Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Batik Quilt: the Back

After finishing my batik quilt top, I wasn't sure what to do for the back. I knew I didn't want to just buy metres of one fabric and have a plain backing. So I laid out all the leftover bits of fabric from the top on my bed to see how much they would cover.


There was more leftover than I thought! Turns out that a lot of the pieces remaining were a similar width, having originally been purchased as fat quarters.


So I arranged them randomly and pieced them together in one long strip, the length of the quilt-to-be.


I still had a pile of 2.5" squares leftover from the quilt top as well, so I pieced them together randomly into two long strips. They've been added to the striped piece, separated by all the leftover green fabric from the quilt top.


And this is where it stalls. I have a little bit more in odd sizes of a couple of fabrics, so I might make another stripe or two, but I'll need to purchase more fabric yet. What would you do? More green? Batik or solid or something else? While it is the quilt back, I still want it to look nice.

Monday, 30 June 2014

Unfinished projects

I've dug out some unfinished projects this week. First off, my batik quilt is so close to being finished!


Today I added the final border around the edges. All it needed was a simple 2.5" strip of the dark green fabric all the way around for the top to be finished.


Here is the finished top, doing a practice run on the bed it will grace when finished. The colours are so brilliant, I can't wait to have it finished!

Now I have to decide what to do for the back. I haven't thought about it until now, so I'm collecting a few ideas on a new Pinterest board Quilt Backs.


Right now I'm waffling between a colour blocked back, using the leftover pieces from the front, or purchasing a coordinating fabric that has similar colours, and doing a strip of squares from the front across it. What do you think?

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Lace Dress Refashion

Here's another little dress refashion that my oldest daughter S just completed. It's a vintage lace dress that she purchased from local Etsy shop Wildwood Rose Vintage in the fall and just finished fixing it up for wearing to her graduation ceremony tomorrow.


It fit nicely, and had some nice design features, but she really didn't like the peachy colour.


Sorry for these bad camera phone pictures. The dress is fully lined, with velvet ribbon trim around the neckline. It also had an aged and brittle seam binding hem that needed to be removed.


When considering the purchase, we were talking about dyeing the dress darker, so Patti, from Wildwood Rose Vintage tested the fabrics and determined they were natural fibres and should dye well.


The first step was to remove the dye in a pot of boiling water with dye remover.


This went really fast--within 10 minutes all the dye was gone!


This step was completed back in April, but it wasn't until last week that S had time to dye the dress.


I forgot to take a picture of the navy blue dye bath, but into the washing machine after dyeing!


After a few minor repairs and a challenging hem, it's all done! The hem was challenging because the lining was sewn together in the seams with the lace, but over time the lining stretched out and had to have several tucks made so it could be hemmed together with the lace again.


The velvet ribbon took the dye much more than the lace, which was more than the lining, but it looks quite nice this way. As expected, the peachy teeth of the zipper did not dye, and make an interesting contrast on the back.

Didn't she do a nice job? 

Monday, 9 June 2014

Shop Update: Teal Bohemian


My latest stitching has been in this teal bohemian colourway. I just finished listing these items in my Prairie Threads Etsy shop, and they include 2 coiled mats and a set of four nesting baskets or bowls.


I've made one set of nesting baskets before, and they can be a challenge to get the sizes right so that they do actually fit together well! I hope to make more though, as they are fun.


And, as usual, they can always be a set of hats, depending on your perspective!

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Front page!


This treasury featuring one of my coiled baskets made the front page on Etsy a couple of hours ago! Thank you Antonia Hordern for the feature!

Choose Your Journal


Recently, my "Choose Your Journal" listings have been my most popular items. You choose the book from my listings, and I make it up into a new blank journal for you.

It's nice to be able to offer customers more selection, since I couldn't possibly have all the books made into journals and listed in my shop at once. I've replenished most of those listings now, but they'll only be available for a short time until I take a break from made to order listings over the summer. I'll be deactivating all my Choose Your Journal listings in mid-June, so if there's one you've had your eye on, now is the time to get it made up! I'll reactivate them at the end of August.

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Alice in Wonderland

I just completed a custom order of an Alice in Wonderland Rebound Journal. The customer wanted to gift a journal to a dear friend who was grieving the loss of a family member.


This 1946 copy was well loved with the cover showing obvious signs of wear, but it was still charming and had beautiful illustrations (by John Tenniel, coloured by Fritz Kredel).


I kept many of the illustrated pages to wrap around each signature, or group of pages.


The customer also sent me several poems, which I printed off and interspersed between the blank pages.



I used a variation of the coptic binding with a double thread on the covers, and I'm really pleased with how it turned out.


And I added a vintage button closure to make sure all those matters of the heart disclosed within the covers stay nice and safe.


I hope the recipient likes the book! I really enjoyed doing this custom order. It's so nice to know where my books will be going and what they might be used for.

Friday, 16 May 2014

Vintage Dress Refashion

Here's a little dress refashion that my oldest daughter S just completed. It's a 1950's dress that she purchased from local Etsy shop Wildwood Rose Vintage in the fall and just finished fixing it up for spring. 


All she had to do was shorten the length and widen the armpits a little and to make this dress into a cute little something a 17 year old would wear. I guided her through the process, but she did it all herself!