Modern Sewciety and an extra hour.

First, it was such a pleasure being on Modern Sewciety this week. You can find the Podcast here. carolyn podccast art

Stephanie was easy to chat with, and I really hope to get a chance to catch up with her one of these days since she’s a Florida girl as well.


While we were chatting she asked what I work on when I’ve got an extra hour, which got me thinking. What I realized is that some of my favorite projects are those that I can slip into extra pockets of time. That point was well proven this weekend when I had a couple extra hours and found myself making up some Shirts.


shirts quilt blocks_carolyn friedlander

This pattern lends itself well to that, and I’ve made it very easy to do so. I keep a box specifically for these guys with extra templates and fabric ready to go. Whenever I’ve got some extra time, all I have to do is pull it out and start sewing. Many times a little bit of this does a whole lot of good.

shirts quilt box_carolyn friedlander


Other “extra hour” projects include…


+ Any slow sewing and definitely endless amounts of Alturas blocks


+ the Single Girl


+ Green Tea and Sweet Beans


green tea and sweet beans_carolyn friedlander





+ Candy Coated


candy coated_carolyn friedlander


+ And then there are always future projects to plan for when the mood strikes…


project planning_carolyn friedlander

This pile sat on my floor for an embarrassing long time while I was finishing up the projects for my book. The pull is now taking shape as another extra hour project from one of the patterns in my new book. Maybe it’s strange, but this was the first thing I wanted to dive into after finishing all the book projects.

That’s probably a good thing.


What’s your favorite project for filling pockets of time?


blue shirt quilt block_carolyn friedlander


clammy cargo.

Thing have been a bit nuts lately, but here’s something I managed to slip in last week thanks to some late-night, extra-curricular sewing. There were a couple colliding factors at play that resulted in this mix.


clammy cargo_carolyn friedlander


Number 1, let’s just say that the cargo duffle (free pattern!) has been on my mind ever since I first saw images of it. Anna Graham is so talented, and she generously designed the pattern to go along with the Botanics release. (I’ve been in the Noodlehead fan club for some time, see clutch, supertote and social tote.)


Number 2, I  just got an accu-cutter last week. Clamshells are great, but they are also something I’d probably never have gotten around to if I had to cut them out by hand, so I’m really glad to be able to roll them through the cutter. Now, I can get real about all the clams that Latifah (Clam Queen) has been inspiring me with. (Btw, for anyone else wanting to make clams, her video is a must-watch.)


accu clam

clams_carolyn friedlander


But, I also don’t have a lot of time for off-topic sewing…

So I merged the two things, and my clammy cargo was born.

Plus, I was hitting the road last week to teach in North Carolina, and I knew my trunk show would not be complete without a new Botanics-filled bag. (Sewing justification is too easy sometimes.)

 clammy cargo insides_carolyn friedlander


I tried out some 30-wt Aurifil with this bag. It’s a tad thicker than the 50-wt that I normally use, but this was a perfect application. The stitches show up quite nicely. I also threw some Railroad denim on the bottom and in the handles. I love that stuff.


quilted clams_carolyn friedlander

The only unfortunate thing about this version was that I had to leave off the front pockets. While I love the way they work in the pattern, I hated to cover up my clams. Those will just have to make it onto the next one.

recently made: ledger top

ledger top_carolyn friedlander


As we get closer to the release of my next fabric line (this fall), I’ve been scoping out new clothing patterns to try when it’s here. I’ve already been working on some new quilts, but clothes are also important (/fun). Plus it gives me the excuse to make them.


While prowling a bit online I found this version (here) of Lisette 0450 (or 2245? not sure why the numbers are different) and was instantly curious. Plus, I happened to have the pattern already in my stash. (Woohoo for pattern hoarding!)


lisette 0450



The fabric Laura chose was great, and I thought the piping at the neckline was a smart detail. She also blogged about it here, which was helpful in thinking about my own.


Overall I stuck pretty closely to pattern, but lengthened it and added a slight curve to the hemline. In the future, I’ll lengthen it just a tad more and further exaggerate the curved hem. I really like the bias cuffs at the sleeves and chose not to interface them, which was a good call. The piping is definitely a must, and I can see playing that up in future versions, as well as playing with a contrasting neck and cuff.


The fit is pretty good and quite comfortable. I ended up taking it in a bit in the back seam and might play around with bringing in the sides a little more too. (I guess I could have just made a smaller size…) But with the shape being a bit boxy, you kind of want to find that sweet spot where you don’t look too truncated. Or at least I do since I don’t have much length myself. Someone taller could probably pull off the fuller shape without as much tweaking.


In the end it’s a good pattern that came together relatively quickly and easily. I’ll look forward to making it again.


ledger top neck_carolyn friedlander

recent weekend makings.

It’s been fun slipping in a few non-market related items over the last few weekends.

The first was a camera strap for my sister and her brand new camera.


lauries camera strap

made from the camera strap pattern in this booklet.

(fabric credits : stamped, dear stella, and some architextures)


lauries camera strap_2

Then there was a Super Tote.

supertote outside_noodlehead

Except I added cording to the entire front. (Would have added to the back too but ran out…)

supertote outside fabric

Pleated gusset is a sweet lil detail.

supertote pleat

Loving the elast-i-fied inside pockets. They will hold a TON.

supertote insides

Great pattern.

(fabric credits : stamped, Yoshiko Jinzinji, Robert Kaufman linen, and some architextures)

And finally some wiksten tanks that I’d been dying to make. These suckers go together nice and fast–I whipped out 2 in one day.

First with tsuru.

wiksten tank_tsuru

wiksten tank_tsuru

Then with some architextures.

wiksten tank_architextures_carolyn friedlander

wiksten tank_architextures_carolyn friedlander

I’m going to be living in these this summer.

saturday sewing binge.

