July 2013 Archives

In my last post I told you about my friends Meg and Bill who got married this past weekend. Meg is a Marine Biologist and lived in Hawaii for many years. Her love for animals and the Hawaiian culture inspired their wedding quilt. When I did some research into Hawaiian quilts I learned the motifs you cut out of the fabric are to represent the people you are giving it to. It’s a very personalized quilt.

I searched online to see other’s Hawaiian quilts to get an idea of how the motifs work together. Then I began sketching out my own design. The hard part is you are drawing out a 1/8th portion of the whole quilt. You know those paper snowflakes you made in school as a kid? It’s basically the same concept. You fold the fabric into eights and cut out your design. Then you open it up and you basically have a fabric snowflake.


I didn’t want to risk it looking ugly so I scanned in my drawing to see all 8 sections together. Below is a digital image I mocked up beforehand to see if I liked the pattern I created. I also scanned in the fabric I wanted to use to see if I liked them together.

Hawaiian (Medium)

Traditionally you use two solid colors but that is no fun. I decided to use two prints. The green is a batik fabric I’ve had on hand for awhile and the coral is a Tula Pink Prince Charming print I found on sale. The print has giant turtles all over it. I thought it would be great with the Hawaiian theme.


I was nervous about cutting into the fabric. The most difficult part was cutting though all eight layers. You need really sharp scissors. I ended up getting a blister on the inside of my thumb from cutting so much.


When you cut it all out you lay it out and baste it to the backing fabric. Pin basting doesn’t hold up, you have to thread baste. Ask me how I know. Above is a picture just after I laid the top fabric to the back.


Now to the tedious part. Hawaiian quilts are traditionally hand appliqued. I decided to go traditional because it just wouldn’t have the same effect. Hand applique basically means you tuck under about 1/8-1/16 of an inch of fabric around all the edges and sew tiny invisible stiches by hand to keep it from fraying. I’m about a quarter of the way done now. I have to take many breaks because my fingers get pretty worn and my eyes exhausted.

I actually presented their quilt at their rehearsal dinner unfinished. I knew there was no way it was going to be done by their wedding and I wanted to be able to work on it when they are over at my place. Their family enjoyed seeing it. It’s a small quilt about 45”x45”.

I’ll keep you updated with work in progress shots and finished images.



My good friends Meg and Bill tied the knot this past weekend at a beautiful castle outside of Denver. Meg having lived in Hawaii for many years had a summery beach theme. Most of my dresses are very fall colored so I thought I'd make a dress for her special day.

I used Simplicity pattern 4070. Instead of using all the same fabric I used a mix. I also lined the bodice in cotton. I do this for more strength in the corseting and comfort. When you are hot and sweaty it feels great. I lined the skirt with a polyester that had similar drape to the coral fabric. If making this dress make sure to try the bodice on multiple times. It fit terribly from the pattern as is. I had to take in the sides and above the bust to make it fit more properly.


When I was digging through my stash I found the coral fabric in my skirt. It was a flowy polyester I bought probably 10 years ago! I realized it looked great with the Boucherouite print in Blush from the Luxe in Bloom fabric line. Luxe in Bloom was designed by a friend I went to college with, Sarah Watson. Maybe I'm biased but I do love the line.


I actually made the dress with the intention of not adding the belt as seen in the pattern. When I tried it on I realized it did indeed need a band of something around the waist. I used one of the coordinates from Luxe in Bloom, Crystalline in Cobalt.


I also whipped up a little clutch to match my dress. The bride saw the clutch the night before and asked if I could make something for her in her wedding colors to carry around at the reception. I unfortunately do not have a picture of hers.


So my hair looks like hell and let me explain why. When we were getting ready to go to the hotel I had the dress on to figure out what shoes to wear. As I bent over to take them off the invisible zipper in the back snapped apart! Luckily it snapped at home and not at the wedding. My husband had to literally cut me out of the dress to get it off! He seam ripped out the zip while I finished getting stuff together. I quickly put in a heavy duty metal fashion zipper. I didn't have time to hand sew the lining to the zip as I still had to finish putting makeup on in the car ride to the hotel. We got to the hotel with very little time to jump on the shuttle. My plan was to quickly change at the wedding location. So I brought needle and thread to stitch the lining on while we rode to the wedding location...


But the shuttles took all the guests to the wrong wedding!!! I managed to get a hold of some of the bridal party to tell them we were going to be late. Thinking I'd have no time to change I shimmied my dress under the one I was wearing. With the help of the mother of the Officiant and, we had me dressed and ready to go. Then we got word another shuttle broke down and had to wait for a new one to get the guests! Yikes. Meg handled the whole mess up beautifully. Everyone finally made it to see Meg and Bill look so dashing to say their vows.


Here we are with the bride and groom!


Cheers to Meg and Bill,