Monday, December 09, 2013

Update and an Interview

Hey QoA's!
Oh my goodness, let me first apologize that you haven't heard about the prizes yet.  The Big Move has killed my schedule and routine, not to mention my access to the internet (as you know.)  I have to head out to one of the local restaurants to use the WI-FI which isn't always convenient.  So, with that information in mind, and the fact that Christmas is upon us and the move blah, blah, blah...I'm a great big jackass and I feel terrible that you're all still in limbo.  I will be trying my very best to get the info out there in the next few days!  THANK YOU FOR YOUR PATIENCE!!  Y'all are Quilter's of Awesome for so many reasons, huh?  

And now on to the interview!  This time it's my friend Kerry, of Kid Giddy.  This is one heck of a fabulously funny, gorgeous lady with a heart of gold.  She has offered up a copy of her book:
 Sewing Tales To Stitch and Love: 18 toy patterns for the storytelling sewist.  I LOVE THIS BOOK.  (check out my book review here)  You may have seen my lobster, Louisa?  If not, you will.  She's due on the blog the next time I'm here.  (Along with my post about my own Mini Quilt from the extremely talented Cat of Hello From Cat, aka the Australian Quilt Goddess, and a few other things that I've been waiting to post.)

Are you ready to meet our final prize giver?  Of course you are!  I think you're going to adore her as much as I do.  Be sure to stop by on Instagram and give her a friendly follow: @kidgiddy.  (Just giving a huge shout out to you all - Kristi is so trusting that she gave me her password so I had to post a big "I love Kristi" in here! I think there should be an ilovekristi club! PS:whoever wins the book will win a few Dritz and Fairfield goodies too) ;) 


1a- when you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up? 
Ever since my twin sister and I were little, we always wanted to be a "Mommy". The one book i remember most as a child was The Little Mommy (Golden Book). The little girl with her big blue eyes and blonde hair, looked just like my sister, but I knew I could be a mommy too.

1b- What do you do now that you're grown up?
Now that I am grown up, I am a mommy first. I also design sewing patterns and started doing that when my 2nd daughter was just born. The ideas started flowing and I started making what I could when I wasn't being a mommy, or sleeping. I wasn't very productive, but that came with time as the girls got older. 

2-someone gave you a $10,000 gift card, what store is it for and what do you buy?
I don't know, because I would give it to a family member, friend, or someone else that could benefit from it more than me. I have sufficient for my needs right now, and am always finding ways to give back.

3-what was your first sewing project?
I don't remember the exact first project, but I do remember loving the pre-printed panels of Care Bear and Strawberry shortcake doll pillows. I also still have a little doll outfit that I attempted to make - but couldn't say when it was from. 

4-who taught you how to sew?
My mom taught me to sew, who was taught by her mother. 
5-besides sewing, what are your favorite hobbies?
I am enjoying running again. I love karate and am working on my 2nd Degree Black belt (August '14). I read when I can focus long enough on it to finish it, and would love to pull out my guitar and keep learning how to play it enough to write more songs.
6-sweet or savory?
Both. I'm a sugarholic, but can pass it up if it's savory enough to fill me to the brim.
7-what is in your sewing basket?
I don't have a basket. I have a whole studio full of stuff.
8-how many ufo's are in your closet?
Too many that I have lost track.
9-what's on your sewing bucket list?
2 more book ideas (yes I am that crazy). A certain quilt for a certain mini quilt swap. Lots of thumbcovers for my long awaiting etsy customers, and before all that - my daughters long overdue Gnome doll for her bday almost 1 year ago. (I was out of the best skin colored fabric). 

10-what is your least favorite sewing-related tool and why?
Anything that is new and complicated. I don't like change. At all! So having something that worked really well, and that I knew like the back of my hand is great, until it needs replacing. I don't like having to figure it all out all over again. I like my new sewing machine - but it's frustrating to get to know its little quirks and special features.
11-what do you pack in your travel sewing bag?
My clear mary kay bag is filled with my dritz notions, scraps, threads, beads, buttons and who knows what else. Oh, I also have some scissors, business cards and labels too.
12-do you have any advice for our beginners and/or future sewists?
Start small and work your way up. I started what was supposed to be a "Quilt in a Day" - queen size and it took me 2 years. Then I made a houses and tree block quilt (also queen size) and that took 2 years too. Technically, that means I'm getting quicker when you think about it, but I should've started with a much smaller size. Now I make stuffies that can be done in a day, but not all of them. Work your way up to prevent frustration and procrastination…otherwise, your WIP or UFO's buckets will only get bigger.

