Sunday, February 28, 2016

Two by Two......

Two by Two.

It started with this Double Rainbow late Thursday.

Then these two rascals were born on Friday.

Then these two sweethearts were born Saturday,

Then these adorable Twin Sisters were born today!

Not to mention my new Two Block Patchwork of the Crosses Easter kit!

A fun but exhausting few days! Have a great week everyone. It looks like I will definitely have my hands full for a while!
   Don't forget this coming Saturday, March 5th is our next Sew Simple Saturday! I haven't had time for a project but hope to have one ready to link up!

Also our next Patchwork of the Crosses Mystery Blocks AND our New Hexagon kits for March should be available on Friday March 4th!!!!

  Wish me luck! I think I need it this week!

 Thank you for stopping by!
Happy Stitching
xo jan

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Patchwork of the Crosses

A fun little recap:
 I think I have a definite love for English Paper Piecing, especially Patchwork of the Crosses. Looking back over the last two years at the hundreds of blocks that I have designed, I discovered that I also love making them into table runners like my St. Paddy's Day one I am currently working on.

 There was my Valentine's Day Runner I designed for my ETSY shop:

My Thanksgiving Runner :

My 6 Block Christmas kit: I want to use mine as a runner and make a few more to go with these as placemats:

And it all started with my first block, which is still my favorite block,  my Easter block:

   I am working on some Bunny love for Easter too! And I want to make a Spring runner and a 4th of July runner and a Halloween runner and .............................
  I just don't think that my love affair with Patchwork of the Crosses is ever going to end.
      But most of all, I LOVE sharing English Paper Piecing and Patchwork of the Crosses with others! Such joy in taking a needle, paper, fabric and thread and creating something from your heart!

    Thank you for stopping by for this fun little recap! And don't forget to be working on those Little Dresses, Boy shorts and Sanitary Pads for Africa! Out link up party will be May 7th! You can read more about the linky party and find pattern links by clicking here!  We will be having sponsors like Aurifil  and Fat Quarter shop! 

Spring is almost here!
Happy Stitching everyone!
xo Jan

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Little Dresses for Africa 2016 Sew Along!

  In 2013 I heard about a not for profit organization called "Little Dresses for Africa".

Here is a little information about this organization from their website:

About LDfA

Little Dresses for Africa, founded in 2008 by  Rachel O’Neill is a registered  non-profit 501c3 Christian organization. Our mission is to provide relief to vulnerable children throughout the Continent of Africa and beyond.  Volunteers from all over the world join together to make little dresses out of pillow cases or other simple patterns. Some sew. Some donate. Some go to Africa, and some send others. Little Dresses for Africa sends the donated dresses through misions teams, mails them directly to verified communities and takes them personally with their short term teams.   Your donations are distributed through orphanages, churches, and schools.  Together, we can make a difference.
How We Make a Difference-
Because of the widespread AIDS pandemic, and other disease, little girls are often left to be the primary care givers of their young siblings. The road is especially tough for little girls and women. It is our hope that in delivering dresses to these young girls, that a seed will be planted in their hearts, in the name of Jesus, that they are worthy.  We plant the seeds; God sends the harvest.
It’s more than just a dress! 
Although clothing is needed, these  little dresses are so much more.  They go as little Ambassadors into the homes and villages where we are able to teach simple lessons clean water, and sanitation and to promote good  health and family skills knowledge. As relationships are formed we are able to identify other needs that can be met through your generosity.
Who Is Making the Difference?
Simply stated… you are! We believe that most people want to help others less fortunate than themselves. They just need to know how!  Lives are changed here and across the ocean as we join together to help others.  Whether you sew or not, this ministry has something for you!  You can sew independently or form a group to sew.
After reading more about the organization AND seeing all the beautiful photos of the children , I knew it was something I had to participate in. In 2013 I made my first 10 little pillowcase dresses. Then last year I decided, with 2 weeks to spare, to host a linky party with prizes to encourage people to make a few dresses and link up! This is a photo of the 10 Little Dresses I made last year!.
I am once again hosting a LDFA Linky Party for 2016. Boy shorts and Sanitary pads are also desperately needed. Did you know that the girls cannot attend school during their monthly periods because they do not have sanitary pads!!!  
 Here are 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 the alot of 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? . We will have sponsors, to be announced, with prizes for linking up. But the greatest gift is knowing that YOU made a difference in a child's life! 
 Last year, we just missed having our Dresses taken by a local Missionary group going to Haiti. SO I am moving up the date for the Sew Along this year to May 7th! The first Saturday in May. I hope to send my Dresses/ Sanitary Pads and /or Boy Shorts with a local group this year. That way I can spend more on fabric to make the Dresses. 
I will be posting more information as the time draws closer. But you can start sewing at any time! When I find out definite dates for the Missionary groups I will post that information.  Please help spread the word through your blog, facebook, twitter, instagram and with your sewing friends and groups. 
 I created a Blog Button that you can share on your blog and blog posts. Just copy the code over on the right sidebar under the photo for 2016! 

