Archive | weekend projects

My First Jumpsuit

It’s finished! My Rory Jumpsuit–and my first jumpsuit ever–is finished! I learned some new things about making jumpsuits and about my own physical proportions that aren’t as obvious when just sewing separates. It was fun!

Rory Jumpsuit in Brussels Washer linen

Making My First Jumpsuit

As I mentioned last month, the Rory Jumpsuit by True Bias looked like fun. It seemed like the kind of project that could give me some new things to think about. Naturally, I started by browsing around the internet to see what others had done with their own versions. There are loads of them on IG just looking at the Rory and Yari hashtags. (The pattern name changed at some point.) That gave me a great place to start.

When it came to cutting and sewing, working with full-body-length pieces was a new feeling. The pieces are just so long!

Rory Jumpsuit in Brussels Washer linen with snaps

Modifications (to start)

I made some modifications off the bat as well as a few more after the first try-on. If I were to make this jumpsuit again, I’d make some further changes too.

Rory Jumpsuit

Off the bat, I shortened the torso 1″. The pattern is written for someone who is 5’5″, and I’m maybe 5’4″ on a good day. Normally you might decide to take the excess out of the bodice and leg more evenly, but I already knew that I’m high waisted. Plus I wanted to be able to cuff the pant.

For any future versions, I’d definitely take a bit more length out of the bodice. The waist of the garment still falls a bit low on me, which restricts movement a bit and means the pockets are lower than I’d like for them to be. The Brussels Washer fabric that I used might also be exaggerating some of this as it’s drapey and has a good weight to it. This all makes it pull down a bit more than a different fabric choice. It’s still very comfortable and wearable.

I also adjusted the neckline a smidge by rounding it and cutting it higher. This was a personal preference, but in the end I’m really glad that I did because of how low the neckline falls on me even having done that. Making it again, I’d raise the neckline just a bit more–I’m realizing that this part of my torso is short too. Although I’m very pleased with where it ended up!

When cutting the garment, I also cut the leg a bit wider than the original pattern. (Here’s a tutorial if you are interested.) I knew I’d be able to take width out, and so I wanted to have some room to work with.

Rory Jumpsuit in Brussels Washer linen

Modifications (after a try on)

After the first try-on, I decided to take a significant amount out from the width in the bodice. Although this style can look great belted, I wasn’t wanting to do that, so I worked for a closer fit. I ended up taking at least 5″ total from the width. This design has princess seams, and therefore many places to take things in–a great bonus of this particular style. Since I’d already topstitched the front and back princess seams, I took this out of the sides and center back.

The final modification had to do with the closure. After asking around and doing a smidge of research, I opted for a sewn-in snap closure. I like the clean look of this–although buttons can look great too. I’m also eager to see how this choice affects the ease of wearing it, and mainly–ahem–going to the bathroom.

Rory Jumpsuit in Brussels Washer linen with sew-in snaps

The Fabric

The fabric is Brussels Washer Yarn Dyed by Robert Kaufman, a linen/rayon blend in the Chestnut color. This fabric is SO dreamy for a project like this. It’s comfortable, super drapey, and resists and embraces wrinkles in the right amount. As I already mentioned, the weight and drape can make it fall quite a bit differently from other fabrics, so I’m curious to see how this would fit with a different fabric choice.

Rory Jumpsuit in Brussels Washer linen

Next Jumpsuit?

This was really fun, and I’m enjoying wearing my new jumpsuit. The fabric is very comfortable, and I love the effortlessness of a single-piece outfit. Plus, sewing a jumpsuit is still new territory to me, so I am eager to make more. I can’t wait to dial in on my proportions better with the next version and try out different fabrics and styles.

I’d be more than happy to make another Rory, but instead I think I’ll try the jumpsuit suggested in Sonya Philip’s new book The Act of Sewing*. It’s not a super-formal pattern, but instead she walks you through using basic pieces provided in the book (pants + top) to make a jumpsuit. I’m think I’m ready for that adventure.

