Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Granny Square Quilt : a finished quilt

I finished up my version of the Granny Square quilt this past weekend! 
It's bright, spring like and has been a fun and simple quilt to work on during these last few weeks of cold weather (hopefully!). It has to get warmer soon!
The fabrics are all some of my favorites. Most of the them were cut from 5" squares that were left over from other projects and some were pulled from the scrap bins. I love the combination of these colors with the white!


I didn't use a specific pattern for this quilt. I just made up a simple block and placed it on point so that it looked like a granny square quilt block. The squares finish at 2".

The backing of this quilt is all pieced from a variety of blue and green printed fabrics. It's been a stash buster of sorts and a good way to use up some of those prints that have been in my stash for a long time. They're too pretty to be sitting on my shelf and need to get out and enjoyed!

I've decided to put this one up for sale in my etsy shop, if you're interested!

Happy Sewing,
~Jessica

quilt stats:
pattern: designed after the "trip around the world" or "granny square" design
fabrics: they're from many collections by designers such as Heather Bailey, Denyse Schmidt, Sandi Henderson, Violet Craft along with a few others; the white is Kona cotton in White
size: approx. 53" x 53"
batting: Warm and White cotton

Monday, March 24, 2014

a new quilt start

Over the past week or so, I've been working on piecing a new quilt top. I put together this collection of 5" squares in this pretty array of spring like colors. It took me a couple of days to decide what to do with them, but I finally decided on this "trip around the world" or "granny square" design.
I think I'll let the pictures do the talking on this post! I think it's fun to see the evolution of this quilt top.




And here's where I left off this past weekend. I decided to set all the blocks on point and I really like how that leaves a white border around the edge of the quilt. From my calculations, it will be about 56" square when it's finished. Hopefully a good lap quilt size!
I've been busy getting everything in order for my slipcovering business, too. A couple weeks ago, I purchased an industrial sewing machine! I'm getting used to it and will do a post about it soon. It's a little different than my home sewing machines, and I can tell it's going to be perfect for making slipcovers.
I hope you're having a great start to the week! I woke up to more snow this morning. Ugh!
~Jessica

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Vintage Fabric Bunting

I have a couple boxes of vintage fabrics from my grandma in my basement that I keep thinking I should do something with them. A long time ago, I pinned a bunting on Pinterest that was made out of vintage fabrics and I knew I'd love to make one like it for my house. The image I pinned didn't link to the correct blog, but I managed to track down the original post from Under the Sycamore about the bunting here. (There's a tutorial about how she made her bunting in her post. Mine is very similar, I just made my tumbler shapes larger.)
This was such a quick project to make and I'm really happy to see some fabrics from my grandma out and visible in my house. The bias tape was probably from her, too. She had quite the collection of sewing supplies and fabrics! Maybe this would be a great thing to make with some precious fabric scraps that you can't seem to throw away.

I found a cute place to hang it up in the house for a while this morning.
Hope you have a wonderful day!
~Jessica

Thursday, March 6, 2014

The Granny Chic Slipcovered Chair

This slipcover started with an old drapery panel that I bought at a thrift store quite a few years ago! I came across it a few weeks ago when I was doing some cleaning and was either going to get rid of it or put it to good use. It provided a good way to get some more slipcover practice.
The curtain is made of a barkcloth fabric so it has a nice texture to it. There were two and a half widths of fabric sewn together, so I was hoping there would be enough fabric to make it all work (I'm thinking there was maybe 7 yards of fabric). Turns out that I had to piece the piping in many places but I was able to cut out all the panels out of a solid width of fabric. The skirt at the bottom is pieced together in many places, but I figured since it was gathered you wouldn't notice all the seams.
There's lots of piping in this slipcover and I debated about adding the piping along the arms (because I thought I would run out of fabric), but I'm so glad that I did. It looks much better that way.
This is the view going into my sun porch (but we use it mostly for a homework/computer room). It's turning out to be quite "granny chic". It's pretty fun and I'm liking the change to the chair cover more every day. It's quirky, different and gives off a vintage/retro feel that I like. 
Here's the chair with the curtain draped over it before I got started. I took out the hem, pleated top and side seams so that I could use every available inch of fabric. Of course I had to work around some faded and torn areas but I sure made the best of what was left and I really like how it all came together!
~Jessica

Friday, February 21, 2014

A Slipcovered Chair Makeover

My mom purchased this chair for me a little while ago at a thrift store. It was in need of a good cleaning but the lines of it were cute. I really liked the turned spindles of the arms and detail on the front legs. It looks as though someone recovered the chair recently in the dark upholstery fabric; which is fine, but I wanted a more lightened up look.

