Friday, July 29, 2016

A Little Pixie Doll

I'm so excited to share what I made using Tasha Noel's newest fabric line Pixie Noel with Riley Blake fabrics for Tasha's Pixie Noel blog tour. This fabric is adorable and so great for multiple holiday sewing projects with all the various colors and prints. I always enjoy getting the fabric and being inspired by it. This line was no different. I couldn't resist making my own "Pixie", since gnomes and I go way back.

This little girl, Crystal, is always cold and loves to quilt with her hat on. Right now she's debating which fussy cut center to use in her next block.
Crystal has made 6 blocks already and thinks this one with the little birdie singing in the center is her favorite so far. She has so much fun making these blocks and using all the cute pics in the centers.

Crystal also enjoys making her own clothes. Here's her newest outfit...a button down collared shirt, with a skirt and striped bloomers. When she's warm, she scrunches the bloomers up a little like capris, and when she's really cold, she will tuck them into her boots.
Her reversible hat and fuzzy mittens and boots, keep her cozy warm in the studio. Luckily they match all of her outfits, so she only has to make more when she wears them out. Maybe tomorrow she will make herself a little dress...or some more fussy cut blocks?
Thanks so much for visiting and sharing in my Pixie Noel creations and thanks so much to Tasha and Riley Blake Fabrics for asking me to be a part of your Pixie Noel tour!

The doll, and all of the doll clothes were made using my Kid Giddy Sizzix: Doll and Doll Clothes die cuts. The boots and mittens were made using my Doll die as well, with a scant seam allowance. Please visit the link above for more info and to see multiple videos to help you create your own one of a kind dolls and stuffies. Want to come sew dolls with me? I'll be teaching all of my tips and tricks for doll/fox making and doll clothes sewing this August at the Kid Giddy Missouri Star Quilt Co Retreat. It's not too late to sign up and come have fun sewing with me!

Disclaimer: I received fabric from Riley Blake Fabrics to use for this project. Opinions are my own and there are no affiliate links. Thank you.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Tell Me a Story Pillow

I was so excited to hear that Amy Friend (During Quiet Time) had written her first book (Intentional Piecing) and couldn't wait to get my hands on a copy of it.

I found Amy and her paper piecing work as I began the journey of learning how to design my own foundation paper piecing designs when making a swap quilt. We connected through social media, eventually met at quilt market, and became east coast quilty friends.

I participated in her Tell Me Story block challenge and had fun making up stories for each block (you can see each block and it's story throughout my Kid Giddy IG feed).

Because I love to work small and fussy cut cute little images from fabric - I decided to shrink Amy's original block pattern by 50%. My blocks finished at 3" and went together as a basic 9 patch, which worked perfectly for a decorative pillow.

I added 3 borders, quilted the blocks and then quilted hopscotch print. I added cording to the edge for a tailored finish, because it's just better that way and finished it as a basic envelope pillow. 

Amy's book is not all foundation paper piecing. There are other great projects to make and piece together, using selvages or fussy cut prints and having fun. What I learned from this book - I need more fabric! Lol. When I had an idea for the fussy cut center, I felt I didn't have the best fabric for the outer border or vice versa. So I will fix that situation right away. Next up - the TeePee block!

Have you tried paper piecing and seen Amy's book yet? You can purchase a copy of her book through Lucky Spool and get 30% off using the code "FRIEND30". Thanks for stopping by!

Disclaimer: I received a copy of Amy's book to read and make a project because she's an awesome friend, but my opinions are my own. No affiliate links.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Come Sew with Me!

Want to come sew with me and learn how to make a doll or two or tons? I'm so excited to announce that I'll be teaching a Sizzix Kid Giddy retreat in mid August at the Missouri Star Quilt Co retreat center and I would LOVE for you to join me for some seriously fun sewing! I want to teach you all I know - all of my doll sewing secrets. Here's why...
"Give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he'll never go hungry." Sound familiar? This was the response I gave to my friend at our lunch date when she asked one last time if she could pay me to make her a doll for her daughter. She loved my dolls, but I rarely sell them.  Quickly I said "no" (again).

Instead of making it for her, I suggested she come over to my home studio so I could teach her how to make her own. She knew how to sew a little, but never made a doll. I told her she could buy a doll from me, or anyone else, or she could learn how to make countless dolls. Not only would it save her money - for reals, but each doll would become something special, something worth passing down...heirlooms. My friend accepted my offer, so we booked a date.
She came over two weeks later to make a doll for her daughter. Between our chatter and giggles, she learned how to use the Sizzix die cut machine, glue baste, sew curves, use new stitches on the sewing machine, clip and notch curves, and stuff her doll in only 4 hours. That's it - just 4 hours!

Once she finished stuffing the doll, I taught her how to sew a ladder stitch to close up the bottom of the doll. Then we gave her eyes, as well as a belly button to call it done. As she was sewing it closed we got to chatting about handmade things. She didn't know all that it took to make a doll and how not everyone realizes how long things take to make - be it clothing, or dolls, or quilts. Everything takes time, every stitch is thought out and meaningful. When we make something with our own hands, it will be appreciated so much more than it would've been otherwise, if purchased. She was so proud of her doll, and I was so proud of her and her doll too. We were pretty exhausted but we took a selfie with her doll anyway just before she left at 10pm.
The next morning, her daughter woke up to the best present her mother had ever made her. She sent me a video (which I understandably can't share) in the which her daughter exclaimed her excitement that this new doll was all hers, and her mom made it. She even said "WOW - good job Mommy"! After much excitement, her daughter also lovingly gave her doll a name, later changing it to Elizabeth. 

