All posts by designsbyheidi

It’s Another TTF – “This and That Friday.”

The COLORS of Fall! Magnificent, this year. Let’s go Leaf Peeping for a moment. Chinese Pistachio, one of my favorite trees. Slow growing, but always a show stopper. If you are young, buy it as  bare root stock in Feb. or March. If you are older, splurge on a 15 gallon size so you can really enjoy it now. Ha, ha.

Dawn B. sent me this picture of her Rafiki Skirt. Love, LOVE this one in a blend of fabrics from Africa and USA. Why couldn’t she wear this into later fall with a turtleneck and a belt sitting on her hips and a smashing pair of boots? Great choice of fabrics and colors.

Patty B. is on a roll. This is her 2nd Zephyr Jacket in a month.It IS fast and easy to make. She found a  fall inspired batik at PIQF (Pacific International Quilt Festival) and used it for the fronts. There are leaves printed on the batik fabric here and there. Can you see the black line down the front of the jacket? The black is the front side of the front pieces and she used the batik as the front pieces lining. So she gets a hint of batik when she folds them back as well as a lean, long line with the solid black on either side. I also see a bit of black showing on the shoulder seams.

The black on the shoulder seams and the entire back piece is black. Patty “fussy cut” the leaves out (after treating them with Terial Magic). She is still in the arranging stage and will soon stitch them down. Really GREAT ideas you are using Patty. I want to try this. May I copy? I really enjoy the concept of a design feature on the front that causes us to turn around and look at the back too.

A study in black and white. Summer is over and all my off white, crisp looking, slipcovers come off (a pricey outlay, but you extend the life of the couch, as well as changing the look and feel of your room). A small portion of my chenille couch shows its’ winter self in the upper corner. And of course, Rex has chosen to sit on the freshly laundered pieces before I put them away. Awwww…

I couldn’t resist another shot of my Virginia Creeper (it just keeps getting better and better color) on my “shabby chic” fence.  I was supposed to repaint it years ago, but I kinda like the peeling paint. It’s a nice juxtaposition against the pristine paint job of the house. Ha, ha, that sounds good doesn’t it? 

This is my yard! Most of the trees were planted 25 years ago as 1 or 5 gallons. Love, all the leaves (my husband doesn’t once they fall). Sorry honey. I’ll help rake this year, oh wait, I have to get all my projects finished first. 

Hydrangea bushes in the Fall, STUNNING! Can you believe it, these beautiful blooms used to be blue!?! It’s true. The chilly evenings work their magic on the color changes. 

And now, May I introduce Janet B. as she models her version of Terrific Tabard. It too is STUNNING! Check out her fab necklace and earrings. She made them herself after taking Sandra Bruce’s Polymer Clay workshop at our Artistic Alchemy Workshop this past Sept. Click on the Artistic Alchemy icon below (HOPEFULLY, it will take you right to the blog). If not, it is, Artisticalchemyblog.wordpress.com   check it out and see what we do. 

There are so many lovely, innovative, ideas in this vest. No batting, no quilting in her version (my next T.T. will also be a smoother look, tip: It will sew up that much faster). Don’t try to fix the pic below. I hit the video button by mistake. It is a little “jerky.” Sorry.

Love her double closures on the sides. Perfect, PERFECT, fitting method, no darts needed. And you can see why it’s also called the “Skinny Vest,” with the open sides. It gives a long and lean look . Great use of button choices. Do you see the Panda faces peeking out here and there? This fabric is a light weight smooth finish, canvas. Check out that pocket! Sashiko stitching, pocket attached only at the top, and the great flourish with the button and pieces of polymer, all add up to “Fabulous daaahling.” Oh and the lining of the vest is the great circles fabric she placed at the sideof the pocket.

Email me directly for the fastest way to get your own Terrific Tabard vest pattern, Rafiki skirt pattern, or Zephyr Jacket: hmemmett@gmail.com 

For a lovely fall finish, let’s look at Joan Connelly’s Woolie ball necklace. Her own creation of course. 

Here is my first one. Sooooo easy and a great traveling project. 

While Joan’s necklace is her own creation, she used the directions below (from a Feb. 2016? not sure on the year issue of Thread’s magazine).  Now you know what to do with an old wool skirt, jacket, accckkk! MORE to collect! 

Thank you so much for stopping by.Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram, and Pinterest. I gave you lots of ideas to get creative this weekend. So, JUST DO IT!!! Hugs, Heidi

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Terrific Tabard- Goes to Downieville!

What a fun Sunday afternoon drive! The top was down, the warm breezes in our faces, and off we drove to Downieville, CA.  It’s a beautiful 45 mile drive from Grass Valley to the north. It’s a winding road with many access views of the river.

 

Downieville-established around 1849. A gold rush town. 

Amazing that TWO rivers run through the little town of Downieville. The Downie river is on the left and it converges into the North Fork of the Yuba River in the picture below.

The cutest scarecrows  were found all over the town. 

Here is one of three bridges. This one crosses the North fork of the Yuba River. Look closely at the lower right. Do you see the fence made of skis? I love this. And I have a “small world” story to tell next week about this fence. 

Close up of the ski fence. And check out the colorful house and the stamp mill (the big metal thingy used in gold mining to crush granite) in the background. 

I want a house like this vault. Great stone work and heavy iron doors. This is a replica of the original. 

Restaurants and many homes border the river. It is so lovely.  Here I am wearing Terrific Tabard.  I’m on the walking side of another bridge. 

Here are the front and back views of this easy to fit Tabard vest with open sides (for a better fit)

Use the email address above: hmemmett@gmail.com to find out how to purchase your own Terrific Tabard, Art to Wear, sewing pattern. It truly makes you “feel skinny.”

This particular Terrific  Tabard goes together really fast because the foundation fabric is  Kantha Cloth. 

Here is the piece of Kantha Cloth I used. This is one side (pieced using printed cottons. I chose to used the solid side (plain red) so I could add all my Kaffe Fassett fabric pieces. Find Kantha in the bedding section. This one, 50 x 60″ was $34.95. Kantha is two pieces of fabric put together with larger running stitches. They are hand made in India. 

I used Kaffe Fassett stripes and cut up one print called Mille Fiore. Each “chunk” of fabric was sprayed and ironed dry with Terial Magic first. Each piece felt like a piece of paper after being treated with the Terial Magic. Fast and easy to cut out and no fraying. 

I glued down each piece to hold in place using Elmer’s School glue. (Notice I am wearing my Kaffe Fassett sweater while working on it). I just LOVE all things Kaffe. Now I am ready to edge stitch each piece down. 

I hope you were inspired by my “Kantha” and Kaffe, Terrific Tabard and will want to make your own. Find Kantha cloth on line or see it in person at places like Stein Mart, Ross, Home Goods (always look in the bedding section). Carve out some time to be “sew” creative this weekend. Thank you all for stopping by. Hugs, Heidi

Zephyr Jacket- The Perfect “Art to Wear” Piece for Leaf Peeping!

Zephyr means Gentle Breeze. I had to make a new one for this beautiful Fall weather we have been having here in northern CA. Here are the front and back covers of my Zephyr Jacket pattern. Email me at: hmemmett@gmail.com to find out the best way to buy one from me. This is a great project for beginner sewists too.

Below are the three different fabrics I’m using for this Zephyr jacket. They are all “like” types in weight and drape. On the left, 100% cotton, a home dec. fabric. In the middle two light weight cottons put together to form one. On the right a cotton/linen blend from Japan. 

Tip: After stitching the panels together, press the seam open. It really helps when you turn them, to lay flat when turned inside out. 

I wanted a nice silk neck facing. Check out my Saks 5th Ave. silk shantung blouse I scored while Thrifting. I threw it in the washer on gentle and hung to dry. Wrinkled mess you think?  I just love the luminosity of silk. 

