From My Stash – Meadowsweet 2

I have tried to resist buying every new fabric collection this year. But there was something about Sandi Henderson‘s new Meadowsweet 2 collection that I loved, especially that print on the right with the mix of berry and salmon colors. They remind me of the fall colors we are starting to see as our gardens and landscapes change. I have always adored her Henna prints too (sneak peaks here in raspberry and grey).

I try not to blabber on too much around here about patchwork projects for my shop, but I’m so excited about all the new products I’ve been making lately.

I made several patchwork bags with these gorgeous fabrics, along with a few other fabrics from my stash just to stretch the stash further.

I thought a new party purse would be nice to offer. That’s the bag in the front of each of these photos.

I named it a party purse because everytime we go to a party or a concert or a festival, and I don’t want to carry my day purse, I end up filling my pockets and my husband’s pockets with my stuff! I really don’t like doing that, so I decided to make one to fit my needs, thinking there might be others out there with my same issues.

It measures about 10 inches wide and 6 inches tall, has a pocket inside to hide your id and money, and a strap for slinging over your shoulder, just long enough to tuck under your arm. Notice the little embroidery details? (see close-up here)

I also made new project bags (that’s the version in the back of these photos), similar to those clear plastic ones you get from quilt shops and quilt retreats, but prettier, in my opinion. I’m just saying.

These project bags measure about 10 inches wide and 7 inches tall, perfect to hold your needle case, scissors, hand sewing supplies, rotary cutter or whatever you travel with,  and have a pocket inside to store your small, loose items like a box of pins or stitch markers for knitting.

I am happy these are finally listed since I think they will be nice additions to my collection for Fall.

I used up almost all of these fat quarters, so I’m debating on whether I need to order a few more, you know, just in case another idea comes up. (wink wink)

Book Review – Sewing Bits and Pieces

Have you seen Sandi Henderson‘s new sewing book, Sewing Bits & Pieces yet? It’s fabulous!

As I mentioned in my most recent Best Practice post about Resources, a couple things I like to look for in a book or magazine: high quality pictures and illustrations (eye candy!), useful tips, intermediate to advanced techniques, and a variety of fresh, modern projects. My aunt Marcy has a general rule – if a book has at least 2-3 projects she wants to make, she buys it. Knowing the high quality and charm of Sandi Henderson‘s fabrics and patterns, I knew this one would be a winner when I pre-ordered it. Whew.

The description on the back cover says “Turn your favorite fabric scraps into fresh and fun handcrafted treasures.” It offers 32  projects using fabric scraps. We are all looking for new ways to use up our scraps, and this book offers plenty of ideas and inspiration.

I think the skill level for the clothing, home goods and craft projects is probably intermediate. There are some applique projects and gathering steps that would have been challenging when I was first learning to sew. One thing I really like about this book is the different approach Sandi took by offering a quick section on sewing terms and a quick section on commonly used tools, instead of providing a comprehensive section on teaching readers how to sew. The patterns in the back section DO NOT need to be enlarged – I love that!

Here are a couple of my favorite projects Sandi offers in her selected categories:

Kitchen – appliqued tablecloth and towels, adorable fruit-shaped magnets, and snack bags.

Bed & bath – a patchwork pillow, organizer, sachet, appliqued pillows, appliqued shower curtain.

Children – includes the coolest looking growth chart in the form of a 3D-looking tree, adorable Mary Jane Slippers, and the cutest library tote using a strategically placed piece of Heather Ross’ princess and the pea fabric.

Party – I can’t wait to make these party lanterns for my patio, but the party bags and invitations will be a must for me too.

Crafts – a pretty butterfly pin that could embellish a jean jacket or a shopping tote, gift tags, and these innovative fabric silhouettes!

Adults – my favorite in this category is the patchwork scarf, which will be the very first project I plan to make.

I’ve had this stack of Ginger Blossom fabrics for awhile, just waiting for the right project to hit me.

I think these fabrics are going to make an adorable patchwork scarf! So much cuter than the old-school cowboy bandanas to hold my hair back while working in the garden or bike riding down the trail. The pattern actually makes two adult scarves so I might have an extra one for a giveaway. (wink wink!)

I love all the original and modern ideas Sandi presented in this book. I also appreciate the stylish photos and illustrations provided for reference. This book is full of cheerful projects that I can quickly whip up in an afternoon and use over and over again.

I preordered Melissa‘s new book Small Stash Sewing, which I can’t wait to find on my doorstep around the end of May. I will definitely offer a book review of that treasure when it arrives.

Recent Etsy Finds and More

I ordered these great handmade goodies from a recent shopping spree. I just had to share them with you.

First I got this unique and adorable crayon caddy from C Berry Baby’s shop.

crayon caddy - rolled up

She made it from Sandi Henderson’s Ginger blossom fabrics, which are so colorful and girly. It has a pretty ribbon closure, and even came filled with crayons!

crayon caddy - unrolled

I also ordered this great market eco-tote from Jenny Hofer Designs, which she made in Amy Butler’s Lotus fabrics.

market eco-tote

Then came these awesome scrap bags, not from, but from j.caroline creative. They are called short-end remnants, so each piece is about a four-inch square.

fabric scraps

I love to get scrap bags because I don’t have to invest as much money or buy a quantity of fabric; instead, it feels like trying it out. These scrap bags came with a great variety, even several Amy Butler fabrics (which I’m carrying around in my purse, due to my fabric addiction).

That sums up my shopping fix for another month. Check out these shops at yourself; you won’t be disappointed!