Friday, July 30, 2010

Friday Wrap-up

Some fun new arrivals at my house this week. It was an exciting mail day.


First off my hexies arrived from the {Handsome} Hexies Swap round 2. They were made for me by the Northwest's own, Jill of Madeonmainstreet. She not only sent hexies, but a pouch made with Laurie Wisbrun's Tufted Tweets line which is one of my faves! She also included these nifty hexie templates which she sells in her etsy store. You can bet I'll be using these to make my next batch of hexies! A very rockin' swap partner she is!! Thank-you Jill. I do hope to make it up to PMQG one day.

Next up are these darling leaf pins, from Lupin on etsy.
New pins
I love these pins ~ ok I know they are just pins, but when you stare at pins all week, you start to appreciate the pretty ones a lot more than the plain jane stick pins. These are lovely and nicely made. I need to make up a new pincushion to put these beauties in.

And soon to leave my house are these hexies, for my swap partner.
Hexie Swap stack
They aren't flying anywhere just yet though, they still need a pouch for this round and I'm running a little behind.

Finishes this week include 3 quilt tops/backs, which are now sandwiched and awaiting some quality time on the machine. That'll have to wait for next week though. My youngest leaves for camp early Sunday morning and we still have to pack up her gear and drive to Portland.

That's it for today

Happy Sewing!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Gathered Clutch Swap

Hexie clutch closeup

It's SWAP time again. No not those fun Swap meets they have in warm climates where people sell all kinds of interesting stuff. I used to love going to those when we were in Florida. This is an organized Craft Swap. This clutch was made for the Gathered Clutch Swap over on Flickr and organized by Penny (Sewtakeahike). The clutch follows a tutorial written by Anna at Noodlehead. You can actually buy her clutch pattern if you like to have your patterns ready-made.

If you're familiar with the tutorial I will say that I did make a couple of adjustments to the original directions. I made my pieces 10" wide instead of 9.5" so that I would have a full 1/2" of seam allowance. For purses I like to have a bit more wiggle room in my seam allowances since there is usually more bulk in the seams than with quilts. I also cut the gathered piece to 16" (not 13" as directed). This gives me a little more fullness and thus more gathers which I like. Finally, beacause I used linen, I interfaced the back of the linen with lightweight fusible interfacing prior to cutting out the pattern pieces. Linen tends to shift when cutting and it has a lot of spring in it. The interfacing helps counter that and makes the linen more amenable to sewing. I love how the linen gave some heft to this clutch. It's nice and stiff and not flimsy - perfect for a little wallet or wristlet.

My partner left it pretty wide open with their requests, so I hope that this is something that they will like. My Swap partner doesn't know yet that this clutch is for them and i'm certainly not going to spill the beans ;) shhhh

Hexie clutch

I had a blast making it. These paper pieced hexagons are pretty addicting to make and were a great scrap project. I thought they would pair well with the linen and the linen really shows off the gathers on the clutch. I like it so much that I'm going to have to make myself one. This was so fun to make and the clutch itself whips up pretty quickly.

My hexies are about 0.65". Hexagons are measured on one of the six sides. So these are just under 1" in width. Making them 0.65" gave me the layout that resulted. I had to put a few hexies on the back too.
Hexie clutch back 'cuz, ya can never have too many hexies.

I added a inside divider and card pockets.
hexie clutch inside

I added a wrist strap and this piece marks the debut of my own Trillium logo which I had printed on ribbon so I could incorporate it into my purses and sewn items. Ok that's probably not too exciting to you, but I'm pretty tickled by it.

If you are looking for a fun sewing adventure, try a Swap sometime - they are fun to participate in and you tend to meet lots of cool like-minded folks who share your craft enthusiasm.

Don't forget, the giveaway for Fat Quarter Issue 2 is still going on, you can enter here.

Happy Sewing!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Did you know?... Giveaway

....The next issue of Fat Quarterly debuts today? Yes Indeed! I'm thrilled to tell you that I was lucky enough to have been asked to write up a piece on the Circular Logic Pillow I made for PTS3. If you were wanting to know how to make your very own Circular Logic Pillow - head on over to Fat Quarterly and grab yourself a copy.

This article is a milestone for me because it is the first time I have been published in the crafting world. Exciting stuff.

But wait there's more!! Fat Quarterly and I will be giving away a free copy of Issue #2 to one lucky winner. Just comment on this blog before July 30th and you'll be eligible to win.

Fan TrilliumDesign on facebook, you'll be eligible for another entry.

If you follow me on twitter, you'll be eligible for yet another entry.

That's 3 chances to win! The winner will be chosen randomly, and I'll announce the winner on August 1st.

I think you'll really like the 2nd issue, it's chalk full of fun projects to use up the ever growing scrap pile.

If you do make your own Circular Logic pillow, don't forget to add the pics to the TrilliumDesign flickr pool.