Not sure if the picture below shows well enough but the top portion is now pressed, bottom, no. 

I’m always hungry. But I try really hard NOT to snack while sewing. But I had to get this puppy done, so I found a new use for my seam ripper! Brilliant, don’t you think? Stabbing pea crisps. I am addicted to these things.  

Taaaaa Daaa! 

I made this one about 3″ longer in the back than the original. Sort of Kimono looking now. 

Check out my beautiful Sashiko stitching (in the orange). I bought a very COOL TOOL for this! It is called a Sashiko machine by Baby Lock. I love the look of Sashiko but I’m not very good at doing it by hand. It takes too long and it’s too hard to be perfect. Did I ever tell you that I’m not perfect in many ways? Ha, ha. But this machine is. LOVE it! I’ll tell you more about it in another post. I stitched all over the back and it took, maybe 45 minutes. Yea!

Here is a close up of the back and more stitching. See the wrinkle in the middle of the back going up and down? Tip: And this is a BIG TIP, when you go to a fancy fabric store and spend the bucks on a beautiful piece of fabric, IF THE FABRIC IS RIGHT SIDE OUT on the bolt, check it before you buy it. Open it out and LOOK at the fold line. Mine is faded. Acckkk! I only noticed it 1/2 way through. I’ll add some silk and more of the orange , holey fabric in some cool shapes. But so frustrating.   

Close up of the detailing on the front pieces. I like the little tufts of 6 strands of embroidery floss. Gives it some texture. And the fabric with holes, I got it as a scrap and I think it is just the coolest piece ever!

I ran a skinny piece down each shoulder seam, because I can. Isn’t it fun? 

Hmm…I’m not really liking how the turq. fabric underneath is looking wrinkly. Ahh, more Sashiko stitching. Or more tufts. I’ll think on it a bit. 

Gardening Tip: Virginia Creeper. LOVE IT! It’s slow growing, but has few pests, grows well in many zones, looks good in all seasons, I think (even winter with only the branches showing). Also, it’s not invasive.

Thanks for stopping by.  Have you packed some hand sewing in a small tote, to take with you on a picnic, a walk, or just to sit outside and enjoy the weather? Have a creative weekend. Hugs to you all. Heidi

“Steampunk” your next Calypso Vest!

What is Steampunk? It has the look and feel of Victorian,and  Industrial but with a modern twist. It is in fashion, home decorating, parties,groups that get together, camping, tiny houses. I like it.  Below is my Calypso Vest pattern that I started with.

 

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Beth, the owner of Fabric Chicks in Minden, NV, asked me to make a sample of Calypso Vest to display in her booth. You can find her Fabric Chicks booth at many quilt shows and sewing shows throughout western states.Her booth spaces are AWESOME! You will want everything. Look for her at PIQF (Pacific International Quilt Festival). She sent me the fabrics she wanted me to use. All by Tim Holtz (I think his look is totally Steampunk). I’ll take you through the making of this, really, really, cool piece of true, “Art to Wear.” Here are the fabrics I’m using. I have already cut them into the bias strips. There are rounds and rounds of bias strips (7 total) that make this pattern so unique. Oh, a smidge of the back (on the left), shows too.

The hardest decision is what fabrics to use on the back of the vest. Always, treat them with Terial Magic first, then cut them up. So, I want to use these birds. 

I love these “skeleton” leaves. I’ll use those too. So, spray, spray, with Terial Magic, and iron to a crispy finish with a dry iron. 

Snip, snip, all around the design I want to use. 

Getting an idea of placement using the back piece tissue as my guide. 

Whrrrrrr, whrrrr, such a satisfying feeling to sew these pieces down. To get that great feeling, USE the Terial Magic, and glue down each piece with whatever fabric glue you like. My preference is Elmer’s school glue.  Use a darning foot (open or closed, this time I grabbed the closed one) and lower the feed dogs.

 

Beginning the first row of the big bias circle. Notice the yellow and red headed pins. 

The pins are telling me where to make a pleat (pleats add better fit over the hips). When I have stitched all the way around the circle, I need to finish it off (complete the circle). So I open up the strip, and pinch right sides together (it needs to lay flat and smooth) and stitch up the seam. Refold it and stitch the strip down. Subsequent rounds really are easy. This first one is the hardest. But it is all spelled out in the pattern.

Whoo hoo, first round of bias stripping is done! Continue adding 6 more strips. BREAK TIME! Actually, I take a break after each round (best for ye old neck and shoulders).

On the way out the door to photograph my finished vest, YOWZAA!! when did all the trees start to change color? Can you even believe it is the very end of September?! 

I love the blue, blue skies of fall. 

Taa daa! Here is Beth’s finished sample. I just LOVE the fabrics she chose and how much fun I had playing with all the choices.

I know, I know, I took a ton of pics. But I couldn’t stop. This could be in a Jane Austen flick, or even Outlander? Maybe? Am I stretching things here?  

A shout out to my friend Judi Biley . Happy anniversary! Thank you for your continued support in what I do. And to all of you, my blog peeps, thanks for stopping by. Hugs to you all. It’s a great day to be creative. So get out there and “Make it up, make it fun, and GET IT DONE!  Heidi InstagramAA Logo1Pinterest-Pinnedetsy 

Upcycling- It’s Always Fun! And It’s The First Day of Fall!

Hello everyone! This is the beautiful sunrise I was greeted with and today is the first day of Fall! My favorite time of year. 

A little upcycling to get your “creative” going. Yowzaa! This is what I call acid green. After washing (it fluffed up the fibers a bit more, which I wanted to showcase), it’s whack, whack, with the scissors. 

Cool embroidery. Not sure how I will use all this great fabric. But I do have ideas for the cuffs. I like on the go projects (small enough to stick in my purse).  When cutting off the cuff, use your sharpest scissors and get as close to the stitching line as you can. That’s it. I guess you could do some hand stitching on the edge if there is still some raveling (this is upcycling, raveling is part of the look, so breathe and continue!). 

I use DMC floss, 3 strands. Those felted circles are reasonably priced on Ebay or Etsy. They come in a TON of colors and sizes. They have 20% wool,  but are basically very smooth.  I will throw in some circles I cut from sweaters that I felted (by mistake but that’s another story). Beads! I have to have some beads. The dollar store has those nifty pill containers (below) that are just what I need. 

Hmm..  I like what’s happening but not that button. 

I pulled out my acrylic paints and added dots of color (using the tip of my really small brushes). I could apply a matte finish of something like outdoor Modge Podge (for the washing factor).

I bury all knots underneath the circles, so that I have a mess free back. 

The whole idea is to have fun, play with fiber and not worry so much about the actual construction. And that is evident in my close up shots. But, I had lots of fun doing it. There is a time and place for perfection. 

Here is a book to get your creative going! I love it. Thank you Linda and Karenanne. No, there is no fabric involved. But it can be a part of your 15-30 minutes a day routine (I have spoken in past posts that everyone can carve out 15 min. (well now I’m upping it because I can) a day for creativity. Yes, this book is not fiber oriented but it is still working on the creative quotient. So on the days you are feeling fiber challenged, and that does not mean Metamucil, work in this book.

Jane Haworth (look at her site of the same name and see the cool stuff she creates) told our quilting guild about this book. We ALL have doubts about our abilities in the artistic sense, whether it’s fiber, painting, mixed media, etc. Love this book.  So with the book above and this one below, you will cure all self doubt and creative drain! Well, maybe not all, but you’ll sure think twice when “it” tries to creep in and take over precious brain space.   

Here’s the back cover. 

I’ll leave with a pattern idea from Designs by Heidi, Triangle Tote pattern. It was first featured as a project in this issue of Modern Patchwork: Triangle Tote pattern by Heidi Emmett. My ornery cat, Rex, sitting/guarding the tote.

