Monday, June 24, 2019

2019 Stash Bee Blocks

I am once again participating in Stash Bee this year but what's different for me is that I'm no longer running it. I handed it off to 2 very capable women who have things running smoothly. It's a nice change of pace for me. Anyhow, here are a few of the blocks that I've made so far this year for my hive mates:

Even though it was quite the challenge, I love how the Dr. Seuss themed block turned out. For my month I chose a very simple block called Stacked Squares.

Once I receive all the blocks from my hive mates, I'll cut them up and create a quilt like this:

Photo courtesy of My Quilt Infatuation
It was originally a Moda Bakeshop pattern but it really didn't catch my eye until I Saw Kelly's version of it from My Quilt Infatuation. Of course, I have plenty of other projects to work on so this isn't high on the priority list right now.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Bionic Bag Finished!

I'm so pleased with how this project turned out, I can't help but smile every time I see it. Was it a challenge? Absolutely! Toward the end, I thought I might not make it given the fact that I broke 2 needles in 2 days but perseverance won out.

I think my biggest struggle was with some of the pattern instructions being a bit vague. For example, there is a pattern piece that you trace for the sides. It states to cut out 4 but it fails to mention that you need to have 2 going in one direction and then flip the other 2 to go in the other direction. Luckily I figured it out before cutting but that could have been a costly mistake. While the pattern has some good pictures, there are other parts (toward the end of construction) that don't show any photos for clarification. The pattern creator has several video tutorials for this bag but they aren't free and you have to pay to access them which I wasn't overly thrilled about (and refused to purchase).

I'm definitely not afraid of zippers anymore. I quite like how they all turned out but more than once I accidentally pulled the zipper pull off and then had to struggle to get it back on.

When deciding to make a bag like this, I was debating between this pattern and the Sew Together Bag pattern. I ultimately decided on the Bionic bag because it had one more compartment and was a bit bigger. Ya know - more bang for the buck. But in hindsight, I think the Sew Together bag would have been a bit easier because it doesn't have the curved back and the different size zipper pouches. You can also see how the front has a wider opening that lays flat.

I think I might use this one for traveling to carry toiletries. I want to make another one and try my hand at altering this pattern to be more like the Sew Together Bag now that I know what I'm doing. Until I get around to doing that, I look forward to using this in a few weeks when we go on vacation.

Saturday, June 08, 2019

Why is this so hard?

Hello Blogland. Yes, I'm still alive despite my silence. I don't know why but blogging has become so difficult lately. And don't get me started on keeping up with everyone else's blogs. I just don't get it. If there was ever something called blogging mojo, not only did mine go missing but I think it up and moved permanently.

Some of my time has been spent trying to get healthier - eating better, moving more, and I've even started to play tennis again (although with summer being in full swing that's been put on hold because of the extreme heat and humidity). I've still been sewing but it's mostly been little things. My son had a huge project for 3rd grade that required him to wear a costume. He did his project on Alexander Hamilton. I wasn't about to sew a costume from scratch but was able to score a George Washington costume online that was too big so we altered it. The pants were full length but we wanted them to be at the knees so my son sewed the casings for the elastic.


I took care of the remaining alterations for the finished product:

Once that was done, I could focus on some of my own projects, like trying out my very first pantograph. Here it is loaded on my machine.

I can appreciate this type of quilting and how you can create some great motifs but I have to admit that it stressed me out a bit not being able to see the needle while quilting. I'll definitely try it again in the future and if I have a client that requests one, I now know that I can do it, but it's not my first choice. Once I put the binding on this quilt, I'll definitely share the completed project here.

I pieced this spring table runner before Easter but just haven't had the chance to get it quilted. It's on my machine now, it's just a matter of deciding what to quilt on it.

My most recent sewing endeavor is the Bionic Gear Bag from Sew Like a Rockstar. I admit that 3-dimensional sewing other than a basic boxed bag intimidates me so this is definitely outside of my comfort zone. I'm a bit more than halfway done with it though and so far so good. If this comes out well, I think I may be hooked and more bags will follow.

With it being summer break from school, my sewing time is greatly reduced and my days are filled with trips to theme parks, the pool, swim lessons, and summer camps. If I'm lucky and play my cards right, I can usually sneak in a bit of early morning or evening sewing if I'm not too exhausted from the day's events. Hope your summer sewing is going well.

~ Diana