UFO Sightings in a ~Mostly~ Organized Studio

There are definite benefits to organizing a craft room. Obviously, there's improved functionality, it's easier to find things, the floor is actually visible again (in my case...), but there are also "benefits" that come hidden as overwhelming amounts of unfinished objects.

Howie likes his new "cave".
I unearthed a LOT of UFOs while sorting through both the dining room (which had kind of turned into the "formal crafting room" for a while) and my upstairs craft room. I made an effort to fold them all neatly and assign due dates to each one with a little sticky note. I tend to work best under pressure, and if I have a deadline for something I'm more likely to get it done.

Little stacks of UFOs.

The infamous IKEA LACK shelf, full of UFOs. Painting the patched walls is also on my list.

My list ended up being divided into two sections; time-sensitive projects for others and whenever-I-feel-like-it projects for myself.

Among the more time-sensitive UFOs are mostly sewing projects, including the disappearing nine-patch I started a few months ago for little Nora, my brother's queen-sized blue and gold quilt that I promised him for Christmas four years ago (oops...), and a heap of cut-up Army parachute I've been meaning to turn into throw blankets and pillows since way back in 2013 when I helped theme a friend's uncle's bar. Of course, I still have to finish the adopt me vests too (OMG I'm terrible! But I can say that I do have a handful of them completely finished...). I also have a surprise for a friend's birthday that's coming up soon, but you'll have to wait to see that one.

My brother's queen-sized quilt top, on my entire sectional couch. Dated January 5, 2014.

I decided to try to attack the UFOs based on how long they've been in stasis (I watch way too much Sci-Fi, apparently), so I started with the pair of parachute blankets. And while I'm not a history or armed-forces buff, I think I want one...

I'm super pumped about the idea of these, but there are a few things that are driving me crazy about them! The green silky fabric is really slippery, so it was hard to cut out into a nice even rectangle the same size as the pieces of khaki fleece I got for the backs. It's also not exactly square along the bottom edge, since it makes a really big circle. Lots of pins were helpful in getting everything to stay in place as best I could.

This may have been helpful if he would have sat still.

My plan was to use the neat bottom edge of the parachute, where the cables are attached, as the bottom of the blanket. I sewed the sides and top (the cut edges of the nylon), right sides together with the fleece and flipped it right side out. I then pinned and top-stitched all the way around. On the neat edge of the parachute,  I folded in the edge of the fleece and sewed right along one of the several lines of stitching already present. I left the little vents open for a billowy effect, and just sewed down the belting underneath to secure it to the fleece. A picture might explain it better...

I really wanted to emphasize that these blankets were made from a parachute, so I decided to top stitch down along all of the seams as well. This is where I'm going crazy right now. The fleece is so stretchy, and likely not exactly the same size as the nylon, so every line of stitching I do ends up with so many tucks and pulls and weird crooked lines on the back. It's so frustrating!


So far I've gotten the best results by pinning the crap out of the seams, then slowly and carefully feeding the blanket through the machine, trying to make sure nothing shifts underneath. It doesn't turn out perfectly though, and so I've had to turn the blanket over, rip out the seams near the tucks, and sew them again with the fleece on top to try to ease out the extra fabric. It kind of sucks. Hopefully the second blanket goes a little smoother. Maybe I'll just try tacking the chute fabric down in little one inch segments instead.

The chute fabric has super cool stitched details already.

On the bright side, the pillows should be super easy in comparison! I just need to find interesting sections of the parachute fabric- I really like the areas where several different angled seams come together, as well as where the chute is printed with manufacture info- and cut out some 17" squares (that's a 16" pillow with a half inch seam allowance).

I also have some really neat heavy straps and D-ring things with all the cording attached to them, which are probably what secured the trooper to the chute. They'd make really interesting details on the pillows, but they sure wouldn't be terribly comfortable...

Lastly (and I literally just thought of this as I'm sitting here typing), wouldn't it be cool to make some crocheted coasters out of the extra paracord? Yeah, I think I'll add that to my list. Lol.

I can't help but feel that this photo is a metaphor for my life- all jumbled up and lots of loose ends. Ha!


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