Friday, November 27, 2009

Scentsy Candle Warmer Give-Away!

I am so excited about this post! I met Debi through my blog and found out she was a Scentsy Candle Warmer Distributor. I have always loved using warming candles to give my home that yummy, cozy aroma, but mine was very functional and not so cute.

Well, that has since changed, and I now love my new Scentsy warmer! Debi set me up with this darling plug-in warmer that matches my kitchen decor perfectly, along with 3 different holiday scents to try out: Welcome Home, a homey, spicy, delicious flavor; Holly Berry, an out-doorsy, masculine scent; and Winter Wonderland, a holiday-ish peppermint fragrance. While I like them all, I have to say that the Welcome Home is my favorite holiday scent!

Now the good news? Debi is offering a full-sized warmer of your choice (holiday warmers, too!), as well as a scented bar of your choice as a give-away here on my blog! This would be a perfect gift for yourself or someone on your Christmas list, and together is a $35.00 value!

Here is a little info about the Scentsy warmers in the words of Debi:

"Our warmers melt highly scented wax over a 25 watt light bulb. There is no flame, smoke or lead, so they are safe to leave on 24/7. The wax will never get hotter than a paraffin wax treatment so you won't burn yourself. Scentsy carries over 80 scents in several categories and a variety of warmers to match almost any decor.
Each Scentsy bar has 6 cubes and each cube will last anywhere from 6-10 hours depending on the strength of the scent. The bars cost $5 each and last up to 60 hours.

We also have smaller
plug-in warmers that use a 15 watt light bulb, as well as car candles, travel tins and room sprays. The car candle is an air freshener that hangs from your rear view mirror and can be 'refreshed' with a room spray.

I offer free light bulb replacement to my customers (not a Scentsy policy) and I also offer a frequent customer card: after 12 bar purchases, I give you one bar free.

Each month there is a
new scent of the month and a coordinating new warmer. I send a small sample of the scent along with the SOTM flyer so my customers can smell the scent each month.

Over the holidays, Scentsy has come out with
limited-time warmers (there is a link on my website)."

And...Debi has offered to send a car candle to anyone who emails her requesting a catalogue. She has been so generous. I love it.

So here is the give-away 411: (Are you so excited?)

1. To enter, first zip over to Debi's blog, peruse the full-size warmers and the bar fragrances, then come back and leave me a comment letting me know which warmer you would want to win, and which bar of scents you would prefer. Please be sure I have a way to contact you through your blog profile, or leave me your email address in your comment.

To increase your chances of winning for extra entries:

2. Become a follower on my side bar, and leave me another comment, or remind me in your comment that you are already a follower,

3. Grab my button and post it on your blog, leaving me another comment and a link to where I can find it,

4. Blog about this give-away, with yup, another comment and link to your blog,

5. Email Debi requesting a catalogue and let me know that in another comment.

6. Tweet or post info about this give-away on Twitter or Facebook, with a link to my blog, and let me know in a comment!

Wahoo! 6 chances at becoming a winner! You have until midnight on Tuesday, December 8, and I'll choose a winner through and announce it on December 9. Debi will ship this out to you ASAP, and you should definitely have your warmer in plenty of time before Christmas.

I can't wait to hear from you and to see which warmers and scents you are all pining for. Good luck! And a huge thank you to Debi for your generosity in sponsoring this great give-away!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Needle in a Haystack "Black Friday" Deals!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I'm starting "Black Friday" a little early with some great Needle in a Haystack deals today, and extending them until Tuesday, December 1!

Machine Embroidery Designs:

Buy 1, get 1 Free! Everything in my "store" at is 50% off through Tuesday, December 1!

Hand-embroidery Patterns:

With each purchase of "Needle in a Haystack" patterns made at or from now until December 1, you can receive this Joyeux Noel gift set pattern for free! Simply shoot me an email (found in my profile on the sidebar) verifying which pattern(s) you purchased and the date of purchase, and I'll send you your free e-pattern via email!

Tune in tomorrow as I have a give-away that will be perfect for your gift-giving needs...for someone else on your list, or maybe for you to keep!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving day today!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

FREE Embroidery Patterns and Gift Ideas

We received our first "real" snow of the season two nights ago in my little neck of the woods, and it has put us all in the mood for Christmas! With Christmas coming so quickly, I wanted to remind you of some fast and easy stitchery and gift projects one more time...and they are each FREE! Each embroidery design would work nicely for a dishtowel, a shelf pillow, as part of a stocking, an ornament, or a festive door hanger. And the additional projects would each make terrific gifts. Let your creativity and ingenuity run wild. Enjoy!

