Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy Ever After - Princess Pack-N-Play

Sandra Workman of Pine Mountain Designs has created the most adorable fabric called Happy Ever After, from Riley Blake Designs. The coordinating solids and prints have a matching panel (in pink or blue colorways) with a flat princess doll and her clothes, plus instructions for making an adorable pocket pillow.

What really caught my eye was Sandra's pattern for the Princess Pack-N-Play. It's more complicated than the pillow and requires more fabric, but it's just so darn cute. (I don't even have children or go near kids, so you know it must be really cute!) I'm hoping this will make a nice gift for a friend's daughter.

I normally don't go anywhere near ruffles or ric-rac, but for this, I'd try anything.

It took awhile to round up some Peltex, Craft Fuse, fusible fleece, flannel, and matching fabric, but once I did it was game on. She gets tucked away in her royal bed and comes with her armoire full of goodies.

I rarely work with so much white and brights, so the biggest problem for me was removing all the dark lint in my sewing area! Jumbo lint roller to the rescue!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Fabric Fortune Cookie Recipe by Anna Chan of Fabric Fun

Fabric fortune cookies are great to trim trees or packages, stuff stockings, or hand out as party favors.

In 1997, I bought the Fabric Fortune Cookie Recipe by Anna Chan of Fabric Fun of San Francisco. There are many patterns and tutorials online, but I think hers is the best. I found out that her pattern is still available, and now it comes with an acrylic template and a sample fortune cookie.

I have made hundreds over the years, and they are a big hit. I'm not sure what is more fun - using up all my small fabric scraps or discovering interesting quotes to put inside them.

They do not seem to violate anyone's dietary guidelines (and many glues are vegan now). Of course, men seem to enjoy getting them, too.

There are other tutorials online. OLFA recommends using a rotary circle cutter, but you can also make a circle pattern and use a regular rotary cutter or scissors. I found that drawing a freezer paper pattern and ironing it on top of the fabric made cutting it more accurate, especially if you want to fussy cut some prints. You can reuse the same freezer paper many times.

For a special touch, you can purchase Chinese Food Take Out boxes to put them in, or make one out of fabric.

Here are more tutorials with some variations:

Have you made these?

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Art Quilts - Raw Edge Applique and Thread Painting with Anita Goodesign

Anita Goodesign released its first Premium Edition Collection called Art Quilts. They combine raw edge applique and thread painting for a beautiful finish.

They are all digitized by hand and come in 3 different sizes: 6" X 9", 7" X 11", and 8" X 12".

I made the largest size and opted not to fold them in half.

They can be made into framed wall hangings with a single fabric backing, like this:

They can also be folded as greeting cards or picture frames.

The instructions are excellent.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Christmas Stockings - Calico Moon pattern, Charlie Brown fabric

Have you seen the Charlie Brown Christmas fabric? It is adorable! It has fabric that matches the little Charlie Brown tree that we put up each year, and we listen to the Vince Guaraldi Trio soundtrack a gajillion times by January. It never gets old.

My husband is making a Charlie Brown Christmas quilt now, and he had some scraps leftover. I wanted to find a way to use them up. About 15 years ago, I made 2 Christmas stockings that I really enjoyed. Fortunately, I found the pattern again. It's called Bottoms Up! and it's still available from Calico Moon Patterns in Salem, Oregon. They also sell the coolest fabric-covered box kits and birdhouse kits with perforated cardboard.

I had just enough fabric to make this lined stocking:

The heels and toes are fused on and then stitched on with a buttonhole stitch. The pocket is sewn on, but there are also directions for allowing the pocket to flap open by unfastening the buttons. I want to try that next time.

Here are two stockings that I made umpteen years ago...

Does anyone remember these fabrics? What a hoot!

This pattern would make a great baby shower gift, too.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Dear Mr. Claus quilt - Moda Pattern - Cosmo Cricket fabric

Around June 2012, you may have noticed the free quilt pattern from Moda for the fabric line Dear Mr. Claus. As soon as I saw it, I had to make it!

The fabric is designed by Cosmo Cricket, and it is adorably retro. They also designed matching stickers, paper, and gift tags available here.

I ordered a fat quarter bundle which provided plenty of fabric for the packages, including gift tags.

Since some of the fabric was directional, I really worried that the package pieces needed to be cut properly. There were two different patterns for packages (4 pieces each) and then they are rotated in each block to give variety. I am easily distracted, so I went ahead and made patterns for each piece and labeled them for cutting all the fabric.

I made two test samples just to make sure I didn't mess up the directions.

They were so darn cute, I went ahead and cut out the rest of the packages.

I cut the gift tag fabric using pinking shears and machine appliqued them to each block.

Extra fabric was required for the sashing, cornerstones, borders, backing, and binding. I was able to join a few sashing strips, and then I ordered the remaining fabric.

I finally finished the top last week. Then I got my dear husband to do all the free motion quilting.

I can't wait to give it to my dear mother-in-law. I hope it reminds her of wonderful Christmases past and many more to come.

I also have some leftover fat quarter material and gift tags to make some other fun goodies!
Have you made anything for the holidays yet?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Halloween Banner - Riley Blake Costume Clubhouse Fabric

After making the Delighted pennants, I felt more comfortable making these Halloween banners.

I used Riley Blake's adorable Costume Clubhouse cottons.

Instead of sewing them RST and then having to turn them inside out, I asked my dear husband to quilt the panels before I cut them out.

Then I used pinking shears to cut out the flags and decorative add-ons. 

I tacked on some of the extra cute circles that came with the panel.

Then I added pom poms, crocheted ribbon, and ric rac.

I think this looked better than sewing them right sides together or serging the edges.

I strung them together using narrow candy print that surrounded the flags on the panel.

My zipper foot came in handy to sew on these pom poms without crushing them!

Is it too early to hang them in my cubicle?