Annette's Acre

Stitching, knitting, reading, life…whatever catches my eye
September 21st, 2013

Shopping and Hopping – Day 2

Saturday was Part II of the Phoenix Quilt Shop Hop “Rally in the Valley”. Only two shops on the list (the two closest to my house – I had other errands on the agenda for the day) and again… two more stamps and two more bags. This time, though, I went in with a very specific goal in mind. I had picked three small quilts out of one of my pattern books and I bought fabric for them. Ok, I may have gotten a couple other things too, but at least I had purpose.

ETC – The first of my three quilts from 101 Fabulous Small Quilts.  As these are for me, I had no reservation in choosing colors *I* liked.

A couple other “also rans…”  Look!  A pair of coordinating fat quarters in colors I wouldn’t pick for myself!  lol

Quilter’s Oasis – easily my favorite shop with great great staff.  First, fabric for the second small quilt – quite patriotic


And for the third… the snowflake print on the bottom will be the center square and four triangles.  The medium snowflake print on the top is for backing.  Can I get it done for Christmas?  We shall see….

Of course, I couldn’t ignore everything else in the shop…. the flag is a kit (model in the shop was very cool).  The Hex N More ruler was the shop demo.

It was very interesting to see all the different variations of the Rally Quilt on display.  The one at Quilters’ Oasis was by far my favorite.  I’ll be keeping an eye out for the pattern to be available as I can see it as my first bed-sized quilt.  Someday.  Maybe when I have an actual sewing room…. ahh… one can dream.

Overall, we had a good time. There were some great shops that I will happily visit again and a couple that won’t see me until next year’s Hop thankyouverymuch. I did have a budget (which I thought was very generous) and stayed within it (barely). Next year, I’ll definitely try to increase it even if it means I’m not buying fabric for the rest of the year. LOL

September 21st, 2013

Hopping and Shopping – Day 1

This weekend marks the beginning of a Quilt Shop Hop here in Phoenix.  The Hop runs from Sept 20 thru the 28th and includes 14 area independent quilt shops.  Essentially, you pay a $5 fee to receive a “passport” (and small charm).  The goal is to visit each shop, watch a short demonstration (tool, pattern, etc) to receive a piece of specially designed quilt pattern and a stamp on your passport.  If you collect stamps from all 14 shops, you are entered into a drawing for several prizes (sewing machine, gift certificates, etc).  You’ll also have the complete pattern for the “Rally Quilt.”  Each shop has a version of the quilt on display, so you can see it in various fabrics, sizes, etc.

This is the first time I’ve ever participated in such an event.  While I knew I wasn’t going to hit all 14 shops (the furthest ones are well over an hour drive for me) given I am pretty limited on how much time I can invest during the Shop Hop time.

The plan was simple.  Friday (the 20th), I took the day off work and I mapped out half the stores to visit along with my MIL (visiting for a few months and recently rediscovering her quilting hobby) and local buddy, Terri.  Everything was looking good until Terri had some last minute health issues (she’s fine after having an offending bit removed) so MIL and I set off alone.

I had a hint of a plan.  I was looking for two things:  at least 4-5 “pairs” of coordinating fat quarters in colors that aren’t my usual style and a particular thread (Sulky 12wt Blendables).

Seven hours and seven shops later we made it back home.  We had six passport stamps (one of the shops wasn’t participating) and I had six bags of varying sizes of….stuff.  MIL made a clean sweep with seven bags 😉

Click the pics to biggify:

Quiltz – My Halloween tendencies are strong in this one (hey, all fabric with “black” was 20% off!).  I also failed the “not my style” part of the fat quarter purchase.

The Bernina Connection – A little better on the “not my style” goal (the brights on the left and the yellow and gold prints). Also found some excellent “sale” fabrics (the castle and Halloween heads)

Three Dudes Quilting – The two fat quarter packs are borderline “me”. Couldn’t resist the map fabric and the three small patterns are for paper piecing.

Quilters’ Ranch – My first jellyroll purchase…ever! Sweet Serenade. The ship fabric simply whispered to me, it refused to stay behind. The model for the tree pattern was on display in the shop and was pretty darned amazing (thus the purchase)

Connecting Threads – This ruler was the demo in the shop. It makes these two patterns ridiculously easy (and has tons of other options)

Zoe’s Trunk – Last and actually least 🙂 Just a couple fat quarters and a Halloween-y charm pack I’ve been eyeing online for awhile (sorry for the blurry pic…)

So that’s the Day 1 haul. I’ll save the Day 2 stuff for a second post…be right back!

February 8th, 2013

Checking in..

Apologies for the “radio silent” mode, but we’ve been hit by a couple stressful events* here at The Acre.

I did indulge in a bit of retail therapy last night, though.

