Free pattern alert: Colette Sorbetto review

Since I am not a very confident sewer, I love finding free patterns. That way I can make mistakes and not feel like I wasted my money. There are a few good free patterns out there. You can find many at this forum post on sewing.patternreview.com. The only one I can vouch for with complete confidence is the Colette Sorbetto. I’ve made it 3 times – each slightly different – and it works every time.

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This is one is by far my favorite. I bought this fabric at a local fabric shop – the only independent shop that sells fabric for apparel in my area – for $13.99/yard. I’m not exactly sure what it is. It’s cotton, it has a nice drape with structure, and feels soft. I was so afraid to cut into it. But, this is why you spend more for fabric. It wears well, washes well, and looks great.

So, as usual, I went to Joann’s first and made my first Sorbetto from some cotton lawn. (Picture coming soon.) It came out well. I purchased the dark blue binding you see on this top, and used it on my first top. I had enough leftover to do this binding. I love this top. I made a straight size 8 and it fit to a T. (Just showing you the back of it here so you can see both sides.)

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You can find a lot of variations on the Sorbetto on the Collete blog. I inverted the pleat on my most recent one, and my own bias binding using this tutorial and a fat quarter. (The first time I made my own bias binding, I used the Colette tutorial and a Clover binding tool. I didn’t like how it came out at all. The tutorial I linked to is very similar, but my binding tape came out better since I really wanted half-inch double fold, not one-quarter single fold.)

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I’m not crazy about how the pleat puffs out at the bottom. (Picture coming soon.) I’m not sure what I would do to fix that so I don’t know if I’d do it again. If you have any suggestions, please feel free to share!

My next free pattern will be the Hemlock T from Grainline studios. It’s only available by signing up for their newsletter. I’ll let you know how it goes.

French braid table runner

french braid table runner

When I asked my sister for fabric for Christmas, I really didn’t know to expect. I wanted to try some different patterns and create some easy projects. She gave me two jelly rolls. After opening this one, and seeing how perfect it matched my kitchen, I scoured the internet for a table runner.  I decided on a a variation of a french braid.

Most french braids have pointed ends, and have a diamond in the middle. Here’s a tutorial from Jenny Doan at the Missouri Quilt Company if you want to follow that idea. I wanted a rectangle. And, because I only had jelly rolls, it would be difficult for me to make the large diamond in the middle. I made my own version.

I started sewing pieces together, using the light 2 inch square in the center. If I had followed the tutorial, I probably would have been more efficient with my fabric. As you can see, I ended up with longer and longer pieces. I started using shorter pieces to preserve fabric, but then I was concerned the table runner wouldn’t be wide enough.

IMG_3198Once I measured my table, and a table runner I already had, I settled on my width and length and squared it up. I used the leftovers to make a simple backing, and pieced together enough light pieces to make the binding, which I machine sewed.

IMG_3357On to the quilting. I had taken Crafty’s Creative Quilting with Your Walking Foot (This class is my all time favorite so far – Jacquie Gering is an excellent teacher.) One of the more fancy stitches she recommends is the serpentine stitch. At first I thought I would do it both ways, crossing at the middle. But after finishing this table runner, I had enough. Straight line quilting is a bit tedious. And, even though she makes it look easy, believe me, it is not.

IMG_0271While I can see all the mistakes -the stitches are uneven, and a bit wobbly, – I think the overall look of the table runner is very consistent. And I love the contrast between the thread and the fabric.

This table runner is proudly displayed on my kitchen table. How do you like it?

french braid table runnerNext I’ll share what I did with the leftover scraps.

Fabric box DIY

This fabric box was so much fun to make. I used scraps and this excellent free tutorial I found at Seaside Stitches. I use it to keep my notions in next to my sewing room.

The fabric box was a quick, easy to make project, and allowed me to brush up on my straight line quilting skills that I learned from this Craftsy class. It’s titled Creative Quilting with Your Walking Foot. Jacquie Gering is a great teacher. I would definitely take more of her classes.
IMG_3013-0.JPGThat’s my ironing board underneath. Another free tutorial. I used a Batik Jelly Roll called Over the Rainbow. Here’s the tutorial from Moda Bake Shop.

Happy sewing!

 

Baby quilts and personalized wall hangings

Well, I finally finished my friends’ baby quilts, just in time to go see them next week.

IMG_2518My plan had been to buy one V and Co Color Me Happy Jelly Roll. I saw on her blog that she made two baby quilts in this free rail pattern and thought that would be perfect for them.

However, I quickly realized that they were really small. I guess I should have known from the finished measurements of the quilt, but what you read on paper, and what you see in reality, are two different things, as I’m sure you know.

Once I started creating the blocks, I realized I would have a lot of those pieced jelly rolls leftover, so I decided to make personalized pillows. I should have used smaller letters, because these were going to be waaayy too big for pillows. I created the letters in Word Art, and used double faced interfacing to place them. I also used a blue tailors chalk on this pale gray, and at first was very upset when I couldn’t get the blue line off You can’t see it anymore.

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I used really thick pellon interfacing to back them. I just hope my friends can hang them because I did not include any way to do so. I’ve been hanging my wall quilts with simple staples right in the seam. You can’t see the staples and they come out of the wall with minimal damage. This stuff is much thicker than regular batting however.IMG_2521

In any event, I think the quilts came out great. I used my walking foot to do straight line quilting on the blue and green one. I used my free motion quilting foot do do squiggles (It has a different name, but you know what I mean) on the pink one. I love the way it looks.

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N
ow they are wrapped and ready to be given to their new owners. I hope they like them!

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