Friday, November 20, 2015

Pillow Party Trunk Show Christmas Edition

Embroidery Library has lots more videos and tutorials so you can get some great ideas and learn how to use all your embroidery designs that you have collected. Don't have a machine that does machine embroider? Many times you can substitute applique, hand embroidery, decorative stitches, ribbons, lace, etc to perk up your projects.

Tuesday, November 03, 2015

Needing Donations of Embroidery Supplies for Congo Women

Since I started our pattern business, Moonwishes Sewing and Crafts, my heart has gone out to third world women that do not have the resources like we do to improve their lives and have respectable ways of earning a living to support their families. We have been donating 10% of our profits towards helping these women. One of the projects that we help support is one in the Congo, by way of Carma Nelson who has served as a Christian and Missionary Alliance missionary there for many years. While she is no longer assigned to Congo, she still helps coordinate this small project. This is a grass roots project that started maybe 6 years ago that I have helped when I can.

There is a lady in the Congo that is knowledgeable in embroidery who teaches the other women, who then can sell what they make to help support themselves. To help her and her students out, I have been sending packages of embroidery supplies; embroidery floss, embroidery fabric, hoops, needles and books and booklets on embroidery over the past few years.

At this point I’m asking for your help as well if this strikes a chord in your heart as well. The teacher needs more 6-strand cotton thread/floss especially in pinks and browns but any color would help. Also I’m sure that embroidery needles for hand embroidery and embroidery fabric would help, even those little embroidery scissors so each woman can have her own pair for when she works at her own home. If you used to do embroidery and gave up on a project and still have the floss, we can use it. Not sure if you should send a tangled bunch of floss. Sure go ahead. David loves untangling when he is resting as do I. So don’t let things like that go to waste, and you can feel good about recycling and helping others directly. Any embroidery supplies you may have but no longer plan to use are welcome. Put them to work in the hands of women that can earn a living by using them. If you live in the North East, PA area and can drop any donations off at my house, I would appreciate it as would Carma and the ladies in the Congo. If you aren’t close by but would like to help, You can mail me the supplies (please email me at for my address). Or you can make a donation of cash by way of to the project and I will buy the supplies with my trusty shopping helper, Steve. I want to send the parcel to Carma by way of her mother on Monday, November 16, 2015. If you don’t have time to get something out by then, no worries. I constantly collect for this project and then send the supplies when Carma lets me know that we should have transport of them to the Congo. Their mail service can’t be used as it isn’t trustworthy.

This is not an official charity, so I can’t send out receipts for tax purposes. I have found that I like donating to a project where I know every penny or thread strand will get to where it can be used and this is the case here. 100% of all donations will be sent as supplies to the Congo.

Thank you so much for your support for this worthwhile project.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Gingham Aprons of the '40s & '50s by Judy Florence

This is a copy of a review that I also posted to Amazon. I received this book as a birthday present from my incredibly long Amazon wish list and was very happy to get it.

I enjoyed reading the book very much and loved seeing the many close up photo details although I am stumped in why these aprons look so pristine! I am an apron wearer and I make my own aprons and most of them with use would never make it to a collection of 'Aprons of the 1980's to 2020's'. They are pretty mucked up within a five to ten year span, but then that is the whole point of an apron isn't it? I can see that some of the apron would have been set aside for good, or like my Christmas apron only for certain special occasions.

Most of the aprons in the book were homemade using machines, while some were completely sewn by hand. The worse looking aprons were made in factories and it certainly shows the difference between tender loving care when sewing and seeing just how many you can whip up in a day when being paid via piecework.

While it was nice to see some approximate values on the aprons, you have to remember that the book was published in 2003 and with the plethora of on line selling venues available since that point, those values are most likely highly inaccurate at this point. My favorite thing was seeing how the makers worked all sorts of rick rack into the aprons as well as embroidery and 'Chicken Scratch' embroidery. I have all sorts of vintage rick rack that I have acquired at my local thrift store and it was good to see the different and attractive ways I can use it. It is obvious though, that the ladies of long ago who made these aprons had no access to Pinterest and its many ideas and links to websites that showed some magnificent ways of doing Chicken Scratch embroidery! If they had they would have really gone to town with Chicken Scratch! It seems that the more ideas spread on Pinterest the more people are trying to out do each other.

