Thursday, December 22, 2011

Now for some finished projects!

So despite the long list of unfinished projects, I still insist on starting something new. Sometimes it's nice to whip up quick, easy items that satisfy the sewing urge without expending too much time.

Unfinished projects.

To make myself somewhat accountable to finish that long to do list, I thought maybe by posting pictures this would spur me on to show you all the end result.
So here we go! A mug rug with a screen printed mug. Binding for mini quilt. Toddler skirt with screen printed bird pocket. Hexagon placemat.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Fernie Christmas Craft Sale

I headed back to Fernie last weekend to sell some wares. In the past, when it comes to selling fabric at the market, I used to just bring fat quarters and 1 yard cuts as it was easier to cart around. This time I dragged all my bolts of fabric down and had a cutting area set up. It was pretty successful! I am not sure I would do that every market, but when space allows, it does seem worth it. I also didn't make any children's clothing this time and stuck to small items like pouches, stroller blankets and simple patchwork pillows. I also had pretty good success with up-cycled slouch hats and the fur lined aviator hats. Most of all I had a great time hanging out for the day with M.C and J.B, my crafty counterparts. It was also really nice to visit with so many familiar faces. Despite the good times to be had and a profit, I think it will be that last time I do a market in Fernie. It is time to get things going here in Kimberley and move on. To all those in Fernie, if you are reading this, thank you for all your support and kindness! I will miss you all!


Saturday, December 10, 2011

Tiny Pouches

I found a great tutorial for making quilted pouches from One Shabby Chic . They are so simple. No fussing with lining and they turn out so neat and flat. I followed her tutorial for small pouch then modified it to make a camera pouch. They are going to make great stocking suffers!

Some Furry Hats

I have recently started sewing some newsboys hats using a pattern from

It is by far the best hat pattern I have tried and wanted to make one for Quinn but.... It is the middle if winter. He has not a whole lot of hair and not always cooperative with keeping hats on. So I was thinking that somehow I needed to have earflaps and fur lining. Faux of course. Then I remembered a great pattern for an aviator hat from Betz White found in a Stitch magazine (Spring 2010).  The first one turned out too small (I had sized it for 12 to 18 months) but I didn't take into account I used really thick furry fleece. So I made the toddler 2/3 and it almost fit me! Mind you I used scant 1/4 inch seems. The next one I used the 12 to 18 month size with a quarter inch seem and top stitched all the seems to keep them flat and provide strength. It looks pretty cute!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Oh where has the time gone??!!

Ok. Why does it always come to this? I haven't blogged since August!!! Life has passed by...back to work, juggling daycare, kids programs and some sewing here and there....actually very little sewing. Hence, the lack of blog posts...Oh yeah...and a move. A few weeks ago we left the panorama of the Lizard Range that surrounds Fernie. Opportunities present themselves when we least expect them and we now have returned to Kimberley. I have fond memories of Kimberley, as we were married here, bought our first house and contemplated the rest of our life together...Well maybe not contemplated...we are not much for planning, my husband and I. So it feels very much like we have traveled full circle after moving to Fernie, having two kids and now back again. Where will life lead us now? At any rate, I have been busy getting kids to play groups, have been enjoying walking downtown, browsing the Gilded Goat and day dreaming about sewing again. Yesterday during a rare quite time with the kids, I was able to put together a few blocks that I pieced ages ago. Judging by  it's configuration, i think it will be a table runner or even a "curtain" for a skinny window in our computer area (which is actually a front hall closet in the front entry).  At any rate, it was sooo nice to get back at the sewing machine. I don't have an actual sewing room but I have a pretty good set up in our master bedroom. The only problem with this is I can't sew into the wee hours of the night. I am sure now that I have kicked started my sewing "stall" I will find the time again!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Berry Picking

Thank you M.F. For suggesting a wonderful way to spend the morning! Ilan ate most of his saskatoons before they hit the bottom of the pail but I did manage to get a few for muffins. I don't have long before I return to work after a year of being on maternity leave. This was a perfect way to spend the day!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, July 29, 2011

