Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Birthday Quilt

I post this with some serious hesitation.  Just know that I'm not really crazy.  I'm going to leave it at that because if I take too long to explain myself my baby will wake up, and this post will never get done.

So right after I had my baby and while I was high on painkillers in the hospital, I thought about a stack of Anna Maria Horner Innocent Crush fabric I had sitting in my sewing room.  I have full yards of 7 different fabrics, and it was kind of eating away at me that it was going to be months most likely until I could get to it.  Then I realized that my husband was going to be taking my two oldest kids to his folks house for a long weekend, and that I would have my mom around to help me with my new born baby.

An idea was born in my brain.  What if I asked my mom, as a birthday present to me (my birthday was July 5th), if she would help me make a birthday quilt for myself while we had just Henry to take care of.  Of course she said yes, and when I say help, I mean she held Henry if I needed her to while I sew.

Sew, I found the perfect quilt design that for some reason I thought would be super easy.  Let me just testify to anyone out there reading this that "easy" and "quilting" should never be used in the same sentence.  I mean it wasn't a difficult pattern, but quilting takes time and it requires repetitive steps and sewing which gets very tedious after a while.  Anything that takes so much time should not be called easy!

However, I will also testify that quilting is always worth it.  I mean just look at my version of the New Wave Quilt.  It's gorgeous if I do say so myself.

My own secret or hot tip when sewing this is I did a little stack n' wack on the trapezoids that you have to cut.  I first cut my fabric into 6 inch by 9 inch rectangles, and then using my rotary cutter and ruler I angled my ruler and made the necessary cuts that Oh, Fransson! says you to make when creating the template.  Sorry if that makes no sense.  I wasn't thinking when I made the quilt, and I have no pictures at all of the process.  Leave a  comment if you need a more detailed explanation.  

I even inscribed my Birthday Quilt.  Happy Birthday to me!  (You'll need to read that upside down because of the way I hung my quilt and took the pictures.  Oops!)

The back was a bit trick to design (I just didn't know what to do).  I'm totally in love with the back as much as I am the front.

My only complaint about my quilt is my FMQ isn't totally awesome.  I've done better, but this is a minor issue, and I'm pretty sure I'm the only one that will ever notice any flaws.

Now, readers, I'm going back to maternity leave.  I'm really not sure when I'm returning.  Mothering 3 little ones under the age of 5 is a wee bit exhausting, and most nights I'm turning in right after my kids are asleep.  My sewing nights are a thing of the past for a little bit.  Once we get everyone (mainly Henry) on a decent sleeping schedule, I'm sure you'll hear from me again.  Hopefully it's sooner, rather than later!

Tootles for now!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Made on Maple's Littlest Model

Baby Henry is asleep on the floor beside me as I type this.  His being asleep at all during the day is a miracle. Henry is a sensitive baby, so he requires being held a lot, and if I'll hold him during nap time he can sleep for hours and hours at a time.  If I dare to put him in his cozy bassinet, I'm lucky if he'll sleep an hour.  It's a good thing he's a darling little baby, so I don't mind holding him and I don't mind not getting anything done during the day.  So I'm not sure when you'll see me back here on MOM on a regular basis, but I do have a two posts for you this week.  (Hopefully.)

I thought it would be fun to share some pictures of the items I made Henry before he was born.  I think the favorite thing I made, and the thing I've definitely used the most, are the felt letters and numbers to keep up with the quickly passing days.  I've done a photo shoot almost every day to document his little life.  As a third child, I don't have tons of time during the day to just whip out the camera and snap shots, so with these letters and numbers I at least know Henry's getting one picture a day.

I'm also loving the little onesies I made for him, and he's also worn his Quick Change Trousers a couple of times.  It's been warm here, so he hasn't worn the pants as much, but I made them long, so hopefully he won't grow out of them before the weather changes.

My Simple Baby Quilt has been the perfect thing to lay on the floor when Henry's up from his nap and pleasant.

Annee made me some pacifier clippies, and I've never had a baby that takes a pacifier.  However, little Henry came out with a sucking blister on his finger because he liked sucking his fingers so much in the womb, so he seems to be soothed by a pacifier, and the clippies have definitely come in handy.  Thank you, Annee!

And, last but not least, the Henry Blanket that Annee made for Henry has been a huge hit in this house.  It's light weight, so I can cover him while he's in his swing, or lay it on the floor for him to stretch out on.  Such a simple blanket, but with so much potential.  I love it!

Cross your fingers I get time to do another blog post this week.  I have something really pretty to share.  Now back to my maternity leave.  Henry needs me!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Summer sewing.

