Medallion BOM with April’s Border

We’re moving along on the Seattle Modern Quilt Guild’s BOM medallion quilt!

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This month’s border was super simple! Just adding a simple white and green border on each side. I’ve started a little trend and I’ve been adding in a pop of one of the other colors in each border. Can you find my pop in this border!

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In looking at the pictures, I wonder if I should have not used white… hmmmm…. THat would ahve been nice too, just green and green… Oh, well! Instead I added the dark green to the top corner.

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And the light green to the bottom corner. And yep, there’s my pop! A little orange spot.

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I guess next time I could actually iron the quilt top, huh! I’m loving this BOM series! You’re welcome to play along. If you do, I’d love to see it. You can get the April instructions here.

Pikachu!

I’m not much up on the whole Pokemon thing. The kiddo isn’t into that whole thing yet. But…

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One of his buddies up the street is! And she just had a Pokemon birthday party. So of course I needed a birthday present. I know our friend loves stuffies. I know she loves Pokemon and her favorite character is Pikachu. And I’ve been following along with ikat bag‘s Menagerie Stuffie Pattern.

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Have you seen it? I was waiting everyday to see what she would come up with next! Using the same basic pattern she came up with a frog, a dragon, a shark, and my favorite, the squid! And many more! 17 actually. Fantastic! It’s so cool. The pattern is not out yet, but she did participate in Sew Mama Sew’s 6 Weeks of Love for Softies and gave us a sneak peek at the pattern with the Raccoon Pattern.

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So I jumped! Stuffie + Pikachu + Menagerie Raccoon Pattern = AWESOME Birthday Present! The pattern was perfect for my project! It’s so simple!

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I got to use two new materials that I have never used before! The plastic eyes and the stuffing beads. I ordered the beads not long ago to use in the lap desk, but the bag ended up being tiny. These are like little beads of plastic, not the tiny polyfill microbeads that fly around. I was going ot return them, but it cost more ot return them so I figured I’d use them sooner or later. Yep!! Good call!

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The obvious changes from the raccoon are the ears and the tail. I did add heavy interfacing in the ears to help them stay straight. I also deleted the nose and instead hand embroidered it.

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Image via Polygon

I debated adding the open pink mouth.  After I started all the pieces, I was sewing on the cheeks and was about to sew on the open mouth when I saw this picture. Totally inspired the closed mouth. So sweet looking!

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And I moved the stripes from the tail to the back! For the cheeks and the back I used high quality wool felt, instead of a fleece. But for the tail I did use a little bit of brown fleece. It was much easier to pull through the tail than the felt would have been. I think if I made it again, I would add one piece across the back instead of 4 little pieces. You can download the pieces I added here. There are no seam allowances included in my pieces.

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I think it turned out freakin’ adorable! I’m in love with it! And I know the birthday girl was pretty happy with him too! There are such cute critters in the whole Pokemon thing, that  I almost want to try to make a whole series of them! What would you make with her pattern?

The Mini Messenger Bag

I got to test a pattern for Katy of The Littlest Thistle! I’ve seen her make some fun bags so I was excited ot try this one.

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This one is the Mini Messenger Bag. I’ve made messenger bags before, but I was interested in seeing what made her’s different from the others. One is the size. It’s mini! It is exactly the right size for a kiddo, for sure.

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I wanted to make it for my son, but he didn’t want one. At least not until he saw mine…. The picture on the cover is a little girlie and I think he was blinded by the floral fabric. Because when he saw mine in person, even though it’s a little girlie though, he wanted mine! But I said no! And I used it the other day and it’s great!

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The second piece about it that was new to me was the insides! The pattern calls for some fusible interfacing that I had never actually used before. A woven interfacing, which I also learned is fantastic for clothing. And a fusible fleece. I’ve seen this before, but typically skip it since it isn’t in my sewing room… This time I bought it and the two interfacings really do give the bag a big sturdy shape!

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Lastly, for new ot me sewing, I have never done an adjustable strap! It seems like I would have with all the hundreds of purses I’ve made in my time (I used to sell purses…). But no! Super easy!

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I love a purse with an inside pocket! And it has one included in the pattern! Next time I might put one on each side.

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The outside pocket is perfect for my phone! I made it the contrasting color, but in hindsight, I think I’d stick with either the same color or at least not as contrasting because part of the pocket shows under the flap. which I didn’t realize in the process!

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And its’ a great size for a stuffie! I couldn’t resist, since this guy looked so cute in it! I actually didn’t carry Mt. Doodles around in it. I used it for carrying books and I really loved how the strap felt on my shoulder. I have a problem with bags falling off my shoulder, but this one didn’t!

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Now to get your own pattern! You can purchase the pattern here at Katy’s shop. To celebrate the launch of her new pattern she’s offering 25% off ALL the patterns in her shop! Hurry over, the discount is available until April 10th with the code HOPPYEASTER15.

 

 

Technicolor Galaxy BOM

Yep, you read right! I’m doing 2 BOM (block of the month) quilts this year! I’m loving both of them! They are so different, both the medallion quilt and this Technicolor quilt are working from the center out!

