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Posts Tagged ‘quilts’

a quilt

I am the kind of person who loves embarking on quilts, but then, when I am about half way done interest wavers, I feel unsure about the design I have chosen, my fabric choices feel too boring, and it all feels too unwieldy both in terms of time and size. Needless to say,  I give up.

What follows in a long period of this half-done-thing, not yet really a quilt, sitting in my cupboard, taking up space. Until one day, I am out of my hibernating period and I start work on it like a mad woman. The funny thing is: I am usually, very very pleased with the results–well, its been sitting around for so long that practically everything about it feels brand new!

Well, something similar happened to this one here. dsc_0004dsc_0011The story of this goes all the way back around 2010 (ok, this is one of my oldest). I bought the wool pieces while still living in Brooklyn, smitten as I was by this free tutorial and the idea of entirely hand sewing it. It was a big investment. The felted wool came from here (originally from Australia, a fact that I am discovering only now); it is incredibly lovely and soft, and I believe, hand dyed. Oh yes, and all that also means expensive. Still I jumped into it, with plans of finishing it and making a winter quilt for Ms. N, all in 2010. The cutting happened first and fast. It’s really a whole bunch of 4″squares (225 in all, to be precise). Then came the layout, all still easy. And then began the sewing. The tutorial instructions are great, with very detailed photos of how to put the two pieces together. But once you get that, it’s really just a whole lot of hand sewing. To say that it went slowly, verrry slowly, is an understatement. Because while it is one of those projects that one can carry with oneself wherever goes, and the process itself is relaxing (maybe even meditative), truth be told, it’s also quite boring.dsc_0025dsc_0013The pattern, if one may call it that, doesn’t call for a binding. There is only one layer, so technically there is nothing to “bind,” but with two kids and possibility of play, I decided to add one anyway to give it some more stability. The stitching is done with cotton embroidery thread which is sturdy enough, but I didn’t want to take any chances of unraveling at its edges. And, just because the wool is so lovely to begin with, I decided that border would be in lovely Liberty, of which I had a tiny amount of. The final quilt is about a 60″ square (with 15 pieces in one row).dsc_0015Of course, I love *love* the end result. We all do! There is just something so beautiful about the colours, and there is tremendous appeal in a design as simple as this. In the end, it really is just all about the wool, and I do think that the hand sewing does add its own bit of charm. Even my sometimes impatient stitches such as these.dsc_0019Having finally finished it, Ms. N cannot believe that it was meant for her to sleep under at one point (It just about barely covers her head to toe now.) It’s too large for Baby M, and so for now we have had to put it away. Come winter we will use it to keep warm during daytime, or for extra warmth on cold nights.

I really do wish I had finished this one sooner. But, I suppose there is a time for everything, and its now time to cherish it. And as embarrassed as I am to admit it, I should mention here that what really got me going this year was the fact that late November last year I discovered that the moths had gotten to it. If you look closely, you will notice extra small pieces of wool sewn over in places. dsc_0017dsc_0001Well yes, they, the industrial moths ate away tiny bits of the wool. So what you see, is the remedial work that had to be done to save the piece. Basically I had to cut smaller pieces of wool in the same colour (I no longer had larger pieces to entire replace the damaged squares) and sew them to the damaged part like attaching a bandaid. It looks fine–a good reminder in fact to not let things linger too long–and I was very very lucky to have caught this at the right moment.

So, that’s that. Finished, finally, a full seven years later after it started. I am happy to report that I have yet another WIP close to finish, and I will be able to show you that soon too. What are you working on these days? I would love to hear.

Asmita/xx

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January for some reason never feels like a start of the new year to me. Maybe because sometime at the end of the year we are in Pune and by the first week we are back in Delhi. Then it’s school, Delhi winter temperatures and the trying to get back into things. So this means I usually come around to the idea of a new year by the first week of February.

So, on that note, happy 2016 friends! I hope it is a happy, good lucky year for everyone.

