Wednesday, July 27, 2016

More Christmas in July from Embroidery Library!


If you do machine embroidery, Now is the time to hurry over to Embroidery Library and sign up for their 2016 Christmas Club! You can either click on the tab on the far right side of your screen that is red and says Christmas Club or just click on the link. You will need to go into your profile and at the bottom of the page is a box to click saying you want to join (if you were a member of the club last year, you have to sign up again). Save your profile after clicking the box and you are done. Their first email newsletter should be coming out August the 5th, so don't delay.

If you haven't been part of the Christmas Club before, you will get lots of Christmas discount, your purchases for the next few months will earn you a gift card depending on how much you buy. You will get Freebie Christmas designs along with your usual monthly freebies, and you will get members only designs at a discount.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Christmas In July at Moonwishes Sewing and Crafts

 
After realizing how difficult it could be for my customers to find Christmas patterns, craft kits, fabric, etc. to prepare for the holiday season since they were scattered throughout our store, we have listed all Christmas items under the umbrella of Moonwishes Christmas Store . From there we have sorted the Christmas items into different categories, but by clicking on the Christmas Store link you will find everything in one list. If you want to find counted cross stitch Christmas designs, you will find a link to them under categories of Christmas Store -- craft kits, patterns, books, etc. We hope that this will making shopping for the season easier for you. We also have lots of inventory to add as we get items photographed and descriptions listed, so come back often As crafters, we know that we can't leave crafting until December to make things or we would never get done!
 
We have several different pattern companies Santa Claus costumes so you can take your pick of styles, sizes, etc.
 
We also sell a lot of pajama patterns right before the holidays so here is a list for you to look at, Pajamas
 
We hope this helps you for this holiday season!

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Hand Embroidery - Part One: Threads and Flosses



I have way too many hobbies for someone that has had to slow down ALL my activities as I get tired so quickly these days. I like to quilt and after years of using for the most part my embroidery machine, a Janome 300e, to do embroidery, I have reverted back to trying to do more hand embroidery with the embroidery machine doing quick or else very long projects. Part of this has to do with having to limit my time with my feet down which of course limits my time in my sewing room.  I have a rolling cart with most of my embroidery supplies on the different shelves. It is a different type of cart that I picked up at a yard sale or the thrift store; I don't remember which, but it was worth every penny. Now while watching TV or a movie if my hands are up to it I can embroider or work on my hexagon project.



All this meaning that I have become very interested in hand embroidery resources which include books and magazines. Do you have any idea how hard it is to find an embroidery magazines that aren't devote to counted cross stitch? I had found one called Inspirations which is the cream of the crop and is an Australian magazine that is rather expensive, but I found out this month that they do have a much cheaper electronic version that you can download and have it forever (some magazines are only on your Kindle or tablet for 6 months and then they disappear. Not a good thing if you are in the middle of a project! The other magazine I have found is Stitch, a Great Britain publication not be be confused with Stitch a US publication from Interweave Press which is a good magazine in it's own right but not devoted to embroidery like the British magazine. While finding a link to the US Stitch magazine, I discovered that it will cease publication in the fall of this year 2016 but some back issues are still available. If any reader knows of another purely embroidery magazine, I would love to know it's name and where it is published.



I'm more or less done with counted cross stitch at this point. I started doing hand embroidery in junior high and made a pair of pillowsaces for my hope chest. Now I want to get back into regular hand embroidery with all sorts of nifty stitches that can encompass embroidery, crewel work, and needlepoint.  I don't have much experience doing crewel work with wool or needlepoint. With needlepoint, even though I have picked up many books on the subject at library used book sales, I haven't found any that really show how to use the many different stitches instead of the boring tent stitch. Crewel work with wool I did from a pillow kit many years ago and since that time I haven't had any wool to work with until now. I have found a wonderful website that anyone that does handwork needs to read and sign up for regular blog posts. The site is called Needle 'n Thread. The woman named Mary Corbet is a supremely talented woman and has a marvelous wealth of information on her site and links to many different sources of supplies.


In my years since doing a lot of counted cross stitch, many new types of threads and more colors of threads have been developed. These past few months I have found a gold mine of embroidery floss, needlework kits and crewel wool at the thrift stores and yard sales. On top of what I have found for cheap On the Needle 'n Thread website, I have found links to some folks selling marvelous floss of different  types: cotton, rayon, silkd, regular embroidery floss as well as perle floss. One of the sites is called Colour Complements located on Etsy. The seller hand dyes her threads and makes varigated  floss in the yummiest of colors! The yellow/orange pack in the photo above is one of her sampler packs that you can get that has an assortment the different threads she makes and they all coordinate for your project. I'm still looking for the perfect project to use these on.



