Wednesday, August 25

French Lesson

We've been having such a fun week here in the shop with new fabric arrivals and the wonderful opportunity to sit down and sew up some new shop samples which were are very excited to share! So let's begin with a trip to France.

During the hop we got in this unique chicken fabric titled "Le Poulet" (pronounced like: lay- poo-lay) much fun is that word to say?! Le Poulet, a word that rolls off the tongue rather nicely and for the way it sounds must have some exquisite meaning. . . but the word Le Poulet means. . .


A fun and pretty sounding word to say a chicken. I guess French really is a Romantic language!

Aside from having a lot of fun saying "Le Poulet" we have had equal amounts of fun sewing with it.
The above is an apron pattern that we jazzed up with the fun chicken pockets on the bottom and chicken patch and "Le Poulet" title on the top. This apron was really quite simple to make and has absolutely wonderful draw strings (one long string) that gives you a lot of freedom for adjusting the neck and waist bands to fit any person
Now, leaving our French lesson on chicken for the day, we head back here where Summer is coming to an end and the school year is upon us . . . so the arrival of Punctuation by Moda's American Jane was perfect and festive. The above shows our coordinating pieces as well as one focal of the ABC's . . .

. . .and this is also the other focal that would make a wonderful strip quilt.

Speaking of Summer's End . . .

The new Kansas Troubles fabrics came in and is called- as you could have guessed-
Summer's End
We have beautiful coordinates as well as honey buns and charm packs.

Darci has been very busy working with her favorite designers fabrics and stepped out of the box and sewed with a honey bun. (for those of you unfamiliar with that term a honey bun is one 1 1/2" strip of each fabric in the line)

The sample above (although not quite finished) is part of Darci's upcoming monthly program called "Prairie Women's Sewing Circle" which features wonderful projects that get you making do with the fabrics you have at home each month. More samples are in the works so more info will be shared later. . .

The "bag lady" also dipped her toes into the Summer's End fabric and sewed up a new bag using the Steel Ball handles. If you haven't seen these before they are kind of unique and clever in that you can buy one set of steel ball handles, and sew different bag bottoms to change for any occasion. The bag was fun and quite easy to do.

Also in, is the new fabrics by BasicGrey called Origins featuring wonderful browns, blacks and yellows.

Lacey has had her eye on making the "Frenchy Bag" by Amy Butler (pattern in photo above) out of some of these fabrics. But until the pattern arrived she settled for sewing on a table runner . . .

. . .and by the looks of it has just the quilting left in the border to do before it's finished.

Guess she must have gotten side-tracked with the steel ball bag . . .

Luna Notte, a quaint and beautiful new line by Moda's 3 Sisters has also arrived this month.

The bag lady was also out pickin' berries and came home with a new kind!
This cute bag has 3-D leaves and wool felt flower and was created by Fig Tree & Co.
It's a very quick bag to sew up and would be perfect for a little girl or big girls who are young at heart!

While we were out hopping with our bus of ladies during the hop we defiantly noticed that kids clothing is a big deal. We continue to slowly but surly add more ideas for ya'll and this is the newest called "Pokadots & Summer" and too is by Fig Tree & Co.
If you are interested in sewing that special little one something I would suggest Fig Tree's patterns. I will be honest in that this is really one of the few and only companies I've sewed with but like the simplicity and good directions that Joanna gives.

Until next time~ Au Revoir ~ Good Bye!

Tuesday, August 17

Busy Bee's in the "quilt shop"

Goodness...guess we really let things slip this summer as far as blog posts go. Hard and very sad to believe how fast a month can go by . . .
So, some of you may wonder what the heck happened to us?
And our answer would be quite simple, we really didn't float away from the Earth, and miraculously land this week, but we've been following the path of the kid below . . .
We've simply just been sitting and picking our noses.
(should have entered our noses in the county fairs that have been going on in the dog days of summer I'm sure we both would have won purple ribbons!!)

