I’m still on a blogging-hiatus, but I just couldn’t resist playing along with the other makers in the 6 Weeks of Softies contest. If you haven’t checked it out, you should! There is such an amazing showcase of talent going on over there. Thank you to the organizers and sponsors for putting together a great lineup!
My entry was made with a very special girl or boy in mind, but more on that later. Meet Nexus Moon — She is a one of kind unicorn who loves dance parties, reading books under the covers, and cuddle time.
She was made in a silky royal purple corduroy accented by a plush white velour blaze and under-body. Her hooves are made from soft genuine leather and slightly weighted. Her horn was painstakingly crafted from sparkly fabric (seriously, you should see the pile of reject horns that failed to turn correctly). Her mane is an all natural bulky weight wool yarn in variegated purple. Her seams are triple sewn so that she is truly adventure-ready. And, like all my toys, Nexus Moon is stuffed with 100% clean carded wool and filled with “hugs” from the preschooler in residence.
Nexus Moon was adapted from Jill Hamor’s “Vintage Horse” pattern. In addition to the sparkly unicorn horn, I’ve also modified her hooves, muzzle, legs and mane.
I’ve also included a few details and embellishments for maximum play-ability. She is sporting a removable bridle made from sparkly silver ribbon and iridescent purple flowers. She can be dressed up or down thanks to her fully reversible saddle… One side features crystal gemstones in a sea of “morning glory” peppered cotton. Un-snap the saddle to turn it over, and presto, her saddle becomes a coordinating floral print from Rashida Coleman’s Koi Collection.
Regular readers know that I adore sharing my softies with children, but Nexus Moon has an extra special job ahead of her: She is being boxed up and donated to a soft toy drive to benefit children in foster care, sponsored by Sew Mama Sew. I couldn’t be more thrilled to share her with a child who needs a little more magic in his/her life. I know Nexus Moon has fabulous adventures ahead of her; and I can’t wait for her to meet her new best friend!
We welcomed a happy healthy baby girl in mid-November, and waved buh-bye to a hugely difficult pregnancy with hyperemesis. We couldn’t be happier! I’m still sewing when I can (read: in five minute increments with a baby strapped to me!), but blogging just isn’t happening between work and home. Kids have these “needs” like eating — pretty selfish, really. Haha
I’ll be back to the blog once things settle down here. In the meantime, please follow me on instagram @stitchified. I would love it if you came by to say hello!
I am so behind on blogging! Thankfully, I’m a little less behind on sewing. Apologies to those who might have seen this quilt top on Instagram, or in Cotton +Steel’s newsletter, like, um, weeks ago.
This quilt is for my new baby girl, who is due in just a few short weeks (ahh!). In retrospect, it’s more adult than I intended. I’ve affectionately dubbed it “Baby’s first dorm quilt.” (And I’ll admit that I have started piecing a second more delicately feminine baby quilt. Babies deserve many quilts, right?).
The quilt features many of my favorite prints from Cotton+Steel’s new collections, which are just gorgeous. I really love everything about their spring collection, but my favorite thing is how easy it is to mix and match between lines. I started with a Mustang layer cake, and mixed in a few prints from their basics lines and the butterflies from MoonLit. And did I mention it’s shiny? Yay for metallics!
To make the quilt top I used my Hex N’ More ruler and the #delightquilt pattern by JaybirdQuilts. I’ve had the ruler for awhile, but this was my first time using it. It really made cutting and piecing a breeze — no partial or Y-seams! will definitely be using it more often!
This is also the first time I’ve pieced on my featherweight when accuracy counted… which means that my points are far from perfect. It wasn’t easy for me to let the imperfections slide, but I forced myself to let it go. Practice makes pefect, right?
Next up. quilting and binding before this baby shows up!
Linking up with CrazyMomQuilts and Finish It Up Friday!
When I was a little girl my great grandmother sent me and my sister a copy of The Velveteen Rabbit. She also included a cassette tape recording of her reading the book, and a handmade teddy bear for each of us. That gift stuck with me and has given me a lifetime appreciation for the magic of toys. Needless to say, the book is a favorite in my household — creepy references to a “skin horse” and all
So when I realized that my friend’s son was turning three, I knew exactly what to make him. Right down to the pink nose and coal black eyes.
The pattern for this little guy came from Jill Hamor’s book, Storybook Toys. This is the third project I’ve made from this book (other projects are here and here). While I do love this book, the patterns are short on photos especially when compared to .pdf patterns and blog tutorials. The pattern is entirely manageable though; no seam ripper required.
