Sewing Feed

Bloom. | Cross Stitch

I don't know about you all, but I feel like warmer weather just will NOT get here.  Yesterday was the first day I could leave the office and not freeze on my way to my car.  Ridiculous.  

And, yes, my electric blanket is still on my bed.  Whatever.  Don't judge. 

Moving on....

 All around are glimpses that spring might actually be here soon.

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These are my azaleas at the front of my house, which seem to have exploded overnight.   For realzies.  LOVELOVELOVE the coral colored one on the left.  LOVE.  My rose bushes are on the verge of blooming, too, and I cannot wait for them to open up.  

To keep myself occupied during these still cold nights, I've been working on a few finishes for my LNS.  It's seriously so  much fun taking finished models and going that next step and making something so totally different than if it were framed.

Enter a piece called "Bloom Sampler" by Threadwork Primitives. 

I knew I wanted to finish this piece as a pillow, like the model, but I didn't want to finish it in the same way.  I dug into my Mary Poppins carpet bag of finishing supplies that the girls at my LNS gave me, and came up with hand-dyed twill tape from Crescent Colours.  

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Hello, fun twill tape! Can you see it????  It's sewn in right at the end of the stitched piece and the small piece of fabric I attached to the end.

Here's a close-up...

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The green matches perfectly, and I decided to create dimension by sewing it in place with a contrasting color - I chose brown to go with the bunny and the plain fabric on the right.  

Just a lil' close-up of the stitched piece...I'm loving the pinks and light reds throughout...

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For the backing fabric, I again went to my carpet bag of finishing supplies, and came up with felted wool.

Have you ever worked with felted wool?? Not gonna lie - it's pretty cool, and is so awesome with smalls and such.  The piece of wool I was given for finishing has a herringbone pattern.

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Awesome, amiright????  The color of this wool could not have matched better with the fiber colors of the stitched pattern.  Love.

 There you have it!!  Another finish that will be displayed at my LNS...as soon as I can get it to them....which should be this weekend.  So, if you're in the DelCo area, stop on by the shop after Saturday, and you'll be able to see this cute piece live and in living color!!

What are you all doing to keep your creative juices going as the flowers start blooming this spring??? 

I'd love to hear what you're all up to!!!!

Do something creative today!!!

Much love ~~~

Sig



A Needlebook Finish | Sewing

Hello all!  :-)

I hope you had a wonderful Easter, if you celebrate!

This past Friday, I brought another model finish to my LNS, and this was just as much fun to finish as the last one that I did.

I'll be honest.  When I set out to do the finish work for this piece, I wasn't totally sure where my sewing machine would take me.  I knew I wanted to do something a little different than a simple "small" or an ornament, but wasn't sold on quite what to do.

Then, I had the idea for a needlebook.  The stitched model was about 4" square, so it wasn't so big that a needlebook was out of the question, and not so small that it would get lost in all the sewing fabric.

So, I decided just to go for it.  I headed to my fabric stash, and even though the stitched model was red, I wasn't convinced surrounding it with more red fabric would be the answer.

I stumbled upon some brown fabric, and even though it sounds like it wouldn't really work, it totally did.

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Here's the needlebook closed, with the ribbon tied in a pretty little bow :-)  I kinda love this fabric - it has just enough of a pattern motif so it's not boring, but it's not overwhelming. 

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Untie the riboon, and viola!!  This is on the inside!  The stitched model is on the left (obvi), and the right has the felt to stash your needles....in this handy little...book.  Needlebook.  Clever.  HA.

Here's a close-up of the stitched model -

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Pretty, right?! Love that lil' key...

And here's a shot of the other side with the felt -

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How.stinkin'.cute is that button ribbon????!!! (yah. you read that right - that's ribbon that looks like buttons. love.)  Perrrrfect to match this felt, and it adds just that little extra detail to really make this complete.  The total estimated size of this needlebook is about 6.5" square when it's closed, and when it's open, it's about 13" long.

That's it!  That's my latest finish!  If you're in the DelCo area, stop in the shop and see this model finish in real life!!!  :-)


Live Simply | Sewing | Cross Stitch

Last night started out with a great idea.  I mean, a great idea.  I was dreaming all day about sitting behind my sewing machine and finally doing the finish work on a needlebook I've been putting off for, oh....aroundabout a year now.  Yep.  A full year.  Whatever.  Don't judge.  

