Los Angeles and My birthday / Los Angeles y Mi Cumpleaños

September 13, 2012 at 23:39 | Posted in Crafts - DIY, Stimulus | 1 Comment
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We went to Los Angeles over Labor Day Weekend. We usually stay home and celebrate my birthday, but this year Michael’s parents celebrated their 35th Wedding Anniversary with a 1970′s house party. When we were there I went to the Fashion District (I love that place!) The Fashion District is a cultural shopping experience. Not only do they have wonderful fabric, crafts, and bead stores, they also have lots of Latin Americans selling a TON of stuff (shoes, knock off bags, clothes, even fruit) on the sidewalk and at the famous Santee Alley. Once we took Michael’s parents there (they had never been in 20+ years in LA!) and they couldn’t believe it. They thought they were in the streets of el Mercado in Mexico.

El finde pasado nos fuimos a Los Angeles porque aquí fue feriado por el Día del Trabajo. Usualmente nos quedamos en casa para esta fecha y celebramos mi cumpleaños, pero este año los papás de Michael cumplieron 35 años de casados y lo celebraron con una fiesta inspirada en los años 70s. Aprovechando que estábamos allá fuí al Distrito de la Moda, uno de mis lugares preferidos en Los Angeles. Es realmente una experiencia cultural. No sólo encuentras tiendas de telas y artísticas buenísimas, sino que además hay muchos Latioamericanos vendiendo muchas cosas (zapatos, imitaciones de bolsas de diseñadores famosos, hasta frutas) en las aceras y en el famoso callejón Santee. Una vez llevamos a los papás de Michael (que viviendo allí por más de 20 años nunca habían ido) y no lo podían creer. Era como estar en las calles de Méjico.

I went to my favorite fabric store, Michael Levine’s, and got some pretty fabrics to make more aprons for the upcoming Sassy Craft Fair. I also ran across the street to their Loft and got a big bag with lots of scrap knits (some more than 2 yards!) for $2 and some more scrap fabric by the pound. I also bought shoes for me and Paloma at another store.

Fuí a mi tienda de telas favoritas, Michael Levine, y compré telas muy lindas para hacer más delantales para la feria que se viene la semana que viene. También me crucé enfrente donde tienen su loft y conpré una bolsa con un montón de retazos de jersey (¡algunos de más de 2 yardas!) por la que pagué $2 y más retazos sueltos que los venden por peso (en libras). Y me compré zapatos para mí y para Paloma en una zapatería.

Here are some pictures from the party. We had fun dressing like in the 70’s! Paloma wore her 70’s Vera Tea Towel Dress.

Acá van unas fotos de la fiesta. Nos divertimos mucho con nuestra ropa setentosa! A Paloma le puse el vestido hecho con el repasador diseñado por Vera en los 70s.

Party like it is 1977! / ¡Celebremos como si fuera 1977!

My in-laws. They wore their original wedding outfits! / Mis suegros con su trajes de novios

These are from the Fashion District. / Estas son del Distrito de la Moda.

 

Don’t worry, these are not the shoes I bought! 😉 ¡Tranquilos, esos no son los zapatos que me compré!

And here are some pix from my Birthday BBQ on the patio. I didn’t decorate like I did last year (no time!) but I cooked and baked A LOT! I even made cake pops! My first attempt, and they were yummy and cute. Maybe I will make some for Pali’s birthday this year. Kids seemed to love them (adults too, but they were not as cute eating them as the kids were).

Y acá estan las fotos de mi cumple en el patio de casa. Este año no decoré como lo hice el año pasado (¡no tuve tiempo!) pero cociné bastante. Hasta hice cake pops! Fueron mi primer intento, me quedaron ricas y lindas. Quizás las haga de nuevo para el cumple de Pali. Les gustaron a todos los niños (a los adultos también, pero no se veían tan lindos como ellos al comerlas.)

Lastly, here is a picture of what is coming on Friday. Because I didn’t post for two weeks, you are having not one, but two posts this week. Hint: I made accessories:)

Por último, una foto de lo que se viene el domingo. Esta semana vas a tener dos entradas ya que no he posteado en dos semanas. Una ayudita: hice accesories 🙂

Blog Hop, Saints and Sinners Webstore closing, and a Sneak Peak!

