Friday, November 23, 2012

Not Your Grandmother's Judaica Quilt

My mother was in charge of putting together a huge charity luncheon for the Sisterhood organization of her synagogue. Part of the charity luncheon was the donations that people could buy raffle tickets to bid for. Early on, she requested that I make a Jewish themed quilt for her luncheon. This is what I made. 


It is an adaptation from one of the patterns in Not Your Grandmothers Log Cabin by Marci Baker of Alicia's Attic and Sara Nephew.




This book is wonderful! It not only has perfect instructions, it even has impeccable pressing directions so all of your points match up exactly perfectly right. Go ahead..zoom in! Check out my points...they are spectacular!


The way I got the perfect points was to use her tools. The Corner Cut was essential. I know some people are good at offsetting those 60 degree angles but not me..I need those "dog ears" cut off! That's how I kept all my measurements and points exact.



I also used the rest of her tools...I find them so helpful for these 60 degree log cabin patterns...and they are so beautiful. I used the 10 inch Clearview Triangle to make my cuts...I originally had the Creative Grids 60 degree ruler but it has a weird half inch extra that means more calculation in my head and for a couple extra dollars I knew I would rather just have the ruler do the exact measurements for me. I used the Cutting Edge under the ruler to make my cuts quickly...so much quicker than a piece of tape under the ruler or eyeing it each time...and with log cabin you are making tons of tiny strips. 


The last tool I used was the Sewing Edge...but only because I had it. It is extremely helpful but my marking on my Bernina is very exact and I would have survived without it...but since I already owned them...I definitely used them. Makes less worrying necessary...I just run the pieces along the sewing edge and then they are all the exact measurements and fit perfectly.

Star of David backing fabric

Lastly, I made a quilt label on my embroidery machine. I used Embird to digitize the label and hand sewed it on the back after completion. I know a lot of people pay a LOT for embroidery software, but if you are looking for an option on a budget, check out Embird. I can do everything on Embird my friend can do with her Artista software. I use the Font Engine almost every time I digitize something. Embird can do every single thing...and there are tons of groups out there to support using the software and help you use it. There are also a lot of tutorials. If you want more information about it let me know.

quilt label designed with Embird and done on my embroidery machine
If you are interested in purchasing any of the items I talked about above, please use the links below! Marci Baker, owner of Alicia's Attic also has several you tube videos with all her quilting secrets...they are so informative and fun to watch...so check them out!

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Halloween Wedding Wednesday-The Groomsmen



It might be easy to forget about the groomsmen and the groom when doing a Halloween wedding and a bunch of DIY but Halloweening up the groomsmen was so much fun! It all started with my favoritest fabric that I ever found...and I only bought four yards! This was three years ago and I cannot find any more of it....I even tried the Find My Fabric website..but nothing! I check Joann's every year during the Halloween season (where I originally got it) for more...but no luck yet.



It is a polyester black fabric with glittery skulls all over it....so much fun! So we used this amazing fabric for several things. First, I made the ties for the main groomsmen out of it..and one extra for my husband just for fun, but we ended up using that one extra for my father to wear the day of the wedding! I used an existing tie my husband had for the pattern. For the best man, we made a bowtie out of the fabric..so cute.

from left to right: groomsman 1, groom, best man (see bowtie?), groomsman 2


My father, getting into the Halloween mood, behind us wearing the extra tie..also my dad is extremely tall....we aren't midgets even though it might look so here :)
We had the groomsmen and bridesmaids as well as the parents of the bride and groom change immediately after the ceremony...they still wore costumes to the party!!

And what better way to make the groom stand out than by making his entire vest out of the fabric!! He wore a regular black tie but his entire vest was this sparkly fun fabric...he's such a good sport :) Instead of fitting a pattern to him, we used a vest that fit him and used that for the pattern. I also made it with an adjustable cinching in the back to make it easier to fit.

the handsome husband

After the ceremony he took his jacket off and the glitter rubbed off on guests and me all night!! It was awesome!

good view of vest and of the bustle on my dress


Oh no! I'm a ghost!!! (and you can see the vest)

extreme closeup of the vest while not being worn


I also made the ring cushion out of this fabric as well...I can do a tutorial on how I made it if you want, but it is just a pillow with a fabric covered button tufted in the middle with ribbon under it...but if it helps anyone, I can do it.

cute picture of my little nephew (dressed as a monkey!!) the ring bearer handing the cushion over


good closeup of pillow with ribbon ties in wedding colors

So what do you think? The men look pretty snazzy don't they???? The guys were all such good sports and wore the outfits well...and then really got into it with their costumes which were all fantastic...one groomsman even hand made his costume! Wait until you see it...it's pretty cool...

