The Korean Art of Paper Folding – Chopkey – is translated into fabric in Rami Kim’s new book “Folded Fabric Elegance” with stunning results. In this day of “cottage chic”, her techniques will add just the right texture and dimension to your next home dec project! But quilters will love it too – the method for making continuous prairie points is worth the price of the book – everything else is just a bonus!
Rami demonstrates ten different fabric manipulation techniques in such a way that you can incorporate them into any project. If you need an 8″ square for a purse insert, for example, Rami has included the calculations so you know the cut size of the original fabric. Just measure the original pattern piece – and do the math – it is that easy!
And, don’t think that it has to be time consuming or complicated! In this case, let the technique and the fabrics speak for you. Any small project using these methods – and silk – would be the perfect Valentine’s Day gift. My favorite – Harlequin Tucks – is mostly sewn on the machine. But, when simple beading is added, every quilter will just have to touch it! A simple cell phone case made from this manipulated fabric would be the perfect affordable gift for all of your friends.
Many of the samples are done in silk – which adds to the tactile pleasure of working on your projects – but silk was not readily available to most of us until now. Mary Jo Hiney’s packaged silks are perfect for many of these projects.
1 Yard of Cream Silk
1 Yard of White Silk
Many of my customers are busy planning weddings – it seems that engagement rings were waiting under many a Christmas tree last year! A ring bearer’s pillow incorporating any of these techniques would be the perfect class in any quilt shop. And now is the time to start on those finishing touches that make that special day memorable. What a perfect shower gift for the future bride! An heirloom quality pillow can be passed down from generation to generation. Dupioni silk is available in 1 yard cuts in both white and cream so stocking a wide assortment of silks is not required!
But don’t stop there – wouldn’t this be an exquisite purse for a child’s first communion…..or, insert a panel into a christening gown – absolutely beautiful. These techniques add the ahhhh factor to any gift – especially those friends who don’t normally appreciate “homemade”!
You don’t have to design your own projects! The book includes 12 projects that are absolutely beautiful. And, you don’t have to use silk – many of these projects use cotton fabrics with stunning results. Rami has included pictures of these techniques incorporated into clothing, hats, purses and pillows. Let your mind wander – an evening bag out of cotton velveteen would be wonderful….the possibilities are endless…….
And, if you are a gadget person, the Clover folding pen is the perfect compliment for any of these techniques. So plan an afternoon just to play and enjoy the process…..you can design the project later!
I have always loved house quilts and couldn’t resist taking a peak at “Houses” the new book by Joanna Figueroa and Lisa Quan. I was hooked! Many of the pieced blocks are quite large so it is very easy to turn a few blocks into a bed-size quilt with stunning results! With fourteen projects, I couldn’t choose just one!
Fig Tree Quilts
Who could resist the nine-patch houses? A simple nine-patch becomes the perfect living quarters with the addition of a pieced roof! And what collection of house quilts would be complete without a “Little Red Schoolhouse”? In this case, they pieced a house border that surrounds a red print fabric that looks like it came right from the Coverlet Collection by Windham! What a great way to showcase a beautiful fabric!
Many of the projects include touches of applique – also a personal favorite! The curved shapes of the leaves and vines soften the angular lines of the houses to create warm and inviting quilts.
And, since many of the blocks are large, they are easy to piece – and quickly completed! Therefore you can focus more of your time on fabric and color selection. That is where Joanna and Lisa truly shine. They love to choose fabrics that have the yellowed feel of antique vintage quilts. These projects look like they were just pulled out of Grandma’s cedar chest!
They have managed to translate the grace and style that have become their signature into a charming first book. But don’t wait until their next one is published – and I certainly hope there IS a next one. Check out their pattern line – Fig Tree Quilts – which started it all…….
This article is from “The CraftGossipBlog Network” with directions for 4 easy to make Valentines by Rachel Paxton . Rachel Paxton is a freelance writer and mom of four. For scrapbooking, card making, gift-giving ideas, and more family memory-making activities, visit http://www.crafty-moms.com.
