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November 2012

Chandeliers, Lanterns & Mirrors...The Homespun & Holly Recap!


"Lanterns lighting up the town...peace on earth is all around...." 
It's over. It came and went. In a blink of an eye. The 4th annual "Homespun & Holly" has come to a close. 2 days. 100 women and a handful of talented designers! Oh-seeew-much fun. What I love about this event is that everyone brings their best to the table. Everyone delivers. Homespun & Holly is a festive gathering that tells us Christmas time is finally here...and it really is my favorite time of year! 
Do you love? I'm not kidding, I listened to this song at least 80 times on my drive out to the "Mothership's" beach house for the holiday. Yes. You are correct, I said 80 times. I admit it. I get a bit obsessed! This is my vision for what Christmas should be like...joyous and full of love! 

If I could get away with it...I'd be re-creating this scene right here on our street! But that would mean I'd need to close an extra day or two to prepare and we know how I get attacked for trying to make things pretty! Oops.
Remember this picture from when we moved into this location? 
I'm still waiting for a moment like this...again! P.S. This photo was taken at 1am. I'm a bit of a night owl. 
Speaking of the "Mothership" well, she outdid herself this year. She's one of the best and this was by far the most extravagant "Homespun & Holly" we've ever hosted! With the help of our friends Matt & Darin at Laurel Hedge, we were able to welcome all to our Christmas Fantasy Garden...or as I referred to it, "The North Pole." 

We build farmhouses....we roll in a haunting fog...why not build a forest that could basically provide Bambi shelter from man? "It's man is in the forest." 

This area was the workshop of Polly Minick & Laurie Simpson of Minick & Simpson fame. As you can see above, one of Polly's wool rugs adorned the wall and Laurie brought one of her new samples from their upcoming collection, Indigo Crossing. Indigo Crossing is a collection full of 19th century inspired indigo cottons and will be arriving in the Shoppe this Spring. Nothing is more striking than a stack of indigo and white quilts stacked in your favorite cupboard. The wool rug is simply titled "Holiday Stockings" and we have two complete kits available on our website. Polly created these kits herself exclusively for the Shoppe and we only have two left! We also have just two of her Snowman rug kit as well! Once these are gone, they are gone! 
During Homespun & Holly, each designer presents a special holiday handmade creation as a special "gift" to the guests of the workshop. The gifts are only revealed on the day of the event and we supply all of the supplies...seeew all you have to do is bring your sewing basics and show up!
Polly and Laurie's project were these adorable rug-hooked ornaments in their signature colors...

We will have kits available on our website and in the Shoppe after our Thanksgiving holiday break. 
If you have always felt intimidated by rug hooking, don't worry...Polly and Laurie are seeew good, they even got our youngest "staff member" (my niece) to give it a try. In the tradition of following in her Uncle Brian's footsteps and his ill-fated wool Bunny attempt a few years ago, Miss Jenna demonstrates rug hooking with grace and precision. What a pro! 

Next on my list (and you better believe I've checked it twice), is Anne Sutton's station. Anne is the talented designer behind Bunny Hill Designs. Her spot in the room was one of my favorites as it reflected each of our contributions. The "Mothership" brought in the chair, I brought in the red hutch, and our friends at Laurel Hedge made a elegant impact with just the right amount of greens. Just a lil' bit. Matt, from Laurel Hedge, dried out those hydrangeas. And just an F.Y.I. and a little B.T.W. if you have a bird bath in your yard...try adding festive red, green and gold glass ornaments! It makes for a stunning display! 

If you follow us on Facebook, you may recall I mentioned earlier this year how I have always wanted to try and plan a traditional holiday red and green quilt with one of our pre-cuts. I had never planned a quilt before and with the guidance of the "Mothership" (she knows a ton about color) we put this new holiday quilt together using a Layer Cake (pre-cut 10"square pack) from the 3 Sister's Grace collection and Fig Tree's Butterscotch Tart pattern. 

Here's a different picture that I took before the event (below). B.T.W. The table runner is a simple charm pack (the pre-cut 5" square packs) pattern by Artful Offerings. I honestly don't think we have any extra patterns of it at the moment. I'll have to get on that. Do you know how difficult it is to keep up with patterns? If we have the pattern people want the kit. If we have only the kit, they want the pattern. It can make your head spin. 

And this (below)...I love. It's the Fa La La La La French Quarter kit. This kit was inspired by a larger version that Joanna of Fig Tree Quilts and the "Mothership" put together for the holiday room inside the "Mothership's" home. It's causal elegance and full of that red, green and white! A simple Fat Quarter quilt for the holidays!

