May the force be with you (& my sewing machine)

We decided that Ian was going to be Luke Skywalker for Halloween. He was originally going to be Angus Young from AC/DC but the jacket I bought for him last year in anticipation is too big. Probably next year, or a random Tuesday.

I combined different elements from the patterns I purchased at Fishsticks Designs and was able to come up with this:

I added strips of fabric to the bottom of the pant legs to mimic Luke's shoes since it'd be silly to try and fashion calf boots for a 19 month old. He looks so flipping adorable in it I can't stand it! I'll be sure to post some pics when he's all gussied up on Halloween.

It still looks a little karate-ish at the moment because I wasn't able to add the final accessories to the belt due to my sewing machine hanging up on me. NOOOOOOOO!!! Why must it break when I need it the most. It's a little work horse, maybe it needed a break...I just wish it hadn't been so literal about it.
So we'll have to figure out a light saber attachment for the belt that doesn't require sewing.

First two quilt tops are done!!

Two down, two to go. The purple & green quilt top didn't turn out too bad considering the trouble I had with making the squares. I decided to only do one border instead of two because it's getting enormous. I wanted it to be a lap quilt but it probably could fit a twin size bed if I added the bigger border. I like how it looks so I'm going to leave it as is and the binding will give the edge a little somethin somethin.

I am SO pleased with how the zig zag quilt top came out. Love love love it. Can't wait to start quilting. You may have noticed I didn't post a 'stitch happens' moment on the zig zag quilt which could possibly indicate that it went together like clockwork without a hitch in the process. Well the tag line for my blog does include 'pitfall' so this project didn't escape either. I lost a quilt block and I didn't put enough blocks together at the beginning so I had to rip out a couple stitches and sew in the necessary blocks. Luckily I figured this out before I got too far along and the blocks are SO simple to put together that didn't cause too much of a kerfuffle. I definitely need a better place to take pictures of completed quilt tops (& eventually completed quilts!!)

Quilt tops #3 & 4 shall commence shortly. I think I'm going to go with another zig zag quilt and a brick one similar to Amy Smart's Brickyard.  One will be for my Mom & Dad and the other will be for my Aunt & Uncle.

I won!

My handmade with love by mommy label won the Crafterhours label competition! I'm so excited. The tractor doo-dah label that I was rooting for won also. Very cool!
These will be great for inundating Ian's clothes once I've actually sewn them. :)

Quilt #2 Ziggin n Zaggin

I absolutely love the look of zig zag quilts and don't have anywhere near the time or expertise to do one using triangles so I was thrilled when I came across this ladies' lovely tutorial using rectangles. Even better was strip piecing (at least I think that's what it is), where you sew two larger pieces together and then cut the blocks from the large sewn piece. Less piecing and fewer seams to mess up, sounds good to me.

I am really loving how quickly my second quilt top is going together. It only took me about 8 hours total to cut all the strips, sew together and then cut into blocks.

 Here's the top half, I need a bigger table or a cleaner floor in order to layout the rest.

I entered a contest!

One of my favorite blogs, Crafterhours posted a label competition and two label ideas popped into my head right off the bat so I decided I might as well go for it. I didn't enter their skirt week competition this past summer because, while it did get me back into sewing after a really long hiatus, another lady had used the exact same pattern that I did and I didn't feel it was very nice to post a similar skirt. So this time around I decided I was going to enter and see how I do.

I came up with these two:

I really needed to make the 2nd one bigger so you could see/read it better but oh well. If you can't read it, it says Handmade, with minimal cursing. ;)

Hopefully people will get a chuckle out of it. You can see all the tags that were entered here.
I'm rooting for the tractor Doo Dah one. :)

Pesky 1/4" Seams

I posted earlier about how none of my 7" squares came out square on the purple & green quilt I'm making. The troubled started here: 

The nice little white line on my bobbin cover would suggest a quarter inch seam. However if you line your fabric up so that you can still see the line you end up with an 1/8" seam, not 1/4".  If you line up the fabric just over the line you lose sight of it and end up going over (3/8") or sewing a really crooked line. Well as least I do. 

