Monday, April 29, 2013

Lizzy House's Sparkle Punch Quilt

Back in August I started the process of cutting up strips of carefully hoarded collected Lizzy House fabrics from her Castle Peeps, 1001 Peeps, Outfoxed and Hello Pilgrim collections to make a Wonky Stars/Sparkle Punch quilt, per Elizabeth Hartman's quilt-along tutorial. Between the 4 collections I had enough to have a whole star out of each fabric without duplicates, and only needed to omit maybe 2 or 3 fabrics.

Lizzy House Fabrics

Lizzy House Fabrics

Lizzy House Fabrics

I still flinch a little inwardly thinking about the fact that I had to cut 384 3.5" squares, and that was just the white background fabric. So many squares!

The squares ended up living in a box for a while due to our move, and then went neglected through the holidays. Here and there I'd pull them out and sew points or press, and sew more points, etc. Finally about a week and a half ago I started assembling all the parts, and now I can strike that top off the To Do list! This weekend's weather has been lovely (though Jeff's allergies aren't agreeing with that at all!) and so I took it outside with another finish to photograph. Sadly that one will need me to take it outside another day and redo the pictures because they all managed to be slightly out of focus.

Sparkle Punch

Now I need to decide on what to back it with and how to bind it. I have some square components left and can make a number of scrappy stars. Beyond that, I'm not sure, maybe some Kona Ash or a slightly darker grey.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

241 Tote

Following the completion of one bag, I started on another: a 241 tote for myself, from Anna Graham's (Noodlehead) now-internet-famous pattern. A while before I'd bought the pattern, I'd picked up a home dec/canvas fabric on a trip to Ikea (where I also got some of that awesome grey-on-white numbers fabric, and noticed they have 20" x 20" pillow inserts for $6.99, "Fjädrar", should I get around to sewing pillow covers).

For other fabrics I dug into my stash, some Michael Miller Mini Mikes houndstooth, black-on-grey and grey-on-white for the sides, side pockets and interior slip pocket, and some Kona Medium Grey for the interior and Kona Ash for the zip pocket linings. The zippers are from Etsy, the Zipit store.


Anna's pattern is clear and the color photos are really helpful, especially if you're fairly new to bag making. I've found sewing bags can feel counter intuitive and a bit ass-backwards at times, though that could just be me. It should definitely not be held against the pattern that I had to redo some things and became fast friends with my seam ripper again. A lot of that has to do with my having gotten ahead of myself and wanting to go a bit too fast, or making some "DOH!" mistakes, and occasionally having made the mistake of trying to sew while both kids were home, awake and running amok. And being highly critical and wanting to redo some wobbly topstitching.

Lieam daring me to move the bag.

Things I'd do differently (or, per pattern suggestions) next time: Make one half of the pocket lining in the same fabric as the exterior, or at least something that matches better. I hadn't really thought about it that much, but after installing the zippers, and the way that it can still let slivers peek through of the lining on the edges of the stitching, the light Kona Ash was a bit more noticeable than I would have chosen. If you look closely at the picture, you can probably see what I mean, little light grey slivers around the zipper.

241 in Ikea home dec

Another change I'd make would be to add some kind of interfacing to the strap if you're using quilting cotton, or to use either webbing or a sturdier fabric. The lack of interfacing just makes the strap feel very light and flimsy, and I prefer it to feel a little stiffer. This is totally up to your personal preference.

The 241 Tote pattern has prompted me to jump on the next blogging band wagon, Anna's new divided basket pattern. Miss Matilda could use some cute storage like this for her ponies, cars and Barbie accessories, so they don't all get lost in the huge toy storage box in the kids' room. And I could use one in my room for some of the bedside flotsam and jetsam. There's no bedside table, and a basket to store the Kindle and things like lip balm and hand cream in, so the cats don't knock it off the bed frame's edge would be helpful.