Twisty Stitches Featured Vendor

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LeAnn Benton of Twisty Stitches is a new vendor at The Dallas Farmer’s Market in Dallas, GA this year.

Leann sells handmade soap and candles in a variety of scents. In addition, unscented varieties are available for more delicate skin types. Also there are some wonderful goat milk soap coming soon. Expect more varieties in the weeks to come.

Additionally Leann has sewn items for sale including : baby quilts, wall hangings, Tablet shoulder bags for your electronic tablets and readers, table toppers, quilted potholders and hand sewn teddy bears. Finally there are cowboy and cowgirl cookie mix in a jar, and tile coasters.

There is surely something for everyone at Twisty Stitches so stop by The Dallas Farmer’s Market in Dallas, GA and pick up something for yourself or as gift for that special someone.

Twisty Stitches at The Dallas GA Farmer's Market Twisty Stitches at The Dallas GA Farmer's Market Twisty Stitches at The Dallas GA Farmer's Market Twisty Stitches at The Dallas GA Farmer's Market Twisty Stitches at The Dallas GA Farmer's Market Twisty Stitches at The Dallas GA Farmer's Market

Anyone seen Bob the Builder, Handy Manny, or Fix It Felix Jr?

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If you have seen any of the aforementioned handymen, please be sure to send them my way.

I talked about my to do list a few weeks ago and how there never seems to be enough time to do all that I need to.  In fact I have discovered as a business owner that as soon as I check one item off of my to-do list I add two more. Which leads me to the title of this article, I need a Bob, Manny, or Felix pronto.

My first day at the Dallas Farmers Market went well. I was pleased with my product display overall but now looking back I found myself coming up with ideas to make things better. This led me to think about my office and I came up with some things I can tweak on my office/workroom/sewing room. Things I need.

1. Ribbon Holder

2. Soap staircase

3. Soap mold

Project 1: Ribbon Holder

I have wanted a ribbon holder for some time. I have used ribbon to tie around my candles. I have used 2 colors of ribbon around my tiles. And I continue to use ribbons in my crafts. I wanted something that keeps all of the ribbon in one place. It also needs to be ready for me to pull off a length of ribbon, cut, and use. I have seen a number of ideas to do just that but they are not a good fit for me. I have seen mason jars filled with colorful spools of ribbon in a variety of colors and designs. (It was pretty but not practical for the easy access). I have seen spools on a paper towel type roll but the middle dowel is too large and most of the ones I saw were mounted on a wall or under cabinets. That wouldn’t work for me as I want to be able to move from room to room.

Finally I found just what I needed at JoAnn‘s. It was a wooden box with an open top and it had a dowel down the middle for the ribbon spools. It was nice but a teeny expensive. I figured it wouldn’t be too complex to make at home and save a few dollars.

Project 2: Soap Staircase

I have been looking at a lot of soap displays and there are so many choices. My husband I have just decided on our label and our wrapping and I wanted a display that would make the total package look good. I think that the staircase display would be the best fit for my needs. So now I need my handyman to figure out the dimensions I need to display my soap.

Project #3 Soap Molds

The last thing I need to make my business run smoother is a couple more soap molds for my cold-pressed soap. I have a rectangular one pretty standard size that is a little over 3 ½ pound mold. I have a square mold that is an 8 pound mold. I am pleased with both but wouldn’t mind a few more option in case I decide to double a recipe or two.

All in the projects aren’t too complex and wouldn’t be a challenge for any handyman to complete. Luckily for me I have a wonderful husband who says he would love to help me with my projects. Here’s a big “Thank You” to Christopher my fantastic husband for helping me make projects to make my life easier.

I Was Nominated for the Liebster Award!

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A fellow blogger, Lauren @ Rustic Honey, has nominated my blog for the Liebster Award!  Thank you Lauren for the nomination.

The “Liebster Award is given to new bloggers (those with under 200 followers) by another blogger who deems the aforementioned bloggers to be up-and-comers and “ones to watch.”

The rules for the Liebster Award are as follows:

  1. List 11 Random Facts about myself
  2. Answer 11 questions that Lauren wrote for me
  3. Pass the torch by nominating 11 bloggers
  4. Create 11 questions for my nominees
  5. Display the Liebster Award logo

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11 Random Facts About Me:

  1. I am always cold
  2. I am not graceful
  3. I love animals and children
  4. I love to watch DIY shows and British television
  5. I love to sew and quilt
  6. I am a foodie.
  7. I would love to have a backyard mini farm in the burbs.
  8. I love to go barefoot in the grass.
  9. I love to grow things despite not having a green thumb.
  10. I enjoy spending time with my husband, he always make me laugh.
  11. I love to spend time with my stepchildren, they are fun to be around.

Here are my answers to Lauren’s questions:

1)       What would you do if you won the lottery?

  1. I would go the boring route at first. Pay off my bills. The house, car notes, all of the debt in my life. Then go on a trip. To a beach somewhere. Put my toes in the sand and lay in a hammock. After that who knows. Depends on how wealthy I am. Would love to have my own business. Travel a little. Make the lives of my loved ones a bit easier.