(*affiliate link)

Project Details

Rory Jumpsuit

Pattern: Rory Jumpsuit by True Bias

Fabric: Brussels Washer Yarn Dyed by Robert Kaufman in Chestnut

Comments: 9 | Leave a comment

Kept Pouches

Pouches are some of the handiest things to sew. These Kept Pouches are some that I made in my Kept fabrics using Aneela Hoey’s Speedy Vinyl Pouches pattern.

speedy vinyl pouches in Kept fabric

There are many great things about the pattern and this type of project in general. First, the pattern is easy to follow and features 3 different size options.

Kept Pouches holding thread, thread gloss and other notions
speedy vinyl pouches in Kept fabric

Second, this is a great project for showcasing a print that you are excited about. Using the clear vinyl means you have a literal window into that fabric of your choosing as well as whatever you are storing in the pouch. I like to plan out the fabric that will be seen through the vinyl first, and then I build my other choices around it.

speedy vinyl pouches in Kept fabric

When I travel I like using little pouches to store and organize different things within a larger bag. A great example is thread–it’s nice to have it all together and in something that you can see it.

kept pouches

The largest pouch is also great for storing a few blocks, pattern and/or a project that you are working on. I find that I not only travel with my projects organized in pouches like this, but I also keep them organized in my studio this way too. It’s a great way to keep everything all together.

speedy vinyl pouches in Kept fabric holding a Spools pattern and project

If you are new to working with vinyl and/or attaching zippers this is a great project to start with. Everything is flat and has squared edges, which makes it very approachable. Just take it one step at a time.

speedy vinyl pouches in Kept fabric

These Kept pouches were a great way to mix and match the new fabrics from the collection. They also make excellent gifts! (But I’m very tempted to keep all of these for myself..ha!)

speedy vinyl pouches in Kept fabric

Pattern: Speedy Vinyl Pouches by Aneela Hoey

Fabric: Kept

Comments: 4 | Leave a comment

Me Made May 2021

Me Made May 2021 is here! (General info about Me Made May and Me Made May 2021.) Each year the challenge can feel a bit different, especially with it going on for so many years now. Last year the pandemic was so new that for me it was a nice way to connect with others while also showing how I was finding comfort in my wardrobe.

The Challenge This Year

This year, I want to use Me Made May to get my head into some new projects. Over the last year I’ve re-discovered how much my handmade wardrobe gives me strength and comfort in challenging times not just in terms of wearing but making too! My plan is to share some of what I’m wearing, but also make a couple of items that I’m in the mood for.

To be honest, there hasn’t been much of a need or desire to make clothes in the last year until recently. I made a Linden sweatshirt, and I also got around to making a matching pair of sweatpants. Fun, huh?!

linden sweatshirt and hudson sweatpant

I also added a label after buying some KATM labels from The Craft Table. They’ve always called out to me, and I’m happy to have them to add to my projects. I’m especially liking the 2021 labels, because I never know when I’ve made which garments. This is a great way to change that.

hudson sweatpant

The main thing I’m wanting to make is a jumpsuit. I have no idea why this is speaking to me, but it is. A single-piece outfit with pockets sounds pretty good. I haven’t made (or worn) a jumpsuit before, and the challenge of sewing something new is exciting. I love that in addition to being new to me, it’s also somewhat involved. Simple sews can be great, but there’s also a time and place to get deep in a project with many steps and different things to consider. I’m ready for that! The pattern I’m going to try is the Rory Jumpsuit by True Bias (formerly called Yari). As for fabric, I’m not totally sure what I’ll use. I’ll pop into my stash first, and see what I have available. Without looking, I’m thinking a linen or denim could work well.

Rory Jumpsuit . by True Bias
(photo by True Bias)

Step 1: I’ve already bought the pattern. Now I need to print out my pattern pieces and take a look at my fabric options.

The jumpsuit is the main plan for the month, but I’m marking these leather house shoes (from Seamwork) for the future. Neat, huh?!

