Here's to You, Hostess

Fall is on the doorstep!

This year I want to do something different. How about you?
Instead of diving into planning presents, parties and all the associated projects, lets take time-out to celebrate us- the hostesses who make it all happen.

Remember the first dinner party you hosted? Or the first Holiday in your home? Do you recall a favorite occasion?
Do tell!

Who is your favorite hostess? Is he/she in your family, club or neighborhood? Do you have a favorite movie scene party?
Which is the first party of your holiday season, Halloween or Thanksgiving? Will there be autumnal birthdays or anniversaries coming up for your family?

I'd like to hear your story:)
Until Thanksgiving, let's celebrate hospitality here, with posts of party management tricks and hostess treats, OK?
Then, whenever you are tasked as the giver or receiver of welcomes (and most likely you'll be both before the season is done, right?), you'll have peace of the moment, knowing that you are in The Club, and that your charming presence is the best present of the season. Sincerely,
Here's to you, Hostess!

Threadbias switching to Quilt Canvas

When logging into Threadbias last week, I was surprised to see the notice that Threadbias is closing. I asked Threadbias designers Alex, Amanda and Rebecca to share news here on Totally-Tech-Tuesdays about how Threadbias grew up and what their new quilting-tech plans may be.

First of all, I want to say Congrats!! to everyone in Threadbias because you did it!
My most haunting UFOs are the ones still in my head, the projects yet to be started. Although Threadbias is closing, it's not a UFO. YOU guys made it happen!

Especially when you consider, the Threadbias founders, Rebecca and Amanda, are not even teckies! With web specialists Alex, they recruited others to invent the unique quilt community hosting site. I can hardly imagine the behind the scenes planning and maintenance that made Threadbias a reality and kept it working. Thanks!

“Toocutete” and “Bijouxbyjannice” were the first quilters to join Threadbias. Rebecca says, "it really encouraged me to go outside my comfort zone to try new things and learn new skills. I knew I had a group to encourage me and offer help if needed within the Threadbias community.  I know many of our users felt the same way."  

These are the same reasons I participated in Threadbias. because of the unique feature of group project sharing, like our Quilt It! Challenge. And the ability to chat by project, rather than in a timeline, what a super idea!

The Threadbias Design Tool isn't leaving, only evolving into the new This new tool is more advanced, with hexagons (YAY!) for examples, and more features than when it first launched on Threadbias. You can design with blocks from Quilt Canvas Library, or draw your own. And you can test out real fabric swatches in your pieces to see what they look like together before you cut.

Here is what the quilty design team says about the new website:
Is Quilt Canvas the same design tool from Threadbias? How has it changed? 
Quilt Canvas is an evolution of the design tool that started on Threadbias. At its core, it is the same tool, however several enhancements were added. There is a block library filled with templates you can use to build your quilts. We also created a Quilt Builder that allows you to layout a full quilt based on a block with borders and sashing. We’ve also enhanced the help system with a lot of help articles and videos. A number of other smaller features and fixes were also added.
How do you get the fabric swatches for Quilt Canvas? 
We have traveled to a number of Quilt Markets and other shows and developed relationships with all of the major manufactures. How we get the swatches varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. We are actually in the process of automating a lot of this. With the move to Quilt Canvas we also give users the option to upload their own swatches so they are not dependent on just what we have imported.
Can you share some insider news on your special plans for Quilt Canvas? Future features, launch dates, what we should watch for, how can we help, etc. 
Upcoming features include lines and arrows, text tools, more export options, and the most ambitious is a full pattern builder that would allow creation and export of PDF patterns.
The biggest help would be for people to spread the word. We have a number of active users on Quilt Canvas and the feedback we get shows the vast majority really enjoy using it. We just need more people to know about it.

Of special note, your Threadbias projects will not be lost, they are available for you to copy:
When the Threadbias community closes it’s virtual doors at the end of August, we will be exporting all of the projects into static versions. These will stay available for a long time as they will require no maintenance and minimal resources. They will be found at
How should Threadbias members transition to keep following you: new Twitter, FB, etc.?We still have both the @Threadbias twitter handle, though will be transitioning most communication to our @QuiltCanvas handle. On Facebook we have both the Threadbias and QuiltCanvas pages. We also have accounts on Instagram, @Threadbias and @QuiltCanvas.
People who need help with Quilt Canvas can use the support system inside the application to ask questions or can always email

AND hold onto your Threadbias ID, you can use it to log into QuiltCanvas!
Which makes it extra easy to get started at this new design playground. See you there! 

