Friday, June 10, 2016

A Return Visit: Arlington Fabric Corner

Went back to Fabric Corner in Arlington.  Picked out another set of fabrics...

I really need to sew and stop buying fabric.  But my friend is getting interested in quilting and this store has such a nice selection I'm having trouble stopping myself.  Perhaps I will use this purple in the stash bee block for the month instead of the purple I got a few days ago.  The circle design is more pronounced in this purple as there are only two colors.

Earlier we each got a Sashiko panel, it's been hard to thread the needles so got this gizmo to help.  I have several from my mom of the version with smaller loop.  I think this larger loop will make it easier to get the thread after it's pushed thru the needle.

I took photos of the ends of bolts of fat quarter fabric I purchased on trip to Daly City.

Fabric Corner is really a wonderful shop.  Again I forgot to take photos to show it to you.  They do not have lessons there - it's all fabric.  Beautiful selections of batiks, novelties, and new fabrics that I see on all the blogs.  And such wonderful prices.  It's a great welcoming shop, I have enjoyed shopping here each time I visit the Boston area.  There are many nice little shops to go in around Fabric Corner too and places to eat.  A lovely area.  When you visit Boston area, this is a wonderful place to spend a day!

Gosh I need to get going on finalizing my block for the July stash bee too!  I'm thinking I'd like my block to include some rich yellows - tone on tone or slight variations of yellows and mustards. Originally I was thinking of it being all scrappy or black and white but since there have been so many specific requests for colors guess I can ask for what I really lust after too!

I really like having a new challenge each month, and seems so much fun to get to be the leader and have others work on something I request - and then receive them in the mail.  Perhaps though my stash was not as extensive as it should have been as I seem to be buying fabric every month to meet the requests of the monthly leaders.  So I'm not sure I will do again next year.

I am really liking the Play with Me challenges - the idea of making them into pillows has been very nice.  I'm pretty good now with putting in zippers and finishing the corners of the pillows too.  It's fun to see the ones I have finished lined up together on the sofa.

The Play with Me game board this month is set up for five different colors - and since I am doing in denim that will be difficult to do while away from my extensive denim stash at home.  My husband won't let me cut his jeans up on this trip - and I only have two pairs of with me so can't even get started on that now.

My friends sewing stuff is not where I am staying now.  But really I need to draft things out again for my July block since I didn't bring what I had started in San Diego.

But first I need to do Katrin's block so I can even be considered to have my July month as queen...

Expenses: Cambridge Gather Here

We finally got to Cambridge to walk around and enjoy memories of our previous time there.  Gosh, I really was made to live in this area....

We went for dinner at S&S.  No trip is complete without that.  Looking out the window I was reminded that Gather Here had moved, and the new location was right here!  It's in what was a tired old little grocery store ------ but that makes a huge quilting craft store!

First my purchases:

Two fabrics picked by my husband - the colored and white on white constellations.  They had them in different varieties of colors and there was a version with only the stars and lines and one with the figures filled in too.

I picked the fat quarter of the beautiful yellow gold with the crosses.  I am one of those disorganized or open people where my favorite place is where I am, my favorite food is what I'm eating, and my favorite color is what I'm seeing - but I think I do like different shades of yellow and white on what for fabrics....

Here are some shots of the inside of the store.  I chatted a bit with the lady at the front asking about when the new location had opened while my husband went down the shelves of fabric.  Within a minute he had found the constellation fabric.  So now that will be added to the UFO fabric he picked out from another store...!

I don't knit yet but can appreciate the selection.

A sashiko class was finishing up in this area - I got to see their progress and learned the teacher starts the class by having people roll the thread up - much easier that trying to work with it the way it comes.  The ladies all were working on white background and some had different colors, others just used one color.  They had done a lot and were very happy with the class.

This new location is much more accessible and welcoming that their first store.  The classes aren't inexpensive but the ladies in the three different classes I saw were clearly enjoying their projects and being together. 

