Monday, May 27, 2013

Super In-Love with my Super Tote

I was beginning to think I would never have the time to sit down with my Super Tote pattern by Anna over at Noodlehead.  Three days ago I was able to pull fabrics and cut the pattern.  Yesterday I was able to mush together the time to sew the exterior and this morning I finished the lining!  

I have had this Alexander Henry print for awhile and I love it, but I never knew quite what I would make with it.  The print is large, the colors make me happy and secretly I always wanted to make something for myself with it.  It is called "veronique" and is from 2007.  

I read through the pattern speed reading  thoroughly and I decided on fabrics for the lining, pockets, gussets and exterior.  I pinned on my design wall to try to keep track.

The lining is all Echo by Lotta Jansdotter.  Which I have also had for awhile and hadn't found anything worthy of using the prints.  The gussets and straps I used Denim (and I think this was Robert Kaufman, but I can't locate my receipt, so maybe).  Here is the front exterior with outside pocket and handle attached.  The fabric on the left is what I decided to use for the recessed zipper.  

Per the pattern options I used duck and SF101 on the exterior pieces, the duck where I used quilters cotton on the exterior not on the gussets which had the thicker denim.  I did use SF101 on the gussets.

I installed a magnetic snap for the exterior pocket.  Luckily for me Anna - Noodlehead put up a tutorial the other day so I wasn't lost or staring at the snap for an hour like it would eat me.  The snap works too.

I made my zipper longer than the instructions called for.  I had seen someone else's Super Tote finish in person and I thought I might like it with a longer zipper.  I can tuck in the ends, no problem.  I wanted to have full access opening of the tote.  The pattern calls for 18" zipper mine was 22".

I have seen some photos of finished Super Totes with water bottles and iPods for working out. My take on that.

Super Happy and In Love with my Super Tote!  

I'm going to spray the exterior with Scotchguard.  I would like to try adding some of those feet to the bottom to keep it standing and keep the bottom clean, if I make another for myself. 

Keep Calm and Quilt On!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Changes to Flickr - Some Tips!

There was a very sweeping change on Flickr last week some time.  While it took most of us by surprise and for a lot of users it is unwelcome; I am attempting to embrace the changes and work with them.  I have put together a few photos showing how to navigate to some familiar places.  If you read my blog and I have put up a photo showing your Flickr name or photo, I was only trying to get info across - if I am offending anyone by including something of theirs here, please let me know and I will take the photo down.

I don't claim to be an expert but I did do some clicking and tried to find what I wanted on the new version of Flickr.  I took these photos with my phone of the computer screen so they are grainy - but you should be able to get the idea!

First to see photos from your contacts:
Hover over CONTACTS  and a drop down menu will appear

The photos will be sorted how you want them - I have them sorted by date uploaded and 5 per contact.  The photos displayed are larger than what we were used to and if you chose one the photo will be larger and you will see the info on the photo and the contact at the bottom right side of the page.  You can add comments or favorite a photo and read other comments.

If you want to see RECENT ACTIVITY on photos you have commented on -
Hover over YOU and a drop down menu will appear

After clicking the Recent Activity you should get a screen like this showing photos you have commented on.

Next if you want to see the recent activity in a group you are in
Hover over  COMMUNITIES  (I think this is what 'groups' are called now
In the drop down menu chose RECENT DISCUSSIONS

You can see in the drop down menus how to get to other places that you are familiar with - groups list, your own photo stream, searching a group.  I hope this helps out some of you who are still searching the new Flickr.  I knew that probably no matter how we felt about it, Flickr will keep their changes.  My friend told me that they are probably gearing more toward mobile devices and and devices like iPads.  Which I believe to be true as when I went to Flickr on my iPhone, I liked how it interfaced much more than previously.  I can add photos to groups from a phone upload now.

Like Facebook and their constant changes, we are probably stuck with this version of Flickr so let's figure out how to best navigate and put our energy back into creativity!

Keep Calm and Quilt On!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Bloggers Quilt Festival - Baby Quilt

My second entry for Bloggers Quilt Festival, thank you to Amy of Amy's Creative Side for setting up the Quilt Festival.  This is the first year I've entered, but I have watched the last two years and am always so impressed by everyone's quilts, talents, and stories.  I'm so glad to be a part of this quilting community.

Baby Quilt

I made this quilt November / December 2012 for my first grandson.  I used a quilt that was given to my son when he was one, that had seen much love and wear; I took this apart and incorporated pieces into a new quilt for Calvin.
Original Quilt - 28 years old

I painstakingly took apart the old quilt in four patches.  This quilt had been hand pieced and hand tied, the pieces were uneven and and threadbare in many places.  This isn't a slight on the quilter!  She was a family friend who was only 14 when she put this together, it had withstood 28 years.  The thicker fabrics she used which were corduroy and velvet held up the best, the sheet materials were the thinnest.  I wanted to use some of the brighter pieces like the green in the new quilt.  