Family Tree

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.
Awhile back I screen printed a tree on linen and about...hmm...let's see....5 months later, I finally appliqued leaves on. I was inspired by my friend AP from InknThreads who had cut a beautiful stencil for screen printing. She is a clever, clever girl and I loved the quirky square leaves she did instead of the typical teardrop shape. To me they remind me of postage stamps and it makes me think of all the avenues I have been down, in a metaphorical sense. Not actual avenues. That would be odd. Remembering all those roads, in every city or town. Yikes! I digress! Anyways...I do have a vision for this mini quilt. I would love to stitch my family's name on the tree. Fitting for my first born, Ilan, whose name means "tree" and Quinn, "one who gives counsel". I imagine trees to be wise as they remain still while we pass by. Imagine what all they take in.

Mini Quilts

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.
I am slowly building a mini quilt wall in my bedroom. Ever since reading Whip Up Mini Quilts, I am in love with these little pieces of scrappy goodness. They can serve so many purposes. They can be considered practice runs or be a complete entity in itself. Mini quilts make great wall art,  mug rugs,  place mats or a pillow top. For me, because I am a beginner quilter, mini quilts allow me to try new techniques. The two mini quilts pictured are my attempts at curved piecing. I can easily use up scraps without wasting more coveted yardage and learn through experimenting. Practicing on a smaller scale allows me to play with combining prints and color I may not normally put together.  If you are new to quilting and want to experiment or even simply get used to your sewing machine, a mini quilt is a great project.

Purse for Tara

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.
I had a lot of fun putting together this purse for a good friend. The fabric is from Dena Designs for Freespirit and it all blends nicely together. I am loving the large scale prints lately as they are fun to use in their entirety or when cut up in small pieces to use only certain elements of the design. The bag is reversible, only the white and grey side doesn't have a pocket. The strap is extra long to sling over the body so it doesn't slide off the shoulder when picking up little ones...which is the case for both of us!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Upcoming September Class at the Art Station

Sewing for Beginners
Cost: $130 (fabric included) $100 (bring your own fabric)
Sept 8th, 15th, 22nd, 29th
Thursday evenings 7 to 9pm
Contact Courtney at the Art Station: 250 423-4842

Have a sewing machine but do not know where to start? Sign up for the Beginner Sewing Workshop Series at the Art Station. Learn the basics of sewing to get you started sewing home items, simple garments and accessories.  Topics to be covered are: how to use your sewing machine, basic stitches, button holes, zippers, finishing, reading patterns and choosing fabrics.  

The first class will cover basic topics such as learning how to thread your sewing machine, basic stitching, buttonholes, zippers and troubleshooting. Once participants are familiar with their machines, we will practice various techniques found in many sewing projects. We will discuss how to select the right project for you, reading a pattern, finding inspiration, adding personal touches, as well as choosing fabric and “up cycling” old items into new.  The goal of the series is to make sewing simple, fun and functional for everyday use.  The class will end by choosing a project for the second class, as well as choosing fabric. Instructor has a variety of fabric to choose from and can be viewed at A variety of books and patterns will be provided for inspiration and use.

The second class will center on sewing for the home. Taking what was learned in the first class students may choose from a variety of projects for the home. For example, learn how to sew a simple “envelope style” cushion, placemats, fabric bucket or funky patchwork potholders. We will discuss how to modify patterns and ideas to incorporate your own personal style.

The third and fourth class will involve garment construction. Participants will take a closer look at reading patterns, pattern placement and learn how to measure themselves. If sewing for children is your goal, we will discuss sizing and choosing fabrics. Potential projects may include easy an adult A line skirt, apron, simple child’s outfit. Options are not limited to those mentioned above but selections do have to be simple and in doable in a 2 hour time slot. If a more complicated project is desired, participants can choose to work on one project throughout the series.

