I finally put away my gardening gloves long enough last week (it got cold and rainy!) to finish the binding on this quilt. It finished at about 48”x60”, perfect for pulling over you while watching tv or reading.
I pieced and machine quilted it all on my Bernina 780 and I am very happy with the results. I haven’t made a quilt just for me in quite a while. Usually they are store samples or small table runners. The inspiration for this quilt was the colors of this fabric line and the desire to test out both my machine and my own free motion quilting capabilities.
I attribute my success on this project to using the right tools. The Bernina Stitch Regulator on the 780 was the first step toward success. Adding the Supreme Slider and Machingers gloves I made it easier on myself. These two books as well as numerous visits to Pinterest, YouTube and various blogs provided ideas and directions to many different quilting designs.
And like any artist, I was sure to sign my work.
I’ve been planning this project for at least 2 months. Finally made time to get it done last week. I was planning to draft my own pattern for this when I stumbled upon this tutorial on Pinterest. It was perfect, she’d already done all the measuring and math so I could just get to work.
I purchased the Chakra Designs from Urban Threads. I did have to resize them down by 20% to get them to fit exactly.
I used Essex linen (Moda) for the outside of the bag and a matching quilt cotton for the lining. The metal zipper is an upholstery zipper I had left over from some other home dec project. I did have to shorten the zipper and that was not fun! Next time I will know to shorten from the top of the zip and not the bottom. It all worked out but I made it much harder than it needed to be. (Of course!)
The tutorial on Modest Maven’s blog is really well written and easy to follow. The only modification I made was to use webbing for the strap instead of making one out of fabric. If I had had the supplies on hand I would’ve made the strap adjustable but I didn’t have the correct hardware. Another idea I had was to make the strap removable so it could be used as a yoga strap. I still like that idea and may revisit it in the future.
The bag is nice and roomy, plenty of room to roll a towel up with your mat if you take hot yoga classes or a thin blanket if you like to take your own to use during savasana. The tutorial includes instructions for putting a small pocket on the inside which would be nice for holding your keys, wallet or phone. I like the long zipper because it makes getting the mat in and out so much easier than bags with a draw-string opening at the top.
Having a cool bag like this is good motivation to take more yoga classes!
More fabric has been converted to wearable clothing this week. This is also one of those instances of actually saving money by sewing my own clothes.
Have you priced yoga clothes lately? Holy asana, that stuff is expensive for so little fabric. A little tank like the one I made can cost upwards of $50-$60! For less than a yard of fabric, some elastic, thread and time. (Ok, I’m not going to count the cost of my machines but still you get the idea.) I made this top using Kwik Sew 3672 and the left over fabric from the swimsuit I made last spring. So I can almost consider the fabric free right?
I really like the back of the top. It looks almost like a halter from the front but the straps make it wear more like a racer-back. I wore it yesterday morning when I did yoga and it was very comfortable. It allows for freedom of movement and the straps stay securely in place. The only change I will make in future tops will be to try adding some V-inserts in the bottom of the side seams. I lengthened this 2” in order to cover my tummy issues but now it rolls up over my hips. I think if I add V-inserts that will give it enough room to stay in place. I may also try adding soft cups to the shelf bra for more coverage and support. I have enough of this fabric left still that I can make a pair of swim briefs to wear with this top as a tankini too. Talk about getting my money’s worth!
The pants are the second time I’ve used Kwik Sew 3115. It is a really simple and fast to whip together pattern for basic yoga pants. I didn’t follow the pattern directions for sewing elastic inside the waistband. None of the RTW yoga pants I own have this and they stay up just fine. I used a really soft, lightweight knit that I’ve had in the stash for a long time. It is a weird yellowy green color that really does nothing for my complexion. I kept thinking I’d make a T-shirt out of it but knew I had nothing to match it and it would most likely go unworn. After I made the purple top I realized that it looked good with this green and the color wouldn’t be a problem if worn below the waist and away from my face.
To make the two pieces go together even better I decided to add a little bit of the purple to the pants in a narrow trim inserted along the waist band. I just cut a piece of the lycra/spandex the length of the waist band and 1” wide, folded it in half and put it in the seam.
I also made this top this week using up some random stash fabric and Kwik Sew 3826. It’s a comfortable shirt and it went together pretty well. I have a few issues with it. I’m not really happy with the way the “scarf/collar” lays around the neck. It seems a little loose or something. The sleeves are just a bit shorter than I like them. I usually add length in the sleeves of all KS patterns because I have Monkey Arms but I forgot this time.
I constructed the entire top on my Bernina 780 using the Dual Feed. I was very happy with the way the machine handled this soft knit. No puckering and the fabric fed evenly. I used the Super Stretch Stitch (looks like a lightning bolt) and a ballpoint needle. I also used the overcast stitch and the #2A foot to finish the edges of some of the seams. I did set up the coverstitch machine for the hems but otherwise the serger wasn’t used in this garment.
Overall I’d say this was a pretty productive sewing week for me. 3 pieces of stash fabric converted to items of clothing that I will actually wear. Next up is some tencel knit that I bought at work to make into basic turtlenecks to wear on my winter morning walks.