Monday, June 27, 2011

Far Far Away 3 is in the house!

As Carrie Bradshaw once said:

"Get it while it's hot.."

Far Far Away 3 could almost be considered 2 collections in one:

The "Snow White" prints (along with the "flowers" and the "laundry day" prints) are all printed on an absolutely delicious, lighter weight cotton/linen blend sheeting that would be perfect for quilts and garments.

The "girls who love horses" and "guitars" prints are only available in the heavier weight cotton/linen blend (the same substrate as Far Far Away 2...), which would be perfect for bags and the like.

I'm in love with both substrates, and although I haven't washed any of these newer, lighter cotton/linens as of yet, I'm betting they wash like a dream, and I know from experience that the heavier weight cotton/linens wash like a dream.

Does that make sense?

(I hope so...)

The rest of the prints from the collection will be arriving tomorrow, along with some other Japanese fabrics.

We'll also post some fat quarter bundles into as soon as we've got them cut, so check back again soon.



Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Textiles in my life...

Sadly this post is filled mostly with textiles that you cannot buy (well, atleast you cannot buy them from me, anyways...), but I thought they would be fun to share.

Let's take a little tour, shall we?

A funny story about this gorgeous table cloth: Mom and I went to the Flower & Garden show in Boston this spring, and there was a man there selling the MOST AMAZING tablecloths from Belgium and France.

Mom bought this tablecloth which was waaay out of my price range, and the whole ride home from the show I told Mom how much I loved the tablecloth and basically arranged for her to leave me the tablecloth in her will, because, as I pointed out to her several times, it would look really good in my kitchen.

Imagine my "surprise" (quote/unquote) when she gave me this tablecloth for my birthday.

(Actually, by my birthday I had forgotten all about the tablecloth so it really was a surprise... and I do love this tablecloth very much which you will find out if you ever visit my house and I yell at you when you try to put something on it...)

My hand-screened fabrics from my new BFF Lucie over at Summersville came in the mail.

I have no idea what I'm going to do with them, but whatever it is I can't wait to do it.

And Lucie sent me these magnets, too, made from some of her fabrics... I love them!

(Locals, the new Thai place in Damariscotta is really good: Ollie and I give it two thumbs up!)

My new ironing-board cover...

This is a "Pockets 2 Go" pattern, all made up by my friend Dawn...

She gave this to me for my birthday this year and I love it so much I don't know how I ever lived without it.

She's got my number: the linen and grey and teeny, tiny bit of orange stitching are perfect!

Currently the Pockets 2 Go is residing in my kitchen, handy for holding birthday cards and the like, but I have grand plans to move it into the office at the store and that will be the key to keeping me organized and on top of these things and I will never make another mistake again ever... all because of my Pockets 2 Go....

I couldn't help myself when I saw this little bundle of Liberty from Purl... it will probably become hexagons one of these days, but for now I just like to look at it and open it up and refold the little squares (*blush*)...

A new set of sheets I found at TJ Maxx, fresh out of the wash and waiting to go on the bed, super-soft with a cute print. Quite the score...

Remember this pile of fabrics from forever ago?

I made it into a quilt, which now needs to be quilted (and ironed, apparently...)

This would make a great picnic blanket, n'est-ce pas?

Throw pillows: the little one is from my friend Emily's shop, Nest, and the big one is part of the schwag Mom brought me back from her recent trip to Finland.

She new she was dead meat if she didn't bring me back some Marimekko.

I think they look nice together, don't you?

And although I am not expecting (I repeat: I am NOT expecting), I couldn't help but pounce on this awesome deal over at Denyse's shop.

The entire collection of baby quilt sets (which include bumpers, a crib-size quilt, a pillow sham and pillow form) are on sale for just $70, including shipping!

I could. not. believe it.

So although I am NOT having a baby any time soon, I thought this was such a good deal I would keep it for when I do have a baby, or for a baby shower gift, or for a throw quilt.

I mean, for $70, how can you go wrong?

I believe that concludes the tour of non-Alewives textiles in my life.

They've been fun to collect over the last few years.

Thanks for going on this tour with me!



