Quilted Gifts

by Stephanie on September 13, 2011

in Accessories,demented sewing logic,KaleidoSquares,Quilted Clothing

quilted oven mitts and pot-holders

OvenĀ  mitts and pot holders for my Mum, who dropped some hints she could use new ones. Colors and prints chosen to compliment her kitchen (lots of earth tones) and dinnerware (southwestern motifs in earth tones + turquoise).

I thought these would be easy to make, but sheesh, not my best sewing job, especially when it came to finishing up with the binding strips. It’s true that I rushed the job, being impatient to get it done, but attaching the binding neatly was just about impossible. This photo was carefully arranged to hide the worst bits, and I’m too embarrassed to show close-ups. I followed suggestions found on someone’s online tute to cut the bias binding at 1-3/4″ and that was a mistake. So was attempting to just fold the binding around the raw edge and sew both sides at once. With all the layers of fabric and batting, I could have used another 1/4″ binding width. For whatever reason, binding these small edges was harder than doing a quilt.

The original plan was to follow these up with some new ones for my own kitchen. Not gonna happen. Oven mitts and potholders are now on my “never again” list, considering the low cost and convenience of tossing new ones in the shopping cart next time I’m trolling the aisles at Walmart or Target. Bottom line: they’re prettier than store-bought, but not as quick and easy a project as expected and there are too many other, more rewarding, projects that I’d like to give attention to during my limited sewing time.

Like getting Mum’s quilted jacket done in time for XMas. Remember these sprightly prints? I had a grand plan, back in the spring, to do something on this project every Sunday: regular steady progress to avert that last-minute, pre-holiday rush! Fortunately it’s not the last minute yet, but somehow the entire summer went by with very little to show for all those missed Sunday sessions. I’m back at work on it. First up was to finish my piles of these:

blocks for quilted jacket

Which will go together more or less like this:

jacket in progress on design wall

I pinned seam tape to the design wall in the shape of each jacket piece, so I can assemble the blocks into “fabric” which will then get quilted to a batiste backing before getting cut to the exact garment-piece shapes. It would be easier to make several generous rectangles of approximately the right size, but I have very, very, very little extra fabric. None at all of most prints, one unused 10″ square of a particularly unappealing medium tone, and only a teeny amount of the pale beige background, although plenty of the one dark print I bought extra yardage of to use for binding.

This entire project has been bumped up to the top position on my sewing list — at least until the basic “fabric” shapes are assembled — because every time I turn on the ceiling fan in the sewing room a half-dozen or so of these little blocks (they finish at just 3″) leap off the design wall onto the floor.

Which means that I won’t be quilting up the Kaleidoscope top quite as soon as I’d hoped. It only took 3 weeks to cut a few border strips and sew a grand total of eight seams to get to this point (and I still don’t have a back pulled together):

Borders for Kaleidoscope quilt

Still hoping to finish the K-quilt this month, although whether that goal is any more realistic than most of my delusional sewing plans remains to be seen. It’s been a while since I added anything to my “11 quilted projects in 2011” list and the year is getting short. I may have to count the oven mitts if I’m to have any hope of making that goal!

What sewing projects have earned a spot on your “never again” list?





{ 1 comment }

1 The Slapdash Sewist September 20, 2011 at 3:20 am

Love the potholders! I especially like that they coordinate but don’t match. I am sure your mom will proudly display them.

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