Here is how Modern Patchwork photographed same tote. I was pretty surprised. Someone was NOT paying attention. This is actually the back of the tote. So sad. 

If you like what you see, you can purchase it (the pattern) directly from me. Email me at: hmemmett@gmail.com  It is $15.00 US  and that includes shipping anywhere in the world. It will come as a hard copy pattern (paper pattern, instructions, all in a plastic bag. 

Fun, fun, FUN, to make! Let’s get going and sew!  Thank you so much for stopping by my blog. Hugs, Heidi

Yikes!– IT’S A BEAR!!! at our Artistic Alchemy Retreat, Sept. 2017!

Last week, September 4th-8th, I was busy, busy, up at Zephyr Point, Lake Tahoe with the Artistic Alchemy retreat. Two mornings into the retreat, my friend from Portland, Oregon, Linda & I were enjoying our early morning coffee (7:15a.m.) at the edge of Lake Tahoe. I turned to see another student about 20 ft. away. Started to say hi, and saw a bear about 20 ft. behind her. OMG!!!!! Wha’ do we do? Wha’ do we do? The pictures of the teenage bear are courtesy of Marti (another student at her second floor window). We took off at a very, very, fast walk and so DID THE BEAR! We have lived to tell the tale. And I didn’t spill a drop of coffee in the race to the door to get inside. Ha, ha, ha. In fact, I didn’t need anymore coffee the rest of the day!

The clearing where we were enjoying the view. The bear entered, stage right, from behind the bolder. We were to the left of the “Portal of Prayer” sign (my prayers were short, and to the point, “Dear Lord, HELP!). 

Now,back to some creative fun. Candace, one of my students,  was very productive. In fact, she is the first of ALL the students in the whole retreat who started and completed her first project, less than half way through the 3 full days retreat! She even brought her serger to speed things along.

My workshop was called “Pick a Pattern.” Each student brought two different patterns from my collection, or my new book. We discussed fabrics for each project via emails. My students had so much creativity on their own. I was there to help fit, and help with design ideas, that would help make it their very own “Art to Wear” piece. Candace’s first piece was Rafiki Skirt.

We hung her Rafiki skirt on the design wall and after an afternoon swim, she got started on a second project, Whisper Blouse.

Each one of my students gave ME GREAT ideas that I had NEVER thought of. I will talk about them over the next few weeks. First, though, Candace had a marvelous way of putting the tie into the skirt. A buttonhole goes in the front. Make the tie belt and thread each end in the buttonhole. 

The tie belt must be threaded in a circle first. The circle fits right under the top edge that will be folded down to form the casing.

She folds the casing right over the tie making certain that the piece is out of the way when she stitches down the casing all the way around the skirt. Sooo simple! Thank you Candace.

Patty wanted to create her own “Earthy colored” Terrific Tabard vest for her first project.

Patty has been ALL OVER THE WORLD! She has amazing stories to tell. She has promised to show me her photo albums. I love seeing and traveling with others through pictures and stories. When we spoke about her fabric choices she said, “Oh, I have silks from my travels to India, Vietnam, Asia, and I just picked up a beautiful batik when I was in Morocco.” WOW, wow, let’s see what she does. 

Isn’t it beautiful? She was very happy with her creation. Patty celebrated by going for an early afternoon Kayaking break. When she returned she whipped out the cutest purse with her vest scraps.

Oh, then she decided to make the cutest fabric earrings  from more scraps. Silk is perfect for these “frayed” earrings.

Below, students from Open Studio (in the back) are busy, too. Do you see the African Ladies on a panel in the foreground of this picture? They are from Carol, another of my creative ladies. 

She wanted to make my “Simply Super Vest” pattern from my new book, Fashion Quilted Accessories by me for Leisure Arts. This is the pattern,on the cover.

Here’s Carol with the back of the vest and one front piece up on her design board. 

I encourage everyone to get their projects up on a design board and stand back to get a good view of what you are creating. Carol has such a good eye for placement. She tells me that she used to teach math and it shows in the great care she took in measuring and placement. I designed this vest pattern for using “panel” pieces. You know, the ones you use for the center of a quilt, wallhanging, or pillows. 

This vest is really coming along……then her trusty older Singer started giving her problems. And then she began suffering from a terrible case of Vertigo. In spite of how badly she felt, she was determined to continue to work on her vest AND wanted to discuss her second project, her version of Rafiki skirt. I will see Carol next week and will get pictures of her finished vest and Rafiki skirt to post later. 

Below is Candace’s second project (almost done out of silks that a family member brought back from Hong Kong 30+ years ago). 

We also had lightening, thunder, and rain almost every afternoon. After all the heat we had all suffered through, the rain, oh the blessed rain, and drop in temperature was such a relief. 

Here are the teachers from another successful year of workshops at our annual Artistic Alchemy Retreat. From the left, Mary Boalt, Sandra Bruce, me, Heidi Emmett, and Christine Barnes. Be sure to visit our blog: Artisticalchemyblog.wordpress.com  to read and see more. 

Hugs to all of you and maybe YOU will attend next year!

Heidi

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This and That for Friday…………

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It’s Friday, and this week I some “This and That.” I’m trying hard to finish some summer projects and use them, wear them, before summer is over. Calypso Vest, it really works all four seasons, is one of these projects. Fabric Chicks in Minden, Nevada sells my patterns like CRAZY!! Thank you Beth. She is the only person I will sew for. She gave me fabric to make a store sample waaay back in March. Yikes. It’s coming Beth.

Don’t forget, you can buy my pattern collection at Etsy (hard copies) or Craftsy.com (pdf files to download on your printer), just click on the appropriate icon above,  or email me and I can send you what you want: hmemmett@gmail.com

These are the fabrics that Beth gave me for the sample of Calypso Vest. These are so beautiful. All are by Tim Holtz. 99% of these fabrics are used on the bias. I will do some careful planning so I will have some special chunks for the collaged back. 

Here is Calypso out flat so you can see a full view. I call this one, “Starry Night.” Look at all the Kaffe Fassett fabrics I used. 

I need to do an update on my upcycled Coach bag. 

Remember, I covered all the split suede leather portions with Kaffe Fassett fabric yo-yos. Well, I have to admit, I had only glued on a couple of yo-yos and took a couple of pictures for the post. I was having the worst time with my Fabric Tac glue. I could not get it to come out in a nice stream, let alone dribbles. I tried everything, cleaned out the tip with a pin, checked inside the tip. I was really questioning my strength training (well, I admit, I had been really remiss of late on my exercises). I would squeeze that bottle sooo hard, I was out of breath. 

I FINALLY figured out the problem. Don’t laugh too hard when you read this. See that little circle by the glue bottle?

I took a shot this way because I want you to see that the little circle piece sits on top of the hole where the glue is stored. Whaaatt??!!  I should have removed that? Really? No, Heidi, instead, cut the tip shorter.  I did not see this little cover until a few days ago. 

All right, you can stop laughing now! OMG, “If I Only Had a Brain!” (Cue the Wizard of OZ music). 

Finished in record time. And I am happy to say that my Free Weight workouts have resumed.  But, the brain drain part, not sure how to fix that. Hmm…..

Did I ever tell you that I save clothes or buy clothes (at the Thrift store) just for the gorgeous fabrics? Well I do. The top below (from a real store) I loved. It was dyed to look like clouds in the sky. I wanted it to last and last so I NEVER put it in the dryer. Except this one time. Shrunk it did. Determined to wear it, I cut off the ribbing on the neck and whacked off some of the sleeves. 

I have worn it this way ever since and I love how it curls a bit now. I mean, if jeans being ripped up is still the rage, I’m right there. Forget about hems and carefully stitched necklines. Whack away, it’s very freeing!

I LOVE my Bernie Mev’s. There are many knock off’s out there too. The real deal are so comfortable. I own so many pairs of shoes I can never wear them out. BUT, because Bernie Mev’s are made mostly of elastic, I have found that the elastic does lose its’ umph….(there is rubber in elastic and when exposed to air it begins to deteriorate). So check out how I fixed mine (one more season’s use).  

