Wednesday, 25 September 2013

The Sewing Summit.........the days passed quickly.

The Sewing Summit went by quickly.  A lot was crammed in during the time I was there.

I flew in on Tuesday so I had extra time to spend on Wednesday, I decided to go find a fabric store.  I posted on the Summit Facebook page that I wanted to go to a store but they seemed to be too far away.  A couple of ladies recommended Tissu Fine Fabric
it was worth the short walk from the hotel. The shop was stocked with so many different types of fabric to chose from. I was able to get some fabric for my metal clutch purse. Hopefully some of you were able to visit her store on the Friday and Saturday to take advance of the Sale.

I had so much fun - learned lots, laughed lots and ate lots. The time seemed to fly by I enjoyed the lectures I took as well as the hands-on classes I had.  I think I had a good balance between the lectures and hands-on classes.  I left the lectures with some new motivation to work on my blog, which I  hope to do over the next few weeks.  Also, with an interest in getting back to finishing some of the patterns I have been puttering on.

It was great to have so many ladies in one place all interested in forms of sewing whether it be quilting, sewing clothes, or bag making.  It was fun seeing a lot of great sewing going on in the sewing rooms after hours and also they amount of new bags and clothes that were made to use during the Summit.

I now have a lot of new friends interested in the same things I am, as well as a lot of new to me exciting websites to go to.

The hotel was great and is amazing how many conferences and meetings that they can put on at once. I also enjoyed that we were able to walk to the Temple Gardens and walk around in such  beautiful flower gardens. 

I had such a great time, I would love to go again sometime.  It was so great to make it to the Summit after following the posts about it for the first two years.

But the big question is did I buy more fabric on the Shop Hop or Marshmallows from Walmart?
Needless to say I didn't have to pay extra for too much weight in my suitcase. In fact the guy at the airport looked at my suitcase and said it didn't look over 50lbs so he never even weight it.

Monday, 16 September 2013

Sewing's getting closer.

Well one sleep left and I'm on the plane to the Summit.  Can't wait, I made it to the hotel in Ottawa.I think it was a good choice, lots of construction on the 401 and 416 I believe it was 6 constructions sites we passed that had the Hwy down to one lane.  Of course the off ramp we wanted to take was closed to.  So glad I'm here already and only a 5 min drive tomorrow.  We would have been pushing it to make it on time tomorrow morning.

Look I pack light so I have room to bring stuff back with me. My carry on will have my lap top, the cords, camera and kobo.

I will try post during the Summit.

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Leather Messenger Bag......Sewing Summit here I come.

This is my Leather Messenger Bag,  I wanted something that I could carry my laptop in and also use to carry just about anything else in.  I have used distressed cow leather in a burgundy colour.  I wanted something that would stand up to years of use but not something that I worry about it getting marked up.

This is my own pattern that I designed as I went along to be able to add everything that I wanted in it.
I have a pocket that the computer slides into that I have added a leather strap that holds it closed so my laptop stay in place.  I have a large zippered pocket, that stays flat until you place things in it and then it expands as it is pleated at the bottom. I have also added a leather strap and toggle hook to hold my keys so they don't end up at the bottom of the bag. I used a fusible fleece attached to the lining and added horse hair interfacing, it is free floating from the top of the lining front to back to help the lining not stretch too much when the bag is fully loaded. If I make myself or anyone one I will go looking for a heavy fusible Pellon  interfacing.  I have a hard time finding it in my area.

As I want to use this bag when I travel to The Sewing Summit in Salt Lake City, Utah in about a week, I wanted to add the Canadian Maple Leaf to the bag.  I didn't want to add a badge or pin to it of the Canadian Flag. I drew an outline of a Maple Leaf on paper and then used the pattern to sew around the pattern.  It is nerve racking to make sure you stay on the line and I would suggest checking your bobbin to make sure that you have enough bobbin thread.  (I did do the bobbin check.)
I suggest when sewing with leather to check your bobbin regularly.  Back stitching on leather while top stitching never looks right.  I always tie off my ends instead of back stitching while top stitching taking the extra time produces a more professional look.

Now to add a little bling to the bag by adding purse jewellery. I was able to try Janelle's new "handmade" hardware.  Janelle from Emmaline will have these in her shop soon. She also came up with a zipper flog that says handmade as well. I'm in love with this purse jewellery,  I can see me adding these to more items in the future. I think these take your bags to a whole new level, maybe even making people think that it is a name brand.  I didn't want to take away from the Maple Leaf or the handmade hardware, so I used magnetic snaps as the closures for the bag.

