Sunday, 9 August 2015

1 hour Baskets

I've still been busy working on my Tula Pink Sampler Quilt (It's now ready to quilt) but I need a break from it and wanted something quick and easy to do.   I'd seen lots of people on Instgram making the 1 hour basket so I decided to give it ago and see what all the fuss is about.

It's a free pattern which you can download from Craftsy create by Hearts and Bees (you need to sign up but it doesn't cost anything).  It's a large storage basket made from 2-3 fat quarters.  The first one I made is pictured below, unfortunately as I was cutting the fabric I realised the map fabric for my outer was not quite a full fat quarter so I had to add another fabric in too.

As you can see it fits a ton of fabric in, ideal size for fat quarters.  I used quilting cotton with my first basket (the project recommends home decor weight) and fusible fleece to give it body as suggested in the pattern.  It turned out pretty floppy and struggled to stand up alone when empty.

I had recently been sent some beautiful home decor weight fabrics from Izabela Peters, a UK company who print their own fabrics, so I decided to try them for the next basket.  They were much thicker, I used their fabrics for both the outside and the lining, and used the fusible fleece too.  The basket had more form to it but still wasn't as structured as I wanted, I wanted something that would stand up alone when empty.

Although I filled both these baskets up with fabric and am using them I wanted to have  another go at getting a firmer basket.  I rummaged through my stash and found some super firm sew in interfacing (almost like a sheet of card).  My concern was that it was so thick I wasn't going to be able to turn the basket through at the end, so I left a larger hole at the bottom of the lining (about 6-7 inches) and luckily it turned through ok.  The result was a much firmer basket which stood up perfectly when empty. Once my husband and son spotted the baskets they wanted some too so pictured below are my final 4 that I made using the very firm interfacing.

As they discovered the baskets are not only the perfect size for fat quarters but also for dvds and Xbox games.  I've already had a request from my husband for a few more so I suspect there will be many more in my future!

Have you tried the one hour basket yet?  How did you get on with it?

Thursday, 23 July 2015

Win tickets to the WI Centennial Fair

WI Fair Ticket Giveaway

*** This competition has now ended - the winners are Harry's Mum and Crafts @ Home.  Congratulations to both the winners, hope you enjoy the show***

To celebrate 100 years of the Women’s Institute a centenary fair is being held in Yorkshire from the 3rd to 6th September.   

The show is open to both WI Members and non-members and will be full of craft and lifestyle stalls, demos and workshops. Carol Smillie will be ‘talking pants’, Lisa Comfort will demonstrate a vintage project from her new book and the Royal School of Needlework and tutors from the WI Craft School at Denman will show you embroidery and patchwork skills.   

There will also be lots of exhibitors from which you’ll be able to stock up on sewing, knitting and crafting supplies whilst there.   The show is being held at the Harrogate International Centre and tickets can be purchased online here.

We have 2 pairs of tickets to the show to giveaway. To be in with a chance of winning please answer the question below in the comments by 28th July 2015. Don’t forget to leave a way for us to contact you if you win (e-mail, Twitter name, web link etc).  Each winner will receive a pair of tickets, valid for one visit on any day.

Question:  If you were to attend the show which workshop would you want to take part in?

Also if you join their mailing list you get entered into a draw to win a Janome XL601 sewing machine. 

Terms & Conditions

2 winners will be chosen at random to receive a pair of entry tickets to the WI Centennial Fair.  One entry allowed per person, multiple entries will result in disqualification.  You must leave a way for us to contact you to notify you of your win and get your address.  Any prizes unclaimed after 2 weeks will be drawn again.  The prizes can be sent to an address in the UK or Ireland.  All entries must be received by 6pm on Tuesday the 28th of July 2015.

Monday, 13 July 2015

Quilt Progress

I've been a busy bee for the last 2 months working on my Tula Pink Sampler quilt from her City Sampler book.  I have to admit when I started I didn't realise what a time consuming project it would be, hours and hours on end of cutting, pressing and then sewing just to make a few blocks.   I normally cut in one session, and then sew in the next.  Here's a pic of several blocks ready to be sewn, I have to put the block number on the top or I forget which blocks I've cut!

I soon decided I wasn't going to make all 100 blocks in the book as some are very fiddly and involve lots of fabrics and pieces (and I hate cutting!) so I've been making the blocks in pairs.  Today I did a count up and layout on my bed to see if I was close to having enough to make a quilt...

I'm only 2 blocks away (represented with white pieces of paper for now).  I decided I'm going to go for a random layout so spent hours playing around with this giant jigsa puzzle trying to make sure I didn't have any similar blocks or colours too close together.

This is going to be my final layout, I just need to finish the last 2 blocks (which will be red and yellow) and then I can start joining them in rows. I managed to get some turquoise Sketch fabric for half price in the sale at Weaver Dee so I plan to use that for the borders and maybe the backing too if there's enough left.

Their sale is still on if you fancy a bargain, use code DIRECTORY10 for an extra 10% off :)  

Hopefully my next post will be showing the finished top.  I'd really like to have this finished by the end of the summer ready to use in the autumn.  Then I ought to finish my son's quilt which I started a year ago...  whoops!

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Sewing Time!

Since Julie has joined The Sewing Directory as my partner I've had much more time to sew so I've been working through my projects list, plus dealing with a few special requests from my son!  I thought I'd share a few pictures of what I've been making lately.

My son has suddenly decided that pigs are his favourite animals after rearing them on Minecraft!  Unfortunetly this also means he will no longer eat them and in fact he's become pescatarian! Luckily Sew Magazine had a piggie pin cushion in their lastest issue so I adapted it slightly to make him a pig toy.  The pink one came first but then apparently he got lonely and wanted a golden pig as a friend so I had to make another. He now wants a whole rainbow of them but I think 2 is enough!

I've had these gorgeous organic prints from Birch Fabrics for ages and wanted to make something that would allow me to see them regularly, so I decided to make pillowcases with them.  Now I get to see them every single day and they have certainly brightened up my bed.  I didn't follow a tutorial for these I just used the measurements of the existing pillowcases and added a 1/4 inch seam allowance.

This large zippy pouch is big enough for me to fit my embroidery supplies, including hoops in.  I used some of my favourite fabric, the peacock print from Cloud 9's Alegria collection and I thought it would go quite nicely with denim.  Plus the denim gave it some structure without me having to use interfacing.  It's lined with a turquoise and gold print.   My mum had a big destash recently and I came away with a huge piece of denim so I suspect there will be more denim projects in my future....  I'm thinking it might be good for a handbag, I need a new one.

Lastly I started on something I've been wanting to make for years, the Tula Pink Sampler quilt.  I got her book when it first came out and have been stashing her fabrics for the last 2-3 years and now I've finally gotten around to starting it.  There's 100 blocks in the quilt, but some are a bit small and fiddly for me (I don't have the patience to faff around with tiny bits of fabric).

So I've decided to pic my favourite blocks from the book and make 2 of each, sometimes more but in different colour ways.  I've made 24 blocks so far so still have a long way to go, but I'm hoping to get another 10-20 done this week.  I have to admit I hate cutting out which is what makes me slow with things like this, I just want to get on with the sewing and not spend hours cutting.  But I'm sure I'll get there in the end.

Speaking of sewing projects we have some brilliant new free sewing projects over on The Sewing Directory, including this fab man's wallet which would be ideal for Father's Day.  If you haven't perused our projects section for a while do pop over and take a look.

I also think the bear Kindle case below would make a great project for the man who loves his e-books, or you could adapt it to use for a tablet.

So what have you been sewing lately?

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