Tag Archives: patchwork

Handmade Holiday – Sewing Edition

My mother’s birthday happens to fall nine days before Christmas, so technically this is not “Holiday” sewing. However, it still lies within the month of December so I’m including it.
Several years ago my mom and I were paroozing the isles of one of our favorite local quilt shops. She ended up finding several “can not live without” fabric prints, mostly of the nature persuasion. She was going to make a table runner with them. Fast forward two years and that vision had yet to be executed. This is where I step in.
Mom “Hey Dee”
Me “yes?”
Mom “I have this fabric and never got around to making anything with it. Would you want to make me a table runner for my birthday?”
Me “Well, seeing as how I was going to make you one in the first place and now I don’t have to go and buy fabric, you betcha!”
I used a strip piecing method for the patchwork. Initially it was going to be alternating blocks of small and large patchwork. Mid way through I completely changed direction and added a pattern by switching up the order of the blocks.
To be quite honest I’m not all that happy with it. I think the orange over powers the entire piece. My mother on the other had was beyond ecstatic and my step-father also really liked it. Just so long as she is happy, that is what counts…but I still don’t care for it! haha
This table that the runner currently resides on is huge. I had somewhat of a difficult time getting the backing to lay flat and not wrinkle as I was cutting it out on the floor. I just should have sucked it up and went into my crawlspace and brought down the leaf insert to my dining room table giving me the extra work space. Once I had the two pieces sewn together and turned right side out, I top stitched the edge. Really what I should have done was quilt the layers together. Damn you hindsight! This would have solved my wrinkles but then I would have had to make edge binding, which I don’t like to do…well, it’s the stitch in a ditch part I don’t like. Oh well, maybe next year’s runner will be a quilted piece! Or better yet, I’ll just make her matching place mats!
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A Recent Trade with Jam Band Junkie’s Tie Dye

For the past year I’ve been squirreling away an amazing sheet set made from a velvety soft cotton. My plan was to dye them using a low water immersion technique, but who knows when that project would actually take place. It just so happens that Laurel, of Jam Band Junkie’s Tie Dye, works with sheets, so I emailed her to see if she was interested in a trade. Guess what? She was!

Laurel was fond of a patchy strip skirt I made a few years back. She was interested in having one created in a similar style but in earthy Fall colors. Not a problem! I opened my fabric vaults and started matching up prints.

Pictured below is Laurel’s finished skirt. I think it turned out really cute and she loved it! I can’t wait to receive a picture of her smiling face sporting her Pixy Patch skirt!

For my sheet set I selected a pallet of brown and blue. I love brown and blue, too bad my bedroom and pink and green. Yes, pink. I loathe pink. Growing up every house I lived in I had a pink bedroom simply because little girls are supposed to be suffocated in fluffy cute pinkness. I was a straight up Tom-boy and pink was so not my thing. Finally when I entered high school my mother let me choose the color for my new bedroom. I selected green and accented with yellow. The room at my father’s house was still pink. Ugh!

While the sheets do not match a thing in my room I love them regardless! My plan is to make a quilt or duvet cover this winter in cream and brown, since there is a wee bit of brown in the wall paper and my bed skirt is brown. I’ve been holding off on quilting since I sucked at keeping my cat off my bed. If I am going to invest some serious time in creating a quilt I’ll be damned if it’s going to be covered in cat hair! Since I no longer have inside animals I’d say I’ve got a green light for quilting!

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I won. This is what I made.

I really enjoy reading fellow crafters blogs, especially those with a purpose. One blog I follow regularly is Teresa from Green Bag Lady. I love what she is doing and the impact it is making!!
A few weeks ago Teresa had a give-a-way for 3 yards of organic cotton from Harmony Art. We are talking about organic goodness that is 110″ wide people! I entered the drawing and guess what, I won! Woo Hoo!! Last fall was a good crafting karma season for me as I also won this fabric from A Print A Day. Anyway back to the point of this post. I was given the option of all 3 yards in the same fabric or I could split them up. Personally I’m not a pastel person and would have selected all 3 in blue. However, since this was going to end up as a gift for a favorite tot I needed to choke back my selfish seamstress tendencies. I decided on 1 yard in each color.
Upon receiving my fabric I smiled when I saw this on my envelope.