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I debated and debated doing this Technicolor Quilt, but in the end, I decided to go for it! The quilt is designed by Alyssa from A Pile ‘o Fabric. It’s called a skill builder quilt in that each month a different quilting technique is used so you can learn new techniques that you might not attempt on your own!

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If you bought the whole kit, fabric included, you’d do the rainbow like in the picture. I didn’t do the rainbow! As much as I love bright colors and have been wanting to do a rainbow quilt, I’m also trying to use my stash!

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Last year I bought a bunch of blue neon fabric after being inspired by my quilting friend Cath’s, of Wombat Quilts, neon pink quilt! The Seattle Modern Quilt Guild did a more traditional block of the month last year that I had planned on using my neon for. But it didn’t happen. So this year, the Technicolor Galaxy is going neon blue!

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The first technique I learned about was starch! I’ve always skipped this step in everything! I’ve actually never ever even owned a can of starch! I’ve used liquid starch to make ghosts for Halloween, but never used it in quilts or sewing projects. It’s amazing! It turns wrinkly fabric into fabric that feels like cardstock! Very weird and cool, all at the same time!

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First we glued the center pieces in place.

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Then we made bias tape applique! Which scared me…. There were a lot of steps. After watching others do these steps, I decided to not do them! All I ended up doing was making the bias tape and glueing it with Elmer’s glue! Another technique I have never used! Glue it down and iron in it place! Easy peasy!!

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Then we quilted! Oh, this is also a quilt as you go quilt! Yeah!

Now onto March’s border! Paper piecing! Right up my alley!!

(and, yes, all these were iphone pics, so please excuse the photo quality!)

SMQG BOM- 3 months in!

As you might have seen, I’ve been playing along with the Seattle Modern Quilt Guild’s 2015 Block of the Month project! I’m loving it!

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This year it’s a medallion quilt with a new border each month. January’s center block can be found here and February’s progress is here. This month yours truly designed the border!

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I made a wonky triangle border. Or flip and stitch border. Whatever you want to call it, I love how it turned out. It’s not the easiest border I’ve ever sewn on… The inset seams were a bit of a bugger until I really figured out that it really was inset seams that were needed! I made it a few ways and took it apart until I got the inset seams lightbulb!! I also heard rumor that starch the triangles will help!

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Our BOM crew is working together to make this a great quilt. Our friend Yeechi has been setting up the tutorials so they look great! You can get the directions here.

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Since I designed this month, mine is obviously done and I am anxiously awaiting next month’s border!!!

A Kitchen Inspired Gift Set

We didn’t know what to get my in-laws for Christmas. My husband wanted me to make placemats. I didn’t think I had time to make placemats…. So I bought a spoon…

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A really cool Spoon! And then I decided to buy some cool napkins at Bed Bath and Beyond to go with the spoon. When I found the awesome napkins, I also found a really cool Seattle neighborhood map cutting board (yes this one is Chicago, but our store actually had Seattle even though it’s not online. Trying not to take that personally…). And then of course, you need placemats to go with everything else!

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So I made placemats! Everyone needs them. I love making them. So why not!

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This one I used one of my favorite patterns, the Mini Trajectory Paper Piece pattern by Simply Cotton! I’ve used it before a few times… Once for a do Good block, I made a placemat for us with it and I used it for my paper piecing tutorial!

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The wonky log cabins is a favorite. No pattern here!

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Another no pattern mat… Just some hexi’s to match the napkins!

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Again, a bit of paper piecing with improv! This pattern is a free pattern from Wombat Quilts, the Star String Paper Pieced Pattern. I did have to scale the pattern down a bit, just like I did with our placemats!

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I do love the circlular stitching. I haven’t attempted it on a large quilt yet, but it looks awesome on the little placemats!

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And for the back, I used some fabric that I had been hoarding…. For the whole project I used fabric from my stash! So that felt really good!

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Don’t they look good together??? I think so!

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I LOVE making placemats! I think it’s the satisfaction of finishing a quilt, but it’s just a tiny quilt! I don’t do many mini quilts because I don’t’ have anywhere to hang them. And they just get rolled up and stashed… But the placemats get used so I feel like I can make them! And they make for a fantastic gift!

Seattle Modern Quilt Guild BOM

Last year I kept saying I was going to play along with the Seattle Modern Quilt Guild block of the month, and I never did. This year I can’t get enough of it!

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You probably remember last month I made the Inside Out Pineapple Block. And then waited patiently for the next months border! I guess since were doing a medallion quilt, BOM stands for Border of the MOnth!

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The new border only makes me more excited about it! I kept with the greens, but added a punch of orange! We have a committee that is making the borders up as we go. The February designer, Yeechi,  did a great job with the border and the instructions! You can always quilt along here!

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Now March is back on me to design! I think I have an idea of what to do!!! I can’t wait to share it! I’m thinking there might be some triangles!

 

A Heart Tree Pillow

Have you decorated for Valentine’s Day? Sitting here writing this, I realized I didn’t really decorate this year! I made a wreath and a ton of kiddo Valentines and my own quilted postcards, which is all WAY more than I usually do for Valentines Day!

