Things I’ve Made for People I Like

It has been months since I last posted. Life got in the way for a little while. But I miss writing about what I have sewn, so it’s time for a little catch-up.

I managed to meet most of my sewing goals for Christmas this year. That meant hand sewn gifts for most of the people on my giving list. I even finished some long projects that had lingered around my sewing room for years! This baby quilt had haunted me for years, and now it’s finally done and given to the baby (now a toddler) who it was meant for.

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I used some Aneela Hoey charm packs that I picked up at the Quilt Expo a few years ago. I love her charming prints for little ones. The pattern is the Patchwork Chevron Quilt tutorial that Jeni Baker did for Moda Bake Shop, reduced slightly in size. The lovely ladies at Material Matters in Thiensville did the quilting.

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IMG_1268This little zippered clutch was made from a pattern in the new and amazing book School of Sewing. It is the best instructional beginner sewing book that I have found. I’m a confident sewist, and I still learned new tricks from Shea’s book. I was thrilled to make this clutch entirely from fabric, notions, and hardware that I had in my stash. This went to my young cousin Abby.

IMG_1271This drawstring bag was made from my favorite standby pattern by Jeni Baker. I packed it full of yarn and knitting needles for my niece who showed an interest in learning how to knit.

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My husband’s secretary loves to knit, so she also got a drawstring bag with coordinating sock yarn.

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My two-year-old nephew is a hands-on, active kid. I used Badskirt’s tutorial to make these beanbags. They were tons of fun to make, sewed up quickly, and they’re fun to play with. I felt that I really needed to test them, so I confess that Peter and I tossed them around the house a few times before I wrapped them up for my nephew.

That’s a quick peek at my holiday gift sewing. What have you sewn for people that you like lately?

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Divided Basket for a New Baby

Babies are teeny tiny mysteries. I don’t have one, and I never have, so I don’t fully understand what they’re all about. Lots of my friends and relatives are having babies, and as is customary, I give them baby-related gifts. My complete cluelessness about babies makes it challenging to identify an appropriate gifts for new parents and their babies. In my confusion, I usually just sew something and then add a book or two.

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Thank goodness for Anna Graham and her outstanding patterns. This is the second time I have made a divided basket as a baby shower gift, and it is such a versatile pattern. I was able to work completely from my stash (hurrah for frugality!) and fill up the basket with small but hopefully useful items for the new baby boy.

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The exterior fabric is an adorable Moda print featuring multicolored origami animals. It had a bunch of bright colors and a nice gray neutral, so it paired well with random items in my stash. I found the origami animal print while visiting Quiltwork Patches in Eugene, Oregon, and at the time I had no idea what I would do with it but I just had to have it. I am glad that I was able to put it to use – it is perfect for a baby gift.

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The basket is filled with some of my favorite board books, a small toy, and some extra onesies. I hear that babies are mighty messy. A change of clothes might come in handy.

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I used fusible fleece in addition to the recommended interfacing, as suggested in the pattern, and it made a sturdy basket that stands on its own. I wish I had done the fabric-covered handles because that would have helped bring it all together…but I was in a rush and wanted to get this sewn up and in the mail before the baby arrived. I hope the new baby (and his parents) like it!