New York Beauty Pillow

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Like so many people who craft, I have materials everywhere.  I’m lucky enough to have a designated room to sew in, but it is jammed full.  Every once in a while I go tearing through a drawer or cupboard and discover something I’d forgotten completely. The other day I rediscovered a few yards of Benartex Foundation by the Yard fabric.  Have you heard of this before?  I hadn’t.  My friend Melissa and I found it during a Korean fabric shopping trip a couple of years ago and bought some because it seemed cool and the price was right.

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It’s a pre-printed muslin panel.  Each panel has 12 foundations for New York Beauty quilt blocks and complete instructions for how to piece them are printed along the sides of the panels. Apparently, Benartex makes these panels pre-printed with lots of classic quilt blocks.  I’ve always done my foundation piecing on paper, but this works just the same way only the muslin stays on the back of your finished block.  No picking bits of paper out of the seams?  Sign me up.

I’d been wanting to make a pillow with a Valentine’s feel to it, so I decided to try making a few of these blocks in shades of pink and red.

I started with foundation block pieces:

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I decided to use solid shades of pinks and reds for the points and text prints for the background.IMG_3203

Originally I was planning on making this a square pillow with four blocks forming a circle in the center, but I got to this point and had an idea:

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About a year ago I bought a couple of down lumbar pillow forms for a pair of chairs in our family room.  I never got around to making the covers I had planned.  I liked this half circle so much (and – amazing – the measurements worked out) I decided to make covers using just 2 squares each for those instead of a big square.  Lazy or brilliant?  You be the judge.

I quilted in arcs on the background fabric using the edge of my walking foot as a spacing guide.IMG_3206

I added an invisible zipper and some backing fabric from my stash using this helpful tutorial.  IMG_3210

And voila – a finished pillow!

IMG_3213The colors are right for Valentine’s Day, but I think I can get away with leaving it out a little longer!

Fun with Floss

Sometimes I get tired of sitting at the sewing machine or I want to hang out with the family.  There is NO space for the family in the craft room.  It’s my selfish place.  And my happy place.  That sounds wrong, doesn’t it?  Don’t judge…

Anyway, I recently discovered some creative fun for when I’m not hiding in the craft room:61Ou85QzfeL

I used to love to embroider, but I stopped because, let’s face it, people don’t really NEED that many cross-stitched wall hangings, and I can’t stand making things if they don’t at least have a hope of being useful in some way.

This book is full of cute little designs and projects that actually can be used or can embellish another sewing project.  I’ve made several houses from the Felt Winter Village project to use as tree ornaments.  They are pretty cute if I do say so myself. I’ll try to add some pics of those soon. I also made a larger project using the embroidery design, but not the same pillow design from the front cover of the book:

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I wanted mine to be square and I got a chance to use some of the fabrics leftover from my holiday gift quilts.  I like it so much that I’m tempted to keep it, but (for now at least) it’s in my Etsy shop.