Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Project Bags and Labels

Guess what came in Monday's mail?!?!?!?
slim, small envelope, from France

100 labels
It took a couple days to fill the order (they did it in good time).  It took 24 hours to get from France to US, but, it took 12 days to get from NY to my home.  :(  (no speed records set for the US Post Office).

Here is some 'up close' of the labels.  Sorry for the blurry pictures.  I tried several times, but, the labesl came out blurry every time.
'Teapots2Quilting' on the front
underside of label 'by Cheryl Parker'
*OOPS!*  I forgot to include a link to the labels. Ikaprint is the company, and they are out of France.  Here are the labels that I ordered. 

I was ready for those labels to arrive!  I got started stitching the labels and binding onto all 10 Project Bags.  It is a slow process, since I'm not used to stitching BOTH sides of the binding down by machine.  All those Clover clips and fussing with everything made my arms sore.  I got 2 bags done on Monday afternoon.  The first two bags are using one of the 'Ugly' fabrics from my little quilt guild's Ugly Fabric Exchange.  The 'ugly' fabric is the wild flowers showing thru the window of the bags.  Both of these bags are the same, except that I quilted the flower fabrics differently.
First 2 Project Bags finished, with labels

up close of one of the bags with the label on the left side

On Tuesday, I stitched the rest of the labels on the bags, and started stitching the bindings on.  I got 6 more bags finished.

These two bags are different fabrics.  One used the orphan blocks from the freebie table at my large quilt guild.
one of these bags is not like the other.....

treadle fabric thru the window

using orphan blocks to make this bag
These next two bags are the same, except that the zippers are different (one pastel, one hot pink).  I got these fabrics a few years ago, when I got 3 large bags full of fabrics at the local thrift store.  I've been slowly making projects with some of these fabrics.
sewing themed Project Bags

up close of one bag
If you want to see the backings I used for these project bags, check out this post.

It is a well known fact that I collect vintage sewing machines (and sew with them, too).  When I find sewing themed fabrics, I HAVE to buy some.  Since the majority of my vintage machines are Singer's, you can guess why I had to have some of these fabrics.
Singer fabric bags

first Singer bag

second Singer bag

These last bags are made from several different sewing themed fabrics that I've collected.  They aren't the same fabric line, but, I thought they went well together.  I got up this morning, and stitched the last bit of binding down on each of these bags.
last 2 project bags

first bag

second bag
10 Project Bags FINISHED!  I got the pattern from By Annie.
I'll make these again, but, I did make some changes as I made these bags (added fusible interfacing to zipper fabrics, and used the 'main' fabric for what shows thru the window, not what is on the back (that won't get looked at).  I also decided to use a solid piece of fabric on the bottom, instead of piecing a strip of fabrics. 

Oh yes, these Project Bags were made on my 1939 Singer 221 Featherweight, Betty Sue.  I did 'cheat' and did the machine quilting for the backings on my Janome 4800QC.  I do love 'needle down' while machine quilting.
Betty Sue, stitching Project Bags together
 Hopefully I'll be off shortly, to sew with friends at a local quilt shop, Sewing Etc.  I'm waiting for the AC man to arrive, and fix our AC first. 

Saturday, May 13, 2017


I really have been stitching, but, now I'm 'waiting' for my new labels, so that I can finish stitching. 

I saw these Project Bags on Stitch All Things, and I've been wanting to make these for quite a while now.  I finally ordered the pattern.

I got all the pieces cut out, and the backings quilted last month (post). I prepped 10 different Project bags.  I've stitched them all together EXCEPT for the binding.  I ordered some labels, and, they were printed and shipped out quickly, BUT, the USPS isn't interested in getting them to me.  It only took 24 hours for them to get from France to New York, but, it then took 6 full days for them to get from NY to Chicago.  Now I'm waiting for them to get the 40 miles from Chicago to me (it's been 4 days so far).  I think they are walking them here.  I need to get these finished by Thursday.  I do wish they would 'walk' them here a bit faster. 
10 Project Bags, with binding ready to be attached
stitching them on Betty Sue
I did change something, most of the way thru.  She doesn't line her zipper flaps, and, the fabric tends to stretch.  After attaching 6 zippers, I decided to add some fusible interfacing to the back of the zipper flap fabric before I sewed the zippers on.  MUCH better! 

