Thursday, June 30, 2011

Learn to Sew on Laminated Fabric

Great page, by See How We Sew, shows some fabulous tips for sewing on laminated fabric. Other tips are further back in this blog, but are no less helpful! Might be a good place to subscribe to and receive all the entries!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Quick Quilting Video Tip

Watch this quick video to find out how your edges effect your boarder.

Have a great day!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Charlotte Gilmour's Chicken Popper Parmesan

This is a great little recipe for eating food that tastes high end, at rock bottom prices!  Chicken Parmesan, a restaurant favorite, is usually on the upper end of the menu, and quality drops sharply with cost. Most of the time, anyway, but not today.  It will make enough for 4 or more hungry men, for under $10!  So let's take a look at what we need to do.


2 jars pasta sauce
1 package of your favorite pasta
1 lb. Chicken Poppers (These can be had in the hot deli of your local WalMart.  Most WalMarts will price hot deli items half off after a certain time. Ask an associate at the deli to find out).
2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
Grated Parmesan

Optional Ingrediants:

1/2 T. garlic powder
1/2 T. chili powder
1/2 T. Italian seasoning
1/4 T. Salt & Pepper
2 large bay leaves.


Set a burner to med/hot.  In a medium pot, combine pasta sauce with any option ingredients, you choose to use, and bring to a slow boil, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.  Add 20 minutes, or more, if using the spices, to allow the flavors to meld. Cook pasta seperately during this time.  When pasta is done, add the chicken poppers to the sauce and let sit 5 min on low heat.

Make a bed of pasta on a plate and ladle sauce onto it.  Sprinkle with parmesan to taste, but don't be afraid to pile it on! Cover with 1/2 cup of mozzarella. Microwave to melt cheese and serve.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Sharpie vs Fabric Marker

For hiding those edges or the occasional missed stitch, don't waste a lot of money on expensive fabric markers when you can use Sharpie permanent markers instead!   Points to consider:

     * They're more readily available
     * They come in a huge assortment of colors
     * They can be had in various thicknesses
     * They're very affordable
     * They're permanent
     * THEY WORK!

     One thing that has always bothered me is spending dollars when you don't have to.  So what to do? Improvise...yes, sometimes we need to spend extra or more dollars for some things to get a certain quality, but from personal, long term experience, I have found that for filling in the occasional missed stitch or design edge that didn't quite get to that outline for whatever reason, Sharpie's do the trick.  You can get them in fine to thick, I suggest getting as many as you can afford, you will definitely need fine for the tinier areas though, so if you can only get one set, get the fine set.

     They're permanent and if you are really worried about using them, practice on something first, while remaining aware that different textiles will 'wick' the ink differently (suggestion: practice on a scrap) and make sure you're calm and your hands are steady.  Feel free to heat set with an iron (remember to protect your iron plate) by using a pressing cloth or heat cloth.

     Save your expensive fabric markers for larger painted areas

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Horse Song

What is a horse?
A horse has eyes as dainty as a mink.
The grace is interrupted merely by a blink.
A horse is beauty.

What is a horse?
A horse is a tree
 in a storm that never goes down.
A horse is a weathered rock that stays around.
A horse is ancient.

What is a horse?
A horse waltzes like breeze over rivers.
She curvets and leaps like rain shivers.
A horse is a marionette.

