Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Gifts from Santa's 2011 Workshop

Finally, photos!

In pursuit of the ambition to make IT Prof's and my gifts a bit more meaningful, I am trying to make more of them.  (If some of my stash gets used up in the process, that is also good.)

Today's exhibits are some of Aurora's Christmas gifts.  Here is the tote bag I made her from a pattern I liked but felt needed some modification.  The outside back has a pocket (instead of none) with a button, too, and the inside has six pockets (instead of none).  I also bound the outside to the inside lining in order to machine sew the entire lining and make it (in my opinion) more durable.  I also machine sewed the lining to the outside on the top edges before I covered the stitching with the binding.  The other change was that I used webbing for the straps instead of matching fabric because I have learned that the webbing lasts much, much longer.

The tote bag is the "dandelion" I was rambling on about before Christmas.

I used Nancy Halvorsen's book Count On It to make a set of monthly table hangings for Swan for Christmas.  However, I had to rush to give them to her at Thanksgiving, so, dear readers, luckily for me you will just have to imagine how fantastic they are.

I'm working on a similar set for Aurora; however, I only finished the December block in time for Christmas.  I gave her the January block before New Year's and am now finishing off the set.  She has not yet seen the February, March, and April blocks because I wanted to take them for Show and Tell at my guild meeting first.  I have completed the May block, too, but do not have a photograph for the computer yet.  It's self-evident which blocks these are:

The shop owner at Prairie Point Quilts in Shawnee, Kansas had a set of the year's blocks she had made on display in her store.  She had had the brilliant idea of using the buttonhole stitch to quilt the block as she appliqued; that sold me on the project.  I felt as though this was something I could complete if I followed her example.

I am trying to make all the monthly blocks with fabric and batting from my stash.  I do allow myself to purchase buttons or thread, however, if my artistic soul requires them.  Embarrassingly enough I have had no design problems due to my self-imposed limitation on the fabric . . . so far.

I am enjoying this project a great deal and hope to make myself a set of the table hangings eventually.  I sew the back of the binding down during the evenings while I watch Netflix with IT Prof, so the project has the additional advantage of making me look like a good manager of my time.