Angry Birds with Shaffer Sisters

Welcome back to another fun day of Sew Ready to Play! Today’s guest is another one of my favorite online friends, Al, from the Shaffer Sisters! Al has been awesome to also be a returning Sew Ready to Play guest for a few years now! I always love seeing what she sends over!

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And this year it’s Angry Birds! Come On!! Let’s head over to the Shaffer Sisters blog and learn more about what she did to make these guys! I love it!

 

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Sept 9th- Liz and LiZ  from Simple Simon and Co

Sept 14th- Stacey from Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts

Sept 16th- Narelle from Threadistry

Sept 19th- Debbie from A Quilter’s Table

Sept 21st- Louise from I’m Feelin’ Crafty

Sept 23rd- Al from Shaffer Sisters

Sept 26th- Michelle from Factotum of Arts

Sept 28th- Ashley and Emily from Frances Suzanne

Sept 30th- The Recap!

Zeus on the Loose with Me!

It’s my turn!! Yeah!! Have you ever played Zeus on the Loose?? We love it! It’s basically a counting strategy game. That description doesn’t do much for it, but take my word for it. It’s fun!

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Originally I wanted to make a notebook cover for my son, but my Improv Lightening Bolts kept being too big, so it turned into a pillow! It was really hard to get it as small as I wanted it to be!

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I went through a few plans of projects to make this year. Usually I know exactly what I want to make. Not this year. Then I remembered our new favorite game. But what to make?? At first I got my Greek Gods confused and for a minute I was designing something with a trident… Um, hello, my to ‘I minored in Ancient History’ self…. Zeus and tridents do not go together. Lightening Bolt my friend!!!  Then I was all over it!

I’ll give you a super quick idea of how I made it! Since it’s improv, there are no dimensions or anything to go with! To make the Improv Lightening bolt is simple!

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First, cut out a ‘leaning’ triangle, then sew on a thin layer of the ‘bright light’ fabric and then a thicker layer of the background fabric. So that you end up with two ‘leaning’ triangles. And you want them to both be leaning in the same direction!

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Next, I folded over the top of the triangle to get an overlap. Once I liked where the overlap was, I ironed it flat. This ironed line is where I sew-ed it together.

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And then I trimmed a quarter inch seam. Repeat these last two steps over and over until you have each side of the lightening bolt how you like them. then sew the two halves together!

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Add in the rest of the background fabric for the shape you need for either a notebook cover, a pillow top or quilt blocks…. And quilt away!

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I thought it turned out pretty cool. And once I got my husbands seal of approval, I knew it was pretty cool! (yes, he’s very honest and has no qualms telling the truth about his feelings on my work! Usually he likes it, but not all the time!) I think it’s going to be loved, along with it’s inspiring game!

 

 

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Sept 9th- Liz and LiZ  from Simple Simon and Co

Sept 14th- Stacey from Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts

Sept 16th- Narelle from Threadistry

Sept 19th- Debbie from A Quilter’s Table

Sept 21st- Louise from I’m Feelin’ Crafty

Sept 23rd- Al from Shaffer Sisters

Sept 26th- Michelle from Factotum of Arts

Sept 28th- Ashley and Emily from Frances Suzanne

Sept 30th- The Recap!

 

 

 

Ultimate Frisbee with A Quilters Table

Let’s kick off another week of Sew Ready to Play with my quilty friend, Debbie, from A Quilter’s Table!

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Debbie and I have become great friends over the years participating in Seattle Modern Quilt Guild activities. And just recently we were roommates again at our retreat. I can’t wait to show you more about that weekend. Debbie came to retreat with a bunch of triangles and left with a finished quilt top! She’s speedy! And I’m so glad she decided to play along again this year!

Be sure to go to her blog to learn more about it!

 

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Sept 9th- Liz and LiZ  from Simple Simon and Co

Sept 14th- Stacey from Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts

Sept 16th- Narelle from Threadistry

Sept 19th- Debbie from A Quilter’s Table

Sept 21st- Louise from I’m Feelin’ Crafty

Sept 23rd- Al from Shaffer Sisters

Sept 26th- Michelle from Factotum of Arts

Sept 28th- Ashley and Emily from Frances Suzanne

Sept 30th- The Recap!

