As mentioned, I had to make a swap gift for the Winter Extravaganza Palooza at the guild. In that previous post, I talked about the pattern. Since then I have been contemplating WHY I chose what is, basically, a giant pincushion.
Short answer: I don’t know.
Long answer: it is kind of a strange gift, but it is useful. It reminds me of the cube I made for the YM. It is also different from other things I have seen. The pockets can hold scissors and seam rippers, etc. I photocopied a variety of tools and put them in the pockets to show how the pockets can be used.
The baby pincushion (Mini Pinnie) can be removed from the Mega Pinnie and used away from its giant mom. There is also a piece of felt designed to hold needles.
The top has a handle, which can be used to hold the full Mega Pinnie.
As I usually do, I filled the piece with some Beanie Baby pellets as well as stuffing. I didn’t use wool roving on this one; I used poly-fil because I needed so much of it. I hope I put enough of the Beanie Baby pellets in the square to keep it anchored. I know I could have put more in it.
I saw the Mega Pinnie pattern in an older issue (issue 6, 2016) of Today’s Quilter. It caught my attention, partially, because I have some squares leftover from the Jen Carlton Bailly workshop and they were on my mind. It turns out they are slightly larger than I need for the Pinnie, but worked just fine. I was also looking for something that would be interesting for a swap gift.
I like this magazine as it has practical and interesting articles that teach people something. I have found good projects, like my favorite pincushion, in Today’s Quilter sister publication, Love of Patchwork and Quilting, but this is the first time I have made something from TQ.
This pattern caught my attention as something different, but also useful. I decided to make it as a swap gift. It is essentially a giant pincushion with pockets for other tools. It will work well for someone who wants to keep a few things together at Sew Day.
While I am not quite finished, the project doesn’t take very long to make. I am almost done after working on it Sunday in between other projects. One of the sites I found said it took her two hours. I didn’t keep exact track of my hours, but this sounds about right.
In the pattern, the pockets are pieced. They look kind of fun pieced, but I also want to try them not pieced. The project will go faster and will be just as interesting. I also think I can add a placket for WonderClips, as in the pincushion that I have made as gifts.
I found a version of the pattern at the Stitch Gathering website.
I am ridiculously delighted by this concept. I want make a couple more as gifts and I can’t wait to sew this one together!
There is an online group to which I have belonged for a long time. Mostly people don’t talk about quiltmaking anymore, but recently one member asked for a block. A swap had been done a long time ago and she didn’t have quite enough blocks to finish her quilt. I said I would make one. I didn’t make any of the original blocks in the swap so this was a good opportunity to try out a block that might use up some scraps.
Julie made one, too. She sewed hers faster than me.
I also received a gift at the guild Winter Extravaganza. I was so pleased to get a gift from Mary! She went above and beyond by making me a very cool portfolio, a little basket and a pincushion.
As soon as I opened the package, my mind started whirling about how I would use all of them.
I have already put the little basket to use as I worked on the back for the MetroScape quilt back. It is now designated for selvedges, though I have already filled it up.
I am thinking that the portfolio will be put to good use for English Paper Piecing fabrics and papers. I use my first Sew Together bag for needles, pins, thread, scissors, etc, but I don’t really have a good place for the papers and the fabrics I have prepared. This might do the trick.
I laughed when I saw the pincushion. As you may remember, I have made this style of pincushion for others in the guild. I never made one for myself, so Mary did it for me!
I signed up for the BAM swap and received Lindsay. I don’t know her very well. I talked to her briefly at a recent meeting as she rummaged through a stack of donation blocks I had recently donated. You know I love it when people use my blocks. 😉 It is such a great feeling of collaboration.
I kind of like doing the swaps,though this one was hard. I kind of gave up on the theme, though Rhonda, the organizer is pretty lax about sticking to the theme. I have to learn to be more like her.
I went through my patterns after I saw that Lindsay requested a bag. I have a lot of bag patterns and need to start plowing through them. I came up with the Classmate Bag by Terry Atkinson. It is not a large tote sized bag, but I thought it would be useful for going to class.
I have heard good things about Atkinson designs patterns and the company certainly has a lot of patterns out. I can’t remember ever making something from their line.
This bag went together pretty well, especially when I was able to concentrate after Thanksgiving.
The problem I always have for these types of swaps is fabric. I don’t buy a lot of the lines that modern quilters seem to swarm over. I chose some leftover Tula Pink fabric from a project for which I made a block for Kelly.
It looks pretty good on the outside, I think. I am surprised to see how well the pattern of the fabric matches up. That was a happy accident.
This was a good enough pattern to make me think that I might make this bag again for another friend. Stay tuned.
I needed to rest at the beginning of March, but knew I had a pillow swap to finish by the April meeting. My recipient’s color preferences were listed as:
Green (lime, pickle)
I wanted to be sure my design was modern, fit the desires of the recipient and wasn’t too difficult to piece. I immediately thought of the Alison Glass fabrics I used for the Triple Star. Except for the white, I thought those fabrics would fit well with the desired color scheme.
I had a pillow I thought was made by my pal Amanda stuck in my mind. I asked her about it and she suggested Pinterest. I immediately found the design for which I was looking – the X Plus O block. Once I had the name, I found a lot of examples and spent a happy hour laying on the couch and looking at them.I also found an example that I thought would be good inspiration.
Before I could really sew again, I worked on the design using EQ8. I was able to play with the size and get the elements right.
After I could sew again, I went back to working on my Sew Together Bag project. In the middle of that project, I needed a break, but didn’t want to reset my machine for piecing. I knew that if I did, I would have three more UFOs and another year would pass before I could give the gifts. Cutting was a good idea, so I cut out all of the pieces.
