Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Sewing School: Stuffed Dachshunds

I'm sticking to my goal of sewing at least one project each month with my three girls. This month we made little stuffed dachshunds, a fun project that came together pretty quickly. The only part of this project that's actually stuffed is the body -- everything else is nice and floppy. As always, I let the girls pick out their own fabric. Rather than letting them dive into my cupboards, it's easier for me to ask them what color they want their project to be and then give them a matching selection of fabrics to look through until they come up with what they like best. We tried three different methods for attaching the ears, and the third time was definitely the charm as you can see on the far right. I figure it doesn't hurt for the girls to experience the joys of problem solving at a young age.

From right to left we have Fix-It (Bear is a big Handy Manny fan), Puppy, and Snuffy. These doxies are long and skinny, perfect for small hands to hold and cuddle. And let me tell you, there's been a lot of cuddling going on in this house since these little guys showed up...

Friday, October 25, 2013

Care Package

Birch Fabrics Fort Firefly Organizer by Fabric Mutt

A friend of mine was having a lousy day last week. I couldn't be there to sit down for a cup of tea and a chat, so it seemed like a good idea to send a little care package. My leftover pieces of Fort Firefly and Charlie Harper came in handy as I sewed up a fun organizer for her to use.

Birch Fabrics Fort Firefly Organizer by Fabric Mutt

I still can't decide which I love best -- the front or the back. These prints are all so adorable.

Birch Fabrics Fort Firefly Organizer by Fabric Mutt

The inside has several pockets, even one with a zipper. I tucked in a few goodies, including those of the fabric variety, and it's now winging its way across the miles to her doorstep. And if you'd like to make one of these for yourself...well, just stay tuned...

Linking up (better late than never) to Finish It Up Friday.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Fort Firefly Gift Set

Not since Briar Rose have I been so excited about a fabric collection for children. Fort Firefly by Teagan White is utterly charming, and I was thrilled to death when the wonderful people at Birch Fabrics sent me a bundle to play with. A friend of mine is expecting a baby by the end of this month, and since we don't know yet if it's a boy or girl, I was looking for fabric that would walk the fine line of gender neutrality. I'll admit that this probably leans a little more toward the girly side, but it's cute enough that I think it can be excused. I've been dying to make the Books for Baby quilt from Patchwork, Please! since I first saw it. This is a slightly smaller version -- nine blocks instead of sixteen -- but it's still large enough for a small baby quilt.

Fort Firefly is a fussy cutter's dream. Every print is full of adorable details, and I had a hard time narrowing my choices down to these nine covers. I pulled from my scrap bucket to find text and map prints that would work for the pages and brown fabrics for the book bindings. Each quilt block is edged with Quilter's Linen, which I'm absolutely loving right now. The backing is a quiet dot print from Vintage Modern by Bonnie and Camille.

I thought it would be fun to make a little bag to hold the quilt instead of wrapping it up in paper, so I did a larger variation on my party bag tutorial using leftover prints from the Fort Firefly bundle and some white webbing that I had on hand. I couldn't resist sewing up a little cloth tag to decorate the front using some extra patchwork squares and a piece of cord. I love the way this bag turned out. It's just the right size for the folded quilt and will also fit nicely into a diaper bag for emergency situations once the baby's here.

There are so many wonderful sewing projects out there, but I still think that baby quilts are some of the sweetest.

Linking up to Finish It Up Friday.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

So You Want to Sew...

Yes, I'm aware that most of you already do know how to sew. For those of you who don't, however, or who might have a friend who's looking to get started, head on over to The Glamorous Housewife and check out my guest post.

A quick note, by the way...you'll notice my reference to the Patchwork, Please! Sew Along in the article mentioned above. I wrote this a few weeks back when the Zakka Along 2.0 was still going on, and as many of you know, it just came to a close. There's plenty of eye candy in the flickr group, though, so be sure to stop by for a visit.

Happy sewing!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Quilt Market Sewing

Charley Harper fabrics purse for Birch Fabrics Quilt Market

I had the absolute pleasure of sewing up a few samples for Quilt Market this week. The lovely people at Birch Fabrics sent me some of the new Charley Harper prints to make into a few bags for their display. I tackled a frame purse again to feature the beautiful Feeding Station print you see above. This type of bag is a lot of work but so worth the trouble. I used a variegated lavender Aurifil thread to stitch along the frame at the top, and I love the way it compliments the purple tones in the rest of the bag.

Charley Harper fabrics purse for Birch Fabrics Quilt Market

Honestly, I can't say enough about these fabrics. They're absolutely stunning. The colors are so saturated, and the designs are just as you would expect from Birch -- incredible. All of the exteriors are made with canvas prints, while the interiors are cotton.

Charley Harper fabrics purse for Birch Fabrics Quilt Market

I used my Nora Clutch Tutorial for the other two bags. This clutch is so quick to sew, and I love trying it out with different fabric combinations. These Cardinal Stagger and Octoberama prints are just perfect for fall and winter projects.

Charley Harper fabrics purse for Birch Fabrics Quilt Market

There was also a fat quarter bundle of Fort Firefly included in the package from Birch Fabrics which -- as some of you may have noticed if you follow me on Instagram -- is rapidly becoming a baby quilt for a friend of mine. I expect to have a finished project to show you in the next week so stay tuned!

Linking up to Finish It Up Friday.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Beautiful Compromise

For ages now I've been longing to have a design wall of my own like so many bloggers use, but the wall space in my sewing area is simply nonexistent. Then I dropped into the local Home Goods store last weekend and found myself a beautiful compromise. This framed piece of burlap is supposed to be a creative take on a bulletin board, but it actually makes a fantastic miniature design wall for my workspace. It fits perfectly on my sideboard-turned-storage-table and is large enough to hold several quilt blocks and small projects at once. I love the way the burlap backing and fancy wooden frame give it extra personality.

And once again I'm reminded that "challenge" is just another word for "opportunity."

Friday, October 4, 2013

Strawberry Pincushion Swap

When my friend Erin asked me to join in her Strawberry Pincushion Swap, I just couldn't refuse. A simple little swap project? Check. Adorable fabric strawberries? Double check. I haven't had time to do a swap in a long time, but I just couldn't stay out of this one.

I pulled some fun scraps together to make a little pouch for my swap partner, lining it with a sweet postage stamp print I found a while back. There was enough room inside for the strawberries and a few fun notions as well.

And as always, it's hard to decide what's more fun: putting together a package for someone else or getting your own package in the mail. Which reminds me...if you need me, I'll be waiting over there by the mailbox...

Linking up to Finish It Up Friday.

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