Tag Archives: lotta jansdotter

Typewriter Cover

4 Sep

Spontaneous sewing. It happens. Suddenly, you have an idea for a thing and you have to put everything on pause until that project is done. This time, it was a bag, a laptop bag. I’ve never made a bag before, really, so I’m not sure why I was so certain I could pull it off.

Quilted-Bag-Front

I’m going to stick with the questionnaire format. Here goes!

1. Who is it for?
Me! It’s been awhile since I sewed myself something.

2. Why did you choose these fabrics?
I’ve been hoping to use this collection (Type by Julia Rothman) for a while. I love the old-school office supplies and the reminder of a simpler time. It makes me think of a typing pool (and how grateful I am for word processing). The complementary fabric was a challenge. I chose Bella by Lotta Jansdotter and Cotton Shuffle by Riley Blake, plus some gray polka dots from Hobby Lobby.

3. Why did you choose this design?
I’m not sure about others’ experiences, but I found designing to be much harder than sewing it.  Do I want a pocket? Do I want adjustable straps? Does it need a closure or clasp? I also fretted over how to incorporate all of the Type fabrics, but woke up one morning to the idea of making the little keystone nod to art deco at the top. I also wondered about which of the many-colored typewriters to use on the fussy-cut square so I deferred to 12 year-old me and picked her favorite colors, teal and orange. Done.

4. How long did it take?
A few hours total, over a couple of days.

5. Was it difficult to make?
It was different than anything else I’ve made, but relatively easy. I started with this tutorial from Sewplicity and it was very helpful.

6. What did you learn from this quilt bag?
I used the zig zag stitch for the first time (can you believe it?) to sort-of serge the raw edges on the inside. It made it look much more finished.

7. What music did you listen to while you worked on it?
I have a Pandora station that has become a Frankenstein-esque mixture of genres. It ranged from Michael Buble to Sam Cooke to Shaggy (and his timeless classic “It Wasn’t Me.”)

8. What would you improve, if you could?
I really like how it turned out, but I used some scraps where a full piece of fabric would’ve looked nicer. I also had grand plans for sewing the straps in between the layers and I sewed on the binding before remembering that plan. Oops.

9. What makes you happiest when you think of this?
It has a typewriter on it!

Now, Domo wants to show you the back and the polka dot lining:

Quilted-Bag-Back

Let me know if you have any questions!

Leaves, Trees, and One Happy Bird

2 May

I think it’s pretty fun that I finished my “tree” quilt on Earth Day. I’ve been working on it since December, when my friend and I made a deal to swap a painting for a quilt. Her specialty is painting trees, so we had a great theme to work from.

I struggled to find just the right fabric, to find just the right pattern, to find just the right backing, and so on. And then I struggled with my sewing machine, big time. The fabric bunched, the bobbin ran out at the worst possible times, and the thread tension went wacky. I couldn’t get the tension right, no matter what tricks I tried, and wound up taking the machine apart (for the first time) to try and fix it. I vacuumed it out, I fiddled with the bobbin case, I changed the needle, and nothing worked. In fact, I made things worse, so I put the machine together and took it apart several times over. (Have you ever cried on your sewing machine? Just asking, for a friend.)

I scoured the Quilterweb(tm) for just the right pattern and settled on Lemon Squares from Faith’s Fresh Lemons blog. Since I was using mostly Lotta Jansdotter’s Bella fabric, it didn’t really lend itself to the fabric color arrangement laid out in the pattern. I realized that after I started cutting, and kind of panicked, because I do love following a pattern. In the end, I just made the squares that I liked and added some sashing. I’m totally surprised at how it turned out, but I’m really pleased.

lotta-trees 

If you look closely, you can tell I’m still trying to the hang of quilting, but I’m pushing myself a little further each time. While it isn’t a large quilt, it’s the largest I’ve made so far. I learned how to piece more complicated blocks, to select fabrics for each block, to make a scrappy binding, and I even made and improv square! (You can see it at the bottom right in the photo above.)

lotta-trees-close

For the back, I used part of a twin-sized duvet cover I found at Target on clearance. I really like how it looks with the rest of the fabric and especially with the scrappy binding. The texture was a little smoother and less cottony than usual quilting fabric, so it was a little more trouble to work with than the usual, but the end result was good. All in all, I’m excited! I just need to come up with a name.

Next on the list: a low volume baby quilt and a high-contrast purple and yellow quilt!

 

Branching Out

20 Jan

I started piecing the tree quilt for my friend today. I’ve alternated between staring at and ignoring a table full of little squares and rectangles for a few weeks now, and today struck me as a day to do something about it. I haven’t finished cutting yet, but I needed a clearer sense of what the squares were going to look like before I committed to all of those little pieces. And now I know!

I’m really looking forward to see how this comes together, because it won’t look anything like I originally planned. None of my quilts have so far–and I like it that way.

Tree-quilt-lotta

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