After finishing up my leggings the other day, I set to work on a coordinating sweatshirt to go with it. Instead of making a “traditional” sized hoodie, I decided to make mine cropped…. and I used Jalie’s Laurent to do it! This pattern already has markings for a cropped design which made things a bit easier, but when I measured it, I felt like it was going to be shorter than I wanted so I added 3″ so that it would sit on the high hip (still cropped, but definitely looks better if you’re not wearing high waisted pants).
I really waffled back and forth if this project wanted to become a hoodie or a sweatshirt. I wound up completing everything but the neckband, then tried it on so I could determine what I wanted to do next… somehow it screamed hoodie. Unfortunately, I did not have enough material left over to use as a lining, but I did have a wonderful dragon fruit peached performance that seemed to match well and really made the interior pop! Now I’m going to need a pair of (dragon fruit) leggings that will go with this hoodie too! Guess what I’m working on next?
If you know a Pokemon fan, then you’ll want to sew them up one of these adorable Squirtles (you don’t even need to like Pokemon to think they’re cute).
This bag is labeled a “mini duffle” but it looks pretty good size to me!
After several months of sewing bags, plushes, and quilt blocks, it’s time to refocus on making some clothing items that I’ve been meaning to get to…. like this AWESOME pair of leggings!
I had purchased this panel from The Styled Magnolia quite some time ago, with the intent on making a pair of leggings… and they did not disappoint! Because of the way the panel is laid out, I wasn’t able to go with a seamless design, so I went with the classic Jalie 2820 pattern. This allowed me to cut the legs independently and maximize my space with the fabric. Instead of going with a design on each leg (there is a “floral skull” print on this panel as well), I went with just the floral print going down one leg and used the muted floral background for the other. What a way to make these leggings pop!
I have a matching floral French terry print that I intend on using to make a coordinating sweatshirt, but not sure what I might make to layer under it. No mater what I make, these leggings need to be the star of the show… and now I can’t wait to use the other side of the panel!
A few weeks ago I mentioned that I joined 2023’s Murder Mystery Quilt. The first block (and story) released last Wednesday, so I immediately set to work. It’s been a long time since I’ve made a quilt, so it took me quite a bit of time to cut all the fabrics (an entire day), but honestly, there were lots to be cut (over 300 pieces!). Sewing up that many pieces also took a while (2+ very long days), but I pretty pleased with my end results:
There were two different versions of the blocks that you could complete and I decided to go with the more complex (because I liked the overall look the best). It was definitely more challenging and took a lot more time cutting and piecing that what the other version would have, but I think the effort was worth it. These are by no means perfect, but it wasn’t worth going back and trying to correct any mistakes.
I definitely learned some things with this month’s block (I may have finally gotten down the “scant 1/4”) and bought some cool new tools (I’m in love with this mini iron and cutting\press station) that will come in handy later, too. I’m excited to see what next month brings!
My holiday decorations may be packed and put away and the carefree schedule over, but I’m having a hard time getting back into the swing of things even though the festivities are over… which largely explains the lack of postings this week. So my goal next week is getting back into a regular routine. In the mean time, I can finally show you one of the projects I had going on behind the scenes – Valentine’s Day Cards! That’s right, your embroidery machine doesn’t have to be just for fabric, with the right materials and designs, you can create beautiful stationary for any occasion! You can get all the details on how to make your own in the Spring 2023 copy of Creative Machine Embroidery Magazine, which should be out on newsstands now (or grab yourself a digital edition, instead)!
And now, it’s back to cutting and practicing my scant 1/4″ seams for my Murder Mystery Quilt block! I started this process yesterday and realized that a number of my pieces were 1/8″ off, so I’m going back to the drawing board and seeing what I can do to make this work out as intended. Not to mention the fact that THERE ARE SO MANY PIECES! It’s been so long since I’ve worked on a quilt, I forgot what that’s like.
Tiny things are cute, but they sure are a b!tch to sew. My axolotl pouch pet is complete, but I have to admit, this was a slightly challenging project for me.
First off, my idea with the hands\feet did not work out (now I have these cute little finger mitts I can wear to amuse myself), but I was on the right track by not cutting out the feet pattern. Instead, I should have sewed the hand\foot fabric directly onto the body and then sew along the traced pattern piece. I also had quite a bit of stretching with this minky which contributed to more frustrations.
This is one of the smaller plush that I have ever made and those tiny details take a bit more work to turn out correctly. While the end result is super cute, I think I need to set this pattern aside for awhile because I just didn’t find it as fun to sew as some of the other plush patterns that I’ve worked on. Eventually I may tackle the “pouch” portion of this project, but don’t expect to see it any time soon.
