Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Stitched Zipper Pouch with kraft-tex

Have you recovered from the holidays yet and slipped into a new routine for the new year? I'm working on this. One of my goals is to start running again, so I've signed up for a race in April. It is a 10 mile race, and I've only ran around 3 miles at once, so I have quite a few nerves going into it! Any advice, runners? I definitely don't want to overdo it and get shin splints.

Another one of my goals is to spend time doing things that aren't productive. I used to enjoy writing in a journal, songwriting, and just spending time thinking about life.

These days, I'm much better at checking things off a list than...
      pondering...
               wondering...
                        being still.

This goal feels HARD to me. Maybe more difficult than running a race. Still, I feel like I've lost touch with a part of myself in the push-pull of motherhood, and I'm hoping to reconnect with some of the creative practices that have helped shape my identity over time. To see what still sparks joy.

Do you have any goals for the new year? Did you write them down or tell anyone? For me, telling someone my goal makes it more real.

"Oh, we're doing this."


I spent some time sewing today, and that was fun! This red pouch is made from a single sheet of kraft-tex, a paper-fabric hybrid that is fun to work with and comes in a wide variety of colors. So if you're looking for vegan leather... try it out and you won't be disappointed.


The pattern for this pouch appears in the new book I compiled called kraft-tex Creations.

More on the book next week.... and a giveaway!

Linda Seeman-Korte contributed this design, called the "Funky Zipper Pouch." I used Designer kraft-tex in Crimson. One roll is enough to make two of these pouches, with some extra kraft-tex to spare. I stitched some straight lines in black and white thread. I didn't think too hard about the placement, which was fun and relaxing. I used a stitch length of 3.5 for the decorative stitching.

I like how the pouch opens wide at the top, and especially how it sits upright when you use it.



kraft-tex Color of the Month 2020
I'm looking forward to sharing more kraft-tex project ideas each month of 2020 as a #krafttexambassador ! Each month I'll share a different kraft-tex project in the color of the month (hint: think birthstones).

To shop all of the colors of kraft-tex and get more project ideas, visit CTPub.com and search kraft-tex.

Until then.... happy sewing!





Friday, October 18, 2019

My Range Quilt

 Range Quilt

I recently finished a baby quilt and wanted to share my photos! Isn't this ombre colored office building a perfect match?

 Range Quilt

The story of this quilt... I love to gift quilts when my friends are having their first baby. There's something so special about giving something handmade. It's a joyful process for me to customize a quilt based on the nursery colors and just thinking about the parents and what makes them unique.

This couple loves to travel, go climbing, and be out in nature. I'm sure their little sprout will become an adventurer, too! So I chose to work with the Range Quilt pattern by Modern Handcraft. I chose the colors based on a print they knew they wanted to hang in the nursery.

 Range Quilt

I did modify the pattern in a couple ways! First, I knew I wanted a baby size, so I resized all the pieces to 60 percent. (Here's a 75 percent version at Quilty Therapy.) While I was at it, I also recalculated some cutting directions so I could piece strips in bigger sections.

Second, I eliminated the bottom color and took some liberties with the lower mountains to fit the fabrics I had and knew I wanted to use.

Range Quilt

I free motion quilted the Range Quilt with grey Madeira thread and used a triangular pattern to play up the mountains theme. Read more about my labels from Dutch Label Shop!

Range Quilt

For the back of the quilt, I machine embroidered a saying carefully chosen for the recipients: "The best view comes after the hardest climb." I hope it reminds them of all of the beauty that can come after a difficult journey. These words inspired me when I thought of them, and I also felt they worked hand in hand with the mountain and climbing theme. I hope it develops new meaning for them as they climb through parenthood in all its beauty and challenges.

I stitched the quote on my Baby Lock Destiny II (the same machine I used for quilting) before adding it to the quilt back. I used Embrilliance software to format the lettering, which I picked up at Jolson's Designs. It stitched up really well!

Range Quilt 

I found this fun wall mural in my neighborhood, and the colors make me so happy!

Range Quilt

See more pics of my quilt on Flickr!

Have you ever resized a quilt pattern? Did it turn out how you expected, or were there some bumps along the way?
 



Tuesday, September 3, 2019

My "Sew Powerful" Purse

Can you imagine what it would be like to be a teenage girl, on her way to school, and you realize you're on your period and you don't have a pad or tampon?

Now imagine that you actually have no access to feminine care products. Nor can you buy soap to wash your clothes. It's not available in your village. Since you don't have these things, it's easier to just stay home from school. And when you return to school, you've lost an ENTIRE WEEK of learning.

This summer, while attending a sewing machine training event with Baby Lock, I met the founders of Sew Powerful, a charity led by husband-and-wife team Jason and Cinnamon Miles. The 501c3 exists to combat extreme poverty in Ngombe Compound in Lusaka Zambia. They are helping girls attend school all year long by giving pads and purses, sewn with love.

Sew Powerful Banner

 

Baby Lock and Sew Powerful

When I learned about the Sew Powerful Purse Project, I knew I wanted to be involved. Thankfully, Baby Lock is partnering with Sew Powerful during the National Sewing Month (yes, this September 2019!) to host charity sewing parties. All over the U.S., Baby Lock retailers are inviting you to come into the stores and sew a purse for a girl in Zambia. To find out if your local retailer is participating and sign up, go to BabyLock.com for details! 

Sew Powerful Purse 1a
Sew Powerful Purse in Fairy Edith fabrics (Riley Blake Designs)
This simplified version of the purse pattern takes about 1-1.5 hours to sew (depending on how creative you want to get with the flap)! It's a beginner-friendly project, and I made mine entirely with fat quarters.

 

The Sew Powerful Purse Project

Sew Powerful Purse 4
Sew Powerful Purses in Riley Blake fabrics (left, Azure Skies; right, Fairy Edith)
Sew Powerful invites YOU to make a Sew Powerful Purse! These handy little bags have pockets to hold reusable feminine care products, which allows girls to stay in school all year long and improve their academic performance. (The local seamstresses in Zambia are employed to make re-usable hygiene pads to go inside the purses. Win-win!)

Sew a Purse, Change a Life...


Make as few or as many purses as you’d like. Take your time and make them as nice as possible. We want quality purses! The girls like cute and colorful purses. Share your passion for this project with us and others on social media with #sewpowerfulpurse This makes a great and very meaningful sewing group activity! Check out the Sew Powerful website for group activity resources.

Sew Powerful Note

 

Include a Special Note...

 

Include a kind greeting in your purse. Write something special to the girl who will receive your work. Maybe a poem, scripture verse, prayer, or word of encouragement. These cards are an important part of the program and each girl looks with anticipation in the purse to see what the sender has written – make it special!
Make sure you . . . Sew Powerful Purse 3b

Just think about what these bags will hold... the tangible help of reusable feminine products, and also the sense of love and pride that a purse was handmade, especially for them!

Sew Powerful Purse 6

Let your creativity shine! I hope you join us in sewing a purse (or two)!




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