Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Geogram by Samarra Khaja

Twice a year, Quilt Market rolls around, and every time it does, I tell myself that I WILL NOT say yes if someone asks me to sew for their booth.  And then every Market, I end up sewing.  It's so exhausting and can be very stressful due to the time restrictions.  Houston 2016 was going to be different!  I was NOT NOT NOT going to do it, I don't care who asks!
Yeah, right.
And then Samarra Khaja said, "Hey, Kristi?  Your name came up as someone who might be able to help me.  I have a men's vest I'd like to have made for my booth..." Then guess what?  I found myself enthusiastically agreeing to that men's vest.  And a shirt, pair of pants, bow tie, neck scarf, skirt, jacket and baby romper.  Oh!  And two pretty cool band jackets for Samarra to wear during Market. 

I was happily up to my eyeballs in redesigning existing sewing patterns, matching hand-dyed threads to funky awesome quilt tops (Panda pictured above), taking FaceTime calls with Samarra while at work and sending mass amounts of text messages over fringe and trim. 

I didn't mind one bit, though.  And do you know why?  Because Samarra is infectious and warm and fun.  You could say that her new line with Lecien, Geogram, is too.  It's bright, colorful, versatile, subtle and very clever.  There are 30 bolts in this one line.  THIRTY BOLTS!  That is so incredible!

I spent a few frantic weeks helping her put together a good chunk of the items for her booth, with the help of my mom, who is a long arm quilter. Samarra stitched all of the animal portrait quilt tops herself, which are the coolest animal quilts I've ever seen, and then sent them on to my mom to be quilted, "framed" and labeled.

Fortunately, we didn't need to ship all of her items because Mom and I had decided to drive the ten hours (it'll be fun!  What?? No.  Never again.  Yeah, yeah, famous last words but in this case I mean it!) from Atlanta to Houston and deliver everything ourselves.  I'm telling you, that was the longest drive ever.  EVER.  EVERRRRRRRRRRR ugh, never again.
Anyway, somehow we made it in one piece and we delivered everything the next day.  We spent a few hours helping to arrange and set up Samarra's booth while she ran around between booth and two schoolhouses.    The next day, it was official booth time.  The response was incredible, mostly because of her animal quilt portraits and those amazing 3D masks.  But still, it felt really good to be a part of something so unique, creative and visionary.

Here are a few pictures of what I worked on, in progress and completed.  Be sure to ask your LQS to stock her new line, it is definitely stash-worthy!  Heck, it's even horde-worthy!  Enjoy!
Baby Romper front and detail 

Men's vest pattern in redesign mode 

Men's vest detail and almost finished

Girl's jacket lining in progress 

Girl's jacket finished 

Band jacket #1 detail 


Samarra's jackets almost finished

Jacket detail

Girls skirt finished

Neck scarf and bowtie

Take a look at the Geogram Blog Hop, if you can!  There's some cool people showing off their projects!  You never know what's going to inspire you, right?


• Feb 1, Wed: Brenda Ratliff | @justabitfrayed |
• Feb 3, Fri: Katy Jones | @imagingermonkey |
• Feb 6, Mon: Tara Curtis | @weftyneedle @t_jaye |
• Feb 8, Wed: Nicholas Ball | @quiltsfromtheattic |
• Feb 10, Fri: Jessee Maloney | @jessee_artschooldropout |
• Feb 13, Mon: Nicole Daksiewicz | @modernhandcraft​ |
• Feb 15, Wed: Kristi McDonough | @schnitzelandboo |
• Feb 17, Fri: Laura McDowell Hopper | @sonicstitches |
• Feb 20, Mon: Giuseppe Ribaudo | @giucy_giuce |
• Feb 22, Wed: Daphne Parthoens | @octopurse |
• Feb 24, Fri: Kate Basti | @katebasti |
• Feb 27, Mon: Rebecca Greco | @hugsarefun​ |
• March 1, Wed: Terry Druga | @tooheycohen |
 • March 3, Fri: Samarra Khaja | @samarrakhaja​ |

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

Quilt Raffle Winner

And the winner is...

