baby FOs

I am having SUCH a shitty weekend. We've been taking turns being sick with one thing or another for the past 3 weeks, and today it was Stuart's turn to spend the day in bed. So of course today was the first nice warm-ish day all week, but I didn't have the energy or where-with-all to do some necessary gardening work that desperately needs to be done. Plus, my babysitter situation is imploding, but then, so is the gig I had lined up to work on this summer. The parting of ways is all amicable and has nothing to do with personal conflicts and everything to do with financial and work situations, so this really shouldn't impact my self-esteem, but it is anyway. It makes me think maybe I should stop kidding myself about being a real, actual musician and just do the mom thing until my kids are old enough to dress and bathe themselves or heck, forever, because at this point, it hardly seems worth the effort.

One sitter of ours is no longer available for a very good and happy reason, though. She's having a baby of her own very soon! The kids and I will miss her very much, but we at least had the chance to attend a small, informal baby shower this morning. I made her some things. First, I bought a bunch of plain organic cotton onesies and stenciled some simple, cute designs on them...alas, in the time crunch getting ready for the shower, I didn't bother to get pictures. The other things are what I gave y'all a preview of the other day, and I'm not sure today's hurried pictures are any better, but we'll give it a go anyway.

Second, I knitted up a cotton tee shirt:

Once again, this is the Spring Garden Tee from Never Not Knitting, and it's a fabulous pattern. Simple, elegant, adorable, and this one came together in less than 48 hours. I used just over one skein of Patons Grace in a pale pink (tiny stash-buster! yay!) and made the smallest size, about 17" around.

The real nail-biter was the quilt, though. I like my quilting to be simple, easy, and fast, but with stunning fabric to make up for the basic designs. This one was no exception.

Seriously, I bought the fabric Monday, assembled the quilt in a couple sessions in the middle of the week, ran a few lines of machine stitching last night, and finished sewing down the binding literally two minutes before we left for the party this morning. The only reason I had time to take pictures at all is that I made Daniel use the bathroom and change his muddy pants before we got in the car.

I bought the fabric at Stitchers' Crossing (best local quilting shop EVER, and they sell yarn, too!). Basically, I headed to their selection of batiks (which is fantastic) and picked out eight fat quarters (a quilter's fat quarter measures about 18"x22"). I then cut each into six 7"x7" squares, arranged them nicely on the guest bed, and stitched them all together in rows. Because the baby will be living in a hot climate (Brazil), I skipped the batting and just used an ultra-soft Minky-like backing. I think it's just fuzzy polyester knit fabric, but it feels like velvet.

The color looks gray in that picture above, but it's really more of a soft lilac. I used a walking foot for the machine quilting, and I couldn't believe what a difference that made in keeping the fabrics lined up. I've had my walking foot for a few years, but didn't need to use it for anything, then couldn't find it when I wanted it, but last night I finally took a deep breath and spent all of two minutes installing it and running some stitches through the middle of the quilt to hold it together and DUDE. I don't even know how that little clump of plastic and metal works but it's like a miracle. Let's just say I'm all inspired now. Watch for more sewing and machine-quilting in the future.


Dee said…
What amazing gifts! They are both lovely.

Dee Anna
Caffeine Girl said…
Your babysitter is very lucky! Very beautiful.
Jessi said…
Such thoughtful gifts!
Mrs. Allroro said…

What else is a walking foot used for? Is it the same as a zipper foot? Do I have one?
Suze said…
Ann, a walking foot is not at all the same as a zipper foot. And most machines don't come with them; I'm pretty sure you have to buy it separately. It's extremely helpful for keeping layers of fabric from slipping, like if you're machine quilting (2 layers of fabric plus batting in the middle) or if you're sewing with slippery fabric.

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