Hey, it’s a-me, Lissa-o! And my new Wii U bag!

It’s been awhile since I posted. We’ve been adjusting to life as a military family so that’s taken a lot of my time.  We’re actually due to move soon and I’ve been quite busy preparing for that. In the midst of the chaos, however, I’ve found time to craft and to quilt. And for that I’m glad because crafting keeps me in a most harmonious mood!

My husband, who’s in the Navy, doesn’t yet have orders, unfortunately. There was an unfortunate mix-up at his training command and a bunch of students, him included, didn’t get orders as they were supposed to. So we’re stuck waiting a little longer. Since we live in Texas, I do know we’re in for a big move one way or the other because the Navy only has so many ports, all of which are quite a distance from here.  As a family, we love to play games. In order to keep ourselves entertained on our down time (and while waiting for our belongings to arrive) we’ve decided to bring our Nintendo WiiU along with us.

It turns out, however, that there aren’t any specialized bags available for carrying gaming systems around. There was one made specifically for the Nintendo Wii quite a few years ago but there appears to be no current product available that meets our specific needs. I could try to modify a computer bag or backpack but I don’t really feel that would really meet our needs either. So, instead, I decided to make my own.

I began drafting my pattern a few weeks ago:

Sorry it’s a bit messy. I tend to use the whole piece of paper when I begin drafting.  Once I had my pattern (and more importantly, my yardage), I waited for the big-box fabric store to either put the materials on sale or issue coupons. I didn’t have to wait long as Joann Fabric is pretty good about pretty much having most of their fabric and other materials on sale.

For this project, I decided to go with rip-stop nylon (in TARDIS blue no less) with some D-rings, zippers, and velcro among other things.  During the long break, I purchased a serger so I decided to make this my first full project to craft using my new equipment!

So obviously, I first started by measuring the system and, after I had those digits, I was able to begin noodling a design. Here’s my graph paper design sheet:

WiiU Bag Pattern

Here’s the bag so far:

IMG_1408IMG_1410I have most of it complete. All I need to do is sew the messenger bag flap, put the loops for the shoulder strap in, build the flap for the zipper and then assemble everything right sides together (and flaps, straps, zips all facing the appropriate directions) in order to sew the whole thing together. After that’s done, I can pull it right-side out, put the foam inside and close the bag. Doesn’t seem like much but these last steps will be the most time consuming. Speaking of which, I should get back to work on the bag!

Tune in Wednesday for some quilt related news! See you then.

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Say ‘hallo’ to my new little friend!

Hello! I have returned and, hopefully, for a more routine and longer period of time this go-round.  So, as many of you might know, I’ve been going to school pretty much non-stop for the last year or so. The last few months have been hectic, to say the least, which has left me with little time to sew or really do many fun things (much to the chagrin of my sons!). Also, my husband recently signed on with the Navy.

Adjusting to being a single parent and being a military dependent/Navy Wife has been a bit of an adjustment!  We’re doing okay. I think I have a bit of a leg up on it, as I served eight years in the Air Force. I spent much of the first two weeks he was gone deep cleaning the house and organizing.  Now, I am keeping busy by canning jam and beans, clipping coupons and studying sale papers. Sounds corny, I know, but it keeps me busy and staying busy helps me cope!

In other news, I thought it best to take a break from school. The last four months has been rigorous, to say the least, and I have not been able to sew or quilt in the slightest.

With Halloween almost here, I knew I had to make some time for projects. My sons almost always ask for costumes and this year is no different. My oldest wants to be Anakin Skywalker. There are currently no patterns in print for Jedi-type robes so I had to find a fan created one. As I’ve never crafted a pattern for clothing before, work on his costume has been a bit slow. I want to get this right! My youngest wants to be an orange kitty (it’s a long story which I will tell when I post his costume). I completely lucked out in that regard because I was able to use the same pattern I’ve been using for his costumes the last two years.  Needless to say, I’ll making several separate posts in the coming days with those costumes and the progress I’ve made on them. I am pretty excited about sharing them; I love Halloween! 🙂

And, finally, on the quilting front, I have been able to get back into piecing.  I’m not working on anything for the shop at the moment — I have fabric on order and that’s holding up at least two quilts — so I’ve decided to get to work on my oldest son’s quilt.

