Wednesday, May 27, 2009

SMS Give Away Day! Item #2 - Handmade Items

Welcome SMS Give Away-ers! This is giveaway #2 of 2 on my blog.

I'm in the process of putting together a tutorial for reusable sandwich and snack bags. These are some prototypes that I'm offering up in homes that you will come back in a few weeks and check out the free tutorial! (I hope to have it posted by mid-June) They are green and black cotton on the outside, fused to repurposed mylar chip and cookie bags. Closures are button and elastic. The green bag has a gusseted bottom and is sandwich sized, and the smaller black bag is intended for nuts, chips, carrot sticks, etc. but hey, who am I to tell you what to pack in your lunch?

The empty view:

The yummy lunch view:

The all-sealed-up-and-ready-to-hit-the-road view:
The details on how to win these...
Leave a comment on this post, the winner will be selected at random. Comments must be made by 11:59pm MT on May 31st. If your comment does not contain a blog link or other contact info, please be sure to check back to see if you have won!

(Note: I'm located in the US, but willing to ship internationally)

Are you a knitter? If so, be sure to checkout my other give-away post!

Check out the Sew,Mama,Sew blog for other great giveaways!

SMS Give Away Day! Item #1 - Knitting Supplies/Materials

Welcome SMS Give Away-ers! This is giveaway #1 of 2 on my blog.

One lucky winner will receive these fabulous vintage knitting books. I picked these up at a thrift store in Dillon, Montana, and then realized I'm never going to sit still long enough to knit anything out of them (plus I prefer crocheting, don't tell my grandmother!). Winner will be selected at random and will receive all 5 of the following:

Spinnerin "His and Hers" (1966)
Bernhard Ulmann Company "Men's Classics" (1966)
Coats & Clark "Children's Classics" (1956)
Bernat Handicrafter "The Big Book of Ski and Sports Sweaters" (1956)
Bernat "The Bernat Book for All Sports" (1958)

This books are well loved and for authenticity, contain both pencil markings and coffee stains from the original owner :)

The winner will find that these knitting books are equal parts functional and hilarious.

Selected images:

The details on how to win these books...
Leave a comment on this post. Feel free to leave witty comments about the above images, however the winner will be selected at random. Comments must be made by 11:59pm on May 31st. If your comment does not contain a blog link or other contact info, please be sure to check back to see if you have won! (Note: I'm located in the US, but willing to ship internationally)

Check out the Sew,Mama,Sew blog for other great giveaways! Good Luck!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Quilt for a wee lassie

Here is another baby quilt with B/W and one color (See Blue Moo Baby Quilt for logic). The blocks are log cabin using two different sized strips, so the B/W strips were 2" and the greens 1.5"

I made this last Spring, before I had a machine that could handle top-stitching without spending hours fiddling with thread tension... So I just used a thin batting and sewed using a normal foot and feed dogs. I had green thread on top and black on the back.

To give the quilt an irish touch, I put 4 shamrocks in with green thread on both the back and the front. I just printed out a clip-art shamrock, traced around it with a white pencil, and sewed in the same manner I was doing the top stitching.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Monkey in the Mail

I put a monkey in the mail last week.  I sure hope that's legal.  At least I beat the postage price increase! (Side note: Dear, USPS: Please just make stamps 50 cents and then leave us alone for a year or two.  You change the rate so often we have no idea whether we are using the correct stamps from day to day.  Thanks.)

My cousin (on the quilting side of the family) is having a baby and between her mom and sisters I know that this child will not be lacking quilts, especially since this will be the first grandchild in their family.  So I took this opportunity to branch out and experiment with 3 dimensional sewing.  My nephew adores the sock monkey his "Gama" made, so that's where this project starts.  With the blue-eyed boy and his monkey!

Instructions: I used a hodge-podge of sock monkey tutorials from the web.  No need to cover the basic sock-monkey assembly tactics in this blog... just google it.

#1 - Socks!  Cute ones purchased in a 2-set coordinating pack.  Since there is a directional pattern of the hearts, I had to make some changes to the basic monkey pattern... Source: Fred Meyer (a store in the Northwest US... it's a grocery store/gardening center/clothing store... but not in a Walmart kind of way.  My mom would take me there in my 90s grunge phase and tell me that she would abandon me in the giant store if I didn't surrender by dirty, worn-out converse chuck taylor high tops and leave the store in a new pair.)

#2 - Stuffin' (Poly-filling... available at any craft or fabric store.) If you are a quilter you can use scraps of leftover batting.  I almost bought black and pink socks for this project, but I was afraid that as the sock stretched the white stuffing would show, and post-construction I certainly think that would have been the case.

#3 - Felt.  I picked up a sheet each of red, white, and black.  Many of the sock monkeys roaming the internet have button eyes, but buttons may not be appropriate for use on toys of young children as they can be a choking hazard.  The red is for the mouth, but if using a red-heel traditional monkey sock, it's not necessary.

Here's a picture of the monkey in progress.  Before it had ears and a bum I thought the sock monkey might turn out to be a sock sealion!  But don't lose hope, he/she turned out pretty cute. (do sock monkeys have genders?)

Here are some photos of the finished monkey:

His arms are a little short for a sock monkey, but that's because these are women's socks and the arms come from the foot which was shorter than in a man's sock.  

This project made me a fan of sewing sock creatures.  Sock material is really easy to work with, and since some of the components had to be hand sewn, it's nice that the hand stitches blend into the sock knitting.  In other words... you don't need to be anywhere near perfect at hand stitching.

Of the 4 original socks, I have one grey sock left.  Stay posted... you never know what I'll come up with to do with a stray funky sock!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

90s movies PLUS quilting EQUALS...

I watch a lot of old movies when I quilt.  I think this quilt picked up a little too much of the 90's vibe from  Sleepless in Seattle.  (I also watch "Bones" episodes on, I hope that doesn't start appearing in my baby quilts!)

The quilt top is an improv log cabin, offset by the final layer of log

The greens in this quilt turned out to be more dominant than I had expected.  It reminds be of the hot pink and neon green spandex shorts my mom made for me in the early 90's (back when I was young and thin thighed, obviously).  Also, the 90's are making a comeback, right?

Apparently not everyone has such associations with these colors though, because I did get some nice compliments on the colors. 

I did really like the texture of this quilt post-topstitching and a trip through the dryer.  Look at the picture below, don't you just wish you could reach through your computer screen and touch it???  The stitching is in black, green, and pink.

I think I've become addicted to pieced quilt backs.  It's like the quilt has a secret.

Lastly, I should note that this was my first attempt at incorporating rick-rack into a quilt, and I think it went well.  Below you can see one of the places I used it:

Now go put in a good Tom Hanks/Meg Ryan flick... you know you want to!