Friday, August 15, 2014

UPDATE: NEW Quilter's GIVEAWAY! $35.00 Gift Certificate!

Quilter's Giveaway!  You know you love them!  Fat Quarter Shop!
To win the $35.00 Gift Certificate all you have to do is "Like" our facebook page at , leave a comment on the post for the drawing and SHARE with your friends!  As soon as we reach 700 "Likes" we will hold the drawing for the gift certificate.  The more you SHARE the faster we get there!  Nothing to purchase ever!  Good Luck! 

Be sure to also enter our Monthly Quilter's Tool Drawing.  This month we are featuring the HST Stencil by Sunday Best Quiltworks.  

Enjoy this Video Tutorial showing how to use the stencil.

To enter that drawing, you must locate the post of the video tutorial on our Facebook page, it's always at the first of the month, so look through the postings, scroll waaaaay back and you will find it. Leave a COMMENT and SHARE the post with your friends. Nothing to purchase ever!  The Winner will get to select the stencil size they would like to receive.  I will be posting about this tool later in the weekend.  I've been playing with it this morning and having a ball!  QUICK and EASY with PERFECT result!

* Update:  Facebook has been having some challenges the past month or so, seems many of our posts have dropped off into never never land.  So, I have reposted the drawing for the stencil.  If you entered before, please re-comment, or leave a post here on my blog and I will count them in the drawing.  Thank you for your patience, I'm sure Facebook will get things straightened out eventually.

Each month, new drawings, new giveaways!  

Burning Man and The Los Angeles Garment District

Taken from the parking lot (yes that's right) at Home Depot in LA

This past weekend I flew to Los Angeles to visit my son and help him out with some costuming for the upcoming Burning Man festivities which will be held in the Black Rock Desert the end of August.  He also wanted some help picking out a sewing machine that would accommodate a pretty broad range of fabrics and threads.

It was sunset in Sacramento when boarded my plane and started the short trek to LA after working all day in the office.  Got to Andrew's house and pretty much hit the sack right away so we would be ready to make it a productive weekend.  Lot's on the agenda!  Number one on the list was a drive to North Hills to pick out a sewing machine.   Traffic wasn't too bad driving out.  It was the coming back part that was slow.  

We tried out several machines and he landed on the Bernina 530.  What a delightful machine.  Everything you need and then some without getting crazy.  He could hardly wait to get it home and get cracking.  Yes, that is my son sewing!  Last Christmas I bought him a Singer to start out on.  Learn to sew, see if you like it, you can always upgrade.  He did, He did and He did.  

I don't want to be a bragging mother but he has tackled things that I would not have dreamed of as someone learning to sew.  He doesn't know any different so he's just going along, asking questions or reading a book or watching a youtube tutorial...and he's got the hang of it.  Sewing on fur, silks, velvets, metallic knits, stretch fabrics, slippery name it, he is going for it.  I'm impressed with his results.

After a day of shopping for machines and getting some trial runs in on it, we planned our next morning at the Los Angeles Garment District to find some unusual fabrics for his costumes and basically just look around and have fun. (you know I'm scouting quilt fabric)

We are on our way!  I can see the high rises of downtown LA
and we are not far from the garment district now!  It's early, we have time to find a good parking spot and start scouting.  My suggestion is to park in one of the lots for $8.00 all day, rather than feed a meter at $4.00/hour.

This place will start to come alive shortly.  The stalls will open their doors and start putting out their fabrics.  Everything from Silks, bejewelled brocades, satins, the finest dressmaking materials, to fake furs, home dec fabrics, drapery fabrics, battings, notions, leathers, vinyls, you name it, it's all here.  They even have basic cotton quilting fabrics.  

Prices vary, bring cash if you want to haggle price, many of the shops will do that.  Most will take debit or credit cards.  There is little or no air conditioning so wear cool clothing, bring a bottle of water and a snack in your bag and VERY comfortable shoes, you will be doing a lot of walking.  The garment district stretches out over several blocks in all directions.

If you are looking for a glamorous shopping experience, this is not for you.  More like shopping stalls in Mexico or Thailand or Hong Kong.  There are people of all ethnicities, it's a melting pot of humanity and textiles from all over the world.   If shopping at the bazaar and digging for bargains floats your boat, then this is a must for you. 

I did find a shop that had a large selection of current quilt shop grade fabrics.  Michael Levine's located at 920 Maple Avenue, just off East 9th Street.  

Nice Selection of Kaffe Fassett and Philip Jacobs at good prices

Amy Butler

Moda French General

Designer vinyls

Every major designer was represented, along with an extensive selection of batiks and notions.

I did not find their notions to be any cheaper than any of the major chain outlets.  But the fabric was about $2-5/ yard cheaper.  And they have several sales tables that are real bargains!

We took a walk a couple blocks over to Ace Sewing Machine to get our notions.  They are located 214 East 8th Street.  Grab a basket when you walk in, you're gonna get something!

Serger thread, specialty thread, zippers, rulers, markers, special reinforcing paper for embroidery, pins, needles, chalk, it's all here. Great prices!

So after a couple hours of traipsing around the garment district, it was off to sew!

Several fittings on the mannequin.

Some parts from the auto store and home depot...

There will be more spray paint, some dremel work, more fittings and elastic, a belt creation, some lighting and of course the shoulder pads.  This should be fun, can't wait to see the photos.

After a weekend of much back and forth on the freeways of Los Angeles, on Sunday we enjoyed our day and took a walk around the lake at Echo Park.  The water lilies were beautiful.

Sadly it was time for me to get back on the plane and head for home, work tomorrow.  It was enjoyable to see my son, fun to spend the weekend puzzling out the costume and great fun for me watching him sew on his new Bernina!

Who knew you could jam so many people into one area?  Nice to be heading back to the forest!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Christmas In July - The Links to The Tutorials

As promised, here is a listing of all of the links for Christmas In July from our Facebook Page.  Lots of great ideas and inspiration here, plenty of time to knock out your gift list!  Imagine great Christmas Fabrics in some of these projects.  Many are great year round gifts. Most are quick and easy. If you have a tutorial you would like to share or a link to a great page, please leave a comment below this post.  Dig out your scrap basket and let's get our Christmas Gifting done!

How To Make Hexi's Video Tutorial by Amanda Rolfe

Patchwork Pin Cushion Video Tutorial by The Crafty Miss

String Stars Table Runner by The Sewing Chick

Quilted Christmas Ornaments by Angie Janca

This by Thimble Ana

More fun with Envelopes...Advent Calendars?

And our little inspirational post would not be complete without some gift wrapping ideas...I love this post...

The Vintage Home   Lots of ideas on this post be sure to take a peek!

Tip Junkie  Lots of ideas here too

Hope you enjoyed our post.  If you have links you love with great Christmas tutorials or ideas, please leave them in the comments below, we'd love to see them!

Remember to come visit us on Facebook at

Be sure to enter our Monthly Drawings for "Quilter's Tools" and our "Likes" Giveaways on our Facebook page.