Saturday, November 30, 2013

November Project Finale!

Today is the LAST "official" DAY of our November Project!
There are near 100 donations accounted for in our album right now!!!!!

I anticipate delivery of our donations the second week of December to allow for plenty of time to finish up and get those donations mailed. If you need the mailing address, you can send to me here, 
 Kristy Smith
c/o Echelon Florist
1260 Rocky Hill Road
Knoxville, TN 37919

Email Me if you have any questions at all! Be sure to add a photo of your donation to our November Project Album HERE so we can have a good count of what to expect, and so you can be entered to win one of those fabulous prize packs we are giving away to 2 of our awesome participants! :) 

Thank you all for sewing along and for being a part of the Giving Back efforts of Hopeful Threads!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wishing you and your families a blessed and beautiful Thanksgiving weekend.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

November Project - Gratitude Giveaway!

Gratitude Giveaways are my FAVORITE!!!! 
While I know you don't participate to get stuff, I am so very grateful for the way you all pour your hearts and generosity into our sewing projects each and every month. These little treats are my way of tangibly saying "Thanks!" for all you do for others. 

My friend Sondra at Contemporary Cloth has teamed up with me to create this awesome package of goodies! She has contributed that GORGEOUS bundle of organic fabric from the Safari Sweet collection. The prints are absolutely precious!!! And did I say Organic??? Because it is silky soft!
I've added a current, Winter 2013 copy of Quilter's World magazine, a template cutting set and a Sandy Gervais pattern, making this a gift with all kinds of potential!

Melissa at Sew BitterSweet Designs has created a giveaway bundle all her own to be given away to one of our participants too! Includes pattern, template & charm pack!

I will be randomly selecting 2 winners from the participant photos in our November Project Album HERE on Sunday, December 1, 2013. US Shipping included. (1 bundle from me, 1 bundle from Melissa) If you have been sewing along and would like to have a chance at one of these giveaway bundles, be sure and get your photo in the album! 

Contemporary Cloth Inc. is having a HUGE SALE right now too, so be sure and pop over to see what you might just "need" at a great price! ;) 

And THANK YOU!!!! Thank you for being a part of Hopeful Threads and joining your efforts with mine each month to make a difference by giving back! 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Book Review - Sew Baby / Argyle Quilt

 While at Quilt Market, I came across the Fox Chapel Publishing booth. They had a couple of books I thought would be great for FLUFF Project sewing that I grabbed for my sewing library. I was also given this copy of Sew Baby to use for our Monthly Project sewing and share with you about. 

I decided to make the Argyle Quilt from the book for donation to our November 2013 Project

While I am a very experienced seamstress, I am a complete beginner when it comes to quilting. As in, I've made ONE quilt. :) The instructions and step-by-step photographs the book provided really did make this an easy project, and I had it complete from start to finish in only a few hours. Very pleased!

I chose a Riley Blake pre-cut stacker I had tucked away in my stash for a very long time, which made the whole project that much faster. This is exactly why I most often buy fabric without a specific project in mind and why I love keeping a certain amount on hand.....when the right fabric and pattern meet, it can make for such a fun project! 
 I also had this perfectly coordinating Riley Blake ribbon that made for a very adorable finish! I hope this sweet quilt fits perfectly the little one that receives it. I decided not to add an applique as the pattern included, but there are instructions included for that step in the book as well. 
 I backed it with a cozy flannel that had been donated as "bits of Binkeez" from Binkeez for Comfort and finished with a coordinating package of bias tape. 

This book is packed with all kinds of other wonderful baby sewing projects too! There are soft toys, bibs, burp cloths, hats and of course, the darling little slippers you see on the cover. The slippers alone include 3 different variations, 1 of which is a penguin which might just have to end up in my Lil' Man's stocking next month! ;) TOO CUTE!!! 

As a reminder....I know it's a holiday week and all, but it's also the FINAL WEEK of our November Project! Would love to have you join in and help us love on the babies of the NICU. I am getting so excited about making the special delivery of all of our beautiful handmade blankets & quilts! 