The prices for the tools I had recently seen other places were the same or a bit lower than other places.
 Great price for Sashiko panels.
 Good price for thread, great selection of colors!

New to me are these Haptic Lab embroidery projects.  Available for many maps of cities, USA, world and the constellations!  The ladies at the store were working on a Boston map that will be fun to see - hopefully they will share in the store and/or online!  They do not have yet on their online site but Gather Here has a large selection in the case near the cash register.

Gather Here also has the largest selection I have seen of different ways to mark patterns on fabrics.

When you visit this area, it's shop to devote some time in!

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Shasta in Columbus and Expenses in Arlington

Went to a lovely quilting store yesterday in Arlington, Massachusetts outside the Cambridge/Boston area.  Fabric Corner.  I wish I had taken a photo of the beautiful selection of fabrics for you, but I was so amazed at the selection and prices that I forgot! When you are in this area do visit!

I tried to stay focused and just pick fabric that would be for this month's stash bee block as I think we are staying longer on this trip than I expected. I didn't bring my sewing supplies with me so if I am to make a block this month it has to be with new fabric.

I did treat myself and bought a yard of the white on white, but will have lots of fabric left over from the other pieces as not much is needed just make one block.

It's hard to post on the blog while on a trip, but I'm having a great time being on the east coast. 

Earlier we were in Ohio and I got to meet an online quilting friend, Shasta - her blog is at  That was a fun lunch in a very nice part of Columbus.  : )

As soon as I can I will share some photos of that visit, Ohio, and our time in Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Connecticut.

I am trying to keep track of my quilting expenses though .... so
Top - Kaffe Heatwave
Middle - RJR Pie Making Day Orange Lattice AND Kona Cotton Periwinkle Blue AND Kaffe Paperweight
Bottom - Cotton & Steel Mochi Dottie's Cousin Pink AND Unknown white on white

1 yard white on white @ $12.99 = $12.99
1/2 yard Kona Periwinkle @7.99 = $4.00
1/2 yard Pie Making Day Orange Lattice @12.99 = $6.50
$23.49 - 30% of $7.05

2 yards of different (Paperweight & HeatWave) Kaffe fabric @$8.99 = $17.98 (to get the discount I had to get a yard of each - at the time it seemed like the right thing to do but already I'm not so sure it was the right decision)

1 fat quarter Cotton & Steel Mochi Dottie's Cousin Pink @$3.50 = $3.50

TOTAL $37.92

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Play with Me QAL: 05-2016 Peg Solitaire/Applique
It's another cute tutorial for a game board this month!  I hadn't seen the layout the way it was in the tutorial, but did remember playing this at Cracker Barrel with our boy so I decided to do that layout triangle for the board instead.

I wasn't sure how the applique would work since I'm sewing on denim...  I tried cutting circle and using the machine to outline using a regular stitch.  Then I tried my new machine with the blanket stitch, after sewing the circle on fusible web then turning it backwards - that took a long time.  Then I thought about and just made a square to keep the fabric down.  I even cut a square and tightened the fabric using a cardboard circle to make the shape - that one I didn't even finish as it was way too bulky and time consuming so you won't see that try!

I couldn't find the cheater needle that I use to hide threads so you have to look beyond that for now to see the circles...  I plan to find that needle, hide and take a new photo sometime...  : )
I'm thinking this will be the back of my future game board pillow.

I finished the board game block though...  

How did I do it?

Yes!  With fabric paint!

I used tape to mark where the pegs would go.  And just painted them on!

I'm pleased with how this turned out and feel very clever to have found a solution that worked for me.
(I had also thought about sewing large buttons down, but the ones at the store I went to were $4.00 to $9.00 each!)
Peg Solitaire Board Game - Triangle Version

 I will make this into a pillow later this summer.  For now though I have the game board part finished!