August 23, 2012 at 18:18 | Posted in Crafts - DIY, Stimulus | Leave a comment
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This week I joined a Blog Hop hosted by Happy Hour Projects and  Take It From Me called Welcome Wednesday. If you are not familiar with Blog Hops, they are great places to spread the love, reach to more people and network with other bloggers. Go check out all the goodness! If you have a blog, you might want to participate too and gain more followers as well.

Esta semana me uní a un Blog Hop organizado por Happy Hour Projects y Take It From Me llamado Welcome Wednesdays. Si no estas familiarizado/a con un Blog Hop, es un espacio para difundir tu trabajo, llegar a más gente y conocer otros bloggers. Vé a echar un vistazo a todo lo bueno que hay! Y si tienes un blog puedes participar para ganar mas lectores también.

Another thing I want to share with you is that my dear friend and artist Barbe SaintJohn is closing her Saints and Sinners Webstore to pursue another creative path. Her jewelry is amazing! She creates one of a kind Jewelry, Wearable Art and Mixed Media Assemblage.

Otra cosa que quiero compartir con ustedes es que mi querida amiga y artista Barbe SaintJohn cerrará su tienda online Saints and Sinners para dedicarse a seguir otro camino creativo. ¡Sus piezas son increíbles! Ella crea accesorios únicos y arte para vestir ensamblando diferentes elementos  y artefactos.

I love her art! And I know you will too. All jewelry on the website is on sale at 25% until the shop closes at the end of September. So go and buy, buy, buy!

¡Su arte me encanta! Y estoy segura que también les va gustar a ustedes. Todos los accesorios en la tienda están a la venta con un 25% de descuento hasta el día del cierre a finales de Setiembre. Así que vé y compra, compra, compra!

One more thing for you all: A sneak peak of the upcoming Before and After. Hmm, how would this be transformed?

Una cosa más: Un vistazo del Antes y Después que se viene. Hmm, ¿cómo crees que lo voy a transformar?

{Show & Tell} Mosaic Artist Mela Delgado

July 30, 2012 at 23:30 | Posted in Crafts - DIY, Stimulus | 3 Comments
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Hi! Welcome to another Mother Crafter Show & Tell Feature. As you know, this is a space where artists/crafters share their work with us and we immerse ourselves in their creative world, a space where we only breathe inspiration and creative stimulus. Here is Mela Delgado to tell us about her art. Enjoy!

Hola! Bienvenidos a la sección de Show & Tell de Mother Crafter, el primer Show & Tell bilingüe! Este es un espacio donde diferentes artistas y artesanos comparten su trabajo con nosotros y donde nos sumergimos en su mundo creativo, un espacio donde sólo respiramos inspiración y mucho estímulo creativo. Hoy aquí está Mela Delgado para contarnos acerca de su arte. Disfruten!

Galilea’s Sky, 2009 / Mirror, glass and beach glass 9”x42”

Tell me a little about yourself. I was raised in the Island of Puerto Rico, but for the past seven years I’ve been living in Oakland, CA with my husband Jason and our two-year-old daughter Gala.

Who taught you your craft? I actually took a mosaic class.

Cuéntanos un poco sobre ti. Crecí en la isla de Puerto Rico, pero por los últimos siete años vivo en Oakland, CA con mi esposo Jason y nuestra hija de dos años Gala.

¿Quién te enseñó tu oficio?Tomé una clase para aprender a hacer mosaicos.

Galilea’s Sky, detail

When and how did you start making your mosaics? What drew you into choosing this medium? I was in the middle of writing my master thesis to finish my degree in Museum Studies, and I was very stressed. I decided that to relieve stress I should take an art class, and this art class happened to be in mosaics. I’ve always been drawn to this medium. First, it’s an ancient form of art; and I have a passion for Art History. Second, I love working with my hands and experimenting with different types of mediums and with mosaics I had the opportunity to combine all of these aspects into one piece of art.