I chose fabrics that complemented the originals, I wanted a nice blend of old and new.  

I cut down the four patches from the old quilt to the same size and made the new four patches.

I tried to keep the feel of the original quilt.  All the red and green pieces are from the original.  I backed with a cozy flannel and a Kaffe Fassett was used for the binding.  I straight quilted this on my home machine.  

A nice comparison of the quilt tops of old and new!

Thank you for visiting if you are here for the Bloggers Quilt Festival!  A big thank you to Amy's Creative Side for setting up this event for all of us.  I hope you will take a look around and come back and visit another time.  You can find me on Flickr and Instagram 'FairlyMerry' I enjoy seeing my quilty friends projects and accomplishments through blogs, and photos.  

P.S. Calvin was born Christmas Day 2012 and his quilt was waiting.  

Keep Calm and Quilt On!

Bloggers Quilt Festival - Throw Quilt

My very first entry for the Bloggers Quilt Festival sponsored by Amy Ellis of Amy's Creative Side

Throw Quilt 

I finished this in December 2012 for a friend who loves sunflowers.  She had recently lost her pet and wanted her to be included in the quilt.  I struggled with a way to add Hannah into the quilt and not make it a sad reminder of the lost one.  Quilts are to be happy!  It took me awhile to finally come up with something working with all the sunflower fabrics.  Although the colors fit me to a tee, the multitude of prints I was trying to incorporate was driving me crazy.  I finally eliminated some of the prints and went with colors that fit the theme rather than all the prints that fit the theme.  It came out so beautifully, I am glad that it took me so long to get there, or the quilt would be entirely different.  

Hannah's Sunflower Garden

I used a sunflower panel which I sliced into sections to create the focal area.

Free motion quilted on my home machine.

The measurements were approximately 53" X 60"

And this is Hannah, she is highlighted on the back of the quilt and if you know she is there, you can find her hidden in the sunflowers on the front.

This last photo was taken prior to quilting.

Thank you for visiting during the Bloggers Quilt Festival.  I hope you will come back!
You can find me on Flickr and Instagram under FairlyMerry and I love seeing all the photos and fun going on in both places.  
Big Thank You to Amy and all the sponsors of the Bloggers Quilt Festival.

Keep Calm and Quilt On!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Sew Sunday

After the beginning of last week I was feeling just slightly burned out on sewing for others.  When that happens, I can sometimes take a break and put my sewing room right (I did a little of that) and because it is Quilt Market weekend, I spent way too mcuh  a little too much time drooling and scheming how I'm going to buy all that new fabulous fabric  looking at photos from Portland.    To help me ease back into happy sewing I finished up a quilt I've had on my list for the Gran.  And I have stopped looking at QuiltMarket photos.

For the Gran - using Riley Blake Peak Hour fabric

You know what was amazing about this?  It was just the fabric, I didn't do anything but add borders.  Yay for great fabric!

I outlined the vehicles and meandered through the white, and the result is the little cars look like I spent hours appliqueing.

The backing fabric was off white and the vehicles were all scattered about, like how the Gran will start to throw his cars and trucks around when he can grab them.

This is his quilt for my house.  He already has several for his own house.

I'm going to steal him for awhile today so he can sit on it (he almost can sit by himself) and I can get a photo of the two of them together.  In the daylight, not these crappy night time photos because when you can only sew late in the night that's all you get.   I wanted to have something up for this Sew Sunday!  I have plans plans plans for this week, which I'm sure by Monday morning will all have been shredded, moved, manipulated around, but I have all my supplies to work on the Super Tote, and I want to start that today.  
Beep Beep!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Sew Together Bag Zip Pouch

This pattern can be found on Craftsy.  I made this for my partner in thePretty Little Pouch Swap 7.  My partner indicated a few likes that I thought this bag would work for her.  The pattern is called Sew Together Bag.
There are three inside zip pouches and one exterior main zip.

Here are my notes on the pattern, I opted for making two panels for the outside vs one panel so that I could make this machine appliqued bird on the front of the bag.  I used a light weight fusible interfacing for the stitching.  She gives sizes for both one piece exterior and two piece.  

I don't have progress photos until I was much further along, but I will tell you a few things about the pattern.  There are not any photos, except for the finished project, only diagrams of some of the steps.  I think the pattern could go smoother if there were photos provided.  I did email the pattern maker a couple of questions and she was quick to respond.  I was able to figure out most of the steps by laying out my pieces, looking at the diagrams, and reading the steps very carefully.   Very carefully.