Another site I found was Threads Be Gone where I got the above assortment of SILK embroidery floss, something I had never owned much less stitched with. They also have a lot of other popular thread brands on their site. Yet again, I'm looking for the right project for these threads. I bought the colors that I did as they appealed to me and most were 'all purpose' colors that can be used in many different applications such as leaves, branches, sky, etc.




 
 
I also found some wonderful DMC floss called Color Variations that are simply gorgeous. Are you starting to see what my favorite type of floss is? Yes, I love varigated floss! When I'm in a store by in the embroidery floss isle, I want it all to scoop up and just play with all the threads there. They look like jewels to me. Be assured that if you are starting embroidery for the first time, or coming back into hand embroidery after a long absence or someone that has been doing it all along, I can assure you that there is a plethora of threads and supplies available out there for the choosing! Until next time, Happy Stitching!
 
 


Tuesday, July 05, 2016

New Free Embroidery Designs from Oma's Place



Here is a chance to get a new free machine embroidery design of a summer sun as well as a complete font: capital letters, small letters and frequently used puncuation that is about 3/4" high.


You can upload these designs as well as others than were introduced earlier at Oma's Place. Oh yes, you can even buy designs there. Many of her designs cater to little ones and the need for littler designs, although in the case of today's sun, it was part of a Summer Time mug rug. A nice, easy looking summer project when there is lots to do other than sit by a fire and stitch!

Monday, July 04, 2016

Book Review: Little Felted Dogs by Saori Yamazaki


I received a copy of this book from Amazon to do a review of the book for the Amazon Vine program.  Little Felted Dogs:  Easy Projects for Making Adorable Pups by Saori Yamazaki, Publisher: Potter Craft, Translation (c) 2016 original (c) 2010, ISBN 978-0-553-44796-5, hardcover, 112 pages, Full color photo illustrations with line drawing illustrations.

I thought the photos of the dogs in this book to be absolutely charming! Even if you decide not to make any of the projects in this book, a child would love looking at the dog pictures since they are cartoon types dogs but 20+ different breeds of dogs. Here is the review that I posted on Amazon:

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When I first started hearing about needle felting 5 or so years ago, I didn't 'get it'. I saw some projects done by machine that were set up with 5 needles. These machine's needles would felt at the same time so it would be easy to felt a large amount of space at a time. Or you can use a much smaller and cheaper set up like the author of this book does. Finally I'm starting to 'get it' why people like doing this and I have seen some spectacular items made by needle felting, but this book shows the most charming items I have seen!

The author of the book uses the most minimal equipment to accomplish her task of making these dog designs that run from 3" to about 5" tall. She is very careful with the coloring and facial expressions of the dogs. They are very cute and adorable looking. If you love to craft they would make a perfect gift for a dog lover, especially since you could change the colors to suit the dog you are replicating. You can buy kits here on Amazon that include the proper needles and supplies of the wool to be used in some of these dog projects. This kit: Estone 50 color wool needle felting seems to have the best selection of wool colors for making animals with plenty of brightly colored wool for additional projects but there are plenty of other options to choose from.

Have fun with your new hobby!

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I was not able to attempt to try these dogs because of arthritic hands, but for those that want a hobby that doesn't take up much space, this may be the one for you. Some reviewers thought that it was really wasn't an easy book and others had no trouble, so you would have to decide for yourself if this is what you would like to do or try.


Thursday, June 30, 2016

Embroidery Library Free machine Embroidery Designs through July 4, 2016



Hey machines embroiderers, Embroidery Library has some really cute ice cream and popsicle designs for free in several sizes each, thrugh July 4, 2016. Each design comes in three sizes and there are four designs which makes 12 designs to download. Remember my mantra? When it is free download it anyhow even if you don't have the ability to sew out that size yet. Maybe someday you will.

Today is also the last day for their June designs and the new July designs are up -- two designs in 5 sizes each. So July designs you can get a total of 22 designs and if you don't have the June ones yet and can download them tonight, you will get 32 designs. How awesome is that??

