Wednesday, December 9, 2009

WIP Wednesday: No Margin for Errors

Let's start out with a little holiday cheer, shall we?
My knitted fruit basket ornament pattern is supposed to be revealed on the Living Crafts website sometime today. I'll come back and post a link here as soon as it's up.

K wanted her doll house to be decorated for Christmas so I added some trimmings on the roof. I hope to make more things to go in the dollhouse like a knitted Christmas tree, but this month is flying by much too fast!

K is working on candy cane presents to mail out to family and friends. She loves this project because they are done so quickly.

Holiday cards for those near to our hearts but far from our reach.

Popcorn strung on our tree. I underestimated how long this project would take! I have been working on it during C's nap time for the past three days and only have about 1/4 of the tree done. At this rate I think I'll have it done by Christmas Day! K keeps telling me to hurry so we can put our ornaments up. Patience, dear child, patience.

So now that I have posted about our holiday cheer, I need to post my personal holiday woes.

I suppose I should start with a little background information. My MIL bought the girls cute little doll beds for Christmas. I knew the girls would love having a special place for their favorite dolls to sleep at night, so I was excited for them to get these beds. Then I had the idea that I should make bedding for the beds (to make it look nicer and more personalized for the girls, and to prevent the wool mattress and pillow from getting dirty). That's fast and easy sewing, no issues there, but then I decided since K has a beautiful doll quilt (made by Ram in the Thicket) for her doll, C needs one, too. I have wanted to try my hand at quilting for a long time so what better time to make one, right? I grew up sewing, conquered and loved industrial sewing machines, majored in fashion design...but yet I have always been afraid of quilting. There just seems to be no margin for errors in quilting, and my usual sewing style of not following rules and patterns exactly doesn't seem to mesh with that. In an effort to work through my fears I found a simple quilt pattern in an old issue of Living Crafts and decided I would try it. I found the perfect fabrics for it. Of course they were out of print/hard to find fabrics so I literally had a piece of fabric from a cut up pair of pajamas (the gnome print) and the last yard available pretty much anywhere of some cute hedgehog, squirrels and toadstools.
Fast forward to the present
I have been putting this project off for months and finally last night I made myself start on it. The first thing I did was cut to size my main piece of fabric that is for the back and trim of the quilt. Remember that saying 'measure twice, cut once'? Well, I didn't. I majorly messed up cutting that piece of fabric and now I don't have enough. It was the last yard, too so there is no buying more. Hanging my head in defeat and munching on peppermint bark for comfort I sewed up a quick pillowcase for C's doll bed just so I could get something accomplished. Then I saw K's doll quilt out of the corner of my eye. Looking it over I thought maybe, just maybe, I could use that as a guide and wing it. I took measurements and cut out my strips for the sides, then left off there. I am hoping, no praying that I can do this and get it done in time for Christmas. I have a feeling this will be all I am working on from now until then. Keep your fingers crossed for me and if you have any quilting pointers you want to share, I am all ears! Now back to winging it.

Have a great Wednesday everyone! Don't forget to enter for your chance to win one of my knitted fruit basket ornaments, time is running out soon.

Happy creating!



Anonymous said...

I have no advice but I'm trying to make the girls doll quilts and it's not working. I have everything ready for the actual quilting step and my sewing machine will not cooperate. I can't decide what to do about it so I haven't done anything at all! Great answer, right?

Great job with all your wip's! You are getting there!

Erin said... grandmother quilts, and I would propose that she is the most patient woman I know. I have told her that although I can knit and sew, she's still in charge of all quilting for the whole family. :)

That dollhouse is beautiful...wherever did you get it?

Sending good quilting energy your way...

La Chili said...

I am making my first quilt this year too, I hope you get yours by Christmas, good luck.

boatbaby said...

Don't beat yourself up, your little one will love whatever her mama makes in love.
And WHERE did you get that adorable doll house that you so sweetly decorated for the holidays?

Joy said...

I love K's dollhouse decorations and the candycanes she made. Are the candycanes just pipe cleaners twisted together? I hope your quilt comes together quickly. The pillowcase is adorable! I'm sure the girls will be thrilled with their doll beds and bedding.

healing hillary said...

love the house trimming. K is such a clever little one.
i hear you on the popcorn stringing. it's been several days in the works here. luckily we are also stringing cranberries along the way. whew...takes up some of the space and they are much easier to thread.
i had no idea you were a professional sewer. who am i kidding though, doesn't surprise me one bit. with your talent i am sure it will unfold in time.
speaking of, get back to my quilting too.

The Blake's said...

You see - that is the beauty of quilting, it's all about piecing... so even though you cut that one piece too small, find another bit of fabric from your stash and piece it to the other to make it large enough, it will always carry the story of your first quilt and after a little while of it bother you, it will tell it's story and make you smile.

Some people like the structure of quilting, following rules exactly, my quilts have never really been that way, I usually come up with a pattern on my own and wing it as the project moves forward. I love it because it lets my stretch my wings and fly and the product is really and truly, me.

