Monday, July 24, 2017

"Crystalia" 2016 Hoffman Challenge Traveling Exhibits

Hi everyone! 
   This past weekend we took a little road trip for my birthday up to historic Jonesborough, Tennessee Vistor's Center & Emporium to see two of the 2016 "Crystalia" Hoffman Challenge Trunk shows that are on exhibit there until the end of the month.

The venue was gorgeous and they really had a very nice display set up for the Quilts Trunk "H" and Clothing and Accessories trunk B.  My little quilt " A Wing and A Prayer" was included in the exhibit. 
It was really nice to see it again since it has been travelling the country for almost a year now. It will come home late September 2017. 

The entire exhibit was really pretty set up together throughout the Visitor's Center. I know most of the entrants do not have the opportunity to see their item(s) on exhibit so here are lots of photos in no particular order. I believe these are all from Quilts Trunk H and Clothing/Accessories Trunk B. 

 A Wing and A Prayer is hiding behind that cabinet door.

The bottom two photos were taken by my BFF Debbie  when she visited the area a couple of weeks ago. Aren't these all just gorgeous. The Jackets are beautiful. I think one of the jackets won 2nd place in the clothing category. It was really fun to see how the Hoffman Challenge fabric "Crystalia" was used in so many different ways! If you get the opportunity to see one the Hoffman Challenge Trunk shows I highly recommend it. You can find a list of the 2016 Hoffman Challenge Crystalia Trunks here:

and the locations and dates of the Trunk Shows here: 

We really had a fantastic but very long trip. We stopped at Fontana Dam on the way home. It was beautiful but the weather was very HOT!

 We spotted lots and lots of Barn Quilts along the way through Tennessee. Hubby was whizzing along so fast I didn't get to photograph those but I did get a map to all the Barn Quilts in that area!

And a fabric panel that even includes some of the Barn quilts that we saw! I think I want to make a lap quilt with it to use on road trips. Maybe even on a Barn Quilt road trip through the Tennessee mountains!

I am super excited that my 2017 Hoffman Challenge Quilt "Hex-plosion" made the semi-finalist of digital online judging and has been sent in for the next round of Judging. Fingers crossed that it gets to travel around the countryside with the 2017 Hoffman Challenge exhibits this year! I will post photos when the Judging is completed.
  Thank you all for stopping by!
 Be sure to get out and see some of the amazing Hoffman Challenge Exhibits. Locations and dates in the links above.
Happy Quilting friends!
xo Jan

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Little Dresses for Africa 2017 Sew Along Winners!

  Woohoo! Thank you everyone that participated in this years Little Dresses for Africa Sew Along!
You guys are awesome! We made a total of 33 Dresses and 2 pairs of boy shorts! What a wonderful way to celebrate our Freedoms here in America by helping others in need! I am really proud of each and every one of you that participated! And super thankful for our sponsors, Aurifil and Fat Quarter Shop!    They help make this annual sew along sew much fun!

  Let's pick some winners of the fantastic prizes! So we had 4 prizes and 6 participants! I decided to throw in 2 extra prizes from my ETSY shop, so everyone gets a prize! Yeehaw!!!

First I have 2 Charm packs of "Lovey Dovey" by Riley Blake Designs. The 2 winners are:
Donna Medlin and Jan Newman! Woohoo!

Next I have a $25.00 Gift Certificate to my ETSY shop, Featherweight Quilt Company! The winner of the gift certificate is Pam Sterling! Woohoo!

Next we have a beautiful 10 small spool collection of Aurifil 50 wt thread "It's a Girl" !. This is my go to thread for hand and machine piecing.The winner of the "It's a Girl" Aurifil collection is Nancy Davies! Woohoo!

Next we have a $50.00 Gift Certificate to the Fat Quarter shop! I love the Fat Quarter shop for all of their pre-cuts and modern fabrics! The winner of the gift certificate is Elise Jane Stone! Yeehaw!!

