Friday, September 21, 2012

Creative Stitches Show and Sewing Night in The Giant Sewing Room!

I would love to show you some pictures I took at the Creative Stitches show last weekend, but mom downloaded my photos, and for some reason, I didn't get any!  So, until I get them back, you'll have to use your imagination.  :)
Avril & Kristin
 Avril and I went, Corrin and her mom went, and we bumped into 2 ladies from the Quilting Guild.  
Kristin & Corrin
We had a very full day.  We each took in a few classes, and I learned a lot.  The women who present the classes have decades of experience in each of their fields.  Very inspiring.  We did lots of shopping, and I will show you my spoils next week.  I left my goodies in mom's basement, aka The Giant Sewing Room.
Corrin's Mom, Jean
 Which brings me to my next topic.  I was a bit overwhelmed at the prospect of moving my entire sewing room, but one day a couple weeks ago, I had a brain wave and realized that if I took my table, some quilting tools, and one sewing machine, I could start putting my quilts together.  That very first day, my friend Nadine came over, and we repaired 5 garments.  Monday night, Avril came over, and we each got a bit of quilting done.  Wednesday night, there were four of us: Avril, Nadine, Corrin, and myself.  Corrin got one of her bags cut out.
Corrin at the cutting table
 Nadine got a couple more repair jobs done, and then I asked her to help me stick my quilt squares up on our new quilt boards.  These are plastic tablecloths with the white fuzzy backing.  Brilliant!
Nadine at the quilt board
 Avril continued working on her quilt.
Avril at the sewing machine
 I am making four "baby" quilts.  These are for boys.  They're more like kid quilts than baby quilts, and I'm pleased at how big they're going to be.  They will easily be able to grow into these.
 Nadine just stuck the squares up from the pile in order.  Once we get the fourth one up, we'll start rearranging squares to mix them up a bit.  If you look closely, you'll notice that the left quilt has big pieces, and the right quilt has small pieces.  I also want to stick up the borders for each quilt so the colours are balanced.  But judging by how good they look already, it won't be very hard.  I'm excited to finally see them coming together.
 Here you can also see that my spare bed is still in The Giant Sewing Room.  I'm thrilled that we're able to get together with so little being brought in and organized.  Eventually, we'll have this room full of cutting tables, a quilting table, 2 sergers, and 10 sewing machines!  The big bedroom will be full of storage (patterns, fabric, supplies, books), and tables for doing scrapbooking, stamping, and card making.  And there's still a smaller bedroom that I can sleep in!  Win, win, win!

Mom's cat, Emma, was so excited to have visitors, that she had to come down for a belly rub.  :)
 When I crawled into bed that night and turned the lights off, I was thrilled to see my lizards glow in the dark!
 I made my nephew PJ pants out of this flannel a few Christmases ago.  I love it!!!
 Speaking of lizards...  Avril brought a stool for the sewing room, and I decided to recover it in 3 different shades of blue and turquoise (the band is royal blue).  She encouraged me to get creative, so I printed this guy off the computer, cut him out, and used 2 layers of vinyl to make him come to life.
 This is my stool that I've been wanting to recover for eons.  I got creative with this one too, but I seem to have forgotten to draw out the shape of the stool before I placed my designs.  They kinda got cut off.  Oops.  Oh well.
 It's still pretty friggin' cute, if I do say so myself!  I think we're going to recover every fabric chair that ends up in that sewing room.  Get ready for some bursts of colour!
I am so excited to watch The Giant Sewing Room get filled with tables, chairs, and machines in the coming weeks, and I'm even more excited to have a bunch of friends over and enjoy teaching, learning, and sharing.  :)

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Sewing-related Updates, and I joined the Quilt Guild!

I still haven't had time to sew, but I have some fun sewing updates to share with you!

A few weeks ago, I went to a wedding with a friend and wanted to make this dress (View B, the funky white one).  I had a few metres of good quality orange cotton/poly broadcloth, and I managed to get it cut out and all the markings made.  But in order to finish it, I would have had to do all the sewing on Saturday morning before the wedding.  I had a busy week and was tired and decided to be nice to myself and sleep in instead.  I wore an A-line skirt and a nice t-shirt, and I was comfortable and looked nice enough.  I don't enjoy killing myself over sewing deadlines, so I put this one aside.  I'm happy with my decision and look forward to finishing this in the near future.
 It's still cut out, laying on my cutting table, buried under a mountain of junk.  My sewing room desperately needs to be cleaned before I sew anything.  And while I'm cleaning, I think I might as well just pack everything up.  Which brings me to my exciting news about my mom's giant basement craft room.  She suggested I move my entire sewing room to her basement and just do my sewing there.  Between her and I, we have 6 sewing machines and 1 serger.  When I first thought about this giant sewing room, I was inspired to invite all my sewing buddies over for sewing nights and they wouldn't have to bring anything but projects.  I have more than enough machines and tools, and my mom has an unbelievable collection of quilting paraphernalia.