  • Faery Queene Sampler – Scarlet Letter
  • Blue Jeans & Daisies (Part 1) – Blue Ribbon Designs
  • A Red Cottage – Plum Street Samplers
  • Let Love Bloom – Country Cottage Needleworks

I’ve been debating this latest mystery sampler, but well, what can I say?  Fabric is coming next week (35-ct blue jeans) and this time I’m going to do it in DMC.

I’m indulging in a hermit-style stitching weekend and have been working on the next square of my Stars for a New Millennium and may have started another small, fun piece…

I have definite plans for this one which I will share…if you would like to stitch your own, head over to weelittlestitches on etsy.  There’s even a sale going on right now (thru 2/8) 🙂

*while I’m sure some of you may be wanting to provide good thoughts, prayers, etc, I’m not quite comfortable putting the details of these latest challenges out for the world.  I will say it’s not life-threatening or health-related and I do expect everything to work out for the best.  It’s just going to be a few rough weeks until we get there.
November 10th, 2012


This weekend was a Holiday Craft and Sewing Fair and I made plans with my buddy Terri and my mom to wander the aisles and find more projects for the never ending to-do list.

Unfortunately, Mom had to cancel but Terri and I were determined.

We managed to arrive early in the show day and started down the first of the aisles.

It wasn’t long before my phone rang and I learned that my senior citizen hot water heater had gone to the appliance depot in the sky. It was 13 years old so it had a good long life.

Luckily, my dear husband had offered to do the grocery shop while I was off gallivanting and chose to come in the house thru the garage. The kids noticed water and the leak was found before it could do too much damage. It still flooded my pantry and wicked into the living room, but thanks to our new tile floor, the damage was limited.

We will enjoy the hum of industrial fans for a few days and have a few missing sections of drywall, but it could have been so much worse.

While the husband dealt with plumbers and such, I did manage to get a few fun things….


Makings of a button bracelet, a peyote stitch needle case kit, beading mat, covered bead tray (the splurge of the day), a red/white Christmas wall hanging kit, a snowman table runner pattern and some great snowy fabric and a too-cute-to-resist chicken pin cushion 🙂

There were several other things I picked up and ultimately put down, but I’m happy with my spoils 🙂

Many of the vendors will return in January so I will have another chance. LOL

April 21st, 2012

Birthday Stash

A week ago, I celebrated a birthday.

The family showered me with love and attention, as always 🙂  A new Vera purse, my favorite See’s chocolates, and a trip to the Phoenix Art Museum with DH to see a Frank Lloyd Wright exhibit and lunch at the Cheesecake Factory.  All in all, a great day!

Now, it wouldn’t be a proper birthday without a bit of stash acquisition, of course.  A couple weeks ago I had a design *leap* out at me from one of the blogs I follow (can I remember?  Of course not…) and after a little searching, had it sent (and a couple other items to help justify the shipping…yikes).

The bunny on the lower left was the leaper 😉  He’s an older Mill Hill kit from 2003.

And then there’s always my birthday discount opportunity at Needlecraft Corner….can’t let that go to waste.

 That would be Mirabilia Tulip on the bottom, Glendon Place Plum Pudding on the left and The Stitching Parlor’s Persuasion on the top.  I have to admit, in the last few weeks I’m warming up to reproduction-style samplers.  Now, I won’t be restocking my stash with them, but I have certainly noticed a few more catching my eye of late.

I’m blessed to have Attic Needlework as my local shop.  As part of their “frequent shopper” program, a nice discount on a birthday shop is available.  I took advantage of that today…

 On the left, a fat quarter of Smokey White Belfast (for Plum Pudding), The Sampler Company’s Plymouth Sampler on the right and a new project envelope underneath.  I just can’t resist alphabets on fabric!  I also ordered Rebecca Gelwick by Historic Stitches and The Town House Sampler by Threads of Gold (though not sure if that’s the right designer… interesting results when I searched for a pic).

Lastly, my mom brought me one last thing today when she came by….

She knows me so well.


March 3rd, 2012

Market Day!

This morning, I headed over to my LNS to peruse the selections from the recent Nashville Market.  I shopped with Mom and Terri along with lots of other regular Attic customers 🙂

I found a couple things that had to come home with me.

  • La-D-Da Wicked Witch
  • Prairie Moon The House that Jack Built
  • Prairie Moon no…Mine is the Trick and the Treat


  • Prairie Moon Skeleton Fob (how cool is that?!?)
  • Colorscapes Dubloon and floss for The House that Jack Built

And a couple more things….

  • Black Branch Needlework – Ann Lockhart (the model got me on this one)
  • Lady K Needlearts  French Elegance
  • Ink Circles Rosetta
  • Plum Street Samplers Brother’s Keeper


  • Jenny Bean’s Gentle Spring Sampler
  • Ink Circles Attractive Opposites

And finally….

Red Hots Scissors from Kelmscott

The floss is Gloriana’s Peacock. I’m considering it as the palette for Tony Minieri’s Stars for the New Millennium. A close up:

And finally… one more piece jumped into the bag thanks to Mom:

She knows me so well.

