Monday, October 27, 2008

Holiday Reindeer Pillow and Other WIPs

Reindeer Pillow mosaic

This weekend, I was busy with the WIPs again. I have so many different ideas going on and have purchased so many different components, I had to put the big STOP sign up on myself and get to it. I am in three holiday shows in November. Unbelievable! I really don't like doing those, but since I was invited, I thought I should get involved. What's hard is most of my work is custom, so to think up ready-made items to sell is difficult, since the possibilities are endless. I've made more buttons, some coffee cozies with freehand decor, tissue holders (these are crazy easy and so cute!), holiday pillow covers, and ... I can't think of anything else in the stack at the moment, but I am finishing up the cottage quilt blocks for Freda's Hive Swap.
Above is a personalized reindeer pillow cover I finished. He's so cute and could be done up girly, too. I've posted a custom order listing for a personalized pillow cover in my shop. This can be ordered with a choice of fabric color for the antlers and, obviously, thread color for the personalization. I think it would be nice with "Happy Holidays" or "Merry Christmas" around the design or below it.

For the sewists, I have a listing for just the fabric panel with your choice of coloring and personalization. I think this is sort of like ordering special scrapbooking stationary or your fabric designs from Spoonflower. Ordering a personalized panel with your choice of design and wording can be a terrific way to enhance your project.

Check out my candy-striped piping. It sure pops, and the fabric was dizzying when ironing out. I've listed some of this in the etsy shop, too. This listing is for 64" of piping, enough to go around 12-14" square pillow.
Well, I think this will be my last post before leaving for Houston on Wednesday to go the Quilt Fest! I need to do a little shopping for myself, organize the house a bit more for my family, and finish up some of the above-mentioned projects that need to get out. I'm hoping to meet some of my blog friends there; I've already got a couple of you loaded in on my cell phone. Plus, I get to stay with a friend from college while in Houston, and we haven't seen each other in nearly 20 years! Amazing, and yet it seems like yesterday.
I hope you have a good week and weekend. I'll be back next week with photos of the market and a list of my must haves for next year!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Pink Chalk Studio - Pencil Roll Pattern Review

The call came to do some pattern testing for Kathy at pink chalk fabrics. I was happy to try out another of her patterns. She has featured her pencil roll in the past, but she now wanted to add it as a pattern in her shop. I love shopping there!
pink chalk fabrics pencil roll

Kathy wanted us to read the instructions, sew out the roll, and send back any corrections or useful advice, but I forgot to do any of that! Probably because I didn't need to. I must have looked at the instructions and illustrations and read it as a picture and then just went to town and made a pretty perfect pencil roll on the first pass. Kathy had created such a well-written pattern with obvious illustrations, it was easy to follow from start to finish. The most difficult part of this project was choosing the perfect colors for the pencil pocket colorway made to coordinate with the colored pencils.
pink chalk studio pencil roll

So, order your pencil roll pattern from Kathy today! I understand it can be a great craft show product. Kathy gave us a detailed description of how she comes up with her price for the pencil rolls she creates on her blog at pink chalk studio. If you are interested in selling a number of items sewn from any of her patterns, be sure to check with Kathy about her cottage industry program and crediting requirements.

I made two of these pencil rolls and have one for sale in my calicodaisy etsy shop.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Fresh Designs

New embroidery and applique designs:

New Embroidery Designs 102208

The sock pony is so sweet! Imagine the mushroom on a pink t-shirt with your girl's name running across the bottom of the stem.
Some new font sets and some to review again:

Embroidery Fonts 102208

Look what can be done with the Vintage Applique Font. So cute! This would be great done up in Christmas fabrics!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

A Piece of Fabric History

True Up just posted and wrote about The Fabric Place in Framingham, MA, closing after 62 years! It was started by two sisters after WWII. Wow! What makes it special to me is I purchased the material, lace, and pearl beads for my wedding dress there when I lived in Boston in 1988 and was preparing for my wedding. You can see my dress here on my anniversary post. Fabric stores were few and far between when I lived in the Boston area, so that was the place to go. At the time, I was new and alone in Boston, it was cold, I didn't have any friends yet, Michael and I were planning the wedding alone, and I HAD TO WORK WHEN IT SNOWED! (not in the South, y'all know, you stay home nice and cozy and safe!), so I was pretty nervous and worried about managing it all alone. The ladies there were so helpful.
I can't figure out how to link the video, but go to True Up and check out the video and story there. You'll want to put her on your google reader anyway to keep up with what's going on in fabric land. She does a great job and has lots of good information.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Here's A Giveaway Link

calico giveaway_button

Calico is having a nice giveaway. It's several bags and a softie doll out of brilliant fabrics. Please click the button above and mention that "calicodaisy" sent you when you make a comment. I'll get an extra entry for this little ad!