I don't know how summer sewing is working out for you, but it's not exactly going according to my "plan" around here.  Often times, I'll think I'm sneaking out to my sewing garage to work on something, and before long, two little ladies have found their way out there as well.  I shouldn't mind.  After all, I'm trying to set an example about creativity around here.  But sometimes, I really want to get something done.  And rarely what I want to get done, and what they think I should make, match up.  Case in point; I think I was going to try to make something cute for the girls for the 4th of July.  Note the red-white-and-blue fabric.  In the end, Cinderella ended up with this really smashing outfit.  And as per usual, once it was done, Ruby was depressed that it was too big on the top (and it kind of was).  I was too frustrated to go pick anything apart, so I just folded the straps over, and sewed right across them.  To be sure, this is not one of my finest moments of sewing, but it illustrates my point.

Yeah, my piping got stuck going the wrong direction.  Again, wasn't going to un-pick anything.  This was supposed to be a quick project!  I thought, to salvage the afternoon, and after appeasing Ruby, that I could still make Ruby something matching to her doll.  But soon enough, Jane found out what was going on in the sewing garage and starting picking out fabric, zippers and trim for her doll dress.  And that's when I just said, "Let's go to the pool".  

Anyway, do you need to make a dress for your little dolls?  It might be essential.  If you do, might I steer you towards this super helpful free pattern, right HERE.  It really was a great, easy pattern.  Had I been in a better mood about the whole thing, I might have been super excited about this project!

Let me also point out, you can just as easily put in velcro instead of the zipper.  Ruby even wondered why I hadn't done that.  She told me all of her other doll clothes had velcro.  I told her since this was homemade, it was supposed to be better than her other clothes.  But I don't think she totally agreed.  

Oh well.  I'm surrendering.  I will sew here and there.  There will be an occasional burst of sewing creativity.  But mostly it's summer time, and I'm mom to four kids, who are home, all day long.  In case you were wondering.  I shouldn't lose sight of that.  

When I found a quiet moment today, I pulled back out my quilt!  It's going to get done.  Today I worked on the backing.  Did you see the dresser I painted?  I purposely painted it to match my quilt.  Every time I walk into my room and see the dresser, I think, "I should finish my quilt".  I keep telling Liz every week my goal is to finish my quilt.  And every week, it doesn't happen.  I'm changing that goal.  Now, the new goal is to finish it by the end of summer.  That's just the pace around here.  

Lastly, I've had some questions about the envelop style diaper clutch.  I don't have a specific tutorial for the clutch going in this direction.  I just used a wipes case as my template to create pattern pieces from.  After that, I mostly used the directions from this tutorial, to help me figure out how to make it.  

If I ever get around to it, I should go ahead and make a tutorial.  I feel like there is no shortage of diaper clutch tutorials out there, but maybe there is a shortage for the clutch going in this direction?  But not before I finish my quilt :)  

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Liz had a baby.

Which gave me the perfect excuse to get back to sewing.  The dresser took up a lot of time and space!  I decide to set a deadline for myself for these little projects.  Or else, I might have still been sewing them when little Henry was turning 1.  Let's just say that summer sewing isn't all that I had dreamed it would be.

I knew he needed a blanket that announced his name.  Since there was so much discussion about it for the whole nine months that Liz was pregnant, when a decision was made, a blanket with his name on it was in order.  It is backed with the softest Moda flannel.  I just couldn't bare to back it in a fuzzy minky given the heat of the summer!

Next, a baby gift was the perfect excuse to buy a fat quarter of Birch's latest organic cotton.  The bike print was irresistible. 

A little shot of my last bit of a favorite ribbon from Korea.  

I was so excited when I saw pictures of baby Henry with a pacifier in his mouth.  I've been wanting to try the MADE tutorial for these pacifier holders.  I've had the suspender clips in the collection for probably a year!

Finally a little diaper clutch in a fat quarter of Nicey Jane.  Another fabric I've been waiting to use.

Of course, no gift to Liz would be complete without a little touch of Anna Maria Horner fabric!  

Thanks for having a baby Liz.  It felt so great to sew again.

Monday, July 11, 2011

A little before and after LOVE:

A while back I bought a dresser on my trip to Virginia.  I could see in it something more than it was, sitting there, outside of the barn, where it was for sale...



After fully sanding it down (with my new power sander!), filling in the hardware holes, priming it with an all purpose primer, and two coats of a Benjamin Moore semi-gloss shade of blue, I was satisfied.  

But I wasn't fully happy until I came upon these Anthropologie knobs.  When I saw them, I knew the dresser would finally look finished!

In the most perfect shade of yellow.  Sigh.  

It was a most satisfying furniture make over.  It was however, more work than I imagined it out to be.  These projects always are.  Will I do it again?  

How could I not?!
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