Wednesday, December 25, 2013

More Christmas Presents!

I made a few more handmade items for Christmas this year.  Nothing too crazy, though, and I actually forgot to take pictures of a few things, which really sucks!

Elizabeth and I swapped mini quilts and sewing machine covers for Christmas.  I've only made a couple mini quilts ever, and they've always been for me, but I love the idea of them because sometimes the thought of making a huge quilt is just exhausting.

I broke into my stash of Mendocino to make this Round n Round mini.  I've been hoarding this fabric for years and it's been passed back and forth between me and my mom.  Currently, it's in my possession, and my mom and I decided if I ever have a kid the baby room should be Mendocino-themed.  I love that idea, especially now that I have Heather Ross Prints and can order the Swimming Sisters print off of Spoonflower.

I quilted this mini with light blue Aurifil in perpendicular straight lines.  I was unsure about this at first but I really like the subtle movement and I love the little boxes it creates--some mermaids and fish are framed!

I backed the mini in Art Gallery Oval Elements and made little hangers so Elizabeth can put it on her wall!  I used a coordinate from Bonnie and Camille's Happy-Go-Lucky for the binding, which was perfect.

I had never made a sewing machine cover before, so this was a first and was a little scary.  I decided to go with the "quilt" version, which isn't as structured as other sewing machine covers.

I had an idea in my head about how I wanted to make this: I originally wanted to use the Thimble Blossoms Mini Spools pattern to make five spools across the front and a rainbow dresden on the back.  But I did the math wrong (unsurprisingly) and ended up with three spools on the front and two on the back.  Oh well.

I used some fun fabrics from my stash for the spools.  I thought I had gray faux-bois fabric in there somewhere, but I couldn't find it for the life of me!  So white faux-bois it was.

I quilted it with white Aurifil in straight lines, which is functional and doesn't take a lot away from it.  I didn't want it to be overwhelming--this is something that needs to fit into Elizabeth's sewing room fairly easily!  It's definitely not a statement piece.

Sigh--the backing.  I agonized over this for hours--what to use?!  I've had this Melody Miller Viewmasters print in my stash for well over a year, after spending too much on it on Etsy.  The colors went with the spools pretty well and the linen substrate will hold up pretty well, too.

I used the Motif Madness print from Rashida Coleman-Hale's Tsuru line as the binding, which I made extra wide just for fun, and I threw in some aqua and red from Oliver + S's City Weekend line for the ties.  That's it on my machine above.  Hmm, maybe it looks too good and I should've kept it...

I also made Kelby a Gather cowl (pattern by Tin Can Knits; Ravelry notes here), a mini iPad case and a box bag, but I completely spaced on taking pictures of those.  That's what happens when you procrastinate and rush through!

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Winter's Lane Festive Quilt

I have a finished Christmas present to show you today!  I don't think my grandma reads this, but if she does, Grandma, just close the window!  Don't spoil the surprise!

Okay, I think she's gone now.

I made my grandma a Festive quilt for Christmas.  The pattern is by Aneela Hoey; the fabric is Winter's Lane by Kate and Birdie for Moda.

So...some background.  I started this quilt in August.  I had all intentions of finishing it and being ahead of schedule--pat yourself on the back, Emily!  Except, not so much.  Knitting and other projects came in and this sat on top of my bookshelf until last week, when I realized I needed to finish it ASAP.

The blocks are huge!  This quilt is about 64" x 64" and the blocks are only three across each row.  I enjoyed making them--as much as I love the look of fiddly little patchwork, sometimes you just want something big and easy.

Oh hey, guess what?  My lens had a smudge and I didn't realize it until now.  Whoops.
I quilted it in serpentine stitch with light blue Aurifil, which matched perfectly.  I originally wanted to have this long-armed but I ran out of time.  I like the serpentine stitch.  It makes it so crinkly!

