Friday, July 30, 2010

early fiber arts

I am having a friend research the genealogy of my family and my husbands. She took a course at Boston University. I have a box with lots of things kept by my grandmother Ruth Gordon Glavin.

This is an original copy of her parents wedding invitation from 1905!
Here they are with their extended family....

This is a picture of my grandmother and grandfather on the honeymoon cruise!

Included in the things my grandmother kept was a Godey Lady's Book and Magazine dated 1856...it is full of instructions, stories, and artwork.


an example of the gorgeous prints in the book.

Directions to make a sweet little bag to keep your "work" in...
There are even a few pages in color...
there are pages and pages of various stitches and embellishments for clothing, etc. Check out this chatelaine!


These are photos of my paternal grandfathers mother over the years...She had red hair like my two oldest daughters.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Hidden Treasures

I had some time this week to get some fun sewing done so I made my inchie quilt~ I took part in a swap with my quilty friends. You can see all the inchies I received in this blog post.

Hidden Treasures 10"x36"
I used batiks scraps to make it. I didn't put a lot of thought into it I just knew that I wanted to try to find a home for each inchie. I cut a bunch of 2" strips, pieced them and the cut them in 2 1/2 and 1 1/2" strips. I love all the colors~

This one is a favorite made by my friend Kathy
I love all the sequins and the butterfly.

I only used two different fabrics in the binding...I was psyched to find the blue/purple/green batik in my stash, it was perfect.

I laid it out on a bumpy surface so it looks a bit warped in reality it is very square~a goal of every quilter~One of the best part of this is that I can add more inchies to it~




Tuesday, July 20, 2010

the good news is it's done!

I started quilting my self portrait (first attempt at portrait painting with Tsukineko inks in Patt Blairs class in Houston 2009) yesterday (Monday) and finished it today. I was thrilled with how it was turning out until I started quilting the background...It was a flesh colored fabric and I was using a Raspberry Aurifil 50 thread. It looked awful anywhere that I had to double back on my quilting. There were too many spots to take it out and I had already ripped stitches.
I decided to use the inks I used to paint the portrait. I mixed a whole bunch of colors on my journey to hide the stitches. I am not so happy with the results but I learned from it! I finished it today...quilting, facing, crystals! The border fabric is a hand dyed piece from Christine Fries, love it.
I very stupidly tried to add some more lash after it was quilted...I should have left them alone.


the facing came out nice and square...I cut the back piece 1/8" smaller than the front so it was nice and tight when I turned it.
I used two threads on the face both flesh toned. I am still not sure about my BSR for my Bernina, I think I need to bring it in for an update.
The coat was fun, it was really a quilted jacket. the hair was easy and fun to do.
I will attempt to paint faces again, I have a quilt planned but I will be careful how I quilt.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Landscape Plan #1

I finished my landscape quilt! I submitted it to my guilds annual challenge. "escape with me" was the theme. I loved planning this quilt and look forward to making many more. I used Mistyfuse for all of the machine applique. It worked perfectly and it didn't gum up my needle while I was quilting. I bought the Goddess Sheet with my last purchase and I love it, it's always flat and I can see through it - perfect protection for someone who has been known to scorch things!

The pool fabric is from Vicki Welsh 's etsy shop. She makes gorgeous hand dyed fabric. I bought the grass fabric on my first trip to Houston, I don't remember the name of the vendor....

I loved finding the right fabrics for this piece, I had many in my stash and found little gems along the way. I made this tree separately using water soluble stabilizer and added it last. I plan to do more of this in the next one.

I quilted it the old fashioned way (sitting at my machine) and I used my older Bernina 1130.

I added a little water feature to the garden...that is the fun of making this series is being able to design your perfect oasis!

I sketched this plan a few years ago, it's a thrill to see it done!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Another Reversible Murphy Bag

This is a commissioned Murphy Bag for a friends daughter. She is a lovely girl with a sweet smile. It was her birthday present. She came over to pick out the fabric and she did a fabulous job. She liked the idea of a reversible bag and I wanted to make another so I can keep improving on the concept.

It has an adjustable strap so it can be either a shoulder bag or a messenger bag.

I did some free motion machine quilting and added Swarovski crystals. They are permanent and you can machine wash the bag. There are four pockets on the "outside" and four on the " inside".

I used interior magnets this time for easy open and close!


Here is what it looks like after you turn it inside out!

Below is the other side. She did such a nice job selecting fabrics. I only had a small piece of the fabric on the top of the bag. It has been very popular with my clients. It is from 2008 and has been hard to find but I found some online at Sew LA Fabric .





Sunday, July 11, 2010

Tutorial -making bags have a flat bottom

I made this bag using up scraps from other projects. One of my favorite parts of making the bag is selecting the fabrics.

I have been asked how I do the corners in my bags so I thought I would show you here.

After I have sewn the front and back of the bag together I clip the corner. I line the side seam up with the bottom seam making sure that the corner is perfectly lined up at the top. I ensure that the seams are perfect by inserting a pin in through both seams and make any adjustments necessary. This is the most important part of the process.

Once the two seams are lined up I pin it making sure I go through both layers. I use any ruler that has a 45 degree angle. I line the 45 degree angle up with the edge of the bag and the straight line up with the seam and I mark - sometimes I use a pin on each side and sometimes I use a marking pen. For a medium sized bag 13"w x 10h" I will mark the corners about 5" across.

I only do this process one time...I will use this first corner as my measurement to do all the other corners. Once your corner looks like this you are ready to sew!

I sew a line from pin to pin, I know that my line isn't perfect but you will see in the end that isn't important.

I use my finished corner to mark the other corner for the out side and the lining. I do this because I think you get better accuracy and am lazy:)

Here is the finished corner! Pretty neat huh? I never trim the corner until I check to make sure it's straight, etc. (long story too sad to tell here). Once you have checked then go ahead and trim off the corner to a 1/4".

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

bartering again....this time a backpack

I made this backpack for Paige's piano teacher Ann Marie Tremblay...she is a phenomenal teacher and Paige is so lucky to learn from her. We bartered some of Paige's lessons for this backpack. She picked out the fabrics ~ great combination.
There are two exterior side pockets and one large front pocket for convenience.
There are 4 pockets inside. The zipper can open from either side for easy access to your stuff!
This is the front pocket, with crystals of course.

Friday, July 02, 2010

Recycling Family Treasures

I finally found a way to use the cotton doilies my MIL Winnie made. I dyed some of them along with cotton fabrics and today I made a Murphy Bag using one of them. The doilies are beautifully made but were stained from age and use. They took the dyes perfectly.

It's a functional embellishment because it is pockets!
I machine quilted the other side which added another cool texture to the bag.
Here is a close-up of the pockets - I put my camera and some sunglasses to give you an idea of how they look full. I wouldn't recommend putting a pen or your wedding ring in them but they are nice for keys, cell phone, etc.

One more close up of the pockets. I zig-zag stitched the doily to the front so it should stay until the next ice age.