Thursday, August 31, 2017

I Love Home Block One

I signed up to make the I Love Home Block-of-the-Month, designed by Jaquelynne Steves. This is a free BOM as long as you sign up for it. I finally got around to finishing this August block and just in time before the September one comes out. I just love it! I added some of my own details and used batik fabric scraps. This BOM will be 4 different house blocks. I think I am going to make each one a separate quilt.

Jacquelynne Steves BOM

I used green rickrack for the flower stems and double stacked buttons for the flower centers, which I love to do. I also used different stitches around each flower.
I had played around with the settings first before I sewed the final sections together. But Jacquelynne's setting of the triangles and 3 color strips was the best. Here are some photos showing different placements:

I turned the corner triangle squares the other way with the pink toward the inside and the white to the outside corners to see how this would look. It gives the block an octagonal look.

On this one I kept the triangles as the above block, but flipped the triple strips on the sides and top and bottom.

On this one I just kept the setting above, but flipped the corner triangles back to the white going toward the center. 
In the end I thought the green strip around the house looked better than the purple and the white triangles in toward the middle looked better too.
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Sunday, August 20, 2017

Call for Testers

Hello friends, followers and lurkers too, lol! I have designed an Organizer Pouch and created a pattern for making it and now I would like to have this pattern tested by a few testers.

The pattern is written for a confident beginner. Someone who has sewn at least a little, but is not brand new to a sewing machine. You need to know how to use your machine and the presser feet needed. I wrote it with beginners in mind, but not for someone who has never sewn anything by machine.

You will be sewing 5 zippers, 4 will be the same kind of zipper installation and one will be installed differently than the rest.

I would like a mix of beginner, and intermediate sewers/sewists.

I have a form that I would like you to fill out if you are interested in testing for me. I will also have you fill out a survey after completing the sewing. (For those chosen to be testers). If I do not choose you to test this time, I will keep your name on my list and if I design another pattern to be tested, then I might call on you at a later date to see if you are interested in testing then, provided I write another pattern that is, lol!

The testing time once you receive the pdf pattern will be one week to have the pouch completed and photos emailed to me. I hope to get the pattern out to those testers I choose by the end of the week, so that will give you until approx. the first week in September, depending on when I mail the pdf pattern out. If you are not able to complete the pouch in the allotted time, or are too busy right now, but want to be considered for any future testing opportunities, then please let me know this in your comment or email to me. The only compensation that you will receive is the pdf pattern itself. (Not to be shared with others please!)

I would like to have a few people who have blogs, or belong to Facebook groups that can post the finished pouch with links back to my Craftsy store and my blog. After all that is the only way for people to discover my pattern by having others write about it. If you do not have a blog or belong to other social media, I will still consider you as a tester, but I do want mostly people who can promote my pattern.

I will get back to you within a week or so. If you are a no-reply please include your email in the comment, otherwise you won't hear back from me because I do not have your email if you are a no-reply. Or you can contact me by email or use the contact form on the right side of my blog. Thanks for your interest.

Here is the Organizer Pouch I want tested:
Call for testing closed! Thanks for the response. I will be choosing a few testers soon.

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Saturday, August 19, 2017

The Bodacious Bowler

I recently tested this bag by ChrisW Designs. It is a bowler style bag that comes in 3 sizes. While they are small-medium-large, the large is more of an adult medium size and the smaller ones are perfect for young children or to use as a cosmetic or toiletry bag. Christine had a lot of testers testing this bag and we each made different sizes, so check out the testers versions here. Christine had digitized a cute drawing from when her daughter was young, which can be embroidered on the front pocket if you have an embroidery machine, and several testers did just that. I do not have an embroidery machine, so I made my bag in all batiks, inside and out. {If interested in purchasing this bag, please scroll to the bottom of this post.}

This is the large size bag.

The large size only has the phone pocket at the back top.

Even using a lint roller before taking these photos, the lint showed on my bag, :0(

The front pocket has a magnetic snap closure. One of the testers sewed a dividing line down the center to give her 2 pockets, so she didn't use a snap, which is another option.

The cell phone pocket holds my keys, since I don't have a cell phone. I am probably the only person not to have a cell phone, lol!

To give you an idea of space, I could fit my large wallet, sunglasses case and reading glasses case inside and there is plenty of room to spare.