I came home from work, inhaled dinner, then ran upstairs to gather my sewing accoutrement (such a great word) and get to work.

But, I encountered a problem.

The cross stitch piece I needed to make the needlebook was nowhere to be found.

Nowhere.  I tore apart my sewing room looking for it.  Nowhere.  Went up to the third floor to my project table, thinking it somehow ended up staying behind when I brought all my unfinished pieces down to my sewing room.  Nothing.  Went into my den where I do all my stitching (which, incidentally, looks like a thread bomb exploded in there. seriously. i have no idea how all that damn thread ended up all over the place, but it's a gd mess in there. ok. rant over.), thinking I hid it in my table (the coffee table slides open, and i hide all my random stitching stuff in there...).  Nope.  Nothing.  Went back upstairs to rip through my sewing room again.  Nothing.

Now.  I know what you're all thinking.  Jack...seriously....it has to be there.

Yah.  I know.  I just don't know where "there" is.  I found a really, really safe place for it, apparently.  So safe, that now I can't find it.

Enter: Annoyed Jack.  So annoyed, but still determined to bond with her sewing machine, she found another project to finish.

A word to the wise:  don't sew when you're annoyed.  Just...don't.  You end up sewing sh-- upside down and backwards, and your seam ripper becomes your best friend for the night.

ugh.

 Good news, though, peeps.  

It all worked out.

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 Lizzie Kate.  Gotta love her words of wisdom.  

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I used a strip of a Moda jelly roll that I have leftover from this pillow project I did a while back (which may not be available anymore, for which i apologize in advance if you search & search & can't find it...), and with the brown/yellow/pink theme, I thought it fit well with the stitched piece on front.

I stuffed it, but still have to close off the bottom, which is why the seam looks all bunched.

Whatever.  It was a long night with the seam ripper and pink thread.  You're over it.

Crazy part of all this?  Simply by using my left brain all night, I felt better about the day in general.  Now, today's a different story, but I'll worry about that as the day drags on...

Much love ~~~

Sig


Thanksgiving Fun | Sewing

Hello all!  I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving!  Ours was filled with too much good food, and way too many delicious desserts.  It's always so hard to pick which dessert to have, because it's so easy to go overboard with all the sweets!!

Thanksgiving in our family is also time for other celebrations - my mom and sister's birthdays fall around  Thanksgiving all the time, and now my brother-in-law's, too!  So, every year, we not only have too much food, we have birthdays to celebrate :-)

For my sister this year, I decided to make her a table runner for her new dining room table.  Like me, she has some decorations for all the holidays, but nothing for her dining room.  So, since handmade is always better, I decided to make her something pretty for her table.

I picked a very fall-like pattern for the runner, with simple accent fabric for panels on the end, and a brown solid for the underside.  She could actually use this for all of the fall season if she wanted, since it's not really Thanksgiving specific.

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For this pic, I laid it out on my dining room table when it was finished to see how it would look.  Cutie, right?!  

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Here, I folded it over so you can see the underside and the accent panels on the ends.   The binding I made myself from the accent fabric, which pulls everything together.  I think it turned out better than buying pre-made binding, but I'm sure it would look just as lovely had I chosen a plain color binding to match the fabric.

In case any of you would like to try your hand at one of these awesome handmade runners, the tutorial I used is from Sew4Home, and can be found here.  I eliminated the tassels they have on each corner, mostly because I just couldn't be bothered with them.

That's all I have for today!  Will you be making anything special for friends or family this holiday? 

