Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Hi. My name's Amber. And I made a bag.

My Open Wide Zippered Pouch is finished. 
I actually finished it - that's the part that blows me away the most I think.


Don't get me wrong.  For most of you reading this, this pouch would be a snap to make.  The tutorial was great and I had lots of moral support :)  But for a girl like me, who doesn't do bags or zippers (have I said that before?) - this was kinda a big deal.  But in the end - it really wasn't that hard.  Imagine that.

I made the large version.  With two little pockets.


And a cute little (fray checked) ribbon pull.


And a cute little mini tab.


Yes, I made a bag
(excuse me, a pouch). 
It feels good.  I want to make lots more. 
And maybe get a little better at this sewing a zipper business.


The wonderful tutorial for this Open Wide Zippered Pouch can be found HERE.  3 different size options are included.

Happy sewing!
~ Amber

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

To-do's

I've been running in 10 different directions lately
and today I am playing hooky from my day job to catch up.
Not a lot (of finished things) to show you
so I thought I'd show you what's on my to-do list.

We're still working on getting new family room furniture.
We've decided on (2) of these sofas


with an ottoman in the middle.  We're still deciding on what chair to get.  My husband really wants a leather recliner (of course ~ what guy doesn't?)  I've only found one that I think is decent but since it costs as much as one of the sofas ~ we're still stewing that one over. 

Here is a little selection of fabric samples I'm playing with for the big pieces: 


Besides furniture shopping I am working on a bag.
This is a big deal, people.  I do not do bags.  Or zippers.
It is half way done and I am hoping to finish it up before it gets forgotten.


All of these cute fabrics were from my stash.
I'll show a finished product soon - I promise.

I just started binding an ancient WIP, yesterday.
I can't wait to show you this quilt when it's finished. 
The quilting on it is aMAZing!


My marmalade quilt and pattern are just about done.  I stayed up till 2:30 this morning writing the instructions.  It's a two-in-one pattern and I am very excited about it.  It's fun, easy, quick and has lots of versatility!  It's Layer Cake friendly too :)


Speaking of Marmalade, I did accomplish one thing the other day.  I canned raspberry jam (fresh picked from my in-laws garden on Monday night).  I stayed up till 12:30 that night but told my hubby I felt pretty awesome for being so domestic.  It set up right away and is super delish on the mini wheat bagels we are loving these days!


Speaking of jam ~ I just realized I haven't had breakfast yet.  Think I'll go get me some. 

Have a great day!
Amber

Monday, September 10, 2012

Finished Spools

I think Camille Roskelley designed the cutest
"Spools" quilt I ever did see.  I fell in love with hers the minute I saw it (here) and knew I just had to make one too.  Since I'm a busy girl I figured I'd try to kill two birds with one stone ~ so I suggested that we do it as a block exchange in my little "Sassy Stitchers" quilt guild (since I'm on the project committee:)  Is that totally selfish of me or what???

It turned out to be a lot of fun though and I couldn't wait to get my blocks back from the other ladies.  That was a month or two ago and finally my quilt is finished and has found it's home.  I had to do a little rearranging but I think I found the perfect spot in my sewing room.


In case some of you want to follow suit, I'll tell you how we organized the swap.  First, each person supplied the other members of the group with a written description and/or a fabric swatch of their color scheme.  They also supplied the others with enough of their background fabric and their spool fabric to make two blocks.  Then we each made two blocks for each person using scraps from our stashes for the "thread" part.  


I made the smaller quilt version and I bound it with the perfect little stripe that I had laying around in my stash (I believe it's from the line Delighted
by The Quilted Fish for Riley Blake).


Jen Ostler in Cedar Hills, UT quilted it for me with my favorite swirl.


  

All in all, I think it turned out to be a cute quilt, a fun group project and I can't wait to see the other ladies quilts.  I'll post pictures soon :)

Happy Quilting!
~ Amber

Monday, September 3, 2012

Sew Red Blog Hop + Block Tutorial!

I am really proud to be participating in the Sew Red Blog Hop.


In case you haven't heard about it yet, it is a blog hop that has been going on since February.  Those of us participating in it are trying to raise more awareness about Heart Disease (which is the leading cause of death among women in the US).  Leah from Burgundy Buttons is the mastermind behind the Hop and she has asked a bunch of bloggers to design a 12" block, share a tutorial for it and then donate two of those blocks to her and the girls over at B.B. so they can put them into a finished quilt that will be auctioned off!  You can click HERE for more details!

So my little creative juices got to flowin' and here's what I came up with:


I kinda like this block because you could put four of them together and make a great little table topper (with lots of blank space in the middle (to showcase some fantastic quilting or applique!)


The fabrics I am using (along with the rest of the Blog Hop contributors) is called Chemistry by Cosmo Cricket.  But of course, this little number would look cute in lots of different color ways.


These instructions make two 12" finished blocks.
P.S. WOF stands for width of fabric (which is approx. 42").
P.S.S. Make sure you have an accurate 1/4" seam allowance.

MATERIALS:
1/2 yard white fabric for background
1/4 yd. red fabric for stripes
(1) 1-1/2" x WOF strip of pink fabric for 9-patch border 

CUTTING:
From the white fabric cut:
(4) 1-1/2" x WOF fabric strips
(2) 6-1/2" x 7-1/2" rectangles
(2) 1-1/2" x 7-1/2" rectangles
(2) 2-1/2" x 6-1/2" rectangles
(2) 1-1/2" x 2-1/2" rectangles

From the red fabric cut:
(4) 1-1/2" x WOF strips

From the pink fabric cut:
(4) 1-1/2" x 3-1/2" rectangles
(4) 1-1/2" x 5-1/2" rectangles

ASSEMBLY:
Sew together two white and one red 1-1/2" x WOF strips
with the red strip in the middle (WRW). 
Carefully press the seams towards the red strip, like "sew":


Cut off the ends to make a straight edge.


Then cut two 1-1/2" rectangles from that WRW section.  These are for the middle row in the 9-patch blocks so you can set these aside for a little while.  We'll get back to these later.


Next, sew on one more red and one more white 1-1/2" x WOF strips to this WRW section to make it a WRWRW section, like sew:


Press the seams towards the dark fabric (carefully - don't stretch!)  
Then cut two 1-1/2" rectangles and two 6-1/2" rectangles as shown below. 
Set these pieces aside.


Now sew together two red and one white 1-1/2" x WOF strips with the white strip in the middle (RWR).  Press seams towards the red fabric. 
Then cut six 1-1/2" rectangles and two 6-1/2" rectangles.

Here's what you should have from those strip sets:


Now let's sew all the pieces together!


To finish the 9-patches, 
sew together two pink, two RWR and one WRW
1-1/2" x 3-1/2" rectangles in this order:


Press.
Then sew the two 1-1/2" x 5-1/2" pink rectangles to each side. 
Press seams towards the pink.   


Sew a 1-1/2" and a 6-1/2" WRWRW strip set unit onto either side of the
9-patch block, like sew:


Finally, make the top and bottom sections (see photo below). 
Press the seams towards the red fabrics
and then sew all three sections together.


Repeat these steps to make your second block.


Piece blocks together any way you'd like :)


Quilt, bind and enjoy!

I hope you liked this tutorial and I do hope you'll stop by the Sew Red Blog to find out more information about Heart Disease and what you can do to help raise awareness.  Thanks for stopping by!

~ Amber