Friday, September 24, 2010

Miss Maven Ruffled Handbag

Can I even tell you how much I love Amy Butler's latest book Style Stitches?

A LOT! A book full of fabulous bags? Yes please!

And after no less than 12 hours of hard labor, I'd like to introduce you to the Miss Maven Ruffled Handbag.

I used Amy's Full Moon Dots print and a Midwest Modern print and I love the combo. So pretty!

The inside of the bag has a false bottom for extra stability. Nice detail! I deviated from the pattern on the pockets and made my own to suit my needs.

I have to tell you, this was THE.MOST.DIFFICULT. bag I've ever made. The pattern is listed on the "Experienced" level and they aren't kidding! When I first read through the directions I didn't think that any one step sounded too hard and I dove right in. But I must have overestimated my skill level because this sucker gave me run for my money! I had broken thread drama making those ruffles, and don't even get me started on making and attaching those adorable handles! I can't even tell you how many times I pinned and re-pinned and stuck my fingers. But then it was done and it was so worth it!

I'm really grateful for the deadline of the Amy Butler Sew & Tell Challenge to keep me going, because I might have given up otherwise! My bag is far from perfect but I feel really good about working through such a difficult pattern.

After making this crazy hard bag I need some serious quilting therapy. My next task is quilting a baby quilt for a friend, and believe me, that's EXACTLY what I need!

Happy sewing!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Sometimes you win!

Like many of you, I enter TONS of blog giveaways but never really expect to win.

Imagine my surprise when I won this fabulous mini quilt from Kristina Wilberg of Sew Domestic!

I had seen this mini on Kristina's blog back in May, so I was thrilled when I saw that she was giving it away! As part of the giveaway Kristina also promised to send some scraps. I was expecting, well, scraps, but instead this is what she sent . . .

Wow, thanks Kristina! Now I have plenty of fabric to make something fun and girly!

Be sure to visit Kristina's blog to ooh and ahh over her adorable new baby girl (born last Friday!) and stop by her Etsy shop Quilted Treasures for fun fat quarter bundles and other goodies.

Happy sewing!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Are you ready . . .

for Amy Butler Sew & Tell day this Friday? I'm on my way!

The husband (who spoils me!) talked me into buying this FABULOUS book last week and there are SO many great bags I'd like to make!

The Cosmo Bag, Style Stitches

Origami Bags, Style Stitches

Blossom Handbag, Style Stitches

Miss Maven Ruffled Handbag, Style Stitches

Seriously, you have to check out this book next time you're at the book store. So.many.awesome.bags. Sigh . . . :-)

For the Amy Butler Sew & Tell challenge I've decided on the Miss Maven handbag - in Amy Butler fabric of course! It's such a cute bag and totally unlike anything else I've made or own. Lauren took a crazy long nap today (3 1/2 hours . . . unheard of!) and I spent the entire time cutting out fabric and interfacing. Phew! Am I rediculously slow or what? I thought I'd start sewing after she went to bed tonight, but I have to admit that after that marathon cutting session I needed a break for the night.

Are you joining in the Amy Butler sewing challenge? I can't wait to see what everyone makes!

Happy sewing,

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Neptune Destash

I've been lucky to have fairly easy access to Tula Pink's Neptune line over the last year at my LQS (local quilt shop, if you're wondering!) It seems that the average Myrtle Beach quilter is not nearly as obsessed with this line as my online blog friends and Flickr friends are! Neptune is pretty much impossible to find online these days.

Anyway, I haven't been able to figure out what I want to make with my small stash, so I think it's time to let it go . . .

7 Fat Quarters (still available)

One half yard of SS Pink in Coral SOLD!

Two "Deep Sea" prints SOLD!

You can find these goodies in the shop!

Happy sewing,

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Doll Quilt Swap - Received!

Look at what Jessica made for me!

| Front |

| Back (in gorgeous Tanya Whelan Fabric from the Dolce collection!) |

| Pretty hand-quilted bird detail on front |

| And the same detail on the back |

| Plus some extras . . . additional fabric from the quilt back AND a hand made card! |

Thanks so much Jessica! This is hanging in my sewing room where I can see it every day!

Happy sewing,

Saturday, September 11, 2010

{Aqua & Tangerine} Tiny Log Cabins

I decided I wanted to play around with tiny log cabin blocks the other day. I had so much fun I made five. Four became coasters -

I'm disappointed with the skipped stitches in my quilting, but I was using a size 9 needle and maybe it just wasn't up to the task. I later switched to a size 14 and didn't seem to have any more trouble.

I love the backs of these coasters too!

The fifth log cabin became an easy pincushion. I experimented with the triple stitch on my machine for the quilting on this one.

I just love these colors!

AND, I just have to share that I used basting spray for the first time ever on these little log cabins and I'm IN LOVE. Sooo nice to not mess with pin basting on such a tiny "quilt sandwich." I used 505 Basting Spray from my LQS, but I'd like to find something cheaper. The 505 spray was $13 - yikes! Not sure I'd be willing to use it on a larger quilt at that price.