Good luck and I'm sure it will be beautiful. What lucky little girls you have.

Bluebirdbaby said...

You sound so much like me! I think we'd be great friends in "real" life :)
I, too, am afraid of quilting...all those rules and not enough room for mistakes. Sounds like you are working things out though. E is getting a very special doll for Christmas and today I am working on the doll clothes and was hoping to complete a small quilt for the doll too, but I just keep putting it off! Quilting scares me so...

I can't wait to see your finished project! Maybe I'll have one too :)


Lisa Anne said...

Beautiful Blog Nicole, thanks for stopping by mine, I hope to get back to it soon. Snow has settled in our valley and the busy farm days are coming to rest.

KnitterMama said...

Beautiful dollhouse decorations. This is amazing--HOW are you getting all of this done????

We have the same dollhouse and love it!

Willew said...

Good luck on your quilt. I feel your pain. I just posted on finishing the bedding I was making for my little girl's doll bed today. Thankfully the quilting process is very forgiving and hides all the mismeasurements and incorrect contruction.

Adlerfam said...

Good luck with the quilt! I dream of quilting one day, too. That little hedgehog/gnome pillow is to die for. Ack, the cuteness!

renee ~ heirloom seasons said...

I can't wait to see your doll quilt. I'm sure it will be beautiful. My girls are getting doll cradles from their Grandma too. I have one little quilt done, but need to get working on the other one soon. (although technically not quilted, just patchwork with a backing.)

The girls have been decorating their doll's homes too, we just made little felt Christmas trees.

I already downloaded your ornament pattern, but my brain is in such a state right now that I am not even attempting to read it yet!

Good luck with the holiday crafting!

momma rae said...

can't wait to see your quilt! it is going to be gorgeous, don't fool yourself.

quilting is so far from my realm. :)

Luciana said...

I look forward to seeing your pattern at Living Crafts. I love this magazine! Also loved the candy cane project. Will put on my "box" of ideas for next year.

Marina said...

I have to giggle that you found comfort in peppermint bark... HEE ;}!

I am sure your quilt will turn out just as lovely as your other creations! Quilting is actually the first crafting that I had ever done. I have to be honest in that I think it's actually a little charming if there are pieces that are just a little "off"... remember your post where you talked about knit items where there are intentional missed stitchesand the beauty in homemade ;}? Remember that dear friend <3

I'm not sure the mistake you made in cutting the back piece, but can you get some coordinating or plain fabric strips use as a border to make up the shortage on it?

Love the candy cane ornaments, it's something I know my boys will really enjoy!

Marina said...

... oh and PS... we have that dollbed at our house and I know your girls are going to love it! Seriously, I think we were separated at birth:)!

Jackie @ Lilolu said...

I just love the idea of decorating a doll house for the christmas. Very cute. I wish my daughter still played with doll houses.

Frontier Dreams (Nicole) said...

Kelly and Kelly - That sounds like me about 2 years ago. I had to make K babya night gown and diaper sewn by hand and make K a waldorf doll by hand as well. My machine just wouldn't work for me :( I hope you get it cleared up soon!

Erin - You're grandmother sounds so sweet! The dollhouse is by Kinderkram. I got it from my friend's store before she had to close down.

La Chili - Thank you! Good luck to you, too!

Boatbaby - Thank you, you are so kind, I hope you're right!
The dollhouse is by Kinderkram. We love it!

Joy - Yes, they are just pipecleaners. Cna't get asny easier than that, right? The funny thing is, she thought of it all her self seeing those 2 colors together in her craft cabinet.

Healing Hillary - We are FINALLY almost done with the popcorn garland. Phew!
I wouldn't call myself a professional sewer, but thank you! sadly I have barely touched my machine since my school days.

The Blake's - What beautiful words, thank you, I needed that!

Bluebirdbaby - Hee ,hee. Someday we will have to figure out a way to get us blogging mama together!! I look forward to seeing what you create for your little one, too!

Lisa Anne - Thank you, yours is,too! It must be beautiful there with all the snow.

Knittermama - Thank you. It's funny b/c I feel like I am getting nothing done. Ridiculous, right? Isn't that dollhouse so much fun!

Willew - Thank you, I hope it comes together!

Adlerfam - Thanks! The fabric is what makes it, for sure!

Renee I can't wait to see pics of yours! I need your inspiration :)
Let me know if you have any questions about the pattern. Good luck to you, too!!

Momma Rae - Thank you, I hope you're right!

Luciana - Thanks! The pattern is there now :)

Marina - Peppermint bark is my 2nd boyfriend ;)
Your beautiful quilting is actually what re-inspired me to look into it again. What would I do without you?! How did I know you had that dollbed?! That's it, I need to see a copy of your birth certificate! :) <3

Jackie - Thanks, my friend Tiffeni is actually the one that reminded me of decoarting the doll house for the holidays, too.

Thanks again, everyone! I apologize for any type-os, I am exhausted!!

nicola@which name? said...

nicole, i don't have your sewing background, but quilting scares me, too. well, so does my serger, so maybe that doesn't mean much! :)

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