craft, quilt, quilting, quilts, Uncategorized

New Ironing Board (kinda)

About a year ago I replaced my ironing board. I wanted one that was wider and had a place to rest my iron. I searched a bit and found one. Unfortunately, I didn’t read the fine print about this particular ironing board – maybe I didn’t read at all?  – it was made from an eco-friendly material.

Now I’m all for eco-friendly products. Really, I am. However, after a year of heavy use the ironing board started to warp and it was wreaking havoc on my work. I’m definitely one to stress the importance of pressing your work and mine looked like I didn’t even own an iron! Not good.

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I was frustrated and feeling lazy. I didn’t really want to buy a new ironing board since mine was, theoretically, new and as much as I love Amazon Prime I didn’t want to wait a day OR go to Target to get one because I’d walk out with an entirely new wardrobe, home accessories and decor, and a crate full of paper products. I was, however, up for making my own. I mean, if I can’t buy what I want I should make it, right? Exactly! Besides, a bigger board would definitely come in handy. Go big or go home.

I looked around my sewing room and found batting, fabric, and some Insul Fleece that C&T sent me. The factor limiting me the most in this build was the size of the Insul Fleece. It’s 27″ x 45″. I can get more but then I’d have another delay, so that was out. Keeping that in mind, I headed to my local home improvement store and bought a board.  I found a 2′ x 4′ piece of composite lumber that would be perfect. I knew I’d have to piece the Insul Fleece, but for a whopping $4.32 I knew I could boost the crafty and make it work.

So I loaded up the car and headed home.

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I grabbed my staple gun and some staples and got to work. I wrapped a double layer batting around the board first, making sure to pull it taut and miter the corners.

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If you pull the corner of the batting into a triangle over the corner of the wood you can miter the pieces when you staple up the sides.

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I cut the Insul Fleece into 2 pieces by cutting 3″ off the width, making the first piece 24″ x 45″. I wrapped the Insul Fleece over the batting and tacked it down. I did the same thing with the smaller 3″ x 45″ piece at the end. I tugged a little on all sides and managed to make it fit (forgetting to take photos, too).

Once I had the batting and Insul Fleece stapled onto my board I covered it with some Moda Ash. I contemplated a more exciting fabric but I had enough of this on hand, it matches my decor and it’s easy to see stains and messes (not that that EVER happens) and I don’t have to worry about ruining a favorite piece of fabric.

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This picture doesn’t quite do it justice, and sorry for the VERY messy, thread covered design wall, but this board is incredible! It’s super wide and the Insul Fleece is my new favorite thing EVER! It works so well for an ironing board. I hate to say it but I was kind of amazed in the most wonderful way. Yay for perfect piecing and pressing and inexpensive, creative solutions.

 

featured, quilt, quilting, quilts, Uncategorized

Warrior Quilt

An old friend of mine was diagnosed with Stage 3 breast cancer last fall. I planned to make her a quilt to have while she was going through chemotherapy but I overcommitted. Well, that’s what I thought. It turns out I was severely vitamin D deficient and had NO energy. My doctor took my concerns about being tired to a fault to heart and ran a few tests to figure that out. Mega doses of Vitamin D and I’m back in the saddle again. Fortunately for me, I had an easy fix. Unfortunately for my friend, she’s still fighting the good fight but she is truly a warrior. Chemo and a double mastectomy. No choice a young mother should make but she’s strong as an ox and I know she’ll get through this.

I’m in awe of her. I really am. You don’t realize how important your health is until you don’t have it. That point hit home over the last 6 weeks. What I’ve been dealing with pales in comparison to her battle. I mean, really, my issue is a small scratch on the surface; but when I was feeling completely and utterly exhausted all the time for no apparent reason, well, that was tough. It was beyond tough.

I finally got my act together and made her this quilt. Many months later than planned but it happened. My friend sent the sweetest note to me when she got it. Deeply touched by the gesture. Indeed it truly is better to give than receive. Unless it’s your birthday, then it’s fun to receive 😉

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I used  Anna Maria Horner’s Dressmaker on the back. I absolutely ADORE that fabric! I should have bought more. It wasn’t quite wide enough so a small strip of another AMH print and I was set. I quilted straight lines at angles across the quilt with my walking foot. No rhyme or reason, just random, for a fun look. The lines are (ahem) mostly straight, too.

