Holidays are approaching! Hard to believe it’s coming so quickly. I have had so little time to sew in the last couple of months that now my head is swimming with ideas. It’s so full of things that some days it’s hard to sort out what to do or even where to start. I think the first thing to do will be to make a list. I’ve had some random projects on my mind, pot holders, zip pouches, pj pants, ear bud cases, dish towels, Christmas stockings and pillows all rumbling around in my head. I do have one more baby quilt to finish. That should be completed by the weekend. The top is pieced so it’s just a matter now of layering it and quilting and binding. Probably just a few hours but not too complicated and I can start and stop. I also have a couple of birthday presents to make. I might even have to do some shopping. The biggest outside time commitment now however is work and my mother. She is back at her home in the senior community after 3 weeks in the hospital and 3 weeks in rehab. Sure seems like longer and I guess between all the doctor visits for the 6 weeks before surgery it has been longer. We’re hoping for a stable winter but when you’re 85 it’s hard to tell what each day will bring.
I did have fun doing one quick project in all of this madness. I made another burp rag from a diaper. I was going to make this before the shower for my niece but ran out of time. I do love applique however and I had fun with this applique cute and hot pink flower fabric.
And there were more bibs and baby items in my sewing room. And I’m having fun.
I realized that this may be boring to the few people who do read this blog but then realized that really, my reason for this blog is for me and is a record of what I am doing. When I think I really have not accomplished much I can sit and scroll through the entries and realize that although I don’t have lots of quilt finishes, I have created many items in the last year and have enjoyed them all. I do want to make more quilts and actually have three cut and stacks of fabric for many more. I’m itching to get in there and get busy but life seems to get in the way. And so does work.
So for now, this is what I’ve made. A tag blanket. This time with smaller and fewer tabs. Bibs in different styles, backings and shapes. Do I have a favorite? I think I’m fine tuning this one. I like the front either of flannel or cotton. The backing I have done several different ways. I’ve used terry cloth, flannel and fleece. I’ve used yardage, kitchen towels and even a left over baby towel that was a fine terry. I’ve also used minky and polar fleece. The polar fleece is interesting because it adds a bit of weight to the bib and also some moisture repellant features. The minky looks lush. The terry cloth is practical and the flannel is just plain cute. I’ve also made some burp rags that are cute. Soft patterned minky on one side and flannel on the other. Dual purpose.. cute and absorbent yet moisture resistant. Guess we’ll see how the moms like them. I do have a few more projects in minds. There are still several weeks before the shower so I’m sure more projects will show up on the table.
Cute baby photos are always a good thing. It’s also nice to see cute baby photos when that baby is using something you’ve made. Now I realize it’s only a bib, but still nice to see that it has been used and looked cute. I had already forgotten.
Patterns old and new. As I have been sewing baby gifts I’ve dug into boxes of old patterns that I had stored in the back of a cupboard. This cupboard is difficult to reach so the patterns have just been sitting. I’ve always known that one day I would be digging into these pattern boxes for old patterns I had used and not gotten rid of. I really was looking for baby bonnet patterns. I thought I had more that I found. I liked my girls to have bonnets on their heads when they went out. They looked cute and my mother told me it would help prevent ear infections! Now I’m not sure that really helped but I did like bonnets and they were fun to make. Now it’s fashionable to wear bonnets again although it’s more likely to keep the sun off of delicate skin. I suppose the looking cute still applies as well.
In spite of the lack of bonnet patterns I did find lots of PJ’s patterns and some bib patterns and special dress patterns. After I had sorted through the boxes I pulled several patterns and then returned the boxes to the cupboard. When I was finished I laid the patterns on my desk and started looking at the differences in pictures and in price. I ended up with patterns old and new covering a 60 year span. The picture on the right is a McCall’s night-shirt pattern from 1952. The price.. $.50. The middle pattern is also a McCall’s pattern but it’s dated 1982. This bib pattern was used to make some bibs for my little girls. The cost $2.00. The third pattern is a Simplicity pattern that I just purchased. This makes it a 2012 pattern for a dress and bonnet and it’s price is comparable to the McCall’s patterns and the cost…. $14.95. Now Joann’s regularly sells them for 40% off. I guess the pattern companies want us to think we are getting a good buy! Hmm… what do you think? I always try to buy patterns on sale which you can do for the big pattern companies like Simplicity, McCall’s and Buttrick. Other patterns like Kwik Sew and independent pattern makers are usually not reduced in price so the cost is often $10-$20. I know there are usually several views and several sizes in each envelope so maybe that’s ok. Opinions?
Little Knitted Creatures are certainly intriguing to me. I am not a knitter however so they will just have to remain in the book. Do you like knit creatures or have you made anything like this before? I’ve made all sorts of dolls, stuffed bears, turtles and other things but no knitted creatures. I guess I’ll have to think about it or see who I can bribe into making me the little gnome in the book..
