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typewriter heart pillow

22 Apr

my little niece turned 3 recently, and a couple weeks before her birthday my sis asked me if i could sew a quilted pillow to go in her “big girl room.”  she gave me a sham from the bedding set she had ordered to coordinate with, and set me loose design-wise.  her new bedding was inspired by the balloon dress i made that she seems to be wearing every time i see her lately – it sure does make you feel good to sew a gift that is so well loved, ya know?  i was actually going to sew her another dress until this request came in.  ;)

melody miller typewriter pillow

i decided to make a simple log cabin pillow showcasing some special fabric.  i wanted it to have enough contrast to stand out against the pink/cream balloon bedding my sis had bought (see below) didn’t want it to be too serious – it had to have whimsy!  and i happen to think typewriters typing hearts with gold polka dots is pretty darn whimsical.

melody miller typewriter pillow

my friend Kelly (nope, Kelly says not her - probably Jess but she can’t remember) had given me a fat quarter of this super special Ruby Star Rising typewriter fabric (Melody Miller for Kokka – couldn’t find the typewriters online but Superbuzzy and Miss Matatabi have some Ruby Star Rising left).  it was so generous of her – i’d never owned any of Melody’s fabric but always admired it, and i’m ridiculously excited about cotton + steel, too!

melody miller typewriter pillow

it pained me to do it, but i trimmed off a few inches on each side, then added a 1” border of dear stella confetti sparkle and then a 1.5” border of kona charcoal.

melody miller typewriter pillow

i backed it with more confetti sparkle and a scrap of kokka polka dots from this coat.  i ended up super happy with this fabric combination…it just made me smile when i brought it all together.

melody miller typewriter pillow

the quilting is a diagonal grid 2” apart – consulted Jess for quilting advice and whether to add the second boarder, sometimes I have trouble with quilting vision and she has it in spades.  it’s hard to show in photos but i love how the darker border splits up the polka dots and makes the front look like it’s floating in a frame.

melody miller typewriter pillow

i also made a little raw edged heart pillow with scraps from Em’s hide-and-seek dress.  it’s got a little Liberty pocket for secret treasures (or maybe baby teeth, when it’s time for her to lose some!).  Em stuffed it for me!

melody miller typewriter pillow

i felt like it needed a special (wonkily) hand stitched touch, so i stitched around the bottom right typewriter heart with embroidery thread.  the pillow closes with an invisible zipper and there’s a down pillow inside (from IKEA).

melody miller typewriter pillow

the little gal seemed to be a fan and it went really well in her room!  these photos were actually taken in Em’s new room (she switched with the boys before C’s birth but i can’t do a proper tour for ya until i sew her some curtains, sorry).

quilted pillows are such a fun gift to give!

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confused geese pillow

24 Jan

sometimes, you just gotta make a pillow.

confused geese pillow

my sister had a birthday a few months back, and due to some last minute party rescheduling, i couldn’t make her something like i’d originally planned.  as time went by, i felt worse and worse that i HADN’T made her something…so finally i got down to business and sewed this pillow for her.  i’ve been big on crossing things off my “to do” list lately (probably a nesting thing) so it felt great to get this done and finally gifted.

confused geese pillow

she had mentioned she needed more throw pillows in her living room, so i made the colors neutral to go with her existing white/cream/wood tone scheme.  the flying geese are essex yarn dyed linen in leather (i got it at Bolt, you can find it here), and the background is a creamy bella solid that i also got at Bolt.  you’ve seen it before as the bodice of Em’s Christmas Dress this year.

confused geese pillow

i used my friend Cherie’s awesome confused geese pillow tutorial to make the pillow.  i went with the larger size (18″ x 18”).  once i finished the piecing, i quilted it to a slightly larger scrap of batting, trimmed it, cut an 18” x 18” back, added a zipper, stuffed it, and done!

confused geese pillow

the insert is the IKEA FJÄDRAR, which is a pretty great price for a feather pillow and my favorite to use for these types of projects.  it’s good to make the outer cover a bit smaller than the pillow insert (the insert in this case is 20” x 20”) so it lays nice and tight and keeps a puffy pillow shape.  18” x 18” may be a bit smaller than i’d normally go for a quilted pillow outer, but it still looked good once i carefully zipped it up.

confused geese pillow

i’m happy with how it turned out, and my sis put it on her couch immediately, so it was well-received.  i think quilted pillow covers are a great “i feel like making a quilt but i can’t commit to all that time/fabric/effort” type project.  you still get to experience the fix of piecing and quilting, but they can be made in a day.  perfect to practice on, and especially fun to give as gifts!

