Friday Featured Fabric

April 26, 2013 § Leave a comment

This week I’ve been tidying up…call it Spring Cleaning and I’ve discounted several vintage and out of print fabric listings in my Etsy Shop.  Take a look see and hurry, as in some cases only a yard or two may be left.  Moving on to the weekend, I’m hoping to work on more scrap packs, fat quarters, and fat eighths…however, the gardening bug has bitten hard.  I might just play outside all weekend!

–Lisa LeBlanc

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Spring in Paris, Anyone?

April 25, 2013 § Leave a comment

After the last two weeks, a getaway feels in order – who’s with me?  Alas, I can’t go anywhere – but I can buy a shop full of French flavored finds and pretend!  Seriously, some super cute items have come in the shop over the last week.  I’m currently loading it up on my main website for you to take a gander and make a mini-retreat, if you like?

Also, very sweetly, Quirk Books included my Downton Abbey Alphabet Cross Stitch Pattern on their blog this morning.  I’m nestled in with some other lovely Downton DIY – check it out!

And a nice mention from Peacoats and Plaid; my New Girl TV Show Cross Stitch Pattern was included in their “Not Your Grandma’s Cross Stitch” love list – awesome and thank you!

–Lisa LeBlanc

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Missing Your Mark

April 24, 2013 § Leave a comment

This is probably not the best way to start a post…but I’m super aggravated.  After we all had that collectively bad week watching Boston try to rise up from horrific and senseless violence, yesterday, not even an hour after I arrived at my shop I receive a frantic text that a shooting occurred near the high school in Ponchatoula…a mile or two from the store.  The high school was unaffected thankfully, but one  person is dead and the suspect is still on the run.  No one has instituted a lock down for our town similar to Watertown, but some of my fellow shop keeps have locked their doors today.

image courtesy of Very Berry Kerry

Right now a spring rain storm has washed a hush over the town as I keep watch over the door.  And my frustration lies in all these miserable acts of violence.  All last week we wanted to know why?  And similarly, us townfolk are asking the same today.  But what does it matter?  Do these pricks really think whatever their cause du jour or motive is that we will be convinced by their dreadful deeds?  Maybe crazy inspires crazy; I just don’t know, but what I do know is they (the bad guys) have missed their mark.  You can see it in the defiant survivors and those rushing to their aid in Boston; even in this little town I’m not locking my shop doors even though a manhunt is underway.

image courtesy of Happy Sew Lucky

I read a really beautiful post from Alicia over at Posie Gets Cozy (all her post are wonderful) where she touched on the importance of creating amongst so much destruction.  It mirrored much of what I had been feeling last week and so on this week.  Goodness knows I’ve been sewing, crocheting, and cross stitching like mad.  So, yesterday by way of instagram, I came upon a collective quilting effort for Boston; To Boston With Love to be specific.  Coordinated by the Vancouver Modern Quilt Guild, a collection of quilt block flags will be collected and made into an installation in June, I believe.

I’m new to sewing and I’m not positive I’m up for the pattern posted yet (tho it is darling)…lots of people are posting alternates to tie in with the standard flag.  I encourage all my sewing adept readers to give it a try and to create something amid the chaos.

***UPDATE 4/25/13 – the manhunt is over in our tiny town; the suspect was wounded in a gun fight (eerily similar to last week’s Boston case).  People are out and about and traffic is already a buzz outside the shop – so hopefully we can lull ourselves back into the sleepy little Southern town that is Ponchatoula.

–Lisa LeBlanc

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Friday Featured Fabric

April 19, 2013 § Leave a comment

Gah!  Isn’t this an adorable owl print fabric?  We got it in the shop last week right in the middle of all the hoopla over Strawberry Festival, but I knew I wanted to feature it very soon.  Named Hoo-Ray (luv it), it’s got everything, cutie patootie owls, other adorable birds, butterflies, and a fun retro floral motif throughout the pattern.  Honestly, it’s like happiness threw up all over this fabric…you can’t help but smile when you see it!  What you can’t see is how amazingly soft this fabric feels; from Blank Quilting – everything they make that came in this past week is super soft; can you imagine how good it will feel after you wash it?  Perfect for a quilt or pillowcase, I’m thinking?

Hoo-Ray is available in my Etsy shop by the yard and store website by the 1/2 or full yard.  Adjust your quantity at checkout and you’ll get a nice continuous cut of fabric.

