My friend, Amy, shared a little project she had made for her daughter using a mini ironing board from Ikea and I told her I was going to steal it. I finally have. In my quest for finding a Christmas gift for my friend, Cilla, the thought occurred to me that a tiny ironing board would be a great addition beside her sewing machine while she quilts. I wanted to make it special by changing up the cover and adding a cute, sewing-related word as Amy did. Quite a few words ran through my head- iron, stitch, I can take the heat, etc. Then the word press entered my brain and it was all over. You see, Cilla is really a Priscilla and what else would a Priscilla have but a tiny ironing board named "Pressilla"?
Is this cute or what?
Too bad there aren't any clever play-on-words that rhyme with Karin.
In my quest to complete Christmas gifts I never seem to count time correctly. I can look at something small and say, "I can whip this up in no time! Straight seams, tiny amount of fabric- no problem." And then reality sets in. I tend to forget how long it takes me to arrange things out on the design wall. I am hopeless as I stand there scrutinizing every block to make sure that this pattern is not the same as the one beside it or that there is not too much of the same color clumped together. Do you do that?
These two quilts are going to a little girl named Mia in North Carolina. She is the daughter of my sister's friend, Bruce. The little quilt on top is for her dollies and the quilt on the bottom is for her. Just a little something to tuck herself under and take a nap with Yaberdy or Sambeder. I love the names she gives things. They crack me up. She has an imaginary friend named Swetty that travels with her everywhere. It will be a sad day when Swetty leaves the building for the last time.
This pattern, one I designed last spring, is called Off Kilter. It was last night that I finally got the quilting finished and bound it. I had to run it through the shower and toss it in the dryer so I could see how cute it would be all puckered and rumply. I love rumply things. Maybe because I am one.
And this is the dolly quilt. I took a Momma's Apron Strings charm pack and just cut each charm into two pieces, one large and one smaller. I took a small piece and attached it to a larger piece and made the blocks. Then the trouble began. It took me about two hours to get the whole quilt laid out. With help from my daughter, we came up with a square that looked promising. Because I did not have time to sew it right then, I left it on the floor. (The design wall is blocked at the moment with a bed. Don't ask.) A while later my husband walked into the craft room looking for something and, well I'm sure you can guess what happened- he kicked the door stop, which slid across the floor and took all of the blocks with it. At that point I just gathered them together and sewed. I went to the shop yesterday and found the backing and came home and quilted and bound the little thing. And, yes, it had a shower with the big one. :) The quilts are being mailed off today and then......I only have two more to go.
This past Saturday found the classroom at A Scarlet Thread graced with the presence of Pat Wys of the Silver Thimble Quilt Company. Pat was there to introduce the Silver Thimble Quilt Club to a group of very eager women.
Pat was a joy to listen to as she told us about her life and the beginnings of her quilt design company and, eventually, the establishment of what has become a nationwide quilting club.
With keen wit and an uncanny way of reading the minds of the women in attendance, Pat gave us every little detail of what we will experience during each class time. Just imagine five uninterrupted hours, once a month, of learning new techniques, reviewing some of the tried-and-true- methods and building friendships with women who each share a common bond. She even confessed that she had caught "Scarlet Thread Fever" while visiting the shop. What is "Scarlet Thread Fever"? It's using bold, bright, juicy colors for quilts that would traditionally be rendered in either soft muted tones or deep, rich colors. Bold and bright is the future, baby! (But never fear- we can satisfy the needs of those with a more traditional eye.) Here are the quilts that will be offered during the first quarter of the AST Silver Thimble Club:
Each of these quilts is designed by Pat herself and kits will be available to club members only. But, patterns will be available for the general public. We want you to be able to make something beautiful as well!
If you are a customer of AST, you might want to pop in the shop and reserve a membership for yourself, a little 'Merry Christmas to Me!' gift.
This is it! The last completed strip club quilt of the 2009, and it is just beautiful.
Allow me to share it with you-
Wendy suggested making baby quilts from the strips and that is exactly what Sandy did. They are all so beautiful and different. It's like looking at a candy counter. :) You know I love that blue one!
This is Sis's Myopia quilt. How cool is that? The green is amazing! Her husband happened to mention that he wasn't sure that anyone would want a black and white quilt, except at a funeral. Well, maybe the funeral of a quilter!