My husband even said the pile of dots has some meaning in his fraternity so it will have extra meaning beyond remembering the time at Cracker Barrel when we played the game together with our son!

I'll work on my applique skills later with regular fabric. I just couldn't do it this time. I read a great post by Made by Chrissy D where she shows how she is working on some Sashiko.  She mentions how she thinks it helping her with other hand stitching.  So perhaps I will try that out too.

Anyway, thank you again Alida for organizing the Play with Me QAL where we are inspired to use different techniques to create a game board.

Please click so you can see what folks are doing, and join in!  You'll see some very pretty work done by the others!


Mailed a stash bee block - $1.15

Fabric paint for project - $1.35ish

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Stash Bee 2016 Hive 8 - May Block

Circle of Friends!

What a wonderful name Lisa has given her block for the Stash Bee!  Especially appropriate for one that she will be receiving from people all around the world this month.

Her directions were very clear. In addition to notes on measuring after completing a sub-unit, she also told us which way to press the seams.  She made reference to other sites where she had seen the block too so we could read other directions too.

I sent her several photos of possible fabrics before deciding which ones to use, and then resent the photo after taking away the fabric she did not think would be good for her version of the block.

The colors she picked will make a really nice summer quilt once they are combined.

Again I made a block to keep for myself with the polka dotted material and neutral background fabric.  I'm liking my little collection of blocks!  

Here is what the pieces looked like before they were sewn together...

It was a lot easier to just use the one color for background as Lisa requested.  Just cut a strip of 3 inch and then a strip of 5.5 inch fabric and do the subcuts!

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

RSC16: May Forest Green with Brown
I haven't been sewing so far this month.

To loosen myself up and try get back into the swing of things I made my 12.5 block for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.

There are a lot of little pieces at the ends. Perhaps when I put the blocks together I'll need to modify the block, we'll see!

Thank goodness for the RSC16, providing me with some guidance for using up some scraps in a targeted fashion.

Click to see the wonderful projects the others are sharing.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Received: Little Girl Sun Hat from ProjectsGirl Michelly

Last December I won a Little Girls Hat made by ProjectsGirl Michelly

I had Michelly mail the hat directly to the daughter of a friend with a new baby, but forgot to ask that new mother to send me a photo when the hat was received.

Last week I took a little trip and visited the new family and finally got to see the hat!

It is so cute and so well made too!

These and other items are available thru her etsy shop!

Thanks again Michelly!


This was my first visit to Daly City, CA.

I was in the Westlake area. It's about 30 minutes from downtown San Francisco, and this part was within walking distance of anything one would need to live. The houses seem to be built at the same time, but each had a unique personality. * Wikipedia: Westlake is notable for its distinct architecture and for being among the earliest examples of a planned, large-tract suburb; it was the inspiration for Malvina Reynolds' song, "Little Boxes."

A fun quilt could be made of these houses with their different roof lines, front steps, and yards...

 Slanted window glass!

Little animals looking out the front windows waiting for their family to return home...

 These houses were right next to each other and were the only houses I saw that had pets looking out.

We also went to San Francisco Union Square for a little concert - lots of folks still identifying with the hippie movement...  It was fun to enjoy the music and see the people.

I remembered visiting a chocolate shop a few years ago but couldn't remember the location so went in this men's store to see if the shop was still around.  This guy had the neatest tie knot ever so I asked him if I could take a photo.  He said sure - then looked off in the distance so he looked like a model... (Double click to enlarge and see the knot!)

I got to the chocolate store too late to buy any, but it was fun to look thru the window to see the treats.

Later that evening we had a wonderful Cioppino dinner at Fog Harbor on Fisherman's Wharf.

We went to JCPenney's one day to have the baby's photo taken.
What a hoot to see the photographers and mother try to make the little one smile!

I was lucky to get to go on this little trip with my friend... so she did not have to stay alone in the hotel for the visit with her granddaughter and daughter!

It was an honor to share the time.