Sunday, January 29, 2012

Got thread? (A Giveaway)

(Please note: This giveaway is now closed.)
I have a philosophical question for you . . . we quilters love to pet and talk to our fabric; we go to great lengths to choose just the right batting; we have our beloved ways of quilting our projects --- but do we give much thought to the thread?  Seriously!!

Lilypadquilters! I would like to introduce you to our newest partner --- Superior Thread! Some of you may already use their products, but the name may be new to some of you . . .

Many shops and stores carry Superior, but if you can't find it near you, never fear! They have an awesome website --- really well organized and user friendly, and you can order straight from them.  If you are impatient, you can click on the button on the left and go straight to the site and look around . . . but I'd like to tell you some really neat information, if you'll hang in there!

Superior is located in St. George, Utah, and has been serving quilters and sewists for many years. They are super friendly and have a wonderful sense of humor. No kidding --- click on that blue "I Love Superior" button over there, and then click on "Other" on the navigation bar . . . then choose "The Quilt Stash Song."  I'll just cool my heels here while you go. No, really, go ahead. (Even if you don't listen to it, at least read the lyrics - it's a hoot!)

Dum - de - dum - de - de - dum . . .  You're back? OK.

When I spent some time browsing the Superior site, I was pretty impressed with the variety of different threads there. It might be confusing, seeing that there is a dizzying number of fibers, weights, and yardages, but  the site also has super descriptions of the threads. They tell you about the fiber, the advantages, and even note the uses that they feel that particular thread is best for. There are some specifically for long arm quilting, some for home machines and piecing, and, and, well, you get the picture.

The part I thought was amazing was their Try Me page. (Again, if you want to check it out, please click over there on the left and go - I'll explain in a minute.)  On the home page, you can click on the left on "Products," and then scoot down to "Specials and Try Me Specials" to get there.  I could be wrong, but I think I saw every one of their products on that page -- you can try out the thread in regular sizes, at a discounted price --- even one spool, if you desire. Then if you decide it's perfect for your project, you can go back and order a basketful! And if you are worried about the color being displayed correctly on your monitor, check out their color cards! 

They have spools that have a mere (grin) 600 yards, and they have 2,500 - 3,000 yard ones, and they have Jumbo ones of 22,000 yards! Ya won't run out for a while, will ya!!

They offer a Thread of the Month Club, with neat projects and threads to complete them, too!
Now, here is the really impressive part: the thread is guaranteed! No kidding! How many times have you long-arm quilters been trying to complete a project and had thread breaking right and left? How many times have we placed a new spool on our machines and then (insert name of your machine here - you DO have a name for your machine, don't you?) begins to cough and sputter and generally refuses to cooperate? 
If you use the thread in the application that they suggest, and with the needle they recommend, and you have breakage and snarls and what-not, they stand behind their product! Check out the guarantee at the bottom of their home page! Here it is:

Now, why am I harping on clicking on that blue button in the left-hand sidebar? Well, as I said, Lilypadquilting is partnering with Superior. Here is what that means . . .  they will keep track of the visits that originate at this blog. And what is even better, is that they will keep track of the purchases that start here. 

For example, if one of you special peeps clicks on that button, falls in love with some of the King Tut thread, and purchases several large spools, they'll put a small percentage of that purchase into a "bucket" marked Lilypadquilting.  I intend to use that bucket to pay-it-forward: when there is enough there to buy thread for a giveaway, I'll buy it and offer the thread as a giveaway here at the Lilypad! Cool, huh? I think so!

Now, I would really like to give Superior a warm Lilypad welcome, so here is a giveaway starting today!

There are six charm packs here . . . all solids. One Bella, by Moda, in a pretty cream color. The rest are all Kona cottons: a Dusty Palette, a Bright Palette, a Pastel Palette, a Classic Palette, and a Dark Palette.
We'll have two winners, so each winner will receive three charm packs --- and a 550 yard spool of Superior's So Fine 50 wt. thread!
How do you enter to win? I'm glad that you asked!