A few notes on construction… His body is a fawn-colored organic cotton velour. Most of the velour parts are reinforced with fusible fleece, except the ears and tail which were left fusible-free for maximum silkiness. The belly and under-ears are organic cotton sherpa, which I’ve raved about before (seriously tactile heaven, people). He is gently stuffed with wool for superior squish, and weighted ever-so-slightly so that he sits well in the hand (or tucked under an arm). He is also the first softie that I’ve made on my Featherweight, which seems only fitting since I’m told that was my great grandmother’s machine of choice.
And, of course, a copy of Margery Williams’s book accompanied the bunny to his new home. I’m told that he was granted a place of honor “in the bed clothes,” which is exactly how I hoped his story would go.
Linking up with CrazyMomQuilts and Finish it Up Friday.
I did it! I’m still fighting my way through this pregnancy sickness (HG
is nobody’s friend), but I’ve been determined to sew. It’s a sanity thing. The days are tough to get through, but I’ve been chipping away at my niece’s baby quilt nonetheless. Finally finishing is so rewarding and feels amazingly life affirming.
This quilt has been on my quilty bucket list ever since I saw Better Off Thread’s version here. I absolutely love the modern twist she gave the traditional lone star by turning it (literally!) on it’s side, and slicing it in half. I decided to leave well enough alone and didn’t change much on my version.
You can find a great tutorial for the lone star on here site here, though it doesn’t include instructions for (in)setting the star in the background — which I found a little tricky.
You can see my seam lines in the quilt top below if you’re curious. Granted, I (greatly!) complicated things by skimping on yardage, so I had to carefully combine what I had to cover the shortage. A quick word of the wise on the offset star though — you’ll need a lot of bias cuts to make it work, so expect a stretchy quilt top.
Because the quilt top was so stretchy (and because I was too scared to attempt a new FMQ design!) I decided to keep things simple with the quilting. I stitched in the ditch inside the star, and then quilted 1″ lines radiating out of the star. I love how the diamonds in the negative space echo the piecing in the star. I’m pretty pleased with how the quilting came out, even if those bias edges caused me a lot of heartburn. If I make another bias-tastic quilt, I might be a little more generous with my basting. Oh, and though you can barely tell they are there, I added a few lines of hot pink contrasting thread to the quilting. Love it!
The quilt is backed in a navy polka dot, and bound in a cheery white and pink polka dot.
I even managed to take this one out for a real photo shoot! It came with us to our CSA where I found a nice spot in the shade of the old silo. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get many good shots because it was a crazy windy (Hurricane Arthur had only just cleared out). What I did get were a few hilarious outtakes, which at least show off the background I was *attempting* to capture. Better luck next time, quilt team
Linking up with CrazyMom and Finish it Up Friday!
I am very lucky to have a support network that contains a few female powerhouses. And this year has made me particularly grateful for each and every one of them.
Which is why I was extra happy to stealth-make a #SewTogetherBag for my dear friend, and kindred spirit, MamaPeaches. And mail it off as a surprise just because. Bwhaha. Yep, I’m sneaky like that.
This bag came together easily, even if it did take me a month to actually finish. It is definitely easier the second time around!. I used both my Featherweight (master top-stitcher!) and my Horizon (hooray for layer-devouring Accufeed!) which is becoming a favorite setup for bag-making projects. The exterior is an Echino print, and the interior is Essex Linen in sand. The zippers are, of course, from Zipit including an exterior brass zipper which is completely drool worthy.
All zippers underwent rigorous quality control testing, and passed with high marks for “swishyness.”
And while I tried to tone down my usual rainbowgasm palette, I just *had* to hide a few splashes of color in the pocket linings. For added luxury, the needle pad is a double layer of turquoise wool felt, and the mini pin cushion is wool-stuffed. I hope she likes it!
And now, in closing, a little PSA: Every quilter needs at least one of these bags. Pattern here. They are a must have for EPP and sewing retreats. Seriously. Friends don’t let quilty friends go without. Besides, secret sewing is pretty much the best!
Linking up with Finish it Up Friday at CrazyMom!
My husband scored a pair of Casige toy sewing machines at the Brimfield Flea Market this weekend. I am ecstatic! They date from the post WW2 era, and are stamped “Made in Germany, British Zone.” Researching the pair has proven surprisingly difficult. Casige was an extremely prolific toy maker, with over 80 models were made between 1902 – 1975. With so many models out there, it’s really difficult to track down exactly what I have here. I think the red one is probably a Model #1015, but I haven’t found a good match for the larger silver one. It’s going to make it tricky to find replacement needles!
