Wednesday, November 26, 2008


The picture in the center is of the sample velvet pieces I got from . The pictures on the top and bottom are the velvet cuts I got from . On the top photo you can see the burn out on the black velvet, but actually all the fabrics on the left of that photo are burned out. The bottom photo is truer to the actual colors. Velvets from both places are scrumptious, but you get more choice and can get more from Thai silks although prices are steep for this fabric even at a bargain! The minimum yardage you can order is 1/2 yd except for sale fabric which is 1 yd. It'd be nice to get a group purchase together, but without the samples I wouldn't buy from this site because the pictures neither do the fabric justice or are true to colors. They also sell other yummy fabrics that I know nothing about!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Storing and keeping beads handy

I keep my beads in these little tins (and they are very little - keep maybe a teaspoon). I got them at and they are called "Aluminum Box With 54 Mini Boxes And Lids". They have really gone up in price since I got them. I bought a set of 5 boxes (cause they were about $7.00 a piece this way) and planned to share them with others because who would ever need storage for 270 types of beads, right?! Before I could share them they were full! When I'm working on a project I move the color beads I need to the narrow white tray (got it from pampered chef-the line is called Simple Additions) and this keeps them handy for use (love these for use in my sewing room). I bought them for the kitchen and they gravitated to my sewing room. I even bought a second set at a garage sale. I saw some on ebay, here's one: I don't think Pampered Chef sells them anymore. I like the mini boxes because they are small and lightweight (made from aluminum) and I can put them back in their original box to carry them making them very portable. It lets you see all the colors you have available fairly easily. I think they would be better if they were screw on lids - I frequently dump a single container over when I foget to put it back in the case or tray. Because I have fat fingers, I find it difficult to get a minibox out of the case, especially the first one. I guess I could leave one minibox out of the box to solve this problem, but apparently it doesn't bother me that much! I often don't have enough room for all the beads that I have for a particular color and so keep leftovers that don't fit in the mini boxes in tiny plastic baggies (also available at Shipwreck beads) and refill when necessary.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

BC Block

This is my quilt block for the breast cancer charity quilt Leslie is putting together. I got in on this late and only had a couple of weeks to get it done (and I'm afraid I'm late).

Another way to store ribbon/lace

Here's my storage idea for lace and ribbon. I like it because they are cheap (many no longer store disks since CDs came on the scene), and stack nicely. Also, I sort them by color and since the lid is clear you can always grab the box you need. (-:

Monday, November 10, 2008

My Western Crazy Plans

I have been planning for a western themed crazy quilt and am very excited to get started on it. Leslie asked me about colors and I couldn't just say reds, browns and turquoise, I had to do pictures!!! Here's my collection of embellishments, fabrics and pics so far! The Cowboy pics I got from Tina Swain on her etsy site: // I think she may be closing it down - she recently offered everything at 50% off. She found these western pictures specially for me and I love the cowgirls and the wanted posters with pics! I'm going to use wool thread for seam embellishments (want to think up some unique western seam treatments) and have fabric selections of cotton, wool, velvet and silk. I have some yummy buttons and buckles bought mostly at an antique store in town here at pretty decent prices. The fabulous trims with came from the Trims and Treasures Club of Flights of Fancy I haven't made final selections yet, but certainly have enough to choose from! Many of the lace pieces and trims are vintage and come from a lady in Denver who bought out a doll store - they weren't cheap, but were well worth it. Take a close look at these because they are magnificent!! I'm trying to make a return trip to her house, but have been unable to contact her recently. I also have a bunch of ideas for embroidered motifs that I'm going to use. The quilt will go in the larger of my fireplace screens. When Christmas is over I plan to start on this not exactly ordinary crazy quilt.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Estate Sale killings

My Friday estate sale excapades continue to reap great rewards! This week it was tatting and crochet threads, scraps of yarn good for embellishing, and a lovely cross-stitched cluctch purse that i get to finish for the nice lady who left it for me (another needlepoint rescue). They sold it to me for a criminal price - $1.50. Shame on them - they obviously don't know the work involved in these works of art. I am thrilled to have it though. .

Road Trip to Denver

Shari, her daughter and friend, and I tried to go to the Rocky Mountain Crazy Quilter's meeting on Saturday. Since no one showed up but us (!), we had to go shopping instead. Poor us. The photos above are my consolation prizes (purchases!) (-; Silk floss and ribbon floss, a ton of baggies of beads along with a few bags of fibers, charms and a couple of pieces of deliscious fabric. I had already started putting the beads away in my little tin storage container so all those beads I bought yesterday too! Shari really got more consolation prizes than I did- she must have been really sad about missing the meeting!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Buttons Galore

Yesterday I went to an estate sale and made a find. There was a box, about 12x8x3, full of buttons. It was hard to get past the top level of buttons to see what was really in there because the box was so full and many of the buttons were still on cards obstructing the view of the others. I couldn't see a price and so took the box to the gal in charge and she unburied the price tag - a whopping $10. Well, the buttons looked a little less than promising, but I thought "there might be little jewels hidden underneath all of that" and pull out my wallet, secretly wondering if I was throwing away my money, but also hoping there would be something redeeming in the box to make it worth it.
Well, it was a couple of hours before I got it home and started to sort through it. I like to sort buttons mostly by color, but also have a spot for buttons made of shell and buttons that are uniquely shaped. At the very end I pull out my favorites - buttons I know I'll use on a quilt - the plan already laid in my mind. When I finished sorting my fingers were covered in grime (in fact I had washed them several times in the process) and I didn't want to think what was all over those buttons! I decided then and there to wash them by color group. Each group required fresh water because the water had turned brown from the years of dust that had accumulated. I didn't realize how dirty they were until I saw them clean! Wow - there was more there than originally met the eye.
I laid them out (by color of course) on paper towels in my kitchen. It's funny how I agonized over the sorting. I had tons of white buttons. Many were shell and went in the shell pile, but the rest I sorted into two groups. One was the "has some potential" and if there is something, even if remotely interesting about it, it went in that pile. It might be that it had larger button holes, or was very small - something I like to use on a QC block - it seems as though I didn't want any button to go into the last pile. The "last pile" was where the absolutely ordinary white buttons went. The whole process took a couple of hours.
One thing I am sure of and that is that I certainly doubled my button supply in one day -- what surely took this woman her lifetime to accumulate. She can know that I will lovingly take care of her buttons. I was lucky enough to find several lovely abalone shell buttons without buttonholes (perfect for painting on Gerry). Also, I love all glass buttons and I found several of these. There were also some lovely black buttons – just right for my black QC quilt that lives in the back corner of my mind! And there were many uniquely designed or shaped buttons that move the imagination!

These are not even all the buttons and the pictures don't do them justice! An idea came to me as I admired my new stock --how many buttons do I typically use on a quilt block? Not very many! So I then considered how many buttons I'd have to use and blocks I'd have to make to use all of my buttons -- I guess I'd better get busy!!!! I do so like to look at them though - they are very inspiring to me. One thing about crazy quilting is that the more embellishments you buy the more time you have to spend sorting -- a part of crazy quilting I apparently relish since I keep buying embellishments! Well, whenever I think of how many buttons I have, I've decided to think of Laurie's (who I met at CQ International retreat in CO) beads so I can feel better. You cannot imagine a stock of beads large enough that is Lauries supply!! (Poor gal hardly knows me and I pick on her so!) Ahhh - if only I had the beads Laurie has!