I pulled up the elastic on the heel piece and stitched it down. Yes, I actually sewed it on my machine. 

I pinched it tighter on the instep strap and stitched it by hand (too weird of an angle for me to get under the machine). Yeahhhh! Did I say how much I LOVE my Bernie Mev’s? And now they have a design feature that I invented.

I enjoyed Maui so much, and wish I was there. The air so clear and clean (no smoke from fires), The breezes by the beach (not hot like here for the past 1 1/2 months).

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Thanks so much for stopping by. Happy sewing, and stay cool and God’s speed to all who are in the path of Hurricane Harvey.  Hugs, Heidi

“Hip to be Tied,” A Belt Idea Using Terial Magic.

by Heidi Emmett

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I recently saw a belt in a catalog that was very wide, embroidered, tied once on the hips, and looked fabulous! It was also $148.00! So, I decided to see what I could put together that looked just as good and at 1/10th of the price!

Materials

1/3 yard large scaled print and 1/3 yard of a smaller print fabric for the lining.  Both fabrics should be quilting cotton weight.

1 bottle Terial Magic spray.

Thread, same thread top and bobbin.

Optional, beads and fabric glue

Sewing machine and supplies.

Finished belt size is 5″ wide x 84″-90″ long (Depending on the width of the fabric).

Directions: Prepare the fashion fabric and the lining fabric with Terial Magic according to their directions.  In case you didn’t know it, I love, love, LOVE, Terial Magic for its many creative uses. 

1.From both fabrics, cut 2 strips, each strip being 5″ x width of the fabric. Seam each piece together with a 1/4″ seam allowance. Press the seam open.

2. Place the two pieces wrong sides together. Pin in a few places to hold together. Thread the machine with the same colored thread both top and bobbin. I put an open-toed embroidery foot on (so I could see where I was sewing), but did not lower the feed dogs. Use a straight stitch and sew all over. I sewed from the center portion out in long meandering lines. Some of my stitches (as seen below) are larger, but with all the other stitching, they aren’t noticeable.

 

Trim off the excess fabric along the edges. Cut along one of the stitching lines for an interesting shape for the belt.

The Terial Magic makes the two fabrics stiff enough for easy sewing.

The Terial Magic gives the belt “body” so that when it is tied, it will stay in place. But you can easily rinse the Terial Magic out for a softer look and feel. 

Tie the belt right on the hips. What a fun way to use some of your favorite fabrics. 

Of course, I couldn’t stop with just one belt! Check out this “house” fabric. I like to use another colorful fabric for the lining, just in case is shows.  Craftsy-Logo InstagramAA Logo1Pinterest-Pinnedetsy

No worries where the stitching lands. It’s easy and relaxing stitching. 

This belt calls for some subtle bling. Look closely at the bottom end of the belt. 

Here’s a close up. I didn’t have time to hand sew my large seed beads down. I wanted the holes of the bead to show. Using  fabric glue and using a pair of tweezers, drag the back of the bead across some glue. Set in place.  

Wear this belt all year round with dresses, skirts, or pants. Make a bunch for gift giving too.

Visit Heidi Emmett at her blog: Designsbyheidi.wordpress.com for more fun ideas.;Orrrr….if you are already here at my blog, you might want to visit Artistic Alchemy at: Artisticalchemyblog.wordpress.com and read some of the past posts. There are four of us teaching at our retreat this September 4th-8th.

One more time,  I love Terial Magic and use it for so many of my creative sewing projects. See my latest projects using Terial Magic in my new book, “Fashion Quilted Accessories” by Leisure Arts. Thanks so much for stopping by. Hugs, Heidi

Heidi’s “Triangle Tote”, a project in Modern Patchwork!

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Jayne from Florida got in touch with me and sent pictures of her Triangle Tote that she had made from my project for Modern Patchwork. I just had to show it off. I can send  hard copy patterns. The pattern pieces will be hand drawn (no time to get them printed). Send a check for $16. (includes postage) to Heidi Emmett, P.O. Box 208, Cedar Ridge, CA 95924 You could also pop $16. into my Paypal account, using my email address: hmemmett@gmail.com Give your mailing address and what the $ is for.

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Here is mine, the front side, with “Sparky dog and Rex the cat”, and the back of it, below. DSC_0064

Hi Jayne, Your tote bag turned out soooo CUTE! and I love that you are modeling it for us.

Triangle Tote #2

I showed mine with my animals and Jayne shows her tote bag  by her very inviting swimming pool. What a great job you did on it Jayne, love the colors. And Jayne gave me design credit by putting a lovely tag that she embroidered right inside the tote. It was a great picture but as much as I tried and tried I could not get it to my blog site. Triangle ToteOnce again, great job Jayne and enjoy totin’ things in your new Triangle Tote bag. And remember people, magazines these days are like books, and books are our friends. I have a gazillion friends in my studio right now, and I love going through them over and over.  So go sit in a hammock and look at magazines (preferably one that I have a project in, ha, ha) and get your creative going! Hugs, Heidi

Yo-Yo’s, Y’all…….. “Upcycled” Totes & Purses.

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The weekend has officially started! Just look at what you could create! All four projects are easy and fast! Check them out:  Below, I found my favorite color of green in a tote bag. The logo on the front had to go. I washed the bag (it was $1.00) and pulled out my favorite Kaffe Fassett green Millefiori  fabric.  I stitched up a pocket, whirrrr….. and topstitched it to the front of the outside pocket.  I have already filled it with a stuff for a new project. Yes!

Time out for a trip (early morning) to my little garden. YIKES! It has been sooooo hot for sooooo long! We are looking at 30+ days with 90+ weather. Very meager pickings as the plants are stressed. Except for my Basil and Thai Basil. This tiny bit of Basil, the fresh fragrance, filled the laundry room where I set the basket down. On to project #2. 

Apologies, the color is off (battery running really low). It’s time for the traveling Yo-Yo’s. Traveling because this is the perfect project to carry with you when you have to hurry up and wait. Cut the circles ahead of time and add scissors, threaded needles and your yo-yo maker (I use Clover).  Spoil yourself and purchase a pair of Karen Kay Baily scissors. 

Taaa Daaa!! It’s magic. I make them in four different sizes, out of solids, stripes, silks, whatever will snap into the disk. 

Finally, battery recharged, proper color. Another fabulous Kaffe Fassett fabric: “Roman Glass” color: sludge. I’m adding these yo-yo’s to my latest Coach purse. They will cover the sad, dirty (cleaned but still dirty looking) split leather. Check out that glue, it’s called Fabri-Tac. I LOVE, LOVE, this glue. It really holds, doesn’t run, and dries clear.  

I placed a loose yo-yo on the little Coach tag. This is going to be the cutest little thing. Hurry up and dry, I want to take you out on the town. 

Project #3: I found this large tote at Target. It was too plain for me. Using the stencil below with dark gray acrylic paint, I stenciled it onto the front of the tote bag. 

To keep the paint on it, I have brushed on some Mod Podge. Love this stuff. Did you know that they make an outdoor Mod Podge? Hm…NO! Heidi! Finish these projects first, then you can go outside and find more. 

Silly me, I am on “small” yo-yo mode, and have made a bunch of tiny ones. Well….I think they are too small for this large tote. No time left to make bigger ones, so I will just place these onto the tote so you get the idea. 

Larger Yo-Yo’s will be better don’t you think? But I like what’s going on here.

Project #4: I love the fuchsia color of this Coach bag, but not the sad, ugly, split leather bottom. I’ll fix that! 

Another great Kaffe Fassett fabric called Jungle Stripe is going to be used. I put some iron on fleece to the wrong side, stitched on the front following the striped pattern. Then stitched up a little “canoe” shaped piece. Snip, snip….trimming the excess away. 

