Christmas wishes

As one of my Christmas crafts,  I am making these little “wish holders” .  On one side we stenciled the word “wish”.  I printed the word out several times on card stock in different fonts and then cut it with an exacto knife.  We used these as stencil. Now offsetting the stencil slightly to create this shaded or outlined look was my husband’s imput. He did much of the stencilling and you can see his impeccable eye in how beautiful it looks.

On the reverse side,  I added a “star” pocket, a small pocket with a star stenciled on it.

The pocket is big enough that a note could be added, a piece of chocolate, or a gift card.  They have a holder so they could be hung on the tree or a hook.  The first few of these were somewhat  difficult due to working out my process, but now I am hoping that the rest (and there are quite a few) will go more quickly.  One piece of advice, I would have is to standardize the pieces.  All of the wish panels are different sizes and that causes some hassle. Since they are not interchangeable, I have been measuring the back from the front for each and that is making my process slower. I will probably trim them down to a smaller size to make more of an assembly line (good task for my new intern). In any case, if anyone is interested in making these, let me know and I will put together a tutorial.

By the way, look at my awesome Christmas tablecloth.  This is the extent of my Christmas decorating so far.  The stand-off begins at Thanksgiving to see who will crack first and ask where the tree is.  Last year it was not me who caved.  This gives me enormous pull in how much decorating (and more importantly,  pre-decorating cleaning) I have to do. I know I am taking a risk putting this in my blog, however I know that two people in my household don’t read it at all, and the third only skims it for a mention of his name.  Wish me luck, because that corner of my house really needs a good scrubbing.

ducky quilt update

So, Saturday I decided to work on the ducky quilt.  I haven’t worked on it really since it was the ufo for the month.  I wanted to begin on the background.

I began by sorting through my ender leaders, then went on to pulling fabric out of my scraps. I had the idea of creating a backdrop that is green and blue like plants and the sky.I found a significant number of swatches that worked but weren’t exactly the kind of bright background I wanted.

So I broke open the dye and as you see in the first image at the top of this post, did a little low water immersion.

The results were really close to my intention.  The middle one was originally white.  It must have a significant amount to polyester in it because it just doesn’t pick up the dye like I would like.  The others I really like but there was not nearly enough.  So finally, I had to break down and go to the fabric store.

I’m so excited to start piecing this!

finished apron skirt

Yes! I made this yesterday.  I was particullarly proud because I have been very sick all week with a head cold.  But yesterday, I just barely well enough to make this.  Patti had given me a gift card to the fabric store for Christmas this year and this was one of the fabrics I bought.  I am excited to wear it to church today.

Steve and I also went to the fabric store and bought the fabric for the back of Paul’s quilt.  I especially love the lobster fabric.

These were two fabrics we picked up in the clearance area to make shorts for Steve.  By the way, never go the fabric store with your husband when you are sick.  You will buy three times your budget (even with all of your coupons) and volunteer to make shorts.  This is actually not everything we bought. I shouldn’t complain.  He was willing to drive me there when I was sick and walk around for an hour and even sort through the fabrics I picked out for Paul.  He even knows if there is more than one roll of fabric to pick the one with the least yardage so I can get the end piece at half off. I’m also secretly a little excited to make the shorts.

back of silk quilt


Here it is the back of the silk quilt before I assembled it.  I love the back of unfinished quilts.  All those seams carefully pressed.  As you can see, I never quite get all my seams going the same way.  I like the ant trail of hand stitches that show up on the back. I did crazy quilt foundation piecing on this quilt.   I especially like how unfinished foundation pieced quilts look from the back. It’s like a secret part of the quilt only known the quilter and, if paper pieced, often ripped out before assembly.  In this quilt, I cut up a worn sheet to use as a stabilizer.  The quilt was really worn- to the point of being sheer -so it had almost no effect on the hand. However, together the silk and the sheet became more manageable to sew, less slippery and more likely to match up. 

March Ufo number 1

Judy pulled number one for the March Ufo. My number 1 is the Hawaii quilt.  This quilt is actually bound and complete.  Except that I don’t feel like it is complete.  I feel like it is missing something.  Possibly leaves.  Anyway, I will pull it out and take a look at it.  I bought some green fabric that I think would make nice leaves and I may start just cutting and looking.

this weekend

Plans, big plans.  Sort of.  I hope to get my jacket going again.  Although I may work on that this evening, and then work on the dragon quilt tomorrow.  I’m still not sure.  I’m excited to have my Saturday morning.
I have the jacket to a point where I can almost try it on.  I am getting excited about it. 
I mended a hoodie discarded by e by putting some plaid swatches across the pocket.  Now, he saw it and asked me to do the same with his hoodie.  I told him he could just have it.  I accidentally did something a teenager thinks is cool.  Wow!  Although maybe tomorrow is be crazy middle age woman day at high school.

happy thanksgiving!!

So today is a free day.  I am excited to get going. I have so many plans it is hard to decide what to do first.  I will probably work on the velvet jacket, but also, I plan to clean up my space.  Every boy in this family is asleep in the hay, so I have the place to myself, just me and my mice who are quiet right now too.  Silence is beautiful.
S will be making a wonderful dinner of sushi later, the boys’ favorite.  I will be contributing cream cheese wontons and wonton soup, my Asian especiallity and cocktail weanies.  A strange and wonderful meal.

velvet jacket

Well, I took out the seam and resewed it twice.  Unfortunately, all that ripping and sewing,  left a small blurb on the fabric.  I am afraid the coat will have the face of a worn soldier before I get it done.
I have been cleaning and moving miscellaneous things out to the porch.  I know I will have a big mess in the spring but right now it is necessary for my sanity.

velvet jacket plus little wool purse

I am always surprised at what a little bit of time can give me.  I edge finished the first seam on my velvet jacket.  There is a small tuck in the seam which I tried to fix last night, but I think I will work on again tonight.  I don’t want my first seam to have tuck on it no matter how small.
Also, I sewed a small bag out of a woolen sweater while I watched Paul do his homework.  It came out quite well, but stretchy.  I think I will soak it in some hot water to see if I can felt it down a little more.  Otherwise, I will stabilize it with something else.
I am making some plans to move some of my stuff out of the sewing room to create some room to think.  Since it is winter, I can move it to the porch.  Then I may be able to clear some things out as I see what I really use.

velvet jacket

I finished the first seams on the machine. I hand basted them and outside of a very tiny tuck, it went together very well. However, pressing the seams is not going as well.  It is very difficult to get them nice and flat.  I am experimenting but it is very hard.
I altered some jeans for my older son, and they came together very well.  I also mended a zipper on a hoodie for him.  This also worked well.