big fabric sale and giveaway

Over at I Have to Say, Randi is having a big Spring Cleaning sale in her Etsy shop, Fresh Squeezed Fabric (a long time favorite of mine!), and a gift certificate giveaway on her blog. 20% off everything in her shop until Monday, April 5th.  She’s got lots of great stuff! And I envy that picture of her shop. I dream of a room like that, filled with bolts of fabric.

Munki TREASURE

Oh man. It’s been an exciting day. We were headed to the library, but instead, I thought, “hmmm, I wonder if Marshalls has any Munki Munki pjs anymore” because I had read a couple people found them there…

(FYI – my most favorite illustrator/fabric designer, Heather Ross, does the artwork for Munki Munki. The pjs are lovely, but retail for about $100 a set – something I’d never pay. Especially since I don’t want to wear them, I want the fabric they’re made of for sewing.)

Anyway, we hit the Marshalls in the next town, and I hit pay dirt. Five sets of pjs at $10 each! BARGAIN! Sadly, none of them fit me, but that’s okay, because I’m just going to chop them into perfect little pieces for lovely little quilts.

munkimunki-1

One snag is that these five sets are the kind with the knit shirt, not the button up pj shirt. So I don’t know what to do with these shirts that are too small for me, and I don’t know if anyone will want them without the matching pants. But maybe I can do something with them also – the colors are great, and the knit is super comfy.

munkimunki-3

We never go to Marshalls, so I didn’t realize that they have a toy section. So when I was done treasure hunting for pjs, my cute kid – who absolutely doesn’t need anymore toys, maybe EVER – got to dig through the piles of half opened toy packages to see what he could find. He ended up with a super cool Sand Man (from Spiderman) that has really bendy legs and arms. SCORE. Score for me, because it was only $5.

So after nap time, my husband says, “you know, I could use some cologne.” Really? Well, wouldn’t you know, they have cologne at Marshalls! So we head out to another town. No Munki Munki pjs to be found, but we did score some Ralph Lauren Blue for $20 and Mr. Fantastic and The Thing (Fantastic Four action figures – all with really bendy arms and legs!) for $7. Now I’m starting to really enjoy this, so we head to one more Marshalls.

PAY DIRT! I find two more sets of Munki Munki pjs – these with the button up top. Bicycles and Farmers Market! Super awesome.

munkimunki-4

I also went crazy recently and got a bunch of Hope Valley and Nicey Jane – that treasure should be arriving in the mail in a couple days, and I can’t wait. The oranges and purples in Hope Valley are going to go perfect with my new coffee munki munki print. I see a fun coffee quilt in MY future. I think my poor sister may never get a quilt.

One last project that didn’t involve shopping. Actually, I did have to go to Home Depot, so scratch that. Anyway, I got a metal dowel and some cafe curtain hangers, and put up this handy ribbon holder. These spools used to be in the bottom drawer of a craft organizer that is really hard to get to. I also have a ribbon jar, for when I get yard cuts, but I think this is going to be a good solution for my spools. And it’s always fun to get out my drill :)

ribbon holder

eye candy

My mother’s day gift was a big fat gift certificate for Fat Quarter Shop. I got lots of booty, and found a little more on Etsy. Jealous?

mothersday-2

mothersday-1

mother's day treasure

mother's day treasure

Field Trip!

wedding wheel quilt by jen hoverson
wedding wheel quilt by jen hoverson

I love PurlSoho. I dream of taking a class there. I am a frequent reader of their blog, the purl bee, and often find inspiration there in the beautifully photographed and carefully described projects. So, I’m reading this blog post where Purl owner Jennifer Hoverson has taken her lovely hand-sewn wedding napkins and turned them into a wedding quilt. The whole thing is a fab idea…the backing fabric for the quilt is the personalized cake table cloth they had ordered from spoonflower.com. I LOVE these ideas.

Anyway, so I’m drinking in the pictures, and I see that the wedding (which was featured in Martha Stewart Weddings!) happened at Dana Point, which is not far from here. And I’m thinking, “why would a New York city fabric shop owner have a wedding in Southern California?” Well, turns out, the warehouse for Purl is in Costa Mesa…also not far from here. Warehouse. That’s not that exciting, right? WRONG! You can shop there!

After a little googling, I found out that you can shop there from Tue-Fri from 9-4. So, you can figure out what you want by looking around the website, and then go buy direct at the warehouse!!! I can’t tell you how exciting this is.

Now, if they’d just offer a west coast Heather Ross workshop every now and then, I’d be in heaven.

Houston

I haven’t paid much attention to all the talk of the famed Houston trade-show, the International Quilt Market, I’m just patiently waiting for all the great new fabrics and patterns to be available for purchase from my favorite shops. One such shop though, Fat Quarters (awesome selection, reasonable prices, lightening fast shipping), had a ton of great pictures on their Jolly Jabber blog, and I can’t help but wish I was there.

