Sunday, July 27, 2014

My Mondo Bag

Mondo bag made for Shelby.
This is my first shot at any sort of tutorial, so no promises on clarity of directions. I will try to show you how I made my second one of the Mondo bags. 

You will need:
-Two panels of the pattern that is printed on fusible web from Quilt Smart
-Enough fabric for 208 2-1/2 squares and two handles (I used less than half of a Bali pop or jelly roll) (you could also use just a few fabrics for a bold look, or even just strips)
-1-1/4 yd coordinating fabric for lining and handle lining
-1-1/4 yd fusible fleece
1) Cut the fusible pattern apart on the cut lines (little scissors show you where)

2) Cut your squares. This took about half an hour from jelly roll strips. Leave two strips for the handles. I used half of each  strip for a more scrappy look.

3)  With the bumpy side up (glue) and the "top point" in the upper left ...
(isn't my new ironing board cover cute?)

place your 2-1/2 in squares on the grid...
and press in place. I use a teflon/applique sheet to protect the iron. (There will be small amounts of glue exposed.) Note: If you take your pressed pieces to the fabric store at this point to pick out your lining, you WILL need to re-attach. The glue is a light weight one :0)

4) Next fold along the short side and sew no less than 1/4 inch seam. Do this for all short seams on each rectangle.
I did two at a time and "chain" stitched between the two.

Short seams stitched.

5) Clip each intersection up to the stitching. This will help the seams to lie flat and be pressed in opposite directions.

6) Next press each row in opposite directions. There are little arrows on the edge of the panel to show you which way to press. My tip for this step is to start with just the bottom row and go left. Then go back and work the second row to the right while keeping the bottom row going to the left. Then fold the panel in half so the top two rows only are showing and do the same thing.

(top two rows with bottom two folded under.)

7) Now stitch the long seams. On your second seam of each panel be careful to keep the seam underneath headed in the right direction. 

8) Press the long seams up. There are directions printed on the fusible.  
9) Measure your rectangles. They will be around 8-1/2 x 26-1/2 inches. Don't stress if they aren't, there are a lot of seams so they will probably be different. Mine were and it still works. 

Cut your lining and fleece to your rectangle measurements. 
Also cut lining and fleece the same size as the handle strips. 

Fuse the fleece to the wrong side of your lining and handle lining. Fuse interfacing to wrong side of handle strips.  Set aside. 

Here is where I forgot to take pictures. I will update next time I make another bag :0) 

10) Place one rectangle right side up horizontally. Place another one vertically above it to make an "L". Bring the top one down making them right sides together. The "bottom center" marks on the fusible pattern will match.  Stitch from the bottom center point to the end (about four squares long). Fold open and press to the top of the "L". Repeat with the other two rectangles. 

11)  Place one "L" on the table right fabric side up, but with the "L" upside down. Place the second one next to it as an "L" so the four bottom center squares meet (that is printed on the fusible pattern).

Next place these pieces right sides together and stitch together from where the diagonal lines meet on each side. (The diagonal lines form the outline for the bag bottom). Press seams in opposite directions, twisting at the middle. 

12)  With pieces lying face up, fold  top leg of the "L" on diagonal "bottom" line counter clock-wise, so it is right sides together with the one pointing to the left.  Interlock and pin seams. Sew from the center out.  Repeat for all four sides working counter clock-wise. 

13) Place lining sides right side up in backwards "L" (mirror of step 10). Make 2 backwards "L"s.  Sew the "L"s together matching centers. Press. Sew seams in the same manner as the outer bag.  LEAVE ABOUT 8 IN OPEN IN ONE SIDE FOR TURNING. 

14)  Place a handle fabric strip and a lining piece right sides together and stitch down each long side, leaving ends open. 

turn handle right side out and press. (I really want one of the turny things!)

Top stitch edges of handles. Repeat for second handle. 

If you are adding a key strap, do that now. Fuse key strap interfacing to wrong side of 2-1/2 inch strip and trim. Fold edges to dotted line and fold in half again, enclosing the raw edge. Top stitch.

15)  Pin Handles, right sides together, to "top point"  and stitch in place on  lines on pattern.  Pin and stitch key loop to desired place at this point also. 

