Monday, June 15, 2015

sleeping bags

Two of our grandson's live in sunny California so when Mom and Dad want to go backpacking they do not want to pack 4lb sleeping bags that are too big and too warm for their boys. Grandma to the rescue....I made these in about 2 hours, matching pillows also.
60 inches of polar fleece folded in half stitched across the bottom and up 2/3rds. I had to add red for the red boy to like it so then I added blue to the blue boys also. The handle on the pillow is attached to the pillow; then the pillow case needed a hole for the handle to come through.
EASY to find out if they are loved and used....

Tuesday, June 9, 2015


Child #6! Graduated. Empty nest syndrome countdown! Andrew graduated with a 3.9 GPA and is going to attend BYU Provo in the fall.

Graduation speakers were short and had a good message. I got some knitting in since we had to be there 90 minutes early. After graduation he wanted to go to a Japanese restaurant so we googled it and chose one. Oishii. It happened to be happy hour and so we got to try 10 items on their happy hour list. The best? The fried banana! It was fun.

 Yesterday marked the first day of his real job. He is working for Source Web Solutions in Friendswood, TX. He (and we) are so excited for this opportunity for him to use his geekhood to monetary advantage!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

sewing with grandkids....

I got to visit my daughter many miles away when she had her fourth boy! Everyone is doing great and I am back home.Grandchild #9 was born May 12, 2015.
This almost 2 year old fell in love with his new brother! So fun to see, so scary for Mom to have him want to hold him all. the. time.
I found one activity the older boys loved, sewing;

And what did they sew? The perfect project....We cut mom's old dish towels down to rags and folded them in thirds then the boy's got to choose a decorative stitch to hold the layers together with:

I know, not much to look at but the boys loved it! We used up odd bits of thread in the bobbins and maybe... the boys will enjoy using the rags they made for cleaning! We can only hope. They WANTED to use them as washcloths.
I had a great time and even managed to go to a thrift store where I found a couple of purple men's shirts that I needed for my current project. (The five year old informed me that men did not wear purple shirts....)
I was able to show him that they did.
I've been home a week so I should actually get something finished soon.....

Saturday, May 16, 2015


My daughter had some sad looking potholders. ....I remodeled her 3 sad looking ones to these happy ones.
I think they are pretty great and so does Liz.
This is my first post using my cell phone
Takes some getting used to.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

String quilt with stars; Twin quilt #1

I decided that I am working in a series! The blue is not the first in this but it is the latest, I have at least 4 in mind for this 'series'.
It HAS been awhile....I have been sewing though so I have a top to show you.
Here is a charity top we (our Women's church group) got to this point. I LOVE it...we just sorted fabric into light and dark piles and sewed them together. Here is the EQ7 version;
I planned it with 7 x 12" blocks, but really? I cut the width to 7.5 and then just straightened the bottom and top pieces and left them ....however long they came out. Did I tell you I LOVE this top? (It would be bordered and quilted BUT I purchased a dark blue for the outer border, washed it, ironed it! and lost it.) The mix of mediums across the dark and light rows I really like.....SO...
A niece was put in the hospital to wait out the birth of her high risk twins and I decided those babies needed a quilt and so started out to make this:

I added the stars for fun....Each of the stars take 1.5 - 2 hours to make
but the rest? EASY, Easy, Easy.
Each block is 6 x 6 but, again, I just straightened the edges of the length. A friend donated some of her pink scraps to the mix so I had plenty of variety for the pink blocks.
So it looked like this;

Clearly I had plenty of scraps....this just scratched the surface so I changed it to this;
With the outer border being pieced. BUT not just piano keys I decided to work some curved seams and some tiny inserts of fabric.
These are cut 4.5 inches wide. So now it is at this stage;
And the twins were born 2 weeks ago and a doing really well for 2 lbs 7 oz and 1 lb 13 oz. babies. I plan to have this (and the twin of it) done by their due date in July.
41 x 51

Vicki has a linky group of others working in a

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Wool quilt

I have been working on a wool quilt for grandson #8. I just finished it.

