Thursday, December 26, 2013

Mini Quilts

Did all of you have a good Christmas? I hope Santa came and brought you everything on your wishlist :)

I wanted to do a little bit of quilting, so I managed to whipped up these little quilts in two evenings. They are so fun to make. You know those Moda candy charm packs? They are perfect for these mini quilts. The pack I used here is Tapestry by Joanna for Fig Tree & Co. It's such a beautiful collection.

We have a busy day ahead of us. Enjoy this great day! :)

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Buttons for Baby Garments

I finished making the Highbury baby vest in one weekend using the Madeleine Tosh Vintage yarn. The yarn was wonderful to work with, and the pattern was super easy to follow. The entire vest was completed in one piece and no seaming was needed! Let me say that again... no seaming! I really love putting a vest on my little one in the morning. It keeps her warm, and it's just so easy to put on and off.

 I love the cable detail on this vest. 

Although I made four button holes as instructed by the pattern, I decided not to put buttons on this vest because my little one puts everything she can find in her mouth. So instead, I attached four snaps onto a ribbon, then I hand sewn the ribbon onto the button band. It came out great. Please let me know if you would like a detailed post on how I did that. I couldn't find much on how best to sew buttons on baby garments, so I came up with this technique.

Close-up of the button bands.

This vest was so simple and fun to make, I am casting on another one!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Pumpkin Baby Hat

I made this little pumpkin hat for my little one's first Halloween a few weeks ago. This adorable hat is keeping her warm when we go to the park during the day. The name of the pattern is "Kid's Fruit Cap" published in Ann Norling. It was such a fast knit. You should use yarn that's machine washable, of course.

The strawberry version is super cute as well. I imagine her having this hat in every fruit possible...

Turkey, anyone?

I started this turkey quilt years ago but never got around to finishing it. This is the tutorial I used; it's very simple with a Dresden ruler and some scrap fabrics. I didn't love the way that particular turkey looked, so I sketched my own version, but it's similar to the design featured in the tutorial.

My husband, somehow, found the quilt top. He brought it to my attention and asked me if he can use it for Thanksgiving this week. I was so touched! It is an ordinary and unfinished quilt top! He thought it was very cute. Well then! I guess I will just have to finish it.

I was afraid people may not know it's a turkey, so I stamped a few letters there just in case! I like the way it came out. These pumpkin fabrics came in handy; I used it for the back. I like it so much I may make  something else with it.

This adorable turkey is now on the wall ready to greet our guests this week. What are your plans for Thanksgiving? We are having a big party!

Happy Thanksgiving! :)

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Hidden Gem

Have you heard of the Makery in Los Altos? Have you visited this shop? If you haven't, then you are seriously missing out. I learned about this adorable place from Andrea, whom I met at this year's PIQF. Andrea: thank you for introducing me to this amazing shop! I am not quite sure how to describe this place; it's a retail shop for craft lovers and a DIY studio space for parties. They have everything a craft lover can dream of! Yarn, birthday goodies, fabrics, tools, everything -- you name it! The layout of the store makes this shop super fun; it has unique spaces for different crafts. For example, the room seen in the two pictures below is the "felt" room. Yes, that is just one of many rooms. I spent a long time at this shop.

That large area rug on the floor was made with felt balls!

 I spent a very long time looking at these felt balls. Who would have thought!? 

They carry everything you can think of for a birthday party. 

This is the cutting room for fabrics. 

That white basket you seen in the photo above was handmade with cotton pipping using a super large knitting needle. It will be a class offered through the Makery in the near future. I bought tons of felt balls and have plans to turn them into a trivet or some sort. I will be visiting this shop again and maybe host a party there! 

Friday, October 18, 2013

PIQF 2013

Wow! This is my SEVENTH year attending PIQF! It's the biggest quilting convention held every year right here in Santa Clara. I look forward to attending it every year. I checked out all the booths in two hours this year and barely had time to admire some of the quilts there. I wanted to rush home to my LO :)

Listed below are this year's highlights for me: 

American Jane
I absolutely love everything about American Jane. I made my Happy Camper quilt with a line by American Jane and that got me hooked! This was one of many booths that I couldn't wait to go to. I got tons of stuff and can't wait to sew with these fabrics!

 Classic and hard to find fabrics from American Jane. 

 I got a kit to make a quilt. 

The kit comes with a super cute bag! Bonus!

They carry funky and modern fabrics. I loved everything (i.e. mostly cotton-linen blend) they had. The three fabrics shown below are the newest collection by Echino. They are bold and quirky.

 "Echino decoro" collection by etsuko furuya for Kokka
 This is a quilt, a design from "Hand Quilted with Love," made with those funky fabrics. 

English paper piecing lovers: you must get this pen! Say goodbye to basting your hexagons before piecing them together! All you need to do is glue the fabrics onto the paper pieces. Amazing... 

