Sunday, February 9, 2020

A Ghastlie heart for Valentine's Day

I was at The Quilting Squares of Franklin quilt shop on Friday. The Ghastlies were there!! Valentine's Day is this coming Friday. And one of my Make Nine projects is pillowcases. Kismet!

"Ghastlie Love." Alexander Henry Fabrics.

Ghastlie Heart Valentine pillow cases
The fabrics I chose for my Valentine pillow cases are Alexander Henry's "A Ghastlie Heart" (of course!) and "A Ghastlie Screen," with a bold, graphic, Art Deco flavor. Both of these fabrics come in other colorways and there are several more prints/patterns in the collection. Call The Quilting Squares of Franklin or visit you local quilt shop and snatch some Ghastlies for Valentine's Day.

The makings of pillowcases: A Ghastlie Heart and A Ghastlie Screen from Alexander Henry Fabrics.

I use the burrito construction method with French seams to make my pillowcases and omit the accent band at the cuff. I'm checking off another Make Nine finish for 2020.

A Ghastlie Heart pillow cases.

Wishing everyone a Delicious Valentine's Day (and night) with Ghastlie pillow cases.

A Ghastlie Love fabric from Alexander Henry Fabrics.

💗 💗 💗

Sunday, February 2, 2020

Odette top in Lugu and Plaid knits: a Make Nine finish

Hello to February and my first Make Nine 2020 finish! This is the Odette Top made with Lugu and Mad Plaid cotton knits from Art Gallery Fabrics.
Lugu & Plaid Odette knit top. Odette and Ivy pattern from The Sewing Workshop.
Cotton knit prints [Lugu and Mad Plaid collections] from Art Gallery Fabrics.

Fabric purchasing factors
These two cotton knits were purchased together [Barb's Sewing Center] with the thought of using them in a color block garment. I liked both of these collections from Art Gallery independently when each was released. But it wasn't until I saw the bolts side by side at the fabric shop that I realized I liked them together as well.

There is an interesting contrast between the geometric plaid print [Electric Watermelon Plaid (gotta love the name)] and the hand drawn, whimsical owls by fabric designer, Jessica Swift. The color palettes harmonize—maybe with a syncopated beat. The Odette & Ivy Top pattern is a go-to pattern of mine, and the winter weather prompted a top with long sleeves.

Electric Watermelon Plaid and Sova Sunshine (owls) knits [Art Gallery Fabrics].
Pattern: Odette & Ivy Tops [from The Sewing Workshop].

My Make Nine journal indicates I started this project on January 19, 2020 with the pattern layout and fabric cutting. The top was completed on February 1. 

Odette Top: front, back.

Working with a Plaid
I was careful to position and match the plaids for both sleeves. The pattern piece layout wasn't as "fabric efficient" as it would be with a solid or all-over print, but it was well worth the extra time and slightly more fabric waste. [I'm sure I'll use the scraps in future projects.]

Matching the plaids.

I waited choosing the fabric for the neckband until the top was fully assembled. I decided on the plaid but was concerned about the alignment of the stripes on the narrow neckband. 

After attaching the neckband, I realized the turquoise stripe in the plaid abutted the Lugu fabric. It was not what I originally intended but after sewing, it looked like a faux piping detail. Happy accident!

A turquoise stripe at the neckband edge looks like a faux piping.

This top coordinates nicely with my Valencia pants in a charcoal Art Gallery denim fabric (a 2019 Make Nine project). Love it when things come together!

Lugu top coordinates with charcoal Valencia pants.

And, the asymmetrical peplum is in just the right position to access the patch pocket in my pants.

Wearing my new Lugu Odette top with the Valencia pants.

It's Groundhog Day
I understand groundhog Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow today, prognosticating an early Spring this year. Winter or Spring, I predict I'll keep on keepin' on with my Make Nine projects. And if, as in the Groundhog Day movie, the day gets into a continuous loop, at least it will be a loop of finishes!

I'd be OK with that, too. How 'bout you?

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Projects inspired by Aboriginal fabrics

If you need a color "pick-me-up," reach for the contemporary, organic Aboriginal fabric prints from M&S Textiles Australia. The motifs on these cotton fabrics are magical, mystical, and bursting with color. They're one of my favorite quilting fabrics to "make" with.
Fabrics from M&S Textiles Australia.
From left: Yalke Green, Womens Business, Bush Banana, and Gathering by the Creek.
The designs on these fabrics are created by Australian aboriginal artists. They illustrate the symbiotic relationship between man and nature, and tell the story of the Dreamtime.

Inspired by Aboriginal fabric designs
Looking beyond the fabrics themselves, here are ideas for using them in quilts, bags, clothing, and home decor. And they can even inspire free-motion quilting designs and other techniques. Quilt shops and independent sewing centers carry these fabrics and links to a few of these shops are listed with the projects below.

"Cat City" [Villa Rosa pattern] using a variety of fat quarters from M&S Textiles fabrics.

