Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Success, and failure... (and a dirty little secret)

What do you want to start with?  Failure?  Failure it is!

So, I had some projects cut out and ready to sew.  The first was a fleece baby hat from Scandinavian Stitches.  I was very excited about this project.  I'd bought a fleece blanket from Ikea for the princely sum of £1 a while ago and I'd hacked it up according to the pattern.  I did the little embroideries for the labels and stitched them on.  Then I sewed it up.  Yuck.  It was horrible to sew.  Then I had to sew the zig zag across the seams.  Nightmare.  The fleece wouldn't feed regularly and getting into the top bit was hard. 

I really could have done with using my walking foot but I don't think I can zig zag with it.  I then turned the big hem and botched that too. 

I'm going to unpick the embroidered patches and start again.  Just not now!

Oh no!  My dirty secret is out - should have moved that ashtray!  Just a note of warning - I don't take kindly to people telling me I shouldn't smoke and that it's bad for me etc.  I do know. 
Failure number two comes courtesy of Tone Finnegar's Sew Pretty Homestyle.  I decided to make the slippers from the only piece of wool felt I have and to use some Tanya Wheelan spotty fabric which went perfectly with the felt.  So I cut and I pinned and I sewed.  Three problems.  First I'd missed half of the sole when I sewed so it was flapping open (forgot to take a picture), second, at no point does she indicate a seam allowance - not helpful when you've got ready made pattern pieces.  Thirdly, it was supposed to go up to a European foot size of 41.  I'm a 38.  I could barely squeeze it on!  So, I've unpicked.  Another one for the WIP pile...

So a success?  Well there have been 2 but I only have photos of one. 

I made some coasters from Last Minute Patchwork Gifts.  OK, so coasters are easy but this is the first time I've quilted.  I made four coasters using bits of layercakes.  I didn't follow the instructions in that I used a different front and back.  I used four different patterns and each pairing is different.

I don't think the instructions told me the best way to do it and I'll be doing it differently in future.  I had to sew up 3 sides, then put the wadding in and try to catch the whole 5 inch seam in my first round of quilting.  Not easy.

The quilting went well and this is my LANT for the month.  It's a simple spiral quilting.  I haven't yet worked in the ends of the threads as I wanted to get photos before I lost the light so I'll do that tonight.  I've got plans to try out other quilting patterns on these little babies!

The second success was the dress I altered for my friend.  She'd picked it up at a charity shop and it definitely wasn't a size 12 as stated so I sewed a new seam either side for her.  It was a simple straight sided dress so I sewed in a few curves and she looks knockout in it!  I really should have taken photos...


Libby said...

I thik the hat is sweet and I love the coasters!
Don't fret..we all have those days were projects go bad!

cauchy09 said...

i always feel like i learn more from crafty snafus than from victories. looks like you're having some nice adventures. :o)

Nancy Lee said...

The hat is sweet. Working with fleece can sometimes be tricky, especially if you are sewing against the nap of the fabric. If that happens, just slip some regular printer paper under the fabric and sew through it. It will just tear away from the stitching. Make sure you clean out your bobbin case after this. As for the slippers, I have all her books and I have not tried these yet. The seam allowance is hidden in the front with the general instructions and is 1/4 inch. I had to hunt all over for it. Cheer up, just make them without a back and call them slip slippers! As for the smoking, been there, got asthma, had to reform. Not willing to preach to anyone about it. Hugs!

Allie said...

Oh I hate days like that. Your walking foot - does it have a wide opening where the needle goes? Mine does, and I quilt all the time with my decorative stitches with it. While it's on, see if you can select different stitches and make the needle move from side to side, then you'll know. I do think it would be easier to do that with a walking foot.

I love your coasters. Don't like the sound of how they go together though! Here's how I do mine - I layer the top and backing layers, right sides together, then put the batting on the bottom. I stitch all the way around, leaving an opening for turning, turn them right side out, then either catch the opening with hand-stitching or with a close top-stitch all the way around. MUCH easier.

NO let me repeat NO judgements here, ever.

Sandra :) said...

It's so disappointing when projects don't work out as well as we want - I don't always rip/redo/fix mine - sometimes I just throw 'em away and stop worrying, or donate them to the thrift store so someone else can have the headache :D Just call me the Lazy Crafter, LOL.

I smoked for 29 years before I quit - no judging here!

I like your LANT - I don't think I LANT'd this month - I must remedy that! ;)

Sandra :) said...

P.S. It's cool that Allie's walking foot has a wide opening for the needle so she can do decorative stitching - mine is only good for straight stitching - I think I'll look for one like hers!

RobynK said...

No judgements here on habits - my children cured me from smoking because as soon as I was pregnant I began throwing up if I was near cigarette smoke let alone smoking one! Eldest child just turned 23!
About all I've made with fleece is tracksuits and I use my overlocker with differential feed for that, not so slippy.
Like your coasters and I use the same method Allie does as it's much easier.