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I usually do a little something, but this year I’m in love with the hearts!

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But this year I was just having so much fun with the postcards, that I decided to make a pillow. But I didn’t really want pink for the house. That’s when the whole tree thing hit me!

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So I ran back to West Seattle Fabric Co and picked up some of the wood grain fabric from the Nutmeg line of Dear Stella! And got to work. Even ‘carving’ our family initials into the tree!

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There’s still time to make yours! It’s really super fast! The pattern is available here. And you can just throw together an envelope pillow and boom! I think I’m going to keep this one out all year!

The Kiddos BackPack

Ok, now this one is LONG overdue! This is probably one of my favorite projects from last year that I somehow never shared!

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There’s no tutorial. There’s no pattern. This was a labor of love! I totally made it up as I went along! In hindsight, I wish I had made a pattern as I went. But I didn’t! I knew I could make it. The kiddo was super excited to design his own backpack. So we went for it!

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The flap is the outside of the alien’s ship. And then when you open it, you see the alien driving his ship around in outer space!

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I’m so glad the kiddo likes it! I didn’t have to buy too much to make it. So in that sense, it was cheaper than buying one. But in the amount of time it took to think about it, design it in my head and then put it all together. Um…. I’m glad there are no dollar signs to add up there, because that would put it way over the cost of just buying one! But it was so worth it! And now I know how to make it again!

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I made a zipper top. I added in the flaps when sewing together the outside and lining. Topstitched and then added the zipper.

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The straps are padded and adjustable. And you have to have a hanging hook, of course!

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I also added little triangular pieces at the bottom of the sides for the adjustable strap. I got this detail idea off his last backpack that he said was oto baby for Kindergarten! But adding them to the side seam totally helps the bag lay right on his back!

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Each side has an elastic pocket. These get used for sneaking legos into school…. But they fit a water bottle, if needed!

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Yes, I added a name tag…. You know, just in case it was to get confused with someone else’s backpack… Ha!

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And I added a quilted, velcro pocket on the inside. And I’m not sure this pocket has ever been used… Oh, well! It’s there if we need it!

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As much work as it was, we had such fun putting it together! Dad was in on the alien design as well. It all started on a dog walk and the kiddo came up with a crazy idea. I had to tone ti down a little bit to fit on the back pack! I love how it changes from outer space to inside the spaceship!

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He loves it! His best friend’s mom told me a funny story! Her son wants a new backpack so they were looking. Then her son said, ‘Max’s mom MADE his!’ I don’t think his mom was happy with me! I think she still likes me though!

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Have you ever made a backpack? Maybe if I make another, I’ll make a pattern! I’m hoping this one lasts for next year too, though!

Valentine’s Day Quilted Postcards- a Tutorial

I’m super excited about this project! Our Seattle Modern Quilt Guild is doing a Valentine Postcard swap. When we first heard about it, I decided I was in, but I wasn’t super excited. Then I started making mine and got hooked!!! Obsessed!

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I came home and started looking around online for instructions and sizes so I could make some and mail them. I couldn’t find a tutorial that didn’t include an applique type edge. I wanted a more quilted look….

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The first one I made was this one. I used a bunch of 1 inch squares, but then couldn’t quite get the back to work. It’s also super thick for mailing with all the seams! So as much as I love this one, it’s not what I wanted for a quilted postcard valentine up taking the plunge into the mailbox!

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So I made some more! But this time I made patterns! More paper piecing for me! I couldn’t decide on just one, so the pattern actually has 3 patterns in it! I have the set of patterns in my Craftsy store, for $5.00. But the tutorial is free! So let’s get to it!

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You’ll need a little bit of fabric, a 4×6 piece of batting, a 4×6 piece of cardstock, patterns and I use basting spray. I used mostly scraps, so needless to say, you don’t need much fabric!

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Print and pick your favorite pattern. Each pattern has two outside lines. One for making a 4.5 x 6.5 inch block. The second is larger for making the postcards.

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Paper piece your hearts! If you’re new to paper piecing, my tutorial on that should help! Sew together and then tear off the paper.

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Center the batting on the quilt block. I use basting spray, but you can pin too. Spray the spray on the batting, not on the quilt block. You’ll have a little more than a half inch on each side.

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Quilt the block and the batting together.

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Iron the edges in half and over again.

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Spray baste the cardstock onto the batting.

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Time to do the ‘binding’! Fold the block over the edge of the card stock and start sewing. The corners are a bit tricky. Especially if you have a bunch of seams like I did in my first postcard. So following the pictures, fold, fold, fold and fold one last time. Then continue sewing!

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And you’re done! Ready for mailing!

 

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And just in case, I mailed one to myself, just to check… I did use a regular letter stamp instead of a postcard stamp. One, because I had it and I didn’t have a postcard stamp. And two, I though they might need extra postage since they are thicker than a plain postcard…..

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These are so fun! Pretty quick, too! Now I have to make more. I need some for the swap and now I want to send them on to family!

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Which one is your favorite!

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