Friday, July 25, 2014

A Sew Together Bag

I did it, I made one.  After seeing them pop up on Instagram, I was intrigued.  It looked like it held tons and was awesome, but I couldn't really tell what size it was and a lot of the chatter centered on how difficult it was to make...so I wavered.
I bought myself the pattern for our anniversary.  We're going out of town and I thought it would be great to hold my EPP on the flight.
And oh my goodness, it is officially great at holding my EPP.  No joke, this bag holds a ton.  I still have room and whole sections are empty.
I used mostly Crafty Chloe fabric by Heather Ross from Hancock Fabrics.  We're big Chloe fans here.
 I love the open spaces for my glued clamshells, I have around fifty in there and could easily fit more.  Easily.  Even basted they are fitting with room to spare.
 The three internal zip pouches hold my scissors, thimbles, glue and thread.  So nice not to worry I'll stab myself when I reach in.  Ditto for the needle landing.  I used one of the pouches to hold my binding clips while I bound a nephew quilt recently.  The pouch held all fifty clips, they are a useful size.
I love the way it all zips up and contains itself.  It was also just fun to make.  I honestly can't think of any reason I would need another but I want to make one anyway.  

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Our Teacher Quilt

I've got another finish to show you.
Our school does looping, the kids and teacher from first grade moved as a unit up to second.  Mrs. VDL taught our oldest two years in a row.  Two years gets a quilt. My seven year old boy helped design it and I hunted her down on pinterest.  I think we're pretty safe on this one.  Even if we aren't and she thinks it's ugly, it's still a quilt and will keep somebody warm on a couch.  And when your last name is VDL, I imagine you don't have much personalized stuff.


It's backed and bound in a gray flannel and machine quilted on a diagonal.  We even included a label written by the kiddo himself. It's nearly six foot across and just over six feet long.

I have two more baby quilts in the works, as well, both boys this time.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The Niece Quilt

I had so much fun making this quilt!  It came to be known as the Gorgeous Quilt in my mind.  Cause it is.  So way gorgeous.  
My inner hand sewer loved the english paper piecing aspect.  I hand sewed each hexagon and then hand sewed them all together into a quilt top.  I think I used eleven or so different fabrics.  I let my sister pick a main fabric and obviously she picked her colors, and then I got to choose the rest.  She choose the coral/peach colorway of Les Amis.  I did run the idea of hexagons by her, I think.  
One thing I really wanted to do was jazz up the binding.  It had to have something special going on, just plain binding didn't feel right.  So I went jumbo ric rac.  Seriously, this is inch and a half ric rac.
 It was beyond nerve wracking to actually assemble the quilt.  I was so afraid I would ruin my gorgeous hexagons with a slightly off seam allowance.  But I went all OCD on it and it turned out perfectly.
I like to sign my name somewhere hidden.  Usually just my initials and the year, but my sister requested this one be signed Aunt Amanda rather than AKP.  I signed my name in the shadow at the base of the tree (you can see it in person) and carved my sister and brother-in-law's initials in the tree.  (Interesting tidbit: my husband and I knew our brother-in-law before my sister did.  She went to grad school where we had done undergrad and he was still there.  When she told us she'd gone on a date with him, our immediate reaction was "that'll work.")
Because she's my sister, and I'm the crafty one, I also made her a mobile. And a crib sheet, but that's not as exciting a pic seeing as I don't have a crib to model it on.  I used single sided scrapbook paper for the most part.  I used various grays, it's super cute when it twirls.  I also used a double sided peachy paper.  I dare you to find peach scrapbook paper.  Along with the scrapbook paper, I added some book pages.  I had already gutted a Nancy Drew and my Shakespeare book, so they found their way in.  Just some introductory pages of Nancy Drew, you know, the ones where we meet Hannah and Nancy drives off somewhere in her blue roadster.  From the Shakespeare I used the balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet.  I sewed the circles together on my machine and just tied them to the metal hoops from Micheal's.  There's an inner circle staggered in the middle to get the cutesy tapered look.
The mobile is bigger than it looks.  My husband and I both thought it was a bit much, but decided for my sister, a bit much will always be our goal.  That's just how she rolls.