Sunday, June 19, 2011

On Fathers Day and blessings in disguise...

Did you ever have one of THOSE weeks?

How about one of those MONTHS?

You know which ones I mean: those days, weeks, months where everything just goes kaflooey all at the same time.

In the last few weeks, Ollie has had emergency surgery on his hand from a splinter (of all things) that got jammed into his palm pretty good at work.

Subsequently we are in worker's comp paperwork hell.

And my car is in desperate need of new tires.

Ollie's truck is on its last legs and every time he takes it out on the road we say a little prayer that he makes it back home again.

I was sick with that crazy morphing cold thing that everyone seemed to have.

And then last night Ollie and I went to the big city of Brunswick, which is a half hour or so south of here.

The power was out at the house and I was jonesin' for some Gelato Fiasco.

Rumor had it there was Pecan Sticky Bun in the case last night, which turned out to be false, which was A-okay with me because come on, it's the Gelato Fiasco and you can't go wrong.

After gelato we went to Wal-Mart to get Ollie some cheap shorts for work (he's a hard-wrokin' carpenter, hence the nasty splinters...) and all of a sudden, the car started making a very un-friendly grinding noise.

Ollie hopped out in the Wal-Mart parking lot and diagnosed the issue as worn-down brake pads.

To which I replied: "My car has those?"

Ollie said that it was not safe to drive home for fear of breaking the roter.

(I guess my car has a couple of those, too.)

Anyhow, we called AAA and it was going to cost $90 (at least) to tow the car home, and we just couldn't stomach that.

So as a wicked awesome present to my Dad on the eve of Father's Day we called him at 10:30 at night and said "Happy Father's Day! Come pick us up!"

And Dad, being the good Dad that he is, said "Sure, where are you?"

And we told him we were in the Wal-Mart parking lot.

Dad started laughing.

"What? What's so funny?" I asked.

"God is punishing you for going to Wal-Mart," he said.

And the whole thing was so funny that all of a sudden I couldn't help but laugh at myself.

The point I am trying to make here is that all of our kaflooey happenings of the past month are really quite trivial in the grand scheme of things, and THANK GOODNESS for hindsight, because I can truly say that I am glad *most* of them happened.

Because of the splinter in Ollie's hand, we got to spend hours in the waiting room together, talking, playing rock/ paper/ scissors, stitching up LOTS of hexagons, reading and just plain old being together.

I realized that there are not many people with whom it is a pleasure to spend time in an ER waiting room, but if I happen to be married to one of them (and he's cute to boot), then I must have done something right along the way...

Plus it was funny when he came out of the anesthesia and was kind of "loopy."

And yes, we are in worker's comp paperwork hell, but I did get to spend the whole week after the surgery with Ollie at home for my days off, which is quite rare indeed: normally he has weekends off and I have Tuesdays and Wednesdays off, so when we get time off together it is a bit of a treat.

Certainly worth a bit of paperwork, I'd say.

My car still needs new tires but that means I don't drive around as much as I normally would so I'm saving a bit of money on gas.

(Can you tell I'm still trying hard to see the bright side of that situation?)

Ollie's truck is on its last legs, but it has been a great truck in the meantime and we got our money's worth out of that thing several years ago, so any extra time is just a bonus.

My crazy morphing cold was not very serious and was probably just my body telling me to take a break for a while and chill the heck out: always good advice.

And although my car broke down, it meant that I got to spend a half an hour riding home in the backseat of my Dad's van with Reuben in my lap, listening to Ollie and Dad pontificate on the many different ways you can love a canoe for the entire ride, and I realized that they are not just my husband and my father, but they are genuinely friends with each other and that makes me disgustingly happy.

Plus Dad's line about "God punishing me for going to Wal-Mart" was priceless.


Happy Father's Day to all the many different types of fathers out there: your little ones are never too old to call in the middle of the night for a bail-out.

And maybe it won't seem like a fun phone call to get at first, but at the very least it might remind you how very much you are loved and needed... even when your daughter is 32 and thinks she's got these things covered.

(Consider yourselves warned...)



Tuesday, June 14, 2011

What I have found in my travels...

