Category Archives: Vending

Day At The Craft Fair & Updates

Happy Tuesday!

Here we are at the start of December and amidst the busy season of shopping and wrapping, I find myself just wanting to retreat into the sewing room to create. I spent much of November preparing for our town’s annual Christmas On The Common celebration where I was a vendor on Saturday. This is my third year vending and I found it to be just as fun and inspiring as it was the first time around.

The day itself is a snapshot of small town life. The Kiwanis club organizes this day for our community complete with a parade, craft fair, Christmas tree sale, food, and performances by local dance studios and musicians all day long. Oh yes and Santa is there as well! It’s a fantastic day.

This was my first year representing both my quilt design company and Creative Memories. I recently had a new banner made up to incorporate both companies. Greg helped me get set up in the early morning and then I was open for business!

img_1162

img_1116

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I met many wonderful people Saturday. Since I was promoting both quilting and scrappbooking, I had twice the fun and twice the amount of inspirational conversations with new and experienced crafters from both hobbies. I am pleased to say that quilting and scrapbooking are both very much alive and well in our community! Several of you were looking for quilting lessons and several more were interested in attending a day long scrap retreat. I’d like to also have a day long sewing retreat and I’ll be looking into places to hold those types of events in the near future.

If you are reading this blog for the first time, I welcome you! I hope you’ll find it an inspirational place to hang out. I also collected a lot of new names for both of my newsletters and you’ll be receiving one soon!

This week I’m catching up with paperwork but also preparing to vend at my daughter’s dance studio on Saturday. I sold out of every ballerina item I had at the craft fair so I’m scrambling to make up more tissue covers and zippered pouches. I am also about to begin the quilting on my mother’s quilt with this pretty pantograph called Pipeline.

img_1105

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was having a small issue with the bar on the long arm machine but Greg was able to fix it for me and now I can’t wait to get going on this one!

Most of you know over the last two years we have acquired the most adorable Lionhead bunnies, Nala and Daisy.

2016-06-29+11.12.48

2016-09-0720-39-14

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

They are really the loves of all of our lives and our daughters just adore them. They have always lived in our house and had plenty of freedom to roam around our first floor. Well, last week we found out that poor Greg has developed asthma and is allergic to the buns. We decided to relocate the bunnies to the garage and I found the most adorable log cabin hutches for them! Greg put them together over the weekend and moving day was today!

img_1178

 

 

 

 

 

 

You all know I want to hang little Christmas wreaths over their doors! I moved the bunnies into their new homes this morning and they seem quite pleased with having a ramp to play on and an area under the hutch in which to run around. I’m glad they like their new space and I’m looking forward to seeing Greg feel better.

That’s it for today. I’ll hopefully be posting more frequently now that the craft fair is over. Enjoy your day, quilters!!!
Sandi

Share

Happy Thursday!

Happy Thursday Everybody!

I missed my post last week and this one will be quick as I’m also preparing my post for next Thursday (November 17th) when I will be on the QuiltMakers 100 Blocks Blog Tour for Volume 14! Say that ten times fast! This time around I created a nautical block and my post will take you through the steps as well as offer a chance to win a copy of volume 14! Yay!!!!

vol14-cover-200px_69246

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The tour runs the whole week long and is always a lot of fun!

joinforblogtour14_200

 

 

 

 

 

I finished up the Star Wars quilt and Lindsey gave it to her teacher who was quite pleased with it! Here it is hot off the long arm…

img_0646

 

 

 

 

 

 

I had some issues with quilting around the orange peel shapes. I wanted to echo stitch around them and underestimated how difficult that is on a long arm. The machine glides effortlessly which is good but bad when you are really trying to concentrate on stitching straight. It came out ok but it’s not as neat as I would like….practice, practice, practice!

I vend at a Christmas Fair in December and usually in November I try to go great guns getting some sewing done. I offer my patterns and book along with a few notions and items like pillow cases, zippered pouches, etc. This week, I opened up a beautiful fat quarter bundle of blueberry and cranberry fabrics. I made zippered pouches and travel tissue covers with the fabric. The travel tissue covers were easy and fast and I made a whole bunch!

img_0657

img_0709

img_0707

img_0660

 

img_0711

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next week, I’ll make more zippered pouches and pillowcases. I have several items for kids already made as well.