This cute little fur purse is perfect winter accessory.
If working out more is part of your new year’s resolution, you’ll want to sew up some new workout gear – like this free Camden one piece. For a two piece look try this sports bra and (stretch) athletic shorts combination.
Tie blankets are a great kids project and are perfect for charitable donations or just gift giving. Here’s how to make yours (this does call for a purchased template, but you can easily make your own).
Rope bowls are a great fabric buster and an easy way to spruce up a room. Looking for something that can coordinate with your room? Why not try this easy nesting bowl or completely non-sewing mod podge version instead.
While it doesn’t look like much yet, this is the makings of an axolotl pouch pet. While I have a ton of things I want to work on right now, I decided to tackle this project first because it’s just so darn cute and I couldn’t resist giving it a whirl. So far I’ve managed to embroider the face as well as the gills and tail (these were created in the hoop – so quick and easy). The hands\feet have been created too – I HIGHLY suggest removing the seam allowance on this portion of the pattern, place two pieces of fabric right sides together, tracing the outline of the pattern piece on the backside of the fabric, and sewing the material together directly on the line. My finished pieces looked so much cleaner this way – the pieces are so small (and minky is slippery) that I just didn’t get a great looking foot\hand otherwise. I should note this is not how the construction is supposed to look (the hands and feet are attached to the body first, then sewn together in one step), so I may be kicking myself for doing it this way later, but I thought I would give this a try first to see if it would work out.
Normally, at the end of the year, I like to reflect on the projects that I’ve worked on throughout the year. I generally keep a record of all the projects I make – However, last year, I got lazy and stopped writing it all down (really early on, too!). So instead of looking back on the past year, I’ll share with you some new adventures I have lined up.
First up: A Murder Mystery Quilt! I stumbled across this through Facebook and was very intrigued: Murder, Mystery, Vikings (the theme of this year’s story and quilt), AND SEWING? Count me in! The brains behind this is the author\Blogger of Whipstitch -apparently this has been going on for several years now (I’m not sure how I never noticed, maybe because I didn’t pay enough attention to quilting) and some of the quilts are really beautiful. The program starts in just a few weeks (the first block is released on the 11th), but I already picked out all of my materials (full disclosure, I spent a VERY long time trying to figure out what fabrics to use… probably way more than what was necessary, but I’m happy with my selections):
For those that are curious, you do get a fabric selection guide that gives you the basic colors in the quilt design (you don’t have to stick with it, though). I tried to select materials that were as close as possible to the guide, but went with a mix of solids, batiks, and prints within that range. As far as quilting goes, I have done several quilts, but it’s been YEARS. This project is supposed to be fairly beginner friendly so I feel confident that I can complete the blocks each month. I also did a foundation piecing class EONS ago, so I have some background (that I need brushing up on) if there are any blocks with that technique. Overall, I’m super excited to get this started!
Also coming soon (I hope):
I’ve been itching to try out Vikisews patterns. I stumbled across these trendy little designs on Etsy a few months ago and have been looking for an excuse to make something. The Nikki Sweatshirt is free so I may start there.
I purchased a slew of new fabrics recently, so I definitely need to get busy and put them to good use. These include some vinyls and pulls for purses, some new shades of Minky cuddle fleece for stuffies, more performance knits for leggings, and some fun fabrics for tops (and a great stretch denim, too!).
Did anyone ever read the book (or see the movie) for Coraline? Easton has done both and it’s definitely one of his favorites. Right before Christmas, he saw a reel on Instagram where someone crafted a doll that looked like the recipient and sent it to them Coraline style. His note read “I would totally take this as a Christmas present”. While I didn’t have enough time to make it for Christmas, I still want to do this (and what a cool birthday present this would make, too!).
Full disclosure, I’m normally a gloves gal, but I recently discovered the benefits of wearing mittens. Here’s why:
Normally, I buy gloves because I feel like they give me the ability to still use my hands better than mittens. I even went so far as to buy a new pair of texting gloves this season. However, when Easton had his soccer tournament last month, gloves just didn’t make my hands feel warm enough. In fact, I found myself shoving Hot Hands inside my glove, taking my fingers out of their finger sleeves (what would you call that part of a glove) and holding it (so essentially creating a mitten) so that my hands would stay warm.
Fortunately, when I got home, I had already made a pair of mittens – Jalie 4343. I tested out this pattern and didn’t have any soft shell material on hand, so I went with a fun polar fleece instead. I found these very easy to sew so I’ll definitely be making more in the future because sometimes the even just calls for mittens!