2)      If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life what would it be?

  1. Steak.  I have low iron and I crave red meat a lot.  It makes me happy.

3)      What is your favorite meal of the day?

  1. Dinner. I have more time and more variety. Breakfast is fast and early. You can’t do a heavy lunch or you will get sleepy. Dinner can be early or late and there is an endless variety answers to the question: What’s for Dinner.

4)      If you could live anywhere in the world where would you go?

  1. Savannah, Georgia. My husband and I visited Savannah shortly after we were married for a weekend getaway around his birthday and it was fantastic. I fell in love with the city and I decided that we were going to move there when we retire.

5)      What was the last DIY project or craft you did?

  1. My last project I did was making a batch of “Clean Cotton” soap. It makes me think of clothes hanging out on the clothesline on a summer day. I love soapmaking it relaxes me after a long day.

6)      What is your favorite holiday and why?

  1. Would have to be Christmas,  because I love shopping and buying gifts for people that I love.

7)      Coke or Pepsi? Apple or Mac? Pen or Pencil?

  1. Coke,      Apple I pad  but Mac PC,      Pen

8)      What is your favorite blogging memory thus far?

  1. The first time I had to write a blog. I felt that people could relate to what I wrote about. As a woman and a sewer I love purses and I thought that other people might enjoy reading what I had to say.

9)      Are you an early riser or a night owl?

  1. Early riser- I like to get things done and then have the rest of the day to sew and create.

10)   What was the last recipe you tried… or pinned?

  1. The last recipe I tried was Chicken Spaghetti. (I kinda made it up as I went along)

Boil 3 chicken breasts with a packet of lipton onion soup mix and cut into strips when done.

Use water to boil the spaghetti. Add chicken, spaghetti, tomato sauce (we used homemade) in a big bowl and mix well. Pour into greased casserole dish. Cover with your favorite cheese. We used about a cup or so of parmesan and mozzarella. Baked about 20 min till cheese was melted and dish was bubbly.

And last pinned on Pinterest was “Mozzarella & Tomato Basil Caprese Flatbread”

11)    What is the best gift you have ever received and what was the worst?

  1. Best: Diamond earrings that reminded me of my wedding ring.
  2. Worst: Men’s tube socks.

 Here are my 11 nominees for the Liebster Award:

2 Craft and 2 Create

Curtain Queen Creates

Quilt Obsession

Janet Granger’s Blog

The Home Vegetable Gardener

Potts Crafty

And Sew It Began

Dr. It Girl

A Project At A Time

Sewing Room Secrets

Star Shine Blog

And here are my questions for you:

  1. Who is your favorite author and why?
  2. If you were a superhero (or heroine), what super powers would you want to have?
  3. If you could live anywhere in the world and money was no object, where would you live?
  4. How many pets do you have?  If you don’t have any pets, do you want a pet?
  5. Why do blog?  What is your inspiration for your blog?
  6. Which project are you most proud of?
  7. Which project are you least proud of and if you could fix it, what would you do?
  8. Which holiday is your favorite?
  9. What is one of your proudest moments from your childhood?
  10. If you could be 18 again, would you and why?
  11. What is your favorite recipe to make for friends or family?

Sometimes Mondays are The Ones That We Dread

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Sometimes Mondays are the ones that we dread. You know, the ones where we get up late. You spill coffee on your favorite blouse (if you even get coffee). You forget a report, a document, or a paper you need to turn in for work, school, or… I could go on and on. We have all had those days and we know what they ate like. You can fill in your own example of your less than stellar Monday. Mine is currently underway, so I take a deep breath and think back to my Saturday.

Saturday was fantastic. On Saturday I had a great day. Around noon I went to an appliqué class at my local quilt shop (Stitch ‘N Quilt). If you remember I wanted to take an appliqué class because there were a couple of quilts that I wanted to make which had beautiful appliqué borders. Also during my Greater Atlanta Quilt Shop Hop, at one of the shops they had appliqué’s their name on a pennant hung inside.
So when I saw that a class was offered, I signed up.

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The first thing we did after arriving at the class was to set up our machine. Next we received a handout from our instructor which we went over. We talked about the different kinds of appliqué. Some are raw edge, needle turn, and invisible. We were doing raw edge in our class.

Next we went over some of the fusible products to choose from. Some are wonder under, steam a seam, and heat n’ bond. I purchased steam a seam to use. Our instructor cautioned us to not crease the fusible, and to keep it away from humidity, both of which can cause the glue to separate.

Next she explained that when we trace a design in the paper side of he fusible, the image is reversed when it is placed on the background fabric. This is important to remember when dealing with letters, and when items on your design need to face in a certain direction. Some designers give you the pattern with the image already reversed so check closely. Trace each part of your image separately on the paper side of the fusible.

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You should leave a little distance between the traced image and the drawn design. If you leave an allowance it will make ting the image from the appliqué fabric much easier. Once your image is fused, then trim exactly to the pencil line.

