Monday, September 22, 2014

Quilts and Pillows and Softies, oh my!

Hi everyone:

This past week-end we travelled up to Edmonton to visit Sarah at university - and to take a look at a vintage Singer sewing machine, but that's another blogpost! This trip reminded me that I had promised to tell you about the other items that I made for Sarah to have in her residence room.

Since residence rooms are not very homey, I thought that some soft furnishings would be welcome. As Sarah is a huge Harry Potter fan, the subject matter was obvious; I just had to decide what to make. 
Sarah's quilt
Since I'd already made her a quilt, I thought that a throw pillow would be nice and decided that I would use the same orange flannel backing fabric from the quilt to make the pillow back. Well that was easy, but what about the front of the pillow? Again, Harry Potter to the rescue! I traced a Deathly Hallows symbol on a plain fabric background and embroidered it using a chain stitch. You'll notice a slight difference in the symbol - this is how Sarah always draws it, incorporated the lightning bolt through the centre of the design. Borders added around the outside, back completed, pillow form inserted and the pillow was done.

Pillow with Deathly Hallows symbol
But this was not quite enough yet. Sarah had drawn a small Dobby figure and partially completed the embroidery before grade 12 activities took over. I finished the embroidery and made it into a little softie. I enlarged the outline of the figure and cut the embroidered fabric and backing fabric to this shape. These pieces were stitched together, right sides together, leaving a small opening at the side to turn. I then turned it right side out and stuffed Dobby and then whipstitched the opening closed. I think he turned out very well and is now a companion to the Harry Potter softie that I had previously made for Sarah. 
Dobby front
Dobby back
Dobby nestled in a sleeping bag (sleeve from a sweater)
Things are looking a bit more homey in Sarah's room now.

I had to make sure that Dobby had his sock - he is a free elf, after all!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Telecast Thursday - And Now for Something a Little Bigger

Hi everyone:

Welcome to Telecast Thursday. Can you believe that we're already halfway through September? Even though we're not at the end of the month yet, we are at the end of this playlist - for now. I intend to add more videos to this playlist in the future with information and practical advice about the Singer Featherweight sewing machines as well as details about my latest addition to my Singer collection. Yes, I have added another machine to the group, but I'm not telling you any more about it right now. And no, I don't have a problem with this obsession!

In this final (for now) video in this series, I'll show you another vintage Singer machine, but this one is a little different. I did promise you something bigger this week, didn't I? 
I acquired this machine and its table for the same amount of money that it would've sold brand-new. Not too bad a deal I don't think with the 50+ year gap in purchase date.

If you haven't already subscribed to my Youtube channel, be sure to do so to receive automatic notifications when new videos are posted.

Do you own a Singer 99-13? I'd love to hear about your vintage sewing machine obsession in the comments below.

Monday, September 15, 2014

University Bound with a Quilt, of Course

Hi everyone:

There have been a lot of changes this summer in my household and suddenly it's much quieter around here. Why? My daughter has started university and is now cozily ensconced in her own private room - with private bathroom - at Campus Saint-Jean at the University of Alberta in Edmonton. Although she isn't the noisiest one in our household (I think my son and I are tied in that respect), it is definitely quieter around here. It could be that with one child out of the house, the remaining one isn't able to carry on the sibling discussions that have been so popular in recent years. In any event, it was time for Sarah to take that big leap into adulthood and we reluctantly drove her up to Edmonton to settle into university life (yes, mea culpa: I did encourage her to accept that university's offer). 
I used the "Wordplay" panel for the centre of the quilt
When she graduated from high school at the end of June I decided to make her a quilt. Although I had grandiose ideas of what I would design for her, I realized that I probably wouldn't have that quilt made until she had graduated from university, so I opted to use a panel to make her quilt. It was a great idea as I actually finished the quilt in time for her graduation. Yay! I think it turned out quite well and I used an orange flannel for the backing as that is her favourite colour. 
A sample of the quilting on Sarah's quilt
When it came to the quilting, I really wanted to do something special, so I decided to free motion quilt a saying from Harry Potter (actually from one of the movies, for those purists out there) around the border as Sarah is a huge HP fan. 
I was pleased at how the words turned out
I wrote out the words in the appropriate scale and then traced then onto the quilt and machine quilted over them. I was pleased with the result - I didn't want the words to overwhelm the quilt, but to be rather in the background for the viewer to discover. 
If you're wondering what I quilted, it is: "Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light" Albus Dumbledore. I also stitched a Deathly Hallows symbol on the border.
Quilting details on the back of the quilt
While I was pleased at how this project turned out, I then realized that Sarah would probably need some other quilty items for her birthday and dorm room. More projects to think up and create! I'll tell you all about these projects in a future blogpost.
Charlie approved