Lynne finished her Starbright quilt just in time. She has such a good eye for color.
Someone went to Kathy Tetter's beginning quilting class! Look at this adorable baby quilt!
And Starbright! These are her first quilts, people!
A Christmas cutie from our Stack n' Slash class!
And a twist on the Transitions quilt. You girls are so good. :)
Do I hear a gasp? I'm sure I do! I never tire if seeing what quilts are being made, strip club or not. They are beautiful and as unique as each woman that makes them. But, most of all, you can see all the love that goes into creating each one, stitch by stitch by stitch.
Here's our little Christmas tree, adorned with the tiny spool ornaments and colorful little tomato pin cushions. The pin cushions were easy to make with a circle of fabric drawn up and stuffed and topped with a little cap of a felted green wool sweater. This time of year is perfect for finding 100% wool sweaters at thrift stores. Once they are washed in hot water and dried in the dryer on high, you can cut them apart and use them for all sorts of projects. My stash is depletingso I think a trip to the Goodwill is in order.
Can you believe that I did not grab a shot of the new quilt? I completely forgot to take one as I was decorating the classroom for our employee Christmas party. So, I will be sure to get one Tuesday when I go back to the shop. You are going to love it!
These are the ornaments I have been making for the little Christmas tree for AST. This tree will decorate the food table for our Christmas strip club. Hmm, somehow those three words don't really go together- Christmas. Strip. Club. Nope.
I simply wrapped embroidery floss around a wooden craft spool, glued the ends down and lightly brushed gel medium onto the floss. Then I generously sprinkled microfine crystal glitter all over the floss. A little piece of baker's twine threaded through a button, a snowflake, through the spool and through another button finished them off. (I did glue the buttons down.) Easy-peasy! How cute would these be on gift packages for all of your quilting friends? I love them. :)
Hope came with her friend Peggy, to share helpful hints, new products and, most importantly, her beautiful designs with our friends. You could actually feel the excitement build as women poured out of cars in the parking lot! It was like watching little girls lining the stairway waiting for Santa Claus. Really.
The girls at the shop prepared bags with corresponding number "paddles" so, when a product was available for purchase, all the women had to do was raise their number and the girls would place it in that bag. Such an easy way of making sure that everyone was happy! The hot product of the day was Hope's new Button~Ups! fabric covered button machine. Oh, my- the possibilities for extreme fun with this machine are endless!
How cute is this key chain? Everyone received one as a gift.
And this lovely gal is modeling the cutest hairband. It makes me wish I had a tiny head. ;)
Hope's talents are many and her designs are absolutely stunning. I really had no idea that you could make so many things with an embroidery machine. I must live in a hole. My eyes were certainly opened to this amazing and beautiful world that Hope has created.
Hope and Karen Taylor, owner of AST.
Thank you, Hope.
You filled our shop with joy and beauty and
inspired each woman who shared the day with you.
Please visit Hope's website to see her beautiful designs for yourself.
Last Monday we had someone special come to the shop. I was there. I took pictures. But the next day... I worked. All day. And the next day.... my sister and her family came. And the next day.... was Thanksgiving. And the next day.... We went shopping. (What were we thinking?) And the next day.... We went to a museum. And that night.... I had to make this for my niece for her school's silent auction. For next Friday. And this day.... I am driving my sister halfway home where we will meet her husband and they will drive away. And I will have a three and a half hour drive home in peace and quiet, all by myself. So, all I have to say now is: Stay tuned 'til tomorrow.
I've had a few questions as to how I made the garland on the Christmas tree in the shop. It was oh-so easy-peasy to do. You know me, I love a simple project that does not require intense concentration.
To make this garland, I used the leftover strips that result from cutting 2 1/2" strips on the AccuCut machine. The strips are anywhere from 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch in width. I leave all edges raw, which adds to the casual feel of this garland. The strips are the width of the fabric which makes for a nice long piece of garland from each set. You can always purchase new fabric to make this project, but I think digging through your scrap bin would make a much cuter garland.