Leather House Shoes . Seamwork Magazine
(photo by Seamwork Magazine)

I’m also pretty excited about the Casual Summer Tee Knit Along with Fancy Tiger. Their newsletter came out, and I jumped right on board. I’ve been knitting a bit here and there, and I’m nearing the finish line on a sweater (inspired by @elisabew). I’ll finish up my Sew Faded sweater (pattern by Drea Renee), and then I have a summery (or more like Spring/Fall/Winter for us in FL) knit on deck to follow.

Speaking of, here’s the sweater I’m working on! It’s been my go-to project in the evenings when I’m ready to unwind. The plan was to use up some yarn that I have in my stash, but of course I couldn’t help but add in a couple new colors as I’ve gone along. (All yarn is from my LYS, Four Purls.) It’s been really fun! I have the left sleeve to go, and then I need to pick up and knit the neck.

so faded sweater . carolyn friedlander

I’ll also plan to share more garment-related projects and resources on the blog and in my newsletter (sign up here), so stay tuned.

What are your thoughts about Me Made May 2021?

Comments: 5 | Leave a comment

Sun Hats in Kept

Have you sewn a hat yet? They are really satisfying to make! Hats are one of those projects that might seem out of reach, but when you actually do it they aren’t too bad at all. Just take it one step at a time. Plus I always love making something that I can actually use! Here’s a look at two sun hats in Kept.

Sun Hats in Kept fabrics

Serpentine Hat

Serpentine Sun Hat in Kept fabrics

The Serpentine Hat (pattern by Elbe Textiles) has a wider-brim, and I used two blue prints from my Kept collection. I like that the the more-patterned print peeks out from the inside, but it’s definitely reversible and you can wear it either way.

Serpentine Sun Hat in Kept fabrics
Serpentine Sun Hat in Kept fabrics

Both fabrics are quilting-cotton weight. I used woven fusible interfacing on the darker blue fabric to give it a bit more body. I think the flop factor is just right.

Serpentine Sun Hat in Kept fabrics

It’s fun to think of wearing this with other things I’ve made in ways not too different than putting fabrics together in a quilt. Blue is an easy color for me to mix into my wardrobe.

Serpentine Sun Hat in Kept fabrics

Sorrento Hat

Sorrento Sun Hat in Kept fabrics

The Sorrento Hat (pattern by Elbe Textiles) is more the classic bucket style hat. I hope to get some wear out of this one this summer.

Sorrento Sun Hat in Kept fabrics

The black and charcoal print from Kept makes a statement that still feels put together and easy to pair with an outfit. On the other side is Essex yarn-dyed linen in Graphite. Incorporating the Essex gives it a bit more texture and body. In addition, I used woven, fusible interfacing on the Kept fabric.

sewn Sorrento Sun Hat in Kept fabrics

Both of these sun hats in Kept go together more easily than you’d think. Again, take it one step at a time. I really enjoyed sewing them, and I can’t wait to put them to use this summer.

Kept Hat from the side

Pattern(s): Serpentine Hat by Elbe Textiles, Sorrento Hat by Elbe Textiles. (If you are wanting to make a kid’s hat, the Oliver + S Reversible Bucket Hat pattern is excellent. I’ve made it many times.)

Fabric(s): Kept and Essex Yarn-Dyed Linen in Graphite

Sorrento Sun Hat back in Kept fabrics

Comments: 4 | Leave a comment

A New Linden Sweatshirt.

Linden Sweatshirt in Sienna
(photo by Alexis Wharem of Greenprint Photography)

I haven’t made a Linden sweatshirt in years. To be fair I’ve made TONS of them, so the need hasn’t really been there. I have so many in all different fabrics and weights, so my bases are mostly covered. But recently I noticed that Robert Kaufman has some new knits. One is a french terry and the other is a french terry fleece–so the fabric you’d expect in a sweatshirt, and the colors are pretty good!

The Spruce and Sienna colors called out to me first, so I got some of each. Both colors are stunning in real life, and I’m excited to put the Spruce to use in something else. But first, the Sienna.

