Spool-en-dids Ornament Project #3 – A primer on cross-stitching

Hello Friends — have you been sewing along with a little friend, or by yourself since I last shared “Happy To Be ME” and Smar-kly ornament?

It’s time for me to share with you the third of six mother-daughter (adult/child) collaborative ornament project, released to highlight Aurifil’s Aurikids iniatiative — an effort to pass on the love and joy and needle and thread to the next generation.  This third ornament is a simple primer on cross-stitching, to get us ready to do cross-stitching for ornaments #4 and #5.

Read more about Spool-en-dids, and find out the names my daughter has for her selected colors HERE.

#1.  YOU may now purchase the collection from FAT QUARTER SHOP by clicking HERE.

#2.  YOU may purchase the collection from Donna — email her:  followthatthread@yahoo.com

#3.  YOU may also purchase collection by clicking HERE.

#4.  OR, ask your local Aurifil dealer to order the collection for you.  Click HERE for a dealer near you!

Miss Baby is saving the royalties for her college fund, as well as supporting the medical missions of Samaritans Purse.

***

PROJECT: Cross-stitching Primer Pillow Ornament

SUPPLIES:

Cross-stitch Aida fabric (11 or 14ct — I recommend 11ct for younger children 7 and under, 14ct for older), Spool-en-did thread (s), Aurifil 50wt thread, a piece of ribbon, embroidery hoop, tapestry or embroidery needle, stuffing material & basic sewing supplies. 

You will need 4 pieces of fabric scrap to frame stitched piece, and one for backing the pillow case.

NOTE: This tutorial, as well as all subsequent pillow ornament tutorials, is not for a specific finished size. You may make it as big or as small as you wish. Since we hang our pillow ornaments on our Christmas tree, our ornaments do not finish larger than 4″.

GOAL: This project is to get children familiar with structured stitching associated with the “holes” on Aida/cross-stitching fabrics.

PLEASE read through the entire project before attempting. You may let your kid stitcher step in and be involved in any of the steps. For us, my daughter participated in selected the fabrics and stitching. I did the rest.

So — you would want to start with a piece of cross-stitch Aida fabric that amply fits your hoop.  The stitches are done with (2) strands of embroidery floss.  The Aurifloss consists of 6-strands of individual floss, just like the conventional embroidery floss.  So, you would have to cut a length of the floss, separate out 2 strands for the stitching.

Step 1.  Refer to the photo below to teach your kid stitcher stitching just straight lines, half-cross-stitches, and then cross-stitches! Notice all the Spool-en-dids come out to play on this one!

Important Notes:

#1.  It’s really important that you hoop the cross-stitch Aida fabric so that the stitches will turn out nicely.  If not, hooped, your kid stitcher might struggle with the tension of the stitches.

#2.  Your kid stitcher may choose to stitch more than just 15 squares in a row.  She might want to stitch long lines for a nice throw pillow.  Since we are doing ornaments at our house, we do a limited number of stitches so that our ornaments do not end up being more than 4″ x 4″.

#3.  To make it fun, feel free to mix colors – using 1 strand of yellow and 1 strand of brown for example for a fun effect.

Step 2.  After stitching is complete, remember to praise your kid stitcher to the sky!  Trim and square up your piece, and frame with fabric scraps to make pillow ornament top.  Then, with the pillow front and back pieces facing each other and folded ribbon piece tucked in the between, I sewed with a 1/4″ seam allowance, leaving a small opening. Turn pillowcase right side out, and stuff. I started using the stuffing made by Hobbs recently, and have ABSOLUTELY loved it!!  Hand stitch opening shut, and there you have it!

Next month, we will be cross-stitching a thread spool ornament!

Meanwhile, Miss Baby is stitching a Patchwork aux Chats sampler (designed by French designer Jardin Prive – I highly recommend her designs for children).  She is mixing her colors to stitch the cats.  Follow me on Instagram for work-in-progress pictures.  My handle is ivory_spring.

I hope you will enjoy this little stitching project with your kid stitcher, and jump start a lifetime of sweet stitching memories.

***

p.s.  If you missed the article in a recent Quiltmaker issue about my experience in teaching Miss Baby to stitch, it is now available online here.  Enjoy!

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A Simple SPOOL-EN-DIDS project tutorial #2

Hello Friends — have you been sewing along with a little friend, or by yourself since I last shared “Happy To Be ME” ornament?  It’s time for me to share with you the second of six mother-daughter (adult/child) collaborative ornament project (Smar-kly), released to highlight Aurifil’s Aurikids iniatiative — an effort to pass on the love and joy and needle and thread to the next generation.