Much love ~~

Sig


A quick weekend post

Helloooooo!!!!!!!
Holy Hera is it HOT in Philly.  I'm in no way complaining, because I HATE being cold. Like, hate.  With a vengeance.  So, even though it's a scorcher, and I'm pretty sure it'll stay above 90 degrees through the end of August (jusssst a prediction based on the fact that it didn't really dip lower than 40 over the winter. unheard of around here...), it didn't stop me from spending some crafty time. 
I spent a lot of time stitching (since it's even really too hot to anything else), but on Saturday afternoon, since I was tooootally procrastinating from cleaning my bathroom, I decided to do a sewing project.  Way better than cleaning the bathroom.
I saw this tutorial for a tote bag over at Sew4Home and decided that I had to make this bag.  Just because.  I had some fabric laying around that I'd bought with the intent of making a new nook cover for myself, but was over that once I saw this tutorial.
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I.love.this.bag.  I have no idea what I'll use it for, but I can't wait to use it.  I tried it out (you know, like any normal person, I walked around my 2nd floor hallway all sassy and whatnot with it on my shoulder), and naturally, it's amazing.  It actually fits a file folder in there with no trouble, so I might make this my new travel bag for work, since it's much, much lighter than my briefcase, and I could just shove my wristlet and cosmetic case in here rather than carrying my big purse, too.
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Here's the inside of the bag.  Oh so cute.  The dimensions of this bag are approximately 18" wide by 17" high.  Not so small it only fits your lip gloss, but not so big it fits a small child with no problem.  Just right.
As I'm sure you've guessed, I've already thought of ways I'm gonna make this just a smidge different the next time I make it.  The original tutorial has you put ribbon on the handles and two smaller pieces as tie closures.  I was over the ribbon, so I eliminated it all.  Plus, without the ribbon, I don't have to worry about it getting ruined in the wash, b/c yes, this is 100% cotton and therefore, washable.  Clutch.
If any of you stitchers out there are sewers and need a quick gift for someone, or just want to make yourself something funky and fun, head on over to Sew4Home and grab the tutorial to make this bag.  It's easy, and didn't take nearly as long as I anticipated.
I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!  4th of July festivities have started already, since the holiday is on Wednesday, so I think a lot of places did stuff this weekend, and others will be next weekend.  I went down to Penn's Landing in Philly to see the fireworks display, which is always a good time.
Stay cool if it's hot where you are, and enjoy your holiday! I hope to post this week with stitchy progress, so stay tuned!
Much love ~~~~
J :-)

