Moonwishes Sewing and Crafts

Moonwishes Sewing and Crafts
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Wednesday, April 27, 2005

April 27 Embroidery Library Newsflash

Embroidery library has just announced their newest designs for the fishermen lover, or those who love fishermen. There is a lot of new fish designs. Many the fish look very lifelike, and if you want to just sew out the fish without any words on them, you can omit the last thread change. They have also just released their May free designs, and currently their April free designs are available until April 30 so if you visit their site, you can still get four free designs, if you've never visited this site before. Embroidery library designs are beautiful, very detailed and are very inexpensive. This a very worthwhile site that you should visit and bookmark if you like machine embroidery.

Monday, April 25, 2005

Counted cross stitch

After I got my first embroidery sewing machine back in about 1990, I stopped doing a lot of hand embroidery. Because when I could embroider on the sewing machine projects got done so much faster. As the arthritis got worse in my hands, there was also another reason why I didn't like embroidering by hand -- it hurt! However, lately, I've realized that just sitting on the couch in the evenings propping your feet up, its kind of hard to hold an embroidery machine in your lap and certainly not relaxing. Recently in my eBay store, I've gotten in a lot of counted cross stitch kits and that got me excited about doing counted cross stitch again. So I dug into my sewing room and found an old pattern of a butterfly sampler that looked promising and got some floss and some Aida cloth together and decided I was going to try to at least do a little bit of counted cross stitch in the evenings. Well, my first mistake was picking a pattern that was rated skilled, all though in years past, I would have considered myself skilled I haven't done any major projects for close to 10 years. So I'm out of practice. The next mistake was trying to use Aida cloth for a pattern that used a lot of quarter and half stitches. After sewing a bit on the sampler, I realized the fabric was all wrong and I was getting very frustrated. Back into my sewing room, I went and found more suitable cross stitch fabric and restarted the entire project. The going is much faster now and I'm making progress.

Once I started doing this I realized how much I'd missed doing counted cross stitch in the evenings while watching TV. I like to multi-task, and since most TV is not enough to occupy my mind and hands I now have something to do. So yet again, I now have several projects to work on both in the living room and in my sewing room. A quilt for me, it has a patchwork center and a border that I'm appliquéing roses on with my embroidery machine. And another Project Linus quilt that I'm machine quilting. And now I have my butterfly sampler that I'll be working on I'm sure for the next year or two.

As I'm getting used to having arthritis, I'm finding more and more I need to occupy my mind and hands as much as possible and have many different kinds of projects to work on depending on my physical ability at the moment. Although there are many things that I can't do, it helps to have small projects, different books to read, etc. to keep myself occupied with so that I don't get bored and depressed.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Counted Cross Stitch Kits

For those of you who haven’t gotten into machine embroidery or also prefer the to do handwork at times, I wanted to let you know we now have a selection of Dimensions counted cross stitch and needlepoint kits in our ebay store. There are a variety of sizes of pictures and different price ranges. If you are looking for a particular type scene, and just not finding it, check out the Dimensions website. They have all there current offerings posted. Just email me with the kit number and I will get back with you on the cost and approximate timing for me to special order it and get it to you. I get my orders in from Dimensions very quickly and I mail out orders within 24 hours of payment. If you are looking for and want a particular kit quickly this would be a good option for you.

I am always open to ideas of what you would like to see for purchase in my store, as my store is open for your convenience. No fighting traffic to get to a store, no paying astronomical prices to pay for gas to get to the store, quick shipping and friendly service instead. As always we are happy to mail worldwide and greatly appreciate our international customers.

Please note, you can always get to my ebay store via the Moonwishes Store link.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Vintage Patterns

The current Sew News magazine (May 2005) has an interesting article on Vintage Patterns written by Kristina Seleshanko. Although by virtue of the fact that it is a magazine article, it does not go into great depth about vintage patterns. The article does give a broad review of what to look for in vintage patterns, vintage being defined as “anything that’s at least a decade but less than a century old”.

We get so used to our current patterns with their lines, markings, and instructions that it is hard to imagine patterns, which were marked only with perforations and no instruction sheets. Thankfully, the author provides a timeline of the history of patterns to give you some insight as to what you can expect for certain vintage patterns depending on which decade they were produced. As sewing has evolved in the last century so too has the terminology. If you are planning on sewing with vintage patterns frequently, it might pay to get a sewing instruction book from the same era so you have greater understanding of terminology and sewing methods of the time. These books can frequently be found at thrift stores, yard sales, through Internet book sites such as Amazon, and through eBay.

