Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Working with Dresdens: A Thanksgiving Table Runner

I just love everything about fall: the cool crisp air, the fashion, the smells of spiced apple and pumpkin, and all of the beautifully rich colors that nature drops on us. Fall is just around the corner and over the past week I got to dabble in some of it as I created a Thanksgiving table runner for one of my favorite clients! The inspiration: a square runner that I had completed earlier this year.

The runner is covered in bright, colorful turkey feathers which meant I was playing with dresdens!

Only I was making these dresdens much smaller to fit onto a skinnier and longer runner. I made these about 5.5 inches tall. I made 20 to create the center circle and then 4 for each side of the runner.

I pinned the dresden to the center of the runner and began stitching down. Rather than zig-zagging like the original, I decided to use a regular straight stitch. The feathers were so thin that I worried a zig-zag stitch would be too bold and take away from the individual colors of the feathers. 

As I got further and further along I knew that the straight stitch was the right choice. It kept with the dainty look of the thinner feathers!

It even looked really neat from the bottom. 

I used the same process to attached the corner feathers. I then decided to add just a little bit of quilting to make the details pop. So I echo quilted around the center feathers 4 times. 

I also echoed around the corner feathers at the ends 2 times for an added pop.

I think this has to be one of my favorite creations thus far!

I also had a few good thrifty finds this weekend . . . the craft supply selection was a bit disappointing where I went but I still managed to find a few good pieces. First were cute little linen pouches for 99 cents . . . they are a wedding favor set but I am thinking they will be cute for gifting small items or even to repurpose as pockets for some projects!

Next were some really cute glass jars (they look like miniature candy shop jars) brand new in their box for $2.99. My mom actually found them and knew that they would be perfect to use in my sewing room for organizing all my small accessories. 

And then the item I splurged on. Sounds funny to say splurge when you are talking about $4.99 but for me, that is a splurge on a used top. But it was so vintage and has so much potential. It almost reminded me of an old nightgown but it is more fitted and is tunic length. I loved the details on it and can't help but picture it in the summer with capris and a cute belt around it's waist or in the fall with skinny jeans and a denim jacket! So I bought it, despite some repairs I will need to make to it. 

And finally, my favorite find: 2 yards of quilted fabric for $3.99! I love the print and already have some ideas on what I am going to make with it! 

Well, I may have one order finished but I have a lot more sewing to do. Off to put the pedal to the metal!

Happy Quilting!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

A Cute Little Sewing Stool

Remember that cute little stool I found while thrifting in Wisconsin last weekend?

I normally would not spend $15 on such a small furniture piece but the wood finish matched my arm chair perfectly so I just could not pass it up. Plus the proceeds of the thrift shop went to help people with hospice care, so it was a worthy cause. 

The wood finish is beautiful but the upholstered top really wasn't my style. But it made for one of the easiest furniture fixes that I have done. 

I found a piece of fabric leftover from when I upholstered my arm chair. It would make the perfect top for the foot stool. I removed the lid from the base and took on the task of removing all the staples in order to get the fabric off. 

The padding was actually in pretty good shape. It wasn't falling apart, it just had a few stains but they did not have any odor and lets face it, this is going to be propping up feet. I don't think I need to run out and buy foam for a foot stool if I don't have to. So I stretched my new fabric over the top and started stapling it on! I reattached the lid and stood back to admire my work.

Much more my style!

And the foot stool looked even better when it was placed in front of my arm chair!

Now I have the perfect place to kick up my feet while I hand quilt! :)

Happy Quilting!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Sewing Basket Makeover

Remember that beat up sewing basket that I found for $1.99 at the Goodwill a few weeks ago?

The veneer was completely brittle and it was missing a handle. 

I wasn't sure how I wanted to fix it up until I was walking through JoAnn Fabrics 2 weeks ago and saw a sewing basket that was covered with the Robert Kaufman Vintage Couturier fabric. I wanted it so bad but not at the high cost of $40.00. Really, $40.00 for a plastic basket?! 

So I went home and began work on the sewing basket. I first wood glued some loose bits back together and took the little doors off. I painted the inside of the box a dark grey.

I then upholstered the sides and the doors by stapling down some thin batting and then some of the Robert Kaufman Vintage Couturier fabric that I had in my stash. Then I mod-podged some fun textured fabric to the outer 2 sides (they were so uneven and damaged, the texture was perfect for hiding the flaws). 

Ta-da!!! My new old sewing box. I just love this Robert Kaufman fabric!

Now to come up with a plan for the other sewing box I picked up . . . 

Happy Quilting!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Another Quilt and Some Thrifted Finds

Last week I began working on another very special quilt . . . a quilt I am going to gift to my husband for our anniversary next month. I am only going to share a few pictures before next month because I want the finished product to be a little bit of a surprise for him. I cut all the pieces the week before.

And I managed to almost complete piecing the top of the quilt this week. 

I wanted the top portion to look like Chicago style bricks and I think it is turning out very well so far. 

Hopefully I will find some time to continue working on the quilt this week. I just have to finish piecing the bottom portion of the quilt top, add some applique and then I can start quilting. 

I also had some great quilting finds at a flea market and some thrift stores while I was on a weekend vacation with my family in Wisconsin. 

An old (and quite a bit beat up) sewing basket and a small ottoman with storage space (for sewing goodies)!

Fabric!!! I love getting fabric for less than $3.00 per yard.

Some lace for embellishing.

A cute fall quilt pattern and some iron-on adhesive.

Quilting magazines . . . including the 2 newest issues of McCall's quilting (for 29 cents a piece)! I had been searching for the August issue because I am dying to make the dresden quilt.

Now that we are settled in back at home I will get back to quilting this week! I am hoping that once the hecticness of summer dies down I will be able to get a lot more sewing done. Until next time . . .

Happy Quilting!