Tag Archive: Sew With Me

5 Fantastic Craft Books from 2017

I will always love craft books. No matter how much time I spend online watching YouTube videos and reading blogs, there’s nothing like holding a really beautiful craft book in your hands. Books are a great value. For $15-25 you get over a dozen patterns. Think about that! Plus, a book is a peek into… 

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5 Fantastic Craft Books from 2017

I will always love craft books. No matter how much time I spend online watching YouTube videos and reading blogs, there’s nothing like holding a really beautiful craft book in your hands. Books are a great value. For $15-25 you get over a dozen patterns. Think about that! Plus, a book is a peek into… 

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Felt Menagerie Kit Now in Stores

I’m super excited to let you know that my new kit, Felt Menagerie, is now available in stores. This kit is published by Quarto and contains a pattern booklet showing you how to make 10 taxidermy animal heads from felt, plus all the materials to make a fox and a peacock (felt, floss, stuffing, a… 

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Learning to Make Puppets

I’ve started making puppets. I’m learning to make the muppet kind of puppet with the wide open mouth and I’m slowly making progress. A few weeks ago I had a sort of creative turning point. Although my love for three-dimensional design in fabric hasn’t wavered over the last 13 years, it’s been important to let… 

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Solid Squares Baby Quilt

A few weeks ago I had coffee with Pippa Armbrester, a modern quilter who lives in my town. We’d never met, although we’d heard about each other. I love Pippa’s quilts (check out her book – affiliate link). She has a wonderfully simple understated style and after our meeting I was inspired to try something… 

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A Quilt and Softie Gift Set

A few weeks ago I got an email from Sheri Cifaldi-Morrill asking if I’d like to collaborate with her on a project. I first learned about Sheri when she won the Craftsy Designer Fellowship in 2016. Part of the prize was a booth at fall Quilt Market. Sheri’s Bzzzzzz quilt is one of my favorites,… 

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Snapshot Mini Quilt

In January I had a conversation with Thomas Knauer on the podcast. Thomas is a deep thinker and he’s got some pretty radical things to say about quilting and the industry that’s grown up around it. One of his big ideas is that we should step away from the constant consumerism of quilting – more… 

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A New Pattern In the Making

A few years ago I sold all my pattern samples. At that time my workspace was a table in the corner of our bedroom and with the piles of fabric, the ironing board, and the stuffing bin, it felt too crowded to have so many softies and dolls everywhere. When Craftland in Providence asked if… 

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Patchwork Elephant and Baby Quilt Print Pattern is Here!

After many months of work I’m excited to finally have the Patchwork Elephant pattern available as a print pattern. And I’ve added a coordinating baby quilt that uses up several more of the pre-cut strips used to create the elephant. Together I think this project makes a really lovely baby gift. The print pattern has… 

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Goldfish Hat from Fleece Hat Friends by Mary Rasch

My middle daughter, Stella, loves to wear hats. All summer she wore a Spiderman baseball cap. When she gets dressed up she wears a fedora. And in the winter she likes to have a fleece animal hat to wear. Most of the winter animal hats in stores are for little kids and after lots of… 

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Casey the Crab Free Pattern in Patchwork

I was looking for a fun summer patchwork project and decided to make my free Casey the Crab pattern up with some quilting cottons (the original sample is in fleece). I grew up in Maryland going to the Eastern Shore with my family every summer. We would always get Maryland crabs one night, usually at… 

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New Pattern: Sweetie the Popsicle

For our middle daughter, Stella’s, 10th birthday we took a small group of her friends to Fun and Games, a nearby arcade. The kids ran around putting coins into machines, playing wack a mole and skeeball for nearly and hour. By the end each kid had a sweaty palmful of tickets to be redeemed at… 

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Going from PDF to Print

One of the biggest advantages that self-publishing PDF patterns give us as designers is the ability to test the market in a very low-cost way. In June of 2009, almost seven years ago, I made a piece of pink patchwork, cut it apart, and sewed it into an elephant. You can see it here. Every… 

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A New Asleep Awake Doll

When I made the pattern for the Asleep Awake Doll I cut out a several dolls to sew up. This little girl ended up all sewn, but sat on my work table waiting to be stuffed for a few months. This weekend it was time to give her some attention. On the awake side she… 

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Spoonflower Introduces Fleece

For years I lived in fear of sewing stretchy fabric. I made all of my dolls and toys from wovens, or from faux fur with a woven backing. Then, about four years ago, I started sewing with fleece and my fear evaporated. When it comes to softies fleece is a dream to sew with! It’s… 

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Felt Daffodils

When I migrated my site from Typepad to WordPress a few random things were lost. One of them was the template for these felt daffodils. I’ve had it on my to-do list to redraw and upload the templates and this weekend I finally did it! While I was at it, of course, I made five… 

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Chick and Egg Toy for Easter

I made an Easter version of my Chick and Egg Reversible Toy. This patterned fleece looks just like a decorated Easter egg. And when you flip it inside out… So fun! I had to make him a sister. I sewed both of these in an afternoon. They’re not hard even if sewing with fleece is… 

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2015 Year In Review

2015 is drawing to a close and it’s time to review the year. My business grew this year in a way that I feel good about. I work about 25 hours a week now – 4 hours in the morning while the kids are at school and another hour at night. Some weeks felt awesome… 

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Fay Nicoll Designs Modern Jewish Fabrics For Today’s Sewists

I’m Jewish and I sew. Sometimes these two facts converge and I find myself wanting to sew something Jewish like a challah cover or a kippah or a Hebrew School tote bag. While I’m planning these projects I often look for Jewish fabrics to use. What I’ve found is that unless you want to put… 

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Circle Bird: A Free Softie Pattern

I love simplicity in design – a single shape cleverly manipulated becomes something unexpected. It’s so pleasing! Today I have a free softie pattern to share with you that I think encapsulates this concept. It’s called Circle Bird and it’s made of two circles. Let’s see how it works! You’ll need: 1/4 yard of fleece… 

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Pattern in Progress

I’m working on a new pattern for a little owl. This will actually be my first print pattern! It’ll be a two-sided card and should be ready in a few months. I wanted this owl to be a project you could make in an hour and hold in the palm of your hand – a… 

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A Selection of Softies Made By You!

Today I’m showing off some softies made by you! I’ve chosen a few of the toys people have been making from my patterns because it’s just so fun to see them made up by different hands. Let’s take a look! Jess Breitschwerdt has been busy making faux taxidermy from both of my faux taxidermy patterns…. 

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A Pillow for Roxanne

Our eldest daughter, Roxanne, is getting ready to begin middle school in the fall. She asked if over the summer we could redo her bedroom to make it more grown up. Down came the alphabet poster. Up in the attic went many of the old stuffed animals. She chose aqua and gray as a new… 

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Repairing a Beloved Stuffed Animal

I received this email from Jessie over the weekend and asked her if I might share it with you: I was wondering if you had any tips for making a patch where there was an injury to the lovie. This is Singer. She is 34 years old. She was injured in an incident involving a… 

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New Simplicity Patterns is Available: #1131

I’m so excited to show you my new Simplicity pattern – #1131. This is a selection of under the sea softies. I haven’t seen the inside yet, but they asked permission to use my step-by-step photos and instructions for this one (which is the first time they’ve made this request). Perhaps it looks different from… 

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How to Use Freezer Paper to Sew Detailed Softie Parts

Freezer paper changed my life as a designer. Seriously! I know that’s a sort of dramatic statement, but I’m standing by it. I first heard about freezer paper from Mimi Kirchner. In 2006 she published this post showing how she sews really detailed doll hands and fingers by machine and from that point on I’ve… 

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