What is a horse?
A horse is determination, that never stops flowing.
A horse is fondness, that never stops growing.
A horse is poetic power.

~~~Lily Whittaker 

You can find the Horse Song set right here!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Star in a Wall Hanging

Image of 'Anything Goes' Quilt
Materials Needed:

Tools and Miscellany
  • Easy Star and Geese™ Tool Set
  • 6" x 24" Ruler
  • Rotary cutter and mat
  • Button, charms, ribbons, trims, photos
  • Paper clips
  • Anything you want to add to embellish!

    Center Star (Medium): 1/4 yard or 1 fat quarter
  • 1 strip 5 1/2" -- Cut 1 - 5 1/2" square
  • 1 strip 3" -- Cut 4 Side B wing unit triangle pairs
  • Outer Star (Dark):1/4 yard or 1 fat quarter
  • 1 strip 3" -- Cut 4 - 3" squares and cut 4 Side A goose unit triangles
  • 1 strip 5 1/2" -- Cut 4 Side B wing unit triangle pairs
  • Background (Light): 1/3 yard 
  • 2 strips 5 1/2" -- Cut 4 - 5 1/2" squares and cut 4 Side A goose unit triangles
  • Border (Multicolor): 1/2 yard
  • 3 strips 4 1/2" -- Cut 1 strip in half to make 2 - 4 1/2" x 20 1/2" strips for side borders. Use remaining 2 - 4 1/2" strips for top and bottom borders
  • Binding: 1/3 yard
  • 3 strips 2 1/4"


Step 1. Refer to the diagrams below to use Easy Star & Geese ruler to cut triangles.

Sew a small Fabric #1 half-square triangle (wing unit) to a Fabric #2 quarter-square triangle (geese unit) as shown. Match notched edge to notched edge, and pointed edge to pointed edge. Press seam toward wing unit.

Add mirror image Fabric #1 half-square triangle unit and press seam.

Units should measure 3" x 5 1/2" unfinished. Make four flying geese.
schematic: Step 1.aschematic: Step 1.b
schematic: Step 1.c
Step 2. Add Fabric #2 squares to two of the flying geese units. Press seams toward squares. Assemble inner Sawtooth Star as shown in diagram.
schematic: Step 2

Step 3. In same manner, sew large Fabric #2 half-square triangles (wing units) to large Fabric #3 quarter-square triangles. Units should measure 5 1/2" x 10 1/2" unfinished. Make four large flying geese units.
Step 4. Add Fabric #3 squares to two of the flying geese units.
Assemble flying geese units to Sawtooth Star block as shown.
schematic: Step 4
Step 5. Add Fabric #4 borders to sides, then add border strips to top and bottom.
Layer batting, backing, and quilt as desired.
Embellish and enjoy!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Fun Glowing Journal from Better Homes and Gardens

What a great quick crafting idea for the teen in your life.  With the glow in the dark cover, and attached flashlight, this is great for late night entries!  The best part is that you can finish this project in less than 30 minutes!  Give it a shot. You'll love it
Outerspace Glow in the Dark Journal

Spiral-bound journals
Paper glow-in-the-dark stickers
Plastic glow-in-the-dark shapes: celestial, space ships, astronauts, and butterflies
Crafts glue
Small key chain flashlight

1. Arrange the glow-in-the-dark pieces over the front of your journal. You can stack plastic shapes over paper stickers.
2. When you're pleased with the arrangement, glue everything in place. Immediately wipe away any excess glue that comes out the sides when you press the pieces onto the book.
3. Glue additional glow-in-the-dark stickers around your design. Let the glue dry completely before use.
4. Clip the miniature flashlight to the binding of the book.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Crock Pot Coca-Cola Pot Roast?

How do you find the time to run a business, or a household, and still put a fantastic dinner on the table at the end of the day?  Crock pots are a great way to cook the day away, with little effort spent during the preparation, or cooking.  At the end of the day you can put that dinner on the table, and still have time for all the other tasks during the day.  With that in mind here is a great crock pot recipe for a juicy, delicious pot roast!
A recipe for Coca-Cola Pot Roast.

3 pound beef
2 Tbs. oil
1  tomatoes, can
1 cup coca-cola
1  onion, chopped
1  spaghetti sauce mix
1 1/2 Tsp. salt
1/2 Tsp. garlic salt 
Directions: Brown meat in oil for ten minutes on each side; remove to crockpot. Drain fat. Break up tomatoes in their juice; add remaining ingredients, stirring until spaghetti sauce mix is dissolved. Pour over meat. Cover; simmer until meat is tender. Thicken gravy; serve over sliced meat.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Knotty Celtic Knots

Celtic Knotwork is often said to be one of the most difficult projects to undertake in the embroidery and quilting world. That being said, there is a new resource for information on the subject. Knotty Celtic Designs, by Raymond Houston, has recently come on the scene. From what information and instructions he has put out, on his blog, he really seems to know his stuff. He shows how to go from a simple grid, to a intricate knot work. So far he is teaching anyone who cares to learn about knot work design. You can go check out his blog at Enjoy yourself and look at what he has to say. We are!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Beautiful Batik Bargains!!