I am so excited about getting a jump start on this years Dresses. Last year I played around with the Decorative Stitches on my machine with some Aurifil thread on the bias tape. I think it looked really cute! 

Please let me know if you have any questions! I can't wait to see the parade of Little dresses and Shorts on May 7th!! ! So gather your friends and fabrics and have a great time stitching!
  I love the Little Dresses for Africas' motto: "

"We're not just sending dresses, We're sending Hope!

I want to say a special Thank You to Patty at Elm Street Quilts for including our LDFA Sew Along 2016 as part of her HUGS project! If you have a moment, be sure to stop by Elm Street Quilts and read more about HUGS! 

Thank you for stopping by everyone! I hope to see ya'll linking up those adorable dresses, pads and shorts in May! Watch this blog for more information about our sponsors and possible Missionary trips!

Happy Stitching!
Thank you for stopping by!
xo Jan

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Lucky me and Patchwork of the Crosses!

     February has been a very lucky month for me! Recently, my friend Patty at Elm Street Quilts had a One Word 2016 Linky Party. I chose my word: "Grow",  made a mini and linked! I won the most adorable gift! Chalklots Placemats!

      What lots? Chalk Lots! These are just too adorable. There are four Chalkboard Placemats. And they are big too. Approximately 12x16. At first I thought "these are really adorable, but I don't have small children!" 
  Then I thought these would be cute to just write each persons name across the top, like a placecard/placemat combo. Adorable! Then the phone rang and my hubby started reeling off things that he needed. I grabbed a piece of chalk and made that list. Then I carried two into my sewing room and made a couple of lists there.

  Yeah! I am always forgetting thread colors that I need to purchase, those went on the list! And some other notions and stuff I need to pick up. Those things went on the list. Including more Chalk! This is fun!  I LOVE the size. Easy to carry around and they do not take up much space. I think these would be fantastic for children.  They are easy to clean up also.  I need some more Chalk Lots Placemats. I would like to have one in the kitchen and another by the telephone. And maybe even one out at the barn!
  Thank you Patty and Chalk Lots! I really love my fantastic prize. What a great idea. AND they are made in the USA!!!!!You can find your very own Chalk Lots here! I am not affiliated in any way other than I won this prize, love it and wanted to share.

  My second Lucky Streak came after I entered a giveaway I saw on facebook. Many of you know that I am an avid reader. If I don't have a needle in my hand then I have a book in my hand. And sometimes, I have an audio book on while I am sewing. I love all types of books. Fiction and Non fiction. One of my favorite light reading authors is Shelley Shepard Gray. I love reading her Amish
stories. She was hosting a little giveaway to celebrate her new series : The Charmed Amish Life and I won a sweet little package:

  This little book bag is so cute and I am going to share my extra bookmarks with my local library! I love the  recipes in the Book Club Recipe Booklet.They all sound Yummy!  I can't wait to read Book One of the series : A Son's Vow. So thank you Shelley Shepard Gray! Such a sweet surprise!

  Things have been really busy in the ETSY shop this past week. I wanted to say a huge THANK YOU to all my customers! I really appreciate your business. I also have a new block that I have enjoyed playing around with. I can't make up my mind which layout I like best.:

I think maybe the first one? Or the fourth one?  Which one do you prefer? I think maybe the first one.
 Happy Valentine's Day dear readers. Hubby will not be home until tonight. I hope he likes his hand warmers. They were fun to make!
  Our next Sew Simple Saturday will be March 5th! I have a beautiful Aurifil 40 wt Thread Collection and a Gift Certificate from the Fat Quarter Shop plus a charm pack giveaway from Featherweight Quilt Company! SO be sure to get your project ready to link up!
Have a wonderful week!
Thank you for stopping by!
 xo Jan

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Sew Simple Saturday February Winners!

