Sunday, 30 November 2014

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care

I was commissioned to make a few stockings, with the only stipulation that one of them be red. So I used a pattern I made last year and sewed a couple up. I used a vibrant red crackle and a navy and silver fabric called winter's grandeur.

 I cut the toe, heel and cuff from white fabric. The toe is pieced to the patterned fabric. The heel is double layered, sewn right rides together and then topstitched onto the heel. The cuff is in two pieces, sewn lengthwise right sides together, then folded over. It serves as both the lining and the outside.

I added the toe and the heel to both sides of the stocking, then sewed the lining.

The lining is made with white fabric as well. It would make more sense to have cut it in one piece, but I had already cut two extra toes out. I just sewed it right sides together.

I traced the stocking onto batting and basted a layer onto the wrong side of the both of the stocking pieces. Then I sewed the two pieces right sides together.

I stuffed the lining into the stocking. Then I took the cuff piece, sewn into a tube, and tucked it into the stocking with the right side facing the lining. I sewed around the top and pulled it out, folding it over. Then I tucked it in 1/2 inch and topstitched, attaching it to the patterned part of the stocking.

I folded the cuff of the stocking down, but it looks good unfolded as well. 

Ready in plenty of time for Christmas!

Wednesday, 19 November 2014


I write this post in the middle of a blizzard but I designed this quilt in the middle of a tornado.

Early in the fall I arrived home from work one Friday night to a power outage and the threat of a storm.  I sat by the window with a pencil and some graph paper, using the last of the daylight and then a flashlight to sketch some designs. As I was sketching, we got a phone call saying the roof had blown off of the field house at the local baseball diamond and later learned an F1 tornado had passed within about 300 m of our house, tearing apart our neighbour's barn. I joked that I would name the quilt tornado then decided that the pattern did evoke a sort of swirling motion, with pieces coming apart from the centre block. So Tornado it is.

I designed the quilt around the Color Me Happy line, as I had a fat quarter bundle that needed a project. I loved the blues in the line but wanted blue to be the dominant colour, so used Kona Navy as the background and picked out greens, grey, pink and whites prints. I ended up using only 7 fat quarters and still had pieces of those left over.

The quilt is mostly comprised of flying geese blocks with some parallelograms and a few half-square triangles, along with lots of 3 1/2 inch strips cut into various sized rectangles. It came together quickly.

I cut and sewed the flying geese units, parallelogram units and half-square triangle units first.

Then I started in the centre and worked my way out.

I sewed the outside flying geese in blocks before adding the half-square triangle corner blocks.

I was playing a bit and thought two flying geese blocks together might make a fun baby quilt.

 I'm happy with how it turned out! It's funny to see a sketch come to life. I like the way the prints pop against the navy background and the clean lines, creating order in the chaos. The quilt measures 90 x 90, so it'll fit a bed.

I was having a hard time taking pictures, as it was getting dark, I had to lay it on the snow and the wind kept blowing the outside border. My fingers were freezing!

I plan on writing a pattern for this one. I think it's a good way to showcase some favourite prints without using too much fabric. I think it would also look good pieced with only two colours. Next I'll have to decide how to quilt it. Personally, I think it's begging for some custom quilting, but we'll see...


We had a thaw and I managed to take some better pictures, despite the gloomy sky.

For the free pattern, see this post: Tornado Quilt Pattern

Sunday, 16 November 2014

More City Gym Shorts

It's the middle of November already! With a few inches of snow on the ground and flakes in the air. The end of summer and start of fall are always busy with summer travel and school starting up again. So I haven't posted in a while but I have been sewing. First up is another pair of City Gym Shorts, which were started in August and finished right around the time it became too cold to wear shorts. So I guess they'll have to wait in the closet until next summer. I've finished a few quilt tops as well, but a wet fall has made photos difficult. The early nightfall and snow on the ground hasn't helped, so stay tuned!

I broke into a fat quarter bundle from the Color Me Happy line and used my favourite print for the front. The back is a Kaffe Fasset shot cotton.