I have been doing some other stuff, while waiting.  Remember this lovely machine from Deborah?
Post WWII class 15 Universal
They just don't make any paint (that I can find) this color.  I finally settled on a paint that is several shades lighter, for the hand crank.  I also didn't like the black spoked hand wheel, that I had to use.  The original hand wheel (solid, so, can't use a hand crank with it) was that light cream color.
original solid hand wheel, and showing black spoked hand wheel and black hand crank

I tested the paints, to see if they would 'stay' on the metal.  I loved the color of the little paint, but, it scratched off the hand wheel.  Only the spray paints worked.
testing the paints

spray paints I used

I finally got both of these painted and attached.  Don't look too closely, since my painting skills leave a lot to be desired.
painted hand wheel and hand crank

painted hand wheel and hand crank
Sew much prettier now!  I have more exchange blocks to make on this machine.  This will also be fun to show off at my next demo, at Lyon's Farm, in September.

While waiting, I've made more binding for placemats, hand stitched some large hexie flowers, and have been working on family reunion blocks, etc. 

Annie's Ruby Slipperz is having a sewing challenge.  She wants us to sew at least 30 minutes, 6 days a week (you get one day off each week) for the month of May.  I think that 30 minutes of sewing is the LEAST I've done each day.  With all the hand sewing, I've gotten way more than 30 minutes a day done.  Making 10 project bags took up most of a couple of days (no string piecing, since I had to keep changing the thread colors).  I've stitched while watching Dancing With The Stars, on NCIS night, while waiting for car repairs (oil change and a recall fix).... 

Now, if the USPS will just deliver my labels, I'll have LOTS more stitching to get done, and will finally have some finishes to show.

Hope you have a fun and productive weekend!

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Table Runners

I've been busy stitching this week.  Other than buying matching zippers for the Project Bags, I haven't worked on those anymore. 

At my March guild meeting, someone put a completed table runner top on the freebie table.  I grabbed it quickly.
table runner top from freebie table
It was time to finally baste and quilt this.  I pulled some red polka dot fabric for the backing, and some red Kona for the binding, and proceeded to straight line quilt this.
completed table runner

showing backing fabric
 I think this will be fun to use under one of my vintage sewing machines.

 Back in February, I designed and made a table runner top for a friend.  After I finished the top, I put it aside to make 7 purses.  It was time to baste and quilt this table runner, too.
finished table runner

showing backing fabric

I'm in two 'Ugly' fabric exchanges.  One of them is for the Michigan TOGA.  This is one of my vintage sewing machine gatherings.  The next TOGA is in June.  I have to have a project made with the Ugly fabric by then.  It was time for me to finally start.

I had got a pattern off the freebie table (I LOVE the freebie table) at guild, back in February.

I liked the star in a star blocks, and thought I could make a table runner, using my Ugly fabric.  My Ugly fabric is a black on black.

Ugly fabric for MI TOGA
I don't think this is ugly.  I didn't think my fabrics last year were ugly either (both large scale polka dots). 

I made three blocks, using Civil War reproduction scraps to go with my ugly fabric.  Here are my blocks

I was going to add the sashing, like in the pattern, but, I don't know if I want to do all that applique or  not.  I also don't know if I want to make more of the center stars, that are the cornerstones.
up close of sashing and blocks on pattern
I was thinking I might set the blocks on point, instead.  Decisions, decisions.....

On Tuesday, I went to sew at Kelly's quilt shop, Sewing, Etc.  Kelly was cutting up fabrics to make a demo quilt with 10 inch squares.  She gave me the scraps.
scraps from Kelly
I'd just looked up a block on The Quilter's Cache.   I hadn't finished the star in a star blocks yet, and was still thinking about the Ugly fabric exchange.  I found a block, called Michigan, on the site.  What a great block to use some of those scraps.
Michigan block from The Quilter's Cache
I was supposed to come up with a 12.5" block for another groups Block of the Month, and, this works for both projects.  Here is my finished block, using the ugly fabric, and Kelly's scraps.
Michigan block, finished
I decided that this block needed something, so that it could become a finished project.  I added a small border, using the ugly fabric, and then, cut 2 large squares, that Kelly had left with the scraps.  I machine quilted it, and bound it with the ugly fabric, to make a 19" square table topper.
finished table topper, using 'Ugly' fabric from MI TOGA

up close of the quilting

showing the backing fabric

Woohoo!  Another finish!  That makes 3 finished table runners/toppers, all using fabrics from my stash, scraps, or Ugly fabric, from the exchange.  I've never considered myself a 'scrappy' quilter, since I don't usually use my scraps.  Most of the time, my scraps just sit in boxes or bags, when I finish the quilt.  This year, I've been using scraps for several different projects. 