1. First of all, we love our followers at Lilypadquilting, so
    leave me a comment first, telling me that you follow. 
2. Next, click on that blue button and when you reach the
    Superior site, sign up for their newsletter - and come
    back and tell me you did!
3. While you are there, check out the Try Me page and 
    comment on which of their threads you would like to
    try out!
4. If you'd like another chance, "like" them on Facebook.
    Just for fun, you can tell Todd you liked the song! And
    of course, let them know I sent you. (Wink)
5. Finally, if you help to spread the word about our give-
    away on your blog or Facebook page, comment and let
    me know that you did, for another chance to win.

Whew! Lots of chances to win! So let the commenting begin --- and remember, if you purchase some of their thread, START HERE (puh-leeze?), so that the giveaways can roll on!!
We'll keep this open for a week, which means we'll close it on Feb. 5th, and announce the winner on February 6th! Good luck!


Saturday, January 28, 2012

A Big Sale and A Sneak Peek

One of our great sponsors, Dewberry Lane, is closing the doors on their online store. The message that I received said . . .

So, I'm glad that it's not due to lack of sales, but instead is a new direction they are headed in! Rachel has lots of great stuff in the store, so be sure to click through using the button on the left-hand sidebar, or the linkie above, and put that code in, to get your discount!

Now, I know that I also promised you a sneak peek, so here is a little glimpse of something that I'm working on . . . you'll see the whole thing sometime in February, when I post it over at Sew We Quilt!

Hope everyone is having a great day, and finding time to sew!


Thursday, January 26, 2012

Final Post for Embellishment Party!! Sunni's here!

It's the final day of our Embellishment Party, and we have the fabulous Sunni with us today! You can catch her posting on her blog and also guest posting on other lucky bloggers' pages, so we are happy that she had time to work up something for our party! Especially since she had a tremendous snow-storm and a three day power outage to contend with, too!

Welcome, Sunni!

Hi! I'm Sunni from Love Affair with my Brother
 No, it's not what you think!! I love my sewing machine!!

I was so excited when Jacque asked me to come up with a fun purse accent. I brainstormed for a few days and finally figured out what to do! Then my power was knocked out by a winter storm for 3 days. It came back on and then went back out again!!
Jacque was very gracious and understanding, and generously gave me a few more days to be able to sew up my project. Thanks Jacque!!

Zippers and Silk. It's like "Leather and Lace", only updated!
These flowers are so easy, your friends will never believe it!

You will need :
a 24" or larger zipper
fat quarter of silk or satin
felt for backing
pin back
basic sewing supplies
glue (can also do this step by hand-sewing)

I made a template
 that you can print out and use or just use your own shape. I am using the middle size. Cut 12 petal shapes if you are making a 6 petal flower.

I chose a very industrial looking zipper. I wanted big teeth to stand out against the silk. Cut a bit of the seam allowance off of your zipper. It fits better with such a small petal and makes turning easier.

Clip every 1/4" or so to accommodate the curve of the petal. Don't clip all the way to the teeth. Just a little will be sufficient.

Sew the zipper on one layer at a time. Slow and steady wins the race here. The curve of the petal was so sharp that it was very difficult to sandwich it between both layers. Just sew it on the front, sandwich the zipper between the layers and sew directly on the first stitch line.
If you are an expert, just go ahead and sandwich the zipper between both petal layers and sew.

This is just before I added the second layer on top and sewed.

Assemble all 6 petals and turn right side out and press. Then plug in your glue gun. I am using a composition notebook so I don't get glue on my carpet!

Using a needle and strong thread, run a basting stitch from edge to edge of the first petal. Continue adding petals, one right next to each other. I was careful to make sure that my zippers all faced up at the sides.

Once all of the petals are basted onto the thread, tie it in a circle to create a flower shape. Glue a felt circle on the back to stabilize the petals and be a base for your pin back. Glue your pin back onto the felt.