August 22nd, 2011

Three Days…

In the last three days…. (Saturday, Sunday and Monday):

– I bought a little bit of new stash

New Stash!

l-r: Sept/Oct JCS, Blackbird Designs Casting a Spell, Blue Ribbon Designs Moonlit Midnight, Ink Circles Four Seasons Mandalas. front: Bent Creek Got Newt?



– I finished off two Pine Mountain Pillows (caught up!)

– I finished the latest Harry Dresden novel, Ghost Story (What a ride…)

And all before noon today 🙂  I love vacation!


July 31st, 2011

A Few Additions

A visit to the LNS yielded a few new treasures yesterday


I went after the two new Prairie Schooler charts and some dark blue fabric (on the right there). The rest just sorta jumped in my hand 😉

I’m working frantically today to finish off my current RR (should make it) and then may indulge in a new start. Or two.

November 28th, 2010

The Stash

First – kudos to Ms. Kylie for the artwork used in the new holiday-themed header image 🙂 

On to today’s topic….

I will admit, here and now, I have a rather large amount of stash.

Copious amounts.


And in many ways… daunting.

I have been stitching for over 20 years, and yes, I have stuff that old (mostly charts and some Balger metallics.  Anyone remember those?), but the vast majority was acquired in the last ten or so years, when I went from “I need something handmade for a gift now and then” to “So many wonderful things to make for *me*”.  Which also happened to coincide with my discovery of the TWBB and ebay and…well…you know.  Coincidence?  I think not.

Then I started knitting more and found online yarn shops and amazing colors and fibers and…oh my my my.

I’ve also sewn for more years than I’ve stitched and dabbled in quilting, temari and beading.

You can imagine all the stash enhancement opportunities, I’m sure.

The Acre Homestead isn’t all that large and a family of four has a lot of stuff (and the kids insist on keeping only their stuff in their rooms, greedy things), so I’m relegated to the garage for the majority of my storage.  Given we live in Arizona, this isn’t too bad, really.  Dust is my biggest enemy as heat doesn’t seem to bother The Stash.  I use lots of recloseable plastic bags and bins.  Lots.

What started out as less than 1/2 of one wall (a set of shelves, a low cabinet and some small drawer-type units) when we moved in six years ago has grown to about 3/4 of said wall (two sets of shelves, a four-drawer legal filing cabinet and the same low cabinet with two plastic drawer units and an old three-drawer nightstand) and before this week, more bins and such stacked in front.

I had gotten to a point where I had repurchased a chart because I couldn’t find my original (though it had been used multiple times) and I knew I had a WIP I hadn’t seen for awhile but could hear mumbling…

It was time for some organizing.  The piles were at a tipping point.

And so I spent a good chunk of three days this week sorting and organizing and reorganizing.  I can definitively state that every chart I own has been sorted (in most cases, by designer, but I did do a few “general” categories.  Would it surprise anyone that “Halloween” has its own folder?) and organized in my file cabinet.  Well, those that aren’t kitted, at least.  Those are in a different drawer.  Or those that are in progress… those are in a different bucket (right out in the open so I can SEE them).  Fabric is at least sorted by count (for everything that was labelled… and that took five containers) and I have a pile of “figure out what this is” to work on.  Magazines are sorted by title (not by date….yet), yarn is all living together, mostly by weight, and while the floss isn’t sorted, I think I’ve at least found all of it.  I may have some time to get working on that tomorrow.

I did find the missing WIP.  And the original copy of Indigo Rose’s Mary’s Pin Pillow.  And my EZ Baby Surprise Jacket pattern.  All of which had been MIA.

I’ve got another two weeks of vacation at the end of December which will have a few days set aside to get the floss and beads into a better system (you know, so I can *find* things when I want them) and maybe….gasp….inventory.

Oh, and did I find things to part with in all this?  You betcha.  Eventually I’ll even get them posted here so they can find new homes 🙂

October 16th, 2010

Buttons and Masquerade

Last weekend, I spent a few hours at my LNS, Attic Needlework, learning how to embellish crocheted trim with buttons.  I worked on the trim and applied it to my small pillow:

A very simple technique (some crocheted trim, #10 cotton, small crochet hook and a pile of buttons) gives a nice result.  And of course, I can see a whole bunch of other options and uses. 

To that end…. I bought some buttons.

I found some on Etsy at this seller:

I may have bought another few (::cough:: six ::cough::) assortments from her today.

I also found some at Nancy’s Notions.

I’ll give you one guess which one I clicked on first.

I also bought this, but that’s a whole ‘nother discussion.

Still waiting on the half dozen yards of crochet trim to arrive….

In the meantime, progress is being made on Masquerade by Ink Circles

I’ll be putting it away for a bit.  I realized this week that while I’d promised DH I’d finish his Summer Queen this year, that’s going to be quite difficult if I don’t actually *work* on it….