To dovetail with the release of Spool-en-dids my daughter curated for Aurifil, we will be highlighting 6 monthly projects to give you ideas on hand-stitching with kids. The colors selected are by a kid for kids!  You may purchase Spool-en-dids from the following sources:

#1.  NEW!! ** YOU may now purchase the collection from FAT QUARTER SHOP by clicking HERE.

#2.  YOU may purchase the collection from Donna — email her:  followthatthread@yahoo.com

#3.  YOU may also purchase collection by clicking HERE.

#4.  OR, ask your local Aurifil dealer to order the collection for you.  Click HERE for a dealer near you!

Read more about Spool-en-dids HERE if you aren’t familiar with the Aurikids initiative. And to those of you who purchased the thread collection, please allow me to thank you from the bottom of my heart or contributing to Miss Baby’s college fund!!

***

PROJECT: “Smar-kly” Pillow Ornament

SUPPLIES: POLKA DOT fabric scrap, paper-back fusible and THIN batting scraps, Spool-en-did thread (s), Aurifil 50wt thread, a piece of ribbon, embroidery hoop, tapestry or embroidery needle, & basic sewing supplies. 
You will need pieces of fabrics – one for pillow top, and one for backing the pillow case.  I didn’t use a batting piece this time to stabilize the project because I wanted Miss Baby to be aware of the thread tension when stitching just on a fabric piece.
OPTIONAL – however, if your kid stitcher is tiny, it is always a good idea to back your ornament top fabric with a piece of batting and a piece of backing fabric.

NOTE: This tutorial, as well as all subsequent pillow ornament tutorials, is not for a specific finished size. You may make it as big or as small as you wish. Since we hang our pillow ornaments on our Christmas tree, our ornaments do not finish larger than 4″.

GOAL: In ornament #1, we did the random no rule confetti stitching.  For ornament #2, we will introduce structure into stitching within the confine of a circle.

ALSO:  This tutorial will not cover how to finish the pillow ornament, as the steps are already covered in the tutorial for ornament #1.

***

Step 1:  This one is light on prep work for the adult.  Once you have the supplies, your kid stitcher is ready to go.  So, everyone has a polka dot fabric collection like I do, right? :)  I picked the polka dot print because the work is all done for us in this quick and easy project.

NOTE:  I notice with children (and adults alike), the excitement of the first project wears off over time.  I also believe keeping on with the projects teaches perseverance in children.  Keeping in mind both aspects, I picked this super easy project to make the experience stress free for both adult and child.

Step 2:  Once you have your fabric hooped, the stitching can begin.  Simply stitch the length of the diamater of the a circle four times (first do a cross, then, the two diagonals), and you are finished!  There is no ruler on how many circles to cover.  The stitching gives the polka dots a bit of dimensional sparkling twinkle!  I happened to find a fabric that provided the background for matching a few Spool-en-dids colors.  Feel free to do a contrasting effect!

Step 3.  To secure the stitches at the center of the circle, you could teach your kid stitcher French knots if she is older.  If not, you can just teach your kid stitcher to take a tiny stitch in the circle center, and your stitches are secure!

Step 4.  Finish up the ornament as we did before, and you will have added another Christmas ornament for your stitching buddy.  Do remember to store the ornaments in a nice clean box, so you don’t have to hunt for them when Christmas comes… ask me how I know!?!

We are actually using this as a sewing pillow companion as summer is just about here — we will be ramping up the stitching!

If you are stitching along — do send me pictures — the plan is to do a couple more of these, and we will have a nice giveaway for those who are participating!

*Smar-kly = Sparkly (Gwen’s version at 5), and we still say her 5 year old version at home.

I hope you have fun with this fun little project.  It should take no more than 20-30 minutes for handstitching.  I will show you additional ideas on stitching on polka dots in a couple of weeks.  And the next installment — cross stitching basics!  If you want to prepare ahead, you will need either 11- or 14- count aida that you can easily purchase at your local craft stores.  

Love and hugs to you all — till next time!

A Simple SPOOL-EN-DIDS project tutorial #1

Hello Friends — I am happy to share with you my first mother-daughter (adult/child) collaborative ornament project tutorial, to highlight Aurifil’s Aurikids initiative — an effort to pass on the love and joy of needle and thread to the next generation.