One of the helpful parts of EQ8 is the ability to print out rotary cutting directions. I found a bug in the process of doing this, which I reported to the Electric Quilt Company. It turned out not to be a bug; they don’t consider a lozenge shape to rotary cuttable. I was able to figure out the size to cut a square as I plan to use the flippy corners method or the Simple Folded Corners Ruler.
I also used the Spoonflower zipper installation instructions. I acually watched the video and found it to be really helpful. I am pleased with how my pillow’s zipper closure came out, though I had to redo it a couple of times. I think the problem was the zipper foot I used. I used the flat snap on zipper foot. I didn’t feel like I could get as close to the zipper as I like. As a result I didn’t catch the seam allowance, which makes a closed up area around the zipper. I should have used the tall, skinny foot. I am used to it. I didn’t use it because I was sick of installing feet and resetting settings on my machine. I paid the price.
We exchanged yesterday and everyone did a wonderful job. I am behind Christina, but you can see my pillow over my head.
The CQFA meeting was Saturday and it was a really good one.
We swapped ATCs, as usual. I wasn’t inspired and really waited until the last minute -Friday morning – to make mine. I used what scraps were on my cutting table despite my lack of enthusiasm about the project.
I focused on making the cards as technically perfect as possible. I think I achieved that goal.
I must work on the next batch sooner, so I am not working under the wire next time.
The Winter Extravaganza Palooza swap was yesterday at the BAM meeting. Being the blog editor, I had compiled a giant list of tutorials and patterns a few months ago for inspiration. It is an impressive list, so take a look. 😉
My swap partner wanted a bag, so I pulled out one of the bag patterns I have had sitting around and tried it out. I know I could have used one of the tutorials I just crowed about, but I didn’t. I wanted to plow through some of the bag patterns I have purchased and this was the perfect opportunity.
I wasn’t hopeful that this bag would be successful (unlike me, I know!), so I was pleasantly surprised to find that this bag came out pretty well. The flap is a great opportunity to do some machine embroidery or applique’ or other type of embellishment. I chose some interesting, if black, modern fabrics for the outside, so it wouldn’t show the dirt.
The pattern is Flip Flap bag from Totes by Sandy. The pattern is not 100% clearly written, though the interpretation could have been my problem. I had some trouble with some of the steps, but it all came out in the end. I would have made the lining section much smaller. I did make it a little smaller, knowing from past experience that it didn’t need to be the same size as the outside. I didn’t make it small enough and the inside sags a little. 🙁 I don’t know what the normal reduction is for linings – half inch? a whole inch? I could experiment, but probably won’t.
I made the inside light so my partner could see her stuff.
I am thinking about making this again, as I think it is a good size. I wonder about adding more pockets. The handbag I use now has a section at the front for cards, lipstick, etc and I wonder if that could be incorporated into this design. Perhaps not with the asymmetrical flap.
I finally made some ATCs! After missing several meetings, then not having time to make any before the October meeting I feel like I have reached the summit of a high mountain. Additionally, I used the charms that have been sitting on my cutting table (or falling off repeatedly) for months!
I wanted a fall theme to go with the leaves and it is still Fall, though it feels like winter some days.
Today is the CQFA meeting, so we will see how they are received.
We had the CQFA meeting on Saturday. Of course there was an ATC swap. Not participated in the swap this time, but I received two lovely cards and got to keep one of my own.
As usual I intended to make them well in advance. Friday morning (day before the meeting!!) became unusually busy and I still hadn’t made any. Eventually I tore myself away from all the other things demanding my attention. I went for a walk determined to decide on a design. As I walked it occurred to me that I wanted to do something very simple and I came up with a design comprising an orange circle on a blue background. I was imagining the colors I used in the Wonky 9 Patch quilt. That particular blue and orange glow when put together.
I also remembered Ms. Lottie’s directions for finishing the edges and decided I would try the technique. I would have done a better job if I had actually read the directions again, but I did what I thought I remembered the directions saying. I had some trouble with the corners. They don’t look very tidy and I realized why after I read the directions when I finished. Such a great plan (<–irony). I’ll give it another try next time.
I like to put stiffener in my ATCs so they are more like cards. This meant that the fusible on the inside of the backing was adhering to loose Pellon interfacing. It didn’t secure the three layers together at all. I liked the technique and the little frame it makes. I’ll just have to make the technique my own for next time.Reading the directions might help. 😉
By the time I arrived home I had an idea. It didn’t quite work out the way I imagined, but turned out satisfactorily. I didn’t have the exact colors I saw in my minds eye, but I did have colors that worked well together.
When I put the initial pieces together, they looked unfinished. I always like to do handwork and haven’t had many bindings to hand sew recently, so I sat on Friday night and stitched some Perl cotton on to these ATC pieces to add interest and finish them. I seem to often do embroidery or beading on these pieces. I wonder if it is a signature?
Bron and Virginia also participated. We each got one of our own and gave Rhonda the extras to bring to Angela.
I have been making and receiving Flying Geese all along. I finally decided to do an update as the group was getting kind of large and was taking up space on my design wall. Also, the last update I did was on November 14 and that seems like a long time ago.
If I did the math correctly (50 weeks x 4 geese each week), I have at least 200 right now. It doesn’t seem like enough, though. I think I must have more. I am kind of amazed at how easy it is to make these blocks and to have them add up in number. I really want to sew up all the patches I have cut. I am trying to restrain myself.
Some of these TFQ won’t recognize, because I haven’t send them off yet. They were part of the Wacky Weekend Work I did. Flying Geese make good leaders and enders.