Friday, April 29, 2016

My Method for Rotary Cutting Strips

I was working on a quilt the other day, and thought I would share what I do when I'm cutting small pieces off a long strip.


I went down to the hardware store a while back and bought the heaviest washers I could find, and I use them for weights. I use them on tissue patterns so I can cut with my rotary cutter.  I also use them to keep my long strips in place while I make my cuts.


It keeps me from having to readjust the strips each time, and I feel like it gets me a more accurate cut.

I even off the beginning, then just move the weights as I get to them. It's amazing how many helpful little things actually come from the hardware store instead of a quilt shop!

Have a happy day!

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Crocheted Slippers

I don't know how to crochet, but my daughter spends all of her spare hours making things!  I wanted to show you what she made us. She used up all of her leftover yarn on her own slippers, so they don't match, silly girl!

Mine are the red ones (of course!).

Friday, April 22, 2016

Sewing machine accessory you need!


Does your machine have this feature?

Monday, April 18, 2016

Quilts = Money $$


That doesn't even include the cost of sewing machines, rotary cutters and mats, scissors, rulers, patterns and snacks! I've got a fortune stashed away in my stacks of quilts :)

My net worth just increased by an impressive amount!

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Red Gingham Curtains

The other day I took down my kitchen curtains and discovered that they were really looking sad. Then I started trying to remember when I made them - uh - how embarrassing, I think they are 15 years old or something. I do sometimes wonder about myself :)


So, here are my new kitchen curtains! I like red, I like the country look of gingham, so perfect for my kitchen, and sooo much better than my old dusty faded ones!

Ha ha, I can see my hubby's reflection in the picture. He didn't realize he was posing for me in his pajamas!




Since my kitchen has an apple theme, I embroidered apples along the border. I had no idea it would take so long - 4 hours! I like how they look, but I'm sure there is a way I could have done more quickly, but once I got going I just decided to continue. Oh well, done now!


Have a happy day!

Monday, March 28, 2016

Cute Baby Headband Bows

Since I now have two granddaughters, I am enjoying making little girly things for them!  I found a free and easy and cute (SCORE!) pattern online for these bows! HERE is the pattern.


I use fold over elastic to go around their head, and glue the bows on, or just wrap some of the elastic around to cover up the place where the two ends meet. Quick and easy, but so darling!
Don't you agree?

Friday, March 25, 2016

Purse/Tote tutorial

I like purses! I like looking at purses in stores. I like making purses and I like hoarding purses in my closet! :)

I made myself a purse/tote, and used one that I really like the shape and size of to make my pattern. I like it so much, that I'm sure sometime I will want to make another one, so, I'm making a tutorial so that I won't have to figure it all out again! If you want to make one you are welcome to use it too. My thanks to clever people on line who provide tutorials that I give links to!

This is the bag that I really like, so I decided to use it as my model, only with more pockets. It has one zipper pocket inside, and a pocket that my sunglasses will fit in. My Ipad fits in just right, along with misc. stuff!

To make this you will need:

1 yard of outer fabric
1 yard of lining fabric
1 yard of fusilbe interfacing
One 7 inch zipper that matches lining
1 yard thin cord to make piping (if desired)
1 yard thick cord for handles

Begin by cutting out all of your pieces, a quick job with your rotary cutter!  ** All measurements are in inches, seams are 1/4 inch unless otherwise noted.

From outer fabric cut:
2 - 15 1/2  X  11 1/2  (front and back base pieces)
1 - 9 1/2  X  4 1/2  (bottom), round corners
2 - 4 1/2  X  11 1/2 (side fronts)
1 - 8 1/2  X  8  (front center outside pocket)

Front lining fabric cut:
2 - 15 1/2  X  11 1/2  (main front and back lining)
1 - 9 1/2  X  4 1/2  (bottom lining), round corners as you did the outer fabric bottom.
2 - 13  X  6 1/2  (for inside pockets)
1 - 8 1/2  X  8  1/2  (to line outside pocket)
1 - 8  X  14  (inside zipper pocket)
1 - 2 1/2  X  width of fabric (for piping)

From fusible interfacing cut:
2 - 15 1/2  X  11 1/2, fuse to front and bake base pieces.
1 -  9 1/2  X  4 1/2, round corners, fuse to bottom piece.
2 - 6 1/2  X  6 1/2, fuse to each pocket so half is covered by interfacing.
1 - 8 1/2 X  8, fuse to front outside pocket


Front Outside Pocket
With right sides together, sew top of front outside pocket to outside pocket lining with a 1/4" seam
allowance.  Press lining up, the over top edge of of pocket so there is 1/4" of lining showing on right side of pocket.

Center pocket to to lower edge of front base piece. Baste pocket piece to front base piece along sides and bottom edge.

