Saturday, January 17, 2015

A Place to Lay My Head

I am a high-maintenance sleeper. For me, a good night of sleep requires a regular bedtime, a cool temperature in my bedroom, four pillows, multiple blankets, blackout shades, and a box fan for white noise. Maybe that doesn’t sound too outrageous to you, but I have thought on more than one occasion, as I smuggled a box fan into yet another hotel or B&B, that this can’t be normal. (Chelsea, I bet you’re super excited to room with me at the guild retreat now!)

One thing I am not high-maintenance about is my sheets. We sleep in white sheets at my house. They’re easier than patterned sheets—they don’t fade, and if you mix and match two different white sheet sets, no one notices.

Lately, however, my white pillowcases have started to show their wear. It seems silly to purchase new ones when I have plenty of fabric on hand. And you know what? I’d like to lay my head on some Free Market Fancy at night!

I found instructions for Guest Pillowcases in my copy of Weekend Sewing, by Heather Ross. She constructs the cases in an interesting way, so I thought I’d give her method a try.

What started out as one Free Market Fancy pillowcase for myself ...

Grew into a set of three ...

Plus two for some little girls who like to lay their heads on pink ...

I know what you’re thinking, and your right: This is another small project to work on so I can avoid all the quilt tops that are piling up. It’s true. And my new machine—a Janome 1600P, purchased to be a piecing and quilting workhorse—has not been used. Of course, the first time I tried to use it, I did Something Very Bad to it. (The smell of melting plastic was a dead giveaway!) This was not a manufacturing problem; it was a me-being-a-bonehead problem. I’ve since remedied the situation—too horrified to go back to the dealer and confess my boneheadedness, I purchased a new foot pedal online—but between that incident and all the quilting waiting for me on the horizon, I’m feeling a bit timid!

Linking up to Sew Cute Tuesday, Let’s Bee Social, Needle and Thread Thursday, and Finish It Up Friday ...

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  1. I love making pillowcases. It is seriously awesome fun! And it looks like you enjoyed it a bit as well, haha! And I'm with you--I have to have a fan going when I sleep. It's seriously necessary. :)

  2. Fabulous pillowcases! I made a few for my toddler (since he has a non-standard pillow) and my husband has been making noises about getting a few made for our bed. Also - if you need white noise, have you tried using an app on your phone? I use one called relax melodies (has both a free version and a paid one) and it has nearly 100 different sounds and you can blend multiple ones together to get it just right - might be worth checking out, way easier than lugging a fan around with you!

  3. Pillowcases are fun to make, a nice distraction and very nice to lay on. I made 30+ for the holidays for family and charity, mostly from stash. I manage to make one for myself that I have yet to lay on. The quilting will be there waiting for you so make what you need to sleep well. :)

    tushay3 (at) yahoo (dot) com

  4. Those quilts will wait as long as you need them to. Because you're the Boss! You dictate to those quilts! You'll let them know when it's their turn! And they can just think about that smell and tremble. If they don't shape up right for the new machine then that could happen to them. Go ahead, Boss. Wait until you're good and ready and then show them who the master is! (Haha? Help any?)

  5. Beautiful pillow cases. I am sorry your new machine had issues, hopefully it gets fixed up and ready to go soon.

  6. Pretty places to lay your head! My husband is a high maintenance guy (he has 6 pillows!), me - I can fall asleep standing up on a train.... :D Do I need to come over and hold your hand through FMQ? I'll bring cookies for bribes if necessary. :D

    1. Michelle, I hope you take Sarah up on this offer, because having a quilty friend - with cookies - nearby is a huge incentive!

  7. Two things: 1 - quilting cotton is much denser than sheet cotton, and may not feel as soft as percale. Just to warn you. I made my mom a pillowcase to match her quilt, and the fabric was so soft when I bought it. At Christmas, she put it on my bed and, boy, was it scratchy! Totally unexpected. 2 - Just do it. Tackle those UFOs that are pinned and ready to be quilted. The service repairmen have probably seen it all, and they won't say anything - you are paying them! Also,laugh it off, and everyone else will, too! Hope the pillowcases do turn out super soft and comfy, and things get moving on the FMQ front!

  8. Those pillowcases are so pretty! I can understand why you kept going once you made your first one. I also can completely relate to stalling and pro-craft-inating (you know, doing other smaller projects instead of the project you are *supposed* to be working on? Yeah, I just made it up. But I like it.) Sometimes you need a few notches under your belt before you tackle the big stuff. I believe that's called the snowball effect. Once you have some momentum, you just keep going! I know you'll get there, so enjoy the process as much as the finish!

  9. Those pillowcases are so very pretty! What a treat! Now about your new machine.... You haven't yet even pieced on it yet? You have me so curious as to what you could have possibly done. Hope you can get back on that horse and enjoy riding!


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