Sew Much More

September 27, 2007

Passport Giveaway.

Filed under: uncraftiness — by michellew @ 3:20 pm

Another great giveaway, win a free passport here.  Thanks for the tip Lynn.

Sewing Books

Filed under: sewing projects — by michellew @ 12:29 pm

I’ve been keeping a list of intriguing sewing and quilting books lately.  So last night I went out to Barnes and Noble to check some out.  I pulled 8 or 9 books off the shelf and sat for a long while reading and completely enjoying myself.  By far the two books I spent most of my time looking at were Bend-the-Rules Sewing: The Essential Guide to a Whole New Way to Sew by Amy Karol and Last-Minute Patchwork + Quilted Gifts  by Joelle Hoverson.  I very nearly bought the patchwork one but I knew it was only $18 on amazon and it was almost $30 in the store.  So maybe sometime soon I’ll be placing an order.
 
Joelle had some suggested books listed in the back of hers which I’ve added to my wish list too.  I want to see some of them before I know I want to own them.  But one of them the library has, so I’m pumped!  I’ve already put it on hold. 

I’ve been wanting a good resource for quilting.  And after I made baby Cooley’s I especially wanted to find a good book.  I want to start making a quilt for Alice, maybe finish it by Christmas?  I don’t know, we’ll see.  I think the patchwork book will really be the resource I need. 

September 20, 2007

Fabric Source

Filed under: sewing projects — by michellew @ 7:07 pm

I worked at JoAnn Fabrics in highschool and that was always a great resource for fabric.  I wish we had one around here.  There are only a handful of places where I buy fabric.  Walmart is my first stop, and if I can’t find it there, I go to Hancock’s.  I know that Hobby Lobby has fabric but I’ve never checked it out before.  Any opinions on Hobby Lobby?  Where else is there in Chattanooga to get good fabric?  One of my main problems is that I’m cheap, hence the reason I start at Walmart.   I don’t want to pay too much a yard.  But I’m starting to realize that for some projects, especially gifts, I want to find a little nicer stuff.  I’ve thought of looking online, but I really wouldn’t know where to begin with buying fabric online.  Any tips for online shopping? 

September 18, 2007

Baby Quilt

Filed under: crafty gifts,sewing projects — by michellew @ 7:32 pm

I made a baby quilt this past week for little baby boy Cooley.  I had so much fun doing it.  Amber had registered for some receiving blankets so I used one of them from the package to make the quilt.  I was hoping to find a solid blue flanel that matched the darker dot in the fabric.  But ended up with the lighter blue dot color.  I still liked it though. 

I’ve only made 2 other quilts and after the last quilt I made for Caleb before he was born, I was determined to never quilt again!  But that was before my new machine.  Quilting with this machine was a breeze.  I love my machine.  It has an on machine dual feed quilting foot which makes all the difference.  Though with this quilt I was determined to not have puckering so I used all straight quilting lines without having to cross so I could avoid the puckers.  The next quilt I do I’ll have to test out the dual feed foot with crossing some lines.  You know live dangerously.

I’m happy with the way it turned out.  I like the three simple panels on the front and then bringing in interest with the top quilting.  I’ve determined after this quilt that I need to get a quilting basics book so that I’m not just making it up as I go along.  Any suggestions for a good basic quilting book?

Of course I have to include what I’d do differently next time, so as not to make the same mistakes twice.  When I was quilting close to one of the corners, I hadn’t pinned down the backing of that corner and it pulled the fabric over on the back too much.  I didn’t know how ripping it out would go.  So I ended up having to make my binding on the back 1 1/4 inches to reach past that pulled corner.  I was kind of bummed about that because I really liked the look of the 1/2 inch binding on the front.  Oh well, I learned my lesson.  And I guess its not that big of a deal. 

I think I get to be a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to quilting.  Sewing clothes you can fudge things a lot.  But with quilting, I like things to be a certain way.  I had fun using a different stitch for the seams that joined the three panels.  I pieced it normally and then just top stitched that different stitch (mode 2, #66 on my machine). 

Another thing I didn’t expect to come up was the backing to not line up with the front.  I pieced both the front and the back, not something usually done in traditional quilting.  Now I know why.  The lines didn’t match up completely, so if you look closely at the back you can see the difference.  Again its not a big deal.  But if I decide to piece the back of a quilt again I will need to be more certain that all panels/sections are exactly the same size.  I didn’t pay attention to this detail until it was too late.

This was a fun project.  I loved making it for Amber in particular because she is so creative herself and is always giving away lovely gifts.  So I was especially excited to give it to her.  Now to meet this little boy in less than a month!

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September 7, 2007

Decorating Bargains

Filed under: decorating — by michellew @ 3:18 pm

I’m constantly looking for the cheapest way to decorate and organize my house.  I have a few favorite stops, depending on what I’m looking for.  Generally I’ll look in Big Lots, Target, Walmart, Lowes, and possibly Home Goods.  But I’d like to branch out a bit.  This is where you come in.  Where are your favorite places to find that great deal while making your home more organized, comfy or stylish?

Leave your comment indicating in what store you’d look for each item:
1.  Curtains
2.  Rugs
3.  Wall Art/Decor
4.  Storage shelves/bins
5.  Kitchen towels/linens
6.  Cool dishes such as pottery bowls/mugs/decor bowls
7.  Vases
8.  Furniture (shelves, tables etc)

September 6, 2007

Decorating Fun

Filed under: decorating — by michellew @ 10:49 am

We went to my parents this past weekend for labor day and had a great time.  They live in a townhouse and admit to being pack-rats.  I was calling mom, pack, and dad, rat!  So we joke and have fun with it.  Somehow I got into asking them if I could help rearrange their living room.  Rearranging the living room turned into buying new curtains, curtain rods, lamp and area rug.  Mom and I had so much fun shopping and I simply had a blast helping them put it all together. 

The new curtains make such a great impact.  We also bought an extra set of curtains to use for fabric on their end tables.  I cut the fabric, cleaned the glass top and voila, brand new end tables.  We rearranged so that their beautiful grandfather clock is an eye catcher as you walk into the room.  We put their not-as-beautiful stero cabinet next to the stairs tucked away in the corner.  That all opened up space so the piano doesn’t look as crowded.  I put a wreath together with some fall colors in it on the wall above the stereo, but didn’t get a picture of it.

Mom is so great with plants and has some beautiful ones in her living room.  So we highlighted those by the window on a little side table that we moved from the end of the couch.  Now they have a place to keep their current newspaper and a fun splash of green with the plants all together.  We also cleared out a shelf in the server for dad’s computer stuff so it no longer has to live propped up behind the checked chair.  We didn’t get a chance to rearrange anything on the walls, but I think mom and dad will be up for doing that themselves.  Mom is going to replace the black lamp shade with a lighter one too.  We had so much fun together getting punchy as we were tired in the evenings.  They were both committed to finishing the curtains and Dad was the champ with ironing the second set of curtains at 9 pm!  What fun we had.  Oh and thanks to Bob too as he did most of the kid watching while we were decorating like mad. 

I really had a lot of fun rearranging and helping that room to open up a bit.  I realize that this really is a love of mine.  I like doing a lot of things crafty and otherwise, but I just love decorating!  I don’t have any before pictures but here’s a couple shots of the after.  Don’t mind a little blurriness, its all I have.

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My happy, beautiful parents!

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