Thursday, May 05, 2016

Snippets and Threadtales




I've been sewing and quilting, I've been playing with chickens and training them to be friendly, I've been setting up tables and fabric for a gigantic $1 yard fabric sale, and I've been otherwise working on my skills as a multi-talented chicken and fabric whisperer as I continue to sew for my two grandbabies and make comfort blankets and quilts for good causes. Variety is the spice and the adrenaline of life.

Unfortunately, I've also been chasing away a coyote that was after my chickens as well as all kinds of other predators. Not my kind of a rush, trust me!

They coyote was the biggest adrenaline rush ..mostly for him. I thought my heart would stop when I saw him attacking the closed up for the night chicken coop during early daylight hours. But I guarantee his heart did stop when this absolutely stark raving crazy chicken woman began running after him hollering and screaming at the top of my lungs!


My husband thought the house was on fire and came running as fast as he could. He caught enough of a glimpse of the coyote to know my identification was correct and know that the coyote probably had not stopped running until he hit the town of Silverton..a good 40 minutes by car away!



The new little chickens weren't outside yet (but are now as seen above) so we spend parts of each day after my husband's work away day designing and redesigning the most effective but economical way of keeping the coyote and the 6 dogs we caught on trail cam video..all trying to also break during one two week period!!!

 
We need to keep them out and away from my babies while still giving us the feeling of free range and free spirited country living that we and the girls treasure.


So, it's very sad to have to add more fences to the pastoral scene we have out back, but keeping my girls safe is more important.



Insides the house, its been Spring Cleaning...that should be all capital letters. Airing of the bits and pieces and add to that lots and lots of vacuuming, carpet shampooing, dusting, and so forth.


I am as crazy of a cleaning and organizing woman as I am a coyote chaser or chicken and cat lover sewing and quilting woman! Most people have signs warning others of dogs, my family tells them to look out for me!!!!!




And I've been sewing bits and pieces of fun. With a year and a half of being a new grandma under my sewing machine needle, I've sewn ..believe it or not...somewhere over 300 baby things. I did mention crazy right? All caps on the crazy. But its the most fun I know how to have..making little things for little precious people. And not just my own, anyone I can! Things you can do in 15 minutes to an hour and the sense of accomplishment from that is pure bliss.


I love making blankets, quilts, cloth diapers, burp pads and bibs but mostly now, we're at the big ..cute ones..stage. So, I discovered baby bandanna bibs and have been having so much fun making these tiny little bits of precious fun!



So, not yet shared, about a dozen new baby bibs. From ones that match the high chairs cushions for my granddaughter to sit in..oh, yes..made two cushions for our almost an antique wooden high chair from my children's era.....to baby bandannas for my wee 6 month old grandson.

You don't really even need patterns for these little things. You just make your own, but here's hints and photo tips on how I do it!

  Baby High Chair Cushions: seat and back of chair

 I measured the back and the seat...where the photos are right now..still looking but basically I place pieces of newspaper up against it and simply mark lines for the shape with a magic marker! Leaving extra for the flat batting to keep it soft and sew seams as you'd expect attaching tie on however you wish. After I find the photos I'll add them in. But I made a back cushion and a seat one. Very cute when done.


Now, mine is not a kiddish print but one to match the barstool cushions and table toppers and such that I'd previously made. I love a lot of variety with a bit of commonality thrown in to fool people into thinking that I know what I'm doing ;-)



Oh, yes! The high chair bib. I added a little heart for my little sweetheart grandbaby girl.


Baby Bandanna Bibs

Lot of bandanna bibs..three different sizes as I went along with ever lengthening velcro strips for sizing up or down as needed.

 

The two taps at the top of my 'pattern' ignore those. Those are placement point for the line of design on the fabrics. they got cut off after stitching.



I used some hand me down very thick cotton knit for the backing on most of them..see the cute little stars. Absorbantly perfect in every way.


Front of the bandanna bib.


View from the back with the velcro on the strip across. Place the hook..rough..velcro on the inside so it doesn't scratch while putting bib on baby.



Reversible as shown..either side!


Flannel alphabet..so sweet. Cotton print on the other side of this one.



Quilted Fleece Play Pad:

And a really puffy play pad. It goes under one of those lay down baby activity play centers. The oens that aren't quite soft or padded enough. A couple of pieces of 36" x 36" (finished) fleece and a super soft piece of layered multiple times batting inside.




Now, I used upholstery batting...very, very thick plus two layers of thin polyester batting on each side.


I didn't want hugely thick seams so I first sewed the fleece 'blanket' together right sides together, leaving an opening to turn right side out. Then I cut the batt just the right sides, rolled it up, fit it into the opening, flattened it down nicely by hand inside. Then I sewed if down , catching it on the outside. Think about it logically instead of following these directions. Worked perfectly and easily with no bulky seams just the two fleece edges inside. 
Don't want to do that, keep it less puffy that what I wanted ;-)


 Just quilt it down here and there ..I did outlines of a few blocks..and boy did it work well!



So, there you have it. Snippets and Threadtales from the sewing room amidst the wild and crazy goings on of my life!



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Michele Bilyeu Creates With Heart and Hands as she shares her imaginative, magical, and healing journey from Alaska to Oregon. Creating, designing, sewing, quilting, and wildcrafting... from my heart and with my hands.

5 comments:

  1. I'm going to have a bit of fun this weekend making a No-Sew Tutu for the grand-girl who is, BTW, 18 months old. Not a baby, not a quite a toddler.

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  2. Isn't it so much fun to sew for a baby? I loved making baby things, but now, my baby grandchild is a grown man. None of them seems to be in a hurry to settle down so I am waiting for them to hurry up before I get too old to enjoy their babies.
    The coyotes are very bad around here too. They have gotten every thing that they could from our chickens to the guineas that live next door. No pet is safe outside. They even come around in the daytime.
    I sure wish you weren't on the other side of the States. I would love to come to your yard sale. Good luck. I hope you make lots of money!

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  3. Busy busy busy you are always :) Love your photos and how green is your valley. Special girls have a very special crazy chicken parent :)

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  4. You go chicken lady. Your laugh is wonderful!!!

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  5. I thought I was the crazy chicken lady?! We found out that "chicken wire" is "for the birds"! Some creature (weasel? fox?) reached through the wire and killed three broilers. It never got inside, it killed by reaching through the fence. So I reinforced the sides of the mobile chicken tractor with 1/4" hardware cloth. I'm crying and screaming to the wind: no one is suppose to kill these chickens but me.

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Michele Bilyeu blogs "With Heart and Hands" as she journeys between Douglas, Alaska and Salem, Oregon.