Well I'm now Traveling Handmade for the Sewing Summit, I can't wait.

The Sewing Summit

Thursday, 5 September 2013

The Sewing Summit, Salt Lake City, Utah

  The Sewing Summit

Taking a page from my sons books........I leave for The Sewing Summit in 12 sleeps. It is getting closer, it seemed so far away when I purchased my ticket back in April.  Of course I had to book my flight right away to get a good deal.  I got a great deal except my flights have changed 3 times, I'm so  glad that I booked it at the travel agency less stress for me.

As we are coming down to the wire, I had  realized that I needed a new bag or purse.  I have decided to make a messenger bag out of distressed leather, in burgundy.   I have been making up the pattern as I go making notes so I can make it again. The only problem doing it this way is you keep changing things and adding a few other things.  I hope it doesn't end up being too heavy to carry. I can fit my lap top into it if I wish and a lot of other things I most likely do not need.

I also have to sew a pouch for the secret swap, I know I will make it in time.  As I always finish things I making for Christmas even if it means staying up late on Christmas Eve. So no problems it will be done.......I guess we can't take our scissors on the plane.

This is the front flap and the main body piece, I have added extra support in the bottom for all the extra stuff I will carry.

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Pattern testing The Bookbag Backpack by Mrs H.

I have had so much fun in the last weeks getting back into sewing, and as luck would have it I was able to be a tester for The Bookbag Backpack By Mrs H.

Samantha has written a few patterns now and has them in her Etsy shop, and the good thing is, that they are PDF so you can get right to sewing.

The thing that took me the longest to decide was the fabric. I'm in love with the IKEA striped fabric. I also like  the fact that it makes the bag so bright.  No chance of misplacing this even in the dark as the zipper I used at the top of the bag is glows in the dark.  Maybe a little over the top in colour but fun.

One of the things I liked the best about the bag is the hidden zipper on the front of the bag.  It is hidden behind the front pocket.  Also having a zippered pocket inside is nice to place keys or other small things that you don't want to lose at the bottom of the bag.

Nice idea with finishing of the inside of the bag, anything that helps cut down on hand stitches is a very good thing.  Especially when I can't find my cheater glasses,  I had to go buy another pair this week.

 I was able to recycle some hardware from another purse. I used the smaller rectangular rings as I like to use smaller rings with the swivel clips.

It is a nice size bag for a day at as you don't have a bulky bag pack.  This is perfect for a day of shopping or running to the library.

Don't forget to visit Mrs H at her blog to see all the lovely Bookbag Backpack that all the other tester whipped up. Also to check out her Etsy page.

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Pattern testing Girl's Cross Body Bag

I was lucky enough to get a chance to test Anna's pattern from Charmed Liebling Girl's Cross Body Bag.

It was a great bag for me, as I was able to use scraps of fabrics from other project I had done as well as jeans that have been sitting around.

It is a great size bag for any girl.  There is a front zipper pocket and then two slip pocket right below on the front as well as on slip pocket inside.  The closure at the top is a snap closure making it easy to open and close.

I had fun sewing this bag no problems with the instructions and a very quick pattern to sew up.  I think I might have to make one for myself.

The funny thing I learned after sending Anna my pictures of my purse I made up. She wanted to know if it was one of the Great Lakes that I took my pictures by.  I told her it was Lake Ontario.  The funny thing is that she lives on Lake Ontario too but just in another Country.

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

The Maze Quilt...............a few years in the making.

This is the Quilt I recently finished  for my son David's Birthday. It's a good thing he is patient. I started this quilt a while ago OK I admit it was a few years ago.

I  have had a few hangups along the way.  Trying to quilt it myself wasn't working for me, it was just too big for me to swing it around on my sewing machine. I was hoping to quilt around the maze so there was no hope to do that on my machine.   I ended up getting a lady to long arm quilt it for me she did an amazing job and I'm very happy with the results.

After the quilting was done, I needed to add a binding. That took me a while, trying to decide on the way I want to finish the binding, also what fabric to use.  I was thinking I would use the green that I used in the main quilt, but I didn't have enough of it.  So I spend forever looking for it or a match to the green or grey.  I was never happy with what I was seeing.  I also came to the conclusion that I didn't want a binding around the outside of the quilt  as it would take away from the maze effect.  I wanted it to be when you looked at the quilt you knew it was a maze. 

