Friday, February 27, 2015

on-the-go knitting bag

I mentioned a while back how much I enjoy knitting. I don't produce anything fancy, mostly just super simple socks using the same pattern over and over (which is really strange since I hate repeating the same quilt pattern), but it's fun and relaxing so I keep doing it. 
Also, it's a great portable project and I bring my knitting when I take my kids to their activities. So, when I spotted this free tutorial for crochet on the go bag I knew it would be perfect for my knitting too.

I raided my stash and in the name of taming things down decided to use this lovely linen fabric for the exterior and Doe quilting cotton for the lining.

I made a few changes to the original design - I skipped the pocket and I followed this tutorial for making my bag fully lined with no exposed seams as they tend to drive me crazy.

Here's what the bag looks like when in use, please don't pay much attention to how my girl (not too happy about having to be a model) is holding the knitting needles :).

I didn't use any interfacing but I'm thinking one layer of SF101 might be a good way to go next time.

How about you? Do you like to craft on the go? Do tell.


Thursday, February 26, 2015

liberty coin quilt {a tutorial}

Hello, happy Thursday to you all. 

Today is my stop on Give me Liberty Club Inspiration blog hop organized by super talented Amanda (Westwood Acres Fabric). This blog hop is all about sewing with gorgeous Liberty Tana Lawn. Did you know Amanda runs a Give me Liberty Club which sends out a bundle of ten Liberty cuts each month? What a great way to build up one's Liberty stash, isn't it?

I received this bundle of gorgeousness to play with and I have to admit, I was a little scared about cutting into these beauties.

I wanted to make a project that would let these lovely prints shine. I decided to make a coin quilt (inspired by this quilt) as the solid fabric (Cotton + Steel seaglass)  keeps things from looking chaotic and unifies all the gorgeous prints and colors.

I went with very simple quilting along the sashing as I wanted this quilt to have more of a blanket feel. And, I just adore the addition of Liberty prints to one side of the binding so much, must do that more often :).

My quilt finished at 59" x 63" and here's a quick tutorial if you'd like to make one for yourself too.


Materials needed:
10 FQs Liberty Tana Lawn (you will have some fabric left over), or you could use smaller cuts of    Liberty Tana Lawn as long as each piece is at least 3" x 5.5"
2 yards of solid fabric for solid coins, sashing, and borders
1/4 yard fabric for binding
3 1/2 yard fabric for backing
65" x 70" batting of choice

Notes:  use consistent 1/4" seam allowance
             WOF - width of fabric
             FQ - fat quarter

1. Cutting:   
Liberty Tana Lawn: cut into 88 - 3" x 5.5" rectangles
Solid fabric:  cut 7 -5.5" x WOF strips, sub-cut these into 87 - 3" x 5.5" rectangles
                      cut 9 - 3" x WOF strips for sashing
                      cut 3 -  5" x WOF for the two borders
Binding: cut 6 - 2.5" x WOF strips

2. Columns of coins:
Arrange the layout of your quilt on design wall or on the floor by alternating Liberty and solid coins.  Make 4 columns beginning and ending with Liberty and 3 columns beginning and ending with solid fabric, alternate those columns as shown in the picture below.  Each column will have 25 coins.
(in this picture sashing is already attached)

Once pleased with the arrangement, stitch coins together into columns, press the seams. Each columns should measure 5.5" x 63".

3. Sashing:
Cut three 3" x WOF solid strips in half. Attach the cut halves to six 3" x WOF strips for sashing. Cut your six sashing strips to measure 3" x 63". Start by adding sashing between first and second column. Leave left side of first column and right side of the last column without sashing, that's where the final border will go.

4. Borders:
Cut one 5" x WOF border strip in half, attach each half to the other two border strips. Cut your two borders to measure 5" x 63". Attach borders to the first and last column.

5. Finishing your quilt:
Give your finished quilt top a good press. Baste to make a quilt sandwich. Quilt any way you like, bind using your preferred method.

Congratulations!!! You're all done. Not too difficult, was it?


I hope you'll follow along and enjoy all the fun Liberty projects other super talented bloggers will share over the next two weeks. Here's the line-up:

February 24th: Kick Off! A Crafty Fox 
February 26th: Svetlana at Sotak Handmade 
February 26th: Andy at A Bright Corner 
February 27th: Chase at Quarter Inch Mark 
March 3rd: Lee at Freshly Pieced 

Monday, February 23, 2015


I love working with Art Gallery fabrics as their cotton is a little bit thinner than your usual quilting cotton which makes for quilts with incredibly luxurious feel and gorgeous drape. So, when I was asked to be a part of AGF stitched with Kimberly series (a collaboration between AGF and Fat Quarter Shop) I was more than happy to say yes.

