Sunday, March 22, 2015

Old Patterns

I was helping my mother-in-law do some cleaning at her house and found a drawer of old patterns.  I picked out a few that I like and are my size.  They aren't anything special or valuable, but they have sentimental value to me, and I might sew them.  If not, maybe my granddaughter will one day.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Knit Tops

I recently made four knit tops and decided to review all of them in one post.

For the first top, I used a Marcy Tilton pattern - Vogue 9057.  I love this pattern.


Here's the front

And the back  

Side view

The print fabric was purchased several years ago at WalMart and this is the second top I've made from it.  It's a poly-blend, but is actually pretty nice.

For the 2nd top, I used this New Look pattern. 

A black & gray lace sweatshirt

I like this top, except I made the neckline too big.  It's too low, especially for a winter time, so I wear a lightweight top underneath it.

Another Vogue 9057

For this one, I used a reversible knit from Joann Fabrics.  It's dots on one side and stripes on the other.  I had planned to use the striped side for the sleeves or maybe the back or even the cuffs,  but I didn't really like the look of it.   It seems like a wasted opportunity, but I just couldn't make it work.  So I only used the stripe for the neckband.  

Last one and my favorite

For this top, I used Butterick 5925

This is the 2nd time I've made this pattern.  I made my usual size medium, but I changed the shape of the neckline and added cuffs to the sleeves.

The print fabric is a beefy cotton blend that I've had for a long time, and don't remember where I bought it.  I love the colors & pattern of the print and it's so soft & comfy.  For contrast, I used a blue ponte for the side inserts, sleeve cuffs and neck binding; and a black/gray slub for the pockets.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Flower Garden Quilt

I saw this pattern in a magazine several years ago and loved it. I also liked the idea of hand piecing a quilt. I've hand quilted quilts, but never hand pieced one.  I enjoyed working on it, but really glad it's finished.  It turned out quite a bit bigger than I planned - closer to king size than queen, which means it will be hard to wash.  I'm almost afraid to use it.  It would be nice to use on a quest bed, more as a display piece.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Simplicity 1543 - Knit Tunic

   My first project for 2015


I used this OOP pattern and made a size medium at the top, going out to large at the hips.  This pattern has a lot of ease and is very loose fitting.  I think I should have made a smaller size.

My daughter-in-law got me this pretty scarf for Christmas and it looks great with this top. 
It was nice that the weather was warm enough to take pictures outside.

Even though the pattern calls for a knit fabric, I don't see any reason it couldn't be make with a woven fabric.  My fabric came from zincksfabric.com/ in Berlin, OH.   It's a textured knit and I paid $3.00 yard for it. 

I added 4 inches to length of this top to turn it into a dress to wear with leggings or tights.

This is a cute top/dress that I think I'll like wearing, but most likely won't make it again. It does have some interesting details.  The sleeves have long "cuffs" that have drawstrings on them.  And the pockets are open on the side.  I like that the hem is a little longer on the sides than the center front.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Quilt for My Sister

I wanted to give my sister a quilt, so I let her look through my tops and this is the one she picked:

This one wasn't quite finished, which was good since it gave her the opportunity to have input on the colors.  She wanted a less traditional look for the quilt, so chose fabrics in grays for the border, the back and the binding.  Truthfully, I wasn't too sure how that would look, but I really love how it turned out!

 I had it quilted with dark gray thread on top and white thread on the bottom. 

This is the back

Friday, December 19, 2014

Another Handbag

I like the blue bag I made recently, but it wasn't exactly what I wanted.  So while I was in the bag making mood, I got to work on another one.  And I'm very happy with how this one turned out.  It's the right size and shape, and I love the colors and all the pockets.

As with the blue one, I used upholstery samples that were given to me by my niece. I used cream colored suede, brown leather and brown tweed.  For the lining,  I used a piece of medium weight brown cotton that was left over from another project.

I started with this pattern, but changed it quite a bit. 

I've used this pattern a lot as I like the general shape and size.   My finished bag is 10-1/2" tall and 12" wide.  The bottom panel is 4-3/4" wide and the side narrows down to 2" wide at the top.  I put a zippered pocket on each size on the outside (1 small and 1 large) and 1 small one on the inside.

I used a plastic jacket zipper for the opening.  I find these work great as they're strong enough, but light-weight and easy to open.  I use split rings as pulls on all the zippers.  These are inexpensive, come in different sizes, easy to grab hold of and they never fall off.


This was one of those rare projects that goes together quick and easy and turns out as great as you hoped.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Christmas Gifts - Fleece Blankets

I generally sew Christmas gifts for my 9 grandchildren.  Usually it's flannel or fleece pj's - they seem to like those.   This year I decided to make fleece blankets.  I made one for each of my grandchildren, plus one for my husband and a small one for myself.  That's 48 yards of fleece!  I'm probably the only crafter that had never made one of these or even owned one.   Instead of the cut & tie method,  I decided to stitch all the way around the edges and then cut the edges into 1-1/2" wide strips. I didn't tie them,  just left them as fringe.  I think the kids will like them and I'm thrilled that I got them finished early! 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Fall/Winter Handbag

I made a bag for the Pattern Review "Handbag" contest.

This was my inspiration:


I used this pattern.  It's a free PDF download.

I wanted a  zippered pocket on the back like this:

I started with the free Kennedy bag pattern from Sew Sweetness. This is a great pattern.  It prints out good and the instructions are very through.   Her bag's finished size is 11 x 14  with a 5 inch bottom.  That was little bigger than I wanted plus I wanted mine to be more of a square shape, so I made mine 10.5 x 12.5 with a 4.5 inch bottom.  Even though I like a fairly large handbag, this is still a little bigger than I like.

I used 7 different upholstery samples.  These came from a local fabric store and were given to me by my niece that works there. When they replace them and toss the old ones, she passes some of them on to me.

For the lining, I used a medium weight brown cotton piece that was left over from another project.

I added feet to the bottom;  used split rings for the zipper pulls; and a magnetic snap for the closure.


I added a large outside zippered pocket on the back


Underneath the flap, I added a 5 x 8 inch lined pocket that I use for my cell phone

There's also an inside zippered pocket.

Feet on the bottom

Side panel