Sunday, May 30, 2010

Summer Tote Swap- Sign Ups

I've decided to host another swap.  This is going to be a tote/bag/purse swap.  I am very excited and I hope to get some fellow "bag lovers" in on a fun time. 

I seem to get a lot of questions when I host swaps, so I thought these guidelines would be helpful. 

The bag you make should have: 
  • quilt shop quality fabrics  
  • stabilizer or fusible fleece 
  • stabilized handles
  • at least one pocket
  • a finished lining (no raw seams)
But, you don't have to stop there!  (Optional) Feel free to add:
  • magnetic snap closures
  • extra pockets
  • embellishments 
  • material flowers
  • cute buttons
  • quilting
  • pleats
  • tucks
  • accessories (lip balm, tissues, gum)

 You DO NOT have to have a blog to participate.  This time around, I may ask for a sewing/blogging reference if I am not familiar with you.  I hope that you do not take this the wrong way.  Everyone is welcome to participate and I hope that we all have the chance to make a new "friend".  However, I have hosted swaps where a partner has never shipped their project.  This is EXTREMELY disappointing to the person that doesn't get their item.  Therefore, I may ask you for a reference and I hope you will understand.
So, the sign ups start today through Friday, June 4th.  I will contact you with the information for the person you will be making a bag for sometime over the weekend.  I am going to run this similar to my past will know the person you are shipping to, but not the person who is making your bag (or shipping to you).  So, it will be a surprise. 
The deadline to ship is July 31st.  Please, if you sign up for the swap do everything possible to get the bag sent by then.  If something really urgent does prevent you from doing so, please communicate that to me as soon as possible.  Please remember to send me an email when you ship.
If you ship on time, your name will be entered in a drawing for a prize (my last remaining Dandy Bag pictured below). 

If you'd like to participate, please send me an email with the subject heading Summer Tote Swap. (You can find my email address by clicking on my profile on the right near the bottom of the page.)  Please include the following information:
Home Address
Email Address
Blog Address (if you have one)
Are you willing to ship internationally?
When you think of your package arriving, what would you love to see in it?  A bag, a purse, colors? 
What style bag would you like to sew?  (bag or purse)

Don't forget to grab the bling at the top for you blog. :)


Monday, May 24, 2010

My Quilting History

Kelly asked us to explain our quilting history. 

Here's my timeline:

2003- I mentioned to my friend Billie that I loved quilts.  Her mom quilts and she was quite confident I could too.  She told me about these day long quilting classes her aunt held at a church.  She convinced me I could do it.  I bought my first sewing machine.  The class started at 8 in the morning and went until 11 at night.  It cost 30 dollars plus supplies.  They had all of your cutting done for you in advance.  What a deal right?  So I went.  I came home with a large lap quilt (pictured below in the golds on the bottom row) in the trip around the world pattern that was hand tied.  I did it in one day.  I presently hate the quilt, but my husband swears it is the best in the house.  I am not fond of the colors or the poor matching of corners or even the hand tieing for that matter.  (I should also mention that growing up I was always very fond of the projects that my mom's friend, Judy, would sew, quilt, and create.  That is probably where the interest stems from really.  I also did some sewing in 4-H and Home Ec and I really like it.)

2006-  I haven't done any quilting since the last class.  Although I did have an excuse, I did have a baby in 2004 so it wasn't a great time for the new hobby.  I attended another class and my mom (and friends) joined in for this one. That was her first quilt. As for me, I was much happier with the corners on this second quilt (the green and tan on the bottom row), however....I today I am not fond of this one either.  The colors seem blah to me or I am not fond of hand tieing.  However, this is husband's second favorite quilt in the house and he says it is staying as well.

2007- I make my first quilt on my own and follow it with 6 more quilts in 2007 (I did attend another all day class at this point .).  I mostly send these to the long arm quilter.  My favorite quilt of all time (is from this year) and it is picture below on my bed in red.  At the very end of 2007, I start a blog.  I didn't have many visitors at first, but those that did visit I quickly thought of as friends.  Among my earliest visitors were Anna and Mary Anne

I keep sewing, and sewing, and sewing. 