Friday, October 17, 2008

How Mish Is Getting Her Embroidery Groove On!

mosaic 101708

Goodness! Working with these tiny designs and coaxing down the sizing to the proper height and width for the covered buttons on the computer and then trying to center the fabric around the button gets me kind of carsick! But, it's worth it! I'm getting much better at all this. Look at the "Initial-M Covered Button." Isn't it marvelous and clear? I love this font, too, especially because it is a filled stitch inside the letter with an outlined border where I can choose to use a coordinating or contrasting color.

Initial Covered Button

These "M's" were a bit too full for the 1-1/8-inch button, which is my favorite size, but this 1-1/2" button does look great. What can this size button be used for? You can slip through a pony holder or put on a pin backing. It would be a great embellishment for a totebag. Sew it in front of the magnetic snap. It's just decorative there but covers the area. I'll be putting some "initial" covered buttons in my calicodaisy shop soon.

Here is a mosaic of a number of mini designs I have that will look great on the buttons:

minis 101708

Again, this is a chance for me to back up your good ideas. See here:

From design to fabric panel to button - You DIY it!

From embroidery design to panel to button.

You order your favorite design to be sewn out on a fabric panel with space enough to cut out the proper sized circle to cover your button. At home, you cut out the designs and then snap onto your button blank, and you have a gorgeous little piece of art. Use them for your own projects or sell at your craft fairs with as a ponytail holder or a barrette with the button centered on a nice grosgrain bow.

Now to the applique section of my dialogue:

Check out this hip chick! I'm going to center this blue panel on the mod flower fabric for a fun pillow. Do you know someone with a VW Bug? You might order a fabric panel with this applique in your favorite colors and add a name or wording underneath. Then, fussy cut around the image and add to your own pillow or quilt or t-shirt. There is a set of vehicle appliques on my flickr page. Just e-mail me or contact me here, and we can design something together.

Speaking of vehicles - and in the spirit of Nanette at Freda's Hive's Fabulous Fabric Fridays, look at these fabrics I picked up from pink chalk fabrics.

I've been needing some boy fabrics, and these are just adorable. What to do with them? I'm not sure, but, I'm loving looking at them.

And, finally, though you might not believe it - especially if you actually come over and visit me regularly, The Chamber of Fabrics (read that with a scary voice and scroll through that post and see my workroom) is getting more and more organized. I can nearly see the floor! I've done a ton of ironing and folding of fabrics while the embroidery machine has been chugging along. Here is some of my stash wall:

Well, that's enough of me for now. I'm wordy on this Friday. I'm off to do some banking and errands, and tomorrow I'm going to visit the girl who is appliqueing my embroideries onto her children's boutique clothing. I'm so excited to meet her in person and work out some ideas with her. It will be fun to get into someone else's fabric stash.

Have a Happy Weekend!

LATE ADDITION: There is a Halloween Giveaway over at Pumpkin Patch Primitives Quilt Shoppe. She wants those who enter to blog about the giveaway, so be sure to lend her a spot on your blog, too. -- Michele

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Designs For Boys

applique 101508

These are what I worked on in my shop last night. This embroidery applique is so lush and detailed. I get mesmerized watching the designs appear on the machine. I generally get a little bit overwhelmed choosing color combinations, as for the cupcakes I did last week, but these boy designs make it a bit easier - primary colors.

Tractor embroidery/applique

However, I need to pick up some blacks and other solids that have a sort of tone-on-tone thing going on for dimension. See the tractor wheels here. I love this black and gray Asian design. Not sure it is perfect for the boys, but it worked last night.

These designs were ordered for boys' rompers by the sewist I mentioned last week. I can't wait until she has the outfits done, so I can show you. I'm waiting to do a big reveal, though, so you see everything at once, and I'll link you to her site at that time.

Barnyard applique

Here is the set of barnyard designs I have. These designs would also look great on throw pillows or quilts. If someone has a barnyard nursery theme going on, you could really go wild coming up with a gift idea. If you'd like to make a pillow, you could order, say, the barnyard applique worked out on a blue home-dec fabric with the child's name underneath. I send you the fabric panel, and you can finish up the project. Also, any of the animals would actually work as a patch/applique for a sweatshirt or onesie. For that purpose, I embroider out on a thin cotton so you can either trim closely around the design right at the threads or trim out at about an eighth of an inch away from the design and needle-turn applique it onto the garment.

And, one more set for boys - and girls, too. Check out the VW Bug!:

car appliques

I created a new set on my flickr site showing off my sewn-out appliques so you can see them done up in fabrics. So far, I've blogged about all of them at this point, but I plan to just keep adding to the set as I finish sew them out. You'll have to check back!

