Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy Happy

Happy New Year to you and yours!

Alewives Fabrics will be closed New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, but we will see you in 2010.



We are expecting a huge snow storm that is supposed to last the next three days, so if you are planning to visit the shop on Saturday or Sunday you may want to check to see if we are open (and check out your window, too!)

Monday, December 28, 2009

Coming soon in 2010

Here's a sneak peak at what AlewivesGirl has in store for 2010 (a blogging re-vamp of sorts):

Fabric Mythbusters (I think this is a particularly brilliant idea of mine where I plan to explore the myths associated with fabrics and quilting/sewing in general and tell you if they are fact or fiction. For example: Do you really need to wash your fabrics before sewing with them? Will cutting paper with your good fabric scissors really dull them down? Can you use large scale prints in small scale projects? You get the idea! )

Back to Basics (After 11 years in a fabric store, I have seen a thing or two come up again and again and again. I thought it might be a good idea to give the once-over treatment to such subjects as rotary cutting, binding, making your own piping and bias tape, inserting a zipper: you get the idea!)

Interviews (I plan to stalk your favorite authors/designers and harass them until they concede to an interview with me. If that plan fails, I promise genuinely entertaining interviews with the Alewives staff and customers and if that plan fails, I can always interview myself! You get the idea!)

Giveaways (I KNOW you get that idea!)

A Potholder Swap ( Who doesn't love potholders? They're so cute and little and quick to make! We'll each make a set of potholders and swap them with people all over the country and perhaps even the world! More details to follow, but you get the idea!)

Book and Pattern Reviews ( I don't always have the best track record for finishing projects, but I do always have good intentions. One of my New Year's resolutions is to do some "field research" for all those new books and patterns that catch my eye... or at least hand the blogging reins over to someone who can! You get the idea!)

Wedding Watch 2010 ( Of course I will chronicle the road to domestic bliss for myself and Oliver... whether you want me to or not! )

Any other suggestions?

Lay 'em on me, I'm all ears!

That is all for now...

Have a Happy New Year and I will see you in 2010!!!



Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!!

However you celebrate...

Whatever you celebrate...

And whomever you celebrate with...

Merry Christmas from me to you!!!

We will be open from 9:00 to Noon tomorrow and then remain closed until 10:00 on Monday.

We will also be closed Thursday New Year's Eve and Friday New Year's Day.

See ya next year!!!


Rhea at Alewives

Sunday, December 20, 2009



Thanks so much to everyone who came out (in the snow!) for our Holiday Open House...

Congratulations to Jackie Hickey who won our $50 gift certificate and to Ginny Burnham who won a $50 gift certificate to Moon Song Creations Long Arm Quilting Services.

The afternoon was unexpectedly cut short for me.

(I am fine but a good friend is going through a rough patch.)

Mom was left alone to hold down the fort and she wanted me to thank everyone for being so patient.

And also thank you to everyone who came to our house on Saturday night.

We are truly blessed with the most wonderful friends and family.

I never knew our little house could hold so many people but the evening was really cozy.

The house looked the way my heart felt: full to bursting.

This is what the Holidays are supposed to be all about.

Confession: I slept until 10:00 this morning when my phone rang and woke me up from a DEAD SLEEP.

If it hadn't rung I probably would have slept until Noon Time at which point I would have been late for work.

So, Thank You, Mom for calling me and asking me if I wanted you to pick up the donuts.

Not only did I take you up on that donut offer, you saved my butt from missing work.

I will post once more before Christmas and then I will probably take a break until the New Year.

Thanks for being here with me and reading my little rants and raves.

Happy Holidays!



Thursday, December 17, 2009

A "LOVE" letter to Amy Butler


I am so pleased to tell you that we have finally received our shipment of the "LOVE" collection from Amy Butler!

I am always amazed when a newbie comes into the shop and they are just getting into quilting and they're looking to make their very first fabric purchases in what (I know) will be a long line of fabric purchases.

These gals, they always go straight for the Amy Butlers.


It never fails.

And these women have never even heard of Amy Butler, so you can't really chalk it up to a devoted following, although Amy certainly has that, as well.

There is just something about Mrs. Butler..., and not just the fact that she shares my future married name.

She has her finger on the pulse and today's "sewist" most certainly gravitates toward her designs.

Amy Butler is like the gateway drug for quilting.

A lot of you have asked me why we were so late to the party with the new Amy Butlers.

The quick answer is that if I were to have received these fabrics in the first "wave" of shipping, I would have had to order the collection sight unseen and I just don't feel comfortable ordering fabric that way.

I only feel comfortable ordering fabric with my Mom at my side so we can argue about which three colorways of a polka dot we will buy and then by the time we decide, the sales rep is rolling his or her eyes in disgust and 20 minutes have been wasted and we end up ordering all of them, anyway.

