I haven’t really talked a whole lot online about this but I bought another quilt shop in November (2018). It has been a whirlwind of paperwork and cleaning and getting used to a whole new routine. My two shops are about 30 minutes apart (Pink Castle Fabrics and The Stitchery) and they have different inventories. I could go on and on about all the little details that you don’t think about before you decide to buy an established business but I won’t bore you with all those details right now. One of the side effects of this new business for me is a lot less free time in my schedule. And unfortunately, sewing gets pushed to the back burner when there’s more work to be done. I know that sewing for even just a little while each day will help reduce my stress levels so I attempted to schedule in some time last week to sew. Well, I tried it..
I know spool caps might not be the height of conversation at dinner parties but selecting the wrong size to use on your sewing machine may cause tension issues. As the owner of two sewing machine dealerships, I hear about tension issues on sewing machines a lot. You want to choose a spool cap that is the same size or smaller than the spool of thread that you are using. Maybe you bought a Janome machine and it came with some of these little guys. Most people have no idea what they are or when to use them. These are the Specialty Spool Caps from Janome. These are the perfect size to use with Aurifil large spools and Mettler Metrosene threads. You can see in the photo just how nice these fit on the end of the spool. This is perfect for making sure that the thread comes off the spool smoothly all the way to the very end! If these..
This month our Modern Quilt Guild is doing a zipper pouch swap. Apparently I had pinned this Zipper Pouch Tutorial by the Sewing Chick more than one time on my Pinterest boards so I’m glad I had a reason to make it. Instead of leaving a hole in the lining of the bag and pulling it through like I have done every other time I’ve made a zipper pouch, she has you make a small bindings for the linings. It ends up looking nice but it was a bit tedious. I’m sure it didn’t help that I was finishing the bag at 11:00 at night. I used some Liberty of London tana lawn scraps and some Cotton+Steel sparkle linen for the outside. And my favorite Add it Up print from Cotton+Steel for the lining. I used fusible fleece for the interfacing instead of ShapeFlex 101. I wanted it to stand up and have some body. I really like the way this..
How to Mend Your Denim: I love wearing jeans. I wear them almost every day. I am lucky enough that I don’t have to wear dress casual to work, I can just wear some blue jeans. They are comfortable and look great with everything. Easy! But wearing jeans every day means that eventually, they get a hole. Look, I know it’s cool to have holes in your jeans and I know visible mending is all the rage these days but some holes are in spots that are in areas that you don’t want to draw attention too if you catch my drift… So this tutorial will show you how to mend your jeans in a much less visible way. You can always use a contrasting color of thread to darn if you want it to stand out. What is darning? Darning describes a way of mending a hole in a woven fabric using threads or yarns in an interwoven fabric…
I know it’s been a while since I’ve blogged regularly. I have been so busy with my shop, Pink Castle Fabrics. And, I recently purchased another quilting shop in Howell, Michigan called The Stitchery Sewing center. I have to say that it was a longer process than I had anticipated, buying someone else’s existing business. Of course, now I have the challenge of bringing the shop back up to speed and full inventory. And just like any process, there are bumps in the road and unexpected complications. But I’m getting there and I’m hoping that both shops will be running smoothly soon enough. It’s been ages since I was able to set foot in my sewing room. I finally got a chance this weekend to clean up a little bit and put together a project. I had this machine embroidery that I made with the Janome Skyline S9 at work and I finally made it into a quilted pillow. The..
I’m very excited that today my pattern for the Splendid Sampler 2 is released! I’m very honored that Pat and Jane asked me to be a part of this collaboration. There are a lot of amazing quilters that are involved in this book! Speaking of the book, it will be released in October but it is available for pre-order now! And of course you can get a head start on some blocks like mine 😉 I wanted to create a block that featured flying geese, they are one of my favorites! There are so many ways to make them and rulers out there to help make them quickly and easily. If you have never tried to make flying geese today is the day to start! Click here to get the FREE instructions on how to make the My Flock block and make sure to link up your photo so I can see what you made! I made up a second..
It’s the kickoff day for the Splendid Sampler 2! The first featured block is by Alex Veronelli of Aurifil thread fame. And of course I added some of my favorite Aurifil threads to my photo for you. I have been using these Italian threads now for 8 years! See the little wooden spool in the photo? That is the new 80 weight thread! It’s sooo thin! You can use it in your sewing machine (I still used the 50 weight for this block) but I’m excited to try using the thinner weight for some hand stitching on some of these blocks. To download today’s free block pattern head to The Spendid Sampler website:https://www.thesplendidsampler.com/2018/06/14/the-splendid-sampler-sew-along-alex-veronelli/ I’m sure this block could have gone together faster if I wasn’t so particular about colors. It was still quick and I used ALL scraps! You know I love a good scrap quilt! I’m hoping these blocks help me use up my massive scrap collection. After stitching..
Did you see all the fun everyone was having last year with The Splendid Sampler quilt along? Did you miss out? Did you have so much fun that you want to join in again? Well, guess what? Pat and Jane are doing it again! Yep! And it starts tomorrow. AND I’m joining in this time. I designed one of the blocks (it’s on the cover too, #nobigdeal) that will be included in the book. Here are the details you need to know: 1. The The Splendid Sampler 2 quilt along begins June 14, 2018. You can join in at any time! There will be 100 blocks total. 2. The Splendid Sampler 2 book won’t actually be published until October of 2018. The first 20 blocks that we will be making will be FREE! That’s right! We are going to get you hooked on making the blocks and then you’ll have to buy the book, right? Either way, click on the Amazon link..
I just got the new issue of Modern Patchwork in the mail! I was very excited to see my Forest Daybreak quilt in this issue! I used some of my favorite colors of the new Me+You batiks from Hoffman fabrics for this quilt. The pattern is all improvisational sewing with strips of fabric. So it goes together really quickly. AND you can easily adjust the thickness of the strips and/or the size of the quilt to suit your needs. If you have never tried improv quilting before, this is a good way to get your feet wet! The digital issues are on sale now for instant download. These will be on the newsstands soon!
In case you missed it, yesterday I had the pleasure of being on Pat Sloan’s radio show again! It’s always so nice to have a little chat with Pat. This time I focused on Camp and Glamp Stitchalot. We talked about what a retreat is like and a few questions that folks had asked on her Facebook page. It’s about 12 minutes long so make sure you pop over to Pat’s site and take a listen. This year we are going to have two Camp Stitchalot events. Of course I’m always trying to make our events better after getting feedback from attendees. So, there are going to be a few changes this year! And I know they will be for the better. Here is a short breakdown about our events! Camp Stitchalot June 2-3, 2017Ann Arbor, MI – $375 This Camp will be a totally new format for us! First of all, I’m really excited to have a bag making..