Feature Friday has come again, and this time we bring you beautiful Batiks! These are some of the most versatile, and interesting, fabrics around! There is so much you can do and nearly everything you could make with these will be a hit! Be sure to click on through to start collecting beautiful fabric to quilt, embroider or sew! Below is a sample of what is available! Most are available for under $10 U.S.

Batik Textiles: 1208 Batik Textiles: 5123 Batik Textiles: 6011 Batik Textiles: 6046
Batik Textiles: 6048 Batik Textiles: 6082 Batik Textiles: 7020 Batik Textiles: 7213
Batik Textiles: 9658 Sun Print Batik Textiles: 9726 Batik: Green Indonesian Inspired Batik: Multi

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Sock Rabbit

This cute little bunny is made of socks! You heard right, socks! Click on the rabbit to be whisked off through cyberspace and find the tutorial! We hope you have a great time! Be sure to post your results in the comments!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Folded Patchwork Star by Heather Chandler

Like to quilt? Love patchwork? Take a look at this beautiful folded patchwork star! Follow the link below to grab the PDF file that shows you what to do, step by step, to complete this project.

I can imagine this sitting under a miniature tree at Christmas, or decorating a special piece of furniture!

Click Here to get started right away!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Mucho Choco Tacos


When looking for family activities to keep your children busy, you might want to consider cooking. Easy- to-make and great tasting "kid-friendly" recipes can make time in the kitchen a fun activity for the whole family.


8 Old El Paso Stand 'N Stuff taco shells (from 4.7-oz box)
1 (24-ounce) package chocolate-flavored candy coating (almond bark)
2 cups sliced fresh strawberries
2 cups sliced bananas
3/4 cup hot fudge ice cream topping
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 aerosol can whipped cream topping
8 mint leaves, if desired


Heat oven to 325°F. Heat taco shells as directed on box. Meanwhile, melt chocolate candy coating as directed on package.
Carefully dip each taco shell into melted chocolate, using spoon to get chocolate on inside of shell; hold shells above bowl to let excess chocolate drip off. Stand shells upright on waxed paper; let stand until chocolate hardens, 10 to 15 minutes.
In medium bowl, mix strawberries and bananas. Divide fruit evenly into taco shells.
In small microwavable bowl, microwave fudge topping on High 30 to 45 seconds or until soft. Stir in cinnamon and vanilla. Drizzle topping over fruit in shells. Top with whipped cream; garnish with mint leaves. Serve immediately.
Preparation Time
20 Minutes

Start to Finish Time
40 Minutes

8 tacos

High Altitude (3500-6500 ft): No change.

SOURCE: General Mills

Monday, June 13, 2011

Embroidery Game

This simple, and very cute, game lets you cross stitch a popular character from video games of the past. With skeins of embroidery floss, in all the colors you need, to the right side of the screen, and views for art, art and thread or thread alone, you can places your stitches as accurately as you wish. Great little game for young girls showing interest in one our favorite crafts! More games and news, designed for girls, are only a click away. Great way to pass some time in a rewarding and safe environment!

Play Here

And go here to play a more challenging version with Hello Kitty characters!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Feature Friday!! Lunch Boxes & Snack Squares

It's Friday, and in just a few short hours the weekend will begin for countless people around the world. We do everything, as a people, on the weekends. From fishing to boating, visiting friends to a day at the park, we do it all! No matter what your plans are for the weekend, you can take a snack, or even a meal, with you in these cute little lunch boxes and snack squares! You can make a matching pair, or a complete opposites! The choice is your's!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Glass Etching: A Quick Video Learning Aid

Hello everyone! It's craft day here on the S&T Musings Blog, and today we bring you some video tutorials on glass etching! It really is fairly simple, creates a beautiful look and fairly inexpensive. You can do a bunch of glass projects at one time, or work on a single piece!

In this first video, Lisa Quinn will tell about glass etching.

And now on to the nitty gritty!

Rayon vs. Polyester: The Great Debate

To get luster and sheen in your embroidery, do you always have to use Rayon embroidery thread? Absolutely not...there are many super Polyester embroidery threads that offer plenty of sheen.

Don't get me wrong, many people love Rayon, but most times Polyester is a better choice. It's the best choice for durability, particularly on kid's clothes, uniforms, jeans, cushions, and the sorts of projects that are not going to be just something pretty to look at.

You'll also find that:

* Polyester thread breaks less when stitching at high speeds, stitching denser designs, or stitching on thicker fabrics or base materials such as leather and vinyl.

* Polyester will rarely take on the 'fuzzy' look, that Rayon sometimes takes on when stitched on items that must endure heavier wear or more frequent washings.