-don't forget to introduce yourself/your company too! 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Interview: Vickey Hughes of Gingersnap Quilts

Hello, hello!  Here I am at my sister-in-laws house borrowing her WI-FI to bring you, my lovely readers and fellow Quilter's of Awesome, a brand new interview with one of my favorite quilty people, Vickey Hughes.  Vickey is one of those kind souls who have offered up a prize for our Mini Quilt Swap.  ROUND OF APPLAUSE FOR VICKEY!  YAAAAAAAY!

Know what's even better?  She has personally selected a Bonnie & Camille"Metro" layer cake to give away to the "BEST NOVICE", how cool is that?  Especially since 85% of you mentioned that Bonnie & Camille were amongst your favorite fabric designers.  Let's discover a little more about this generous soul and fellow QoA, shall we?

When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up? What do you do now that you're grown up? I wanted to be a nurse when I grew up... And I am! I am a (very art time) Registered Nurse in a busy ICU.

Someone gave you a $10,000 gift card, what store is it for and what do you buy?
To the Gammill Company! I would love to get a long arm some day soon!!
What was your first sewing project? I first made a quilt in high school for my newborn niece.... BUT... It fell apart in the wash. I then put my sewing machine away for several years lol

Who taught you how to sew?
When I started sewing again a few years ago I taught myself with the help of some great teaching blogs.

Besides sewing, what are your favorite hobbies?
I love to go trail riding with our horses.

Sweet or savory? Sweet!! I LOVE chocolate!

What is your favorite tool in your sewing basket?
My rotary cutter is my favorite item ... I don't know how I could sew without it!

How many ufo's are in your closet?
Ummm..... I hate to admit it but seven.

What's on your sewing bucket list?
I would really like to make a kaleidoscope quilt for my king size bed but I don't think I'm not ready for that kind of commitment.

What do you pack in your travel sewing bag? Believe it or not I don't have one!
When we go on trips its family time... no time for sewing.

Do you have an advice for our beginners and/or future sewists?
Dive in! Don't be afraid to try new things. There are so many great blogs out there with great instruction!

I had planned on expanding my online shop this summer but instead we moved to two different states in less than five months!! I still plan on expanding but it may have to wait a bit so please be patient and check back often! In the meantime, I would like to offer a coupon code to be used at checkout. Please use code MiniQuilt for 15 percent off your next order. Thanks! I have loved watching the progress of everyone's mini's!!
 Thank you again, Vickey! 

Happy Swapping!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Interview: Lisa Nelson of Rubenstein & Ziff

Hey, do you guys remember my call of distress back when I was assigning swap partners?  There was a lady who had signed up but her email didn't work and I couldn't find her anywhere so I posted a Tweegram asking if anyone knew her.  Unfortunately, no one recognized her but there were a few helpful suggestions (which didn't pan out, sadly.)  I couldn't stop thinking about her and I was feeling pretty bad about not being able to locate her to assign her a partner.  Well, very shortly after all the partners went out, she sent me a very sweet email inquiry about whether or not she made the cut.  I WAS SO RELIEVED!  We worked out the email, her partner info went out and the world kept turning.  In fact, she was so grateful for my hard work that she offered up a prize for one of our QoA's.  Isn't that a happy ending?  I certainly think so.  

Let's find out a little more about our new friend, shall we?

Hello Everyone, my name is Lisa Nelson. I am currently living in Richfield, Minnesota (right by the Mall of America, y'all!) with my husband of 12 years, our daughter and our two silly dogs. I started quilting in my 30's! My Mother-in-law taught me to sew. (Trust me, I needed the guidance and her patience!)