Getting back to Bunny Hill Designs...Anne Sutton's gift was this adorable wool pillow(below). What I love about Anne's gift is that it coordinated with the project she presented last year. Isn't it cute? Anne's next collection Jubilee will be here in the Spring...and we'll have her next block of the month quilt kit, Chick Jubilee
I should take this moment to point out that the "Mothership's" assistant, Priscilla was at it again baking a delicious meal and luscious desserts for all of our guests. P.S. I don't usually ask her for the recipe. If she is kind enough to offer it, I will post it. But trust me...these were a little bit of heaven right here in my mouth. Sometimes I like to just let her desserts sit there. I don't chew. Savor only. It really is a highlight of my day. 

Next up....Karla Eisenbach of Moda's Sweetwater! Karla surprised my mom with this very cute gift to the Shoppe (below)! Isn't it precious? Maybe I will have to come up with my own tale.... "Twas the night before Homespun & Holly...Brian didn't sleep at all." Ba ha ha ha ha ha ha. Seriously, I stayed up the entire night to make sure everything was put away. I then passed out and fell off a chair in my Elf costume as I sat quietly listening to the "Mothership" and Melissa. "We got an elf down in here!" Needless to say 9-1-1 did not need to be called. Can you imagine what that scene would look like? 

We love collections that can be used for the holidays but don't necessarily say "holiday." While Sweetwater had the popular Countdown To Christmas last year, this year they didn't design a Christmas collection but they did design Mama Said Sew and it has lots of great red and white prints. Who doesn't love this collection? I love our Mama's Strawberry Pie (below)! Wouldn't it be great to make this quilt and take it with you on a picnic? Maybe you should put this one on that list to Santa. Karla passed on the word that for 2013...they have a Halloween collection! Can't wait! 

Karla's gift was this appliqued kitchen towel using the collection. What a cute and practical gift! Who doesn't love a holiday towel as an accent to bring a little Christmas cheer while cleaning up after a Christmas meal?

Karla also brought along this fun Snowman table runner made with prairie cloth (below) which inspired the "Mothership" to make kits. Seeew...we will have kits of this in the near future! Look how the red and white fabrics from Mama Said Sew work with Christmas! Now that's a cute idea!
P.S. Near future does not mean tomorrow, next week, or sometimes next month. It's a balance around here. I'll of course let everyone know when the kits are ready. 

Here's a new quilt sample that was recently quilted by our dear Melissa Hoffman. The quilt uses fabrics from the Blitzen collection and we have kits available! The pattern is available with our kit or you can visit Moda's website for the free pattern download

This cabinet (below) always gives me a headache when it comes to a display whether in our classroom or in the Shoppe. The shelves are too narrow and there are a lot of them. I was so happy that our friends took over the chore of decorating this cabinet and the result was just! They even included some of Kathy Schmitz's stitchery. The "Mothership" then added this farmhouse inspired towel rack and hung two of our holiday quilts, Tree Lot and the Grace House Christmas Kit

Speaking of Kathy Schmitz....for our last set of designers we had actually three. On Friday, Debbie Busby of Wooden Spool Designs presented a gift and currently I do not have a picture...but it was an adorable wool gift tag complete with snowman! On Saturday, Kathy Schmitz and her sister, Bonnie Sullivan joined us with a wool ornament featuring a snowman. When I obtain some pictures of both projects I will post them here but for now here's a look at Kathy's new collection, Round Robin which debuts in April. Isn't this a cute table runner? And we love that the colors can work with Christmas! 

We will be kitting the Primitive Gatherings "Home For the Holidays" Quilt in the very near future. We are taking a waiting list of names of those who are interested who we will contact first. The kit will include all fabrics to complete the quilt as shown and will also include the wool and pattern. I don't have the price yet, but we will let you know what the cost is once our kits are complete.

Wow! Did you get all of that?
Last but not least...we are very thankful for the hard work of our staff. Christine, Deb, Nancy, Kay and Joann are all very dedicated employees and they are the faces you meet each day here in the Shoppe. We have decided to let them enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday with their families. We will be closed Tuesday, November 20 thru Friday, November 23 in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday. 
Thank you to everyone who attended the fourth annual "Homespun & Holly" and we look forward to seeing you again! If you attended the event and want to share your thoughts, please feel free to comment below! We love hearing from you!
Remember, when carol singers gather 'round and you hear that festive's "Boughs of Holly!"
Have a Happy Thanksgiving! ~ Brian