Sneak Peek

This week has been devoted to stitching up a pattern for testing – stick a fork in me, I’m done! It’s always a lot of work, but I love lending a helping hand to my favorite designers…. plus this project gave me an excuse to use some fancy zippers and pulls (and fabric too) and now I have a great _______ until the pattern is released (my guess is that you can expect it sometime late next month).

So, while I can’t show you the entire project, I can give you a little sneak peek. I will also say that this project is creative & original, uses several types of hardware (but should be easy to find), and could definitely be unisex if made in the right materials.

I can’t wait to show this off to you soon!


Halloween is right around the corner and I’m finding myself trying to finish up some of those last minute projects that I’ve been meaning to get to. This weekend, I finally stitched up a “holiday” table runner.

Our kitchen table is very long (93″), so finding coverings that will work with that length is pretty difficult. I had no real plans on adding anything to the table, but I stumbled across this retro cat\owl\pumpkin print and couldn’t resist buying it since it seemed to coordinate with the rest of my decorations so well.

Since this is a pretty basic rectangle, I didn’t use a pattern – I simply cut (2) strips of the print fabric 10 1/2″ wide, cut black strips 2 1/2″ wide, and sewed them on either side. I backed it with back fabric and topstitched all around. I like the end result, but I’m not sure anyone else in the house noticed that it was there. LOL


While I may do a lot of embroidery, I find that I tend to buy a lot of “single” style designs. So this week I’ve been trying my hand at some different types of embroidery projects, mostly “in-the-hoop” style projects (that are not key fobs or bookmarks, which seem to be my favorites, but who needs that many of those?).

Here’s a small sample of what I’ve been working on. First up, a Crime Scene wrist band style key fob. Overall super cute and fun, but it’s very stiff and slightly larger than the key fob hardware. I’m thinking about trying my hand at this one using a nylon webbing instead of vinyl and skipping the backing all together.

I also tried out a door hanger style design as well. This one is relatively small because of my hoop size (5 x 7), however I think it would work as a doorknob hanger. I just need some ribbon to finish this one off.

I also played around with some of the settings on my machine in an attempt to get nicer stitching when I apply backing. I “think” I may have solved my issue of periodic thread bubbling on the backside, but I’ll need to test this out again when I use some trickier vinyl (I’m looking at you white vinyl) for the underside.

Linky Thursday

I’ve been seeing a lot of (awesome) custom Converse shoes lately. Since this isn’t a project that I think I want to tackle, I may have to settle for serged shoelaces.

Halloween is a few weeks away. If you’ve been thinking about going as a witch here’s a few hats to get you started: This version from & Hot Patterns has a witch hat and fascinator options, this fast and easy version is perfect for last minute costumes as well as this one (and I love the embellishments).

I’ve been very into color blocking lately – so this work dress is something that caught my eye this week.

Looking to get away from clothes or bagmaking? This Summer Snowflake quilt is the perfect project.

Not only is the Bellas coat unisex, but it looks warm for this winter (and stylish too). Looking to make it even trendier? Finish it off with a faux fur collar wrap.

Learn how to sew a flat front gathered skirt.

With a potential shortage of toys this year, it sounds like handmade gifts are the perfect substitution. Any little girl would love this doll carrier backpack (it reminds me of the American Doll versions).

Dress up as Frankenstein without all the makeup with this fun “hat” version of the costume.

Need a quick costume for work, school, or just a get together. This Batty (cape) could work out nicely (ears not included).

Enter to win a $30 gift certificate to The Fabric Fairy!

Gather up any late garden produce with this harvest apron.

Up Next

Some days go as planned, others, don’t. Yesterday was one of those days.

On the upside, I made my way to the fabric store to pick up a coordinating canvas fabric for a pattern I’ll be testing. The downside? That’s as far as I got into any projects as I spent the rest of the afternoon\evening at the emergency vet.

Everything is fine now, but he happened to find a chocolate bar yesterday and ate it – wrapper and all. I didn’t even know he found one, but happened across a corner of the package that he left behind. Fortunately, I was able to get him to the vet in time for treatment and that the candy he ate wasn’t solid (it was filled with cookie butter) so he didn’t get as much dark chocolate as a regular bar. Thank goodness he’s fine today, but he gave me a heart attack yesterday and a whole wallet lighter.

And now that things have returned to normal…. back to sewing.