Out in my hometown where I work, I stay over quite often in the fall/winter.  I go to bowling and a few fitness classes in the evenings.  On quiet nights, I have a whole plenty of time to sew and invite my sewing buddies over.  We have quite a varied group, and I can't wait to start this new venture!  There are 3 pros, including myself, 1 intermediate, and 3 beginners.  I love that I won't be the only pro, and will have help teaching the newbies.

We're going to have so much fun!  We'll be sewing quilts, PJ pants, bags and purses, hoodies, UFO's, repairs and alterations, and of course, garments!  I'm not sure if it'll be possible to have "theme nights", but that's one of my ideas.  I absolutely can't wait!!!  If I have time on Sunday, I'm going to try and pack up a few things and take them with me this week.

And I found lime green serger thread on sale!  These were $2.50 each.  My orange serger cones are getting a bit thin, and I wanted another fun colour to sew with.  Sue is going to literally sew everything with this.  It's her favourite colour.  :)
On Thursday at work, Avril mentioned that she was going to the quilting meeting that night.  I was staying over and had no plans, so I spontaneously decided to join her!  I have a lot of connections to this group.  My mom was one of the founding members 10 years ago, and they used to have meetings at our house in the big basement before the upholstery shop infiltrated and took over every spare inch of space.  When I showed up, I was familiar with about half of the group, and personally knew a handful. All I have to do is tell them I'm Raylene's daughter, and they know exactly who I am.  I decided to join, even though I'll probably miss all the monthly meetings because it's on the same night as my church choir practices.  They also have monthly quilting classes, so I signed up for one in September and am planning on attending the January one as well.  And there's a shop hop in October!
On to the pictures!  Avril brought 5 different projects for show and tell.  This is a Christmas quilt that she designed herself.  There are an infinite number of creative ideas floating around in her head, and this was one of them.  She sewed green and red stripes in a square, and then chopped them in pieces and arranged them until they made these funky X patterns.
I think she's absolutely brilliant, and she doesn't believe me.  But she is.  I absolutely can't wait to siphon that creativity out of her head when we sew together.  She's a brilliant seamstress at the upholstery shop, too.  I am already learning so much from her.  Love you, Avril!
 She made a whole bunch of pillow covers that look like presents.  They are so cute!  This was my favourite.
 This was a show and tell from Glenda.  Funky!  I think I squealed when I turned around and saw this.  :D
This is my best friend Corrin's mom.  She's showing off a doll made by Sally (above left).  I think she's the president.  I really like Sally.  All these women are so creative!!!
 Our first quilting course at the end of September is taught by a designer!  Her name is Shauna Case, and I can tell I'm going to like her.  There's topstitching all over her quilts!  :)  The ladies were saying that they've learned a lot of great shortcuts about appliqué from her, and I'm excited about that, because I've only attempted it twice, and I wasn't a big fan.  It's a bit fiddly.  

She's giving us 5 designs to choose from!  Can you guess which one I picked?!  I squealed when I saw this, too.
They are all really cute.  I would love to make them all eventually, and I can't wait to peruse the rest of her patterns.  Check out her website and have a look at the cute details!
This is the quilt they will be teaching at the November course.  Unfortunately, I'll have to miss this one, but I will get my hands on this pattern!  
This is a bargello quilt, and my mom taught a course a few years ago with a bigger design, and I am fortunate enough to have it hanging in my basement.  I love it.  It's a work of art.
The charity project for this year is to make quilts for teens.  Organizations like the Stollery Children's Hospital and Ronald McDonald House usually get lots of donations for babies and children, but not a lot for teens.  I have so many funky fabrics that are absolutely perfect for this, so my goal will be to make two twin-size quilts, one for a girl and one for a boy.  I'll be using a much simpler patchwork pattern, but this was a cute design they shared as an idea.  This stuff is right up my alley!
At the October course, they will be learning to make fabric pottery.  Isn't this amazing?  
Avril had to model it for me.  What a goof.  :P
I had so much fun at this meeting!  I'm looking forward to learning lots more about quilting and making new friends who sew!