February 2012 MOOSletter


Howdy fellow quilters!

February has arrived.

Below are some stress busters from Oprah.com that we have found to be useful.

 TAKE MORE RESTROOM BREAKS

There's a reason it's called the restroom: It's the one place—at work or at home—where no one will bother you. If you're overwhelmed, steal away for a five-minute meditation break. Inhale deeply into your belly and try to focus on your breathing. You'll emerge calmer, and maybe even more productive. Research shows that meditation can improve your ability to concentrate.

 SHOW UP FIVE MINUTES EARLY

Everyone knows the feeling: You're running late, stuck in traffic, glancing at your watch every 30 seconds in frustration. Give yourself extra time to get wherever you need to go. Being an early bird will kill stress by giving you more control over your day and your commitments.

 CHANGE YOUR STRESS EATING

The best stress-quashing foods are made by Mother Nature, not Baskin-Robbins. Berries are naturally rich in vitamin C, which helps fight increased levels of cortisol, a stress hormone. A handful of pistachios can lower your blood pressure, which means less of a spike when you get that next rush of adrenaline

 GET YOUR HEART PUMPING

Stress makes your body spew out two hormones: cortisol and adrenaline. These chemicals put your body into fight-or-flight mode, ratcheting up your energy level and causing your heart to pound and your muscles to tense. Exercise gives you an outlet to release some of that tension. A good workout also increases your levels of "feel-good" chemicals called endorphins.

 

The Hoffman Challenge fabrics just arrived!  The fabric is floral with purples, pinks, soft greens. Did I tell ya? I love…… purple. The information to participate in the challenge is on the fabric case by the Hoffman Challenge fabrics.  Or visit site for official rules www.HoffmanChallenge.com.
If you make something out of the fabric line, but it is not an original design or does not qualify for some other reason as required for the official challenge  bring in your creations July 20, 2012 before 4PM and be entered into the "H. Cow Challenge!" We thought about requiring items with cows on them but since I love the fabric, did I tell you it has lavender/purples; anything with the challenge fabric will be accepted. However, items must be quilting/sewing related; have maker’s personal information attached to the item and a completed “official” H. Cow Challenge Form. Entry fee is $5.00 with all monies collected going to the winner.  Judging will be by popular vote of visitors/ customers. The H. Cow Challenge Display will be setup for voting the week of 7/23 through Friday the 27th. The winner will have the highest vote by popular demand. On Saturday we will have cookies, tea, coffee, etc and the winner will receive their monetary prize.

 The Quilted Cow now has a new website; you get there the same way by going to www.thequiltedcowemporium.com . The learning curve is still kind of sharp right now, so please bear with us.

 Keep a look out in your mail box as we are sending out a Customer Survey. It seems we haven’t come up with classes or BOMs that our customers’ love. Any feedback you can give us will be appreciated, even if we did something not as well as we should. The survey will be on our website, mailed out, emailed, and available at the store. When you return the survey, we will have special fat quarters available as a Thank You, one per survey please.

 Our General’s Wives BOM has hit a snag.  The Wilmington Company has not shipped our next shipment for the fourth block. As Snoopy would say, Arrrrrrggggghhhh! We are assured that it is on its way. We will keep everyone posted.

 February we will have a new Buck-a-Block Thangles program. This time it is in black, white and red. We thought you guys might like a quilt with no florals. The starter kit is $6.00 that includes the fabric, pattern, Thangles pack and two strips of fabric (one black and one white). March and every month after when you bring your finished blocks in for us to ooooh and aaaaah, the next block is just a buck! If you for some reason cannot bring in the finished block, then the kit will be $3.00. We will have a sign-up spreadsheet so you can cross off your block each month. That way I can keep track better.