I glued it on with that fabulous glue, Fabri-Tac. I smeared on the glue all over the split leather, let it set up for about 5 minutes, slipped the quilted piece over the leather and smoothed it down with my fingers. I put extra pressure on the top edges. I have used this purse without any of it coming apart for 2 summers now. So glad I could give some more good years to this pretty colored Coach bag. 

This is a recent view near Sand Harbor, Lake Tahoe, the California side looking toward North Shore.  The lake is the fullest it has been in 11 years. Wow! Come and see it for yourself, come up and join our Artistic Alchemy retreat. My workshop is called “Pick a Pattern.” Let me help you custom fit, color and stylize your pick of patterns from the DesignsbyHeidi collection. Can’t wait. There’s still room. Click on the Artistic Alchemy logo below and learn more. You can always get in touch via my email: hmemmett@gmail.com

Stay cool. Thank you so much for stopping by. Hugs, Heidi

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This And That. Easy, Breezy, thoughts on a Hot Summer Day!

We all have to grocery shop. We maybe don’t enjoy it or we’re just rushed. Well here is my tip to make it a more enjoyable time. Next time you go, first thing, take 2 minutes and walk through the floral dept. Deep breathe while you walk among the beauty and color and designs that you see. Ahhhhh…….. Sometimes I even buy some flowers. Even carrying them in the squeaky cart (I ALWAYS manage to pick one of those, or the wheels are weird), calms me down. 

Wasn’t that nice? As I wheel into the fruit and veggie area next, the color and design doesn’t stop. I look at these beauties below with fresh eyes. Dragon Fruit, have you tried it? Neither have I. But as in your sewing experiences, it’s time to step out of the box now and then and try a new technique, work with colors you don’t usually gravitate toward…. 

Pineapple, we see it ALL the time. We use it quite a bit too. Have you ever barbecued it? Well, I had not either until I tried it at my friend Jean’s Bunco party. Ohh my gosh!! Totally fabulous! Fresh Pineapple BBQ’d (complete with grill marks). It looks fancy too. And so easy too. Slice it, add a tiny bit of oil, and pop them on the grill. That’s it. Thanks Jean!!

Oh, and corn. Here is the fastest, best way EVER! to cook it. Here it is, in its’ cute packaging. LEAVE ALL THE PACKAGING on and pop 2 ears at a time into the microwave. Cook according to your microwave. Pull out, let cool for a few minutes, and then open. Watch out for steam. Everything just sort of slides off as you pull on it. Amazing.

O.K. I’m on a food kick today. And I know the 4th is long gone (where HAS this month gone?), but I had to show you my flag cake. This was the first time in 2 years that we were home for the fourth. So good to be home with family. Check out the fresh blueberries. Again, I feel so fortunate being able to walk down to my mom’s house and pick fresh blueberries in the cool of the evening.  Chocolate cake (whatever flavor you like).  Fresh raspberries, washed and carefully dried.
Use a cream cheese frosting, frosted in a “rustic” manner (the sides are not frosted as I ran out)ha, ha. A lace cap hydrangea. It was mis-marked at the nursery, but I have grown to like it, because it’s different.  Just can’t get enough of these colors and designs.  It took a few years, but we finally re-painted our vintage wrought iron table and chairs. My job was to cover the chair seats. Label your chairs F & B and chair #. (mainly for the screw-in portions as each chair was different (on the sides).  Buy the very best quality of outdoor furniture fabric you can (did you know that NASA developed the coated portion of this terrific fabric that keeps it waterproof?). The method that I use is the fast and easy way as I want to get it done and enjoy them. Pull the fabric tight enough so it  takes up all the slack. Put a few staples in the middle of one side. Go to the opposite side and staple the same way as the first. And do the same on the other two sides.  The corners are then brought up and folded, whatever way you want to, but be consistent. I trimmed off the little tails. 

Taa daa! It’s like having a brand new set. We use it every day for at least one meal. 

More beautiful flowers to leave you with. Wish this was a bouquet I did on my own. Cosmos and Zinnias. But the next best thing is having a fabulous calendar by Workman Publishing. 

some easy, breezy, summer ideas this week. Thanks for stopping by. I will have a step by step project next week. Hugs everyone, Heidi

A Summer Project That will Keep You Cool. Let’s SEW!

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Grab a glass of iced tea and let’s take some time to be creative. Let’s make some fiber jewelry. Pull out your copy of my new book, Fashion Quilted Accessories. What? You don’t have it yet? I sell them at my Etsy store/DesignsbyHeidi, Sugar Pine Quilt Shop in Grass Valley, CA sells them, and yes, find it on Amazon. Only $12.99 for some nifty projects. Two pull out patterns included. A great gift idea. On page 2, the first project is the Easy and Fun, Circles Earrings and Necklace. 

Here’s a quick synopsis. Sew two of your favorite, small scaled, fabrics together. Mindless sewing, rows and rows of stiching, straight, gentle waves, Whrrrrrrr…..  Here is the reverse side and one circle cut out.  Before cutting out the circles some spiral stitching is done. This is time consuming. I only do it on the earrings. Adds some interest and weight to the earrings. 

Whoa, are you dizzy yet?  They are so addictive to make, these cute circles. Use little black eyelets to give a nice finished look. Attach them to cording and voila!   I mailed all my projects off in the early fall of 2016. I had to take a picture of them, as I thought I would never see them again. As you can see, these work all year!  Here are 4 more pieces I stitched, ready to be cut out.  I try to have some pieces ready to go at all times and ready to stitch( with that mindless stitching (great time for thinking up NEW projects!). 

Finished and ready to wear!

I could NOT resist showing you one of my Hydrangea blooms. Deep rich colors. Perfect colors for a new necklace and earrings: deep blue violet with a hint of chartreuse, and a rich fuchsia. What a lovely color combination.   

Please come back for another visit to my blog. I’ll pull another project from Fashion Quilted Accessories for us to explore. 

Also, time is running out, but I still have room in my Artistic Alchemy workshop (Zephyr Point Conference Center, Sept. 4th-8th). Join the fun of “Pick a Pattern.” Learn new techniques, make new friends, enjoy the view, and sew, sew, SEW!!! Click on the Artistic Icon below. It will take you to our blog for more information. Hugs, Heidi

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When It’s a Working Vacation, TAKE SOME HANDWORK ALONG!

On our way up to Tahoe, Zephyr Point, to work and play! If you love to sew/quilt/create, always tuck some hand work into a bag. The skirt below, I wore it, and no one ever knew that it was a work in progress (literally a needle and thread in the back of the skirt)!

Craftsy-Logo InstagramAA Logo1Pinterest-Pinnedetsy 100% linen skirt (boring by itself), but add some fun spirals and, well, it’s just plain FUN! The needle and thread on the skirt allow me , when I have a moment, to do some stitching, EVEN WHILE WEARING THE SKIRT! Let me show you how it’s done. I cut some circles (3″ or larger please) and glued them down (basting glue or Elmer’s school glue). Cut some 1″ bias strips, fold in half lengthwise and press. See below: I start stitching (it’s about 1/16th of an inch seam allowance) and work the bias strip around the circle. The folded portion is in the middle of the circle. Zip on around and sew OVER where you started. Make a gentle wave of the strip and continue stitching. When you come within 3″ of the end, tuck the edges inside (short ends) so that you have a finished edge.  Another view.  Don’t have a skirt to stitch on? No worries….cut up some denim ( I use $1.00 jeans) and get your spiral going on some pieces that you can turn into little bags or in this case, denim vases.  I first saw this idea on Pinterest. She did not identify herself. But, here’s what I did.  I did say that this was a working vacation. This is the multi-million dollar  view from our deck. More pictures coming.  Here is the skirt on me! It is 100% linen. These are called status wrinkles! This is where we work for one week at a time. Cabin 8 at Zephyr Point Conference Center, Lake Tahoe, Nevada side (this is the side for Sunsets).
It is the cutest shop. The gifts and Frozen Yogurt are on the middle floor. Storage on the top floor. We live on the bottom floor. So let’s follow the deck around the side…. Go to the left and see those stairs going down? That’s where we stay. The deck with flower baskets is the gift shop portion. You can sit and rock and eat your frozen Yogurt and watch the boats, kayaks, paddle boards, and The Delta Queen float on by. Ahhhh……. 

