Getting Our Fabrics Organized, Quilter’s Style

We all do it – every year!  For quilters, I think it is more prevelant than the “dieting” resolution!  We are going to finish all of those UFO’s in our closet and use up our stash. 

There is just one problem – we have to get organized…..  Our sewing room, if we are lucky enough to have one, looks like a tornado hit it!  We frantically closed the door as we were wrapping the last gift – as our guests were pulling into the driveway.  After all, our “sewing room” has been doing double duty as the gift wrapping station for the entire month of December! 

And, the notion of fabric scissors went out the window weeks ago – right now I would just be happy to FIND a pair – and at this point would settle for the poultry scissors in the kitchen! 

So, before we can keep that New Year’s Resolution, it is time to get organized!  Since two of my sons left the nest this year, I am turning a bedroom into a sewing room.  These are the storage compartments and organizers that I couldn’t resist. 


Bag Fat Quarter
Item #3025774  Retail $12.95

They looked so darn cute at the quilt shop – all bundled together with that cute little ribbon.  Or, you were having a bad day – and just ONE fat quarter wouldn’t really add to your stash…..

This soft sided satchel holds a boatload of fat quarters.  And, for now, just put them in there – if you start color coordinating and dreaming of future projects, your family won’t see you again until the 4th of July! 

         

Super Satchel Storage Cube                                Casters  (set of 4)
Super Satchel boxes not included                       Item 6856SW Retail $8.49
Item 6855SC  Retail $49.99                                 

1 Compartment      
Super Satchel         
Item #9000AB      
Retail $14.99    

Deep Super Satchel
with Removable Dividers
9007AB
Retail $14.99

I know I have written about these before, but they really are a must have!  The storage cubes can be put on casters so you can easily move them when you need floor space to lay out a quilt – or, God forbid, CLEAN!  And, if your sewing room occasionally is used as a guest room, you can just roll them into the closet for a few days! 

The one compartment box will hold fabric and instructions for even a queen size quilt.  And, if you have enough 2 1/2″ strips and 5″ squares to circle the globe, they will also hold 240 -2 1/2″ strips OR 480 – 5″ squares!  Or use the Deep Super Satchel with Removable dividers which the three compartments are perfect for your 2 1/2 ” strips.

I dream of cutting all of my scraps into strips and squares and sorting them by color into these bins.  Then, they will actually be usable – I may even invite some friends over for a Stashbusting party – but that’s another article!

These cubes are even stackable so they take up very little space!  My goal is to have every “cut” project in it’s own box.  Then, when it is time to pack for that retreat, I can just grab some boxes and go!  If you’re like me, you stress for weeks about what projects you’ll be working on – but throw in a change of clothes as you are passing the dryer on your way out the door!  After all, quilters have their priorities……….


Bag See your Stuff
Item #SysB4-BLK
Retail $16.00

These bags are perfect for holding an entire quilt project!  They come in several different sizes and colors. Check them all out at Checkerdist.com click on the notion tab, then click on organizers. 

I want them to store fabric and patterns that I have purchased for a specific project but haven’t cut yet.  This size is roomy enough to include all of the fabric, pattern, and backing for a queen size quilt.  I’ll never have to worry about cutting into a border fabric or backing by accident again!

As an added bonus, they have a clear panel so that I can see what is inside and stack easily in a drawer!  Now that I have my fabrics organized, it’s time to tackle those notions……

Getting our Notions Organized, Quilter’s Style

I am guessing that I am not the only one that has baskets, bins and drawers full of flosses, threads, rulers and miscellaneous notions!  And, generally, my “ironing board” is a folded bath towel on my kitchen counter! 

But this is OUR year!  Men have the garage – it is time we took a stand and demanded our own space!  We’ve been good girls – cooked umpteen meals, did even more loads of laundry, car pooled enough to get our taxi license, and scheduled every doctor’s appointment, dentist’s appointment and haircut for our entire family!  Isn’t it about time that we got to schedule some time – and space – for ourselves????

   
Set of Two Cabinet Towers
Item #BBTSET
Check with Store for Pricing

This set is made by the people at Big Board – and is the perfect height for cutting and ironing!  You can get an ironing board specially made for the top.  And, since it is on casters, you can move it away from the wall when ironing wide backings and quilts.  It makes those big jobs a breeze! 

Or if you are having friends over to sew, two to four people can be ironing or cutting at the same time – the work space is huge!  Just roll it away from the wall!  Casters MUST have been invented by women! 