 I will try to post pictures, no wait…I will post pictures on the new website for the beautiful Bird Machine Appliqué BOM.  Now I know there are lots of people out there that love how appliqué looks, but are afraid to try it. So remember your 2012 word of Intention (like POSITIVE) and let’s make this bird quilt.  The first three blocks are the Cardinal, Robin and Humming Bird. If you make a wobble sewing the bird down to the background, here’s a little secret, get close so I can whisper in your ear…. Use a fine tipped permanent black marker to go along the micro sewing seam and it will look marvelous! The Cardinal kit is ready to start, but I wanted to include some Cow Sense Tips for machine appliqué. The fusible is included in the kit and it has two sides of paper. Appliqué pieces must be a mirror image of the pattern piece or everything will be facing the opposite way than the pattern. I am one of those people that have to have everything spelled out for them. I use a light box or window to draw my pattern pieces on the fusible paper backed sheet just as they appear on the pattern, be sure to leave 1/4 inch or more space between pieces as you draw. Label each piece with the name or number designated by the pattern. Next using specially designated “paper” scissors with a sharp tip start cutting pieces 1/8th inch on the outside of drawn border line. Peel off the paper that does not have the name/ number of each piece written on it and place the fusible (paper side up, sticky stuff down) on the backside of the fabric. Following directions for the fusible; press the fusible in place. I use my paper scissors to again cut, but this time cut directly on the drawn line. Having the fusible extend past the edge of the pattern piece will fuse the tiny threads that can fray. I like to have two pressing Teflon sheets and lay one over the sewn pattern illustration, not the one with the pieces separated, to place my pieces. You start with number ONE that lies under the other pieces and start layering the pieces. All of your pieces should hold together if you gently handle them. Place the second pressing Teflon sheet over the perfectly aligned pattern and press the pieces together. Place your fused combined pieces on the background, cover with one Teflon pressing sheet and fuse the design to the background. Lastly you will sew straight stitch seam close to the edge of the fabric piece to secure each piece in place. For this quilt I used black thread. Now for the exception, always read the pattern through completely before drawing or cutting.  Some designers draw the patterns in reverse for you, go figure! Yikes, I almost forgot that the kits are $18.99 each, include the block specific background, appliqué fabrics, pattern, fusible and we are keeping background fabric pieces (they are each one different) to piece as the outside border for the finished size stated in the pattern. You will only need small amount of fabric for the inner border, binding, backing and batting to finish your quilt. Making the quilt bigger will require purchase of additional fabrics of your choosing.

 

Classes:

February 2nd from 10:30 to 4PM Beginning Sewing taught by “Just Dorrie”. This is geared toward those who have not sewn or for those who it has been awhile. Introduction to Basic Sewing: terms, reading a pattern, selecting fabric, cutting out pattern pieces, etc. This program is $15.00 class fee paid every month when signing up. Sign-up for succeeding sewing projects will occur at the end of the class where pattern size and fabrics will be selected/ purchased for the next month. Everyone will purchase the pattern and fabrics before the next class and pay the $15.00 class fee when enrolling. Students will bring a working sewing machine (with power cord, manual, bobbins, feet) fabric scissors, straight pins, seam ripper fabric marking pencils, pens) to the second session not this initial basic introduction to sewing. Class will occur the first Thursday of every month during the day.  Additional times/ days will be added when the need arises. March 1st 10:30 to 4 will be beginners sewing “Lounge Pants”. Now make these for yourself, kids and others can wait!

 

Let’s Get Organized! Saturday February 11 from 1 to 3 PM, fee $15.00 (due at sign-up) and additional purchase of book.  The first portion of the class will be organizing our Sewing Studios and the second part will be to organize your stash.  Bring in scraps from your stash and Bev D. will show you how to cut them into usable pieces to make scrappy quilts. Bev wanted to bring her stash in so all y’all could cut her’s up. So if you don’t want to tote in some of your scraps, I’m sure she will have some for you to cut, but not take home.

 

February 16th from 10:30 to 4, join Deb and Just Dorrie for our Bag-of-the-Month featuring “The MOD Tote”. Class fee of $15.00 due at sign-up; purchase of fabric must be made prior to class. If you don’t have the interfacings, fusible, these can be purchased when needed after deciding on size of project. Just Dorrie will have to bring in another sample made from her stash fabrics as someone coveted her original sample so much that they snuck it out without paying. Please bring working sewing machine and basic sewing supplies.

 

February 21st from 6-8ishPM  to make the amazing 10- Minute Block using 3-Seam Squares for Quicker Quilts uses Jelly Rolls, Layer Cakes or Yardage. Now I know some of you were amazed at the 10-Minute Table Runner that took us 45-minutes the first time and 10-15 people to figure out. We did get faster, but sadly we could not do it in 10 minutes and do it RIGHT. But this 10-Minute Block is doable. Come join Bev D. Tuesday evening, sign-up fee is $15.00 and everyone must have the book “10-Minute Block” by Suzanne McNeill.

