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Location: 1633 Birchwood Ave., Bellingham, WA, United States
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Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas 2009....

This is a picture of our family's Christmas celebration this year - and yes, you're so right...it's a blank picture frame!! We haven't been able to do a big family celebration yet. It was supposed to be today, but my husband has a terrible cold and we didn't want the rest of the family to be exposed to it. So...the next planned time is New Year's Day. I'll try and get a picture and fill in the frame when it does happen! Well, at least maybe I can take advantage of some of the After-Christmas sales?

Speaking of After-Christmas sales, we're having one at the shop. All of the Christmas "stuff" is 50% off right now. It was originally supposed to run through the end of the year, but we're running it until the end of next week - January 3rd - due to the weather. And even though I usually close early on New Year's Eve, we'll stay open regular hours of 10-6 and close on New Year's Day.

When I was getting ready for the Christmas fabric to be on sale, I got really involved in the quiet of the shop and moved a bunch of stuff around. I also added to the "Clearance" section and made some "Back for the Future" 5 yard bundles. They're $19.95 for the 5 yards, which could back a quilt in your future!

Okay, if we're having Christmas on New Year's, I better get a move on! Laundry, Post Office (BOM mailing), more stocking stuffers and...... Have a great Sunday all!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow....

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow....enough already, as I told the Fabettes in an e-mail today! Actually, it doesn't bother me that much. Which of course, is easy to say for somebody who carpools with their husband - door to door service in a 4 wheel drive vehicle! And we aren't doing the first big Christmas celebration until Sunday the 28th, with another one in January sometime (we have to share our new baby Cody and his parents with the other grandparents in Spokane this Christmas.) I know many of you have stricter time constraints!

I noticed that it seems quite a few of you have been looking at the blog the last couple of days - weather related I would imagine. So, I thought I should put up something new for you to look at. I kept mentioning the chickens I was "playing" with this week. Well, here they are! It's from a book called "Quilts for All Seasons and Some for No Reason!" I guess the chickens would be "for no reason". Of course, if you can tell from this picture, I saw it as yet another opportunity to use our black and whites! I have most of their body parts cut and ready to fuse, but I still need a few feathers for that top left fowl. I'm building the outer checkerboard border at home, while they stay safe on the design wall at the shop.

This has been a nervous weekend for us. Our oldest son left Los Angeles Friday with most of his earthly possessions to move back to the Seattle area. We've been "talking him in" by cell phone! As of a few minutes ago, he was just south of Olympia. The chains had broken and we managed to find a Sears in Lacey with chains, so he's stopping to get some. Roads are pretty clear, but he'll probably need them when he gets off the freeway to get to his final destination. At which point his mother will heave a very large sigh of relief!!

Hope your Sunday has been wonderful - that you are warm, safe and enjoying the company of family, friends, or your sewing machine! More later - Carol

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

On the 12th Day of Christmas.....

On the 12th day of the Fabric-Etc 12 Days of Quick and Easy Gift Ideas, we thought we should give you an idea of how to wrap up these quick and easy projects! This is our "green" wrap - it's really an Asian concept loosely designed after the Japanese "Furoshiki" - in fact, Japan is encouraging their citizens to revive this method of carrying goods to reduce waste. A Furoshiki, as I understand it, is usually a silk scarf-type design that can be used as a wrapping, or as a carrier, much like our grocery totes. I have discovered that there are many ways to tie these for different "cargo"....one site showed carrying a bowling ball, with a disclaimer that they can be heavy and be careful of your toes! We have used some fun fabrics, including one of our silks, as ideas for you to use as wraps. I took the picture with a few of the ribbons we carry, plus an elastic cord in gold and silver, that you might find helpful during this season. I'm still working on the free handout, but hope it will be ready when you are!

Okay....it snowed today! I was right, it was a bit quiet this afternoon, after a busy morning. And I am so glad that I told Jan to stay in her comfy clothes, in her comfy house today! I spent most of the day getting the Block of the Month kits ready. Tomorrow might be a bit quiet as well, so I'll try and get some cleaning done, and play with my chickens too. (I already told Harriet that she shouldn't attempt her steep driveway in the morning.) Hopefully all of you can stay warm and safe tomorrow....you know where I'll be, in case you need anything!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

On the 11th Day of Christmas.....

