Saturday, June 30, 2012

A New Fabric Lover

My 13 year old granddaughter, Sierra expressed an interest in learning to sew. When we went fabric shopping I could tell she loved petting the fabrics almost as much as I. It was fun to teach her about picking coordinating fabrics. I showed her how she could tell a lot about cotton fabrics by the feel.
She chose some nice fabrics for a pillowcase. I thought that was a great beginner project. 
We used the "hotdog" method to make her pillowcase.

It was a good, first effort.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

A Sunflower, Birdhouses and a Story

As promised, here is a new finished project reveal. My daughter loves sunflowers. When I saw this wall hanging in Quilter's World magazine (Aug. 2008), I knew I had to make it for her. Since I was going from Nashville to San Diego this week to visit her, I put a rush on finishing. She loved it!
I was thrilled to find the exact same red fabric print for the border as was pictured in the magazine.
I tried my hand at thread painting with a variegated thread to give the sunflower depth. I used a trapunto technique for the center of the sunflower.
 The birdhouse roofs were prairie points with buttons tied with tan embroidery thread. Looks like nesting material.

 Even the backing has sunflowers.
Now a story about the sunflowers. In February 2010, a 17 year old girl at my granddaughter's high school (Poway, CA) was kidnapped and murdered. Her name was Chelsea King. At her memorial service everyone was given a sunflower (see story here). When I found the red border fabric at a LQS, I mentioned the story to the lady who was cutting the fabric for me. As I was telling it, my eyes fell on the selvage. The name of the fabric design was Chelsea Lane. The coincidence gave me goose bumps. 

Monday, June 25, 2012

Flying High

Tomorrow morning I am flying to San Diego, CA to see my 2 grandsons, 2 granddaughters, and my daughter. If my flight is on time I'll be there for lunch with 3 of the Grands. I am really excited because the youngest wants me to teach her how to sew. I have a few simple projects all picked out. I just need to decide on a few fabrics to take with me.This should be fun!

I have been very busy trying to finish up projects before I go. My guild is having a fundraiser the day after I return home. So, I had to get a project finished before my trip to donate to the auction. I made a sewing machine organizer mat. Very cheery, too.I love yellow and the cute little owls.

I am going to make myself a sewing machine mat when I get back home. I have a large one that came from JoAnn's that I use use under my Husqvarna Lily.But, I need one of these to carry along with my Singer Featherweight.

Stay tuned for another reveal and a story in the next few days.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Small Gift

In my last quilt guild meeting someone showed these cute snappy bags. I found a great tutorial here at Just Another Hangup. These are called snappy bags. They are so fun to make!

I made a snappy bag for my "baby" sister Karen as a thank you gift. She lives near my mother's assisted living facility and visits several days a week. I live 200 miles away and my other sister lives 1,000 miles away. We so appreciate all that Karen does for our Mom. Karen has a small alterations business called Anchor Alterations. I thought she might enjoy a little take-along sewing bag.
Inside it is a scissor fob and a small pincushion I made. Teresa of A Quilt and A Prayer shared her pattern for a cute thread catcher that I included in the bag. The thread catcher folds flat. 

Sunday, June 10, 2012

For the Birds

I started a new project this week. But, because it is a surprise for someone, I can only show a little part of it. It has the cutest inner border of sweet little birdhouses. Prairie points make the roof on each house which gives it a three-dimensional look. A button will be sewn in the middle of each birdhouse. I just have to find 22 black, 7/8" buttons (preferably with 2 holes) that don't cost too much. Not an easy task, I tell you. 
All the  birdhouses are from scraps. I do love the background fabric. I was at The Quilting Squares Quilt Shop in Franklin, TN and saw this Jo Morton fabric as they were putting it on the shelf. I knew it would be perfect for this project. Then, I went to Stitcher's Garden (also in Franklin) and found the outer border fabric I had been searching for. There is a story that goes along with that. I will tell it when I reveal this completed project. Get ready for goosebumps!

I was at the sewing machine a long time yesterday. I also worked on another small project that is a gift for someone. You will see that reveal very soon. I needed a break, so I wandered around in the back yard. I didn't notice that my metal pinwheel was turned around backwards until I saw this photo today. The hydrandeas are looking a little wilty and the birdbath was dry. So, I refilled the birdbath before I went back to the machine. Hoping for rain today. We need it!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Fun Stuff

When I gave my granddaughter her quilt, she loved the fabric I used in the center backing. I love it, too. I got it at JoAnn's and it was as pricey as fabric from my LQS. It feels wonderful. So, I decided to make her a set of pillowcases to match her quilt. I made the cuffs a little narrower than I would have liked because that was all the lime green I had except for one 2.5 inch strip. I  used the "hotdog" method because it is so easy and looks so finished. There is a great tutorial at I love them!
As I was sewing I felt that my needle had a tiny burr. I cleaned all the fuzz out of my sewing machine and put in a new needle. I've been cleaning out my machine more frequently lately. Then, I decided to clean other areas of my sewing table. My favorite pincushion is one that my ex-daughter-in-law (still my friend) bought me years ago at a crafts fair. It is made in a cappuccino cup and saucer with a real silver spoon attached to the saucer. The pincushion part was looking dirty. I removed all the pins and the pearls surrounding it. I wish I had gotten "before" photos. The spoon was very tarnished. I had just bought a beautiful brown print fat quarter for another project. I thought it could simulate coffee. I covered the pin area and re-glued the pearls into place. I got out the silver polish and cleaned up the spoon. Then, I re-glued the flower that had come off long ago. It really looks cute, don't you think?
Another item in my sewing room that makes me happy is a sewing box that my son and family gave me.
Luckily all that it required was dusting. This is a good view of the lid.  My grandchildren call me "Grammy". I understand that the first one they ordered said "granny" and they re-ordered it to say "Grammy". What's in your sewing room that makes your space personal and makes you happy?