Tag Archives: useful

Commissions and gifts!

The holidays are quickly approaching!  They will surely be here before we know it.


Are you interested in a custom quilt? Or maybe some throw pillows? Perhaps a set of placemats and napkins.  It’s time to place those orders!  (The pillow above, on the right is for sale for $40, more photos upon request.)

I wanted to show you some non-quilt commissions that I’ve never posted about!

imageI made this set of dinner napkins for some friends that got married.  I used the V&Co Zig Zag Ombre in navy for one side and white for the other.  A set of 18″ dinner napkins run about $40 for 4 or $75 for 8.


I made this set of 8 placemats and dinner napkins for my dad last Christmas, commissioned by his girlfriend. He is a retired geologist and worked for the state water board nearly my whole life, so water and stone and earthy colors remind me of him.


For the placemats, I gathered some blue scrap strips and some of the Joel Dewberry print I used on the napkins, cut stacks of three into wavy lines, switched the colors in the stack around, and sewed them together. I used four different kinds of neutral linen from my stash, and backed them in this grey dandelion print.  I quilted wavy lines only in the pieced section, labeled, and topstitched them.


For the napkins, I used the same four different linens on one side and a Joel Dewberry print with a strip of an Amy Butler stripe for the other side.  They were pillowcase stitched, labeled, and top stitched.


A set of 8 like this would run you $125, or a set of four for $75.

This pillow was commissioned by a friend for his son, made from a t-shirt.


The kid always liked to look at it, to point out everything going on and a pillow seemed the perfect way for it to live on.  I cut the design out of the shirt and used it as the center of a log cabin block, using coordinating prints from my stash.

I quilted it very simply, outlining some of the center designs in black and square spiraling the block at random widths in white. I backed it in a Cotton + Steel print…


With a lapped yellow zipper.


This pillow is 20″ square with a down feather insert.  One similar runs $60 and up.

These are just a few examples.  If you’re interested in something like anything above, email me!

kait [at] kaitcetera [dot] com

Gift commission.


My lovely friends Sam and Amanda, who I made this quilt for last year, asked me to make a set of placemats and napkins for a wedding gift.  Amanda suggested grey and mustard yellow so I set off to The Little General and got a lovely stack.


Each of the eight placemats and napkins are different.  I roughly used this tutorial though I used fusible fleece, quilted the front with a variegated grey thread, and used the pillowcase method.



The placemats measure approximately 13″ by 18″ and the napkins, white on the other back sides, are 17″ square.


I wish I’d gotten better pictures but that’s what happens when you finish something 5 minutes before the deadline!  Sam and Amanda loved these and had a hard time giving them away.  I can only hope their friends Chris and Clair love them too! (Sam and Chris made a documentary together called Wagonmasters that’s super awesome.)

Lamp redo.

I recovered this lamp weeks ago and I’m just getting around to showing it off!IMG_0878

I found this lamp at the Rescue Mission Thrift Store and loved the shape of it but the base was a tan yellow color and the shade was cracked.  I swear I saw a photo from quilt market a few times back with a lamp similar to this in the background of Anna Maria Horner‘s booth, but I can’t seem to find it again. I loved it when I saw it and knew it’s what I wanted to do to this one.

I pieced three feathers using remnants of this pillow, and using a template I made by tracing the curvature of the shade, pieced turquoise sections to complete the circle. I stretched it over the old shade and using fabric glue, rolled the edges over the top and bottom. I spray painted the base a glossy white, and voila!IMG_0881

I love it!

Small studio projects.

I’ve had a list for a very long time or little things I’d like to make for my studio space.  With the recent organization and burst of creativity and productivity I’ve felt lately, I finally crossed a few things off.

I attempted to make a sewing machine cover a few years ago but never quite got the math right.  I took another stab at it though and this time it was a breeze!  I used some flying geese I’ve had for a long time for one side and an (Amy Butler?) home dec print for the other.  I think I like the orange side better, it’s so cheery!

I made a set of coasters I made years ago (incorrectly, I might add) that I always hated so I just threw them out and made a few more.  I used the stack-and-whack method, based on the coaster pattern from Denyse Schmidt’s Quilts but I only used 4 fabrics and cut each 5″ by 7″ (instead of 5 by 8). I wanted to pull from both the green wall and the orange sewing machine cover.

When I made an ironing board cover a year or so ago, I cut it too small but never took the time to fix it.  I finally tore out the old stitching and added another channel for the rope and it fits so much better!  No more coming off the board when I’m ironing fabric and pulling it towards me.

Some things!

This last week has been one of the most productive in a while.  I’ve been pleasantly busy making some gifts.

My friend Sarah asked me almost a year ago to make her a Kindle case and it finally happened.  She told me she loves the tiny clothes fabric by Aneela Hooey so I pulled some coordinating scraps and used this pattern with a couple minor adjustments.Kindle case Kindle case Kindle case    Kindle case

This pillow is for my best friend Catherine.  She accompanied me to the Little General last year and bought some fabric that she left with me.  I used the Virginia star from Carol Doak’s 50 Fabulous Paper-Pieced Stars because Virginia is where we met and became friends (though I now live in NC and she in KY).