On the next to the last day of the Fabric-Etc 12 Days of Christmas Quick and Easy Gift Ideas, we bring you another very popular gift. It's a potholder made from the "Easy Foldy" pattern. The designer is a local gal from Sedro Woolley. She even taught some of our kids sewing classes a couple of years ago! This potholder really is quick, and it can help you use up some of those pesky scraps, or you could make it to match an apron, table runner, or a kitchen theme. We do carry the "insides" as well - Insulbrite - plus, you know we have some great "fruits and veggies" to choose from in the way of fabrics. Stop by and see one in person!

Today was another great day in the land of fabric. Jan came in and she worked on that 60 degree runner out of the Just Desserts line. I took it home to work on the binding. Izzie came in as well, and helped us with Fat Tuesday preparations and some block of the month stuff. I played a bit with the 12th day of Christmas project and my newest chickens, cherries and checkerboards up on the design wall - why do I always seem to overthink these projects?

Tomorrow? Well, will it snow? If so, it could be a pretty quiet day at Fab-Etc. I already told Jan that she wasn't driving in to Bellingham in the snow! So, if so, I will be working on cleaning, block of the month, chickens, and Christmas gifts! Tonight? Some bookwork, binding and bed! Have a great evening.

Monday, December 15, 2008

On the 10th Day of Christmas.....

On the 10th day of our Quick and Easy Gift Ideas, we bring you a fun "green" gift - yes, I did notice it was Minnie Mouse red and white polka dots! This is our oilcloth lunchbag. We have about 8-9 different oilcloths @ $8.49/yard to choose from, or we have some kits @ $3.49 each. And of course, we have a free handout on making these great lunchbags. (You wouldn't have to make them from the oilcloth, regular fabric would work too.) So, why not give someone on your list a fun way to not brown bag it?

Well, in case you hadn't noticed, it's windy and cold outside! And some of the roads aren't a bit fun. That said, it was kind of a quiet day at Fab-Etc today. I told Jan not to drive in from the north county - they had experienced off and on power outages. And Diane couldn't get down her driveway, even if I hadn't said don't come! Was I like the Maytag repairman? Not really. There were quite a few folks who needed something for that project to work on today. And tomorrow could be busier, with the threat of 3"-6" more snow on Wednesday! Speaking of which, Tracey came by after work today and said she has 8" right now at her house! (And she looked so cute in Matt's Santa hat.)

Okay, got "stuff" to do. John's got a plumbing project, so I'm staying out of the way. Hope you are staying warm and safe tonight. More tomorrow!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

On the 9th Day of Christmas.....

Oops....I got so fascinated by the wind and snow last night, that all of a sudden, as I was tucked in my bed while visions of sugarplums ....wait a minute, wrong story! We have a police/fire scanner and my husband and I were listening to the messes on the roadways with 13 cars here and 25 cars there (none of which seemed to be serious, thank goodness). And I really did forget all about the Fabric-Etc 12 Days of Christmas Quick and Easy Gift Ideas! I had taken a picture before I left Saturday of this great holiday pillowcase that Harriet put together. It's in fun colors that young people might like, with holiday lights on the main part of the case. Anyway...this project continues to be a popular one with everyone, and really is "Quick and Easy". Many times people come in and ask for a good beginning project for a youngster learning to sew. We always suggest this as one - it's straight seam sewing and is easy to finish, so you get that sense of accomplishment. So, the Novelty Pillowcase is our 9th Day of Christmas project - we have a free handout or lots of kits to choose from!

Saturday, Velina taught the Amy Butler "Birdie Sling" project. The bags were gorgeous, as always! I actually found the top of the filing cabinet - "file paperwork" has been on my To Do list for about a month now. I'd get a little ways on the pile, and then add more to it. But as of Saturday, it's done - hooray! Harriet played around a bit with a couple of other Quick and Easy Ideas that have been rattling around here. Between the two of us, I think we might have nailed them. With only 3 Days of Christmas, it's a good thing!

