Friday, October 30, 2009

Where did Fall Go?

I just had to share a couple photos with you of our early snow.  I grew up in Southern Cal and moved to Tucson so snow was a real adjustment for me here in Colorado!  This is already our 3rd snow this month. 


This was the view from our back deck of Pikes Peak on Monday.

I have been told that it always snows here on Halloween, and true to form we had an all out blizzard the first full day we lived here back in 2004.  It was also my first day at work and they threw me in a truck and said, “go for it”.  I saw my safe driving record flash before my eyes several times that first day, but I made it back in one piece.  I DO NOT miss driving in this weather, but I do think of all the other couriers out there and pray for their safety and health.


This picture of Pikes Peak was taken from just East of our home.  The snow yesterday really blew, but today it is nearly all melted!  They have a saying here:  if you don’t like the weather, just wait 5 minutes!  It’s so true!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Love Those Buttons!

There were several button distribution companies at Quilt Market.  I think I’ve dealt with nearly all of them except for Dill Button Company.  Dill is based in Germany, but has offices here in the States.  I have been a fan for a while and so I made sure to check out their booth.

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I posted photos of purses in my blog entitled Quilt Market (part 2) that were part of their display.  Here is a quilt made with those same yummy buttons, and a close up detail showing lots of big, bold, beautiful buttons!  Note the stacked buttons with the paisley shaped pink center as well as the flower button centers.


I had the chance to speak with several Dill company executives (mostly men) and it turns out that they (surprise!) collect buttons.  I was thrilled to be able to show them my books and they purchased several copies!  I was honored.

In addition, I have decided to order and carry Dill buttons in my store!  There are several sizes, shapes and a myriad of bright colors.  I’ll let you know when they arrive.  Any special requests?

Speaking of orders, this quilt was also hanging in the Dill booth:


I fell in love with it!  It turns out that the quilt’s maker has a pattern for this adorable piece and I have ordered these as well.  I hope to have these new products available by the beginning of December. (Note the knitted belt hanging on the right side of the quilt with the Dill button fastener).  Until then, Button Up!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Creative Spirit

While at Quilt Market in Houston, TX, I had a couple moments (literally) to see part of the Quilt Show in the next building.  Boy am I glad I did!  I happened to stroll past the area displaying the quilted wearables and found the garment you see here.


Well, of course what caught my eye were the buttons!  I’m sorry that I didn’t write down the maker's name, but I do know that she said her husband made the buttons for her from scrap lumber he had.

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Now there are a lot of buttons she could have chosen to use, but I think it just extended her creativity to make (or design) the buttons she wanted for her garment.  Buttons are easy to make using store bought forms, and don’t forget to embellish them!  One of my favorite things to make are buttons created by taking a plain covered upholstery button (found in every button jar around) and add beads and other embellishments to it to create a whole new button!  I have even found a new button-making tool that I will introduce in my November newsletter.  Inspiration is everywhere.  Button UP! 

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Buttons in the News!

I wanted to share this article with you.  My good friend, Carol Cienna is quoted in it.  I think you’ll find it fascinating!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

More Quilt Market (Yo-Yo Ideas)

Clover has come out with 2 new Yo-Yo shapes that you can create.


You can now create butterflies and clovers with these new tools.

Now, if you want my opinion, and I KNOW you do, the clover doesn’t look anything like a clover and the butterfly can be made using a regular round yo-yo maker of your choice.  I do not plan to carry them, but if you all want them, I may change my mind.  Any opinions?

In addition, Indygo Junction has unveiled a new pattern: Yo-Yo Monkey!  I have placed my order and hope to have this cute little guy added to our inventory of other yo-yo animals and pin cushions very soon!  Look for other new Indygo Junction additions to be unveiled in next month’s Jillions of Buttons Newsletter.



While at Market, I saw several designers use yo-yo’s in some really lovely ways.  I want to give credit to the designers, but my paperwork is being brought home by my friend, Sandy, and I do not have it yet.  Please realize that  these designs are the work of others and should be treated as such.  I am also planning to carry a few of her purse patterns, so you will know who she is very soon!

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031 I loved the stacked look and the choice of fabrics.  I offered my opinion and told her the only thing I found lacking was, of course, a button (or two)!

091 (2) This bag was made using the extra-small Yo-Yo maker.  The colors were lovely!

Try using all kinds of fabrics for creating your yo-yo’s and don’t forget to check out Amy Barickman’s Yo-Yo Fashions book for lots of hints, tips and great ideas for using yo-yo’s!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Quilt Market (part 2)

I think the most popular pattern available at Market was any kind of purse pattern.  While I have chosen a few to add to my inventory (and I’ll share those with you shortly), here are some cute ideas for embellishing your purse creations with buttons:





Don’t you love the big, colorful buttons on these bags?  They are from Dill Button Company and I will be adding several styles, sizes and colors to my inventory before the end of the year.

Tomorrow:  New Yo-Yo shapes and design ideas!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Quilt Market (part 1)

While Houston was gray and gloomy outside while I was there, it was bright and lively inside the convention center where Fall Quilt Market was held!  I think I could have been there 5 full days and not seen it all!

On Friday, I was thrilled to be chosen to present a Schoolhouse Class to quilt shop owners.  We discussed my newest book, Busy With Buttons, and they were able to see the projects up close.


I hope you all appreciate seeing these pictures….I have never been comfortable seeing myself in pictures.  I guess I could feel better by saying that the lighting in the room was very poor!!!


On Sunday, I presented a demo and signed books in the F&W / Krause booth (my publisher) and had a lot of fun!



While it was fun to be in the spotlight, my favorite part of Market was coming home with lots of fun new ideas .  Tomorrow I’ll tell and show you a few of them!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Two Thousand Dollars for Mice!

$2137.00.  That’s how much one button lover just paid on Ebay for an antique horn button entitled “The Mice in Council,” after an Aesop Fable.  It is very rare and in good condition always brings in the big bucks!  The detail is incredible!


This is the seller’s description of the button:

“Superb Large (1 and 3/4 inches diameter) Antique picture button dating from the 19th century...Made of pressed Horn.....depicts a curious tableaux of Mice sitting at a table underneath a tree in which a cat is hiding,all within a landscape of mountains,buildings and a crescent moon.....excellent condition..”

Here is the back of the button:


Many people have asked me what the most expensive button I own is or that I have seen.  While this may qualify as my answer to that question, I have always told the asker that worth is very different from value.  My most prized buttons in my collection are worth about 10cent each to anyone but me, but they are one of the items I would go back into a burning building for!  Here they are:


Most of you already know about these:  they are from my Nanny’s robe and when I see them, I see her.  I hope you will never look at buttons as utilitarian items after this!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

I’m Ready For My Close Up!

My animals are always at my side while I’m working.  Many of you, if you have talked to me on the phone, have heard my dog, Annie, begging me to throw her ball.  While I was photographing my latest quick craft to share with you, Meow-Meow came over and lay down as if she were there for her photo shoot!  She often parades across my computer keys for attention, but this was a first!  Here are the photos I took:




Is there anything more appropriate than a black cat as a backdrop to an orange pumpkin?  Here is the pumpkin, made with the XtraLarge Yo-Yo Maker.  Any size would work.  Make a whole basket full!