Saturday, April 12, 2014

Anyone like French General?

I have so much fabric in my studio that I know I will not use in this lifetime. I am going to part with a lot of fabric and before I start listing on my Etsy site, I thought I would run it through the blogs first.

First up is a fat quarter bundle of Rouenneries Duex from French General for Moda. (And, yes, the label appears to have been printed incorrectly or I know less about French that I think I do!)

There are 40 fat quarters in the bundle. I am offering it for $85 with free shipping in the US. I will ship internationally for $125 (US). Please contact me via email if you are interested.

Thanks so much!!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

We have a winner!

I ran the Random Number Generator and the winner of a box of scraps is Regina who doesn't really NEED the scraps but WANTS them! Regina, I will sent you an email to get all the particulars. 

Thanks so much for all the interest. I know there will be more fabric in a giveaway soon!

Sunday, March 16, 2014


I have been "in the zone" for about a week. Now that I have found a real confidence sewing vinyl I have been making tote bags every day. My dear friend, Quilty Pam, was my model yesterday afternoon.

I love this one - especially the woven faux leather on the bottom!

Something about the red on this tote just makes me smile!

Isn't this fabric fabulous? Love, love, love!
I have four more already cut out and I am promising myself I will get at least two of them finished today. Nothing I like better on a Sunday afternoon than playing with fabric!

                    Linking to:  DIY Show Off

Saturday, March 15, 2014


My studio has been in a disaster state since before the holidays. My quilty sister came over last Saturday and spent many hours with me starting to organize and purge. On Sunday I went up to continue the job. I found projects I had totally forgotten as well as fabric I didn't even remember buying. I also discovered that, once again, I have an inordinate number of scraps. I am never going to use all if them so it is time for a scrap giveaway. Because I am going to pay the postage I have to limit the giveaway to US readers only.

If you would like a large box of scraps, please leave a comment. If you are a "no reply" follower, please leave your email address in the body of the comment. I will do a random drawing on Wednesday, March 19th.

Please help me purge!!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Now Faux Leather!

I had some pretty faux leather in my stash (because I cannot walk away from a good remnant!) and thought if I could work with leather surely I could work with the fake stuff. I decided to make some very simple totes. They are a nice size for library books or paperwork from the office or even for a handful of diapers, wipes and a change of baby clothes. I made two and sold one at the office before I had even opened my office door!

This one is pewter on top and a lovely basketweave black on the bottom.

I had some pretty red, black and gray fabric in my stash that was perfect for a simple lining. 

The next day I brought in this tote.

I used a "home dec" fabric for the top of the bag and lipstick red vinyl for the the bottom and handles. This one just makes me smile.

The lining is a bright and cheery as well.

This one also sold the day I brought it in so I made another one very much like it to put in my Etsy shop. This bag has longer handles and is a little bit bigger than the first tote. The basic tote is $25 and the longer handled (and tiny bit larger) tote is $30.00.

I just purchased some additional vinyl and a little bit more home dec fabric and plan to sew all weekend. More pics next week!

Thursday, February 6, 2014


I have been wanting to try working with leather. Just a little leather. I love fabric but thought bits of leather might make for some interesting bags. One of my co-workers requested a cross-body messenger style bag. I made this for her. (I wish she had wanted a leather strap!)

I lined up the fabric so that the flap piece matches the body of the bag. I love how that looks!

I added just a couple of pockets
I learned lots of things when I was sewing the leather. First, because this is very soft, buttery leather, a leather needle is overkill. The nylon thread I used liked a titanium jeans needle (110/18). I used a teflon foot and also took the pressure on my presser foot down to about a 2. I discovered that even with the special foot, there was a little drag until I reduced the pressure. I also used a longer than normal stitch length. I think I used 3 instead of my usual 2.5 that I use when making bags. I topstitched with 3.5.

Since I love making wristlets, I used some more of my upcycled leather and made this

The bag is about 8.5" wide and stands about 6" high. I love the paisley lining fabric. I put a couple of pockets in this one as well. It will be for sale in my Etsy shop.

I am in "bag making mode" so there will be a couple of new bags in the shop this weekend. I have a gorgeous piece of Amy Butler fabric that I have been saving. I decided to add a little black leather to it as well and it is adorable!

I recently purchased a fair amount of really nice home decor weight fabrics that are really beautiful and I am looking forward to finally cutting into my stash this weekend. I am also in the mood to make some of Nancy's "Polar Vortex" blocks. If I don't do any housework this weekend I might be able to do both!

Linking to link party button

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Chocolate cake!

At the office yesterday I had a hankering for cake. Every once in a while I just want cake. When I mentioned my craving, one of my co-workers said "I was just thinking the same thing!" so today I am taking in a cake. But it isn't just cake. It is FABULOUS Chocolate Cake. I am not kidding. I thought you might like the recipe so here it is!

I am NOT a food photographer! :)

Fabulous Chocolate Cake
(a variation of Hershey's Special Dark Chocolate Cake)

2 c. granulated sugar
1-3/4 c. all purpose flour
3/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder (I just had the regular stuff from Hershey's in the cabinet)
1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
1-1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2 eggs
1 c. milk
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla
1 c. boiling black coffee

Pre-heat the oven to 350. Spray a 9 x 13 baking pan with vegetable oil or grease with butter and then dust with flour.

In a large bowl, mix all the dry ingredients together with a wire whisk until thoroughly blended. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and all the wet ingredients except the hot coffee. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and blend together. (I do not use a mixer for this recipe. I just whisk it!) After all the ingredients are blended, add the cup of hot coffee and continue to mix together until everything is blended thoroughly. The batter will be very, very thin. It's OK. I promise!

Pour into the prepared  pan and bake for about 35 minutes. (I use a wooden toothpick in the center of the cake to test to see if it is done.) Cool on a wire rack.

1/4 c. butter
1 c. semi-sweet real chocolate chips (I use 1/2 c. peanut butter chips and 1/2 c. chocolate chips because it seems that everyone in Berks County likes chocolate peanut butter frosting!)
1-1/2 c. powdered sugar
1/4 c. milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Put the butter and chocolate chips in a microwavable bowl and heat on high for 1 minute. Stir and heat again in 15 second increments until totally melted. Add the powdered sugar and then beat in the rest of the ingredients until smooth. If you don't make the frosting just before you are planning on putting it on the cake you may have to put the frosting back in the microwave for a few seconds and re-beat. This is a very firm frosting.

This cake is incredibly moist and chocolaty. Enjoy!!

Linking to: Life on Lakeshore - A Bouquet of Talent Party; Sew Many Ways