Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Playing with the Embroidery Machine Again

When I bought my embroidery machine I did it with the intention of making things to sell and trying to earn a little money to help the husband pay the bills. I had ideas in my head that I was going to build a customer base of people who wanted things monogrammed and such. I had no idea what the world of machine embroidery had in store for me though!

I discovered "in the hoop" designs pretty fast and fell completely and utterly in love with this style of machine embroidery. Actually making items in the embroidery hoop? What's not to love about that?

I have been doing some small things here and there, and some of them without very great results. The embroidery machine just can't do some things and the finishing of some of the items left a lot to be desired. But after joining a group on Facebook, I was opened up to a lot of new stuff and have just taken off and run with it!

In keeping up with the "make and sell things at a craft show" goal I have set for myself this year, I have begun to create stock so that when one pops up, I'll be ready!

Here are a few of the things I have started making...


These have been fun to play with! I backed them in craft foam so they're nice and sturdy and lock together really well. A bit of no fray on the edges and we're in business! I'm going to experiment with magnet sheets too for these, once I figure out where to buy some.

Lace Masks

That blue one still needs to be stitched together, but there are so many options for these that I don't even know where to start! I can leave as is and attach some ribbon and call it a day, or embellish them with feathers and rhinestones, the possibilities are endless. I have more than one mask design to play with too and am really excited about them. I think these and the other kid type masks will do really well if I can score a craft show before Halloween.

And this little gem, my favorite so far, Raggedy Ann

Yes my friends, she was made on the embroidery machine. Well, parts of her anyway. There was some hand sewing involved too, and a little bit of machine sewing for her dress. She is going to have some upgrades the next go 'round but I am totally smitten with her right now. 

And in case you were worried about whether I've given up sewing, never fear, I'm in the middle of testing the newest pattern too.

I also have plans for a tutorial for that hipster bag I'm making for my niece in the near future, once I finish the prototype, and have also started a new quilt that I am super excited about and can't wait to show you!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Fat Quarter Shop Coupon Code

No, this is not a sponsored post. Just wanted to share that Fat Quarter Shop has a coupon code available right now for 15% off your purchase. Use code "3DAY" between now and 11:59 pm CST on Wednesday to get your discount. 

Why am I sharing this? Well, because

1. Fat Quarter Shop doesn't have coupons often so it's good to use one while they do!


2. Because they now carry my patterns!

That's right, all of the Julie Pickles Designs patterns are available for pdf download from Fat Quarter Shop. So, if you've been eyeing one and have been on the fence, now's the time to get one for a discounted price!

You can find them here:

Happy Shopping!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Finish-a-long Q2 Wrap Up and Q3 Goal Setting

I was SO close to completing each of my goals for this past quarter, so close. You know what happened? I missed the link up for one of them for The Lovely Year of Finishes party and lost all steam to finish it. I let myself get discouraged and that was all it took! 

So let's get back on track, shall we? 

Q2 Goals were:

Raccoon block for Allegory-Done!
Finish Cathedral Window Sampler-FAIL!!
Make myself a bag-Done!
Make an idea pouch for my mom-Done!
Make a baby quilt for my soon to be new niece-Done!
Make a console cover for my dad's new truck-Done!

So what shall I work on for Q3? I have to say, losing my sew-jo and being committed to finishing UFOs has really taken a big bite out of my list! I had to go back to my New Year goal list to see what I had left, how's that for progress? It excites me, that's for sure!

For this quarter I'm going to....

...definitely finish the Cathedral Window Sampler, for real this time.

Also, this hipster pouch for my niece. I need to figure out the strap and hardware situation to finish it up.

Finish this military camouflage Emmaline bag.

Finish the Christmas Stockings for the kids

And finish the Christmas quilt.

Those are the last of my "Non-long term" projects that are actually WIPs. If I finish these I will have narrowed my list down to my double wedding ring quilt, the Maple Leaf Rag, that dang denim quilt and my hand sewn hexi quilt. The finish-a-long is working y'all!!

she can quilt

Friday, July 5, 2013

A Few More Finishes For You

I was looking back over my list of goals for the second quarter of the 2013 Finish A Long and realized I had a couple of things I never posted about. And well, I need to post them to link them!

First up was an Idea Pouch (pattern by Michelle Patterns) for my mom.

I had originally made one for my step-dad for Christmas, even though he didn't have a tablet at the time. I knew he would have one eventually but could use it for work in the meantime, or my mom could use it for her tablet. That's what she ended up doing. Then she got a new tablet and it didn't fit. So I made her a new one, but a bit taller, for that new tablet to fit, and in some more girly colors. 