Joanie came in and got some things to work on this snowy, windy cold weekend. Except, she wanted Insulbrite, and I left it sitting by the counter. Lucky for me, she hadn't left the parking lot. Only one problem - her puppy dogs were in her truck and were just getting warmed up when this fabric store lady came and made her roll the window down! So, I found out what she needed and did "curbside service". The dogs were very grateful!

Jan stopped in after her daughter's graduation at Western - congratulations, Jessie! She's working on some Christmas gifts and needed just a few more things to finish. All in all, it was a wonderful Saturday at Fab-Etc, but then, how could it not be when we're surrounded by all that fabric and customers' creative ideas?

I'm off to read the Sunday paper, wash clothes, update the Fab-Etc mailing list, fix pork chops, and most importantly, play with some fabric I brought home. That's the kind of work I like to "bring home from the office". Have a great day, and most importantly, stay warm and safe!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

On the 8th Day of Christmas.....

8th day of our Fabric-Etc's 12 Days of Christmas Quick and Easy Gift Ideas! As you know, I took the day off on Monday, leaving the store in the capable hands of Harriet and Linda. They always like to have a "To Do" list, so I accommodated them. One of the things on the list was to make some new toweling samples....look what they came up with in just an afternoon! These are our 8th day gift ideas for you. They added one of our great coffee prints to the border of some Huck toweling and threw in some ric rac for good measure. Then they simply cut off a section of our pre-printed toweling from Moda and hemmed it. And the last one, they added a coordinating fabric strip to another pre-printed towel. Be sure to take a look when you come by....all of the fabrics used here are still available as of today, plus we have other toweling, as well!

What else is going on around Fab-Etc? Well, Emily finished her last final at WCC today...boy, was she happy! And she said she'd been reading the blog, and couldn't wait to see all the new stuff we had at the shop. She was a huge help straightening fabric today and packaging new pillowcase kits. Harriet had fun yesterday cutting new ones for you! Then, we got the class area ready for 4-H and played with a new pattern from the new American Jane book - it has chickens, and is a new way for us to use black and whites - yippee!

Tomorrow, Harriet and I will work on another Quick and Easy, and be ready to help all of you with your fabric needs. I'll be trying to find the top of my desk and go through the mountain of stuff that needs to be filed! The next week or so sounds like it will be a good time to turn up the heat and hunker down with some good sewing projects....brrrrrr. Have a great Friday night all!!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

On the 7th Day of Christmas.....

On the 7th day of that Fab-Etc Quick and Easy thing (thought you might be tired of the whole Fabric-Etc 12 Days of Christmas Quick and Easy Gift Ideas!), we are reviving one of our customer favorites - the One Hour Tablerunner. And it's true, you really can make it in just one hour....of course, it could take you another hour of fun picking out just the right fabrics! We made this one for a holiday table - check out the very cute cats by clicking on the picture and it will get big enough for you to see! As with most of our Quick and Easy projects, this is a free handout at the shop.

What else happened today? We got lobsters and crabs on fabric! And there was a tea fabric, and a cute couple of baby-type prints...thinking quick baby blanket model in my spare time! Otherwise, the exciting news is that (drum roll please) I finished two projects so far this week! One of them is this dishtowel with embroidery and a cute red polka dot border! Haven't done embroidery much at all in my 60 years, so this was a fun thing. Also finished that runner I put up a couple of weeks ago from the Loose Change book - hooray!

Well, tomorrow should be a great day. Emily will be coming to work! She hasn't worked yet this month due to her college finals. She says she can't wait to see what all is new. I know some of you will be shopping for supplies, just in case the power goes out or we get lots of snow. Just remember when you are shopping the 3 F's of any storm - Food + Fabric = Fun! Those are the basic necessities of life - right? We'll be here, just in case you need the fabric part of your supplies!!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

On the 6th Day of Christmas.....