2009-  My husband lost his job and I am forced to learn to stipple.  I hang in there and manage to catch on.   I join the Charming Girls and Guys Club and find I get more accomplished than ever.  I continue to enjoy my blog and all of the great quilters I connect with.

2010-  Kelly convinces me to do my first tutorial (still located on the right side of the screen), I have hosted a couple of swaps, participated in a few more, and have one planned in the near future (bag lovers stay tuned). 

So that brings us to the present.  That is 22 finished quilts and baby quilts, 6 unfinished quilt tops, and 5 mini quilts.  I am pretty pleased with that.  No, I didn't count my bags...that is probably a post of its own.

Flowers are blooming and so is some sewing!

So, I bought this pattern from Carol at her sale and I just happened to have this charm pack in a drawer.  So, I broke it out this weekend.  I bought this pattern because I really want to work on my machine applique.  Not that I am overally thrilled with any of it, but I am really unhappy with the center circles.  I am thinking about ripping them out and starting over.  Yuck.  Even looking at the photo makes me upset.  For those of you that machine applique, what tips can you offer?  I suspect it will just take practice.
For one thing, I know I need a better light near my sewing machine.  I was having a hard time seeing what I was doing.  Now on a more positive note, I am normally do not use black fabrics too much, but I do the like the blacks in the border of this.  I even have enough fabric to add a black binding on this when I am done.

Here's a picture of Buddy at the baseball diamond.  Isn't he cute? 

Saturday, May 22, 2010

The mail is here!

So, I tried a different online shop, The Quilted Castle.  I actually found it a couple of weeks ago and signed up to get their newsletters.  I must say I had a great first time shopping experience with them.  They had several fabrics on sale that I have been eyeing. 

First up is Timber, isn't this pretty?  It will  make a great bag.  It is on sale for $6.50 a yard.  You can't beat that!

Next up is Love by Amy Butler.  Also, probably for a bag.  It is on sale for $7.60. 

Then I picked up Modern Meadow by Joel Dewberry (I've had my eye on this for a while.  It was $8.25 a yard.  Again I thought it was quite reasonable.

I also picked up some Hunky Dory (how long have I wanted that?) along with this new purse pattern, isn't it cute?  I have had my eye on it for a while as well.  It might have been their last copy though.

Perhaps my favorite part of the shopping trip was the fact that I thought I spent enough for $10 shipping, but when my package arrived they had managed to fit it in a $5.00 envelope and they credited me the differenced.  I really appreciated that.  If you haven't checked out The Quilted Cottage, I think you'd be quite pleased with their service.

Friday, May 21, 2010

A big smile and a thank you

Thanks to Jen.... for this nice little package that arrived at my door today!  How cute are those magnets and potholders? 

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Testing? Hello, are you still all out there?

Sorry for the blogging break, DQ was a DISASTER recently with a computer virus.  (Thanks to those of you who are suympathetically shaking your heads right now.)  But, it seems that life is getting better by the minute and we are back up and running. 

Don't worry, it wasn't an active virus and I am pretty confident you couldn't catch it from me, but it was there lurking all ZIPPED UP....and I didn't feel too safe.  So, we took care of the bugger anyway.

So, please excuse me if I don't email you back on all of the lovely comment you left me.  I really did appreciate them (I needed some uplifting) and I do appreciate you.  But, I am a bit swamped, so I think I will start from scratch and just empty out the email. 

I hope you are having a great week!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Jelly Roll Quilt Along Block 6

It was one of those days where I was preoccupied with something else.  I shouldn't have tried doing a simple block because it wasn't meant to be simple for me.  Have you ever had one of those days?  Where you manage to screw up the simplest of tasks?  Three times I screwed this block up.  I ended up fixing it twice and third time, I improvised.  Good times.  I do love the colors though. 

Is anyone else worrying they might run out of fabric? 

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Quilty Stuff for Sale

I will be accepting personal check.  Leave a comment to secure your purchase and include your email address.  I will send you a confirmation email. You are also welcome to place a "bid" price of less than the asking price.  If no one wants to pay the asking price, and I think your bid is fair...I may accept it and contact you.