Multi-tasking.. it seems like a good idea but I think but for me this is one that has gone gotten out of hand. I have so many ideas, and have collected so may lovely fabrics and I want to sew all kinds of projects. This time, I have used my AccuQuilt Go cutter and I have several new dies. I want to try them all out so the cutter is sitting on my table and I have piles of fabric and piles of cut shapes and now I have a huge mess! When I picked up the fabric for my nieces quilt and then used the wrong die to cut the fabric I decided I need to change my ways. I’ve taken a picture to remind myself of the disaster and started to pick things up and put them away. I do have piles ready to cut for quilts but now it’s one at a time and it goes into a clear plastic box with the pattern. The leftover shapes are in another box along with the oops cuts and I’ve decided that I need to sew up what I have and then I can cut more. Do you have a problem multi-tasking? If you do multi-task, what is your secret to stay organized? I’m ready to try some new ideas.
It’s nice to be at a point where I am starting on new projects. It’s always fun and exciting to plan a new project, think about the fabric, the details and who will be receiving the end product. Sometimes I make something just to make it but I do find that I’m more productive and apt to stick with it and finish it if there is a time line or a reason. I’m not good at just sitting and playing. I need a purpose. I recently got a die for my AccuQuilt Go cutter. This cuts simple 5″ squares. I love to cut the fabric with this die. It’s fast and easy and accurate. The package insert always has a pattern idea. When I saw the pattern I knew I had the perfect fabric. Last year when I first started to sew and quilt again one of the first fabrics that I fell in love with was the green fabric with the Swiss houses on it. The pattern was big enough that I knew I needed a bigger block and I really didn’t have too much of the yardage. I had enough other fabrics in my stash to make the rest of the blocks and I spent an hour or so happily cutting and placing this on my design wall. It has been sitting in a box waiting for the day to sew it up and now the day is here. I’m going to make this for a young friend who is having a baby girl and doesn’t like pink. This quilt has flowers and butterflies and these darling little houses and I think it will be perfect. Now I’m off to sew and already planning another new project in my head.
A rag blanket finish happened this week. It actually was fun to do and I’m pleased with the finished product. When I first bought this die I thought this would be a great way to use the flannel remnants. As it turns out, because you use two pieces of fabric in each block the remnants don’t go very far. I knew that I was making this blanket for a little boy and have since learned that the mom is already in the hospital waiting for this little one to appear. It’s a bit early for his arrival however so they hope he will take his time! In the end, I was able to mostly use fabrics from my stash. I did end up buying a small piece of yellow. Hubby was a bit reserved about the project but was also impressed after it had been washed and dried. Like he said, it almost makes a chenille type fabric after it’s been in the wash and I’m sure it will get softer with each wash. I think I’m off to make another.
August already? I just looked at the date of the last post. I can’t believe it’s been two months to the day! I’m back to more regular posting. The big Girl Scout project has been finished and I’ll do several posts about that in the next week. I have to go back and gather all the photos so I can document the project. For now, camp is finished, birthdays have been celebrated and we’re into August. I think the next few months will be many baby posts. I know of at least 4 babies in the next 4 months. They will all need different levels of acknowledgment which means a large variety of projects for me. I’m excited. I have soo many ideas and love the excuse to try them out.
The first project was just a couple of baby bibs. I love to make these bib. I had some like them when my kids were little and loved the extra coverage. I made one in the size the pattern suggested and then put the pattern in the copy machine and enlarged it 129%. So pleased with they way they turned out. I often times buy remnants and this is the perfect pattern for a remnant. I can see how the fabric looks made up, the parents get a bib that’s unique and I have lots of fun. Win win for all!
A tag blanket for baby is a popular gift. When I first saw them I thought it was kind of silly but as I thought about it I realized it was actually a smart gift and something a baby would enjoy. It’s small enough to put in a diaper bag or use in a car seat or stroller and might even be good in a crib at nap time. I know that when my kids were babies they liked to rub things between their fingers and it helped to sooth them. This blanket has something for every mood. It has lots of color and many textures. When I was making it I did wonder if there were too many tags or too many colors. I opted for many textures and many colors. I think this will make the blanket useful for a longer period and should appeal to every childs fascination with color and texture. The front of the tag blanket is a piece of fabric that has cute little bunnies. The back of the blanket is a piece of fabric I purchased that has alternating squares of flannel and chenille. Lots of interesting things for baby to look at. I’m also going to enclose a couple of link toys so mama can attach toys to the ribbon tags or even attach it to the side of a stroller or car seat. When baby gets tired of it and throws it, this tag blanket for baby will not go very far!