Linden Sweatshirt
(photo by Alexis Wharem of Greenprint Photography)

If you are new to garment sewing and/or new to sewing with knits, the Grainline Linden Sweatshirt is such a perfect place to start. The construction is fairly straight forward, and you don’t have to worry too much about the fit as sweatshirts are on the more forgiving side.

Linden Sweatshirt
(photo by Alexis Wharem of Greenprint Photography)

I have the Linden dialed in pretty well for me since I’ve made so many. The only modification I make is to shorten the sleeves just an inch or so, which is a consistent modification for me.

To cap it all off, I finally got around to making a pair of sweatpants to match. I used the True Bias Hudson Pant, which I also have squared away after having made a few pairs of them as well. Mainly I adjust the pockets to be more inseam and discrete, which is just a personal preference. Yay for comfy clothes!

Patterns: Linden Sweatshirt by Grainline and Hudson Pant by True Bias

Fabric: Trainers French Terry by Robert Kaufman in Sienna

Comments: 3 | Leave a comment

Colorful Quilts for my Niece

This summer I made a couple of colorful quilts for my niece. It was a treat for both of us.

Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander

To start, I picked up a couple of adorable mini charm packs from Bunny’s at QuiltCon back in February. (That feels like a million years ago!) Together the packs make up a full rainbow of color, and I knew at the time they’d be perfect for her–and me. I love all of the cute Japanese prints and the range of color feels so happy too.

colorful fabric squares

Quilt Tops

To me, one mini quilt wasn’t enough, and so I made matching quilts–a big one for her and the mini for her dolls. I made the mini first from the 2 mini charm packs from Bunny’s with 2 1/2″ squares added in from my stash (my 2 1/2″ square stash!). It’s a simple, checkerboard layout with the stash pieces going between the Japanese prints. The lighter colors set them off nicely.

Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander

For the big quilt, I wanted a similar-but-larger match, and so I sized up by using 5″ squares. Unfortunately I didn’t have a perfect rainbow pre-cut pack to work with, but I created my own by diving into my stash. I sought out colorful prints with clever motifs that I hoped she’d enjoy discovering and perusing over time. There’s nothing better than an i-spy quilt, and I definitely had a great time revisiting all of these lovely fabrics.

Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander

Like in the mini version, I alternated in with some of my own lighter prints–mostly repurposed from my scrap piles.

Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander


There’s nothing better than sewing through a stack of color, plus it was fun seeing all of the great prints as I sewed. I pressed all of the seams open, with a seam wheel first, and then with the iron. I think this makes things much easier.

Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander
Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander
Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander


Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander

Hand quilting has been my personal vacation/spa treatment/zen in recent months. I’ve really been loving it. For these quilts I wanted to hand quilt them to make them super soft, but also to use a colorful array of thick threads to stand out.

Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander
Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander
Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander

I changed my thread colors often to mimic the color changes across the quilt. The effect is really nice.

Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander
Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander
Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander

I didn’t mark these quilts, and so the lines are more freeform. I stitched from corner to corner, with some definite wobble here and there, but I like the personal touch.

Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander


Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander

As I mentioned recently, I’ve been trying to be better with adding labels to my quilts. It was pretty easy to do here, because I had an extra square from the big quilt. I re-purposed it for the label, and then made a matching mini for the other quilt.

Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander

My niece loves her quilts, which of course makes me very happy.

Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander

Pattern: None–just 5″ squares for the big quilt, 2 1/2″ squares for the little quilt.

Fabrics: Mini quilt is made from 2 mini charm packs from Bunnys (I don’t see a listing, but you can probably ask via email) plus my own fabric. Larger quilt is made from my stash with fabrics by Melody Miller, Alexia Abegg, Rifle, Aneela Hoey, UPPERCASE, Denyse Schmidt, Jeni Baker, Charley Harper, Rashida Coleman-Hale, Lizzy House, Ed Emberley, Leah Duncan, Robert Kaufman, and several others.

Hand Quilting: Here’s a link to my favorite tools.