This is not an exaggeration and I can site examples and witnesses should you request them.

When the images of the LOVE collection were finally released they were on postage stamp sized icons.

And let me tell you, that gave me a lot of insight as to how you internet customers must feel when you are trying to order fabrics from our site.

So I waited to be shown the fabrics in larger scale by our rep.

And I missed out on the first wave but was very happy to order from our rep and wait a little longer.

And today, the fabrics came.

And while if I am being honest I must admit that this is not my favorite collection from Amy Butler, I do "love" it and I know these fabrics won't be here for very long before we have to order and play the waiting game all over again.

Amy can do no wrong and I am just so glad that she is out there designing fabrics.

She has certainly transformed the quilting world and made it so much easier to fall in "Love" with sewing and for that I am eternally grateful.

No joke.

I will talk to you all again soon and in the meantime, let the "Love" fest begin.



Sunday, December 13, 2009

Happy Sunday Morning and a Holiday Open House

Hello all...

Happy Sunday morning.

I wanted to let everyone know that one week from today will be our very first ever Holiday Open House.

The Open House is our way of saying "Thank You" to all our wonderful customers for a great year.

We will be giving away lots of free goodies: anything from a 15% off coupon to a full set of fat quarters from Denyse Schmidt's new line "Hope Valley" to a $50 gift certificate could be yours.

Everyone who comes will walk away with something good!

We will also be serving cookies and hot cider, and who doesn't love cookies and hot cider?

December 20th will also be the last day to donate food to our food drive, so if you have been waiting to bring in your donation of non-perishable food items, the time is nigh!!!

And while you are there, you may want to fill out one of our "A Little Birdie Told Me" wish lists.

This is a great place to let all the people who are shopping for you know EXACTLY what you would like and what you need.

Lots of people buy gift certificates and you can't go wrong with a G.C., it's true, but they're not as much fun to wrap as say, a book or a Turning Twenty kit.

If you DO fill out one of our "A Little Birdie Told Me" wish lists you will be in very good shape when your special guy comes in for Men's Shopping Day and Night.

We all know that guys are famous for the last minute shopping so this year we are going as last minute as we possibly can:

He has from 10am to 8:30pm on Tuesday, December 22nd to come in and shop for you and we will reward his thoughtfulness with a whopping 20% off...

This includes all in stock merchandise, gift certificates and class fees.

(Classes make great gifts.)

In addition, we will be gift-wrapping free of charge and of course serving everybody's favorite: hot cider and cookies!!!

(Have you ever noticed how much guys love food?)

To sum it all up, we hope to see YOU at the shop on Sunday December 20th between 12 & 5 .

And we hope to see your MAN at the shop on Tuesday December 22nd between 10 & 8:30.

Spread the word!!!



Saturday, December 12, 2009

Happy Hannukah

Happy Hannukah to all our friends of the Jewish faith!!!



Thursday, December 10, 2009

"Little Folks" voile has arrived and highlights of the day

Anna Maria's "Little Folks" voile arrived today.

What's a voile?

It's a very silky, soft and drape-y cotton.

Perfect for garments.

These are just spectacular and I love that Anna Maria has made a departure from the regular 45" quilting cotton routine.

It's very progressive of her.

These fabrics are 54" wide and you're going to love them.

Check 'em out in the online store here.

Other good news today:

• My girlfriends and I are going to see Ani at the Strand in Rockland in January. Got our tix. Plan to eat at In Good Company.

• Then we are going to see David Gray at the Merrill in April. Will be dropping everything at noontime on Monday to get tix. Plan to eat at Fuji's.

(Amanda, are you gonna be there, you concert-hopper, you?)

• Ollie is making din din tonight whilst I sew.

• We watched Julie and Julia last night and loved it.

• I got my hair cut at Aura today by the fabu Natasha.

• Have decided to get up and out of bed at 6:00 am everyday regardless of schedule to see if I can be more "awake" if I put myself on a schedule and if I get more work done during the early-ish hours instead of frittering them away. Will let you know how that goes.

• (As a small business owner with no health insurance who would love to have kids but would reeeaaalllyyy like to have health insurance before she does so) Am very excited at the progress being made with the Health Care Reform bill.

• Am also very pleased that our own Susan Collins is a big part of that progress AND she's a Republican, which I think is very progressive of her.

(Got that off my chest).

Alright, AlewivesGirl over and out.

Will see you again soon.



Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A letter to Tiger

Dear Tiger Woods,

Please give it a rest.

You are breaking my Grandma's heart.


Rhea at Alewives Fabrics

Sunday, December 6, 2009



(a VERY happy girl)

Friday, December 4, 2009

Hope Valley

My gal has done it again...