But first, we thank each and every one of you who helped with this fundraiser.  Altogether, we raised $893 for his trip to London!  $893!!!  That's amazing!  Thank you, thank you, thank you!  You have been a tremendous part of helping him achieve this goal.

A great big thank you to Chief Ron Harrison of the Cleveland, TN Fire Department for being willing to pull the winning ticket.  

Congratulations to Michelle Dillon, who purchased 25 tickets, for winning this raffle!

We know you will enjoy and treasure your new quilt!

With many heartfelt thanks,
Kristi and Charlene

Saturday, October 01, 2016

A Quilt Raffle For My Nephew's Big Fabulous Trip!


(PayPal button thingy riiiiiiiiiiiiiight there-------------)

...if you're viewing this blog from a tablet or smartphone and wish to purchase tickets, you will need to scroll to the bottom of the blog and click "view web version"...

{Look to the right to get your tickets}

This is the part where I get to brag about my nephew... 

So, last year, my number two (heh...get it?  "Number Two" which is also code for poo...?) Anyway...last year my Turd Burglar nephew worked really hard and earned the Junior Drum Major  position in his high school marching band. 

I remember how nervous he was when it was time for the try-outs and I also remember telling him that if he went out there and gave it everything he had, he'd have nothing to worry about.  Well, being the extra-super smart auntie, I was right. 

 He went to his first drum major camp that summer where he and his fellow drum majorette earned several awards, one of which was the London Award.

  This is a prestigious award given to only four senior drum majors in attendance at the camp, and is basically like the MVP award.  He told me when he finished camp that year that it was his goal to win it himself for his senior year.  Well, guess what?  He totally did it.  I promised him that I would do whatever I could to help him raise the money for his trip.  So, my mom came up with the absolutely brilliant idea to have a quilt raffle.   

Holy cow there was a lot of cutting:

And a lot of little bits to sew:

But, before too long, I had a pretty pile of finished blocks:

Which means that not long after that, I had a finished quilt top:

I packed it up and took off to Mom's place to get it quilted:

Then brought it back home to do the binding.  Once attached by machine, I turned it to the back and stitched it on by hand.  All 242" of it.  (I still have a callous to show for it.)

And now here we are today.  It's ready to go home to one lucky raffle ticket winner.  Interested?  Here's the scoop:

*Tickets are $1 each
*6 for $5
*12 for $10
*25 for $20
*60 for $50
*125 for $100

*Open to buyers worldwide, but if an outside the U.S.A. buyer wins, they must pay the shipping.  By purchasing a ticket, you are agreeing to these terms.

*Quilt has been professionally cut, assembled and bound by myself.

*It has been professionally long-arm quilted by Charlene Trieloff, owner of The Cotton Farm Fabrics.

*Quilt is machine wash and dry!
*100% cotton fabrics, thread and batting.

When we reach our first goal of $1000, we will have a surprise giveaway for one of our ticket purchasers. Your name will be added for each ticket you buy.  For example, if you purchase 12 tickets, your name will be entered 12 times.

Ready to purchase a ticket or twelve?  Hooray!  The PayPal button is at the top of the blog, the first widget/gadget/button thingy on the right.

Thank you, thank you, thank you from me, Mom and the Turd Burglar ;)

 Size 60 1/2" x 60 1/2"  
Note : This raffle is open worldwide but 
the winner pays shipping if it ships outside the USA.


What is the London Award?  It's pretty cool, and I'm a little jealous.  Ok, I'm a lot jealous!  I've ALWAYS wanted to of to England!  Basically, he worked so hard and did such a fantastic job that he gets to go to London, England to represent the United States and perform in their annual New Year's Day Parade. Not only does he get to be in the INTERNATIONALLY TELEVISED (whaaaaaaat??) parade, but he also gets to watch other performances and then go sight-seeing.  Wow.  His trip is December 26-January 2 and I know he's going to have the most amazing, life-altering, wonderful time.  I'm really proud of him!  

Thank you for supporting our Little Turd and his Big Accomplishment!

Best of luck in the drawing!