But what if you really, really, really like Rayon and have a good stash of it? Okay, that's fine, you can still enjoy your Rayon on such projects, but I do suggest picking just one part of the design, even if it's just an outline for your Rayon choice as that added bit of shine you crave, then do the balance of the design work in Polyester for the durability you need. Your high quality polyester threads (notice I said quality, not price) of today have the sheen that rivals yesteryear rayon. I stitch exclusively with polyester. I'm also very particular about the quality of it. I will only carry the threads that I recommend and use. Look HERE to see what those are.

Monday, June 6, 2011

The Right Needle For The Job

So many of us know and understand the differences between a sharp needle and a ball point needle, and when it's appropriate to use them 'in sewing' but it's amazing how many people never apply this same concept to their machine embroidery hobby.

As a result, too many blindly use a sharp needle for embroidery and never know that sometimes, it's the wrong choice. More than likely it's because so many embroidery projects end up being stitched on woven fabrics, and of course then a sharp needle is appropriate...and it's often only after a person embroiders a design on a knit, or stretch fabric, that they notice something 'might be wrong', but even then, not always right away.

So what's lurking on that knit embroidery project that might upset you later? Holes, and possibly even runs. How does this happen? Tiny cuts, caused by the sharp needle as it passes from the top to the bottom of the knit. In fact, a project might even look fantastic for awhile, but as time wears on, it may become evident that a problem exists.

Though this is a very common error, all we have to train ourselves as embroiderers to remember is, that the purposes of needles are the same for sewing AND embroidery, basically a sharp needle is for wovens, and a ballpoint needle is for knits (and of course there are different sizes for different weights of fabric).

It helps to remember by knowing how needles work. Sharps pass through a weave, and while they may still cut a bit, they give a nice clean stitch out that most wovens can take (not all) but knits are different, they require a ballpoint needle that is less likely to cut, and more likely to only pass around the weave, thus less cuts, and less damage (some of which pops up later) when it comes to knit or stretch fabrics.

Nobody whats to put time and effort into a lovely project, only to find out, especially later, that an incorrect needle choice has ultimately ruined the project. Sew be ready, and have some ballpoint needles on hand. You may not need them often, but when you find yourself needing one, you'll smile and think happy thoughts of where you heard this advice!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Victoriana Quilt Designs

Have you ever visited Victoriana Quilt Designs?? Let me start by saying WOW! This site is a plethora of information and inspiration.

A large resource for quilters', including:

  • Free Original quilt patterns (with membership)
  • Free Block of the Month
  • Free Quilt Patterns
  • Free printable quilt labels
  • Free Charity Quilt patterns
  • Free Beginner's Quilting Online Class and Free Crazy Quilt Online Workshop (with membership)
  • Free quilting technique instructions, designs and information in the Library
  • Free Quilting Calculator Charts
  • Free printable quilt graph paper
  • Free printable quilty bookmarks
  • Quilt Gallery
  • Quilting Stories
  • Used Quilt Books listing
  • And more!

Right now they are having a fabric party!!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Fun Decorating Craft Project for Kids!

The 4th of July is right around the corner, and it is a great time for kids to do some crafting to decorate for the occasion. There truly are thousands of crafting projects for kids when it comes to decorating, but today we bring you an easy project for kids to master!

What you Need:

Construction paper. (Red, White & Blue)
String or yarn. (Red, White, and/or Blue)
tape, glue, or stapler.


Draw, or print, stars on the construction paper and cut them out. While the stars can be of any size 3" to 4" stars are great for the project.

Run out a length of string or yarn long enough to hang across the area to be decorated.

Take the stars and fold the top point over the string and secure with tape, glue or staples. Be sure to leave enough string on the ends to tie off the strand for hanging.

For extra fun with the kids, let them decorate the stars, with crayons, markers or glitter!

Hang and enjoy!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

TLC's "Ultimate Quiz Challenge"

A little bit of fun today! Want to find out interesting facts on quilting? Want to test your knowledge of quilting? The TLC network has a quilting quiz that is loads of fun. You will even find out where the oldest known quilting was discovered and when it was made! Earn points for correct answers and link it with your favorite social network. Post your results in the comments below to proudly display your quilting knowledge! Good luck!