Monthly Archives: March 2008

Rock Chalk Jayhawk!

I don’t talk about a lot of sports, but I have to say – “WooHoo! Go Jayhawks!” I’m so excited that I even have a Jayhawk romper ready just in case this little guy decides to make his appearance in time for the Final Four.
So now back to sewing…. I started reading my Sophia bag instructions and cut out all the pieces for it this weekend. I plan on doing all the materialinterfacing cutting today – which I am expecting will take most of the afternoon. If you’re still on the fence about making this bag, but would like to participate in a bag contest in April then be sure to hop on over to Pattern Review’s Handbag contest that starts tomorrow. I’m so lucky that I get to judge this one as this is definitely one of my favorite contests on the site! You can find all the rules posted in the first entry on the handbag contest discussion board.

More On Timtex

I had quite a few comments and emails about the link on the Demise of Timtex so I thought I would do a bit of research. I put an email into (who I believe is) the manufacturer of the interfacing, but in the mean time, I’ve done some surfing and here’s what I’ve gathered (keep in mind all this is pulled from second hand information).
Timtex originally got it’s start as the interfacing in hat brims, but once the sewing and crafting community discovered it, they started producing it in larger quantities. That is until sometime last last year (it appears it may have been sometime in November when people started discovering that Timtex was no longer available) when the production plant they use closed without warning. From what I’ve read they are attempting to find a new manufacturer, but until then – what you find on the internet is the last of what is out there!

Yippie Ki-Ay, It’s Done!

What’s quilted, bound, washed, and ready for use? The Yippie Ki-Ay Cowboy Quilt!

I finished the rest of the quilting on this project by doing a simple square shape inside the larger pieces. I opted not to do any more stippling so no one could closely look at my work (I figured the pieced designs hid my flaws), but also to give it more puff in places since I was afraid that it would be too stiff with all those meandering lines. Now that it’s washed, I’m wishing I would have done the whole thing with the stipple effect – it really does have a nice feel in those heavily stitched areas!
I also sat down and worked on the binding to this one as well. I made the binding a bit ‘chunkier’ than what I have ever done before, I thought it gave it a nice, ‘bubble’ effect around the edges. Overall, I’m extremely pleased with how the edges turned out – for once, my miters turned out perfect!
Now that this big project is done, it’s time to tackle cleaning up the mess in the sewing room and make room for the next project(s)! What are you working on this weekend?

More Fabric And Tips & Tricks

I think I’m ready…. ready to get started on the Sophia Cary-All! I headed over to some fabric stores the other day to pick up the rest of my supplies (thank you so much Sarah for the coupon – I put it to good use!). My outer fabric arrived yesterday so it was time to decide on a lining. I decided a tropical shirting fabric – it’s a bit on the thin side, but seems to work well with the outer print:

I also picked up all the notions needed for this bag (cording, fleece, zipper, etc.). The only thing I’ve been contemplating buying is purse feet. I searched every sewing and craft store in town, but wasn’t able to find any so I moved onto my second favorite source, eBay!
If you’ve decided to join the Sophia Sew-Along (or still on the fence) and are looking for some great related reading, here’s a few links for you:
Kris has posted a few Tips and Tricks on the Flickr discussion board.
Looking for inspiration? Look no further than this Vera Bradley handbag (the site is also fun because you can ‘play’ with the fabrics). Pattern Review also has 4 reviews posted (with pictures).
Like most Amy Butler bag patterns, there’s a bit of Timtex involved with the Sophia. So if your looking for substitutions or tips, be sure to check out Craft Apple’s post on “The Demise of Timtex”, Distressed’s Timtex trick, and this great interview with Amy Butler on interfacing from Sew Mama Sew.

Thurday’s Links

Te links have been piling up on me so it’s definitely time to share! Here’s my linky Thursday post:
New Vogue patterns are out as well as several from the Shop Onion site (I’ve got my eye on this twist top dress).
What not to crochet.
Angry Chicken’s great video on machine bias tape.
Create your own labels for clothing and accessories. [link via Monkeyroom]
Spruce up your bathroom with these cute, quick handtowels.
Have a great crafty, creative idea? Pitch your idea to Fred Flare and you could be the next big thing!
Sharon is giving away 4 copies of the Make It Mine magazine.
Free vintage embroidery designs all week at Meet Me at Mikes. [link via Average Jane Crafter]
It’s not sewing related, but it’s free stuff for kids – so I couldn’t resist. Funky Finds is having a March Children’s Goods Giveaway with lots of great items to give away. You can enter this one up to 45 times, but be sure to read the requirements for this one. Speaking of free stuff, I won a baby tee from Honestbaby (I picked Colicky but Cute)!
I love this reversible bag. Although this selvedge bag is a close second.
Recycle those old jeans into an apron! I see lots of possibilities with this one!
BurdaStyle has their first men’s pattern available for download – the Jakob.