You still have plenty of time to make up several of these quick and easy Valentines Day cards. The instructions do call for paper but just think of all the customization that you can do with this pattern (click here for directions). One idea that really came to mind was that if you are anything like me, you just don’t throw away the scraps, yes I still have scraps from probably 15 years ago and I constantly think that I need to either get rid of them or do something, well here is a good way to do something with them.
This would also be a great way to recycle old cards that you have, just cover with fabric, insert small amount of batting if desired, and sew around the card. I’m thinking that if you did not want to use your sewing machine, you could very well just use glue instead. Oh the ideas are really popping up in my mind here and the great thing is again you can use up some of your scraps; yes I knew there was a reason to keep them. Thank you Rachel Paxton of Crafty – Moms for this unique idea.
I’m thinking you can really use this for more than just Valentines Day. Another great thing about this idea is that you can write a more personal saying inside or an inside joke or ??? Wouldn’t it be fabulous to make a quilt and a card ? Nothing says made with love better than that.
We have all said it – I’m not buying any more fabric until I use up what I have! And, Creative Grid has the perfect solution – the Charming Strip Stashbuster! This new ruler has just arrived and will make it possible for me to cut up my stash quickly and easily! The initial response has been amazing! We showed a prototype at Fall Market and everyone loved it.
Order these rulers now – Item #CGRCSS for just $24.00.
Rita Fishel, our favorite Creative Grid demonstrator and guru, has created a ruler that is 5″ wide and 23″ long. A line is drawn the length of the ruler at 2 1/2″. One end even includes the markings necessary to square-up the half-square triangles made from them!
The math just works. If you trim half-square triangles made from 5″ squares to 4 1/2″, they can be sewn with the 2 1/2″ strips and incorporated into the same quilt! Don’t you just love it when a plan comes together!
Why not get your quilting friends together and host a stashbusting party! Ask everyone to bring their stash, their Charming Strip Stashbuster ruler, and their favorite books or patterns that use 2 1/2″ strips or 5″ squares. If you need any inspiration, visit Checkerdist.com and look at the patterns categorized by “jelly roll” and “charm squares”! There are literally hundreds to choose from!
Spend some quality time cutting and organizing your fabrics. Rita has designed the ruler so well, that it is virtually impossible to make a mistake. You can cut and talk to your heart’s content – no concentration required!
Then, sit down for dessert and choose a project for the next month! After all, you’ve already cut out the fabric. And, if you are short a few pieces, you know just where to find it! Quilters always share!
You have a month to visit your local quilt shop, buy the chosen book or pattern, and pick out the coordinates for your scrap quilt. After all, if the majority of the fabric is “free”, you can now afford to splurge on the perfect border fabric or backing! You can turn a scrappy quilt into a work of art!
And, won’t it be fun to see all of the quilts completed in a host of colorways! When your quilt is complete, cut the remaining fabric into 2 1/2″ strips and 5″ squares. They’ll be ready to use in your next project!
See how creative you can be hosting your own version of the 21st century quilting bee. After all, the concept hasn’t changed – it is all about getting together with friends who share a common interest – and a similar sense of humor!
This is an article written by Beth Mauro for B.Line, Beth Mauro’s blog at scrapbookretailermagazine.com. She may have written it for the Scrapbook retailers, but the ideas hold try for Quilt retailers as well. I really like her positive spin on the Recession and what, as storeowners, we can do.
Enjoy!End of year consumer confidence results are starting to come in. That coupled with the frequent usage of the “R” word- Recession – suggests that small business owners need to review their promotional strategies.According to the pundits- we have to be in recession a few months before the data suggests we are. The jury is still out as to whether we are actually in recession but all seem to agree we are heading for one. I am old enough to remember the 1970s gas crisis- long lines, only being able to purchase gas every other day. Here in Philly we are paying 3.09/gallon, I can save 15 cents/gallon if I gas up across the river. We are already in gas paranoia mode- topping off- gassing up at a half tank and strategizing every trip out to maximize the gas expenditure. Rising gas prices are on our minds and people are talking about it.