What inspires you in your creations? Many things inspire my work. Artists, for example: the painter Frida Kahlo, the sculptor Andy Goldsworthy, the mosaic artist Verdiano Marzi or the mosaic collaborators CaCo3, and many others. Architecture also inspires my work, from the concrete houses I grew up in to the extraordinary buildings by Antonio Gaudí. The environment that surrounds me inspires my work, the moss that grows between cracked concrete, the deep blue of the ocean, and even a sky full of celestial stars. Also, the people around me inspire me, especially my daughter Gala.

¿Cuándo empezaste a hacer tus mosaicos? ¿Qué te llevó a elegir este medio? Me encontraba en el medio de la escritura de mi tésis, para terminar mi maestria en Museología, y estaba muy estresada. Para aliviar el estrés decidí tomar una clase de arte, y la clase que tomé fue de mosaicos. Siempre me ha fascinado este medio. Primero, es un arte antiguo; y yo tengo una pasión por la historia del arte. Segundo, me encanta trabajar con mis manos y experimentar con diferentes medios; y con el mosaico tengo la oportunidad de combinar todos esos aspectos en una pieza de arte.

¿Qué te inspira en tus creaciones? Muchas cosas me inspiran, Artistas, por ejemplo: la pintora Frida Kahlo, el escultor Andy Goldsworthy, el artista de mosaic Verdiano Marzi o los colaboradores del mosaico CaCo3, y muchos otros. La arquitectura también inspira mi trabajo, desde las casas en concreto donde me crié hasta los edificios extraordinarios de Antonio Gaudí. El ambiente a mi alrededor también me inspira, el musgo que crece entre las aperturas del hormigón, el profundo color azul del océano, hasta el cielo repleto de estrellas celestiales. Me inspira también la gente a mi alrededor, especialmente mi hija Gala.

Caguana, 2009 / Stone, ceramic and glass 16”x16”

What keeps you motivated to continue creating? The passion for mosaics keeps me motivated, and the endless possibilities and use of materials for its creation.

Do you have a “creative process”? To give me ideas I usually start with a rough drawing, or even images I find around in magazines or the Internet.

¿Qué te motiva a seguir creando? Me mantiene motivada la pasión por los mosaicos , y la infinidad de posibilidades y uso de materiales para su creación.

¿Tienes un proceso creativo? Para darme ideas usualmente comienzo con un simple dibujo, o hasta imágenes que encuentro en revistas o el internet.

Dig#1, detail / Stone, ceramic, glass, smalti, gold, beads and sea shells 16”x16”

Do you have other crafts activities/hobbies? Right now I don’t have other crafts, I would like to have others but being a full time stay at home mama this is the only craft I can focus on. I do read fervently and I love going to art gallery openings and visit museums.

¿Tienes otros oficios o pasatiempos? Ahora mismo no tengo otro arte, me gustaria hacer otra cosa pero soy una mamá tiempo completo y solo puedo enfocarme en una cosa. Si leo fervientemente y me encanta ir a exhibiciones de arte y museos.

Dig#3, 2012 / smalti, sicis, dichroic glass, elementile recycled glass, mix vitreous glass, crystals, stone, beach glass, seashells and teeth 9.25”x12.25”

Do you think the economic situation we are living right now is impacting the DIY/craft world? If so, how? I believe it’s impacting it in a positive way; with the unemployment rates so high people like me that have a Master Degree and can’t easily find a job in their field have to rely in their other skills and talents to make a living.

¿Crees que la situación económica que estamos viviendo actualmente está afectando el mundo de DIY/arte? Si es así, ¿cómo? Creo que ha impactado la situación económica de una manera positiva; con el porcentaje de desempleo tan alto, personas como yo que tienen una Maestría y que no pueden encontar un empleo con facilidad en su rama tienen que recaer en sus otros talentos para ganarse la vida.

Are you able to make a profit from your art? Jaja, Not yet!

¿Sos capaz de vivir de tu arte? Jaja, todavia no!

Dig#2, 2011, detail / marble, ceramic, glass, beach glass, quartz, smalti, pearls and teeth 9”x24”

Is there anything else you want to share with other crafters? To all the Mother Crafters out there, if you have passion for your art don’t have excuses for not doing it or say that you don’t have enough time. There is always time, meaning if you have to get up or go to bed an hr or two before or after your kids, do it! Or, you have to work on your art while your kid is running around, and you are also trying to cook and wash clothes, do it! Even if a piece takes you a whole year to do, but you are proud and satisfied with what you’ve created, then it was worth it!

