A Memorial T-Shirt Quilt

My daughter's friend Corina wanted a quilt made from her grandpa's shirts. When Corina dropped off the shirts, there were so many that I had to make two. The first one was made from dress shirts and was delivered in time to give as a gift before Thanksgiving. Right after Christmas I started on the second quilt from t-shirts and other knit shirts. There were even a few flannel shirts thrown in. 

Once it was finished, I looked at the stack of remaining fabric scraps and figured out how to make a pillow from one of the shirts. I used a 16" pillow form as a measurement to make the pillow cover. The buttons on the front became the opening to get the pillow form in. 

Leftover pieces from the dress shirts made a nice patchwork pillow cover, the cuffs were incorporated into the patchwork as well. I quilted the patchwork with some straight-line stitch-in-the-ditch quilting. 

Back in fall, Corina's daughter asked me if I could make her a baby doll quilt. I started it back in fall and sadly it never got finished. Then last week while cleaning up the sewing room, I came across it and finished it. I was happy to be able to complete it for her. 

I dropped everything off yesterday. Corina was happy with the extra surprises and glad to be able to gift the quilt and pillow to her grandma. 


Pencil Me In Quilt

This quilt has been sitting in my sewing room since October. Sadly, it fell victim to the holiday quilting and crafting rush but that's ok, there was no rush to finish it. I used half of a Tula Pink jelly roll to make it and the pattern can be found in Fons and Porter's Magazine. It measures 48' by 68.5" so it's lap size. 

Fons & Porter

I used a pantograph called Amica for the quilting.

Fons & Porter

This was a nice bonus project using leftovers. It will make a nice gift.


Ruxin's Pet Bed

My cat, Ruxin just loved the charity pet beds I made last month. When I got ready to deliver them, I struggled with taking the bed he claimed away from him. In fact, I delivered all of them except the one he claimed for himself.  

I decided I needed to make him one of his own. Instead of using donated fleece that was earmarked for charity projects I needed to buy my own to make a bed for him. I knew it would be a while before I took the time to go to the fabric store to buy fleece, it just wasn't a priority. Then one day I was cleaning out a cabinet in my sewing studio and I came across an unfinished quilt. It was just two pieces of fabric with batting in-between that was used to practice on my longarmer the day it was set up in my house. I decided it was perfect to cut up to make a pet bed. I didn't need to go fabric shopping after all. Yay!

I washed the piece to get all the sizing out since my cat would be sleeping on it. Then I cut it into two pieces and stitched them together to form the pillow. I stuffed the bed with leftover batting scraps and the leftover pieces from the quilt top. It was nice and soft and the perfect size for Ruxin. 

And I think he likes it. 

I had to sneak the charity pet bed away when Ruxin was off playing with my husband. I did have to vacuum all his pet hair off the fleece, he is such a hairy beast, lol. I got it delivered just in time for it to go with the rest of the pet beds.


January Project Plans

Happy new year! I've put away all my Christmas fabrics and I am working on a t-shirt quilt for a client today. The quilt top is done, but I need to get some backing fabric before I can quilt it on the longarmer. My plan is to pick up the fabric to finish it tomorrow while I'm working at the quilt shop. 

The design board is pretty empty except for a piece I finished on the embroidery machine. I want to turn it into an apron pocket.

I have a stack of quilt tops to longarm and I'm hoping to get a few of those completed this week. There's at least 4 Quilts for Kids quilt tops in the bunch that are long overdue. I'm also working on a list of craft fair projects to start on. I want to get a jump on those before the March craft fair date gets too close. 

Since it is the start of a new year I thought I would list some of my crafting and quilting goals for this year:

  • Embroidery machine lessons
  • Quilt listings on Etsy and Ebay
  • Take a class on collage quilts
  • Scroll saw craft projects
  • Purge old fabrics
  • Rearrange sewing studio

Here's to 2021!