Check out this year's winners; their quilts are just so beautiful. See for your self. 

 First Place: The Magical Mermaid Castle

Best Wall Quilt: Life at the Water's Edge

A close-up of "Life at the Water's Edge."

I am hoping to go back again sometime this weekend! Be sure to check it out if you are in the area.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

I am in Love!

Have I told you how much I love Japanese taupe fabrics?! I can't get enough of them. I love everything about it. The texture, the color, and how great they look when you put them next to each other.

This small quilt for a coffee table was made with various 1" hexagons. I hand quilted inside of each hexagons and around the entire piece. Japanese taupe fabrics show best when hand quilted.I really like the way this project came out. I decided on the hexagon as the final shape because it will be placed on a round coffee table.

I hope the recipients like it; I certainly enjoyed making it!

Monday, October 7, 2013

I see hexagons

Ever since my friends gifted the LO with the hexagon quilt, I have been itching to make some too. I had a few hexagons already made from awhile back, so I just kept going with it. This looks like it's becoming a quilt for a coffee table; cannot wait to hand quilt this little project. 

Love these Japanese fabrics!

Someone tell me why paper piecing is so addicting!?

Friday, September 20, 2013

Ready to Party

So excited to be able to sew my LO a dress for her first party. This pattern was a breeze, and we enjoyed shopping for the fabric together. The hardest part of the dress was sewing on seven snaps. I thought that was a bit annoying. The pattern for the dress can be found here; I love that it's lined because I think it looks more "professional" this way. There is also a sleeveless version if you prefer.

That pink head band is perfect!

I used snaps instead of buttons.

I showed the dress to the little one and asked her if she liked it. She smiled at it so I assume that's a YES! :)

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

So Grateful

Who says knitting and quilting are just "hobbies"? I have made life-long friends because of these hobbies of mine. The LO has received so many wonderful handmade items, which I still need to blog about. But for now, let me show you this beautiful quilt my friends hand quilted for my LO.

This was beautifully orchestrated by Marisa, and a total five "knitters" worked on it together. 

Did I mention this was entirely handmade?

A close-up of these tiny stitches. 

This quilt couldn't be more perfect. I LOVE the selection of the various taupe fabrics, the tiny hearts around the border, the hand quilting, the style, and just pretty much everything about it. The label on the back is even more amazing... 

Thank you, my friends. You are so wonderful.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Little Cardigan

Things are so busy around the house with the arrival of the LO. When I have time, I am working on the "Anderson" baby cardigan from Rowan's "Just Baby".

We celebrated Labor Day in the US last weekend. I hope you are enjoying every last bit of summer!

Monday, August 12, 2013

An Update

Okay, can I just tell you that I have been waiting to write a post for days!? Even just this morning when the little one was napping, I thought I am going to update my blog! Then of course, I realized there are probably more important things to be done... loads of laundry, dishes to be put away, bottles  to be washed and did I mention breakfast? Feeding and changing diapers in between.... o boy. Okay. Let me type fast before she wakes up screaming for milk!

I finished assembling the Little Red Schoolhouse quilt right before the little one arrived. I love how this quilt came out. I had five minutes this week to cut up the backing and sandwiched the quilt so hopefully I can get some hand quilting done in between chores and caring for my little one. She is so adorable, in case I haven't told you :)

Oh! Do you recall the Little Oak cardigan I made back in May? We put it on the little one last week when we went to dinner for the first time as a family. And oh my gosh, it was so cute on her! I think handmade garments are so much more beautiful than store bought ones. The photos I took were blurry (she kept moving!), but I will try to take a few more to show you!

Okay, must run now. Talk to you later!

Monday, July 15, 2013

X's and O's Mini Quilt

I am thrilled to share with you that our baby girl was born last week. She is absolutely adorable, and we are having a blast with her!

I had the chance to work on a few things before our baby's arrival; here is one of them.

Have you heard of Moda's candies? They are similar to charm packs, but measure 2.5" x 2.5". I used one pack of Simply Style for Moda Candy by V and Co. These were so easy to put together. Perhaps I will write up a tutorial one of these days. Not sure what to do with this quilt top. Any suggestions?

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Scrappy Hourglass Blocks

I am having a blast sewing up these blocks using Kathleen's Scrappy Hourglass Doll Quilt Pattern. These fabrics are "ugly" on their own, but I find them gorgeous when put together. There is something special about them! I spent a lot of time ironing each block after seaming them.

 I am seriously addicted to making these little doll quilts using reproduction fabrics!

For those of you living in the US, happy fourth of July! 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Little Red Schoolhouse Quilt

I received three books I ordered by Kathleen Tracy this week. Her books are mostly about doll quilts using reproduction fabrics. In addition to instructions for these quilts, Kathy talks about what life was like for children growing up on the prairie. I love looking at photos of these quilts and appreciate the history behind them.

