Friday, January 22, 2016

Sew In Love Mini Quilt

I am right on track with one of my goals for the year, to make a mini quilt or small project each month!  This month I wanted to make something that I could hang above my sewing area and that represented me as a quilter and my brand. Also, being that it's also close to February, this Sew In Love mini was kind of a no-brainer for me.


I used some of the precious Bonnie and Camille fabric from my stash and decided it was time to tackle something new to make the lettering . . . paper piecing. 


I had previously purchased Diane Bohn's (aka From Blank Pages) "My First Alphabet" pattern, so I pulled it out, read through the instructions and went for it!  Well, actually before I just went for it, I read through a series of paper piecing tutorials on Diane's blog that were extremely helpful!  You can find the series here


So, although the "s" is probably the most complex letter in the pattern, I decided it would be a good place to start. I don't know why I do things that way, but I do!  Once I finished that letter, the rest went SO much faster!


One thing I knew I just had to do was omit the "o" in "love" and replace it with heart. I hand embroidered a hand drawn heart, but it didn't seem quite right yet. 


The scale of it was a little off, so I decided to add a stem stitch and another heart like the outer one. I think it looks so much better!


I wanted to keep the quilting to a minimum so I simply free-motioned a little wavy loop in the sashing. 


And of course, I had to use my favorite red and white bias stripe fabric for the binding!  


And the perfect spot for this mini is right over my sewing area, so I can look at those beautiful fabrics everyday and remember that I really do love to sew (even when my desk is a complete and utter mess)!


So, are you ready to make your own Sew In Love mini?   You can buy the alphabet pattern from Diane's website here. You can also check out a bunch of other alphabet projects using her pattern on Instagram under #fromblankpagespatterns. 

I would love to see any of your creations if you decided to make this!  If you are on Instagram make sure to tag me @sewinlovequilting and use #sewinloveminiquilt, or you can email a pic, post it here, whatever floats your boat!  Happy weekend everyone!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Valentine's Day Project Roundup

Many of you are getting ready to start on some Valentine's Day inspired projects, so I thought I'd gather up some links of my creations if you need some ideas to get started.

Hugs and Kisses Quilt 


The Hugs and Kisses quilt is one that I created for the Moda Bakeshop last year.  I used Rambling Rose by Sandy Gervais, but wouldn't it also be dreamy in Scrumptious by Bonnie and Camille? 


Click here for the full tutorial!

Ruffled Heart Wreath


Making a wreath for your front door is a simple way to add a little holiday decor to your home. Click here for an easy, quick tutorial for making this ruffled heart wreath. 

Lots of Love Table Runner


If you don't have time to make an entire quilt to celebrate the day of love, this table runner is a great solution!  Click here for the Lots Of Love table runner tutorial!

Love Note Mailbox


Last, but not least, is this cute love note mailbox!  I made this last year and we actually have used it year round to leave little love notes and drawings for each other!  Click here for the tutorial!

Hope that helps get your creative juices flowing!  So, which project is first on your list?

Saturday, January 9, 2016

New Patterns + Newsletter Sign-up + 15% Off = Awesome!

It has been a while since I released any new patterns, but I'm happy to say that today I released 3!  Say hello to Nice & Knit, Baubles, and Stitchery. 


Inspired by Fair Isle knitting, this quilt is entirely made using flying geese.  I even share a trick in the pattern of how to make more blocks with less fabric waste.  Woo hoo for that!


Each row in this quilt represents a string of jewelry.  The "bangle" and "bauble" blocks are made using fat eighths and it is a quick finish quilt!  Great for a baby blanket, wouldn't you say? 


Stitchery is a shout out to an old time hobby of mine: cross-stitch. The beautiful flower motif in the center has a pixelated pattern look and I am especially loving the familiar X blocks, which those of us that cross-stitch would recognize anywhere!  

It was so fun to have those themes in mind as I designed these patterns! Now the problem is, which one to make first?

Patterns shown above are now available in my Etsy shop in paper or PDF format.  And right now I'm throwing in an extra bonus!  

