So the "Scissor Guy"is making his monthly visit to our shop on August 31. He sharpens scissors, knives, and rotary blades for a small fee. You may drop off as many of these items as you'd like between now and his visit. We'll tag them, he'll sharpen them on the 31st and you can come pick them up thereafter! Oh! but, wait what is the freebie you might be saying? The freebie is for each person who drops off items for sharpening we'll give you a free fat quarter of your choosing- note this is one per person not one per scissor! Just a little way to say thanks for supporting our business and our Scissor Guy! 108 Commerce Street, Tomball 281-516-7515 Open 7 days a week!!
Everywhere I have been looking lately I have seen ruffles. Some folks have a great little sewing machine accessory called a "Ruffling Foot" and they use them with great effect to embellish clothes, home decor, toys and quilts. I have never gotten around to buying the particular foot my machine needs to make these because they are a bit pricey but, I have made ruffles without it. Now I know you might be thinking-- I hate to do all the gathering and then the thread breaks and it is so frustrating right? Not anymore! Check out my nifty ruffling trick. First calculate the length of ruffle you'll need. Generally if you double this length it will give you a decent ruffle. For my project I measured the perimeter of my pillow ( add up the length of all four sides). Then I doubled this number. My pillow measured 68" around so I needed 136" of fabric for the ruffle.
Next determine the height you want your ruffle to be. I actually want to do a double ruffle one slightly shorter than the other. I want my shorter ruffle to be about 1.5" tall. So I take 1.5" and double it ( now we have 3") and add 1" for seam allowance so I make my cuts 4" each. Three cuts 4"x WOF will give me 132 inches approximately which is close enough for me to my target 136" so I am going with that. My second border needs to be a bit taller (2.5" tall) so I cut 3 -six inch strips X WOF to achieve this ( this works out to exactly 1/2 a yard of fabric for this outer border). I point this out because it is very easy to underestimate the amount of fabric you'll need for a ruffle when purchasing it.
Sew your shorter ruffle strips together end to end with a 1/4" seam allowance ( Wrong Sides Together).
Press seams open.
Next turn your ends under and topstitch to finish the ends cleanly. You can also sew the ends together and have a circle which gives a nice look but you need to be very careful not to twist it! Next fold your ruffle in half all along its length as shown. Press. Repeat with taller ruffle fabric if you are doing a double ruffle!
Next stack your two ruffles (raw edges together) neatly and baste down the length 1/8" from the raw edges. This will hold the piece together as one and make it easier to deal with. I always prefer a walking foot when sewing long lengths of fabric because it feeds more evenly but, it isn't necessary.
Okay now for the nifty trick: You going to sew a stretched out zig zag stitch down the length of your ruffle on the raw edge side. Set your zigzag stitch as long and wide as it goes on a normal sewing machine. (People with embroidery machines won't go to their maximums just enough for the next part) The tricky part is that you stitch the zig zag over a string of pearl cotton or a piece of dental floss! This is what you will do the gathering on-- much stronger-- less breakage! I did the zig zag inside of the basting so you could easily see it but you could zig zag right over the basting stitches. Note the string of black pearl cotton under the zig zag here.
Now if you feel like you need three hands to do this, don't worry! You can stitch the zig zag and then go back with a big huge needle and run the floss or pearl cotton through the zig zag channel! Either way is fine.
Now you are ready to gather your ruffle to the desired length confidently- knowing that your gathering string will not snap and make you have to start all over again! Just make sure you hold onto both ends of the floss or cotton as you gather or it will slip right on through OR as my problem solving husband suggested- temporarily tie a button on each end of the floss so it can't slip all the way through!
When you reach your target length of ruffle (mine was 68" remember) make a large knot at each end so the length won't stretch out again or you can tie the ends together if you are going all around something with the ruffle. Even out the fullness of your ruffle to your preferred look.
Pin raw edges together to your pillow front. I wanted the yellow border to be in front since it is shorter so I had to lay it face down on the pillow front. Pin generously making sure to overlap your start and finish about an inch if you didn't make the ruffle in a circle.
Straight stitch all around (make sure you change your stitch length to normal not basting!) Use the zig zags tips as your guide- you want to stitch just to the inside of the zig zags so they will not show on the finished pillow. It will be bumpy sewing over all the ruffles but if you have pinned well you'll be okay. Watch your corners- make sure you don't have any of the ruffle tucked in the seam where it shouldn't be. Remove the floss/pearl cotton (and buttons) by cutting the string and pulling through.
