Friday, September 28, 2012

By Hand

I have been working on this ship for the past few weeks and I have really enjoyed it. I usually have a project on the sewing machine going and some sort of project by hand going at the same time, it keeps me balanced. This ship is on a canvas tote bag, I have debated maybe lining it with something but I haven't decided yet. What are your thoughts? 

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Birds and the Bees

 I gave you a teaser last week so I figured I should make good on my promise. I finished up this quilt the other week and I LOVE it! The fabric is Tula Pink's "Birds and the Bees" which I got from Pink Chalk Fabrics. I also have a quilt top done using her "Nightshade" line that needs to be quilted but is on the back burner for now until I finish up a few other things. 

I used Monica Solorio-Snow's pattern called "Taking Turns" out of the Spring 2012 issue of Quilts and More from Better Homes and Gardens. Which was a great pattern, perfect for beginners or someone wanting a quick quilt. I picked that pattern because I thought it was prefect for showing off some of the bigger prints used in this line of fabric.

Wouldn't you agree? I couldn't bear the thought of chopping up those dear little squirrels or those lovely trees! 

Anyways, I did some straight line quilting on this one, as I always do. I need to learn free motion quilting but I am sure I will get around to it one of these days!

Regardless, I am very happy with this quilt and have already snuggled up with it while watching Voyager with my Hubby! Isn't that what quilts are for? 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Bringing a little color to the laundry room

Like many people my age, I live in an apartment. I was thinking about it the other day and I have lived in either an apartment or a dorm for the past 8 years. The last time I lived in a house was my parent's house which feels like yesterday.

Anyways, living in an apartment or small home you run into some space issues. I have a love hate relationship with this, it forces you to get rid of things you don't need or keep from buying things you don't need but it makes it hard to store things you do need. 

One thing I always wanted in an apartment is space in my "laundry room" (really closet instead of room) for a trash can. So, being the genius that I am, I came up with one, I hung a plastic grocery bag on a clothes hanger from my hanging rack. I don't have a picture of this but I think you can get a mental image, it was tacky. I did that for a while then I broke down a few weeks ago and made something a bit prettier. 

 I started with a simple bag, about the size of a grocery bag, with boxed corners. I lined it, made some small button holes and used drapery hooks I had lying around to attach them to my shelf.

Here is a close up of my button hole with the drapery hook. 

I ended up making a smaller one too for my lingerie bags and small bottle of spot remover. I think they look great, and they took me maybe 30 minutes start to finish. I have a feeling I may be making some more for other areas of the house that need some storage. 

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Noah's ark quilt

A little secret to making a quick little baby quilt, or a quick quilt all together is doing what is known as a whole cloth quilt. There is no patchwork involved, no blocks to sew up, just a simple quilt sandwich to quilt and bind. It is best to use fabric that is interesting or in this case use a printed panel. 

Panels are sold on the bolt, and priced by the panel. Usually they will be part of a set with corresponding fabrics or they will include everything you need on the panel itself. Some printed panels will have kits on them for making various things such as aprons, tote bags, Christmas stockings, etc. Those panels are great for beginner sewers as are the printed panels with just a scene.

   This fun panel had a cute, modern Noah's ark scene, perfect for either a boy or a girl. I backed it with muslin and bound it with a great aqua gingham. 

I sold this quilt to some great friends in Nashville and I think it found a pretty good home.

Monday, September 24, 2012

A few things.....and the moon.

My Hubby and I were busy this weekend. We got a twitter account up for me, you can follow me @saykayquilts. 

We also got my Etsy store up and running, there is a link to it in a tab up at the top.

We also spent a bit of time working on his gaming stuff, you can check it out at Metatronix Gaming on youtube.  

As well as all of that we decided it would be nice to buy the moon, so we did.

Happy Monday everyone! 

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Star in the making!

For those of you who don't know, my husband is a game commentator on youtube and I did a duel commentary with him for his latest video.

Watch below and give it a like!

Friday, September 21, 2012

New Header and a sneak peak!

I am so blessed to have the husband I have. He made me the new header and I am thrilled with it! I sat next to him telling him what I pictured and he did it better than what I wanted! Needless to say I am very thankful for him.

I thought I would keep it short and sweet today so this quilt is just a little sneak peak of what will come next week.

Have a good weekend everyone!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Denim Rag Quilt

I had been thinking about making a rag quilt for a while now, just something simple and fun, a little different from my normal projects. So I sewed up this little guy. 

