Sunday, February 26, 2012

Mouthy Stitches W is for Wellies

Tumbleweeds around here....  sorry for the absence.

I always feel like I've got to have something finished to show you and then the something I'm working on can take longer than I thought.  Remember when I told you I joined my first Flickr swap - Mouthy Stitches?  I got my zipper pouch finished last night ready for posting tomorrow.  I'm going to share with you it's evolution from concept to finished item.

Wellies (a.k.a Gumboots) Pouch Original Concept

When I came up with the design (based on this) I didn't know my partner very well since she wasn't active on Flickr, I mainly had her mosaic to go by.  I knew she liked raw-edge applique and free-motion embroidery so at least that was something we had in common, and some examples of pouches she liked.  Our tastes are probably the complete opposite ends of the spectrum as far as colour goes since her one colour dislike is probably one of my favourites and is in about 80% of my stash.  Yeah, that was stressing me out!

Practice Pouch

The pattern is the Perfect Zip Bag Pattern by Elizabeth Hartman (Oh, Fransson).  I love the way her sewing is so thorough and finished professionally.  I'm quite critical of handsewn items looking too "homemade", I still want things to look like they're made properly and neatly.  Here's my first practice pouch which is less than perfect.  One side of the lining got stitched on upside down, I had to unpick the pocket because that was useless being the wrong way up!  The corners didn't work out very well which is not so noticeable in this photo.  The second time around I made sure I measured exactly how far I needed the seam to be so that the corners were going to turn properly.  It was worth doing a practice, especially since I've never sewn a zipper before.

Raw Edge Applique and Free-Motion Embroidery

It became clearer over time that my partner liked umbrella fabrics so the red umbrella fabric was going to have to be used and that drove the colour direction for the pouch.  I had the brilliant idea of "W is for..." after I posted my design idea.  I kept it to myself because I wasn't sure how I was going to execute it.

Pouch with spare zipper pull

When it came to the crunch, there were some comments that the red/green combo was a bit Xmassy and I couldn't resolve the wellies sitting on a green background (it was just decorative but I wondered whether it looked like it was supposed to be grass and it just didn't seem to make sense) plus it didn't work with the umbrella fabric so in the end I ditched the green background.  

Interior with Pocket

I had tried to incorporate green somewhere else or introducing teal as my partner showed a preference for those colours but what I had just didn't work with that umbrella fabric.  Luckily I found an old Pop Garden fabric on sale at a LQS, with it's earthy feel, green and pops of red and blue it was a perfect match.

So that's my finished pouch, off to the post office tomorrow and winging it's way around the world!  I hope my partner is happy when she receives it.  Now I'm just waiting in anticipation for mine to arrive!

Edited to add: Forgot to mention that this is linking to Sew Modern Monday!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentines Day

Valentines Day is not a very big deal in our household, before kids we'd go out to dinner to some fancy restaurant but now I'd just rather do something small and meaningful for each other, it's my way of rebelling against commercialism and everyone trying to cash in (has anyone else noticed that a certain large supermarket chain put away christmas decorations and replaced them promptly with easter in January!!).

I woke up to this sweet little box of chocolates by the bed this morning, apparently they'd spent the night only inches away from my head.

We had a nice dinner, Veal Marsala followed by Chocolate Mousse and a lovely bottle of Stoneleigh Pinot Noir (for the grown ups only).

Don't you love that happy glint in her eye!

Chocolate goatee

Let's make silly poses for the camera

By the time mousse's were eaten, chocolate overload had kicked in and there were some hyped up little people who were hard to get in the bath and to bed.


In other news - Danielle Wilson from My Sparkle won Project Run & Play.  How good is that?

Monday, February 13, 2012

Project Run & Play Finale

I'd been following and voting for Kristin from Skirt as Top in the Project Run and Play competition.  Kristin got knocked out of the competition in the last round, now they are down to just three designers sewing their Signature Look.  It sounds like there has been so much time and effort involved in this competition, it's amazing what they have been coming up with every week.

In the Details by Danielle Wilson
This week is the Finale and there are three very different submissions.  My favourite, without a doubt, is by Danielle Wilson of My Sparkle (I've never met Danielle before, I've never even read her blog before today but I'm so excited to find it and her creations).  I think this outfit is sophisticated and girly - definitely something I would buy in a shop, the embroidery detail on the jacket is just beautiful!

You should so totally go to PR&P and see what these women have been making, it's truly inspirational (and don't forget to vote for your favourite voting now closed!).

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Scallop Bunting

I've been on Curves Camp this week.  Here's my first project made today, bunting for Scarlett's room.

She'll be two in June and this is the first thing I've made for her room, besides the Babushka doll for her birthday last year.  I've had yardage of It's a Hoot waiting to make a quilt, I'm feeling slack and guilty that it's taken me so long to start decorating her room nicely.

The bunting was easy and fun to make.  I decided to make mine longer than the pattern since this window is 3 metres wide.

I used pre-made bias binding - A Day in the Country from The Remnant Warehouse.  The fabrics are It's a Hoot and DS Quilts.

I had a hard time getting the lighting right (I had to deal with either backlit glare or flash).  Not sure how I could've gotten better photos with the curtain open?

Saturday, February 4, 2012

FQ8 Paper Piecing Sew Along Details

A huge thanks to everyone who made a mention of this little SAL on their blog.  I've made a button without even asking inhouse IT for help I had to ask for some help with the code in the end. You might want to add it to your blog (grab the code from my sidebar).  

FQ8 Paper Piecing Sew Along

I've even set up a Flickr group, FQ8 Paper Piecing Sew Along.  Don't worry, if you don't have a Flickr account, I'll set up a linky party at the end of each month and everyone can add their links to that.

So the nitty gritty about the group. This is not a "how-to group" with tutorials. You will need to have your own copy of Fat Quarterly Issue 8 (it's a download so you get to have it straight away!). The group is a place for us to support each other through the process of making the projects. There are about a dozen projects to choose from, you may even wish to concentrate on one particular technique like foundation piecing or freezer paper piecing or English paper piecing or have a go at all three. You may be planning to make every project or just concentrate on one or two, it doesn't matter, everyone is welcome.  

Take in the eye candy of some of the projects you'll find in the ezine:

1. Skating on Frog Pond, Fat Quarterly Issue 8, 2. Quilter's Clock, 3. Apple Pie Pillow, 4. Geared Up Robot

1. Braided Kaleidoscope for Fat Quarterly, 2. My potholder pattern in the current issue of Fat Quarterly! #sewing #quilting #kitchen, 3. Summer Trees Pillow, 4. Teapot Fancy Cozy

1. Spring Clean Quilt, 2. Elixir Bottle, 3. Star Flower, 4. Fat Quarterly Issue 8 - This is so cool being part of it

So don't forget to put a button on your blog and sign up to the Flickr group!