I work for Rubenstein & Ziff in Customer Service and Sales. We got our start wholesaling fabric in the upper Midwest to tailors and furriers in the late 1920’s. As fabric stores and cottage industry manufacturers entered the marketplace, Rubenstein & Ziff began to serve them as well.
With the advent of the hobby and craft industry, and the increase worldwide of quilting retailers, Rubenstein & Ziff sought to expand business opportunities and market position. In December 1995, Rubenstein & Ziff, Inc. merged with The Quiltworks to form Rubenstein & Ziff, Inc./The Quiltworks. Our goal: to become a major player within the quilting and sewing trades.
Today, we have expanded our product base to include larger fabric offerings, wider selection of notions and quilting supplies along with a complete line of the latest books, patterns and gift items. We are proud to serve national and international customers, and offer safe, secure shopping 24 hours a day through our Online Wholesale Fabric & Supply Store.
My favorite sewing tool has to be my machine. I have a Baby Lock Melody. She just hums along... love her!
My favorite thing I've made has to be the string quilt I made for ME! It's so colorful and has all of my favorite fabrics. I call it "Lisa's Happy Quilt"! I wish I was more confident in my abilities and had more TIME to play/sew. I also adore making wall-hangings and buntings for family members and my daughter's teachers for the holidays
I have two techniques I'd love to learn. One - foundation paper piecing. (Not to be confused with English Paper Piecing, which I will NOT do... not a hand-sewer!) Two - Free Motion Quilting. (Yes, I have Angela Walters' books... just need time to try the projects in the books.)
**And now for my favorite question to ask ever...**
"If you were a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, what part of the sandwich would you be and why?"
Hmmm, if I were a peanut butter and jelly sandwich... gosh, I'd be the whole thing! I'm soft and sweet on the inside and kinda crusty on the outside! *tee hee*
Lisa has kindly offered up a copy of the book Making Quilts with Kathy Doughty of Material Obsession
 Thank you so much, Lisa!  

Happy Reading!
PS I would just like to mention that I am currently sitting in a restaurant eating nachos and using the restaurant's WI-FI on my husband's Mac.  You can see how this would be disastrous for blogging, right?  Needless to say, I cannot figure out how to save an image of the book for you to look at, so please click on the link.  It is a gorgeous book and that link will give you all sorts of information and lovely pictures to ogle. 

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Book Review: Sewing Tales to Stitch and Love by Kerry Goulder

*photo from*

About a month ago I got an email from a friend of mine.  It went a little something like this:
"Hey, I have a book coming out and I think your blog is awesome would you consider doing a book review?"

To which I totally replied:
"Dude.  Who me?  YOU think MY blog is awesome?  WHAAAAAT?"

Oh no, wait...that was how I responded in my head.  What I really said was:
"Heck yeah!  Can I make the lobster?"
To which she replied:
*evil cackles of glee in the background*
(also purely imagined, by the way)
"You're brave!  That lobster made me sweat!"

*photo by Kid Giddy*
Well, I happen to LOVE a challenge so this was, of course, music to my ears.
One week later my world slid sideways and I found myself packing up my horde stash of fabric and putting it into storage on the VERY. SAME. DAY. that this super-fabulous box of goodies arrived with HOLY COW ALL SORTS OF AWESOME STUFF!  I couldn't believe it!  Still, I told myself that there was plenty of time, that cleaning out, organizing and packing 12+ years of stuff to move across the country in a three week time span was "NBD" (as the yunguns say).  Well, the days went by, more and more stuff disappeared into boxes, rooms began to empty out, my sewing tables were taken away, my sewing room became a hold-all for everything else and then...then the worst thing happened.  My sewing machine got unplugged and shoved into a corner.  I got a little panicky, I immediately sent out an SOS to my friend who very kindly granted me permission to do a two part review for her lovely little blog hop. 
So, this first part is all about the book.  The second part will be all about Louisa the Lobstah.  She's from Boston and she's pretty dang excited that her Red Sox won the world series.  Louisa decided to celebrate the big win by taking a vacation to Bermuda and visit her cousin Jorge, doesn't that sound like fun?  Anyway, more about Louisa's adventures later.  I hear she's quite the catch (HA!) so I'm sure she'll have lots of wild tales (HA AGAIN!) to tell. So, without further delay, allow me to introduce you to the one and only Kid Giddy, aka Kerry Goulder!