16)  Insert lining into bag, right sides together. Match raw edges, pin well, ease as needed.  Stitch on solid lines, pivot at handle edge, stitch across handles at previous stitch line or just below, pivot again and continue. Clip inner corners to stitching (the bottom of the "v"). Double stitch along solid line again to reinforce. Turn bag. Neaten the edges and top stitch around top edges or "bind".  Close turning hole by hand or machine. 

I hope you have fun making your bag. I LOVE mine! 

Let me know what your plans are for yours. 

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Looking Forward to something

Red roses from my yard, because a post without pictures is boring.

Ahh, the lazy days of summer..... NOT
We have been super busy not doing much of anything. Day camps for one son, golfing and now work for another, and trying to fit  quilting/work in for me. Plus living at least 10 miles away from anything means a lot of "dead" time in the car. 

But all of that is about to end. School starts in less than two weeks for HCS. August 5. We should be able to get back into a routine of sorts, which will be nice. Something to look forward to. 

Something else I have to look forward to is the International Quilt Festival at the end of October in Houston, TX.  I have been "invited" to work/volunteer on the Education Team for the festival. It will be a lot of work and long hours but I am really excited about it, a whole week of nothing but quilts. 

One of the "perks" is that the volunteers get to sign up for classes right before registration opens up for everyone else. While there is not a lot of time for taking classes I have been able to pick out two sessions. I think it will be fun to meet the rest of the team, which is made up of about 23 dedicated people from all over the country.

It was exciting to see my friend Barbara Black's quilt on the cover of the quilt festival course catalogue too. This is the Ruby Jubilee Show "celebrating 40 years of great quilts." This particular quilt is red and white and is being featured on all of the official show stuff (tote bags, brochures, etc). It will also hang in the special exhibit Ruby Jubilee part of the show. You can see more of this phenomenal quilt here My Joyful Journey .  

One more thing to look forward to, my 30th high school reunion (next year). I have been asked to donate a little something for an auction.  More on that another time. But I am really looking forward to heading to paradise! 

Max is nine months old and just got his first haircut.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

How long does it take to get a driver's license?

Ahh, summer. That time of lazy days and sitting around drinking iced tea or lemonade..... NOT! This summer has been extremely busy around here. I thought the quilters would go out to their gardens and I might get a little break. Nope, I am staying very steady with my quilting and have several t-shirt quilts on order. Plus the kiddos are home and needing rides everywhere. The 17-yo did get his driver's license, but without an extra car that doesn't do us much good. 
Okay, here is the driver's license story. It took a full week to obtain said license. Not because he failed the test. Because the offices where one gets a license are understaffed and its a government agency in the state of Alabama.  

We decided to not even try to go to the office in Huntsville due to previous experiences of waiting 5 hours in line. People are lined up at 5 a.m. and you get a number and still might not get seen that day. So we head to a smaller office south of town. When we get there we discover it is a building the size of my kitchen and the sign on the door states no driving tests on wet roads. Well of course it was a drizzly day. So we go home. 

The next day we get to the office 10 mins after it opens and the sign on the door says the driving tests are all full. (Apparently only person staffs the office and she can only take two a day of those). I call another office and she says I can chance it but she won't do it in the rain. Well the radar say no rain until the afternoon, it is 8 a.m. after all. So we drive the 45 mins to that office. (Jackson is getting plenty of extra driving practice in). When we arrive in the basement of the courthouse the door is closed, the people waiting in the chairs in the hall say she (another one-person office) is on a driving test and that the computers are down. So we sit and wait. After the computers come back up we are first on the list and she actually puts all of Jackson's information in the computer and takes his photo, looking like its a go today. Then she starts taking people who came after us to get renewals and such. Wait, what? She then tells us it will be after lunch before she does any more driving tests. Sooo, we go shopping at Hammer's and eat a leisurely lunch, it is a government office and they are in no hurry. Get back from lunch, computers are down again. Look at the radar, HUGE storm headed our way. Ugh. Decided to call it quits for the day. On the way home it is raining so hard we had to pull off the road. Chalk it up to another chance of learning how to handle that driving experience for Jackson. 
The next day we didn't even attempt it, I had to get some work done this week. So Thursday we head out again, get to the office within 30 mins of it opening. No rain in the forecast, we have our paper work in order. After a couple of hours it was his turn for the test. Hallelujah, he passed! I don't think I could have handled going through all of that again. Now to find him a vehicle..... 

Do you have any government office horror stories?