My Sewful Retirement

A Quilting Journey

Archive for the tag “quilted pillows”

Hello Spring

Happy Monday!

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted, sometimes life gets in the way of spending time in my sewing room.

We had a great visit with my son’s family .

Evelyn Disney family

Here’s Evelyn in one of the outfits I made.

Evelyn Disney update

I also started a low impact boot camp course — I am so out of shape. I am definitely enjoying the work out. It’s been two weeks and I feel the improvement in my energy level.

My Viking Designer SE sewing machine of 19 years is slowly dying and I’ve decided not to repair it. I’ve been shopping for a new machine, this is the first time in many years that I don’t have to consider embroidery features in my decision. I want a machine that I can travel with, locally I found Babylock and Janome machines. We decided to do more shopping so we took a road trip to a few shops in Central Florida. I’ve decided to go with the Juki HZL DX7. The staff in the shop Sew Mini Things in Mt. Dora, Florida were wonderful! I was able to spend quite a bit of time using many of the machines they had on hand. The Juki stitches are beautiful, it is a fast machine, and quiet but the selling point for me was the ease of switching to a straight plate and the multi function foot pedal. The Juki DX7 machine doesn’t have as many decorative stitches as my Babylocks but it does offer the popular ones. The DX7 has an automatic thread cutter, separate motor for winding bobbins, lock and separate reverse stitch, sensor buttonhole and automatic tension settings –same as my Babylocks. The only feature I’m not crazy about is the stitch selector, and it’s not a big deal — I’m spoiled my other machines are touch screens. The price was reasonable but I’m not one to buy on the spot, I came home and did some online research and talked to a couple of people who own Juki machines. I will order the machine online today since the shop offered free shipping!

Sorry for my rambling….

I made a couple of St. Patty Day pillows to use as door prizes for a local event.

A new mug rug for myself.

st patty mug rug
st patty mug rug

I started on Easter table toppers/placemats for my daughter, DIL, and myself!

These were fun….I didn’t have a pattern. I had my sweet hubby draw out a 12 x 18 egg shape, which I used as foundation for piecing. I used my Creative Grids Scrap Crazy templates for the patchwork topper. The place-mats were made with Kaffe Fassett shott cottons cut into 2.5 inch strips. I used the scraps to make the mug rugs and coasters!

Happy Sewing!

Finishes — New and Old

Happy Wednesday!

The past week has been hectic with work and other crazy life stuff.  I did manage to get in some quality sewing time to finish a UFO and work on a couple of new projects.

The rail fence quilt block is an old traditional block that is super simple to construct. Looks great with all fabric themes – modern, solids, 30’s reproduction prints, civil war, etc. I love the rail fence quilt block because it is jelly roll friendly!

rail fence diamond quilt

rail fence diamond quilt

I used the RJR Redwork meets Bluework roll of 2.5 inch strips to make my rail fence picnic quilt. The prints in the roll were red, white, and blue making it perfect for us to use at our local patriotic festivals. I used the thick but soft Blizzard fleece from JoAnn Fabrics for the backing and did not use any batting. I finished the quilt as a blanket; no binding. I did quilt it with a large meandering stitch.  The quilt measure 54 x 65.

Using left over charm squares from a project last year I made a couple of pillows to match. I quickly took the hst scraps and made the star block. Pillow on the left I made using my embroidery machine.

 

I still needed a table runner for May and found the tutorial Stars and Stripes from A Bright Corner  online. I was able to make it start to finish in two hours. If you like applique or just learning how to applique this is a super project. Directions are great.  My runner measure 13 x 36 inches.

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stars and stripes tr

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stars and stripes tr back

 

My new project for the week was using sashiko, which is a decorative form of stitching/embroidery from Japan. When Martingale  had a sale on ebooks over the holidays I purchased  Sensational Sashiko by Sharon Pederson.

sashiko book Martingale image

This book has beautiful quilt projects featuring Sashiko designs — so many of them I hope to make. There are templates in the book if you want to do hand embroidery , and also a list of sites of where to purchase sashiko machine embroidery designs.

Using the machine embroidery option I made place mats and mug rugs. I used a heavier 35 weight rayon thread to give it a more authentic look. The stitch out is absolutely beautiful, you can see stars and diamonds. Each is a single design with a continuous stitch. The placemat sashiko design is 8 x 12 inches and the mug rug sashiko design is 8 x 8 inches. The beauty is the front and back are identical! I can’t wait to start one of the projects from the book.

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sashiko placemat

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sashiko mug rug

Until next time happy sewing!

 

Hello Fall

It’s the end of October, time to pull out my GO BLUE Michigan sweatshirts! We’ve had a couple of chilly days here in MD.

Fall is my favorite time of year. I love the colors of the leaves as they fall to the ground – the deep hues of orange, yellow, green and red are so comforting.

Fall is synonymous with football in our house — my son played football for University of Michigan beginning in 2006 and graduated in 2010.  We still follow the team as if he were still playing!

Gotta have some quilty goodness to go along with football — right??

I made this supersized maple leaf quilt last year. Not really large enough to snuggle under but perfect to throw over my legs while watching games on TV and/or reading.

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Maple Leaf Throw

Quilt Stats:

  • Quilt Block – Maple Leaf
  • Quilt Size: 50×50
  • Fabric: Stash
  • Quilting: Straight Line using walking foot on my Babylock Ellisimo Gold

I practiced more walking foot quilting with pillows to match the quilt.  The yellow/gold pillow I used a decorative stitch from my machine, the burgundy pillow, I marked a large X and echoed each quadrant. It was my first time using a chalk pencil — I didn’t test it — and it didn’t come out until several washes later.

2015 maple pillows

2015 maple pillows

 

I love the maple leaf quilt block.  It is a very beginner friendly block — you learn how to make half square triangles (HST), trimming to size and stitching them together so that you don’t lose the points.  The floor rug below was my first attempt — lots, lots of mistakes. Finished is better than perfect right? 🙂

2015-maple-rug

If you are interested in seeing a great video tutorial for creating the maple leaf quilt block, check out Amanda from 3and3Quarters.

Thanks for stopping by!

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