(Image of hand screened fabric from Summersville's Etsy shop)

I've been a boring blogger lately...

Part of that comes with summer (although it sure doesn't seem like summer at the moment...brrr... Don't tell Ollie, but I've got the heat on for a bit... just to take the chill out of the air, mind you...) and part of that comes with being busier than usual and part of that comes with being sick for a week and a half now with a cold.

As colds go, it hasn't been so bad, but I have been quite tired and sluggish.

I've missed a couple days from work and have been spending a lot of quality time with my computer.

What I've found in my travels on the computer has been quite entertaining...

I've made new friends (Hi, Lucie!)...

Discovered new things that I want to make...

Discovered new things that I think the store should have and that I'll need to take up with my business associate (Mom)...

And did a little armchair shopping...

Discovered old things that are going out of print (we've got a solid stock of these at the shop: catch them while you can)...

Enjoyed one of my favorite movies of all time...

Firmly decided that in my next life I'm going to come back as a Broadway singer...

Gotten some juicy fabric-related news that I'm not allowed to share with you, except to say that there is some veeeeeeery awesome stuff coming down the pike from this fabric company...

Bought a new bathing suit from Old Navy for 10 bucks (look out, Damariscotta Mills!)...

And eaten many, many popsicles.


I think you're all caught up now.

When I'm feeling better and have more interesting stuff to share I'll be back in the saddle again.



Sunday, June 5, 2011

Customer Inspiration: Nadine and Barbara

Today I would like to share with you a couple of fabulous bags made by two of my favorite people, Nadine and Barbara.

Nadine is a customer and close friend (so close, in fact, that she was front and center at my wedding, along with a couple of other frequent flyers from the shop...) and Barbara is not technically a customer, because she works for us here at Alewives (doing the fabulous long-arm quilting, among other things), but she started out as a customer.

Let's start with Nadine's bag shall we?

You all know about my love affair with the Winslow Market Tote, right?

The infection seems to be spreading and Nadine has made no less than three at last count.

Here's the latest creation which was started and completed at Sewing Lounge last Friday night:

Gorgeous, n'est-ce pas?

Nadine made this bag completely from Home Decorator weight fat quarters, all from the new Amy Butler "Soul Blossoms" line.

The home decorator weight fabrics made the bag nice and sturdy and I think these particular fat quarters are so pretty together, but then again I did help her pick them out.

And then we have Barbara's Reversible Sunday Sling, which she made in the smaller size as a diaper bag for her daughter, who is expecting a new baby girl to arrive from Ethiopia very soon...

I love that this bag is completely reversible.

Barbara used the super-cute "Urban Circus" line by Laurie Wisbrun.

Couldn't possible be a more perfect diaper bag, don't you think?

Good job, both of you!

Keep up the good work, ladies!



Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Hand-pieced Hexagon class recap

I can't believe it has taken me 2 whole weeks to finally get around to posting these pictures, but that is how the cookie crumbles...

Here's Brooke teaching away at her Hand-pieced Hexagon class...

Is she not the most adorable little pink-haired pixie you ever saw?

I first met Brooke at the Maine State Quilt Show, which takes place every year at the Augusta Civic Center during the last weekend in July.

I have to confess that sometimes, Mom and I feel a bit like oddballs at the Quilt Show: not because the people aren't nice (they most assuredly are), but because we have fabrics that are a bit "out there" for the average Quilt Show-goer.

Having said that...

There are some people I look for every year, and little pink-haired Brooke has always been one of those people...

Except when I first met her, she was little blue-haired Brooke.

Not many people at the Quilt Show with blue hair, but I would have remembered Brooke any which way... :-)

We've been "hanging out" together on the internet ever since.

I think it was particularly brilliant of me to ask Brooke to visit the shop and teach us all how to make hand-pieced hexagons.

So brilliant that I think I'll do it again.

How 'bout it Brooke?

Come back and teach again this fall?

Yes, this was 2 whole weeks ago and I am still enamored with making little hexies.

Thanks so much, Brooke!

Everybody had a great time, including me!



PS For much, much better photos of the class, check out Brooke's blog post on the same topic!