According to a Nielsen Homescan Survey, because of higher gas prices consumers say they will:
Shop more at Supercenters 23% (June o7) 27% (Dec. 07)
Switch to lower price gas stations 26% 26%
Use more coupons 21% 25%
Use less expensive grocery brands 19% 23%
Use lower grade gas 14% 15%
Interestingly, before people make gas-related cutbacks they are willing to cut coupons and trade in their Sugar Smacks for generic puffed rice cereal.
As you plan promotional activities for the next year. Give special consideration to how you can help people practice the craft of scrapbooking less expensively.
More store demos so people can see how a tool is used before they purchase it. Also demos provide inspiration for folks who can’t make paid classes.
Look for promotional goods at the trade shows. You don’t have to discount every product in your store if you buy a few items wisely. Use the less expensive items as bonus buys to generate store traffic from those folks who are cutting back.
Partner on promotions with other business owners – such as your local photo processor.
Review your couponing strategy. I have mixed feelings about couponing, especially when we train our customers that every week without fail they will find one 20% off coupon for a single item in their newspaper. That said- people are looking for value. What can you do? Instead of creating your own coupons, honor those of competitor stores. Use coupons as rewards for a sale, attending events, or buying particular items.
What we shouldn’t do is assume that business will be slow. It doesn’t have to be. When people can’t afford vacations or expensive leisure activities they look for other hobbies. Promoting scrapbooking as a hobby that gets photos out of boxes and into memory albums shows folks they can have fun while doing something productive.–Beth
Reprinted with permission from Beth Mauro, B.Line Beth Mauro’s blog at scrapbookretailermagazine.com
In this day and age when many schools have elliminated their home economics or life skills classes, the next generation is not being exposed to sewing. But, thanks to shows like “Project Runway”, they have the desire to sew but don’t have the basic skills needed to get started!
“Start to Sew” by Creative Publishing is the perfect book for anyone who needs to keep it simple – and at just $9.95, this is a must have for every beginner! They keep it simple with lots of pictures that offer visual aids to help every step of the way.
Start to Sew
Learn how to thread a needle; sew on buttons; sew a straight seam; finish raw edges; and add a zipper. Frankly, I have sewn my entire life – but picked up tips that I never knew.
The book also includes simple projects that can be completed in an afternoon and guarantee success. Make a simple pillow out of beautiful fabrics. Then, move onto a pillow with a zipper. Coordinate the room by adding a simple rod pocket curtain or valance.
This is the perfect book for those of you who want to teach a child to sew. The simple projects are not intimidating and all of the terminology is explained. Wouldn’t it be nice if they learned the RIGHT way to do it from the very beginning! It might actually elliminate the need for a seam ripper…..
The Checker website introduced a color selector feature for fabrics this week – and once you have start playing with it, you won’t know how you did without it!
My shop kits projects constantly – in fact, it represents about 50% of our sales. We would cut kits, sell out of the first run, and then one or more fabrics would not be in stock to make more. Now, we can find the fabric that is not in stock and find the perfect substitution.
OR, you can design your whole project on line! Find a beautiful focal fabric and choose the coordinates right on the site. And, in many cases, the color selector may show colors that you wouldn’t have considered as coordinates – but would add spice to your project!
Block of the Months will never be easier to kit – and you no longer have to worry about color distortion in pictures again. As an added bonus, you can cross fabric lines! A Kauffman Fusions can mix beautifully with a Henry Glass line, etc…and you no longer have to wonder if you should order cream, ecru, ivory, etc… The computer will show you the perfect matches.