The idea was to make the Birchen quilt using our favorite AGF fabric. I chose the combination of beautiful Petal and Plume by Bari J. and two AGF solids, and I could not be happier with how this quilt turned out. 

I just adore navy and pink together these days. And you know what? Even all these HSTs were a breeze to make as I was sent a roll of HST paper triangles on a roll to use as well. I must admit, I was quite hesitant at first as I've never worked with triangles on a roll before. Once I gave it a try though I could not believe how super easy it was to make tons of perfectly precise, already trimmed HSTs in no time at all.

I used yet another lovely AGF print for the back of my quilt and quilted it using straight-ish lines about 3/4" - 1" apart. 

So, what do you say? Would you like to make Birchen quilt of your own? AGF and FQS have provided tons of free resources:

Click here for free video tutorial.

Go here to get free Birchen pattern.

Also, Fat Quarter Shop is selling quilt kits if you're interested (click here).

Fun, isn't it? I hope you give this pattern a try. Svetlana

Saturday, February 21, 2015

lola pencil pouch

I woke up way too early this morning and since everyone was still asleep, I decided to do a little quiet clean up in my sewing room. I only managed to put away two or three FQs when I spotted leftover fabric from my Super Tote. At that point all the clean up ideas were completely abandoned and I suddenly had to make a new Lola pouch.

I made a smaller size of the pouch - it's perfect for pencils as well as many other sewing supplies. It also fits my rotary cutters nicely.

Once again I went with striped binding around the zipper as I simply can't resist striped bindings. I might have a problem here :). But really, how can I possibly resist this gorgeous contrast of bright magenta zipper and black and white striped binding ???

I even added a little leather zipper pull which is such a lovely finishing touch for any pouch or bag. I just need to remember to add these little details more often.

All in all, this super quick pouch was a lovely distraction from what I should really be doing and now that it's all finished I'm back to that original clean up plan :(. 

Hope your weekend is off to a good start as well. Svetlana

Oh, by the way, Etsy has finally gotten on board with all that VAT mess so I re-opened my esty store and my pdf patterns are available for purchase worldwide. (insert happy dance here)

Thursday, February 19, 2015

motley wheel pillow

As I mentioned in my previous post, I had the pleasure to test Nicole's (mama love quilts) newest pdf pattern called Motley Wheel - a mini 20" color wheel.

Turns out, it's quite tricky for me to get this rainbow-y color gradation right. But, instead of worrying about my imperfect rainbow I decided to just go with the flow and pretend like the original intent was to make a happy, bright patchwork which I then turned into a pillow. I'm pretty sure one of my nieces will happily take it off my hands :).

I love how each and every spoke of the wheel is exactly the same size and the seams match up beautifully - thanks to Nicole's super detailed instructions and paper piecing templates.

I quilted my pillow top with straight lines ...

... and used this adorable scooter print for the back (once again I went with my trusty hidden zipper back - tutorial here).

My Motley Wheel pillow finished at 20" square and I highly recommend you give this pattern a try. I think it might even be a good way to introduce yourself to paper piecing as Nicole gives super clear instructions with tons of pictures to help along.

So, what do you say? Would you like to make a Motley Wheel of your own? If so, you can buy Nicole's pattern here. Also, I hope you'll pop over to Nicole's blog Mama Love Quilts to see other lovely versions of this pattern.

Thanks for reading friends. Hope you all are staying warm and super cozy these days (our temperatures dropped to -30 degrees today, brrr). Svetlana

Monday, February 16, 2015

PJs and a rainbow

Hello, happy Monday friends. Did you have a good weekend? I hope you had some time to relax and take things easy. And do some sewing, of course. I was actually quite surprised at how much I managed to accomplish. It must by all that horrible cold weather that makes us stay in and pushes me towards my sewing machine. Poor me, right ??? :)

 I've been planning on making a new pair of pajama pants for my son for months. Somehow though sewing clothes is never on my priority list so I kept putting it off :(. And then, other day, I suddenly noticed his old PJs (I made a few pairs for him about two years ago) were ridiculously short by now so I knew it was finally time. And once I got in the groove of making these super quick pants I made not just one, but three pairs in one evening.

 I used this pattern which I bought ages ago and all the fabric was from my stash, definitely a win win combination.

And then I played with some rainbow.  I must admit, this color gradation is definitely not my strong point. I had no idea getting a decent rainbow was so tricky :).

 I'm testing a pattern for Nicole Mama Love Quilts and I'm planning on turning this happy patchwork into a pillow. I'll share pictures of the finished pillow once Nicole is ready to release her pattern.