This was never meant to be a blog post...but I asked my friend recently if I could share this story. I wanted to share why I'm so excited to teach this class, and what it means to me. It's in these moments that I realize, this is why I do what I do, and why I want to share it with others. The moments of teaching someone something new and seeing the lightbulb grow brighter every second, or the daughter's moment of excitement seeing this brand new doll to love on, made just for her, by her mom, it's all worth it. Here's what my sweet friend said about her experience - nothing edited:

"I have known Kerry for approx 2 years. When I found out she sewed for a living and I saw all her beautiful creations, I just knew I had to get my hands on a doll! They are so incredibly cute and I knew my daughter would love to have one. Especially if it looked just like her. So a few months ago Kerry and I met up and I asked her once again if she would make me a doll. I even offered to pay!!! She finally caved in and said, “NO, but you can come over and I will TEACH you how to make a doll.” I’m not going to lie, I wasn’t very thrilled. I’m extremely intimidated with sewing machines and anything to do with a needle and thread. However, since I really wanted this doll, I knew I had to commit and just do it! Kerry was amazing to say the least. She is so particular and an achiever at everything she does. Making the doll was definitely challenging; Mind you, like I said before, I’m scared of anything to do with sewing. Kerry made it as simple and easy as possible for me. This doll took us four hours to complete but was totally doable, and we had an AWESOME time making this doll together! I found out a lot of other hidden talents this lady has, she is unbelievably talented. She is an amazing mom, wife and friend.
After I left, I had such immense gratitude for her. That doll took us 4 hours to make. I know she can probably get a doll done on her own much quicker, but it still takes time, precision and effort on her part. You know the saying, “give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”. Well she took the time out of her busy schedule and not only taught me how to make a doll, but gave me the confidence and realization that I could do this again. Next time, I know I won’t be so nervous! Yes, there will be a next time, since my daughter is already asking for another one. Kerry, THANK YOU for all your love and encouragement and helping me make something so precious. It is an heirloom that will be passed down for many generations to come."
We made this doll "naked" so we could take her daughter's old clothes and make them doll size with my new die. During the retreat, we will be making Kid Giddy Dolls (and/or Foxes), Doll Clothes (using my new Sizzix Doll Clothes die) and even a fun class on using my Sizzix Kid Giddy Doll/Fox pieces for a really cute applique quilt block. Did I mention there will be a trunk show with Jenny Doan Wednesday evening and a trunk show with me the morning we get started? I'm bringing all my dolls with me - including Bubbles, Queen Phoebe, Elvis and so many others! They didn't want to miss out on coming to the retreat too for inspiration and to meet all of you.
For more information about the class, materials to bring, registration info and to sign up, please click here to visit the Missouri Star Quilt Co. / Kid Giddy retreat listing. I'm so excited to sew with you and teach you all of my tips and tricks in doll making! I can't wait to see what we make together!

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt Along - Tracy # 97

I'm excited to share my second block (Tracy # 97) for Angie (GnomeAngel) and Fat Quarter Shop's Farmer's Wife QAL. I decided to paper piece this Tracy block because of all the smaller pieces. I know a few of the bloggers have already done some paper piecing tutorials so I am just going to share some tricks I have figured out along the way. If you are new to paper piecing, you can check out Angie's Tracy post in the which she has linked up many of the bloggers that shared full paper piecing tutorials.
When working with any paper piecing project that has numerous pieces, color code the pieces to keep things straight while sewing. It's even better if you color code it so the colors match the fabrics you are using.
I leave a little extra paper around the edge so in my mind, I need extra fabric. This ensures I'll have enough fabric for the actual seam allowance.
Some pieces don't always go beyond the edge, especially when trying to fussy cut a specific design. As long as you have enough for the seam allowance, it's ok. 

I don't trim up every block until I know for sure that each fabric placement is correct. Even then, I only trim up one section at a time.

Sometimes it's really easy to line every piece up. Below you can see the straight edge lines up in the front, to the line behind it, and the angle on the right lines up too.

When they don't line up visually, I use a pin to connect the point on the front to the point on the back.

This is the back side.

It also works for joining points.

The pin should meet with both points.

When it's all done, the majority of your points will line up. Somehow I still had 2 a little off in my center square, not sure how or why - but it happens. And it's ok. I'll enjoy all of the others that did line up. The more you work at it, the easier it gets.

Thanks so much for visiting. I hope you learned a few tricks to put your paper piecing blocks together. If you want to check out my other Farmer's Wife block post, you can check out Malvina here. Sign up below for my emails to get info about new patterns, new dies, future sales and other fun stuff. The first one is coming soon...don't miss out on the first bit of giddy goodness and find me @kidgiddy on Instagram for all my daily happenings.

If you want to join in on the fun, you can find Angie's Malvina tutorial on her website Gnome Angel, as well as grainline tips from Marti on her blog. You can get the book and all your fabric needs from The Fat Quarter Shop (Angie got to put together a big Farmer's Wife fabric bundle just for this sew along), and the Marti Michell templates from Marti's website!

Disclaimer: Because I am a blogger in this quilt-a-long, I graciously received a copy of the Farmer's Wife book and gift card from the Fat Quarter shop (yes I picked up more Cotton and Steel fabrics for my quilt) as well as a full set of templates from Marti Michell. The links above are not affiliate links - because my state won't allow that. The opinions as always, as well as the tutorial and photos, are all my own.