Winter Friend Pillows

I’m enjoying making other people’s projects these days! Like these Winter Friend Pillows!

I really love these little throw pillows. They were intended to be Christmas presents, but they were a little late. The green ones are staying at our house while the red ones found a new home. I’m calling them winter pillows, not holiday pillows. It’s still winter….

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As you probably know, I love this book! Pretty In Patchwork, Holidays by John Q Adams. I’ve made a few projects from it, like these teachers gifts.

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As much as I love this book, I did find a bit of an editing oversight. The project for these pillows in the book is called Greetings From Antarctica! I just want to clarify… There are no polar bears in the Antarctic. Penguins live in Antarctica, polar bears live in the Arctic. Things like this really bug me! Let’s be smart, people! Don’t dumb us down….

So I’m changing the name of the project to Winter Friends, as in they are all our friends. I don’t think polar bears and penguins would be friends.

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The directions called for applique eyes and button eyeballs. As much as I don’t like applique, I did do the eyes! By putting a white circle over black, the black showed through, so I added some betting to my circles, so you couldn’t see the black through the white. But I didn’t want buttons for eyes. And I didn’t want to applique anything smaller than the eyes. I also have those eyeballs you use for stuffed animals, but I realized they wouldn’t work on the pillow. It was my son who said, ‘I saw you had some other round things in your cabinet.’ He was talking about my box of rivets! Perfect!

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The polar bear actually had applique eyes (or was it buttons), but I added the diamond shaped eyes in the paper piecing pattern. I love how they turned out, but wonder if I had used rivets, would the pillows blend together better??

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I did also change the pattern of the hat to make the white band thinner. Then the poof was to be a button or applique as well. But I hand sewed on a little pompom!

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I did the same thing for the little penguins! just used smaller rivets and a smaller pompom. Also, for these little guys, I just reduced the size of the pattern when I made the copies. Next time, I’d like them a little larger!

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I chose a freehand wavy pattern to work with ‘sprinkles’ of white to look like the sprinkles were snow blowing in the wind. I think it works!

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The backs are BORING! But I’m ok with it, because the fronts are adorable!

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And the invisible zippers rock!

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I love my winter friends pillows! They make a great gift for penguin loving friends!

 

A New Christmas Tree Skirt

I finished with a day to spare!

I started this project in January. I started it but then put it away to work on other things. The thought was to start back up after the early in the year so that it would be ready in plenty of time for Christmas. Well, that didn’t happen! so of course, I was cramming to get it done for this Christmas. And I did!

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It is so beautiful (if I do say so myself)! It would make a beautiful real skirt! My Christmas colors are white, bright pink, bright green and teal. And I’m excited to say, it’s all made from my stash! I saw the project in Issue 66 of Love Patchwork and Quilting and knew I wanted to make it. The pattern is by Evie of EVQuilts and is the Starburst Tree Skirt.

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Then when I realized I had all the fabric I needed, I was even more excited! The pink raw silk was a scrap I had been given ages ago. I don’t know where the teal satin and bright green came from. I did use the bright green for our handmade Elf on the Shelf.

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All the other fabrics were from my wedding! The white raw silk look alike (it’s not actually raw silk, but looks like it) was from my wedding. The beaded white raw silk was from the cake table at my wedding. And the green, but not bright green, was from extra fabric I bought to match the bridesmaids dresses. I ran out of that fabric and had some of the darker fabric from their dresses that I used to finish off the binding in the back. I didn’t make thier dresses, but we used a company that I picked the fabric, the bridesmaids picked the dress style. You can buy extra fabric to use on other projects for your wedding. Perfect use of stash, IMO! I also used the beaded white fabric from our Chirstmas stockings I made ages ago! Nine years ago, actually! (excuse the horrible pictures if you click back…) 

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For years, we’ve been using these fleece tree skirt. It went better with the tree when we used to get a live, green tree. It’s literally a piece of fleece cut into a circle with a split in the back. Since we got the white tree I have not liked it anymore!

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But man! Check out how much better the new skirt looks!! I’m actually gleeful with how this turned out!

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The tree skirt is quilt as you go. You start with a really long piece of batting, like 60″ long, and sew the strips on at angle. Over and over and over! Then you do it again with the strips going in the opposite direction! So, needless to say it took me longer that I had anticpiated. I was planning on quilting just the white. But then decided, nope.

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I did hand sew on the binding. You can see the two fabrics from the bridesmaids dresses here.

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I’m just so excited about it! I almost hated to cover it in presents! But we did, of course! And now it’s empty again and I can enjoy the tree skirt again before it has to go away until next year.

