You guys have seen this one before, but now it's entry time!
Remember the Throwdown Challenge that I told you about over at Old Red Barn Co.? The prize is a gift certificate in Dana's shop. Dana makes and sells soaps and sugar scrubs and I have been dying to try them out as I've heard really great stuff about them. But when you have 4 kids, an expensive hobby and only one income, fancy soaps and scrubs tend to fall somewhere down at the bottom of the pile of things to buy.
So when Dana issued this challenge I jumped at it! I decided to make it a two-fer and also use the completed item as a Pay it Forward gift for Bree.
I started with an embroidered pickle. I already had that part done when the challenge was issued, so I needed to find a color palette that incorporated the green and gray threads I had used in the embroidery.
From there I dug through my stash to find fabrics that represented the bundle.
I was a little bit unsure of how she would feel about these picks, so I posted a picture of the bundle and the color palette for her, asking her advice on whether she thought the bundle worked well for the palette. I actually did want the advice, but I was also hoping she would give me a positive comment on the bundle as well, and she did!
So with that, I carried on. I was inspired by this image to make a hexagon border around the embroidery. I tried machine piecing the hexagons and let me tell you, it's not as easy as the tutorials make you think! I was actually wishing I had hand pieced them at more than on point during the making.
I finished it off by sandwiching just the top with a piece of batting and free motion quilting swirls in the border only. I have been watching Angela Walter's quilting class on Craftsy and was really inspired to try something new. Then I sewed the quilted piece and the backing right sides together and flipped it right sides out. A topstitch all the way around completed it.
There were a few other challenging parts, namely trying to piece the embroidery into the border with completely ruining the look of the hexagons in the corners. They did get a teeny bit wonkified though.
And because it's always interesting to me to hear about the non-sewing challenges that go into the making of an item, I have another fun little tidbit for you. Moose, being the 2 year old that he is, loves to color. He loves to color so much that we are in the process of repainting our walls because between his and his sister's doodles, it's just too much for a magic eraser to clean up. He found my finished embroidery piece on my cutting table, along with my chalk marking pencils, and apparently he thought it needed some more color! So this finished piece is embroidery number 2. Those chalk pencils don't come off as easy as they say they do unfortunately. It all worked out ok in the end though. When I did the first embroidery I didn't have a plan, and it turned out not to be the right size for the hexagon border as it was. So this way I was able to customize it and get a better fit. So he actually kind of saved me a little bit :)