Living Large

It’s been awhile since I’ve given an update on me, so I thought that I would start off this post with the 37 week belly shot:

As you can tell from the title of this post, I’m “feeling” the effects of the last month of pregnancy! Thankfully, there’s only 3 more weeks to go because I’m not sure my stomach can grow any more!
I’ve also been plugging away at the Cowboy Quilt and am happy to report I’ve finished all the actual quilting!
Normally, I would say that I enjoy piecing the top together and dreaded doing all the quilting itself, but this time was different. I think that there were two factors involved:
1) Size matters. For once, I’m making a small quilt (45″ square), manipulating the fabric around and through the machine was so much easier than working with the bulk of a lap size or larger.
2) I had fun using a new tool…. the Stitch Regulator! This is one my favorite features of the machine I’m using. I do have to say that although it’s fun to use, practice makes perfect! I did spend some time practicing on a mini quilt sandwich before I moved onto the Cowboy quilt. I found that it is much easier to manipulate the mini size than a full blow quilt, but after quilting the entire project, it got a lot easier and I felt more comfortable with the entire process. One thing that would have helped quilting gloves – I now understand why quilters use them!
Here’s a close up of my handiwork:

Planning For Sophia

Have you joined the Monkey Foot Designs and Stacy Sew’s Sophia sew along yet (remember, there’s prizes!)? I started planning for my version of the bag and finally settled on an exterior print. I ran across a website devoted entirely to one of my favorite fabric designers – Alexander Henry. While surfing their site, I noticed that AH was re-releasing their Aloha Girls design – it seemed so perfect and summery! I had to wait until yesterday to order it (until it was in stock), but hopefully it will make it’s way here by the end of the week. I’m still debating what I should use on the interior.
I also stopped by Joann’s right before Easter and picked up the fusible woven interfacing while it was on sale. I have a number of notions that I still need to pick up (fusible fleece, 1/4″ cotton cording, and 22 inch zipper) but am waiting for coupons and sales before I attempt to buy more (in the mean time, the Sophia is now up on the sidebar). How about everyone else? What stage of planning or sewing are you at on this bag?

Back To The Routine

Spring break is over, which means it’s time to get back into a weekly routine. Before I plunge into housework, I’m going to spend some time in the sewing room and (attempt to) finish quilting the cowboy quilt. Since the material I chose for the back wasn’t large enough, I had to piece together a little something. I chose to make a border around the main fabric:

I’m hoping that I’ve centered it up enough with the top that the border doesn’t become lopsided! I’m also using the border fabric for the binding on the quilt as well – hopefully, I’ll be read to add that soon!

Happy Easter!

To those who celebrate – Happy Easter! We’re spending the day gorging on candy (The Williams-Sonoma jelly beans and sour bunnies are fantastic!), watching Bee Movie, and cooking a big meal! I hope everyone enjoys their day!

Martha’s Cookies

Bret and Taylor decided to spend the last day of Spring Break fishing. That gave me the perfect opportunity to do something else that I love – bake! For Christmas this year I got a KitchenAid Professional 600 6-Quart Mixer (thanks, mom!) and I’ve been putting it to good use, actually I’m not sure how I did baking without it now that I have one! I also used my new Martha Stewart’s Cookies book and made two styles (I could have made more, but I figured there was no way that we could eat that much sugar) – the Biscuit Sandwich Cookies (with a creamy Nutella filling) and a Banana Chocolate Chip Walnut cookie. They both turned out tasting great (although my suggestion for the second cookie is to use an over-ripe banana to give it lots of flavor) although not as ‘beautiful’ looking as the cookies in the book! My second project of the day was to put together Taylor’s Easter basket – which you can see I went crazy with. I decided not to do to much candy this year, so I made up for it with other treats.
I was hoping to get into the sewing room, but never managed to make it. I’m hoping that today (after cleaning the house and dying eggs with the family) I’ll have a few minutes to work on the quilt a bit more. Any sewing for anyone else this weekend or is everyone taking a holiday break?