Another Project Ticked off the List 😊

The tablet holder is done! And it isn’t perfect by any means, but I managed it and I love it!

 

The pattern and tutorial are courtesy of Caroline at SewCanShe. She originally designed the quilted ipad sleeve back in January. I had been looking for something for my (then) new Samsung Tab S2, but didn’t like any of the flippy  ones you can buy that turn into stands (too bulky) and didn’t want to pay for a soft case when I felt I could probably make my own. Caroline’s was absolutely perfect and the Blend fabric was gorgeous!

I was never going to be able to get the same fabric, but found some lovely fabric from Riley Blake, Lulabelle and Flutterberry, changing my mind several times about which design I wanted, before finally settling on some jewel-coloured cotton from Michael Miller. The designer is Tamara Kate, and the collection is Birds and the Bees. I have Feathered Flock and Love Bug, both in Navy. I originally bought them in a curated FQ pack from Elephant in My Handbag, which included a feather pattern from the same collection and 2 co-ordinating colours of Flurry from Dashwood Studios. They were used to make an organiser for a friend, and I loved the main fabrics so much, I decided they would be perfect for my tablet case. Now I just needed the pattern or tutorial.

 

Caroline is very busy with all sorts of things, but she did a downloadable tutorial in June. And yes, it has taken me this long to get round to utilising it! Having prepped last week, I sewed it this Thursday and Friday, choosing some stupidly hot days to work whilst Mini Mister was napping. All I can say is that an electric fan full on facing you, whilst you work at the sewing machine, is a definite need rather than an option.

 

I spray basted the 2 pieces of batting to the outer and lining fabrics, before spray basting the batting together, so I had a 4-layer sandwich. This meant I didn’t have to worry about pins or clips being in the way for drawing quilting lines on. Oh, and that was an issue as I couldn’t find any of my fabric marking pencils or chalk or the washable pen that I have. Once that was located  (and I really need some suggestions for better versions than the cheap one I have), I ruled one line at a time before quilting. I am pleased with the result as it is mostly straight, mostly at the correct spacing, and mostly at the right angles. I have to admit, some unpicking was required, including, after a change of bobbin,  when I realised that the tension hadn’t reset properly.

Quilted tablet holder Picklepiemama

Quilting complete

 

The quilted piece got straightened and cut in 2, before having 2 corners curved. Then it was on to the zip. And I don’t have a good history with zips and had never before attempted one not on a straight!

 

Well, I got there. Eventually. Using the slowest speed setting, and going back over with the top stitching (at least the basting stitches helped) several times to make sure it was all caught properly.

Quilted tablet cover top-stitching Picklepiemama

Top-stitching the zip and binding

I had made up some bias binding from some of the spare fabric,  my first attempt to make it using a continuous method. It was a bit wobbly, but there was enough to use. Binding the zip was hard work, especially ensuring that it was lined up properly to get the top-stitching to catch all the way round.

Quilted tablet holder binding pinned Picklepiemama

Zip binding pinned

Then I made a muck-up. A big mistake. I clipped together the raw sides, cut them straight, and the sewed round the 2 of them. Has anyone spotted what I forgot to do? It was nearly disaster…I had forgotten to start undoing the zip so the I could access it once all 4 sides were sewn up! The zip pull was sewn inside the pouch. Eek!

I thought I was going to have to unpick a load, but there was just enough of a gap to get my scissors in and grasp the zip pull with them. A bit of careful yanking with the scissors and I had moved it enough to get access to open it properly. Oops! This is why tutorials always warn you to move the zip into the middle before you close up.

Quilted tablet holder binding raw edges Picklepiemama

Binding the raw open edges

 

Quilted tablet holder Picklepiemama

Binding clipped round for sewing

The last thing was to put the binding round the 2 raw edges (needed some wiggling here to get it right), and then I could turn it and press. And it is done. What do you think? 😊

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Close-up – A Daily Post Challenge

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Rather conveniently, as one of my Blogging 101 tasks is to either join a blogging event or complete one of the Daily Post’s challenges, I have a make which fits this week’s photo challenge nicely. You can visit the page yourself for more details, but here is the summary: Close-up – This week, discover the hidden details that can only be seen up close. So above is my close-up. I had a play around with the cameras on both my phone and my tablet, and I was quite pleased with this considering the limitations of each camera. It shows the hidden sewing which goes into making the beautiful cushion cover I completed the other day (scroll down if you can’t wait to see the whole thing).

