Friday, May 30, 2014

double wedding ring {the beginning}

Last night I started a new quilt - a double wedding ring quilt.

I'm using a free pattern by Freespirit (for some reason the only way to find it is by googling double wedding ring freespirit, don't waste you time looking for it on their website). I gave this pattern two trial runs already. I turned one into this pillow, the other one is a wall hanging.

I'm using mostly scraps for the arches, although I'm pretty sure I'll dig into my stash just to add a little variety to these fun blocks.

I now have 16 arches finished, only 64 more to go :) And then, once the quilt top is all finished, I would very much like to hand quilt it. Let's hope my fingers and wrists will be up for it. Fingers crossed.

Wishing you all a very fun, restful, and creative weekend. Svetlana

Thursday, May 29, 2014

coasters and a tote bag

Remember how I talked about having leftover patchwork from my tote bag turned pillow in my previous post? Well, I used those "leftovers" to make coasters :)

I first stitched all the smaller patchwork pieces to form one big slab which I subcut into twelve 4" x 4" squares. I then used the same method as the one described here for finishing coasters.

I'm pretty sure we have enough coasters for now :)

And, in case you wondered, I did make a new super simple linen tote bag. It's pretty big (easily fits a twin sized quilt).

And is double sided because I could not decide whether I liked the red or that mustardy yellow linen better :)

Now, this is not my usual style of a tote bag, but I quite like it. I only wish I had some leather handles on hand. I think they could take this simple tote to the next level. For now, though, I'm quite happy with the way it turned out.

Thanks for stopping by. Svetlana

Monday, May 26, 2014

not quite as planned

With only two weeks of school left before summer break is here I decided it was time to make a large tote bag. The plan was to make it big enough to fit our towels as well as a few snacks and other necessities so I don't have to carry a gazillion bags all summer long.

I pulled out white, black, blue, green, pink and a few red and yellow scraps and made these two 27" x 21" panels. I then quilted the panels, made a lining with tons of pockets and all, and right before adding handles to my tote I realized it looked like a giant quilted pillow with handles :( I could not even bring myself to take a picture of the whole contraption.

I'm pretty sure you can guess what I did next, right? Yep, I have a new pillow to show you :)

I ripped out the tote and turned it into a double sided pillow. This is side A.

And side B. I installed invisible zipper so none of the patchwork would be lost.

So yes, I have a new pillow but no tote bag. I will definitely have to get back to that later. Also, I have a few strips of patchwork left and I'm thinking of piecing them together to make some coasters maybe. We'll see :)

Talk to you soon. Svetlana

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

coin pouches

The other day I was in a mood for some simple sewing. I was going for an instant gratification kind of project, so I decided to make a sweet little coin pouch

I pulled out a few pretty scraps (very little fabric is needed for this cutie) and followed my own tutorial which I wrote many moons ago. In fact, it was my first ever sewing tutorial. 

And then I made a second, this time boy version of the little pouch. They really are super quick to make.

I'm thinking of making a few more of these in different colors and keeping them as quick back up birthday presents for my kids' friends. Because yes, my children do tend to remember their friends' birthdays as we're about to leave for school on a regular basis :)

These pouches finish at 3" x 4". They are a great size for holding a gift card, too.

Working with my own tutorial made me realize I wanted to make my tutorial page more organized and streamlined. Now, it's easier said than done for a person like me who has never ever dipped her toes in anything HTML. Thankfully I found this amazing tutorial on how to create a project gallery and I absolutely love the new look. Hope you'll check it out (click here to go to my tutorial page).

As always, my tutorials are free for personal or charity/ fundraiser use. Also, if you make a project using my tutorial, please add it to sotak handmade inspired Flickr group. I'd love to see all your gorgeous creations.

Wishing you all a very lovely and creative day. Svetlana

Sunday, May 18, 2014

large patchwork quilt

So, I had this idea of making a quilt using big rectangular blocks of some of my very favorite fabrics and arranging them in a simple patchwork pattern.

I started off by pulling lots of different fabrics from my stash, finally settling on this combination of flowers, stripes, gingham, and dots.

I cut each square at 12" x 15".  As you can imagine, this quilt top came together incredibly quickly.

I then quilted it with straightish lines about 1/2" - 3/4" apart. Did I ever tell you how much I enjoy straight line quilting? Well, I do. Very much, I actually find it very therapeutic and soothing. I hope this does not sound too crazy :)

All those lines were totally worth it as the texture of the quilt is fantastic. I can't help but touch it every time I pass by it.

 Finished quilt measures about 57" x 70".

Wishing you all a very lovely rest of the weekend. Svetlana

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

pink love {a finished baby quilt)

 Last night I finished this sweet little quilt inspired by Jolene's gorgeous pixelated heart quilt.  

I. am. in. love.

I used a combination of pink and low volume fabrics, most of them were from my scrap basket which makes me love this quilt even more.

I have hoarded a yard of Sarah Jane Children at Play fabric for quite some time, waiting for just the right project to come along and this sweet little quilt totally fit the bill.

I used pink and white striped fabric for the binding simply because I love striped bindings and in my  book you can never go wrong with stripes :)

Finished size of this quilt is 35" x 37". And you know what? Not only is this quilt totally adorable, it also was very quick to make since all it involved was piecing squares.

I'm pretty sure I'll be visiting this pattern again very soon.

Thanks for stopping by. Svetlana

Monday, May 12, 2014

sew, mama, sew! {may 2014 giveaway}

Yay, it's that time of the year - sew, mama, sew! giveaway day is here!