I LOVE getting totally lost in a project, and that is exactly what happened over the weekend.


It all started with these guys that I’d picked up the day before at a quilt show.


ed emberley fabrics


Ed Emberley from Cloud9. I’d already been obsessed, and then finding some and actually having them in my possession made it impossible to resist.


For a hot minute, I thought about using them in a future pattern, but no. That idea was quickly turned down when I realized that I kind of wanted to make a quilt for no real reason.


After the fabric, my next muse was a project in this beautiful book by Amanda Jean Nyberg and Cheryl Arkison. Such a lovely, lovely book, and it’s been calling my name for a while. Candy Coated, aka the cover quilt, is exactly what I was looking for.


Sunday Morning Quilts


The fabric pull was fun. Especially because this pattern buys me all sorts of scrap liberties. I happily helped myself to a load of stuff and will continue to do so as the project grows. Sweet, merciful fabric.


fabric pull


The warm ochres in the lion print are majorly enticing, and I’m coupling them with some grays, lush blues, and plenty of neutrals. I’ve got the first few rows together, and hope to find time to plug away on it again soon.


candy coated lions in progress

envelope making.

architextures fabric envelopes_carolyn friedlanderI’ve been making some envelopes.

envelope maker

With some card stock, fabricstamps, and my trusty templates (above), I’ve been working to build back up my stash. I can’t seem to find the exact templates that I bought on etsy before, but these look like a great option.

architextures fabric envelopes_flat_carolyn friedlander


architextures fabric envelopes_carolyn friedlander


architextures fabric envelopes_carolyn friedlander


architextures fabric envelopes_carolyn friedlander


stamped envelopes_carolyn friedlander


stamped envelopes_carolyn friedlander


Scraps of fabric work great for the liners, and I made cardboard templates once I got the sizes down. I’m thinking you could make some fully fabric versions with a little interfacing–will have to try that next time. Then I used some spray adhesive to attach the lining, and double stick tape to keep everything else in place.




hello new year!

I’m feeling quite refreshed after taking a break. I had my computer turned off for at least a solid week, which is nothing short of a miracle. I did sneak a moment here and there on my ipad, but overall my effort to disconnect was successful, and my chi feels good.


While unplugged, my biggest goal was probably not to obsess over my schedule, making lists, or filling every moment with something productive. Aside from a couple of personal projects in mind, I just wanted to let go and enjoy. Some highlights were getting lost in good reading, knitting on a project that had gone totally dormant, spending time with family and friends, baking, sewing, and even getting lost in a 24 marathon. It’s been good.


Cue the visuals.


Shrug update: She’s being blocked, which means I’m closing in on the finish line. It’s always amazing to me how much lace opens up when blocked–a good reminder since I’m always tempted to skip this step. (Try to ignore the heinous pink towel and shoddy blocking system.)


blocked shrug


Single girl‘s got some new additions. It’s fun being able to work in some architextures.



single girl rings

I’ve been page-turning to Kaffe Fassett, vegan ultramarathoning, and industrialized fashion (not pictured). All very enjoyable.


reading book pile


Craft-wise, I’ve got a stack of flagged pages and projects from some recent acquisitions. (Apparently I’ve got a Japanese obsession going on. What can I say?)


craft book pile


And I’ve even gotten a start on a tunic from the Stylish Dress book (on top). I need to work out a few alterations, so it’s gonna hang for a bit while I ponder on that. The tea calendar was something I picked up at Quilt Market from Spoonflower. All it needed was some architextures binding to finish it off, which miraculously felt like the thing to do one afternoon.


tunic in the making


So, lesson learned that breaks are good. I’m feeling pumped to start a new year off with some energy and excitement for whatever it may bring. I’ve taken time to review the good stuff of 2012 and will continue to map out goals for 2013. I do love my goals.


Hope you are able to do some of the same. Happy New Year!



recently made: clutch.

Finally a new purse.


architextures clutch front_carolyn friedlander



I used this noodlehead pattern and really enjoyed it. The fabrics are from architextures with the exception of the strap and flap detail. Those are a Philip Jacob feather print.


Using my gray ledger print on the bias has been really fun–especially for some thick cording.


architextures bias cording_carolyn friedlander


architextures bias ledger cording_carolyn friedlander


Peach pockets on the inside.


architextures clutch inside_carolyn friedlander


My new go-to label system.


architextures clutch label_carolyn friedlander


Hardware (from the buckle guy) that I just happened to have on hand. Love it when that happens.


architextures clutch hardware_carolyn friedlander


architextures clutch backside_carolyn friedlander


Instead of using a magnet or velcro, I decided to go binder-style and use 2 vintage buttons from my stash with some braided embroidery floss.


architextures clutch closure_carolyn friedlander



late summer showers.


before the storm


The early evening showers have been quite regular this week, and I love the drama right before it all goes down. The colors and light get kind of intense. I snapped this yesterday while taking a look at our first pineapple in bloom. Fresh pineapple is one of my favorites, and I honestly had no idea that the bloom was so pretty. The purple and peach are quite unexpected.


fresh pineapple


The week has been great. I got four new quilt tops ready and almost all basted that I’ll be taking with me to Houston for Quilt Market. Quilting them will be next.

And I’m not quite sure what’s on the agenda for the weekend, but I do feel deserving of a little down time.


One thing might be to take a look through the latest GenQ. That came in the mail this week.


gen q second issue



And it’d also be great to make use of this fun fabric that I scored at the quilt shop yesterday while stocking up on backings.


purple and gold fabric



Warm cerise with flecks of gold…so lovely. Single girl maybe? Very likely.

happy weekend!