First is "Joy" and the Hanging Holiday Star seen above, available in both machine embroidery as well as hand-embroidery. Complete instructions are provided to make this festive hanging star out of recycled jeans! My kiddos also stitched this "Joy" design on dishtowels for their teachers last year for Christmas. If my 11 year old boy and 8 year old girl can do this, all of you can do this, I promise!

Next is the classic door hanger and the comforting "Home for the Holidays" sentiment. This design and complete instructions for making the hanger you see here are available here. Machine embroidery files are available here.

This "Believe" design is so simple, you'll be making loads.

At a recent sister's weekend, my sisters and I made these, and I also taught several Young Women in my neighborhood how to stitch on dishtowels using this pattern. We are using the dishtowels for an upcoming activity to line baskets of goodies for the widows and shut-ins in our area. I think it will be a lovely gift for them! This one's also available for hand and machine embroidery.

Many of you have already seen the "Ho, Ho, Ho" design that I published in July along with a back-stitching tutorial. Once you get the hang of the back-stitch, all the other stitches come easily! Again, a perfect and quick gift for the season.

For those of you with babies on your gift-giving list, how about a receiving blanket and burpie? Simple, special, and free.

How about a "Welcome Home" Table Runner published by You Can Quilt This for the home of a special friend? The embroidery patterns and directions are found here, and the machine embroidery files are all right here. I think that just one of these blocks turned into a pillow or wall-hanging would make a treasured gift.

If that particular runner seems too daunting, here is a simplified Sweetheart Table Runner that involves sewing only...and whips up quickly with festive or decorative fabric.

Hot pads are always a necessity...I'm planning to make several of these for gifts to give along with a loaf of yummy bread.

For the young gals in your life, this No-Sew Bag would be a hit! It's a great and inexpensive gift for tweens to make for their friends.

In addition to these ideas, did you know that there is a "Free" section found at SWAK Embroidery, You Can Make This, and You Can Quilt This, full of additional fun and simple gift ideas?

How about a head band for your little girl, a chef's hat for dress-up, and printable holiday gift tags? And don't forget a special "Santa" Pillowcase and holiday tradition idea created by my great friend Lorie!

Whew! So much to create, so little time! Be sure to check back soon, as I'll be featuring more Christmas Gift Ideas, AND, I have some BLACK FRIDAY deals and a give-away you won't want to miss!

Monday, November 16, 2009

A Few of My Favorite Things...

As promised earlier in the month, I wanted to share a few of my favorite things of the Thanksgiving season before it quickly vanishes ....

The little acorn.

Something so tiny and seemingly insignificant, has potential to become something grand and of great worth, providing shade, a thinking spot, and beauty for all to enjoy. All the little acorn needs is a warm spot, attention and care, plenty of time and patience, and someone to help it establish its roots. Aren't our little children, and all of us like that little acorn? Full of so much potential to become greater than we can ever imagine. I love thinking of that as I pass by this acorn pillow in my entry way. (It's free, by the way, for both machine and hand-embroidery--so you can have your own acorn inspiration).

Susan Branch.

She has some of THE cutest artwork on the planet, I think. Her book, Autumn From the Heart of the Home is simply delightful to peruse and dreamily read in hopes of making all the beautiful and delicious items inside. She offers harvest recipes, gift basket ideas, fall decorating ideas, and treat recipes, as well as some insight into her artwork. I love it. Her shelf scarf on the cover was the inspiration for the table scarf I made using this embroidery design. It's one of those books you pore over on a chilly day in front of the fire.

My little scarecrow friend.

This one has a story that goes back 14 years. Back in the day, my husband was a student, we were living in a one bedroom basement apartment, and I was teaching school full-time. My oldest son was just a year old, and my hubby was his primary care-taker during the day. They were difficult days in so many ways, yet in others, full of happy and warm memories.

We realized about August of that particular year that we needed extra money for Christmas, as we were barely able to pay for our monthly needs from my modest income. (Don't we all have stories of struggle in those first years of marriage?)

So, we got creative, and made these scarecrows that year to sell and earn a little extra income. We invested a little money in fabric and supplies, and used old worn jeans from the second hand store for the scarecrow pants. I taught my hubby how to use the sewing machine, and he would sew the straight lines for the shirt and pants while I was at school (he was so good-natured to go along with my crazy ideas!). At night after teaching, I'd paint the faces, and we'd assemble and hot glue the scarecrow parts together as we laughed and enjoyed being together. I remember my little toddler was so pleasant through the whole process, although our apartment was a ruin of scarecrow parts, straw, and fabric that had been carried from one end to the other!

It's one of those memories that will always stand out as one of my favorites, and that I will always cherish. We were poor, yet my hubby and I worked as a team, building scarecrows and another little level of our relationship. We accomplished more than we anticipated in the beginning. We sold every scarecrow we made, but I hung onto one little scarecrow guy, as I wanted to always remember that fun-filled "scarecrow and relationship-building" year.