 

A Christmas Hedgehog Pillow

I’m all about the holiday animals! A halloween cat, Rudolph the reindeer, and a now Christmas hedgehog! (and there might be more to come…. )

This is another project I made last year, but haven’t shared yet.

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Do you like paper piecing? If you do, you should probably know Tartankiwi! I love her patterns! I have a few, but this is the only one I’ve made yet. I’ve been eyeballing her patterns for years. Then when I saw her hedgehog pattern in the issue 64 of Love Patchwork Quilting Magazine, I knew I had to make it. So I did!

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It’s a lot of pieces, obviously, but it’s a really quick sew. I needed something for the holiday swap for our SMQG Holiday pattern, so I decided to make this. But I loved it and my family loved it so much that it didn’t quite make it to the swap.

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And look how good it goes with this other pillow that I made years ago! It kinda had to stay here, right? (Back me up here… 🙂 )

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I love this Cotton and Steel Fabric, too. For this one I just made an envelope back. It was before my new obsession with invisible zippers.

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My plan was to post the presents I’m making, but then I realized, those receiving the gifts would see them and that kinda blew my plan… Luckily I had some holiday sewing projects saved from last year! Ha!

 

Be sure to check out Tartankiwi’s blog and you can get the hedgehog pattern on her etsy site or her payhip site.

 

Happy Holiday sewing!

 

 

 

A Christmas Mug Rug

Yes, Christmas is over, but I had so many projects that I didn’t finish that I have decided to keep sewing Christmas projects!

With that said, I have to admit, I made this project a year ago! My New Years Resolution is to finish a bunch of unfinished projects. One of those unfinished projects is to blog about a bunch of projects I’ve done but haven’t shown you! There’s also kids projects to do and quilting projects…. The usual!

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This project may look a little familiar… I used extra blocks from my Christmas Quilt to make it!  Every year we have a Dirty Santa/White Elephant (what do you call it?) gift exchange at our Seattle Modern Quilt Guild Christmas Party. I wasn’t sure what to make. Then as I was working on my Christmas Quilt, it came to me! A mug rug with the cute little blocks!

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First I made the top by using quilt as you go. But I didn’t add the quilting between the different fabrics. So is it really quilting as you go? hmmm.. I sewed the pieces down onto the batting!

Then I added the back fabric. I cut the back fabric about 3/4″ larger then the front on each side. When I did the quilting, I stayed away from the edges.

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Then I turned the back fabric over a quarter inch, ironed it flat, then folded over to the front of the mug rug and stitched it down.

I know there are tutorials out there for this technique of a fold over binding, but I was in a time crunch so I made it up as I went along. I need to look it up and see if I actually did it the ‘right’ way or not!

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Then I had to wrap it and give it away! I have a habit of keeping things I get or make for exchanges, but not this time!

You can also use insul-bright batting to make your Christmas Mini a potholder or a hot pad. Here’s a tutorial I made for pot holders!

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And are you wondering what I got?? I got these awesome pot holders! They are perfect! I love them so much and was so excited to unpack them again this year! Allison, who makes a ton of amaxing things including the cutest clothes ever, made them!

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Have you already put away your Christmas fabric? Or are you getting ahead on next years Christmas sewing like I am???

A Christmas Quilt

It’s been a while since I shared a finished quilt!

It’s my Christmas Quilt! I have a Halloween quilt and I have a ton of amazing Christmas fabric, so I knew I needed to make a Christmas quilt! I’m a huge sucker for both Halloween and Christmas fabric. especially Cotton and Steel Christmas fabric…. I can’t get enough so I had to do something with it!

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The only problem with Christmas fabric is that it isn’t solids! It’s prints, hence the Christmas theme, right! And I’m not real good with prints! I get totally pushed around by print fabric.

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Quilts pictures here are by Katie of Sew Katie Did, not my work! 

In October 2017, the Seattle Modern Quilt Guild had one of our members, Katie Pedersen of Sew Katie Did, come teach some classes. One of the classes was her Split Personality Class. I signed up! But I didn’t want to take solids. Katie is so good with prints, so I was trying to let that rub off on me during this class. But what to take??? Christmas!

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I love describing what I do as a quilter to non quilters! So basically the technique involves cutting up fabric, sewing it together, cutting it, mixing the pieces up, sewing it back together, cutting it again, mixing again and sewing it back together again! Yep, that about sums it up! You do that and end up with lovely little improv pieced blocks!

But then what to do with the blocks??? 

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I decided to use one of the designs I came up with from the Quilt Design a Day challenge. I forget what the picture was that inspired this design. Anyway, I thought it would be a fun design inspiration for this quilt. 

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I also used another technique that I don’ tthink I have ever used before. Fussy cutting… Well, sewing with solids doesn’t lend itself well to fuzzy cutting, does it now?? Ha!

