Saturday, February 25, 2012

Purchases at San Mateo Sewing and Craft Show

Usually when I buy stuff at a show I leave it out on the family table for a week or so to admire and remind myself what I got.  I like blogging about it, better.  I can describe why I like it, feel content that I bought it, put it away, remind myself of it when I re-read my blog, recall what I intended to use it for or with, and know where I got it should I want to buy more.  Blogging about it expands the pleasure and makes the money spent feel like it went a lot farther!

Here are pictures of all the fabric and notions I bought yesterday.  In keeping with my penchant for dots I got these three fat quarters from Fabric Chicks from NV. The picture does not do the funky color combination justice.  The yellow is quite stale egg yolk eerie and the olive has a slimy tone to it. Yes, this is good. This evokes a definite aura.  It will be good for Halloween or monsters.

There is a vendor called A Quilter's Dream out of San Dimas, CA who does incredible pattern designs.  I have bought some of hers before. They are straight forward and simple to make, but I love the whacky, asymmetric, quirkiness of them.  I bought these three yesterday. From left to right they are called Dash in the Box, A-Mazed, and The Space Between.  The quilt samples made from them on display are generally in earth tones or have a painted desert flavor but I can envision them in brights or monochromatic of a particular color family.

The woman from A Quilter's Dream also has a very artsy way of displaying her fabric; she folds it into equilateral triangles where the raw edges all tucked in neatly.  I will agree that presentation is everything (almost), and admit that the display suckers me in (somewhat).  These triangles are 1/2 yard cuts that I bought, not to go with each other but just because I like the level of color saturation in each.  I usually am not into such graphic prints, but this particular paisley combination called to me.  And when have you ever seen butterflies in such a muted neutral? Very different I thought.  Hmm- maybe they are moths? Still, moths are unusual, too.

The next 1-yard cuts I bought from A Rabbit Hole out of Chico, CA.  I will admit the initial allure was the price- $6 a yard for good quality cotton, when around here the prices are $11-$12. The vendor said she was doing this pricing at the show because she wanted to attract a lot of customers to see the versatility of her shop.  There was quite a variety she displayed in this manner, rather than transporting full bolts of a narrower selection to the show. I replenished my "reads-like-a-solid" pinks and oranges with these, all nicely tied with raffia string you see.

The Alice in Wonderland print was too cute and girly-colored to pass up and I thought the martial arts print was boyishly unique. I have slated both prints for potential pillowcases, one of my simple projects I am becoming addicted to. I could not pass up her beige dots, my "signature".

The raffia tied rolls to the right, also from the Rabbit Hole, are potential binding fabrics since I like to use stripes for that purpose.  The ship print on the left was a purchase my husband liked from Quilters Cove.  I will make him a pillowcase out of it.  The main fabric will be cut 36" long for a king size case instead of the normal 27" long for a regular pillowcase.  I may go for a deep blue border with a charcoal grey accent strip or vice versa.  Maybe I will come across an ocean waves or clouds mini-print for the border.  A narrow black/white pin stripe might also pick up the delicate ink lines of the sails.

One of my favorite vendors at these shows is Laurel Leaf.   I think I just must like the taste of the buyer.  Here I bought a packet of eight fat quarters, sea prints in saturated blue and green tones with an occasional splash of hot pink for the kelp. Of course I love the presentation again, all wrapped up with a sheer deep blue organza bow.

And here are the fabrics laid out separately to see the selection.  My favorite is the seahorse and surprisingly pink kelp. Hmm - those bubbles or deep blue may get confiscated for the ship pillowcase.

I also bought the cutest panel, designed to be a soft cover book but I may make a quilt out of it.  The pudgy baby bunny and fuzzy duckling look so whimsical - ya just wanna squoonch 'em!

Here are some close ups of the frog, bunny, duckling, bear, and puppy. Don't ya jus' love the red flippers on the frog? 

A wall hanging panel was also included but it does not float my boat. It will not be part of the quilt or book. It is 10 inches wide by 14 inches tall and would need surrounding blocks or borders to make a decent size quilt, even for a baby.

