Saturday, June 30, 2012

Free Tutorial Burlap & White Book Mark or Name Tag

Here I go again.  Just thought I would show you a little how to book mark out of burlap and white muslin.  First you will need to go get the piece of burlap you have hiding in a special place so it doesn't make the rest of your fabric smell funny.
Then cut a strip off the end.  It is important that you cut on the grain of the fabric staying between two specific fibers.  If this is tricky for you, try pulling one fiber from the edge.  This will give you a cutting path.  I cut mine two inches wide. I am making a book mark.  If you are making a name tag, you might want it just a tad wider (a nice name tag size is 2.5 X 4.5.)  I then cut 5.5 inches from the strip.  (I will be making more than one so I cut a whole long strip.)  I then cut a piece of iron-on interfacing about 1.5 X 5 inches and ironed that (steamer off) to the burlap.  Very Very Very important - make sure the shiny side is toward the fabric so it doesn't stick to your iron.  That would be bad.  The measurements I use leave about 1/4 inch all around to pull some of the fibers away for a 'fringy' look.  Heehee, I like that word.  I then did what I refer to as doodling with my needle.  I just made a couple little flowers.  I don't use patterns for little things like this, but you could draw a little flower, a cat, write a name, or just any ol' thing you are into.  Next, you will need to get your white muslin. 

Snip and tear from one corner, then from the same corner, snip and tear in the other direction so you end up with a freyed corner.

 I then lay the burlap piece on the white muslin and snipped and tore to make it just slightly larger than the burlap (about another 1/4 inch on all sides.)


Now you will need your wonder under or heat-n-bond which ever double sided adhesive you prefer.  Cut a piece just slightly larger than the interfacing you cut before stitching.  Iron it (shiny side down & no steam) on the burlap piece.  While you are at it, might as well iron the muslin piece.  Peal the paper off and  place the muslin on the burlap making sure it is centered both top to bottom and side to side.
Iron this from the back - you don't want to take a chance either cinging or snagging your embroidery on the front.  Also, the heat travels through muslin better than it does through burlap. 
And "Voila!"  There you have it.  If you are making name tags, simply hot glue a pin back to the back of the tag or use fun, big safety pin to pin them on.  It is almost easier to make several of these at one time and use the little assembly line technique rather than just one.  This one is going to a very nice lady I met in Prosser last weekend. 
Please leave me a comment and let me know what you think.
Hope you are having a fantastic weekend. 

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Visiting Prosser, Washington

I have been right through the town years ago without stopping.  Yesterday, I stopped in Prosser.  I started out with a destination of the Sewing Basket Quilt shop. 
It was like a quilters Easter egg hunt heaven.  In places the fabric was stacked three bolts deep, which makes it a little tough to see what's available.  But, they have tons!  There was a room for batiks and a room of novelty - fabric with popcorn, baseballs, cherries, you name it.  In the main two rooms were various collections and the cutting table of course.  Theeeen, the wonderful owner said, "If you like 20's and 30's repros or holiday fabrics, there is the garage as well."  What more?  I had a stack going so asked if I could leave it there while I went and checked out the garage.  This is no regular garage.  Shelves four bolts high - and someone with a ladder to retrieve those high bolts if I needed a closer look.  I ended up with a stack there as well.  I couldn't believe the selection. 
A couple weeks ago, I went and quilted for a day with my mom and a friend from Baker City.  She was working on a 'cathedrial window' quilt so I was inspired to try my hand at it and found this beautiful collection that I thought would be perfect.
I found the teal-colored fabric first and didn't see the others.  While it was being cut, I went back over to see another piece and saw the others.  After all was said and done, I ended up with this.  Don't worry; they won't all be in the same quilt - eeek. 
I was surprised (and super happy) to find this little heart fabric in the Christmas section.  I have wanted to make a St. Valentine's Day quilt for a long time, but it's difficult to find old-fashionedy Valentine fabric.  Their Valentine collections were much more modern - duh that's what most people probably look for - and then there's me.
The robin's egg blue (sorta) and ivory I just loved. (the picture is a little dark) Then I thought of Kathie at 'Inspired by Vintage Quilts' and thought, "Why don't I just make a small quilt?"  For some reason, I think I have to make a big quilt when I am buying fabric.  I think I get that from my mom.  Her motto is 'Rule of thumb: you have two thumbs, buy at least two yards.'  I'm not quite like that, but I like hand work so I need to think smaller in order to get anything finished.  There is also a B & B at this wonderful quilt shop, very reasonably priced, and able to host 4-10 people.  I might have to gather up a crew.

