Sewing with leather: success!

  I dream of leather bag making, but something always to go wrong. Skipped stitches, broken thread, etc.

I think this time, since I stayed SUPER simple, I actually achieved success!

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I used Isocord (Isacord?) machine embroidery polyester thread for all the sewing. it's super fine, but WAY strong.

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I put in a metal zipper from Momen+. They have the bestest zips in the whole world.  The leather is SUPER soft and supple, I bought it as a scrap in downtown LA.

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It's lined with a print of London Calling II lawn by Robert Kaufman.

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inside, with the fabric only, I put in a simple divided pocket on one side. Since the fabric is lawn, it's super fine and easy to sew multiple layers.

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so here it is, all done. And it totally looks awesome. so I think I might be brave enough to try something more complicated. we'll see...

 

 

Birthday/camp sewing

image This boy turned 7 this week. he requested a full Luke Skywalker/Jedi costume. Pants (pegged so they bunch up), Tunic (over a white t-shirt, and with the flappy vest-y bits sewn on to a simple shirt), and, of course, the jedi robe.

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he also "needed" (I.e. has been hinting since Xmas that he would really like) a smaller amineko that is easier to take places. Here they are doing yoga at a mall fountain.  I used sock yarn and a "C" crochet hook. 2 days of constant hooking, finished in the parking lot with 2 minutes to spare!  His name is Pierre la Vert. (I also made that stripy green shirt for his birthday)

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LUCKILY for me, his birthday was wednesday, and today is Hollywood Dress Up Day at their camp.  So, obvi, D wore his new costume, but the Bean was desperate for a new costume too.

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last night at bedtime she finally decided on Cinderella's fancy dress, so here it is.

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It does twirl, but I've decided that I HATE gathering knits. Also I'm not a huge fan of dirndl skirts in general, SO much bulk at the waist! I might actually remake this one, if she's going to wear it a lot, with a nicer (read: circle/a-line) skirt.

now back to work!

(all jedi fabrics from Joanns, Green t-shirt fabric from the -by-the-pound section at Michael Levine's, and the princess dress is the dreamy Laguna Cotton Jersey from Robert Kaufman in Aqua and Cloud)

 

I drafted all the patterns myself, but if people want them, I can scan them in, so let me know!

Funbot Dress!

  I had a little bit of Funbot fabric left over after making all the stuffed robots, so I decided my Bean needed a dress. She LOVES robots.

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she couldn't hold still, she was so excited.

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I used my HennyPenny dress pattern, modified a little bit to have a back opening and a facing. (and, as always, I put pockets on the dress. This girl LOVES pockets as much as she loves robots)

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I love this pattern because a) it's quick and easy, and b) the large pieces allow a special fabric to really shine. No fussy cutting or chopped off robots or anything.

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she's a perfect size 4 (and she's 4.5 right now).  Below is a picture of her "being a robot:"

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I'm not sure what kind of robot she is.

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but she's SUPER CUTE!

 

Sailor's Delight doll quilt

image (the quilting says: made for Leonora, with love, Mama, 2013)

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quilt back

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quilt front

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I was trying to figure out the colors to use on this quilt, and the Bean came along to "help" then she sweetly asked if she could pick the fabrics, so she did. and my spectrum mug rug became a purple/gold/pink doll quilt just like that.

A quilt for Kai

whipped out a UFO and bound it quickly so I could gift it to a surprise arrival. (Our friends got the call Friday that their new baby was ready to adopt on Sunday, I found out on Monday). image

it was sort of an idea tester quilt, so it's definitely not perfect, but hopefully its imperfections will make them feel like it can be used and spat up upon, etc, right?

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it's all Kona and ROAR (both Robert Kaufman fabrics, ROAR is designed by the same person who did The Circus, which I LOVE), and I LOVE them, esp. in this colorway. so bright and cheery!

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I made this quilt just to test out quilting on my new machine, so it's not awesomely quilted, but it'll get the job done (those aren't stains, they're just dew from when I took the first pics)

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Merry Xmas to me!!!

I've had an industrial Singer straight stitch garment machine for years, and it sits in my living room and is used daily. But I can't quilt on it. I also have a Bernina Artista 730 which I DO quilt on, but only small stuff.

um. I don't do a lot of small stuff.

I have 3?4? queen or bigger tops just waiting for quilting. So, for the past several months, I've been researching sewing/quilting machines, and trying to find a solution. Most people seem to love their Janine Horizons, but I LOVE front or side loading bobbins, not drop in. Like, its a deal breaker for me.

Won't do drop ins.

Then my super talented friend Janice of Better Off Thread bought a Juki TL2000, and my mind was blown. Absolutely everything I want at a price I can (almost) afford. I ordered it yesterday (I got the 2010Q, floor model from Sewing Machines Plus), and because they're only like a hundred miles away, even with (free) ground shipping it arrived today!