I ended up finding the knife edge binding. I love the look of it as it doesn't take away from the green hedges at the edge. I was able to find the instruction how to do it on the internet.

This is a 72" by 96" quit; bigger than I thought I should make it when I first started making the blocks.  But once I got going on the animals I couldn't stop.  The pattern I used for the paper pieced animal was Animal Kingdom  by Margaret Rolfe. I love this CD-ROM pattern as you can make the animals in many different sizes. I made them different sizes and then enlarged some of them even move by adding the boarder.  Once I got the animals done then it was time to make up the maze.

 I laid out the animals the way I wanted them to be on the maze. ( As you can see some of the animals had a little extra boarders on them, too fussy so I removed them.) Once everything was where I wanted then we found a computer program that would design mazes we plugged in the width of the strips I wanted a finish measurement of 2" thick. It designed the maze around the block measurements we had entered.

Once the maze was the way I wanted it with the animals placed in the pattern. I printed it out and went to work with a highlighter to decide how long the strips would be that I would work with.  I wanted it to be the longest pieces possible so the line would keep a straight look.  There are very few small pieces on this quilt my smallest would be 2 1/2" by 2 1/2" the biggest green piece was 2 1/2" by 32" and the grey biggest piece was  28".

I worked in section across the quilt once I finish across the width of the quilt then I work on adding those sections together, in the picture you can see that I have already added two sections together. I had to wait to add the bottom left corner piece in until the next section I did this throughout the quilt so you cannot see how they were joined together as I didn't want to have visible joining lines showing.
You can't see any visible joining lines in this picture and binding it underneath so it doesn't detracted the maze.  

The trick when picking fabric for the maze quilt is not to use fabric that has a directional pattern to it. 

The sheep is one of my favourites as I used the extra fabric from making my wedding dress. I didn't have an embroidery machine so I did the writing free hand quilting. The chicks are just cute in the middle of the quilt. Trying to find their way to the Mother Hen. The Cheetah because of his movable tail.
This was such a fun quilt to work on, I love to come up with ideas for quilts that I haven't seen before.  It was so much fun piecing it together.  The paper pieces was fun as well, and I smile when I see it on my sons bed as it brings back so many good memories about working on it.  Even if it was a few more years then I had planned.

Oh I just about forgot there were two mistakes in this quilt when it was done up on the computer I didn't notice them until I had finished piecing the whole quilt top together.   I picked out the wrong colour strip on it and resewed it, as I couldn't leave that one mistake in as I would always see that it was wrong, and it would drive me nuts.  You cannot see where I ripped it out and then resewed it which I'm very happy about.  If you compare the finished quilt and the smaller sections that I have together you can see the mistake before and after.  The other mistake, I truthfully can't find it anymore and I'm not planning on looking for it as it is best for me to just forget about it.

 UPDATE: That was what I was going to do, forget about it, but my Dear Husband just pointed it out to me. When I asked him if he remembered that I fixed the other mistake. I made the mistake of showing him the picture of before and after. Oh have I mentioned he an Engineer. lol

Thursday, 6 June 2013

It Might Be Raining............a bit.

Well it's raining today and dull out.  The poppies opened up some anyways so I had to get out there and take a picture.  Now they are hanging down pretty low in the flower bed with all the rain, I still think they look great. Hopefully they will hold up to all the rain we are to get over the next few days.

Monday, 3 June 2013

The garden is the reason I'm not sewing.

I have been spending a lot of my time outside in the garden. I love this time of year - seeing what has come up  and what has not.  I seem to have lost a lot of hostas, which is funny as they have been there for years.  All there was to show where they had been, were indents in the garden. I dug around in the indents - no little shoots coming up - in fact, there were no roots at all.

So needless to say, I had to replace them. I have never counted all the different hosta varieties I have, I also can not tell you the names of very many of them.   I can tell you I was sad to see that my Elvis Lives was one of the ones to mysteriously disappear.   My theory is the #$@%#% SQUIRRELS dug them up.  They are always digging around in the flowers beds.

We won't even go into the amount of Lime Ricky, Coral Bells that they have killed over the years, because they insist on digging them out no matter what bed I plant them in. I have a dream that the two I planted this week will survive to see the end of the summer. (Who knows I might be able to post a picture at the end of summer.)