Sewing Tales to Stitch and Love is a book full of cute little softies, each with their own little story.  I love that Kerry has brought these characters to life in a story for us.  It sorta makes you feel like your project will be a continuation of hers, like you're creating a little family to go along with each toy.  This book is warm, inviting and delightful.  I loved reading through it and I am eager to get started on my project.

One of the things I really appreciated about the book was the credits on the photo.  I love having the fabric/notion information listed where I can easily see it.  Often times, I find myself admiring the fabric or wondering about a tool in a pictured project but there is no info for it anywhere.  Or, sometimes it's listed in the back of the book but that's just too much work for me.  I want the information to be easily accessible.  In this book it is.

*photo from*

There are eighteen patterns in this book and they suit a wide range of sewing abilities.  Eighteen might not seem like a lot, but there is quite the variety of projects in the book.  Eighteen is just right.  Eighteen is doable, it's a "Hey!  I can make one of everything in here!" and actually do it kinda number.

The photographs are beautifully done and the instructions are easy to follow.  I like that the patterns are all shrunk to fit in the pages of the book.  There's no annoying pull-out patterns that never fold up right after you use them, causing the cover to stick up and not lay flat anymore.  (Grrr how I hate that.)  Plus, I always make a copy of my book patterns anyway because I don't want to cut up the original.  I also LOVE the fact that she opted for the shrink-to-fit-book size patterns instead of overlapping full size patterns on the pages.  That makes my brain hurt.  I feel like this was a well-thought out part of the book.

I am eager to get to the other side of this move because that means I get to start sewing again.  Miss Louisa is the very first thing that I'm going to make.   You will get a full report on the pattern and how it goes together.  I have lots of lovely new sewing tools to use and demonstrate, thanks to Dritz.
Check out Kerry's book on Amazon and follow along on her blog hop.  There's lots more to see along the way!  There are twenty of us participating in the tour.

Thank you to Heather Bailey, Dritz, F&W Media/KP Craft, and especially Kerry for the fantastic goody box full of absolutely everything a sewist would need to put together one of the delightful toys in the book.  I am especially grateful for it because I had to put all of my stuff in storage, and now I will have new, lovely sewing accoutrements to play with.  Yay!

Kerry Goulder & Heather Bailey

Happy Reading!

Monday, November 04, 2013

Love Triangle

I was lucky enough to do a guest post over on our first prize giver's blog.  Head on over and check out my little tutorial on triangles.  Then make something totally fabulous with your newly acquired triangle skill!  Don't forget to post it on Twitter and Instagram with the hashtag #octoberquiltybox

Happy Quilting!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Meet Quilty Box!

We're now about two and a half weeks away from the shipping deadline for the schnitzel & boo Mini Quilt Swap.  As you guys know, we have lots of awesome prizes.  Over the next few weeks (in between my sudden scramble to move across the country and everything involved in that) I'll be introducing you to our prize givers.  

The first prize to be given away is a box of awesome quilty goodies from newcomer Quilty Box.  What is Quilty Box?  Well, keep reading to see for yourself!
1. Please introduce yourself (name, location, family, creative history)
My name is Tabatha and I'm a native South Floridian.  I have red hair and freckles and an unhealthy love of the sun.  I'm a mom to three: DD-5, DS1-4 and DS2-6 months (and no, we are not done).  When people tell me I have my hands full, I say "What better way to have your hands full of than the hands of my children?" My husband is Spaniard and French and well, I'm pretty enamored.  I love creativity, games, the outdoors, and am a HUGE nerd.

