Quilted Jacket

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Like I need another jacket! However, when Bonnie mentioned the quilted jacket class I thought I’d enjoy sewing with the gals again, so I signed up.

First, select two different fabrics (I chose two batiks) – buy 3 meters. Then I left the fabric at Sew With Visioin (the Pfaff/Husqvarna shop where the class was going to be held) to make into a quilt sandwich with bamboo batting, then to have the whole thing quilted on the long arm quilter.

Thursday I went to class having prepped the pattern – traced a size small knowing it would need a bit of adjusting. Cut the fabric, pin based it, adjusted the fitting and then began to sew.

The point of the class (as far as I was concerned) was to learn ways of joining double sided fabric using bindings. For the most part that wasn’t terribly difficult – line up one edge of the binding with the edge of the seam, sew, press binding away from the garment, fold over seam, press, pin (I actually found it easier without pinning), stitch binding to garment on the second side. The tricky seam was along the underarm of the sleeve – it gets narrow pretty quickly so it’s slow going carefully keeping the binding flat against the sleeve as you go along.

Because I wanted the jacket to be completely reversible and have pockets on both sides, I had to come up with a way to access the pocket on one side through a zippered welt opening on the second side.

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It looks as if there’s a pocket on the second side, but it’s actually just access through the front to the pocket on the other side.

The buttonholes took forever – I tried some samples on my embroidery machine but today the machine wouldn’t cooperate with me (it may have to go in for a check-up). In the end I decided to create bound buttonholes. This meant creating a facing for the second side to cover the unfinished buttonhole seams on that side. They turned out reasonably well.

Last thing – add buttons to both sides.

We’ve a second class coming Thursday but I’ve got appointments during the morning so I finished the jacket today. I’ll still go to class to show off my completed jacket and to socialize with the other gals.

Socks

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Finally finished these socks last evening. Didn’t work on them while I was traveling although I had them with me. Into the give-away pile with the others. Could be I’m actually working on Christmas gifts!

Now to finish the re-knitting of the feet in Margaret’s yellow socks.

Armani / Swarovski Dress

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Armani Privé evening gown. Silver silk, Diamond Leaf Swarovski crystals. Fall 2007.

A couple of years ago on the New York Garment/Fabric Shopping trip we visited the FIT Museum – this was the first item you saw as you walked into the exhibit. It’s an amazing garment – created in 2007 by Armani at the request of Swarovski to showcase a new “leaf crystal” added to the Swarovski collection.

We weren’t able to see the internal construction of the gown, but it must have been substantial to allow a wearer to hold up the 50 or so pounds of crystals!

I’ve been looking for images of the dress since I got back. I finally got the idea of writing to the FIT Museum to ask about it. They answered me with a lot of information:

The dress was designed for Armani’s Fall 2007 collection in collaboration with Swarovski. It is embellished with approximately 100,000 Swarovski crystal beads and rhinestones as you describe. The beads appear in graduated sizes from small ones around the neckline to larger ones at the hem.  I’ve also included the label text that appeared with the dress in the exhibition in 2012 (Fashion journalist Suzy Menkes described Armani’s elaborately embellished women’s clothes as “symbols of escape from everyday reality.” This gown features approximately 100,000 Diamond Leaf crystals, a new shape designed by Armani for Swarovski. Prior to this collaboration, Swarovski had not worked directly with a designer since the 1950s, when the company partnered with Christian Dior.) Click here to see the dress in the FIT Museum collection.

A Quilt for Noah

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This is the collection of fabrics I bought to make a double bed quilt for Noah. I took pictures of the painted walls in his bedroom so I had something to work with. The selection of green batiks at Keepsake Quilting was large – many times the number if bolts I’d have been able to choose from locally! Bought backing fabric as well. It’s going to be a simple strip quilt like the one Ben has in his room:

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I plan on starting it this week – shams and pillow cases, too.

My Visit To Keepsake Quilting

I stopped off at Keepsake Quilting in Center Harbor NH yesterday. I’ve purchased fabric online and from the catalogue and so I decided to return from my family visit to Toronto via NH.

I bought fabric for a double bed quilt my great nephew Noah and some fat quarters for me. But I had to stop at that.

Oh my! Heaven for a quilter!

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Orchids Blooming in my Bedroom

I always have a couple of phalaenopsis in bloom in my bedroom (that’s in addition to all the orchids in my living room). At the moment I have three plants in bloom – they cheer my day. They’re there to greet me when I wake. When one is finished blooming, I swap it out for another in bloom. During the winter I often have to buy a new plant that’s starting to bloom because all of my other phalaenopsis are hibernating, waiting for the days to get noticeably longer when they send up new flower spikes. I love having them around.IMG_3008 IMG_3009 IMG_3006

Pick-up-sticks Quilt

I finished the quilt last evening. It got put aside for a while so I could work on the deck deciding what to keep and what to purge, and then deciding where to put the plants I retained and weeding them. They’d all been neglected for 6 weeks while the old deck was torn down and the new deck was built. They were all crowded into my neighbour’s yard (I was lucky she was willing to plant sit for such a long time).

A couple of days ago I got back to quilting the blocks, by yesterday I had just 7 double blocks to quilt. Got that done in the afternoon. Pressed the quilt to get rid of the markings (I use Frixion pens which disappear with heat – although the marks return if the fabric gets close to freezing, I’m told). Then I trimmed and bound it. Added the label last evening.

The front of the quilt consists of 63 (6 1/2″) blocks of fabric (which started out as 7 x 7 blocks), slashed either twice or three times, reassembled – while this looks like an easy quilt, turns out it was surprisingly difficult to do – each block had to be carefully crafted, the parts adjusted, pinned, and repinned until the underneath strip looked continuous! Three strips, if they crossed one another, was particularly challenging! However, I only made one block that in the end I discarded.
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The back of the quilt was inspired by an image of a white on red quilt (‘Lace”) by Weeks Ringle that I came across. I thought this would be the perfect quilt to try it on. Constructing the pieced strip took longer than I anticipated it would – although it was simpler to execute than the blocks on the front side.IMG_3152