The Pinking Shears Pouch Tutorial at Go To Sew!

As you know I recently made this pouch as a pouch for pinking shears for my latest swap.

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Then the other day I bought a pencil box for my son. As we were walking out of the store, I was struck by a moment of confusion…. Um, why did I just buy that when I could make one, super fast and for the same price (if not less, since this only uses scraps)???? No clue! I just kept on walking….

I call it a pinking shears pouch, but it can be an eyeglass case, a marker pouch, a credit card holder, a cash holder…. Basically anything you want to hold….

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Ready? It’s simple! Go to Go To Sew for the tutorial!

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Goodbye Google Reader, Hello Blog Lovin’ and Feedly

How do you follow blogs? I follow by email… Which really fills up my inbox, for sure. No clue how many blogs I actually follow! But I know most people follow through RSS feed and readers, like Google Reader…

I don’t know why, but readers have always confused me! I can do a lot online and with my blog. But for some reason, it’s just been easier for me to follow by email.

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I’m sure you’ve seen that Google Reader, one of the biggest online readers is going away as of July 1st. But I do hope that if you do follow this blog via Google Reader that you are finding a new reader that you can keep track of my craziness! The two readers that I’ve been seeing the most of lately is Bloglovin’ and Feedly.

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I seem to prefer bloglovin’. To me, who like I said, finds these readers a bit confusing, this one is super easy to set up and get going. When I set up my account, the blogs I do follow in Google were right there.

And then the other one that most people seem to like is Feedly. But to me, it was more confusing…. But to those of you out there up on the whole reader thing, it might be perfectly clear!

Good Luck finding a new reader, but remember to follow me in whichever one you end up with!

There are new buttons to both of these readers in the Follow me section on the right hand side.

 

Thanks again for reading my blog!

What I know about Swaps!

I’ve been doing swaps for about the last year maybe? Since last June. I’m going to tell you what I know about them. But I have to give a warning… They are addictive! So if you start, just beware…

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Pretty LIttle Pouch Swap

I’ve had a lot of questions about the swaps, so I thought I’d tell ya what I know! And if you know more, please add comments below for others to learn from!

All the swaps I do are flickr based. You basically have to use flickr. Let’s step back a minute… How did I learn about them to begin with? I would scan flickr now and then and I kept finding amazing things people had made for this swap or that swap. I had no clue what a swap was, but eventually I put two and two together and realized that a swap is literally a swap! Hello!

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Modernista Homemade Swap

So I started seeing a theme between some of these pieces I like and which swaps these artists were participating in. Most swaps require a good history of swapping. But you have to start somewhere, huh? So I wrote to the group administrators and told them I was interested in playing along, but I had no history…. They took a look at my flickr page and let me in.

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Doll Quilt Swap

Most of the ones I do, you have to be approved to join. And others you have to be invited. Of course, each swap has their own requirements.

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Modern She Made Swap

How they work. All the ones I do are blind swaps. Meaning who you are making something for is not the same person who is making something for you. AND… The person you are making something for doesn’t know you are making something for them! So you can’t ask them directly what they like and what they don’t like!

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Modernista Homemade

If you can’t talk to them, how do you make them something that they are going to like?? You stalk them. Yep. No restraining orders here. The more stalking the better! When you get your partner’s info, it includes their likes and dislikes and all their social media outlets. Like their blog, their pinterest page, their flickr page, and anything else you want to share!

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Modernista Homemade

Now you have your partner. You can start stalking. But there’s another component to the whole swap thing… And that’s the fact that you really need to stay up to date on all the progress pictures being added to the flickr group for the swap. You are asked to comment on as many progress photos as you can. Why would you want to comment on so many pictures? Because you don’t know who your partner is. And your partner, more than likely, is going to post progress pictures with questions. And the more you comment, the more likely your end product is going to be perfect for you! You are answering questions and helping guide your fellow artists in making the perfect gift for you. And you are also letting your partner learn more about your likes and dislikes based on the comments you share!

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Modern She Made Swap

Then you make something cool, mail it off and get a wonderful package in the mail just for you!

Most swaps also send little goodies with the main package. So be sure to know the swaps guidelines on that too! I didn’t realize that at first and almost sent mine out without the extra goodies!

So what swaps do I do? The two main ones that I have loved are the Modernista Homemade Swap and the Modern She Made Swap. I recently joined the Pretty Little Pouch Swap, that was a lot of fun! And I’ve also just started the Doll Quilt Swap and the Fab Little Quilt Swap.

And a few that I like, but haven’t participated in yet are the Fab Little Pincushion Swap and the For the Love of Solids Swap.

If you swap, let us know your favorite swaps, too!
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A Foxy Sewing Machine Cover!

I had a request for a custom sewing machine cover from my friend Jenny at The Southern Institute. And of course, I said yes. I asked if she had any preferences and she mentioned foxes and birds.

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And that’s what she got!

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I love love love this little fox! I had seen this fox bag on Flickr and favorite-ed it right away. It ends up that the fox is from the paper-pieced pattern Lil’ Fox by Artisania. And I bought the pattern! The pattern is for a 8×10 image, which made the fox too big for my project. I ended up printing it at half scale and piecing from that. It’s actually my first paper piecing project, I think. Yeah, it is. So of course I couldn’t make it easy and do it nice and big like the instructions. Instead I decided to work with little tiny pieces of fabric!