I'm in the process of creating a monthly newsletter so I can share projects and announcements and exclusive coupons to my followers.  Anyone who signs up for my newsletter will get a 15% off coupon to use in my shop. It's good on any thing (including these patterns) in the store!

Comment below with which new pattern is your favorite!  I'd love to know . . . hope to hear from you soon!


Thursday, January 7, 2016

New Year, New Goals


Hello, everyone!  Hope you all had a wonderful holiday season and a happy New Year!  I have kind of been absent lately from the blogging world, and for those of you that follow me, I have to apologize.  Last year was a real doozy for my creativity!  I underwent 3 surgeries and most of the time I was getting by with just doing the bare minimum to keep my house in order and keep my family alive.  When I did find time for my hobbies, I just simply didn't have time to blog about it (or so I told myself).

But, it is a new year, and I am ready to nourish my soul again by making and sharing my creations. I decided to write down some goals that I believe will help me do that.  I want to share these goals with you so that I can put them out there and be more accountable to keep them.  I plan on checking in quarterly to see how I am doing with each of my goals and to make adjustments if necessary.  I really have three ways that I express my creativity and so I wrote goals for each of the following categories: Blog, Etsy Shop, and Just For Me!


My blogging goals are kind of a no brainer.  Blog.  Just do it.  Haha!  Make it look pretty.  That sort of stuff.  When it comes to my Etsy shop, I am super excited for this year!  I have so many wonderful plans and ideas that will be coming to fruition in the next few months!  I really want to share some of those fun things with you . . . but not quite yet.  I will be creating and sending out a newsletter to subscribers that will give some sneak peeks into some of the changes I'll be making as well as sharing things that I am working on and my creative process.  Watch for a sign up later this month!


And these goals . . . well, they are just for me.  Things that I want to make and keep.  Things that I want to work on in my down time from making for others.  There really aren't that many goals written in this section, and that's okay with me.  If I am able to get more done, then I would be ecstatic!  But, I'm keeping it simple in the hopes that my goals will be reachable and more enjoyable.

So, what about you?  Have you written down your creative goals for the year?  What do you do to be more accountable when you make your goals?  I'd love to hear from you in the comments!

-Amy

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Finally a Finish

Oh, boy. It's been quite a while since I posted!  I took a little break from blogging and sewing this summer to focus on keeping the kids busy. We had so much fun swimming, playing, and visiting with family!  Now that school is back in session, I'm ready to get back to the sewing machine and my list of WIPs. 

I've been working on my latest finish for quite some time!  It is a miniature of my pattern, Honeybee Heaven and I am so thrilled with how it turned out. 


I decided that instead of machine quilting this one I would use some blue and yellow perle cotton thread and hand quilt around the honeycomb shape. 


   

I also wanted to incorporate some colorful thread on the binding. I machine stitched a skinny binding onto the back of the quilt and then hand stitched the binding to the front by using the yellow perle cotton thread using a big straight stitch. (I just went through the front layer and did not stitch through to the back.)




This mini is getting a special place above my sewing machine and I'm hoping it will be joined by some quilt friends soon!





Tuesday, March 24, 2015

A Simple Birthday Skirt

I have worked on a few projects here and there over the last month, but all my project making came to a screeching halt a week and a half ago when I had surgery on my foot.  I am just now getting to the point where I feel well enough to walk around outside a bit, but for the most part I have been stuck inside.  Not being able to sew has been REALLY difficult, especially on days when I needed the stress relief.  Even though the surgery was on my left foot, it has been hard for me to have any pressure on my foot, and sitting without it elevated was painful.  Thus, no sewing.  I was able to complete a few customer orders late last week and committed to myself that I would take it slow and see how I felt.  I thought I'd share with you a simple, quick project I was able to finish this morning.

