Oct 302012

Congratulations to the two winners of the book giveaway I announced last week. After I posted details about the giveaway, I was contacted by a representative of the publisher, FW Media, who offered to kick in a second copy. Pretty cool, huh?! The two winners of Lisa Lam’s book, A bag for all reasons, are Spenser Hardin (Comment #9) and Margaret Freije (Comment #13). Congratulations, ladies!

Spenser is co-owner of an English cottage-style tea room in southern Iowa called Miss Spenser’s Special-Teas. She and her mother host monthly themed tea events that run the gamut from Alice in Wonderland to swash-buckling pirates. Spenser designs her own outfits and writes her own scripts. She and her mother, Donna, also own and operate Longview Farms Bed and Breakfast, a charming country farmhouse getaway in the middle of Iowa’s southern prairies and rolling hills. Concerning Lisa Lam’s book, Spenser writes, “What a fun looking book!! I love really all kinds of bags . . . but my favorites are probably cute tote bags—to carry books and other things in.” You can follow Spenser at Miss Spenser’s Blog.

Garden View Suite at Longview Bed and Breakfast

Spenser plays the part of a nursemaid who tells a Victorian ghost story.

Margaret is the owner of Splendid Little Stars, an Etsy shop which features hand-dyed clothing and accessories. Inspired by her daughter’s first grade teacher, Margaret began studying the process of dyeing. Today she has about 20 years of experience in hand-dyeing and painting clothing that is truly one-of-a-kind. “Learning something new while creating is a constant process,” she says. “Discovery is a joy (mostly)!” She is inspired by nature, and loves working with her hands. “A generous giveaway,” Margaret writes about A bag for all reasons. “I most often carry a wristlet or a small tote bag if I want to bring my camera, in addition to other items.” You can follow Margaret on her blog, Splendid Little Stars (whose title matches her shop name).

Margaret has a table beneath a window where she does all of her dyeing.

Under the Sea silk scarf, designed by Splendid Little Stars, reminds me of a painting by French impressionist painter Claude Monet.

Congratulations to both of these creative ladies! I hope they’ll share with us what they create from Lisa Lam’s book, A bag for all reasons. Thanks also to FW Media for supplying the books for this giveaway.

© 2012 Judy Nolan. All rights reserved.

Oct 242012

In early September I was reading Nancy Zieman’s sewing blog, and commented on one of her posts, String Quilts—What’s Old is New Again! In that post, Nancy introduces sewing sisters Virginia Baker and Barbara Sanders, promoting their book titled String Quilt Revival. Because string quilting makes heavy use of fabric scraps, Nancy asked her readers to confess how many boxes of scraps they have, and promised a random giveaway—a copy of String Quilt Revival—to the winner.

“This could be incriminating to answer!” I wrote. “Let’s just say that there are boxes and baskets of scraps, and nobody really wants to count them. (I sure don’t!).”

The next thing I knew, I received an e-mail from one of her representatives, telling me I had won the random drawing . I am looking forward to talking more about this book in a future post, when I can share a project that uses string quilting.

The publishing warehouse charged with sending me the book, however, accidentally mailed me Lisa Lam’s A bag for all reasons, a great book that already sits on my bookshelf. I called the customer service number on the company’s Web site, and they apologized for the error, told me to keep the book, and sent me the title promised. Well, that error will now be a giveaway for someone else.

If you are a sewist and like to sew bags (or have aspirations to sew bags), then you have to visit Lisa’s blog, http://u-handbag.typepad.com, which is chock-full of bag sewing tips. The book, of course, includes many of her best tips, discusses basic bag sewing sewing tools that are a must, and includes projects that will set you on the path toward designing your own bags. Imagine learning how to make all of these bags:

  • iPad case
  • groceries tote
  • pouch
  • backpack
  • school satchel
  • purse-frame purse
  • laundry bag
  • baby bag
  • bicycle bag
  • convertible backpack
  • tri-fold wallet
  • vanity case

To enter a random drawing for this book, just comment below. Let me know what style of everyday bag is your favorite. For example, do you like a clutch purse, a shoulder bag, a tote bag, a backback-style purse, a slouchy bag? You’re not limited to these choices; I am simply interested to hear what your favorite type of bag might be. The winner of Lisa Lam’s A bag for all reasons will be announced on October 30, 2012. Make sure you include your email address in the comment form; it will not be published, but I do need a way to get in touch with you if you’re the winner.

For those of you who do not win Lisa’s book, visit her blog or check out Nancy Zieman’s post, Top 10 Creative Designer Bag Sewing Tips. You’ll be glad you did!

© 2012 Judy Nolan. All rights reserved.