Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Flimsy*

The top of the quilt is complete!

Quilt top

I still can't get over the size of it. You'd think I'd never seen a queen-sized blanket before. I have. I've just never made one.

Quilt top
Pardon that stray string. 

My excitement level over this quilt has varied a bit. I was pretty excited with the pile of fabrics before I started. Assembling the blocks was enjoyable and soothing (straight seams, lots of pressing, well-behaved cotton, etc). When I started arranging the blocks to determine the layout, I wasn't happy with the look. That was disappointing.

Quilt top

The pattern for the quilt has the rectangles arranged vertically, while the quilt that I was inspired by (see previous post) has them horizontally. I initially planned to follow the pattern since it was the colors and "feel" of the inspiration quilt I was after. But, after being unhappy with it, I recalculated and switched them to vertical.

Quilt top

That was an improvement and my excitement rose again when I got some distance from it. Literally. Viewing it from 10-15 feet away made me like it more. The colors blended more for an overall pattern rather than a real patchwork look.

Quilt top

And, as you can see from all the pictures, I really liked watching it blow in the breeze on the clothesline in the sunshine. Sunshine makes everything look better. I'm hoping to rent some time on a long-arm quilting machine next week to quilt it. Both nervous and excited about that. I'll keep you posted.

*Term used by some quilters for the finished quilt top.

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Next Big Thing

I've been wanting to give my bedroom a bit of a makeover for awhile. A month or two ago, we got a good deal on some new furniture and that was a good impetus for me to get moving with the rest of the project, starting with a quilt.

After much online searching, I came up with a plan.

The inspiration:


The pattern:
Same as the one for this quilt, "Plain Spoken" from The Modern Quilt Workshop.

The fabrics:

Quilt fabrics

Right now, I'm actually well into the project. The pattern is so simple that it comes together quickly. But, a queen-sized quilt is big. Bigger than anything I've made before. So, the number of blocks needed does make it a bit of a time suck. Tonight or tomorrow I'm hoping to get the blocks arranged in a layout I like.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

McCall's 6070 / Simplicity 3503 - Brown Print Knit Dress

This is the dress I mentioned in my last post - a combination of McCall's 6070 and Simplicity 3503. I've been wanting to make this dress since I saw Peacock Chic's version awhile back. It turns out that she was inspired by Amanda's creation (it has been awhile since I looked back at Amanda's post - the similarity in fabric is entirely coincidental!). I must say that Amanda's idea to combine these two patterns is rather genius. The two patterns are remarkably similar, but each has some things about it that aren't quite ideal. Using the best of both gets around that problem. You can read more about the reasons why in Amanda's post.

McCall's 6070 / Simplicity 3503

I used a dark brown and white print ITY poly knit that I bought intending to make a dress last summer. So much fabric, so little time....

I didn't make any changes to the pattern when I cut it out. After trying it on, I stitched the top of the midriff band to the bodice with a 1/4" seam because it was too high.

McCall's 6070 / Simplicity 3503

I was a little worried that the back would feel too bare, but it really doesn't and I like the ties.

This is a very easy-to-make and easy-to-wear dress. The to-make list is long, but if I can get to it, I'd like to make another of these.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Public Safety Issue

Do you read the Yarn Harlot blog? If you are at all interested in (or even just aware of) knitting, you should. She's hilarious. Anyway, yesterday's post resonated with me. Just substitute "sewing" for "knitting" and much of what she says is true for me.

So, this afternoon I ignored the dirty bathrooms, full laundry baskets, phone calls to return, school committee work to do, etc. and just sewed for ME! for FUN! I made a dress - start to finish. And - bonus! I really like the finished product!

Now tomorrow I will have some catching up to do. But, it's all good. Because now I can be nice to people again.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Simple Summer Stuff (Part 3)

This batch of simple summer clothes finishes with a very basic T-shirt dress and leggings. I had every intention of adding "something" to the dress to make it a little more interesting. Maybe another applique? Or some novelty pockets on the skirt? But, all the sewing I did on this was done in tiny bits of time between other tasks. Stitch the shoulder seams. Reload the washing machine. Attach the neckband. Get the pan of cookies out of the oven. Gather the sleeves. Settle a sibling squabble. Insert sleeves. Check the clothes on the line. And on it went...

That really isn't an ideal way to sew for me. I had the dress complete and then remembered that I was going to add something. I still could, I suppose. But, I won't. Because it feels done to me and I have a very hard time going back to fix something that feels finished. Silly, I know. But, it's the truth.

Blue dress/Grey leggings

The dress is a very modified Kwik Sew 2918. The jersey is very stretchy in both directions, so I didn't have to add nearly as much length to the bodice as I anticipated I would. Ever since making this dress, I love to use clear elastic for gathering knits. The gathers are beautifully even and the seam remains stretchy.

The leggings are Burda 9615, made from a heather grey jersey knit that looks a little more athletic than I'd like, but I suspect my daughter will want to wear the dress without the leggings as the weather warms up more.