Hi everyone! We have been having some snowy and icy weather today and lots of computer problems to boot! Thank you to everyone for linking up their projects, tips and tutorials! I really enjoyed reading everyone's link up! And thank you for the kind comments on my sweet Hand Warmers!

      So without further ado, before I loose internet service again,  I quickly picked 3 winners out of my hubby's hat so here we go:

The winner of the Aurifil 4 Large spools of 50 wt is:
Pat at Life in the Scrapatch!

The winner of the Fat Quarter SHop gift Certificate is :
Wendy of Wehago Designs

The winner of the Featherweight Quilt Company Hexagon kit is:
Danette of Danette 001

A special THANK YOU to our fabulous sponsors at Aurifil and the Fat Quarter SHop! 

Thank you everyone for linking up! Our next Sew Simple Saturday will be on Saturday March 5th!
Happy Stitching ya'll!
xoxoxoxoxoxo Jan

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Hugs and Kisses Valentine Hand Warmers!

Welcome!! I have a fun and easy Valentine Project that I would like to share with you!

  X's and O's Hand Warmers!

Aren't these just too cute? I made these for my handsome farmer, hubby dude for Valentine's Day! Now he can carry a warm hug and kiss around with him in this cold and windy weather!  This is such a fun and easy project. I want to make several more pairs before Valentines Day!

Here's what you need to make your own pair of Hand Warmer's:

4 pieces of Muslin 3" x 4"
4 pieces Outer Fabric 3 1/2" x 3"
2 pieces Outer Fabric 3 1/2" x 4 1/2"
Matching Aurifil Thread - I used both 50 wt and 12 wt.
1/4 cup white rice
A small funnel
Hand Sewing Needle
X and O Applique - 2" -  (These are iron on's from Joann's Fabric or you can make your own )
Sewing Machine

Sew two pieces of the Muslin together leaving an opening large enough for your funnel tip and for turning. Trim corners and turn right sides out. Press well.

Using your funnel, fill with about half of the rice.

Whip stitch or ladder stitch the opening closed.

Now let's make the cover!

Center your Applique piece onto one of the  3 1/2" x 4 1/2" outer pieces of fabric: I ironed mine on and then sewed around the edges on the machine: (I just love the pillow ticking fabric with the Chevron letters)

Next hem ONE end of TWO of the 3 1/2" x 3" pieces of fabric;
Lay these RIGHT SIDES together on the appliqued piece overlapping the hemmed ends in the middle back and sew all the way around, backtacking at the opening:

Trim corners, turn right sides out and press. Pop your hand warmer into the microwave for 20 seconds then insert your warm Rice filled Hand Warmer into the cover! ! Repeat all steps for the second Hand Warmer and Cover!

These are sew much fun to make. The covers can be removed and laundered!  And you can make several covers for each set of hand warmers!! I want to make the hubby another set of covers with flannel and another set for St Patrick's Day with a Four Leaf Clover on the front ! Who couldn't use some Good Luck in their pocket??  You can also adjust the sizes for children or adults.

I hope that you enjoyed this fun and easy tutorial! I would love to see photos if you make some! Be sure and share on my facebook page.
xo Jan

Monday, February 1, 2016

In Our Garden Block of the Month Blog Hop!

 Happy February everyone! Today starts the In OUR Garden Block of the Month Blog hop! I've have been anxiously anticipating our first month of free blocks! Amy of Sew Incredibly Crazy is our host and she has started off this free block of month blog hop with a hopping good time!

Eeeeeek!!! Aren't her blocks just too stinkin' cute?? I love these.

  You can hop over to Amy's blog for the Patterns that will be FREE during the month of February!
Be sure to sew along with us as we make this Incredibly cute Garden themed quilt. We would also love to invite you to join in with our facebook group here!

You can read Amy's post and enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway here!

These are just so adorable! I can't wait to get started sewing along!
Here is a list of all the Blogger and months coming up!
Carol – Just Let Me Quilt
Amy – Sew Incredibly Crazy– Final Blocks and wrap up

And remember this coming Saturday, February 6th is our next Sew Simple Saturday! 

Do you have a tip, technique or tutorial that you would like to share? If so, then drop by Saturday and link up for your chance to win one of the great prizes being offered by our sponsors! 
Happy Stitching everyone! 
xo jan