Now you just cut a backing the same size as your pillow front panel and sew it on with a 1/2" seam for your pillow (right sides together) leave an opening for flipping it right side out. Turn right side out, stuff, close and wah-lah!
This particular pillow and ruffle are made from Jane Spolar's line called Bliss put out by Northcott fabrics and available at Quilters Crossing in Tomball! I hope this tutorial inspires you to add some ruffles to a project in your future!
One thing we will always have a lot of in the shop are 30's Reproductions fabrics. We have fabrics from several lines and we are also carrying the entire Aunt Grace "Circle of Friends" line put out by Marcus Brothers. This line coordinates with the Circle of Friends Block of the Month (aka-BOM) designed by, Vicki Bellino. The BOM is a 7 month project. At the end you will have made this quilt top.
Beginning in September, the cost is $25 per month which includes a block pattern and fabric kit. We still have spaces available for anyone interested in doing this BOM. There are 2 meeting time options for this each month. We tried to make one to accommodate people who work and one for those who do not. Check the calendar for details. You can just pick up your kit and go or, you can bring your sewing supplies and stay to sew in the classroom with fellow "BOM-ers" and work on your block for a couple of hours. Here is a sneak peek at the fabrics in the project
As I promised on Saturday here are the rest of the class samples.
The first is called "The Cube". This is from the One Block Wonder series if you are familiar with that. This is the third edition with really interesting three dimensional cubes in them. We still have spaces available just check the calender for when it is offered and make a trip to the shop to sign up! This project is even fat quarter friendly!
Next we have a class in Stumpwork which is a combination of ribbon embroidery and thread embroidery with beautiful results! The details are really amazing the sample is hanging in the shop if you would like a closer look.
Again we still have spaces available in the current round of classes so come on in and reserve your spot today!
We are now carrying Masterpiece thread in many many colors on the convenient 600 yard spools. Excellent for piecing and applique! We are still carrying King Tut variegated threads in the 500 yard spools and 2,000 yard cones for quilting. More books, more patterns and more fabrics too! See you soon!
We have been anxiously awaiting the Hungarian Blue line of fabric from Clothworks since we ordered it in June. I was web surfing yesterday and saw it was advertised on the Hancock of Paducah's website and I was *hopeful* that it would arrive today and it DID! In a word they are PRETTY. Deep saturated tones of blue with clean crisp white. Love love love them.
Here are some closer pictures so you can appreciate the detail in the prints
And some more...
Clothworks is providing a free pattern to go along with this line of fabric. Follow this link to their website to download it for your own personal use! We also have a few copies in the shop!
We had a nice group for Quilts of Valor in the shop today. Thank you to all who made it in to donate their time, talent and fabric. As the ladies were heading out for the day their enthusiasm was contagious and they happily welcomed a new customer who was interested willing to help! The group is growing already- how great is that! See everyone again the second Tuesday in September.
Quilters Crossing is proud to host one of the two chapters of North West Houston's, Quilts of Valor. Quilts of Valor ( click on these words to go directly to the QOV website) is an organization that makes and donates quilts to our wounded soldiers.
The second Tuesday of every month from 9:30 until 1:30 Quilts of Valor will be in our classroom making quilts.
Quilts must be a minimum of 55"x 65" and be less than the maximum 72"x 90". They must be made with quilt shop quality fabric and they can be of an Americana theme like the quilt above but do NOT have to be. There are some female soldiers, but most soldiers are male so please consider that when making color/fabric selections.
Quilts of Valor will accept donations of money, fabric, sewing, quilting, thread, batting and labor. If you want to help but do not quilt come and help with pressing, organizing, taking photos, cutting, folding etc... there is plenty to do for anyone of any quilting skill level.
The Quilts of Valor website (www.qovf.org/) has a wealth of information and even has some free quilt patterns to choose from.
Anyone is welcome to come and help, you can come once, twice or every month. We are happy to have you and your sewing machine! If you want to work from home and just bring your completed quilt tops or completed quilts that is fine too.
You may include a letter or journal with your quilt if you wish when you donate but this is not required.
