Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Sunday, August 26, 2012
The Things I Didn't Buy And The Thing I Did
Yesterday was a thrift shopping day and I came upon a goldmine of crazy. Someone's collection of ceramic figurines, all of them elderly. In addition to this shelf full, there were about 20 more scattered throughout the store. I couldn't bring myself to buy them. I just felt like I had to have them all or none of them and, while my husband really appreciates many of the horrifying ceramic things I bring home, he wouldn't if I spent $60 to $80 on one haul.
Then I went to my local grocery store and happened upon this:
For sale for $18.95 and totally ironically cool. Which was hugely disappointing because I already own this:
Bought for a buck at a yard sale, under the impression that it wasn't supposed to be ironically cool. I don't know how I feel about it any more.
But I am thrilled with this purchase. It's the door to an old PO box. I bought it at the post office. The woman behind the counter gave me a quick lesson on how to pick the lock, too - which was priceless.
Friday, August 24, 2012
No Brilliant Reason.
I made a book! One of my mail art groups wants to have a journal swap so I made a journal. It's full of mistakes but I'm good with it. I learned a ton. It was so fun to do; I see more journal making in my future.
I used Coptic Stitch Binding (I'm sure that doesn't need to be capitalized but it somehow seemed appropriate). I learned about it in How To Make Books by Esther K. Smith. I used a cereal box for the covers and embroidery thread for the binding.
It also gets two pictures because it's an awesome technique. It was the first time I tried it and it's a little loosey goosey.
What's that you say? Didn't I just buy a binding machine? Why am I binding this by hand?
I got nothing. No brilliant reason. Leave me alone!
Sorry. I know you're just looking out for me.
I used paper bags to make the pages. I used this technique to make them look cool. I also added some envelopes as pages. The idea of the swap is that everybody adds to the journal and then passes it on, so I wanted to make different options for people.
One of the cool things about this binding is that the book lies flat and I hope that will make it easier for people to add their art work. It's a long term project but I will post some pictures of it here when I get it back.
Monday, August 20, 2012
A Bunch of Different, Totally Random Stuff.
At first she's cute
but as she comes towards you, you see that
SHE"S SCREAMING AND SHE'LL NEVER STOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I haven't been on the computer much lately but here's a bunch of different, totally random stuff...
Finished the Darkside Cowl
Here it is in action
Phrenology head was feeling pensive...
Splurged on a Tom Bihn bag. It's pretty cool but I can't help thinking...it's just a purse.
This is what my thought process looks like..apparently...because that pile just sits there while I think about it
This is the time of year when I garden. I have a black thumb and don't like to buy plants until they're on sale since I'm going to kill them anyway.
Also, because I don't have enough collections, I bought yet another glass insulator thing. Isn't it cool?
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
|Check out my awesome yarn bowl. My sister in law got it for me for my birthday. I love it.|
I've been partaking in some transitional crafting. The last time I finished a big project I felt down for little while. So, this time I decided that knitting would be the perfect in between thing to do. It's doesn't take a ton of concentration - especially when using someone else's pattern - and it's fun to do. And it worked. I'm making the Darkside Cowl out of Noro Retro that I impulsively bought at a Sow's Ear knit night. Phew - lots of name dropping there. It's a very fun knit and I'm sure it'll get lots of wear.
On to destruction:
That's right. I took the unfinished half of a baby quilt that I had left over and unquilted it. I was never in love with it and I realized why the other night. It's the colors.
They are great for a baby quilt but these denim blocks don't really want to be a colorful baby quilt. They're too regular and tidy (relatively, for me).
They want a neutral color thread. Can you hear them asking? I can. I will need to remove the border and separate at least some of the squares but I think it's for the best.
In unrelated news, one of my chickens laid her first egg. :)
Tuesday, August 14, 2012
Invisible Stitch Mini-Tute
Here I'm holding the mitered corner in a death grip so I can make sure it lines up in a nice and tidy way. I've sewn the corners of the binding where I want them as I hand sew this side of the binding to the quilt. Then I'll tuck the extra fabric into the corner and tack it shut with a stitch. I wish I'd taken a picture of that. I'll get it next time I make a quilt.
I took some pictures so I could post a quick little tutorial on how to hand sew a quilt binding on, using an invisible stitch. It always seems like magic to me.
The binding fabric is folded under just a bit. I've machine sewn the binding onto the other side of the quilt so there is a line of stitching on this side that I need to hide under the binding fabric. I also try to make sure it looks even across the quilt edge but other than those two things, I'm not very careful
I put the needle into the flannel and follow along the line of the binding, right up close to it, for just under about a half and inch. I pull it out and...
then put the needle into the binding right next to where it came out of the flannel and make just under a half inch or so long stitch in the binding - always pulling the thread nice and snug. I pull the needle out and ...
do it again on the flannel side. That way the thread is hidden under the fabric and the stitch is invisible.
I just keep moving along that way all along the binding. It's always surprising to me how fast it moves along.
Monday, August 13, 2012
Mitered Corner Mini-Tute
The first place I saw this technique was in Bend the Rules Sewing by Amy Karol. This is the book that got me sewing again after over a decade; I love it. I'm sure there are better tutorials than mine all over the interwebs. But I thought (since I took copious pictures of the project) I'd share this tute anyway.
Quilt corners look hard but they really aren't.
Here we go: Machine sewing the quilt binding to the quilt. When I got almost to the corner - say, about a half and inch to a quarter of an inch away I stopped, lifted the need out of the fabric and ...
pulled the whole quilt otter there. I took the rest of the binding fabric and
folded it straight up at a ninety degree angle...
Then, I folded it straight down. The fabric should be right on top of the quilt, hugging the edges.
Then I turned the quilt so the edge I was about to sew was lined up.
Then put the foot in about a half to a quarter of an inch down and sewed along to the next corner, where I did the same thing again. I think I clipped the thread but I really didn't have to. When I hand sewed up the other side of the quilt, I tidied up the corners. Picture of that coming up om my next gratuitous mini tute...stayed tuned!
Saturday, August 11, 2012
Washed and finished.
My least favorite parts: The orientation of the stripes is not what I originally intended so it just seems wrong to me. But, maybe, if you weren't inside my head, it would look fine.
And, while I really actually like the edging from a distance; up close, it doesn't really get along with the colorful stitching.
Here are some gratuitous macro shots...just because...
Friday, August 10, 2012
This quilt has been a tough one for me. I know. That's sounds silly to me, too. But I just never got my typical quilt mojo going with this one.
But, even mojo free, This one needed finishing. I picked the edging material out of my stash. Not perfect but my original thought was using the same material as the backing and that looked terrible.
With that decision made, I had to plan my CHOPPING IT IN HALF approach. Scary.
So, the plan was only just coming together in my head when I started cutting.
I started by trimming the excess backing and batting which needs doing every time anyway.
Folding it in half and.......
CUTTING IT!! AHHHHH. No return and a final plan hadn't been hatched yet.
But that's OK. I think I had to get to this point to visualize what might work. I added a border strip a little ways up on the quilt
That way, after I ironed it down, it would overlap enough to have some batting behind it.
Pretty smart, right? I didn't want the edge of the quilt to not be soft and stuffy. Please excuse the excess pictures. I took 59 shots of this process.
I was nervous and I guess it gave me a solid distraction.
It was still a little too wide for the amount of backing so I trimmed the border all around
The next step is easy peasy. I machine sewed the border onto one side, I hand sewed the other side on but I think I'll save that for another post because this one has gone on long enough.
I do still have the other half of the blanket to play with. I can add more quilting if I choose or do something else. It has no deadline.
And there's still this giant pile of squares to play with...