Snakes and Ladders with Threadistry

Yeah! Another Day of Sew Ready to Play!

Today we have a long term Sew Ready to Play player! She’s played along every year! Yea! Today is my blogger friend Narelle. She was originally from Cook, Clean Craft, but now blogs over at Threadistry.

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She has a tutorial today for making a Snakes and Ladders game board. I’m used to Chutes and Ladders, so I had to google Snakes and Ladders! All sorts of interesting articles! What did we do before Google?? Sounds like it’s what Milton Bradley based Chutes and Ladders on! Head on over to her blog, Threadistry, to learn more!!!

 

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Sept 9th- Liz and LiZ  from Simple Simon and Co

Sept 14th- Stacey from Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts

Sept 16th- Narelle from Threadistry

Sept 19th- Debbie from A Quilter’s Table

Sept 21st- Louise from I’m Feelin’ Crafty

Sept 23rd- Al from Shaffer Sisters

Sept 26th- Michelle from Factotum of Arts

Sept 28th- Ashley and Emily from Frances Suzanne

Sept 30th- The Recap!

Pokemon Go with Simple Simon and Co

It’s time to really kick off this season of Sew Ready to Play! And to start us off right, our first guests are the ladies behind Simple Simon and Co!

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Simple Simon and Co have a lovely blog chock full of fun inspiration! They are the ones behind the Skirting the Issue series I participated in earlier this year. The series collects skirts for foster kids. But not only skirts, blankets too!

Head on over to their blog to learn more about their Pokemon Go inspired project!

This year the ‘rules’ to game are a little different. Traditionally, the guest posted all the details on my blog. This year, I’m posting the teaser and sending you to their blog for more details! Enjoy!

 

Sewing with Leather

Last weekend I took a class to learn more about sewing with leather.

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It was a lot of fun! I made two pouches, a keyring, learned new things and got to hang out with my SMQG friends! The Guild brought in Krista Fleckenstein to teach for two days and give a lecture. The classes and lecture all revolved around projects in her book, Beyond Cotton.

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The first class was about printmaking, the lecture was about mixed media artists and the second class about sewing with leather. Both of which are talked about in her book. I debated which class to take becuase I wanted to do both. I had taken two classes from another guest teacher and wasn’t happy, so I was a little leary to take both. Now I’m kicking myself! The printing class turned out awesome work! ANYWAY…. The book is really good. I get kinda annoyed when teachers books are ‘required’ for the class, but this one is worth it. I got the book from the library to start, to see if I wanted to actually add it to my own stash of books. It is full of useful information, so I did purchase it!

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We learned about the different kinds of leather, things to look for when purchasing leather and how to cut leather…

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And then we were off to actually sew with leather! There are quite a few tricks of the trade that I didn’t know about! Different stitch lengths and sorts of things like that. It is hard to get remember to switch back and forth between the right stitch lengths for leather and fabric!

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We ended up with 2 pouches each! I still need to add in my fancy labels, but otherwise they are ready to be stuffed with something!

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The class ended up with such a great pile of pouches! I love some of the others fabric choices! And some even used fabric they had made in the class before!

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Then we got to play around with veg-tan leather and make a key ring. No sewing involved on this one. The leather is way to thick. But there was a lot of pounding involved!

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If Krista comes to your town, take both classes! That’s my advice! The only problem with this whole sewing with leather class is that now I want to go buy leather!!! There’s a cool leather shop here in Seattle almost in my neighborhood… This could be bad…. but in a good way…..

 

 

Skirting the Issue with a QAYG Row by Row Tutorial

I’m honored to have been invited by Simple Simon to participate in their yearly series, Skirting The Issue! Skirting the Issue is a  month long event every July where you are invited to sew along with us to make skirts (and quilts)  to donate to local Foster Care centers for the girls to receive just in time for back to school.