Pillow for Cat

I started with the Anna Maria Horner velveteen and pulled coordinating fabrics.  The velveteen was definitely a little harder to work with but it made for a really cozy pillow.  I fussy cut a few sections but you can’t really tell.

Pillow for Cat

It has an envelope closure and measures 18″ square.

Pillow for Cat

I made another pillow as a sneak peek of a quilt for a baby shower.  I didn’t have the quilt done in time but I wanted to send them something useful instead of just a picture so I made this small pillow.IMG_0158It’s based on the Baby Roller Rink pattern from Modern Patchwork by Elizabeth Hartman using blue and green scraps. The pillow made it to California just in time (I photographed it at the post office!) and was loved.  I’m hopeful they’ll love the quilt too, which I’m sending off on Monday.IMG_0156

It has an envelope closure and measures a very snug 12″ x 14″.


Patchwork dinner napkins.

This is one of those projects that I’ve meant to make for years.  Whenever I go to Caitlin‘s house, I’m always pleased at all her homemade napkins used for every meal.  So much nicer than paper towels!  So, with a dinner guest coming last night, I decided now was the time.

I started with the Denyse Schmidt FMF bouquet fabric because I love it, I had a full yard, and my living room/eating space is grey and yellow. From there, I picked coordinating scraps, sewed some patchwork strips, and added FreeSpirit Arctic white.  I did my math a little wrong and they only turned out about 16½”, but that’s okay.

Now I want to make place mats, coasters, a table runner… all matter of useful things!

Pincushion for a friend.

I made this Frankenstein pincushion for my friend Ian for his birthday this week.  I found some images online and made a small paper piecing pattern and put it together in a couple hours.  Ian has a space in the same studio as I do and makes these awesome stuffed alien creatures, and until now, his poor little straight pins just hung out in a box. He is also into science fiction and horror and the like so this seemed like the perfect gift.  Happy birthday Ian!

LMP+QG August project: Kelly’s Pincushions

Each month, Cait and I make a project from Last Minute Patchwork + Quilted Gifts.  You can see past projects here.

Cait and I got together one Sunday afternoon and made these simple pincushions, a much welcomed break from quilts.  I grabbed scraps to make two and I’m really happy with how they turned out!

The blue and turquoise one in the front is Cait’s pincushion.Be sure to check out Cait’s post!

Next month: Color Wheel quilt.

LMP+QG May: Summer Breeze picnic quilt.

Once again, I am late posting this month’s project but better late than never, right?

My friend Cait and I are making a project every month from Last Minute Patchwork and Quilted Gifts.  You can see past projects here.

Summer has definitely arrived in North Carolina and this quilt will be perfect for naps in the grass and afternoon meals with friends.  I knew I wanted to use this particular vintage sheet for the backing so I kind of haphazardly pulled fabrics from my stash and ended up really loving the combination.  There are a lot of different shades of dark blue going on but I still think it works.

I used a fake linen from my stash as the solid, the vintage sheet I thrifted a few months ago, Pearl Bracelet in green from Lizzy House (not pictured), a blue flower print that I’ve had for years from a Beatrix Potter collection (thanks Abby!), Opal dandelion from Joel Dewberry, large green mums from Valori Wells, grass Chinese lantern from Amy Butler, and just like Caitlin, gingham nut from Denyse Schmidt.I wanted to use a whole cloth backing (something I don’t think I’ve done in years) but the sheet has some yellow discoloration so I might have to cut it up.  I’m also stuck on what to do with the quilting.  As long as I’ve wanted to make a picnic quilt, I’ve wanted to use a particular pantograph of ants that Lindsey has but she is on maternity leave from quilting!I do know that I will bind it in the solid blue and add ties so the quilt can be rolled up and carried.  Hopefully I’ll get it all completed before too long so I can enjoy this season.

Be sure to check out Caitlin’s beautiful quilt!  Next month: pinwheel duvet cover (which will be the perfect excuse for me to buy a down comforter!).

To lay on and to hold on.

I am in love with this new pillow.

I made this block in Jess’s wonderful Improv Piecing class at Sewing Summit back in October and as soon as it was finished, I knew it had to become a pillow.  So what if it only took me three months?  :)I surrounded it in Alexander Henry’s Heath in black, quilted it in a pale grey thread by following some of the natural lines in the block and sewing on on both sides of them, and bound it in white, and closed it with an envelope back.

I’ve also made a few bags and pouches recently for various things.Using Jeni’s wonderful and oh-so-popular lined drawstring bag tutorial, I made a bag for my herringbone cowl out of one of my favorite Aneely Hooey Little Apples prints, a red dot from my stash, and a DS Quilts print for the ties (I really should buy a bolt of that stuff!),

one for that portable speaker system I got a couple weeks ago (the first one, on the far left, was a little too small but the second one fit just right, both out of Jay McCarroll Habitat prints and coordinating solids),

and a triangle pouch for my binding clips from this tutorial, also out of a Habitat print.  Thanks Jeni for such a great project!