I take so many pictures this time of year. I have so much fun trying to capture the colours of
Spring and the colour of early Summer.  Everything looks great and not too over-grown or tired looking.

I have Spring Bulbs like  the Orange Fritillaria  (don't quote me on the spelling)   Purple Allium.

One of my favorite is my Tree Peonies. I have this beautiful pink one that had 30 flowers on it this year. I also have a bold yellow one that had about 5 on it.

My Pink Poppy
and Lupins that the Bees love.


Bachelor Buttons and of course ants.

Annuals that I have no idea what their names are
but I love the splash of colours from them. 

Hopefully over the summer I will keep up with the picture taking.

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Sewing Room Remake.

This is the reason I needed to remake the sewing room.  It was suppose to be a quick fix, to have for a sewing table and storage...........a good idea at the time.  Until I realized once I got it home that the owner was a smoker and no amount of cleaning was going to get rid of the smell.  


Well this is what it looks like now.  A new table top and  a lot of paint.  I couldn't  resist painting the inside of the drawers the same turquoise that I used for the top.

 I used B-I-N 2 which blocks smoke.  I painted everything on this sewing machine stand, even the underside of the drawers with it.  I then used C-I-L Smart3 Furniture & Cabinets Melamine Finish. Both this products were amazing.

I made sure to not place the sewing machine on  the stand until it cured for a week.  This way the new table top should hold up to years of use.

 Of course as I had to move things around to fit in the cupboard.  I decided to build a new bookcase to fit around the fireplace as it was wasted space.  (We had all the furry friends removed first and capped the chimney so no more visitors).

I went to Rona where they had scrap lumber on sale and then they cut it to the sizes I needed. I made two bookcases and screwed them together and then trimmed them out so it looked like a built in.

I had built a base to cover the bottom of the fireplace so I could sit the bookcase on it.  I made a shelf cap of the top mantle as well so I could  place my books there.

The bookcase is filled with all my purse hardware, the boxes above are zippers and webbing for the handles on the bags. I can now find everything I need to make a purse quickly.

This is the room as you walk into it with the main work area.  

I have all my machine set up in the one area like a triangle I can use one chair and roll from machine to machine.

The cutting table is right there as well and as you can see, so is my row of cupboard that my husband and I  made up.

Someday I hope to have working ceiling lights in my sewing room. So for now I have a lot of floor lights and clamp on lights.

I'm very lucky to have a sewing room for myself. I love sewing in this room now.  I'm very happy with how everything turned out and that I have enough room to have things set up the way I like too.

Monday, 22 April 2013

Sewing Room Storage

I'm lucky enough to have my own sewing room.  I have been working for a while to get it all organized the way I want.  I'm still working on painting out the sewing machine cabinet. ( I might have already finished if I stopped changing things on it.) Since I'm unable to show you the whole finished cleaned up sewing room I'll show you my storage cabinet.

I have been able to add storage along the way to my sewing room .  This is one of the first things we did in my sewing room when we moved into the house. There was a wall that had a bump out in the room, the room in fact has a few bump out and bump in.

This cupboard started with IKEA book cases.  We used two different sizes  of bookcases for this.  The centre one is a wider one with two smaller ones used to the outside.  The small cupboard doors you see to the left is the pull out drawer that was made to store all my acrylic tole paints.

My husband designed the pattern of the doors. I wanted a wall of doors with no hardware visible.  He came up with the pattern that I really liked. We cut all the doors out of MDF, rounded the edges, primed, and painted them all.  It took a while to do, but they turned out great.

We used push latch hinges, so I just push on the center of each door edge and the doors pop open.  This way it is very easy to open up the cupboard doors without visible hardware.  Door open to the left, to the right and one opens up!

The shelves are lined up so that they line up with the gaps between the doors, so that when you look at the wall you see the white shelves in the edge of the door not fabric.

I didn't get a good picture of the full width shelves, the center shelves are wide enough to fold fabric full width.  Initially I stored a sewing machine in the middle of the centre shelf, but as I added more machines I added more furniture to store them. Of course I have added more fabric to fill up the shelves I took the machine off.

This is the pull out drawers for my tole paint, we figured out the size of bottles, drilled the holes so the bottles will sit on an angle in the shelves.   I can see the colour name at a glance.

I'm very happy with the way it has turned out and it is great to be able to see my fabric at a glance.

Come back again to visit and see more of my sewing room.