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I also changed the eyes a bit. It’s kinda my thing. On almost all of my earlier work (this project isn’t old, but it shows some old ones nad it’s the same designs as my old ones!), I used to show the sweet closed eyes, so I kept with it here.

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I stopped, stepped back and looked before I made it into the machine cover. I honestly love it as a mini quilt as well!

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But a mini quilt wasn’t where I was going, was it???? Nope! My original design idea had the fox next to a forest with a big tealish blue sky, but I wasn’t sure how I wanted to make the forest… The I came across this Birch Forest fabric by Micheal Miller and it all came together! I was at the shop, getting things straight, and saw a piece in the fat quarter pile and it hit me! Perfect!

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And I’m totally in love with this Oh, Deer fabric from Moda. I like for the inside fabric to relate on some level to the outside and I thought this forest theme went quite nicely! I really really want to make something for myself out of this fabric, but not sure what… Any ideas?

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This was the first time I have used different sides! Typically I have left the sides a solid color, but this time I wanted to carry the forest over to the side, but knew it wouldn’t work on both sides. So we ended up with different sides this time!

It took me way to long to actually get this to Jenny, but I finally did and I think she likes it!!

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Modernista Homemade Swap #3

Yep, I did it again… I signed up for three swaps this spring. Why?? I don’t know. I can’t seem to say NO. Luckily there is only one due a month…

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The Modernista Homemade Swap was last month. I almost missed the deadline too…. I even wrote to the Swap Mama this long email about how I couldn’t get it done on time, blah blah blah… I never heard back from here and then saw that the deadline had been changed from Saturday the 30th to today, the 1st!!! Yea!!! So luckily I’m going not to be kicked out of the swap next round…..

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My partner originally had one color scheme, but then moved and changed her color scheme. With the swaps you are supposed to ‘stalk’ your partner, since you can’t talk directly to them. So I checked out her new pinterest page and it was full of pictures of grey, white and teal. And there were also images of art that said things like, ‘Love builds a happy home’ and ‘Love is spoken Here.’

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As soon as I saw the colors and the art picks, I knew exactly what I wanted to do….

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I had been wanting to make this heart since I had seen it around the web time and time again. Now I had the perfect opportunity!

I used the same technique that I used to make my Where I Live postage stamp quilt. I love watching it shrink! Except for those quick moments of fear when you turn it over and the corners don’t line up because you haven’t finished sewing a section. It happens a couple of times. Then I remember that’s the 1/4inch allowance that I haven’t sewn yet… Oh, yeah, and then I’m back on!

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I tried my hand at a little embroidery work. Inspired by the art prints I had seen. It’s not the best, but I think it turned out cute. I was going to make more of one of the saying, but then got nervous that my partner might not like my lack of embroidery skills, so I left it sweet and short!

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For the small second item, I made a pinking shears pouch. It’s a quilted pouch with bound edges.

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Even though the pouch is probably not going to be used in the same room as the pillow, I still made them match. And I used all my teal scraps…. STay tuned for a tutorial on how I did the pouch.

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And I decided to add a little something to the back. As I was cutting the pieces for the front, I had a few extra, so I threw it on the back. And it turns out the back actually holds it own as a design, I think!

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I love how the stitching on the sides makes it look really clean and fresh.

And I received my package! The colors are perfect for our living room. Love the orange, brown and yellows. My swap gift was a lap quilt and some quilted coasters from a.quilter.2. Too cute!

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And now I’m on to my next swap and think I’ve already figured it out! This is going to be a month of quilting for sure. Hopefully I can get a little something else in….

 

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Happy Easter!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter with family and friends! I know we did!

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I had planned a bunch of crafty Easter posts, but that didn’t happen. At all. My poor crafty kid missed out on Easter crafts this year. Recovering from this surgery has taken much longer than I was expecting. I’m doing well and moving around, but my moving around is pretty slow going.

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One of the Easter crafts I had planned was decorating super hero Easter eggs. But the planning fizzled and we ended up with the regular ‘ole dying technique. Then one day I came home and looky who I found in the Easter basket! Spider Man!

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A couple of funnies from our day…

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I don’t know what possessed me to buy Peeps this year. I don’t know if I ever have, actually. I think I was curious to see if my son would like them. He found them in his Easter basket and his first response was, ‘Hey! We can make a garland out of these!’ I love the craftiness in this kid!

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The sun has been shining in Seattle. When the sun starts to shine and temps rise, the city breaks out into thinking it’s summer. Most of us forget that it won’t last for long and the rain will be back, but we enjoy it just the same. So needless to say that since we don’t see it so much, we forget what it does. As in keeping things warm. The chocolate bunny got put away ’til later… in the sun…. Oops!

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OK, obviously you know that super hero’s are a big thing at our house… Well, Look what the Easter bunny brought to Momma! We needed a little girl super power going on here and especially one that has her own invisible jet! I’ve ALWAYS wants an invisible jet. And now I have one! YES!!!! And so what if the box says it’s only for 1 to 4 year olds. hmph!

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We had a lot of good times this weekend. And it ended with an another Easter egg hunt with our good friends (and their crafty mom.. check out the bunny bags she had them make), good food, sun and just enjoying our families! Hope you had the same kind of weekend!