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Of course, I was excited that quilts are now included in their series. As most of you know that I also participate in a quilting bee that used to donate our quilts to a foster child organization. We no longer do, which is another reason I was excited to make another quilt for foster kids. Can you imagine not having anything? Not even a blanket? That’s what so many of these foster kids move from house to house with. Nothing. I’m hoping I can change that for at least one kiddo! And hoping I’ll inspire others to also participate and help another kiddo!

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This quilt started as a office meeting doodle. I doodle so that I don’t day dream in meetings! I think some people think I’m not paying attention, but really the doodling helps me focus on the meeting…. So I doodled this and a co-worker asked if it was going to be another quilt design. No…. I mean YES! That would make a cool quilt! I had grand plans of piecing each block with strips of fabric… Then I came to my senses and realized, they make striped fabric! Hello!

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I wanted to make an easy quilt for new quilters to be able to make and share with the kids! This quilt uses blocks cut from striped fabric using a modified Quilt As You Go method. There are many QAYG tutorials out there. But my biggest thing with QAYG is the bulk at the seam allowance. I found a way to get around that and I’ll show you how I do it. So here’s how I do QAYG….

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First, I cut all the pieces. This fabric has 1″ stripes. And a shout out to It’s Just Sewing for the awesome fabric! I want 8″ blocks for this quilt to really show off the stripes. So cute your blocks to be 8 3/4″ blocks. Here’s my biggest QAYG secret…. I don’t use 1/4″ seam allowances. I use 3/8″ seam allowances! Why? I’ll tell you… It’s hard to iron flat 1/4″ seams when you have both the fabric and the batting to be ironing open. And if it’s not ironed flat, it’s hard to catch the seam allowance when you’re quilting….

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Next I quilt the batting to the fabric, but not a full QAYG style! I chain pieced each row with just one row of quilting. Just enough to hold the fabric to the batting. I’ll tell you why later!

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Combine the blocks into rows. Are you wondering why I have quilted yet??? Hold on… Keep with me!

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Then combine the first two rows….

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NOW QUILT the top row only! I know it’s hard to see in this picture, but the top row is actually quilted.

Now here’s the thing. You could combine all the rows and then quilt the whole thing. But… For me, with all the quilting in this quilt and all the moving around of the quilt, it is easier to me to quilt a row, then another row, etc…. I’m avoiding stuffing my whole quilt through the machine over and over and over each time I change directions.

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I’m doing this same technique with my SMQG BOM quilt. So this may look familiar to you… (Of course, I forgot to take a picture of the backside of this blue and green quilt once I started quilting it!) So this is what the back will look like.

As you are quilting the lines, you will be stitching in the ditch between each quilt line and then quilting over the seam allowance as you continue quilting the stripes.

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Now we continue on. Top row is quilted and combined with the second row. Then add another row. Quilt the second row. And on and on.

This quilt has 8 rows. So again to eliminate a lot of quilt being moved around and stuffed through my sewing machine, I did four rows. Then started again with the bottom row and worked my way up. Then I combined the two pieces and quilted down the middle.

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And you end up with this! Yea!

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Add your back and quilt in the ditch. and you don’t have the bulk of the seam allowances!

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Another way to do it would be to quilt all the lines on your blocks. Combine them all and then not quilt in the ditch, but do your quilting over the seam allowances. Easy Peasy…

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So why didn’t I do it this way? The plain and simple reason…. Aesthetics. I didn’t want the straight lines at the seam allowance to be quilted over the quilting of each stripe. Make sense?

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My son asked why I take pictures of the labels… Because I do! ha!

Recap:

So the two things I do a little different with quilt as you go.

1. 3/8 seam allowances.

2. I don’t ‘quilt as you go’ prior to combining blocks. I quilt as I go, row by row. (or as with the SMQG BOM, block by block.) I don’t do the quilting until at least a couple of the blocks are joined  so that I can quilt over the seam allowance.

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Where is this quilt going? I haven’t figured that out yet. There’s a great organization, My Very Own Blanket, in Ohio that organizing matching quilts with foster kids. I’m looking for a local group here in Seattle that does the same thing.