Now to get back to those Project Bags.  One of the reasons I hadn't done anymore on them, was that the vinyl was 'folded' and I've been trying to get it smooth.  That takes time, and heat, and more time.  I think the vinyl is ready to be cut now. 

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Busy Stitching!

Thursday night was my large quilt guild meeting.  I found these two blocks on the freebie table, and rescued them as the meeting ended.

orphan block from freebie table

2nd orphan block from freebie table (smaller than first block)
I know, not pretty, and not well made, either.  Neither lay very flat, but, I figured I could maybe make a tote bag with them.

Well.....I've been wanting to make some project bags, and I decided I'd better get started on them, since one of them will be made with the 'UGLY' fabric from my little quilt guild's Ugly fabric exchange.

This is the pattern that I will be using.  'Project Bags' from


I've been seeing the dozens (yes, dozens, she just finished an order for 25 project bags) of these bags being made on a blog I read.  I finally decided that I had to make some for myself. 

The pattern makes 4 different sizes of project bags.  I wanted the largest one.  It calls for quilting a 18"x 18" square, then trimming it down to 16.5".  I started pulling fabrics from my stash, and, got a bit carried away....  I ended up with 8 different squares to quilt.  I just finished the machine quilting on all of them.  Some are heavily quilted, and some are very lightly quilted (depending on the fabrics). 

First is the block from above.  It was wonky, so, I quilted it heavily.  I think it looks better now, than it did.
front of wonky block

backing of wonky block
The other, matching block will be used in the project bag, too.

Next is the 'Ugly' fabric from my little quilt guild's exchange.  I don't think that it is ugly, but, I wouldn't know how to use it cut up in a quilt, since it has a large pattern.  We got 1/2 yard of each Ugly fabric, so, I decided to put something else on the back, and make 2 project bags.  I quilted each piece differently.
Ugly fabric, 1st block

Ugly fabric, 2nd block

back of Ugly fabric blocks
Then I started working with some of my larger prints of my vast Sewing Themed fabrics.  I can never figure out how to use fabrics with larger prints, since you lose the print when it is cut up.  The first one, I made 2 matching blocks (front and back are the same) and I made one block of the 2nd one.

2 of this block, front and back are the same

front and back are the same
Then I pulled out some of my 'fun' Sewing themed fabrics, and had to add borders to these fabrics before I quilted them.  First, are the 'Singer' fabrics, with some thimble fabric added for borders.

Singer treadle block

2nd Singer treadle block

backing on both Singer blocks
Lastly, I used some bright sewing themed fabrics, that also needed to be bordered.  I made sure to keep all the border fabrics going in the same direction.  You can read some of the fabric parts.

1st block

2nd block

showing backing for both blocks
The backing fabric shown in the picture above, was ordered online last month.  When I went to cut it, I found a rip in the center of the fabric.  Grrr!!!!  I paid good money for this fabric.  At least I noticed it before I cut the backing squares.  Because of the location of the rip, I could use the piece on either side of the rip, and get the squares I needed (barely).  I hope the rest of this piece of fabric doesn't have any rips in it. 

While preparing these blocks for machine quilting, I also prepared 2 different table runners for quilting.  I haven't decided how to quilt them yet, since they will be looked at more closely (one is a gift for a friend).  I forgot to take pictures of them. 

Now to start cutting the pieces for the rest of the project bags, and see if I have enough matching zippers. 

I hope that all of you are having a productive weekend, too.  Hubby is off backpacking, so, I don't have to worry about cooking this weekend.  Having to stop and fix supper tends to kill my mojo every evening.  I worked on these till 10pm last night.