To dovetail with the release of Spool-en-dids collection my daughter curated for Aurifil, we will be highlighting 6 monthly projects to give you ideas on projects suitable for hand-stitching with kids.

#1.  YOU may purchase the collection from Donna — email her:  followthatthread@yahoo.com

#2.  YOU may also purchase collection by clicking HERE.

#3.  OR, ask your local Aurifil dealer to order the collection for you.  Click HERE for a dealer near you!

Read more about Spool-en-dids, and find out the names my daughter has for her selected colors HERE.

Oh, before we start, we picked up Gwen’s stitched piece at Woodlawn yesterday, with her blue ribbon!

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PROJECT: “HAPPY TO BE ME” Pillow Ornament

SUPPLIES: Fabric, paper-back fusible and THIN batting scraps, Spool-en-did thread (s), Aurifil 50wt thread, a piece of ribbon, embroidery hoop, tapestry or embroidery needle, & basic sewing supplies.
You will need 4 pieces of fabrics – one for top, one for monogram, one for backing the stitched piecing, and one for backing the pillow case.
I used a piece of silk batting because it is not as dense. I have also used the Hobbs Tuscany bleached cotton batting which worked well too.

NOTE: This tutorial, as well as all subsequent pillow ornament tutorials, is not for a specific finished size. You may make it as big or as small as you wish. Since we hang our pillow ornaments on our Christmas tree, our ornaments do not finish larger than 4″.

GOAL: This project is to get children familiar with the in-and-out mechanism of stitching. No rules — just random “confetti” stitching around an appliqued monogram.

PLEASE read through the entire project before attempting. You may let your kid stitcher step in and be involved in any of the steps. For us, my daughter participated in selected the fabrics and stitching. I did the rest.
***
1. Start with an appliqued monogram on a background fabric. Remember to reverse your letter(s) when you trace the letter on the paper side of fusible. Click here if you would like a crash course on fusible machine applique.

I always stitch around my applique shape after I fuse it in place. Stitching around the shape gives it a much finished look.  You can either do buttonhole or satin stitches around the edge of appliqued letters.

2. Then, I hooped the monogrammed piece (facing down), batting and backing piece (facing up).

3. My daughter’s work began at this point. She used a tapestry needle threaded with 3 strands of floss, and just went at it.

I would recommend a large tapestry needle for younger children, and an embroidery or even darning needle for the older children for the needle to penetrate through the hooped piece. Tapestry needles are more blunt, so they are a little safter than the sharp embroidery needles.

You little stitcher may use just ONE color, or as many as she wants — let her!

4. When stitching is completed, I first sewed around the area to secure the hand stitches before cutting to size for my pillow. I anchored a piece of ribbon as shown on the pillow front piece. I then cut the pillow back piece to size.

NOTE: I ended up sewing a back pocket to the back of the pillow ornament for storing stitching notions. To do that, I needed 2 pieces of fabrics. One to cut to size of the pillow front piece, the other to fold in half and placed at the bottom of the pillow back piece with raw edges matching.

5. Then, with the pillow front and back pieces facing each other, I sewed with a 1/4″ seam allowance, leaving a small opening. Turn pillowcase right side out, and stuff. I started using the stuffing made by Hobbs recently, and have ABSOLUTELY loved it!!

6. Hand sew the opening shut — and you and your kid stitcher will have made a (Christmas) ornament for her!  The back pocket I added to the back of the pillow ornament isn’t just for storing notions — how sweet it would be too to include a little note for a loved one if you gift this pillow ornament.

Imagine…
#1. making different ones with different initials of your children or grandchildren to give as gifts?
#2. making these to give for a handmade gift for your kid stitcher’s bff?
#3. making a real-size pillow with the same steps for a throw pillow on a chair, to go on a bed?
#4. instead of letters, you applique something that is near and dear to your kid stitcher, a kitty cat, a puppy, or an ice cream cone?

I hope you will enjoy this little stitching project with your kid stitcher, and jump start a lifetime of sweet stitching memories.

***

You may also read about my article on my journey with my best stitching buddy in the latest issue (May/June 2018) of Quiltmaker magazine — on newsstands now!

Quiltmaker May/June 2018

You may also read more further about the Aurikids iniative here.

Thanks so much for stopping by – till next time!

Have you seen the Aurikid SPOOL-EN-DIDS thread box?