* * *

P.S. get ready – a new film petit is coming on monday!!!   it’s also the first day of Kid’s Clothes Week but we figure we’ll sneak it in before KCW really gets going.  trust me, it’s inconceivably good.  ;)

P.P.S.  teepee print from this awesome shop.

ed emberley alligator quilt

18 Nov

i snagged a couple naptime hours this weekend to clean up my utter disaster of a sewing room…and in the process, i got inspired to do some stashbusting and a project i’d delayed for far too long – a cozy quilt for O!

ed emberley alligator quilt

the little guy doesn’t realize it, but i’ve felt bad for a long time because i’ve never made him a blankie of his own.  i made his sister a quilt, and multiple cozy flannel/minky blankies for snuggling/school, but none for him.

it’s not like he’s blanket-deprived – he was gifted a number of handmade and store bought blankets at baby showers and has actually adopted my baby quilt as his own…just none made by ME.  and i believe that there’s nothing more special a mother can make than a cozy blanket for her kids.  you’re literally wrapping your little one up in love!

ed emberley alligator quilt

it was when his unborn baby brother was gifted a beautiful CINO quilt that the guilt really started to set in.  O needed a home sewn quilt!  NOW!

ed emberley alligator quilt

i had gotten this Ed Emberley for Cloud 9 alligator print at Bolt last year with the intention of using it for a blanket for him…

ed emberley alligator quilt

…and same plan with the super soft light blue minky on the back.

ed emberley alligator quilt

it’s hard to see in photos, but i did irregular sawtooth quilting on the alligator print and straight horizontal lines across the solid color blocked top and bottom rows.  it looks like alligator teeth in person!  there is no batting, but due to the minky it still has a nice weight to it.

ed emberley alligator quilt

the top and bottom rows (scraps cut 8” high to extend this directional print a bit for more coverage) are a mix of Kona and Moda Bella solids from my stash in colors that pull from the print.  the quilt measures 35” x 50” which covers him very nicely.

ed emberley alligator quilt

the binding is Amy Butler’s full moon polka dots in tangerine (still available here)!  think i may have gotten that at Bolt too.  ;)  it’s finished by zigzag stitch, both for speed and to mimic the sawtooth quilting / alligator teeth motif.

ed emberley alligator quilt

love how the colors look when they all drape together, it feels bright and happy but still boyish.

i showed the in-progress quilt to O when he woke up from his nap, only partly quilted, and he was very excited about it, rubbing the minky side on his cheek, etc.  i promised him i’d finish it when he was asleep that night, and i did.  i laid it on him while he slept and when he came to our room in morning, he had wrapped himself up in it!  he proceeded to “Linus around” with it for a good part of the day.  GREAT SUCCESS.

does fall make you want to quilt too?  i feel like the knitting and quilting bugs hit me hard when the weather gets cold (still haven’t picked up the needles yet this year, though)!

** i have emailed Lara, the winner of a Gingercake pattern.  thank you to all who entered the giveaway! **

camp quilt for the husband

2 Jul

i tried to buy something for my husband for father’s day, i really did!  i went to our favorite home / random cool stuff store, schoolhouse electric, with the full intention of getting him something there.  problem is, that place is a bit spendy, and everything i wanted to get was out of budget.  what happened next is what usually happens – i get inspired, and decide to make something instead.  so i went home and knocked out this quilt mostly during naptime (with some sneaky finishing touches the next day).

camp quilt

the vibe they have at schoolhouse is sort of a arts & crafts era meets midcentury modern meets industrial meets summer camp, which is what i tried to recreate in my quilt.  the reason i made a quilt for him is he tends to fall asleep on the couch most evenings…and he’s a taller guy, so i thought he needed something to keep his feet cozy as well as his shoulders, ya know?  it’s always a bit frustrating to watch a person try to cover themselves with a too-small-of-blanket.

camp quilt

i’d also wanted to make a quilt that looks like a pendleton national park blanket for a while (still plan to eventually make a quilt for O that looks like the crater lake blanket), and decided this was my chance to practice.  it was really tough picking “manly” fabrics from my stash, but i stuck to mostly linen and it worked out.

