In Progress

I feel as if my studio revamp is taking something only slightly short of forever. I’m not typically a piecemeal sort of girl but that’s exactly how I’ve been dealing with this re-do: One little bit at a time.

It’s making me nuts.

And while it’s still not done, it’s getting closer to being exactly what I want. Fun. Bright. A little girly. Very much me.

My older son’s bedroom is downstairs and he’s groused a bit about the girling up of the public space outside his door. I was quick to remind him that he’s heading off to college in the very near future and will be gone nine months of the year, so 1. he won’t have to look at it that much and b. it’s my house and I can do what I want.

I’m thinking he most objects to the giant pink futon. I picked up the frame on Craigslist and forced asked him to sand it down for me so I could prime and paint it, a nice shiny white. I would loved to have left it stained but that dark wood just doesn’t work in a room that gets minimal natural light. The bright pink cover was a great find, a floor sample on clearance at the futon store where I bought the mattress.

The finishing touch would be the pillows. It was love at first sight with this Alexander Henry fabric (Sew Now Sew Wow). I mean, love love love love LOVE. I’ve been accenting it mostly the the AH Perfect Pattern fabrics (black, white and pink versions) but also some aqua and white polka dots from my stash.

The small pillow (top) is just a basic slipcover over a 16″ pillow form. I inserted a ruffle between the front and the back to fancy it up a bit.

The larger pillow was inspired by the cover project from the Spring issue of Stitch. I kind of did my own thing with the blocks (which are foundation pieced, unlike the magazine’s instructions) but I absolutely love how it turned out. It’s big and bold and bright and just perfect.

Camp Goodies

Can I brag on my campers one more time? They were such awesome girls and I had so much fun with them last week. They also were amazingly prolific during the course of camp. Clothes, bags, quilt blocks. You name it, I threw it at them and they knocked it out. Out of the park, even! LOL!

Friday was our last day and they came in that morning and whipped up their fourth A-line skirt before tackling the big final project: crazy log cabin blocks. Because I only had two girls in the camp, I could let them work on different projects so one girl chose to make a little bag and the other a pillow.

They used 7″x7″ pieces of muslin for the blocks and I had them foundation piece their log cabins. Why? Well, I think it’s easier to keep the shape — especially when using different sizes of strips — if there’s a little something to help guide the block formation.

The girls kept me busy cutting strips. One decided to use only the fabrics she’d sewn with all week for her blocks while the other was willing to dip into my stash for hers. Of course, she also wanted to use her favorite fabric — Paula‘s Par Avion from Flights of Fancy — for the centers of all her blocks, so I spent some extra time fussy cutting them.

I could not be more proud of their finished projects and they were so happy with them, too. And they promised me they were going to wear and use everything they made (in fact that’s why one pair of PJ pants is missing – they were worn the night before at a sleepover!). Also missing from the photos are the gifts they made their moms as a thank-you for enrolling them in summer camp: another wristlet and a tote-style purse with pre-made handles (which I hear were much appreciated).

Pssst! Live in Atlanta? I’ve got a second week of sewing summer camp in August.

Around the Block

I’d never heard of selvedge quilting before my buddy Katie made the most amazing pillow I’d ever seen. Love at first sight, I’m telling you.

I’ve recently joined a quilt guild* and our May challenge was to reinvent the classic log cabin block. My mind went back to that cool pillow and I knew what direction I wanted to take for my piece.

I used a 100 percent cotton babywale corduroy for the center. The rest of the block is made up with selvedges from various fabrics I’ve used.

Although I own the book Quilts From the Selvedge Edge, I didn’t look in it to see if there was a log cabin re-do until I was most of the way through my block. Come to think of it, I didn’t even look at the basic selvedge sewing directions before I started, which probably would have helped me a great deal. Live and learn, baby.

This was the first “free form” quilting I’ve done on anything, although I use that term lightly — mostly because I have no idea what I’m talking about. I thought the wavy lines would be cool and used my disappearing fabric ink pen to draw them on the block before sewing.

It may not be perfect but it was a good introduction to piecing with selvedges. I’m definitely hooked! You know, because I don’t have enough crafty addictions already.

*The Fearless Friday Guild meets at 10 a.m. on the first Friday of the month at Intown Quilters.