The backing is Winter's Lane poinsettias, which I picked up at Quilted Thimble Cottage last weekend.  Thanks God they still had some prints in stock!  It was a double whammy of a good day--I got poinsettia backing and I got to talk to Caleb, Jenn's four-month-old baby.  He's a sweetie!

Of course Schnoz approves.

It should be in Ohio today, so let's hope the post office doesn't fail me.  Merry Christmas, Grandma!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Finished: Cherry Soda/Orange Soda Hat

I really love knitting hats.  They're fast and fun and small and I usually can't figure out how to effectively wear them but that doesn't stop me.

This is the Cherry Soda/Orange Soda pattern from Thea Coleman's With a Splash Of... series.  I love Thea's designs and this pattern was great to start with.  It wasn't difficult at all, even with the lace chart.  I think it helped that it's made from DK-weight yarn, so you aren't dealing with skinny strands of yarn and tiny little needles.

I used Madelinetosh DK in Forestry for this hat, which I bought at Eat Sleep Knit on Black Friday.

I love the movement of the colors in this yarn, and all tosh yarns.  It's never boring!

You can find my Ravelry notes here.  You'll notice I finished this almost two weeks ago.  I've just been a little behind lately.

I took this one before the others, without any makeup--yeesh.

I have two other projects in the works now, so I hope I can get those posted here soon!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Christmas at Our House

Hello!  I'm so sorry about the long absence--with Thanksgiving being so late this year, it seems like the last three weeks have been a blur of preparation and work.  As of last night, though, I'm done with my full-time job until January 6th and all the presents are wrapped!  I have one more stocking stuffer to buy but that's it.  It's such a good feeling to know I can spend the next two weeks knitting and watching Christmas movies and lots of Netflix!

Because everything is officially done, I have lots of time to blog now!  I have about four posts coming at you in the next week.  Watch out, world!

First up, I wanted to talk about some Christmas decorations at my house.  Most of what we have (outside of ornaments) is handmade, either by me or my friend Elizabeth.  Elizabeth and I swapped Christmas pillows this year which really livened up my living room!

Aren't they adorable?  Elizabeth is an awesome quilter and her skills really came through with these pillows.  I wish I could capture her FMQ skills but you just have to see them in person!

Also, that's our new couch!  No more sad back cushion, which makes me ecstatic.

I sent Elizabeth two pillows as well!

This pillow was made with a mini charm pack of Aspen Frost by BasicGrey and some neutrals.  I used this tutorial from Moda Bake Shop and an Aspen Frost print for the back.

For the other pillow I used a tutorial from Sew Mama Sew and Winter's Lane, which is easily my most favorite winter/holiday fabric line ever.  I also used Quilter's Linen for the first time ever and I can't recommend it enough.  I love the look of linen but Essex can sometimes be a pain in the butt.

I also sent Elizabeth some homemade gifts!  Like this drawstring bag...

...which had a Honey Cowl inside!  I used Madelinetosh DK in Mica for her cowl.  I love the way it turned out!

So of course those two pillows aren't our only Christmas decorations.  We have our stockings from last year, too:

I don't remember talking about those Swoons before, but I painted them in August.  Right now they're resting our mantle because Nick won't hang them.  Oh well, two fewer holes to patch when we move!

The little birds on either side of the Swoons are from Target.  My brother and his fiancee bought the other two in the series without talking to us first--quite a coincidence!

Here's our tree, with the treeskirt I made last year:

We bought this tree at Home Depot this year and I love it so much.  I'll miss it when it's gone, actually.  It smells great, it's super healthy-looking, and it was $30.00.

I also made a little runner for my quilt cabinet, which had the pumpkin runner on it during the fall:

I used the Jingle block from Thimble Blossoms and a bunch of red and aqua scraps from my stash.  Red and aqua are the colors of the holidays now, it seems.  I used red gingham for the binding which is just about the best thing ever, I think.  The little owl jar is from Target this year, while the knitted tree is from Target last year.

How do you decorate your home for the holidays?

Images by Freepik