My daughter, Zoey, is having a birthday next week and she has specifically asked me to get her some new skirts.  She literally wears skirts and dresses 90% of the time, so I was excited that she wanted to add to her wardrobe.  I've also been on a little handmade kick lately and really want to try my hand at garment making.  Obviously being a beginner, I wanted a very easy and fast pattern.  I found a wonderful tutorial on the Dana Made It blog on how to make such a skirt and went and bought this gorgeous fabric at Joann's yesterday.


The floral is a 100% cotton voile I found in their specialty cotton section and the pink is a super soft polyester satin from their apparel section.  I got a yard cut of each so I could make a matching skirt for Lily as well.

I used a mix of Dana's Simple Skirt and her Sparkle Skirt tutorials.  She has really clear instructions and wonderful pictures that explain the step by step process, so I've leave the instructions to her.

Here are some of my in-progress photos . . .

The cutting for this skirt is soooo easy!  You use the measurements as instructed and just cut two rectangles.  I cut the outer fabric 2x's her waist size by the length to from her waist to knee (41.5" x 12").  I cut the lining the same width and added 3.5" to her waist to knee measurement for the length(41.5 x 15.5").  I cut the elastic for the waistband an inch shorter than her waist size (19.75").


Here I'm sewing the bottoms of the lining and outer fabric together.  Dana suggests ironing the seam after this, but I didn't.  I wanted it to have a bubble skirt effect, so I just kind of stuck my hand in between the layers once I turned it right sides out and pushed the seam out. 



Next I basted the outer fabric to the lining fabric.  My fabric shifted a little in this step and although I pinned every 6 inches, I think I would pin more like every 3 inches.  Also, make sure that you start pinning at the seams so they line up together.


Folding over the top fabric to make the waistband . . .
I just made sure that the basting stitches were covered on this one.  For some reason I didn't pin the waistband down and I wish I had, because it also shifted a little (although you can't tell because it has a gathered waist line).


And here's the finished skirt!




Once the skirt was finished, I tried it on the birthday girl.  I told her that I was making a skirt for Lily and I needed to know if I should make it longer or not.  I think she bought it!


I love the length of the skirt!  I was worried that it would be a tad on the long side, but I'm so glad it's not too short and she will have room to grow in it.  The waist fits her perfectly!  In retrospect, I might cut the elastic for the waistband only a 1/2" shorter than her waist size next time and see if that will increase the longevity of the skirt.


This girl just loves to pose and twirl!



I think she'll be surprised for sure when she sees this is actually HER skirt.  Loved making it and I will definitely make more!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Lots of Love Table Runner

I don't know what it is about Valentine's Day, but I have been making all sorts of love related projects the last couple weeks!  Today I finished my Lots of Love table runner and I couldn't be happier with the way it turned out!

I started by making eight 4" finished heart blocks using this tutorial by Cluck Cluck Sew.


I cut some white fabric 1.5" for the sashing to go in between and around 2 groups of 4 hearts.  Then I finished it off by cutting red fabric 1.25" for the border around the whole thing. Unfinished, the block was 13" x 13".


Using Moda's "Spell It With Fabric" tutorials, I used 4 different red prints to spell LOVE.  
You can find the posts with the PDF files at the following links:
The only thing I changed from the patterns was omitting a 2.5" x 10.5" strip of neutral fabric to the right of the "L" block, making it a 6" finished block instead of 8".  I used the 1" finished (1.5" cut) sashing strips recommended in the patterns for in between the letters and to the left of the "L" and the right of the "E".  I then added a white sashing to the top and bottom by cutting 1.75" strips.  The LOVE block's height measured 13".


Then I pieced the heart blocks to the left and right of the LOVE block.  I quilted it with romantic, flowing swirls and bound it with a lovely solid aqua.  I cut the binding to 2" and used a 1/4" seam to make it a little skinnier than usual.  The finished size of the table runner is 13" x 60.5".



Our table seats 6 and this runner is the perfect size!
 

Of course, I had to break out this little heart dish and fill it with candy, just because it's the cutest!


 No sooner had I done this, when these little hands came to claim some goodies!



 And yes, we did probably spoil our lunch by snacking on M & M's and Starbursts, but sometimes you just can't say no!