Sunday, December 20, 2009

Thank you, my friends...

I've always thought of my customers as friends, and often times have gotten off of the phone with a customer wishing I could follow up our conversation by inviting the customer over for a cozy cup of tea and relaxed chat. So many of them (you) I have talked with about struggles, hopes, and dreams, both day to day and in the grand scheme of things. We have shared not just our sewing and crafting experiences, but births, illness, divorce, falling in get the idea. I have been so thrilled over the past year or so to realize that many of my customers think of me the same way...and was incredibly touched when a few sent ME handmade gifts this year.

Maureen Winter, founder, designer, and seamstress-in-chief of Moes Monkeys, sent handmade jammies for all 4 of my kids out of Fabric Fairy fabric (matching monkey on pink for the three girls, and airplanes for my son)! Not only are these my kids fabric jammies and the ones they look for straight out of the laundry, but I loved them so much that this photo was the cover of our Christmas card this year! Thank you again, Maureen!!!

Speaking of monkeys, Christina Marrs of Little Sidekick on Etsy sent this beautiful monkey hat she crocheted. It was intended for Annie, the baby, but all of the girls insist on taking turns wearing it. :-) I should mention that they all like to wear it backwards for some reason, so I don't have a photo of it being worn facing the correct direction (you can check Christina's site for photos of the hat being worn the proper way), but I think you'll agree that it is absolutely adorable either way! Christina is also the extremely talented lead singer of the Asylum Street Spankers, and sent us a copy of their acclaimed children's album, Mommy Says No! If you haven't seen them perform, check them out on You Tube--you won't be disappointed--they put on an incredible show!

Last but not least, I have to tell you about an incredible teenager I have come to know who is the daughter of one of my dear customers. Christine Palmer made me a custom fairy emoticon (click here to see her sprinkle fairy dust) as a surprise after I commented that I liked the dancing bunny emoticon she had made for her mother. Christine is not only talented at making emoticons, she has also created several websites including one catering to homeschooled youth and one catering to siblings of autistic youth (her youngest sister is autistic), sews and sells waldorf dolls, and is an award winning essayist who is planning to attend college and get a degree in material science engineering! You are sew impressive Christine--may your future be filled with lots of lucky fairy dust!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Gift Giving

I'll admit it, I have had to take a step back. As I always do. Every year, I tell myself that this is the year that I will finally handmake every single present I gift. It hasn't happened yet. Life gets in the way, and somehow taking the time to watch my children perform at the mall, help them decorate gingerbread men or encourage them in making their own handmade gifts prevails. I still do handmake as many of my gifts as I can though and those are always my very favorite gifts to give.

My 5-year-old working on a hand-painted backpack to give as a gift

Speaking of giving, I'm in the mood to give away fabric, so I thought a little contest might be fun. Reply to this post with the best handmade gift you have ever given or received. The 3 most original, interesting, unique entries will each win a $10 gift certificate to The Fabric Fairy. :-) I can't wait to hear everyones stories!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Loving this time of year!

Molly, my 3-year-old getting a head start on some holiday baking

Tomorrow we are supposed to get a blizzard, and the whole family will be snowbound in the house together. Busy as I am these days, I am feeling a thrill at the prospect of the forced coziness. I have great plans for a jammy day, complete with holiday baking, candy making, crafting, and a bit of holiday sewing. For the first time, this year the kids are actually old enough to participate in a lot of these activities with me (well, some of them--my 16-month-old will be happily playing next to us). The enthusiasm is palpable around here among all of us, and hearing my kids brainstorm about the creative projects they want to undertake makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

Speaking of firsts, The Fabric Fairy has begun stocking domestic quilting cottons alongside our famous ginormous knit collection. While we've had a selection of exquisite Asian and European cotton imports for quite a while, it wasn't until we visited Quilt Market this Fall that we were inspired to begin stocking some of the gorgeous domestic designer cottons we saw. Many of these new fabrics will be trickling in throughout the coming months, but I am excited to introduce some of our first groups.

Perhaps my favorite new collection of the season is Meadowsweet by Sandi Henderson, which you can see in the background in the photo of Sandi and me from Quiltmarket. It is so evocative of everything that is fresh and sweet and carefree about spring blossoms and summer picnics in the meadow that even at this time of year, when I'm feeling so inspired by the creative rush of the holiday season, I feel sorely tempted to put it all aside and sew peasant tops, tiered skirts, and sundresses for my girls.