What I’m most looking forward to is finding some time after these items are made to get back to designing. I haven’t forgotten about the Seaglass quilt…it’s ready for the long arm and then it will be pattern tested and ready for the Craftsy store.

That’s about it for today! Join me for the 100 Blocks Blog Tour next week!!!

Share

Delving Into Applique

Two weekends ago I attended a local quilt show for the Herring Run Quilt Guild. It’s a biannual show that I remember enjoying last time around. I reversed my usual show order and perused the vendors first. I picked up one of those nifty lap size ironing boards thinking it would be nice to use a small lap table for when I’m doing English Paper Piecing. LOL –  I make it sound as though that happens all the time but really it’s about once every three calendar page turns!

Then a funny thing happened as I walked through the quilt exhibit. I came upon a beautifully appliqued wall hanging. I didn’t take a picture of it because the program said cameras were welcome for personal inspiration but a no no for publication anywhere else…and really, why else do we take pictures of things but to put them on our blogs to give us something to talk about, so I tabled the photo taking idea! I did read the card though and the maker of the quilt stated that she had never considered applique before coming upon something called the back-basting method of applique. Hmmmmm…..I’m one of those anti needle turners myself but this held some sort of promise…like even I could do it. I looked closely at the stitches from the front and back and committed the phrase, ‘back-basting applique’ to my mind for later Googling! It was her first go around with applique and I knew right then, it surely would be mine too!

And it solidified my purchase of that nifty lap ironing board!

So, I did what  any good quilter does when introduced to a new method of anything, I pulled up Amazon on my laptop faster than you can say, ‘applique’. And ah ha!

And thanks to Amazon look what arrived on Sunday…

img_0043

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And look what I started on Monday…

img_0051

 

 

 

 

 

 

And finished on Tuesday…

img_0054

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hey, I’m appliqueing!! With this method, you basically trace the applique pattern on the back of the background fabric. Then you baste around the tracing of that applique pattern piece while hold in place the applique fabric on the right side. The basting shows up on the applique fabric.

img_0046

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then you trim the fabric leaving a 1/4″ seam allowance around the basting. You do needle turn the applique but you remove the basting as you go. The perforation of the fabric from the basting allows the seam allowance to roll under very nicely. The blind stitch or ladder stitch is used to actually applique the piece. I use the blind stitch. So now I need to try it again with a different pattern and maybe make a table topper using the method. The step by step process in Barbara Eckmeier’s book is fantastic! She has beautiful project instructions included.

This past Saturday, I was vending at an area Rainbow Girls Camp. I split my table in half using part for Quilt Cabana and part for Creative Memories. Sadly, the craft fair had very little foot traffic and I don’t think many of us made our table money back. It was a total bust. They did provide a nice lunch, coffee and donuts but it added up to a loss for so many vendors. In fact, we all received an apology later that day from the organizer. This is what my table looked like…

img_0033

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was seated next to the Avon lady and she was killing it! She definitely made her table back and I was really in awe. I had no idea that people even bought Avon anymore! Shows you what I know! I talked with her quite a bit and took home the catalogs to look through. They now have clothes and shoes and a separate home living catalog. What? Yup. She was also a great sales lady and drew everyone in with her, “Have you seen an Avon catalog lately?” sales pitch. Sure enough, the ladies came flocking and buying up products they used to order ‘all the time’.  The lady on the other side of me was selling homemade dog biscuits. She didn’t sell many but she enjoyed talking about her dogs and she was good company…because it was a long day, y’all.

That’s about it from here. I’m working on my quilt kit that I bought in Hawaii. Also working on getting the Seaglass quilt ready to load on the long arm. Enjoy your day!

*this post contains an Amazon affiliate link

Share

Post Craft Fair & Stuff

Where is this week going? I’m not sure how it is possibly Wednesday already but it is! I not only survived vending at our town’s Christmas celebration and craft fair but I enjoyed it and the kids all got where they needed to be and on time thanks to my awesome husband.

