Monday, December 29, 2008

Last-minute Christmas presents

I was originally going to spend Christmas in Toronto, but decided, very last minute to spend it in Kalamazoo, MI with my friend Brian and his mom. This left me one evening to buy/make presents for both Brian and his mom...

I hate the mall, what can I say? The prospect of being at the mall on Dec 23 fighting the crowds was making me pale with horror. Besides, Brian was being unhelpful and refusing to tell me what he wanted (something about my driving all the way there being present enough, etc. Which is nice and sweet, but not helpful.)

So, crafting needed to come to the rescue.

Jan (Brian's mom) was relatively easy, if time-consuming. I decided I was going to make her a lap quilt. In one evening. Thankfully, all fabric, batting and backing could come from stash.

So, I pulled all my greens from the stash. I cut random rectangles at lunch (came home from work, I'm super-fortunate, I live a 5 minute walk from work.) That took about an hour to do. (Random is harder than it looks, and I wanted a good assortment of greens.)

Since it was Dec 23rd, everyone left work early, (yay!) and I came back home and continued. This is pretty simple piecing, you essentially piece all the rows at once, just adding the next piece for all the rows, more or less randomly. To get them all the same size, measure them once the rows are almost done, and trim off excess. (I hope that's clear? I took no action shots, was too busy sewing.)

I didn't have time for binding, etc, so I used the birthing method. Very simply quilted, just a line of quilting on either side of each row (my quilting skills are, to say the least, sloppy. I had to rip one row two times. Its any wonder I got it done.)

Total time taken - about 6-7 hours? Something like that. 1 hour to cut, 3 hours to piece the top, 45 minutes to sandwich, and do the birthing method, and 2 hours to quilt (most of that time was ripping that one row though, since there wasn't much quilting.)

And here's Jan, holding it up. She loved it, so all worth-while.

Brian - I racked my brains for this one. It would have been pajamas, except all my flannel (not much of it anyway) was at my parents, and I didn't have time to go get it. In the end, I finished a project I'd started over two years back. I stamped the lyrics to "One" on a pillowcase. It was fairly simple, but Brian really loved it, and is going to hang it on his wall.

I hope everyone had a great holiday season. I sure did, hanging out, eating yummy food (Jan's a great cook), drinking wine and coffee, finding boots at Macy's and buying a lot of fabric (separate post for that one). An excellent holiday break, and even if my heart is a little broken that the Patriots didn't make the playoffs, so what? Everything else was pretty awesome. (But, don't even get me started on the Jets. Really.)


Christina said...

Wow, that pillowcase with the lyrics is super cool. And the lap quilt is such a perfect idea for a mom. I'm coming to you next time I'm stuck on a gift idea!

cidell said...

What great gift ideas. That pillowcase is so very very cool.

angie.a said...

Oh I love love love the pillowcase! What an amazing idea! And the lap quilt is just beautiful. Love the fabric choices!