On a random note, I even managed to hang my Improv Logs quilt up on the wall. I love how it looks in our hallway. And, it took me "only" seven months to finally get it done :).

Here's to a great, super creative week. Svetlana

Thursday, February 12, 2015

divided basket

Hello everyone, hope you week is going well. 

I seem to be on a sort of basket making spree here :). Last time I showed you my newest Tessa basket, now it's time for Anna's super popular Divided Basket.

Zebras anyone??? Isn't this such a fun fabric? And I just love how it looks combined with linen and coordinating cotton prints.

The part I worry most when making these baskets are the handles. I always think fabric will start bunching up on me and make the handles all wonky looking, but I found using tons of wonder clips to hold things in place and going slow makes for quite a smooth ride.

This is my fourth Divided Basket (you can see the others here and here) and I'm sure it won't be the last. They do make such wonderful presents, especially when stuffed with tons of lovely goodies.

Off I go now. Time to make dinner :). Svetlana

Linking up to AmandaJean's Finish it up Friday.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

tessa basket

As soon as I came across Pink Stitches' pattern for Tessa Basket I knew I had to make one right away. After pulling tons of fabric from my stash and making a huge mess I finally decided to go with a combination of Charms linen blend fabric by Ellen Baker with green Pearl Bracelets and neon webbing for the handles.

I did a few changes while making this basket - I cut the main body as well as lining 2" longer than the pattern originally called for. I also adhered fusible fleece to the exterior and SF101 to the lining because I wanted the basket to hold its shape and stand on its own.

This was a super quick sew, picking fabric (and then cleaning up all the mess I made) was definitely the most time consuming part for me:). I so love how this basket turned out and I just adore its simple shape and the combination of linen + cotton fabric and webbing handles.

I'm going to use this basket for my knitting but I'm pretty sure I'll be making more of these super chic bags/ baskets very soon. You can purchase a pdf pattern here if you'd like to make one for yourself.

Thanks for reading. Svetlana

Sunday, February 8, 2015

quiet scrap eater {all finished}

I started this little quilt one afternoon a few days back completely on a whim, as I was trying to avoid thinking about what to make for dinner :). And, before I knew it, I dumped my scrap buckets on the floor and started sorting - I wanted to use only low volume prints but once I made a few blocks I decided some additional color would bring more interest to the finished quilt.

Just like with my Scrap Eater quilt, I followed this tutorial to make my blocks. I very highly recommend you give it a try if you want to use up some of your scraps in quite a short period of time. Every time I make these blocks I'm amazed at how quickly they come together.

I was originally planning on making a lap sized quilt but once I made 13 blocks I was done. I decided to do a 3 x 4 layout and added strips of fabric to the sides to make the finished quilt a little wider (my blocks were 12.5" square before sewing them together).

I think this lovely berry backing fabric is such a fun contrast to the quilt top. Plus, it's super super soft and it gives the quilt a wonderful drape.

I did a random grid quilting (this might be my very favorite quilting pattern at the moment). I really like how quilting sort of disappears into the patchwork and does not compete with all the craziness that's already going on here :). 

I then I used this wider striped fabric for the binding. I love how it not only frames all the scrappy blocks, it also contrasts so very nicely with the berry backing. Definitely a win win.

This Quiet Scrap Eater quilt finished at 44" x 48" and all the pictures were taken after the quilt was washed and tumble dried.


Monday, February 2, 2015

snowed in

Hello, happy Monday to you all. Did you have a nice weekend? Ours was quite interesting.

On Sunday morning we woke up to 15" of freshly fallen snow which made everything look so stunningly beautiful, but it also meant we were snowed in.

And since this was just the beginning because a dangerous blizzard was still coming our way and everyone was advised to stay inside, we decided to simply enjoy this day and take things easy.

Taking things easy had to involve some fabric, of course. I cut into this gorgeous Liberty Tana Lawn bundle I received from Westwood Acres (project plus tutorial coming up soon). Did you know there's still time to join their Liberty Tana Lawn Bundle of the Month club? I would definitely recommend it to any Liberty fan.

I also made quite a good progress on knitted socks for my husband. Did I ever tell you I really enjoy knitting socks? Well, I do. A lot. The only slightly strange thing is that I generally dislike wearing socks of any kind, and I absolutely can't stand knitted socks. But thankfully my husband likes them. Let's just say he has enough knitted socks to last him a very, very long time :).

All in all, I quite liked being snowed in. But now I'm ready for things to get back to normal, hopefully schools will reopen tomorrow and we'll be back to our everyday routine.

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