Here’s the progress so far:

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As you can see, this is a simple diamond-within-a-diamond quilt or square-within-a-square block. They measure 9″ finished. I’m using Sweetwater’s Mama said Sew for Moda Fabrics.  We happened to come across the cream/red-black squiggle stripe on sale at our local quilt shop last December and my son said he loved it.  At the time, I didn’t realize that Mama Said Sew was nearing the end of its run so I had to grab a yard here and a yard there where I could find it. It was a bit of a hairy experience — I think I ordered the fabric from at least seven different sellers on Etsy to gather enough to make the quilt — but one which I think will be worth it once it’s completed.

I’d also like to announce one small-ish change you may have already noticed to the site. I’ve decided to rename the site and my business.  New Traditions Design Studio was an okay name but I didn’t really feel like it ever captured what I was about or my love of quilts.  I also didn’t think it was very catchy.  So, after some lengthy brainstorming, I’ve decided to go with Bewitching Stitches Quilt Company.  I think this more or less says it all for my feelings about quilts, they are magical things that can bewitch you with their beauty and warmth.  Also, since I have an overly healthy love of Halloween, I think this really fits my personality so to speak. I should have a logo soon, too!

Well, that’s all I had to share for now. Stay tuned for more posts! Thanks for reading and boy, am I glad to be back!

Finals week… eek.

Sorry for the delay! As some of you may know, I am attending college full time.  I’m going to school online so my courses are eight weeks long.  I’ve been absent from the blog this week because I am wrapping up this block of classes. I have been busy with finals, putting the finishing touches on a research papers, and a whole bunch of other assignments.

If all goes according to plan, I should probably be finished with everything on Friday evening.  After that, I plan to take a much needed break of the weekend and will be back with a new post next Monday.  Hope to see you then! Have a great weekend.

[News!] We’re Navy Bound! Plus: Studio upgrades and new quilt design!

Hello everyone! I hope you had a great week last week. We had a bit of a rollercoaster of a ride, let me tell you.

As you might remember, my husband has been working on enlisting in the Navy.  On Wednesday, he was scheduled to go to the military processing center for a checkup and to make sure all his paperwork was correct. That didn’t happen until Thursday, unfortunately, because of a new rule stating prior service enlistees can’t go to processing without going with another enlistee. So his recruiter scrambled and found someone to go with him the following day.  He had to stay overnight (and get up at 0430 in the next morning) and spent the following day waiting to find out when he’d be shipping out. He leaves in two months and we are super excited.

In the meantime, I am in the process of trying to ebay my Janome so I can buy a Bernina.  It’s not that I don’t like my Janome, I do, but I think I need to change up my game some. I want to switch to a model that has fewer stitches and this new machine will be for piecing only.  After my husband gets finished with training (and we move), I’ll buy a mid-arm machine for quilting.  I have been doing some extensive research and have narrowed it down to either a Babylock Tiara or the Handi Quilter Sweet 16.  I know the Tiara is made by HQ but I have heard that Babylock’s support is better than HandiQuilter’s. If anyone happens to own one of these fabulous machines, please feel free to comment on your experiences! I’d love to hear from you!

In the meantime, I can still FMQ on the Bernina because the model I picked is capable of doing FMQ. Not only does it come with the 1/4 inch piecing foot, it has a walking foot and a FMQ foot.   Let me tell you, I am super excited about my new plans!  I am just waiting for the auction to end so I send Gert to her new owner (*sad face*) and bring the new gal home to get to work.

In the meantime, I have been piecing, piecing and piecing but I am not ready to show you what just yet! 😉

Instead, I will share a new quilt design with you!

