This past weekend I was able to celebrate a birthday with a long time and dear friend of mine. Since the event was all black, I want to give her something she could use. Since we both love wine, and I need something to accent my black, I made us some wine tote bags. They were a hit!!!!
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes, with a minor modification
Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes, very easy
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I love that this was quick and fun project for a Saturday afternoon. Dislike…this pattern in for narrow wine bottles, not the fat ones. I will have to make another bag and make some measurement adjustment for a the fat bottles.
Fabric Used: Quilting cottons from Joann Fabrics
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: Instead of using the charm packs, I used quilting cotton and quilted grid lines in it. I added some bling pieces to it to make it differnent and my own. I also increased the length and width of the pattern pieced by 1/2 inch. I will go back and make adjustment for the larger wine bottles
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? YES
Conclusion: this was a fun and quick project. Great for yourself or as gifts. For those looking to get their sewing and quilting mojo back, this will be the project.
I was able to fine a beautiful wine quilting fabric at Joann’s and use it as the lining for the tote.
This is the wine tore I presented it to my fiend and she LOVE IT!
This past week the 2016 International Quilt Festival was in Houston, TX. Wanting to expand my sewing craft and skills, I decided to go. I enrolled in Uptown Workshop with Gyleen Fitzgerald, owner of Colourful Stitiches. Her class was AMAZING.
CHOOSING MY CLASS:
I’ve tried the jelly roll method but they are incomplete because they looked funny. This was my opportunity have a hands on lesson and have someone correct me as I go. I went online and pulled the class schedules and instructors. Because I have a Craftsy account I knew to look for those instructors first and anyone I follow on YouTube. Then I noticed instructors with websites and social media accounts. This gave me honest feedback from students.
I sent a request to Mrs. Fitzgerald’s facebook group and within minutes I was accepted. I introduced myself and before I knew it her students had me running to the Quilt Festival to sign up. Mrs. Fitzgerald joined the chat session, give me some tips and then emailed me the information I needed for the class.
PREPARING FOR CLASS:
Prior to class, I went and reviewed a beginner class I took from Craftsy a year ago, so I wouldn’t look so lost in the class…lol. I was able to catch an awesome sale at Joann’s and bought my fabric and square tool needed for the class project. Good thing was I already own the major stuff ,like cutting mats, rotary cutters, etc.
The night before class, I stayed up and cut my fabric. I could have taken the easy route and bought the pre-cuts, but I really wanted to learn the correct way.
SHOWTIME….TIME FOR CLASS
Bag packed and ready to go, I was up early Saturday morning full of excitement and nervous at the same time. The night before I visited the AllBrands booth to view the Brother sewing machines, so why not rock their bag to class.
I arrive to class set up and introduce myself to the teacher. A few of the ladies remembered my name from the Facebook post, can over, introduced themselves and we all instantly bonded. Good thing the class was not full, this gave Mrs. Fitzgerald more time to work with everyone one on one, which seemed to please the whole class.
PFAFF was our sewing machine sponsor for the class. Before the class began we have a quick lesson on how to operate the sewing machine. We also had an ironing station set up with this nice flatter pineapple grove spray for pressing our seams. This stuff was awesome and smelled so good. I have never enjoyed ironing until now…lol
We received our pattern, took out our fabrics and began to work. At the begin I struggled with the 1/4 seam allowance because the quilting foot was different from what I have at home. Mrs. Fitzgerald was able to see right off my struggle was going to have my pattern alignment off. Once I got it, square blocks were flowing….lol
Next was arranging the blocks into pinwheels and sewing them together. HOUSTON WE HAVE A PROBLEM! The seam ripper was my best friend. I really had a hard time lining my seams up. I keep looking over at my neighbors trying to figure out where I went wrong. Mrs. Fitzgerald made it to my table and the taught me “NESTING” and how to feel when the seam in lined. On my second try I NAILED IT.
Next came trimming my block and setting the boarders. This is where I realized quilting has some OCD tendencies……………..
I learned how to use my square ruler to measure my block properly. Now I understand why my previous attempts to make a quilt were not successful.
Ironing in direction plays an important key in setting the block and constructing the final quilt top.