And finally we have a 12 large spool collection of Aurifil 40 wt thread "Sand Dune". These threads are beautiful and I am totally jealous Liz Gray because you are the winner of this gorgeous thread collection! Yay!
Woohoo! Congratulations ladies!  Thank you all for your hard work and for helping a child in need! I will be contacting you for your mailing and/or email addresses! And a special THANK YOU to the Fat Quarter Shop and Aurifil for their generosity and support! Be sure to visit both on their facebook pages and let them know how much we appreciate their generosity!
  And remember Little Dresses for Africa accepts dresses and shorts all year around so if you didn't get to participate in this years sew along you can still help a child in need. You can find all the details of their program here!
Thank you everyone!
Happy Stitching!
God Bless America today and everyday!
xo jan

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Little Dresses for Africa 2017 Link Up Party!

 Welcome to the 3rd Annual Little Dresses for Africa Sew 

Along Linky Party at Sew and Sow Farm!

 Each summer I like to choose a project to make for 

charity. In 2013, I came across an organization that

makes and collects simple little dresses to help clothe

 children around the world, Little Dresses for Africa! I 

really enjoyed making those first dresses. So this year, I 

decided to do it again and asked for some help from ya'll!

 I also asked some of my sponsors to give us a little 

incentive to Sew - Along! Aurifil and the Fat Quarter 

Shop didn't hesitate and have offered some very nice

prizes along with a prize from my ETSY shop

 Featherweight Quilt Company!! I have the BEST 

sponsors! They are ALWAYS so generous! I have been 

making a few little dresses and have 6 out of my goal of 

10 completed. 

I also reached out to blog and facebook friends and I have already received 28 dresses!

Woohoo! Aren't these just adorable! Way to go ladies! Thank you so much for your help! 

 This year I plan on mailing the dresses that I receive from you all and the ones that I have made directly to Little Dresses for Africa's Headquarters in Brownstown, Mi. 

Also, if you did not get to participate, Little Dresses for Africa accepts items year around. So it is never too late to help a little boy or girl in need! 
I would like to say a HUGE Thank you to our wonderful sponsors.

  Aurifil for two beautiful thread collection prizes! These are simply gorgeous threads!  

And The Fat Quarter shop for their generous Gift Certificate!

And I am offering a $25.00 Gift Certificate to my ETSY shop , Featherweight Quilt Company, for one lucky participant!

 Having prizes for doing what we love is like the icing on a cupcake! It just makes it all a little sweeter!

It's time to link up those Dresses!

1. You must link to a specific and current blog post or face book post. Not just to your homepage.
2. Please visit at least one person before your link and one person after your link. We want to share our sewing and be sure and leave nice comments! We all love receiving comments and encouragement on our efforts! Plus it's a nice way to make new friends!
3. Please take time to visit Aurifl and the Fat Quarter Shop and let them know how much we appreciate their great prizes! You can tell them all about your dresses and /or shorts or just tell them hi! Tell them I said hi too! They are both fantastic and generous companies with superior products!
4. Share, share , share! Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, twitter, blogs.....The more people we have making dresses and shorts, the more children we can help!
5. Be sure to follow up and get your items in the mail if you haven't done so already! 
6. The link up will only remain open until Monday July 3rd, 11:59 pm EST You must add your link before then to be eligible to win one of the prizes! You must link to at least one completed dress or boy shorts. You can still make more after the link up party !

I really want to say THANK YOU to everyone for participating. It really touches my heart how generous our sewing and crafting community is! 

 So let's get this party started! Follow the Linky below to add your photo and links! (click on the "click here to enter")

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Tips for using the Nancy's Notions Pattern for Little Dresses for Africa

Hi everyone!
 I wanted to share a few tips on using my favorite pattern for making simple dresses for the Little Dresses for Africa Sew along. Nancy's Notions has the easiest pattern! And it's free!
click here for pattern!
  As a quilter I have lots of cotton yardage available so I prefer to use yardage instead of pillowcases. Yardage also makes it easy as you use the selvages for the back seam, so no raw edges to worry about!

You can find a full tutorial on the blog here: LDFA Tutorial. But here are a few tips that will speed things along!

On the Nancy's notions pattern you will find the armhole templates as pictured below.  Cut out these templates on the outer most ( XL) line.

Using a piece of thin cardboard, cardstock or plastic, trace around the outside edge of the XL size. Then trim down the pattern to the Large size and trace, then trim down to the Medium and trace and finally trim down to the Small and trace!

Now you have 4 armhole templates!

Find the cutting and sizing information on the pattern:

Write this information along with the elastic lengths and bias tape lengths on each of the 4 templates. Be sure to mark the fold line on the templates also. You can flip over the template for the opposite armhole so no need to make 2 templates of each size :

Now you have all the information handy on each template for each size dress! This really saves lots of time!