New Quilt Formats

Inspired by @AngieQuilts :)
Once upon a first FB friend sent me this WOW! thread painted postcard!!
I had never seen anything like it! I believe Angie pioneered thread-painting in this new medium.

[No worries, you too can get one of Angie's amazing creations in Angie's Textile Art Etsy Shop]
While I still haven't quite got the hang of thread painting and fabric printing like Angie does,
I have been playing with the magic postcard interfacing
its perfect for quilted jewelry!
It took many tries to work out the finishing details over the years since I received Angie's lovely Sunflower Postcard all the way from Cheadle, UK,
but here at last is Hexagon Cuff
Thank you, Angela:)

Halloween in July

First - a shoutout to @SandyFowler, who always has super ideas for celebrating, but here she has achieved seriously clever status in this Christmas in July Party podcast.  Congrats Sandy! And thanks for sharing the fun :)
I so want to do this! Trouble is, here in the desert, our regular Christmas already looks like your Midwestern July Christmas. So....nevermind:P
But your post has inspired us to celebrate
Halloween in July in our RHQEtsy shop

Coupon Code:  AUNTVICKI1 -10%
that's "Aunt Vicki 1"

I love Autumn! The first craft boutiques of the season, smell of chilis roasting at the grocery store, no longer 100 degrees after dark, and the eerie quiet in the backyard as the golf course gets reseeded.
Must be the reason why we have more Autumn themed projects in our Etsy shop compared to all the other great holidays.

Quilted witch hats are fun - for d├ęcor and for costume!

Alex's blue witch hat has some satin patches and giant blue ric-rac hat band.

2 of these are quilted with glow-in-the-dark thread!! Haven't figured out how to get glow-in-the-dark pictures yet, sorry.

Alex likes this mourning wreath best.

Please checkout our shop for more fall stitchery and appliques.
Happy Holidays!

Minions Here

The Minion craze has struck our home. No, it's not Alex. It's not even Kitty Pearl.
It's Grandpa who is our Minion fan!

So I was glad to score this adorable fan fabric from the last yard available at LQS!
LUV the orange here. Had to have it. Now what?

Grandpa already has a new Walker Pocket.
Help me think, please, what can we make of Minion fabric for Grandpa???
Bet you keep an awesome go-to pattern for a quick quilty gift, am I right?

Italian Roast Soap

Alex said we should plant she could make me soap:)

More on Lavender later. I only bring it up because that's what led to our experiment with
coffee soap....which turned out awesome!

After studying several Pinterest (Alex's Board) recipes for soap, I decided on the extremely simple combination of 3oz of my fave Italian Roast, grounds included, mixed with 1/2 container goat's milk soap blocks from Michael's Crafts.
Melt the soap in the microwave and stir in the coffee, just like making fudge.

 @ddrquilter says it looks like chocolate ice cream. It does!
Which is cool, but, any idea how I can get more coffee color in my soap?

And @Scooquilt is right, it does the trick for a nice scrubby soap to exfoliate, which is exactly what I wished for:)

Thanks, Alex, for finding a new craft for us to try!

Pocket Triage


Alex wanted a skirt with pockets.
No point shopping for anything like that, right?
So I added lining and pockets to Butterick 4686.
(Its the yellow one, View D, except ours is BLUE, of course;)
Butterick 7686-D
I hurried to get the skirt done so she could wear it to last day of school. And I did!
cut pockets in half, close to hand opening, leaving generous seam allowance.
Open seams 5/8".

Except, I should of had her try it on in stages. Alex is right, my made-up pockets are too small.
And lining fabric, while a good choice for dress-pant pockets,
is not strong enough to carry a smart-phone in a skirt. 
What to do?
cut larger pocket "patches" from fashion fabric
I needed to remake the pockets, larger and with stronger fabric,
hopefully without having to take apart the entire new skirt.
Here is how I did it:
Insert patches inside of pockets, right sides together, aligning with cut edge.
Seam and edgestitch pocket patch to original pocket.
With right sides together, stitch outside edge of pocket patches.
Turn over and edge stitch in the other direction- fastest way to make sure you haven't missed anything.
Finish with pinking shears.
Have you done this before?
If you have a better plan, please let me know below- I'm sure there will be a next time;)
Pearl supervises Pocket Triage

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