If time allows, basic hand stitching and appliqué will be covered to add personal touches to items.  Participants will be able to choose from a variety of projects or bring a simple pattern of their own.  Must bring own sewing machine in good working order. Please ensure you have a basic sewing kit consisting of scissors, pins, thread, seam ripper, dressmakers chalk or disappearing fabric marker (found at local quilt shop) and measuring tape. Fabric is included in price of class unless you opt to purchase your own fabric.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Quinn's Birthday Pants

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Quinn's Birthday Pants

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Quinn's Birthday Pants

I try and sew for each of my boys for their birthday. This year, the night before Quinn's big day (1 year old!) I am whipping up a pair of pants. I love Anna Maria Horner's Quick Change Pants but the only fabric I had that was plain was a light denim recycled from a pair of trouser jeans of mine. I didn't line them as it is summer so they were quick and easy to sew up. I have been hanging on to a few Echino scraps for the back yoke and used Joel Dewberry's woodgrain in bark for a cuff on the legs. As soon as Quinn woke up this morning, on went the pants! I enjoy sewing for kids while they are small. I love mixing fun prints and they never mind how quirky or loud the end result is.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, July 18, 2011

Sew Liberated Patterns in the shop

Yeah!!! After some anxious moments waiting for my patterns from Sew Liberated (held up by the mail strike here in Canada), they finally arrived and can be purchased in the shop (see along side bar on right). Well worth the wait! I also purchased the beautiful book Growing Up Sew Liberated and have read it front to back!

I am especially excited to try the Envelope tee from Sew Liberated using the Germania knits in the Shop. The pattern in the book is for newborn up to 24 months but could easily be adapted for my almost 3 year old.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Lone Star Challenge

I have this renewed interest in quilting and it has come on with a vengeance.  I love making clothing for adults and kids but I really love what is going on with modern quilting these days. I was on Flickr the other day searching out a virtual sewing bee to challenge myself in trying more difficult patterns. I had a hard time finding ones to join that were open to Canadian residents or had room for new participants. However, I did find a Lone Star Quilt a Long (I am very afraid, very afraid). Here is a very nice example below from Material Obsession 2 .

I think I may be a little in over my head with this one but I wanted to "go big or go home".  I have always steered away from anything too complicated and stuck with simple designs for my quilts. I think I am ready to test my perseverance and patience. I want to try something that will take a long time to complete and be ok with it. Who knows where this little quilt a long will take me. If I can make a larger bed sized quilt or something even close to this adorable mini-quilt from  Bloomin Workshop, I will be happy. I hope to post my progress as I go.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Obi Belt

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.
I have long wanted to make an Obi belt. I really like the one from Anna Maria Horner's book Handmade Beginnings but I wasn't in the mood this time for all the little bits of patchwork. Instead, I used her fabric and inserted random pieces of different prints for interest. I also liked the wider Obi belt and used a free download from In the end I am pretty happy with it.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Strip Quilt for Mountain Market

IMG_0256 by Our Ilan & Quinn
IMG_0256, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.

I decided to make a quilt for the July 1rst Mountain was really last minute! Like 2 days before. I love strip quilts as they are so easy to make. I am a new to quilting because typically I am the kind of person that likes quick projects. What I am learning through quilting is that it is an exercise in patience. I love the fact that with quilting, it is a process that generates different facets of creativity and skill that making clothes doesn't give me. Clothes have to fit. End of story. With patchwork, you can go a little crazy with pattern, color, and piecing (not really evidenced here). You can stick to traditional designs or improvise (I bow down to you Denyse Schmidt). I know I may not sell this cute quilt. Market success is based on moderately priced items. Most people only have a certain amount of cash on them after they fill their baskets with fruits and the case with me, certainly. But I loved how this bright little quilt looked at our table. I liked how some of the prints were softer but were a nice contrast to the vibrant orange. I think I will keep up this quilting hobby of mine, even if it is easier to make the little things that sell well. Thank you everybody who bought dresses and fabric that day! It was a fun adventure and we hope to see you this Sunday at Rotary Park!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

July 1rst Mountain Market

Thank you to Kat, Jacquie, Merideth, Nat and Astrid for all your lovely wares that made our table a hit! A big thank you to Jacquie of Sew Simple Design for posting a lovely slideshow of our day. I brought my camera but it didn't make it out my purse. It was a blast and I am looking forward to doing it again!