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I grabbed a stack of 2" squares (leftovers from Fall Quilt Market 2011), stitched them together (only 4 leftover), then put on my walking foot and went to town. The stitching is almost too perfect. Like, it looks storebought/factory made, which is kinda great, but not my style. Maybe I'll turn it into a wall hanging for my daughter's preschool? Or just a doll quilt? (Suggestions welcome!) I'm ridiculously excited. I'm gonna do a baby quilt tomorrow night, and then try to quilt one of my giants on Saturday. :)

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For an adorable architect

My friend Erik is an architect/urban planner. (he's also one of my daughter's godfathers). when I got this amazing new fabric (Architextures by Carolyn Friedlander), with blueprint-y prints, I knew I needed to make him something. He'd once commented on a crayon roll of the Bean's, saying it'd be great to have something like that for his pens and pencils. Perfect. I asked him how many slots, and then whipped this puppy out: image

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he's on a 2 month trip to Japan, Spain (and maybe England? I can't remember), so hopefully this is helping him in his travels...

LAMQG scrap swap

Our October (or maybe september) LAMQG swap was a scrap swap. I was lucky enough to get scraps from my friend Nicole, and one day, while looking at the scraps, I noticed that they all went well with this peachy-pink Essex Linen that I had. so I sewed up the pieces into little bits of patchy-goodness, and made all three sizes of Open-Wide pouches by Noodlehead. image

I love that they nest

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each is slightly different, but still awesome.

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the tiniest squares are 1". the biggest are 2"

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Bags n babies

D and I stopped by the new Daiso Japan store in Torrance last week. they have cute little metal clasp frames for $1.50, so I bought one and tried it out. image

I suck at glueing.

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and next time I'll make my own shape (less pear-y), but this time I followed the pattern that comes with the clasp. (Or, rather, I followed the pattern piece and illustrations. the instructions were written in Japanese, so they didn't help me much)

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but it came out cute, and the Bean was pleased.

Since I had that linen out.... I decided to try tiny hexies...

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I printed out a sheet of 1/4" hexies (man, there sure are a lot on 1 page! I cut about 40, and used 7)

here's my late night basting...

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I used a blanket stitch to applique them onto a scrap of linen, and made a zip pouch from it. came out pretty cute, if I do say so myself!

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I've been able to get a lot done these days (even though I'm not posting much. Everything is for Fall Market, and therefore hush hush), because my little dude spends a lot of time like this:

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Block of the day

it seems like journalling is becoming a thing these days, and part of me wants to jump right in and play along, either with lists or special books or whatever, but another part of me remembers the Project Life album I requested 4 years ago that remains unopened, etc, and thinks perhaps something simpler would be better.... so last night I was looking at journals online (because I rarely listen to the latter part of me, I'm all impulse), and saw some 365 book, advising how to do a project for 365 days.... and a lightbulb lit up So here's my quilt block of the day (for yesterday):

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center is a Cosmo print scrap from my dress, text is Architextures, by Carolyn Freidlander (coming soon by RK). Block measures 4.5" square, and took 3 minutes. this fabric combo made me so happy at 11pm last night.

My goal is to do one block every day, with scraps that are on my cutting table. On crazy busy days, I might just cut 2.5" squares, on relaxed days, I might make a more intense 8.5" block.... I'm gonna to it magic # style... at the end of the year, I'll see what it looks like, and maybe turn it into a quilt... or maybe just at the end of the month?

Does anyone want to play with me? (cough cough, Liberty, I'm thinking of you)

Changing pad

I needed a simple changing pad that would easily fit in my bag image

so I made one (pencil for scale), using this awesome red/white print (Pop Posies by Nancy Mims for Robert Kaufman, coming soon).

I love this print. It looked like plus signs to me until I used it, and now it looks like a cool latice to me.

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it has simple velcro on the non-baby side

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and cute Cat in the Hat laminate (also RK scraps) on the baby side.

with thin bias tape to finish the edges.

so simple and awesome.

 

new workspace....

I have a LOT of fabric. and right now, most of it looks like this:

it started in organized bins and tubs... Quilting Cottons, Knits, Home Dec, etc.... but as my stash expanded, the bins started overflowing...

so now we're working on something like this:

I'm slowly folding all my fabric onto comic book boards (7x10.5"), and sorting scraps into those colorful bins...

the island is made up of 4 martha stewart cubby things from Home Depot, with a big piece o' wood on top, to cover the hole in the center... My cutting mat measures 60x30 (ish), and the island measures about 60.5x36, so it's perfect.... I'm LOOOOOOVING cutting on it....