I always recycle my packaging at Pixy Patch, and I am glad to see how many other businesses are doing the same! I even save the envelopes we get at work from our vendors. They are the perfect size for mailing lip balms and body oils! 🙂

When I left my comment on Teresa’s blog I told her that if I won I would use the fabric to make something for my niece, which I did. His name is *Bunny* and she loves him!!
The aqua and pink fabrics were both solid. The blue has pin stripes on one side, so I decided to use the *wrong side* since I wanted the patchwork for this project to be uniform. The eyes are buttons and the nose is black embroidery floss. Thankfully I only had three small details to sew since I had to stuff bunny for placement and then unstuff him to sew them on. You can also see I’ve been putzin’ around in photoshop backgrounds!

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Holiday Crafting – Table Runner

As promised here are the finished pictures of the table runner I made for my mom. I finished it last night but was too tired to post. I used 3 stunning Indonesian Batiks and a dark brown quilters solid for the border and back. The colors are a bit off in the pictures, the blue is not that green. The finished size is somewhere around 65″ long by 18″ wide. I still have quite a bit of fabric left over and may even purchase more after the holidays, hopefully it will be on sale! I can definitely see something in my wardrobe with these fabrics!!!

After a lengthy inspection I ended up getting the Jimi Cat Paw of approval! 🙂

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Before & After

Sometimes after I spend hours upon hours making a piece of patchwork, I just have to stare at it for a while. Not because I don’t know what I am going to do with it but for the simple fact that it took soooooooo long to make and now I am going to simply just CUT IT UP into something else. I like to, savor the moment…if you will.

I had a conversation with my mother the other day who also sews but not with my passion.

Mom “So you cut up fabric to make another piece of fabric, then you cut THAT fabric up to make the clothing?? I don’t know Dani, that sounds like a lot of extra work to me!”

Me
“um, well, yea pretty much.”

Last week despite Murphy’s Law fucking shit up mid way through, I managed to make about 5+ yards of patchwork…mostly from scraps of fabric I’ve been hoarding. This makes me extremely happy because it would have been fabric that most people toss out…oh no, not me!The end result was this…

and this…

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Sneak Peak

I’ve been a crafty little pixy as of late, meaning yesterday. 🙂 I was planning to update the website this weekend but I will be pushing it back to the beginning of next week. I had several inquiries from customers who had asked to see particular items/colors/sizes in this upcoming post, which of course I will do my best to accommodate them! Here is a glimpse at what I have been working on.I hope to finish these pieces this morning so that I may move on to another one this afternoon.

I’ve also been left wondering if I should continue to announce upcoming website postings? I’ve noticed an increase in repeat traffic over the last week as well as received a few special requests. It is definitely something to consider!

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My Week in Review

Well, I’m back, so this blog must be a go. 🙂 I’ve actually been blogging this entire week only it has all been in my head. Too bad I can’t hook up a USB cable to my brain and vomit it all onto the computer screen.

I’ve been busy this past week filling my time with a myriad of activities. None of which were sewing for my website or working on my list of custom orders, that I am so far behind on. It all started last Friday, the 16th. Jason had been dropping hints that I should enter the Lancaster Summer Arts Festival with him. So after much back and forth I decided to go ahead and enter. Now the decision on what to create?? The only media not accepted was photography so I put the hamster in the wheel and started running through ideas. After much deliberation I decided to create a Lancaster County Farmland Patchwork Skirt inspired by an areal view of Lancaster County Farmland. Duh, what could be better than that? I love patchwork and happen to live right in the middle of an area that looks just like patchwork!! So it began, I was cutting, stitching and riding my creative high, only occasionally taking a break to check on the progress of Jason and his sculpture. After several ripped seams and revisions my skirt turned into a wall hanging giving me a much better chance of placing in the competition and better yet selling my piece. So we, which translates into Jason, built the stretcher and frame. The final product:

