Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Looking Ahead to 2011 - Part 4

How many things that you make do you actually keep?  We all love making things as gifts, but isn't nice to RECEIVE a handmade gift?  Since that rarely happens with us crafters and sewists, we've decided to do something about that.  We will be holding several SWAPS in the coming year. 

Our first swap will be Pincushions!

Here's how it will work:
  • You agree to make a pincushion to be swapped with someone else at The Quilt Asylum.
  • The deadline to sign up is 7pm, Monday, January 24.
  • Pincushions will be exchanged at our Swap Party at 6pm on Monday, February 7.
  • If you cannot attend the Swap Party, you agree to turn in your pincushion no later than 5pm, February 7.  TQA will swap on your behalf.
  • You can make any size, style, or type of pincushion, but you agree to do your best work and create something that you would be proud to own.
  • You will need to turn in an info card with each pincushion (you will receive a blank info card when you sign up).
  • You can make and swap more than one pincushion, but you will need to attach an info card to each one.
  • If you default on your commitment to participate, you will not be allowed to participate in the next swap.
We encourage you to have fun with this swap!  It's a great opportunity to try something new, make new friends, and receive something handmade all in the same process!  If you have any questions, or wish to sign up to play with us, give us a call at (972) 562-2686.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Looking Ahead to 2011 - Part 3

Welcome to our 3rd installment of Looking Ahead to 2011!

How many of you have heard of Quilts of Valor?  This is a national program whose mission is to cover all our service men and women touched by war with donated quilts.  You can read all about this fabulous organization here

Marianne Fons (of Fons and Porter fame) became interested in working with the Quilts of Valor foundation and has succeeded on two fronts:  1) She convinced 9 different fabric companies to create American Valor fabric collections specifically benefitting QOV, and 2) She created the "Under Our Wings" program to pair an experienced quilter with a "rookie" quilter to make and donate a quilt to Quilts of Valor.

The American Valor fabrics will begin shipping in March, 2011.  We have purchased two of the collections:  one by Timeless Treasures and the other by Pat Sloan for P&B Fabrics.

The "Under Our Wings" program is really pretty cool.  We haven't worked out ALL the details just yet, but the basic premise is for an experienced quilter ("Coach") to be paired with someone who has not made a quilt before ("Rookie").  The Coach brings her sewing machine and tools.  The Rookie buys a quilt kit.  The Coach teaches the Rookie how to sew a 1/4" seam.  The Coach does all the cutting, pinning, and pressing - while demonstrating each step to the Rookie.  The Rookie pieces simple patchwork blocks.  Rookies have a great first-time quiltmaking experience under the protective wing of an avid quilter.  The best part is that our military personnel benefit from this partnership!  The QOV Foundation even has a list of longarm quilters who will dontate their time to complete the quilt.  Isn't that great???

We will begin having QOV/Under Our Wings workshops beginning in April once the fabric arrives.  Until then, think about becoming a Coach.  Talk it up among your friends.  Surely you know someone who would like to serve their country by sewing a quilt?

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Looking Ahead to 2011 - Part 2

Here's another fun thing we're going to be doing beginning in January.  If you are a frequent shopper in our store, you've probably seen the small block kits we have next to the register.  For the past several years, we have had kits that used Thangles half-square triangle papers.  This year, we are going to do something different.  We're English Paper Piecing!

If you know me, you know that I am crazy for EPP. It's easy handwork that I can take anywhere; it's quick and doesn't take much concentration.  If you've never tried EPP before, I plan to have a tutorial here on the blog in the next few days.  A step-by-step tutorial can be found HERE.

I made this quilt with the hexagon diamonds last year.  Most of it was pieced while I was at school events or private lessons or in the car... you get the idea.  On evenings when I am too tired to concentrate at the sewing machine, I sit in front of the TV and paper piece.

Anyhoo, we will have kits available on January 3.  Each kit will have the pre-cut fabrics and the 1" hexagon papers to complete one double diamond block.  If you prefer to make the traditional Grandmother's Flower Garden flower, you'll simply omit some pieces.  We plan to stay within the "Fresh and Modern" color palette, and we'll put out 2 blocks per month for $4 each.  This is a no muss, no fuss program - just pick them up when you feel like it and make as many as you desire.  I really encourage you to try at least one - and maybe you'll become as addicted as I am!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Looking Ahead to 2011 - Part 1

I know it's been a long time since I blogged.  This fall has been moving along at a whirlwind pace, and I can't believe there's only 10 more days left in 2010!!!  Much of the past couple of months has been spent on planning fun ideas and events for the new year, and I hope to spend the next few days sharing what's coming up.  We are so excited - and hope you will be too!

Ya'll know we are just a tad bit crazy, right?  We do work at the Asylum, right?  Well, here's a way you can jump on the crazy train right along with us....we're starting a Fundamentals Block of the Week on January 3rd!  Yes, you read that right - a BLOCK OF THE WEEK!  Below are samples of the first 4 weeks....

Here's how it will work.  Each Monday morning, we will release a new block kit.  Each block kit will contain your pattern and fabrics to make one 7-1/2" finished block for $3.  We are featuring the Kaffe Fassett Collective (Kaffe, Brandon, and Phillip) in our fabric selections along with a lovely Moda Bella Solid to tie them all together.  The program is written so that over time you will continue to learn new piecing skills, hence the name "Fundamentals".  If you are a new quilter, this program is perfect for you!  If you don't pick up your block by Saturday at 5pm, the price for the block goes up to $3.75.  You can also sign up to have the blocks regularly mailed to you - every 4 weeks for $15 plus shipping.  We'll even give you a pocket card so that you can keep track of your blocks!

There will be 52 blocks issued during 2011.  We will show the setting for this quilt in early December, and you can place orders for a setting kit then, if you wish.

So, do you want to play along with us?  Give us a call if you have any additional questions or to sign up!