Wednesday, January 21, 2009

As Promised...

...preliminary pics of the Modern Spirit in Squares quilt.

I think I'll call mine Spring Spirit. Just in case I haven't said it enough, I can't wait for spring!
I did have a design decision to make after laying the squares out. (This isn't all of them. I still need to piece about 8 blocks.)

The pattern calls for 12 prints, with three 7.5" squares and three 4.5" squares cut from each for a total of 36 plain blocks and 36 pieced blocks. I had more than 12 fabrics! (Way more!) If you look closely you can see 13 different prints. Now I could have kept all 13 and just had three of 10 of them, and two each of the remaining 3 prints; OR I could edit out one print. I decided to edit. It came down to these three prints which are all pretty similar in value:

Obviously, the leaf print wasn't going anywhere! That left a decision between the two pink dot prints. I decided to edit out the one on the bottom. Even though I really like it and it certainly goes with all the others, it just didn't have the contrast within the print itself that the white dot does. So it's out. But never fear, I have enough fabric to make lots more blocks, so the poor pink print could end up being used on the back of this quilt, or it might even show up in the next pink quilt. And there will be another one!

In other sewing news, construction has begun on S2694. I threaded the serger with matching pink thread this morning, stay-stitched the neckline, and made the darts in the front and back bodice pieces. Not a lot of work, I know, but getting the darts in is always a huge step for me. It's kind of a speed bump I have to get over before turning on the cruise control and really getting a project underway. The vertical darts on the front still need some tweaking- I'm getting a slight "bullet bra" look. It's probably because my darts are so wide that it's hard to end them off smoothly. I've compensated by curving the dart slightly, but it still needs some fine-tuning. I'll post some pics of the darts and the front pattern pieces later, just in case anyone out there is interested in how I handled the FBA. For now, I'm off to play around with my quilt blocks!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Stash Notes

Who is this handsome young man?

This is the HSM shirt- again. Made out of a bright green and gold novelty camo print, this is the 3rd incarnation of S2836. And here it is again in an outer space novelty print:

Sorry about the crummy indoor photo but it's really cold outside this morning. And my Little Man is having a rough start today (weird expression.) This fabric is so nice. It's 100% cotton, but softer and "silkier" than most quilting cottons. I must have really liked it, because apparently I bought it twice! That's right, I have another three yard cut in my stash. I'm thinking the Prince needs some light weight summer PJs. BTW, check out how I matched the print across the front!

Both of these shirts will be entered into the Stash Contest over at Pattern Review. That's another four yards sewn! I hope to get one more of these made before the contest ends. Can you guess what it will be made of? That's right, Frogs!

Now that these two little shirts are done, the next garment up will be S2694, the Military Dress. It's all cut out and ready to go, and I already made a run to the fabric store to get all the notions I needed- thread, buttons, lining for the shoulder flaps, etc. Of course, it's very likely I will get distracted by the Modern Squares quilt. I've already made a bunch of blocks for it and I'm really enjoying it. Stay tuned for preliminary pics!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The Best Laid Plans...

After the last post, Lynn asked what kind of quilt the pink and orange fabrics would be. Here's a pic of the pattern:

This is Modern Spirit in Squares from Quick Quilts #96. Simple, yet pretty, no? I've already cut a bunch of 7.5" and 4.5" squares from the various colored fabrics. I laid them all out on a piece of yellow- my first thought for the "borders" shown in white in the photo, but it just didn't sing. So I laid them out on white, and Wow! What a difference. It was singing! The Princess agreed, so white it will be. Unfortunately, that means I have to get more white fabric. So this quilt top is stalled awaiting a trip to the fabric store.

I am happy to report that Simplicity 2694, the military dress, is all cut out and ready to be put together. I pulled the fabric out this past weekend only to discover that it was dusty from being stored on an open shelf so I had to pre-wash it again. While it was in the laundry, I didn't want to waste good sewing mojo, so I cut out two more HSM shirts (Simplicity 2836) for the Prince. One is a bright green and gold camo print and the other is outer space. I'll have those done and pics posted probably this weekend. Both will count for the fabric stash contest, as will the dark pink gabardine I'm using for the military dress.

I'm feeling good about sewing right now- the mojo is definately ON! I just hope I can sustain this flurry of motivation and activity!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

What's Up?

This was what my bed looked like yesterday afternoon.

It was covered in fabric in one of my favorite color combos: pink, yellow, and orange, with lime green! Happy, bright colors that evoke feelings of warmth and excitement. (Yeah, they're a little wrinkly from the dryer.)

I'm making another quilt top- this time for the Princess. She helped pick out several of the fabrics in the form of fat quarters. The large dot print was our "inspiration fabric."

