Tuesday, May 4

The pages that time forgot. . .

 "There is a past version of you that is SO PROUD of how far you have come"

I can now see that it has been FIVE YEARS since our last post on this blog.  And my have things changed, but according to an email from google, we still have people who check this out, and for you faithful people, you deserve to know the updates since then.

In the five years since our final post on here, life for the Pastthyme Gals has changed...a lot.

In February of 2017 the repair shop next door, home to our handyman started on fire.  The building was a total loss.  It was a dark day for our family and yet somehow in the midst of all of the chaos there was a tremendous beam of light.  Nobody was hurt.  It reminded us that material things are just that, material and when you get to hug your family and thank all of the fireman, first responders and those assisting in getting our family pets out of the building, it is a very, very good day.  Small towns are great.  The support was amazing.

Following this, the quilt shop changed.  Lacey finished her PTA degree and started working full time and Darci began a new chapter with a seasonal, turned more year round job in town.  And with this and a few health issues, it was decided that work can wait, family cannot.  Our days are precious and are to be spent wisely.  In 2017 we celebrated Thanksgiving with extra special hugs, knowing that the table could've been missing a few people that year.

Following this, we sold the shops.  The lot in Clara City that people once loved to visit is now empty.  It's an odd sight and yet a sight we are all at peace with.  We moved home into the house and a year later, had a shop built (see above) to move our repair and sewing studios into.  And we LOVE it.

Last year we celebrated a wedding as Lacey got married and following this moved to South Dakota.  She and her husband are expecting their first child this fall and we are excited to spoil and love this new little bundle. 

We continue to venture out and participate in quilt shows in MN, SD and WI when COVID allows us to see all of you.  We continue to design patterns in wool and cotton and invite you to follow our Facebook page to see the latest creations as well as personal videos from "Thelma & Weezer".

  Our new website is also home to a blog and various shopping for you to enjoy in the comfort of home.  (www.shadesofpast.com) as well as various FREE downloadable patterns for your enjoyment.

We hope that time has treated you well.  We are so proud of the accomplishments and growth that has occurred over the past very fast five years.  And we very much look forward to what the future holds.

Thursday, March 17

Penny Rose Wool Love: "Thyme Gone By"

Welcome to Day Four of the Penny Rose Wool Love Blog Tour! 
(And a Happy St. Patrick's Day!!)

Before we leap into our project for today we thought we'd let those of you who are not familiar with us "Pastthyme Gals" have a little background info about us!

 We are a mother-daughter/partners in crime duo from rural Minnesota who design patterns under the name of Pastthyme Patterns in our quilt shop Shades of the Past.  (You can read more about that here if you'd like)

Darci (aka: "the mom" shown bottom right) is the wool guru. All of the wool creations are designed by her as well as many, many cotton and flannel quilts.  Her box remains a nice comfortable constant with warm earth tones and traditionally pieced patterns.  

Lacey (aka: "the daughter" shown upper left) joined her mom when she was in high school and mostly works with cotton and enjoys English paper piecing and often jokes about not having that famous "box".  

We are perfectly imperfect people who are usually found with a can of pop in hand, beef jerky and chips by the sewing machine, the seam ripper close by, our canine companions by our feet and a hockey game on in the background.

But on to bigger and better things. . .such as the reason you stopped by.

 "Thyme Gone By" by Darci Schipnewski

Crazy quilting has become a passion and an addiction! There is nothing better than sitting in the chair with a blank crazy quilting canvas in your lap and thread to color the lines in.  Crazy quilting gives the imagination lots of room to play and my mind almost never quits.  It, much like aged wine, gets better with time!  The more you stitch and add the better it gets.

This form of work also allows you to dive into the scrap pile that quickly collects. . .not that us wool lovers know anything about scrap collections!! And gives us the chance to put all sorts of good stitches to use. My favorite stitches to use (that were used on this project and many others in the shop) consist of the Feather, Fly, Creatin, Herringbone, Satin, Stem and Colonial knot.

This project is set up to allow you to use a handful of your favorite wool pieces for the background and gives you many seams to cover with your favorite stitches as well as allow for adding some variations to give the work extra dimension.  Patterns for this project will be available for sale on our Etsy site.

We thank our friends at Penny Rose (the sister company to Riley Blake) for their supply of beautifully hued wool to create this lovely "Thyme Gone By" piece out of the brown, black, dark green, red and blue.  The colors for this project blended together beautifully and coordinated with my variegated thread perfect.

I decided to share the items that are faithfully kept in my "wool tool box" as I travel or teach.
Because they work well and are must have items for me I've decided to pass them along as tips to you.

~Heat Press Batting Tape~
This stuff works two-fold. . .you can use it not only for pressing together left over batting scraps, but it also doubles for adhering your wool crazy quilt pieces together. I use this to fuse my background pieces into place.  The tape is placed on the wrong side of the wool covering the seam line and pressed into place.  This helps to ensure your pieces stay "nested up" next to one another.
~Clover White Ink Pen~
I like this particular pen because it faithfully irons away upon completion.  I use the pen to free hand text onto my wool pieces.  When I teach crazy quilting to groups of eager learners, I find that often those who like more uniform "perfect" (if you will) crazy quilt lines will draw a white line on either side of their seam lines to use a guide for how long to make their stitches.
Who would guess that the common stapler would provide assistance for wool work creations!  I have tried about everything. . .from mini applique pins to glue but find the stapler to be my favorite.  I never fuse my wool. . .it's certainly not wrong to fuse I just don't like to add that agent into my work.  I staple all of my pieces into place.  The staples pop out of the wool great, leaving no marks of where they were put in and keep everything flush.  I no longer have pins stabbing my leg when I carry my work bag or lose pieces because glue dried.  
We use these sheets in our shop for the vast majority of our embroidery.  Simply transfer your text onto the Transfer-Eze sheet, cut around your text and stick it onto your wool work.  This works great for adding text to dark colored wool or for transferring unique and extensive designs onto the wool.  When you are done you simply soak the wool piece in water and let air dry and the Transfer-Eze will dissolve away.
~Thread & Needles~
It always makes me laugh when I get asked about needles. . .not that it's funny but the honest answer is that I pretty much stitch with the needle that I can get the thread through.  I happen to like the Bohn company because the needles are sharp. (Maybe I should add a BandAid to my toolbox...)  I also love working with Valdani thread which is 100% hand-dyed 12 wt Pearl Cotton.  The variegation is heavenly.  If you are ever in doubt of the thread I suggest testing the waters with P9 which goes with about everything!

But most importantly. . .
Nobody is perfect and neither does your work need to be!
The best part about Crazy Quilting is the opportunity for it to be a one of a kind and
 unique piece. . .just like you! 

We sincerely thank you for stopping by to visit us!! 
And again a huge thank you to Penny Rose fabrics for the wool to play with!
We are off to eat some Birthday cake as today is Darci's birthday!

Make sure you keep touring on!!

March 17: Darci Schipnewski of Pastthyme Patterns

Take the weekend off to stitch on wool!!
March 23: Penny Rose Blog

Take the weekend off to stitch on wool!