Awesome hair pin by Art School Dropout

2. Where did the idea for "Quilty Box" come from?
I used to work in Corporate America, putting my MBA to use in various areas of strategy and business analysis, but left to become a stay-at-home mom, and that has been most rewarding for me.  As a busy mom, I sometimes felt I couldn't quite get the spark of creativity to sync up with my family's schedule.  My husband receives a monthly box containing "gamer" items that my family loves to receive each month.  I started thinking about how I could combine my love of quilting, and leverage this unique medium to reach out to the quilting obsessed and curious.  I didn't want to send a box with a project in it.  I wanted to send a box of inspiration.  Something appealing to all levels of quilters, with the element of surprise.  And, Quilty Boxes meet that objective.  But they are more than the contents of the box, my goal is to grow a community of creativity inspired by the monthly contents, to keep us inspired, creating, and sharing.  I want to let people know how diverse in technique and application quilting can be.

3. What kinds of things are typically found in a Box?
Each month contains items that revolve around a theme.  October's theme was Geometry and was inspired by all sorts of shapes and lines.  You can expect to find everything from fabric and notions to books and patterns, varied each month, along with a unique item each month to further inspire creativity.  Every month is different, there is no magical box formula.  And the contents of the box has a retail value far exceeding the cost.  October's box retail was about $60 and also includes exclusive discounts from some vendors.

4. What is your most favorite sewing tool?
Does my machine count?  I adore my Bernina, Big Bertha (or Bertie for short).  I love trying new tools and products, but my current favorite tool is my Gingher 45mm rotary cutter.  Just as nice to look at as my scissors, and cuts like butter.  My most used tool would be my seam ripper, and iron...I'm an obsessive presser.

5. What's the most favorite thing you've ever made?
I'm fickle.  Everything I make is my new favorite.  I made my mom a quilt with batiks in my own pattern, and I really love it.  I still haven't finished all the FMQ on it, but my mom is being patient.

6. How did you learn to sew?
Hand sew?  My Grandma Betty taught me simple stitches when I was quite young.  She wasn't a hobby sewist.  But, she could mend.  When she passed in 2005, I received her crocheting supplies, a hobby of hers.  Machine sewing has been within the past few years and the internet has been my teacher, plus trial and error!

7. What is on your sewing goal list? (Technique to master, pattern to make etc)
Geez... Finish my unfinished projects, plus a Super Tote by Noodlehead, a Swoon Quilt by ThimbleBlossoms Reverie Quilt by Rachel Griffith, finish my Autumn Sample from the Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery, etc. And, I want to master Foundation Paper Piecing.  I also have ideas for some monochromatic quilts.

8. If you were a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, what part of the sandwich would you be and why?
Peanut butter!  A little crunchy, makes a mess, but you always count on it to hold the other parts together.  :-)


To get your very own subscription to Quilty Box-and there's more than one awesomely affordable option-click here and be sure to use the code "SCHNITZEL5" for a discount good through November 15.  AND!!  There are still a few October boxes (pictured throughout this post)!  To purchase one, send a request to


Thank you, Tabatha!  I love meeting members of our community and we love that you have been such a generous part of our first swap!

Quilty Box has very kindly offered up TWO boxes!  One for a random participant and one for "Most Unique".  Be sure to use our hashtags #schnitzelandboominiquiltswap and #makeaquiltmakeafriend and tag @schnitzelandboo as you ship out your Mini's!  Recipients, I encourage you to post pictures of your Mini's as they come in and be sure to tag me AND your partner.  This is how we will know if you have completed your end of the swap.  Only those that have sent their quilts will be entered to win a prize.  Stay tuned for more on our other prizes!

Happy Quilting!

Monday, October 07, 2013

Mini Quilt Swap Guidelines

Hello, Quilter's of Awesome (QoA's)!
Want to hear something cool?  Of course you do...

A week into our swapping and our stats look like this:

-We're the number one listing when someone Googles "Mini Quilt Swap" WHAAAT?
-Our Flickr group, as of this moment, has 67 photos and 147 members.
-The hashtag "schnitzelandboominiquiltswap" has 100 posts.
-The hashtag "makeaquiltmakeafriend" has 32 posts.
-We have TWO more pizes to give away for a total of FIVE prizes!
-We found Lisa Nelson (who is one of our new prize givers AWESOME!)

