Monday, September 29, 2008

Wait, wait...I'm still here!

Sorry about the hiatus, folks. I was out of town and have been making some transitions with the craziness that is my work.

The weather is cooling down, and fall is just around the corner. Mmmmm, fall....

Fall means that the hard core crafting season is rapidly approaching, which gives me an excuse to do a bunch of things and then pawn them off on family and friends as gifts! I've got sooo much to show you, so I'll be back shortly with some new fun stuff that I've been working on in my little bits of spare time!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Scrappy Reverse Applique Pillow Tutorial

Thanks for all your lovely comments here and on flickr about the pillows! I've got a tutorial put together so you all can make some cute pillows with your scraps too.

You'll need background fabric for the body of the pillow, scraps for the reverse applique, coordinating thread, a sharp pair of scissors with a small point, and some kind of fabric marking pen--I like the water erasable ones, but DO NOT IRON the marks from those pens or they will be permanent (ask me how I know!).

First, cut your background fabric to the size of pillow form plus 1 inch (1/2 seam allowance on each side). Draw your design on the right side of the fabric, making sure not to draw in the seam allowance. Feel free to adapt my design for your own use. A note about your design: you are drawing the STITCHING lines on the fabric. What is inside the lines will be your applique fabric. Closed simple shapes work best.

reverse applique 1 Leaves work well. I could see a cute sunflower too!

Cut a scrap of fabric slightly larger than your applique shape.

reverse applique 2

Place your applique fabric behind the backround fabric face up--that is, the right side of the applique fabric to the wrong side of the background fabric.

reverse applique 3

Set your machine to a narrow zigzag with a short length. Test your zigzag on a scrap fabric to make sure you have nice, somewhat dense stitching. From the right side of the backround fabric, follow your drawn line to stitch your two fabrics together. Leave the thread tails long.

reverse applique 4

Draw your thread tails to the back. Knot and trim tails.
reverse applique 5reverse applique 6
This is the "correct" way. If you get lazy like me after doing a bunch, you'll probably find yourself clipping the tails, applying fray-check and hoping for the best! :)

Trim the applique fabric close to the stitching line (but not too close!).

reverse applique 7
ooo, blurry! Sorry! Hopefully you get the idea...

From the right side of the background fabric, carefully cut the background fabric that is inside the applique without cutting the underlying applique fabric. This is where those small pointy scissors come in handy.

reverse applique 8


reverse applique 9

Repeat for the rest of your design, then add in any connecting stitching lines.

reverse applique 10

Finish you pillow as you see fit. There are a lot of other tutorials out there, depending on what you like. Here's a few that I found, provided without guarantees however:Button back pillow, Basic throw pillow tutorial, Zippered pillow.
(All I did was cut two pieces that were the same width as my front but 1/2 length + 3 in. Turn up a half inch then 2 inches and sew the hem. Lay these face down on the front then sew and turn. All done!)

Phew! Lovely work, now it's time to use that pretty pillow for some well deserved lounging!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Sometimes I just can't help myself

Hope you all have a very lovely weekend, weather notwithstanding in some locals. Me, I have a lovely little time... a little lounging, a little cleaning (okay, more than I would have liked), a little good food (okay, a lot of that too), a little sailing, and of course, a little sewing:

new pillows

What can I say...I love some pillows!

This one features reverse applique, which is a fun way to use up those Garden Party scraps. Check back later this week and I'll have a tutorial for you to try.

reverse applique pillow

Mmmm, pillows... Makes me want to curl up for a little nap!

Monday, September 8, 2008

It's the Pitt!

I'm back from a lovely weekend in Pittsburgh catching up with my oldest gal pals. Lots of gabbing, photo sharing and general merriment was had by all. And we even got in a little Pittsburgh sightseeing.

Pittsburgh - the strip
Shopping, shopping, shopping!

Pittsburgh PopcornPittsburgh Steelers Kettle Corn
Shopping fuel in Steelers colors.

Pittsburgh Ketchup That's a lotta ketchup!

Waffles Incaffeinated
Crazy waffles enclosed...

Pear, almond and cheese with red wine glaze vs. M&M cookie dough with strawberries and whipped cream...both good!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Busy Bee

Why are long weekends never long enough? I totally crammed way to much into mine...

Catch up on lost my new workout courtesy of craigslist, of course....clean mucho... sew a little...

mini stuff stasher v2

Field trip to Whole Foods with the boy... and then a yummy boy cooked meal... and finished with the last of the b-day cake...

the boy loves cake

Head to the boat... battle wasps, giant spiders, sails needing repair and almost killing the motor before heading out for a few nice hours of sailing... collapse into a very very yummy curried chicken salad...(we added garam masala for added yum)...

curried chicken salad

And on my holiday? Yeah, I worked on data analysis and another project alllllll day. Sigh. I could use another holiday to recover from my holiday weekend!