And, you don’t have to own a quilt shop to have some fun. For instance, if you are working on a scrappy quilt, choose your focal fabric at your local quilt shop. It does have to be a fabric line that Checker carries – but there are so many to choose from that that shouldn’t be a problem!
Find that fabric on our website and the color dots will give you up to eight choices that appear in that fabric. Many times when I was playing with this, I didn’t notice some of the secondary colors shown. When I pullled these colors to go with my quilt, they just sparkled! Sometimes that is all you need to bring your quilt to life!
In the past if I needed some reds for an Ohio State quilt – we are in Buckeye country, after all – I would order several different bolts and hope that they were the bright red that I needed. Now, I can enter a bolt with the correct shade – and find several choices immediately! Guesswork is no longer required!
The Marketing Department has provided instructions on how to use the color selector on our website. Visit checkerdist.com for more information. I just had to add my two cents worth and share how you can incorporate it into your daily business! Enjoy!
Do you dream of making those scrappy quilts that our grandmothers seemed to produce so effortlessly? Have you been intimidated by all of those pieces and odd angles? No more!
Grab your favorite quilt and your stash of books and patterns….snuggle in front of the fire….and let your imagination soar! Because once you learn how easy it is to use “Inklingo”, a whole new world will open! I spent a few hours talking to Linda on a cold winter day and she convinced me that I would love her methods – and she was right! But, believe me, I was not an easy sell! This product was so far out of the box that it intimidated me at first – but no more!
Inklingo is a series of C.D.’s that make it possible to print different shapes directly onto the wrong side of fabric. They can then be cut out quickly and efficiently with scissors or a rotary cutter. Just cut freezer paper the required size and iron it to the RIGHT side of the fabric. Run it through your printer – and all of the cutting and sewing lines are marked on the fabric – right where you need them.
But, if that is stepping too far out of the box – and it was for me – you can print the shapes onto paper or freezer paper. Baby steps are good too, and you will stil get your money’s worth!
I work a lot in miniature so being able to print half-square triangles from 1/4″ – 4 1/2″ is a definite plus. Anyone working on Dear Jane, Nearly Insane, Civil War Diary Quilts, Civil War Love Letters Quilts, Quilted Diamonds, and the Centennial Quilts will love these. After all, you are no longer limited by the sizes available in commercial triangle paper.
And, you are not limited to half-square triangles. The same C.D. (Shape Collection #2) also provides 20 sizes of quarter-square triangles; 19 sizes of flying geese units; and 10 diferent sizes of half-rectangle triangles.
But, remember, these sizes go up to 4 and 5 inches – so they work for EVERYONE!
I know what you’re thinking – installing computer programs is not my fortay. But, Inklingo does not have to be installed. You simply slip the disc into your computer – and it magically appears – instructions and all! It really is that easy! Linda takes you step by step through the process – but within 15 minutes, you’ll be a pro!
So far there are three different collections available. The third collection even includes a book wth patterns to complete your own Grandmother’s Flower Garden, Seven Sisters, and Baby Blocks quilt. Why not try hand piecing? If you loved to cross stitch or hand quilt, you will love hand piecing. And, don’t be in a hurry. Cut a star or flower garden out of your scraps while you are completing other projects. Not only will you be using up your scraps – guilt free is good – you will also always have handwork!
Shape Collection 3 and Book
If you thought the name sounded familiar, it does. Linda Franz is also the author of Quilted Diamonds 1 and Quilted Diamonds 2. But, her expertise in intricate miniatures is totally separate from Inklingo. They are both creative and wonderful – but that is as far as it goes.
Inklingo is for ALL of your piecing needs! While it includes sizes for miniatures, traditional sizes are included. I admit, I would never make a 1/4″ half-square triangle either – but I use 3″ every day! And, for just $29.95, I can print my own until the cows come home so the intial cost of the C.D. is recovered very quickly.