A factoid: 7 feet of gorgeous water was added this past winter to a lake that is 22 miles long and 12 miles wide. THAT’s A WHOLE LOT OF WATER, PEOPLE!!!!

The best sunset view was our last night there. The blue oval is blue sky. Reminds me of the fun spirals I am sewing. Five minutes later. 

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Thank you so much for stopping by. It really means a lot to me. Please note the icons above and realize that you can tap on those to see my patterns that I am selling (Craftsy & Etsy), and my new book (Etsy). Or email or call me if you have questions: hmemmett@gmail.com, 530-273-8067.    Also: there is room in my workshop (tap on Artistic Alchemy logo above to visit). Big hugs to you you all, Heidi

Running Hot and Cold!

by Heidi Emmett

“Kaffe Fassett Extravaganza!” That is the name of our Trunk Show. Christine Barnes and I have long had an interest in all things Kaffe, from fabric to his knitwear, to his needlepoint, mosaics, and of course, quilts. So we were off to Merced for Trunk Show # 1, this past Monday. Below is the coolest Mosaic in the hottest part of the day, 108 degrees! I saw this as part of a wall to sit on. That streak of white is the blazing sun.  The A.C. was on and the quilt guild in Merced was a hot group! They were such a creative, lively, and nice group.
And look what Lora Wheeler made, her own Mommy & Me vest! I love it. She bought the pattern at our Artistic Alchemy Booth at the Pine Tree Quilt Show back in May in Grass Valley, CA. It is always so fun to see what you all create with one of my patterns. She used a fabulous puckery type of rayon. I thought it was silk.

I just love what you did Lora. You were thinking outside the box! I sure wish I could come back and take your “upcycling” workshop-taking four shirts to create one.

On to San Francisco! It was 63 degrees when we arrived! Ahhhhhhh, so refreshing. As soon as we got to our hotel, I took a walk across the street to Sutro Park. It has tons of Nasturtiums, they are such a happy plant. Great colors.

I came close to the edge of a trail and stopped in my tracks! Yes, this was my view. It is just astonishing! That large green patch is the beginning of Golden Gate Park! Did you know that it is 3 1/2 miles long and 1/2 mile wide? Wow. And check out that HUGE beach area.  A lovely rose. Sutro park is 128 acres of loveliness. Adolph Sutro purchased that acreage in 1881 and built a Mansion, Conservatory, and a Parapette. When he passed, the whole place went to ruin. All the buildings were torn down but all the foliage stayed. It is now a city park within San Francisco.   

These homes border the park on one side.These home owners can walk down the hill to the Cliff House restaurant.  Don’t they look like places on the Cote d’Azure in France?  Succulents in front of the hotel, Seal Rock Inn. Cool and crisp looking.  There it is, Seal Rock Inn from Sutro park. 

The ladies of the S.F. Quilt Guild were also a delight. We had a great time telling them  some things they didn’t know about Kaffe Fassett. He grew up at Nepenthe which is near Big Sur, just down Highway One, south of San Francisco. Thank you Cathy and Laura, you were great hostesses.

No, NO! Christine and I didn’t want to leave. A 63 degree high, I had to dig through my Kaffe samples and find my Kaffe Alpaca sweater to wear. Who knew?  

Thanks for stopping by. At our Artistic Alchemy Retreat in September, my workshop, “Pick a Pattern”(Designs by Heidi patterns) is still taking students. Maybe you will want to design and create your own Mommy & Me Vest. I would love to have you in my workshop. I will help you fit whichever pattern you choose. Let’s all get our creative going. Hugs, Heidi

 

Maui, Hawaii—–Listen, you can almost hear the waves.

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Aloha! And in case you didn’t know (there are new signups every week, to which I say thank you), my husband and I went to Maui to celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary. I brought along my newest “Proto-type.”  It’s a top/blouse and its’ working title is  “The Sparky Top.” I feel sparkly” when I put it on and it’s also in honor of our sweet dog, Sparky, who would be curled up in his bed right next to me as I wrote my blog posts or worked on my patterns and projects.

Besides the new “Sparky Top” check out the sand. Yes, It really is  really dark brown almost black. The beach in front of our condo. has at least 5 different sands. Each one is very defined. We are at the “black beach” section.  

As Heidi looks towards Molokai you can see that this top will be a wonderful addition to your 3 season wardrobe. It has an all in one cap sleeve, bias taped neckline, and falls longer in the back than the front. There is a back yoke which is a little blank canvas for, piecing, quilting, embroidery, whatever you choose.

Tell me what you think. Too long, too loose, just right? Do I need a better description?

76-82 degrees for the entire time we were there. It sprinkled once, for 15 minutes.

Flowers from the tropics.  I don’t know all the names. They remind me of the flowers in the fabrics I used in my new pattern to be (three more months until publishing, argghh).  I know this is a Kaffe Fassett fabric but I’m at a loss to say which one (I had no selvage to look at). Also, I only had scraps left for this back yoke. So, I stiffened more scraps with Terial Magic and raw edge stitched around the fussy cut flowers to hide my seam. 

Even under the sea creatures (at the Maui Ocean Center) reminded me of the colors and shapes in the fabrics. These are sooo cool! I shot this straight on using my Nikon on Auto (I have no time for “Raw”) and no flash.

Below are Coral that are iridescent. They are such glowing colors in very low light. The shutter speed was sooo slow, hence the blurring (and I forgot to hold my breath). But the colors, check the colors.!  This flower is a little tired but the shapes of the petals on the stem and the original color next to the rich green leaves, it’s a keeper. 

The only blue violet flower I saw. Stunning.

Some flowers need no words. Thanks for visiting Hawaii with me this week.

I still have room in my”Pick a Pattern” workshop at our Artistic Alchemy Retreat in Sept. Let’s create your own Art to Wear Piece. Mahalo, Heidi

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Shortest Post Ever!

ALOHA!

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I have returned from a most FABULOUS!!!! time on Maui! I only have 745 pictures (that’s on my camera, not my phone) to go through. Did I say it was a fabulous trip? I’ll be mixing in posts now and then, and yes, there will be fabric, creativity, and design stuff in those posts too. I promise.

I was beyond exhausted coming home. Ha, ha! I’m TOO OLD for red eye flights (what were we thinking, although it gave us one more whole day on Maui). Trying to sleep in a sitting up position is a new form of torture. Almost missing (by minutes!!!) our connecting flight added more stress. What time is it? What day is it? Where am I?

Here it is: Shortest post and only 5 pics. Enjoy

First morning, from a long, open sided hallway/balcony. This was 7:00 a.m. Maui time

Yes, our first stop after picking up the car was a grocery store for proper coffee, and supplies. Kona coffee, little bag, $19.99 (that is correct). Maui coffee, little bag, $9.99. It’s the mugs and the scenery, first, coffee selection, 3rd. 

Sitting on our Lanai, 5: 45 a.m. the first day. My husband, Robert, enjoying his cuppa. We are on the 10th floor, and ON THE BEACH!!! The days of “Peek-a-boo” or “Garden” views are over! 

10:00 a.m. and we have been walking the beach in front of our condo for an hour. Do you see it?

We missed it on the first walk by. Too funny.  So exciting, in my opinion, to see a turtle up close and personal like this within hours of our arrival. June is egg laying season on Maui. Whales, ya gotta come in January for those. 