This was a unique year for Christmas On The Common because our high school football team was playing in the Superbowl at Gillette Stadium on the SAME DAY. That meant all those football, marching band, and fan families were not in attendance for more than half of the day if at all. Sadly, they lost that game by 2 points. So for the vendors that meant attendance was definitely down as were sales. The big wave of shoppers who usually appear right at the end of the parade, never really showed up. I think they were all over at Gillette. That being said, I still had a pretty good day and made decent money. Here is what my booth looked like right as the day began.

2015-12-09+08.39.20

 

 

 

 

 

The Star Wars pillowcases were the biggest hit of the table and also Disney Princess items as well as the Mr. & Mrs. Snowflake pattern.

I had several people ask about Snow White items…who knew? I also sold a few Minion items as well as baby bibs. In addition to that I have a few orders now to fill as well. I’m calling it a success for Quilt Cabana Patterns and I hope other vendors were able to feel the same way. The items that didn’t sell at the fair will be listed in my Etsy Store. Here’s Leah in the parade. Greg caught a cute picture of her as she marched by with the dance studio…

2015-12-09+08.37.28

 

 

 

 

 

 

A note about my new site, www.sandicolwell.com, it is now up and running and has a subscribe button as well as a place to comment. This is a new blog meant to help us encourage, inspire, and connect with one another. I hope you’ll visit and become a reader. There are two posts now for your enjoyment!

My metal stamping supplies arrived and I’ve been having fun making some jewelry. No pictures yet as I’m still learning and practicing!

And here’s a picture to make you smile…dear Nala can’t seem to stay away from the Christmas tree as you can see from the 3ft high fence around it in the background of the photo. Good thing she’s so cute…we’ll keep her.

2015-12-09+08.36.48

Share

Getting Ready & Something New

How’s that for a post title? I couldn’t think of anything outstanding so I went with Getting Ready & Something New. I am about to start the process of getting my patterns and products ready to sell at Christmas On The Common on Saturday. This is our town’s annual Christmas festival complete with parade, craft fair, performances and all manner of yummy food. I’ll be vending from 9-3pm at the Quilt Cabana Patterns table. This time around feels remarkably different from my first time vending last year. This year I pretty much know what I need to bring and what can stay at home. The only downside to vending this event is that Leah is performing and so is Amanda which means I need to get some table coverage so I can sneak away into the auditorium to see one dance and the other play with the jazz band. This leaves middle daughter to watch my table – only she signed up to sell cookies with her classmates all day. I nicely pointed out that Quilt Cabana pays table help and the school doesn’t…is that wrong? I needed leverage, so there you have it.  Bad Mama….

This morning I finished up a bib order and they came out so cute with rick rack and matching snaps! I love those snaps! To find out more about them, click here for the post where I discussed the snap setter.

2015-12-02+20.09.36

My sewing for the craft fair is done now and next I need to work on a Christmas gift for someone who may be reading, so no more details right now. After Christmas I have a few custom quilt orders and I have a few pattern ideas waiting to become realities. I wish designing patterns was a faster process but it truly is not!

To add a few more things to my ever-growing list of creative pursuits, tonight I ordered a bunch of supplies to stamp metal for jewelry. It’s something I’ve always wanted to try. I’ll keep you posted on the progress and a tool review once I play with it all.

I’m also working on a sister website to this one. It’s currently under construction although you can visit but there’s really not much content in it. It’s www.sandicolwell.com. Building a website is time consuming and I’m not finding a lot of extra time in my day as you can imagine these last few weeks. This site will be focusing on writing, devotionals and the busy lives of moms and dads just like yourselves. I’m slightly hesitant to share it so early but maybe you all can spur me on to get going with this project and I really want you to participate in it as well. Go have a look…

Share

Kam Snap Setter & Wednesday Progress

Hi Everyone,

Yesterday I spent some time going through the items I made for the upcoming craft fair. I realized that the snaps still needed to be set on the baby bibs. I had been putting it off because, quite honestly, I didn’t feel like learning how to use the new tool I bought to do it! After a little chat with myself about getting over it, I pulled out the Kam Snap Setter package and began to learn with the help of Kam’s website and tutorial. There are no written directions in the package. You have to go to their website for instructions but it was super easy! The starter set I purchased came with everything I needed including the tools and snaps in various colors. The snaps are plastic and colorful which was important to me as I want them to look nice on baby items. I chose the set below that had white snaps as well as the rainbow colors. Here are Amazon links to two sets – one with white snaps and one with only rainbow colors.