I have the side panels on in this photo and the three center zip pockets are visible.  I used different fabrics for inside the pockets and also in each section, there was planning involved.  Some comments in the reviews of the pattern on Craftsy indicated some had problems with the side panels, I found this step very easy.  I was confused with the placement of the inside pocket pieces, but it was one of the questions that the designer clarified.

The exterior panel is attached in these photos (not visible), and the side bindings attached.

After these photos were taken, I removed the zipper and bindings and added a new one.  My first outside zipper wasn't long enough and also I had it unzipping toward the wrong side.  Something not indicated in the directions, but I thought it would go smoother if the outside zipper went the same direction as the inside pocket zippers.  She did indicate a long enough zipper, I just trimmed too much on the first one.  

I wouldn't call this a beginner pattern.  I used my walking foot for all the layers.  Everything did line up, I had to trim the outside panel slightly after sewing all the layers together.  The bag itself sits up nicely.  I think the directions could be just a little clearer, with photos showing the steps plus the diagrams.  The binding I did was different than her directions, I added it the 'quilting' way, but the end result is the same.  And I used a super long zipper the second time, installed it, and then trimmed the zipper after.  It was tough getting the top zipper on the second half of the exterior with all the layers, zipper, plus binding.  

I like the bag, not sure I would need one, but I would make another one for a gift.  Especially now that I've made one, it will go a bit quicker.  

Keep Calm and Quilt On!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Sew Sunday

Happy Mother's Day all, I am late getting Sew Sunday up - and I have little to show today.  I have plans for the day, which involve my sewing studio and fabric flying around the room, but little to show for the last few days.  I have finished another fabric basket, but haven't photographed it yet.  Besides, you may be tired of seeing those!  

I'm finishing up a Mother's Day gift today.  And then for myself I plan to make the Super Tote by Anna.  I can't wait to give this a try!  I ordered fabric last week to use, I do have to go out and get elastic, but other than that, I'm ready to go.  

I have a swap item to finish today too, so a busy day but what I want to do on this Mother's Day.  Thanks for visiting, and I hope you get to do what you want on your day too!  

I was able to get a super photo last week, all five buns together.  It's hard to get them in one photo, they move quickly or something across the room sparks their interest.  They were all getting cranberries - which they don't get often, it's a treat - and they all sat still long enough for a few quick photos.

We have Peanut (brown lop) Velveteen (grey mini rex) Bandit (white with black, Netherland dwarf) and Patch & Stitch (white netherland dwarf).  Stitch is the boy all white bun, he is slightly larger than Patch and he actually has a small patch of black behind his ear.  We had already named him Stitch, so even though he has the 'patch' that isn't his name.  

Friday, May 10, 2013

Finishing up

Time to start checking things off my long long long list.

But first, last night

Him:  Why is your machine up on this counter
Me:  I just need the cover out of the attic and then I'm putting it in the closet, that one is the back up machine now.
Him:  I think I threw that out.
Me:  What?
Him:  I think I threw that out of the attic.  (chews on sandwich)
Him:  blank stare back while chewing sandwich
Me:  Are you serious?????
Him:  Serious. (chewing) 
Me:  Why would you throw that out?  The cover for my machine?  Why can't you check with me before throwing out my stuff?  I may cry.  
Him:  I'm just kidding, I don't even know what you are talking about.
Me:  See?  This is why I need retail therapy.

Getting this baby gift Divided Fabric Basket out today.

I finished up burp cloths last night to fill it up.  These are just cloth diapers with flannel sewn down the center for extra absorbency and softness.  I made a whole package of diapers (10) but I'll hold on to a few for the next baby gift I need to send out. 

This is an angel mini made for the Traveling Quilts group.  One of the minis went missing, so I made a replacement.  I used a paper piece pattern from Craftsy.  The original was a star in bright colors.

I added a border for my round.  

That is two things I can check off as DONE.  Linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish It Friday.  

Keep Calm andQuilt On!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Goal Setting

I'm going to jump on this band wagon with Shanna of Fiber of All Sorts and Melissa of Sew Bittersweet ( and can I add that I just love sew blog names!) for their Lovely Year of Finishes May Party.  This one should be easy to complete because now it is on two different lists and it is partially finished.  

Finish quilting 'I Don't Get It' which was my Pantone Emerald Challenge quilt.  

It's quite beautiful, shimmery with the Oakshott cottons I used.  

And second, for the goal setting party, I am going to finish a top with these pieces.  I still don't know exactly where it's going - but it will go.  And thank you for all the pieces of of advice on these colors.  I love all the colors, but they aren't all playing nice, but I have ideas of where I am going, just need some sewing time to execute new plans.

Two is good.  
Have you linked up with the goal setting party?