Here’s another secret… I got the fabric for this quilt Friday night. Then I marathon quilted all weekend to get it done by Sunday night. I thought I had until August 26th to share my project with the Skirting the Issue series…. So I’m a bit behind on finding the right home for this quilt….

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January doGood Stitches Quilt

This is my first doGood Stitches post for the year! WOW!

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Have you seen the Forest Quilt Along Quilt hosted by Shape Moth? It’s precious! But A LOT of work! Each block is either an animal or forest plant. For our group, we each got to choose one block. And then Kat from Kat and Cat Quilts pieced them. I choose the fox! I’ve been wanting to make the fox for a long time. So I jumped on it!

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I do love how she put all the pieces together. And the triangle piece going through, but tying it all together at the same time.

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My block was pretty straight forward. I picked the Maple Fox by Sewing Under the Rainbow. But some of our bee mates blocks were not so straightforward. Some of the blocks the instructions were very confusing on how to actually put the paper pieced sections together. The fox is pretty easy in that sense. From what I hear, all the blocks are time consuming. But don’t they look great!? It’s a great BOM project for sure.

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You can see the fun quilting and someone added eyes to the little fox! Smart thinking!

Thanks for giving me the opportunity to make the fox, Kat!

 

 

A Memory Quilt Using the Complete Quilt Design Planner

Remember the Friendship Bracelet quilt that I finished not long ago? Well, originally I agreed to test Blair Stocker’s, AKA WiseCraft, pattern to make a memory quilt. Very quickly I realized that wasn’t going to work for that pattern.

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Then she asked me to test another pattern, The Complete Quilt Design Planner Pattern. I was one, very intrigued by the name, but also knew it would work well with my memory quilt idea!

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The pattern is really not a pattern at all, but step by step guide to designing your own one of a kind quilt! It has layouts for 6 different sized quilts. It was really fun! My son and I laid out all the fabric we were going to use, grabbed some colored pencils and we both started designing!

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A friend of mine from way back… Like Middle School I think? I was actually best friends with her younger sister for a while… Anyway, she asked me to take her sons clothes to make into a quilt. I ended up separating the piles and using mostly wovens on the front and the knit t-shirts on the back.

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I really loved this little center guy from a baby outfit! I also think it also tied together the colors from the other clothing pieces. Once I had it designed, I realized not all the pinks were the same, etc… So there was a bunch of laying out and picking up and laying out again to get it right!

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And the back is a t-shirt quilt. These t-shirt quilts take a long time. I didn’t want just a bunch of regular squares, so it took a bit, I mean a lot, longer to layout than I thought it would! I also added in a few colored blocks to fill in the spaces in between.

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This is a great pattern, especially for beginners. It also got me to try something new. I don’t think I’ve ever done a whole quilt out of the same size blocks before. It’s always fun to look at quilt design a little out of your design comfort zone and this is exactly was I experienced with this one.

You can see more examples of this quilt here.

AND… It’s the one thing that I actually finished this quarter! oops…

 

 

SMGQ First Giving Quilt for 2016

This year my friend Debbie and I are the co-Chairs for the Seattle Modern Quilt Guild’s Giving Committee! We have decided to shoot for 6 quilt designs this year. Some of those designs are lending themselves to more than one quilt, so we don’t know how many finished quilts we’ll end up with!

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When we took over the committee, we were given a bag of fabric and a lot of information! When we looked through the fabric, we found a bunch of these star blocks… So what do quilters do with random blocks? They make a quilt!

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It looks like the blocks were made by guild members a while back, but nothing was ever done with them. So we decided we might as well go ahead and make a little quilt out of them! There is assortment of stars, including these appliqued stars!

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We were short by one star, so I decided to make one to match!

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The backing fabric was also in the pile! We thought the little teal birds went well with the colors on the front.

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This little guy will be heading off to the Nurse Family Partnership!

 

Quilt Name: First Star I See

Quilt Size: 36×48

Blocks by: Seattle Modern Quilt Guild Members

Pieced by: Louise Wackerman

Quilted by: Debbie Jeske

Binding by: Deborah Christensen