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Entries in Machine Quilting (17)

Thursday
Feb202014

Corinne's Thread: Quilted Vest

There's a cartoon sketch I remember watching when I was a kid. A little boy looks out the window to see that it's raining, bundles up in all his rain gear and runs outside, only to find the sun shining bright. This scene repeats a few more times until it is finally revealed that the "rain" is actually the sprinkler going back and forth across the lawn.

In the upcoming early days of spring, this meteorological back and forth will be all too real: freezing in the morning, sunny and warm in the afternoon and cloudy by dinner time. I anticipate feeling like that confused little boy chasing the whims of a sprinkler.

And so, this Quilted Vest will be my go-to for spring's unpredictable days. A layer of Dream Wool batting will keep me cozy, but its light weight will never feel too warm. It’s like a comfy blanket that you get to wear all day long but with its clean lines and delicate collar shaping, much more fashionable!

Robert Kaufman’s Chambray Union Dot makes the outside of this vest as cool and versatile as a favorite pair of jeans, while Moda 200-count Muslin makes the inside as crisp as a spring pea! Get all of the materials you need to make your own with our Materials for Quilted Vest kit right here, and no matter how the temperatures dip, curve, climb, or tease, you’ll be prepared too! - Corinne

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Thursday
Aug222013

Corinne's Thread: Denim Pinwheel Quilt

Did you know that the chocolate chip cookie was a serendipitous discovery? When Ruth Wakefield, owner of the Toll House Inn, ran out of baker’s chocolate, she tossed some semi-sweet chocolate chunks into the batter, hoping they would melt while cooking. Instead of chocolate cookies, what came out of the oven was a delicious surprise, and chocolate chip cookies were born! 

The design for my Denim Pinwheel Quilt was just such a happy accident. We had just gotten in Robert Kaufman’s Railroad Denim, and excited about every fabric in the collection, I sewed up a bunch of combinations for our Big Pinwheel Pillows. As I laid all the sample squares out on the table at our weekly Bee meeting, the reaction was the same all around: These were going to make beautiful pillows, but my gosh, they should also be a quilt! 

And we were right! The quiet complexity that comes from mixing various Railroad Denim stripes gives this quilt such a rich story.  The grid of nuanced color variations is reminiscent of a minimalist painting hanging in a museum, yet the humble denim cloth reminds me of my grandfather’s overalls, all lined up on the hooks beside the door of his farmhouse. The perfect mix of classic and modern.

To make a throw size quilt of your own, we’ve compiled everything you need into our Materials for Denim Pinwheel Quilt kit, including fabrics for the piecing, backing and binding.  Now, I won’t say that this quilt stacks up anywhere close to the chocolate chip cookie in terms of amazing discoveries, but it sure stacks up nice! - Corinne

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Thursday
Aug012013

Molly's Sketchbook: Quilted Computer Sleeve

Sometimes when people hear about my job at the Purl Bee they imagine quilting bees and sewing circles, floral tea sets and lace doilies. Sounds lovely indeed, but the reality is that my life entails an incredible amount of time on my laptop! In fact, I hardly go anywhere without my computer. It gets thrown into my bag as I rush off to daycare pick-up; it rides the subway on my way into the store; and it bounces up the four flights of stairs to my sewing studio daily.  With all this time in transit, my laptop needs protection!

My Quilted Computer Sleeve brings together the two seemingly contradictory sides of my life: needle and thread, plus latest technology! I made my Sleeve with sturdy Organic Canvas and quilted it with our thickest cotton batting, so it is truly heavy duty. And for style, I made the pocket out of pretty yarn-dyed Slub Denim Stripes, finished with a bold neon bias tape. Everything you'll need to make one of your own is available in our Materials for Quilted Computer Sleeve kit here!

Using old-fashioned quilt making techniques to make an engineered laptop sleeve creates the perfect mix of quaint and modern, timeless and timely. And best of all, my trusty computer sidekick will be safe and secure on our daily travels! --Molly

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Thursday
May162013

Molly's Sketchbook: Simple Four Square Quilt

I’m not a painter, but I have always imagined that quilt making is a lot like oil painting. Both involve a detailed setup and complex series of steps, yet both tap into a deep well of freedom and creativity.  My sewing projects tend towards the quick, easy and practical, but every once in a while I like to slow down and explore big gestures using the refined techniques of quilting.

This Simple Four Square Quilt crystallizes everything I love about quilt making! It uses traditional block patterns in a decidedly unorthodox way, exploring color and proportionality much like a striking modern painting. I used Robert Kaufman’s Architextures prints, whose simple mechanical drawings I love for their clean freshness. I anchored the prints with a cool gray solid, and for fun, added a hot pop of neon orange dots.

With a project like this, it is important to do all of the steps, from the cutting to the piecing to the pressing, with care. Savor this deliberate process; it is well worth the extra time! The finished quilt is truly something special, an heirloom that is modern, elegant and simply beautiful! --Molly

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Thursday
Sep132012

Molly's Sketchbook: Quilted Tea Cozy

While I was on maternity leave this summer learning how to swaddle, sling and sleepwalk, Purl Soho was busy stocking up on a whole new family of products! Returning to the store, I was greeted by lots of questions from my co-workers and also by a myriad of exciting new things: a beautiful quilting line from Liberty of London, bags and quilts from Utility Canvas, and most surprisingly, tea from Bellocq

I was so intrigued by its colorful ingredients and handsome packaging, its amazing fragrance and unusual flavors, that I immediately conjured a cozy autumn scene involving a steaming pot of Bellocq tea and me knitting something sweet for my daughter. And while I may not actually get much knitting done this year with a little baby around, I do think I’ll make time for the tea. This lovely Quilted Tea Cozy will keep my pot warm while I answer emails, put away the laundry, and sing “Old MacDonald Had a Farm” for the hundredth time! 

I used the sturdy yet pretty Kiyohara Upholstery Weight solid in Pink, quilted it with thick cotton batting to keep the tea piping hot, and finished it with a smokey gray cotton twill tape. I love this Cozy's simple elegance and old-fashioned charm, and with a tin of your favorite Bellocq tea, it's an excellent gift too! 

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