 Well now, since I traveled all the way to Prosser, I wasn't going to leave just then.  I ventured down town where I found several lovely specialty and antique shops.  Let me just say, "There are some very talented ladies over there."  I found twin vintage crazy-quilt doll quilts to add to my collection.  Both have the same happy backing.  Woohoo, heehee, ladida - me singing a little happy song.
That's all for now.  I need to go reset all the clocks since our power was out during the thunderstorm last night.
Have a fabulous weekend.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Sewing Room Favorite Finds

Yesterday was another wonderful day of finds.  I will have to get them photographed so I can share them with you.  Buuuut, until then, I wanted to share a few of my former finds that seem to have made it into the fun room.  First, of course, are buttons.  Who doesn't love buttons, remember playing with Grandma's jar of buttons, or go hunting for them on a regular basis?
The vase/bowl, I found at the giant yard sale in Portland that I mentioned in my first post.  I love how heavy it is now, much more than when I was packing it around in Portland.  It is heavy in appearance and in weight.  And, yes, that is a quilt stacked on the floor in the background.  I have been working on a wool quilt for the Baker City Quilt Show that is coming up in one month.  More about that later.
See buttons look good both indoors and outdoors and they become more appealing as they age - I think I need to take beauty tips from buttons:)  They are just too fun.

I love to bring the outdoors in - whether it's flowers in the house in the summer or evergreens and pine cones in the winter.  I am hoping to do a post from the yard before long to show some things you can put in your yard/garden to add little elegant and unexpected touches.    Stay tuned for that one.

And this last picture is just a little goody basket that has little odds that I love.  It is in my sewing room as well - moss, feathers and all.  Off to have lunch with Dad - Happy Father's Day, and Smiles to all.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Vintage Doll Quilts

Good Monday morning everybody.  I just wanted to share a little happy place with you.  Now anyone who knows me knows I love the deep rich colors.  When I was choosing colors for various rooms in the house, I was referred to as 'the color-match queen' at the paint store.  I would take in a piece of old fabric, or gadget and have the color replicated for wall paint.  However, and a big however it is, I have one room that would probably be a bit unexpected considering the tone set by the rest of the house.  It has yellow walls, a green slipper chair, a little bit of orange, robin's egg blue, and purple, etc.  In that room, I have a little sampling of my doll quilt collection arranged on one wall. 
Some are older than others, a better quality than others, &/or in better condition than others.  I am a bit of a crazy quilt lover by nature, so I was thrilled to find a 'bright' one to add.  It is far from square and the stitches aren't fantastic, but I love it.  I have actually done a light washing on each of these just to remove any dust, pet hair, or smoke odor that might have been in them.  None of them seemed to have those sorts of problems, but I figured I didn't want to be in the room after hanging them and wonder "hmm, what is that strange smell?"  I didn't try to remove the imperfections.
I figured, whatever Dolly did to achieve those stains, there must be a story, and I want to preserve that story even though I don't know it.  I am not concerned with the real 'value' of these little beauties.  They make me happy just as they are.  I have a few others in better condition, design, and workmanship, but these are the ones that made the wall.  Just thought I would share.  And by all means, if it makes you happy, display it for yourself. 

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Free Autograph Memory Book Tutorial

     I recently made one of these for a friend who is moving back from Hawaii and is on a bit of a road trip.  It turned out rather cute so I thought I would share.  You will need to begin by gathering a few items: small composition notebook (I got these 3 for a dollar at the Dollar Store,) enough fabric to cover one, a coordinating fabric, scissors, a way to measure, a button, and a glue stick. (and a cup of tea or coffee of course.)
Next cut fabric about 3/4 of an inch larger than the opened notebook all the way around.  If you have a one way fabric like I do, be sure to cut it so that the print is right-side up not sideways or upside-down.

Next is a very easy step.  Center the open book on the wrong side of the fabric.  Cut from the edge to the spine of the book at the top and the bottom.

Before you glue - make sure your fabric is right-side up!  Theeenn, glue the outer edge over the edge of the book.  Fold the corners like you are wrapping a present and glue the top and bottom edges over so it looks something like this----->

Now repeat for the back.

Next choose a coordinating color.  It can be a print, but I chose to go with the solid brown.

I had 1/3 of a yard of the brown so I tore off the selvage .  Snip the edge then tear it.

Save the skinny little strip for later - it's a secret right now.

Then measure from the spine over to the middle of the fabric that is folded and glued.  Snip and tear so it will fit just right like this --------->

Now do the same for the top and bottom.  Snipping and tearing - go ahead and get your aggravation out:)  Be sure it fits before you glue it down.


Slather it with glue even about a quarter of an inch onto the fabric, because the other fabric will be covering it.

Then center the fabric and finger press in place.

Here is where the secret little
strip comes into play. Glue the little
thing near the spine inside the back

Then glue the coordinating fabric inside the back cover just as you did for the inside of the front cover.

Now is an extremely fun part.  You get to play with buttons.  BUTTONS!  I love buttons - who doesn't?  Choose one that goes with your book.  The size really doesn't matter - have fun with it.

 Fold the skinny strip into the front cover and stitch the button onto the end.  This is your bookmark - just like in those beautiful old novels. 

Voila! And there you have it.  You could get much more elaborate, or just keep it simple.  I wrote a little message on the first page of the one I gave my friend to make it even more personal. 

 I do hope you enjoyed this little project.  Have a lovely afternoon.