¿Algo más que desees compartir con otros artesanos? Para todas las Mother Crafters, si sienten pasión por su arte no tengan excusas para no hacerlo, o digan que no tienen suficiente tiempo. Siempre hay tiempo, aunque tengas que levantarte o acostarte una o dos horas antes o después de tus hijos, házlo! O, tienes que trabajar en tu arte mientras tu hijo esté correteando, y a la vez estás cocinando y lavando la ropa, házlo! No importa si la pieza te toma un año para terminar, pero si estás orgullosa y satisfecha con lo que haz creado, entonces valió la pena!

La playa Kitchen Backsplash, 2010, detail / ceramic, glass, local beach glass, peebles, seashells and metal 2‘x5’

Aren’t her pieces awesome? Thank you Mela for joining us and sharing your work! Check her website, Twitter and Facebook page to connect with her.

And remember, If you would like to be featured in the future please send me an email at mothercrafterblog (at) gmail (dot) com.

Sus piezas son increíbles, ¿no crees? Muchas gracias Mela por estar con nosotros y compartir tu arte! Vé a su página web o conéctate con ella en Twitter o Facebook.

Y recuerda: si deseas compartir tu oficio y creaciones en futuros Show & Tell, envíame un email a mothercrafterblog (@) gmail (.) com.

Christmas in July and Alameda County Fair

July 13, 2012 at 22:56 | Posted in Crafts - DIY, Stimulus | Leave a comment
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Adrianne from Happy Hours Project hosted a Christmas in July Gift Exchange. I was matched with Veronica, from Adventures of D and V. Not only was fun to participate, but it was also great to meet her through our email exchanges. I sent her one of my aprons with a Japanese theme fabric. I forgot to take a picture before I sent it to her, so I am stealing this one from her blog (that you should go and check out by the way).

Adrianne de Happy Hours Project organizó un intercambio de regalos llamado Navidad en Julio. Me tocó de pareja Verónica, de Adventures of D and V. No sólo fue divertido participar del intercambio, también fue genial conocerla a través de nuestros intercambios de e-mails. Le envié uno de mis delantales, hecho con telas con estamapados japoneses. Me olvidé de tomar una foto antes de enviarselo, así que se la estoy robando de su blog (vayan a visitarlo, por cierto).

This is what she made for me. Cards with doves on them, flower pens (Paloma loves them), and two pins. Super cute and very thoughtful!

Esto es lo que ella hizo para mí. Tarjetas con palomas, lapiceras con flores (a Paloma le encantaron), un prendedor y una hebilla. ¡Muy lindo y muy considerado!

I encourage you to participate in swaps! It is a great way to get inspired and motivated, and you can meet more crafters like you!

Les recomiendo participar de intercambios! Es una manera de sentirse motivada e inspirada, y tambien es una oportunidad para conocer a más personas artesanas como tú.

I also want to show you some of the stuff we saw at the Alameda County Fair a couple of weekends ago. We had a great time and Paloma got to ride a horse for the first time! I wasn’t sure how she was going to react to it, but she loved it!

También quiero mostrarles algunas de las cosas que vimos en la Feria del Condado de Alameda hace un par de semanas, donde la pasamos muy lindo y Paloma anduvo a caballo por primera vez. Al principio no estaba muy segura como iba a reaccionar, ¡pero le encantó!

The Food and Fiber pavillon was one of my favorites, along with the animals and the garden displays.

El pabellón de Comidas y Textiles fue uno de mis favoritos junto con los animales y los jardines.

Do you go to your county or state fairs in the Summer?

¿Visitas las ferias de tu provincia o estado durante el verano?

Make something. Anything. {30 Days of Creativity}

May 31, 2012 at 23:36 | Posted in Crafts - DIY, Stimulus | 1 Comment
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  • Create stuff you’ve been wanting to do anyway.
  • Exercise the creativity we’re all born with.
  • Break the monotony of not doing anything creative.
  • Make your mom proud.

