Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Winner, Winner, Goose-y Dinner.

I must say that I greatly enjoyed reading all of the goose-names submitted, and if it were a vote, I think our collective goose would definitely be named Lucy (or Loosey, or other variations thereof), or Grey. Quilters and vodka-lovers, it seems that a venn diagram would have a significant overlap, amiright? Anyway, drumroll, please...
 Elizabeth! You have done won. I shall email you shortly.
I really do wish I had a bunch more to give away, especially since there were so many interesting and hilarious suggestions. A few of my favorites:


Awesome, right? And, even if you didn't win on this one, I hope you'll be comforted knowing that I'm going to try and give you as many chances as possible to get some free stuff in the next few days! If you haven't already signed up to win an Overdue Book Calendar, you can do so here. Also, I just received a nice stack of Studio Stitches patterns, and I am itching to get some of them flying out the door and into your hands... look for it soon!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

It's Baaaaaaaaack... An Overdue Overdue Calendar, and Another Giveaway!

 So, last year I didn't make one. I was indecisive, and really busy with fabric-schtuff, and then it was too late. But I felt a little sadness in my cold, grinchy, heart, and this year I was determined to bring my baby back: The Overdue Book Calendar.
 And if you're new around here, well, first of all, welcome! Thanks for coming! You can leave your shoes on, we don't have carpet! Are you allergic to cats? I hope not, because if you are, uhm, well, I need to go vaccuum. Wait, what was I saying? Oh. Yeah!
If you're new around here and not accquainted with the Overdue Book Calendar, it's something I started making a few years ago, inspired by the hilarious Raych, one of the most impressive library-patrons I've ever known. She reads A LOT OF BOOKS. And so I was thinking, I could do that, but I always forget the due dates, so...
The OBC was born. I'mma copy and paste some of the etsy listing, because I'm lazy. Skip over it, if you know the drill. Salient points are, digital download, so you have it IMMEDIAMENTE! Since it's a digital printable, you can print it a zillion times for all your friends and family, a super-cheap Christmas gift. And, did I mention super-cheap? It's $4. Other than pretty minimal printing costs, it's like the cheapest gift ever, besides gum. And gum is a LAME present, guys. Just sayin'.

Commence etsy listing text! And, if you're already convinced, buy it here!
Books make people smarter, it's a fact. I'm pretty sure that there is scientific evidence to prove it, AND that evidence is most likely located in a book. Bam.

And books are GREAT, but they are not free, and that is sad. But! Libraries exist! Which is awesome, because they let you read books for free! Unless you forget to take them back, and then books costs money again.

So I drew up this handy calendar to help you remember when to take your library books back, because that is a surprisingly hard thing to do, at least for me. Time moves forward, in a very logical and well-documented way, but somehow I manage to forget (or ignore) the consequences of it.

But ANYWAYS! Every month of this 2014 calendar has space for you to write in your library books (12-14 spots) with their due dates. You can also circle the due dates on the calendar to give yourself a visual reminder.

And, yep, I know, E-Readers exist. I have one. (I have two, actually. What a traitor.) But it doesn't mean you don't need the calendar! Just use the blank version of it as a record of the books you read. An heirloom, if you will, because without paper proof, how will your future (or present, I don't know,) grandchildren know you could read? Also, you can print two and keep a decoy calendar on your fridge that makes you look super-fancy, and keep the real one hidden away. I'm not here to judge.

Two versions of this calendar are available for you to download, the standard calendar as well as a blank version without the words "Due By", so that you are able write in your own text. This makes it possible to alter the calendar for many purposes, including recording books read or setting specific reading goals. Downloads for both calendars are included in this listing, so it's kinda like two for the price of one!

Also included is a completely customizable page of books with a single large space for you to fill up- perfect for any number of uses, like recording your favorite (or least favorite) books read during the year, or making up fictional titles for books you wish existed, or listing books you want to read in the future.

And if you are NOW convinced, it is still here. Woot!
But wait, you're saying, what's that about a giveaway? Welp, since I'm in the away-giving mood, and your duck names were all hilarious, I'm giving away 5 copies of the calendar, freesies. If you want the calendar now, you can go ahead and buy it, and if you win, I will refund your $4, I promise! I'll pick the 5 names and announce them on the 21st, and because I like to ask silly questions, we'll go with this: If you could alter the size of any wild animal and keep it as a pet, what would it be? Tiny hippo? Giant spider? (I reeeeeeeally hope it isn't giant spider.) Oh, and if you do the thing where you "like" or "share" or whatever on facebook, you'll be entered into the drawing, but twice more! Social media, I am harnessing it? Do so if you wish: https://www.facebook.com/auntjune.etsy
 Yay! I hope you win! No giant spiders!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Classic Modern Quilts: A Real Book, That I Am In! (And Of Course, A Giveaway!)

