Monday

Sweetwater's Sewing Kit and Labels

Sewing Kit by SunshineSews
I completed the sewing kit I got on Etsy from Sweetwater.  I used the labels from August's label  crew club.  This is the grey version of the kit. I also bought the red and black versions. Not sure when I will make those but for now I have a nice little place to store things to take with me when I hand sew while sitting outside. 

Wednesday

Lucy's Ruffled Pillowcase

Sweetwater label clubI finished this pillowcase from a kit I bought from Sweetwater. It was one of the kits available to go with the July (or maybe it was August) Label Crew labels. The example on the pattern showed the good night and good morning placement of the labels but not the sleep label. And because I am finishing this pretty late in the evening, I'm too tired to decide for myself the best place for the label. Maybe after I "sleep" on it it will come to me. So for now, it is somewhat unfinished. I also didn't stitch the labels on yet, as I ran out of ecru thread. I do not know how that happened. I have hundreds (yes, that is plural) of spools of thread but no ecru. As if I need an excuse to go to the fabric store for more! So hopefully tomorrow I can truly complete the project and move on to the next.

Sunday

Zig Zag Quilt

Zig Zag QuiltI decided to quilt the Zig Zag quilt myself. I love my new walking foot and it makes the job so easy.  Since the quilt was made up with precise angles. I wanted to use a combination of straight lines and some curves ones as well, but I wanted it to still have a crisp look.  After paging through a magazine, I came across an ad for a drive along Route 66.  Just looking at the lines intersecting and how some were straight and some had a little curve to them, I was inspired.  So I took my queue from that map and made my straight, clean lines and some that curved like the road does on my travels.  The end result was a nice, neat finished quilt. I can't wait to curl up with it in my hammock in these last days of summer.

Saturday

Synchronized Squares Quilt

I finally decided to take my Synchronized Squares quilt to a professonal quilter with a longarmer.  I wasn't sure where to start when it comes to entrusting my quilt to someone. I didn't know where to start so I did the obvious, I googled it.  I found people who want a basted quilt and backing with the batting in-between, some who wanted all three layers separately, and some who didn't specify.  I didn't like leaving anything to chance so I got a referral from my quilt group. 
Quilt Along
I brought it in with the batting and backing as well.  The quilter explained to me that she only uses Quilters' Dream batting and that it must be purchased from her.  She went on to explain how Warm and Natural contains stuff in the fibers that can break the needle of the longarmer, or at least dull the needle.  So the Quilters' Dream didn't have those issues.  The prices weren't terribly out of range, so I didn't mind.  Then we went on to discuss thread.  She uses a heavier weight thread on the top and a lighter weight one on the back so the stitches don't poke through to the front.  After picking the colors for the front and the back, we moved on to the design.  That was really the hard part.  There are so many to choose from.  After paging through many designs, I settled on one that mimicked the swirls in the fabric I used for the backing.  I also learned that I had to make sure there was at least 9 inches of extra fabric on the top and bottom of the backing in order to attach it to the longarmer.  I had to take it back home and add more to the back.  After three weeks, I got it back, all basted, squared up and trimmed after quilting.  It is absolutely beautiful, she did a wonderful job.

Friday

Off Track by Cluck Cluck Sew

Off Track PatternOne of the patterns I picked up recently is Off Track by Cluck Cluck Sew.  Over the winter I purchased a bunch of jelly rolls on sale and it was time I found a pattern to start using them.  Off Track is a perfect fit.  It's modern and uses 2 and a half-inch strips, the pattern actually called for a jelly roll. I pulled Liz Scott's Domestic Bliss off my shelf and starting sorting the strips.  Some of the prints were really pretty and some were so-so.  That is one of the things I love/hate about jelly rolls - they get me to use fabrics I wouldn't normally choose and sometimes that's a good thing and sometimes it's not so good. The amazing thing is whether I love them or just kind of like them, in the end, they all go together wonderfully.

I dug out one of the 5-yard pieces of Kona cotton I kept in my stash.  (Yes, if there's a great sale on Kona, I will buy a neutral color in a large enough piece to either become the backing of a quilt or be used for filler between prints.)  Even though this is not a complicated pattern, I did struggle to make sure I had all the pieces turned in the right direction.  I also wanted to make sure I had the prints dispersed somewhat evenly - I didn't want to end up with an entire row of pinks.  I spent some free time cutting all the pieces at once. Then over the course of a week, I stitched the top together. I spent around an hour a day working on it, jsut before bedtime.  Amazingly, it was finished by the end of one week.

Wednesday

Sweetwater's Label Crew

Today I joined Sweetwater's Label Crew. I've been considering it for a while but it felt a little like adding something to my ever-growing to-do list.  And I really don't need any more obligations.  After some thought I realized that the only obligation to joining is to make something crafty or quilty and there's nothing  I like more than that! So why not? Besides, just because I get a pattern and some cute little labels doesn't mean I actually HAVE to make something with them.  I can always just keep them around because they are cute.  That's not so bad. So here are my first month's labels...

 And wouldn't you know it, I just had to go to their Etsy shop and buy the kit to make the pillowcase.  It should be a quick project that will look fantastic in my new sewing room. Especially in this pretty orange colorway.