Good morning, Friends!  I have shared with you last year that Miss Baby was selected by Aurifil to be one of their first batch of Aurkids in an initiative to pass down the love of needle and thread to the next and upcoming generation.  Have you see Miss Baby’s Spool-en-dids collection?  This is a collection of 6-ply cotton embroidery floss (Aurifloss) produced by Aurifil.  If you have liked Aurifil’s signature 50wt threads, you WILL love these floss for your handwork.  You know the part of very little  lint on any of their sewing threads?  Same is true with the floss.  I know the reason behind the little lint on Aurifil’s threads, but I will let Alex Veronelli tell you if he ever stops by your area to do a free lecture.  It is worth going!  ANYWAY, with the floss, your hand worked stitches will look much more crisp and defined with the little lint on the threads.

If you have heard me share about my daughter, you will know that my daughter very often has her own mind on things.  She took it upon herself to name the colors she selected to go into her embroidery floss collection.

From left to right:  Billy Brown, Ribby Red, Papita Peach, Oscar Orange, Yodel Yellow, Grouchy Green, GWENDOLYN GREEN (!), Bobby Blue, Polly Purple, Petunia Pink

Here are some pictures of how the colors have been used.

And the latest… a tutorial is coming SOON as soon as I get the green light with the people at higher places. :-)

One thing I really like about the AURIKIDS program is that each child is asked to select a charity to support with the proceeds from the thread sales.  Miss Baby was so excited receiving her first royalty check two weeks ago! :)  She has selected Samaritan’s Purse as her charity of choice, specifically in their medical missions effort.  And the rest, she decided to save for college.

If you haven’t heard of Samaritan’s Purse, check out their amazing work, in the name and with the love of Christ, here.

SO, if you have purchased the Spool-en-dids collection, Miss Baby and I want to THANK YOU for contributing to Miss Baby’s college fund, as well as supporting the work of Samaritans Purse. :)

#1.  YOU MAY PURCHASE THE COLLECTION FROM Donna — email her:  followthatthread@yahoo.com

#2.  YOU MAY ALSO PURCHASE THE COLLECTION BY CLICKING HERE.

***

Remember I had shared with you a few weeks ago Miss Baby and I both entered our respective pieces in shows?

My Thread Journey quilt was juried into the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival?  Mine didn’t win anything.  Totally fine.  Miss Baby entered her stitched pieced in the 55th Woodlawn Needlework Show.  We are really excited her ABC Des Maisons won a first place blue ribbon!  We spent a day last week at Woodlawn House in Alexandria, VA admiring the entries, and was really glad my husband was able to meet us for lunch there for some precious family time together.

[For those who like historical tidbits:  The land where Woodlawn sits was part of Mount Vernon.  It was gifted in 1799 to Nelly Custis, Martha Washington’s niece, upon her marriage to General Washington’s nephew, Lawrence Lewis.  Woodlawn is historic site within the framework of  the National Historic Trust for Preservation.  The annual Needlework Show is a fundraiser toward the specific preservation of Woodlawn.  And if you don’t know Nelly Custis, she was brought to Mount Vernon, along with brother George Washington Parke Custis, to be raised by the Washingtons after Martha’s son (John) died in Yorktown, VA shortly after the Surrender at Yorktown.  George Washington Parke Custis built the Arlington House, where it stands still today on the hill at the Arlington National Cemetery.  So there…. all the intertwining threads of history which I love to unwind.]

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We are gearing up for more stitching fun at our house.  Miss Baby recently finished her first machine pieced quilt if you are following my Instagram feed.  We are getting ready to have her quilt the quilt herself… and moving on to her next quilt — if she ever gets her academic work and music practices done with time to spare before bedtime!  We are EXCITED!!!