In these dog days of summer (sort of feels like we traded Minnesota in for some tropical place like Costa Rica) where we have 100 degree days with 100% humidity...yuck...we've tried to think of "cool" things to work on. One of them being Oopsie the Octopus. What better way to think about cooling off than to work on a stuffed animal that lives in the cool oceans. Oopsie is a free pattern on the Moda Bake Shop and has been an interesting conversation piece.
On Friday July 30th we started our 4th annual Minnesota State Shop Hop.
This is really the reason we haven't done much posting as we spent many weeks prior to the hop sewing up samples from the beautiful blue and white Holly Taylor fabrics. Thu the course of the hop, which ended two days ago, we spent time chatting with many wonderful people from various places in the United States, and even a gal from Norway!! Above is part of our Quilt MN display that sat in the back room by our raved cookies, coffee and fused ice water.
Now we mostly have wonderful things to say about the hop and do truly enjoy being in it each and every year. The hop does come with grumbles to which we never mind hearing about. However this year one really hit home and although we know better the comment has stuck in our minds in the days after the report as apparently in the mind of a hopper we are not considered a "Quilt Shop". Like many other things in life, this was not a fun one to hear and while we happened to be proud of the many samples that adorn our "quilt shop" walls we questioned . . .What is a quilt shop??
Anyhow...each quilt shop in the state handed out patterns for a 9" quilt block and this "quilt shop" handed out one called Twisted Log Cabin which was very well received. We even added a little "Take time to chase the snowflakes" embroidery in the inner border (used Transfer Eze which is a miracle to embroidery lovers . . .stop in or leave a comment to find out why). We do have a few kits left ($21.99 w/pattern) as well as patterns $5.00.
The most popular quilt in the shop happened to be this gem
Minnesota Winter
This was a lap quilt size that used the pictures of the Minnesota fabrics.
This project was called Paul Bunyan because it's an over sized (in length) lap quilt. Great for having extra on the bottom to tuck under your feet on those cold Minnesota winter nights.
Paul Bunyan uses a charm pack for the pieced blocks and Chenille-It strips for snowflakes.
We have sewn up many samples using different charm packs. This little
guy was also well received during the hop and is definitely a project that you can get completed in an afternoon, or one good day.
Our wonderful SW section created 9" quilt blocks that were winter themed. Many shops did up fun projects using all of the quilt blocks, and ours happened to be this one. All of us SW shops handed out ornaments with a $10 purchase and we decided to display them by our sectional quilt. Our bag out of the 2011 memorabilia towel.

We also took a bus trip to the metro section on Friday the 13th.

We had an absolutely wonderful and fun group of ladies to accompany us and truly had a blast.

Now, those that know our famous bus trips know that we tend to have some type of glitch at some point of the day--and this trip was no different as we started our day out one hour behind schedule as train was poking thru Glencoe and we hit about every light red in Chaska.

Nothing like shopping with a lighter touching you butt...but we laughed and had a blast along the way seeing new shops, meeting fun owners, seeing some unique projects and shop personalities and relaxing with a delicious meal at Lola's Lakehouse on Lake Waconia.

We got everyone home in record time (we made up time along the way) and are thrilled to have been able to join the gals on the trip there. We always look forward the bus trips and are very, very fortunate that we have people who enjoy hopping with us, and are fun and kind people to be around.

Thanks to all who came...we had a ball and hope you did too :)

We never buy a lot--don't have time for personal sewing--but yet seem to find those things we just have to have. The above is Darci's fun find. Darci loves fall and pumpkins so this truly is up her alley, but we joke every time she sees this designers fabric. . .the gal is truly a one of a kind and very unique lady whom you'd never forget (and believe me we haven't!) if you met her.
Lacey got this single piece (had a case of I can't make up my mind and we are running out of time) for an Amy Butler bag. The best part about not being able to make up your mind is getting to go back to get more!!!
Speaking of bags--this beauty has been popular amongst hoppers.
The fabrics are "Moxie" by Kim Schaefer and the bag is a pattern by Indygo Junction.

But as the hop started to wind down, and the snowflakes we were seeing began to melt away we decided to work on fall as it will be here sooner than we think. The above mat is our free monthly project that the wool gals worked on the last 100 degree day last week.
Of course, it hasn't all been quilting. We've managed to fill our free time with visits from family and friends and have spent time watching some of them at the racetrack. Spending nights with family (like our favorite little relative above who someday wants to drive a race car like the one he's sitting in) is truly what counts.
Hope your summers have been safe and that you too have been able to spend some time with those you love.