And lastly, the concept of Abundance.

In those lean years that we experienced, and still now when times are tight and I get feeling gloomy, I have to stop and think of all I've been blessed with. My kids are healthy and happy (well, you know--for the most part, minus the teenage hormonal moments), we have a warm home, food on the table, a job, vehicles, and most importantly, each other. How truly abundant our lives are. May you each experience that same feeling this Thanksgiving Season.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Pink Ribbon Encouragement

Breast cancer affects us all at some level. Everyone seems to have at least one neighbor, co-worker, friend, mother, sister, daughter, or grandmother who has had to battle cancer and its effects. Some have fared well through the chemo and mastectomies, while others have fought valiantly, only to eventually surrender to the disease.

Cancer has reared its ugly head in my own family; my father dying of colon cancer, my mother of breast cancer, and my oldest sister facing a brain tumor twice now. Thankfully, my sister has been blessed both times, and is currently functioning and feeling well (more to come about that later in another post!). Cancer has forced our family to sit up and pay attention.

So, even though Breast Cancer Awareness Month has passed, I wanted to share with you a new design for machine embroidery that was just released yesterday morning, because as we all know, the fight against cancer still lives on. With so many women facing the battle, I wanted to create something of hope and encouragement for those who have had, or are coping with this disease.

My sweet friend, Belinda has done it again. She is amazing. She has taken these embroidery designs and turned them into beautiful pillows. Even the fabric she used coordinates. I absolutely love what she has done! (Isn't that rick-rack the cutest?)

There are two different styles of the pink ribbon machine embroidery one the pink ribbon is "filled", and the other is an "appliqué" to use with the fabric of your choice.

Belinda's green pillow is sewn with wool felt, and the pink ribbon is wool felt as well. Both designs are available at SWAK Embroidery for just $5 each. For those of you who hand-stitch, an e-pattern will be available soon, so stay tuned.

(Remember as well, that for every $20 you spend in my store at SWAK until November 15, you receive three Christmas designs absolutely free!)

So, ladies, back to the subject at sure to take care of yourselves and get those lovely exams regularly. Then strengthen those who are struggling with this malady. We all need each other!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Welcome November! New Machine Embroidery Files and Promotion...

Welcome, November! Do you just love this month? I've decided that it is one of my favorites, and I believe Thanksgiving is officially my favorite holiday to celebrate. No gifts to think about; no major school parties to plan or costumes to create; no bunny, leprechaun, or elf that is planning to visit and bring stuff to my kids...just a beautiful, simple day to enjoy thinking about all of our blessings, with an opportunity to share a nice meal, play games, and watch football with family (that's a given with the men in my house!). I love it! Don't get me wrong---I love to give and receive gifts, and enjoy the fun all those other holidays have to offer. I'm just pretty keen on the concept of a simple day of giving thanks. It makes me happy. (This photo is courtesy of my niece, Cath's front yard. I think it is stunning!)

And guess what? My friend Dana emailed me Sunday night and told me all of her Halloween decorations were replaced with Thanksgiving decor. (Already!) So, that gave me inspiration to do the same. Why do I need to wait all month again? I don't have that much, but in a matter of 30 minutes, we were also Halloween-less and enjoying the simple amount of Thanksgiving decor we have. Yep, happy again. A few of my favorites to follow in another post! No, really this time.

On to other news: For those of you who machine embroider, I want to show you my latest files available at SWAK Embroidery! My sweet friends, Belinda and Lisa have been busy testing the files, and look at what they've made!

First up is "Miracle" which Belinda embroidered and turned into this darling pillow. This design has a unique story behind it, that I'll be sharing when the design becomes available for hand-embroidery, which is soon. Stay tuned!

And Lisa created this beautiful fall hand bag with the "Harvest Delight" design. I just love it as well! This design will also be available for hand-embroidery soon.

Belinda also created this lovely pillow using the "Harvest Delight" design:

In addition, I have a promotion going on over at SWAK Embroidery that I'd love for you to check out! When you spend $20 in my *store* from now until November 15, you receive the following three files for free---just in time to gear up for the holidays!

"Rejoice"-- available in two sizes:

Along with "Country Christmas" and "Joyeux Noel", both seen at the links. Remember you get all three for FREE with a $20 purchase until November 15!

One last item for you machine embroiderists...I am still looking for a few more testers who would be interested in receiving my free machine embroidery files in exchange for testing the files, providing feedback, and providing a few photos. If any of you are interested, please leave me a comment or email me directly. I'd love to work with you! Thanks so much!

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