Friday, February 28, 2014

The Nephew Quilt

Onto the Nephew Quilt! For our last nephew, I made the jungle quilt. This time I went ocean. 
First, let it be known the thing in the bottom right is NOT a turtle. Its a moray eel. It has a fang.
Not that that's settled.
After an ocean brainstorming session I just went at it. I wanted texture and things to play with, so each element has something making it fun. A few of the fabrics are textured (the purple fish and the coral) and a few others I sewed to give texture. The seaweed is my favorite and worked just like I wanted it too. My cute little hand carved stamped schools of fish didn't quite work like I wanted them to, but I think it still added some depth to the quilt. 
I'm happy with the final result, but seeing as I was making this and the Niece quilt simultaneously, I'm glad to be finished with them. I got kinda tired of seeing this unfinished quilt mocking me. But now they are done.
After the jungle and the ocean I think I may be tapped out on over the top quilts. My husband and I decided we may want to establish a one texture/tummy time quilt per family.
Although I do still wanna make a dollhouse quilt someday. Maybe for a granddaughter.  I expect in twenty years I'll be ready for sure.


Thursday, February 13, 2014

Sewing Night

I can't show the nephew quilt just yet, but it's finished. The niece sewing is nearly done, too. But of course that's not all I'm sewing.
Lately I've had Thursday nights to myself for some handwork. A friend and her husband both now have church responsibilties that keep them busy Thursday nights so I head to their house and watch their little ones. Seeing as the kiddos are all in bed when I get there, I've been getting in some major sewing time.
My EPP projects are a diamond lone star quilt and a bunch of hexies for fun. We've fallen in love with having a throw on the couch and the hexies will someday be the next throw. The lone star will probably be a throw sized quilt too, but it's kinda big so maybe it'll end up on our bed. We'll see. It's kinda nice making a quilt just for fun with no sense of needing to get it done or how big it will be.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Niece Quilt Update

We have gender info on the other baby cousin coming, he's a boy.  I'm now calling them the niece quilt and the nephew quilt.  We bought fabric for the nephew quilt and I'll be posting some peeks on instagram as I get started on it.  I'm excited, I think it will be fun to make.
But onto the niece quilt.  While sitting in an airport, after being told her flight was delayed until 4am, my sister caved.  She needed to see it, so we all get to now, too.
Before all the Black Friday sales, I started emailing my sister links to fabrics I thought she would like.  She then poked around on the sites and choose colors and a fabric.
For the pattern, I wanted to do some EPP hexies.  I thought it would be fun for me, and a good fit for my sister.  Hexagons are just so crisp and orderly. 
I am loving the hexagons.  I need to make a hexagon quilt for me someday. 
 
I'm having so much fun piecing them together.  It's so satisfying to see it turn into a quilt top.  

Friday, November 22, 2013

The Baby Quilts

For the as yet undetermined niece or nephew, my plan is formulating.  I'm waiting on gender to finalize and determine colors, but I've got it mostly thought out.  I plan on machine pieceing that one, which will be a nice switch, seeing as I'm hand piecing the niece quilt.
Yeah, hand piecing.  Am I crazy?  Kinda.  I was feeling hexagons and the easiest way for me to do hexagons is EPP.  So, I'm doing it. 
I wanted to get started (my kids were sick on the couch so I may as well get some handwork in, right?) but I didn't know what to do about papers.  So after a lunch date with google and a consultation with my husband, I determined I was going to be brave and make a cereal box template and then trace it onto printer paper and cut out a bunch of hexagons.  I think I made 22 paper hexagons.  And then I went to it.
Aren't they just cute?  I feel so accomplished looking at them.  Of course I need a whole lot more, but it's progress.  The only slightly stressful moment came when I took out the paper.  I wasn't too eager to cut more just yet, so I took the paper out of two to see if I was actually capable of sewing two together without the papers to give them more structure.  It's not as intimidating as it seemed.  Turns out I really can EPP.  Must be the handsewer in me.

(and you aren't getting any real pictures yet.  my sister requested "part of his left elbow" with regard to pictures.  and if you know the movie, we should so hang out.)