Monday, October 5, 2015

Mini-mini Quilts

Recently my friend Yvonne @Quilting Jetgirl recently posted a tiny quilt (only measure 3" square) to her instagram and asked if anyone wanted to swap for it.  I was lucky enough to say YES! first, and little did I know it was but a rabbit hole of mini-mini-mania.  If you're interested in joining in, check out the #miniminiquiltswap on IG and look for ones available to swap, or just ask someone if they'd like to swap with you!  Everyone is so friendly.

Mini-mini quilts.

I started with using some 1.5" hst blocks I had leftover from this quilt, and then also used a leftover block from the Wedding Medallion quilt I made earlier this year--both perfectly suited to making itty bitty quilts!

This one went to Kitty at Night Quilter, and just before I mailed it I added some fmq swirls to the center.  See the after photo on my IG

The back, before I added some fmq swirls.  About 3.5" square.

This one went to Michelle on IG, about 4.5" square.

Tiny mini quilt back.

This one went to Yvonne, it measures 3.5" square.

I totally chose this mathy background for Yvonne, but it's awesomeness is lost in the size of this mini.  It is Metrics by Brigitte Heitland for Zen chic.

And then it seemed like I was done...until I started making FMQ paisley wholecloth mini-minis (I'll post photos of those soon)! Apparently that is my niche, and now I'm signed up to swap with 9 more people, hahaha.  I'll be at my machine quilting those up if you need me...

Friday, October 2, 2015

Ocean Study baby quilt

It's been quiet around here lately!  I went through a major creative slump for several weeks, but about a week ago I finally found some motivation to make again.  I decided to participate in Quilts in the Queue's 100 Quilts for Kids project.

grab button for 100 Quilts for Kids

I figured it would be a good way to get myself out of a slump while working on my annual donation quilt.  Plus I had a guild sew-in last Saturday and I wanted something simple to piece.  I chose Tula Pink's Field Study quilt pattern (see my first one here) because the piecing is so quick (start to finish was less than a week!).

Ocean Study quilt: measures 38"x47" after first wash.

The pattern calls for five 3/4 yard cuts, but I really wanted to use the 1/2 yard I had of the whale pint (Sea Breeze by Amy Shaw).  So instead of each block being 12.5" I cut them at only 10.5".  It finished at 38" x 47", which I think is a good size for a baby!

Sea Breeze fabric by Amy Shaw--I love that the whales are swimming every which way, I didn't have to worry about directions when piecing!

I chose coordinating solids of Kona Cornflower, Navy and Espresso and Bella Feather.  

Ocean Study quilt: quilting detail

I quilted it using Aurifil #2715 (Robin's Egg) on the front to blend with the light blues, and #2600 (Dove) on the back so it would show off the quilting a little more:

Ocean Study quilt: front of quilt on the left, back of quilt on the right

The piecing of the front leaves a lot of extra fabric, which I sewed into HST blocks and pieced onto the back:

Ocean Study quilt: back (mostly Kona Cornflower)

And thankfully my sew-jo has returned and I'm working on lots of small projects at the same time right now!  I will be posting about those soon.

I will be donating this quilt to the Albuquerque chapter of Project Linus.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Selvage Along: Project Link Up!

Welcome to the last post of the Selvage Along!  Thank you so much for joining me and Jess @Quilty Habit this summer and sharing your selvages and projects with us!

My big project for the Selvage Along is this Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner you can read about here:

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner

Go check out Jess's big amazing Selvage bookcase Quilt too!

Feel free to link up a IG photo or blog post!  But, please refrain from linking up selvage projects that you made before July!  This linky party is for the projects made July-September, 2015.  Thanks!

Selvage Along Schedule
July 20 - Intro post
July 24 - Selvage storage/collection linkup 
July 27 - Selvage Strip Pillow Tutorial by Jess @ Quilty Habit 

August 3 - Anna Maria Horner Selvage Feathers Tutorial by Renee @ Quilts of a Feather
August 10 -  Selvage Zippy Pouch Tutorial by Chris @ Made by ChrissieD & mid-way linky on both blogs  

August 17 - Selvage Binding Tutorial by Yvonne @ Quilting Jetgirl 

August 24 - Project by Vera @ Negligent Style 

August 31 - Project by JessElven Garden Quilts 
Sept. 14 - Tutorial round up on both blogs 
Sept. 21 - Last linky party- link up your selvage projects! <<<You are here!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner

I finally finished this mini quilt, hurray!  It was a slow summer project I worked on during the Selvage Along (the last link up is tomorrow!).  I wrote a tutorial on how I made these AMH Feather Bed here: feathers with selvages.

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: measures 9" x 70"--specically to hang above my sewing room window.

I used up lots of selvages on the back too!

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: back

I had my husband take photos since it's such a weird shaped quilt and he can't hide behind it.  Things got a little silly:

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner as a headdress.

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner as a shawl.

Now for a bunch of close up photos!

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: feather #1 

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: feather #2

The background fabric is Kona Charcoal, and I quilted it with Aurifil #5004 (grey smoke).  I really enjoyed playing with the contrast of thread and fabric while also playing with new motifs!

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner center.

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: feather #3

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: feather #4

My newest obsession are paisleys, and it was a fun challenge to find ways to quilt them:

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: quilted paisley

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: quilted paisley

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: quilted paisley

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: quilted paisley

I also started decorating my larger spiral:

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: fancy swirl/spiral

And of course I snuck a little snail in!

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: my signature snail 

I used Aurifil #2800 (mint ice) on the back.  The selvages on the back are sewn onto muslin (in the shingle method, to cover the raw edges).  Because of the extra layers I used a topstitch 90/14 needle, but otherwise FMQ normally without any issues.