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And another technique… Pattern matching my fabric for the back!

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Did you know those reindeer came in flannel? So soft! and adorable!

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I liked how the blue binding didn’t totally scream Christmas for the quilt.

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I really like it turned out! And I’m loving watching the family curl up in on the couch this holiday season!

 

 

A Mountain Pillow- Quick and Easy Handmade Gift!

Every year my office has a White Elephant gift exchange with a theme at our Holiday party. Last year the theme was High Low.

We never really tell each other who got what, so I’ve never actually made a gift for the exchange. This year, I had a little problem…

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I bought these beautiful beaded snowflakes from Blair at Wise Craft Handmade. They start high in the sky and end up low on the ground… Get it? High Low….

Well, the day of the party I decided I didn’t want to give up any of my ornaments and I needed to come up with something else to give at the party!

I’d been seeing a lot of these mountain pillows. I got the ornaments at our local handmade craft show. And at the craft show, there were a few people selling these mountain pillows. Most of them were made of beautiful felt and were way over my price range. But I kept being drawn to them! And then I had a great idea…. I’d make a new gift. I’d make a mountain pillow! High Peaks, Low Valleys… High Low!

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I just happened to have this grey fleece that looked kinda like the felt that all the others were made of. And I had this fluffy white fleece, which I totally think looks like fluffy snow!

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Although I didn’t actually made a tutorial, I’ll tell you how I made it! It was so easy and quick, I didn’t even have time to think about pictures! ha! I cut out the mountains, sewed on the snow on top. I made a front and back, with snow on both front and back sides. Next I sewed the front and back together, right sides together and then turned it right side out and Boom! A mountain pillow! SOOOOO easy!

And the pillow was stolen a couple of times, so it was a hit!

These were all adults that loved it, but they could be fun in kids rooms too! Adventure themed rooms… So many possibilities and such a quick make!

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The 1-Hour Dopp Kit

I love patterns that say 1 hour!

Ha! Whatever! Well, it takes me almost that long just to pick the fabric. And if you quilt it, right away the one hour is out the window! Right? And maybe once you’ve made it once it will only take an hour, but the first one never takes me just an hour. Maybe you are faster than I am!

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For this one I used the 1-Hour Dopp Kit Tutorial from the Craftsy Sewing Blog. Even though I’m complaining about the one hour part, I like the pattern and would like to make another one. This one was a Christmas present for my husband, but the kiddo took it instead!

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I love the little handle! You could do two, but I chose to do just one. You only carry it on one end, so why do you really need two handles?

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Although the inside corners take some thought, the turned out great. This feature was one reason I headed to this tutorial over some of the others. (ignore the toothpaste spots. It’s proof that it is actually being used as a toiletry bag and not a bag to carry toys!)

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And the bottom! Do those stripes look familiar? I used scraps from my 2016 SMQG BOM Medallion quilt!

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So what do you think? Would you give it a try? Do you have a favorite Dopp Kit pattern? I’d try a different one next time. I kinda want to make a leather one… Have you?

 

More Tree Pillows!

Looking for a pretty quick holiday project to fill your next few days? I mean who has anything to really do between now and Christmas, right? Ha!

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I’m so excited to have my own tree pillows! Do you remember the ones I made last year? You can see them here

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I made these from the scraps from last years pillows. Yes, it did take me all year…. Moving on… So last year I used the tutorial from the Quick Curve Ruler ladies over at Sew Kind of Wonderful. I used it pretty right on. With a long piece down the middle to make the trunk of the tree. This year I did a little bit of experimenting. For one thing, I wanted a pointy top!

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For each tree, I started with by following the tutorial. Then I sewed the left and right sides of the tree together. For the little pillow, I cut off the top of the bottom two blocks. And the bottom off the top block. I wanted more thickness to the tree, but with a pointy top!

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And for the bigger pillow, I cut the bottom off of each block. For the top one, I think I took off 1.5″ and down at the bottom blocks, I only cut off about .5″ of the block. And then varied the dimension between the others. This way I got a more skinny tree and a still had my pointy top!

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I really need to start adding zippers… I know it’s not hard. I more or less have a problem with planning ahead and getting the right size and color! So I stuck with the envelope back. I’m also usually not a fabric line kinda person… But you can probably tell that I have a little obsession with Cotton and Steel going on right about now!

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I’m building up my holiday pillow collection! I had a little collection of CB2 knock off pillows, but I wasn’t feeling it this year and gave them away… I’m going more with the quilted look for the next few years….

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And even if I should have been sewing for others, I needed to finish these! And I’m glad I did…. Have you made any quick curve ruler projects?