Wednesday, July 3, 2019

A Few Finishes

I've been away from my work bench quite a lot lately. When that happens, I like to tidy things up and this means finishing UFOs. There is something about finishing and liking the result that gives me inspiration for my next project.

In one case, I'm running in circles. I made this black linen Urban Tunic as a dress a couple of years ago. First I wore it as a jumper in order to avoid bare arms. Adding that white tee shirt seemed to help.

The following year I thought that adding sleeves would magically convert it into my favorite LBD.

Nope. When I wore it, I felt like a big black blob. So I removed said sleeves and I'm back to where I started. It's hot here so maybe my vanity over my floppy arms will lose out to the practicality of a sleeveless dress.

Or maybe I need to pull out that white tee shirt again. Or cut it off and make it a tunic. Or...

Go figure.
My second finish is a TnT pattern made up in textured cotton shirting in black. It's my much-altered version of the MixIt Top from the Sewing Workshop. I've made so many changes to it that I feel like it's almost my design!

It has a shaped facing that is stitched in place, creating a little neckline styling. This means it slips over my head.

I always enjoy pulling out remnants from other projects and incorporating them into new projects. In this case, I used a remnant of fabulous Japanese cotton. I do not get how it is woven but it has a different design on each side. And it is not printed. I don't get it but I love it.

One side of the Japanese piece reads striped, the other reads as little groups of hash-marks (cut on the bias here)

I used the bias version to finish the lower hem. I finished the sleeves with simple cuffs. I kind of like it with my green linen Fit for Art Eureka pants.

My favorite finish is this 17x22 inch art quilt. It makes me inordinately happy.

I started it in a class with Cindy Grisdela. I've long admired her work and was so happy to take classes from her. We brought our own fabrics and created improv designs informed by her aesthetic.

Cindy uses quilt cottons but my fabrics are from my stash - so silk, linen, and cotton. Some of them are cross-dyed. The colors change depending upon the light.

I finished the edges with a facing. It's frame-less and (I hope) more art than quilt. I cut a piece of burnt orange radiance (silk and cotton sateen) to the exact size of my squared-up quilt. Then I sewed them right sides together. I made a slit in the back, trimmed the corners and turned it right side out. Then I free-form cut the edges of the facing for a fun design in the back. The edges were turned under and stitched like hand applique.

I also took a free motion quilting class from Cindy. I love her beautiful machine quilting. But after I finished the piecing on mine, I felt a powerful need to hand quilt it. I used a 2-ply, 12 weight cotton thread from Aurofil. Now I see why people rave about Aurofil. Even after many hours of stitching, I was sad to finish. I have some travel coming up quickly. I think I need another project with hand-quilting, really, sashiko.


  1. I just LOVE your posts. More than anything, you got me back into garment sewing...thank you so much...

    1. You made my day! Thanks for this. Happy sewing!

  2. I love everything, the art quilt is magnificent!

  3. Your quilt is beautiful. So are your arms. You could not do all your lovely work without those capable arms.

    1. You're right. It's good to be grateful. And I am.

  4. What a pretty quilt. I like the color combos and the modern design.