So, many months ago, which translates to two posts ago, I was all, I'm done made a quilt! For a thing! A book thing! For reals!
Well, y'all, I was not lying, and now I have the proof to prove it! (Yeah, I know that's a redundant sentence, but isn't it fun to say?) It's a book! With my name on the cover! Which is weird! But awesome! Exclamation point overload!
Classic Modern Quilts: 10 Quilts Inspired by Historical Kansas City Star Blocks
And it's a PRETTY book, my friends. There are some very fabulous quilts in here, so you should take a gander at it when you get a chance-- and definitely check out the blog tour that's going on from now until the 22nd, at the fabulous blogs of the other contributors!
Nov. 11: Lisa Calle, www.vintagemodernquilts.com
Nov. 12: Lynne Goldsworthy, www.lilysquilts.blogspot.com
Nov. 13: If you're reading this, You Are Here.
Nov. 14: Heather Kojan, www.heatherkojan.blogspot.com
Nov. 15: John Kubiniec, www.bigrigquilting.blogspot.com
Nov. 18: Adrianne Ove, www.littlebluebell.com
Nov. 19: Trisch Price, www.hadleystreetquilts.com
Nov. 20: Tammie Schaffer, www.craftytammie.com and Tia Curtis, tiacurtisquilts.blogspot.com
Nov. 21: Amy Smart, www.diaryofaquilter.com
Nov. 22: Susan Strong, www.strongstitches.wordpress.com

And, the lovely folks at My Stars, the newest imprint of Kansas City Star Quilts, are letting us each give away a copy-- that's unlimited ganders, and all for free! Just leave a comment on this post before November 22nd, and I'll do one of those random-number-drawing-things to pick a winner! Of course, it wouldn't be as much fun if we didn't have a theme for the comments, so let's go with: If you had a goose, what would you name it? (Optional secondary question: Why would anyone want to own a goose? They are TERRIFYING.)
The theme of the book is taking traditional blocks and remaking them in a modern way, and I've got to say, I really enjoyed the challenge of it. I chose a block called "Many Roads to the White House", and to tell the truth, I'm still not sure how the original block was constructed, but I had a lot of fun figuring out how to recreate it in a way that's surprisingly simple, with no paper-piecing.
My goal was to take the relatively basic block and make it look far more complex, and I'm really pleased with how it came out, and especially pumped about the method of construction. Because yeah, it LOOKS like a lot of small pieces, but it's actually strip-pieced in a way that makes it MUCH faster than it would seem. I mean, I finished it, so it has to be pretty basic, ya know?
Anyhoo, it makes me smile. Now, leave your goose-name in the comments, and check out the other stops on the blog tour! Because, QUILTS! They are awesome.
And of course, so are photo-bombing cats. Named Baxter. Ahem.

Monday, November 4, 2013

I Love Embroidery Like Nobody's Business.

So it turns out, I freaking LOVE embroidery. Which is good, because it's, like, 90% of what I did this summer. Why, you might ask? Because, I was a-makin' somethin'...
Studio Stitches, A Sewing Themed Embroidery set! I'll post more details later, once I have them in my hot little hands, but this pattern was truly a labor of love, and I'm really really pleased with the way we set it up. Starting out with almost no embroidery experience allowed me to see elements that I wanted from traditional patterns that just don't exist, and try to make graphics that would explain things clearly, especially for visual learners like me.
How did it happen? Well, my friends, when Shea Henderson (the unstoppable force behind Empty Bobbin Sewing Studio), says to you, "You should think about doing this thing," LET ME TELL YOU  you should probably do that thing. Because, like a magical soul-seeing unicorn, Shea will direct you to things that you had no idea you would love, and she will gently nudge you with her unicorn-horn towards them until one day you're like, WHOA, I love this, how did I get here? and then you turn around and, Magical Unicorn Shea looks at you knowingly and then disappears into a mist. Or, something like that... I think I've read too much fantasy lately. (For the record, Shea does not actually have any horns.)
And, I have a so many thoughts about embroidery, because I've spent the past 6+ months becoming somewhat less terrible than I initially was at it-- but I won't go in to it all now, because 1) I can't remember most of it at the moment, and 2) I will be blathering about this a lot more when the pattern is officially out in the world, so I'll save it for then. But, man, I am EXCITED about embroidery. I am JAZZED. My SOCKS have been ROCKED. 
But because the pattern was hush-hush, I spent the entire summer desperately desiring to talk about embroidery all the time-- It was like spending WEEKS at French immersion camp, and then going home and not being allowed to let anyone know you speak French. And you're all, I can conjugate THAT verb! but you have to put a sock in it, or everyone will know what you're playing at. But now I shall conjugate all the embroidery-verbs! And loudly! I'm so happy that this is finally out in the world, and I hope at least a few other people do, too.
Lest ye should ever wonder how fake the interwebs are, and what it ACTUALLY looks like when I'm snapping pictures...