Sewing Projects

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Last month I wrote this post about a baby quilt I was making.  I finished it last week and gave to my colleague who was absolutely thrilled with it.

Here is the result of my endeavours.

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This crazy quilt was made entirely from scraps and thrifted fabric and bits and pieces of it were made over a number of years.

In complete contrast, my next sewing project was made in less than an hour this morning.  GMan recently bought a new Kindle e-reader but had not decided about a case/cover so I suggested that I could make one.

I did not take any photos during the construction process as I did not have a pattern and just made it up as I went along.  I was pleased with the result.

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It is made from a couple of scraps of poly cotton fabric – patterned on the outside with a plain red lining.  I cut up an old handtowel which had been in the pile of old towels and used this for some padding to provide some protection for the Kindle.  The bias binding and velcro tab were also scraps that were lurking in my stash of sewing bits and pieces.

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And this is how it looks with the flap sealed with the velcro.

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The rest of my day was spent far away from the sewing machine but more on that tomorrow.

 

Project Completed

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It is almost a week since my last post and in that time I feel as though I barely managed to keep my head above water, let alone write or publish any blog posts.  As well as running a home and holding down a full-time job I have been caring for my 2 granddaughters, aged 5 and almost 7.  By the time I cook meals, pack lunches, wash clothes, supervise homework etc I am pretty well exhausted.  Luckily, my stint is for 10 days so I can see the end in sight.

I had almost finished a patchwork project before things got busy and I have now finished hand-sewing the binding.

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This is a knee rug which I have made for my mother for her birthday.  Like the other work I have shown you, it is based on a disappearing 9 patch block.

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This photo shows the backing which is from a sheet that I bought some time ago from the local op shop.  In fact, all of the fabric is either salvaged from unpicked garments or offcuts from other sewing projects.  It is all cotton or poly/cotton but of varying weights.  In my opinion, this rug represents the true essence of patchwork – using up what you have.

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A close-up shows the wide border with mitred corners and then the binding to finish it off.

This is my first completed patchwork so I am definitely no expert.  If you were able to study the piece closely you would find that it is far from perfect.  There are some joins in which the corners do not match precisely, it is possibly not as flat or smooth as it should be and there are the occasional wrinkle and pucker.  However, I regard these as part of the love with which these was devised and assembled.

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Finally, I wanted to show you that you do not need to spend a heap of money on a plethora of gadgets.  I used my standard dressmaking scissors, tape measure and pins.  In addition, I used a set square and 1 metre metal ruler which I had on hand.  I also used a 1/4″ foot and a quilting foot for my sewing machine.  The 1/4″ foot was a handy addition but not essential, whereas I could not have completed this rug without the quilting foot.  I was lucky that both of these items had generously been given to me.

A Unique Gift

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I have been making a gift for Izz for her birthday.  She has a doll’s bed which has been passed down to her but no bedding.

I bought 2 u-shaped pillowcases recently from the op shop.  Here is one that I have unpicked ready to use.  Note the roll of fabric which is the dismantled and pressed frill.

2012-08-06 01The Duke bought a piece of foam cut to size for the mattress and I have covered that using some of the pillowcase fabric.

2012-08-06 02The next step was to make a patchwork quilt.  I worked out the size and number of pieces I would need.  The plain pink is more of the pillowcase, plain mauve from a piece in my stash of fabric, Dora pattern is a few leftover scraps from the doona cover and curtains that I made for Miss O last year and the pink patterned fabric is from a blouse I picked up at the op shop.  The frill is the one I unpicked from the pillowcase.  The hemmed edge remained intact so I simply regathered it and reapplied to the quilt edge.

2012-08-06 03I bought a large piece of cotton/bamboo batting for a bed quilt I am working on for Izz’s bed so I used a small piece for this quilt.  (I think this is a rather spoiled doll!)  The backing is more leftovers from some op shop fabric.  I quilted it by simply machine stitching along the seam lines which is nothing fancy but seems effective.

2012-08-06 04The finishing touch was to make a matching pillow.  A couple more fabric scraps and some salvaged filling from an old cushion and I had a complete set of bedding for the doll.  Here is the mattress with the pillow.

2012-08-06 05The total cost of things I bought specifically for this project was $6.60.  This is a gift which I know will be loved regardless of the cost.  I am looking forward to seeing Izz’s face when she opens the gift.

Now I need to work on the the bed quilt I am making as well since her birthday is in 2 weeks and I want to be able to give her the present before we go on holidays.

Something Different

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I have always eschewed patchwork groups and my comment has been, “Why would you spend heaps of money on fabric just to cut it up into little pieces so that you can sew them back together again?”  I simply don’t see the attraction and in my opinion it is a waste of money.  In fact many of the creations are just for display and serve no practical purpose.  Once again, why?

However, I have recently discovered that this is not the case with all patchwork and quilting.  I have been reading Frugal in Cornwall and if anyone knows how to do something for nothing (or not very much), it is Froogs.  She has been quilting for some time but has really got into it recently.  This post is just one of many where she discusses upcycling fabric for these gorgeous quilts.

Anyway, I have been inspired and finally capitulated.  At the moment I am just creating some blocks out of scraps of fabric from my cupboard.  Most of it is new – offcuts from completed projects or pieces that have been given to me.  A couple are garments that have been unpicked.

2012-05-12 01When I looked through my stash it seemed that pink seemed to be the dominant colour.  Not entirely surprising, since I have 2 daughters and 2 granddaughters.  These are the blocks I have made so far.  There will be some blue as well with touches of purple and green.  I am not sure how many blocks I will be able to make with the fabric I have got.  Nor do I know what I will make.  I am wondering about a quilt for Izz, whose birthday is in August.

Watch this space for more progress.