All together a very interesting book to those that love aprons, embroidery, rick rack, vintage sewing and/or vintage garments. It is about research and study and has no instructions for making any of the aprons although it does reference a few vintage apron patterns as well as embroidery transfer patterns. The author does have a legible photo of a vintage apron pattern instructions in the book and you should be able to follow them if you like since there are no tissue patterns involved and it even includes two different charts for doing counted cross stitch to embellish the apron. For more apron patterns, you should be able to find both current and vintage as well as vintage pattern reprints on sewing pattern selling sites including mine at Moonwishes Sewing and Crafts. Since reading this book, I have put the author's other book; Aprons of the Mid-20th Century: To Serve and Protect (A Schiffer Book for Designers and Collectors)on my Wish List.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

A Great Stash and Scrap Quilt Idea

I've never been big on the idea that I have to 'bust' my stash of fabrics. To me my fabric is like money in the bank. I have enough to keep me happily quilting along for many years with only the need to buy thread and batting. So when I see websites for using up scraps  I'm always happy to file those ideas away in my head, especially ones that will use mis-cut fabric that once cut wrong, all you can do generally is make it into a smaller piece and that wastes your precious scraps. So check out this website for a quilt top that makes use of left over strips and 'crumbs'. Visit Quilting is still my Passion for a very interesting idea. While the writer says you can use any color, think about how this would work using leftover juvenile prints for more Project Linus quilt tops. Or if for some reason you have been doing a lot of quilting using the same colors, this would be a great way to make one more quilt in those same colors. Or using all your leftover plaid pieces or leftover dot or stripe pieces. Anything that is a variation on a theme. So while you may have made a bedroom quilt, you may be able to make so pillows or a lap/nap quilt to go along with the room d├ęcor but without the having the same designs.

Life has been, shall we say interesting for the past few weeks. Got up a couple of weeks ago to a dead monitor. This is not good when one has an on-line business and generally has to get orders out every morning. At the same time my back-up laptop is slowing dying. Try to go too fast with it, it will freeze up and it is pokier than I am and that is saying a lot. At the same time I had been sent a computer to review -- Yeah me! It is Windows 10. Our Wi-Fi for some reason was going slow as well. You don't pay for satellite speed to get the equivalent of dial up! So hubby had his work cut out for him as he also had his own computer that needed installed and it wasn't Windows 10 compatible. A week and a half later, I'm using my new computer and flat screen monitor, but our Windows office doesn't seem to want to play nice with our older files. Can you imagine the work to reconstruct a database that has over 12000 patterns listed in it along with all listing information? So he is still working on a few things. And trying to keep up blogs, etc. went by the wayside. I always want to be more regular with all three of my blogs, but with poor health and computers demanding vacation time, I can't always get to it like I would like. For that I apologize.

Friday, October 02, 2015

Crafty Christmas Trunk Show

Check out this video to see some great ideas for Christmas Crafting for gifts and decorations.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Embroidery Library Pillow Party Look Book

Embroidery Library does it yet again with a wealth of design ideas. If you are already crafting presents for the holidays for your home or to give as gifts, you will want to look at this Pillow Party Look Book . It not only has an abundant showing of great pillow ideas, you can also find the instructions on how to make each of these pillows. There is no charge for the Look Book or the instructions and if you have been collecting embroidery designs, you might already have some of the designs that you would like to use. Currently a lot of the pillow embroidery designs are on sale with the sale ending today (9-13-15) but the designs won't disappear. You can always find them to buy on Embroidery Library and if price is a factor, Embroidery Library has frequent sales and monthly freebies.
And folks for those of you that don't know, Janome is coming out with a new embroidery machine, the Memory Craft 500e. The MC500E has a maximum embroidery size of 7.9”x11”! and it comes with 4 embroidery hoops; RE28b 7.9" x 11", SQ20b 7.9" x 7.9", RE20b 5.5" x 7.9" and SQ14b 5.5" x 5.5". Designs are easily imported through a USB and edited through the machine's advanced on-screen editing functions. Navigation through all of these features has become easier with the MC500E’s new LCD color touchscreen. And Yes, I'm drooling! Can't you just imagine embroidering large designs and quilting in one go a 8" X 8" quilt block which is one of my favorite sizes to work with using my 2 x 4 pre-cuts that I make myself. One of these days I would like to make one of these machines mine and this is why I always encourage downloading free embroidery designs that you find even if you don't have the capacity to do it yet. Some day your prince, er. machine will come!.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

What's NEW at Moonwishes Sewing and Crafts?

Starting today, August 13, 2015 at Moonwishes Sewing and Crafts, any US buyer that buys 2 or more sewing patterns will be automatically upgraded to Priority Mail. For a long time we have offered buyers of 5 or more patterns paid for will receive Priority Mail shipping, even if you buy 20+ patterns there will be no increase in shipping costs than the rate as if for 5 patterns. Now we are happy to give a upgrade in shipping to those customers buying 2-4 patterns. We appreciate your business and want you to come back and shop some more and tell your friends about us! Always fast shipping and a huge selection of over 8000 uncut sewing patterns. While the timing between First Class Mail and Priority Mail may not be huge and in some cases, there may be no time difference, we know that the sooner you get your patterns, the faster you can start your project before you lose your enthusiasm for doing it, thus perhaps less UFO piles!

If you have any questions about this new policy please ask. We wish we could do it for our international customers but with the increased costs of shipping that go up by several dollars per OUNCE, we just can't afford to do so. Currently we are helping subsidize the shipping costs for many international shipments when a pattern is extra heavy.