Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Classy Cargo Dress Pattern Review

As soon as I laid eyes on this pattern, I knew immediately that I had to have it. Olive Ann Designs is a new pattern line to me and one that I'll be looking out for in the future because it was so well done.
 The pattern packet contains tissue patterns with size marking from sizes 2 through 10 and even a size for an 18" doll. I made the size 6 for Lula. The fabric is called Littlest, by Art Gallery Fabrics, if you are wondering.
 My favorite part is the pocket detail. I added the bias edging to the pleated cargo pocket, but it would be cute without it as well. My one suggestion for improving the pattern would be to add interfacing to the buttoned front and neckline. I just automatically always add this important step when garment sewing to give more body and a professional look.
 The back is designed with a kick pleat and belt loop. I found the directions and photos to be well done for the most part, especially for anyone who has some garment sewing experience. The elastic belt was very easy to make and a creative alternative to the sashed belt featured on the front of the pattern.
 The dress design is so perfect for Lula's slender body type. Since the style is a bit grown up,  I'm not sure it would be as cute in the size two, but maybe with different fabric it would be great for younger girls. Lula loved the dress and so did her mommy...which is very important!
With leggings and a tee, it's perfect for a fall day at school.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Sunday Morning

"For God is greater than our worried hearts
and knows more about us than we do ourselves."
2 Timothy 3:20b The Message

Friday, September 26, 2014

Friendship x and + Quilt Reveal

It's an exciting day - the reveal of of my version of the Friendship x and + Quilt! Susan and I began swapping blocks a year ago - eight each month for eight months.
 I decided to put 5 of my 64 blocks on the back in the shape of a plus sign. The middle block serves as my quilt label with information penned on.
 Each month Susan and I chose 3 colors from our basic color pallet for making the swap blocks. I decided to group the resulting blocks by color on the front rather than scatter them around the top.
Trying to create a modern twist to this pattern, I added a large solid aqua plus sign. (Honestly, I'm not quite sure how successful this decision turned out to be.) 
 Straight-line cross hatching emphasises the large cross while an all over rose design is quilted over the scrappy x and + blocks. I quilted the all over design on my quilting frame but did the straight lines with my walking foot on my Bernina. 
 Several pink fabrics from my stash were pieced together with the 5 blocks to make my quilt almost reversible. 
It's always fun to photograph a quilt all rolled up. As you can see, I used Flea Market Fancy for the binding. The colors are the perfect compliment. 
 I love having this token of the long distance friendship that Susan and I enjoy...all because of blogging. 
 The colors remind me of the opposite seasons that Australia and America enjoy. I think that I might even name it, "Opposite Seasons".
There were several other quilters who joined us on this fun friendship swap.
You can visit our flickr site here: https://www.flickr.com/groups/2336168@N20/ If you posted about your quilt today, please let me know so I can list your post below for others to see. Okay!
Here's Susan's
And Cindy's
And Carla's
And Elizabeth's
And Heidi's
And Jane's

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Sunday Morning

"And hope does not disappoint us,
because God has poured out His love
into our hearts by the Holy Spirit,
whom He has given us."
Romans 5:5

Wednesday, September 17, 2014


Meet Charming, my end of summer quilt...
 Yesterday I shared that I was practicing my free-motion quilting on this quilt. Here's one of my favorite designs that I tried out...
 But, really, the top is so busy that you don't even notice the quilting design that much anyway. Who will ever realize that it was my sampler unless I tell them?
 I really like the large floral backing fabric. It was purchased from Joanne's several years ago. The colors are perfect for my summer/fall project.
 This polka dot binding fabric is one of those fabrics that just never seems to get used up in my stash. Maybe it multiplies at night or something! (The quilting just looks like one big mess here, doesn't it! Yes, it does.)
 Though I'm not sure when the top was finished, I do remember that I made it as a leader/ender project using up 5 inch charm squares and 2.5 inch stash squares. It's a very simple design.
 The colors are so happy and cheerful. It's a nice reminder of the colorful flowers of summer. Soon we'll be seeing the beautiful fall foliage here in the Midwest.
 One last hurrah for summer!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Sampler Quilting

Since I am getting ready to quilt my Friendship x and + quilt, I decided that it might be a good idea to brush up on my free-motion quilting skills. I found this cheerful quilt top in my sewing closet....ready and waiting to become a quilting sampler!
 The inspirational Angela Walters was the guest speaker at one of my quilt guilds this month so I wanted to try out a couple of her ideas. The No-Mark book is a recent addition to my quilting library. (I use pre-wound bobbins when I quilt. Do you?)
 Both books gave me ideas for some simple shapes...the kind that this "Utilitarian Quilter" might be able to handle. 
 Right now, I don't have a certain purpose in mind for this quilt...perhaps I will donate it to charity. Where ever it ends up, the quilting on it will be interesting, let's just say... I probably tried a half dozen different designs on it!
Stop by tomorrow to see the finish!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Sunday Morning

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding."
Proverbs 3:5