Here's a picture of what we have for you on the 6th day of the "Fabric-Etc's 12 Days of Christmas Quick and Easy Gift Ideas" (I've been practicing saying that out loud all day today!) It's this darling little scissor holder. Don't tell anybody, but Jan's been making some a little like this for a few of her sewing buddies. So, today she and I decided to try making some while the Gucci Bag class was going on in the back. I had "shocked and awed" that wool felt yesterday, and we were going to do it out of that. But neither one of us remembered to bring matching embroidery floss - rats! What to do? Jan had this great idea to make one out of Kansas Troubles fabric, batting, and some perle cotton we had at the shop. It is great, isn't it? Tomorrow, I'm going to remember to bring the floss and try one out of our wool felt....hers looked great made in felt.

Today, we got four bolts of gorgeous flannel, and some aged muslin from Marcus Brothers Fabrics. After the class, Jan cut that 60 degree runner out of the fun dessert fabric we got yesterday. It's on the design wall, just waiting to be sewn together!

Tomorrow, Harriet and I will continue the fun...except, I still have to clean up from some of the mess I made making room for the class. If you're in the neighborhood, pop in and take a look at our growing group of Quick and Easy Ideas. I can hardly wait to have more fun with fabric...see you soon!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

On the 5th Day of Christmas.....

On the 5th day of Fabric-Etc's 12 Days of Christmas Quick and Easy Gift Ideas (why did I make such a long name for this, anyway?)....we feature our Chicken Pincushion, with a new twist! If I were that chicken, I wouldn't be too happy with the photographer - it's not the best likeness. Looks like she has her beak up in the air! Anyway, when you see her in person, she's pretty darn cute. So, back to the twist. We made these last year and stuffed them with poly fil and then some poly pellets to give them a bit of weight. But we found that they kind of "flew" around...not heavy enough. So, this year we unstuffed this fowl most of the way and filled her in with our crushed glass insides. Much better!!! You'll have to come and look - OK?

What else happened today? Well, Jan and I took down the boutique and moved the Nifty Notion Sale table, because tomorrow Mary Ann is teaching the Gucci Bag class and it's a full class! I know this is a busy time of the year, and there are lots of others who are interested, so she'll teach it again in January or February. Let us know, and we'll put your name on the "to be called" list we have at the store. And we got fabric! "Just Desserts" from Clothworks arrived. It's pretty darn cute. Jan has already gotten our 60 degree ruler out and has a very fun tablerunner to cut out tomorrow while the class is going on. Otherwise, we're working on Fat Tuesday for February and trying to clean up the messiness that I always seem to attract.

Enough for tonight.... I'm doing some "shock and awe" to some wool felt charm squares we also have a plan for tomorrow. Stay tuned!

Monday, December 8, 2008

On the 4th Day of Christmas.....

On the 4th Day of the Fabric-Etc 12 Days of Christmas Quick and Easy Gift Ideas, we are giving you the directions to make this great Roll-Up Pressing Pad! Here are a couple of pictures, so you can kind of get the idea - one with it unrolled and one rolled up. This would be great to take to a class and set next to your machine. It has a Teflon "inside" with lining of Insulbrite and cotton batting. With our directions, it really is a quick and easy gift for one of your sewing buddies, and maybe one for you? We are going to try a version with piping too! And yes, we do sell those great little Clover irons you see in the pictures.

I have had a good day off today. But why do we always think we can do more than we actually have the time to do? I had fish for lunch with my Mom...that was the most important thing of the day! I did get a few things done around the house and got some groceries for the empty cupboards! And of course, I caught up on the laundry.

Not sure what all happened at Fab-Etc today with Linda and Harriet holding down the fort, but I know them well enough to know that it will be tidy and there will be lots accomplished....I have THE BEST staff anyone could ask for!! I think more seam rippers and bobbin holders came today, in case you were waiting for them to arrive again.

