Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Quick Table Runner

I just got tired of looking at a plain dining room table so yesterday I decided that I would do something quick.  After deciding to do a sew and flip, I began to choose fabrics.  Luckily I had a jelly roll of colors that I like so that limited cutting except for cutting the strips in half.  I auditioned batting cut to the size that I thought I wanted and began sewing and flipping.  The size of my table runner is approximately 17" by 42".  Choose the size you would like and follow the directions below if you want to make a quick table runner.

I started with a plain dining room table . . .

I measured to see how big I wanted my table runner and auditioned a piece of batting to make sure . . .

Now on to choosing fabrics for this project.  This project could go seasonal, scrappy, etc.  Your choice!  I happened to find a jelly roll that I thought would be suitable until spring.

Of course since I had pre-cut strips I used 2-1/2" strips, but you could easily vary the widths, use smaller widths, larger widths, etc.  Again your choice.  My kind of project.

I layed these strips out in the order I wanted to use and cut them in half and made two identical stacks.  I began with the top strip of one stack and removed the identical strip from the other stack.  Now for the sewing.  Lay the strip in the middle of your batting and add another strip from the stack and sew using a 1/4" seam.  Flip and press.  Add the next strip from the same stack, flip, and press until you get this half finished.  Now when you go to the next stack you will notice that the strip matches the one on the other side of the center strip.  For me, that's what I chose to do.  Now continue with the sew, flip, and press until entire batting is covered.  For the size of my table runner I used 23 strips.

Next trim and square up the runner.  For my project, I chose to do a pillowcase back versus binding.  I used muslin and made the backing.  After sewing on the backing, I used a bone folder to push out the corners, pressed the finished table runner, and placed on my dining room table.

Much to my amazement, I had already used some of the strips to make a fabric vase!  For a little over one and a half hours, I filled my empty table with something that I enjoyed doing and love.

The beauty of this project is that you can do it however you wish and without a pattern and using your own imagination.  This is a great project for the beginner and a FUN project for anyone!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Urban Country. . .

Loved the book URBAN country QUILTS by Jeanne Large and Shelley Wicks and published by That Patchwork Place.  Stunning wall hangings, pillows, pillowcases, lap quilts, etc.  I will have to say that Maisy caught my eye almost immediately.  So I decided to take this pattern into a different direction . . .
Telemadeira Fusion which I will explain later on.  In URBAN Country QUILTS Jeanne Large used black flannel for the background and felted wool for the applique.  She fused the applique to the flannel and suggested doing a blanket stitch around the fused pieces either by hand or machine.  You can find her project on Page 38.

I do love to applique by machine;  however, I thought I would take this project into a totally different direction using different media and techniques.  Telemadeira Fusion is a process that I learned from Al ma de la Melena Cox. On her web site, Almaart.com, she explains it this way:

"By bringing together "tela, the Spanish word for fabric, and "madera," the Spanish word for wood, I create a dynamic fusion of elements; "Telamadera Fusion" requires patience, as it can take several weeks for one work to evolve."
This is what I did to complete this project using her technique. . .
I went into my husband's workshop and found a scrap that I thought I could use.  I taped off edges and painted the interior black with just craft paint.  When the paint dried I taped off the interior and painted the edges to appear like a frame.  I chose green (my absolute favorite color) but any color would be just fine.  I went to the book and traced the patterns on the paper side of the fusible.  I then cut out and fused to the wood just as you would with fabric except I used a dry iron.  After the fabric and wood cooled down I began the process of adding the the varnish (I use Matte Varnish by Liquitex).  I allow each layer to dry for at least 8 to 10 hours and apply another coat.  In this case, I applied 10 coats.  It is a lengthy process but well worth the outcome.  And while you are waiting for this process to be completed, you can work on all your other projects!
Here is a picture of my finished project:

As you will see, I drilled holes, added buttons, and threaded wire through the holes and buttons to use for a hanger.  I love buttons, too!

This is a closeup of the flowers.  As you can see, I chose fabric from Jennifer Jangles' line which worked perfectly for me.  (Check out Jennifer on her blog, web site, and Etsy store)  I added some glitter glue to add a little sparkle.  I love this project.  EASY and FUN  to do.
Be sure to check out Alma de la Melena Cox and her tutorials and gallery.  Simply stunning and quite a bit more intricate than my piece.
Whatever you do, just have FUN!!!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Studio Re-model

Been a while since I've had a chance to blog.  For Christmas, my sweet husband gave me the storage solution for my fabric scraps that I needed in my studio to keep me more organized and more creative.  It was really a hassle and messy to pull down "shoe boxes" of scraps for a project and invariably the colors I needed and/or wanted were on the bottom.  This process was a long one but proved to be the best thing I've ever done in my studio.  Below are the "before", "during", and "after" pictures.  A local cabinet maker, Johnny Baker, helped me through this process and built the most beautiful and sturdy storage solution that I could hope for.

BEFORE . . .



Johnny Baker of Baker Cabinets
Bogart, Georgia


We fit in 49 drawers of which I only have 10 left to fill and I am positive that will not take too long. I am so thrilled with the outcome. I really wish you could see in person the BEFORE and the AFTER! It is simply amazing and I want to thank my husband and Johnny for a job well done!!!!!