Colorful Quilts for my niece . carolyn friedlander

Comments: 19 | Leave a comment

Project Ideas for a Long Weekend

With it being labor day here in the US, I thought I’d share some project ideas for a long weekend. Although I’m not sure what a long weekend actually means in the times of COVID. Aren’t the weeks and ends blurring together? Oh well. I’m going with it!

Appliqué Projects

Sewing is relaxing, and there’s nothing more relaxing to me than an appliqué project be it big or small. In fact, having a variety of appliqué projects at the ready is always my goal. To start the list, here’s something I cut out recently. It is two new blocks for my Scrappy Everglade Quilt (from my Everglade pattern). My rule has been to go one block at a time, but I got carried away and prepped two. I can’t help it. My fabric approach is to use some of my fabrics (Collection CF here) + Liberty of London.

scrappy everglade quilt blocks . carolyn friedlander

If your weekend energy is best suited for a relaxing project that you can settle in with and not fuss over too much–this is it. After picking your appliqué and background fabrics, you’re good to go.

For an appliqué project with more in terms of composing colors and shapes, Clay is a good option. Sometimes I want to feel like I’m painting with fabric, and this one is like that. I love simmering over the composition of a project for a few days, which is easy to do here.

clay mini quilt . carolyn friedlander

You could go small or big with this one, it all depends on what kind of a dive you’re ready to do.

clay throw quilt . carolyn friedlander

Pieced Projects

When you’re more in the mood to sit down at the machine, here are a couple of projects to consider.

First up is a mini quilt. They are creatively satisfying and not a huge commitment. Still a favorite is this Envelopes quilt from several years ago (here’s the blog post). The envelope liners are all fussy cut, which made for a satisfying deep dive into my stash. (Heads up on that, if you’re like me, you’ll make a huge mess in the process, but it’s really worth it!)

Fussy Cut Envelopes quilt . Carolyn Friedlander

For a larger project at the sewing machine, one that I’ve been thinking about lately is my Spools pattern. Since my friend Lee (of May Chappell) started this BIG Spools quilt, I’ve been wanting to make a bigger version myself. There is definitely a pile of 5″ squares in my studio reserved for this, which includes a charm pack of Rashida Coleman Hale’s Speckled prints. I know that I always say this, but there’s nothing better than sewing through a big stack of colors.

spools quilt . carolyn friedlander

Gift Sewing and No-Sew Projects

For anyone not in the mood for making a quilt, there are many other options. Lately I’m especially excited about projects that spruce up my surroundings or can be good to give to a friend. Here are a couple of projects that fall in these categories.

Cloth napkins are very easy, and they are something I use daily. If you’re looking to refresh something you use in your daily life or you want to put something together for a friend to spruce up their daily life, here’s an idea.

Friedlander Fabric Napkins . Carolyn Friedlander

Another favorite for me in the sewing-for-home department is custom dishtowels. You can get creative with embroidery and other embellishments, or you could just use a special fabric. Either option would be well utilized in a project like this.

euclid dishtowels . carolyn friedlander

Other projects on my mind by some of my favorite designers are a new bag (maybe this one by Noodlehead), some pouches (these or these by Aneela Hoey), and maybe even this handy wallet (by Megan Callahan) for the MQG.

How’s that? Does this give you some project ideas for a long weekend? Or is it overwhelming (since at least I just reminded myself of many things that I want to make)? Let me know, and I’d love to know some of your favorites too!

Comments: 2 | Leave a comment

Scrap Squares.

Scraps! I’m not sure where you fall on the scrap spectrum, but for me they can get out of control. In an effort to cut down on my scrap pile, here’s a new thing I’ve been trying this year–and I think it is helping. These scrap squares are just the colorful break and productive way to deal with scraps that I needed.

scrap squares . carolyn friedlander


I’m a scrap saver, mostly because I find scraps to be handy. Whether I’m paper piecing, appliquéing, thinking about new color schemes, it is less daunting to work from a pile of scraps than it is to work from something more precious and pristine like yardage. But then it is hard to part with scraps, and the piles become unruly.