My parents also asked me to make a cover for the console in my step-dad's new truck.

It's not technically a console, but the middle seat folds down to use as an arm rest or a "desk" of sorts. It is fabric covered and with the work he does he gets dirty and sweaty and didn't want to ruin the fabric. 

Mom picked up a towel that matched the interior and I picked up some PUL and a gray solid. We made a template for the console and I got to work. 

I sandwiched the PUL in between the fabrics for both looks and because that stuff is slippery! 

I made some channels along the bottom for elastic to fit around the console to help hold it in place. I didn't want to sew the elastic right to it because the cover is actually quite snug and I wanted to give him the option of removing it if he wanted to or felt he didn't need it after all. 

I wasn't a huge fan of how the stitching showed through the towel though, but for a work truck it will do. 

I wish I had gotten a photo of it on the truck, I was so proud of myself for pulling this one off!

My goal post also said that I was going to make a bag for myself using the fabric I got from Spoonflower. I ended up going a different route for my own bag, but did make a bag with that fabric and wanted to show it off. 

As you can see, the scale of the print was quite large, so it really needed a big bag to show it off. 

I used a pattern from I Think Sew called the Chic Carryall that was in the One Yard Wonders book. She also has it listed on her website but it's called the Alice bag there. 

I had so much fun with it that I made another one using some Echino fabric that I had on hand. 

Both bags are now listed in my etsy store, along with a few other things I've been making here and there. Now that I'm finally using my etsy store, it's been kind of fun sewing things just on a whim, with no recipient or reason in mind other than because I feel like it. I haven't been taking advantage of that store enough in the past! 

I'll be back in the next day or two with a second quarter recap and a goal setting for quarter three. For now, I'm linking this and Spirograph up to Finish it Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts. Go check out the other finishes!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Introducing Spirograph!

I've been putting my pattern testers through the paces this last month. That's right, that means another pattern release!!

I'm really excited about this one! Ok, I say that like I'm not excited about the rest of them, but this one excites me because of it's difficulty level. I LOVE to push myself outside of my comfort zone and to try new things, new techniques. This quilt definitely did that for me.

I introduce to you, Spirograph!

This one is for the intermediate quilter as it requires a piecing technique that may be difficult for beginners to master. It is fun to piece though and goes together quite quickly. One tester said it could definitely be a one day project, and I would have to agree.

The final quilt measures at 60" square for a generous lap size.

As always, the pattern includes detailed cutting and piecing instructions and many diagrams to help along the way. There is a template involved for the triangles, and there is also a coloring sheet for planning purposes.

Now, do you want to see my tester's versions?

Jennifer, of Knotted Thread, made a Happy Go Lucky version. I like how the light blue and gray are so close in value that it makes the other colors pop and gives that center piece some extra oomph.

Heidi, from Buttons and Butterflies, made one using Winter's Lane. I adore the vintage feel to hers! And extra thumbs up to Heidi, she got her husband's seal of approval! 

Dede, who does not have a blog but really needs one because she's hilarious and her sewing is phenomenal, made one using Mod Century. Y'all know I love Mod Century and her version does not disappoint! You may also notice that hers is a bit scrappier looking, she pieced hers using fat quarters for a different look.

Bree was my last tester. She also went scrappy with hers, using a Chicopee fat quarter bundle. I adore everything about this one, the colors, the scrappiness, everything. 

And then of course, here is my original version as pictured on the pattern cover. I used Comma for my fabrics, which were so very generously donated by Rhonda from my LQS, Tabby Fabric and Studio. Thank you Rhonda for your incredible support!


And here's the back, since you guys know I love getting creative with the backs too! When I got the fabric for the top, I rounded all of the requirements up to the next yard. I was able to piece the back with what I had leftover from those fabrics and one extra yard of the solid. 

Spirograph back

Spirograph is now available on Craftsy for instant download:

Through my Big Cartel Shop:

And now through my Etsy store, also for instant download:

And just a quick note about my Big Cartel shop. I just realized last night that I had two pdf patterns showing out of stock when they shouldn't have been. I know how it happened and have fixed it to where it shouldn't happen again, but if you were trying to purchase one in the past and couldn't just know that it's fixed now :)

Thanks again, for all of your support. Also, thanks to Bree for coming up with the awesome name. And a special thank you to my pattern testers for using their time and their fabric to help bring this one to life. You guys rock!