I'm not sure who started the mosaic quilt pictures on the Flickr group, but seriously...WHOA. I am genuinely shocked at how this tiny little idea grew into this big, crazy quilty group of new and old friends.  We have people participating from all skill levels.  We have beginners, professionals, fabric designers, pattern designers, authors, stay at home moms, and even a guy or two.  We have participants in EIGHT different countries.  This is so cool!  Yeah, it was a lot of work for me, but I would do it again in a heartbeat because I am so touched by this community of crafters, sewists and creators.  In fact, I will be doing it again, but probably not until January so we can all get through the holidays. 

You've all seen the bloggy button thingy, right?  If not, check it out, stick it up on your blog, share it with the world!  The post below has the details on it.

Now, how about some guidelines?  

1. Quilts can be as small as 6"x6" and as big as 24"x24".
2. This is a secret swap, give us sneak peeks or even full views, but don't tag your partner!
3. Due dates to have your mini quilt in the mail is Friday, November 15.  This gives you about a month and a half to get through quilt market, finish up your WIP's, clear your cutting table off and stock your shelves.
4. Because the ship-by date is so far off, and this is a secret swap, please make every effort to send your swap between November 8-15 to keep the secret a surprise.  If you need more time, or you are no longer able to participate, PLEASE OH PLEASE let me know!  I won't publicly humiliate you (well shoot, I won't privately do it either!)  and I won't make you feel bad.  I get it, life is busy, things happen.  I want to know so other arrangements can be made for your person.  So pretty please with Auriful thread on top, let me know if something comes up.  Ok?
5. If you haven't already done so, come join the Flickr group to share all of your pictures, gather ideas and meet up with new and current friends.
6. Use the hashtag #schnitzelandboominiquiltswap and #makeaquiltmakeafriend to check out what everyone else is doing. 
7. Feel free to send goodies with your Quilts, if you want.  It is nice, but NOT necessary, so don't feel obligated to do so and don't feel bad if you don't. 
Happy Swapping!

PS Pretend this post was full of lovely, inspiring quilty pictures, k?  I couldn't figure out how to get them off our Flickr group and post here.  Heh...

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Ooh, a fancy bloggy button!

schniztel & boo Mini Quilt Swap, round 1

Hey check it out!  ^^ a button for your blog!

Thank you to my friend and Stitch That Stash Bee mate, Kristan for helping me put that together!  I am a hopeless wreck with computer stuff, and she, obviously, is not.  At the bottom of this post is the button with all that garbledy gook stuff for you to copy and paste into that part of your blog where it belongs.  I'm sure you guys know what I'm talking about, right?  Riiiiiight.

So, guess what?  When the Mini Quilt sign-ups officially ended on September 25, it closed with 161 (162 if you count me) people in it!  WOW!  I never dreamed it would be so big!  I thought maaaaybe 20-25 people would be interested enough to sign up? Boy was I wrong!  And since the close of sign-ups, I've had an additional 15 people put their name on a list!  I decided to just go ahead and add them to the mix as well!  We'll be about 180 members strong.  I am amazed and humbled by your enthusiasm and eagerness to be a part of what started out as a middle-of-the-night thought about covering my ugly walls. 

We even have prize givers!  There is a new kid in town!  Have you all met Quilty Box?  For less than a price of a jelly roll, you can be sent a monthly subscription of quilty goodies.  How cool is that?  Just for participating in (and completing) the swap, you are entered into a random drawing to win November's box!  Awesome! Keep an eye out here for an interview with Tabatha, the genius behind this idea.

One of my favorite IG peeps, Kerry Goulder (kidgiddy) just wrote the CUTEST book, Sewing Tales to Stitch and Love, and someone is going to win a copy.  I am so excited about this book, and I know you will be too.  There are so many adorable projects in it, my favorite is the lobster.  A lobster!  You have got to get this book.  More on Kerry soon, too.

And lastly, a third prize from me, not nearly as cool as Kerry and Tabatha's, but a prize nonetheless.  Someone is going to receive a mini quilt from me, yay!  No picture yet, but that's ok, it gives us just one more thing to look forward to here, right?