I had several pairs of old jeans saved up so this was the perfect project for them. I simply cut 6.5" squares out of denim and flannel, placed them on top of each other with right sides out,  sewed an X through the squares, then I sewed my squares together using a 1/2" seam allowance and sewed a 1/2" line around the quilt. After the quilt was put together I cut into the seams a bit so it would fray then ran it through the washer and dryer.

I loved this method of rag quilting because using flannel and denim keeps you from having to use any batting. Perfect for a child or to take with you to any fall football games. 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Bird Ornaments

 While I was making my Bird wall hanging I thought it would be fun to make some little bird ornaments. 

 I practiced a bit of what I call "dirty sewing" where you don't really follow the rules or do things "professionally". I knew these were for me, in my house, and I have no plans of washing these things or even having them be heavily used. So with that in mind I just took two birds that face opposite directions, put them on top of each other with a bird shaped piece of scrap paper in between, placed the ribbon on top and zig-zagged around the edge. 

 I like the way they look, a little primitive maybe, but I like that. I then placed them on this metal rack thingy I got from goodwill years ago. I think it is meant for coffee mugs, I bought it thinking I could put jewelry on it or maybe hang my scissors on it. I did hang my scissors on it for a while but I found it just didn't really work that well. 

But my birds look awesome on it so it all worked out in the end.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Some Birds

I am not entirely sure what lead me down the path to make this wall hanging. I wanted a wall hanging for my living room that matched my sorta spice colored decor and this is what happened.

I used scraps for everything except the binding, that was in my stash. I straight stitched the wings on the birds then I zig-zagged the birds onto the muslin squares. I stitched in the ditch to quilt it and added two small button holes at the top so I could hang it.

It was really quick and easy to make, I actually was shocked when I finished so quickly and I think it looks pretty good on my wall.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Kristen's quilt

This quilt really had quite the evolution. I got the idea for the color scheme from the book Sunday Morning Quilts (which my husband saw me eyeing and ordered for me as a surprise). One of the projects in the book is called Splash which is primarily aqua with one orange block all slab pieced together. I loved to color combo and decided to start collecting shades of orange and aqua and as I collected I thought they went nicely with some lime green I already had. 

Once I got my fabrics collected I wasn't too sure if the pattern from the book would really work with what I had. The whole book is really meant for scraps and I had a few half yard cuts. So I went looking for another pattern. I found one in Quilt Magazine from August/September 2011 called In and Out. It was simple and perfect for bright colors and prints. 

As I was working on this quilt my sister Kristen fell in love with it and seeing as how she was the only sister at the time who didn't have a quilt made for her (not counting my sister-in-law which I am working on) I had to give it to her. And it really only made sense because these are her colors for the world.  

I had to add the big lime green border around it to make it a full size for her bed but I think it makes a nice frame for the patchwork. I quilted it with orange thread and bound it with an orange batik. This was also the first quilt I quilted on my new Babylock Jane and it quilted like a dream. It was so easy to fit the full size quilt under the throat of the machine that it felt like I was doing a lap size. 

I had a blast making this quilt, I finished it all in July and it proved to be a super fun summer project. 

Friday, September 14, 2012


Back when I was working at the fabric store in Clarksville,TN the assistant manager gave me these appliqued blocks. She knew I was doing some quilting and thought they would go to a good home, she also said she had a ton more and wanted to get rid of some. 

How did she get so many blocks? Well, a family member of hers was going through chemo and wanted something she could do by hand during that time. So she hand appliqued all these blocks. 

These blocks sat on my shelf for about a year before I did anything with them. I wasn't too sure what colors to go with. I knew I needed some dusty colors but I never saw anything in the store I liked. I would constantly bring those blocks in with me searching for something, anything that would go with them. The style and color scheme were both challenges for me because it's not what I am drawn to. But thankfully I finally found this dusty pink with dots and that amazing grey with a small floral print. The color and style matched perfectly! 

  I simply did some sashing around all my blocks and made a big grey border, anything else would have been overkill. Then to quilt it I just stitched in the ditch for most of it. This quilt is also special because I pieced the top in Nashville and quilted it in Austin. 

I signed the back and gave this quilt to my parents, I think it will be well taken care of with them. 

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Anna's Quilt

My sister Anna graduated college this year so I had to make her a quilt. I made a quilt for one of my other sisters when she graduated high school so it was only fair that I make one for Anna too. I am also on a mission to give everyone in my family a quilt, I have no set time limits on this but I figure eventually everyone will get one. 