“Lancaster County Farmland Ariel View Patchwork”

My inspiration:

My artist statement:

Living in Lancaster County provides a wonderful pallet of inspiration. I used an aerial photograph of local farmland as a template for this patchwork wall hanging. I selected fabrics for this piece that would best represent the landscape. By using corduroy with various wales, I was able to create the illusion of plowed fields and rows of growing produce and plants. I wanted the printed fabrics to contain flowers, sticks, leaves and other organic matter found in farm fields. All seams were straight stitched and serged.

I am beyond excited about my latest creative adventure! I have to wait until June 6th, which is the First Friday artist reception to see if my wall hanging made it into the competition. Ultimately you want to be in the main room of the museum. That is where the best submissions will be displayed. Everything else will be crammed upstairs into the other rooms. Ahhh sweet anticipation!

UPDATE: I made it into the main room!!! WOO HOO!! Not bad for my first entry into a fine art competition. Jason’s sculpture, which is amazing and thought provoking, was placed in the second room so that kind of sucked!

I spent several days last week planting my garden. Usually it would have just been a day but with all the rain and cold weather I had to work intermittently, often taking shelter in my garden shed from the sudden outbursts of rain. This year I’ve expanded from an 8′ X 30′ plot to 18′ X 30′. I am sooooo excited for my seeds to begin sprouting. Nothing gives me greater satisfaction than the tender love needed to care for my plants. Knowing that in only a few short weeks my hard work will become 90% of my diet!

I know it doesn’t look like much right now but in a few weeks this plot will be thriving with plant life…and hopefully a garden spider or two! This year I planted 5 varieties of tomatoes, 7 different types of peppers, over half being spicy and hot, just the way I like it! 🙂 I have 3 types of peas and 4 kinds of beans, carrots, mescaline, arugula, butter crunch lettuce, strawberries, beets, radishes, zucchini, butternut squash, watermelon, eggplant, cucumber, chives, 2 kinds of broccoli and several different herbs. I’ve already been able to pick a few berries and use some of my chives in recent meals.

This Memorial Day weekend was the first time I missed the annual Spring Hookahville Music Festival in Thornville OH. Vending my wares is bittersweet. Nothing gives me greater satisfaction than to see someone wearing something that I created. When I hear someone say “Pixy Patch, Hey I know you, I check out your website all the time!” I am pretty sure that in that moment I glow and my soul shines just a little brighter! I also get a weekend full of quality girlfriend time with my stitchin’ sisters. This is usually the only time I get to see these beautiful ladies. We talk, we party, we sell our threads. Now what you ask is so bad about vending? The sudden drenching rain that turns everything into a muddy mess. Or how about the wet camp fire aroma that seems to permeate everything for weeks to come! Usually the music plays into the wee hours of the morning so our booth is open and ready for business. I happen to be a morning person through and through, so by 10 pm my ass is dragging, hard! My less than comfy air mattress is calling for me and I want nothing more than to answer. I fight off sleep so that I can help close the booth taking comfort in the fact I will be sleeping soon….but it is never soon enough. 🙂 This year I attended the 420 Jam Fest in Gore, Va with Justine, my vending partner and favorite mama, but I fear it will be my only show. The rising cost of gas and outrageous vending fees have made it less than desirable to set out on yet another musical road trip. My heart sank earlier this weekend when I got into my car and the Hookahville directions from years past fell from my visor into my lap. I sat there for a moment pondering what I would have been doing if I were there with Nature and Justine. Maybe I will be able to venture out for a late summer or fall show if I start saving my pennies now…fingers crossed!

Well, that’s enough mid morning rambling for now…time to get stitchin!

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