Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Charley Harper Messenger Bag

Way back in June I planned a birthday gift, and I cut out the pieces for a messenger bag.

Then some things happened, some other things happened, I had other deadlines, and new sewing projects - and the messenger bag was put aside.  

I always intended to make it and finally I just did it.  I'm calling it a six month early birthday gift instead of six months late.

Charley Harper bag

I used a Charley Harper canvas print for the flap and front body, a linen blended fabric for the back and the inside front flap.  I applied SF-101 interfacing to the lining fabric.  After using my own messenger bag for quite awhile now, I realized that I would like the lining of the bag to have more structure, I think this interfacing will do the trick.  

I almost always use waxed canvas (purchased on Etsy) for the gusset of the bag, I like the leathery look of waxed canvas and it gives the bottom of the bag a nice water proof and soil proof touch.

A magnetic snap closure is easy to add, and leaves the front flap clean

This bag went together quickly, because all the parts including the lining were pre cut!  
I should do that more often.  This went out before Christmas to the new bag owner - now I really should start on her next birthday gift so it isn't so late!

Keep Calm and Quilt On!

Sunday, December 28, 2014

New York City

Every year I take a one day trip to New York City.  It's one of my favorite things to do all year.  A friend of mine charters a bus, we get on the bus at midnight on Friday, the bus drives us all night to the city.  We stop about an hour out of NYC for breakfast and to freshen up.  Then boom we are there!  We have all day Saturday to roam the city.  

This year a quilter friend went with me, and we met up with another quilter and we did a mini- fabric quilting tour of the city.

You may know @mushyhed and @nyc_christopher (The Tattooed Quilter) from Instagram.  

(Starbucks re-feuling)

Chen and I had both been to NYC many times, and Chris lives there, so although we saw a few sights along the way, this day was all about the fabric.

Mood was beautiful and overwhelming with choices

I purchased buttons, ribbon, and a beautiful piece of leather from Mood

This is where the Erin Wilson quilts were displaying

I wrote a post with more photos about these quilts here
I bought a large piece of oilcloth here and a yard of fabric

We saw a few sights on our journey from fabric store to fabric store

We rode the subway - one of us for the first time

The weekend we were there it was SantaCon - which makes for some interesting Santa sightings

Now back to fabric

Walking through the streets we came across a flea market

With an entire stall of African Indigo.  We had a lot of fun going through these cloths

Next stop - Purl SoHo

This hoop wall inside Purl made me want to have a hoop wall 

I purchased my first bit of Liberty at Purl

We saw the tree.  Barely.  Through a million people

Had great food,  good laughs, bought fabric, met a quilter friend in person, perfect day in NYC

Shout out to @nyc_christopher for taking us everywhere
Till next year!


Saturday, December 27, 2014

Handmade Christmas

If I could, I would make everyone a handmade Christmas item.  If I make you something it's because I have thought of you, but because I don't make you  something it isn't because I DIDN'T think of you, its because I don't have all the time in the universe.  

Oh, that I did!

This year my theme was pillows - I love handmade pillows - love the ones that have been made for me - so I figure everyone else would love one too.

And what says Christmas to your brother but bloody zombies?

And a paper pieced zombie?

That you can snuggle up to at night

This was a 16" pillow form, and I decided before mailing that it was too snug, so I used a 14" pillow form instead and that worked better.

I didn't take a before photo of this one, but this was a boys t-shirt I found in Target.  I cut out the front of the t-shirt, backed the jersey with SF-101 and used it for the pillow center.

This one I used the QAYG method as I pieced around the center owl - I added top stitch quilting when the top was completed.

I made these small coin purses for some of the girls in the family, I like having these little zip pouches in my purse for miscellaneous items.  I used oil cloth that I purchased in New York City and zippers I had on hand.  There is no lining in these, I cut one long piece of oilcloth, added the zipper, and closed the side seams.  I zig zag stitched the inside seams to finish the inside.

I hope you are yours had a happy holiday - I am still recovering from my marathon sewing sessions.  (there is more to show!)

Keep Calm and Quilt On!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

A side Trip to NYC

I'll have more on my trip in a different post - for this post, I wanted to share something I learned on a short trip to NYC last week.  

I met Erin Wilson.  Was I aware of her before this, no.  But I am now.  

Erin is a textile artist based in Brooklyn. 
She hand dyes her fabric.  
She was open,  sharing, and humble when I met her at The Art Quilt Gallery in New York, where some of her quilts were on displaydisplay.  

She answered all of our questions in detail, explained her process, and was also curious about our methods.  
(all photos of Erin's quilts are posted with her permission)

Erin Wilson: Storyboard #20 30"x 24"
I can not even begin to tell you how inspired I was by Erin's work.

This is how big one of her squares are:

Each one was that small! I was / still am blown away.  These are NOT paper pieced or fused, she free sews all of them.  

Erin Wilson:  Shape Study 15

I don't often see something so new to me that it catches my breath and makes me want to see where my quilting and patchwork can take me, this exhibit did this.  

This was a whole other level of art work made with fabric.  Fabric and colors that I love and work with almost daily.  This exhibit and speaking to Erin truly made me happy to be in the world of quilters.  
Erin Wilson:  Landscape Squares

My thumb for scale.

This is what I took away from seeing her quilts:
The minimalism of her squares
The tiny tiny sashings
The seemingly effortless way the colors came together (I'm sure that was not effortless)
How two people will see a block in two different ways
Erin's willingness to share 
Her binding 
And a head full of motivation and inspiration

Erin's quilts are currently on display at The Art Quilt Gallery in New York