Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Shoes and Dancing Teapot

So I had a couple of interesting conversations with my children recently. Right after school started, I asked my second grade daughter if she needed a new pair of gym shoes.

"No, Mom. We got those other shoes a couple months ago. My sandals are wearing out, but I still don't need new ones."

*phew* It is my dream to raise children that don't constantly want new things, particularly shoes. I hate shopping for shoes almost as much as shopping for new bras. Anyway, This nice reaction from my daughter was giving me the warm fuzzies that we were on the right track when a few days ago, my 5th grade son came over:

Son: Mom, there's these shoes that have these 3 stripes down the side. 'Adias" is what they are. Those are cool. Can I get some?
Me: Why? You have two other sets of gym shoes that still fit. I think you are talking about Adidas.
Son: Yeah, but those shoes are cool. I don't like these shoes any more.

Alas... Don't worry, I didn't get them for him. I gave him a speech about brand names and the cost of things like that. He didn't seem to care too much, but I think the subject will come up again. At some point, he might end up with those Adidas.. I'm not sure I haven't priced them at all. I have a STRONG aversion to brand names and logos for clothing, even if I can afford them.

Here's a dancing saucepot embroidery I did for SlyBetty in my Tea Towel Swap on Craftster. Actually, most of my group seems to be doing aprons instead of towels, but the embroidery is the same:
Dancing Saucepot Embroidery

Monday, September 24, 2007

Falling Leaves Quilt

Leaves Quilt

I haven't gotten this wall hanging quilt out of storage yet, but this is a photo I took last fall before I had this blog. I made this quilt a few years ago. I hang it up in the fall until Thanksgiving. I never actually got around to quilting it because I hate that part. One day I will finish it, but for now I don't care because I hang it up. I get a puzzled reaction from some people when I tell them I hang up unfinished quilts, but I think this has lots of oomph even without a backing and stitched up edges.

The pattern was in Quiltmaker Magazine. I did really love making this one. The colors were luscious to work with. I had a link to a place to purchase the pattern, but for now that link isn't working. I used batiks and tone-on-tone fabrics.

I used freezer paper and a blind hem stitch with invisible thread to do the applique leaves. The pattern is really not very difficult. I tested a couple of methods for the applique, but freezer paper was the most successful. You can sew the leaves on with the freezer paper still ironed on to the back of the leaves. Then when you slice each block in half diagonally, you pull out the paper, before sewing it to it's complimentary half.

I remember that when I made it, I had to fill out my fabric stash. I took a long time at the Hobby Lobby fabric counter getting 1/4 yard cuts of the ones that I liked. A weary woman behind me finally asked, "what could you possibly make with such small cuts of fabric?" A quilt!

Pumpkin Wallhanging

This is a Pumpkin Wallhanging quilt I did about 13 years ago with a quilting group I was in. This was the first time I ever used fuseable web. What a revelation! You just trace your shapes onto the web. Iron it to the back of your fabric then cut out your shapes and you have your own iron-ons! I used hand blanket stitch around the raw edges. I now have a machine that does a nice blanket stitch so that's what I would use today.

I think it's time to start Halloween Crafting! I'm thinking about Halloween felt mascots too.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Purse Applique

I made myself a new purse after finally doing a little bit o stash building at my Local Quilt Shop. I love 30's and 40's vintage prints so I had them cut me some fat quarters.
Felt Peach Applique

Here is a progress pic of that purse. It is quite bright. The pattern is in a Japanese book
Purse in Progress

I was going to use red instead of orange on the peach, but it just didn't look right so I switched to orange and it came together. I have actually finished the purse and have been carrying it around, but I do need to take a final photo of it.

Here's what I made with some of the rest of that vintage style stash building fabrics:
2007 09 13 003_edited-1
Tissue paper holders! I even had my 7 year old daughter make one for herself. Hers is with a cute purple fabric. She did a great job, but only wanted the machine to move at a snail's pace. I did the ironing for her...

