Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Down in the Valley

So my dear little wrapped 4" wooden embroidery hoop really needed to have its own pouch like the ones I made for the other spring tension ones I own.   Really, I was just looking for a way to finish "Down In The Valley" by Blackbird Designs.  Since it was meant to be a round finish, I thought a hoop pouch made sense. I was considering going completely round, with maybe a zipper, but I ended up with a rounded bottom only.  Turns out to be pretty easy to do that.  I found a bowl in the kitchen that was the right size and traced a semi-circle onto the back of the stitching and finishing fabrics.  That gave a nice sewing line.  You just need to use a short machine stitch and clip the curves before turning.  For once, my measurements came out pretty good and this pouch really doesn't even need a snap closure to keep the hoop in there. 

The top border fabric is the backing fabric as well.  It's really not so blue and actually looks more like the muted colors in the stitching.  The stitching is done on 32 ct natural MCG linen.  That linen is a little heavier than Zweigart and makes a more sturdy pouch.   I mostly used the DMC suggested colors with a few changes here and there.

Ele chose 'thread' as the theme for her "s,t,u" block of the Alphabet SAL.  She wanted to tie it in to the needle on the "m,n,o" block.  I didn't want these blocks to end up with a stitchy theme so I went rogue and found a small chart for an umbrella here.  Ele had thought about going with the umbrella idea, so it wasn't entirely my idea.  I think I've stayed with the flavor of this SAL.  We'll see how much of a SAL rebel I will be in the coming weeks.  

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Double zip pouch and SAL updates

I did a little experimental sewing today.  I've made a number of little zippered coin purses and I use them a lot.  They are handy for carrying my credit & ID cards, some paper money and some change in a compact, light-weight format.  The only annoying thing is that change gets buried at the bottom and it's difficult to see what's there to pick out the right coins.  So I decided to try sewing one that had an outside zippered pocket to use as a separate compartment for the change.  I had always been afraid of doing that because of the added bulk in the seams.  So today's test was just done with quilting cottons and no cross-stitch fabric, interfacing, or batting.  It worked out very well, but next time I'll place the side zipper a little higher.   I wasn't sure where to put it.  The pouch measures about 3.5" x 5", about the size of a recipe card.

I found this You Tube video to be a very clear tutorial on how to do this.  I didn't follow it exactly, but it's more or less the same technique.  I've also found it easier to use a zipper that's too long and shorten it on each end.  Trying to line up the metal pieces at the end of each zipper when you sew it in is just too fiddly an operation for me.

I'm up to date on the Snowlower Diaries Calendar SAL now too.  I made a few color changes to brighten it up, but not much.  That bunny and squirrel are just too cute. 

I also completed part 6 of Ele's ABC SAL.  Why does that peacock look like a dinosaur to me?  We just got part 7 and I I think may be going rogue on that one.  We'll see.