Monday, November 19, 2012

Jasmine Blouse


I had been meaning to try the Jasmine blouse from Colette patterns for quite some time...but I always avoided it because of the dreaded SBA. Problem was, it was too cute to put off for much longer. I went to a Colette patterns party at Sew La back in February and I made my Spider Peony and managed to get around doing an SBA by making the side bust darts 1 inch smaller total...so I thought I would press my luck and try something similar with the Jasmine bust darts. I took each dart leg in a half inch to take off 1 inch total and then redrew the dart legs from their original starting point to their new thinner leg point and guess what??!?!? It fits perfectly! I was so amazed...I should never have put off making it for so long. I wonder if I can get away with that on all Colette patterns? Hmm...maybe I should go public with my fake SBA procedure...so much easier than all that cutting and slashing for an amount I don't even know how to figure out!


If my process described in words does not make sense, let me know and I'll post pictures of how I did it. This was my first time making a bias cut garment so I was unaware of how it wears. At first I thought it was pulling weird, but I've since made another bias cut garment (to be reviewed soon--Simplicity 2594) and it pulls the same way so maybe that is just how a bias cut garment wears...it still looks great, I think it is just something to get used to.  A definite change I would make next time it to make the armhole smaller...it pulls from way too low when I move my arm which may be the reason for some of the pulls I was describing above.

I made this out of a polyester crepe de chine I got from Fabric Mart. The fabric I used for hte contrast was the same polyester chiffon I used on my Vogue 1178 by Anna Sui that I blogged about here. It sews wonderfully....I just love crepe de chine whether it is polyester or silk. I think it is my favorite kind of fabric. The only tricky part comes with hemming since polyester hates to hold a press and it is a slippery fabric. But lucky for you all, I took pictures and will write a tutorial on how to hem those slippery impossible hems!


In some reviews, people have used bias binding for the collar instead of a facing and I happen to be a fan of facings and not a fan of bias binding. However, having said that, I would probably use bias binding next time...all the layers got extremely thick so just something to keep in mind...also the chiffon is almost too light and airy for the collar..I would interface the chiffon next time...or use a more substantial fabric.



I actually wore the exact outfit you see in the pictures to ETA California. I had a great time there and met a fellow blogger in person that I had never met before...Susan from Knitters Delight. I also went with my sewing friends you have seen before...check us out!

Sandra, Jill, me, and Nhi at ETA California

Lastly, I am gong to Montreal in a week...anyone know any bloggers there or good fabric places I need to check out? Please let me know!!

Check out my pattern review here.



Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Halloween Wedding Wednesday-The Cake



Time for the cake! This is one of the funnest parts of a Halloween wedding! I surprisingly found a lot of inspiration for the cake online...but nothing was QUITE exactly right for our theme...remember our theme is traditional wedding with spooky twists. All the ideas I found helped lead to the perfect cake...and trust me..it was perfect!! See for yourself!


 It was a traditional, white, tiered cake and had super pretty sparkly hearts but the best part is the blood royal icing dripping down. And the cake toppers...custom made! Here are some more close ups.





I had the cake topper custom made from etsy seller TNZ Sculptures.  I told her what color hair and eyes and dress I wanted so it looked just like my husband and I and she had it out to me right away! It does not look like she has anything in her shop at the moment but I am sure she always takes custom requests! We loved our little vampire cake toppers...I think they complemented the cake beautifully!

Just in case our exact cake and toppers are not exactly what you are looking for, here are a few other inspiration photos.


how fun!



To see a lot more inspiration cakes, visit my Pinterest board for Halloween cakes

How about some fun Halloween cake topper photos???

awww...so cute


Do any of you have some great photos or ideas that I missed???