Monday, May 28, 2012

Busy As a Bee

I've missed the last two Zakka Style Sew-A-Long projects as I've had a lot going on ... traveling ... other craftiness that needed completing.  If you don't believe me, here's the proof!

Here's a little something I whipped up for my BFF:

I've been wanting to combine some crochet and sewing and this is the first outcome of that desire!  The center panel is just straight Tunisian crochet.  Love the purples, pinks, browns all together.  The self-striping yarn does most of the work.  I found a nice deep fuchsia cotton to make the rest of the pillow cover.  Made the custom insert myself even using muslin and poly-fill.  You can't see it, but I even printed a care tag for the inside.  Ooo ... fancy!  And don't forget the inset zipper!  The insert I overfilled a little bit so that as it settles and compresses a bit, the pillow won't sag.

And then there is this little denim wristlet purse for a new PhD I know:

I trimmed the outside with the same fabric I used for the lining.  Tres chic!

There are two other projects that got completed the past two weeks.  I will be posting about them at a later date.  AND I've been working feverishly on a cute capelet for an upcoming workshop I'll be co-teaching my local LYS next month!  Yea!!!!

Edit:  Wristlet design based upon a pattern/how-to from Sew What! Bags by Lexie Barnes.  I inserted the zipper differently using fabric tabs to cover the ends of the zipper.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Zakka Style Sew-A-Long: Week 6


Or not.  Busy, busy week this was.  I wasn't even going to attempt to do this week's project.  Not just because I didn't have time, I also have a stainless front refrigerator.  Magnets don't stick.

BUT ...
(There's always a but.)
On Saturday it occurred to me what a great idea this project was for using up scraps.  Which I have begun shoving in a plastic bag.  For now.  Working on a better system, but that's not really the point.  I have all these scrap fabric to use!  But I still don't need magnets.  So I decided to make broaches!  Well, broach singular.  (Hey!  I didn't have a lot of time, okay?!  Get off my back!)

Anyway, it isn't perfect.  I consider it my trial run as I see more of these in my future! 

Now, for the specifics.  I fussy-cut a piece of home dec weight cotton, used some repurposed denim scraps to surround it and attached a layer of fusible fleece behind it.  THEN I used some No. 5 Perle Cotton thread to put a simple running stitch around the flower.  (There I go, hand-sewing again!)  The back is Osnaburg and I used more of that to create a stronger base for the pin finding inside the whole thing.  Just like a scrap folded about 4 times to make it thicker.  Worked pretty well.  Stitched the pin to the backing BEFORE sewing the front and back together, RS facing then turning RS out.  Please ignore the wonky edge there on the back.  I was doing this quick and the seamed backing pulled apart a little.  Then I top-stitched all around the border twice.  Yes, I intentionally made those lines wonky as the edges aren't perfectly square.  Then denim stretches a little bit.

So that's my "Not-a-Magnet" for this week's project!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Zakka Style Sew-A-Long: Week 5


The project for this week was cute and looked relatively easy.  Thought I'd have some fun with the patchwork portion.  Which I did. 

BUT that being said ...

It's gripe time.
I think the construction for this was W-A-Y more convoluted and confusing than it needed to be.  I think there are better ways to do something so simple.  And to suggest leaving only a 1.25" opening to turn it right-side-out through??  When there is interfacing involved??  And a strap??  Yeah, that's not really big enough and I have tiny fingers!  The material is just to thick.  The linen got stretched out at the opening so it's uneven after closing and stitching it up.  Oh, and "use a knitting needle ..." to help push the fabric through???  Even with a fairly tight-weave linen, the knitting needle will punch right through the weave.  Three times.  I knew better than to use it, but I did anyway.  So, that's on me.  Now I have three holes in it.  Lovely.

If I do this project again, I will do it differently. 
And write up my own instructions. 
And post them here. 
Because this was a pain in the ass.

In my humble opinion.

But it's kick-ass in RED!

** I will admit that I had some unrelated frustrations arise as I was writing this post so if my rant seems a little blunt, I apologize.  But my points I defend.  This could have had simpler and better instructions.