Easter Eggstravaganza in McCall’s Quilting March/April 2018

Fabric Box Giveaway Winners & More Here we go… Box #1: Ellen Callo; Box #2: Melody Lutz!  Congratulations, Ladies!!  You will be receiving an email on how to proceed! :) THANK YOU ALL – for being so willing to help me destash! I am in the process of cleaning out more things.  I just don’t know why, but my stash is ever growing, haha!  I will be posting more giveaways next week.  Stay tuned!! Editorial Feature You remember being introduced to Marmalade the pot belly bunny? marmalades-merriment1 img_5020 This little stitchery wallhanging project featuring Marmalade is a free project I developed to support the embroidery floss collection I curated for Aurifil.  You can order Marmalade Meadows here. marmalade-meadows marmalade-colors So back to Marmalade… some of you might or might not know that the Marmalade stitchery designs are adaptations of my daughter’s (aka Miss Baby who just turned 9!) artwork.  She was the one who first drew Marmalade for me.  And I am happy to share with you the news that the second stitchery design, Easter Eggstravaganza just turned official in McCall’s Quilting March/April 2018!!!  In Easter Eggstravaganza, Marmalade is seen decorating her little Easter tree! The magazine has full stitchery diagram, as well as instructions to make the pillow.  It is on the newsstands right now if you aren’t a subscriber! I finished the pillow using Riley Blake Designs’ Dear Diary fabrics — the fabrics are just out!  Be on a lookout for these darling fabrics. Something important to note — ALL Marmalade stitchery designs fit a finished 9″ x 9″ square.  So, with that square, you can do whatever to finish the block.  You can combine the stitchery from the free pattern upon purchase of Marmalade Meadows thread box with this current Easter Eggstravaganza and other upcoming Marmalade designs for a quilt or runner. Now, Marmalade is kind busy — rumor has it that she is preparing for Christmas 2018 already!  Hey, no pressure there… she says! :)  I think she also has a love of reading design in the works — because Miss Baby is quite the bookworm, and naturally, Marmalade is a reader too. *wink* That’s it for today…. I am rushing to get a quilt top finished.  Playing catch up after being sick is no easy task for anyone!  Later!!

Aurifil’s AURIKIDS Debut: Spool-en-dids with Gwendolyn Sheppard

Hello Friends, I am back from my whirlwind 3-day trip to Houston Fall Market.  I shall be sharing various Market-related snippets in my upcoming posts,

but I want to focus today’s post as a “I am my daughter’s Mom” post.

I will announce the winners of my Market giveaways this Friday.

***

Isn’t it interesting how once one has kids or a kid (in my case), more often than not, one is known as the kids’ or kid’s parent?!

Most of you know Miss Baby has been stitching with me since she was 5.  We have done fun ornaments like these:

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angels

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The reason I picked making ornaments as our projects is that I like the fact that the ornaments can be stored carefully and added each year, and they are definitely something Miss Baby can keep with her for the rest of her life.

Miss Baby started a huge project for her size/age in summer 2017.  She embarked on an adventure in stitching a full sized sampler!  It took her a year, and she finally completed her ABC des Maisons by Jardin Prive (a French designer) this past summer before the new school year.  In stitching this sampler, she was adamant about selecting her own colors.  Her words, “Mom, I don’t like it when they tell me what colors to use!”.  So she stitched the sampler with an assortment of Aurifil’s embroidery floss, Aurifloss.

I actually got it framed in time for the sampler to be displayed at Houston Fall Quilt Market this year.

We are really excited, happy and honored to be a part of Aurifil’s AURIKIDS program, an initiative focuses on reaching the next generation of sewist and crafters.  Miss Baby (her name is actually Gwendolyn now that the cat is out of the bag, haha!) debuts her own thread collection with Aurifil at Fall Quilt Market in Houston this year!  It was a big moment, a huge moment, in an 8 year old’s life!  The only disappointment for her was that she didn’t get to go to Market with me.

This floss collection is ready to ship in this month in case you would like to give this as a Christmas present.  You should be able to order them at your local Aurifil dealers.  We will kick off 2018 with a monthly program making ornaments for kids.

To keep the mother/daughter theme, these ornaments will be collaborative projects between an adult and a child.  Ask if your local Aurifil dealers are participating in the monthly program starting in 2018.  They can also contact Aurifil for more information.  Here are a few of the ornaments we will be making.

Miss Baby will also have a poem that she has written to share with her fellow kid stitchers each month to go with the ornaments.  She actually hasn’t seen the real thread box — so we are eagerly waiting for it to arrive!  When it does, I will share more details.  My rather imaginative and go-getter daughter has given each color a name as well.  So stay tuned! :)

Kids these days have so many entertainment outlets.  Being able to pass on the love of needle and thread to my daughter has been one of the most gratifying things I have ever accomplished as a mother.  So I hope grandmothers/mothers/aunts out there will join in the fun to help our youth to discover, preserve and prolong the legacy of needlework.

Thank you for stopping by!  I am already back at it as I have outstanding pattern instructions to turn in… but such is life!  I shall catch up with you later!

A little “Marmalade Meadows” stitching finish!

Hello Friends – and Happy Wednesday to you!  I hope you are well.  I turned a little simple cross-stitched piece that I completed in the car at the school parking lot….

… into a little hanging pillow.  The moral story is: Sometimes simple = sweet.

