Tag Archives: charity

Happy Fourth of July!

1 Jul

USA! USA!

I love the Fourth of July! Don’t you?  It makes me think of green grass, picnics, barbeques, hot dogs…What’s stange is I totally know how hot dogs are made and yet I still love them. But I digress.  My favorite part about the fourth of July is the flags!  Seriously.  I have a thing for Old Glory.  I even painted my house red, white and blue.

Seriously, it used to be pale pink!

And if that wasn’t permanent enough for you, I inked myself up with some American (and quilting!) pride!

Sorry mom!

Yes, that is totally my tramp stamp. Don’t judge! And yes, that’s a needle and thread around my American Flag heart.  Which brings me back to why I’m writing in the first place: Red White and Blue quilts!! The quilt above is one of my very first quilts.  I had this vision in my head of a flag quilt and I set out to make it.  I was so new to sewing, a complete novice, but I wanted to design it, create it and have it finished by Independence Day of 2000.  The great thing about not knowing how to do things “right” is that you don’t know you’re doing them wrong!  I had a blue fat quarter that screamed of needing stars! It already had glitter in it after all, so I eyeballed it, cut it, traced and cut 50 muslin stars, placed them on my sea of blue, zig zag stitched them mostly on, stuffed them, then zig zag stitched them closed!

The stripes were also a spontaneous design. I pieced two different 2″ (or so) strips together, then cut them into 2″ (or so) segments.  Little did I know the REAL patterns would be requiring me to do this for years! Yay me! I was advanced. I discovered that if I matched the bottom left and top right quadrants, the effect was pretty cool! I did that until…well, until it looked right.  But that was about my only reasoning. I was pleased with myself when it came out looking like waves!

Once I had the completed top, I needed to finish it! It was a pretty impressive top for a novice 20-year-old with no pattern! (*not that I would have done the pattern right!) All I knew how to do at the time was pillowcase quilts, and attaching satin borders to baby quilts. I was completely unaware of the phenomenon of “binding”.  I pillowcased it, used remnant batting and stitched-in-the-ditchish.  The finished quilt was not as impressive as I had hoped, but I was still proud of my scrappy, 57″ x 37″ piece of America!  I proudly displayed it on my walls for years!  And then I started quilting.  Really quilting.

My sense of pride in this piece began to diminish.  In my new-found experience, I began to see glaring flaws in my once beautiful quilt.  I had disgraced my flag! I couldn’t bear it anymore and took it down from the wall, folded it up and put it away.

A couple of years ago I mustered up to courage to revisit this quilt.  I tore it open, ripped out my quilting, I bought new backing (A beautiful Moda flag print, Red, White and Bold, the only boutique quality fabric in the quilt at that point! I was such a newb!!) heavy red, white and blue variegated thread and set off to finish this quilt right! The thread was so heavy and was awful to deal with, even on the Bernina! But I did it. I stippled the blue and used a wavy stitch in each stripe.  It is hand bound in my favorite red RJR fabric.  I finally have made this quilt the way it was supposed to be! Now, 11 years old, long may she wave!

It certainly wasn’t my last patriotic quilt either. I used to participate in the Mystery Quilt Series at The Calico Cat, my favorite local quilt store, and ended up with a red and white churn dash. I added a blue border and ended up with this:

Red White and Blue Churn Dash

So pretty, right? Naturally it looked like it should be a Quilt of Valor quilt. If you are unfamiliar with the organization, they hook you up with a long armer who donates their services.  The result was this:

WTH!!

Look at that quilting!

Holy hell! Look at that quilting!! Did I seriously make that?! If this isn’t a testament to having quilts long armed, I don’t know what is! Her quilting took my average quilt and made it incredible! I was SO PROUD to donate this!  Granted, I did want to keep it, but JUST FOR A SECOND! I made a matching pillowcase and sent it off.  Goodness, I sure do love that quilt.

Anyway, among my myriad of other quilts-to-be-made is another red, white and blue.  I got the kit as the replacement for a shabby chic kit I’d had for years and made for my sister.  I would like to think I’ll have it finished by next July 4th. Stop laughing! I’m serious!

July 4, 2012 quilt...I promise. Now hold me to it!!

In other news, I have finished all my Buck a Blocks from 2009. (Shut it.) And am working on finishing them up.  I hope to have all finishing blocks done tonight.  Currently I have 2 done…only 10 to go! Seriously! I’m going to finish them! Ask me about it tomorrow!!

12 7.5" buck a blocks...They'll make into a king size somehow...?

Should you deem my millenium Quilt worthy of a vote, it is competing in the Patriotic quilt contest this week (starting Friday, 7/1) over on the Quilting blogger’s Directory! Thanks so much! And Happy Independence Day, America!!

Lizze

Quilts For Japan Update

29 Apr

You know, it’s funny how things happen.  I had in my mind what I wanted to make for my Quilts For Japan quilt ( that is to say, I had fabric I wanted to use) but I am donating a completely different quilt!