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Tutorial: Bucket Lunch Bag

School is starting in two and a half weeks here in The South. August 5, to be exact. I can't quite believe it, I feel like it should still be a month away, or at the very least it should be the END of August! Anyway, school is coming and Roo has been on a sewing bender recently so we decided to make lunch bags. 

Of course, I didn't have a pattern so I had to make one up. This one is really simple and has just enough room for one of those nifty lunch cubes and a water bottle. 

You will need:
1/2 yard exterior fabric
1/2 yard lining
About a 10" square scrap of canvas
1/2 yard Insulbright
1 yard med-weight fusible interfacing
6" sew-on Velcro

Plus the usual:
Sewing Machine
Rotary Cutter/Cutting Mat/Acrylic Ruler
Iron/Ironing Board
Fabric Pen

Cut the Following

Exterior Fabric:
2 Front/Back 10.5"x13"
2 Handles 4"x18"
1 Pocket 7"x14"
1 Bottom 7"x9"

From Lining:
2 Front/Back 10.5"x13"
1 Bottom 7"x9"

From Insulbright:
2 Front/Back 10.5"x13"
1 Bottom 9"x7"

From Interfacing:
2 Front/Back 10.5"x13"
2 Handles 4"x18"
1 Pocket 7"x14"
1 Bottom 7"x9"

From Canvas:
1 Bottom 7"x9"

**Seam Allowance is 1/2", unless noted otherwise

**Following manufacturer's instructions, fuse interfacing to the wrong side of coordinating exterior pieces.

For the handles, fold the length of each handle in half, wrong sides together; press. Unfold, then turn each long edge into this center fold line; press. Fold again on the center line, making sure edges are nicely tucked in to the center; press. Edge stitch long edges of both handles, starting with the edge with two folds. This will prevent twisting and bunching during stitching.

For the pocket: fold in half, wrong sides together, to create a 7" square. Pin along the bottom and sides, leaving a 3"-4" space for turning; stitch, making sure to back stitch on each side of the opening and at the top edge. DO NOT sew the top (folded) edge. Clip corners; turn and press.

Topstitch 1/2" from folded edge.

Fold the pocket in half from side to side; finger press. Fold the front piece in half, side to side; finger press and/or mark center lines with a pin.

Place a ruler 2" down from too edge of bag front. Align the finished edge of pocket along the ruler, matching centers of pocket and front. Pin in place; edge stitch 1/8" from edge of pocket.

Match up the edges of Insulbright to the wrong side of front/back; baste inside the seam line to keep everything in place. Repeat for the bottom, but sandwich the canvas with the Insulbright as well.

Place right side of bag back fo the front; stitch. Finger press seams open; from the right side of the bag, stitch the seam down using 1/4" seam allowance on both sides of the seam.

Find the center of the front and back by matching up side seams and making a small 1/4" snip inside the seam line. Fold the bag bottom in half both ways, snip each time.

With right sides together, pin side seam of bag to center mark of the 7" side of bag bottom. Pin the remaining center marks of the bag bottom to the front/back. Carefully "walk" and pin the pieces together. You will notice the bottom piece is wider and the front/back will have a tendency to curve in front of the corner. Do your best to evenly distribute the front/back around the corner; trim. It should look something like this:

Repeat for all three remaining corner; stitch. Trim seam allowance with pinking shears, or snip notches into the corners with regular scissors.

Repeat process for lining.

Place edge of handle on either side of pocket; baste. Match front/back together for easiest handle placement guide; pin handle and baste in place.

Turn exterior right side out. Leave interior wrong side out. Insert bag into lining, right sides together, matching side seams. Pin around the edge, leaving a 4"-5" gap for turning; stitch making sure to backstitch on both sides of opening.

Carefully pull the bag out through the opening of the lining; press. Edgestitch all the way around the bag, keeping handles out of the stitching line. 

Place the wrong side of Velcro on the lining, about 1/2" down from the top, centered between the straps. Use Liquid Stitch glue to hold Velcro in place.

Wait about 15-20 minutes before stitching in place. 

That's it! Feel free to use a coordinating fabric for the pocket and handles, or go crazy and make it patchwork! Tag me in Instagram if you decide to make one. 

Happy Sewing!