December Client Quilts

I didn't have much time for client quilts this month. With all the projects I had to make for my clients from scratch, I did very little quilting for others. Here's the one quilt I did longarm:

That's it for 2020. I had a very productive and successful year with crafting and quilting. I feel very lucky. Happy new year!


A Christmas Wrap-Up

You would think that since I am retired from the workforce (well kind of, I do have a part-time job at a quilt shop now) that the holidays would be less stressful. Well, they are not. Maybe it is because I pile on more things to do than I did before or maybe it is because I am getting older and I can't get things done as quickly and easily as I did when I was younger. It is most likely a little of both. 

I started decorating my house sooner than in years' past and I loved the ease of getting it done. The outside of my house looks pretty good and we didn't break our necks to get the lights on. 

We spent an evening decorating cookies with our daughter and granddaughters. Chloe is not pictured since she didn't last long with the decorating - she hates getting her hands dirty. Avery chose to color the frosting in deep, dark colors. 

We also spent an evening walking through Oak Creek's city square. It was beautifully decorated. Since we had just finished Christmas shopping with our granddaughters with a stop for a scoop of custard, the girls had lots of energy to run around the square.

One morning, Jeff saw a story on the local news where Wisconsin State Fair was selling their famous state fair cream puffs in a chocolate whipped cream version. So we ordered some online and he drove down to pick them up. They were a fantastic Christmas season treat.

We dabbled with making old fashioneds. They seem to be most famous at bars and supper clubs here in Wisconsin so we thought we would try to make them ourselves. Since the pandemic, we've regularly tried our hand at mixing our own cocktails. Some turn out better than others. I think we will have to try again with this one, I'm not so sure I did it right.

One of the last-minute gifts I made was this bag with fabric from the television show The Office. My sister commented that her son's girlfriend would LOVE a bag from the fabric and I really didn't plan on taking the "hint" but I caved the night before Christmas Eve. I used the bag to put my nephew's Christmas gift inside. My sister was quite surprised when she saw the bag.

And today, I mailed out my last Christmas package to my son. The Oak Creek post office was so far backlogged that my postman suggested I wait until after Christmas to send the package. The package was going to my son in Colorado and I already sent him the most important gift which should have gotten to him on December 19th but arrived on his doorstep on Christmas Eve. So I had him and his fiancĂ© covered for the holiday for the most part. 

It felt so good mailing that package this morning, like a weight had been lifted from my shoulders. 

Yesterday we picked up my leftover crafts from the pop-up shop at Hillside Coffee House, it was nice to discover that some things sold there. I also finished another holiday table topper yesterday. I still have a few more works-in-progress that will have to wait until next year. But this one is done and it will get packed away for the next year's craft fairs. 

I sorted, folded, stacked all my Christmas fabrics and unfinished holiday projects and put them back on the shelf for next year.  If it weren't for my new embroidery machine, my sewing room would look pretty uncluttered and clean right now. Oh well. It feels good to wrap things up and I am ready to celebrate the new year.


Jelly Bean Handwarmers

I made a few jelly bean handwarmers using the instructions from the sew4home website. They are so cute. The pattern comes in three sizes and I chose to make the medium size. I only made three of these so far and I took them to my craft fair back in November and sold one of them. I still have the other two and I keep them on my sewing table as a reminder to make some more. 

I have a giant ziploc bag filled with rice that has essential oils sprinkled over them. Once in a while I will shake the bag up to make sure the scent get over all the rice. That's what I use to stuff inside the handwarmers. It works great and smells great.

The instructions to make these can be found here. I think this will be a good way to use up some scraps.


Unicorn Pillow Cover

I embroidered a few samples just to try out my new machine. So now that I have these pieces, it seemed silly to waste them by letting them sit. I found some coordinating fabrics and the samples are now in the center of a pillow cover. I made the cover with a zipper closure so it can be removed and washed. Not that it's done, I wish I would have added a ruffle. I think that would have made it prettier. I think I will give it to Avery next time I see her.