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Quilting Gone Green-Part 2

This week we will be exploring the alternative battings that Mountain Mist (Leggett & Platt) are offering us.  We know the world is calling for less reliance on fossil fuels to both free ourselves from its dependency and to begin living life in a more sustainable manner. Americans, in particular, are demanding choice and innovation in products that utilize renewable resources in an effort to keep our environment clean. These advancements will ensure a better life for our children and our children’s children.

To meet this initiative Leggett & Platt® has partnered with Nature Works LLC using Ingeo™ Fibers to introduce the world’s first man-made environmentally friendly, naturally based craft fibers. Fresh from American cornfields, our unique brand is based in the American heartland. Continue reading

Quilting Gone Green- Part 1

The buzz work lately has been “GREEN”.  Everywhere I turn I find an article about being gentler to our enviroment.  Quilting is no exception.  Did you know that there are several  “Green” choices when chosing your batting?  This will be part one of a three part series.

Fairfield Processing Corporation has introduced a Bamboo and organic cotton blend  batting, and pillow forms, and fiberfill which are filled with 100% bamboo fiber.  The bamboo filled pillows give Professional decorator results that are only normally achieved with down (watch the video for a demonstration)

Natural Bamboo fiber is manufactured, using a green process without pollution, by crushing, grinding, wringing, and then combing the actual pulp from the Bamboo plants. Naturally antibacterial and antifungal. An excellent insulat with natural anti-static properties. This unique bamboo/cotton blend is luxuriously soft and supple to the touch, with excellent loft and it’s thin scrim makes it perfect for machine quilting. You can quilt up to 8″ apart.

The bamboo story begins with its naturally antibacterial property, which is retained by the ultra-soft finished fibers. As the fastest growing plant on earth with the ability to absorb 2/3 more carbon dioxide and release 2/3 more oxygen than any other plant, bamboo is the clear leader among plant species for positive environmental impact. Bamboo is processed into luxurious fiber using pollution-free methods with little waste. It is truly a green product that lives up to and beyond expectations.  If you want to know more about the renewable, sustainable bamboo, click here 

A portion of the proceed from the sale of these items  will be used to support environmental and ecological initiatives.

To see the full line available, go to www.checkerdist.com, click on notions, then batting from the left hand menu.  Once in batting scroll down and click Environmentally Friendly  .

Next week we explore the green options from Mountain Mist.

Great Recipes and Helping the Fight Against Breast Cancer

22732  Retail $29.95

Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book, Limited Edition “Pink Plaid” is the very latest of the trusted “Plaids” that generations of the best cooks have relied on to prepare many a great meal since 1930’s.  When I was a little girl, I used to help my mother cook and I always remember her using a red plaid covered cookbook – The Better Homes and Garden New Cookbook. I mulled over it for hours.  I received a later edition as a bridal shower gift and it sits on my shelf in my kitchen to this day.  This new edition book is 640 pages and all beautifully presented in a convenient ring-bound format. With many girls receiving engagement rings during this Holiday season, keep this cookbook in mind when you need a gift for a Bridal shower.

This cookbook is amazing! The recipes for breast cancer prevention are easy to prepare, the ingredients are east to find, and they really don’t take very long to prepare.

  • Hundreds of recipes for any occasion.
  • Great pink insert chapter that has recipes specifically to breast cancer.
  • Great recipes to prevent breast cancer.
  • The recipes appear to be very simple.
  • The phots of the finished creations are amazing and tempting!

Support the fight against breast cancer with this limited edition copy of the New Cook Book from the much respected and reliable experts at Better Homes and Gardens. This cook book features many great recipes with loads of pictures, as well as countless cooking tips. Whether you’re a beginning cook or a seasoned chef, you’re bound to find the Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book, Limited Edition “Pink Plaid” an invaluable resource, as well as an excellent way to support breast cancer research.

In support of the fight against breast cancer, Meredith Books will make a minimum $250,000 donation to The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.

Bring out the Irish in all of Us

Pat Sloan’s new book, “Tour of Ireland”, should be out on your coffee table year round! Not only are the projects beautiful, the photography will make you want to pack your bags and hop the next plane to Dublin! If you are planning a trip anytime in your lifetime, this book is a must!

Pat takes you day by day through their nine-day tour of Ireland. She shares photographs of the landscape and architecture – along with the quilts they inspired. To see her visions come to life in her quilts is so much fun! Her creativity is infectious.