Despite what the measurements are on the pattern, the first completed block sets the dimensions for the remaining blocks (this includes correct seam allowance and squaring the blocks correctly)
As you see below, I have pictured my completed block before trimming (left) and the back of my block after ironing and trimming (right).
Once I understood the concept, I was able to complete my second block on my own (the one on the right below). When I brought it to Mrs. Fitzgerald she reacted like a parent receiving a straight A report card from their child, and I was standing there grinning like the child with the straight A’s…lol
HERE ARE A FEW COMPLETED BLOCKS FROM MY CLASSMATES. OUR COMBINED BLOCKS ALONE MADE A NICE PATTERN TOP. IT WAS NICE TO SEE THE PERSONALITY IN EACH BLOCK SET.
My confidence was strong and with the encouragement and support from Mrs. Fitzgerald and the other students, I felt bold enough to buy two additional patterns. Mrs. Fitzgerald picked them out for me based on the skill level from class. The Jack and the Bean Stalk is slightly above my newbie skill level, but I really liked the pattern and she is going to help me when I am ready.
Throughout the week I networked with soooo many people. In the workshop I actually met a couple of ladies who live very close to me. We exchanged information and I hope to be quilting with them soon.
I can not wait to post my finished quilt. I hope it doesn’t take me too long to complete. Stay tune and until next time……
My best friend is having a baby boy, and I wanted to give the baby a gift that is unique from the standard baby gifts. After browsing through pinterest, I saw a crib rag quilt from Poofy Cheeks. I thought I would give it a try. Her instructions were easy to read and follow.
I started out following the instructions of Poofy Cheeks, but some how I got distracted and miscalculated. Therefore my rag quilt strips are not as she listed. It was a hit and the baby shower and I loved the first picture my friend sent me of her son wrapped in the the quilt.
YES, September is National Sewing Month and I am super excited.
The observance of National Sewing Month began in 1982 with a proclamation from President Ronald Reagan declaring September as National Sewing Month “In recognition of the importance of home sewing to our Nation.”
This year I pledge to do something sewing related each day. How many of my sew sisters and brothers will join me? I will journal my sewing activities, and blog them once a week. A strong commitment to make, but this will allow me to increase my sewing skills and knowledge.
This past weekend my sewing group had a zipper workshop to review techniques as we prepare our spring/summer collections. Since this was an all morning workshop, we decided to bring breakfast refreshments. I brought sangria and blinged out the wine glasses for everyone. Sometimes sewing can be stressful when your creative thoughts are blur, so the ladies we happy to have a glass to sit by their machines as we worked. By then end of the workshop…well lets just say we may need to retake this zipper workshop….LOL
SEW GOOD SANGRIA
1 box of 5 liter box wine
1 liter of ginger ale
1 liter of mango agava
1 cup of flavor rum
1/4 cup of sugar
1 cup of strawberries
1 cup of pineapples
1 cup of mangoes
2 cups of peaches
Let the mixture sit overnight in the fridge and enjoy the next day.
You see this beautiful picture of sisterhood. Well they put me to the test this past weekend. We went shopping at one of my favorite stores, on a sales day, while I had a little extra change to spare during my RTW fast. I did just like the husbands/boyfriends…found a seat and watched them shop….lol (it was hard 😢😢😢😢).
I did buy two accessories for my new clothes I will be sewing myself this year.
The seamstress in me did walk around observing the details in the clothing. At my current sewing level, I must say I am doing very well compared to retail stores.
How do you tell a person who LOVES shopping they can’t for a whole year.
I first heard of the Ready To Wear Challenge from Vatsla of Fashion Behind The Seams. We met on periscope and she was explaining the challenge and the things she had learned from it thus far. This allowed her to me more creative and pushed her to improve her techniques on certain garment items the she would normally buy.
This encourage me to want to try because I began designing garments for area fashion shows. I wanted my garments to be unique, not knock off copy cats. I ordered a few sewing technique books, enrolled in a few online classes, and began following a few technique youtube channels.
Here I am banning myself from shopping for 2016. This may be a little difficult because I am used to running in the store to pick up a cute shirt for a social gather. Guess I need to have these shirts on deck now…lol. I will post updated through the year on my progress.