The handout and the instructor went on to discuss needle and thread, stabilizers, and specialty feet. (* Get an open toe foot.) I didn’t have time to order one before my class and I really wish I had.  After going over the information from the handout she had us do some practice stitches.

If you remember from a previous post I was having issues with my machine. As of late it wasn’t changing stitches and it seemed to have a short of some kind. Well the short issue hasn’t shown up again lately, and my instructor flipped a dial on my machine that regulated the stitch length (she moved it from zero). It was my duh moment! I hadn’t realized that’s what the setting had been on. So that was taken care of. For me the class paid for itself right there.

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We started off doing test stitches. This allowed us to see what our stitches looked like. We change the stitch for example Zig zag. We adjusted the length, length, and tension to one. We made several stitches then we went to two and sewed some stitches and then on to three, etc. After we were done we chose the settings we liked best for our appliqué project. I chose the zig zag stitch, my width was 3 and my length was 3. I think my tension was 2.   After that we were set loose ton practice “for real “.

I sketched out a quick S. reversed it and transferred it to my fusible paper. Trimmed it a bit leaving a 1/4 inch to the edge, and transferred it to my blue batik cloth. Then trim the image out to he pencil line. Next peel off the paper and attach it to the background cloth you are using. Press it with an iron and then voila you are done! It was really quite easy.

photo (3)Now I only have the time issues to deal with so I can create my TWISTY STITCHES banner.

Twisty Stitches @ The Dallas GA Farmer’s Market

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Twisty Stitches will be at the Dallas Georgia Farmer’s Market on May 4, 2013 from 8am to 1pm.  If you are in Georgia please swing by and check us out.  We will have homemade soaps and candles as well as our Art Deco Tile Coasters and quilts/blankets.  We accept cash and all major credit cards.  Hope to see you at the Dallas Georgia Farmer’s Market next weekend.

Making Soap is Fun

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I made some cold-pressed soap last night.  It won’t be ready to sell at the Dallas GA Farmer’s Market on my first day of the selling season but I will have enough melt-and-pour soap and candles for opening day.  I hope this first batch of cold-pressed soap using a new recipe comes out okay.  I should be able to unmold it tonight and cut it as long as it has firmed up. My husband built for me a new soaping table so I could have plenty of room to spread out for my soaping activities.  There are also some pictures of the soap process from last night also.

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This is me waiting for the lye mixture to cool down below 150 degrees F

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This is the lye and water mixture cooking.

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Coconut oil, olive oil and castor oil mix before the lye was added.

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Disclaimer:

If you are new to soap making  please do not attempt this process when children or pets are about as lye is highly caustic. When lye is mixed with water it heats up. If it comes into contact with your skin or eyes, rinse immediately with cool water. If you spill it on any surface, wash it immediately or it will corrode. Keep a jug of vinegar nearby to help neutralize any spills. When mixing the lye and water together, keep your face away from the container and ensure you are working in a well-ventilated area. Use safety equipment such as latex gloves, safety glasses, an apron and a mask when handling lye at least until you are experienced at which point you can make an informed decision for yourself. Once the lye solution and oils have been mixed together and saponified, the solution is neutralized and no longer caustic.”

These are the molds that I used.  We only used the wooden mold (the long one) but I am always prepared in case I make too much soap for the mold.  I’ll post some pics once I unmold it and cut the soap.

I always ask that if you enjoyed this post to please click the Like button as well as share it on Twitter or Facebook or whatever social media site you enjoy using.  You are welcome to re-blog this post as long as the following information is included in the post and is not altered.  *This blog post can be read at https://twistystitches.wordpress.com or http: //twistystitches.biz*

Another Week, Another Quilt, Another Giveaway Winner

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Congrats to Brita who was the winner of the contest. Check out the post and all of the beautiful quilts from See How We Sew.
Also, don’t forget to check out my blog here on WordPress.com as well as my official blog at http://twistystitches.biz. You can find an online store there with all of the items that I create myself. I would appreciate a visit and a Follow or Like so I know people are enjoying what I’m doing.
Take care,
LeAnn from Twisty Stitches

See How We Sew

Another week, another quilt. Yeah, I’m slowing down and looking for a break from the quilt-making frenzy after this. I’ve got a deadline though, a serious deadline to finish this next quilt. My sister-in-law Laurence is coming from France for her daughter’s bridal shower here in the U.S. and I’m making her a quilt for a milestone birthday she celebrated recently. I was going to take it to Europe for the wedding, but as she’s heading my way . .  . might as well use her arrival as my finishing goal.  I’ll probably have to stitch on the faced binding as we drive to the shower.

Book-J:  Jelly Roll Quilts by Pam and Nicky Lintott

I picked up Jelly Roll Quilts by the Lintotts, an English mother/daughter duo,  at Back Porch Fabric last fall. Gail Abeloe, the shop owner, had a colorful sample quilt from the book in the shop when I visited. Gotta admit, I’m a sucker for quilts…

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