Thursday, December 27, 2018

Christmas Gifts 2018

I just barely finished all my Christmas gifts on time this year! The first is my One Monthly Goal project for December, encouraged along by Elm Street Quilts. I successfully completed the stocking for my newest niece, Anna, who was born in August. When did I start the stocking? Ummm... December 13th ish? Raise your hand if you procrastinate too!
She's in Wisconsin and I'm in Florida, so I mailed it off on the 19th. It arrived in time! 

The tricky part about stockings is that it's nice for them to be the same/similar. I chose a style/color palette/fabrics for each family unit and planned ahead, so I had enough, but my challenge is that I wasn't great about taking notes about sizes (I didn't follow a pattern--these are something I developed myself.) So each time a new baby was born, I'd have to ask for measurements. Again. Oops!
The following gifts were all for an out-of-town Christmas gathering that started on December 20th, so in reality I shorted myself four days of sewing time! My husband took the kids to Epcot the previous Sunday so I could sew, and sew I did!

Next up are the duffle bags I sewed for a niece and nephew. Six years ago, I'd made duffels for my two nieces using the Quilted Travel Duffle pattern by Studio Cherie. Then my mom made four--two for my boys, and two for my nephews. This year it was time to make bags for my next niece and nephew. Done! 

Picking out the fabric is always a fun challenge. I want the bag to "grow" with them, so even though my nephew is seven and my niece four, I tried to choose some more "grown-up" prints rather than going too cutesy.

I love the lining on my nephew's bag, but didn't want to use a light background print for the outside--too many opportunities to get dirty! The blue print I did use has drawings of boats, planes, stamps, globes, and more on it. I really like the pop of the orangey-red for the handles and zippers, and the way the lining pulls it all together.

Once I chose the outer bag print for my niece, the coordinates were easy to pick out! I can always find tonal prints to go with a big floral. I love the polka dot pockets. 

My two older nieces (who received the first duffles I made) got sleeping bags for their American Girl dolls. These were quick and easy to make using this tutorial. I bought really poofy batting so they feel like actual sleeping bags. The prints are from Tracey Wirth's Jump, Ride, Spin! collection for Paintbrush Studio Fabrics. 

Don't they look cute all rolled up?

My sleeping bag sewing started with this birthday gift back in the fall, made using the Otter Romp collection. My niece liked it so much that I made one for each of her sisters for Christmas.

Whew! Gift sewing is done for a while...but there's still plenty on my to-do list! 

Friday, December 7, 2018

OMG: And then there were 5...

I am the official stocking maker in my family. I've made...let's count...19 stocking so far! (You can see most of them here.)

My sister had her third baby on August 31st. Plenty of time to make the stocking, right? 
Well, it's December 7th and I feel like I should probably get started. :) 

Here are the stocking for the first four family members: 

My December One Monthly Goal is to make the fifth stocking for my new niece, Anna. Time to get sewing! Wish me luck!

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Spicy Squares Table Runner with Jacquie's Favorites

Last week I shared the quilt I made using the cool colors from Jacquie's Favorites, a specially curated selection of Painter's Palette Solids from Paintbrush Studio. This week it's time for a project featuring the warm colors! 

I don't naturally gravitate toward warm colors, but after making this runner, that may be changing! I love how these bright colors play off each other, creating a bold, saturated look. I call the runner "Spicy Squares."

Here are the colors I used. (See the entire Jacquie's Favorites palette here.) 

Once I had the design in mind, the first thing I did was pair up the colors to create maximum contrast. These blocks are small--just 5" square finished--and I sewed them all in less than an hour. 

The colors needed a little breathing space, so I alternated surrounding them with white and gray strips. For quilting, I did simple wavy lines to create texture. The design didn't need any competition! I chose a neutral gray thread for the quilting; I'd considered yellow but chickened out. I kind of wish I'd tried it! 

After finishing this runner, I really want to make a larger quilt--I love it that much! Maybe I'll do that using the entire palette? That would be fun. 

Find the Spicy Squares table runner tutorial here.

Paintbrush Studio Fabrics is giving away a fat quarter bundle of Jacquie's Favorites (giveaway open through Sunday, December 2nd). Visit them on IG for details on how to enter.

If you missed the Leafy Cool quilt tutorial, find it here