You can find the free pattern HERE. The only extra thing I did was make them boxy by doing that extra gusset on the edges. Click HERE for a good tutorial on square gussets. The bottoms of my little embroidered pouches also have the same square bottoms.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

More Cute Pouches

Here's some things I've been doing.

I made several pouches from a pattern book I have. ISBN 4277430902. These are adapted from the Little Red Riding Hood I did a few weeks ago.
Spaceship Pouches
Elephant Pouches
Pink Sunshine Pouch

This whale is my favorite:
Whale Pouch

I have a few more pouches ready for the last assembly stitches. I got most of the motifs from my various design books. particularly this one HERE.

More tomorrow. I'm so glad to have my own hard drive back!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Japanese Embroidery books

I have a couple of cute Japanese embroidery books. I purchased these at YesAsia. (I'd link to it, but it's making my computer unhappy, just go to Shopping at YesAsia takes patience because their search engine doesn't navigate the language barrier very well. If you are going to search by ISBN at YesAsia, use the numbers only with no letters. Orders from YesAsia take at least a month to reach the USA, but shipping is free and I find their craft books are often cheaper than ours.

365 Emb Book

This one is super cute and is ISBN 4529042049

Look at the cute little felt clothes and little girl in her undies: ISBN 452904209 EmbClothes

Here's an adorable little tiny ant and a caterpillar: ISBN 452904209 EmbAntISBN 452904209 EmbCaterpillar

This is another book I have, ISBN 4579110129
ISBN 4579110129

This one is far less cute and I got it because "Freehand Embroidery" is not the style I am comfortable doing.

Look at this terrific spiderweb tote. You can't tell in the photo, but that spider is made from seed beads:
ISBN 4579110129 Detail2 You can easily see the beads on this little frog: ISBN 4579110129 Detail1

My children have been in school for 3 weeks now and it really got my crafting going again. I let myself purchase some adorable fat quarters at my LQS and I made some of those tissue holders people do all the time. I even made a bright red purse with a big pear applique from this book, ISBN 4834755371 isbn4834755371Japanese Felt PurseISBN4834755371 detail

Hopefully next week our computer will be repaired and I can show photos of my real finished items.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Little Red Riding Hood

Pink Red Riding Hood Pouch

Red Riding Hood and her pouch are from a new Japanese kid's stuff book that I recently purchased, ISBN 4277430902. I don't normally make too many pouches and purses, but I think I want to start. It is a bit more challenging to follow Japanese instructions in a purse book than the felt mascot books. I think that is mostly because I have no experience with bag construction. For these, you stitch the design on your outer piece, then sew together the lining and the outside in a particular way illustrated in the book. Turn it out and voila! perfect pouch!

I was so excited about these that I made 4 pink Red Riding Hood ones and then went to JoAnns for stash building. I wanted lighter and neutrals that would show my stitching to better effect. I live by one of the little JoAnns and they have a terrible fabric selection, but I do like these, especially the space stuff on top.
Fabric Stash Building

I have actually made about 8 more super cute pouches in a variety of patterns with new little designs on them, but we have to take our home computer to Geek Squad to get our internet up again before I can load pictures into my Flickr account. My photos are trapped inside!

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Felt Fast Food

Felt Fast Foods

I've got lots of things to blog about, but we got a computer virus last week and when my hubby cleaned out the computer, he messed up our internet connection... We are at a bit of an impasse about whose responsibility it is to call tech support. He says I can do it because I'm home all day. I say the one and only thing he is actually able to fix around here is the computer and he should do it. He actually agreed with me about that... At any rate, we both caught monster colds and he keeps putting it off...

I get to use his laptop and the cellular dialup connection he has before he goes to work, so that's what I'm stuck with....

So those little guys above were my angel package in our mascot swap on craftster. They are very tiny, so that's why I did three. Our usual swap requirements are one mascot under 6 inches, an extra, and an introduction card. I can't claim to be fully responsible for their undeniable cuteness. They are from THIS BOOK which I've been using a lot lately.

Check out the swap gallery HERE.
People made really cute things! Felt is so much fun to use.