Wednesday, 27 February 2008

Bad bad cats

My naughty cats, the grey one is the boy, Binka, the other is his sister Bossy.

I've cut out all the pieces for my autumn quilt test block, it was quite fiddly tracing the pattern and measuring seam allowance to make the templates, and then tracing them all out onto the fabric. I cut the pieces out (using scissors, it took ages!) and laid them out in place to see if they all fit together again, which I think they kind of do. It's a little confusing actually cause I've cut them all out of the same piece of fabric so it just looks like a square unless I really squint. My 'chosen method of applique' for the autumn leaf stems was entirely made up, I have no idea if they will actually stay on the quilt.

I then went to the shops, and when I came home I found that the cat had jumped up onto the kitchen bench where I had put DD's watercolour paints that she'd used this morning, trodden in the blue paint and walked all over the place. There were blue prints all over the floor in the kitchen and dining room, all over the dining table, the sink, all the benchtops, letters and magazines, on the ironing board and the cut out pieces of fabric. I was just so glad that it was just a practice block and not the actual quilt fabric which I had stacked under the ironing board. I have two tonkinese (indoor) cats, the boy is much smarter and naughty than the girl, and I just knew it was him - I checked his feet and sure enough one of them was blue. I'm sure he jumps up there all the time when I'm not here but there's usually no way to tell, I'd just love to see what they get up to when they have the run of the house.

Bossy is not so bright.

Wednesday, 20 February 2008

Autumn fabric

This is the fabric I've bought for my autumn quilt. Some of it is from the Lincraft 50% off sale, some of it is from a sale at a local quilt shop. I tried to take a photo of the fabric in the sunlight, it looked so dingy and dark otherwise as it was a pretty cloudy day.

Monday, 18 February 2008

Autumn Quilt

This is a picture of the quilt I'm going to do next. It looks scary, but hopefully when it's broken down into individual blocks it's not going to be too complicated. I'm just going to focus on one block at a time and see how I go. Tomorrow I'll put up some photos of the fabrics I've bought for it.

Sunday, 17 February 2008

Sewing chore

Pretty boring but it counts as a sewing project so I'm putting it in: replacing the old elastic in my stash of totsbots nappies.

I also took up the hems of all of my daughter's winter pants by hand, but I won't add to the boring by taking photos of those ;)

Dinosaurs at home

These furniture kits are fiddly to put together, and the only instruction they give basically says "look at the picture on the front and try to copy it", but they are so cute. The cupboard doors open, and the toilet seat lifts up and down :) I should probably paint them, but that can be a future project.

Saturday, 9 February 2008

Second sewing project for the year

This is the inside of the bag, it's identical to the outside with the squared off corners (I have no idea of the technical term for this!)

I decided to have a go at making a teatowel tote bag, as it looked pretty straightforward (and it was!). I found the instructions here. I changed it a little by squaring the corners off so that it stood open a little, sort of like a gusset I guess.

Next I'm going to have a go at making a messenger bag, since I'm now an expert at putting in zippers ;) maybe I'll even have some sort of zippered pocket or something. I also want to buy some pretty quilting cotton and make a handbag, on the same lines as the tote but with a zippered opening.

I have no idea when I'm going to find the time to do any of these things!

First sewing project for the year

My daughter refuses to sleep under a sheet, so she has always had grobags. Unfortunately, now that she's 3 1/2 the summer grobags are too small for her (they don't make the 0.5 togs in 3-6 years). I thought I'd have a go at drafting my own pattern from the 3-6 yr winter grobag and making her one from cotton. I'd never sewn anything except a couple of cloth nappies and my practice quilt, but I'm a firm believer that if you don't know how difficult something is going to be then you can often achieve a good result :)

I bought some cotton voile for the lining, and some cotton gingham for the outer, as they were both soft and light. I realised that I'd have to put in a zipper, which was a little daunting, but my new sewing machine has a zipper foot so why not? I bought an open ended zipper, which is what the grobags use - I think it was 80cm which was the largest I could find. They didn't have green so it ended up being blue.

I traced the outside of the 3-6 yr winter grobag onto 2 taped-together pieces of butcher's paper and cut it out. I then traced that copy onto another couple of pieces of butcher's paper but this time I estimated where the neckline should be, and I cut it in half lengthwise. I sewed the lining and outer pieces together so that I had 3 separate pieces. I then put the zipper in and sewed it all together. I sewed a little patch on the inside over the bottom of the zipper, so it wouldn't be scratchy, and also a little flap that covers the top of the zipper so it doesn't rub on my daughter's neck.

It desperately needs an iron in these pictures, as she's already worn it a couple of times. It fits perfectly, and she can take it off herself, which is what I was hoping for. I'm very pleased with it and it only cost me $10 or so.

Quilt top done!

(Before it was completed)

This is my first quilt. I have made it from flannelette as I have plenty of that in my fabric stash. It started off as a disappearing 9 patch but I kept adding to it :)

I'm going to have some plain flannelette in the middle, and probably use the pink butterfly fabric as the backing. If I have enough left, I plan to use the stripey fabric for the binding. I'm just going to tie it rather than attempt to machine quilt it, as I don't have a walking foot - it might be a practise quilt but I don't want to ruin it.