Spooky Season

We are almost to the middle of October and I realized that I’m way behind on all the projects I wanted to work on. It seemed like I started off really good last month by creating some fun towels and tees, I lost my momentum. So today, I got back into the swing of things by stitching up some fun bookmarks.

This design is from Cactus Embroidery – not only is it coffin shaped (ooohhh spooky!), but it’s also applique so it’s a great opportunity to use scraps of fabric you may have on hand. For these I used a horror movie collage print from The Three Bobbins and a zombie princess fabric from Zor-Elle. Now I just need to invest in some edge kote and this project would be near perfect.

Merry Christmas?

I’ve been talking a lot about Halloween lately, but I’ve been seeing tons of Christmas in stores. So it’s totally appropriate to show off Christmas projects, right?

If you’ve been reading my blog for awhile you may recognize these poinsettias from a blog post early in the year – they are truly a labor of love, but the end result is worth it. While it’s hard to capture how pretty they are on camera, I can assure you they are sparkly (thanks to the rhinestone button centers), fun, and totally pop on this white velvet. I had originally added more to this cascade, but when the bunch up, they loose some detail.

You can catch this project (with instructions on how to make the tree skirt) in the winter 2021 issue of Creative Machine Embroidery magazine… and around my tree in just a few months!

Linky Thursda

Gertie from Charm Patterns has been posting all sorts of daily Halloween goodies. Some are additions to purchased patterns while others are just freebies – like this Dagger Collar.

There’s still plenty of time to sew up this fun Halloween mini quilt.

Even if you’re not sewing up a Halloween costume this year, you can add a handmade touch with a custom treat bucket.

If you’re gearing up for some cool weather sewing for kids, this free raglan tee is a great place to start.

Looking for a quick and easy costume idea that can be sewn up in an afternoon? Be sure to check out this Red Ridding Hood Cape tutorial (kids and adult) – it’s a great costume idea, but can be easily altered to work with other characters, too.

I’m on a clear vinyl kick. This See-Through Box Bottom Zip Pouch is calling my name.

The fringe in this tutorial is epic, but the jacket is a great pattern.

Enter to win a $30 gift card to The Fabric Fairy.

If you’re a beginner sewer or just looking for a quick gift to make, be sure to check out this fabric wallet tutorial.

Bats may freak me out in real life, but I love the fuzzy bodies of this spooky Halloween version.

These candy trays are great for gift giving, handing out special treats on Halloween night, or a cute display that can hold your goodies.


This past week’s project has been centered around this (shown on right):

I’ve been writing up an article and developing a pattern with this lovely stripe denim (which is really more like a chambray). It has a great drape, but it’s been very tricky to cut, hem, and embroider… but I think it will be worth it in the end.

Today I started the process of embroidering it. Seeing that I can never follow a color chart, I changed things up pretty dramatically from the original. I love how the reds, oranges, and yellows pop on this color (and because I’m “extra” I even used metallic thread too). I probably have another day’s worth of work on this before I can call it complete.

What has everyone else been up to?

Linky Thursday

Yesterday I started decorating for Halloween – one of my favorite holidays! You’ll find that I write quite a few tutorials for the occasion. Here’s some of my most recent for Bernina’s WeAllSew: Mummy Pillow Slipcover (the eyes even glow!), Halloween Mask, and Devil Headband.

Still thinking about what you might stitch up for Halloween? Here’s some of the most popular Superhero costumes of 2021. If that’s not your bag, here’s some great pop culture costume ideas for 2021. FYI, most of these are just “ideas” for costumes and not links to the actual patterns themselves (although some do have great free pattern links attached).

Exploding boxes have been a huge success in the machine cutting\papercrafting world. If you’ve always wanted to try one for yourself, here’s one in fabric form.

If you have fabric scraps that you’re saving for just the right project, this coin purse may just be it.

My aunt recently stitched up some gifts for a baby shower which included a set of homemade baby bibs (this version has a great side snap).

Fabric panels can be tricky to figure out how to use. I love the idea of transforming them into body pillows (and especially love that this one glows in the dark).

I’m sort of out of the loop on kid’s shows lately, but I do know Bluey is a huge hit. Here’s how to make your child a Bluey (or Bingo – same pattern, different colors and spots) costume for Halloween.

If you’re looking for a unique way to upcycle jeans, check out this beautiful autumn leaf pillow. If does use a cutting machine, but could definitely be made without one.

Get cozy this fall with a sherpa and flannel blanket. Looking for something a little more luxurious? Be sure to check out this leather and fleece version that folds up into a pillow too!