I definitely see more tiny log cabins in my future . . . too much fun, and perfect for scraps!

Happy sewing!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

First day of preschool!

Lauren's first day of preschool

Lauren had her first day of preschool yesterday. She was so excited! I think we managed to get all of the obligatory "first day" photos.

Lauren & Me - first day of preschool!

Mr. PinSewPress is even going to make an appearance here . . .

Lauren and Mr. PinSewPress - first day of preschool!

I love my girl!


I think she's going to have a great school year.

Happy sewing!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Pleated Handbag

Three cheers for another bag!  I had this one all cut out when I made my first one a couple months ago, and I'm just now getting around to finishing it.  It sure is nice to pick up a project when everything's already cut out!

I love this bag pattern by I Think Sew.  There are so many fabric combinations I want to try!  I like this one because it can be used for daytime or evening.

You can find this one in the shop.  Up next: clutches?  zip pouches?  perhaps some Stay-Put Kitchen Towels?  So much to sew, so little time!

Lauren starts preschool tomorrow (three mornings a week) and I have high hopes for a very productive fall, sewing-wise.  When do you get your sewing done?  I sometimes sew while Lauren is awake, but that can be challenging to say the least!  Most of my sewing is done during naptime and after she goes to bed.  I sure don't watch much TV anymore!

Happy sewing!

Monday, September 6, 2010

A new bag and a new venture

I gave in and splurged on a little Far Far Away 2 recently.  I'm proud of myself for not hoarding it - within two days I dove right in and started cutting it up!

I love this color combo for an early fall bag, and I'm loving this Bracelet Bag pattern by Keyka Lou too! It was fun learning how to make those cute circular handles, and I finally understand what the sewing term "facing" is all about.  Aha!

The exterior fabric is Roses in Dusk and the interior fabric is Moon and Stars in Tangerine.  I also have to mention that I love this lightweight cotton canvas.  It's so perfect for bag making and so easy to work with.

Aaaaannnndddd . . . after dragging my feet for at least the past six months, I have finally opened an Etsy shop!  Let's just call this a soft opening, since my only item listed is this Bracelet Bag.  More to come soon!

If you want to visit my teeny tiny shop, click here.

Happy sewing!

Friday, September 3, 2010

At last . . . a finished "Man Quilt!"

Last January, I set out to make my husband a quilt.  A manly quilt.

He said it couldn't be done.  (The manly part, that is.)  But if there's one thing you can say about this quilt, it's definitely not girly!  I fear I may have gone overboard with all that Kona Black, buy hey, it's manly!  The rest of the fabric is Authentic by Sweetwater, which is such a great, unique line!

The back is mostly the "Dictionary" word print with a strip of patchwork at the top to make it a little more interesting.

I especially love the Authentic number print for my number-crunching husband who's getting his MBA in Accounting.

I really like this green stripe for the binding.  At first I was bummed that I didn't cut the stripes horizontally, but now I kind of like them running vertically.  (And yes, I machine stitched the binding to the back of the quilt.  Don't judge - this is a BIG quilt!  For me, at least.)

Here it is resting on our couch, where it will spend most of it's time!  I'm not crazy about my quilting (concentric diamonds) or thread choice (off-white.)  I wish I was comfortable with free-motion quilting, because I've heard that's easier to do on large quilts.  I was also really stumped on what thread color to choose.  Maybe I should have used a variegated thread?  Oh well, my husband likes it and that's what matters most!

The Man Quilt measures 70" x 80" and is by far my largest yet!  It took over my entire breakfast nook while I was basting it.  In this picture I'm standing where the kitchen table should be.  We squished it into the family room so that we could have dinner with my parents.  Yep, this is what it's like to live with a quilter!

All in all, this my least favorite quilt so far.  It's a little too bold and geometic and it was big and heavy and awkward to work with.  However, it's DONE and that is a very good feeling indeed.  And now Mr. PinSewPress doesn't have to steal my quilt that's way too small for him anyway :-)

I'm linking up to Amylouwho's Sew & Tell Friday.  Be sure to check out all the other great finishes!

Happy sewing!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Tissue Box Cover for Amy

As a part of my swap with Amy I made her this reversible tissue box cover for her newly remodeled bathroom.  You can see pictures of their gorgeous new bathroom here.

I used the Pink Penguin Reversible Tissue Box Cover tutorial for the overall construction and Beki Lambert's applique design from Stitch Magazine for the design on the front.

Below is the back of the tissue box cover.  This simple strip of patchwork is intended to mimic the strip of green tile on Amy's bathroom wall.

And this is the reverse side.  I decided to make this one pretty simple since the other side is so busy!  I used my favorite grey Flora and Fauna print and appliqued an "F" in Kona Coal on the front for Amy's last initial.

Amy and I also swapped scraps, but of course I forgot to take a picture of the scraps I sent.  Oh well!  Hopefully Amy will enjoy all of her new modern scraps too!

Happy sewing,
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