I got a tiny bit of sewing done last month and here it is:DSC_0533A good friend’s sister-in-law had a baby and my friend wanted me to make a baby quilt for her. Specifically she wanted something that would be good for the first six months or so, so I made a tiny blanket with patchwork pieces on the front and one single piece of fabric on the back. I put a few layers of an old saree in between the front and the back pieces of fabric to give it some thickness and used a satin stitch in place of tying it. The whole thing measures 30″X30″. DSC_0537As you can see above I sewed it shut with my current favourite way, the blanket stitch. And I embroidered the baby’s initial on the back.DSC_0565It was a quick fun project and it got me back into my sewing groove so I enjoyed it immensely.DSC_0561 What has your new year been like so far? And what projects are you working on? Any resolutions? I have a few to share here, and I will be back soon to share them.

And before I forget, Happy Chinese New year to everyone! We are celebrating with friends; I hope you are doing something nice too.

Asmita/xx

 

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start of a new year

Because I have all but disappeared from blog land, it is bit awkward to come back and suddenly pick up where I left off. Kind of like a good friend that you have been wanting to write to but somehow just not being able to.

Of course, all the usual reasons exist (baby, child, housework: overwhelmed….) but this time a few more added themselves to these few. Most importantly we moved houses again and more weeks that I would like to count have gone in the packing then the unpacking. Now we are all thoroughly sick of this activity.

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This thing that  N made back in December actually is a good reminder of this time. She is totally over making these paper flowers, and when I told her that I was thinking of posting this on my blog she told me that she made much better things now, suggesting that this little light holder is ancient. Meaning last year.

So welcome 2015, it’s been a month since the new year has arrived!

Amidst the moving I finished a few left over projects, of which one was a very large long pending quilt.

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Phew!

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It has been adorning N’s bed for the last whole month, and both she and I are delighted with it. DSC_0010DSC_0006

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It’s my largest project to date, and I am glad of how all those little pieces found their place and came together eventually. The squares and the whole thing measures roughly 90″X60″. The back ended up being a bit frustrating requiring more pieces and cutting than what I had anticipated, but it has some of N’s favourite prints and more scraps so it makes me quite happy.

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One of the nice things about this new house that it gets a lot more light than the old one, so I am looking forward to photographing more in her room (and thereby show you more of our lovely new house :-).

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Besides the quilt there are few things here and there finished and not yet photographed, so I hope to show them soon. Sadly in this boy sewing has totally been ignored. In fact I am yet to make anything yet for baby M, but things are already on the cutting table for him. So amends will be made. In the meantime here is a photo of mister cutie.

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I promise promise promise promise to be back soon!

xo/asmita

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a gift

N quilt in progress 1For the last few months now I have been working on this project that can only be called as insane. I have procrastinated for months while working on it, then worked like  a mad woman at it, and am finally this close to finishing it. Now I can’t wait for it to be done.

Here are a few random photos of the-thing.  N quilt 1 N quilt in progress N quilt 2N quilt in progress 2

And here is N patiently keeping me coming while the baby is sleeping and when I am sewing. N in Nov

In the midst of all this, I sadly forgot to show you the most wonderful gift we received for the new baby a couple of weeks ago.martas elephant

I mean look at this. Isn’t it adorable? It is a small little elephant to go in in our ‘study’ where I sew and the two babies play 🙂

The story behind it is this: more than a month ago, my blog friend Marta emailed me to tell me that her parents were visiting India. I ‘met’ Marta perhaps a year ago through her lovely blog (you should visit it to see the beautiful clothes she makes for her two daughters) and was more than happy to give her recommendations for fabric shops in Delhi. To my great surprise when I met Marta’s parents (two lovely people) they handed us a bag with goodies. Inside it was this elephant made by Marta! gift 2

And these most beautiful buttons with a note.

Thank you Marta! I love the elephant and the buttons, and am happy to report that the elephant is being played with everyday and I am saving the buttons to be used with some special fabric 🙂

Asmita/xoxmartas elephant 1

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happy diwali 2014

Happy Diwali dear friends! Hope it brings your way lots of good and joyous things in the year to come.

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We have had a relatively quiet one here. N played with a few sparklers, a few close friends visited us, my cousin arrived late last night to spend a few days with us and see the new baby and her niece (and of course us :-), and the boy turned three months old.

I have done such little sewing as you all well know but managed a pant the night before. I am happy to say that it took all of twenty minutes and the pattern is the free one from Made by Rae. It’s super quick, took very little fabric, but is a wee bit tight, so the next one will have to be larger.

madhav blue pants

I am however excited to day to show you something else too.

mini quilt 1mini quilt 3It’s a mini quilt. I am planning to put up on the wall behind baby M’s cot which currently sits in our bedroom.