This is made out of thrift store wool sweaters. When I get them home I wash them in hot water and dry them. These are not felted a lot, but enough that the edges didn't fray when I cut them. For years I have seen in magazines and on-line the occasional wool sweater quilts and they all seemed to have bulky, puckered seams. I knew that I did not want that look so decided to butt the seams instead of the standard seam. Each place I started and stopped the feather stitching I knotted the threads and hid them on the back. (Bette White shows a cool technique that I might try next time :))
Once I chose the 3 sweaters I thought I could get to work together I over-dyed the yellow sweater with a stronger, brighter yellow. (It started out a very pale yellow.) I decided on the size based on the pockets in the lighter blue sweater and cut as many 6 inch squares as I could then I cut 3" squares then 1.5 inch squares. After laying them out I figured out what and how many yellows I needed. I also used the scraps to practice my seams and made a couple of postcards with them:

(I used all of the blue sweaters but have the back left of the yellow.)

The sweater squares kept creeping forward when stitching. First I tried a spray adhesive, it still moved. So I tried basting each piece down:
It still moved and those stitches were a pain to remove. So I used strips of steam a seam 2 under each seam, ironing it to a very thin interfacing, then stitched. It worked much better. After getting each block made I laid them out on the guest room bed.and rearranged it, and rearranged it, and played with it some more.
Then I went to EQ7 ( I love EQ7.)

 Then I sewed it together. THEN I tried to figure out how to bind it and quilt it. I thought maybe satin blanket binding.....NO that looked horrible. I even considered knitting my own binding....I went to Painted Pony 'n Quilts (a great quilt shop) and Tonya helped me select the only fabric even close to the right colors, a plaid.

 I decided to back it with thin-wale corduroy (since nothing else looked good- although now I think the plaid would have been fine). I tried to find a flannel but didn't. (now I've found a quilt shop that carries more flannel; Quilters Emporium in Stafford, TX)
 I added a border of yellow and cut the interfacing out from behind the blocks. So the back of the top looks like this:
In trying to figure out how to quilt this the pockets kept getting in the way so I got my magnifying light out and managed to pick them off. I gave the pockets to a friend to monogram the baby's last initial (no first name has been decided on) and the year of birth; '15. (Then after all the quilting I sewed them back on-the hardest part of the whole quilt!)

I would have liked to quilt a design that would allow the quilt to drape better but since I'm unsure of the strength of those butted seams I went with a tight baptist fan. The pin-wale corduroy on the back feels wonderful but the quilt is a little stiff. Next time maybe I'll leave the batting out.

This will be used for years. Unlike the baby quilts I've made in the past this will have a place on their couch every winter, at least as long as they live in a cold climate.
I LOVED trying something new and using some of my bin of to make one out of cashmere.....
When I asked for one more picture my son did this:

You CAN still see the quilt.....

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

zipper bag

Yeah! I used 4 zippers last week. I got to demonstrate how to make a bag at our woman's meeting. I had to refresh my memory before the meeting AND make one during the meeting. I considered giving it to one of the attendees.... but I am just to selfish....and I couldn't give up either fabric to someone else cause I used some of my bestest fabric EVER!
The yellow daisy I bought years ago for a doll dress..after my girls were too old for it, so it's waiting....hopefully there will be enough left for a doll dress. (The doll will have to be small.)
The green is a scrap from I dress I made in High school for myself. A BEAUTIFUL dress that I have no picture of :(. (Anyway it proves that I was young once and could wear that bright green....maybe it wasn't a good color on me but the dress was cute!)

The next 2 zippers I used in a bag that I'm loving. I first saw it on this blog. So this is what I'm using now while I wait for the hardware to come in so I can take it apart and add it.
In my stash of zippers I only had 2 repeats, these 2 hot pink ones and 3 beige ones. So I looked at my wall of fabric and choose something to go with the 2 pink zippers. I made it about midnight Saturday night and used it for church Sunday. It is so nice to use a small purse after using BIG ones for years. I did not have any pink thread so I used dots of fusible for the strap. I really like the look without stitching but not sure how it will wash. Here is a link to a pattern (which I did not use, really it would be easier to follow a pattern than to make it up as you go). I think I'll make another one...or.... 5.

Oh, if you want to know how to make the bags on is a tutorial done by someone least one of those bags were made like that....I experimented with the zip on the other...