Anna wanted black, white, and pink which is a very fun color combo and I thought just a splash of pink here and there would look nice. So I used the same stacked coins pattern I did for my grandmother's quilt just made it bigger, a lot bigger. It is for a full size but it could probably fit a queen, I have a tendency to make quilts a bit bigger because when I am sleeping I always want more covers! 

I hand stitched a little patch that I heat-n-bonded to the back with a note and signature. I usually sign and date most of my quilts, I hope one day when I am long gone someone will find one of my quilts in an attic or thrift store somewhere and know that a Sarah made that. Or if my sister ever goes crazy (she is in education so that is not out of the question) she will at least know I made her this quilt. 

To finish it off I bound it using mostly the pink fabric with a few scraps here and there. It think it provides a really nice pop around the quilt. 

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Elephant Quilt

5 or so years ago I went on a life changing trip to Kenya and absolutely fell in love with African art and culture. Which is why I was pleased as punch to find this elephant piece of cloth at the Nashville cultural festival. The lady I bought it from was Tanzanian and super sweet. It was a bit odd though because it was just an unfinished panel of cloth. I had considered sewing a bit around it and turning it into a wall hanging but I thought it would be used more as a quilt, and if I wanted I could hang the quilt on the wall too. 

 So I added strips the length of the panel to the top and bottom. I wanted a more rustic look so I took some smaller strips and sewed them on top of the patchwork leaving a frayed edge. Then I added two strips to the sides to make it just the right size. 

I love this quilt, it is perfect for a little nap on the couch, reminds me of Africa, and goes very well with my living room. Granted, this is my old living room, I don't have the rug or curtains in the new place, I haven't decided yet if I want them up. 

Happy travels to you all! 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Uncle Sam's Quilt

Historically, I have never been a huge patriot or really into Americana type artwork or decor. I think I just was over blue and red because those were my school colors, milk of magnesia blue and scarlet red. It is that same reasoning that I couldn't stand the music of Aaron Copeland, we did his music my senior year of high school in marching band and I had heard it all 4 years of marching band from other schools, I just didn't want to hear it anymore. (I felt the same about the song "proud to be an american" which was a fan favorite).  

I often wonder if the forced patriotism during my high school years was due to September 11. I was actually on the practice field during marching band in the morning when we heard the news. That same school year, in the spring, our band trip was to Washington D.C. for memorial day. We performed at the Washington monument and then later at a veterans home, all patriotic music, which was fitting. 

Safe to say, when I left high school I needed some time away from it. Sure, I am glad to be living in America, where I am pretty much free. The lifestyle I have chosen I am free to live. I also have the freedom to be enslaved to our country's debt and to my personal debt. I swear to speak the truth in the court of law, to give justice and freedom to those on trial and the government spits out lies to all Americans. So I stick by my statement, I am pretty much free. But I live in hope that one day we might have true freedom here in America.

It is with that hope that I made this quilt. I loosely followed the pattern from the Moda Bake Shop with prints I collected in red white and blue. I tea dyed most of my fabrics to give them an aged look. I gave this quilt to my Grandparents.      

Monday, September 10, 2012

ABC quilt

If there is one single event that inspires crafting it would be the birth of a baby. The months of pregnancy leave plenty of time for crafters to scheme, cut, and create something one of a kind for a one of a kind child. Working at a fabric store this was one of my favorite reasons for our customers to buy fabric. Babies get people all inspired and many times are a driving force for people who don't really craft or haven't made anything in a while. 

Although I love sewing for babies, I do get a little tired of the cutesy pinks and blues. The prints are so limited to the first year or so of babyhood and feel mundane and overdone to me. So I was thrilled when this fabric group rolled on in to the store, and just in time to make a quilt for a new nephew. I fussy cut out the squares and improv- pieced around them to make them all the same size. I then did some simple white sashing around the blocks and bound it all with some yellow. 

I was really pleased with how it turned out, perfect for either a girl or boy (on purpose because the parents didn't find out) and it ended up with a darling little boy! 

Friday, September 7, 2012

Hanging Gardens

My second quilt of 2012 was this "Hanging Gardens" quilt, so named for the fabric line I used which is Hanging Gardens II by M'Liss for Hancock Fabrics. I used to work at Hancock fabrics, which is where most of my fabric stash comes from. I remember the day this came off the truck I absolutely fell in love. I think I bought it either that day or the next. I loved the sorta art deco style it has which is a style I love and of course I love the colors! 

I did a simple staggered brick wall placement. This quilt also only took 2 weeks start to finish. It's about 60x60 square. This quilt has stayed with me, it is my favorite quilt to cuddle up with on the couch. 

All folded up you can see a bit of the fabric close up, I absolutely love it!