Thursday, March 31, 2011

Mug Rug!

I realized something as I was making this project...I have a style! At first I was thinking that all my stuff looked the same and was kind of thinking I might be boring. But then if you think of it as more of a distinct style, that is pretty cool. I think it is because I am officially obsessed with linen and bright colours. That's why the lavender pillow, linen quilt, kindle case and now this mug rug all go together.

Mug rug- front
I made this mug rug for my friend Sarah for her birthday. You might be asking "oh golly! what in the world is a mug rug?", well, a mug rug is kind of like a giant coaster, but it's bigger and has room for your mug and a snack, like a cookie! You really don't need a whole plate for a cookie but it would be too messy to just set on your desk, so you need a mug rug! It's literally a super mini quilt, so it is totally machine washable for times when you put your fresh baked ooey-gooey chocolate chip cookies onto your mug rug, or spill your pink forever nuts tea on it :)
Mug rug- back

Monday, March 28, 2011

Sewn scarf for Lake

This is a scarf I made for my brother, Lake. He designed it and picked out the linen fabric, and I sewed it. 
Front- the colours are navy blue, chocolate brown and off-white linen.
 Sorry for the bad quality pictures! My camera ran out of batteries and I had to take these pics with my computer.
Close up of front
If you couldn't already tell, I LOVE linen so I was very happy with the fabric used for this scarf.
Red linen on the back.

Here I am trying it on.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

First wristlet

One side
Other side
My friend taught me how to make these wristlets and this is the first one I made. I made it for my Mom for her birthday using Echino linen-cotton blend fabric that I bought at the Creativ Festival. I really loved the fabric and I think it turned out really well. 

Inside with by sky label

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Quilted Kindle case

I am very happy with this project. I actually think it is my favourite thing I have ever sewn. It is a Kindle (e-reader) case for my Mom.  I found out this morning that I got into the Masters in Social Work program and Laurier so that put me in a good mood and I felt like being creative!
The front! I am holding the flap down but there will be velcro there when it's done.

  I made up how to make the Kindle case all my myself, no tutorial. Due to that, I'm quite surprised it turned out so well. I tend to rush things and even though they turn out, I know they could have been better if I put more time into it or thought about how to do it a bit longer.

This is the back. 
 Btw, it is not totally done, I have to add some velcro but I didn't feel like trekking through 1 foot a snow today. I really like the quilted look. It reminds me a lot of the linen quilt. The fabrics are all random but I think they worked really well together.
This is the front with the flap open. I added a little extra flare to the inside of the flap.
As I mentioned above, I made up how to do it all by myself. I also just made it up as I went along, I'm not much of a planner with this sort of stuff. I did think of a detail that ended up working out really well...I knew you would be able to see a bit of the inside lining even when the case was closed and I thought it would look messy and distracting if you could see a whole different pattern. I made the top inch or so of the lining with linen so that it blended it. If you take a peek inside, it is a very funky pattern. Also, I am pretty sure it is a perfect size! I want it to be snug but not annoying to take out and put back in.
Looking in.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Toiletries bag

I just picked up my sewing machine from getting it serviced and was itching to sew something as soon as I got home. I made this toiletries bag for my boyfriend. He picked out the fabric a while ago and I just got around to making it today. The inside is a blue gingham oil cloth so that it's easy to clean when stuff spills in it. 

Monday, March 21, 2011

Linen quilt

Work in progress. Ping-pong tables make great work areas.

 I made this quilt as a distraction from applying to grad school in December. It was my second quilt ever and my first non baby size quilt.  When I decided I wanted to learn how to quilt, I flipped through some books at Indigo. Kaffe Fassett was the first book I looked at and I instantly fell in love with his fabric. My boyfriend's Mom gave me some Kaffe Fasset fabric and I knew I had to put it to good use.

Finished quilt (front). I LOVE LINEN!! 
 The natural coloured fabric on the front is a linen and cotton blend. I love the earthy look it has. If you use linen, prewashing is a must! It shrinks A LOT. Luckily my Mom told me this before I began cutting and sewing.

Finished back.

The back took so much longer than the front to make. I learned a pretty good lesson in quilting while making this quilt. Making things line up and look very tidy and organized is easy! Making things wonky and random is much much more difficult. That's modern quilting for you! I had to cut the back up into so many pieces and basically replace areas of the brown (Kona solids in Sable) with my squares. I wanted to change my mind and just line up the blocks but I knew I would appreciated the wonkiness once it was complete.
Close up of a pieced area on the back. No, it is not perfectly square but I like it this way. 