scrap squares . carolyn friedlander

The Plan

The idea is simple, but by giving myself clear direction and purpose it is much easier to act. Any random pieces of fabric–usually leftovers from a project–are cut into 2 1/2″ squares. Then I sew them back together into 16-piece scrap squares (4 squares x 4 squares). Of course, you could do more/less squares, choose a different size, whatever. This is enough of a plan for now for me. I am going for a bit of a checkerboard in terms of the value with repeated fabric choices in a block or split up depending on what is available in the fabric pile.

scrap squares . carolyn friedlander

This strategy has been especially helpful after cutting out a garment or other project that leaves you with random sizes and shapes of fabric. It’s satisfying to cut those things down into tidy stacks of squares. Plus, I like seeing remnants of those garments in my patchwork.

scrap squares . carolyn friedlander


After I cut the scraps into squares, I file them away in this handy little box. Having a place for things and everything in its place is key. Then when I have a few extra minutes, need to clear my head, want to explore a color combination and/or just want to sew I can hit the box. It’s a great creative reprieve when you need it.

scrap squares . carolyn friedlander

Sometimes I get an idea for fabrics that I want to see together, and this is a satisfying way to put an idea into action without getting too carried away. There are some fun finds here that I could explore more in other projects or just enjoy that they found their way in to this one.

scrap squares . carolyn friedlander

I’m sort of keeping the blocks similar in terms of color, but who knows. Maybe that’ll change if the mood strikes. Every once in awhile I’ll pull out the blocks and think about different arrangements.

scrap squares . carolyn friedlander

This is also a great place for mini charms that I’ve picked up at shows from other designers. I love seeing their prints next to mine and the variety they add to the project.

scrap squares . carolyn friedlander

There we go. I can’t say that the scrap piles have fully disappeared, but I can say that a lot of it has been diverted to a more orderly place with a colorful outcome in mind.

scrap squares . carolyn friedlander

Pattern: None. It’s 2 1/2″ squares sewn together in groups of 16.

Fabric: Scraps from many of mine, plus others’ like Elizabeth Hartman, Violet Craft, Anna Graham and Liberty Of London.

scrap squares . carolyn friedlander

Comments: 35 | Leave a comment

Hunt QAL #13 Check In

Hunt QAL #13 Check In.

Hunt QAL Quilt . carolyn friedlander

Yes, the Hunt QAL is officially over, but I thought I’d continue to check in with you on my quilt until I have it finished, which I don’t think will be too much longer!

Hunt QAL Quilt . carolyn friedlander

The hand quilting continues, and I just love doing it. It is so relaxing pushing the needle through the different fabrics and colors. I’m loving using the sashiko threads and just following the marked lines.

Hunt QAL Quilt . carolyn friedlander

I’d say that I am 3/4 of the way along. I’ve basically moved from the bottom to the top, so there’s just a little bit left to go. The binding decision is sort of looming at this point.

Hunt QAL Quilt . carolyn friedlander

The texture and softness from the hand quilting is really enticing, and I’m loving the darker thread color. I haven’t tried it yet, but I’m eager to see how it will look on the bed.

Hunt QAL Quilt . carolyn friedlander

I’m also working my way through this skein of thread. It started out much more full. Part of me hopes I’ll run out so I can switch to another color randomly at the end, but I’m thinking this might be just the right amount to see things through to the end.

Pattern: Hunt Quilt (templates here, here and here)

Fabrics: Mostly mine from many collections including Jetty, Collection CF, Botanics, Instead, Gleaned, Friedlander

Quilting Thread: Sashiko thread from Upcycle Stitches

Hunt QAL Quilt . carolyn friedlander

Comments: 9 | Leave a comment

Hunt QAL #12 Check In.

Hunt QAL #12 Check In.

Month #12, we did it! It’s been a year of Hunt, and I appreciate you following along and joining in. At the start, I really just thought I’d make a quilt top by this point, but to my delight I have an almost half-quilted quilt! Yay!

hunt quilt along quilt . carolyn friedlander

Backing + Basting

To back up a bit, it’s been an eventful month–or it’s at least felt that way. Looking back on the calendar, I see that it hasn’t happened fast, but instead it’s been steady bits here and there that have added up. In my mind I know this to be true, but it’s easy to forget and so this is an encouraging reminder.

