I don't get out and around much, and haven't been sewing all that long, so when I do get out, I'm amazed at the things I learn and see.
Here are a few things that were new to me while on my trip to Chicago.
First up, and I'm sure this isn't new to 99.999999% of you....
Featherweight Sewing Machines!!
Oh, I'd heard of these machines, even seen a few online, but I actually saw them, in the flesh, for the first time, in my Carrie classes. Two black ones and a white one! I have to say, I found them amazing. They are the cutest little machines and make the most pleasing sound as they sew. I was intrigued, intrigued enough to search Ebay for one when I got home.
And I found just the perfect one for me (click here). So what do you think? I think my wallet is intrigued to know how I would pay for it!
Here's something I was able to afford,
I tend to have dry hands, particularly in the winter. I picked up this lotion bar somewhere along the way. I don't tend to put on lotion right before I head into my sewing room, but I put this bar by my sewing machine and have been using it. It smells great and feels great.
Here's something else right in my price range...
Niagara Non-Arosol Spray Starch! Carrie brought these bottles to class for us to try, it was new to me and I really like it. Up to this point I had been using Mary Ellen's Best Press, I bought it by the gallon. But when I used Mary Ellen's, it kind of gave my throat a tickle. The Niagara is tickle free, and this 22 oz bottle runs $1.98 and is available at Walmart and Target!
They are good rippers, but my old rippers may be a little dull from use, so maybe it's not a fair comparison, but I think the Clover Seam Ripper, with the fat white handle, feels better in my hand than these. The Bohins are a handy size, nice for traveling, and you don't have that whole "where's the tip protector" issue since they fold up.
If you read my blog very often, you know I struggle with my fabric choices, it takes me forever to warm up to a family of fabrics.
In Chicago I ran across some fabric that I feel was designed for me! It was instant love!!
This is Old World Style Fabric by Monique Dillard for Maywood. The colors, all me, and the prints....well Maywood does a better job of describing them than I could,
I have to agree with the timeless style comment, I'm not well versed in fashion, let alone European tastes and trends, but I do know this, this fabric is going to make some amazing quilts, that will match my house and taste perfectly, and stand the test of time!
Sold to the woman who NEVER buys fabric without anguishing and second guessing the colors, cost, and use, for days, weeks, sometimes months! This was one easy purchase.
Click here to see a few pictures of some quilts made using this fabric.
Monique is also the designer of the Open Gate patterns, you can check out the latest goings on in her world here. Her website is called Bundles and Bolts.
One thing that's not hard for me to spend money on is patterns. I would have to say patterns are my weakness. I remember growing up, my Mom just loved to read cookbooks. I found it strange, because she had no intention of making 99% of the recipes in those books, she found reading them interesting and entertaining. I get it now, because that's the way I feel about quilt patterns. I know I'll never make all the ones I buy, but just reading them is so entertaining. Every designer has their own style and presentation, some designers get right to it, others get there eventually. I prefer the ones that give me a little history about the pattern, or how they came up with the name or pattern. I like color, the more color the happier I am.
So here are a few patterns I picked up while hitting the shops,
This is Stone Soup by Life's A Stitch Quilt Shoppe . .
I just love it when a quilt shop designs their own patterns. They are usually something new and different. I bought a few of their patterns, they had a great selection.
This is made from either Rouenneries or Rural Jardin, I'm not sure which, but it's French General for sure. (have you ever seen an ugly quilt made from that fabric?)
Nicole did a wonderful post on this quilt shop, if you've not read it, click here.
This pattern is also designed by someone at a Quilt Shop
Beth at The Quilt Merchant has some amazing patterns inspired by antique quilts, they are called Grace's Dowry Quilts, I think she's designed over 20 of them.
Lisa posted a great picture of the completed quilt made from this pattern.
This is by Deb Tucker of Studio 180 Design, Ltd., and is called Atlantic Flyway. I liked the geese in this pattern,
They are going every which way, I've not had the time to read how you go about making those geese fly like that, maybe I'll read up on it tonight, my nightstand reading.
This Deb Tucker is new to me, but she was just nominated as the Teacher of the Year by Professional Quilter. So I guess I'm late to her party.
Are you familiar with Kaye England?
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She's new to me too, but from the looks of her website, she's been designing pattern for ages! I was drawn to this quilt and the format of this pattern. Lots of color, it's more of a pamphlet than the normal pages folded behind a picture format, and there's hardly any text. It's more like a picture pattern, you know, like a picture book? Very different, but I like it.
I also picked up several Miss Rosie's Quilt Co patterns; Short Line, Two Step, Brown Eyed Girl, Three Barns, and a couple of Schnibbles. I couldn't help myself, they were everywhere!
Ashcombe's done, I'm hoping to get some good pictures of it and on my blog soon!