It was a simple process of using the included awl to poke holes in each side of the bib. Next, you put a snap prong through one side of the fabric and a male or female socket over the prong.

2015-11-18+09.40.01

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Using the snap pliers, you squeeze the prong and socket together and you have one side of the snap!

2015-11-18+09.39.35

Repeat for the other side…

2015-11-18+09.39.11

And you are done! So easy.

2015-11-18+09.38.25

These bibs will join the following items for sale at the craft fair in December. I’ll also be selling patterns and notions. I enjoy this fair so much because the whole town comes out for a parade and performances at the high school by the different dance studios and school bands. Leah will be dancing and marching in the parade and Amanda will be performing with the jazz band. There’s lots of food and of course, Santa is there too! It takes place on December 5th at the East Bridgewater Junior Senior High School.

These will be at my table…

2015-11-17+08.27.35

2015-11-17+08.32.28

2015-11-17+08.37.51

2015-11-17+08.41.58

2015-11-17+08.43.20

2015-11-17+08.47.08

Don’t forget Friday is my day on the 100 Blocks Blog Tour! I hope you’ll join me for a give-away!

It’s almost time to pull out holiday quilts like this one. Find this and more in my Craftsy Store!

full_191_85884_ComingDownTheChimney_1

****I am an Amazon Affiliate and would love for you to order the Kam Snap Setter through the links above. Purchases made through the posted links help to fund the website and podcast.

Share

Sewing Progress & An Interesting Article

Happy Thursday!

It’s been a slow week for me over here as I’ve been saddled with a cold and some nasty fatigue. I’m feeling better today so I’m thrilled. I tried to get in some sewing for the craft fair in December and I managed to make a few tote bags and even some Star Wars bibs.

2015-09-26+14.40.33

2015-09-30+14.18.29

2015-09-30+14.18.55

2015-09-30+14.19.21

2015-09-30+14.20.26

2015-09-30+14.20.44

After asking around a bit about the best way to do the closures on the bibs, I settled on plastic snaps. I ordered this Kam Snap Plier bundle set from Amazon for $25. It came yesterday but I haven’t tried it yet.

a kam

I ordered some Minion and Frozen fabric this week too. It has arrived and it is washed and waiting to be pressed. These will be for pillow cases.

I came across this article from James Clear about creativity and whether it is a function of destiny or development. It speaks to creativity being a process. I think it’s a great read and very inspiring. What do you think?

http://jamesclear.com/creative-thinking?__s=bvjaetktaqrnxxuphyop

Don’t forget to get your $2 Three Jacks Mug Rug pattern on Craftsy!

table photo

cover hi res

It’s also a great time to pick up the Third Seasonal Trio Mini Quilt Pattern on Craftsy…

Third Seasonal Trio Hi Res For QW

And Happy Haunting as well…

1 happy haunt

Share

Pillowcases & Abstract Fun

I’ve been whipping up pillowcases all week to add to inventory for a show I’m vending in December. I’ve got 7 made and now I’m waiting on some fabric to arrive in the mail to make more.

2015-09-22+09.32.13

2015-09-22+09.31.30

2015-09-22+09.30.46

I’ll also be making tote bags and toiletry bags as well as baby play mats and some bibs.

Last night I was reading in the latest Quilting Arts magazine about using photographs as a jumping off point for abstract art quilts. Using a photo of something very simple and then rearranging those elements resonated with me and I got pretty excited to try a piece of my own. Examples of simple photos in the article included a wooden chair composition and a cat among others. I chose my sewing table and chair.

2015-09-22+15.36.18

I picked fabric based on a color scheme I particularly like…

2015-09-22+15.35.57

I free hand cut shapes to resemble the sewing room photo and glued them to a background…

2015-09-22+15.35.30

Then I cut it up…

2015-09-22+15.35.13

And I cut some more…

2015-09-22+15.34.53

Here’s where the abstract begins! I rearranged those tiles about 50 times…

2015-09-22+15.34.27

I joined the tiles with a zig zag stitch, layered, basted and free motion quilted it…

2015-09-22+15.33.19

And then I pulled out my Inktense Coloring Blocks and I painted it.