 Three of four books by Kathleen Tracy. 

One of my favorite quilts is the "Little Red Schoolhouse Quilt" in "Prairie Children and their Quilts." I enjoyed visiting my LQS for some reproduction fabrics and got to work!

Red, white, and blue - just in time for Fourth of July!

Oh I love how this looks! Can't wait to assemble it.

In addition to these books, Kathy was kind enough to send me a free pattern and scrap fabrics for a doll quilt! What a nice surprise from her. Thanks, Kathy!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Signature Needle Arts

My great friend who introduced me to hand quilting gifted me a beautiful circular knitting needle by Signature Needle Arts for my birthday this year. She has always raved about how wonderful these needles are, and I was so surprised to see a package with a pair of this needle outside my front door the other day. I absolutely love working with these needles. They are so smooth and extremely pointy. Although they are expensive, they are worth every penny!

This pair of circular needle has my name engraved! :) 

I enjoy working with these needles so much that I bought two sets of single point needles specifically for the bunnies that I have been working on.

If you haven't heard of Signature Needle Arts, I urge you to check it out. They are hand-polished, hand-crafted, come in different colors, caps, and length. There is no going back once you experience Signature Needle Arts! Thank you, Marisa, for introducing me to them!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Project Organization

My sewing mojo is back! I have several small hand projects that I have been working on. These projects are perfect to work on while I wait for my doctors in the waiting room. I found the perfect containers from the Japanese dollar store to keep these projects organized.

I am working on two different English piecing projects: small hexagons and diamonds. They are kept in different containers.

Here is a picture of the diamond English piecing project that I am working on with reproduction fabric. Warning: highly addicting!

I quickly realized that I didn't have a needle book to store my needles while I am on the go, so of course I had to make one today. I found the perfect tutorial. Although it looks easy, it did take me a good two hours. This is a good project to use up some scrap fabrics. My needle book measures 4.5" x 3.5" when it's opened up. It fits perfectly in my project boxes shown above.

 Front of the needle book. 

Back of the needle book. 

How do you store your needles? Are you a pincushion kind of person? I would love to hear how you manage these sharp objects on the go! 

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Nine-Patch Doll Quilt

I have been super into doll quilts lately and 1800 reproduction fabrics. These doll quilts are the perfect projects to work on; they are small and highly satisfying! I found a free nine-patch doll quilt pattern online and used up some new fabrics for it.

I can't wait to hand quilt this pretty pink quilt. I also invested in some 1800 reproduction fabrics. It will be fun to work with those fabrics as they are very different from the type of fabrics I usually work with.

Hope you are enjoying your weekend. It's supposed to rain here in the Bay Area tomorrow.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Handmade Wonton

In my opinion, my mom is the best chef in the world! Her attention to every detail is admirable. We spent this weekend making homemade wonton. She went to several different grocery stores days before and spent hours preparing all the ingredients. I enjoyed sitting with her and making these tiny little organic chicken with veggie wontons. Then of course, I made her cook me these wontons immediately so I could devour them!

 These are low in carb, but fill you up with lots of nutrients. 

My hot bowl of wonton soup is ready!

This is the most delicious meal money can't buy. Thank you, mom!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Ready for Tea Time

Just wanted to stop by and show you a photo of the little bunny completed with her little dress. Now she is ready for tea time! Although this little toy took me hours to complete, I am addicted to it!

She is quite cute!

I modified the pattern for the dress to include two little sleeves. I think the dress is cuter with the sleeves. Now I am off to start another one!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Meet Ballerina Bunny

I am a huge fan of Little Cotton Rabbit and have been following this blog for the last few years. Julie makes the most adorable little cotton rabbits. She offers them for sale but they are hard to come around. She finally released two patterns after all these years and needless to say, I bought both patterns as soon as they became available.

I visited my local yarn shop and bought all the yarn I needed. The best part of it was I got to use different shades of pink! The pattern is very well written with many photos. I took my time with every part of the bunny, and I think it paid off.

The hardest part of the project is pretty much done! Now I am off to making her little dress. I see many more bunnies in the near future.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Great Expectation!

I am thrilled to share with you that my husband and I are expecting a baby girl this summer! We have been so busy preparing for her arrival. I have been making a few things here and there for her, but  all I ever want to do is sleep. But don't you worry, I am so excited about all the things I can make her. I am not sure if I will have all the time in the world, but the thought of being able to make her things just makes me so happy.

My husband painted her room pink as soon as we found out it was a baby girl.  Since then, we have been busy working on her nursery room. We (aka "the husband") finished installing a nice shelf in her room today. What's the shelf for you ask? For her stuffed animals and hair ties of course!

Not a great photo, but you get the idea. 

This mini quilt on the wall and the quilt hanging on the crib may look familiar to you. I can't wait to share with you all the things I am working on for her. That will be another post next time!