 The patterns calls for making a casing for the elastic for the front and back of the dress. I simply cut the length of elastic the required length according to the pattern and using a large or diaper pin I start threading it into the casing. When I get the end of the elastic even with the edge of the casing on the right, I go ahead and stay stitch it so it will not pull all the way through! (see where it is stitched on the right side) Then you can continue to pull the elastic all the way through the casing without the end of the elastic getting lost inside of the casing. Leave the gathers in the middle of the bodice, remove the safety pin and stay stitch the left side. REMEMBER : Leave the gathers in the middle of the bodice until AFTER you finish off the armholes with bias tape.

See how the gathers are away from the armhole making it easier to attach the bias tape.

I use my favorite Aurifil 40wt thread on the bias tape with a decorative stitch! It makes a really fun and cute addition to the simple dresses!

After you have attached the bias tape to both armholes you can evenly distribute the elastic with a gentle tug. Woohoo! Sew simple and fun!

Four down and 6 to go if I reach my goal of 10 Little Dresses! Wish me luck! I hope you will join in the fun and link up with a photo of  your little dresses July 1 thru 3rd!
Happy Stitching!
xo Jan

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Update on Little Dresses for Africa Sew Along!

    Hi everyone! I hope you are gearing up and getting ready for our Little Dresses for Africa Sew Along!. You can find all the details for  this years sew along HERE! 
  I am running a little behind this year but just completed my first Dress for this year!
  I just adore this fabric and try to use some each year. This year I have it in gray and some in Navy. I love the green bias tape ties with the gray! 

 This year we have some amazing prizes being offered by our very generous sponsors Aurifil and Fat Quarter Shop! and I wanted to share a photo of the prizes!
 Aurifil sent two fantastic prizes! First a large 12 spool box of 40 weight Designer collection of "Sand Dune" by Kathy Engle! 

Aren't those colors just gorgeous?? I love Aurifil's 40 wt for both machine piecing and free motion quilting! 
 And Aurifil also sent a a 50 wt 10 small spool collection of "It's A Girl" !
These colors are fantastic! Their 50wt is my favorite machine and hand piecing thread! 
Thank you so much Aurifil for your generous donation!

  We also have 2 Gift Certificates available! Woot! Woot!
First the Fat Quarter Shop is offering a $50.00 Gift Certificate to be used in their fabulous online shop! 

Woohoo! Shopping spree! Thank you Fat Quarter shop for your generousity! 

And I am also offering a $25.00 Gift Certificate to my ETSY shop Featherweight Quilt Company

If you have ever wanted to learn English Paper Piecing this would definitely get you started on that journey! 

 So just to recap - you will have 4 chances to win one of the prizes just by linking up one or more of your home made little dress or boy short. Here are a few of the details regarding the linky party and sew along!

 Below are the patterns for :
1. Pillowcase Dresses from yardage- Please make sure fabric is good quality and not see through. This is the pattern I use. I also pre-washed my fabrics. These dresses have to last and hold up to alot of wearing and washing.Please make sure that all inside raw edges are finished. You can also do a French Seam and enclose raw edges.

2.. Pillow case Dresses from Pillow cases.
4. Boy Shorts - made from T Shirts ( or any drawstring type of shorts will work) 
      Will you sew along with me?  You can make one or ten or more! Any help is greatly appreciated!!
 The link up party will run right here on this blog July 1st through July 3rd, 2017. The winners will be announced on or after July 4th, 2017!! So gather your friends and fabrics and have a great time stitching! Please note to be eligible for the drawings your entries must be made between July 1st 2017 and July 3rd 2017. All dresses and items must be mailed directly to Featherweight Quilt Company at P.O. Box 1715 Chatsworth Georgia 30705 and should be received by July 4th. BE SURE TO PHOTOGRAPH YOUR DRESSES ETC BEFORE MAILING THEM SO THAT YOU WILL HAVE A PHOTO TO LINK UP!  ALL PRIZES WILL BE MAILED/EMAILED ONCE YOUR ITEMS ARE RECEIVED!!!! ALL ITEMS WILL EITHER BE SENT WITH A LOCAL MISSIONARY GROUP OR I WILL MAIL THEM DIRECTLY TO LDFA.