Haven't decided what the 5th Day of Christmas will be, but you know it will not only be quick and easy, but good! Have a great evening and I'll talk to all of you tomorrow.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

On the 3rd Day of Christmas

As I said yesterday, on the third Day of Fabric-Etc's 12 Days of Christmas Quick and Easy Gift Ideas, we feature one of the all time most popular ideas we've ever had. It was so requested at Shop Hop last year, the printer on my laptop was going non-stop! Yup, you can see the picture....it's the Wine Coasters. These take five 5" squares of fabric and one of flannel to make. You can make them to match your friends' decor, hobby or "whatever". Some people make them all the same, some make them so you can tell who's glass is who's! (I had them sitting on my desk for a while earlier in the year, when I was having a lot of spine issues....they were sitting there next to my pill bottles....looked a bit suspicious!) Anyway, stop by and pick up the free handout any time.

Our adventure to Kenmore today was good. Got to see our son, Dave, his wife, Nikki and almost 2 month old Cody. We went to Lydia's (our daughter) to fix up the downstairs "unit" for Uncle Pete to move into later this month. So, we got to see everybody but Lukas and Benson today who were at their other grandparents' house. Lyd, Nikki, Cody and I had a quick shopping trip to the Alderwood Mall, which was fun. And then John and I headed home. All in all, a good day.

Tomorrow, I am taking the whole day off!! Harriet and Linda gave me a day off for Christmas last year, so since it was almost Christmas again, I thought I better use it or lose it! I'll be getting groceries, a haircut and doing some other "fun" stuff that I don't always have time for. It will be great! Hope your Sunday was wonderful. Stay tuned tomorrow for the fourth Day of Christmas!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

On the 2nd Day of Christmas.....

So, on the 2nd Day of of the Fabric-Etc's Quick and Easy Gift Ideas, we are giving you the pattern to make these very fun "Festive Tree Napkins". These are napkins that Harriet's Aunt Gwen makes. We're not going to give away the secret, so you'll have to stop by and see them in person and pick up your free pattern! Wouldn't they look great on your holiday table, or as a gift for someone? Our holiday fabric selection is getting more limited, but there's still plenty to choose from. Several of you came by today for the bib pattern and the fabric to make some little person look cute at the dinner table!

Our Fabric-Etc Staff and Family Gift Boutique still has a few items left in it. And today, Jan brought these darling new cupcake pincushions made form Mary Englebreit fabric. How cute! And if you have the time and are so inclined, we also have the fabric and the pattern.

Okay...just wanted to warn you that we are going to Kenmore tomorrow to work a bit on our daughter's place. Why am I telling you that? Because, it might be later in the evening than usual when I get up the 3rd Day of Christmas! I think you'll like that one too. It is a "back by popular request" Quick and Easy Gift Idea - probably the most popular of all time! Have a wonderful Sunday!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Fab-Etc 12 Days of Christmas....

Hey - remember our "Quick and Easy Gift Ideas"? Well, this year, we are having the "Fabric-Etc 12 Days of Christmas Quick and Easy Gift Ideas"! Watch the blog for the next 12 days and you'll see pictures of our ideas for things you can whip out in a few hours.

So, on the first day of Christmas, your true love fabric store (us!) gave you a quick and easy baby Christmas bib to make. (Imagine a cute little baby face framed in one of these.) That's right, we have a washable lightweight waterproof nylon you can use for the back (68" wide and $5.99/yard) and lots of fun fabrics for the front - doesn't have to be Christmas, we just thought it was a fun idea. We have the free pattern at the shop. If Mr. Cody was a little bigger, you can bet he'd have one of these this Christmas.

What else happened since the last time I wrote? Well, we got the Holly Taylor flannel group in and you have to come and pet it - it's by the north front door and is so incredibly soft! We also got a few other flannels in from Hoffman. The new Laurel Burch Secret Jungle group is here! There are a couple of new batiks (can you ever have enough of those?) The giant pandas arrived and a great print with buffalo as well. The Nifty Notion Sale is going great...Bendable Bright Light is very popular and we're trying to keep some of the other things in stock, but you guys keep coming in and buying them!

Enough for one night...if I'm going to keep writing each of the 12 days, I don't want to run out of stuff to say...could that happen when you're talking about fabric, sewing, etc? I think not! For the second day of Christmas, we have something very fun for you. Check back tomorrow! Have a great evening all!