Friday, November 22, 2013

FLUFF DROP! Delivery of stuffed friends for the FLUFF Project

My crew & I were so excited to get to deliver this box of 55 stuffed friends to the Department of Children's Services yesterday! 
A very BIG Thank You to all those that contributed to this overflowing box of fluff! These friends will be on hand to be given to children as they come into foster care or as gifts to those currently in care. 

To learn more about the FLUFF Project, what it's all about and how you can participate, read more HERE.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Ruffle Trimmed Faux Patchwork Baby Blanket Tutorial

I made this sweet little blanket for our November Project and it was such a simple sew that turned out so pretty, I wanted to share with you in case you'd like to give it a try. This is a smaller blanket to accommodate the smaller sizes requested by our NICU. You can use the same method for any size you would like to make though. 

Simply measure 1 yard of fabric and cut in half the full length. 

Now, with my patchwork print pinned to a layer of batting, I began stitching across the patchwork squares to create a quilting effect. You can also stitch length wise to give it a real patchwork feel. I was going to wait and do this step at the end to incorporate the backing fabric into the quilting, but it wanted to bunch up since the borders were already complete, so I left it off.

To make your ruffle trim, I measured 4" x WOF (width of fabric) strips. For the size of blanket I was making, I needed 4 strips. Sew the short ends together to create one long strip. Iron seams open. Then, fold & iron the strip in half with wrong sides together. Now you are ready to ruffle your strip using your ruffling foot or favorite ruffling method, find my favorite HERE.  
Pin your ruffle evenly around the outer edge of your blanket matching up raw edges. Carefully round the ruffle at the corners if you would like your finished blanket to have rounded corners. Stitch or baste ruffle in place.
With right sides of patchwork fabric and backing fabric together, pin your backing in place. Stitch all the way around your blanket, leaving a 6-8" opening at the bottom edge for turning. Trim your seams, especially at the corners and turn your blanket right side out. I have used a soft, coordinating flannel print for the back of mine. 

Neatly push out the edge to make sure all is even. Pin the opening closed. Top-stitch around the entire edge of your blanket being sure to stitch closed the opening left for turning. 

There you have it! A precious little "Ruffle Trimmed Faux Patchwork Baby Blanket" perfect for gift giving or donation!  
 My finished blanket is approximately 24" x 38.5"

If you give it a try, I'd love to see! 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Baby Quilt Tutorial from Sew BitterSweet Designs!

Today, my friend Melissa from Sew BitterSweet Designs has a tutorial to help you make a quick & simple baby quilt using a panel.

Drop by her blog HERE for all the details!

We'd love to have you use this or any of your favorite sewing/quilting tutorials to join us in our giving efforts this month. Find out all about our November Project HERE!

Monday, November 18, 2013

GIVEAWAY! WinchesterLambourne Clip Art Bundle!!!

This is going to be FUN!!!!

You may remember a few months ago when I shared some new sewing labels I had received from Ananemone Labels. She had made some of the sweetest, personalized sew-in labels for me using a darling vintage sewing machine image. The images were designed by WinchesterLambourne and today, I have a very fun giveaway for you from them!
WinchesterLambourne provides unique and playful clip-arts, digital papers for scrap-booking and custom graphics that can be used for your shop/blog banners, business cards, labels, stickers, stationary, party supplies and MORE! There is truly something for everyone!
The images can be used for personal & commercial use, meaning you can make items for sale using the images, like the labels above, but you of course can't sell or share the images themselves.  

Her shop is bursting with possibilities for every occassion!
I personally have many favorites that are sure to be showing up around here, but her sewing theme set is a for sure at the top of my list! 

WinchesterLambourne is offering 1 lucky reader their choice of 10 Clipart Packs! That's a regular retail value of about $40!!!

This giveaway is open to all eligible, so if you'd like to enter, simply follow the Rafflecopter prompts below. Winner will be announced and emailed 11/25/13 and expected to respond within 48 hours or an alternate winner may be selected. Prize will be emailed to winner.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you for this wonderful opportunity and creative designs to work with WinchesterLambourne!

