26 June 2013

Idea Pouch

One of my favorite etsy sellers is michellepatterns. She has cute, functional bag patterns. I bought a couple of her patterns 2 years ago and frequently check for new ones. The best part is she allows the use of her patterns to re-sell. So many designers only allow you to use them for personal use--a bummer for me as I can't translate the idea in my head onto paper or cloth.

One of her newer patterns is the Idea Pouch.

So today I'm working on putting one together using scraps from making zipper pouches for my daughters cabin-mates at camp 2years ago. 
It went together quickly. There's lots of top stitching, but that was worth it in the end. 
And inside:

I can't decide if I should keep this one or list it!

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Nancy Drew bags

I completed 2 of the Katie Boston bags in the Nancy Drew book spine fabric.
The instructions could be better for the next time I sew bags. I don't like having to bind the interior seams. 
I also prefer the bottom to be stiffer, so I'll be adding chipboard or plastic covered in fabric. 

20 June 2013

Get a Clue with Nancy Drew

I discovered the Nancy Drew when I was in 2nd grade.  Each week we had a library day and I would immediately go to the shelf and choose 2 to take home.  Once home I read them voraciously.  I wanted to be Nancy Drew--she was smart, independent, and quite handy. I read every book in the series multiple times. My parents would buy me the antique blue spine ones for birthdays & Christmas. I even have one that my grandmother saved from her childhood!

These area few of  my older copies.   My kids, including my son, love to read them. They have all the yellow spined ones in their rooms.

 As a poor college student in 1995 I spent $38 of my grocery money on a first edition Nancy Drew with a near mint dust jacket.
It's priceless to me. I worked 2 jobs AND went to college full time. I had to pay my own way--rent, tuition, bills. That book was a small pleasure in my hectic life, especially since I ate ramen noodles for 2 weeks after buying it.  

To my delight, Moda released a line of Nancy Drew fabric. It's a lovely collection of silhouettes, end papers, book spines and magnifying glasses.
I have always loved the end papers inside the covers of the books. Having it printed as fabric is that much sweeter!

I only discovered the fabric last week even though it was released in January. To my dismay, the line is nearly sold out!  I have managed to purchase a fat quarter bundle with all the fabrics, and some yardage of a couple favorites.
Fat quarter bundle, yardage & panel with covers.
As soon as my planned projects are complete (purse, overnight bag, quilt) I may try to get a layer cake or charm pack. I would have made a skirt, but none of the fabric screamed "wear me!"  I did see a skirt made with the book cover panel, but I wouldn't wear it regularly. 

The Projects
I'm planning to use the book spine fabric for the Katie Boston Bag, with the "end papers" fabric as the lining. I'm also going to make an Amy Butler Weekender Bag with either the faces of Nancy or the book spines. 

The other project will be a quilt to snuggle under while reading my books. The kids like the quilt project best since it's the one they'll get to use!   The designs for the fabric needed a quilt to show off the variety. I chose this quilt, from an etsy seller.  

I haven't figured out a way to use the panel with the book covers yet. I've found a few ideas online, but no one project is calling me yet.  I may make totes for the kids with the panels and the magnifying glass fabric.

As soon as VBS is over, it's time for a sew-fest.  My quilting machine is in the shop--timing went out & the needle hits the bobbin case.  Fortunately I have another machine that I can use for piecing quilts or sewing clothes.

17 June 2013

Quick & Easy Frame Purse

I love these little frame purses!  I've been admiring them for quite a while, but didn't know where to get the frames locally. A couple weeks ago I found some on clearance at JoAnn Fabrics & decided it would be a good way to use up some fabric. 

I snapped up 3 different sizes & colors of frames that day. Once home I headed to etsy, my favorite place for independent designers, and looked for a fun pattern. I liked the way this one is short & squatty, yet elegant. 
I chose a funky floral contrasting it with a simple line design for the outside & a green scroll for the interior. 
This pattern is the Madelyn Coin Purse from www.ithinksew.com. Overall this is an easy pattern to work with. The trickiest part is stitching the fabric to the frame. It wouldn't have been such a big deal, but I was using pink thread to match the outside & you can see it on the inside.

Update:  I listed it in my etsy shop and it sold within a couple hours!


03 June 2013

Around the Block Baby Quilt

I have been pouring over magazines & books in my stash lately plotting ways to use up my enormous stash of supplies. I came across a super easy Log Cabin quilt that is one giant 52" block. It's from a BH&G magazine called All Small dated 2012. 

Too easy!--Until I spent 2 hours digging through 9 plastic totes to find 17 fabrics for the front, plus enough yardage to cover the back. I was successful, it just took more time than I thought. 

My stash is fairly evenly divided between fat quarters and yardage, which was frustrating on my search. Add to this the absolute disarray my supplies are still in because of the way the movers dumped totes into boxes, I nearly reorganized first!  That project will be what I tackle when my back pain from a pinched nerve or possible herniated disk is gone. 

I ended up piecing some of the fat quarters in order to have the lengths I needed for the "logs". While trying to decide where each fabric should go in the quilt, I took sticky notes and stuck them to the fabric to keep track. As I cut each print, I put the note on my ruler. 

      (Is it time for a new cutting mat?!)

This was a huge help as I have a tendency to pay more attention to my audiobook (currently Outlander) than to the cutting dimensions. I think this pile of stickies will be used again when I make this quilt a second time this weekend!

Here's the first quilt:

Quilt #2 will have to wait--my machine is headed to the shop. As I was half finished quilting this one the timing went out & my needle was hitting the bobbin case.