Monday, June 24, 2013

Swoon #10- #12 & Momentum Returned

Finally back to the sewing machine! I had an incredibly productive weekend. So much so, I feel like I deserve a break and so went back to work (yeah right). This weekend was exhausting yet fulfilling. Here's a brief run-through of fun stuff (all chores excluded):

Well, I guess laundry is a chore. Laundry day is Neti's favorite because the basket is empty and she can knock it over and curl up inside. It's her favorite place on the weekend, when not on the sewing table. She occupied herself here all day so I don't have any sewing pictures with her. She couldn't be bothered.

I spent Saturday morning with an old friend who I used to sew with constantly. She's off at grad school in Illinois. Now home for the summer we met up for our usual coffee & pastry and something fun afterwards. We decided to hit up a local quilt shop-- The Quilting Loft. Twist my arm, right? I think we were both happy to go browse.

Yeah, I found something. This adorable Hexie Garden quilt kit! I'm a big fan of kits but somehow always feel like I'm cheating when working on them. They had a demo of the finished quilt in the Loft and the minute I saw it I wanted to throw it over my shoulders and take a nap. That's a good sign, so I had to grab it.

These are the included fabrics for the hexagon flowers. Apparently, hexagons are all the rage right now. I hate to follow the masses, but the quilt just screamed vintage with its creams instead of stark whites. I couldn't resist. I'm a sucker for vintage.

Renewed with a sense of urgency to sew so I could get to this quilt kit, I went home and got my other big project out of the way. 

I bought some strawberries from a local farm near work. Peak of the season, best berries I've ever tasted, seriously the best berries I've ever had! They were picked that morning and although I felt like I was cheating (kinda like a quilt kit, all the choosing and cutting done for me) I grabbed and ran with great expectations. I made strawberry jam and strawberry balsamic jam and ended up with 2 more jars each than anticipated! 

Needing time to set overnight I waited until Sunday and then made some currant cream scones. I slathered them with strawberry jam and poured myself a tall glass of milk.

The jam (and scones) are HEAVENLY. Seriously. Heavenly. The hubby and I have already eaten half that jam jar, haha. Excited for more fruit seasons to rear their head! They don't know what's coming!

Between dirty dishes, oven loads and jamming I was able to squeeze in some girl-TV (Drop Dead Diva Season 4!) and a few more Swoon blocks. I actually missed piecing these. It'd been too long.

Swoon #10- Finished!

Swoon #11 (love that pink stripe!)- Finished!

Swoon #12- Finished!

All this activity! Including church, cleaning, laundry, World War Z, using the remaining strawberries to make homemade strawberry ice cream, chats with the sister, and zero naps made the kitten VERY sleepy. She was a doll this weekend.

There you have it! A super fulfilling weekend and only four more Swoon to go! I know what I'm doing this weekend!! Can't WAIT to start quilting it!

Swoon Count: 12/16 Finished!

Happy Crafting!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Devie's Getting Married!

Wowee! It's been awhile, hasn't it? The summer is starting off with a bang! I've been traveling and just overall super busy with some new commitments on the weekends while enjoying a sunny Seattle. I'm also getting ready for in less than 10 days seeing my sister get married!!!! SO EXCITED!

Just before my wedding, almost two years ago, my sister sent me a surprise preparation gift, filled with make-up and beauty supplies. It was amazing! I thought I would return the favor, but I don't really know make-up like she does, so I didn't even try. I stuck to what I know best-- sewing. (Warning: Picture heavy post).

I decided that the one thing I could help her prep for was the honeymoon! Or, at least packing for the honeymoon. This meant the sister needed a bunch of travel bags and goodies for getting ready. Let the pattern search commence!

I found the following:
1. A Make-Up Brush Holder (top left)
2. A (Hot) Curling Iron Carrier (top right)
3. A Clean/Dirty Bag for Undies & Socks (bottom left)
4. A Toiletries Bag (bottom right)

I tried to keep all the fabrics in sync with one another and focus on Devon's main squeeze (at the moment): turquoise. I found all the patterns at Sew4Home online. They have somewhere around 8 million free patterns. You could spend hours lost there. Neti and I got to cutting!

Finish #1: The Toiletries Bag

This little bag was a pain to make! But it turned out super great. The best part is the inside, which is a laminate fabric. How smart is that?! That way, if anything spills along the way it can easily be wiped out of the bag, no harm done and no staining. These were my favorite fabrics to work with. I also love that the bag holds its shape on its own, due to those nice boxed corners. Inside were two little surprises. You can't send a bag empty!

Finish #2: The Make-Up Brush Holder

This was the easiest to put together. I went most challenging first and then gave myself a break. Mentally, this is the best way for me to work. A super simple pattern with another super smart use of laminate on the backing. That way, any make-up left on the brushes gets held by the laminate and can easily be wiped off. Each little pocket perfectly holds a brush of all shapes and sizes. I included a little baby one, just 'cause. These fabric combos were by far the most fun. I may even have a little left over for one for myself. :)

All the while, Neti was nearby during the process. Since I haven't been sewing much she's really been missing the time spent at the machine and sewing table with its rulers and cutting mats.


Yes, that's Neti on my lap while working on the toiletries bag. It was impossible to sew, but I love it.
Finish #3: A (Hot) Curling Iron Bag

By far the most ingenious of the bunch and the most plush. I used that awesome batting (Insul-brite) that has the metal fibers woven in to it. This will allow Devon to grab her curling iron, just after using it, and shove it in to the bag, close it up, and run for the airport! It will hold that heat in without burning fabric or damaging anything else around it in her luggage. The back even has an "invisible" pocket for putting the wound up cord away. These people think of everything! I say invisible only because I lined up the pattern perfectly on the back. 

Finish #4: The Clean/Dirty Bags for Undies & Socks

My very favorite project to put together were these bags. I got the ideas from ladies in my quilt guild who actually found some fabric with bras and undies all over it and made similar bags. I decided this fabric was a little more Devon and went to work! I designed my own pattern, but that's not too exciting seeing as I could have made these with Grandma when I was 8. They are ridiculously simple. I did try and make them extra special though, with top-stitching around the bag's border and around the zipper. I even hand embroidered the Clean and Dirty labels and then appliqued them on to the fronts. I love these bags and almost kept them. Almost. These should help keep the clean undies/socks away from the dirty ones during their week in paradise. I made them big enough so she could share with her new husband (but she didn't seem too keen on that idea).

Needless to say, they all look great in a group and now Devon will be able to travel in style to her tropical honeymoon destination. These were super fun to make for her, I hope she loves them!

Sorry for the delay in posting, but I had to make sure she got the package first before sharing. This also delayed posting for about two weeks as I got them finished, but all is good now.

This weekend the hubby is racing mopeds down in McMinnville, which means I have a weekend to myself sewing. Swoon, I'm coming back to finish piecing you!

Happy Crafting!