WIP – Crazy 9-patch quilt again

Binding close up - frontA close up of the binding on the front

The seam to the right is where I started and finished attaching the binding by machine. I’m very proud of how neat that looks! I used Jaybird Quilts’ tutorial on perfect binding.

I made the binding myself using the method where you get one continuous tape by just sewing one seam. You can find loads of tutorials on YouTube if you search for “make bias tape continuously“.

Binding close up - backA close up of the binding on the back

I’m attaching the binding by hand on the back. I’m using ladder stitch. It trakes time, but I like the way it turns out. A bit wavy, but not too much. I have another 3 sides and corners left to do.

Part of the backThis is part of the back with attached binding

I’ve used scraps from the quilt top to make part of the back. I’ve added some fabric from my stash as well, like the grey seen here.

I decided to quilt it all with random straight lines. I’m using a yellow thread and I quite like it. It shifts between a brighter and a more subbtle yellow but not very noticeably. Quilting like this was fun! I didn’t have to put too much thought into it and I think it works well with the wonky 9-patches on the front.

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The Hat by Ingrid Michaelson

Last year, my friend essjay posted a video on her blog that made me go to iTunes to buy an album. It was a song and video of Ingrid Michaelson.

Here’s a favourite song of mine from the album I bought (Girls and Boys)

Did you notice there’s a knitted hat in there? What other songs do you know of, and like, that has knitting in it? I’d like to know!

WIP – Crazy 9-patch quilt

Colourful quilt in progress

I decided I needed to work with colours. And I needed something a bit crazy. And I wanted to try a new quilt design. And I didn’t want to make something adult-sized.

So, I looked through my fabric stash and found some scrap bundles of colourful batik fabrics. Bought on a whim a couple of months ago. And I started making a quilt for my niece. I used Oh! Fransson‘s tutorial on how to make the Crazy 9-Patch blocks and they were really easy to make. Even though the process involved a lot of cutting and ironing I found it all quite efficient as I was working on nine blocks at a time.

I put the grid pattern together yesterday and hope to add some border to it tonight. It’s all a bit wonky and not properly lined up at 90 degree angles, but I’ll work something out. A quilt with crazy blocks in it can be a bit wonky and off-centered, eh? 🙂

FO – A budgie amigurumi

The budgie“Hello!”

My best friend in my office building is retiring this week. And he loves budgies. He has six of them in a huge cage at home and they all are handpicked because of their unique colours and patterns and genes.

I made him a crocheted version of a budgie and hope he’ll like it. The pattern is made by Crochetroo (Etsy-link here, Ravelry-link here) and is called Budgerigars (Ravelry-link here).

The budgie from behind
A shy budgie trying to hide in a plant

I used a 3.5mm hook and the yarn is Alba from BC Garn. Alba is an ecological cotton that you can get in a lot of different colours. I bought mine at Fröken Garn in Malmö, Sweden.

I liked making this little guy (named Drogba as the football player in Chelsea) but I’m having a hard time with patterns that involves a lot of sewing. Attaching limbs make the perfectionist in me cringe. I’m never quite happy with the turnout.

When I have some time over I’ll make Drogba a friend or two. I have yellow and green yarn I can use as well. And some grey.

My photo project for 2011

On January 1st, I told you that I started two different projects that day. And that I’d be back to tell you more about it.

Well, it’s been a month and I still haven’t said anything, have I? Guess I just wanted to see how comfortable I felt about the projects and to figure out how much I wanted to keep to myself and how much I wanted to share.

Anyways, I thought I’d tell you about my photo project. It’s nothing new. You’ve heard of it before. And I’m sure you know someone who’s doing it already.

I’ve challenged myself to take pictures every day. And to pick one photo every day to put in a photo book that I will have printed. At the end of this year I will have a real photo diary I can flip through with pictures from my every day life in 2011.

I’ve chosen not to do regular postings about it here on the blog as I don’t want to censor my own shots. I want a diary with people in it and I want to be able to recognize my surroundings. But I’ve decided to share some pictures with you. Occassionally. Randomly.

Here goes with some pictures from January.

January 2, 2011
January 2nd, 2011 – A sponge cake with cardamom in our kitchen

January 4, 2011
January 4th, 2011 – Walking to work at 8am

January 17, 2011January 17th, 2011 – Watching Denmark play handball against Serbia in 2011 World Championships (the guy sitting down to stretch is the team’s goalie Niklas Landin)

January 22, 2011
January 22nd, 2011 – Candle lights at friends’ house

January 24, 2011
January 24th, 2011 – Skorpan’s nose and whiskers
(This is my favourite pictures from January. My boyfriend thinks it creepy.)

January 26, 2011
January 26th, 2011 – Shadow on the whiteboard in my office

Finished my Creative Writing class

I handed in the last assignment for my second Creative Writing class a couple of weeks ago and got my grades last week. I finished this one (too) with the highest marks. The feedback I got from the teachers all along fell into the category of “you know how to use the language and you do it weel” and “your texts are very well written but are a bit too matter-of-factly and would be better if you did more of show-don’t-tell” and “try not to tell the readers everything but let them draw their own conclusions”.

Nothing really surprising for me, to be honest. I know I need to work on my telling-stories-skills when it comes to narration, suspense and descriptions of characters and the environment. And I know I handle the language well. But it makes me happy that my teachers saw the same things.

I feel more secure in my writing after these two classes, but I also feel more apprehensive to actually work on my own writing projects. I doubt I have anything important or interesting to say. And even if I do, I doubt I could express it in a way that makes it good enough to be considered literature. Maybe I should stick to non-fiction? Or just bite the bullet and realize that practice makes perfect? 🙂

I now have university credits worth half of a semester’s full-time-studies in Creative Writing.

This semester I’m doing a class in Photography and Visual Communication. I have finished the first lesson (the lessons are videos consisting of different interviews and lectures) and I’m so excited to learn more!

Placemats for my parents

Front of placematsThe six placemats on the floor

I made placemats for my parents for Christmas. You can find the tutorial/pattern here over at Handmade by Alissa.

The fabrics are from IKEA, except for the black linnen fabric on the front. Can’t remember where I bought that. All fabrics were pieces I already had at home. Same goes for the batting. I had to buy biased tape and thread, but was it.

Close up of quiltingClose up of the quilting

Back of placematsThe back of the placemats

CornersMitered cornes with biased tape (I’m showing you three that look nice and I keep the others to myself!)

I love the end product and so do my parents. Apparently my mum thinks they’re too pretty to use on weeknights so they only come out on weekends. She’s silly! 🙂

I was surprised at how much time I had to spend making them though. The last one was finished just a couple of hours before I had to leave for the Christmas party. Cutting the pieces took time. Sewing with linen fabrics is more work than cotton fabrics and I had totally forgotten how linnen bahves when it kind of shifts sideways. I had to be extra careful when pinning to make ends match. And there was a lot of ironing going on as well. Quilting took about 30 minutes per placemat. And I think I spent 1½ on getting the first biased tape attached around the edges. I got faster and faster at doing it though (and maybe a bit more forgiving too) and the last one was fastened in 40 minutes or so.

WIP – Print O’The Wave-stole (again)

Corner!See???!!!

My Print O’The Wave-stole has yet another corner! It’s finished! I’ve grafted that fourth corner and I’ve fastened the loose ends. Now it’s time for blocking.

Thanks again to Linda who came to my rescue and helped out when I lacked yarn to finish my stole.