I decided that on the next quilt I would make absolutely certain that I'd get nice 1/4" seams.
So I ordered this:
 An Ultimate Seam Guide from here. I loved that it came with two little plastic guides that I could run my fabric right up against. Sadly it was just too big for my machine. The platform needs to be at least 5 inches in order for the guides to work and sadly mine is a piddly inch before it starts to slope down. If my machine didn't slope it'd work just fine.

So I came up with some cardstock & tape:

So far so good. The ultimate test will be when I starting putting together the blocks. Fingers crossed.

Quilt #1 almost done, Quilt #2 up to bat

I've finally got all the blocks put together on the purple & green quilt for my cousin. I'm actually fairly pleased with how it turned out despite the slight wonkiness that I was having when I started putting the blocks together.

All that remains for the quilt top is to add the borders.

I'm hoping to get all 4 quilt tops completed by the end of this month.  I'm aiming for November to be quilting month. So quilt # 2 for my brother's family is up to bat.

Ian's Fall Wardrobe (cont.)

I feel I need to make a list of items I'd like to complete for Ian's fall wardrobe so I know exactly where I'm at and where I need to go.

7 pants
  • 5 knits (complete!)
  • 2 ?? (not sure if I'll do two more knits or some khaki's / jeans)
7 tops
  • 5 tops to go with pants completed above
  • 2 tops to go with pants not yet finialized
5 coveralls

7 PJs

Today's goal will be to trace out the patterns I plan to use and cut out at least one so I'll have something to sew up in the next couple of days.

The Good & the Not-So-Good

I've mentioned before that I love to start projects but finishing them is always a challenge.
I've been working away at the purple & green quilt for my cousin and have sort of put my son's fall wardrobe on the back burner since he still has plenty of clothes...or so I thought. I came home from work on Saturday and found him dressed in pants that were two inches too short. I asked my hubby why he was wearing those and he said they were the only comfy looking pants he could find. I thought about it and he was right. The only comfy knit pants he has are size 6-9 months. Everything else are either shorts or khakis of some sort. That lit a fire under me and I finished up 4 more knit pants. That elastic waistband that kicked my butt on the first pair has got nothing on me now. I whipped it into submission!

Obviously I'll need some long sleeve-ed tops to go with the new pants but since he's already got some long-sleeved bodysuits we're covered for at least a little while. Now I'm debating between more pants or all-in-one outfits. The only hesitation I have with the all-in-one's is the snapping of the legs. He is a little wiggler at diaper changes and the thought of all those snaps after the diaper changing struggle makes me cringe. I like all-in-ones though cause they're only one item of clothing to put on instead of two.

On the quilt front I'm making a lot of progress though when I said earlier that I could sew squares I didn't know what the heck I was talking about. Apparently I can't sew squares well.

I was supposed to end up with lovely 7" squares and not a one of them (out of 70 mind you) is actually 7" square. Each row is so off that I'm just going to sew a white band between each row to try & hide the fact that I can't sew a straight seam to save my life.  Maybe quilt #2 will go better. 


There has to be something to say about have multiple on-going projects. I think I actually get more accomplished when I have more than one project in the works.  When I get stuck on one project (ahem, stupid elastic waistband), I can easily move over to another (hello quilt) and when I'm sick of sewing 1/4" inch straight lines I can work off some "I don't feel like going to bed yet" energy cleaning out a mountain of packaging filler that I keep thinking I'll use but never send out as many items as I bring in. Wow, if that isn't a run on sentence I don't know what is. Oh well.
So this week I finally finished one (yes, only one (stupid elastic waistband)) pair of pants for Ian's fall wardrobe. Sized 12 months for my nearly 19 month old and they fit great.
The waistband is a little wonky...I have a heck of a time following the instructions in the pattern and think I'm going to try a slightly different way that will hopefully be easier and get the remaining pants (4 pairs) completed before snow starts falling on the ground. He'll also need some shirts I'm sure. ;)

I was also able to complete 50 out of 70 of my quilt blocks for my first quilt and am really loving how quickly it's going. I'm able to get 5 blocks done in about a half an hour which is perfect for right after putting the little man to bed and winding myself down for some Zs. 

I was also able to de-clutter some more of my craft room. Huzzah!