These are some of the 30 reasons you should participate in 30 Days of Creativity. Launched by ad agency Carmichael Lynch, it is a initiative for people to make something (anything) every day for the month of June. In its 3rd year (2nd for me), they are encouraging people to stop putting off their creativeness and jump in. Their motto is: “Your brain is like a muscle. When you exercise it, it gets stronger.”

Here is the 2012 Inspiration Calendar:

You can also check out the projects I did last year here for more inspiration.

So… are you in? Join me and other creative minds! To be part of it, you pledge to make something every day from June 1st to June 30th and let them know on Twitter. Or visit the 30 Days of Creativity website to share your creations, see what others are making, and encourage others/be encouraged to finish the month. They also created a Pinterest page where they will upload the projects of the community.

“Creation is a better means of self-expression than possession; it is through creating, not possessing, that life is revealed.” -Vida Dutton Scudder, The Privilege of Age.

Last Minute Cinco de Mayo Decoration

May 4, 2012 at 22:29 | Posted in Crafts - DIY, Stimulus | Leave a comment
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Cinco de Mayo is tomorrow! Here is a very last minute decoration idea you can whip up in half an hour or less using frames and fabric scraps.

This weekend I will be participating at a Spring Craft Sale for the home selling my fun, unique and creative aprons. I am very excited to be back doing craft shows! I stopped when Paloma was born, so it is nice to be back. I have been sewing them all week, and while cutting one out of a beautiful Frida Kahlo print, an idea for using some frames I have laying around came to me. Use them to frame fabric!

You just need to cut the fabric to the size of the frame. You can exchange them for different holidays or seasons (flowers prints for spring, patriotic prints for 4th of July, etc).

Wish me luck at the craft show! Do you sell at Craft Shows/Bazaars?

Aprons, aprons, aprons 😉

Bold and Colorful Curtains

April 23, 2012 at 22:52 | Posted in Crafts - DIY, Stimulus | 7 Comments
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Happy (belated) Earth Day! and Happy National Dance week! We had a great weekend, full of activities. I took a Vertical Dance Class, it was so much fun! but boy, I was sore all weekend (yes! that is me!). And then  we went to the Poi Fire Dance Expo in SF.

I hope you had a good weekend too!

Now back to business 😉 One of the projects in my never-ending list of house projects are curtains. Curtains for the kitchen, the laundry room, the bedrooms… see… never-ending! I only made the ones for the kitchen and laundry room so far, from fabric I got at IKEA. Very colorful fun print and budget friendly.

I hung a beautiful batik cloth Michael bought a long time ago in the office, and I really like how you can see it both from the street and inside, so I think I will keep it like that (one less to do!).

I made these when we lived in the apartment, we chose a rich red color burnt-out fabric that paired really nice with the yellow walls (and with Bob the Super Cat too).

Curtains are relatively easy to make, depending on the style you choose. You can find some guidance about choosing the perfect curtain, calculating the yardage and more here, here, and here. Also, check out these tutorials.

Personally, I prefer the curtains to be bold, graphic and colorful, so here are more ideas I absolutely adore.

 

Do you make your own curtains? Do you prefer graphic or solids? Tell me! 🙂

DIY Easter Round-Up

March 30, 2012 at 11:39 | Posted in Crafts - DIY, Stimulus | 3 Comments
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We are traveling this week celebrating Michael’s birthday, but here are some DIY Easter projects to get you ready to celebrate the coming holiday.

Joanne from Craft Passion shares these cute and colorful Egg Planters.

Dcoracao has these AMAZING embroidered eggs with a tutorial. The site is in Portuguese but the pictures are self explanatory. Wow…

Tanya from Myrtle and Eunice created these Easter Chicks and made them dance… Here you can see them dancing to MJ’s “Thriller”. Hilarious!

These Crepe Paper Surprise Bunnies from Martha Stewart are adorable, and the kids would love them!

Also from Martha, cupcakes!

What about these treat holders you can make with your kids from Hostess (with the Mostess)?

Alberta from Yoke Bakery shared origami bunnies at Instructables.

If you are looking for a cute dress for your daughter, check out my *award winning* (ahem!) Tea Towel Spring Dress. 😉

Go over to Falala and get this free printable to put on your door.