–Lisa LeBlanc

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Stitching Stat!

April 18, 2013 § Leave a comment

How long has Etsy had digital downloads???  I stumbled on this yesterday when I was entering my daily listings – whoa!  This is life changing!  And frankly about time.  Not that I minded running over to my computer to write an email, attach the file and pray that my message didn’t go into someone’s junk mail; it’s just that in this day and age, people expect what they want when they want!

So Voila!  THREE ways to instantly download my cross stitch patterns – pick your platform (all venues,  including Etsy, do not limit downloading as long as the listing is still active).  Go forth and stitch!

I spent today, a weirdly slow day at the shop, immersed in a different kind of stitching – the April Craftsy Block of the Month.  I was actually pretty nervous about this one – curved piecing forming a fan block.  I’ve just gotten comfortable with stitching straight.  I did fairly well, for my first go at it.  I’m not sure why though, my block is a good inch shorter than it is suppose to be.  I know a lot of people had trouble with this because they did not print the templates to scale – I did, for sure.  So, again, we will chalk this up to lesson learned.  Overall, I’m pleased with my progress…and more pleased that I’m actually sticking with this!

–Lisa LeBlanc

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Unicorn Believer Rainbow Heart Cross Stitch Pattern

April 16, 2013 § Leave a comment

After the horrific events of yesterdays Boston Marathon, you know what y’all…it’s time to launch this pattern.

Rainbows, Hearts, and Unicorns – f*ck yes!  I’ve spent the last couple of months slowly plotting away on my unicorn believer pattern, sometimes watching the news from the aftermath of Newtown, an ineffective congress on gun reform, and the debate on whether we should ALL have equal rights.  Some nights all I could do was look away into the happy silly face of my stitched unicorn.  And as silly and fun as my patterns can appear, to me they always have a deeper meaning than just face value.   Believe me, as a Lisa Frank Trapper Keeper toting child of the 80’s, I grew up wishing unicorns were real (and that I was Madonna too).  Now, I know sometimes on rare occasions we can see actual unicorns…from people changing their Facebook and Twitter profile pics to equal signs to a brave few running to smoke and screams.  Let’s all remember to be the unicorn when the opportunity arises…someone needs to believe in you.

This is my first pattern that allows for customization; included in the pattern is a full upper and lower case alphabet to put your own message within the 30 spaced banner…great for something as uni-corny as “my other ride is a unicorn” to the names of a couple to be wed.   Also, this pattern encourages you to pick a contrasting color of aida cloth (Stitchnmomma has some nice hand-dyed options); you can even vary a bit from the selected floss colors.  Make it your own!

The pattern is currently available through three venues:  Etsy and two instant download sites Craftsy and Meylah.

–Lisa LeBlanc

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Ponchatoula Strawberry Festival 2013

April 15, 2013 § Leave a comment

This year’s festival was a bit of a surprise for me; I held no expectations – I just got uber-prepared with lots of new stock, plus putting the store in “festival mode” for significant crowds.  Fortunately, our visitors were wonderful (and many, many numbered from out of state…even as far as Wisconsin!) plus we even made a little money!  There’s a secret about Strawberry Festival that local officials have kept on the down low for the last few years…even though this is the largest free festival held in the state, people have stopped spending money.  I noticed it for sure but it’s left townsfolk shaking their heads; I think its been more of a sign of economic strains…high gas prices and its taken a few years for our community to dig out of the BP Oil Spill.  So, I’m really thrilled that though this year wasn’t like what we netted five years ago…we do seem to be on the upswing!  Plus, we gained so many new fans and exposure though the festival.  You have to understand we and our community plan ALL year for this special time; and it’s that one time where we really come together as a community.

My favorite event is the parade held Saturday morning that crosses the town; local organizations, businesses and our farmers throw beads and goodies Mardi Gras style for a nearly two hour extravaganza.  It passes right by the store so we had a front row seat; Chico is back to being in fine health and had a great time!  And just for our Ponchatoula local girls, I had a local printer make me some “Toula Girl” cups based on my original design and they are just darling (and beer perfect, I must say).

Today, I’m berry tired and enjoying some R-n-R plus beginning the process of thinking “what’s next” for the shop in next few months.  Part of my prep is a new cross stitch pattern launching *fingers crossed* this week.  It’s been several months since my last release so definitely watch this space and my Etsy shop!

–Lisa LeBlanc

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