This blog should be called "The Adventures of a Fabric Junkie!". I am passionate about fabric, threads, colours and textures. I can record my crazy quilting, sane quilting, embroidery and everything else that I consider important in my life.

Photo shows my block for the Hurricane Katrina fund-raising quilt "All That Jazz".

Monday, December 12, 2011

The March of the UFOs

We had a great weekend finishing off some UFOs which have been hanging around our house for weeks, months and even years.  What a terrific feeling to sew the last stitch or glue the last bit of braid or polish the last piece of wood and in the case of Pippa's baby bag, watch it walk out the door!!

Firstly, was the baby bag.  I used a pattern from a book on making baby gifts and while it looked simple and straight forward, it was the worst pattern that I have ever tried to decipher!! In the end it took about twenty hours of cutting, sewing, ironing, unpicking and hand-stitching over three weekends however when I gave it to Pippa today, she loved it so I guess the effort was worth it in the end.
While the front and back of the bag show the printed PVC with the pattern the right way up, the flap which is part of the same piece of fabric as the back is up-side-down. The change mat is rolled into a swag and strapped to the front.

The inside is lined with wadding and gingham with lots of pockets to hold all the important things that babies need.

Secondly were a pair of beaded lampshades for our bedroom.  I bought the pair of them for $8 at a charity shop about two years ago.  They had lacquered black bases and the frames were covered in grubby white fabric with a fringe of fraying knitted cord however, I loved the shape of the bases so I bought them anyway. Eddie scraped off all the black lacquer and sanded them down so I could spray paint them with Antique Cream paint. I ripped the grubby fabric and fringing off the frames but left the lining intact and then covered them with cream fabric and ivory stretch lace and cream braid.  Finally they were given their beaded fringes and now sit at either side of our bed. I love the soft, romantic Edwardian look - they'll go well with the still unfinished patchwork quilt one day.....
Finally, Eddie put the finishing touches to the 1921 Singer Treadle sewing machine that has languished in pieces in our dining room for about 12 years.  I saw it outside a second-hand shop and it reminded me so much of the one that my Nanna and my Mum had when I was a child. It was a wreck as it had been sitting on a verandah out in the weather and was badly water damaged.  Eddie totally dismantled it and treated each piece of metal, each piece of wood and even the leather strap has been treated with leather protection stuff. I love the finished product, he took all the bits of peeling veneer off the lid and saved them to cut into strips and cover the left-hand side piece on the top. He replaced the veneer on the lid with a new piece and had to re-make the curved base under the machine itself.  One bonus was that it came with the box of bits including the key and when I unlocked the drawers, they were full of 1920s haberdashery including embroidery cottons wound around magazine pages from a 1926 magazine, suspenders extensions, ancient bias binding and braids which had faded with time, artificial flowers and netting for hats and heaps of other mostly unusable bits and bobs. The machine will now take pride of place in the hallway so that it will be the first thing that people will see when they walk in our door.  Now I know why I married Eddie - it wasn't just for his good looks, LOL.


Faye said...

Oh Viv, how lucky are you to have yours finally finished, I have one in a similar condition to what yours sounds like it was in. I would love to have energy to get to work on it. Hmmmm, maybe one-day!!!

Natascha's Dolls said...

Youre an absolute gem Viv,Maybe I should invite you to come and finish mine you did such a good job of yours! I will give you a bonus? You have such energy wow!
I feel like I should pull my finger out! My new machine is at the Doctor's for machine it needs a service but they are standing by just in case!

Bear said...

Oh my Viv
I remember my Nana having this very type of machine - I was broken hearted when she traded it in on a electric model which I think may be here at Dads place- your Eddie has done it up beautifully I can see a new line of work coming up for him
love n hugs bear xoxoxox