Monday, February 29, 2016

modern coins

Happy Monday, everyone!

I have a sweet little baby boy quilt to share with you today.

It's my take on many beautiful coin quilts I've been admiring for years and I quite like how simple and minimalistic it is.

And, because I wanted it to be a baby boy quilt, I decided to go with this adorable car print flannel I had in my stash for backing. I love how this whimsical print is sort of an unexpected backing for such a graphic quilt top.

I quilted it using straight lines about 1" apart. This is my absolute favorite way to quilt baby quilts as it adds a bit of extra interest and texture while at the same time keeping the quilt nicely soft and snuggly. And, as you can see, I use a hera marker and a yardstick that's 1" wide to mark my quilting lines. Works like a charm every time.

finished size: 36" x 43"
fabrics used: Kona Snow, Essex linen in Charcoal, Cirrus Solid in Shadow for the border, Joann flannel for backing
batting: Warm and White
binding: Cloud 9 (not sure what collection though)

Have a lovely day, friends. Svetlana

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

shop update (new pouch kits)

Hello, happy Wednesday to you all.

How is your week going? Ours is a mixed bag of regular everyday routine, a fun outing to Chicago for a pop concert, with a bit of toothache and stomach flu thrown in for good measure :).

No complaints here, though. The sickness will hopefully be gone by tomorrow and I even managed to put together some new pouch kits

I've also been making pouches like there's no tomorrow :). I so love coming up with new linen + waxed canvas combinations. And all those metal zippers!!! I don't think I'll ever tire of them. Ever!

This brown canvas and gray Essex linen is my new very favorite combo.

I hope you like these kits as much as I do. Here's a link to my etsy shop in case you'd like to buy some. They do make great presents not just for yourself, but for some crafty friends as well.

Wishing you all a super lovely day. Svetlana

Monday, February 22, 2016

navy + parchment baby quilt...

... all finished :).

I'm really glad I talked myself into not using my usual white or gray solid fabric. Instead I went with Kona Parchment and I absolutely love how it lets all the navy prints shine.
I used polyester batting I had on hand and I'm still deciding on whether it was a good choice or not. I quite like the poofy, super soft texture it gave the finished quilt, but all that loft proved to be quite tricky when it came to quilting. I think I'll save the rest of my poly batting for tied quilts and little poofy comforters :).

I worried a bit about stripe overload when I decided to go with striped backing as well as binding, but I think it kind of works here. Wouldn't you agree?


Wednesday, February 17, 2016

in progress

I've been working on quite a few projects in the last few days and I thought a recap of sorts might be fun. Ready? Here we go.

My "collection" of screens is growing and seeing them all together makes me feel so artsy. It's kind of fun to say it since I never thought of myself as being artistic before thanks to my inability to draw, sing, or play any musical instrument :(.

I've been printing lots of panels for pouch kits (hope to have those ready for sale next week), ...

as well as coming up with some new prints. See? I still can't really draw, but I can make shapes and sometimes that's all that's needed :).

I've been sewing, too. I needed to make a quick baby boy quilt so I decided to combine navy prints from my stash with Kona Parchment into this super simple patchwork. I hope to baste and quilt it in the next day or two. I'm not planning anything too fancy, just simple straight line quilting along each seam should do the trick.

And, I have this beautiful bundle to play with. Gorgeous, isn't it? It's Fleet and Flourish by Maureen Cracknell and it's absolutely stunning. It's been a while since I worked with so much color and I'm super excited to dive in.

What have you been working on? Do tell. I'd love to know.


Monday, February 15, 2016

cat hammock

You guys, I might have gone "slightly" overboard with my diy adventures this weekend. I made a hammock for our cats :).

It was a pretty easy project, and so very fun. Just two fabrics for top and bottom and a layer of batting all joined together, grommets installed in each corner + chain and S hooks and I was ready to install it under the bench in my sewing room as this is where the kitties spend a lot of time keeping me company each day.

Pretty cool, isn't it? I hope it will get lots of use.

And, in case you feel as crazy as I do and would like to make a hammock for your kitty as well, here's the link to a tutorial I followed.

Wishing you all a super fun day. Svetlana

Friday, February 12, 2016

oven mitts

A few days ago, as I was pulling our piping hot dinner out of the oven, I suddenly noticed how beat up (and downright ugly looking) my oven mitts were. So, as soon as our dinner was finished, I was going through my stash choosing fabric for my new oven mitts, of course :).

I settled on a combination of my most favorite cotton fabric at the moment - Carkai by Carolyn Friedlander, and Essex linen. And, I decided to make two kinds of mitts. The classic mitt is my go to pattern from Denyse Schmidt Quilts book called Too Hot to Handle, and the "pinchy" kind is a free tutorial.

Both of these were fun and quick to make. I followed the oval ones tutorial just the way it was written, the only change I did was add one extra layer of cotton batting to make them more heat proof. I think they will be great for pulling hot bowls and plates out of the microwave.

As far as Too Hot to Handle mitts go, I really like their shape and I made them a few times already so I knew they fit well. The thing I don't like about the pattern is no lining and exposed raw edges. Plus, the pattern calls for only one layer of batting, which I think makes for a pretty, but not usable oven mitts.

So, I made a few adjustments and now I'm super happy with my mitts. I added a layer of Insul-Bright as well as cotton batting to the mitts (Insul-Bright is basted to exterior of the mitt, batting to the lining).

