Archive for July, 2009

Another pillowcase

Friday, July 31st, 2009

This spring I sewed another pillowcase, and with all the experience I’d already gained while sewing my first one 😉 I decided that I needed a challenge. This pillowcase consists entirely of fabric squares, but they are sewn together diagonally. It was a gift for a friend’s baby boy.

(As usual, click on the photos for a bigger version. Here’s the whole set at Flickr.)

This is the layout of squares I came up with. They are then folded and sewn together to form a pillowcase with a diagonal opening in the back.

Unfortunately, this is not the easiest layout possible, and it was quite difficult to sew the sides together because I had to change directions so often. But of course I persevered. Here’s the finished pillow, front and back:

There are no seams along the sides of the pillow, as you can see here:

Of course there is an easier way to sew a pillowcase in this pattern, as was pointed out to me by a friend who also sews. She is good with mathematics and all kinds of crafts and came up with this layout:

The blue squares are the fabric squares, sewn together. You fold along the orange lines and sew together along the red and then the green lines.

Of course, I then had to make my friend a pillowcase of her own, using her great layout idea. This time I used three different fabrics again, but made some of the squares out of smaller sqares. Here’s my layout plan:

For the squares that consist of four smaller squares, I first sewed two long stripes of fabric together.

Then I cut the stripe into rectangles…

… which I then sewed into squares.

This was also my first project in which I pressed the seams open instead of to one side, as recommended by Weeks and Ringle in their book The Modern Quilt Workshop.

I have to agree with the authors that the finished product just looks neater.

Here’s the finished pillow. The fabric is from the Tilda line by Tone Finnanger, by the way.

New Hobby

Friday, July 24th, 2009

About two years ago I got a sewing machine from my grandmother. She didn’t sew any more and thought I could use it. I had never sewed anything before, so for almost a year the sewing machine just sat in our living room. (Click on any image for a bigger version.)

The machine is a Pfaff 230 and was built in 1955. My grandma bought it new that same year and has been using it all the time until she gave it to me. It’s powered by the foot pedal visible in the next image. The whole machine can be stowed inside the little cupboard, which opens up on top and in front and turns into a little sewing table.

After looking at the machine for almost a year I decided to try it out and start my first project. I sewed a pillowcase for my goddaughter for Christmas.

Here are the fabrics: I chose turquoise and yellow because those colours are used in her bedroom, and I added a little pink, well, because she’s a girl.

The printed fabrics are used for patchwork, and the light yellow acts as a background. I cut the printed fabrics into squares. Since the finished pillowcase was supposed to be 60 x 40 cm, each square had to be 8 x 8 cm, and I added another cm all around as a seam allowance, so I cut the squares to be 10 x 10 cm.

The squares then got sewed into stripes and these into the finished square.

Then I added a broad stripe on which I wanted to write her name.

I used the same yellow fabric for the back, which consists of two overlapping pieces of fabric.

Finally I wrote the name onto the fabric with a fabric marker and sewed the front and the back together. Here’s the finished pillow on our couch:

I used some of the scraps to make these pincushions, which I gave to some friends for Christmas. They were inspired by these Funky Chicken Pincushions.

To be continued… I’m posting all the photos in this Flickr set.

Forty years ago…

Monday, July 20th, 2009

… men first landed on the moon.

Hal has some postings with links up.

I wasn’t born yet back then, but I’m sure I would have been glued to the TV. Today, you can recreate the experience by going to Kottke’s Apollo 11 page.

Wer noch mehr über das Mondprogramm der NASA erfahren möchte, dem empfehle ich das Buch, welches ich gerade lese: Der Mond (weitere Rezension) von Ralf Jaumann (Herausgeber).