I have been told that I take waaaay too many sunset pictures. So, I will get this out of the way now. This was by far the best night for a great sunset and yep, it was the last night. The island that you see (8 miles away) is Molokai.

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Mahalo for visiting my blog today. And Aloha. Until next week, Hugs from Heidi

 

 

The Saga Continues….

Hi there. Last week I showed you what I just knew I would use on my Upcycled Summer coat by Adri. Well, I changed my mind again. Acck! I need a break. In fact, I’m taking one. My husband and I are leaving in a few days for a much needed long awaited vacation. We’re going to Maui, Hawaii. We are celebrating our 35th anniversary. 

So yes, more flowers. This is Genesta, a hybrid Scotch Broom. Genesta is not invasive like the broom. It is a real show stopper in my mom’s garden. 

Isn’t this cute? Sandra Bruce made it. I collect unusual pincushions. 

The cup and saucer are so sweet. I have collected my own cup and saucers over the years for pincushions and they are still in a box, just the cups and saucers. Thank you Sandra. 

This is Sunfire Tickseed, a member of the Coreopsis family. It’s so happy looking. 

What is going on here? Is this a garden blog? Noo, I am just in love with all the beautiful flowers in my yard this month of May. Did you know that Heidi (I was told this) in German means “a field of pretty flowers.” So I come to love all these flowers quite naturally. Ha, ha.

A gorgeous peony just opening. 

The fabulous rose bush, a climber on our newly renovated, rose arbor. These roses smell divine. 

Enjoy this Memorial Weekend. And remember that Freedom isn’t Free. Thank you to the men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice so that we can enjoy the beauty of the season in our own yards and neighborhoods of these great United States of America.

I will talk to you again, rested and refreshed, ready to sew, on June 9th. Hugs, Heidi

I didn’t want to do this!

Let me explain. I wanted to do the post,but, I did NOT want to present an unfinished garment. But alas, It could not be helped this week. I have Sciatica (the first time). It is oh so painful, and takes a few weeks to heal. And my mom went into the hospital a few days ago. She is home and after all the tests, tests, tests, they found out she has high blood pressure. That’s it!! What a remarkable 86 yrs young my mom is.

So check out what I started with. I think this is Circa 1986 (it’s quite obvious that I don’t give much away, hence the over stuffed closets, oh, and this is from the overflow closet upstairs. I’m hopeless).

I think my machine applique work is quite good, thank you very much.  

I did some dry-brush painting and then glued, yes glued on beads. 

Gotta take a break (I’m standing while I work on the computer). I will be back in ten. Dr’s orders, walk, walk, and the minute something hurts, stop doing whatever, and go walk! 

Here is the pattern I used. Carol Horn was super popular in the 80’s. I made this coat as a sample for my fabric store.

It’s time to trim this Carol Horn down. It’s too bulky looking.

I need something cool for the plain fronts. I gathered this huge pile of treasured fabrics, blocks, and trims. I auditioned each one and finally came up with….

this smaller pile…

And a closer look. Check out my own hand dyed yarn. Make your own by dampening a loose skein of white cotton or silk. Place in a ziplock bag and sprinkle several colors of a powdered dye (like Procian). Microwave on high for 10 minutes. Let it cool down all the way and adding white vinegar to the rinse water. Gently rinse until water runs clear. Pretty nifty. 

And now for some inspirational Iris pictures from my yard to stimulate your creative juices for your own Iris project. 

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Time for another quick walk. I’ll go down to my mom’s granny house and take pics of her Iris. Aren’t these fabulous. These cost the big bucks but you can see why. It’s called “Batik.”

Ahhh, that’s nice. Thanks for stopping by. Next week I’ll show the finished project. Hugs, Heidi

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Pinterest-Easy to Use and Fun! Sign up and Follow Me!

If I can sign up for Pinterest ALL by MYSELF, anyone can! It will open a new UNIVERSE of everything you have ever wanted to look for and see. It’s like having 200 magazine subscriptions, but none of the clutter of tearing out pages and saving them. Shameless begging right now, please, “Follow” me – Heidi Emmett- or type in Designsbyheidi.wordpress.com.  Help me get to over 10,000 followers!! It’s silly, I know……

So, today, just a few, O.K.! 10 pictures, ten only, of some of the “things” I am re-pinning on Pinterest.

This top gives me ideas of how to upcycle something I already own. 

Really different, I know, but one or two or three around the bottom edge of a pair of jeans might be kinda fun….

You just can’t beat nature pictures.

ADORABLE!

There is room in my “Wearable Art, Pick a Pattern” workshop at our Artistic Alchemy Retreat at Zephyr Point, Lake Tahoe (the Nevada side). Go to Artisticalchemyblog.wordpress.com for all the information you need.

Below is from a blog that I follow called,  Blue Mountain Daisy.  She is in Australia and it is so fun to see what a quilter/flower lover’s life is like, “Down Under.”

Not sure what these are below, but I pinned them because I like circles, the design, the colors. Hmmm… fabric printing idea, quilt idea, mixed media idea, fiber jewelry idea, SEE WHAT I MEAN!! I love Pinterest. 

I love cute dogs and cats and funny sayings, and when I’m feeling blahhhh…I go to my Pinterest boards and look at my pinned pictures under the board, “Things That Make Me Laugh.”

The title on this picture makes me laugh, “Branch manager, & Assistant Branch manager.” 

I pin lots and lots of my own pictures too. This one I took, Helleborus , comes out first thing in the spring. 

Your “creative” this weekend is to sign up for Pinerest if you haven’t already and Follow all of my boards or just one or two. Happy Mother’s Day to all you moms out there. Hugs, Heidi

“Woof, Woof, and Meow, Meow!!”

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The speaker in April at our Pine Tree Quilt Guild here in Grass Valley, CA was Jane Haworth. She spoke on Creativity in our Quilting and what we love to do. More about that in future posts. Her workshop the next day was “Pet Portraits.” Below are a few of her pet portraits. Be sure to visit her website Janehaworth.com for more inspiring work.

Jane is just beginning the stitching process on this one.

The newspaper is 3-D!! Love that. 

We looked at hers and said, YIKES!! we are going to do this too? We’ll see. Below I am showing you the progress on Jax, our son’s dog.

The pictures of our pets needed to be 8 x 10. I chose a profile shot.

We started with the eyes. It was hilarious. The pieces were so small that I was constantly losing “the sparkle” or some other portion and that was JUST the eye. Patience, patience.  

Slowly, Jax is coming alive. Take a workshop or class. Challenge yourself. You will ALWAYS learn new techniques, new ways of trying things.

 

Taking pictures as you work and viewing them, give a whole new look on the project. 

Here are some of the other students work. I think they are ALL coming along beautifully! And we all said, I can’t draw pets! And just look at what we are creating!

Jane is showing us the stitching techniques she uses to make our pets have depth and texture. 

Fabulous idea! Use a lighter weight thread on the bobbin such as “The Bottom Line” so your bobbin is really, really, full. That way you can sew that much longer before winding another bobbin. Brilliant.

Below is a Llama, just because. 

O.K., after I do a picture on the wall for our son (wrapping it around a canvas for a “painterly” look), I want to do a Pet Portrait on, you guessed it, clothing. So, I pulled out a couple of my jean jackets (yes, I collect jean jackets too) and I’m thinking, what should I put on the back of jacket, a woof, woof, or a meow, meow? I’ll keep you posted.

Love my flower bowl that I just bought. Look at the pollen on the blossoms. Don’t forget, there is still room in my “Pick a Pattern” workshop at our 4th annual Artistic Alchemy Retreat at Zephyr Point at Lake Tahoe, this Sept. 4-8th. Click on the logo below (if it doesn’t work, go to Artisticalchemyblog.wordpress.com). Thanks for stopping by. Get in some creative time this weekend. You’ve earned it! Hugs, Heidi

P.S. Our Spring Time In The Pines quilt show is at the Nevada County Fairgrounds in Grass Valley this weekend. I will be in our Artistic Alchemy booth, selling patterns, books, and helping people sign up for the retreat. It’s going to be a GREAT show. Stop by if you can.