 

March 1st 10:30 to 4 will be Beginners Sewing “Lounge Pants”. Now make these for yourself, kids and others can wait! Class fee $15.00 due at sign-up; pattern and fabrics must be purchased/selected prior to class.

Thursday March 15th, Deb Renner’s birthday, is the Bag-of-the-Month featuring The “O” Purse. Stacia had brought in this purse way back when we first opened and we have been searching for it ever since. I know the lady that designed this purse must have thought I had a stroke during last October’s Quilt Market when I started jumping up and down pointing to the purse and making strange sounds. This was several days into Market and what remained of my brain was not firing on all 8 cells. Class fee is $15.00 due at sign-up, must purchase pattern and fabric prior to class. Bring working sewing machine and basic sewing kit.

 

St. Patrick’s Day, Saturday 3/17/2012 from 11-3; bring covered dish to share The Cow will provide meat, cheese and bread; bring in your newly organized stash, sewing machine, sewing paraphernalia, couple irons & boards, rotary cutters/rulers/ and make a Patchwork Lap Quilt to donate to Morgan County Hospice. Even if you did not attend Let’s Get Organized session, feel free to bring in some of your stash, whew…. Lordy we don’t have room for all of it, and we can all work together to assembly line these needed quilts. Come in Wednesday 3/21/12, from 10:30 to 4 and continue to work on this Morgan County Community Service project.  We can schedule additional Wednesday Sew-Ins until all the tops are made.

 

Gertie had this great idea for all you creative sewers that enter projects into the Morgan County Fair.  Let’s schedule MCF Project Days? I hate abbreviations, but typing some of these ideas takes a really long time and our calendar is not so big. The categories are the same as last year and can be obtained from the internet. We will have some on hand if you can’t access the internet. Come in Wednesday March 28th from 10:30 until sometime before 3PM to look at the categories, get ideas flowing and play with fabric. This can be scheduled almost every Wednesday until Fair time. We will have tea and coffee and probably some light snacks to keep our energy high.

 

April 5th 10:30 to 4 will be the third Beginning Sewing session where you will make the Kwik Sew Easy Tote. Class fee $15.00 due at sign-up; purchase of pattern and fabric must be made before class. Bring working sewing machine and basic sewing kit.

 There are different sizes of totes to make. Besides, one can never have too many totes. You can hide or I mean store those unfinished projects, have ones that match your outfits or seasonal.  Everyone will be clamoring for one as a gift.

 

May 5th and 12th come to the Cow to make the “Star of Bethlehem” starting at 10:30 to 3PM, for a 2-day sewing adventure;  class fee $30.00 due at sign-up; purchase of pattern and fabric must be done prior to class. Pictures of quilt will magically appear on the Website. Bring working sewing machine and basic sewing kit.

 

WOW I did not know I could talk so much or rather type so much.  No wonder my little hooves are hurting.  What else I have forgotten?  Oh yeah, Gertie is in Texas spending the winter and plans to come back sometime in March. Until she returns, the Shop will be closed on Mondays. We are down to Mary and “Just Dorrie” covering the weekdays, with Debbie, Dee, Dorrie and Cindy here on Saturdays. Beverly has some physical limitations that have prevented her from working at our shop. We wish her the best and will miss her.  My sister Debbie will assist “Just Dorrie” during those days when Dorrie is teaching. We truly appreciate everyone’s patience with us. We all try to do the best we can while making coming to The Cow an enjoyable event.

 

This schedule is not finished; I wanted everyone to know what we are up to and will keep you posted as events are planned.  We have one more Block-of-the-Month made from Stonehenge fabrics. If you have not seen this fabric yet, you have missed out on some lovely colors.  The fabric looks like stone granite with multiple layers of color just like the specks and color washes seen in nature. We have chosen the bright color way instead of the neutral one. We are still waiting for the sample fabric and program notebook.  More MOOs to come.

I think everyone needs to hunker-down with lots of fabric and patterns because winter has to show up sometime? Let’s enjoy each day and be POISTIVE.

This is Perky Cow Pattie signing off.