More Sewing Fun

Well.  I survived.
I survived a 1st birthday party with more kids in one house than I thought could actually fit.
For those of you who don't know, me and small children aren't really friends.  Now, my high school band kids?  They rock.  Small children that scream for no reason whatsoever?  Not cool.
BUT.  This was for my T-girl, the daughter of one of my good friends from high school.  She turned 1 last Friday, and her party was on Saturday.  
There is one good thing about shopping for babies:  babygap.  Oh, yes.  babygap.  Here's a fun tidbit to know and tell:  I once worked for Gapkids/babygap.  Yep.  I was the denim/khaki specialist, and could make those walls and walls of denim and khakis just look perfect and pristine.  I was that crazy person with a cart and piles and piles of denim stacked around me, folding away like Rainman.  Touch my perfect wall of denim and you lost a hand.  Sometimes I'd be nice and I'd let you get away with only losing a few fingers.
I digress.
babygap.  T-girl. 
Another fantastic place to be when you're shopping for baby gifts:  Pottery Barn Kids.  Oh man.  At one point, they had The Grinch sheets.  GRINCH.  SHEETS.  If you are unaware with my complete and total obsession with Dr. Seuss, particularly The Grinch That Stole Christmas, go to this post where I freak out only slightly about fabric I bought.
Ok.  So, my shopping consisted of one item from babygap (because omg i couldn't resist) and one item from Pottery Barn Kids.  Again, couldn't resist.  I wanted to get her something else, but nothing was hitting me.
Then, I thought to myself, "Self.  Why buy something when you can MAKE something????"  
I mean, really.  
I have the tools, an amazing craft room, and a sewing machine.  I'm totes making something.
I remembered I have leftover fabric from the apron I made for my sister for her birthday, and I thought this would make a perfect pillow sham,  much like this one that I made for myself last week.
I switched it up a bit, and I decided that nothing said "baby" like a cute quilted pattern.  
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OOOOOMG.  How adorbs is this????!??!!!?!  This turned out so daggone cute!!  
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OK!!!  I did the same type of sham back covering, so Katie can take the pillow out and wash it every so often, along with the cover itself.
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So.  Darn.  C-U-T-E.  Cricut owners:  you can cut fabric with your Cricut!!!  The possibilities are endless when you have a die cutter that can cut your fabric into shapes!!! 
Once I figure out the precise combination of speed and pressure, it'll be wonderful, that is.  This time around, I couldn't get it to make clean cuts on the fabric, so I cut paper and traced it on the fabric.
Moving on....since you're all supposed to believe that I'm absolutely perfect at everything....
This is the birthday card I made for the occasion --
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Cute, amiright??  I love that birthday cake.  It's so...slanted....and it looks delicious.  Actually, now that I think about it, I think I showed you guys this pic already.  Wow.  I'm losing my damn mind.  Huh.  Well, there's the card.  Again.  ("Yeah, thanks, Jack.  We saw this already.  Aren't you doing anything new and innovative in your craft room???  Sheesh.")
Patience, peeps. There is much going on in my craft room, I just can't show you all the deets yet.  Somewhere aroundabout 23 April I should be able to show you more.  But not before then.  Well, not anything that I've been feverishly working on, anyways. 
Until tomorrow...or the weekend....whenever I have something supercool to show you (like the chipboard album I made last night -- keep an eye on that Instagram feed on the top left of my blog -- you'll find pics there that don't always make it to the blog right away....and it updates almost once a day....just sayin'......).  
Much love to all of you, my crazy crafting & stitching friends!
~~~ J

My sewing machine and I are bff's.

It was a dark and stormy night...
Well, not really...but it was a dreary Saturday, Sunday morning and afternoon until the sun came out.  This also equates to a 3-day headache.  Friday was gorrrggggg outside (i had to weed, people.  weed my garden.  unacceptable for march.), and then the storms came.  Such drastic changes in the weather usually mean certain headaches arrive.
And they did.
No migraine, thank goodness, but a bad enough headache to sideline me for most of the weekend.  When I was able to function for a bit, I decided to do bond with my sewing machine, something I haven't done in a while.  Quite possibly since I made my sister's apron.  That was a long time ago, peeps.
So, I grabbed one of the most recent tutorials from the Moda Bake Shop, which uses jelly roll strips.  This is called a Strippy Pillow, and I thought it was just so cute and it looked super simple, that I decided to give it a whirl.  I have many leftover jelly roll strips from when I made myself a nook cover, so I figured this was a perfect way to use up some of the strips.
This is SO easy.  SO EASY.  Seriously.  If I can do this, so can you.  It only took 2.5 hours, and that includes cutting the fabric, ironing, and pinning each strip.  Start to finish - 2.5 hours.  I was on a time-crunch, too -- GCB was starting at 10p, and I had to make the start of the show.  I so did.  Annie Potts + Kristen Chenowith = pure gold.
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OK!!  Adorbs!!  This would make a fabulous gift for a teen girl for her bday or Christmas or whatevs!  It's a sham, if you will...note the back --
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This fits a 16" square pillow (which i don't have at the moment, but i'm sure i can scrounge one up at joann's with my 40% off coup - gotta love coups), and it totes washable, so you don't have to worry about it getting dirty!  You can just throw it in the wash with the dark delicates, and viola!  All clean!
I haven't quite decided where this will finally make its home, but rest assured it'll be in a place where everyone can see it :-)
That's my craftyness for today!  I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!
Go forth and be crafty :-)
Much love :-)
~ ~ ~ J

Ta Da!!

Ok so...I'm finally able to post a pic of the apron I made for my lil' sis for her birthday :-)

