I didn’t know who Alison Glass was until I started seeing posts for the Alison Glass mini quilt swap. I quickly fell for her fabrics. I ordered a fat quarter bundle of Grove for my quilt and used the nine colorways to create a plus quilt layout. I was really happy with how this layout turned out and have considered making a version of it for myself. I didn’t get a good picture of the back with my phone, but I did find this one of Jackson laying on it while I was sewing on the binding. And here’s the finished project with the extras I sent. I got a lovely improv quilt with the Handcrafted fabric line and a really nice pincushion and lots of other lovely extras. My previous pincushion was something I threw together when I was in elementary school. I posted a picture on Instagram asking for a new one if my partner felt like it. Here’s a close-up of my new one. I got some pins I really like too. This was the first of three fabric designer themed mini quilt swaps that wrapped up this month so erring the mail has been quite exciting lately!
The rainbow mini swap wrapped up in April. I started off with nine colors of polka dots and an idea for a log cabin, but the colors weren’t working in the pattern. I did sew the warm colors together in the center before I decided that it wasn’t working out so I ended up using that part of the block as a zipper pouch. I was messing around with the layout in Adobe Illustrator and came up with this when I was trying out another idea. It got much more of a response from the swap group than I was thinking it would and my partner, who is a big fan of polka dots, was very pleased with it.
And here’s the back.
I made some colorful extras too, including a rainbow tote and a key fob. Those two items have become my go-to extras for swaps. And here’s the quilt I got from my partner. I’m still pretty amazed by it and will catch myself just staring at as it hangs on my craft room wall. I still have several more swaps to catch up with on the blog, and three shipping this month!
I’ve become a bit of a mini quilt swap addict. Here’s the info on my second one from early this year, the Schnitzel and Boo mini quilt swap.
I picked out some blocks from a sampler book my mom has when I was visiting her at Thanksgiving. I started with Tula Pink arrowheads and picked out coordinating fabrics from my LQS.
And bear’s paw and dutchman’s puzzle.
It ended up being pretty big with four 12″ blocks and there were some tricky size issues with a block that I have since tried to forget about. Here’s how it all turned out.
And here’s some extras I made with the leftover scraps after cutting out all the pieces.
And the total package. (Photo from my partner)
And now what I got from my partner. This quilt was so perfect for me and I got a lot of great extras too!
I’ve signed up for many more swaps since!
Last year I did a Dr. Who swap that turned out to be my first mini quilt swap.
Making a quilt wasn’t required for this swap but I made one for my person since she said she never had a quilt before, and my partner (a different person) made one for me.
The design I chose was something way out of my comfort zone but learned a lot in the process. I’ve been taking graphic design class, so I started using Adobe Illustrator to lay out all my quilts before buying fabrics.
It was really useful for making patterns for my appliqués. (The designs don’t make a lot of sense if you don’t watch the show…) I just interfaced (yeah, learned that QUICK) and did a zigzag stitch around the edges.
And here it is all together with Tardis backing/binding. The borders and white squares are Kona Cotton.
Here’s the one I got.
I really like the pattern my partner used for mine and have downloaded the free pattern so I can make it sometime.
This project was my return to quilting and I’ve hit the ground running since with swaps and inspiration, so much more to come on this front!
I have so many pretty and fun things to show you all blog fans, but my blog backlog is killing me… Plus I have already completed projects for two swaps this year and am working on four more (Am I hooked on swaps? Maybe…)
So here’s a quick post just so it doesn’t feel insurmountable to get back to it.
I bought some really pretty bird fabric at my LQS last fall. It lingered on my shelf until earlier this week.
I wanted I make a headphone pouch but didn’t feel like shortening the 9″ zipper. Why? Beats me but I ended up with a way wider pouch than I intended.
I lined it with black fleece because I typically like my pouches to have more heft to them than just interfacing. So after making a super wide pouch I realized it would be a lovely new home for my DPNs, at least until I sew myself a fancy knitting needle case 😄
For round five of the Secret Tote Bag Swap hosted by Lia’s Handmades, the theme was the 241 Tote by Noodlehead. I was quite excited about this theme and decided to order some fabric online instead of just heading to my local Hancock Fabrics. (I’d like to go to a local quilt shop, but their hours aren’t often day job friendly.)
The first options (my favorite) were popular, but I thought my partner might prefer #4 which was also getting some good responses. I couldn’t commit to two as I just didn’t like it even though some others did. Was I overthinking my fabric selections? Perhaps. As the mailing deadline got closer, I realized I better go ahead and order something.
So I went with the Joel Dewberry and paired it with some white twill and a unused belt from the boyfriend as a strap. I had a metal and navy zipper that went right along with it and even though I was nervous about making a zipper pocket like this, it went together easily.
And I did buy some of the fabrics in option one for me. 🙂 Couldn’t resist!
For my extras I made a zipper pouch with some leftover charm squares. I reorganized lately and found a bunch of things I forgot I had.
And made a key fob too. I ordered some more hardware after running through the first 10 pieces pretty quickly.
And then threw in some buttons and cupcake ribbon to round out the package.
So all in all here’s what I sent.
My partner said was happy with the package and it looks like I picked the right fabrics for her. Success!
I was flipping through an issue of Lucky magazine and spotted this tote. I loved the stripes and handle treatment.
Then I recalled that I had a very similar fabric in my stash and decided to make a knock-off for my friend Crystal who lives near a lake.
I started by making a lined zipper pocket to sew in at the top hem of the bag. I really wanted a sturdy lining so there wouldn’t be anywhere for sand to hide out. I basically just made a square zipper pouch like I’ve made before, but on a larger scale. The lining was a little fiddly, but it all worked out. (I don’t know that I’ll ever do a tutorial because I generally hack things until they turn out how I want them.)
Quite proud of that pocket! And I like how the vintage metal zipper finishes it off. Here’s how it looks in the bag. I just sewed it right in to the top hem between the straps.
The bag itself is pretty large. I figured it would fit two or three towels, snacks, extra shoes/clothes, water bottles, and anything else you might need on a trip to the beach.
I finished everything off on the inside with French seams to stop this home dec fabric from fraying.
To add some form to the floppy bag, I boxed the bottom and added seams along each of the four corners to reinforce the shape.
I was going to buy cotton webbing for the handles but it would have been around $10. Instead, I bought a remnant of nice crisp off-white cotton for less than $2 and made my own handles and pocket lining from that. Crystal said she preferred that for the handles anyway!
So leftover yard sale fabric (previously used for an apron for my brother) + vintage metal zipper from stash + $2 remnant = way less than $77 for a beach tote for my friend!
I threw in the second sunnies pouch and a pair of baby pants to finish off the package.Made by Rae’s newborn baby pants are probably my most sewn pattern to date. They sew up quickly, make good use of small bits of fabric, and are perfect for anyone having a baby, especially people having boys as you can’t just whip up a cute dress or hair ribbon for them.
My plaids don’t match up because I didn’t have much of this fabric left and what I did was in an odd shape, but I think they’ll looking darling with a red onesie or yellow or navy sweater.