Monday, October 13, 2008

A Beautiful Quilt Giveaway

Not me! Over at Pigtails and Snails, you'll find a marvelous quilt up for a prize with some runner up gifts too. Jump over and enter. Here is her button:

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Buttons, Buttons ....

buttons 101208

.... don't you want some buttons? These came out wonderful! I am so excited, and while rummaging around for cardstock in my scrapbooking supplies, I came across a pad of tags that work beautifully for display. The buttons are 1-1/8 inches with a shank on the back. You can use them as buttons, of course, but you could also run a ponytail holder through the shank and create a ponytail holder for you or your little girl. Here are some made into ponytail holders:

Kitty Cat Ponytail Holders

You can find the kitty face ponytail holders in the calicodaisy shop already made up.

There was a bit of a learning curve, though. My first batch of bees and pandas were a little bit too big for the 1-1/8 inch button covers and I thought looked a bit lost in the 1-1/2 inch button covers. So, I am making seconds of those. I have this fabric panel listed in my shop already at a discount. There wasn't enough room for me to cut out the proper circle area to cover anymore of the larger buttons. I thought someone might fussy cut around the embroidery and sort of needle-turn applique them onto a project. Later I will load the 1-1/2 inch buttons (already covered) in the shop. It's just my opinion that the design looks lost; you might think it is just right. If you already know you would like the 1-1/2 inch covered buttons, just e-mail me or comment here before I list them, so I don't have to go through the trouble of listing.

If you check out the mishflicks embroidery designs section, you will see all the new embroidery designs I have purchased recently. If there is a mini embroidery design you particularly like, please contact me, and I can make them up for you in your choice of colors and fabric. Think about initial buttons, too. I think this "Girls R Weird" font would look great on a button.

Alrighty, then. I'm going back to work, even though it's Sunday; I'm generally at church and then trying to rest on Sundays, but everyday has been full this week and Camille isn't feeling well today anyway. There are so many different things going on right now. There is plenty of housework, there are plenty of notes to transcribe, and there is an enormous amount of fabric to iron and items in the works in the studio. I've been paralyzed lately knowing what to do first and trying to divide the day up, but to no good results so far. All I can do is try again each day. I was distressed last night after a whole evening of what seemed like mistakes in the sewing room, but after my short-night's sleep, I woke up this morning with the ability to re-think the button design-size problem and solved it! So, one nice check for the day!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

You + Me = TERRIFIC!

mini embroideries perfect for buttons!

Above: New mini embroidery designs that are perfect for covered buttons! -- Nanette, I was thinking of you when I chose the little bee.

Two big projects have come together over the past couple of weeks thanks to blogging and getting some exposure. One collaboration is with a blogger that many of you already know. The other is with a new acquaintance who found me through etsy. She makes children's boutique clothing and contacted me looking for someone to sew out embroidery appliques to enhance her designs. I am so excited for two reasons: 1. She chose me! 2. This is exactly what I have been hoping to do with my embroidery skills/equipment - enhance another crafter's projects. Right now, I'm on a learning curve discovering the best way to get these out, but things are moving along.

I will say no more right now until all is ready to show, but here's a little peek into what I've been doing for the children's wear designer using the cupcake applique embroideries I already have in my library:

applique 100708

Of course, her work is beautiful, handmade children's wear; I just laid the applique down on a t-shirt to give you an idea. Wait until you see the other designs she has chosen. It's all going to be so darling.

Here's more:

applique ideas 100708

Finally, these are repeats, but you can see how the projects come together.

from this to this 100708

I think of it as scrapbooking for fabric.

Your Project plus My Embellishments equals a TERRIFIC COLLABORATION!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

October - My Favorite Month!

autumn tree

Especially on a day like today when the weather is cool, humidity free (good hair day!), and the sky is such a gorgeous blue creating the perfect backdrop for the green and colorful leaves. September was a warm month this year, and the trees haven't begun to change yet in my part of the state.

Photo from here.
October is also my birthday month, not that I'm so excited about that anymore after turning 39 (a few years ago). On my birthday this year, though, I'm flying out to Houston to go to the International Quilt Festival! I've been wanting to go for a few years but haven't been able to get away. This year, all is well, the plane fare is reasonable, and a college friend invited me to stay with her. I'm pretty excited to take a little trip, visit, see all the fabrics and designers we read about, and hopefully meet up with a few of my blog friends. Please let me know if you are going to be there, too. Maybe we can meet up.

Owl Applique Reversible Pinafore

Didn't this turn out darling? When my friend saw the owl applique I put on an apron a couple of months ago, she called and requested one appliqued on a top for her daughter. Since I had to hand it over right as I finished up the hand sewing this morning, I just got a couple of not so great photos. I'm anxious to see pictures of the little one dressed up in it with a turtleneck and jeans.

Last weekend, we went to Parents' Weekend at my son's university. We had such a big time. The university did a great job with parties, food, seminars, activities. We were wiped out by Sunday. Above is a picture of the kids doing the "take-your-own-photo" poses.