This is first and foremost a travel guide – with quilts thrown in! You don’t have to be a quilter to enjoy the beauty of the land, but it definitely will enhance your journey. And, to experience that journey through another quilter’s eyes is a magical experience.
Pat fell in love with the warmth of the people and their hospitality – and you will too. The beauty of their spirit is not only reflected in their quilts, but in the way they embraced a group of quilters from “across the way”! Take the time to embrace that little bit of Irish in all of us. You’ll be glad you did!
Tour Ireland
with Pat Sloan
Item #LA4291
Retail $24.95

Free Last Minute Gift Patterns

Here are some free patterns for those last minute gifts.   When you go to the designers  websites, make sure you spend some time looking at all their designs.  Their designs are available through www.checkerdist.com for the retailers.  If you are a consumer, check with your local store about special ordering them for you.

A special THANK YOU goes out to all designers whose designs we have featured on this post.                   

From Amy Butler Designs, you can make these  portfolios. Click here for her directions. 

Amy also has this lavender eye pillow free on her site.  To see this and additional free patterns click here, scroll down and click on free pattern.

Our Friends at Artful Offering offer this delightful star on their website.  This could be a gift, or tie it on a package for a festive touch.  Click here to get the directions.

This Checkerboard Table Mat is from Perkins Dry Goods.  They even include the template for the scallop borders.  Click here to go to their site to download the free pattern. 

Joan Hawley, from Lazy Girl Designs posted the directions for this “With Love Tote Bag” on her blog last week. Wrap one of these gifts inside it and the receipient receives two gifts! To learn how to make this bag click here

Barb Adams & Alma Allen – A Tour of Homes

In their latest book by Kansas City Star, Barb Adams and Alma Allen take you on a tour of the homes of three of their friends who have combined their love of art and nature with their passion for decorating. 

The photography is absolutely beautiful so don’t even bother trying to read a word until you have feasted your eyes on the pictures.  Once that is done, read every last word to see what you may have overlooked.  There is just so much to stimulate your senses – eye candy for the soul!

You’re Invited!
Item #KCS13231
Retail $25.95

I love to applique so I anxiously await the arrival of their new books.  But, I was pleasantly surprised to realize that Barb and Alma did not design everything!  They have included projects from four other designers who have their same sense of style, color, and obvious joy for life! 

The applique quilts are exquisite.  Some of them even include a touch of rickrack.  When used as stems, it adds just a touch of whimsey to a beautiful quilt.  The cross stitch patterns are also endearing.  And, when you see them grouped on walls, you’ll want to start a whole collection!

That is the true gift of Barb and Alma – they let us dream.  We too can create this perfect home where peace reigns, stitching is always waiting by the fire, and every bed is covered by an heirloom quilt….one project at a time……

There is still time to sew….


Pajama Pants
TMB163
Retail $15.00

Add some style to those pictures you take Christmas morning by decking your loved ones out in new P.J.’s.  The men love this style as much as the women.  AND, you can sew these up in no time!  Wouldn’t some holiday prints be nice….or flannel…..or have you ever
thought of fleece???

          
First Choice Boxers – Adult                First Choice Boxers – Kids
Item #TLP404                                   Item #TLP804
Retail $8.00                                       Retail $8.00

Everyone loves boxers these days – the brighter and wilder the better!  This is the perfect opportunity to use all of those crazy prints that you love – that will never make it into your favorite quilt! 


Easy Mittens
Item #TLP603
Retail $8.00

You can never have enough mittens – and these work up very quickly!  What a great way to use up scraps of fleece!  Host a sled riding party or build a snowman and give the mittens as gifts!  You can even fill them with treats – what a clever version of a stocking! 

Pieced Pin Cushions
Item #IJ748
Retail $8.99

These pin cushions are so cute and make the perfect last minute gifts!  They are so easy to personalize by adding your own collection of buttons and trims!  What a festive way to add a personal touch to a holiday table!  Don’t forget to sign and date the bottom for a lasting memory!


Tote-It Screenplay Six
Item #TI205
Retail $8.00

This tote by Nancy Ota works up in a jiffy and would be the perfect way for those you love to carry all of their stuff home!  Make it in festive fabrics and it could become a holiday tradition!


Braid Runner
Item #GE101
Retail $8.00

There is a reason this pattern is always in the top 10!  Since you quilt as you go you actually CAN finish it in an afternoon!  Fussy cut the center square and you have a tablerunner for any season.  You can even make the braids out of light prints so that all of your guests can sign it.  What a keepsake!

Now all you have to do is choose your project!  Sometimes that is the hardest part!