If you STILL aren’t a believer, contact Linda at www.inklingo.com. She will send you a free demo C.D. so you, too, will become a believer. Better yet, demo it for your local guild or customers! They will be converts within five minutes!
Linda is in the process of creating even more – the possibilities are endless. So give it a try – you’ll wonder how you ever did without it!
Since so many of you carry the Amy Butler patterns, we thought you might be interested in this new contest. All of Amy’s purse patterns are available through Checker. Craftzine shared the requirements with us as follows:
Amy Butler Sew Inspiring Contest
We’re excited to bring you a new contest for 2008! Chronicle Books and CRAFT Magazine are bringing you a contest for all you Amy Butler fans and sewers around the world! For a two-month period crafters can submit pictures of their own Amy Butler inspired bag online to the flickr group called ‘Amy Butler Sew Inspiring Contest’. At the end of the two-month period Amy Butler will pick a top winner and five runners up among the entries.
Amy Butler shares, “I am so excited about this unique promotion that brings together both of my publishers in a fun contest that involves the larger community. I’ve always been so impressed with the collaboration in the online crafting world and this is a perfect example of that spirit.”
Contest Update 1/2/08
Thanks for all your comments and early entries to the Amy Butler Sew Inspiring Contest! We listened to you and we’re happy to announce that we’re now opening up the contest to participants outside the US and Canada, there are no geographic restrictions on entries. Apologies also for not being more clear on what we mean by an ‘Amy Butler Inspired Bag’, we wanted to keep it pretty open to interpretation but to clarify, people may use one of Amy’s patterns, her fabric, or just make something that was inspired by her very distinct style. Amy’s style reminds us of Sunday morning trips to the flea market, vintage fabric, sunny Spring afternoons, and casual comfort. But that’s just us– you could be inspired by her in a different way, if you aren’t familiar with Amy and her designs poke around her site at amybutlerdesign.com and then get to sewing!
The grand prize winner will receive a Janome Memory Craft 6600P Sewing Machine with a retail value of $1999, Amy Butler Fabric, Amy Butler’s Midwest Modern (published by STC), Amy Butler’s In Stitches, and the Sew-It Kit (both published by Chronicle Books).
The five runner-ups will win a copy of Amy Butler’s Midwest Modern, Amy Butler’s In Stitches, and the Sew-It Kit.
1. No purchase necessary to enter. A purchase will not improve your chances of winning.
2. Contest begins at 12:01 AM Eastern Time (ET) on 1/01/08 and ends at 11:59 PM ET on 2/29/08. U.S. residents only Everyone may enter by submitting their information to the ‘Amy Butler Sew Inspiring Contest’ flickr group so it is received by 11:59 PM (ET) on 2/29/08. Limit: one entry per person. Each entry will be considered to win the grand prize and decided upon by Amy Butler.
3. Prizes/Approximate Retail Values (ARV): The featured grand prize will be the following items: One (1) Janome Memory Craft 6600P Sewing Machine (MSRP $1999), One (1) Amy Butler’s Midwest Modern ($35), One (1) Amy Butler’s In Stitches ($24.95), One (1) Stitch-It Kit ($24.95), Amy Butler Fabric ($60). (ARV: $2,143.90). Five Runner-Ups will receive: One (1) Amy Butler’s Midwest Modern ($35), One (1) Amy Butler’s In Stitches ($24.95), One (1) Stitch-It Kit ($24.95). (ARV: $84.90). Sponsors: Chronicle Books and Amy Butler.
4. Winners will be selected by Amy Butler from among all eligible entries received. Winner will be notified by e-mail, mail or phone. If a prize or notification is returned as undeliverable, the corresponding prize will be awarded to an alternate winner. Winner may forfeit prize if Sponsors are unable to contact him or her within 7 days of first attempted notification. No prize substitutions will be permitted, except Sponsors may substitute any prize with one of equal or greater retail value. Prizes are not transferable or redeemable for cash. Acceptance of prize constitutes permission (except where prohibited by law) to use each winner’s name, prize won, hometown and likeness for purposes of advertising, promotion and publicity including online posting without additional compensation.