camp quilt

the quilt measures 43″ x 66″ finished – sort of random, but that’s what i had, fabric-wise.  the fabrics are a navy linen (from JoAnn i think), red canvas from Bolt (most famously used on little red), natural linen (from fabric depot), with essex linen yarn dyed black center panel.  it’s a strip quilt, which came together really quickly.  i omitted batting, both because i didn’t have enough on hand, and because i wanted it more summer blanket-weight.  the backing is Denyse Schmidt for JoAnn from last year.

camp quilt

the binding is two packages of store-bought double fold bias tape (sent to me by Cherie, thanks girl!) and the non-matchingness of it gives it that extra “summer camp” element i was looking for, plus takes it away from flag territory a bit.

camp quilt

i quilted it with mustard thread on both sides of each stripe, and zigzagged the binding to finish it.

camp quilt

the center of the quilt also has a quilted concentric diamond shape which doesn’t really show up in photos (or real life for that matter) but it subliminally ties in with the backing.

camp quilt

my husband seems to really like his quilt/blanket and uses it almost every day, and when i surveyed him for his favorite project of mine for Sanae’s blog, he said this!  i don’t sew for him much, but i really should do it more often.  look how happy his two fingers are there, peeking out from the side!  ;)

camp quilt

GREAT SUCCESS.

single feather pillow

21 Feb

Em’s school has its annual auction coming up, and while i have been mostly flying under the radar as far as my sewing knowledge goes (no requests to make the class quilt, phew!), i did decide to make something to donate to the silent auction (and earn fundraising credit) –  a feather pillow!

single feather pillow

the block pattern is from Anna Maria Horner’s feather bed quilt, and if it looks familiar, it’s because i already made one for Caila around Christmastime.  i had even saved a couple extra feather halves for this purpose.  this time, i went with just a single feather against yarn dyed black essex for a bolder statement.

single feather pillow

i quilted it with some red/blue/purple variegated thread (never used that before, kinda fun) and i hope it’s not too crazy looking for the school auction attendees because i want them to bid it up – you know, for the kids!  it closes with a zipper.

single feather pillow

the back is leaves and berries from hello pilgrim by lizzy house.  i only got a fat quarter but need more – it’s so pretty.

single feather pillow

i can’t remember how big the pillow is, sorry – sort of a lumbar size i guess?  i wanted to keep it – maybe if it doesn’t get many bids at the auction i’ll just buy it back.  ;)

oh so here’s a confession – i rarely, like almost never, buy fabric online.  i’m spoiled to have four awesome fabric stores within about 20 minutes of my house that each serve a different purpose depending on what i need, PLUS a JoAnn, PLUS a little shop near work just in case i need a thread run on my lunch break.  i love being able to touch and see my fabric before buying it and have built good relationships with the gals at Bolt, especially.  but this local convenience does pose a bit of a problem with blogging, since none of the stores I shop at have much of a web shop presence (my first lovely fabric sponsor, Britex Fabrics, has amazing fashion fabrics online but not much in the way of quilting cottons, which i sew with often).

enter my newest sponsor, Pink Castle Fabrics.

pink castle fabrics

i reached out to them because i wanted a place to link to when i’m posting my projects so non-locals have a place to actually buy the fabric if you like it.  i browsed a few online shops before contacting Pink Castle.  i love their general shop aesthetic, and they stock almost all of my favorite designers, so i knew pretty quickly that they’d be a great fit.  want to go drool over some fabric/add to your stash?  here are my favorite lines that Pink Castle has in stock right now:

Lizzy House – Constellations

Carolyn Friedlander – Architextures

Rashida Coleman-Hale – Tsuru

Anyan – Cotorienne

Essex Yarn Dyed Linen

plus so much more!!  Brenda, the owner, has a really great eye.  Pink Castle is in the process of opening a storefront (in Michigan), which is very cool too.  oh and have you heard of Camp Stitchalot?  how fun does THAT look?!  anyway, i’m so happy to have them as a sponsor and i hope you’ll check them out.

now to pick out an outfit for the auction (it’s a “through the decades” theme and her class is assigned to the ’90s which i guess means the husband and i are supposed to dress like that for the event.  doc martens and plaid shirts?  not the fanciest decade ever…).

PS – film petit is coming!  

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