Tuesday, May 7, 2013

The New Handbag--Almost

See all those squiggly drawings and attempts at figuring out the math in the back? This is a pile of all the cut pattern pieces--hopefully all of them anyway.

I missed my deadline for finishing the handbag yesterday, but I have a ton of cheap excuses that I shared with Sandra in what may have seemed like an eBook but was really just a whiny email filled with cheap, insufficient excuses...

 1.  I just could not NOT change the pattern.  I think this should be in the psychiatric association's list of mental illnesses along with fabric hoarding.  Right now (I say that because things still may change) the only things remaining from the original are some piping and gussets.

2.  I am spatially and mathematically challenged.  Following pattern directions is really difficult for me. Making a pattern has been the thing of nightmares--literally.  I have been working on this thing in my sleep.  I will admit to having come up with a couple of impressive solutions while sleeping, though.

3.  My son has had to use my car for over a week now leaving me with a bicycle.  It may not seem like much of a problem, but when was the last time you saw someone show up at Joann's on a bike?  Let me assure that riding with a roll of heavy duty interfacing sticking up out of your backpack causes people to point fingers and stare.  

Friday, May whatever Friday is, 2013.  I shall get this thing completed.  Maybe.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

The New Challenge: Handbag vs. Baby Quilt!

Sandra and I have another challenge!  In the next two weeks, I will make a new handbag--this one from Lisa Lam's The Bag Making Bible:
Picture it minus the tassel and the penguins.  I am not a tassel-kinda person and prefer to use my penguin fabric for my pjs. 
If I can just avoid making changes to the pattern, I have a chance of achieving my goal.  Unfortunately, I cannot remember a time when I have not changed a pattern to the point of making the project ten times more difficult.  I'm hoping the challenge aspect will keep me on pattern.

Sandra will be putting together a special baby quilt--batting and binding and quilting.

Next time I post, I shall be the proud owner--okay, maybe just the owner of a new handbag.  No point in setting expectations too high here.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Protesting CISPA on April 22

Tomorrow, April 22, 2013, I am joining with Anonymous in protesting against CISPA, the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act by blacking out my Blogspot and dot com sites.

Why?  This act, passed by the U. S. House of Representatives on April 18th will allow corporations to share their users' personal information without the government needing a warrant beforehand.  CISPA will not only negate any privacy contract the companies have with users,  it will also directly counter the fourth amendment of our constitution which quite clearly states:
"The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

Many large companies have supported this act including AT&T, Comcast, EMC, IBM, Intel, McAfee, Oracle, Time Warner Cable, Hewlett Packard, and Verizon.  Of course, this act will give these companies complete liability protection when releasing information. 

Fortunately, many other groups fiercely oppose CISPA,  These include numbers of civil liberties organizations including the American Civil Liberties Union, library associations such as the American Library Association and the American Association of Law Libraries,  the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Reporters Without Borders, Reddit, Mozilla, as well as quite a few security experts,  and academic leaders. 

I hope you will join me in this venture.  Individually, we bloggers are a tiny fraction of the internet.  Together, however, we have the potential to make an impact.

Kindle Cover Completed!

After I admitted to Sandra of Sandra Sews that I have been wrapping my new Kindle in a piece of fabric when I take it out with me, she issued a challenge.  By this Friday, I would complete a Kindle cover.  Sandra will be making a baby dress.  I need to be challenged more often.

Okay, I did use the simplest design I could possible come up with.  If you are familiar with my blog, you should know by now that I am the queen of rectangle sewing.  This is two rectangles of fabric with a heavy interfacing between.  I sewed around the flap edge, then flipped the bottom up to form a pocket, and sewed those edges. 
I probably should have used a Velcro closure, but I just love these new snaps.  To get around the problem of pressing on the Kindle screen when closing the snap, I just need to put it in with the screen facing the back.
The pack of assorted snap colors hasn't failed me yet.  Look at that pretty yellow snap!

Sandra is trying out a new-to-her pattern for the dress.  Okay, Sandra, I'm all set to put the link to that new dress right "here"!

Those Squeezed In Projects

I sometimes feel as though I'm not getting much done.  Then I am reminded of all the squeezed-in projects that people spring on me.  They are always needed NOW and end up leaving the house before I can get decent pics if any at all.  (Consider that an excuse and apology for the crappy photos below.) 

This was the latest "save me" project.  It's just a simple quilt top, but it needed to be in the party "theme colors." The only one of those colors in the stash was the white!  I spent a day and a half coming up with a design, figuring out all the dimensions, shopping, cutting, sewing, and embroidering.  Non-sewers have no idea how long this stuff takes.
It will be a raffle item for a teacher appreciation party.  The blue lines across the white strip with the embroidered lettering are supposed to make it look like school paper. If I had more time, I would have preferred to do these line by hand with embroidery floss to give them more emphasis. 
On my "Thankful List" this week: someone else is being gifted with the quilting and binding. 

Sunday, April 14, 2013

What's That New Quilt Gonna Look Like?

As promised and on time!  So unlike me.  Okay maybe I promised more than one block when I posted yesterday.  Procrastinating is what I do best in life, so getting one done when I said I would is amazing progress.  If I had a therapist, s/he would be so pleased with me.

What do you think?  I added some of the stash to the Shades of Black charm pack I won from Quilt Taffy.  I cannot wait to get this one together.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Winning, Recycling, and a Free Online Tutorial all Rolled into One Post

First-- look what I won from Quilt Taffy!
 Lovely little squares of Moda's Shades of Black that will soon turn into a baby quilt with a splash of red.  (Thank you, Quilt Taffy, not just for the fabric but also the regular introduction to so many good sewing ideas.)

So the first thing you do when making a baby quilt is sew up the matching stuffie, right?  Is it just me?
This cute little black bunny was made using Betz White's cashmere bunny tutorial found here and an old lamb's wool sweater I felted.  After reading Pam's (of Threading My Way) post on felting old wool items, I finally got brave enough to actually cut into the sweaters I had felted.  It worked!  The sweater material didn't unravel. 
Tonight I am putting together the first blocks for the quilt.  Shall post them in the morning!  This is so much more fun than the housework I'm supposed to be getting done.