Friday, October 25, 2013

Giveaway, Apples and Cider Week

Cider Week started here in NYC and Hudson last Friday on October 18th.  It continues until this Sunday October 27th.  We went to the cider week celebration in Union Square last week.  I got there a tad too late and missed trying the hard ciders but I was able to take a bottle home.  Union Square is a big open space where markets and fairs are held.  The farmer markets stayed later that day, till 8.  I finally got to pick up some pumpkins!

A few weeks ago while I was away visiting family, my sisters and I went pumpkin picking with our families.  It was a gorgeous day!

I love the fall. I love walking around my neighborhood and hearing the crunch of the dry leaves and smelling the crisp fall air.  Buying apples at the farmer's market and making home made apple pie.  To celebrate the fall and cider week I am giving away one of my new limited tea towels.  There are only four of these made, what can I say blue apples are hard to come by.
This is a pieced tea towel.  The main fabric is a japanese print of apples that are blue and yellow printed on canvas pieced to a bright yellow cotton fabric. There is a hanging loop sewn into the back.  Machine washable.  I sell these for $18.00 in my etsy shop.

Just leave a comment and I will be picking the winner next Tuesday.  Enter your comment by Monday October 28th midnight eastern time.  Don't know what to say? Do you like apples? Apple cider? Apple sauce? Do you have a favorite apple? How many apple varieties are there anyway?  And be sure to check out the Cider Week website, two more days to visit one of the events!


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

A Furry Good Benefit and DIY Runners!

A few months ago a woman named Sandi messaged me on facebook about a fundraiser she was organizing.  A few years ago I co-founded a cat rescue group in NYC.  I no longer am active with that group but continue to volunteer and help out where I can with animal rescue in NYC.   What exactly is animal rescue in NYC?  The city shelters by contract have to take every animal that comes to their door.  Therefore they end up euthanizing many adoptable animals.  Many people in the city do not spay neuter their cats and also let them roam.  Many people also buy dogs then give them up because they cannot handle them or they move to a no pets building.  Sandi is organizing a benefit called Mutt Masquerade which will benefit 3 animal groups; Stewie to the Rescue, Cats in the Cradle and BLES Elephant, Dog and Cat Sanctuary.  It is being held this Saturday October 26th in NYC at Joshua Tree at 513 3rd Ave.
     Sandi asked me if I would be interested in being a sponsor.  I was honored she asked and happy to help out any way I can.  Since I was pregnant at the time and didn't know what it would be like having a baby, I didn't want to over commit.  I offered to make the table linens for the benefit.  Since the benefit is around Halloween I decided to find fabric that is seasonal yet sophisticated and fun.
When Sandi told me some theme ideas; lace, masquerade, animals I thought of fabric by Tula Pink called Nightshade

Unfortunately I wasn't able to source enough of this fabric for table runners.  Then I found some other fabric that was purrfect! It had a bit of lace feel, spider web feel and neon cats.  Two different fabrics encompassing Sandi's themes.
silver flocked

Usually with runners I make the hems a clean finish, folding over the edges twice and sewn down.  The last project I was working on my serger have been the Liberty pocket squares and I have the serger threaded with neon green. I decided to leave the neon green thread and not even hem the runners.  The neon green matches the fabric and will look perfect in a masquerade setting.

If you are interested in making a table runner for your home all you need is 1 yard of fabric and sew the pieces together. Runners are 13" to 14" wide.  One yard of fabric will give you a runner 108" long.   Cut 3 pieces from the one yard so each piece will be 13" x 36". Sew the pieces on the short end face to face. Then hem the long sides 1/2".

If you would like to find out more about the Mutt Masquerade check out their facebook page or buy your tickets here.  Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

How to make: Throw pillow with zipper closure


If you are a beginner sewer one of the easiest ways to spice up your living quarters is to change up the pillows.  Zippers are usually scary to most sewers, don't be scared.  They are actually quite doable.  In the past month I have made pillows for our newly finished back yard, my husband's birthday and my friend Kayte's new couch.  For Andy's birthday the pillows were made with some fabrics he found at a sample sale for about $10 each piece.  They were already pre-cut to the perfect size for an 18" square pillow.

For Andy's pillows I used a natural color canvas for the back.
For this pillow tutorial I used 2 different fabrics.

Fold over the raw edge of one back piece 1/2" and steam with iron

                                        Lay face up on top of zipper over the zipper tape

Attach zipper foot and sew

Take second back piece and fold over 2 ½” and press,  sew a ¾” seam allowance close to folded edge

Lay on top of piece 1 overlapping by ¾”Sew with back side up, be sure zipper foot is running along zipper teeth (see pic)

Back side complete!

Unzip zipper (you are unzippering this because we will be sewing all 4 sides of the pillow case) and lay front piece face to face with back piece

Pin together and sew a 1/2" seam allowance around all sides

Steam with iron

Trim corners at an angle so you can get nice pointy corners when you turn it back out.

Push corners out with a point turner, I like the bamboo kind

Iron and steam, 

Slip pillow into case.