Happy Sewing!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Hexie redux ~ Take 1

Walking in the Rain Pillow

Hexagon shapes have hit, swept (and mopped up?) the online quilting world ~ they are everywhere these days. People, including yours truly, can't get enough of making these little paper-pieced shapes.

For me, they are a relaxing way to spend the evening with my family, much the same way as knitting used to occupy my time. But, as much as I enjoy making them, there is always the question of what to do with them in the end? Their classic use isn't for me - it's great, but not for me ~ too traditional.

So the question remains, what to do with all these little hexagons? I wanted something that would lend a modern feel and a fresh perspective? I have been thinking about this problem for a while now and have come up with a few answers to my own question. Here is the first one ~ a little hexie redux, Version 1.Walking in the Rain Pillow

You have already seen the beginnings of this project in this post. Here is the final version. All my hexies sewn up together and ready to be made into a pillow ~ the Walking in the rain pillow

Why a pillow? ~ Because I'm on a mission to redo all the toss pillows in our house. The Pillow talk swap was impetus enough to retire our boring plain pillows and come up with fabulous replacements. Reason two is because these are half inch hexies! That's a finished hexagon about 1" across and believe me, after hand-piecing 400 of these babies, I'm ready to be done. A pillow was about a big as this project was going to get.

It's black and white and grey as you can see, which is a "color" scheme I'm fond of in our house. Seems to be everywhere.
Cathedral Mod Pillow

Fit's right in.

I threw in a little splash of color to stir things up a bit by appliqueing the little person walking in the rain and used some free-motion stitching to attach the applique.
Walking in the Rain Pillow

Add some quilting and a back and it's a throw pillow!

Looks nice next to the Cathedral Mod pillow and the Mid Mod Quilt, no?

So there you have it! Hexie redux, part 1. Stayed tuned for part 2, coming in August.

Happy Sewing!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Nifty Notion

Check out this nifty little gadget. It's a needle threader. Not one of those little wire doo-hickeys that breaks the first time you use it either! A real needle threader.

I have been doing so much hand sewing lately, and therefore threading of needles, I decided to pick up this little guy at the fabric store. Ok and I will admit that threading needles in my apparently advanced age (ugggh) is getting a little bit trickier than it used to be and that may have contributed to my purchase (maybe, possibly, but I'll never tell). This needle threader is super easy to use - I mean seriously! Why even bother trying to thread a needle the other way? - this is a just plain no-brainer.
You put the needle in the hole on top, you lay the thread in the groove and press the button. Takes all of 0.9876 seconds.

With hand threading, you have to trim the thread sharply to make sure that those little fine strands of thread are really clipped so they don't misdirect the thread away from the eye of the needle - know what I mean? Yea. No worries with the threader. It even has a handy thread cutter built in. I'm sold on this gadget. Go check it out.

In the meantime, I have two quilt tops done and a third nearly complete. So I’m making a lot of progress but no piccies until I get them quilted which will be awhile because we will be busy all weekend at Da Vinci days doing this

And this

and watching this


yes that's mud...

there is also water...

and sand...

and oh yeah - solid ground is allowed too.

Happy Sewing!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Shameless thread grubbing post

Sew Mama Sew is doing a giveaway for the new Amy Butler and Kaffe Fassett thread collections. Check it out here. My answers to the questions are at the end of this post.

And because I feel a wee bit uncomfortable using my blog to just win a contest, I'm going to show you my latest quilty project first. Still in the works mind you ~ I'm currently making the "Outside the Box" quilt from Modern Quilt Workshop for my son.

Outside the box blocks

He doesn't often benefit from my sewing skills, so I'm glad to be making something for him for a change. Very guy-ish so as not to embarrass the poor kid and very appropriate for him, because he is definitely an outside the box kind of person.
Outside the box block

What follows next is my shameless attempt to win some thread and oh yeah, my answers to the questions Sew Mama Sew had posted ~ read on if particularly interested in my thread preferences or have some spare time on your hands.

* How did you select colors for your personal thread collection?

I pretty much pick the colors when I need them for the project I'm working. I don't typically stock thread without a project in mind but of course I have lots of leftover thread from old projects. The exceptions to this would be basics such as white/black/brown and maybe navy and red, those I do stock because they get used so frequently.

* Do you always match the color perfectly to your project?

That depends. If I'm sewing internal seams on purses/bags, then no because that isn't usually seen. However, for garments I'm pretty careful about matching the thread to the fabrics. The same holds true for any topstitching where both sides of the stitching will be seen.

* Do you ever use contrasting thread?

Yes, definitely. Particularly if I want to accent a purse or garment - I do that a lot with knit tops and jackets. I have a cover stitch machine and use that often to introduce decorative stitching to the outside of garments and specifically use contrasting thread for that.

* Do you use the same color in the bobbin as the upper thread?
If the stitching will be seen from both sides, as in topstitching, or in a garment seam, then yes, I almost always use the same color bobbin thread.

