Monday, 27 May 2013

A little at a time...

Some days are overwhelming...

Mrs Pugsley's Emporium or Mrs P's, as I shorten it to- is coming along.  Not everything works along as you'd expect it to. 

As in making a quilt, putting together a business is a challenge.  Sometimes, all the tools are in place- other times, you need a seam ripper- it didn't quite sew in the way it should have.  Nothing major, it's the placement of a block, not looking quite right.  In this case, the existing shelving I have is scattered throughout the building.  I want a different 'feel' to the store, so I shift and I shift pieces around until I am happy.  I expected this to be easier than it is turning out to be. 

One way for the block...but....

I plan to have an area set up for classes or tables to do projects on, and I will need more plugs, I'm in a cue at the electricians- so move on to something else.  Hmmm- I think I'll move the piano.  It's on wheels, no problem- except; a) where should I move it to ? and b) the wall should be painted.

The wall to be painted is fine but the piano is looking a little lost where I ended up with it.  Turns out a couple of other pieces needed to be moved as well. could do it this way too if you wanted to...

As I wander around, store layouts wander though my head.  To deal with the layout, I've set a list of priorities and work away at that list.  For Mrs P's- it's about having fun with what you are doing.  That it's 'fun', doesn't mean it is easy or not challenging.  I do not want wall to wall fabric with little room to move- I want open space to think and dream in supplemented by the colours in the fabric.  The fabric will be the focus and I hope to have it on display, so that it invites you to touch and imagine what you can do with it.  The challenge with it all, is the function of the layout.  

It's easy to line the walls with fabric; how will it look off the wall, yet stay clean, be accessible and easy to pick up a bolt for cutting? The plan needs more tweaking for sure, but its coming along. 

...Tweaking to see what works...
I'm learning patience, not all quilts are made quickly but perseverance will push us through to the end and hopefully the result will be fabulous! 

Have a great day! 

Monday, 20 May 2013

Aqua & Red...

Another Moda 'Jelly Roll' !
Winter's Lane: a Moda Jelly Roll
It is cold in Nova Scotia, this long holiday ( Victoria Day ) weekend, so maybe it's apt that I share with you, Mrs Pugsley's Emporium has a new Moda Jelly Roll in, Winter's Lane. 

I am intrigued by the palette of aqua and red.  I think they are beautiful to look at together, but I worry that they will become dated and I'm not sure how the colours will fit in my house.  I decided to take the chance and try to make something from these colours.  Like always, how much should I get?  I don't want a major investment, but I do want the colours.  They look so new and modern.  A jelly roll, I thought...that would work perfect!

I also thought I wanted a white background quilt.  Now, quilters and painters will be smirking at that last statement.  White is a hard colour to match.  There are a lot of whites! Turns out, the 'white' background in Winter's Lane does not match my white.  No great surprise, but a bit of a disappointment. 

Winter's Lane, opened!
 There are a lot of browns and taupe in the roll, as well.  Browns are not my favourite colours.  Have I made a mistake in trying to do something with this Jelly Roll, begins as small whisper in my head...

No, it's now a challenge! I look at some simple block patterns, cut out some squares and start playing around. I ended up checking out the Moda Bakeshop looking at patterns for precuts.  I kept coming back to Kissing Stars Quilt, designed by Crystal Hendrix found here- 

I wondered if I could make it work for smaller squares?  I would need a solid colour to showcase the star/kiss on, hmmm... I have a beautiful red by Stoff...will it work?

Off I went to try.  I read and studied the pattern on line.  It's simple but I made it harder!  I didn't go back to check and attached the block pieces wrong.   It's a bit too bulky and one set of squares went off a bit.  Using the correct instructions, should fix all these problems!  I just wanted to see if looked okay!

Kissing Stars block

I think it does!  We can be very critical of ourselves- quilting should be fun and about creating.  Not something that is a chore.  I was excited about the colours of aqua and red and I still am. I'm also a visual person and as I work away on this, I now am becoming curious- how big of a project will the Jelly Roll stretch into?  I like the happy red Stoff around the star but I may add a white sashing between the blocks.

A bit of a fun adventure for me this weekend!

And yes!, there are more of these Moda Winter's Lane Jelly Rolls for sale.  Please email for info.  They are $49.95 plus applicable taxes. Shipping extra. 

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Merci !

What can I say...Merci!

L'Eglise du Sacre-Coeur
Sacred Heart Church,  Saulnierville, Nova Scotia

I had an awesome weekend!  La Guilde Acadienne de Clare went above and beyond! 

Joan & Elaine were at the hall on Friday night to welcome us to help 'set up shop'.  They were ooh-ing and ahh-ing over the car load of materials I had brought.  I admit to having been nervous, setting out on this new venture.  I will never forget their welcome that Friday night.  They opened their arms and just accepted me!  

I can never thank them enough or express verbally what the guilds' feeling of friendship means to me as both a female in business, and as a person.  I felt and still feel, so cherished.  It wasn't just one person- it was everyone in the guild and those came to see the trunk show, that gave me that feeling. A true sense of belonging to their community.

Karen Neary's original Patterns with Samples on Display

Karen's works were beautiful splashes of colour that instantly drew people to that side of the room.

Mrs P's Trunk Show & Sale

One of the best surprises of Sat morning was, Simonne!  She normally works at Clarence's Shopping Mart in the fabric section.  Simonne showed up on Sat, unable to do the workshop because her son was graduating- Congratulations!  She wanted to show her support, so she offered her expertise and cut fabric for me! Way faster than I ever could and we shared where we got some of our items from. It really was magical! Thank you so much, Simonne!

