31 May 2011

Well that was disappointing. . .

I've had the fabric to make this garment bag for my wedding dress since last August. But I was scared of laminated fabric (rightly so) and zippers. My rousing success with the zippered bag on Saturday gave me the confidence to finally tackle this project. I mean, how hard could it be really?

I hope that if you click on this picture, you can't see too many details because this is a janky bunch of mess. Seriously. It's awful. I won't mention any names (because I love her) but the writer of the pattern is an incredible fabric designer but her patterns are miserable. Maybe it's just me. Maybe I don't have the skillz to read patterns like this. Maybe I should stick to quilting. This is the second thing I've made from one of her patterns though and I'm about to swear off and be happy just to love her fabric. The instructions were incredibly unclear to me. I had to read them over and over and then hope that I was doing the right thing in a few places. And there were diagrams for some of the steps but not for all - and the ones that were lacking were pretty confusing steps.

I've learned never to say never but this may be my last project with laminated fabric. I can say with all confidence that I will never use laminated fabric for binding ever again. GRRRRR. The stitching there is awful. It drags on the feed dogs in places and then inexplicably zips along in others. And I had a few other projects on my to-do list yesterday but this one took hours and hours. So much more than I was anticipating. I needed a cocktail after.

Anyway, it's pretty from a distance. My wedding dress now has a nice garment bag. One more thing checked off the list.

30 May 2011

This is why we are pixiecupINDUSTRIES. . .

Here's the quilt I finished yesterday. It's for two friends of ours who are expecting their first baby - a girl - in July. I'm excited to meet her. And almost as excited to hand this quilt over to her momma. Why am I almost as excited? Because I love this quilt. In a powerful way. It's going to be hard to let it go, even though I'm thrilled to be able to do so. Sometimes you finish a project and are glad to be done because you're over it. Sometimes you're glad to be done because you can't to see how it turns out. That's how I was with this one. I couldn't wait to see how she would look fresh out of the dryer. I love it. I love it. I love it. (Get the idea?) This little cutie was heavily inspired by this quilt. Which was heavily inspired by a pillow project in this book.

And I love the way the quilting turned out. Just big zigs and zags (you know how I love those) in the solid blocks. I think it looks fantastic on the back. The fabric on the back is Robert Kaufman's Essex Linen in light pink. And when they say "light", they're not exaggerating. When I received the fabric in the mail, I thought I'd been shipped the wrong color. It's almost off white. Just the teeniest drop of pink in there. But that's good because I didn't want pink on the back to be overpowering.

The only hiccup along the way was that I made binding out of this subtly striped fabric that I bought specifically to bind this quilt. Once I made it and got ready to pin it on, I realized that it was way too wimpy and wasn't going to work at all. It looked like an afterthought. So I dipped into my Denyse Schmidt stash and found this flowered bit of loveliness which I think was the perfect thing.

I've decided to stop being a lurker so I'm linking up to Sew Modern Mondays this week.

Ok. I need to get away from my desk and keep working on today's to-do list of craftiness. Hope you're all having a happy Memorial Day!

29 May 2011

I'm bursting at the zipper!!

Tamie, I hope you're not too mad at me. I know that we've been talking about attempting zippers together, but yesterday I got the burning desire to go for it. I went to the store, bought a zipper, pulled up this tutorial and got started. I learned a few things along the way - 1. Zippers really aren't anything to be scared of and 2. I need to read each instruction all the way through, not just the first sentence while I'm checking out the picture. Because of lesson number 2, I spent some friendly time with my seam ripper. But it's all good because I AM IN LOVE.  
Seriously, isn't it the cutest thing? The doxie fabric is from a sleeve of Munki Munki pajamas by Heather Ross. (If you don't know about this phenomenon, these pajamas are absurdly expensive and the fabric from which they are made is only produced for the pajamas. You can't buy yardage so people buy the pajamas, tear them up into arms, legs, panels, whatever and sell the bits off. And I, for one, am glad they do.) I've been saving this knowing that the right project would come along and here it was. And the blue polka dotted fabric came from the dog groomer yesterday. Serendipity.
And that fabric on the inside? Perfect. Stepped outside the zone and picked something that wasn't matchy and it's PERFECT. Love it too. What you can't see (and what nobody but me will ever know) is that the diamonds match up perfectly on the inside. Didn't mean for it to happen. The sewing gods were just smiling upon me.
I also finished another hat and a quilt this weekend. Here's a sneaky of the quilt before binding last night. The picture is not great but it's what I could do with the nighttime lighting in my living room. You'll have to wait for better pictures of both because I haven't been able to get them yet. And it's only Sunday afternoon. I still have a night and another whole day (bliss!) of this lovely long crafty weekend left to go.  Lots more pics to come!!