* What if a fabric has big areas of very different colors?
Typically, I pick a thread color that I think will accent the fabric well and go with that.

* Do you have any tips or suggestions about choosing thread?
I personally prefer to use polyester in garment sewing for strength and have been using it also in my quilts. However, I'm new to quilting and have certainly heard the case for cotton thread in quilting, so I'm undecided about that. I'm quite partial to a few brands.

* Can you show us a picture(s) of your thread collection?

Umm ok, if you insist. Really kind of a jumbled mess. I need to get this better organized ~ that's still in the planning stages at the moment...
* Do you ever buy thread because you fall in love with the color (without a particular project in mind)?
Sometimes I will do this for embroidery threads, but typically I'm project oriented.
* Do you “invest” in thread?
If you ask my husband he'll say I invest in everything sewing related. Certainly with the price of thread these days, you are putting an investment into it. But since it's kind of essential to sewing, I figure it's worth the investment to use good thread considering the time and effort you are putting into creating a garment, quilt or other sewing project.
* What types of thread do you have? (elastic, quilting, all-purpose, wool, etc.)

I use mostly polyester threads since they work up well on my machines and are strong and durable over time, in the wash etc. I use polyester threads for sewing and quilting. I'll use polyneon (a high sheen polyester thread) from Madeira for embroidery projects and I'll use maxilock or wooly nylon in my serger. I always use wooly nylon when sewing knits. I do have some elastic thread, a few rayons, and a few leftover spools of variegated thread, and that's about it.

This was kind of fun. There you have my thread wisdom in a nutshell. Go over to Sew mama Sew and perhaps grab yourself a chance at some thread.

Happy Sewing!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Happy 4th ~ a little late

... If it's July 6th, I kind of a blew right by the Independence day celebrations. We were a little under the weather this year with some sort of weird dizzy viral bug at our house. I managed to escape so far, so instead I cleaned out my daughters room - really cleaned it out as in, purged it big time. Well, it's done now and while it probably wasn't the most exciting thing for the 4th, I'm very happy that it's finished and all the random clutter is gone. You know how kids rooms just manage to accumulate - ummm - stuff? It's all gone - many many bags worth. Her room actually looks bigger now, although it's not. She loves it to! Hopefully this will be incentive for her to keep it clean for awhile – yeah right, I know that’s not going to really happen, but a girl can dream right?

Aside from getting a peace/love tote bag done this weekend, I did manage to finish off my July 4th hexie napkins. The first version was a little bland,
Firecracker napkin
so I spiced them up a bit with red rickrack (instead of blue), and used a coordinating print fabric for the backs - much better this way.
4th Hexie napkins
The Hexies were made from a Red, White and Bold charm pack (Sandy Gervais, Moda) and the backs are assorted fabrics from my stash including Amy Butlers Love.

4th Hexie napkins
Much better this way.

Hope you had a great 4th! Happy Sewing!

Monday, July 5, 2010


Peace Love Multitasker

Remember the 70s? Peace, Love and all that other groovy stuff. As a kid growing up in the 70s, I detested those jeans with the giant white daisies on them. I was pretty glad to give up my bell-bottoms for the much cooler and narrower skinny jeans that were popular in the 80s. Wait wait, what's that you say? Skinny jeans? Sound familiar? Yes, all that's old is new again. The 70s, 80s and probably even the 90s are back again although this time all these decades have been melded into one. And back are peace signs, giant daisies, skinny jeans and even those neon paint splashes on clothes - that was definitely a place I didn't need to revisit. But it's back and it's everything a girl could want - well if you are 8 anyway. So now the next generation gets to 'enjoy' these things again. My daughter is "all over it" as she would say. If she had her way, there would be peace signs on everything.

So here is a little summer tote bag just for her, in her favorite colors and embellished with so many of her favorite things. Yes I live in Oregon. NO, I don't drive a VW Van, nor do I want to - this is as close as she's ever going to get with us. That's Oregonian and you kind of have to live here to appreciate just how hippy this place is.
Peace Love Multitasker

The bag is a basic Anna Maria Horner Multi-tasker tote - proving just how multi-tasking this tote can be. Really works perfect as a pool/beach tote which is where you'll find my kids most days this summer.

Peace Love Multitasker
I have made quite a few versions of this tote and it's still a proven winner. This one is embellished with lots of embroidery designs from all over really.
Peace Love MultitaskerAll made by me and patched or directly embroidered onto the bag prior to assembly. I did shorten the straps on her version, since she isn't quite adult size just yet.

A little farbenmix and assorted ribbons for fun and added to the embroidery is some much needed bling - a girl's gotta have her bling, right?
Peace Love Multitasker

Check out the lining fabric from Michael Miller - how perfect is that? Groovy man!

Peace Love Multitasker inside

Embroidery designs include Love/Peace, Mirror Forest, and London Calling from Nic Hildebrandt (Luzia Pimpenella I really love everything she does) and Panda from Mymaki .