Thursday, February 26, 2015

In Memorium: Koos Van Den Akker


 
 
 

 
 

Koos Van Den Akker a well known designer died February 4, 2015. While many of his designs were rather strange and different, some just grabbed you. Want to learn more about his life? You can visit his Wikipedia entry here. He also designed a series of sewing patterns for Vogue. We have a lot of his most current Vogue Sewing patterns available in our store at this point, except for one that I really loved that I have tucked away for me to try someday). Unless he had a pattern or two in the process of being published at Vogue, there will be no more of his patterns available to us so if you have been looking for one, this is probably a good time to grab one. Pictured are just a few of his Vogue pattern designs that we currently have in stock. Most in two size ranges at this point.

 

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Kaleidoscope Stitching for Hand Embroidery



I have always liked the images that Kaleidoscope made when looking through the tube. I especially have liked the special effects that quilters can make with the Kaleidoscope blocks. I'm not sure why I have never made a Kaleidoscope quilt. But then after my last Remicade IV day I popped into my local Barnes & Noble for my 'treat' and saw and looked through the different craft magazines to see which ones would come home with me while I rested for the rest of the day. My Remicade day takes the starch out of me. Anyhow I picked up the current copy of Stitch magazine, Issue 91 Oct.-Nov. and saw this stitch in it and had to have the magazine!

I used a variegated embroidery floss to make the design. For those with eagle eyes, yes I did make a couple boo-boos. Ever since I got bi-focals I have had a few problems with counting spaces on Aida cloth. I love how the design comes out. The article showed the many different ways that you can change the whole look of the stitch by just your use of floss colors and whether you use variegated floss or not.

This is one thing I do like about this magazine is the clear instructions and diagrams, plus samples to help you learn how to make the different stitches. It also has projects to make, and different techniques to get your stitching repertoire increased. I have finally broken down and gotten a subscription by way of Amazon. There are two different Stitch magazines being published that I know of with the name Stitch. This one comes form the UK the other has sewing, quilting, stitching projects from Interweave. I wouldn't mind have a subscription of that one either. It is very hard to find a magazine that focuses on other types of embroidery other than counted cross stitch, so I have been happy to pick it up when I can. Depending on how my hands feel, I can't do a lot of hand embroidery or quilt piecing for that matter, but it is nice to get new ideas to try.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

DIY Costumes







Through the kindness of another seller, I was able to get a lot of new costume patterns. Not only can they be used for Halloween, many would be good for school plays or even dress up for little girls. I remember years ago making a cape for my son Ron, and how he wore it all the time. I always tried to make costumes so that they could be worn to play in, such as a sheriffs vest with a star embroidered on it.

I'd love for you to drop in and see our fine selection of costumes and if costumes aren't what you are looking for, we have plenty of other types of sewing patterns. At today's count, we have over 8100 sewing patterns that are uncut and unused!

Thursday, February 05, 2015

February's FREE Machine Embroidery Designs from Embroidery Library




Yet again Embroidery Library gives us some lovely machine embroidery designs in two sizes each for this February 2015. While a few companies will give very small simple designs to show their digitizing capability, Embroidery Library gives out full-fledged gorgeous designs to try and use and this month's are beautiful. I appreciate all the companies that make these wonderful designs and give out samples to try. I know with Embroidery Library, it sure works for marketing, since every time I don't have a design I need, I go to Embroidery Library first to buy what I need if they have it.

Do you ever fill overwhelmed with emails some companies send you? I sure do. I had signed up for a company that in the beginning only sent an email every month or two and then it became weekly and then daily! Sorry, but that is way too much and I had to unsubscribe. I've been running into the same problem with Craftsy. While I like their intention and they do have good classes, they also seem to be paying McCall's, Vogue and Threads Magazine to send out their emails as well, so almost daily I get 4 identical emails, day after day, all promoting a particular Craftsy class. Thanks but no thanks. I didn't sign up to get Craftsy emails from Threads or the pattern companies. So these companies that sent me specific, targeted email that I did want to see, are now bombarding my email on a daily basis as well. Tried to write to one of the companies and got the classic pass the buck response. Don't these companies know or understand how they are turning off their paying customers by doing this? I think I currently have around 100 unopened emails since I just haven't had time yet to get rid of the clutter.  Anyone know how to get companies from sending emails that I'm not interested in and that aren't the actual companies, to cease??? Okay, I'm done venting. Happy Stitching.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

More Organizing My Sewing Room


Almost two years ago I set myself a goal of organizing my sewing room. Unfortunately it is taking much longer than anticipated due to my lack of physical energy, but every little bit helps. I have been enjoying getting different Binders, Dividers and other office supplies to try and review on the Amazon Vine program as I am slowly but surely trying to get all the paper and other items in my sewing room organized. One of the things that are hard to keep organized is the many different acrylic templates and rulers and their instructions used in quilting. For me they and their instructions were all tossed in the same drawer that I not only had to find the correct template but the instructions to be sure I am using it and measuring correctly. It is amazing how something that looks so simple needs to be used carefully so an entire quilt block comes out okay. So that is what I was working on this time. I had some 3 hole punched plastic sheet protectors that I put my rulers in and on the actual divider with the very nice big pocket I tucked the instructions for each of rulers that were in that section. Five dividers was exactly right for this project. The sheet protectors that I used were not real heavy duty, so I didn't stuff them full. just one or two templates/rulers was sufficient.

There were divider tabs that could be run through your printer with instructions on how to set them up at the Avery website, but for 5 dividers I decided it was much easier and quicker to write what I needed on each tab an slip them in. Some tabs were rather a tight fit, but I would rather have that than divider tabs that are too loose and the tabs would then fall out. For someone that is putting together a lot of notebooks with the dividers, I can see them setting up a template in the computer and then printing it out and they would be much more professional looking. As it is, I am happy that I now will no longer have to rummage around looking for the correct ruler and instructions. Ever minute spared looking for something is a minute more to do what I really like.

Compared to what was available back in the stone age when I went to school, it is nice that people can have a choice in exactly what they need in dividers, binders, tabs, etc. so that their notebooks meets their needs exactly and Avery works hard to give you those choices.
 
 

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Curvy Sewing Collective



For all you curvy gals out there, myself included, a website devoted to the curvy woman that sews her own garments. So great to see examples of how particular patterns fit and see many take offs from some of these ladies favorite 'Tried-And-True' (TNT) patterns. I'm sure we all have one. I have a top that I love to make that I think I've made in at least 6 if not more variations. Also this site will give you even more inspiration to sew patterns that you haven't been sure about. Truthfully I was surprised at how well some dresses like a shirtwaist dress could look on some of these women. I have avoided anything with a definite waistline for years, maybe I will get brave enough to try one since dresses with waist are my favorite kind, but I can no longer do zippers up the back so will probably have to stick to front buttons or other kind of front closure.

Visit The Curvy Sewing Collective for Plus-Size Sewers and see all the great info and chances to participate in monthly sewing photo ops.  While we may not carry all the patterns that are posted on that blog, we do carry a large selection of plus-size pattern styles at Moonwishes Sewing and Crafts.  We would love to have you visit and make us your pattern stop. When sourcing patterns for our store, plus size patterns are always the first thing we buy, any other size comes in after that.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Here is a link to a great Threads article for a Fashion Sketching Tool Kit.


Threads is one of my favorite sewing magazines. I have learned so much by reading it - every issue no less!