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The “featured image” of this post displays the twin sized version of this nautical themed boy quilt made with Moda Fabrics “Bartholomew’s Reef” line.  I also plan on doing a toddler/crib bed size version of this quilt and this second image is the smaller version.  So cute! I can’t wait to start cutting this one out this week. Other than that, school continues to challenge me; I am headed into week seven (of eight) today!

Well, that’s all the news I had to share for now. Have a great week, I’ll see you next Monday!

Happy Monday, have a new quilt pattern!

So I might not have mentioned it but I’ve sold two quilts from my Etsy shop in the last two months. Woohoo!

Marmalade Dream and one of the Ohio Star Baby quilts both found homes.  My other quilt, Spring Pinwheel is my only remaining quilt  in stock. I am feverishly working on Boston Beauty which is about half way done.  In the meantime, I am also starting to gear up for the holiday season because, as we know, quilts not only take time to plan, cut, and piece but also quilt. So it’s with great pride and excitement that I present the first of my Christmas quilts for 2014!

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Sorry about the watermark but I’ve had an unfortunate incident with someone taking my photos and claiming they created my work. How silly of them!

I created this using EQ7 software and boy what a lot of fun this was!  This quilt will be my most complicated quilt since I made “1893 Nine Patch” for my son.  This quilt was designed using “Joy” by Kate Spain for Moda Fabrics.  I happen to have a small stash of Joy because this was the fabric I made my third quilt from. It’s our family christmas snuggle quilt and, I loved it so much, I went out and snagged a fat quarter pack while this was still in print!

Aside from planning for the last quarter of the year, we’ve been patiently waiting for my husband’s trip to the military processing center this Wednesday. He’ll have a checkup on Thursday and they should give him his actual ship date; we are all so very excited about it, let me tell you!

Well, that’s all I had to share today. Hope you have a great week!

News and other news…

Hello!

I am terribly sorry for the lack of posts lately. My college classes started back up again three weeks ago and that, not-so-coincidentally, is about the last time I posted. Sorry!

I have had no time to sew. None. Everytime I pass my sewing machine I sigh longingly. I even got a whole bunch of new fabric and designed a new quilt but I have had no time to cut or piece anything. I’ll see about getting a photo of the new quilts – there will be three – posted as soon as I can find the time.

Between classes, the kids off for summer break and the news that my husband will be entering the Navy soon, things have been super hectic. Yep, you heard me, he’s going into the military soon and we’re super excited!

So, in order to help him, in my free time I have been going with him to work out and making sure he has plenty of good, healthy things to eat.  We don’t know many details yet other than “things will be happening soon”. I can say, though, all this extra exercise has been a lot of fun. I swam, literally, a whole entire mile the other day in the pool (plus forty yards…but who’s counting?) and I am very proud of myself!

So, until he ships out, all my attention is on him. Sorry! 🙂 We’ll be separated due to training and what not, for a few months, we think, so I don’t think anyone can fault me for wanting to spend time with him.

I will post when I can, though. And, hopefully, things will get back to “normal” soon-ish.

Have a great week!

 

Elizabeth’s Wedding Quilt

This quilt is so incredibly beautiful in every possible way that I simply had to reblog it!

In June 2008, I completed this quilt as a wedding gift for my niece, Elizabeth:
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The design was inspired by a design from Jan Krenz’s book, “Lone Star Quilts and Beyond.” It is basically a Lone Star quilt where eight different fabrics (colors) spiral from the center. I used a spiral feather quilting motif along each of the pieced spirals, filling in with small feathers:
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I used New York Beauty blocks for the setting squares and triangles:
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I inserted a striped inner border:
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All the fabrics were from the “Sand and Surf” collection by Michele D’More for Marcus Brothers. There was a large floral print which I used for the outer border. I chose to follow the large floral motifs for the quilting design:
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I quilted a large feather design in the corner setting squares:
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The quilt back:
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I used Hobbs 80/20 batting and Superior Thread’s King Tut thread in…

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