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October 2014

a few pouches

Fold over pouch

This week I have been living vocariously through the sewing of others.  All the pouches in this post were made by friends of mine who pattern tested for me recently.  Not only did they provide lots of feedback and ideas for what to include in the patterns (and quite a few grammatical corrections).  They also produced some very pretty looking pouches as a result.  

First up, is this dreamy looking version of my fold over pouch, made by Charlotte.  She chose the prettiest Heather Ross fabrics to make them in.  You can take a look at the inside of the pouch here (if anything, it's even sweeter than the outside and well worth the click).

Fold over mini

She also made this co-ordinating set of my mini pouch and needle book.


Next up is another fold over pouch, this time made by Pennie.  She beautifully fussy cut her cover fabric to perfection - look at how accurately she matched up the horses!  I am in awe of Pennie, she sews as fast as she talks and it's pretty speedy.

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The inside is just as pretty as everything else she makes.

At a glance - hadley1

Last but never least, Hadley tested my at a glance pouches.  You can see how thorough she is, she made three just to be sure everyy instruction was fully tested.  She also assured me that her pouches were most likely to be filled with loom bands by her daughters the minute they got back from school.

All this looking at sewing done by others has finally got me back into my sewing room and stitching.  Everything is going a little slowly for now but I should have something new (finally) to show you very soon :)

tobacco leaf quilt

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I last showed this quilt when it was still a quilt top back at the beginning of the year.  I managed to get it quilted and bound shortly after that and we used the finished quilt for our bed right up until summer.  Then it was promptly put away until the beginning of this week when the weather has turned right from hot to cold seemingly overnight.

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So now seemed as good a time as any to show the finished piece here on the blog.  In the general scheme of things, I tend to make stuff, blog about it and then use it but it feels more appropriate to talk about this quilt now that it has been used and washed many times over.

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I've blogged about the making of the top previously so I'll just talk about the final stages here.

1. The ovals were hand appliqued on to the background fabric but even though it felt a little heavy, I decided not cut out the background fabric from behind the appliqued shapes.  With the benefit of experience, I feel that this was a good move.  The quilt does not feel overly heavy in use but it is warmer than any other quilt I have.  Which is good, since that is the point of the thing.

2.  I decided to do the quilting in several ways instead of using one overall design.  Firstly, using pale blue thread, I quilted the background or negative space in a kind of square spiral.  I love the finished look but it was a whole bunch of hard work to do, since it involved moving the entire quilt round and through the throat of the machine three times for each spiral.  I had added sashing to the sides of the quilt only,  to make it a little wider, I quilted the sashing in a zig zag pattern.

3. As there was a variety of the fabric shades used for the ovals, from the very dark to the very light, I decided to use several colours of thread in the quilting of them.  Firstly I used white, to quilt around each oval just inside the binding.  Then I quilted a second oval in the centre of each one using the closest coloured matching thread I had.

4. I used a neutral thread in the bobbin throughout as the backing fabric was grey.


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All the threads I used to do the quilting are by Aurifil.  I have one of their colour cards which makes ordering colours online easy since you just need to know the shade number. I used the following colours in the quilt - white (2021), pale blue (2710), navy (2785) and neutral (2314).  I've since updated my collection to include a few more matching colours - purple (2535) and blue (2735).

Quilt pattern used was from Denyse Schmidt's book Modern Quilts, Traditional Inspirations.

All fabrics from from Hello Petal, the background fabric is bella solid - 9900 63.  Again, I have a colour card which makes ordering online in the run up to Christmas and getting a good matching shade, a trouble free experience.

I've previously blogged about the making of the quilt blocks and top here and here.

cat and mouse

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Today's post brings together several items I've made over the past few months but haven't shown here on the blog yet.  First up is this purse I made back in the spring.  I'd wanted to make one of these for a couple of years, ever since I saw this one that Ali made.  I used this tutorial.  

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This purse like all of the items in today's post has been in constant, heavy use for the past several months.  It still somehow looks like I only made it yesterday.

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After making the purse, I had an idea to make a matching - ish Super Tote.  I cut out all the pieces one evening but it was too late to sew.  The next day I had a hospital appointment, the one where I found out about my recent diagnosis.  When I got home, I was trying to process all of the information I had just found out.  Somehow I ended up in my sewing room calmy and methodically sewing together this bag.  It helped so much to have something to do with my hands.  Sometimes I'm so glad I learned to sew and this was one of those important times when it really mattered.

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Again, it has been used non stop since then.

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The only sewing I have done since the day I made the tote was to make this new mini pouch and needle book set.  I use my original set to hold sewing items but I needed another to hold some knitting items - stitch markers and darning needles.  I used fabrics from Catnap by Lizzy house.  They fit perfectly into the pockets of my knitting project book pouch.