Friday, February 26, 2021

A Modern Postage Stamp Quilt

I'm still battling my scrap bins! If you're a quilter, you know that it doesn't really matter how many scrap quilts you make, the scrap bins will always be full. I sometimes get tempted to cut my scraps into a bunch of squares but then get discouraged after cutting just a few.

It was during one of these cutting sessions that I found the Modern Postage Stamp quilt pattern by Kitchen Table Quilting.

I decided to sew my blocks in a rainbow pattern - I already cut a few 2.5" squares in most colours so that shortened the amount of time I spent cutting.

I wasn't really surprised to see that making this quilt barely put a dent in my scrap bins. In fact, it made no difference at all. 

The sashing is Kona White. I wanted a high contrast between the blocks and the sashing so made sure none of the coloured blocks had fabric with lots of white in them.

I used my favourite wavy lines with the walking foot for the quilting, but decided to have a bit of fun by choosing a matching thread for every row of the "rainbow". I also quilted this quilt more densely than is my habit to make sure the stitching lines would be very apparent on the quilt top.

The backing is another sheet from the sheet stash. I'm down to only one sheet left now but I love using sheets so much I think I'm going to try thrift shops to find more.

The binding is a colourful stripe I've had in my stash forever. I thought it would be a fun frame for a rainbow quilt, but now that it's been sewn on there, I'm not sure I love it. 

The details:
  • Pattern: Modern Postage Stamp Quilt by Kitchen Table Quilting
  • Size: 54" x 62"
  • Fabrics: Kona White and a rainbow of scraps 
  • Thread: Pieced with Aurifil #2600 (dove) and quilted with Aurifil #1130 (brown), #2780 (blue), #2520 (purple), #2230 (red), #2150 (orange), #2890 (green), #2479 (pink) and #2135 (yellow) in 50 and 40 wt

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

The Sabalito Top

I hadn't planned to make this just yet. When I took out my black sandwashed cotton, I meant to make a new Gilbert shirt. And I'm still not sure why I decided to make the Sabalito top instead. It is completely inappropriate for this time of year and now that I've sewn it up, I realize that the fabric was a terrible choice for this pattern.

This definitely isn't a success and the poor choice of fabric isn't the only reason. The proportions are all wrong and I dislike anything that sticks out at my waist. And it doesn't look much better from the back!

I wasn't going to share this top on here, but I like to use this blog to document my makes so that I may not make the same mistakes twice. And that I why I am writing this post.

There are some things I do like about this top though. I loved working with this fabric which is a sandwashed cotton from Blackbird Fabrics. It would have been a beautiful Gilbert Shirt.

I also really like the sleeves and the length. And I learned how to sew a Hong Kong seam finish while making this. I'm not sure I would use this finish often - it really is extremely tedious - but the finished product is so pretty!

The details:

Friday, February 19, 2021

The Ella Quilt by Kitchen Table Quilting

I'm not sure how I didn't buy the Ella Quilt pattern when it first came out because I love the design! And of course I can't remember when I saw this pattern again or what prompted me to buy it this time around, but when I was making my sewing plans for the first quarter of 2021, it needed to be part of those plans.

The pattern requires a background fabric (I used Kona Ash) and 8 fat quarters. I really like that as far as colours and prints, anything goes really for this pattern. I had a lot of fun choosing the fat quarters I used for this quilt. Most of them unfortunately didn't have the fabric designer on the selvage so I can't list all of them, but they had all been part of my stash for a while. 

The back is another vintage sheet my husband found a while ago. It is incredibly soft and snuggly - the perfect quilt back.

And I made the binding with leftovers from the fat quarters and a longer piece I had which remained from the Oh Happy Day! quilt I finished back in December.

I used Aurifil #2600 (Dove) in 50 wt to quilt my favourite wavy vertical lines. I decided to quilt them a little more densely that is usual for my quilts. I like that some of the lines intersect, creating an almost "wood"-like pattern.

The details:

I don't have plans for this quilt, no recipient in mind. So it will be added to the pile of small quilts to be gifted if and when the need arises.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

An Ashton Top with Sleeves!

I love simple tops such as the Ashton top by Helen's Closet. It's the perfect top for summer and I've been wearing mine all winter with cardigans. And then a little while ago, Helen came out with an expansion pattern to put sleeves on the Ashton top, making this top even more versatile! I immediately purchased it and pulled some fabric from my small stash.

The fabric is a gorgeous blue Tencel twill from Blackbird Fabrics. I'm not going to lie and say it was easy to work with for a beginner like me because it was definitely a challenge but the resulting garment is so comfortable, it was worth the pain.

The difficulty of working with this fabric though means this garment is really not perfect. And I'll need to make some minor adjustments for my next one.

For example, the shoulders are a tiny bit wide for me. I will probably need to take about 1/2" off there. The shoulders also do something funny when I lift up my arms - not sure if fixing the width will also fix that, but I plan on doing some research on that. I shall report back!