Green Lily Designs also shares free Easter Bag downloads.

Hope you got inspired! See you next week.

{Show & Tell} Artist and Crocheter Kathie Eng

March 7, 2012 at 23:10 | Posted in Crafts - DIY, Stimulus | 6 Comments
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Back when I was pregnant, one of the first gift I received was a beautiful and colorful handmade blanket from the mother of my Tango teacher. Not only did she make it especially for us, but then I found that she was an avid crocheter.

So I decided to feature her in the first Show and Tell of Mother Crafter. It is a perfect post to celebrate not only National Craft Month, but also National Crochet Month. I hope you find her work as amazing and inspirational as I do.

Who taught you to crochet?

My grandmother taught me when I was 8 or 9 years old, then I learned more from a neighbor at the time who was a highly skilled crocheter.

When and how did you start making your quilts? 

About 24 years ago, a friend gave me a miniature quilt she made and encouraged me to try to do a crocheted version of it.  I did and it just escalated from there.  Also, I bought a book on Amish quilts, went to see the Esprit Collection at the De Young Museum and then got hooked on them, especially the bar quilts which were and still are my favorites.

What inspired you in your creations?

The beautiful jewel tones and fabulous color combinations in the Amish quilts inspired me to begin with and still do to this day.

What keeps you motivated to continue creating?

The challenge of being able to visualize something, making it, and being able to see the final product.

Do you have other crafts activities/hobbies?

Yes, of course, tango, collage, and baking.  I also used to love to do macrame when that was popular.

Are you able to make a profit from your craft?

Yes, because I do lots of work for a yarn company and various craft publications.

Do you think the economic situation we are living in right now is impacting the DIY/craft world? How?

I don’t experience a difference myself and I think that maybe because of it, more people are trying to make their arts and crafts a means of income.

She also made these Missoni inspired scarves and a green lacey scarf, perfect to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.

Aren’t these great? Thank you Kathie for joining us and sharing your work! If you would like to be featured in future {Show and Tell}s please send me an email at mothercrafterblog (at) gmail (dot) com.

Bay Area Quilt, Craft, and Sewing Festival

February 27, 2012 at 11:37 | Posted in Crafts - DIY, Stimulus | 1 Comment
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I’ve been feeling the quilting itch for a while now, and quilting definitely intrigues me and scares me at the same time. Do I have the skills and patience required for it? Other than the quilt I made for Paloma when I was pregnant, I haven’t really got into it. Sometimes it take me a while to fully get into new things, but I am sure I would get around to it eventually. Maybe I could take a class this Spring.

When I saw that the Bay Area Quilt, Craft, and Sewing Festival was happening this weekend, I decided to go to check it out and find some new stimulus.  I wore this purse my Aunt Melissa sent me to honor the occasion 😉 The details on it are crazy, and it is truly a piece of work. I got compliments from the attendees, it was definitely a conversation piece.

The festival was bigger than I thought it would be, with exhibitors of all kinds and from places all around the country. There where hundreds of quilts. And they were all AMAZING. I rummaged through all the booths soaking in all the patterns, colors, textures and techniques. Beautiful, beautiful handiwork. One of my favorites  quilts were in a booth featuring Amy Bradley Designs. I think her quilts are non-traditional and the majority of them are fresh and funny. She has a pattern called Fabric Addict that I think is pretty hilarious. It consist of four blocks, each one saying: Find the fabric. Hug the fabric. Buy the fabric. Stash the fabric (this one with the husband freaking out in the background).  And the Quilt Diva Quilt is funny too. I love her quilts!

Here are more pictures of the day. From vegetables and flowers cats to army theme and everything in between, quilting has tons of possibilities.

Husqvarna, Janone and Bernina had booths as well, with all the I-can-only-afford-this-machine-if-I-win-the-lottery embroidery and quilting machines  doing crazy thread work like this Art-Noveau lady in metallic thread.

I really enjoyed it. Maybe going there and seeing all the wonderful things you can quilt was the final push I needed to start my quilting journey. What about you? Do you quilt? How did you start?

I craft all night and party everyday at these Craft Parties. Check them out and party with us!

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