Monday, June 28, 2010

Upcycled Fabric Totes and Fabric Scraps

I don't like to waste anything and I have a little bucket I put all my fabric scraps into. I keep even very small squares to decorate other projects. That is how I decorated these bookmarks is little scraps. The fabrics are so cute now that I love to keep little snippets around for the color and pattern inspiration.


I have a latte brown colored couch set so I wanted to accent with reds this summer. I used little larger patches and sewed them on randomly to the top before I sewed the back on.



I went to yard sales a few weekends ago and found some hand painted canvas drapes. Such nice heavy fabric and a great painting job, I thought they would make great totes. I decided to upcycle the fabric into very big totes and line them with bright, bright fabrics with matching handles. I like the way they turned out.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Halloween Witch Fabric and More Pumpkins


Shopping for Halloween and holiday theme fabrics I had to have these funny black cats and whimsical witch fabrics. They are great with lots of squiggle lines and black color variations. I haven't decided what I want to make yet, I don't want to cut the fabric yet - maybe just one small section of the cats and hang it on my fridge so I see them all the time - they really make me happy.

I have a special affection for pumpkins so I wanted to get some of them together in one post, maybe I will get them out early in my house this summer.


I think it might be their shape and the huge size they can get and that they have great odd shapes, bulges here and there, unique lines and always varying orange shades.


Small sugar baby pumpkins too. I love carving pumpkins on a warm October day. The slimy - stringy texture of the inside and picking out the seeds to roast later with a little salt - full of vitamins. I had a co-worker once who grew pumpkins and made a pie with one of them. I've not tried that - I stick with Sara Lee or Marie Callenders - have you made a pumpkin pie from scratch?


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Pumpkin Cross Stitch Table Runner Tutorial

I decided to make a table runner for Halloween using my black pumpkin cross stitch pattern (available in my Etsy Store :). I made some quilt blocks out of coordinating fabrics to form the runner. I made a nine patch quilt block out of 2" blocks and a strip quilt block out of 1 1/2" strips. I trimmed them to the same size then cut the cross stitch design to the same size.

Cut three other pieces of Halloween theme fabrics to go with the quilt blocks and the design.


Sew them together using a 1/4" seam placing the design second from the left. Press the seams to one side and press from the front so the fabrics relaxed without puckers and folds.



Cut two long pieces for the top and bottom measuring 2" wide and the same length as the main piece. Sew them on with a 1/4" seam.


Cut another two pieces for the top and bottom 2 1/2" wide and the same length and sew them on using a 1/4" seam. Cut two pieces the 2 1/2" wide and the same length for each side and sew on using a 1/4" seam. It is good to press after sewing each seam to set the stitches and so the piece lays flat and the fabrics are relaxed.



Next cut a piece of batting to fit the front and pin in several places to secure. I used a variegated thread in coordinating colors for the front quilting and a decorative machine stitch. I sewed from the front at each seam for each block - you can see the black stitching from the back.



Close up of the decorative stitching for the quilting on the front. Lightly press from the front.



Cut a backing piece to match the quilted front. Right sides together sew the pieces together using a 3/8" seam and leave an opening for turning along the bottom. Trim seam and corners when finished to remove bulk.



Turn the runner inside out and press lightly lining up the edges. Line up the fabrics where the opening is and pin to secure. Top stitch around the edge. Press again.



It is finished! I hope you like this tutorial, I like to think of new ways to finish needlework and share them with you. I'd love to read any comments you may have.








Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Fabric Flowers, Tomatoes and Picnic Quilt

I've been inspired to use my scraps of fabrics to decorate my house with fabric flowers. These are very fun to make. Very quick and easy. I am going to take a bouquet with me for my next art and craft sale. I think they are cheerful.


My newest embroidery pattern is of cherry tomatoes. These are last year's tomatoes that I sketched then stitched. Makes me anxious for this year's crop.


I remember seeing a picnic quilt and an antique shop in Gardnerville, NV last year. It was small checks in pink and white. It was a thin quilt with no batting that is perfect for carrying to a picnic in the picnic basket since there is no bulk. I made this one with lovely Amy Butler fabrics in blues and other coordinating fabrics. It was a fun and simple project.


Thursday, June 3, 2010

Purple Teapots, Orange Flowers and New Linens

How fun would it be to have a collection of purple teapots? I have a collection of small teapots, those cute little pots that hold enough tea for one. They are all different colors and shapes; one in the shape of a little house that my husband's grandmother gave me. Also, a teapot with little fairies is a favorite too.



I can't tell you why, but I have a big liking for orange flowers this year. Orange anything really. I've bought bright orange flowers, I am painting with orange, and orange floss appears in my needlework more often too.


Weeks Dye Works has lovely hand dyed linens and I just got samples of Gold and Baby's Breath which is a very soft peach color. I also got some more orange shades of floss...

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