We stopped in on Friday to see Clarence's and it was spotless.  A real treat, well merchandised and a variety of goods.  If you are down that way, Clarence's is in the Foodland and it's wonderful!  They also have an aisle of beads for jewelry, craft supplies, shoes, giftware and groceries!  

Dinner was served across the road from the hall at La Cuisine Robicheau.  They had just been reviewed by The Chronicle Herald newspaper on Thursday.
Sitting down with the group was a cultural treat.  I had ordered a small Chicken Rappie Pie. There was orders for seafood chowder, clam rappie pie, seafood lasagna and hot lobster...

Seafood Chowder

Everyone waited while I tried the Rappie Pie for the 1st time.  They use grated potatoes- so it is a creamier texture than anything I had tried before.

My limited cooking experience came  into effect as I showed total astonishment that the guild ladies at the table buy the potatoes already grated! I just wasn't expecting that ... I figured you always had to grate them...

A Small Chicken Rappie Pie !

The pie was fabulous! Hot, with big pieces of chicken, it was like a hug in your stomach.  It was delicious!  Followed by a hot cup of coffee, I was full and content. 

That afternoon,  I was also able to visit Panier D'art in Comeauville.  They have an amazing selection of fabrics and sewing machines.

I chatted with lots of interesting people at the trunk show.  This guild has 80 years young people there, right along with 8 years young juniors just learning to sew.  It is a real success story of an inter-generational project working in the community for the community.  The Guild coordinates and offers sewing classes at the elementary schools.  This is a very vibrant area of Nova Scotia.

I truly treasured my time with the people in this guild and in this beautiful part of Nova Scotia.  I will never forget the welcome and joyful acceptance they showed to Mrs Pugsley's Emporium and myself.

Thank you to everyone that was part of this spectacular weekend.

Karen Neary has posted her experiences on her blog, which can be found via her web site...

Joan's experiences of the weekend are on her blog...

Mavilette Beach, Nova Scotia
  When was the last time you explored Nova Scotia ?

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Doodle Kits!...

What was I 'working' on for La Guilde Acadienne de Clare and friends - trunk show...

                                             I call them Doodle Kits!

What do you need to play with, if you want to quilt?  Fabric, batting, thread, some tools and imagination!

These small kits start with Freckles by Northcott in Mrs Pugsley's Emporium favourite colours- purple and orange - each cut into 5x5 inch squares and a WOF of 2&1/2 inch in Shades of the Season by Robert Kaufman. 

Batting is Legacy 100% wool batting in about a 6 inch square.

Thread is Konfetti by Wonderfil in orange or purple and InvisaFil by Wonderfil as well.  Not a huge amount- enough to 'doodle' with on the 5x5 square. 

All labeled & packaged in a plastic sandwich bag.

I'm hoping la guilde members will supply their tools &  imagination and send pictures of their 'doodles' to Mrs P's email for posting!  

Thank you again, for inviting me to share your day !

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Fat Quarters to Charm Squares...

Sorry for the delay in posting.  I've been 'working' on the trunk show for La Guilde Acadienne de Clare. 

Pheasant Hill Charm Pack by Moda

The guilde is excited about the precuts that I am bringing.  There are 5x5 inch squares known as charm packs. Layer cakes are 10 x 10 inch squares and jelly rolls are precut into 2 & 1/2 inch WOF or width of fabric. 

The precuts are a quick way to start quilting and they are bundled with all of the colours in a fabric collection- so they are easy to work with- no colour stressing!

What happens if you don't have access to precuts or if you see a beautiful piece of fabric ?

Chocolate Mint Batik

As I've been pre-cutting Fat Quarters and Flabbies ( 1/2m WOF cuts), I'm learning ...

Depending on how generous the cut of a Fat Quarter is, it can be cut into 4 - 10x10 inch (layer cake)  squares or 12 - 5x5 inch (charm pack) squares.  Without the pinking, 16 - 5x5 inch squares could have been cut from the Fat Quarter.

Colour Splash Batiks by Moda

Showing Fat Quarters with precuts

This is using Canadian Fat Quarters, which are a bit larger than the American size. 
A Flabbie - can generate 2 Fat Quarters or up to 32 - 5x5 inch squares - close to what is in a 40 piece charm pack.  This cut will also give you 2 & 1/2 inch WOF strips.  39 inches ( 1 metre ) divided by 2 is 19.5 inches...divide that by 2.5 (inches/strip wanted) and it's about 7 strips....maybe 8 if the cut is generous.

If a pattern calls for a charm pack - you would need 3 to 4 Fat Quarters or close to a full metre of fabric.  Knowing how many squares come from a Fat Quarter, allows you to plan your quilt using all fabrics and colours- not just precuts. 

These measurements are before washing, so add a bit more if you are planning for shrinkage. 

Enjoy your fabric!  Have a peek in your stash- it might surprise you at what you have, and how you might consider using it now. 

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

PO Box 367...

PO Box 367 Amherst, NS B4H 3Z5
 This is Mrs Pugsley's Emporiums' mailbox at the post office...I've been checking it regularly- looking for something special.  That 'special-ness' has arrived! 

TA- DA! Thread! Wonderfil to be specific.  The above picture is the Konfetti that has arrived.  It's a general purpose thread- good for hand and/or machine usage.  It is 50 wt Egyptian 100% cotton.  On the info it is 'double gassed and mercerized'-meaning it has a lustrous look and any stray strands of lint, are removed in a certain process.  This thread has very low lint and there is 1000m (metres) on a spool. 

That would be 1 km or 1 kilometre of thread and that is 0.6 of a mile.  That's a lot of stitching ability!

I have other kinds of their threads as well.  I'll post more as the week progresses. 

Konfetti Thread, a refreshing spool
Have a great day!