Thursday, December 29, 2011

Christmas Gifts

Lovely as vacation was, relaxing can be difficult when you are used to having busy hands. Preparing for Christmas was almost as fun as celebrating it. At the last minute, I decided to make a few gifts. Now that the gifts have been received, I can share them with you :o)

Introducing...the Citrus Series!

I started with some gorgeous Birdie Spokes by Birch Fabrics, Pearl Bracelet in Green by Lizzy House, some lovely Kona solids, and a couple scraps of Little Folks voile (every bit of that stuff will be used).

I used Dream Green batting by Quilter's Dream. It's made from recycled plastic bottles, so it's kind of a gift to the Earth too.
A duo of mini quilts went to my dad and his fiance. I finished them with a bit of hand-quilting in gray and yellow perle cotton thread. Because I didn't mind taking larger stitches with the perle cotton thread, I practiced the traditional method for hand-quilting instead of my usual way (taking each stitch one at a time). I found it pretty enjoyable. Maybe perle cotton will teach me how to quilt "for real."

A set of 8 coasters found a home with my cousin. They measure about 4" square and are backed with Kona Cayenne.
The gray fabric is Kona Medium Gray. I love how it lends the perfect coolness to those citrus-y flavors.

They fit right into the San Diego landscape, no?

And because I couldn't let go of those beautiful fabrics completely, I made an organizer for myself. The tutorial is here: Where the Orchids Grow. Mine is slightly larger than the tutorial (8"x10.5" finished), and the side pockets are increased accordingly.

As the tutorial suggested, I sewed the fabric to the batting when joining the strips of fabric together. I love this method! It sped up the process and made the layers sit more smoothly together. I wonder how it would work on a full-sized quilt top...

What I wouldn't do to get out of basting.

I cut into my luscious Echo prints to make a Buttercup Bag for my orange-loving sister. I forgot to get pictures of it, but quilt friends, it was super cute. I have never made a bag before, and even I thought the pattern was easy-peasy. Try it!

For mom, I whipped up a set of fabric boxes in her favorite colors. The middle size comes directly from the Sometimes Crafter's tutorial, with which I am clearly obsessed. I've made like ten of these things, and there's no end in sight! So easy and useful.

To make the small box, I started with a 10 inch square of fabric, and cut out 3 inch squares from each corner. For the large, I increased the original square to 20 inches with a 6 inch cut-out. I wouldn't make it any bigger though, as the increase in size definitely challenges the shape of the box.

Finally I made another set of 6 coasters and a box for my friend who just moved into a new apartment. Her color scheme is black, red, and silver.

I pulled out six reds from the Kona Spice fat quarter pack, and sewed together 1 1/4" strips. I cut the fabric into strips, each 1/4" larger than the next.

Each coaster is backed with a different red.

This bundle is due to arrive in her mailbox any day now. I really hope she likes them!

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