Now that everyone (besides my last minute sign-ups from tonight) has been assigned a SECRET partner, we need to start the mad dash of stalking each other on Flickr, Instagram, Pinterest etc.  Please feel free to leave your name here along with your social media name for your partner.  Some of you are hard to find (or so I'm hearing via email from your partner).  If we could make it easy for your person to see what you like, that would be fantastic!  There is a thread on the Flickr group for this very thing. PLEASE visit the thread and say hello!

That's about it for now.  I will be back tomorrow or the next day with that promised suggested guidelines/ideas etc post.  My butt hasn't yet made a full recovery from the four day sit-down with the computer and ALL THOSE EMAILS!  It's still numb.  Yep, pins-and-needles, that's my butt.

Happy Stalking!

PS...don't forget to grab our Swap button! Let everyone know you're a participant!
schniztel & boo Mini Quilt Swap, round 1

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Mini Quilt Swap NEWS!

 (the end of the sign-ups)

Sign-ups for the first schnitzel & boo Mini Quilt swap is now over.  Thank you all for your interest and excitement, I am overwhelmed...160+ people signed up!  WOW!

So now, I take on the huge task of sorting you all.  Too bad I can't borrow the Sorting Hat from Hogwart's!  I'll be back later today with more info for you later today so sit tight! 

Don't forget to follow me right here to stay in the know for future swaps, giveaways, news etc. 

Happy Sewing!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Mini Quilt Swap

Well, hi!
The other night I was lying in bed wide awake at about 2:00 in the morning.  Do you know what I was thinking about?  The hideous wood-paneling in my living and dining room.  HID-E-OUS. I really despise it, but there's not much I can do because the house is just a rental...sigh...

Someone that I follow on Instagram posted a picture of their quick-fix design wall.  She had stapled Warm 'N Natural quilt batting on her walls, which in my opinion was pure genius.  I started fantasizing about doing the same to my walls.  I laid there awake, picturing the blocks and partial quilts that I could pin up there and how pretty it would look.  Then I imagined the splatter of ketchup that could easily happen with the resident four-and-a-half year old and how pretty that would not look.  Then I imagined the price tag for all of that batting and well, I knew it wasn't going to happen.

But how could I make my walls nice?  There had to be a way to cover them.  I really dislike the background that it creates, and how orange it makes everything appear in pictures, especially at night.  So I was awake, yet I was dreaming.  Dreaming of all of my talented friends and my fabric stash and this super sweet little mini quilt that my friend gave me.  (picture's dark already so now the lighting sucks.)  And, I had an idea when I woke up: I'll make a bunch of mini quilts in all sizes and style!  Yeah!  It's perfect!'ll take a really long time and I kinda want them all now.  What to do, what to do.  I GOT IT!  I'll host a mini quilt swap because everyone likes a swap, right?  And we all love our Happy Mail, so why not?  I say we do this.  Tell your friends, have them tell their friends, let's make stuff for each other, it'll be awesome.  Quick, sign up and then go take a peek at the quilts I'm showing you here.  Gather your inspiration and get ready!  This will be more fun than...I don't'll be more fun than most things, how's that?

So, here we go with the guidelines/suggestions:
1. You will be assigned a partner according to the answers you submit, so think carefully!
2. Be sure to give as much information as possible so your swap is a happy success.
3. Quilts can be as small as 6"x6" and as big as 24"x24".
4. This is a secret swap, give us sneak peeks or even full views, but don't tag your partner!
5. Due dates to have your mini quilt in the mail is Friday, November 15.  This gives you two months to get through quilt market, finish up your WIP's, clear your cutting table off and stock your shelves.
6. Because the ship-by date is so far off, and this is a secret swap, please make every effort to send your swap between November 8-15 to keep the secret a surprise.  (although, I'm not sure this is the right way to do it for a secret swap, does anyone have any thoughts on this?)
7. Come join the Flickr group to share all of your pictures, gather ideas and meet up with new and current friends.
8. Use the hashtag #schnitzelandboominiquiltswap to check out what everyone else is doing. 
9. Feel free to send goodies with your Quilts, if you want.  It is nice, but NOT necessary, so don't feel obligated to do so and don't feel bad if you don't. 
10.  HAVE FUN!
11. Follow the link below to sign up:

Happy Swapping!

