Hello everyone, and welcome to my stop on the Thankful Sewing blog tour, courtesy of Sewing by Ti.
Such an exciting tour this month, with giveaways each week! So don't forget to check out all the other stops on the tour, and enter this week's giveaway (see below)
We don't celebrate Thanksgiving in Australia, but Christmas is fast approaching, and I saw the perfect opportunity to say thank you to the librarian at my kid's school. We're fortunate to have a dedicated teacher-librarian, and she's just amazing! I remember loving the time I spent at the library when I was at school, and I'm thrilled that my kids love a visit to the library too. Our librarian runs lessons for each class once a week, organises the overall school reward system, and also runs a talent show at the end of each year, and most importantly, helps kids to have a love of reading, supplying them with a huge range of books, and helping find one that that engages each child (now that's a super power). Last year I realised that, come the end of the year, she can be an unsung hero - class teachers receive all sorts of amazing gifts from students, but until then I hadn't considered the librarian. And that's when I started planning this thank you gift.
A potholder (or mug rug) of a bookshelf, where the titles of the books are some of my kids' favourites.
Aaaages ago I pinned a mini quilt. Back in the days when I thought I might make quilts (I never have). I took the original mini quilt (check it out on "Don't Call Me Betsy"), and reworked it on some grid paper to get it to the size I wanted. Then I did some maths (resizing, then adding seam allowance to all my pieces), quizzed the kids on their favourite books, and went rummaging through my stash.
I tried to choose fabrics that kind-of matched the titles: my son decided Harry Potter needed to be red (possibly for Gryffindor), The 13 Storey Treehouse is a fun and vibrant yellow with stars, Matilda is kind of a magical rainbow, Uno's Garden has flowers and leaves, and The Book With No Pictures is plain white.
I used my free motion foot to 'write' the titles onto the spines of the books. I printed out the titles onto sulky solvy (dissolvable interfacing, that you can print onto). After the first title, I tried to choose fonts that where in 'handwriting' (joined up letters), to save stopping and starting all the time. I used my sewing glue to glue some tearaway stabiliser to the back, which worked perfectly. I probably could have chosen some fabrics to better show the lettering (or changed thread colour), but overall I'm pretty impressed with how it turned out.
I apologise to any quilters for my work. I am not a quilter. I kind of started with the Don't Call Me Betsy tutorial and made it work for me. It was pretty easy to follow (even with different sized books), and had some great techniques that I wouldn't have thought of. The binding is kind of fudged from this tutorial (I misread it, so my binding is applied like bias binding).
I've managed to lose my wonderclips, so pulled out these binder clips that I had in case of emergencies. I don't have any basting spray, so with my layers carefully pinned I basted my layers together (top layer, batting, insulfleece & backing). When I was basting, I took care to try and make sure my needle was perpendicular to the layers to avoid distortion.
As I was putting together the details of this project I was struck with something else I can be thankful for, the way that each sewing project can help to build skills that work together for something totally different.
Piecing the front, I remembered the patchwork pillow I sewed in year 8 (back when Home Ec was called Design and Technology). Writing on the spines, I used the idea of printing the words from the felt mermaid doll (a One Thimble Pattern*), and the 'writing' was using the techniques I learnt doing free motion applique (also from One Thimble*). Assembling the layers, I remembered the pot holders I made as Christmas presents one year (and could raid the remaining stash of batting and insulfleece). Basting the layers together, I remembered the Australian wildflower quilt block I quilted in '94 (a gift for an international Girl Guide Camp). And binding the edges, I used the techniques I had learnt making simple bibs from old towels when I first started sewing again.
And that's what I love about sewing, and am thankful for. Each technique is like part of a complex puzzle, and when they are all joined up together, they make something beautiful. Use them in a different order, or add something different, and you have something new! There will always be something new to learn, a new challenge to tackle, a new idea to bring to life. And that's a great reason to be thankful.
Tour DetailsOur Thankful Sewing Bloggers are creating something special to share with you to celebrate this month of Thanksgivings! As an extra special surprise, we also have a couple giveaways during each week of the tour. Share your thanks with Petite Stitchery who has a new pattern to share with us, a free pattern giveaway from Sew by Pattern Pieces, and a chance to win a shop credit each week from Simply by Ti!
Intro to the tourNovember 1st: mahlicadesigns Sewing with Sarah
Week 1:Nov 1st: Tenille’s Thread
Nov 2nd: Candace Ayala
Nov 3rd: Hazelnut Handmade
Nov 4th: Musing of a Seamstress
Nov 5th: Sewing Portfolios
Monday Nov 6th: mahlicadesigns
Nov 7th: Seams Sew Lo
Week 2:Nov 8th: Margarita on the Ross
Nov 9th: Stitched by Jennie
Nov 10th: Sewing with D
Monday Nov 13th: 5 outof 4 Patterns
Nov 14th: Tales of a Southern Mom
Week 3:Nov 15th: Hazelnut Handmade
Nov 16th: Octaves of Color
Nov 17th: Kainara Stitches
Nov 18th: Kutti Couture
Nov 19th: The Petite Sewist
Monday Nov 20th: My Heart will Sew On
Nov 21st: Needles to Say
Week 4:Nov 22nd: Back 40 Life
Nov 23rd: Lovemade Handmade
Nov 24th: Sewing by Ti
Nov 25th: On Wednesdays We Sew
Nov 26th: Paisley Roots
Monday Nov 27th: Mermaid Mama Designs
Nov 28th: Sew Haute Blog
Nov 29th: Ma Moose Handmade
Nov 30th: Everything Your Mama Made & More
And don't forget the giveaway - Petite Stitchery and Co Mama Adelyn Giveaway and Simply by Ti $20 shop credit
* The links marked are affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase I receive a small commission at no extra cost to yourself.