The colors I used are from my Marmalade Meadows collection.

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To date, the colors in the collection have been used in these projects:

#1.  Spring on Bleecker Street embroidery

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#2.  Marmalade’s Merriment (pattern for mini quilt and embroidery are included with the purchase of the floss pack)

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#3.  A Christmas ornament

And more projects using this floss collection are forthcoming!!!  I am working hard!

Since I am a totally one woman show, and do not own a shop… I rely on the good graces of shop owners to carry products associated with me, and quilters to buy them to support my work.  So far, I know of these shops carrying the floss packs:

Cinnamon Quilt Shoppe: https://cinnamonsquilts.rainadmin.com/shop/Thread/p/Marmalade-Meadows-Collection-x24133197.htm [They were temporarily out of stock, but they are back in stock!!!]

Pumpkinvine Corner:  Click here to go to the store.  I don’t think the actual item is listed on the website yet.  So feel free to contact the shop directly. :)  Jean “at” pumpkinvinecorner “dot” com / phone: 770-272-2485

I shall catch up with you later.  Meanwhile, I hope you will keep sewing/stitching/quilting on!  Hugs to you all!

Stamp Pad in McCall’s Quick Quilts (April/May 2017) & More

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Hello Friends, Happy Monday, and a Blessed Week to you!  Today, I am sharing with you my latest magazine quilt that became official, Stamp Pad.   Stamp Pad is featured in McCall’s Quick Quilts (April/May 2017) issue.  The full instructions are included in the magazine issue.

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This is a design that majors in the basics — flying geese and rectangular patches — and yet, the result is quite eye-catching, no?  This design is perfect for telling a “fabric story” with any large or colorful prints.  But if you interested to use the fabrics I used, they are from RJR Fabrics‘ Garden Gate line by Robyn Pandolph.  Pandolph always has the most amazing florals!!

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I have also designed an exclusive runner project using the same fabrics for Keepsake Quilting.

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Purchase the kit here, or purchase the pattern here.

Be sure to check out my other offerings in Keepsake Quilting here.

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Meanwhile, I want to welcome those of you who have recently signed up to join the Spring on Bleecker Street Sew-Along.  I am so glad you are on board.  Click here if you would like to learn more about the Sew-Along.

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Again, like I have told many, I am running this Sew-Along with the pace of one who has way too many projects going on at the same time.  So, we will just be tackling small portions of the quilt each month.  The house/tree block took me 2 hours to complete… so, if you could just spare about 2 hours a month, I am certain you can keep up. :)Also, I found out this week Cinnamon’s Quilt Shop has the kits if you need to pick one up.  Click here to purchase the kits, and here to purchase the accompany Aurifil embroidery floss pack!

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I will be posting installment #2 of the sew-along on March 15th.  So, you definitely have time to catch up with part 1. :)  Click here if you haven’t seen installment #1.

Meanwhile, I have also been smocking.  Miss Baby still lets me dress her, mainly because she is not one who puts too much thought into what she wears.  It’s a win-win for us right now.  She is needed some new outfits.  So, here is my latest completed smocking project.

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And here, I completed the stitching for a small little project that I work on at the school parking lot when I wait to pick up Miss Baby.  The colors I use are from my Marmalade Meadows floss pack.

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And here is me and a homemade apple pie a couple of weeks ago.  I am not crazy about pictures taken of me, but I had to do it for one of the fabric companies, hahaha.  Miss Baby can handily consume an apple pie in half a day, if I let her… a pinch of nutmeg is my secret ingredient when I make apple pies! :) That pie looks a bit pale because I was scared to death the pie would look too brown for the picture, hahaha.  Truth be known, I popped that pie back into the oven after the picture was taken.  Things I do for work….

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But I am curious though — what is your favorite pie?

And that’s it for now!  I shall catch up with you again in a couple of days.  Hugs to you all!

***

My 2017 Line-up

Editorial Feature

American Patchwork & Quilting (Jan/Feb 2017):  Close Quarters (Cover Quilt)

McCall’s Quick Quilts (Feb/March 2017):  I’m Blue For You

McCall’s Quick Quilts (April/May 2017): Stamp Pad

 

Free-to-use Design

Jan 2017:  Stars and Stripes Forever (Hoffman Fabrics)

Jan 2017:  HOPE (Windham Fabrics)

Jan 2017:  Bleecker Street (Quilting Treasures)

Feb 2017: Sheeps and Peeps (Quilting Treasures)

Feb 2017: Smarty Cats (Windham Fabrics)

Feb 2017: Wildwood Way (RJR Fabrics)

Another chance to win Marmalade Meadows Floss Box

Happy Monday, Friends! I hope you are all well and warm!  Right about now, I am an icicle contemplating a one-way ticket to Florida! :)

Last fall, Aurifil introduced my Marmalade Meadows Floss Collectionat Fall Market.  A few days before Christmas last year, Aurifil featured my new Embroidery Floss collection, Marmalade Meadows, on their blog Auribuzz. Click here to read more if you hadn’t had a chance to do so.