The "6 Pack" quilt featuring Womens Business, Flowers in the Desert green,
Bush Dreamings of Utopia purple (border) and other Australian prints.
 Supplies available at Busy Lady Quilt Shop.

This quilt uses a precut Dreamtime strip roll from M&S Textiles.
The exclusive Star quilt pattern and other supplies available from Sew Many Blessings.
Show off a variety of Aboriginal prints with this "Aboriginal Stained Glass" quilt.
[Melissa and Mom Quilts pattern].

Log Cabin quilt with an on-point setting. Supplies available at Calico Rose quilt shop.

An assortment of black Aboriginal serve as the background to set off Sandhill red.
"Crossroads," fat quarter pattern from Villa Rosa Designs.

Don't be afraid to use these cotton fabrics for clothing.
The Cottage Shirt [The Sewing Workshop pattern] in Yalke Blue [M&S Textiles].
Details about making the Cottage Shirt in Yalke blue are at this blog post. And see my Sandy Creek Siena Shirt blog post with more photos of the shirt below.
Siena Shirt [The Sewing Workshop] featuring Sandy Creek and Spirit Dreaming.

Siena Shirt [The Sewing Workshop pattern] featuring Women Dreaming burgundy.

Pocket lining or pocket accent with Spirit Place Ecru.

Bags and Totes
Give a bag or tote some attitude with Aboriginal fabrics!
Totably bag [Quilts Illustrated pattern] in Summertime Rainforest black.

Expedition Tote [Swoon patterns] in Yalke Blue and Bambillah.
Made by Debbie at Calico Rose quilt shop.

Expedition Tote [Swoon patterns] in Kingfisher Camp with Sandy Creek accent.
Supplies available at Calico Rose quilt shop.

The Melba Pintuck Bag [The Textile Pantry pattern] with Salt Plain and Sandhill White.
Supplies and pattern available at Kentucky Quilt Company quilt shop.

Summertime Carryall featuring Dreaming in One.

You can take this water koozie with you on the go!
"Walker's Water Bottle Sling" with Bush Medicine 2 blue and Dancing Spirit purple.
Supplies and pattern available at Sisters Side by Side Quilt Shop.

Dreamtime precuts
Precut strips, charms, 10" squares and fat quarters are available in several colorways such as red, yellow, purple, black and assorted. These projects were made with M&S Textiles Dreamtime precuts.
Bag pattern and supplies available at WV Quilt.
The jelly roll race quilt. Dreamtime strip rolls and supplies available at Calico Rose quilt shop.
English paper pieced hexagons from a charm pack or strip roll adorn a pillow.
Class and supplies available at WV Quilt.

A mini tuffet [Tuffet Source].

English Paper Piecing and selective cutting
Try selective positioning and fussy cutting of the Aboriginal motifs for fabulous results.
Fussy cutting and English Paper Piecing with Aboriginal prints.

Detail: from "Oh My Stars" guild Challenge.

Inspiration for free-motion quilting, collage, art quilts
The free-motion quilting on my 2018 guild Challenge was inspired by the fabrics. Details about the process are in this blog post.
Free-motion quilting inspired by Aboriginal fabric designs.

The Winter 2020 issue of Art Quilting Studio features the work of Joan Anderson and her use of Aboriginal fabrics from M&S Textiles in her collaged art quilts.

Article in Art Quilting Studio magazine featuring the work of Joan Anderson
and her use of Aboriginal fabrics from M&S Textiles.

Winter 2020 issue of Art Quilting Studio magazine.

So many possibilities!

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Alexander Henry fabric drawstring bag

I used to carry a small plastic bag in my suitcase for laundry. No more! This cloth drawstring bag is much better and the Alexander Henry Fabrics are cheerful, happy designs that make me smile.

Drawstring laundry bag.
Made with Birdland from Alexander Henry Fabrics.

The fabric pieces for the bag are about fat quarter size. The fold-over casing at the top for the drawstring is about 1.25" deep. Remember to leave openings at the side seams to feed the drawstrings through. 

Two long, narrow strips of cotton knit fabric (scraps from a garment sewing project) worked great for the drawstrings! I actually like the knit fabric "string" better than a cotton cord or ribbon. The knit stretches and springs back, but the bag is still easily closed. 

The other side of the drawstring bag.
My Planet print from Alexander Henry fabrics.

The bag bottom was boxed to make the bag more spacious inside. I sewed a seam about 3" in from the bottom corner. I like how the scene from My Planet travels up the outside of the bag.

Did you know that the fabric designs from Alexander Henry are original and drawn/painted by hand with traditional art materials—ink, acrylics, gouache, etc.? The original art is not created on a computer. You can really see the "hand of the artist" in these prints. Aren't they wonderful??

Boxed bottom of my drawstring bag.

I love using my fabric drawstring bag! Fabric is breathable, earth-friendly, soft, not noisy, and washable. So much better than plastic! And when the fabric is from Alexander Henry... well, that makes it even more special.

Visit your local quilt shop and pick up a few Alexander Henry fabrics to make something special. It will make you smile!

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