The picture shows the straight stitching (stitch length 2) with a quarter inch seam, attaching a strip of fabric to the lining of the item I was making. The fabric is a folded 2 and a half inch WOF strip from a Rolie Polie (Riley Blake’s answer to Moda’s Jelly Rolls). It is one of 21 half widths which make up the front of a cushion cover. I was given the idea when I found this tutorial on Pinterest a few months ago: Quilting in the Rain

When I spotted the gorgeous fabric from the Riley Blake collection ‘A Beautiful Thing‘ by Zoe Pearn, I couldn’t decide which patterns I preferred. There was no way I could afford to get all of the ones I like. And then I discovered Jelly Rolls/Rolie Polies, which are a great way to get all the patterns in a collection without spending a fortune on FQs (fat quarters) of each one. Moda invented them and include (usually) 40 WOF (width of fabric) strips in each. Other manufacturers do the same of make smaller rolls. Riley Blake’s are called Rolie Polies and include 18 strips.

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I used a spare piece of plain cotton fabric for the lining material, and a larger piece of one of the collection’s patterns as the back. I also alternated which side of the strip I started sewing from. I had seen a recommendation to do this a few days before I started the project, and the idea is to lessen the likelihood of bowing in the middle of the strips. It seems to have worked!

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First 2 strips sewn on

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Halfway through

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All sewn on

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Trimmed straight

The sewing on of the back was easy and the final cover when turned looks like this:

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With a nice fluffy cushion inside it : D

With a nice fluffy cushion inside it

To be honest, the part that took the longest was pressing the strips and then deciding on the order I wanted them to be in. The sewing itself was quick and straightforward, literally! Take another look at the close-up for confirmation of this!

And the remnants? They are going into my stash which is awaiting turning into hexies. Maybe I should do some close-ups when I sew those and compare the neatness of the machine sewing with the more rustic hand-sewing…

Bye for now 😀

In Due Time…

I am currently following a course called Blogging 101, run by Word Press to help new bloggers develop their skills and knowledge of blogging. There have been tasks each week day, and yesterday we were asked to use the Daily Prompt to inspire a post. As we were allowed to choose a random prompt, I clicked through a few and then this one popped up:

In Due Time: What’s your next, most pressing deadline? Are you excited, stressed, or ambivalent about it? What’s the first thing you’d like to do once you’re done with it?

I think it fits quite well for me, given the length of my project list and the fact that I am running out of time to complete some of those projects. In actual fact, my most pressing deadline hasn’t been a project but rather the impending date of my return to work after maternity leave

I have been incredibly lucky that I have had an extended time with Mini Mister, although I have got to the point that I no longer even have SMP. So the return to work is a blessing in disguise, since having no income means that not only can I not buy all the things I need for the boys, there is no way I can get away with indulging in my fabric or sugarcraft tool addictions. And there are some lovely fabrics coming out a the moment in preparation for (and I will say this quietly) Christmas. And I still haven’t had a chance to try out sugar lace, despite how long it has been on trend.

So, I am excited about the prospect of having an income again, but stressed about organising childcare for Maxi Mister and worrying about whether Mini Mister will settle in to nursery ok. I think I am going to have to restrain myself from spending the not very much money I will get this month, but if anyone else is after places to feed their addictions, have a look at some of the places on my Blogroll. There are more to add, but these are some of the places I tend to visit on a far too regular basis! Please don’t ask me which is my favourite, as I don’t think I could pick one. I go to different sites for different things.

As for ‘making’ deadlines, there are a few, as I said. I have some chair cushions to complete before we go on holiday in a couple of weeks (I think they will be a future post, so I won’t say anything more here), I have Mum’s hexie flowers to finish before then as well, so that I don’t lug her stuff around on holiday with me. And I have 2 celebration cakes to plan/design and make, but they aren’t needed until the end of September, thank goodness. Pinterest is definitely my friend for planning in this case.

I have just realised that I have completely failed to include any pictures in this post so far, so here are 2 for you. The first is my Mum and Dad. Mum is probably my biggest creative influence, and I wish she could see all the things I make (even the failures!). The other shows the fabric I am going to use for the chair cushions – Giraffe Crossing by Riley Blake – and this is a cot pocket I made for Mini Mister with it.

Dad and Mum about 15 years ago

Dad and Mum about 15 years ago

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Time to retire now, as I have a very early start tomorrow. For the first time in about 10 and a half months I have to set my alarm. Wish me luck!

Bye for now 😀