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Topic: Countdown to Christmas Advent Calendar  (Read 4551 times)
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« on: December 06, 2013 02:32:44 PM »

I just finished my first ever machine quilted project! I participated in a Quilt-Along on BetterOffThread - http://betteroffthread.com/2013/11/24/countdown-to-christmas-quilt-along-link-up-and-prizes/. I even won something!

I had a few issues with my pocket fabric being a little bunched up (I used inexpensive fabric - don't know if that was part of the problem), and that affected my ability to line everything up properly. I just did straight-line quilting, and my quilting lines are a little wonky because the pockets don't line up perfectly. Overall, I'm really happy with the end result, and my son also loves all the fun winter activities stuffed inside.

I have a few more quilted projects planned now. I'm hoping to make two quilted tree skirts (one for me and one for my mom). I would also like to make a tumbler quilt for my little girl that is due in March. Hopefully the piecing and quilting will go better on those!


« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2013 02:53:00 PM »

Very cute!

I am collecting cotton Hawaiian fabric scraps for a quilt if you wanted to send any my way!
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« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2013 02:54:40 PM »

Amazing!  I love it!

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« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2013 03:20:40 PM »

What a gorgeous advent calendar!

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« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2013 04:20:07 PM »

OH!  This is too much goodness to handle.  Quilting AND Advent Calendars, two things I love to look at... it is just wonderful.  Rocked it, pinned it.  Wink

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    « Reply #5 on: December 06, 2013 04:42:53 PM »

    Lovely Advent calendar.
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    « Reply #6 on: December 06, 2013 09:19:20 PM »

    Thanks everyone!

    Here is the original pattern, if anyone is interested: http://www.sewmamasew.com/2009/07/elizabeths-fabric-focus-christmas-in-july-advent-calendar/

    I changed the pattern up a bit. I made 25 pockets (even though traditional advent calendars only have 24) because I liked the symmetry of it. I also didn't make my pockets off-center like the original pattern called for, and I changed the way the sashing was cut and attached. If I left the pockets off-center, I probably would have had straighter quilting lines though. Tongue
    « Last Edit: December 07, 2013 09:22:19 AM by ActsofCraftiness » THIS ROCKS   Logged

    « Reply #7 on: December 06, 2013 11:56:15 PM »

    Very pretty. So what types of little goodies fit into those pockets? Are they designed for little candies, or stickers, or removable tatoos or,....? And why only 24? I thought they all had the 25. I have never done an advent, so I guess I just never paid attention. Well, I take that back. I made advent boxes, hand cut little paper 1" ones collected in a basket with the numbers on them one year for my daughter. But I did 25, too. Ooops.  Roll Eyes It helps the little ones learn to count. And had the hardest time finding little gifts that would fit in them. I didn't want hers to be all candy, so I found itsy toys, too. She was past the "choking" age for small toys. Very nice project. I like that you can re-use this one. My boxes got destroyed that year  Roll Eyes


    Re-read the posts:
    Yes. Fabric quality makes a big difference. Not that the cheaper stuff is bad. Especially if it is quality at a discount price. I didn't realize this until I started using the nicer stuff. I blamed myself for the hastles I was having, too.
    SPRAY STARCH!!!! It turns a crudy fabric into something that is better workable. And iron, iron, iron. All the way through your project. You did a really great job. Even if you did have to fight things.

    Thread count of fabric has to do with things, as well as the materials blended in. I prefer pure cotton for quilting. But many crafters I know prefer the poly blends. They do wash up nicer, but dull your sewing needles. Even if you use the Sew Ease oils that are recommended for your machine threads on them. If you are having trouble. Rethread the machine and check tension. Still a pain? New needle time  Grin Save the old one for a cruddy project that might just bust a needle. But fresh needles usually help. You can also use fine sandpaper to re-taper a point of the needle, if it gets a burr on it.

    I worked side by side at a fabric shop with our mechanic there, and he taught me lots! I can time my own machine and make machine repairs, now. I own 5 different machines...all thread different, and have different personalities. I also did industrial machine embroidery. For many years. Can you tell that I love to sew?  Roll Eyes
    « Last Edit: December 07, 2013 12:34:47 AM by stillatthetop » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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    « Reply #8 on: December 08, 2013 07:53:35 AM »

    That is awesome! I would have never thought that the two(quilt and advent calendar) could be made into one quilt of awesomeness. I love the idea of the pockets.  It looks amazing!

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    « Reply #9 on: December 08, 2013 10:01:02 AM »

    Great job on your first quilting project! I love the idea of a re-usable advent calendar. 
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    « Reply #10 on: December 09, 2013 07:24:22 PM »

    @stillatthetop - I also don't want to put candy in the advent calendar. I've been mostly putting activities to do together written on decorated card stock in the pockets - some of them are: decorate the tree, watch a Christmas movie and have popcorn, color a Christmas picture, decorate a gingerbread house, make a gingerbread boy, have hot cocoa, sing Christmas songs, etc. He is also getting some Hot Wheels cars, a handmade car wallet to put the cars in for traveling, a handmade crayon and coloring pad travel case, and a Christmas coloring book.

    Thanks for the tips! I always iron a lot while putting my projects together, and I change my needles often. I didn't try starch though. I'm planning to start buying higher quality fabrics now, but I still have a bunch of fabric I've purchased over the last few years that probably isn't great. Do you just use the regular starch you would use when ironing laundry?
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    « Reply #11 on: December 10, 2013 06:39:26 AM »

    You did a beautiful job on this!
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    « Reply #12 on: December 12, 2013 08:22:01 AM »

    Congratulations! This has been chosen as a Featured ProjectSmiley
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    « Reply #13 on: December 18, 2013 02:52:31 PM »

    @rackycoo - Wow! Thanks for letting me know.  Smiley
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    « Reply #14 on: January 10, 2014 08:12:08 PM »

    This is so pretty, I love the different Christmas fabrics you used!
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