Minions and pin cushions

Minions and pin cushions were next on the list. A friend saw the orange Minion pillow cases and wanted a blue one for her college age daughter.  It was fun to make and I added a little coin purse. This fabric was great quality and had a great feel to it so it was fun to sew.

Minion pillowcase

Minion coin purse

 

 

 

 

 

Next was a pin cushion for a friend. After reading about other folks using this pattern I was hesitant and I procrastinated   it took me a long time to make it. When I was done, I realized there were several things I could have done differently had I known but it turned out OK and wasn’t nearly as difficult as I thought it might be. A win for sure.

Starfish Alley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And one more jar cozy.

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Postcards

Postcards were again on the agenda for my camp friends. I tried to customize them a bit with something special for person. Sometimes this happened to be a name, like Chipmunk or Tigger. I didn’t have any Tigger fabric so had to make do with Pooh instead. And one for a friend whose name was from the Wizard of Oz, and there were several themed ones as well.

A Nature, a boating, a generic Girl Scout, a crafter, a Cat (mouse) and even the kitchen folks.  These were fast and fun. I might have made them more elaborate if I had started sooner but… Starfish Alley

Starfish Alley

Gifts

I was lucky enough to recieve some gifts from friends this summer too. A friend who I chat with many times a week but usually by email, found a pincushion pattern that she wanted to try out so I was the lucky winner on that one and one friend I had made a pincushion caddy for and in turn she created me a beautiful pair of hand knit socks.

It’s always such a treat to receive handmade gifts from friends. (Actually it’s a treat to receive any kind of gift. It always makes me feel special.) I love creating gifts for people and in turn I love to receive theStarfish Alleym as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This beautiful wool pincushion was created with love and care by my friend Gretchen.

I feel honored and blessed to be on the receiving end.
For my friend Terri, I made this pincushion caddy similar to one she had see on a website.

Starfish Alley

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a thank you she gifted me with these hand knit socks. What a lucky gal I am!

Starfish Alley

 

 

Fall is in the air!

Fall is in the air here in Edmonds.  After an unusually warm summer it’s time to get into the fall routines. I’m working on that for sure.

I have done lots of odds and ends of sewing here but really haven’t had the inclination to post much. I’m looking forward however to some updates here and continue to make a record of my finishes.  I’ve got lots of plans for the fall so we’ll see how I do.

One of my finishes this summer has been a second baby quilt. This is for the friend of daughter #2 who is expecting her daughter #2. When I started this I really only expected to test the block idea and size but after I had finished several of the blocks I decided that I really like it and it would be perfect for this new baby. I did struggle with the binding for a bit but finally settled on this green stripe. At first after it was done I thought I had made a mistake because it’s so much bolder than I had anticipated but I do think I like it and it does go with the fabrics.

Starfish Alley

 

 

 

 

 

As I was searching for this picture I also found many others.

Another project from earlier in the summer was another pillowcase. This was also for a Girl Scout friend.

Starfish Alley

Graduation Time of Year

It’s graduation time of year again.  I don’t really have close to me relatives graduating this year but  do know two ladies that I want to recognize.  Graduation is a big accomplishment if it is high school or college.  The first lady is a high school graduate and like I’ve done many times over the last several years I’ve made a zip bag.  I love to make these and they are so handy to have around.  I have odds and ends in my purse, like Tylenol, eye drops etc. I have one for my cell phone, I have one for my Kindle and I have one for all of my charging cords.  The usefulness can go on and on. I hope this lady will like her zip pouch as she heads off to college and finds it useful for some of life’s odd and ends.

camera zip pouch

camera aip pouch2

The second lady is older and a college graduate.  She has put herself through school while working full-time and I have lots of admiration for her and her hard work.  She is also a Girl Scout volunteer and for many years has volunteered one week of her vacation at a summer overnight Girl Scout camp.  As I puzzled about how to recognize her I decided I could make her a pillowcase that was designed especially for camp. Her camp name relates to a small animal and there are many interesting small wildlife creatures at camp so I thought this was a fitting recognition and something that she will use, enjoy and it will not show any dirt.  At camp this is always a bonus even if you do sleep inside!.

Chipmunk pillowcase

So for this year, graduation sewing is done. Next on the agenda is a couple of aprons and at least two baby quilts.  One of those quilts has been pieced so now it’s just layering, quilting and binding.

A couple more pictures

A couple more pictures here. I did make some things for Christmas this year but find I only have pictures of some of the things.. not sure what happened.  Guess I’m out of the habit.

I did make this nightgown for my niece’s daughter. I love making flannel nightgowns for little girls.

Flannel nightgown Starfishalley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And I made my brother some napkins.

pulled thread napkins Starfishalley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Of course there were also a few more zip bags.
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And I also made about 20 of the long rice heat packs. There was a 50 pound bag of rice left at one of my work places so I made many of these.  In fact I even ended up going to Costco for a second bag of rice.

rice bags

 

 

 

 

 

Next up will be several baby quilts and other items. There are at least 3 babies that I know of in the next few months.  I do enjoy the baby sewing and could easily get carried away by that.

Quick graduation gift

I knew a couple of young ladies that were graduating and needed a quick graduation gift.  I’ve made pouches for young ladies this age before and found they have been well received.  They seem to be useful for odds and end and all kinds of other things.  I made these a tad bigger so they could be used for charging cords.  I don’t know about you, but it seems like I am taking more of these with me when I travel places and it’s hard to find a convenient place to store them where you can find them again.  I hate to keep looking for my things and try to keep them all together and be consistent about where I put my belongings so this is important to me.  These young ladies will not have mothers with them to keep track of their things when they leave for college in a few weeks so I’m hopeful that these pouches will be useful.

graduation zip pouches

In my dreams..