As usual, I had the hardest time deciding what to give away. I knew it was going to be fabric, but I simply could not narrow it down. So, once again, I made my very own custom made charm pack.

It consists of 65 charms (5" x 5" squares) of some of my very favorite fabric. It has it all from text print, low volumes, and graphics, to flowers and adorable animals. I even included some out of print and hard to find fabric :) Aneela's turtles anyone?

 This giveaway is open worldwide (U.S. as well as international entries welcome) and will close on May 16th at 5 p.m. PST. I will announce who the random winner is by Sunday, May 18th.

So, what do you say? Do you want to play along?

Here's how to enter:

* leave a comment on this post
* to get a second bonus entry let me know that you are my follower, or become one and then let me know

Thank you to everyone who participated. This giveaway is now closed and the winner is
imatopper who said: What a great charm pack! 

Thank you so much for stopping by. Wishing  you all a wonderful rest of the day. Svetlana

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

laptop bag

I made myself a new laptop bag over the weekend. And, to my husband and kids' surprise it did not involve absolutely any colorful patchwork at all! They really were surprised, my oldest daughter even said she had no idea I could make a bag like that - I decided to take this remark as a compliment :)

From the very beginning I decided to go with very clean, sort of modern design and I think it was a success. I used home decor weight fabric for the exterior of the bag. I now want to make tons and tons more striped bags and totes.

I wanted to make sure the bag was nicely padded to protect my laptop so I decided to use Soft and Stable between the exterior and lining layers and it worked like a charm.

A zipper closure was a must, of course. Plus a tiny teapot zipper pull just because :)

What makes this bag for me though, is all these little details of fun hardware, webbing handles,

and this fantastic hand made leather tag. Sweet, isn't it?

You can probably tell I really like this bag, right? Well yes I do. But, do you want to hear something totally crazy? I measured wrong and it DOES NOT FIT my laptop :(

Yes, yes things like that happen to me quite often as I dislike prep work and measuring very much, I always want to get to sewing as soon as possible. Maybe one of these days I will learn my lesson. Until then I will simply make another bag (with correct dimensions this time - I hope) and find some other use for this snazzy, not quite the right size bag.

Hope your day is great. Svetlana

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

blogger bundle

Do you shop for your fabric online? I do, I buy almost all my fabric online and I absolutely love it. So, when incredibly sweet Cindy, owner of online fabric shop Fluffy Sheep Quilting, asked if I'd like to put together a blogger bundle I could not say yes fast enough.

And, after a very enjoyable time spent looking through Cindy's beautiful fabrics, I decided to go with this bundle of pretties.

I so love this sweet combination of  aqua, red and green with a touch of black. And I especially enjoy seeing dainty flowers next to very modern geometrics, gingham, as well as that fantastic text print by Lori Holt.

I'm so looking forward to getting my complimentary bundle in the mail soon. I have a few ideas what I'd like to make - maybe a giant pillow cover or a quilt with lots of white negative space??? Not sure yet but I'm quite positive there will be some triangles :)

What do you think? Would you like to get these pretties for yourself? This bundle, and lots of other gorgeous sewing related goodies, are available for purchase at Cindy's shop .

Thanks so much for reading. Hope you all have an amazingly creative day. Svetlana

Saturday, May 3, 2014

grocery bags

Hello, hope everyone's weekend is off to a great start. I'm so happy to say that after a week of dreadfully gloomy cold and rainy weather the sun showed up this morning and it feels glorious!!!!

So, to my children's dismay, I decided this was a perfect day to clean the house, and I mean really clean, everything top to bottom :) We're about half way done now but I gave everyone a short break and decided to pop in to show you what I've been working on over the last few days.

Ta-da!!! Grocery bags! Very glamorous, right?

See, Chicago is on a brink of banning plastic bags in stores and it was just the right push I needed to finally make myself a few of these fantastic reusable bags. I used Michelle's Grocery Bag pattern . It is such a perfectly perfect pattern.

I love the shape of the bag, it's exactly like the plastic bag at the store, and it's so quick to make. I love how there's no boxing up the bottom, so it saves tons of time, yet it's a wonderfully roomy bag.

At first I was slightly reluctant to use some of my "prettier" fabrics for these bags, but I decided since I'll be using them on a regular basis it totally made sense to choose fabrics I really like.

Now I'm seriously looking forward to going grocery shopping :)

Tell me, are you using reusable grocery bags? Do you have a certain go to pattern you like to make?

Off I go now, more cleaning to be done, and then grocery shopping - yay! Svetlana

Thursday, May 1, 2014

lozenges tote bag

Last few days have been rainy, dark, and cold so I decided to brighten things up by making a new happy looking tote bag.

Not bad, right? I finally gave purpose to an orphan block that was on my design wall for months. I made my own simple pattern to waste as little of the epp block as possible and added some stripes (because you can never have too many stripes in my opinion).

 These epp shapes are called coffins :( but some people refer to them as lozenges and that's what I call them too. Referring to pretty things as coffins is way too creepy for me. I got mine here. They carry different sizes, mine are 3" wide ones.

 I then used this gorgeous fairy tale fabric from my stash for the back,

even added a zipper closure. And thus one happy, bright, and very functional tote was born :)

Finished size of this tote is 13" x 12" x 3". I made handles slightly longer that usual (they are 22" long) because I wanted to be able to sling the tote over my shoulder.

And, once I figure out how PDF files work, I'll post a tutorial and pattern for the tote. Fingers crossed, I have so much techy stuff to learn.

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