Want to be able to sew out those bigger size designs? Check out Janome's 500e or 400e at your local dealer or you can buy on line through Amazon. I espeically like the looks of the 400e after studying the manual and that is a someday, maybe machine for me. Currently I use my 300e and it works for me although to be able to embroider out the really big designs would be fun! I found a Clothsetter 10000 at a yard sale the other for a really good price. I haven't had one all this time, but since I am anticipating a large embroidery project, I think it will pay for itself pretty quickly in helping me line designs up. I'm just about done cleaning up my sewing room so I can start getting some new projects going in a bit.



Saturday, June 11, 2016

Me and My Sewing Room

For awhile other than to continue sorting out and cleaning up, I haven't gotten much done in my sewing room, then I had the chance to review some items from Amazon that were good 'blanks' for embroidering on. So I have been doing more sewing, but running out of time for posting. I'm not sure how others find time to post so much.



One of the first things that I got to embroider on were these lime green towels that if you are a regular customer you get your pick of colors, but if you are a Vine reviewer you get what you get. Of course I found that the lime green went great with the Project Linus frog quilts that I haven't gotten finished, but I embroidered the frogs from Embrodiery Library and used the lettering in my Janome 300e to write on the other end, Burp Baby Burp. I did this one in blue to go along with the quilt, and the next burp rag will be in pink lettering since the quilt will be more pink. I think I have enough of the frog fabric and coordinates to make at leat two more quilt tops and happy to say I have two more lime green towels too so I can make burp rags to include with those quilts as well! I know when my boys were little they were champion spit-up kings so spare burp rags are always welcome.



In the midst of the sewing I got another addition to my sewing room courtesy the Vine prgram. It is a bedside stand, but as far as I am concerned it is making a great stand to hold my Janome 300e at the proper level. No more stretching my arms up to thread it. Beautiful isn't it?



Then I got this great set of placemats and napkins. I didn't attempt trying to embroider the placemats as they were woven and seemed pretty thick, but I did embroider the napkins. With a niece getting married, it seemed appropriate to embroider their monograms on the napkins using a design that has been built into all Janome embroidery sewing machines since the first 8000. It isn't like I don't have more lettering and wreath styles to enclose them, but as the years have gone by, the software for manipulating designs on the 300e it has become harder and more time consuming to transfer designs to the machine. So I always end up with the default designs. If I had my druthers, I would upgrade, but don't have the finances to do so at this point in my life.



I also got a set of two black butcher aprons. I wasn't real impressed with the weight of the fabric or the construction, but sufficient if you need some colored aprons for a one or two time event. So for the newlyweds I embroidered their name on each apron, the letting again from the 300e and I appliqued the free-hand cut heart on each apron. Not even sure if either cooks but trying out their aprons might inspire them.




I also got in two different sets, one was a set of six purple tea towels and several weeks later a set of purple and white zig zag pot holder and oven mitt. This was great as I got some items that coordinated. This afternoon I embroidered the curvy lines on the towels using my Janome 7700 stitch #149 on the default settings. I used the cloth guide to keep me sewing straight as I didn't want these lines going all over. Some people complain about not being able to draw a straight line, I can't sew a straight line without a little help! I do wish that there was a stitch like this one only more pointy like the zig zags on the pot holder and oven mitt. Maybe some machine have them. Mine don't.


I also tried out Embroidery Library's Wild Rose Spray on one of the towels. These towels really embroidered easily, just be sure to use the right stabilizer behind it. I still have three more of these towels to embroider, but not quite sure what exactly to do with them.

I was just happy to be in my sewing room more than I had been in a very long time. I'm feeling much better than usual. I don't know if it is the Remicade IV I get every six weeks, the warmer summer weather or the fact that I have been cutting out a lot of chocolate out of my diet. Could be all of them or none of them, just happy for each day I feel fairly well. I'm even trying to push myself to take extra steps as much as possible each day. They say with RA it is important to exercise but it is so easy to go too far and end up not being able to move for the next couple of days, so I'm trying to 'sneak' the exercise in! Hey thanks for reading.

My latest on my wish list of machines I would like to have. They also have a new Janome 9400 out but doesn't look like it is currently for sale at Amazon. What can I say, I love sewing machines and the fancier the better. With our current family economics, these are just dreams. I'm fortunate to have a great dealer in my town where I would buy my machines from, Super Stitch in North East, PA, but for those that aren't that fortunate isn't it great to be able to buy something like this on line?