Hope Valley is here and I am so in love.

Denyse's new collection comes in three different colorways:

Piney Woods:

The Fiesta Colorway:

And finally New Day:

And I know it is the most cliche thing in the world to say, but I can't decide which colorway I like the best.

I know I want to make something out of the "wallflower" print... probably the new Amy Butler Liverpool Shirtdress.

Which one of these three would you choose???

If I was a customer in my own shop and I asked myself which of the these three fabrics I would choose my answer (to myself) would be:

"Oh, gosh, it depends on what kind of a mood you are in!"

They are all three so pretty: bandana chic!

What I like about Hope Valley is that the whole collection is so usable.

Any of these prints would be great on their own as a garment (hence my Liverpool Dress dilemma), but they are sooo strong as a collection.

Just piling up the bolts to take these photos the colors were twinkling at me.

These are so pleasingly different from anything else out there right now.

That Denyse Schmidt, she knows of what she sews.

She's really going to be somebody someday ; )

Here is a little description of the "Hope Valley" collection from Denyse herself:

Inspired by the can-do community attitude and homesteading economics of the depression era, Hope Valley is the latest quilting-weight fabric collection by Denyse Schmidt. Eight beautiful new prints in a range of scales take their cue from a vintage-tinged country landscape that embodies a sense of new beginnings and possibilities. Three fresh and inviting color families evoke a feeling of hope and down-home hospitality. Hope Valley is perfect for all your quilt, apparel, home, or accessory projects.

There's even a free quilt pattern available:

I will admit that sometimes I do not get too jazzed by the free quilt patterns that are offered with collections but I love, love, LURV this one.

(download the quilt pattern by following this link.)

Don't look for me to make that shirt dress too soon, though.

I sadly have very little time for sewing.

If you like sewing I don't recommend owning a fabric store.

Or any store.

I am alone at the shop again today - don't worry: everyone is fine! - but I have spent the time racing between customers and the computer to update all of these luscious lovelies aaand the UPS guy just dropped off three more boxes that are (funnily enough) shaped like bolts of fabrics.

In my free time I must confess that I am doing some top-secret holiday sewing.

And I still want to make that Favorite Things Uptown Coat.

Plus I have an Oliver+S School Days Coat to finish.

I am up to my eyeballs in unfinished sewing projects and I am not the kind of gal who likes that.

But anyways, Hope Valley is up in the online store.

I will let it all percolate and drink it all in and maybe by the new year I will be ready to pounce...

I just hope there are some of these fabrics left by then!


Rhea at Alewives

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Around the House

Hello Friends...

Some pictures from around my house today:

Here is the 2009 TREE (yay!!!)

Ollie said we couldn't get a tree until December so Tuesday night I duh-ragged him all over the Midcoast looking for just the right tree.

I hate those fatty trees that are so fat you can't even hang an ornament on them.

I was very happy to finally find this tree at one of the local homes that becomes a tree lot at this time of year with the big round lights strung up at night and everything.

We threw it in the back of Ollie's truck and chugged our way home.

Then we decked the halls and made pizza and were quite pleased with ourselves.

I think this gal is my very favorite ornament...

But I think this might be Ollie's favorite:

I'm all about the wrapping this year:

Ollie brought out some presents last night and I am the WORST. SNOOP. EVER.

Worse than a kid.

Worse than I was when I was a kid.


I have a big ol' pile of Christmas cards to do...

Today is a good day to do them because it looks like this outside:

Wouldn't it be cool if all that rain were SNOW???

(Aww, come on... you KNOW you want a White Christmas!!!)

Here are some leftover Thanksgiving flowers to brighten the place...

Here are my mix-y match-y dishes on the wall...

Here is my new old hutch that I am waaay more in love with than should be allowed between a person and an inanimate object...

Here is that quilt I made and had promised to share with you...

Doesn't it look perfect behind Ollie's table?

He made it from an old barn door.

Here's a close-up:

Love that old, weathered wood.

And here's my breakfast which is calling to me like a siren:

I'm doing Weight Watchers.

Did you know you can have two pieces of a certain type of toast, PLUS 2 teaspoons of jelly, PLUS 2 teaspoons of butter PLUS 1 mug of hot tea for just 6 points?

It can be done, so I am a happy camper.

In other news, I have taken a personal day off from the store.

I just needed a day to pull it all together.

It's probably the second time in five years that I've taken a personal day and it feels sooo good.

Jessie is over at the store by herself today so if you visit be nice and go easy on her, although I'm pretty sure she can handle whatever you throw at her.

That's all for now.

Mom is feeling much better but she is still at home resting.

Thanks for all your well-wishes!

I will see you again soon...

Have a good weekend!