I finally finished this quilt! I wasn't able to make it to the store to get more thread. I was cleaning up all my notions and so forth when I found some thread that was the exact same color. Score!
So I was able to finish quilting and add the binding. I went with machine binding for two reasons:
1. It is faster
2. It holds up better in the wash on a baby quilt. I figure if it is a baby quilt it will be washed many times so I want the stitching to be as strong as possible.
One of my goals/resolutions for 2013 was to spend at least 2 hours every week sewing, cutting, pressing, etc. I didn't make my goal for January because I was gone for a week in San Francisco, followed by a week of being super sick and sleeping all the time! So I'm trying to make it up. What has amazed me is that once I get going, I actually get a lot done. I realize this is pretty obvious, but it just bolsters the point: schedule time, make time for being creative. When you do, even if you don't feel "inspired" you will eventually get in the groove and the juices will flow. Pushing myself to put in the time this week (and step away from the computer!) has really made me feel proud of what I can do if I put my mind to it.
With all that being said, this is what I was working on this week.
My "Plain Spoken" quilt from the Modern Quilt Workshop by Bill Kerr and Weeks Ringle.
I'm actually pretty excited about the progress I'm making and hoping to make significant progress on various projects in the next few weeks. Ash Wednesday is next week and I am giving up Facebook for Lent. So I imagine that I will end up with a lot more sewing time and a lot less wasted time.
I was working on quilting this baby quilt (the pattern is called Leo Baby Quilt). As you can see I was almost done when I ran out of thread! I haven't had a chance to make it to the store either. :(
I'll definitely post it when I finish!
One of my goals last year was to make at least one project involving handwork. After my fun with sashiko, I saw some adorable embroidery patterns to try. I got the Penguin and Fish pattern for "L" because my daughter's name starts with L, and the little lion was super cute. I've never really done embroidery before. It amazed me how fun it was, as well as how little time it took! I took this to a barbecue and finished it while chatting with folks and drinking beer. This will also go on my daughter's wall (her room is generally jungle-themed already, with pale yellow walls).
I think I may have more embroidery in my future....
This is one of those quilts that has been lying around for a long time, waiting to be finished. I had no urgency to complete it, as I started it after my daughter was born and I was hoping to hang it on the wall in her room.
I wanted to do something different for the quilting, so I took a cue from the gate and looped up into the top of each "gate", then back down, in a sort of figure eight. Then I kept going to the next piece. To stabilize the quilt, I quilted in one direction, flipped it, then repeated in the other direction. I think it worked well because the quilt lays pretty flat now. I later learned this pattern has a name! It is called "wishbone".
All that is left is to add a hanging sleeve and hang it up! Although, when I left it out, my daughter pulled it off the chair and started laying on it. It was super cute and made me think that maybe she might enjoy it as a blankie instead. She has been enjoying laying on it for the last few months and I still haven't had the heart to put a hanging sleeve on it. It may happen some day, or maybe not!
As I mentioned before, Pinterest has encouraged me to try some new sewing. I thought it would be fun to make this apron and chef's hat for my daughter for Christmas. She loves to "help" in the kitchen when we are cooking so I thought it would be something special for our cooking time. I decided to make one for my niece as well. Of course, I forgot to take pictures before I gave them away and they got dirty, but here is my niece wearing hers.
Here is my daughter wearing hers, standing on the kitchen tower, ready to help Dad.
It is really quite adorable and has a little ruffle along the bottom. When we take out the apron she gets excited and points to Dad's apron so he can wear his as well (his doesn't have a ruffle).
I admit I am pretty addicted to Pinterest, but I feel like it has been really good for me, actually. Instead of having bookmarks all over the place and trying to remember what they are, my Pinterest board helps me keep the link and a photo to jog my memory. I've even got an entire board of recipes that I've tried from Pinterest. Basically I try to put things into action rather than just pinning like crazy.
One of the ideas I found on Pinterest was this lovely tutorial for fabric ornaments from V and Co. It was lots of fun and is a great way to use up those fabulous fat quarters you have been hoarding but weren't sure what to do with.
I decided to do all of mine with Japanese fabrics that had some sort of metallic thread in them. This makes them a little more "fancy" and the metallic shines nicely next to the Christmas tree lights. I really love how they all turned out!