Have fun looking through all of the clip-art possibilities in the WinchesterLambourne shop and GOOD LUCK! 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Mid-Month Reminder!

Not sure if it's the time of year making things move even faster or what, but we are ALREADY at the mid-way point for our November Project!!!!

Several beautiful donations added to our Project Album and more on their way! :)
Would love to have you join our efforts! Find out more HERE.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Let's Talk Textiles - Understanding Batting

  Kim from Fabric Outlet is back today for our "Let's Talk Textiles" series with some great information about batting options. 

    In my shop we sell a variety of batting choices and our customers very often do not know the difference until they see and touch it.  You also might not know which one would be best for your project so here are a few suggestions!

   If you are making a large quilt for your king size bed you should use a needle punched batting. This type of batting is very easy to work with  because the fibers that hold it together also help it from being slippery.  They come in some choices, there is the all cotton or mostly cotton type, the best known brand is Warm and Natural. The only drawback to this type is that it is so dense it is hard to stitch through.  There are blends, such as Hobbs 80/20, an 80% cotton and 20% polyester mix.  These usually look and feel very much like an all cotton batting but are lighter and therefore easier to stitch through.  And then there are all polyester types in different lofts, or thicknesses (or puffiness, if you will).  If your doing a baby blanket or a puffy pattern type quilt you might opt for this type.  Warning, it is slippery to work with but a little more forgiving then needle punched types if your quilt gets a little skewed.  
  Now, for the quilting "purists" there are some other options, such as bamboo or silk but that is very pricy!  
R to L - Warm & Natural Cotton Needle Punched, Medium Loft Polyester, 80/20 Blend
  Unless a baby has a known allergy or Mom is a naturalist, the polyester medium or high loft is a good choice for a baby comforter.  For a blanket type quilt you should stick to a needle punched type and personally I would suggest an 80/20 mix.  Its easiest to work with and will create maximum warmth for the baby.

In support of our November Project, Kim is offering a special on Pre-Cut Crib Size (36x45) batting in the Hobbs 80/20 for $6.75 or Medium Loft Poly for $4.75 plus shipping. She also has lots of great baby quilt panels and quality quilting cottons. Simply message her with your order or any questions.
Thanks Kim!
You can search "Let's Talk Textiles" in the sidebar for other textile learning opportunities from Kim! 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Baby Girl Gift Set with Babyville Boutique!

 I had so much fun creating these sweet "Cowgirl" sets to be delivered as part of our November Project donations! They are super cute and simple to make, so I thought I'd share a tutorial for those of you that might like to give it a try. Ready? 

I've started with some of the adorable new Babyville Boutique Ruffle Elastic and Ribbons.
 If you are making these for your own child, you will want to start by measuring her head, otherwise, a quick google search for "baby headband measurements" will provide some averages for you to work from. Once you've determined your size, cut the Ruffle Elastic accordingly and sew the cut ends together to create your headband. 
Next, you will make your bows. For mine I have used THIS TUTORIAL and made 2 bows for layering.
 Once your bows are secured together, cut an extra piece of the Ruffle Elastic 3-5" in length, and use this to tie the bow to the headband, covering the stitching. 

Now you are all set! Quick & easy huh? And fun to make! Find a little model to show off your creation and enjoy making another. :)

 Here's the second headband I made following the same instructions above. 

 Using some of the remaining ribbon and Ruffle Elastic, I also made a sweet security blankie to complete my donation sets. 

I rolled the little blankies and used the stretchy headbands to wrap around them. I hope the little Cowgirl Princesses that receive these, and their parents, love them! :) 

Babyville Boutique is providing you with the chance to win your own surprise bundle of  their new ribbons and Ruffle Elastic so you can make your own adorable headbands! Simply follow the Rafflecopter prompts below to enter! (Open to US entrants)

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Winner announced and emailed 11/15/13 and provided 48 hours to respond and claim prize or alternate winner may be selected. Thanks!
See the great selection of Babyville Boutique elastics & ribbons at !
Thank you Babyville Boutique and good luck to you all!
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