Almost a year, not quite, but too long really. A lot has changed in my life personally. I promise, all good, but I do find I'm a wee bit busier these days and blogging just had to take a back burner for a while, but hopefully I am back. So enough about all that, let's get to business today as my time is limited!
I am here today to show off my latest finish, my Modern Quilt Guild Fabric Challenge project. If we signed up we were sent a bundle of six, fat eighth fabrics from the line The Cottage Garden designed by The Quilted Fish. The six fabrics were from the aqua colorway and we had the option to add in Riley Blake Fabrics solids or any other prints from the line. One of the requirements of this challenge was to do something we have never done before with this fabric, so almost instantly I knew I wanted to try out patchwork/quilted clothing as this is something I have never done before. So I hopped online, saw the pink colorway, ordered more fabric and set out on a plan.
I looked through the patterns I already owned, as one of my missions this year was to sew my own stash/pattern stash and use what I already have. I found the Anna Maria Horner pattern, All Set and decided I had to make the super cute jacket included in the pattern. After reading through the pattern instructions I decided that I could make this jacket reversible, fairly easily, so why not. One side in the pink colorway and the other in an aqua/pink mixture. And if you were wondering, yes, this is for a girl and maybe that has something to do with why I haven't been blogging! I quickly set to work cutting fabric, decided on a simple 2" x 2" patchwork and several parts of the jacket I decided to cut out as whole pieces, like the top/back of the hood and the front button plackets simply so it wouldn't be too busy. I cut out all my fabric only to discover I didn't have enough and had to order more. Live and learn.
Once I received the second shipment of fabric, I finished cutting and then started piecing all those 2" (finished size) squares. I made chunks of patchwork fabric just big enough for each jacket pattern piece to fit on, and then cut out each piece from the "created" fabric. I had to cut two of each piece so that it would be reversible, with the exception of the button plackets, they worked as is. I then dug through all my cotton batting scraps and cut out each piece from the batting, which was a great use of those scraps by the way. So now I officially had a quilt, a "front", batting middle and a "back." It took a bit of manipulating to cut out each piece identically on the front and inside as I wanted the squares to line up on both sides the same, does that make sense? I hope so. I also had to change the construction method of the jacket as I was making it reversible but since I've been making clothes FOREVER it wasn't hard for me to figure out.
I sewed the jacket together, mostly following the pattern directions, treating the front and batting as one layer and the back patchwork piece as the lining. Some of the steps were easier as I didn't have to hem the jacket or sleeves, some were a pain trying to line up, but overall I would call it a success. The button placket was one of the last steps and I even used the Riley Blake ribbon that tied the bundle of fabric together to create the button loops. I love that detail! On the other side I used scraps of the aqua text to create the button loops. Before I knew it the jacket was together and all it needed was buttons and some quilting to officially make it a quilt!
I then took about a two month break for personal reasons (hint, hint) and then found a free moment to run to JoAnn Fabrics for the buttons as I had NOTHING in my stash that would even closely work. After a bit of debate I settled on some super shiny pink crystal buttons for one side and some awesome plastic crystal clear ovals for the other side because in order for this thing to be reversible it needed buttons on both sides. I hand stitched on the buttons, careful not to let the stitching show through to the other side. I then took another long break for no real reason other than the fact that apparently I like doing everything at the last possible minute. So two days ago I decided to quilt this thing!
I have never quilted clothing before, much less quilted anything that was 3D of sorts, and by that I mean the fact that I decided to start on the front, quilt over the shoulder and continue onto the back. So I basted with pins around the shoulder area as this area would need the most manipulation and just went for it. I chose a simple five petal flower and loops in a line following inside of the patchwork squares. This post was titled, "It Has Been A Long Time," for another reason too, I haven't free motion quilted in around a year. Crazy right? Especially considering that I LOVE IT. Well just like riding a bike, I hoped back on and thankfully with no problems and great tension I quilted this jacket. I kept it simple and basically quilted three lines of design on the jacket body and two short lines on each side of the hood. It went so quickly I wondered why I waited so long to do it, (I was scared, honestly!)
I loved the end result, buried the threads and this reversible jacket sized for a 2 year old girl (who won't wear it for another 2 years, hint, hint) was all finished. The pattern and the instructions were great, the fabric is pretty and super girly and the challenge was fun. As always I'm thankful for the Modern Quilt Guild and these challenges as each time I stretch my limits, knowledge and learn something new.
I also wanted to thank Riley Blake Fabrics and The Quilted Fish for hosting this challenge. As an individual member these are just the sorts of things that make the Modern Quilt Guild feel like more of a community for me and allow me to participate in these challenges that used to be reserved for group members only. So thank you, it is fun! Also thanks to all my followers that are still here for being patient with me while I took this much needed time off.
A feisty mom designing, sewing and blogging her way through everyday life!