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner back.

While putting on my binding, it came up about 2" short (even though I was sure I had cut enough!), so I used a coordinating piece of selvage:

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: quilted bee and selvage binding patch

Selvage Feathers Quilt Runner: selvage binding patch and quilt label (from TagsToGo on Etsy)

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Aeroplane Bag: Padded Straps & Zipper Tab Tutorial!

These short tutorials are for the Aeroplane Bag pattern by Sew Sweetness, though the methods can definitely be used on other bag patterns with similar construction!  

Aeroplane Bags: long version on the left with small sewing machine and regular version on the right with 3/4 sewing machine.

Padded Straps

The pattern does not include any instructions for adding padding to the straps--but the bag is quite large and will be heavy and uncomfortable to carry without any padding.  Especially if you plan to use the bag for a sewing machine!   I also think the padding adds a more structured, finished, and -professional feel to the bag.

1. Cut 2 pieces of fusible fleece 3" wide and the length of your straps piece, minus one inch (so if your strap is 44" long, cut the fusible fleece to 43" long).  You may have to use more than one piece to get the right length, just overlap them by 1/8 when pressing to your strap fabric.

Aeroplane bag strap with fusible fleece added for padding.

2. Press as per the instructions that came with your fusible fleece--centering it on the strap. 

3. Cut 2 pieces of fusible fleece 3" wide and 14" long (one for each strap).  Place and press it at the center of each strap.

Aeroplane Bag: adding a second layer of fusible fleece to the center of the strap for extra padding/comfort.

 4. The fusible fleece makes for an easy guide for the rest of the handle construction.  Press the fabric in towards the fusible fleece 1/2" on each side.

Aeroplane Bag: pressing seam allowance toward fusible fleece.

5. Follow instructions in the Aeroplane Bag pattern to finish the straps.

Note: For my first version I only added one layer and knew it wasn't thick enough to carry a larger machine, so for the long version of the bag I added the second layer at the center of the strap and was much happier with the thickness and comfort when carrying a sewing machine. 

Zipper Taps

Adding 1" pieces of fabric to both ends of the zipper with reduce bulk in the seam allowance, and will make sewing the bag together smoother as you won't be sewing over many layers of fabric plus a zipper!  The hidden zipper ends and/or teeth can be really difficult to sew over or around.  Also the zipper tabs center the ends of the zipper instead of them being kind of skewed into the seam allowance.

1. Cut 4 pieces of fabric 1.25" long by the width of your zipper.  My zipper is 1" wide, so my fabirc pieces are 1.25"x1".  You will also want to trim your zipper to 2" shorter than called for in your pattern as the tabs add about 2" in length.  

2.  Layer a piece of fabric on each side of the zipper ends (right sides facing the zipper, making a zipper sandwich), and sew a 1/4" seam.  

Aeroplane Bag: zipper sandwich!

3. Press fabric pieces away from zipper and topstitch 1/8" from edge (catching both the top and bottom pieces):

Aeroplane Bag: zipper tabs top

Aeroplane Bag: zipper tabs bottom.

4. When inserting the zipper (as per the Aeroplane Bag pattern instructions), mark the center of the tabs, and angle it to the edge of the bag pieces:

Aeroplane Bag: when installing zipper the tabs will angle towards the edge of the bag piece while the zipper stays flush with the edge of the bag.

5. Basically follow the Aeroplane Bag instructions for sewing in the zipper, being sure to start sewing at the edge of the bag and angling to a 1/4" seam allowance:

Aeroplane Bag: sewing in the zipper tabs

Aeroplane Bag: sewing in the zipper tabs

6. Here is what the zipper tab looks like once you have sewn the zipper to the lining:

Aeroplane Bag: zipper tab from lining side.

If it's a little smaller, that's okay, but you don't want it much bigger because you want that entire unfinished edge of the zipper tab to be encased in the bag seam allowance.

7.  Continue with the pattern instruction on finishing the bag.  I took a bunch of photos and think they are worth sharing to help you out in the tricky spots.

When pinning the exterior pieces together, try to match them up around the entire edge, but especially where it meets the lining.

Aeroplane Bag: preparing to sew the exterior of the bag together. 

When sewing you want to make sure to start right at the seam where the zipper tab is sewn to the bag--in the photo below I started about 1/2" away from it and then carefully reversed to the right spot.

Aeroplane Bag: sewing together the exterior pieces takes a lot of wrestling!

Be careful to keep the lining out of the way so it doesn't get pinched, like mine did:

Aeroplane Bag: top seam (just above the zipper tab) is pinched/accidently sewn in, and the stitches are already stressed.

If you do catch the lining, just rip out the offending stitches and try again.  I know, that totally sucks and you just want to be done with the bag already!  But those stitches will be carrying the weight of whatever you put in your bag, and will likely tear through at some point--better to do an easy fix now than deal with damage later!

Aeroplane Bag: ripped out a few stitches on the left where the lining was caught in the seam.

Okay, hopefully the bag construction went smoothly after that and your zipper tabs looks like this (or better!):

Aeroplane Bag: exterior zipper tab at the top stop.

Aeroplane Bag: interior zipper tab at the top stop.

Aeroplane Bag: exterior zipper tab at the bottom stop.

Aeroplane Bag: interior zipper tab at the bottom stop.  This one has a weird pinching on the left side, but with the lining fully in the bag it didn't pull on the stitches, so I left it.  It is a minor wonky detail in the bag that would probably go unnoticed...except for this closeup photo I'm sharing on the internet, haha.

You can also see the zipper tabs I put in the first Aeroplane bag I made here!

I hope these make sense and are helpful when you make an Aeroplane bag, or similar.  Please let me know if something doesn't make sense and I will try to clarify!