You see, M does not have anything like a nursery, and will most probably move into N’s room when he moves out of ours. The walls were kind of bare…and I had been wanting to put something up for him to look at. (Well, there is always the ceiling fan….but still…)

And, I had been dying to make these mini quilts from the purl bee series. The pattern is from here, and comes with excellent instructions. It took me almost two weeks to make, but it was fun adding the layer after layer.

I hope baby M will take a look at it once in a while when he decides to take a break from staring at the fan. 🙂

mini quilt 2The fabrics are all scraps from here. Many  are remnants of things I made for N, so seeing them again makes her happy too.

And for the final photo, here’s me holding it up. 🙂mini quilt 4

So what have you been sewing. I believe kcw is in full force and there is incredible amount of loveliness to be seen and admired. Have you participating?

Asmita/xox

 

 

 

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old times

Hello.

I have about one month to go for the baby to come starting today, and I have been thinking…I still have not felt any urge as such to sew for the new baby. For one, I have been really lucky to get enough clothes, blankets and what not from friends new and old the the coming baby. And then there is stuff here and there saved from from the time when N was little.

Needless to say a lot of time these days goes in bringing everything to one room, putting the AC on the lowest possible setting and then going through the stuff to see what is useful. With N as part of this process as she often is, there are lots of oohs and aahs. Clearly, someone is having a whale of time going through these tiny clothes and seeing which doll of hers they will fit, and which the baby can get into! You can imagine there is a lot of folding and refolding….dupata 2

But anyway. Not to digress. In the middle of all this, I have also been thinking about how long I have been sewing for.

And this is the one of the very first things I made for N. It’s what we call in Marathi a “dupata,” a swaddling blanket of sorts, and I remember sitting at my mother’s sewing machine cranking this one out in the first month after N’s arrival.

The fabric I had gathered from my tailor who still makes clothes for me, some of it is random furoshiki (Japanese wrapping cloth) from my time in Japan, and the yellow I bought. But really I had no clue how to cut; it was the first time I was trying out a rotary cutter and all those fancy  rulers that go with it.

Still it got made. And six years later it is still in use. N plays with it and used it to wrap up her dolls, and as of yesterday she willingly gave it up to now be used by the new baby.  DSC_0768

 

Leaving aside the fact that the sewing is not all that straight, I am still pretty impressed, or really looking back surprised  that I kept going. It was, I remember not a whole lot of fun, but then you know how something still sticks and I kept going back to it.

After that it was not for a while that I tried my hand at teeny tiny clothes. But that’s for another story, for another time.

This one-patchwork-quilt-like thing got me into making a few more small things. Looking back, already I think, I was getting into things a little bit more.quilt 2quilt 1

For a while they went up on the wall in N’s room, and then they came down again to be played with. Now N wants them up again, next to the baby new crib (i.e just as the ways they hung above her bed when she was in the crib :-). Talk about excitement levels!

It does feel a bit strange I must admit to revisit these ‘old’ things, which while not very old do feel that way. I feel like I haven’t really looked at them, or thought about what went into making them for a long time. And the last six years have really swept past. Do you also sometimes get that feeling about what you made before?

So while I am right now in the process of making (yet another) something for N, I am looking forward to seeing more of this old(er) stuff around me. And maybe appreciating myself just a little bit 🙂quilt 3

Asmita xox

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scrappy

Hello there!

It’s been long…again, hasn’t it? I hope you are well well.

Unlike previously, as is usually the case after my long absences, I want to tell you that this time I have actually been quite productive. Just somehow not very good with posting what I have been up to.

If you remember, I said a while ago, that I have a really hard time throwing out scraps. Well, I have been rather good with using them up consistently, and have quite a few more blocks to show.

 

log cabin quilt 3log cabin quilt 2

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log cabin quilt 4They are all entirely made of scraps and I am happy to report that the pile of just-can’t-bear-to-throw-away fabric pieces is slowly diminishing. Each block measures 12.5″ now, and i think with another twelve of them I’ll have a bed cover or a quilt for N’s new bed.

She is super excited about this one, and can’t wait for me to be done with it. Neither can I!

More soon.

Asmita

 

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