Bodies have also changed throughout the years and along with that came sizing changes in the pattern companies. Being a size 12 now doesn’t mean the same as being a size 12 60-70 years ago when every pattern envelope showed women with what appeared to be 20-inch waistlines. I know I sure haven’t seen too many women looking like that recently! If you plan to buy a vintage pattern to make a garment for yourself, double-check your own body measurements against the pattern, especially if you aren’t very good at altering patterns.

There are many sources of vintage patterns: yard sales, thrift stores and via the Internet. In my eBay Store, I sell sewing patterns from the four major pattern companies: Vogue, Butterick, McCall’s and Simplicity. I do have a selection of vintage patterns throughout my store, although because I chanced upon a great deal, the majority of my patterns are current McCall’s patterns. I enjoy rooting through the patterns myself, comparing them to days and sewing memories of years ago and also to current fashions as they repeat the fashions of my teens. For example, even though ponchos can be a warm and comfortable garment, who would have thought that they would make such a huge come back?

If you have never considered sewing with a vintage pattern or have considered but were scared to try, this article can be a springboard to help you start to navigate the unknown or unfamiliar waters of vintage patterns. To learn more about Kristina Seleshanko you can visit her at her website

Monday, April 11, 2005

Free Embroidery Stuff – A Link

Another great link for embroidery designs is Free Embroidery Stuff . Different designers submit their designs each month and they are given away for free. Each month has a different theme; March was Easter, April is spring, etc. Not all designs are in all sewing machine formats, but it is worth checking in each month to see what is available for your particular machine.

Besides the monthly free designs, there is also a monthly contest with a valuable prize ( I enter and keep my fingers crossed). This month’s contest features 300 spools of thread, stabilizer and design CDs. There are also various articles dealing with machine embroidery and many useful links that a machine embroiderer would find worthwhile.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

View From My Sewing Room Window

On Sunday, we had the misfortune to be recipients of a spring snowstorm that dumped 2 feet of snow in our area. It just wouldn’t stop falling. The next couple days, the sun came out and tried to melt it all away, but 4 days later we still have mounds of dirty snow all over the place.

Yesterday I sat in my sewing room embroidering out some rose designs for my quilt border. As the embroidery machine was doing all the work, I got to look out the window in between thread changes. Kids were walking home from school dressed in T-shirts and shorts; they were having a ball having snowball fights! Everybody who could was out on the sidewalk catching up on sunshine. I heard so many people laughing and playing. It was truly a magical day. It was so nice to see that school children remember how to play in the ‘old-fashioned’ way of snowball fights, tea parties, and games of ‘You’re It’.

Looking out my sewing room window, I felt that certain peace of being taken back to my much more simple childhood.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

April 6 -- Hot Off the Press!

April 6

Hot off the press! Embroidery Library, an embroidery design site that I have mentioned previously, has just introduced their new April designs. If you love the folk look of Eastern European designs, you will love these designs. “Add vivid color and bold, geometric designs to garments and home décor by incorporating designs that were inspired by Eastern European techniques, such as Polish paper cutting and traditional Hungarian textile art. From brilliant floral sprays to pastoral rural scenes, Eastern European folk art is known for its use of vibrant color and geometric shapes.”

The designs are shown in project packs for decorating adult or children’s shirts, dining room décor packs and companion pieces. These are bright, bold designs that should make you happy just seeing the wonderful colors stitching out! For those who love Pennsylvania Dutch designs, these designs are reminiscent of them and you should certainly be able to find a project or two that you would like to do.

While visiting Embroidery Library, don’t forget to take a minute or two to download the two new free designs and see what else is available at this wonderful embroidery design site!

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Buystitch – An Embroidery Link

Here is another good embroidery link Buystitch. They have new designs each week that you can purchase. Specials prices and deals each week also. The best part is, sign up for their newsletter and each week you will get a notice of the weekly specials and weekly FREEBIES! That’s right, every single week you get 10 free designs (a variety of motifs) for most of the major home embroidery machines. Figure the math: 52 weeks times 10 designs! That is a real treasure trove of designs.