I finished this quilt on Christmas Eve at my Nanny's house. I got the binding from a cute little quilt shop in Kingston.

Friday, March 11, 2011


This is a necklace I made for my Mom. It's made out of a t-shirt. It's quite easy to make actually and I think it would be fun for kids too. I braided my pieces but i have another one that isn't braided and it looks really great too. You have to use a certain kind of fabric so that when you cut it into strips and pull on the strips, it curls nicely. It's the softer jersey type of fabric that works best.

By the way, I will probably only be posting previous projects, not new ones for a while. School is super busy and I also took my sewing machine in to get serviced so I won't have the opportunity to sew up anything new. Looking forward to a summer full of sewing though :)

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Makeup pouch

I made this makeup bag/pencil case for my Aunt for her birthday. I LOVE the outside fabric so much! The colours are great and the shimmer just makes it amazing. I got the fabric at the Creativ Festival in Toronto last October. The Spring Creativ Festival is the weekend of April 15 which is right after I finish my last final exams of my undergrad!! Perfect timing :)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Table runner for Nanny

Front of the table runner. Traditional pinwheel design. 
Table runners are very fun to make. They use the exact same process as a full quilt yet are much smaller and therefore take less time to complete. I made my Nanny this table runner for Christmas. I think that the colours were perfect for her! She really liked it and it looked great on the table.
Back of the table runner. I decided to give the back a design so it could be reversible. 
I decided to free-motion quilt the table runner. I love the look of free motion and it was a small piece in comparison to an actual quilt so I figured it wouldn't be too difficult. It went well, until I ran out of the light pink thread I was using when I had a 3in x 3in area left to quilt. It was Christmas eve so I knew I wouldn't be able to buy any that day. My aunt ended up saving me. She had gotten me a wonderful box of Gutermann thread for Christmas and gave me the light pink thread early so I could finish quilting the table runner. It turned out perfectly!
Close up of one pinwheel. You can also see the background fabric had gold designs which made it much more interesting (and fancier) than plain white.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Sneak peek at a quilt for Mom and Dad

I am making a quilt for my parents. I chose a grey/green colour scheme and it looks really great so far. I have all the peices cut and partially sewn together. I am not sure when I will finish it as I am super busy with the last 6 weeks of school. 

It's going to be a huge quilt. They have a queen size bed but their mattress is really tall so I have to account for the overhang. It will need to be quilted on a longarm machine. I don't have one (yet, haha) so I have been looking for somewhere within a few hours driving distance that rents out the use of a long arm machine. I haven't been having too much luck yet but I am sure I will find something by the time it's time to quilt it.

Playing with clay

This past Christmas, I wanted to make a lot of the gifts I was going to give to people. I went to a pottery studio in Guelph and made a lot of different things. Here are some of the dishes I made. I hadn't done pottery since I was in elementary school and I forgot how much fun it is to get messy and play with mud!
This is my favourite bowl. I really like the curled edges and the blue highlighting on the curls.
This plate matches my favourite bowl. I gave it to my parents and now it is on display in my living room :)

 Pottery is pretty time consuming. You have to make the pieces out of wet clay. Then ALL of the water has to evaporate before it can go into the kiln for the first firing. After the first firing, the pieces are now at their bisque stage.
My boyfriend picked this one out for himself. It reminds me of honeycomb.
I like things to be instant so the long waiting process of all the dryings and firings made me really curious to see my pieces.  I also had to guess what sort of techniques I would prefer the finished look of. I didn't know what some of the patterns would end up looking like, nor did I know what colour some of the glazes would take on.
This was one of my favourites made by pressing lace into the wet clay.  I also really liked the flat but uneven look on the top. 

Next is the glazing stage. The glaze looks like really ugly paint at first. It's thick and pretty much all dull shades of gray. The final colours end up being sort of a surprise as the glaze takes on different colours depending on where it is in the kiln, how thick the coat was and whether it is in a raised or sunken in part of the design.  Sometimes I even mixed glazes for a more interesting look.
The design on this bowl is actually a rubber stamp that I repeated until I covered the whole area.