Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Samples for Sew Expo

I have so much fun at my part time job! I spent the last month and a half designing and coordinating samples for the Pendleton Woolen Mill Store Sew Expo vender booth. I can't begin to tell you how much fun it was! I mean, having access to any Pendleton fabric to make any sample I want to make? How cool is that! 

WMS design inspiration wall
My Design Wall for the Woolen Mill Store 
One of the first things I did was to make a design wall in the embroidery room. There are so many gorgeous fabric that I had to pin swatches up to create my mini collections. Once I knew which fabrics I wanted to use and the designs I planned to make them in I set out to delegate: I know a few very talented gals who can sew up a storm. I knew I wouldn't be able to make everything myself and meet the deadline so I enlisted my army of talented sewists to work on this collection with me.

Fastest Bag in the West
Fastest Bag in the West Free Pattern Here
Sugar Skull Applique 1
Download Free Sugar Skull Applique Here
I also decided to make free patterns for any of my original designs. I love helping customers with their sewing projects and it is fun for me to make these free pattern pages. Above are links to two of my new designs: The Fastest Bag in the West (fits a 15" laptop) and an applique template that goes with the new Pendleton Sugar Skulls fabric. I embroidered the skull applique with the Sublime Stitching metallic palette. It was fun to embellish. I think I used every embroidery stitch I could think of!

In additional to designing original projects, I used several commercial patterns and projects from books. I love Burda Style sewing patterns that can be download from their website but it does take some patience to tape the pattern pieces together. Last year all my projects for Sew Expo came from the Burda Sewing Book. The post I wrote about that is here.
Oliver and Madeleine
Plaid Puppy Love (and cute toes!)
Susan Beal of West Coast Crafty suggested sewing the adorable 'George the Puppy' from Girl's World: Twenty-One Sewing Projects to Make for Little Girls by Jennifer Paganelli. They came out just darling! I never would have thought to make these in Pendleton plaids -- Susan is so talented! She has some great tips for making these darling pups on her blog.

The gals at the WMS loved it so much they asked me to make another project from the book so I made the Gigi Ruffled Pillow (photo is on the right side, one up from the bottom corner.) 

A collage of all the wonderful projects we made for Sew Expo!
In all we made three jackets, two skirts, five pillows, three blankets/quilts, two bags and a few other goodies. I made all the samples in the collage except these:

Lower left Corner: An original pillow with neon-embroidered Feathers made by Meridith. Right above her pillow is the Sew Liberated Bohemian Carpet BagMeridith often teaches this bag as a class at  Modern Domestic so check their website for dates and times. 

Center Bottom Row: Pink Jacket make by Teresa of crinkledreams from a Burda Style sewing pattern.

If you are at Sew Expo this weekend make sure to stop by the Pendleton Woolen Mills booth and say hi. They have some gorgeous new fabrics that are priced special for the show. Hope to see you there!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

All Up in My Grill

Super Bowl Sunday! Whoot Whoot! TOUCHDOWNS! Ya! Are the Ducks playing? (cue the sound of a car skidding to a stop...) Okay, the truth is, I have NEVER been to a pro football game. I went to my first College game last fall, and no, I still don't know who plays on what day. Well, who's to say I can't be a fan in my own way? I made this about a month ago for a friend of mine who LOVES the Ducks.
It was really fun to make! I used Elizabeth Hartman's tutorial from her Billboard Quilt-Along to make the 'O'. I free hand drew it on freezer paper and then marked off all the sections for the patchwork pieces. It was super fast and easy to sew all the pieces together - instant gratification for sure! I sewed the strips for the bag together and appliqued on the yellow 'O' and quilted it all to a piece of pink calico (she'll never know!). It made her really, really happy!
Oregon Travel Bag
Back to the Super Bowl. I was asked to bring baked beans to our friend's house today. Easy. My Aunt Sandy makes the best baked beans in the world. I've made them a few times before so I checked to make sure I had some of her secret ingredients (liquid smoke is one) and headed to the market to get the beans and fresh ingredients. She always used the canned beans with the green label on them - I never paid attention to what the brand was, I just always bought the ones with the green label. So skip forward to me standing confused in front of rows and rows of canned beans, none of which had a green label. I was deep in thought when a woman with her five-ish year-old son came up next to me. The woman bent down to her son and said, "We NEVER eat canned beans, do we?" He looked at her lovingly and didn't answer. "Those are YUCKY, aren't they!" Hand in hand they walked down the aisle, leaving me stunned and sad with a can of beans in my hand.

I am just going to say this right now before I go any further. I BOUGHT THE CANNED BEANS. This does not mean I am a bad person. I fully support banning BPA from ALL food packaging. I was upset when the FDA did not agree to the ban in back in March 2012 and I am hopeful that they will ban it eventually. But I would NEVER, EVER humiliate someone the way that person did to me today. I called my cousin Romy (who had walked me through a shopping list on my way to the market) to tell her what had happened. We decided what the perfect response would have been (Romy is one of the funniest people on the planet) and next time if I have my wits about me I may just find the courage to say it. They do look good, don't they?
And to cheer myself up I am going over to Dry Goods Designs to take advantage of their Super Bowl Sale. They are giving an additional 25% off of sale fabrics if you mention the codes Ravens or Niners . Shopping for fabric online while eating baked beans? What more could a girl want!