I have had this Quilt Kit in my stash for quite some time:

Fossil Fern Quilt Kit

This is a medallion wall hanging from Benartex.  It has a medallion for the center and gradient Fossil Fern fabrics in blues and purples.  I never had a strong desire to make the quilt as shown, so I made a sketch of two blocks, and cut the fabric into bits.  What I ended up with is this:

I’m quite pleased with how this turned out, considering I made it up on the fly.  The inner lavender border and binding are batik.  I received the batik from my grandmother’s estate, and it fit perfectly with the Fossil Ferns.  I also had lavender Minkee on hand, so naturally, it is backed in Minkee.  (SO SOFT!!)

Originally I was going to call this quilt Bento Box, but there is already a beautiful, well known pattern called Bento Box. Alas.  I think I’ll call this Chopsticks.

So, why is it this isn’t what I had in mind?  Well, as i was making this beautiful quilt, one of my completed quilts found its way back home to me.  I had given it to my grandma (my other grandma), and she has never used it.  It always sat beautifully folded in a room.  She is beginning to downsize and asked if I would like it back.  It is considerably larger than Chopsticks, and I felt it was a better quilt to give.

Delft

I was so please to be able to share this quilt with someone.  I may have said it earlier, but what I lack in cash, I make up for in fabric.  I want to help, and this is honestly the best way  know how.  I do know that monetary needs are still there, and will be for quite some time.  With that in mind, I will be donating the proceeds from Chopsticks to the Red Cross.

There are so many people in need right now, and with yesterday’s devastating tornadoes tearing through the South, Selina and I see our next calling.  Stay tuned for a call out for a quilter help within the next few days!

Don’t forget to enter yourself into the drawing for our big prize on our earlier blog!  We also host #gdas on Twitter, Friday night’s at 6 PM Pacific, where we Get Drunk and Sew.  Or talk about sewing. Or Merkins, or whatever.  Join us!! WS_on_Etsy

Thanks for everything!

Lizze

Making Dresses (and britches)!

1 Feb

Sunday was a productive day. Lizze and her mom came over to sew with me and we made 6 dresses and 5 pairs of shorts for this charity:

http://www.littledressesforafrica.org/blog/?page_id=477

We took lots of photos to share with you. Please ignore my super messy, ugly sewing studio. It’s in the process of a remodel. It’ll be beautiful soon, but for now, it’s an eyesore. And yes, the curtains are tacked to the drywall.

Cutting out the patterns

Putting the seam ripper to work

Lizze's mom working, and me goofing off

Lizze's "you can take my picture now" face

Tada! All done!

Not bad for a day of work, I’d say. It felt good making these because we knew that they’d be going to kids who would love them. I’ll be shipping them out later in the week. If you want to help, it’s not too late. You have until April to get these sent in! Even if you only make one or two, that’s one or two more children who will have a beautiful dress or a new pair of shorts because of you. Trust me, they will be grateful.

Selina

Dresses (and britches) for Africa

28 Jan

I had something else in mind for tonight’s blog, but when I came across this, I decided it was much cooler than my original subject.

When you were a child did you ever receive handmade clothing? We know our children have, and they cherish them very much. We have seen the gratitude on our kids faces countless times from getting things that were made for them by someone else (usually us). We think that every child should have something handmade. There are kids in Africa who very little or no clothing. So Lizze and I are going to spend this Sunday making dresses for girls and britches for boys. They’ll be shipped off and given to little girls and boys who need and will appreciate them.

The link to the blog explaining the charity is here:

http://www.littledressesforafrica.org/blog/?page_id=477

There you will find the address to ship your finished dresses and britches, as well as a pattern you can use for the dresses if you don’t have one already. The dresses are a very simple, pillowcase dress style so they don’t take long to make at all.

If you are in the Seattle area, Pink Chalk Studios will be hosting a sew-in on Saturday, January 29th from 10am – 2pm. Here is a link to their blog for the info if you’re interested in participating:

http://pinkchalkstudio.com/blog/2011/01/15/little-dresses-for-africa/

This is something very small that we can do in one afternoon to make a HUGE difference in the lives of children. Please consider making a few or getting a small group of friends together and having your own sew-in! You’d be surprised how much little things like this can do to boost the spirits of children in need. Not to mention how it will make you feel knowing you are doing something to make a difference!

Selina

Hope

14 Sep

As promised, this beautiful quilt is now finished. It is called “Hydrangeas for Hope”. Both Lizze’s mother and sister have had breast cancer, so this is a cause that touches her very deeply. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this quilt will be donated to the Susan G. Komen 3-day walk. Please take a look at this listing. It is for such a wonderful cause. The month of October is national breast cancer awareness month. This quilt would be a lovely and touching gift for any woman who has fought, or is still fighting this awful disease.

Little ribbons are quilted in the corners

backed with super soft minkee fabric

I made a treasury as well. I carefully selected items made by other etsy sellers that also help in donating to Susan G. Komen. All of these listings will donate a portion (and a few of them are donating ALL) of the proceeds of the sale. Let’s get these sold!!!

http://www.etsy.com/treasury/4c8f1f52f5726d91b0a26c65/fighters-and-survivors

Happy Tuesday,

Selina