They came to me absolutely caked in dirt. I’m no neat freak, but honestly they were too dirty to enter the house. I spared you all photos of that hot mess. Honestly, I thought the larger one was tan colored when it was fresh from the fair. Thankfully a few sprays of Tuff Stuff took care of the worst of the grime, and revealed a silver machine (not tan!). Though there’s still *plenty* of cleaning work to be done.
I started taking the larger silver one apart, and let me tell you… it is rust city. I was able to loosen the screws after a long soak in WD-40, but the one on the base plate is still stuck. The chrome pieces are soaking in vinegar to take care of the rust. I haven’t used that technique before, but I have my fingers crossed! I’ve used WD-40 to clean the gunk in the machine head, which has things moving more smoothly.
The next question is whether to stick to restoring, or do a full repaint. I usually try to keep things original, but I think the finish on these is too far gone. Which begs the question… if I repaint, do I go crazy with a dark royal purple? Or play it cool with a more vintage appropriate powder blue or something? Hmmm… decisions! What do you folks think? Linking up with WIP Wednesday!
Yikes! Sorry for the radio silence over here.
In a lovely ironic twist, the very thing that got me started on my sewing adventure is now causing me to take a forced break. Yes, that’s right… I’m very happy to announce that we are expecting baby #2 this November. And while I’m eager to welcome this baby into the world, I’ll be equally excited to wave goodbye to the non-stop puke fest that is my life right now. Seriously, this pregnancy has not been easy on Mama.
I have been chipping away at a few projects, but I don’t have much to show for it… and you’ll have to excuse the lazy iPhone photos.
There is this new quilt top in the works for my brother’s new baby girl. I’m going to do this as a half-lone star with a grass-green background. Can I also say that I just *love* Vanessa’s Color Me Happy line?
And I managed to sew up a Sew Together Bag for my hexie EPP projects. Phew. That was a tough project, but it’s such a great finished bag. I’m not entirely pleased with how the hexies got cut off on the outside, but I had to cover a bad mis-measurement. Whoops!
Otherwise, how about a few shamelessly adorable photos from our CSA? Maybe it’s the hormones, but I love the Daddy goat with his baby.
And a tamworth piglet, too:
That’s all I have for now. I suspect the next couple of months will be quiet around here, but I look forward to crafting again and returning to this space. In the meantime, happy sewing to all of you
I’ll be honest… all that applique for Patchwork Elephants on Parade left me pretty burnt out on the sewing front. So last Saturday morning, my Mini Me and I decided to make something just for me. And that thing? The 241 Tote by Noodlehead.
I have had my eye on this bag for ages — like Evernote says I bought the pattern over a year ago.
At any rate, fabric auditions were held and we decided on a teal textured cotton, linen, and of course, a feature print from Tula Pink’s Acacia collection. The bag is lined with Alison Glass’s feathers in pink. For the most part, I stuck to the pattern though I did add a zipper pocket to the inside. Oh, and I modified the strap so I could wear the bag across my shoulders (easier for toddler wrangling!).
And on the opposite side of the liner is another pocket, specially sized for my iPhone. Happiness folks. Pure happiness.
The end result is a little, errrr, bold. I think it’s a bag that only a quilter could love, but it makes me happy inside.
I haven’t been brave enough to bring my bag to the office, but I did take it for a spin at the mall (and nobody complained about its loudness!). The bag may be totally impractical fashion-wise, but it makes me happy just the same. The moral of the story here? We should all treat ourselves more often! A fun diversion here and there is well deserved
I know I’ve said it before, but oye vey! I have not enjoyed this quilt top! Thanks to all your advice and encouragement (and a little #selfishsewing project — more on that later in the week!) I was able to to get it finished. But now it’s done. Done. Done. Done! These elephants are literally made of four letter words — Good riddance little elephants!
Despite the hellish applique project that I brought upon myself, I’m so happy with how it came out.
I’m going to put it away for a week or so while I figure out how to quilt the darn thing. There is a *lot* of negative space, and I’m sort of at a loss. I spotted this paper pantograph called “Animal Crackers.” It looks, um, challenging. And I’m not sure what to make of the whole paper pantograph thing either. So, yes, I need to let things percolate before I figure out where I’m going next.
Which means, right now I’m all about celebrating the quilt top finish. Woohoo! And one last photo to commemorate the finish