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Off The Grid Vest pattern….How Did it Come to Be?

Once upon a time, I took the Urban Ombre’s quilt class from Christine. It was great fun. It was the first time I had seen the Diawabo ombre’ from E.E. Schneck in grey or is it gray?Throughout the class I kept thinking, all these fabrics together would make the coolest vest. But what design? So, I took my blocks, along with everyone’s scraps (I ASKED them first), and put them on my design board and began to think.

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Later, Christine said she was doing a lecture at the E.E. Schenck Trends Show (a show for shop owners  in Porland, OR). Since Schenck sells the grey background fabric Christine was showing her quilt and then she said, hey, that vest idea you had, that would be great, I’ll take that too, so we can get your name out there. O.K., that sounds good, when is it? 

In a month. Whaaaaattt?! I have done NOTHING! The little pieces were falling off the design board, or covered by other projects that were creeping in.

An hour later, I stood at my ironing board, fabrics spread out and I said a prayer. I had a nice chat with God and said, Help!! I walked over to my little garment rack of purchased pieces (whether from a “Real” store or the thrift shop)all for ideas for future project. I pulled out a super short jacket that had bad fabric and design, but the collar!! and while that jacket had a skinny front band, I liked how it connected to the collar.  

I whipped out my sketch pad and started with rectangles. I knew I wanted a long, lean, look to this vest pattern. The rectangles kept coming to mind. 

I also wanted to showcase the interesting fabrics on the front, so I made the front panels really wide . Those pieces, the rectangle  shaped log cabin blocks, and the “sticks” (remember those pieces people discarded?), again they are all rectangle shapes.  

It all came together so smoothly (remember that prayer at the ironing board?). I was sewing up a storm and it was time to add the front panel pieces. WAIT A MINUTE!! They are too short at the bottom, no, no, NO! (Oh, dear, I just told the world that I made a major measuring mistake). And NO TIME to make new front panel pieces. 

Upon further trying it on, looking, thinking, I came to the conclusion that I LIKED it that way! Who knew? I like it being “off” at the bottom edges (hint, hint, Off the Grid).  You will be happy to know that yes, I finished it in time for Christine to take up to the Portland show. She said it was a big hit. Yea….

I use Terial Magic on the strips used for the blocks and sticks. I love how this product keeps things from fraying while I”m raw edge stitching them down.

It’s so fun to use Marcia Derse prints, and other ombre’ fabrics. The blocks have their edges turned under and are edge stitched to the gray ombre’ background fabric. 

I use glue (the bottle in the picture is basting glue), but I also use basic school glue (like Elmer’s). You can see the subtle change in the background fabric. I really enjoy turning it this way and that, darker portions verses lighter sections. It’ what YOU like. That’s why I call for 3 yds. for the background (room to play). 

Notice please that I use a zig zag stitch (rectangles again), and it also encases the raw edge of the fabric. 

And I do, what I call, “Shadow quilting.” They are always done in a rectangle shape . I like the look and it adds more quilting to the piece. 

I do any all over quilting in gentle curves because it’s easier on the eyes (if they were straight it’s too hard to sew perfectly straight) and adds movement. 

Look at the SUPER COOL necklace my 93 year young friend, Lila Sugg made for me (she is a MASTER sewist). It is so perfect with my vest (a secret, shhh…the gorgeous chunks of turquoise are made from potatoes).  Google that one, people! 

My workshop is called “Pick a Pattern.” I have at least 9 patterns to choose from or you could pick some from my NEW book! It’s out now! Buy it from me, your quilt shop, or Amazon. I’d love to see YOU in my workshop this September at Zephyr Point.

And listen to this, E.E.Schenck now carries my patterns and my book! And I have been asked to come to the next Trends Show and present a trunk show on my Art to Wear patterns and book. Sharon, the buyer, said that “Art to Wear” is coming back in a big way in the quilting world and I’ll be right there!  Hugs, Heidi

“Off The Cuff”

One of the projects that Gayle showed us at our “Sewing Sistas” retreat started with a sweatshirt. She got the idea from a visiting teacher (tracking down her name) at another event. I love, love, LOVE this project. If you can sew a straight seam, you too can make one of these. My husband named this pullover for me, “Off The Cuff.” You will see why soon. Commercial break first.

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Yes, my newest thing is my Etsy shop. Look for the name, “Designs by Heidi Emmett.” All my hard copy patterns and my new book (selling really well, thanks to all of you!) are available there.

Alright, let’s get started. Find a preferably plain sweatshirt. Yes, this men’s XXL is the exact color I wanted. The fish, hmm…we’ll see. Buy the sweatshirt larger than you normally wear.Big and loose is the look we are going for. Remember big and loose on top, tighter fitting on the bottom. Baggy tops and bottoms are not a good look for anyone.

I thought I had taken pictures of this project while at the retreat, but I didn’t, so I did it from memory improvising here and there. So it’s safe to say, you just CAN’T mess this up! Begin by NEATLY cutting off the neck, cuffs, and bottom ribbing. Notice that I cut beyond the stitching line of each piece, right into the sweatshirt itself, beyond the stitching. After the sweatshirt is complete you will throw it into the washer and dryer and some of the edges will roll or curl a little. You want that curled look. 

Step 2. Look at the cuff above and the pile of “string” below. Cut ONLY the ribbing off of each piece, EXCEPT the neck. Set the ribbing aside. The circle of “string” just below is from the bottom ribbing. Leave the neck and cuff pieces in circles. That FISH!! Hmm…still thinking…

For the back,If you have a tank top that you can cut up, great. I did not. I used a white mock turtleneck (had a hole in the sleeve) and took a tank top that I had (as a pattern) and cut out a piece. I left the hem on. 

Ah ha!! Great idea to hide that FISH! I covered it up with a pocket placed at an angle. 

I love “text” fabrics. The pocket measures about 6 x 9″ and I stitched down 3 sides (one long end is open). It has become a secret pocket. 

I stitched the white “tank” cut out onto the back , along on the edges. I remember a circle of hand stitching on the back. What to use, salad plate or soup bowl? 

The pen reads, “Fine Point Disappearing Ink Pen.” Works beautifully. Never, EVER, put one in your purse and write a check with it, like a customer at my store did. Ha, ha. Good thing she was a local. Even the bank had a good laugh. 

Three strands of a taupe colored embroidery floss, and two rows of stitching. Nice. 

The unveiling of “Off The Cuff.” Whoops, I forgot to tell you to stitch down the circles after weaving in the strip cut off of the bottom ribbing. Leave the neck edge alone as well as the bottom edge. Roll up the sleeves.

This is the most freeing project you will make! There are no mistakes, just new possibilities. I had so much fun that I promptly went to the thrift shop the next day and yes, found (some)  sweatshirts in the men’s section. O.K., O.K., I found six, but my husband snagged two of them. Give it a try, and a HUGE thank you to Gayle for this fab, fun, Off the Cuff, super creative idea. Oh, I almost forgot, I wore mine the very next day, went to three events, and got mobbed at each one because they all loved my Off the Cuff. I can’t wait to see what you make with your sweatshirt. I leave you with flowers of Spring. Enjoy your creative weekend. Take time for deep breathing. It’s a great stress reliever. Hugs, Heidi  

These are right out of the wrap from the florist. Don’t forget to check out my workshop, “Pick a Pattern” at our Artistic Alchemy Retreat. Go to: Artisticalchemyblog.wordpress.com for all the details (at home page, tap on Workshops). I’d love to have you join the fun!