I've been doing a lot of thinking about starting my own custom slipcovering business since slipcovering my couch (which I am going to!) and this project gave me a little more practice and would help me decide if that is something I would love doing! My youngest child is going to be starting Kindergarten this fall and I've been thinking and praying a lot about what that means for me. I'd love to be able to use my sewing talents and still be able to be around for my kids when they need me. I'm very excited about this adventure and I know it's going to be something that I'll enjoy working at!
If you're in the West Michigan (Holland, Grand Haven, Zeeland area) and would like something custom slipcovered, I'd love to start working with you. You can reach me at twinfibers@gmail.com.
Back to the chair for a little bit...
Here it is with a finished slipcover and a fresh coat of chalk paint and wax!
I needed to use a double layer of the white fabric so that the dark upholstery didn't show through.

The ties help hold the covers on the chair back and seat.
It was a fun chair to transform and there's quite the difference between the before and after!
This past weekend, I needed a little sewing project just for fun. I pulled out all the selvages I had stashed away and started sewing them together.
It's fun to dig through that pile and see all the little bits of fabric that I've used over the years.
I made a couple zippy pouches to stash away as future gifts. (They're made using Anna's tutorial over at Noodlehead)
Up next is a chair that I slipcovered with a vintage barkcloth curtain. It's quite "granny chic" and very different. I still have to get used to it, but I think it's growing on me. Pictures and post coming up next week!
~Jessica

Friday, February 7, 2014

shawl knitting

I finished up this knitting project a little while ago but just took some pictures of it this week. We had one day this week with a couple hours of sunshine (it was so nice!) so I pulled out the camera and took some pictures. 
Over the past year or so, I've knit quite a few shawls. I never thought I would like wearing one but now I've figured out how I like to wear them (with the point in the front) and they really do keep me extra warm in the winter.
This one is called the Bees to Honey Shawl. Super simple to knit the body part and then the lace at the end gives you something to concentrate on while knitting. I knit mine out of Plucky Single yarn; it's a fingering weight yarn with a little silk in it. It's really nice and soft and I love the little bit of shine that the silk gives to the yarn.
This is the project that I'm currently working on. The pattern is called Cameo and I'm just to the point of starting the last section that's a lace border. This one has been fun because it's constructed a little differently starting from one point and increasing all the time getting you to one of the three edges (for a triangular shawl)... hopefully that makes sense.
The section I just finished was alternating stripes of the blue and oatmeal color. I'm not sure you can see from the pictures, but the slight variegation in these hand dyed yarns are so pretty (I'm using Luna Grey Aquila in Harbor and Plucky Feet in Oatmeal). The color combination I choose here reminds me so much of the beach. It's been so nice to work with such calming colors. Hopefully I'll have time to do some knitting this weekend. I'm looking forward to watching some of the Olympics and this will be good tv knitting.
~Jessica

Monday, February 3, 2014

Hawaiian Memories Quilt : a finished quilt

It's taken a while, but this one is finally bound and washed up. 

It's so good to have it completed. I think I got stuck on choosing a binding fabric. I wanted to use up something I had already and something that would blend in and not stand out too much. There's already a lot of color going on in the quilt top. Finally I pulled out a green and white gingham fabric. A perfect option, it just took me a while to realize it.
I love this backing fabric! It's so pretty, bright and spring like. It's a design by Josephine Kimberling for Blend Fabrics in a collection called Field Day.
It sure was nice to work with the summery colors and cute prints of the Hawaiian fabrics! Now I'll have a daily reminder of our trip to Hawaii. Maybe it'll help me get through the super snowy and cold winter we're experiencing right now. :)
~Jessica

quilt stats:
size: approx. 59" x 68"
pattern: block pattern is from the Coming Home quilt in Camille Roskelley's book titled "Simplify"
Warm and White cotton batting
Pieced, quilted and bound by Jessica