Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Product Reviews

Recently I've had the opportunity to use some "new to me" products that I'd like to share with you.  First up is "Soft and Stable." I met Annie Unrein a couple of months ago at a quilt show in St. George and was able to have a demonstration of this amazing product. Since I make quite a few bags, "Soft and Stable" was of interest to me.

It is absolutely a wonderful product.  I used it in the construction of both bags I made for market.  The bags hold their shape, even when nothing is in them!  I've traditionally used either fusible fleece or a layer of batting/heavy interfacing when constructing bags, and this product gives greater stability than both of these methods while still being soft.  I'm definitely sold on this product.  The package pictured above made both bags shown here with enough left over for a 3rd, smaller bag. 

It was easy to quilt through as well...I did a little pinning, but not a lot as the "nap" of the "Soft and Stable" held the fabric steady.

Another product I recently reviewed is LapelStick.  LapelStick is an adhesive perfect for short term sewing repairs (think hemming pants until you have time to sew them), but it is also great for temporarily keeping fabrics together for applique'.

I have to say that I was a little hesitant to use it for applique, but I had no reason to worry.  It held great (this block actually sat for a month before I got around to stitching it). And there was no stiffness at all.  There was no gumming up of the needle, either.  Definitely, this is a handly little product to keep in your purse, suitcase, and sewing kit.  I have two extra samples of this to give away, so if you'd like to try this product, just leave me a comment, and I'll draw two names tonight.

Oh, and you can still enter the Hawthorne Threads giveaway on my previous post!

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Sunday, May 29, 2011

Giveaway--Hawthorne Threads

Have you ever visited Hawthorne Threads?  This fun on-line shop is owned by a husband and wife team who have a great selection of fresh, modern fabrics.The new Anna Maria collection, Loulouthi has already arrived...along with Tula Pink's Prince Charming!

Well...Charlie and Lindsay of Hawthorne Threads are offering up a fat quarter bundle of  Sweet Broderie   to one of my readers (a great collection to win, isn't it?)!  You have two ways to enter.  For one entry visit Hawthorne Threads and come back with a comment about your favorite "Coming Soon" collection.  For another entry, sign up for their newsletter (just scroll down, and you'll find the newsletter sign up on the left of the home page).  That's it!  I'll keep entries open until Wednesday evening--good luck!

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Saturday, May 28, 2011


Here's a close-up view of my most recent finish.  Fabric: Ruby...just love it! Half-square triangles previously seen here. What is it?

Introducing "Just Swell!"  I have needed to make a cover for my Janome for quite a while...it's actually been on the "to-do" list for a couple of years.  When I saw Camille's cute sewing machine cover at market I knew I had to make one.

I did all the straight line quilting exactly as suggested in the pattern.  My machine is taller and wider than Camille's, but the pattern has a simple formula for making the cover fit your machine--the math worked out perfectly.  The only thing I might have done differently would be to make the ties about an inch longer than suggested--since my machine was a bit wider I think I needed longer ties (but you can see from the photo above that I was still able to tie a cute bow on each side).

And finally...for the winner of my Sew, Mama, Sew Giveaway...wow--there were 708 comments!  Thanks so much to everyone who entered and shared their thoughts on favorite fabrics!  Congratulations Dawn...I've sent you an e-mail...and as soon as I get your mailing address a box of goodies will be on it's way to you! Have a great rest of the weekend everyone!

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

American Patchwork & Quilting

Do you have your August 2011 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting yet?  Mine just arrived today...and if you look closely at the cover...

up in the right hand corner is a picture of a charm-square hexagon bag...that I designed!!!

It's been amazing to work with the editors at American Patchwork & Quilting and see the wonderful job they did putting everything together--it's been a true honor to have this published in my favorite quilting magazine!

Here is the first bag I made with my design...it's been patiently waiting in the closet for me to be able to carry it around--which I will do, starting today!

Kathie Holland designed the cover quilt, and there are lots of  other great projects (as usual)!  One of my favorite features in each issue is the spotlight on a designer's creative space; this month's issue features Roseann Meehan Kermes and is full of great tips and beautiful photos of her creative space--I can't wait to get a few minutes to sit down and read this article from start to end!

Well...that's all for now...have a great day!  Hope you get to sew!

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Wednesday, May 25, 2011


I came home from market with so many plans to sew.  Somehow, that didn't happen right away...there were things to catch up on (housework and laundry) and research papers and final exams to grade.  Still, I kept thinking about what I would sew first.  I came home with some wonderful Sew Cherry fabrics (thanks Lori)!

And some Happy Mochi Yum Yum goodness (yes, I stalked the Lecien booth at Sample Spree and can say I bought the first bundle sold)!

I also made it to the Moda booth at Sample Spree and bought two color-ways of Puttin' on the Ritz! And then there are the patterns...I came home with some wonderful patterns--might have to do a post on them.  I have 5 or 6 that I want to start yesterday!

But when it came down to it, and I finally got a minute to sew, I decided to stitch and trim these half-square triangles left over from making flying geese for "Swoon." They finished off at 2 1/2" square.  Love. Them. Don't know what I'll do with them, but that's okay.

And then I sewed my Curio 2 1/2" charms into 4-patches.  And that was enough.  How wonderful, really, that sometimes it's enough just to sew--even without the big finish.

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Sunday, May 22, 2011

Giveaway Day

Once again it's time for the Sew, Mama, Sew Giveaway Day!