As this is a new chapter of QOV we are really in need of fabric donations at this time. Please consider perusing your stash for any quilt shop quality fabrics you are willing to donate. As I said red, white and blue is always welcome but any fabric that isn't juvenile will do. Black and whites are super, outdoor themes, animals, etc... You can bring donations to the Quilters Crossing at any time not just during the QOV meeting.
Thank you so much and hopefully we'll see you tomorrow!
We had a great day today at the shop with some very enthusiastic customers! It was fantastic to have you all visit, sign up for classes and pick out fabric for your projects. Thank you so much for spending part of your day with us!
For those of you who couldn't make it I took some pictures of most of the class samples. My camera and I had a disagreement so I didn't get a picture everything but here is part one of the classes. To be followed by part two soon ( as in as soon as I get new batteries in my camera!)
If any of these classes interest you check the Quilters Crossing Website for the schedule and come in to the shop to sign up!
Dolores wowed us with this:
A Christmas wallhanging sampler which uses Shiva paint sticks on black fabric. In this class you will learn how to use the Star Builder stamp set with the paintsticks and the Holiday rubbing plates set. The metallic paint sticks really set this off and the fairy frost fabric in the sashing and binding are perfect!
Next Dolores is offering "Frames", put out by the Maple Island pattern company, which is a great little pattern for someone just getting into quilting or who needs a refresher, a quick project or something quick to whip up as a gift.
Dolores is a trained textile surface designer so with a little arm twisting we convinced her to offer a class called Fabric Bling! This course will meet several times and each time you will learn a new technique which has to do with manipulating your fabric. If you are interested in art quilting, embellishment or just exploring ways to take your quilts to the next level this will be a great place to start! It will be a smorgasbord of new ideas.
She is also offering the One Block Wonder Encore class on The Cube. (pictures coming I promise!)
Next we have Kathy who is offering 2 classes, the first if Beginner Applique using the pattern Jacobean Rhapsody. Her stunning sample is shown below.
Kathy is also offering a class on Stumpwork which combines ribbon embroidery with a little beading and embellishment. Her exquisite samples really stood out today, my camera however...well the pictures are coming soon.
Margaret is offering a few classes, here are some pictures of her samples:
The X-block. This class uses just 3 fabrics for the quilt top. Good for beginners.
The next picture is her sample from the Fat Quarter Cut-Ups book. For this class you all work together on this pattern and then from the same pattern book you'll choose a second quilt to work through with Margaret helping you each step of the way!- 2 quilt tops in this 2 part class!
Margaret is also teaching a beginner machine quilting class which uses a large piece of muslin to practice your machine quilting skills on your home sewing machine so you can quilt all those beautiful tops you make!
Check for classes on Paper piecing also being offered.
Remember we are open 7 days a week so if you missed out today come on in and sign up as soon as you can. Spaces are limited.
Thanks again for making today such a great day! We hope you have as much fun at the shop as we do!
The classroom is full of beautiful samples made by our teachers from 9:30 til noon! You can sign up for classes, pick up your supply list, buy supplies ( for 15% off)! Lots to choose from Beginner Piecing and Quilting, Beginner Applique, One Block Wonder Encore!, Fabric Bling ( embellishing fabrics), X blocks etc...
Also new in the shop...
Pretty Bird-- here is a picture of all of them! They are so cute we framed some of them!
And if you are looking for some texture- look at this neat collection...
Stop in and check it out! If you can't make it today you can sign up for classes any time from now on! See you soon.
Remember we'll be open late Friday to join in the Tomball night festivities. There is a band near the shop, vendors etc... Come and walk around should be a nice evening, check out our fabrics, and THEN come back Saturday morning to sign up for classes, Circle of Friends block-of-the-month (out of 30's reproductions), see the beautiful sample quilts our teachers have made. Supplies for classes will be 15% off! Don't forget to bring your date book so you can sign up right there- spaces are limited.
With the dog days of summer coming to an end isn't it a great time to start a new project or a get a jump start on Christmas gifts?
Just in from Michael Miller is the red color way of the Pretty Bird fabric line. Thanks to a friend and customer, we heard about this line and ordered it right away. We also ordered and received more Fairy Frosts, due to their popularity in the shop. Come check them out. We are open 7 days a week at 108 Commerce St. Tomball Texas.
Also don't forget about our open house Saturday 9:30-Noon where you can sign up for classes, see the pretty finished quilts and "shmooze" with other quilters!