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The purchase of the floss collection comes with my pattern instructions (including embroidery) for Marmalade’s Merriment.  If you remember, the embroidery design is based on Miss Baby’s artwork that I had adapted for embroidery.  I do have a funny story associated with that.  I had texted from Fall Market last year a picture of the floss box to Miss Baby at home.  When I checked in with home that night…

Miss Baby:  Urm, Mom, didn’t you tell them I drew the original picture?

Me: Yes?

Miss Baby: Why isn’t my name on the box?

Me:  Well, you see…

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Over the next year, I will be releasing more Marmalade the pot belly bunny embroidery designs, as well as different projects you can make using the free download Marmalade’s Merriment embroidery design!  It will be fun.  So, get your floss ready to stitch… You can ask your local quilt shop owners to order the floss collection for you!

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Aurifil is hosting another giveaway of Marmalade Meadows on their Instagram feed!  Be sure to check out the details there — just search for “aurifilthread”.

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That’s all for now, Friends!  Happy Monday and Happy Week!  I will be back this Wed to catch up with you!  Hugs!!!

Another completed Thread Journey Quilt!!!

Hello Friends, I hope you’ve been well.  I truly apologize for being scarce of late.  Too much going on with work, and too much going on with Miss Baby — so much so that I totally failed to see a scheduling conflict between Miss Baby’s art and music commitments!  My daughter had to remind me the 19th last week was actually  Saturday, and not Friday.  But…. on the upside, I am finished with my major Christmas shopping, and about 75% done with wrapping the presents!  So, if you must know, I have kind of being “one” with Scotch tape and wrapping paper the last couple of days… :)

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Jody has actually sent these pictures of her complete Thread Journey quilt a few weeks ago.  I am SO proud of Jody attempting and completing the quilt!  Good job, Jody.  Would you please join me and letting Jody know she did a phenomenal job by leaving a comment for Jody?  Thanks so much…

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Jody did an amazing job with her feather quilting, don’t you think?

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Instructions to make the Thread Journey quilt, presented in installments, are found in www.auribuzz.com.   Though the Quilt-Along is over, you can still make your own Thread Journey quilt following the instructions.

Happy Monday, and Happy Thanksgiving week to you all!

p.s.  Click here you would like to see my version of Thread Journey (version 2).  Incidentally, the first version was photographed being shown by Alex Veronelli during one of his recent lectures – see below.  If you have yet to attend his lectures, you simply have to find out where you can attend one!

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image source: http://www.heirloomcreations.net

Aurifil’s Embroidery Floss Collection: Marmalade Meadows

Friends, you know I have a passion for handwork. Over the years I have done embroidery, smocking and cross-stitching. I love stitching with my hands, and feeling the needle and threads as the stitches are formed.  I am very excited to share more about Marmalade Meadows, an embroidery floss collection I curated for Aurifil.

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Firstly, these Aurifloss colors were selected to be companion threads for Quilting Treasures’ new group Bleecker Street!  I will share more about Bleecker Street fabrics tomorrow.  Spring on Bleecker Street is a collage quilt I designed using the Bleecker Street fabrics that involve a bit of piecing, applique as well as hand embroidery.  The hand embroidery part uses threads from Marmalade Meadows.

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The following picture was taken at this past Quilt Market of Spring on Bleecker Street.  Kits and patterns are available via your local quilt shops sometime in November!  Check and ask about the project with your local quilt shops that carry Quilting Treasures fabrics.

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And you here how the Marmalade Meadows embroidery floss is at play in the following pictures:

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I also designed and stitched a little wallhanging using the Marmalade Meadows embroidery floss, featuring Marmalade, the pot-belly bunny!  This is going to be a free pattern when the thread collection ships in December.

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I quilted the wallhanging with Aurifil’s Mako 50 wt cotton.  When quilting around embroidered motif, I like to quilt densely so that the embroidery will pop!