I've participated in the past, and it's been a great way to find "new to me" blogs!  Plus, you just might win something.

I'm doing some studio cleaning this week and have some patterns, fabric, and one of these to give away...

Just leave a comment letting me know your favorite fabric line...I'll pick one winner for a nifty little sewing bag--and add some fun fabric and patterns as well!  Good luck! Be back soon!

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Saturday, May 21, 2011


I'm taking a little break from the market reports to share some market sewing. It was super fun to get the call from Camille one evening that Ruby had arrived--by the next morning I was cutting out quilts with this wonderful fabric. 

The first quilt I made using Ruby was "Jellybean"--a fun, fast jelly roll quilt that goes together in a jiffy.

I love this quilt..and couldn't wait to see it quilted and hanging in the booth at market!

Next up was "Swoon." I loved the pattern from first glance but didn't realize until I'd made a block or two the impact this quilt would have.


Making this big block quilt was a lot of fun.  It was just stunning as it came together.  Again, I could hardly wait to see it quilted...and in the booth.

Isn't the quilting beautiful?

Such a fun quilt--the blocks are big, so they're easy to piece.  You can see the rest of Camille's new patterns here.  Her new stuff is all great...but these two just happen to be my favorites!

Also, thanks so much Camille, for letting me use your beautiful photos--yep, she took every single one of these gorgeous photos!

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Friday, May 20, 2011

One More (I Think)...

More market...hoping it's still okay to post about it! I thought I might be able to finish with this post, but it looks like I'll have to do at least one more!  First up is the French General section over in Moda-land.  The new line is stunning (as usual), and the booth was beautiful.

And Sandy Klop's booth...everything was colorful and beautiful!

 Okay...I'm switching gears here, but...I had to share this booth.  This is the Riley Blake "Man Cave" (yes, that's the name she gave this booth) that one of the Riley Blake owners created for her husband. Who would have thought?! I never did see her husband here, but it sure did look like a comfortable place to relax.

Lynette Anderson and her husband...just a delightful couple. I bought one of her patterns at Sample Spree and can't wait to get stitching! Lynette's new line of fabric with Lecien is absolutely beautiful as well.

Back to Moda...this is the Basic Grey booth highlighting their new fabric collection, Curio.  Not only did I love the Curio line, but I also loved their booth with so many ideas for decorating with fabric and notions.

They have some really fun products coming out in the next few months.  I really loved the pre-made collage boards that are ready for you to just add your favorite scraps of fabric and create a framed piece of art.

You can see a few bigger pieces of the fabric on the right.  It was one of my favorite Moda lines.

I think I mentioned book signings in one of my previous posts--they were wonderful.  Bari's book Inspired to Sew by Bari J.: 15 Pretty Projects -- Sewing Secrets -- Colorful Collage has been on my wishlist for a while now, for good reason!  The book has  many fun projects to sew, and the photography is beautiful!

I also attended a Heather Bailey book signing for the book  Signature Styles: 20 Stitchers Craft Their Look--she was very gracious as so many people were asking for photos. This is another book that had been on my wishlist--and it is amazing.  It shares the studios of 20 different artists along with tips and projects.  The photos again, are pure eye candy!

A photo of one of the Aurifil thread displays--I wanted to take every color home!

I wasn't able to do that, but I did get an Aurifil color card which is really going to come in handy.  Also, I was able to purchase a 4-pack of spools at Sample Spree for a terrific price.

Just some of the other books I was able to get at the book signings: first, Strip-Smart Quilts: 16 Designs from One Easy Technique by Kathy Brown.  Her presentation was beautiful, and the book and quilts are wonderful as well.  Another book signing I attended was the one for Block Party--The Modern Quilting Bee: The Journey of 12 Women, 1 Blog, & 12 Improvisational Projects.  Again...a wish list book that does not disappoint.  There is an emphasis on the "modern" quilting bee and techniques and ideas that are useful for modern quilting.

Just a few more books...and one nifty notion, then I'll call it day for this post! Three Times the Charm! (Leisure Arts #5276) is a fun charm pack book written by Me and My Sister Designs. These two ladies were absolutely delightful! I was so happy to meet them at market, and their book has several great charm pack projects in it!  Fresh Fabric Treats (Fresh Fabric Treats: 16 Yummy Projects to Sew from Jelly Rolls, Layer Cakes & More with Your Favorite Moda Bake Shop Designers) has been a "must have" book since it was first announced. This book will not disappoint--it has so many cute projects that there is sure to be something for everyone.  The photos are especially wonderful, plus it was fun for me to get it signed by so many of the "chefs!"

Jeanna Kimball has created some new needles called "Utility Quilting Needles" that will be available in a few months.  They are reinforced, making them stronger, and have a larger eye for using perle cotton when doing big-stitch quilting.  I was grateful to get a sample card that contains several sizes of the new needles--these will definitely be on my list to purchase.  Finally, I was able to get a copy of Kaari Meng's The French-Inspired Home, with French General.  Such a beautiful book with so many beautiful photos.  This edition is a new, paperback edititon of the previously published hard-cover volume.

Thanks to everyone who played along with my market bag guessing game here.  My new Oak Park bag was made with "Terrain" by Kate Spain, but since I also made a market bag using "Ruby" by Bonnie & Camille I took either answer.  The first five people to guess one of these lines got an e-mail from me this afternoon.  I have some Oak Park patterns to share, courtesy of Stephanie, and a little bit of "Ruby" for one winner!  Thanks so much for stopping by!

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