For the center of the flower, you can make a zipper swirl. Just roll and glue, roll and glue until you are happy with it. Glue it onto the center.

You can also use the zipper pull as your flower center. Just be sure to pull your circle very tight! I liked the pull better because it creates a bit of an illusion. As if you could just unzip the flower! My oldest immediately started pulling on the tab trying to unzip it! 

Then just pin it on your purse, scarf, or headband!! I'm sure you could think of a bunch of places to use these flowers!

To Jacque and all your awesome readers: Thank you so much for having me and being so understanding for my "extended" deadline!

Thanks, Sunni, for such an awesome tutorial --- these have a lot of potential uses as embellishments! So glad that your power is back, and all is well. After all, the worst part of an outage is that your sewing machine won't run, right?!  (Grin)
If you enjoyed this tute, please leave Sunni a comment, and be sure to stop in at her blog --- there are lots of fun things happening there!

I'm also linking up with Making Rebecca Lynne's Thursday Think Tank linky party.....stop by there for some creative inspiration, OK?


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I'm grateful!

Hurrah! We got to the 600 mark!

I'm so grateful that we now have 600 followers! Some by RSS feed, and some that just come by and visit us each day to see how things are going here at the Lilypad!


I just wanted to let you know that you are all appreciated so much! I can't believe how quickly this blog has grown, and how much fun it has been --- I've made so many wonderful bloggie friends! And I have so many opportunities that the blog has opened up for me in this virtual quilting community.
None of this would be possible without you . . . all of you! Thank you to those who read my posts, leave me kind comments, enjoy my tutorials, and enter the giveaways! Y'all are the ones that make this so fun.

To say thank you, with the help of some awesome and amazing sponsors, we will celebrate!

In the next few days, I'll be pulling together some really nice prizes, and putting together an awesome, fun giveaway for you special peeps!

In the coming months, I will be reviewing some online resources for you, showing you some fabulous fabric lines, having super giveaways, participating in great blog hops, and even --- trumpets here --- this summer we'll host the fun Pets on Quilts Show for 2012!

Hang on for the ride!


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Embellishment Party - Week 2!

I'm linking up today to share at the Shady Porch! Click this link to check out all the fun projects and ideas there!

Yay! It's my turn to show you my embellishment for totes, purses, bags and more. Wherever you want a little "Wow!" you can use these embellishments.

Jackie of Jackie's Art Quilts showed us her Scrap and Slash Flowers --- thank you, Jackie! They were scrap-happy fun, and I can imagine a lot of uses for them.  (Pssst! You want to see another embellishment from Jackie? Check out this link to the Riley Blake Cutting Corners College.)

Sunni of Love Affair had some super bad weather and a three-day power outage, so she's going to be a little late to the party, but that's OK. She's bringing a really neat project with her on Thursday!

So now, it's my turn. Gack!  The pressure, the intimidation!  Hold on a minute whilst I grab a paper bag and breathe a few times!

OK, I'm alright now. Are ya ready? Here we go!

We are going to make a Cherry Charm embellishment for your enjoyment --- I think you'll get lots of positive comments on your tote or purse, with these babies displayed there!  I'm adapting this from our Cherry Charms tutorial, so instead of a cross between fuzzy dice and quilter's emblems, we'll end up with purse embellishment!

We're going to start with some scraps of fuzzy red fabric, fuzzy green if you have it, and the brown cord for the stems. Fleece works great for this project, so if you made some funky slippers or apparel for Christmas, just go root around in the scraps and then come back. Want us to wait?  OK.  (Slipper scuffing to kitchen for coffee, then returning.)
You ready now? Great! You'll need to go to our file cabinet in Google docs and download and print the pattern. Once that is done, you are ready to roll.
You'll want to cut out the pattern pieces on the solid lines, first.

Then you will use those to cut your pieces of fabric. Most of us will use the red for the cherries and the green for the leaves, but if you really want to reverse it or even do something totally crazy with different colors, don't let me hold you back. (Grin)

Next step will be to mark WS of the cherries. On our tutorial, Elby used a marker (gasp!) but you can use whatever method you have handy, and mark the darts to form the cherry half.