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I like that the Aurifil’s embroidery floss is wound on a charming wooden spool.  Some have asked if I feel a difference between Aurifloss and skeined floss.  One major thing I notice is that, with the other threads produced by Aurifil, the Aurifloss is very low on lint.  That allows me to have very crisp stitches.  [As to why Aurifil’s threads are low lint, you will have to attend Alex Veronelli’s thread lectures to find out — really worth your while if there is one offered in your area.  It is free to attend.]

So, here are the spools you will get in my Marmalade Meadows collection.  Even though they scream vibes of spring, I am actually working on a Christmas scene featuring Marmalade the pot-belly bunny!  Stay tuned for details. :)

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Again, the collection ships this December to shops.  You may place an order for the collection with any shops that carries Aurifil products.  I know http://www.followthatthread.com will have it.  If it’s not listed on the website, just shoot them an email, and they will take care of you!

Thanks so much for stopping by.  Till next time!

My Turn: Windham Fabrics FIRST BLUSH Blog Hop & Giveaway!

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Hello Friends, here it is — my turn sharing my First Blush hop project — Softie’s Posies.  But first, a bit of background story on Softie. My favorite book (absolute favorite) from growing up is the Enchanted Wood/Faraway Tree trilogy written by a British author Enid Blyton!  The same trilogy has become extra special because I can trace Miss Baby reading independently to this very trilogy!  I started reading a chapter a day to her when she was about 5.  The story was so captivating that she asked for more.  I told her if she wanted more, she could read for herself the following chapters to find out what happened in the story.  And so she did!!!  And since then, she has been a most avid and self-motivated reader with a huge appetite of learning.  I have even caught her reading WHILE practicing her violin!!! Needless to say, we have quite a few Enid Blyton’s books at our house.

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I had shown you a little sneaky peek of Softie the Squirrel at his dress fitting.  He wanted a red jacket, and so, I tried my best to come up with a fashionable one for him.  Well you see, in the Enchanted Wood/Faraway Tree stories, there is a squirrel who wears an old red jacket who waits at the foot of the Faraway Tree to retrieve the cushions used by the riders of a “slippery slip” within the tree.  And after many adventures, he finally had a new red jacket for himself.  Miss Baby and I always had a soft spot for that squirrel, and she named him Softie!

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I thought Windham’s First Blush fabrics would be perfect to make a little “story” quilt for Softie!

Photo credit: Grey Dogwood Studio

Softie liked the check jacket and red solid sleeve.  In the end, he also requested a red pocket to go with his jacket to store his acorns.  I used the applique method mentioned here and here.

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Then, I took one of the floral prints, and did fusible broiderie perse with the individual floral sprigs.  Instead of falling leaves, we have falling autumn blossoms!

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With that, and the borders, we have this!

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Here is the close-up showing the quilting — feathers and cinnamon rolls!  Notice I used a light pink to quilt on the white in the quilt center.  I have become a firm believer in subtle contrast quilting so that I can use the other pretty shades of threads out there. Click here to learn more about my favorite subtle shades of Aurifil threads.

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I hope you have liked Softie’s Posies.  Some of you might ask for the pattern… well, there’s no pattern for this for now.  It might be part of something bigger.  I am not sure yet, but it is definitely a possibility!

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First Blush fabrics are shipping this month.  You can purchase the fabrics here.

Now, the giveaway!  For each day of the hop, Windham Fabrics will give away a fat quarter bundle of the collection. along with a coordinating small thread box of First Blush from Aurifil for each stop of the blog tour.  Leave a comment between now and next Tuesday, and I will pick a winner each for the fabrics and threads.  Winners will be announced by the end of next week.

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In case you haven’t seen the schedule:

October 10 – Chris Dodsley, Made by Chrissie D
October 11 – Sinta at Pink Pincushion
October 12 –  Fat Quarter Shop
October 13- Windham/Two Blondes and a Sewing Machine
October 14- Jennie at Clover and Violet
October 15- Aurifil- Erin Sampson
October 16- Tina Egner
October 17 – Pretty By Hand
October 18 – Allison Harris
October 19 – Erin Cox
October 20 – Angie Wilson Gnome Angel
October 21 – Debbie at happy little cottage
October 22 – Heidi Staples
October 23 – Leanne Elliott
October 24- Greg Jones Grey Dogwood Studio – me!
October 25- Wendy Sheppard Ivory Spring
October 26 – Stephanie Lynn Denton
October 27 – Lisa Ruble