5. Contest is open to adults, 18 or older. Employees of the Sponsors, their affiliates, subsidiaries, distributors, retailers, advertising and promotion agencies, and the immediate families of each are not eligible to enter or win. All federal, state and local laws and regulations apply. Void where prohibited by law.
7. Sponsors are not responsible for lost or late entries nor for electronic transmission errors resulting in omission, interruption, deletion, defect, delay in operations or transmission, theft or destruction or unauthorized access to or alterations of entry materials, or for technical, network, telephone equipment, electronic, computer, hardware or software malfunctions or limitations of any kind, or inaccurate transmissions of or failure to receive entry information by Sponsors or presenter on account of technical problems or traffic congestion on the Internet or at any Web site or any combination thereof. If for any reason the Internet portion of the program is not capable of running as planned, including infection by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures, or any other causes beyond the control of the Sponsors which corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity, or proper conduct of this Contest, the Sponsors reserve the right at their sole discretion, to disqualify any individual who tampers with the entry process, and to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the Contest. Caution: Any attempt by a contestant to deliberately damage any Web site or undermine the legitimate operation of the game is a violation of criminal and civil laws and should such an attempt be made, Sponsors reserve the right to seek damages from any such contestant to the fullest extent of the law.
Quilters dance to the beat of a different drummer. We are always busy juggling families, children, careers – and don’t even think about the day to day errands, appointments, and housework! Most of us enjoy the holidays – but are glad they are over – and life is returning to our version of normal!
We look forward to dates that wouldn’t be highlights on anyone else’s calendar. Only a quilter is excited because this is a leap year – and we actually gain a day! And, Christmas is fun – but give me a four day week-end any day. After all, nobody expects me to cook a turkey on President’s Day!
These are the days we carve some time out for ourselves – and have some time to sew! Let’s plan ahead this year – and mark these days as “me days”. Those are the days we reserve for friends – and with a little planning, you’ll have something to look forward to on a regular basis.
Quilt shop owners, plan classes around a quilter’s schedule! Let’s face it, if we have the day off, our significant others and children may too! That means, that if we stay home we may be called upon to provide entertainment and dinner – which means our sewing time went right out the window!
For many of us, scheduling time in our lives for our passion is the only way it is going to get done! So, talk to your friends NOW and carve out time to sew. And, while you’re at it, schedule a trip to one of the national venues. If you have never gone, it is an inspirational experience. What’s not to love about spending a day – or several days – with people who share your love of quilting. Take classes, view the beautiful quilts on display, and shop ’til you drop – who could ask for anything more!
2008 Quilter’s Calendar
January 11 – 13 – Friday to Sunday
The National Needlarts Trade Show (TNNA)
Long Beach, California
Contact Information: www.tnna.org
January 21 – Monday
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
February 3 – Sunday
Super Bowl Sunday
February 5 – Tuesday
February 18 – Monday
February 29 – Friday
March 9 – Sunday
Daylight Savings Time Begins
April 11 – 13 – Friday – Sunday
International Quilt Festival
Rosemont, Illinois – Stephens Center
Contact Information: www.quilts.com
April 23-26 – Wednesday – Saturday
AQS Quilt Show and Contest
Paducah, Kentucky Expo Center
Contact Information: www.americanquilter.com
May 16-18 – Friday – Sunday
International Quilt Market
Portland, Oregon Trade Show
Contact Information: www.quilts.com
Trade Show – Not Open to the Public
June 19 – 21 – Thursday – Saturday
National Quilting Association Show
Greater Columbus, Ohio Convention Center
Contact Information: www.nqaquilts.org
July 25 – 27 – Friday – Sunday
International Quilt Festival – Summer
Long Beach Convention & Entertainment Center
Contact Information: www.quilts.com