Then you need your trusty needle and thread, and sew up those darts! (Is it just me, or do you feel like you're back in Home Ec, too?!)

If you find the nap is caught in the dart, just use your needle to fluff it out, this way:

(Just look at those smudgy fingers....I told Elby that would happen!)

Once all the darts are sewn, your cherry half should look something like this:

Now you need to construct the other half of the cherry --- second verse, like the first!

Then you can put them right-sides-together and sew them up. It makes it a LOT easier if you don't match up the darts. Oh, and don't forget to leave a small opening for turning . . . don't ask me how I know to warn you about that.  I'm just old and wise. Well, old, anyway.

Now, where was I? Ah! We now have what could pass for a deflated cherry. Make another one. And then one more. You want three, all told.

Now comes the stuffing part --- hey, nobody said you could head toward the kitchen! We're stuffing the cherries, not our faces! This is where a pencil or chopstick comes in really handy.  You can use scraps of fabric, thread snippets, etc to pack into the cherry and make it nice and plump. I know plump.
You could use fiberfill for stuffing if you wish, but I prefer the solid way that the scraps and snippets pack in there. Like Daffy Duck used to always say, "So round, so firm, so fully packed!" 

Now grab some red thread, and sew that opening closed! I'm not really taking that much in a stitch, I just placed my needle there so I could use that hand for the camera.

When you are sewing the opening in the cherry closed, stick one end of your brown cord into the hole, and take a couple of stitches through it to secure that bad boy right where you want him.  When we attach them to the bag, you can loop the stems back under the cherry charm unit, and the loops will look all artsy and 3D and such. (Wink)

Next, you'll put the pieces of green fuzzy wrong-sides-together and blanket-stitch around the edges. Sure beats turning them right side out, and besides, it gives them a nice edge!  (Elby used embroidery floss on hers.)

Now, let's get organized . . . you should have three cherries with stems, and two leaves. You'll need a large yarn needle, and yarn, and a stout heart for this next step. You are going to (be brave, now!) pierce each cherry and pull your yarn through, to make one unit. (I know you can do this.)

Pull them together kind of loosely, and arrange the leaves in a way that is pleasing to you; then stitch those into place with sewing thread, so it won't show.

Now, sit back and admire your handiwork . . . Ain't they cute? Now all that's left is to secure them onto your bag, purse, or other project. I placed mine with a large safety pin, but you can use whatever method you like to attach yours.

I think my Mary Engelbreit bag looks wonderful! Well, at least it will when I get the handles on! (If you like the bag, the pattern is an original by my friend Kiera. Here is a link to her blog, and here's a link to the pattern.)

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial, and I really hope that you try this project --- and let me know if you do! Show pictures!!


Monday, January 23, 2012

Coming Soon to a Blog Near You!

Hey there, Lilypadquilters! Just a quick head's up to let you know there's something brewing for February, and I think you'll enjoy it! 
No, it's not a new coffee blend, although you might like to have a cuppa handy when you settle in to join the hop! 

It's the next Accuquilt blog hop, and we've got a Love-ly theme going on! It's the Go! Ahead and Show Some Love hop, and there are going to be lots of projects, tutorials, and maybe some giveaways, too! Ya know we all love giveaways, right? Of course!

So if you'd like to know who will be posting in our hop, click on the graphic in the right-hand sidebar, and you'll be able to see SewCalGal's post and the list of bloggers. Lilypadquilting will be posting on Thursday of the hop week, so I hope to see you here!

Meanwhile, start thinking red, white, hearts, valentines . . . work with me here!  It's going to be lots of fun, so be sure to tune in!


PS And if anyone reading this has not yet signed up to follow Lilypadquilting, please do --- we are still searching for those last few followers that will push us over 600 . . . and you know what that means! Cake, candy, ice cream, balloons . . . well, OK, we'll have a BIG, OVERSIZED giveaway!