We picked out several other fat quarters in colors and patterns that coordinated with the dots, and when we got home we supplemented the group with stash fabrics. We've probably got enough for three quilts now! You'll be seeing the first one soon.

In other news, I made a muslin of Simplicity 2694 last night. After an FBA and a little extra length, the pattern is good to go and I'm off to cut out the real dress now.

Saturday, January 10, 2009


As promised, here is McCalls 5694 in apple print corduroy:

This is sort of View A, the version with contrast bands. I left off the contrast at the hem because the red fabric was a remnant left over from Cherry Blossom and I didn't have quite enough to cut the hem bands on grain. I like it, though. I think we're going to look for a pair of red tights to wear with it to break up the all black look.

I didn't make any design changes or adjustments to the pattern. The only thing I did differently than the pattern instructed was to interface the pocket bands and bodice bands. The corduroy, while very lightweight and soft, is still just a tad heavier than the quilting type cotton used for the contrast and I wanted to make sure the bands had enough body to support the gathered corduroy.

The Princess loves it. she originally wanted pants out of this fabric, but I've envisioned a dress all along. I have about a half yard left of the apple print and I'm wondering if I might make a little bag for her. It's just so cute and I love the colors. It was a nice find at Hancock Fabrics last summer and I'll be entering this in the Stash Contest over at Pattern Review.

Now that this is completed, I'll be focusing on the Hannah Montana jacket for the Princess and Simplicity 2694 for myself.

I like the blue "military" version on the left. Stay tuned for an update.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Happy New Year

I don't know about you but I'm actually looking forward to getting back to normal- as in non-holiday normal- and getting back on a regular schedule. The holidays were great, but I'm ready to get on with normal life.

Having said that, there was sewing during the holidays. I wanted to get a couple of things made for the Princess (she's in desperate need of some dresses) and the first one was this one, Simplicity 3515 from the Hannah Montana Collection:

This pattern is available in sizes 8 through 16.5 and I made a size 8. I was worried that it might be a bit too big, but I really don't think she could wear it any smaller. My baby has grown.

What drew me to this pattern was the jacket with its cute military vibe. I have some stash fabric pulled to make it, but I haven't gotten to it yet.

The dress is really cute, though. The plan is for her to wear it now with tights and a turtleneck underneath (and the jacket when it's done) and then with a short sleeved tee in the spring, and finally, without a shirt in the heat of summer.

I used a 100% cotton Hello Kitty print with a black and white dot print for contrast. I made the straight size 8with no adjustments. The pattern went together pretty easily. The front "sash" piece was kind of fiddly, but not too bad.

The next finished project was McCalls 5694:

I basically made view B (the brown one in the photo)without the bow. Cute as it is, a 7 year old doesn't need a big 'ole bow flapping around in front of her all day. I can just imagine it dragging through her lunch tray at school or in the sink every time she washes her hands.

I wanted this pattern the second I saw it. I love the plaid version with the contrast bands and if I could find a similar fabric, I'd make it just like the pattern picture. I can't recommend this pattern enough. I love the cute, casual style, the sillhouette, the ease with which it goes together, and the fact that it takes so little fabric (just 1 5/8yd).

I made the smallest size in the envelope, a 7. It fits just fine, in fact I think it's pretty consistant with RTW. DH was concerned that the top band looked a little bit loose on the Princess, but there is no zipper or buttons. The dress has to be a little loose to fit over the child's head.

I used this cute cute dotted corduroy fabric that came from Hancock Fabrics. Once again, this one will be worn with tights/leggings and a turtleneck underneath. I like this one so much that I've already cut a second one out of black corduroy with red and green apples. This time I'll be making red contrast bands. Stay tuned for pics!

I also made a quilt top during the holidays:
My Best Bud, Angie, and I are diving back into quilting and we've started with this pattern. I found it at Crazy Mom Quilts and you can find her directions and a link to her inspiration here. Now, Angie claims that I am ahead of her on this project because I have my blocks sewn together. But actually, I'd have to say that she is ahead of me because she's already quilted an absolutely adorable table runner and so once she gets her blocks sewn together she's going to be able to get it quilted and finished, while mine will probably still be folded up and draped across the back of a chair in my bedroom. (Yeah, umm... I still need to learn how to machine quilt.)
Anyway. I'm going to call my quilt Waiting for Summer. I thought about calling it Waiting for Spring, but the colors are really too bold for Spring. This says summer to me. All of the colored fabrics are fat quarters from Hancocks, with the exception of the aqua swirl which is from my stash. The sashing is a white on white print. I haven't decided yet what to do for the backing. I don't think I have anything in my stash that coordinates and is big enough for a solid backing, so I will probably have to buy something. I will probably use the aqua swirl for the binding since I have plenty of it.