It’s Giveaway Day at Sew Mama Sew, and it’s been a little while since I joined in the fun! If this is your first time here or your one hundredth time visiting, WELCOME! If you’ve found your way over from the link-up at Sew Mama Sew, I hope you’ll browse around a bit, say, “Hi!” and take away a little inspiration.My name is Bonnie, and I’ve been blogging here for many years, sharing the things that I sew for my little ones, for my family and for my home, along with a few recipes now and then, and a little bit about life in general. Recently, my assistant, Leigh, has joined me in sharing some of her projects, as well. (You can find Leigh blogging regularly over at Rooibos Mom.)I’m the designer behind Fishsticks Designs sewing patterns. I primarily design patterns for children’s clothing and for accessories. I really enjoy focusing my designs on things that are practical and things that work for little boys (although, I’m slowly adding little girls’ clothes, too).I’m giving away the winner’s choice of three of my pdf patterns this week, and since you’ll need fabric and notions to sew those new patterns, I’m adding a $25 gift card to the winner’s favorite online fabric store! There are thumbnails of all of my patterns along the right-hand sidebar here, and you can find details about each of them in the Fishsticks Designs Pattern Store if you want to take a closer peek at what you’re entering to win.I’m using a Rafflecopter for entries because it’s easy for you to use, and it makes choosing a winner complication-free for me. To enter, simply leave a comment on this post telling me what your favorite thing is to sew for your loved ones then click on the Rafflecopter to confirm your entry. (Don’t miss the bonus entries for Facebook fans and blog/newsletter subscribers!)a Rafflecopter giveaway
Anyone who has been around me long enough, has heard me utter these words: “If it doesn’t come with an actual pattern piece, then I won’t sew it.”
Enter the Crazy Quilt Block Sewalong!
And you’re absolutely right, this is exactly the type of sewing I said I would never do!
But can I admit something? It’s actually incredibly fun! Even if you make a silly mistake like I did while trimming.
Do you see that nick in the fabric to the left of my oh-so-sharp rotary cutter? Oops. Thankfully with crazy quilting I can easily choose any number of ways to cover it up before my project is finished!
I was crossing my fingers a little by this stage. Just hoping and praying it really would look pretty after it was all trimmed off, and that I wouldn’t lose too much of my favorite fabrics on the edges, in the process.
As you can tell, it was a rather big block that I’d pieced together. And seeing as I am not making a quilt (I already have 2 in the works!), I decided to trim it to the very biggest size I could. As the sides are trimmed and moved out of the way, it’s amazing to see this cute block suddenly emerge from the chaos!
Ta-da! I love it!
In fact, I loved it so much that I stayed up late making another one! This one is actually much bigger than the first. It’s probably going to be a lovely big placemat. The first is probably going to be turned into a super cute snack mat for our little girl, who makes messes of about the same proportion as a wild animal at the zoo during snack and meal times!
Well, I’m off to put my photos up onto the SewCanShe Crazy Quilt Block Sewalong Facebook. Have you put yours up yet? I can’t wait to see what new ones have been added today!
Things are moving along quite nicely with the crazy I-spy mini-blocks for Charlie’s quilt. (I love that he gets so excited when he finds me in my studio working on it! I really have to get it finished for him before we leave on our trip!)I’m not sure yet whether I’m going to sew 10 or 12 of these mini-blocks. Either way, these are the first five finished blocks. (This week’s Crazy Quilt Sewalong Challenge is to show off at least one finished block.)For each block, I started with a fussy-cut focus piece and worked around it with the other scraps that I have on hand. I’m such a planner. These blocks definitely push me out of my comfort zone because they’re such an exercise in going with the flow. I am having fun choosing fabrics that are very “Charlie”. He was born in Texas thus the block below, and the Michael Miller Dino Dudes above makes me laugh a bit. I worked so much with Dino Dudes between the interlock, the woven and the various colors of jerseys . . . oh, and the PUL! This child wore Dino Dudes at least one day a week for the first couple years of his life!My blocks are incredibly simple compared to some of the amazing blocks showing up on the Crazy Quilt Sewalong Facebook Event Page! If you’re looking for inspiration, you have to go check it out!
I know I said I was going to be working on shirts for my two little guys during this season’s Kids Clothes Week, but I got a little sidetracked. These are at least tops, right? I mentioned before that we are heading out on a family trip soon. We’re off to visit a few places that are normally fairly warm this time of the year, but with highs currently hanging out in the low 60s and high 50s, my Florida babies just might be cold! I’ll admit that I agonized a little over the idea that all of our outdoor sightseeing pictures were going to show jackets instead of the cute handmade shirts that I’ve been working on. Enter the handmade hoodie, and that problem is solved! This light blue stretch french terry has been in my stash for longer than I remember. It’s got a nice weight to it, not too heavy, not too light, and it made the perfect backdrop for some of the jersey knit stripes that I love for my boys!
I used my Charlie Tee & Hoodie pattern for these sized up one size since these will be worn over clothing. I modified the pattern slightly by rounding the pocket openings. I’m really loving pockets with a little bit of a curve mixed in with the sharp right angles. The hoods on both tops are lined with the same stripe as the pocket and the sleeve- and waist-bands are done with scraps of chocolate brown french terry. The brown french terry doesn’t have a stretch to it, so I increased the width of the bands to equal the width of the part I was sewing it to. I also had a blast playing with raw edges again! I am generally a little bit obsessive about the way that my seams look, but the reckless nature of these raw edge finishes makes that totally unnecessary. You really don’t know how the fabric is going to curl along the seam allowance until after it’s washed and dried, so slightly wiggly stitching is no big deal! It just adds more character.On Tuesday and Wednesday, I worked on another project for my kids. One that happens to also include raw edge jersey knit sewing. I’m not quite ready to share the whole thing yet, but I’ll share a little picture of some fun pockets . . . lots of fun pockets.
Weeeee! Time to get started on the Sew Can She Crazy Quilt Sewalong! This little mountain shows just a small portion of my I-Spy scraps. We’ve been a little I-Spy Quilt crazy around here in the past, and it’s time to make another one! I have a tendency to grab fat quarters and 1/4 yards that have fun novelty prints on them whenever I run across them, and I hang onto any scraps with cute prints that would work in an I-Spy Quilt, too!
Each of my kids has what we call “couch quilts” that I’ve sewn for them. They are generally about 50″ x 60″ finished with a quilted top and minky on the back. I’ve turned and topstitched some and machine bound others. They are perfect quilts for little ones to sleep with and for big ones to curl up under on the couch. (They’re the only blankets that I allow to be dragged around the house.) They also fold up quite compactly for travel, so they go with us when we’re on the road.
I started planning Charlie’s quilt last year before we left Texas. Actually, I even sewed six blocks for it, but then the house sold and packing started, and I never made it back to it. I was so excited when Caroline told me she was planning a crazy quilt sewalong because it’s perfect motivation to get this quilt done! It just so happens, that my first six blocks are crazy (or wonky) log cabin blocks.
(That’s Charlie’s little finger pointing out the I Heart Robots fabric on top.) The pile of squares to the right are already cut to 6 1/2″ which is 1/4 the size of my finished blocks. My plan is to sew random crazy blocks that are 6 1/2″ to mix in with those squares in 4-patch blocks. To finish the piecing, I’ll stagger the crazy log cabin blocks and the crazy 4-patch blogs. But, we leave on a trip next Friday, so I’ll be sewing fast and sewing ahead of everyone else! I’ll share pieces as we travel, though, so you won’t get to see my finished project until the very end.