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

Having finished the quilt top middle of last month, I pulled backing options before the start of May. They sat in my studio taunting me until the 17th when I could spend an afternoon sewing them all together.

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander
hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

After my backing was ready, I couldn’t wait to get it basted so I could start quilting it. The anticipation was killing me, and I used that energy to seize on some progress.

It’s worth noting that I had batting ready. Normally, I get to the basting step, and I’m like “oh, batting…” (hand to face emoji.) Glad there wasn’t anything slowing me down here.

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

My quilting dream for this quilt was to big stitch hand quilt with contrasting sashiko threads. I’ve loved big stitch for years, and I’ve recently been exploring (and loving) using sashiko threads. It felt like the perfect thing for this project, and it’s been on my mind for months.


hunt quilt along quilting supplies

Here’s a look at my current supply situation. Dark green thread (from here or here), my trusty Kai scissors, Olympus needles (although I have a heap of others to try, I’m just in such a groove with this one), a thimble situation I’m pleased with (more below), and light and dark marking tools. Yes, I’m marking.

hunt quilt along quilting supplies

On a completely superficial note, the thimble situation since my last tool discussion was driving me a little crazy. I LOVE the Clover flexible thimbles, but the pink/purple combo was driving me bonkers. It’s completely ridiculous, I know, but I couldn’t handle it. Looking for other options, I tried these, and love combining one for my index finger, with the Clover blue version on my thumb and then my usual thimble on my middle finger. Joy sparked.


hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

The quilting is coming along–like everything else–in bits and pieces that are adding up. It’s the most relaxing way to unwind at night and stitch away on a few rows. I’m doing straight lines, 3″ apart in different directions. If I get tired of going one way, I change it up. This suits my mood, and I think it suits the quilt. I also like that it’s a totally different approach than my previous versions (here and here).

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

Any time I add hand quilting to my projects, I do it before any machine quilting. This flow works better for me, but it also means that I often think about machine quilting while I’m doing the hand quilting. I’ve had it in mind this whole time as a possibility, and I’ll see how I’m feeling about adding it–or not–when I get there. Today, I’m happy leaving it all hand quilted. It’s just so soft and homey.

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

Thinking ahead

I’ll continue chugging along, and hopefully I’ll get it quilted by the end of next month. I can’t even believe that I’m halfway through already. The binding is not a settled issue, but I’ll continue to ponder that while stitching away.

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

Thank you!

Thank you, thank you, thank you for following along! How did you feel about this informal, year-long format? I hope that it felt like we were moving along together, and that the check ins provided some accountability without too much stress.

I know it helped me immensely. There’s no way I would have gotten this far or been able to keep myself on track otherwise. I eventually finish things, but it’s the extracurricular projects like this that so easily get pushed to the back burner without some means of accountability. All along I’ve been thinking about how nice it was to have monthly goals for this project, and I’m planning to continue to set a date each month to check in on my progress as this finishes up and with what I pick to work out next.

Pattern: Hunt quilt pattern

Fabrics: Mostly mine from many of my collections. Backing fabric is also mine plus Liberty of London, some sparkly linen and a Robert Kaufman gingham.

See all of the Hunt Quilt Along posts in the summary here!

Comments: 9 | Leave a comment

#FreshlyQuiltedTP, my TP quilt.

Have you been following along with the #FreshlyQuiltedTP quilt along that @elisabew and I are hosting? It wraps up this week, and I thought I’d share the progress on my own TP quilt.

TP quilt in progress . carolyn friedlander

Over the weekend I was able to get a lot done on my project. I sorted out my quilt top, got it quilted and now I just need to get the binding on there.