First up for sale:  19 Fat Quarters in green, blue, toupe, and cream in the Serenity Collection by Henry Glass designer, Heather Mulder Peterson 

Asking Price $40 + shipping- SOLD

2 Sleepytime charm packs from Moda (29 charms each), + 1 1/2 yards yellow dotted fabric

 Asking Price $25 + shipping- SOLD


Features 12 projects using FQ's.  Retails at $22.99.

Asking Price $8 + shipping- SOLD


Each book retailed at $25 or $30 dollars a piece.  Each contains 150 pages of instruction with many color illustrations. 

Asking Price $10 each or $32 for all 4 + shipping
(these do seem to be heavy, so the shipping might be a bit more than the other items)

Pictures from inside the book:

This book retailed at $16.95. 

Asking Price $ 5 + shipping


 Each of the following patterns, I am asking for $2 a piece.  I will cover the shipping.
 Diva Bag- SOLD

 Yellow Brick Road- still available

 Spice Cake- SOLD

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Thank you! And Just a Peek at My Stash

First up I want to thank my sweet friend, Carol, for thinking of my on my birthday.  She sent me this great magazine (with a pattern in it that I adore), this great bag collection pattern (you know I am such a bag lady these days), some nice magnetic snaps (I have already used one), and a flying geese ruler (how handy is that?).  Thank you for your thoughtfulness, Carol. 

Secondly, I want to thank my sewing pal, Judy, for these sweet table toppers. I just love them both!

Kelly asked us to post how we store our stash.  Sorry to say, this isn't verying exciting over here.  I share my little sewing room with a guest room that is frequently used.  There are no pretty displays.  It is just crammed in where it fits.  On the top shelf of this closet, these plastic tubs hold my fabrics.  I have florals, children, and holidays up there. 

Here is my box of patterns. 

Here is my shelf that houses books and magazines. 

Not too thrilling, but its functional.

It is a beautiful day here (the first day in many that we haven't had rain).  It was perfect for soccer.  I hope you are having a great Saturday whereever you are.  Come back tomorrow for a bit of a garage sale.  Kelly had a fun idea to sell/swap our patterns and fabrics.  I will have several pattern books, patterns, and fabrics up for sale tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Mama's Day Purses

Mom and I did some sewing on Mama's Day.  We used the Grand Revival Pattern Ava Bag.  I like this is great for someone new to bag making.  I decided against having it reversible, and I added a pocket for a cellphone and a magnetic snap. 

This is the one mom made. 

This is the one I made.

Pretty cute, right?  They make the perfect size for a purse, and are actually very roomy. 

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Jelly Roll Quilt Along Block 5

Well, I guess I am a few stitches behind most of you...seems to be my story these days.  But, I really liked this block.  I thought it went together nicely and I was really pleased with my color combination.  I wanted a block that had a green focus (not my favorite), and I managed to do it in a way I liked.  I also like how they are coming together.

Couldn't you eat this sweet little face up? 

Monday, May 3, 2010

Sunday Sewing- Pinwheel Quilt Along

I was 4 blocks behind.  I made 2 of these first, and then I decided I really liked this block and I made 2 more. (I see there is a flick or red scrap on that green pinwheel...not a stain I promise.) I think making 4 of these helped even out the effect of the border throughout the quilt.  It brought a little unity.  I like how these all look together.  Hopefully I will get them sashed soon.  But, it may have to wait until summer vacation as we are keeping pretty busy these days.  What'd you work on over the weekend?

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Birthday Loot

Need a girl say more?

We had a nice family outing to my favorite quilt shop, Mabelena's in Ortonville, Michigan.  We also wented to the Village Quilt Shoppe at Canterbury Village in Lake Orion, Michigan.  Plus I had an order to Connecting Threads for some thread (not pictured), the Schnibbles book, and Heather Mulder Peterson's new book on pillow shams (not pictured).  I also was treated to 2 bouquets of flowers.  Very special day!