Friday, July 1, 2011

To keep or not to keep....

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.

I have made a few adult skirts this year for the market and I can't decide if I should keep this one....sigh...too many decisions.

Darn cute hat for Avery

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.

Reversible jumper for a friend

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.

I can't get enough of Quick Change Trousers!

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.

Sewing for the Mountain Market

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.
Usually when I don't post, in like, forever, it is because I am productive. I have been a sewing fiend! In Fernie, we have a Canada Day Celebration that kicks off our local Mountain Market. This will be my third year sewing baby and toddler clothing. I decided to make a few home items as well. The two pillows on the right are made using the QAYG method. I love this process and hope to make a larger quilt some day. I literally sew out of a closet (a renovated sauna) so I don't have a lot of room to quilt larger items. A great tutorial for QAYG can be found at SewTakeaHike. I actually want to try it using flannel as batting for a lighter weight quilt to use as a throw for our sofa. Such ambitions! Anyways, it is a lovely day here this morning...I must grab that second cup of coffee and start getting ready for market madness....Happy Canada Day!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Upcoming June Class at the Arts Station

Sewing Clothing For Babies & Toddlers 

Date: June 5th, 2011
Time: 12 to 4pm
Where: The Arts Station Studio (upstairs)
Cost: $60 Supplies included

The Details: A class for people with basic skills of sewing. Level of difficulty is Easy so this class is appropriate for those just starting out sewing and want to learn how to make adjustable clothing for babies and toddlers. Choose from a little dress that converts to a skirt as the child grows or a pair of pants that are reversible and have an adjustable waist.

I have a variety of fabrics to choose from. Visit to view selection. Email or call Athena Knibbs at or 250 423-7214 for more information.
Register at The Arts Station (601 1st Avenue). Contact Courtney Baker at 250-423-4842 or at to register. 

Friday, May 20, 2011

Addendum for Make a Shoulder Bag Workshop.

For those of you who have signed up for the shoulder bag workshop, and for those yet to sign up...I have added an option for including fabric in the cost of the class. If participants would like, they have the option of paying $60.00 and this would include ALL fabric and  notions. I am sorry this may seem a bit disorganized but I had the posters already made and circulated before I opened an online shop for fabric at ETSY (see righthand side of blog or click here. As I don't have a huge stock, I am able to bring all selections with me, so just pick what you like when you get to class!

Date: May 29th, 2011
12 to 4pm
The Arts Station Studio (upstairs)
$40 (supplies not included) $60 Supplies included
Athena Knibbs
The Details:
  Option 1: an easy beginner bag designed by Amy Butler (top) or Option 2: An advanced beginner bag (bottom) designed by Anna Graham of

Must bring working sewing machine. Writer will provide Opt. 1 pattern, Opt.2 pattern is available for download at: Pick up material list for tote at the Arts Station or email For those paying $40 for the workshop, writer will provide interfacing and snaps so participants will only have to purchase outer fabric, lining and optional zippers.

Register at The Arts Station (601 1st Avenue). For more information contact Courtney Baker at 250-423-4842 or at

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Tea for Two.

  by Our Ilan & Quinn
, a photo by Our Ilan & Quinn on Flickr.
Ilan thought it was pretty fun to pretend to have tea with me while we read books. We sang the alphabet...oh, let's see...about 20 times. I will cherish these moments. Now every time I look at this mug rug I will think of tea time with Ilan. I had fun making this one. I love mugrugs and have tried a few with some success. I am not so good at binding. I have a hard enough time getting the mitered corners when binding a quilt, much less a really, really small one. It is a challenge for me, for sure. So when I saw hotpads from Natural Patchwork that had raw edge binding, I was all over that!

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