Friday, April 8, 2011

Traveling Stash Box Winner is #5!

Mary Lou Casada who said, "What a fun way to de-stash AND feel the rush of something new to you! LOVE it! Count me in!"

Congratulations, Mary Lou! I've sent you an email! Thanks to everyone who entered!


Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Fashionetta Quilt, designed by Evy Hawkins

Last April, I attended a "For the Love of Sewing" event in Rogers. Evy Hawkins, artist extraordinaire, demonstrated a technique, using her own designs, that allows quilt blocks to be appliqued, pieced, and quilted in the hoop. One set of Evy's designs, the Fashionetta Quilt, features images of twelve darling clothing ensembles. Each of the twelve relates to particular seasons and holidays throughout the year.

When I saw Evy's lovely version of her Fashionetta Quilt on display, I knew I'd have to make one for my daughter. My daughter, Laura, has always held an interest in fashion and even earned a degree in apparel studies at the University of Arkansas.

Although there are numerous steps to the process of creating and completely finishing these blocks in the hoop, it's a fun and creative process. I most enjoy choosing fabrics for each ensemble. For the swimsuit and cover-up skirt, which is June's block, I used remnants cut from a tangerine-colored bridesmaid's dress.

Last summer, just a day before my daughter's best friend's wedding, I was asked to "hem" the dress of a bridesmaid who lived out of state. This bridesmaid's dress didn't even come close to fitting in the bodice, so I unpicked thousands of stitches and reworked the bodice in addition to altering the hem. The flowing skirt was constructed of three layers ranging from poly satin to sheer organza. I altered the dress from floor-length to knee-length. What a job! For April's lime linen suit, I used the sleeves I'd cut from my neighbor's blouse when I shortened the sleeves.

I did find it difficult to maneuver my applique scissors below the lip of the hoop in order to trim away excess fabric from the appliques. Recently, I purchased Gingher's double-curved machine embroidery scissors. These scissors make trimming so much easier. No more wrist pain! Their razor-sharp, pointed tip also makes cleaner cuts, allowing the satin stitching to completely cover raw edges.

To assemble the quilt, the appliqued and filler blocks are to be attached with straight-of-grain fabric strips. I will admit that I presented the blocks I've completed so far to my daughter at her bridal shower last August. My daughter married in October. Laura has asked me more than once when I will finish her quilt! I truly hope to have the quilt completed by the end of this month. Wish me luck!

Gingher's six-inch Double-Curved Machine Embroidery Scissors

Anne, procrastinator extraordinaire

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Stray Stitches: 200th Post Celebration Giveaway

Stray Stitches: 200th Post Celebration Giveaway: "A blog is a message in a bottle, both in purpose and likely readership. ~Robert Brault Linda, at Stray Stitches, is celebrating her 200th post! I urge you all, my dear reader, also known as my sweet, supportive mother-in-law, to visit Linda's blog today! Linda, a talented writer, offers thought-provoking messages, witty observations, and need-to-know news about what's going on in blogland. She shares thoughts for the day and presents clear photos of her beautiful projects in progress. She even gathers information about various blog giveaways and lists the details of each one at the end of her posts! Only a few days left to enter Stray Stitches' own giveaway! The prize is a $25 gift certificate to the Fat Quarter Shop! (Linda's giveaway will end Monday, April 11, at 8:00 pm PST, and she will announce the lucky winner on Tuesday, April 12!)

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Giveaway: The Amazing Traveling Stash Box

I won the "Traveling Stash Box" from Kelly at Cotton Charm Quilts/Charming Chatter. Thanks so much Kelly!

Here's how it works: I won the box from Kelly, and she mailed the box to me. It weighed a ton and was packed with goodies galore! I took the things I wanted, and I added some back! Like Kelly, and the five previous bloggers, I'll draw a name to determine the next winner. Stash Box #1 will be mailed to that winner! That person will take what she wants, fill up the box, and choose another person to receive it in order to keep Stash Box #1 traveling. Included is a travel log to fill out in order to keep track of the box's journeys.

So far, the box originated at * the next stop was * then on to * next it traveled to * and then to Kelly at * Kelly split the growing stash into two boxes, and box #1 came to me. Yippee!
Box #2 headed to

From Kelly's house, the box came filled with all of these goodies! I found some glorious goodies I wanted. I couldn't believe my eyes when I found the gorgeous cross stitched Asian design in the very bottom of the box! I would love to know who cross stitched it. What a treasure. I intend to frame it and hang it in my dining room. Thank you to the generous person who added it! I love it. I also chose some wonderful charm squares, the honey bun, and some leftover quilt scraps. Though I have been obsessed with quilting for many years, I have only recently discerned the difference between fabrics from discount outlets and the premium quality of fabrics sold at quilt shops.

In addition to the many items left in the still almost-full box, I added three 1/2-yard cuts of fabrics from my local quilt shop, a big roll of scrappy strips, also from my local quilt shop, a pattern, a recent issue of McCall's Quilting magazine, Book 2 of American Quilts, seven fat quarters (from Quilt in a Day and Connecting Threads), two vintage quilt blocks acquired from an estate sale, a card wound full of ecru lace, a package of paper Solvy, and a pincushion (see photo below). I chose to keep the cute pincushion Kelly made, so I made another to travel on.

The pincushion is made from Moda's "Lily and Will" fabric line designed by Anne Sutton. As a matter of fact, the fabrics in this pincushion came directly from Anne Sutton's personal stash! On the day I learned I'd won the stash box, I also discovered that I'd won a "scrap bag" giveaway from Anne Sutton! The rabbit is a machine applique design and was created by the very talented Evy Hawkins.

If you'd like to win this traveling stash box and agree to take what you like, fill it up, and send it on, just post a comment. On Friday, April 8, 2011, at noon CST, I'll draw a winner at random and notify that person to anticipate the famous Traveling Stash Box #1! It is so much fun!

Keep on stitching,