Tuesday, 5 January 2010

January blues !

Its official - I dislike January. Now everything is back to normal doesn't it all seem flat ?

I plan to get out of this by doing some quilting. Trouble is I have such a lot of UFO's I'm not sure where to start. My plan is to get 1 finished by the end of January. I have a very nice rail fence quilt top up to border stage and after I've come off here I'm going to search through my stash for border fabric. I have a reason for doing this quilt which is this.

Jason snores - loudly !! Most nights I turn to my faithful ear plugs which do the trick - lol ! But some nights I like to give my poor ears a rest and so very often I find myself trundling down the stairs with my pillow and a quilt in hand to spend the night on the settee/sofa. Trouble is the quilts I use are a little tad too small and I want something longer to keep my toes warm. This rail fence quilt is quite long and will be ideal so that is the plan. That will be my next post hopefully.

Here's a little quilt I made from a charm pack some time ago.

I got this hand-quilted just before Christmas and it made a nice present for a lovely lady who Jason does computer work for. She was delighted with it. I may make myself another like this with another charm pack I have but not yet - need to get stuff finished.

And lastly a quick few photos on one of the ways I make bag handles. I used this method for the handles on Kerry's bag and I like how they turn out. I'm not sure if I've shown this before but anyway -

1. Decide on the length and width of your handles. Cut wadding/batting and a strip of fabric to
exact size.

2. Using a contrasting fabric cut another strip the same length but 1 and an eigth of an inch
bigger. So for example if you want the handles to be 2 inches wide cut the contrast fabric 3
and an eigth inches wide.

3. Layer as follows - wadding strip with smaller length on fabric on top right side up. Then place
your contrasting fabric along one edge face down. So your 2 fabrics are right sides together.
Sew along this edge.

4. Then line the unsewn edge of the bigger contrast fabric along the other edge and sew the 3
layers together. I use a little trick at this stage to turn the handle through easily and it's this.

I use a length of old selvedge strip longer than the handle and sew it along the top edge of the
handle before I sew the second seam. Obviously making sure it doesn't get sewn in.

This makes it quite easy to pull the handle through and once it's done just snip off the length of selvedge. I have one I use that is cut bigger and folded in half along the length and zig-zag stitched to make it stronger.

Hope this makes sense.
And I must say a big thankyou to Gina who was amazingly kind and sent a very generous donation to Jess's African Fund. What a love !!!

Off to get those borders done......


A Time for Stitching said...

I love the charm pack quilt, it's so cute! And thank you for the handle tutorial, the bias strip tip is especially clever!!

Tamera said...

If you have lots of UFOs and you don't know which one to start on, there are some bloggers who are doing this:

list all your UFOs and give them a number

put the numbers in a hat and draw out one or two or three

resolve to work on those UFOs for that month, or until they're done, or whatever works for you

Maybe that will help you.

Gail said...

I can understand your poor ears! I used to find myself sleeping on a couch really often. I love the little quilt as I always enjoy looking at your lovely work. My least favorite part of making bags, etc is turning the handles so I will definitely give your process a try!

claudia said...

Cute Charm Pack Quilt!
Love the tutorial for the handle. I am so impressed. I knew where you were going with the handle but wondered how you would turn it after sewing it together. That selvage length is such a great idea! Thank you so much for that! Do you do any quilting of the handle once it is turned?
Happy New Year. January will be over before we know it and the blues will soon be gone!

LC said...

Neat way to make handles. THANKS for the tutorial!

Calidore said...

Know where you are coming from regarding the couch and sleep. There is nothing nicer than cuddling under a nice warm quilt in blessed silence...vbg. Thank you for the handle tutorial - I'm going to try that - it looks brilliant. Hope January brightens up for you - you are right - it is a bit flat after all the Chriatms excitement.

Anonymous said...

Cute little mini, and I love the border on it!

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Andrea. Thanks for sharing the handles tip - love the idea of using the selvedge strip to turn the handles through, always the worst bit of any bag project. Definitely going to use that tip in the near future.

Quilter Kathy said...

We find January a tough month here...dark, cold and boring. So I intend to quilt A LOT!
My hubby stopped snoring after getting a CPAP and I have been sleeping soundly ever since!

Pam said...

I agree with you about January. I have had enough of the rain and the dark and the stress of Christmas - I need a vacation!! No wonder so many people go to Mexico this time of year.

Good luck with your UFO's and getting out of your funk :)))

Lynda said...

Great method for making handles! Must give it a go ....

Guðrún said...

It´s a great idea to use the salvage to turn the handle inside out, thanks.

Floss said...

I love the little charm pack quilt, I have a charm pack that I was trying to decide what to make out of; I think this may be the winner.
That how I make my handles I think I first saw this on your blog.

Elly D said...

Hello Andrea, I've just had a wonderful time reading you blog page.
Great tutorial for the bag handle! Thank you.
I can sympathize with the snoring :)) I've ended up on the sofa many a night myself, LOL.
I love the charm pack quilt and well everything else too :) I'm way behind on my blogspot so much try find some umph from somewhere to get posting again... and also to get cracking on some of my ufos. I hope your resolve to not start anything new lasts longer than mine :))

Anonymous said...

I officially hate January too *smile*. toni xxx