TP quilt . carolyn friedlander

To back up a bit, I was inspired to create a patterned background using some of my patterns (Everglade, Alturas and even Hearts). Many of my appliqué designs have reminded me at times of bathroom tiles, and so in a TP project like this, it seemed fitting!

patterned background . carolyn friedlander

I played with the scale of the designs and used different patterned fabrics to add another visual layer to the experience. I totally got carried away, and as a result I split my motifs into 2 different panels. One is now my TP project, and the other is something I might quilt up on its own. Or maybe I’ll let it get bigger, we’ll see!

pattern background quilts . carolyn friedlander

This project has been a welcome, creative challenge unrelated to anything else that I have going on. I think we all need a good break sometimes, and I hope that this TP quilt along has provided that for you too.

Here’s a look at where I’m planning to hang mine, which is right by my shower. It’s a super small space, but hopefully you get the idea. I normally hang different tea towels that I’ve collected there, and I think this quilt will be a good addition to the rotation.

#FreshlyQuiltedTP quilt . carolyn friedlander

A note on the quilting and construction

All of the TP and patterned background pieces are added via fusible, raw edge appliqué. It’s a speedy technique that can really make you feel like you are painting by numbers, but with fabric.

TP quilt . carolyn friedlander

I used mostly Steam A Seam Lite 2, as well as some Clover fusible that I had on hand. With any fusible product, I use extreme caution to not only keep my iron and ironing surface free of sticky gunk, but also to keep my machine and sewing needle clean.

quilting my TP quilt . carolyn friedlander

Years ago I quilted quilts for other people, and the fusible projects were usually the most stressful. Gummed-up needles are not only bad for stitching, but they can transfer the gunk into your machine. For this reason, I highly recommend cleaning your needle regularly if you are using anything fusible. When I quilted this, I cleaned my needle after every 2-4 passes with an eyeglass cleaner. You could use rubbing alcohol or something similar as well. It seems extreme, but it makes the experience much much easier.

quilted TP quilt . carolyn friedlander

The top is all trimmed up, and my binding is cut and prepped. Hopefully I can get it sewn on tonight.

quilted TP quilt with binding . carolyn friedlander

Want to join in?

If you’d like to join in, there are still a few days left and you can grab a digital pattern to get yourself going. We are using the Java House Quilt pattern, We’re On A Bigger Roll.

To enter your project, post a pic or some pics on instagram using the hashtag #FreshlyQuiltedTP through 5/15/20 so we can find it.

Comments: 5 | Leave a comment

05/04/20 What I’ve been making

05/04/20 – With so much going on, I appreciate being able to jump between projects depending on my mood. Here’s a look at what I’ve been making lately.


blake knit tshirt . carolyn friedlander

It’s MeMadeMay, which means it’s also a great time to scope out some good garments that people have been sewing up. (So inspiring!) For me, I’ll be making an effort to share some of my handmade wearables, and here’s one of them. This t-shirt is a new favorite. It started as something else long ago that didn’t work out and has sat in my sewing room ever since. I finally dusted it off and re-cut it into a t-shirt. Pattern is the Jeanne T-Shirt by Ready To Sew. I’m such a fan of this pattern. There are no modifications except that I left off the pocket, and the fabric is from my Blake collection.



Yes, that is toilet paper. If you haven’t heard, @elisabew and I have been hosting a TP quilt along using Java House Quilt’s We’re On a Bigger Roll pattern (deadline is extended to 5/15/20). This has been a low-stress, fun project that has sparked plenty of creativity for me. That’s what a challenge can do sometimes! It can help you think outside of your own box.

Some of my fabric TP is up there, and a bit of my background is below. I’m going a little wild in my background by doing a mashup of some of my own designs–many of which have reminded me of bathroom tiles. This seemed like the perfect way to use them.

patterned background . carolyn friedlander

I’m pretty sure I’ll continue with this theme in some more sewing projects to come…


Finally, my scrappy Everglade project (using my Everglade pattern) continues to grow!

scrappy everglade quilt blocks . carolyn friedlander

More blocks are being added to the party. The color, fabrics and slowness of this are ticking all of the boxes for me.

scrappy everglade quilt . carolyn friedlander

Comments: 2 | Leave a comment

Site by Spunmonkey.