These two random fat quarters were also from the Laurel Leaf.  (I did say it was a favorite vendor of mine.)  I continue to gather pink for an upcoming baby quilt for my grand-niece. This season's pink seems to be more of the coral tone so when I see a pure pink I snatch it up. The mottled green was bright and cheery and again I have a weakness for the unusual- green hummingbirds.

My husband is into model trains and he has an attraction to rows of houses so this firehouse lengthwise print from Bear Paw Quilts in Lake Stevens, WA caught his eye. He may want to run it along the wall behind his train layout. It is so nice to have my husband willing to come to these shows with me. I think he enjoys seeing me happy and I can point to at least a small percentage of the purchases instigated by him.

I also bought a panel of a coordinating set of scenes of firemen, if not for my husband's trains, then perhaps for my son-in law, a former fireman.  I do like the rich brown stone color. It is unusual since fireman prints are usually associated with black.

I bought two fat quarters for only $1 each from Sew Blessed. I picked the red/white swirly print and the multi-striped and when I went to pay was told if I bought two, I got a third free. I added the two tone green/teal. I was pleased and surprised on closer look at home that the swirly red/white print was actually swordfish. How unusual- red fish!  (One fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish... sorry, Dr Suess, got distracted.) Maybe I should plan a quilt of anomalies - beige butterflies, green hummingbirds, and red swordfish- and look for additions to this day's purchases?

I attended a seminar in the upon first arrival from a vendor, Quilters Haven, website The teacher showed a technique for Less Than Traditional quilts that made table runners, quilts etc. from circles with four edges folded over to make squares and then joined. The technique was interesting but I did not buy any of the starter sets because I thought I would tire of it.  A women at the seminar, though, said she had bought the set in all three sizes and it was addictive. I figure right now I have enough addiction with pillowcases and burp cloths and spiral table runners, all patterns I have used more than once. The vendor also demo'd a bunch of notions, however. Many that were demonstrated seemed worthy of purchase and here they are: 
  • a yellow magnetic wand to pick up straight pins and needles
    • a marker pencil with a very fine white "chalk line", so fine your sewing lines cover it, and just to the right, green refills for fine lines on light fabrics
    • a pencil sharpener that makes a fat stubby point, not a long slender one so marker points do not break when you press on them
    • "thread heaven", a substance that keeps thread from tangling when hand sewing and leaves no stain on the fabric
    • "that purple thang" for rolling inside seams, for directed fine work under pressure foot, for grabbing pulled up bobbin thread, etc.

    And finally, before heading home, and I almost forgot, I bought a crib size roll of bamboo batting for my daughter's gift projects and a twin size package of bamboo batting for the doll quilt. Whew, a lot of purchases. But in looking at them all again, I have no regrets.  And I can look at them over and over again by reading my blog- no fuss, no mess!


    1. Great finds! Personally I think my favorites are the green hummingbirds and the rainbow fish (actually is there a designer/collection name on the selvage of that fish one? Just curious), and I think that bubbly pink is the same pink I used in Ellie Fun, so... great minds think alike I also have the same white Bohin marker, although I haven't done anything with mine yet, and I bought it at a quilt show last summer.

    2. As you know, I'm not into quilting, crafting, or fabrics, but for what it's worth, I really do like the idea of the fabric baby book. A baby (I'm imagining) could have too many quilts, but never too many books!

      Your husband is amazing to go to these quilt shows with you! Dan and I have found a very happy medium where I participate in my activities and he in his and neither one of us feels any desire to involve the other. For us, though, this is definitely best. If Dan came along with me on my 7-mile run yesterday, which I thoroughly enjoyed, he would have been miserable and made me miserable in the process. And if I hung out and watched "Grey's" or UFC with him, I would have hated it and made him miserable with all of my questions. Hopefully, though, after many more years of marriage, we'll have some more tolerance or interest in each other's individual activities - ha!

    3. Those patterns are amazing. You are really making me want to get back to quilting. I got as far as setting up my machine in the guest room yesterday - so I guess that's progress. Since moving, I don't have a dedicated space for sewing any longer, but I think I can make this work - we rarely have guests.

      Thanks for the inspiration!