The darts are also a little weird on my top - I blame the shiftiness of the fabric for that though. Tracing, pinning and sewing those darts wasn't easy! 

But the length of the top and the sleeves are perfect for me. These sleeves aren't super practical and I found them to be a little bit of a pain when doing dishes, but they look pretty good I think.

I didn't have enough fabric to cut the back on the fold, so you'll notice a seam back there. I really don't mind the seam - this isn't a print so I didn't need to worry about print matching. I only had 1.5 meter and I really wanted long sleeves. The only way to do that was to cut the back as two separate pieces, add the seam allowance and then sew them together.

I'm so pleased with my Ashton with sleeves! The colour goes really well with these tan pants and will also work with jeans (I'm thinking my new York Pinafore) - definitely fills a gap in my closet.

The details:

Friday, February 12, 2021

Some Walking Foot Practice

I have been having much fun with my walking foot lately! The little quilt I am sharing today started off as simply that - practice with the walking foot and my WALK book by Jacquie Gering.

I started with a half yard of some Kona Tangerine (it looks a little more red than orange in my photos) which I cut in half - one half for the top and one half for the back. I used one layer of cotton/poly batting and Aurifil #2600 (Dove) in 50 wt.

The design I went with is called Crosshatch Mash Up. I used 1" painter's tape to keep my lines consistent and I'm really pleased with the results. I can certainly see this kind of quilting in the background of a future quilt.

Once the quilting was all done, I decided to play some more and add some 1/2" bias trips sewn on randomly. To make the bias tape, I cut up a Carolyn Friedlander print in orange and used my 1/2" bias tape maker.

I didn't plan the placement of the strips at all - I simply stitched them on one at a time and decided on placement as I went.

The binding is a chevron print in orange as well.

I don't have a purpose for this mini quilt yet, but now that I have three minis in shades of orange, I might hang them together on my dining room wall.

The details:
  • Pattern: None
  • Size: 17" x 20" 
  • Fabrics: Kona Tangerine and a Carolyn Friedlander print from my stash
  • Thread: Pieced and quilted with Aurifil #2600 (dove) in 50 wt

Tuesday, February 9, 2021

A New Navy Seamwork Oliver

As written in my 2021 goals, I'm hoping to fill some gaps in my wardrobe this year. I haven't yet purged my closet or written down what gaps I need to fill, but I do know a navy sweater will come in handy for the rest of the winter and into spring - the temperatures do remain pretty low here until April or May.

For my new navy sweater, I chose a pattern I've done before - the Seamwork Oliver. You can read about my wine Liverpool version here. It is a very simple design, pretty easy sew and it meets a couple of style suggestions for my body type: a boat neck and the hem hits me right at the high hip.

The fabric is a sweater knit from Minerva. It is a polyester blend with 60% stretch and it has fun sparkles in it - although pretty difficult to see in these photos. The walking foot on my inexpensive Singer sewing machine wasn't a fan unfortunately. So I had to really take my time and help the fabric along by gently pulling and pushing it under the foot. I congratulated myself multiple times for selecting a very simple garment to sew. Anything more complex and I would have lost my mind!

I'm wearing my new sweater with some ready-to-wear faux leather pants in these pictures, but I also have some mustard and some burgundy work pants this sweater will go together with quite nicely.

The details:
  • Pattern: Seamwork Oliver
  • Size: 16
  • Modifications/Alterations: I shortened the upper sleeves by 1"
  • Fabrics: Sparkle Sweater Knit in Navy from Minerva
  • Verdict: I would definitely call this a successful make. I think the pattern/fabric match worked very well, the fit is right and it does fill a gap in my closet. 

Friday, February 5, 2021

A Valentine's Day Mini Quilt

I have a really fun quilt finish to share today!

Back in January 2019, I saved a blog post by Sew Jess Handmade who made a "Love" mini quilt. She didn't provide a pattern or anything, but the math was pretty simple to figure out. 

I was scrolling through my blog saves between Christmas and New Year's Day and decided to add this to my to do list. I thought it would make a really fun Valentine's Day wall hanging for my "home office" (the corner of the dining room where my desk is set-up).

I used some red scraps and Kona White for the background. And the backing is a really fun print I found in my stash.

For the quilting, I was inspired by Debbie from a Quilter's Table and stitched some "Fancy Straight Lines" from the book WALK by Jacquie Gering. The straight lines are Aurifil #2600 (Dove) and the zig zags are Aurifil # 2230 (red) - both in 50 wt.

I love my "Love" mini quilt! LOL And making a small quilt was so much fun. I really liked trying a new quilting design. 

The details:
  • Pattern: None
  • Size: 19" x 20"
  • Fabrics: Kona White and red scraps 
  • Thread: Pieced with Aurifil #2600 (dove) and quilted with Aurifil #2600 (dove) and #2230 (red) in 50 wt