2015-09-22+15.34.09

So this is my first true abstract piece and I’m quite happy with it. It made for a fun afternoon and I was able to practice free motion skills as well as create a piece of art that I never would have thought of making before today.

Share

Vending Recap

I did it! I was a vendor at a craft fair for the first time. The town we live in has an annual Christmas event run by the Kiwanis Club. It’s a day long holiday festival complete with a parade, a craft fair, photos with Santa, music & dance performances, delicious food and the selling of Christmas Trees. It’s been going on for about 31 years and it is something that our town is very proud of. It is called Christmas On The Common. The food and parade are held outdoors and the rest is held inside the high school. I’ve always been a fan of the craft fair that takes place and I thought it would be fun and educational for me to vend there. I contacted the man in charge of the vendors and he sent me a contract to fill out. The price of a table space was $50 which I found to be reasonable. We did have to bring our own tables and chairs which seemed to be something new. The school decided not to supply them this year for some reason.

I spent many days preparing and packing for the fair. I made a master packing list and just kept piling things in the dining room until the morning of the event. The doors opened at 7:15 for vendors to set up. The fair opened at 9am and ran until 3pm. The set up went well. It took two cars to get everything there and one extra trip that Greg made for a card table and table cloth. We got inside and quickly realized that everyone else had two tables and two were really needed in order to not be cluttered. I also quickly found that my table banner was about 6″ too tall for the table. Thanks to duct tape, we got that “hemmed”. I received the banner as a free gift for reviewing the banner company awhile back.

Here is how my table and displays looked once I was finished setting up…

photo 2 (25)

I had one clothes rack that I covered with a table cloth and pinned the quilt samples to. I now realize that I should have had two racks so I could display more of the quilts. People really enjoyed looking at the samples and I easily could have fit two racks behind me.

A few days before the fair, I embroidered this apron for myself and I’m glad I did as I seemed more professional with it on.

photo 1 (25)

I brought two chairs along but I never sat in them. The girls were performing that day in the parade and in the auditorium and so in between events, they would come sit with me at the table. I didn’t mind standing though as it was much easier to talk to customers standing. The stream of people was constant all day long. However, the next day I felt like I had somehow pulled every muscle in my body.

Here are some pictures from both sides of the gym where the fair was held…

photo 3 (20)

photo 4 (15)

Other vendors were selling candles, jewelry, pillow cases, wreaths, wine bottles with lights inside, soaps, ornaments, Avon, Scentsy, artwork, scarves and sweatshirts. I felt unique in the sense that no one else was selling patterns or advertising classes. I made it a point to ask each person who came up to the table if they quilted or sewed. I had so many conversations with people by doing this. I heard all kinds of stories about quilting and early attempts at sewing. It was fun and I had a segue to recruiting for beginner sewing lessons. I’m not sure how many Coffee & Quilting postcards I handed out but it was a lot! I also had sign up sheet for the newsletter which I forgot about until midway through. I was able to get some names and email addresses for the next round of newsletters that I send out. I’m not sure how many people will sign up for a Coffee & Quilting session but even if it’s only one, that’s a good start.

I was glad I brought some waters and snacks as outside food from the carts (hamburgers, etc) were not allowed in the gym. I had protein bars and snack crackers packed that I ate. I could have run out for something to eat and left Greg and the girls at the table but I really didn’t want to miss a minute of the fair. I paid for that later in the day with a massive migraine.

It turned out to be a profitable day for me. I had advance sales of the Frozen make up bags which covered the cost of the table space and then I made a couple hundred dollars in sales. I also had an order waiting for me when I got home in my email from someone who couldn’t attend the fair.
I went into this thinking that even if I didn’t sell a single item, that I would have had a good time and that I would have learned something. I learned a lot on Saturday and the goal of getting my name and the business name out to the community was achieved. I’m calling it a success!

Here is a pdf file of my vending packing list. It might be helpful to you if you are thinking of vending a show.

Vending Packing List

Share