Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Quilting Basics

I have had a few questions lately from people who want to make my travel duffle sewing pattern and they have never quilted. The quilt for the duffle consists of three layers. The bottom layer will become the lining of your bag, I use kona cotton muslin. You will need a large craft table to layout the fabric. You will be using pins, so you don't want to scratch your dining table.

First you press the muslin so you do not have any creases, and you lay it out flat on your work surface. Some people even tape the edges down to keep from getting even the smallest pucker in their quilt back.

Second, put the batting on top of the muslin.

Third, lay your feature fabric on top of the batting.

Fourth, pin the three layers together with safety pins about every 6" apart.
Here is a video showing the pinning process and a really great tool I am going to have to get myself!

The reason you use safety pins: Getting a large piece of fabric quilted on your home machine will require rolling it up from the right side as it gets to be too much to fit through the arm of the machine. If you use straight pins, you will get stuck by them even if you are careful.

After your fabric layers are pinned, you run the fabric through your machine, using a walking foot. I don't quilt them much for the duffles. I just run 4 wavy lines down the length of the fabric. I have seen beautiful duffles made from my pattern with more detailed quilting on them. If you want to take more time with the quilting part, you certainly can stitch more.

I hope this helps!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Spokane River

Spokane River
Originally uploaded by studiocherie
I picked up a batch of fabric for boot socks, made mock up sock tops (because I make each pair of socks to size) and loaded up the photo gear and Rory. We are so blessed to live near the Spokane river. As you can see it is a picturesque location for us frequently. Four or five kayakers went by in the middle of our shoot (one of them upside down - which scared me, but she was smiling as she rolled out of it.) Rory got really excited when this one guy came back upriver to play in the current. Thank you kayak man! Thank you Rory. Click on the photo to see the other fabric choices and boots in my Flickr photostream.

Monday, September 19, 2011

The boot socks pattern is finally ready!

Womens Size Fleece socks
Originally uploaded by studiocherie
I think I mentioned in a few places that the sizing was mucho tricky on these, but I prevailed. I decided that people deserve to have these fleece socks in specific sizes for their feet, so they are not too baggy nor toe schrunchy. The sewing pattern includes sizing from pre-school shoe size 4-13, kids sizes 1-6, women 4-9, and men 8-13. All in one pattern! I am also selling the socks as a made to order item, so people can specify their color and size. Of course, if you buy the pattern, you can sell them too. The leopard print fleece is great quality - nicely stretchy - I got it at

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

New Simplicity Pattern Coming

twirl dress and petticoat
Originally uploaded by studiocherie
In the Summer 2012 catalog, you will find my girls dress pattern and the cute play skirt I made for underneath, which is a fun thing all by itself too. The skirt is a very easy project with a different way to incorporate tulle and fun embellishment ideas. Yay! Simplicity. Thank you. We are currently hunting for fabrics to feature on the pattern cover. Let me know if you have any ideas. Preferably it will be a fabric line that is fairly new and will still be available when the pattern comes out next Spring.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Yoga Journal

If I write this experience down on a piece of paper, it is likely I will never see it again. I want to remember what this feels like. I believe there are a few of you who can be encouraged from my experience too. So if you don't want to read a yoga journal, skip this entry. I will write more about sewing of course. I do have some fabulous sewing related news that I will post here tomorrow.
Hot Yoga - Bikram inspired yoga. My goal is 30 sessions in 30 days.
Day one - I wrote about it. It was hard and scary. Heart pounding, hard to breathe scary.
Day two - I thought I knew what it would be like, but it was still a very new experience. Not as scary, but still very hard and heart pounding. Felt pretty drained afterward.
Day three - Fear of it is gone, but it still requires a lot of effort. I am wondering if this is for me. Wiped out and going to bed early with a headache. My appetite is greatly changed and diminished. I want more veges and more water. Less sweets and meat.
Day four - I talked to the instructor before class. I commented that I didn't have a favorite part yet. It was all like some form of torture. She said that she focuses on how strong she is and tells herself how well she is doing. I did that throughout class and I did feel strong and proud of myself for sticking with it. Still tired early in the evening. I am more aware of my skin and it feels good.
Day 5 - I asked before class about getting any kind of added energy benefit from the practise and was told that everyone is different. I will find what there is in it for myself. I went into class ready to tell myself how strong I was again. I did that a lot, but I also felt as though I was going to spontaneously combust. It was very difficult to stay with it for 90 minutes, but I did. My heart rate was not as uncomfortable and breathing was easier. I was just extremely hot.
Day 6 - Major breakthrough. I found the joy. After the initial breathing exercise and during the first series of asanas (I think that is what they are called - I don't want to say "poses" because I don't think of them like that) the instructor, Justice, said "squeeze your biceps with your ears." That cracked me up and I laughed all through the first series. I cannot even describe the feeling of laughter mixed with the physical practise of this yoga. It was like a magical combination. Instead of my sweat feeling like a gross toxic bath, it felt like a beautiful cooling shower. I felt a love and acceptance for myself. I was able to deepen some of the moves. I felt glowing and beautiful and I was hooked. I felt pleased and happy afterward and not tired like the previous 5 evenings.
Day 7 - I went into class prepared to focus on feeling strong and joyful. I was able to do more than before. Toward the end of class I felt like some new pathways opened up. Like the inside of my body was having a party. All of my cells are bubbly and sparkling inside. A new energy source is revealed inside of me.
Day 8 - For the first time, I felt that this practice - even in the heat and the demands of 90 continuous minutes - can be relaxing. My breathing was easy, my heart rate steady. I feel a kind of heat and energy inside my body now and a cool, clean sensation on my skin. I see how people want to do this everyday. I feel like this is one of the best things I have ever done for myself.
Here is where this is all happening: Yarrow Yoga.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Hot Yoga Made Me Cry

I cried a little bit. I think I should have let myself cry more, but I rolled over onto my back and just let myself breathe for a minute before rejoining the class. Yes, it is that hard. I don't know what the poses are called yet. There is a pose where after sweating profusely for about an hour, you get to put your face, including your mouth on the mat. Breathing deeply through my nose, I was taken back to the tunnels under Jerusalem. Claustrophobia. Rather than bawling and throwing up (like I actually did in a Byzantine church in Bethlehem) I rolled onto my back. The floor was hot, but the ceiling was high which relieved me somewhat. I wanted to leave. I wanted cool air and sky, but I had decided to stay.  Ara, the instructor, had told us our first goal was to stay in the room for the entire 90 minute class.  We will be going back to this hot yoga class everyday for a month. Day one, my body felt like a sponge full of toxins getting wrung out. Glad to get it out. Let's see what a month does...

Friday, September 2, 2011


Yoga is a lot harder than I thought it would be. I thought it was all lolling about on a mat and stretching. Toward the end of a class the other night, holding a pose just beyond comfort and not in pain, soft music, dim light, in the company of other quiet people, I heard my body say "Thank you. I am so glad you brought me to this place."