Ways I Kept Myself Busy in 2014

Leave a comment

2014 CoopCrafts Projects

Looking forward to a creative and productive 2015!

sarahsigres

Cherry Pit Hand Warmers Tutorial

Leave a comment

Cherry Pit Hand Warmers

This beginner level sewing project is quick, easy and low cost and would be great for craft sales or little gifts.

Cherry pits are wonderful to use in hand warmers or heat packs because they naturally retain heat and release it slowly.  Their small, round shape helps them to comfortably conform to the shape of your body, and they have a very pleasant light cherry scent.  They can be purchased in bulk, cleaned, dried and ready to use from many sources online.  (I found mine at The Next Door Down on Etsy.)

To make hand warmers:

  • Stack two charm squares (or scraps of fabric cut to 5″ square) right sides together and cut them in half, so that you have two pieces of fabric 2.5″ x 5″.
  • Sew with a quarter inch seam allowance around the outside of the rectangles, leaving an opening along one long side.  (Be sure to backstitch at the beginning and end of your stitches to lock them in place.)
  • Turn right side out and press with a steamy iron.
  • Lightly fill with cherry pits.
  • Sew the opening closed very close to the edge of the fabric.  If you find it’s hard to maneuver under the presser foot, remove a few cherry pits and try again.  You’ll want the cherry pits to be able to move around a little when finished, so don’t over fill.

Cherry Pit Hand Warmers

Mix and match all kinds of fabrics, or make matching sets and tie them up with a little ribbon.  To use, pop them in a microwave for 20-30 seconds.  (Don’t overdo it, scorched cherry pits don’t smell nice.)

The packs are small enough so that they can stay in coat pockets all day without being much in the way, so kids are likely to bring them back home to heat up again before the bus stop wait tomorrow.  If your kids are fidgety like mine (and me!) they’ll probably enjoy the soothing feel of the warm cherry pits rolling around inside the warmers.

Make larger packs with the same method to use as a heating pad, or chill in the freezer to use as an ice pack.

sarahsigres

A WIP: 24th Anniversary Quilt

2 Comments

24th Anniversary Quilt

24th Anniversary Quilt

24th Anniversary Quilt

24th Anniversary Quilt

24th Anniversary Quilt

24th Anniversary Quilt

24th Anniversary Quilt

24th Anniversary Quilt

My latest project is a half square triangle quilt.  I’ll be adding a wiiiide border so it will fit our king size bed, and may possibly add a date or a phrase or something along an edge.  (Even though I’m actively working on it, it’s still in the planning stages and I’m still undecided.  I’m like that sometimes.)  I’m throwing in 24 squares to represent the 24 years we’ve been married so far.

I’ve been slow about updating my blog, so if you’d like to see how this quilt is going please feel free to follow me on Instagram.  (I’m CoopCrafts there, too.)

sarahsigres

WIP: New Quilted Cover for the Patchwork Bench

1 Comment

WIP Patchwork Bench

Our kitchen makeover is almost done.  One of the few remaining projects is recovering our patchwork bench so that it fits the updated room a little better.  The bench sits in our kitchen beside the door to the garage and functions as a mini mud room, with shoes thrown underneath and lunch bags and backpacks on top.  During the day when it’s cleared off, it’s a good napping space for cats.

I’m sewing blocks using colors pulled from the kitchen, black from the appliances, dark brown from the newly painted cabinets, gray from the new concrete counters and red from the accents.  I’m hoping for an “optical illusion” sort of finished pattern, but I’ll settle for less yellow/more modern.   The fabrics are peppered cottons that are especially soft.  I’m worried they may not hold up well against the cats.  But you know — one of the blessings cats bring to our lives is the gift of learning not to get too attached to “stuff”, right?

sarahsigres

Little Stars Quilts

5 Comments

Lately I’ve been seeing stars. Lots of stars! Star quilts, specifically.

Seeing Stars

This one is to keep, made from gorgeous Japanese fabrics sent to me from my friend Kaori, who lives in Chiba.

Japanese Star Quilt

The star shape was a great compliment to the fabrics,  and simple hand stitching really defined it.  Oh, I love it!

Hand Quilting Detail, Japanese Star Quilt

I enjoyed making it so much that as soon as I was done, I started on one for my little sister in law.  She asked for orange, brown and red.  I threw in teal and black.

Alison's Star Quilt

Rows of ombre stitches make a halo effect, so that the star almost twinkles.

Hand Quilting Detail, Star Quilt

And now I’m working on one that will go back to Japan, to Kaori’s daughter, Anna.  Hers is getting the same “twinkle treatment”.

Anna's Star Hand Quilting

Two Star Quilts

Which kind of brings me back to where I started.  :)  Mine will eventually go up on the quilt wall.

Little Quilt Book

If you’d like to make your own, you can find the Drawn Together foundation paper piecing star pattern in the Little Quilts Book by Sarah Fielke and Amy Lobsiger.  (It’s a great book, I plan to make a few more little quilts from it!)

sarahsigres

Starting a Quilt Wall

6 Comments

It’s been too long since I posted, but I have been sewing, even if I haven’t been sharing it here.  I’ve started on a little wall of quilts in my dining room, opposite my herringbone stenciled wall.

Two Mini Wall Quilts

The Wine/Whiskey quilt was made using the My First Alphabet and My First Alphabet: Numbers and Punctuation foundation paper piecing patterns by From Blank Pages on Etsy.  I accented it with leftovers from the American Made Brand License Plate Tour, so that it reminds me of how nice it felt to be asked to participate.  (And aren’t those colors gorgeous?  LOVE them!)

My husband doesn’t listen to country music, so even though he loves Blake Shelton from The Voice, he doesn’t hear the song in his head when he reads the quilt.  He does know why I chose it for us, though.  :)

Wine and Whiskey Mini Quilt

Oh, those S’s are HARD!  I’m only really pleased with one of them, but I let them ride.  I’ve learned that over time, the imperfections in a quilt kind of become endearing to the creator.  It’s weird, but mostly true.  It’s what you’ll look for, part of how you know it’s yours.  It’s good to learn to forgive yourself and move on.

The hashtag quilt was a very simple pattern I found in Fons & Porter’s Scrap Quilts magazine Spring 2014 issue.  You can make the top from just a charm pack of solids and less than two yards of white fabric.  I think this would make a great baby quilt, boy or girl.

Hashtag Quilt

I have a third little quilt made, but it won’t be hung up until I have a couple more done, just for proper placement.  For now I’ll just enjoy these, and the process of making the ones to come!

sarahsigres