Friday, December 28, 2012

Making progress


 Well, I have fallen short of my goal of this quilt top being done by Christmas, but I have made progress. I need 16 of these blocks I have now completed 8 (6 are shown as there is no room on this design wall for a king size bed quilt!)

All the strips are made so it is just a matter of having the time to sew! I should be able to finish the blocks at least this weekend, as long as I don't have to go to work!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Homemade Pillowcases for Gifts

I love making these pillowcases for Christmas! They are simple to make and always look so good when they are done, but each year I always have to relearn the sausage trick to make the cuff (is that the word?). So I decided to make myself a photo reference and post it here so I can refer to it anytime.

Fabric requirements:

WOF 2 inch strip, 9 inch strip and 27 inch strip

Press 2 inch strip in half lengthwise.

Lay out 9 inch fabric right side up, lay pressed 2 inch fabric along top, pin together at top.

Lay out 27 inch fabric on top wrong side up, pin together at top.

Roll up the 27 inch piece.

Fold up the 9 inch piece so that everything is inside and pin together.

ta da!
Sew quarter inch seam along pinned side. Turn it all inside out and press.

With wrong sides together sew side and bottom with scant quarter inch seam, turn inside out. With right sides together sew 3/8 inch seam on same side and bottom, and turn inside out again. Press! Done!

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Quilts for twins! and for Dan's

I have been very busy lately! I finished these two baby quilts for friends of mine (Danielle and Dan) who are having twins, a boy and a girl sometime in December! It was quite a struggle to do the machine quilting. I hardly ever use a seam ripper except when I am machine quilting. First I didn't like the pattern, rip it out! then I didn't like the colour of thread, rip it out! then I had tension problems, eek rip it out!! but in the end it worked out, I am still learning and it's practice and practice and practice! It's a good thing babies do not have a critical eye when it comes to quilts!

How's about a nice Hawaiian Punch?
So now that I have that done, I have to work on my next big project.  A friend of mine, another Dan, asked me to make him a quilt made from some of his Hawaiian shirts. Oh that should be fun I said! King size, he said. eek King size? and most of the shirts are made of rayon! He has a huge collection of shirts! He brought me about 20 different shirts, I sorted them by colour and rejected the polyester ones, I figured I only want one kind of fabric to sew, and only one headache to deal with! and the headache is that it is slippery and wonky. Even after you cut the fabric it gets all distorted. I am continuously experimenting with spray-on starch. In the end I picked out 8 different shirts to use.

This also made it hard to figure out a design. I was going to use cotton fabric for sashing the blocks to stablize it. I found a pattern in my Sew to Swap book by Chrissie Grace, that I thought might work with so many busy fabrics, the only problem was that it was square and I had to make it bigger. I got out my graph paper and started drawing.  I also thought I would use white as my solid instead of brown.

My squares will be 2 inches instead of 1 inch and I added a flying geese border for the pillow rest and to make it rectangular instead of square.

Below are my 2 1/2 inch squares waiting to be chain pieced.  I needed to make 16x 16-patch blocks! I got those done at the BIQR.

Below is one completed block, I need 16 of these. I am currently chain-piecing the outer borders. 30x strips of 8 squares, and 30x strips of 6 squares. Chain piecing can be monotonous work at best, so I do a bunch as leaders and enders and in between projects. My goal is to get most of the top pieced by Christmas!