*This is the quilt that Kathy gave me*

PS The quilts above are not my creations. 
They are linked to the rightful owners, and posted here for your inspiration.

Sunday, September 08, 2013

Tutorial: Mini Fabric {paper} Grocery Bag

*exterior, side and interior of the bag*

 My sister is always doing really nice things for me and Roo, so I decided to make her a new tote bag as a thank you.  It ended up being timed just right because the day after I finished it, she wound up having emergency gallbladder removal surgery, can you believe that?  So, Mom and I stuffed it full of goodies (magazines, new cozy socks, candy, a travel coffee mug and a notebook) and brought it up to the hospital with us.  She loved it!  I was pretty excited when she said "It looks just like a paper grocery bag, except it's fabric!" because that is exactly what I was going for.  Yay!

How about a little tutorial on how to make one for yourself?  Yes?  Alrighty we go!

Gather your supplies:
1/2 yard Exterior Fabric (tan Kona cotton)
1/2 yard Lining (red gingham)
1/2 yard Accent for exterior strip and interior pocket (cupcakes)
1/2 yard Fusible Fleece

From the Exterior cut:
One Bag Bottom 7 1/2" x 26"
One Bag Top 6" x 26"
Two Handles 4" x 19"

From the Lining cut:
One Main Piece 14" x 26"

From the Accent  cut:
Exterior Strip 3"x 26"
Pocket 7" x 9"

From the Fusible Fleece cut:
One Main Piece 15" x 26"

**Seam Allowance is 1/4" unless otherwise noted**

Let's get started, shall we?

1. Fold Pocket in half, so that it measures 4 1/2" x 7"; pin edges making sure to leave a 2" opening for turning and stitch.

2. Trim corners; turn right side out and press; topstitch 1/4" from folded edge.
(not the side with the opening)

3. Find the centers of the pocket and lining by folding in half and marking.  Measure 2" down on lining, and pin pocket in place, matching centers; edge stitch 1/8". Fuse fleece to lining (not pictured) and set aside.

 4. With right sides together, stitch exterior strip to bag bottom; press seam toward bag.  Repeat for bag top to remaining side of accent strip.

 5. With right side up, topstitch 1/4" from accent edge on both sides of exterior.

 6. With right sides together, pin lining to exterior and stitch.
7. Turn lining to inside (wrong sides together) and press but do not stitch.  You should have about 1" of the exterior fabric folded to the inside:

 8. Open bag pieces out, pin long edge, right sides together, and stitch all the way down.
**ignore the pins at the top and bottom of bag, ONLY pin and sew the side at this stage**

9. Match center of seam to center of folded edge of bag; press seam open; pin top and bottom of bag and stitch leaving 3"-4" gap in the lining for turning.

 10. Measure a 1 3/4" square on each corner, starting with the fold and the seam, NOT the raw edge (if you measure from the raw edge, your square will be off by 1/4" on one side)

 11. Cut all four squares from the bag corners.

12. Match center of fold to center of seam and pin.

13. Sew across the seam, making sure to backstitch when you start and stop.  Backstitching will reinforce the corners.

14. Carefully turn the bag right side out through the opening in the lining and press.  Stitch opening closed by hand (not pictured); topstitch 1/2" from finished edge.

15. For the handles, fold each handle in half lengthwise and press.

16. Fold one raw edge to center and press.

17. Repeat for the other side.

18. Refold at the center and edgestitch 1/8" from double fold side first (this helps prevent twisting and bunching when stitching) and then edgestitch single fold side.

19. Measure and mark 2 1/2" from center back seam on each side; place center of the right side of handle edge about 1 1/2" down from finished edge on this mark.  Measure 1/2" down from the handle's raw edge (or 2" from finished edge of bag) and fold handle up towards top of bag (this process makes sure that the rough edge of the handle is hidden).  Pin in place and repeat for the other end.  Repeat process for front of bag.

20. Stitch a square with an "X" in it at the handle's edge (not pictured).  This will ensure the security of the handles.

That's it!  Please come back and let me know what you think of your finished bags.  You can even upload a picture to the schnitzel & boo Flickr group, I would LOVE that!

Happy Sewing!