Thursday, November 4, 2010

Sew Diverse

September started with canning and quickly shifted into a sewing spree that ended on Halloween. I feel like I have been attached to my sewing machine and my fingers are raw from all the finishing work! I have been so busy that I have not had time or energy to blog. (1) What kept my presser foot to the floor?  A baby quilt, Christmas presents, Bert and Ernie hats, and a Princess Bride inspired costume.

The Baby Quilt
I made a contemporary baby quilt for a sweet little girl named (2) Kyri. It is an adaptation of the Eclipse quilt by Joyce Robinson, published in McCall's Quilting, February, 2007. I had a lot of fun creating this quilt with my mom, spending an afternoon in her sewing room, swapping circles and chatting. This whole quilt was a learning process. I forgot to bring the pattern with me, so I had to recreate it from memory. One interesting feature of this quilt is that the circles were attached as part of the top quilting process, so the edges are raw. As the quilt ages the circles will fray, lending warmth and texture to the quilt.

Christmas Gifts (3)
I am SUPER excited about the gifts I am making this year! I won’t go into detail, or I will ruin the surprise. Check back in late December for pictures and instructions for these super easy, highly functional gifts!!

Bert and Ernie Costumes
I do not remember having a ‘store bought’ costume as a kid. Part of the fun of Halloween was creating our costumes. Over the years my family came up with some awesome characters!  This is a creative and economical tradition I continue with my son Henry. I try to make costumes that meet one of two criteria – they can be used again OR they are made out of recycled materials. Last year I created a turtle costume for Henry, which will be recycled into a pajama pillow for his big boy room. This year, Henry and his bff Evan were Bert and Ernie (4) for Halloween. Evan’s mom Elizabeth and I created these fun costumes. (5) I made their heads (hats), Elizabeth made their hands (gloves), and we each made the accessories for our son’s costume. I have never sewn a hat before, so this was a fun puzzle to solve. I made the base first and once the hat was done I added the ears, eyes and nose. I made Ernie first and learned a lot in the process which helped when making the more challenging Bert. These were a lot of fun to make and I now have a template to make unlimited ear-flap hats. (6)

Ernie and Bert hold still for 30 seconds.

Princess Bride Hag Costume
My hubby and I were part of a Princess Bride cast ensemble. My character was the hag that yells at Princess Buttercup in her nightmare. This costume is my Scarlett O’Hara outfit, (7) as the majority of the costume was constructed out of our old curtains. The skirt is two curtains sewn together and trimmed to length. The apron is another lighter colored curtain (I made a cassock for John’s costume out of the other half). I spent $3 on the shirt and $5 on the wig. The eyebrows were made out of a fake mustache cut in two - a last minute inspiration/gift from my good friends Clay and Jen.

"Booo... bow down to her, bow down to the queen of filth, the queen of slime..."

What is coming next?
Upcoming blog topics: Take a tour of our International Supper Club, Turkey day treats/crafts, and homemade Christmas gifts.

The autumnal colors have me inspired and when it gets too cold and rainy I will be working away on some exciting new fabric art projects!  What projects are you working on this fall?

(1)   Okay, this is a partial truth. I had time to blog, but I suffered a disappointment at my job and every blog I attempted morphed into a diatribe on what makes a person “qualified.”  It was a Defying Gravity kind of month.
(2)   Kyri is the daughter Eve (my bff from high school) and Scott and little sister to Gabriel. She was born this spring and I JUST sent her belated quilt last week… oops!
(3)   Don’t worry, I am not going to tell you what I made, as most of my readers are getting these for Christmas. 
Popular Sesame Street
(5)   It is SOOOO fun to have crafty, creative friends!
(6)   I made a few trial hats and I can now whip out a hat in about 5 minutes… oh the possibilities!
(7)   In the book/movie Gone with the Wind, Scarlett constructs a dress out of drapes in order to snag a man. My costume did not have the same purpose or effect.