Thursday, May 14, 2009

Grammie's Quilts

I've decided to make baby patchwork quilts from fabrics I already have and then save them for my "grandbabies". This is a purple and yellow one I'll save for Tiffany when she has a girl (someday - not now). Everything is done on the machine - including the very cute blanket stitch I used on the binding. I even did the stippling myself using the darning foot, dropping down the feed dogs and then just moving the fabric in a free form design. If you don't pre-wash the cotton fabric and then wash it when the quilt is completely done, it shrinks up to look like an old fashioned heirloom quilt. I love it. This would be an easy project for the quilt top assembly - but intermediate if you wanted to do your own stippling.

Iced Mocha

I looked around my house and realized that I have given away most of my sewing creations and projects. How depressing is that!! So, I decided to make myself a quilt. I went to the quilt shop to just "look around" and found the most beautiful collection of fabrics by Moda called "Iced Mocha". I had to have it. I selected a quilt design called "Don't fence me in" (appropriate for me) and started the process of cutting the 420 triangles and tons of 2 1/2" strips. That was a few weeks ago. Then, Trina surprised me yesterday by her coming to help me sew the quilt top - giving me her time as a special Mothers Day gift. We spent a wonderful day together piecing the quilt squares and talking and eating brownies. One more day like that - and I'll be ready to ship the quilt top off to Julie to quilt. It's going to go on my bed and be my summer quilt.

The strips
The Blocks

Taryn's Minky Quilt

Taryn loves minky fabrics because they are so soft. She asked me to make her a quilt using her favorite colors. I made it big enough for her to wrap up in and she loves it. This would be an intermediate level project because minky fabric stretches and you need to match all the corners of the blocks.

The Sewing Room

To me, having a designated area to work on your "Projects" is wonderful. It doesn't have to be a large sewing room, but rather an area where you can organize all your tools and be able to easily access your project at a moment's notice. A sturdy work counter is important as well as good lighting. If you don't have a desk with drawers, then purchase a 3 drawer plastic organizer and put all your thread in one drawer, scissors and tools in a different drawer, and then your buttons, elastic and trims another. My sewing room is in my laundry room. I have cabinets along the wall set at desk height with a butcher block counter. Everything is organized in drawers or behind cabinets so when I'm not sewing - everything is clean and I can use the space to fold laundry.

My First Sewing Machine

My grandma was a wonderful seamstress. I remember sitting under her sewing table playing while she made me beautiful dresses and costumes. My dream was to be able to sew anything and everything - just like her. My mom made this dream a reality when I was only about 10 years old, when she found this wonderful lady named Cleo who lived nearby to be my sewing teacher. She wasn't a sewing teacher, but actually a professional seamstress. Even though she was very busy with her business, she agreed to teach me what she knew. What a blessing this has been in my life. My mom unknowingly bought me the best machine ever. A Pfaff 1222 that I still sew on and love. For the next few years my machine sat on a table in the corner of Cleo's sewing room. It was a closed in sun porch that was the full length of her house. I rode my bike to her house every chance I could and in no time at all I was wearing my own creations. Soon, I was sewing for others and to this day my brothers still bring me their pants to hem. I feel sad that sewing lost popularity and that many girls don't know how to sew. I want to give them the opportunity to learn this valuable skill and to find the love and enjoyment in the creation process as I have.