I’m particularly intrigued by Sandy Henderson and Jay McCarroll. Sandy Henderson has some gorgeous fabrics and some fun tutorials on her blog – including one for shirring! Hooray. The picture of her booth on the Jolly Jabber really grabbed my eye – I LOVE those big fabric flowers around the top of the booth.

You may remember Jay McCarroll from Project Runway…well, in the picture on Jolly Jabber, he’s surrounded by really cool applique quilts. Are they his? He’s also wearing a cool 1970’s string-pieced vest. Is he a quilter? Nothing about quilting or quilts on his site, but you never know…I’m going to research it a little more. Looks like there is a line of fabric on the way…from none other than Free Spirit, my fav. These swatches are from the two lines – one line is called Woodland Wonderland, the other is Garden Friends. I love those trippy little deer and bugs.

Anyway, lots of eye-candy out there. I better start saving my pennies :)

holiday spirit

I’m working hard on Christmas gifts. I’m trying to avoid the last minute purchasing spree because all the crafts I had planned never got made. So, so far, I’ve completed two quilt tops, one back and binding – ready to be sandwiched, one waiting to be ironed.

I’ve also finished cloth napkins for everyone. These are about 8″ x 10″ – one fat quarter makes two. I’ve got enough here for six different families :) This is one part of my “green” Christmas, where everyone gets a reusable grocery bag and cloth napkins. And maybe something else – but I haven’t decided what yet. Any ideas? Here are my napkins:

cloth napkins

Thanks to Unspeakable Visions for providing this fun naughty and nice list for planning gifts. I love it! Also, thanks to the Handmade Holiday 2008 group on flickr for keeping me honest and inspired. I do still plan to give a few Oxfam gifts this year though – if you haven’t been on Oxfam America Unwrapped, you should check it out. Lots of great gift ideas – especially for people who have everything!

Just a note about those cloth napkins. I instituted them at my own house about six months ago, and I thought they might be a pain, but actually, they’re awesome. First of all, I love to use them – they get softer and softer with each wash because they’re made of good quilting cotton. Second, they make me feel fancy, even when I’m eating ramen. Third, we have been using the same roll of paper towels for about 4 months now – and it’s still over half full! When they’re dirty, I set them on the washing machine, and they just get thrown in with whatever load I’m doing. If they get too stained with spaghetti sauce or whatever, I’ll just make some new ones, but so far, they are perfect. I highly recommend them for everyone! Reduce – Reuse – Recycle!

excited

Here are some things I’m excited about:

  • On TV: Kathy Griffin’s My Life on the D List, Flipping Out, So You Think You Can Dance and all the shows starting in July.
  • My new Nikon S550 camera!!!
  • My newly organized desk drawer and my new gel roller bic pens.
  • My increase in hours for my job.
  • The new authors I’ve been enjoying: Sherryl Woods and Robyn Carr. And speaking of books, Jennifer Weiner’s newest book “Certain Girls” – which was AWESOME.
  • Finding SuperBuzzy.com, an awesome Japanese fabric shop online.

I think that’s it for now :)

anthropologie

During our home shopping expedition, we stopped at Victoria Gardens mall. Its one of these new all-outside malls with mostly upscale shops. It would have been more fun if it hadn’t been 106 degrees outside, but we did manage to stop at Thomas Station – an all Thomas the train store, and Anthropologie. That place is an inspiration wonderland for sewing. There is so much cool stuff in there. We saw these fun vases, coasters and picture frames made from magazine pages rolled tightly into thin strips and glued together. First of all, great recycling. Second, I just know that those were made by some women using what they have to create something cool and how awesome that it’s being sold in this fancy store where t-shirts are $70!

There was a bird cage made of fabric and wire that seemed so simple to make, but was really lovely. It was selling for $108! I’m sure I could make something similar. Lord knows I’ve got enough jewelry wire and fabric floating around my house. I tried to find a picture to show, but I guess they only have them in the stores, not online. Although, searching “anthropologie” on flickr yields some pretty awesome images.

my birthday gift

I haven’t been the greatest blogger lately. First, we were vacating. Then, I was unpacking/doing laundry/forcing my kid to return to Pacific Standard Time. Then I was cooking my first Thanksgiving dinner ever. (Thanks, Martha, for the great recipes! Pictures coming soon.) Then I was shopping.

Today, for the first time in my life, I partook of the great American tradition of stampeding poorly prepared cashiers and customer service people in retails shops of all kinds. My birthday is next week (31!), and I was on a mission to find my perfect gift.

Did I buy perfume or diamond rings? No. Of course not. What I did buy was a new Singer Confidence sewing machine. YAHOO! It is awesome! I got it for $399, normal retail is $599, and it kicks my old Singer’s booty. I also got a new Rowenta iron, normally $80, for only $30.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have some sewing to do.