Saturday, April 30, 2016

Tom Servo softie by Thing 2


When my 11 yr old told me she was working on a secret softie design, I assumed it would be a puppy or a unikitty or something like that. Nope. It was Tom Servo. Because she is retro cool that way.


Well, Tom Servo after a crash diet. He's pretty skinny. I love it. She's been watching some MST3K with her Dad and has really been digging it. She says she wants to buy some gold fleece to make Crow next. I'm not sure how she's going to pull that off, but I have every confidence.


My favorite part is his mouth. So proud.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Mistleholly stockings for National Nonwovens


I dug out my Mistleholly stocking pattern to whip up these two samples for National Nonwovens' Spring Quilt Market booth. National Nonwovens is responsible for much wool felt happiness in the world, so I am glad they are around! These stockings are made entirely of wool felt, ribbon and sequins.


In progress shot. I forgot what an easy make these are. They come together really quickly. I may have to sew myself a set in new colors...


To me, these are the perfect sized stocking to hang from the mantel (15 inches long). I don't love huge, shapeless stockings. I like them to have a nice foot shape and to look pretty! They are usually hanging up at my house for about a month before they are ever stuffed with goodies. They need to function as Christmas eye candy.



The pattern has a template so you can easily get the leaf and stem placement just right. Just one sewn line down the center of each leaf and you are done. I like them to be unsewn at the edges so there's a bit of 3D action going on. The sequins and glass beads add a bit of holiday sparkle. You have to have some sparkle at Christmas!

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

fun with letter boards


If you see me staring into space I'm probably trying to think of a quote to put on my new letter board. Have you guys seen these things around Instagram? Old fashioned felt groove letter boards with plastic letters made hip and new by LetterFolk. I kept eyeing their feed and finally had to cave and get one for myself. I can't stop playing with it.




This board is 16 x 20 inches and I got the one inch letters. The board is nice and weighty. The frame is classic aluminum on mine but they also have wood frames available. The plastic letters need to be snipped apart with scissors and they send a handy drawstring bag to keep them in.

I think a bead organizer from the craft store would be a great idea for the letters, so I can find them more quickly when inspiration strikes.

From the top: 1) unflappable Kaylee from Serenity 2) ELO, misheard lyrics. 3) See that's funny because it's an app request from a low tech letter board. 4) Might be original to me. Not sure because I need a second cup.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

pattern testers extraordinaire

video

^Here's an action shot video of the Early Bird/Night Owl pillow pattern. (Is it invisible to you? I find it disappears in some formats. If so, you can see it here.) Those are my 13 year old daughter's skinny little arms reaching in to help. I think reversible items are so fun!

I had three marvelicious pattern testers for the Early Bird/Night Owl pillow pattern. A thousand thanks to my timely testing trio, Stephanie, Candy and Skooks!


I mailed out these test kits to them because I didn't want them to have to burn their time running to the fabric store for the trims and notions. Poor Skooks' kit arrived demolished and she was actually missing a few of the items! I think a postal elephant must have sat on it. Kudos to her for finding substitutions! OK, on to tester photos:



The EB/NO shown above is by Stephanie of Peas In A Pod. She took the pattern kit with her on a sewing retreat, so I was lucky to get not only her impeccable notes and great feedback but also comments from a bunch of experienced sewers at the retreat who watched it all come together. Stephanie has published a thorough pattern review here!



This EB/NO was made by Candy of A Photo's Worth, better known on the interwebs as Grandma G! If you live on Earth and have a blog, she's probably left you a sweet and/or funny comment. Grandma G also published a fantastic pattern review here!



Last but not least, Skooks of Skooks' Playground. Hey, whatever that textile is behind the EB/NO pillow I'd like you to fold it up nice and send it to me, Skooksie. It's purty! Anyway, as previously mentioned she gets extra credit because she had to find substitutes for all the trims that fell out of her mangled package! I think she did a great job! *round of applause*

*chest thumps* *high fives* *secret handshakes* to all my testers! Their practical, hands-on feedback helped to make this a better pattern for everyone.

The Early Bird/Night Owl Reversible Pillow sewing pattern is now available in my Etsy shop. Visit the listing or this previous blog post to see more photos and details. And there are two other action videos featuring my daughter's arms on my Instagram feed.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Early Bird/Night Owl reversible pillow pattern is in the shop!


Yay! At long last. This fun, reversible design I came up with for my daughter's birthday has been made into a sewing pattern for the shop. (There's a nicer video clip of this in my Instagram feed.)

Many thanks to my intrepid pattern testers for helping me to make this the best pattern I can! I will be showing off their pillows in a later post!


The early bird gets the worm and the night owl is staying up late! Flip it to whatever side you are feeling that day, or flip it according to the time of day. My daughter uses hers as an accent pillow on her bed and flips it twice a day.

Here are the other two samples I've made, but the color possibilities are endless and of course you can make it look more boyish or girlish as needed:


This pattern is an intermediate level because it has a lot of steps and requires precision in cutting and placing of trims. Machine and hand sewing techniques are used.


I have worked for a good while to make this sewing and applique project come together in the easiest, fastest and most accurate way possible, so I think you are going to enjoy it!


The trims are really the star of the show here. It's a nice project to showcase your favorite ribbons, buttons, rick racks and mini-pom trims. And of course any project that includes pom-poms is aces in my book! The other main ingredients in the pillow are medium weight cottons or tickings and wool felts. And of course, stuffing. And love.



You can find more details in the shop listing. I hope you enjoy the pattern! I've had a lot of fun making these Early Bird/Night Owls! I'm definitely a Night Owl. How about you?

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

sewing injury


Sausage finger! Wrenched it last night pulling a needle through several layers of fabric. Didn't realize it at the time. It ballooned up later. Not what I needed as I'm making the final samples for the Early Bird Night Owl pattern and trying my best to get that thing off my desk and into my shop. I didn't realize how much I rely on this finger for everything. Someone needs to make me a sandwich because I can't open the mayonnaise.

  • In other news, there's a bilious coating of yellow green pollen on everything here and runny noses galore. I think the plants and trees are trying to kill us. We are looking forward to the next rain.
  • I need to lose ten pounds so I can look fabulous at the two family weddings, various showers and 50th anniversary events that are coming up. Sad thing is I think I could probably achieve this if I could stop snacking at night. #willpowersadlylacking
  • I'm trying to re-learn Spanish and enjoying using the Duolingo app so much. 
  • I'm slated to be a guest speaker and teach my first class this summer for my sister's quilt group. They've selected the Flora Needle Book pattern. I've already got a headstart on the stage fright and nausea, so I'm good. Still working on the deer-in-headlights look.
  • I'm once again out of compelling fiction to read. Send me your titles so I can enjoy one over spring break.

I hope all your fingers are their normal size and that you are having a great (coating free) spring time!

Thursday, March 10, 2016

this is how I feel about that


I'm moving to Arizona. Who's with me?