In my dreams I update this blog frequently with new projects and fun sewing activities.  In reality, I just dream about it because there really has not been a lot of sewing.  I did make a couple of skirts for a daughter’s birthday. I’ve also done a few zippered pouches and a bit of mending.  I’ve also made a few dish towels with some applique. I would love to do more and maybe that will happen and maybe only a dream for a while.  Part of the reason is just far more hours spent working.  You know those adult kind of work things.  I’ve also done some reading and tending to family issues.

This week is camp week however.  After 21 years of attending Girl Scout camp as an adult and many more years as a girl, camp seems to be a part of my summer.  I “retired” from camp a couple of years ago but still have lots of friends who attend and carry on this fabulous tradition.  It looks like they will have a great week this week too.  I try to send some mail but it needs to be sent at the beginning of the week or it will not arrive in time.

Although I didn’t think of this very far in advance I wanted to send mail and thought it should be a bit different. I’ve read about fabric post cards and have some leftover Girl Scout fabric so thought I would give it a try.  Although these are not very elegant or elaborate it was a fun diversion and I’m going to make some more.  Because it was a last minute thought I decided that I would use what I had on hand.  I had some Peltex and Wonder Under so I created my own double stick post card base and then experimented with ironing on the fabric and doing some simple applique.  I got some permanent fabric markers and sent them through the postal mail.  I do hope they receive them and if not I do have a picture.

Off to make a couple more.  I have several friends that were not able to go due to health reasons.  I thought they might like camping@home mail.

 

post card frontpost caard backs

A Big Day at our house!

Tomorrow will be a big day at our house!  It’s daughter’s birthday and also the last two drug chemo day.  Although she will still have two more treatments after tomorrow, the end is in sight and those two are not as nasty as the one tomorrow.  So we will celebrate!  Tomorrow she will still feel ok.  Starting Wednesday afternoon, Thursday and Friday will not be very pleasant but she knows that.  So tomorrow we will celebrate. The birthday seems to be a significant day to have the last double treatment.

This of course requires a celebration.  We will have some family and a couple of friends to have dinner and celebrate.  This also requires a few gifts.  My kids are very “green” oriented and dislike paper waste including cards.  I really can’t just give up the cards because I like them but I can do something about the wrapping so I decided it was time to create re-usable gift bags.

I have to admit that until I found a remnant of birthday fabric at the store the thought had not crossed my mind.  So I created three different kinds of bags.  The first bag that I did is somewhat narrow and tall.  I lined it with orange fabric, put some handles on it and a snap at the top so it could be closed and the contents will stay secret.  I think every good birthday gift should be a surprise and hate it when the packaging fails! The second bag is just a drawstring beg.  Sort of a medium size that will accommodate many sizes and shapes of gifts.  The third bag was an experiment.  I wanted a bag that was easy to close but also a little bit fun and different.  This is the bag from the cupcake fabric.  Although it’s hard to tell from this photo I hemmed the top of the bag, and then sewed colored elastic into the side seam so you can just stretch the band around the top of the bag and it’s securely closed and adds a cute little top to the bag.  All in all the gifts are ready for tomorrow, we’ll get the chemo done, dinner will be started in the crock pot before we leave in the morning (pulled pork) and we’ll all be glad when tomorrow is over and the day has been celebrated to the best of our ability!

birthday celebration bag

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

drawsting birthday bag

Zig Zag quilt.

A new zig zag quilt has been finished!  This has been on my design wall for a while as I contemplated what I was going to do.  The new parents are Florida Gator fans and wanted this to be a nod to their Gator loyalty.  When I looked at the Florida Gator colors however I just couldn’t see making a baby quilt with just blue and orange which are the main colors.  Now I actually am fond of both blue and orange with a touch of green but for a baby this seems a bit intense  especially when the gender has not been disclosed.  Mom and Dad have chosen not to find out ahead of time.

I knew I wanted to use half square triangles but was undecided about the zig zags or make them using arrows. I also wasn’t sure about the colors.  This is version number 1.

half square triangle arrows

 

 

 

I ended up using a royal blue, a green an orange and a fabric that was mixed but included those three colors.  I had all of these in my stash.  I did end up buying a different orange because I wanted one that was brighter with all the white. Once I got the zig zags done I had the dilemma of the border.  I cut the half square triangles with my Go cutter and the finished pattern made a 12″ square so I knew that I wanted the border to be about 4″ total but I really didn’t want to use another fabric or re-use one of the fabrics.  I stared to play with some quilting software that I had received for Christmas.. EQ7 or Electric  Quilt and ended up with alternating squares and rectangle of the white and colored fabrics.  One day when I was walking through JoAnn’s in search of something else, I  found this stripped fabric that had all the same colors in it as well and knew this would be the perfect fabric binding.  The back I also ended up purchasing and that was a piece of yellow flannel with green alligators  Finally the baby quilt was ready.  Mom and Dad were pleased, I was satisfied and the baby is due in a couple of weeks.  Nice to have this one finished and nice to be pleased with the result.

Zig Zag quilt front

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

gatorflannel back

 

 

 

 

 

 

adrienne quilt1