Friday, May 27, 2016

More Coasters

I did another set of coasters. I used felt, a heart-shaped cookie cutter (you want a simple shape for this...), a scalpel, and, finally, a sewing machine.
 Cutting out the hearts is what takes the longest and is the most tricky, but the outcome is nice. The coasters were well received by the new owners.
 On another note, I basted the Trellis quilt today (or, as I start to call it, the MONSTER). This thing is big. In the end it will be 215 x 180 cm.
I didn't exactly fancy a crawl on the floor, so I used a method I saw in a youtube video by 'Man Sewing' (link is here)
 I bought those clamps to hold the whole sandwich to the table and it worked like a charm.
There seem to be now obvious wrinkles, though in the end it comes down how it will behave once it's in the machine. 
This will be "fun". It doesn't help that I used a fairy substatial and fluffy cotton batting, which adds a lot of volumn and also weight.

Friday, May 13, 2016


At my vacation 2013 into Yukon and British Columbia, we took at little excursion to Skagway, Alaska. There I came across this great quilt shop (Rushin' Tailor). I bought a couple of things, among them a kit for Orcas diving at a cliff all done in batiks.
The name of the kit is 'Orca-stra' by Pine Needle Designs.
Last weekend I found myself between projects. My great Trellis quilt top is done (I'm waiting for some more curved safety pins before I baste is). I finished the Blue Sands Cardigan (need an opportunity for some photographs. Preferably when it's not too warm). I have started a new cardigan, but there's no urgency to it.
So I thought, something quick, with some instant gratification would be great.
There was plenty of fabric in the kit, so I had some choice in picking just the right bit for just the effect I wanted. Working with batiks offers so much color and variation. Also, as it's usually more tightly woven than normal quilting fabric, it's less prone for fraying and thus ideal for raw edge applique.

The quilting was all done free motion, with a wavey braid at the border (I did stitch in the ditch using my walking foot at the inner border)
Only thing left to do is adding a sleeve in the back for hanging and a label.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Double Upcycling

A few years back (in 2010) I did some experiments with knitting and fulling stuff in the washing machine. One of those experiments was a bag I'd knitted using Cascade 220. I finished the bag (sort of), but never was really happy with it, or actually used it.
A few weeks back, that old bag fell into my hands, and I thought about giving it - or at least the fabric - a second life. As coasters.
I cut out circles and thought about doing some stitching on the borders, but then the remnants of another project fell into my hands. It was my first attempt on a rug for my bathroom from last year, using old t-shirts I've had braided into a long cord. I still had a couple of meters left, and as I used rather narrow stripes back then, the width of the cord was almost exactly equal to the thickness of the fulled material from the bag.
I hand-sewed the cord to the circles I've cut out from the bag and got lovely coasters for my summery drinks (which, by the way, is my home made rhubarb syrup - super yummy. I definitely need to make more)
So these coasters are using material from two old projects, one of them already an upcycling project. Hence double upcycling. Or upcycling the upcycling ...?

Sunday, May 08, 2016

Close Up

I've got a macro lens, and I'm not afraid to use it ...
I've always been quite fond of dandelions (quite tricky to take photos of, though)
 Last one is the centre of one of my orchids. Almost like an abstract painting ...

Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Printing on Fabric

Last Sunday I tried out a couple of different methods to apply colour to fabric. I've got some fabric paint left overs (from way, way, waaaaaaay back) so I didn't even need to buy new materials.
I used some cotton bags I bought at the Swedish place (you know which one ...). I washed them before hand to get rid of any treatment still sticking to the fibers.
Bag 1: a stencil I bought years ago. I used a coppery color with a bit of sparkle.
Bag 2: easiest of the lot, really. I used toiletpaper rolls, folded them a bit to get a heard shape and dipped the ends into the paint. The yellow paint was a bit on the thin side, but I don't think it's a problem.
Bag 3: I uses some rubbery material which I cut into shapes and glued to a piece of pipe I've got lying around. After one round, the color was almost all used up, so I filled out the last bits with a brush. I think it would be better with a longer piece of fabric.
Bag 4: For this one, I wrapped some course twine around a bit of rubber and used this as a stamp. Fun, easy and I love the effect it creates. 
Bag 5:  Here I used masking tape to create a simple stencil. After each round of paint, I let it dry, then moved the masking tape to open up another bit. This one took the longest, but I really like the result.

 Finally, I iron them all for a couple of minute with the iron set to hot. Hopefully this fixes the paint. I use a couple those bag for potatos, onions, ....
Great fun, need to get more bags to try some more.
I still get plenty of ideas.

Sunday, May 01, 2016

Night at the Museums

Last weekend, forty museums in and around Frankfurt opened their doors for a night of enterainment and education. We focused on three of them.
We started out at the Museum for Criminology at the police headquarter in Frankfurt. The museum is normally not open to the public (though you can arrange for guided tours), so it was something you don't see normally. There was a demonstration of the the K-9 unit every hour in front of the building. Though I didn't understand a word of whatever the guy who guided the demonstation, it was still quite interesting.
 It took a moment for us to find the stop for the shuttle bus, but we eventually managed to get to the Senkenberg museum (natural history)
The musuem always has been one of my favorites in Frankfurt and I've been there a couple of times before, but it was new to M.
Inside they had a Mad Scientist Quizshow and a couple of interesting demonstrations.
Next stop was the Experiminta, a Science musuem, with tons of interesting stuff going on.
When we got out of there, we realized that it was getting on to midnight, so we stopped there (even those there had been a few more museums on our list).
Our feet hurt and it was very cold.
Still, I quite enjoyed the whole event.