I cut out both exterior and lining panels using the provided template. I used 1/4" seam allowance to stitch the exterior panels together and 1/2" seam allowance to stitch the linings together. I then trimmed the lining seam allowance to make it easier to fit inside the exterior.

Then I gently pushed and coaxed the lining (wrong side out) into the exterior (right side out). I aligned side seams and made sure everything fits in nicely without any puckers.

I used wonder clips to hold both layers together and basted along the top edge using 1/8" seam allowance.

I finished the mitt by attaching 1.5" wide single fold bias strip of fabric to the top raw edge.

That's it. Pretty straight forward, isn't it? A little bit more work, but totally worth it.

Thanks for reading, everyone. Wishing you all a super lovely weekend. Svetlana

Linking up to Finish It Up Friday over at Crazy Mom Quilts.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

super soft quilted blanket

Remember that pretty stack of fabrics I showed you in my last post? Yep, I turned it into this super, super soft, squishy, and beautifully warm quilted blanket over the weekend.

It was such a quick and satisfying sew. I started by cutting my fabric into 10" squares, arranged in a 6 x 7 layout. I'm sure you can imagine how fast a quilt top like that came together :).

My daughter wanted this to be a soft and warm blanket, so we decided to go with a 3/4" high loft polyester batting and Luxe Fleece (which is thicker and feels more luxurious than your regular fleece) for backing.

 I followed my tutorial for making a quilted comforter to join all the layers together. I then used perle cotton #8 to stitch all the way around the perimeter of the blanket, and then I tied it using white yarn I had on hand. I love these little ties, they are such a fun, cozy addition to this pile of softness.

Kiki has been "testing" the blanket ever since I finished it. Can you tell she approves, and probably thinks I made it just for her? :). More importantly though, my daughter loves how it turned out and has already whisked it away to keep in her room.

A quick note before I go: I made a mistake of not pre-washing cotton fabric which caused the top to shrink during final wash and thus the backing sags a little. Which is really not such a huge deal, but next time, if I were to combine cotton top with polyester backing, I'd definitely pre-wash my fabric.

Thanks for stopping by, friends. Svetlana

Thursday, February 4, 2016

squishy goodness

I made this super soft and squishy baby blanket the other day. It was a quick project, just simple 6" squares in pretty girly fabrics randomly stitched together. Pure joy, I'm telling you :).

I used polyester high loft batting to make it extra poofy ...

...and simple stitch all the way around the perimeter and turn right side out through the hole method (proper tutorial here) to finish it off without any need for binding.

I hand quilted it using perle cotton #8. I even hand stitched the opening closed using same big stitches and I absolutely love how it looks.

And, after seeing this comfy little blanket my oldest daughter asked for one of her own, which I'm more than happy to make, of course. She even chose her fabrics already. I think they'll make a stunning blanket.

Have a lovely day, everyone. And thanks for stopping by. Svetlana

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

more pouch kits in stock

You guys, I was so happy to see you liked my idea of Sotak Kits. Thank you, thank you, thank you for all the support, encouraging words, and for buying the kits, of course.

As promised, I'm here to let you know I added quite a few new kits to my Etsy shop.

I hope you'll like my new plus design printed on linen. I must admit, this combination of screen printed linen, waxed canvas, and metal zipper makes my pouch loving heart do happy skips every single time :).

You can see all the kits listings by clicking here.
Enjoy your day. Svetlana

Monday, February 1, 2016

super sized broken dishes pillow {a tutorial}

Happy Monday, friends.

I'm quite a fan of simple patchwork projects using super sized blocks and today I'd like to share my take on a traditional broken dishes block.

Pretty fun, isn't it? I like how graphic and modern looking these pillows turned out. And, to top it off, they were incredibly easy and quick to make. Just my kind of a project these days :).

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Here's how to make your own super sized broken dishes pillow.

To make one 16" pillow you will need:
two 9" squares in solid fabric
one 9" square in darker print
one 9" square in lighter print
one 16.5" square backing fabric (you could use quilting cotton or cotton/linen blend fabric)
one 16.5" square fusible fleece
one 16" or longer invisible zipper 
one 16" pillow form

1. Place two solid squares right side down on a flat surface, use disappearing fabric pen to mark diagonal lines as shown in pic. below.

2. Lay dark print square and one solid fabric square right sides together, align all the edges and pin to prevent shifting.

3. Use 1/4" seam allowance and stitch along both sides of drawn line. Take the pins out, press to set the stitches. Cut your block along the drawn line, you will now have two hst (half square triangle) units. Press seams towards darker fabric.

4. Make a second set of hst units following the same direction, this time placing light print square and remaining solid square together. Once finished you will have four hst units as shown below. Trim your units to 8.5" square each.

5. Arrange your trimmed units to form a broken dish block. Piece together, press the seams.

6. Follow manufacturer's directions to adhere fusible fleece to wrong side of your finished block. Quilt your preferred way (I did straight lines about 1/2" apart). 

7. Install invisible zipper (there are tons of really good tutorials online if you're not sure how to do this). Press the finished pillow cover. Stuff a 16" pillow form inside and you're all finished.

Hope you enjoyed this tutorial. And, as always, if you make a project using any of my tutorials please add it to my Flickr group or use #sotakhandmade if posting on IG. I love seeing all the fun projects you make.

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