Sunday, January 30, 2011

Reducing the List but no Finishes

Yesterday my local quilt shop had a "Sew In" to make quilts, library bags and soft toys for the flood victims.  I took along one Kids Quilt top and the Music Quilt - both of which I had intended for a charity so it seemed the ideal opportunity to hand them over.  Someone has finished the music quilt and someone else has taken the kids top to quilt and bind it.  I have almost finished another top with left over bits from the music quilt and will hopefully take a picture before I hand it over to be finished off .  So that is 3 off the List!

I have also finished Verse 2 for Jenny's Give Thanks so will photograph it later in the week and post the picture.

And I am delighted that the tennis is finally over (even though the right girl won but the wrong boy won!) adn Channel 7 will get back to normal.   But as my husband cheerfully informs me it is only a few weeks til the AFL starts and there is always some cricket or something going on. 
Thank heavens I have my sewing to distract me. 


Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sewing Caddies for "New Beginnings"

I have made five Sewing Caddies to send to the New Beginnings project - organised by Gum Tree Designers (with Dawn and Jenny doing the collections etc).  They are all almost the same and will be posted off tomorrow.  Nothing outstanding but I hope they will be useful and show those badly affected by the floods everywhere that people care.  I had no great plans for this fabric when I bought it at a closing down sale quite a while back - and its not really my colour choice, but I knew it would come in handy one day!

Sewing Caddy, Needlebook, Scissors holder and scissors, a pin cushion [in green and hard to see] a fat quarter, 6 skeins of DMC and a packet of needles (not in the picture).

Now back to my UFO list!

Happy Sewing til next time

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Two More Finishes

Here are my photos of My Give Thanks wall hanging and with Verse 1 attached. This is going to be such a lovely collection.  (From Jenny of Elefantz)  And already Jenny has given us verse 2. - so I better get tracing again!  Go here for the original wall hanging.

Monday, January 24, 2011

2 More Finishes

Another two to get off the list!

Christmas Sampler - not finished in time for 2010 Christmas but at least its ready for this year.  A Nancy Halverson design - in the book "Tidings" .  I fell in love with this at the Brisbane Craft show in October last year.

Leanne Beasley's Stitchers Keeper - I just love this embroidery - it was a "Must have" as soon as I saw it.
The pattern included an iron on transfer - just love those things - so much better than tracing - and you can use a wider variety of fabrics.  So I had to test the iron on before I did the main pattern - and made a little needle case out of the pratice bit.  (That's it at the top saying "Stitchers Keeper").  I feel I also need a scissors holder with a single flower - maybe later!

One more is finished - but it will have to wait for another day.

(That's 5 finishes or me)

Take Care

An Alternative to Binding

This idea would work for wall hangings that are relatively small.

I love the look of binding but sometimes its a bit of a bother and then I opt for a "pillowcase" method of backing my small quilts.  I am sure you know what I mean - sew the quilt wadding & backing together with the right side of the backing facing the right side of the quilt, sew around it remembering to leave a gap to turn it the right way out.  Then I had the problem of trying to make the sewn up gap look as neat as the rest.  (and I never could.)  Then I had a flash of brilliance - well I thought it was pretty clever.!!

Sew - try this:

Start with 2 pieces of fabric you can use for your backing - in this case I used the same width as the 'quilt'  [tiny baby thing it is] and made my pieces more than half the length - confused ? - read on!
Sew the seam across the backing - I sewed to the first pin mark - did a locking stitch - changed my stitch length to a lot longer- sewed until the next pin mark and then reduced my stitch length to normal, did a lock stitch and sewed to the end.

Iron the backing and trim to the size of the quilt top.

Put the  quilt and the backing right sides together and sew all the way around the quilt.

I usually do locking stitches in the corner but that is optional.
Trim the corners

Now - you unpick the seam in the backing where you did the larger stitches - and because you did do longer stitches it is easy enough to do.  You can't really see that here - but use your imagination!

Now you can turn the quilt the right way out and push out the corners with your favourite instrument - I use a "Purple Thang" and if you don't have one it is certainly worth the investment (not much).  I tidied up the corners a bit after this picture was taken.

Voila!!  you have a neat little quilt and all you need to do now is sew up the small gap in the backing.

You might like to then use either a triple stitch or machine quilting stitch around the quilt.  I haven't done that on my sample that I used here - but I have used triple stitch on this one - the effect is similar to binding in the same fabric as your border.

Now, there is a drawback to this - as I found by experience - your quilt will end up smaller than if you had used regular binding - after all your 1/4 inch seam allowance is now INSIDE  instead of under the binding - that is why I showed you this red sample instead of my original - but then I have a motto - You can learn something from every quilt you make - I certainly did this time.!

Hopefully you found that interesting - else you can just forget all about it.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Message from Carla in the US

I visit Carla's blog frequently.  Today I read her message (titled Natural Disasters dated 18 January) to us all in Australia and was very moved by what she wrote.  The last week has been very emotionally draining - even for those of us totally unaffected by the floods in Brisbane - but after reading Carla's message I was all choked up again.  She has been through some tough times herself - but she has overcome all that and has a lot of words of encouragement.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Help Queensland Flood Victims

You will all have heard how devastating the floods are in Queensland.  There are two things happening that I know of where you can help.

Gum Tree Designers are organising small sewing parcels to be delivered to Quilting Groups to help those who have lost everything - to give them a little start to be able to enjoy some sewing again.  The parcels will consist of a thread caddy,some scissors, some threads etc. Please go and look and help if you can.
Jenny of Elefantz is also auctioning two of her gorgeous Shabby Roses Quilts and donating the proceeds to the flood victims.

Take Care everyone - especially those in flood areas and also in the bushfire areas on the other side of the country. Unfortunately the rain is likely to be very heavy for a while yet and extend all the way down the east coast of Austalia.  Its a strange country sometimes!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

UFOs - 1 2 and 3 DONE!!

My Christmas break is nearly over but I have done a lot of organising and a fair bit of sewing - there can never be enough but I am only human and need to sleep a bit.

I am happy to say I have 3 UFOs finsihed - so I will post now but update my list a bit later.

The first one - a black and gold bag that has been cut out for several months:  Pity the gold doesn't show up very well.

The second one - (started and finished in 3 days!!!!) a very colourful bag made for a friend of a friend who very kindly finished a cross stitch for me - I had done less than a quarter of it - started more than five years ago. This is in no way comparable to the work she put into my cross stitch - but she said she enjoyed doing things like that! (The pattern was Sew Cosy in case you have it.)

The third one is the Victorian Sewing Pouch from the Gift of the Month program for 2009. I had all the inside pockets made, just needed to put it all together.

Well that is 3 down and ???how many to go???

Hugs to all

Monday, January 3, 2011

Sew Its Finished 2011 UFO Challenge

Well I have just spent quite a bit of time listing in a spreadsheet - all the UFOs that came to mind - based on existing lists and what I can see - and although I only finished it half an hour ago I have already thought of 2 more that I HAVE to include!! (lol).    Then I gave them a rating -  10 being DO SOON and 1 being - When on earth will I ever get to this??)  And some of them are date deadlines - eg by 1st July and by end of year.  I found an alarming 58 (after the 2 new ones).  Ratings 10 - 6 are meant to be done by the End of the Year - that is 46 or something - eek - can I do it???  All my project (one missing ) are listed at the right - if you want to have a good laugh!!!
Don't forget to leave a little comment if you come visiting - it does mean a lot to me!! :-)