The best part?  She said when she opened it, that she just said to herself that she could use an apron!  Perfect timing by big sis!! :-)

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I cropped the pic - I'm sure she'd kill me for posting the entire thing, since she's got a silly look on her face ;-)

Um....how a-dor-able are those ruffles?!!?  I had so much fun sewing this!!  The fabric colors turned out faboooo for a bright and cheery apron!!  I may just have to make more and post them to my etsy store which has all of, you know, nothing, in it right now.  Oh wait, there's a cross stitch pattern I'm trying to unload that no one else seems to want either.  (le sigh)

It's gonna be a rainy dreary day in Philly....so go forth and be crafty and creative!!


Sneak peak

Just a quick post here before I forget --

I'm currently sewing an oh-so-cute apron for my lil' sis (who's not quite so little anymore...in fact she's taller than me....but she'll always be my lil' sis :-)), and I just wanted to take a snippity snap and give you a sneak peek.

I'll post a pic of the entire thing once I give it to her :-)

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Be creative today!


A finish, a work in progress (WIP, if you will), and....FABRIC.

Hello to all you wonderful people out there in blogland!  I've been so incredibly busy with work lately, that I've struggled to find time to do anything other than sleep and eat.  BUT, last night, I took some time to sit and stitch...something I haven't done in quite some time.

So, without further delay, here is the latest Little House ornament that I finished stitching --

Go to www.blueribbondesigns.com for more info on the Stitch Starter

It's called "Bringing Home the Tree".  I think she is just adorable, and that doggie is beyond cute!!  She has a lil' pink collar and booties!!  I love it!  LOVE!  I just have to get some backing fabric for her, and find some time to sit at my sewing machine and finish her up.  I stitched her on 40 count Maple Sugar by Lakeside Linens.  I used this awesomely amazing lil' tool called the Stitch Starter by Blue Ribbon Designs.  Belinda, if you're reading this, I absolutely LOVE this instrument that you have created.  I cannot go anywhere without it.  

I have this up next to my stitched piece so you can see the size of it done on 40 count linen.  I know some of the ornaments out there can get a little big depending on what stitch count you use, so I figured I'd give you something to gauge how big this one actually turned out to be.  The "Baked Goods" one that I showed you all here a few days ago was also done on 40 count linen, and is the same stitch count, so it is the same size as this adorable little piece.  You must all run out and get a Stitch Starter!   I blogged about it previously here, and Belinda has since created another set of sleeves you can stitch for your starter, all holiday themed.  Love it love it love it.

My WIP is something I've been trying to get finished, but just seem to find other things to do instead...like the 1400 Christmas ornaments you've all been seeing.  However, this piece is totally cool, and I think it's turning out spooktacular....

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This is "16 Men on a Dead Man's Ship" by Cricket Collection.  I love so many of her designs, including the seasons pieces of which I've finished Summer, Autumn, and Winter.  Spring is another WIP.  Check out older posts from my other blog to see the pics I posted over there of those finished pieces.  They turned out so great!  I'm still trying to decide if I want to finish them all as pillows, like I did for Summer, or if I want to frame the rest.  Decisions, decisions....

Now that I've shown you my WIP (how cool is that!), I have to show you this amazingly fun and fantastical fabric I found whilst visiting a quilting shop near me that I'd never been in before.  It's not far from my LNS, so one day when I had to pick up something those dear ladies were holding for me, I stopped in the quilt shop to take a peek.  

I went in with the intention of finding fabric to make a nook cover (which you can see a sneak peek of here). When I entered, they had adorable Halloween fabric on display in the front.  So...I naturally had to grab a quarter yard of two of those for my Halloween projects which are still in my stash...not yet stitched...

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(ahem)movingon.......

So, I'm coming around one of the display tables, and I see that they have Christmas fabric.  Now, Christmas is my absolute favvvvorite time of year, but it always makes me somewhat crazy to see Christmas stuff on display in SEPTEMBER.  Can we have Halloween and Thanksgiving, Mr. Crazy-retailer-giant-who-won't-let-me-enjoy-fall-before-shoving-Christmas-down-my-throat???  Pretty please?!  With powdered sugar on top of my gingerbread snaps????  No?  Ok, well...I tried.

That said....I start looking at the Christmas fabric because I absolutely cannot control myself because of my love for Christmas, and I found THIS.....

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OMG.  THE GRINCH.  Now, my sister will attest to the fact that I know every.single.word to that Christmas special.  Every one.  In fact, I'm pretty sure I'm forced to watch it alone these days because I recite the entire daggone thing without even realizing it.

Ok.  So.  Not only is the cover from Dr. Seuss's amazing book on this panel....but so are 10 OTHER images from the book!!  

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OMG.  I have so many ideas running through my head for this fabric I can't even hardly stop myself.

Greatness, amiright??  Love this fabric.  LOVVVVVVVE.

Now, I did buy adorable other Christmas fabric with which I have no idea what I'm going to do, but I couldn't pass it up.  Sadly, it now pales in comparison to the awesomeness and excitement that The Grinch creates, but I'll share them with you, too --

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Cute, right?  I love the little presents :-)  The marshmallow kabob looks deeelish.  Now I want some...haha!

On that delicious note, that's all the creative I have in me for the moment.  I'm hoping to get some more stitching in this weekend, since I'll be able to breathe again for a little while, so stay tuned for more creations!

Have a fabulous fall day, and do something creative today!!! :-)