I like to divide my slips pockets with a pen pocket in the center,

Here you can how roomy is is with nothing (except for the pen) inside the bag. The bag opens up nice and wide too.

There is a zippered pocket inside too across from the slip pocket. That makes 6 pockets on my bag (the large front pocket, the divided slip pocket, including the pen pocket, the zippered pocket and the cell phone pocket), but you can divide your pockets or not as you choose, yielding a different number of pockets.

You can add purse feet to the bottom if you like also. The black nylon strips were say we say a "design opportunity" because I cut the base of the bag a bit too short and had to piece the fabric. So I decided to cover up the seam line with some nylon strapping and I figure that these will act as purse feet on this bag, lol! I doubt anyone would have looked at the bottom of the bag closely anyhow.
I am selling this Bodacious Bowler for $75.00 + $15.00 shipping (USA shipping, elsewhere will cost more). If interested in purchasing please email me. SOLD!
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Friday, August 18, 2017

Custom Made Pencil/School Supply Pouch

I have been making and finishing several things, but haven't had the time to post what I have made lately, so I will be posting a few items each week as I have the time.

Last week a quilting friend of mine emailed me asking if I could make her 13 year old granddaughter a pencil pouch for school. She wanted an 8.5" x 11" pouch with zippered pockets and a main zippered compartment. She didn't need grommets because it would go into her backpack and not her notebook. We all met to talk about the size and needs, and colors desired. I always ask for 3 color choices in case I don't have enough of one fabric and because I do like to accent with a 2nd or 3rd color too. Pink was the main color choice, with turquoise and violet as the other two choices. No cutesy pie novelty fabrics (she is nearly 14 years old), no worries because I don't have many novelty fabrics anyhow.

I thought a few days about how I would go about making this pouch and sewing in the zippers needed. I sketched out ideas and visualized in my head not only the final look, but how it would work with the sewing part too. With testing other people's bag patterns and making my own changes on some, and even creating a few of my own designs, I knew basically what I wanted to do, but of course in the actual making of something is when you see what works or not. I decided to sew a smaller version first to decide if I needed to make changes. I am so glad I did sew the smaller one first because I went about installing the zippers differently on the final version than on the test version. The small test version came out looking fine, but I didn't like the way I sewed the zippers in place with strips of other fabrics in between each zipper. It looked great, but I didn't like the sewing of it that way. I even changed the final large version a bit from what we had talked about originally, but I think that was a change for the better. I added a smaller zipper pocket inside the main compartment, making 5 zippers total instead of the original 4 pockets. I did this for 2 reasons, first if she is carrying money I thought it would be safer to use the inside zippered pocket, rather than the small outside pocket and second it made turning the bag right-sides-out through the zippered pocket so much easier! I also added a removable wrist strap, making it easier to carry if she needs to carry this separately instead of inside her backpack, but the strap can easily be removed if not needed.

I took this for show and tell at our quilt group on Thursday, and also gave it to my friend there. Her granddaughter started school this past Monday, so she had been without something for a few days. After my friend saw it, she told me her granddaughter loves Paris stuff, so the fabric I chose was certainly the right choice! Then later she asked for me to make another one for her younger granddaughter, using the same Paris fabric. So I will be working on making it this weekend. I hope her granddaughters love it and find it useful too! I plan on taking photos of the process and writing up a pattern for this too.

One side has a large zippered pocket. This French motif print had the colors she had requested, although the violet color wasn't as pronounced and I think ended up in the seams!

This side has a large zippered pocket and a smaller one centered below it. 

I made 5 beaded zipper pulls with metal charms, using 3 of the heart charms and a flower charm and a leaf charm on the other two zippers.

This is the main compartment with a zippered pocket.

My label has my blog name on one side and my name on the other side.

I wanted some photos on our teak bench, so I could prop them up. The photos in the rocks are laying flat, but I guess you can't tell the difference much, lol! I am pretty proud of how this turned out, so I went a bit overboard on photos. This might work for other supplies too like knitting, quilting or stuff to have on hand when taking a car or plane trip? Might need to make one for myself to test out how I would use it.

This is a small triple zipper pouch I made to test how making a larger pouch would work. I sewed this differently than the larger pouch. I was glad I made this first, because I am much more pleased with how I made the larger pouch. While they might look similar, the larger one is sewn differently.

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