To make the garland:
Take one strip and lay another on top of it being sure to have enough of an overlap to prevent the strips from coming apart from fraying. Repeat on a second set of strips. Choose one of your wider strips to be your center strip. Sew one strip set on either side of the center strip. Wow, I wonder how many times I can type strip in this post? To attach the strip sets together, simply overlap the end of one set and the beginning of another and run two rows of stitching top ti bottom to secure. Do not panic if your strips are not the same width- it's part of the charm of this garland. Besides, you can always pinch the joins into a branch and no one will ever see them.
Sew together as many strip sets as you think you will need to encircle your tree. I made 15 sets and it was just enough for our tall, slender tree.
That's all there is to it! If you make your own scrappy garland, let us know, send a picture and we'll post it here. (Or on Flickr, if I can ever figure it out. Being technologically challenged proves to be problematic sometimes.)
That is the word to describe what was shown at strip club this morning! Beginning with the lovely Sandy and her Myopia quilt done with melon as her strong accent color. Oh, my! The photo does it no justice at all. It is beautiful.
This is Lynne's quilt from last month- Southern Comfort. And.....
Her Myopia quilt done in yellow! Oh. My. Gosh. She combined her black and
white strips with a bold yellow and her border is from the Taxi line. Yum.
Rats, I forget this girl's name. :( I'll get it and post it here.
But, she shared this amazing quilt that contains 1400 triangles. 1400, people!
Carol finished her queen-sized Cactus Wreath quilt just in time for Christmas.
Seriously, this is one of my favorite patterns we have done.
Miss Mary, of the ever popular Miss Mary's Charm School shared this Ladyfingers
quilt made with the new, delightful Panache line, done with perfection.
Ack! How did this get in here? This would be my Myopia quilt, done with aqua and red accents. Karen insisted that someone take my camera and take a picture of me. Really. The nice thing about writing this blog is that I get to control what content goes in it. That, and a little photo-editing magic, and all you see is that tiny portion of me- my hand. Bwahahahaha!
The other Karen shared her tiny tissue package covers that she made. They are adorable and would make the sweetest gifts for teachers, bus drivers, the mailman, etc.
She said they only take a few minutes to make, so you could give them to everyone you know.
And now for next month's adventure- Starbright. Sheri Curtis did a wonderful job on this quilt.
(Sorry for the tilted picture. What was I thinking?)
I can actually wrap my head around these stars. They are simple, simple to assemble from four square blocks that combine to make them. And who doesn't like reproduction feedsack fabric? This one is going to be fun. :) Stay tuned..................
Goodness, where does time go? I've been busy helping Karen at the shop lately and I am having the best time. There is nothing like doing something you love. I am one happy camper. I am also working on this quilt:
Tomorrow is strip club and I cannot wait to see what everyone has done. Oh, my! This quilt is dizzying! I just put mine up on the design wall and I am not touching it except to take it down to sew together. I could be there for years trying to make something that is not supposed to be perfect, perfect. It will be what it will be!
Tune in tomorrow and you will see the results of our Scarlet Stripper's handiwork!
Are you bored yet? I hope not! This is a little wreath made from strips of Merry and Bright from last Christmas. I love this fabric!
I used a 10-inch foam wreath from the dollar store and wrapped it in sections with different colors. Then I stitched together three strips, leaving raw edges exposed and gathered them with a running stitch. A little twist, a little stitching and, I have to admit, a little glue and voila!, a flower. A contrasting button finishes them off perfectly. Stitching two strips together in the same manner, I made leaves that were then tucked here and there into my rag flower bouquet.
Here they are close up. It's bright, cheery and a sweet little adornment for your wall, door or your friend's house!
Ah, yes, another basket of strippy scraps that the girls at the shop saved for me. I love these little strips and the challenge that they pose. Every time I pull some from the basket, I wonder what they will become.
This time, the strips were sewn together, raw edges exposed, into a lovely rainbow fabric.
After the fabric was made, I went to my kitchen shelves and pulled bowls of various sizes. tracing the bowls, I made a tidy stack of circles. I laid out the circles onto a base fabric and, when I achieved a pleasing arrangement, I appliqued them down using a blanket stitch on my sewing machine.
A little echo quilting (not my string suit) and then the fun begins.
I can't show you the finished project just yet as it has a looong way to go. But when it's done, you will the first to see it. Promise.