22 May 2011

Sunday sneak peeks

It's been a crazy week, topped off with a birthday party for a soon-to-be 4 year old this weekend, and today I've been trying hard to relax and catch up at the same time. My day has slipped away too quickly and I don't have nearly as much done as I had hoped but progress is progress I suppose. This little one WILL be done this week. It's the power of positive thinking, people!!

And here's what I'll hopefully be finishing up tonight when Donald fires his final celebrity apprentice - another hat.   (No. I'm not proud of my addiction to reality TV, but there it is. And I totally have the boy to blame thank for that addiction.) And crappy tv time makes for excellent knitting time.

And can I please give a quick thanks to DirecTV for the super crazy awesome Flashback New Wave channel. I give them an obscene amount of money each month. I'm really glad I get something out of it. . . But the music is all so awesome that it is totally keeping me chugging away at the sewing machine.

Hope you had a sunny, great weekend too.

15 May 2011

What I should be doing. . .

I should be working on quilting this. It's a baby quilt for Scott's best friend and his wife who are expecting their first baby next month. I LOVE this quilt already. If the back turns out the way I'm envisioning it, it's going to be ultra-super fab. More pictures to show of this very soon, I hope.

And the now requisite baby ball to go along with the quilt. (What?? At least they aren't hexagons. . .) Love those little bunnies.

And one more thing to show - the alpaca throw I made for my mom for mother's day. She was in Hawaii on the day so I couldn't post until after she returned. I started this right around Christmas and finished up in February so I've been sitting on this baby. I've had the yarn for years and I stole borrowed the pattern from a blanket I spotted in Pottery Barn. Hope they don't mind but this one is prettier. Anyway, I realized that I was going to run out of the brown so the red was a happy accident. (Isn't my boy cute back there holding up the blanket??)

Off to my machine now. . . Happy Sunday!

08 May 2011

More completeds.

So "completeds" isn't a word. I couldn't think of a title. That's what you get. Here's how I spent my weekend. Friday night I started the knitted, cabled coffee sleeve. Yesterday I made pincushions and started the tea cosy (the thing propped against the back of the chair) and this morning, fast and furious before I went to have Mother's Day brunch for Suzan (which was delicious but now I don't like myself very much), I had to finish the cozy. I may have said things whilst stitching on the binding that were not becoming of a lady. But I finished it just in time. And in just enough time to snap some pictures before running out the door. I still have crafty things left in my brain for this evening, so I suppose that it is a good thing that I ate so horribly at lunch because now I can still have a quick smoothie for dinner and not feel bad about not cooking.
Here are both pincushions I made. Super cute. The grey and blue one and the coffee sleeve were Mother's Day gifts for Margeaux. Because even dog-moms need presents. The yellow and grey one is for me. I have a little bowl next to my sewing machine where I drop pins and I'm afraid they're going to spill out everywhere. I have a great big pincushion nearby but I have to reach for it which isn't easy to do when you're in the middle of a stitch.
I'll wrap it up now because I feel like this is one dull post, but I want to end it with a picture of how my super awesome mom spent her mother's day weekend. JEALOUS. And yep. She said that turtle was as big as she is. (Pretty amazing even though she is a tiny little lady.)

Happy mother's day to you all!

06 May 2011

Happy Friday!

I know. I know. I should be working right now. But I wanted to share my new little desk buddy with you. He is making me all kinds of happy this morning, even though its cloudy and grey outside my office window. I’ve been trying so hard to de-stuff-ify my life, but he was sooooo cute at the toy store yesterday. And how much do you love that teeny tiny bowl of kibble? These are the itty-est blocks I’ve ever seen. (So that you get the idea of how itty, the little guy is only 2” tall at the tips of his ears.) So now he’s sitting on my windowsill and keeping me company while I do research on our trip and pay bills. Hoorah.

And I thought I should finally report back with this. Don't you hate it when you spend so much time making something and then you're totally unthrilled with the end result?? This blanket was that project for me. I was so fired up to do it but so completely uninspired by the end that it has been sitting for nearly two weeks waiting for me to weave in the ends.  Sad. And I couldn't even be bothered to block it although I know how much it would benefit.  Oh well.  I think the recipient likes it.  It is unbelievably soft and has a nice weight.  I think my issue is that I really hate that goldfish color.  I knew it from the moment I started with it but I thought it would grow on me.  Wrong.  Bleh.

I'm looking forward to another Saturday with nothing on my calendar except lots of craftiness.  And maybe a bit more Gilmore Girls. . .

Hope you're planning a good weekend too!