Take front side pieces and put them right side down on the front base piece, ling raw edges with raw edge of pocket. Sew 1/2 seam and press to sides.  Baste sides and bottom to front base piece. You should have a nice looking front pocket! Now sew the front and back purse pieces together at the side seams using a 1/2 inch seam.



Lining Pockets

 If you would like to install a nice zipper pocket, there is a great tutorial HERE. For the other inside pockets, take your two pocket pieces, fold them in half along the top edge of the interfacing you already fused. Sew down each short side of the pocket, turn right side out and press.
Now play around with how wide you will need the pockets. Are you going to put your sunglasses in one? Your wallet? What might you store in the pockets? Once you know the sizes you will need, decide if you want to put pleats in the bottom to accommodate your items, and add pleats accordingly. Sorry this is kind of vague, but if I give you measurements you will have to put the same things in your pockets that I do...  :) To make the pleats I just pinched what I needed, and sewed them 1/2 inch up the bottom edge, backstitch to keep them from coming out.

The opening of your pocket is going to be about 4 inches down from the top of your lining, but you want to sew the bottom of the pocket down first, so the raw edge is at the bottom, inside of your pocket. Put the pocket face down 8 1/2 inches down from the top edge of lining. Sew across bottom edge only. Now flip the pocket up, and sew pocket to lining, stitching close to the side edges of your pocket. Backstitch at both ends. Sew front and back lining pieces together at sides, leaving an 8 inch opening in the middle of one side to use later for turning your purse right side out.

I also installed an inside slip pocket in front of the zipper pocket Just install the pocket the same as above, but no pleats. I sewed up two dividing lines in the pocket (but don't sew those lines through your zipper pocket, flip it out of the way!).

Attach Purse Bottom

Make sure you have rounded the corners on the bottom outside and lining pieces. Turn outside of purse wrong side out. Matching center front and backs, right sides together, pin purse bottom around the lower edge of your purse front and back. Sorry, I forgot to take pictures... When you get to the corners, pinch little pleats into the outside purse edge, pin, and baste around the bottom with a 1/2 inch seam allowance. It takes a little fiddling to get it all right. Once you have it the way you like it, sew over basting stitches. Attach the lining bottom to the lining in the same manner.

Finish Purse

If you would like to put piping around the top of your purse there is a great tutorial for making piping right HERE.  Baste the piping to the top edge of the purse, matching raw edges, piping edge facing down.

Now you need to make the handles.There are many different kinds of handles you can make, I used the one HERE. Baste handles on to the top edge of outer purse.


With the outer purse WRONG side out and the lining RIGHT
side out, slide the lining inside the purse. Sandwich the piping (which you have basted to the outside fabric) and the purse handles in the middle of the lining and outside fabric, sew completely around upper edge of purse, making sure you only catch the edges of the handle in the seam, you may need to pin the rest of the handle out of the way.

You are almost done! Now you are going to turn the purse right side out, using the opening you left in the side seam of the lining. It's a bit of a a squeeze, be careful if your handles are pinned inside somewhere, the pins are sharp (ask me how I know...).

Now close up that seam in the lining...

and topstitch around the top and you are done!

Now look at this perfect purse/tote/whatever!

I put some additional little do-dads like a magnetic snap and some purse feet...but this tutorial is long enough! There are loads of tutorials on line if you want to do that! I'm lovin' my purse!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Tote bags

I made tote bags for family and friends for Christmas. I just realized I didn't ever post the picture - so here it is.

I tried to personalize them, not only with the name, but also with a favorite flower or color, or something that reminds me of that person. I also embroidered several t-shirts for the guys in the family with something I knew they would think was funny. I also made my husband some baked potato pants - what, you say? Well, I found this fabric that had loaded baked potatoes printed on it. My hubby loves potatoes in all forms and kinds, but especially baked potatoes. So I made him a pair of PJ pants from the baked potato fabric and embroidered a shirt that says, "I love potatoes". Just some of my little projects that have kept me busy.

I have about 5 other projects that I'm trying to finish up, but I keep getting distracted. I really need to make myself finish one thing before I get started on another! OK, New Years resolution #243...

Monday, January 11, 2016

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Friday, January 1, 2016

Monday, December 14, 2015

Another new granddaughter!

I had a granddaughter born in July and another in November! It makes me happy to think of two little girl cousins so close in age, they will have so much fun together!


Here is the happy family!

Here is baby Lilly!


I made these two quilts - one for 1 year old Matthew, and one for Lilly.
 After I had given the quilts to them I realized I hadn't put on labels! Shame on me!!
So I took them both back and put on these labels.

And of course I had to embroider a shirt for Matthew!




Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Thursday, October 29, 2015

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