Uncategorized

Tablet Cover

I pulled out my favorite sweater the other day and it had a hole. I was unbelievably bummed. I decided that, instead of tossing the sweater or taking it to the Salvation Army for someone to mend (G-d forbid I mend it, right?), that I should turn it into a tablet cover. I can repurpose something and keep my favorite sweater near, even if in parts.

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I measured my tablet and added a small seam allowance before cutting my sweater apart. I grabbed some black interfacing to stabilize the back side of each piece I cut. The cover of the tablet had the hole so I appliquéd wool hearts and added a blanket stitch. Note: the blanket stitch took longer to do than sewing the rest of the cover.

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Once I had the applique attached, I cut my cover to size. I cut two pieces of lining fabric and sewed on a zipper.

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I turned the cover right side out, pressed the opening in the lining (along one side inside the cover) and voila!

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It is important to note that I measured incorrectly. I needed an extra half inch or so for my tablet so cut slightly generously. My mistake did work out well for my mother-in-law. She needed a tablet cover and this fit hers perfectly! I’m bummed that the cover didn’t work for me but I’m happy it’s in a good home and will be well loved.

UPDATE: I’ve been asked for a pattern so I’ll post that soon. Shouldn’t take too long since I still need a tablet cover. sigh…

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Kaffe Mini Swap

A friend of mine put together a Kaffe Fassett Mini Swap in July. I’m a huge lover of Kaffe fabrics so, of course, I had to participate! As usual, I waited until the last minute. I swear I do better work when I’m under pressure. Others may call me a procrastinator but I think my creativity soars and things just come together.

I sent this yesterday to parts far North of here. I hope the person that gets it is happy.

I have to admit, I was kind of sad not to keep this for myself.

mini swap

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1400 Quilt Squares

I am working hard to use fabric from my stash and not buy new material. I’m not gonna lie. It’s not easy.

I’m working on a checkerboard quilt. This weekend I cut 1400 squares, each 1.5″. The grey fabric in the background is from another project that I took a different direction. See? Using what I have. I call that a win.

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Then I did the math. I used yards and yards of fabric, right? No. 2 1/4 yards. But that means I have that much less fabric in my space and a lot more quilts to make. Woot!

house renovation, Uncategorized

Laundry Room Makeover, part two

I’m making good progress on the laundry room project. I still have work to do – mud a wall, paint the ceiling, and trim, but I’m no longer embarrassed to have the door open. A work in progress is better than the disaster that was previously there.20140304-082425.jpg

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I’m really pleased with the shelving. Not the best photo, but this shelving from Home Depot is exactly like the more expensive shelving from this store (which I love, but hey, it’s a laundry room). 20140304-082522.jpg

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See you in four years!

Last July, I asked several quilter friends if they would like to be part of a round robin. There are no rules, but we each have six months to complete our border and send it to the next quilter. We’re working alphabetically so we always know who gets the quilt next. Pretty easy.

We have a dynamic group. Each of us has a great style, and look, but the combined efforts will make spectacular quilts. I can’t wait to see them finished. The long lead times mean we’ll have this project going on for four years -maybe less if we don’t take the full six months to complete a section. Everyone seemed okay with that.

We have just sent our centers to the first border maker. Okay, I still have to send mine, but I plan to do that tomorrow. Snow and winter break made it tough. I’m sending it with a small pack of fabric in case any of my friends want to incorporate them in other borders. I’m also sending a label so everyone can sign it.

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Uncategorized

Renovation, Part 1, Basement Bathroom

I intended to publish a post about the entire renovation but have come to realize that if I do that it’ll be entirely too long. So, I’ll piece it all together, room by room with before and after photos, starting in the basement.

We gutted the bathroom.

Before:

Popcorn walls painted canary yellow, red cabinet and laminate countertop, linoleum “tile” floor. Not shown : original almond tub.

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During:

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Walls were sanded down and re-mudded so they’d be flat again.

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After:

We extended the Pergo flooring into the bathroom. New toilet, pedestal sink, shower, and accessories.

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Bad photo of the shower. Sorry.

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End result:

serene bathroom that doesn’t overwhelm your senses.