Sunday, May 19, 2013

The Panda Gift

As I mentioned in my previous post, I have a checklist of projects to do.  So far I've hemmed my daughter's sheers for her bedroom window (check) and have just finished my grandson's teacher's gift (check).  Even though the sheers needed to be altered, I didn't bother taking pictures because, really, it was a pretty mundane task and not worth photos.  However, the gift I made for my grandson to give to his teacher is quite different.  Before I share pictures with you, I'd like to first share the reasons for making it.

This was my grandson's kindergarten teacher's first year teaching at the school my grandson attends.  Upon entering her classroom, you will find many wonderful visuals and aides that promote learning of course.  The theme throughout her room is that of the Panda bear and the environment in which it lives--done in a happy child-like style.  One day, after volunteering to work along side her in her classroom, I inquired about her classroom theme because it was so delightful.  She told me that previously she had a cowboy theme at the school she had taught at the year prior but came across this one shortly after and liked the Panda theme better because they had adopted a daughter from China, which is also where Pandas are found exclusively.  Because the Panda bear has such special meaning to her, I thought it would be nice to give her a Panda bear to add to her classroom as a gift.  After checking with my daughter and grandson, I found just the right Panda bear to make her--one that is a little unique and would also identify as being from our family.  This bear is actually a quilted bolster pillow with what is called a broken dish block design on its body (for added interest) but, of course, his paws, ears, eyes and nose have the more traditional Panda (black and white) coloring.  The design is from Stash Happy Patchwork by Cynthia Shaffer.

Here he is at different angles:

Tyler, my grandson, will be giving this to her tomorrow--the last day of school.  I hope she and her new class will enjoy him next school year.  I can just visualize him sitting on top of one of her bookshelves watching over her class.  BUT should she decide to change her theme, she'll always have it to take home to keep and/or give to her daughter.

Okay, back to my to do list.

Have a great week!


Saturday, May 11, 2013

I List Them

In order to stay on top of the many projects ahead, I list them and check them off as I go--especially when there are so many projects due within a short period of time.  If I didn't know any better, I would believe I was smack dab in the middle of the holidays again.  The only difference is that when I look outside I see that the grass is now green and when I'm in my sewing room the sun comes through a great deal longer.  Thank goodness for natural light; it does wonders for these eyes!

So just off the top of my head, as of today, my sewing/quilting list looks like this:

-  Make gift for grandson's teacher - due next week.

-  Teach applique to Maria (my sewing student) for a graduation gift she's giving to a friend
    - due May 23

-  Guide sewing students on their projects for our booth at the Sprint Campus - due June 19

-  My prep for booth set-up--Project NiniQuilts to be at Sprint Campus - due June 19.  
    That is, make one display plus 12 each of the following summer themed items for sale:

                  13 coin purses
                  13 totes
                  13 picnic mats with cloth napkins
                  13 sun glass cases
                  13 water bottle holders
                  13 headbands - help sewing students
                  13 quilted cuffs - help sewing students
                  13 beer or soda can cozies
                   garments worn by sewing students
                  1 or 2 quilts for display
                  1 bunting with company name & logo

-  Prepare order forms, business cards, and fliers with sewing classes offered

-  Plan, design and make quilt for hubby for Father's Day - due June 16

-  Make 3 pillows for daughter's sofa & modify sheers for bedroom window - no due date

I believe I'll be staying out of trouble at least through mid-June--don't you? What do you do to stay on track when you have a lot going on?  Do you use a calendar, smart-phone, bulletin board, or make post-its along the way?


Wednesday, May 8, 2013

It's Been Awhile

I hope all has been well with everyone!  I haven't posted in awhile as I am sure you've noticed.  My household has been very busy of late and things are starting to settle down a bit - yeah!   Even though I haven't posted, I've still been busy sewing.  Since I last dropped in, I've made window treatments for my daughter's new home and have volunteered at my grandson's school and helped with making pillows for a senior citizen's home.   All while these things were going on, in the back of my mind I knew I had volunteered to participate in another swap at the quilting guild for which I am a member.  The guild didn't specify what we were to make this time, but it couldn't be a pincushion, or a mug rug, or potholders.  Initially I thought about making a wristlet, and I did -

Although it was fun to make and has some nice detail, being zippered and pleated and colorful and all, but it just didn't really seem fitting for a quilter.  So I wracked my brain trying to come up with something . . . but it wasn't until yesterday, after scouring over blogs and websites, that I found something that gave me inspiration.  I happened to have taken a look at Martha Stewart's site and found this:

The above is a very simple sewing machine cover made with a tea towel and some purchased ties.  So I took the idea and ran with it.  I selected fabric from my own stash and measured and wrote down the dimensions of  my sewing machine and began cutting and piecing and sewing.  Here's my version:

My version (cover) is quilted within the pieced border of triangles and rectangles; I made my own ties, and have added beads at the bottom for embellishment.  Even though my gift is simple and understated, I feel so much better about it.  It's colorful and the print fabric I selected does have a sewing motif of buttons and various sewing notions.  The swap is tomorrow - wish me luck.

I'm so happy to post again--it's been too long.  Until next time!