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Quick Tip: Hanging A Large Picture

Thursday, 04 November 2010 9:00

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Remember back in the day, when hanging a picture meant sticking a thumb tack in each corner of your favorite poster and calling it good? Although still a valid method if you prefer walls like swiss cheese, most of us have graduated to framing our favorite works of art, and so need a better way to hang a large picture. We're not worrying here about the random collages of small framed photos. We're talking about the big stuff that needs to be placed with care. How high should it hang? How do I place the hook at the right height? Do I need to hang in a stud? All valid questions for which we have easy answers.

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Thanksgiving Elegance: Antiquities Tasseled Table Runner

Wednesday, 03 November 2010 9:00

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Although I have no proof, I feel certain that somewhere in my past there is an ancestor of regal bearing. Perhaps a Baltic princess or a brooding prince from the moors of Scotland. I have a deep affection for well-appointed luxury. For a formal occasion, I love the look of a table runner with place mats. The rich dark wood of the dining table sets off the fabric, and the individual linens act like beautiful little frames for the china and silver. This very elegant table runner in a sparkling platinum damask with rich mahogany accents is from Michael Miller's Antiquity collection. It's certainly fit for a king or a queen or... for your own royal family this Thanksgiving.

Products We Love: Simplicity Bias Tape Maker

Tuesday, 02 November 2010 9:00

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You know how they are always comparing cool new things to sliced bread and mouse traps? To me, neither of these items rank very high on the cool-o-meter on their own, so I don't quite understand their intrinsic comparison value. Even so, they are easily blown away by the product we just finished testing here at S4H: the Simplicity Bias Tape Maker . It's cooler than a piece of sliced bread caught in a better mouse trap, which ranks it at the very tip-top of the cool-o-meter. As those of you who are frequent visitors know, we love using binding on our projects, especially custom binding in great coordinating fabrics. However, we don't love the rather tedious process of actually making that beautiful custom binding. So, when we got the opportunity to give this automatic binding maker a try, we were thrilled... and a little bit giggly with anticipation.

Thanksgiving Elegance: Handsome Half Apron

Monday, 01 November 2010 9:00

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This fabric, from Michel Miller's Antiquity Collection, is so lovely, you don't want or need any distractions. We chose to design a classic half apron with clean, simple lines to showcase the stunning motifs with their sparkling gold metallic accents. Kathy Miller, co-owner of Michael Miller Fabrics and the designer of this fabulous collection, described it as 'Dr. Zhivago meets Anthropologie.' A perfect image... although now I'm tempted to wear it with one of those giant Russian fur hats. Faux fur, of course.

Italiano Kitchen: Bistro Placemats

Thursday, 28 October 2010 9:00

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Without a spare month to spend learning Italian in Rome from a handsome young man over plates of spaghetti and glasses of wine, perhaps these placemats can serve a starting point. We used the signature Mutli Blocks Italino fabric from the new Michael Miller collection, Alfabeto Italiano Collezione. The fabric features elaborately illustrated 4" x 4" alphabet blocks in wonderful vintage colors. Why in just the short time it took to make two placemats, I've already learned that "L" is for lanterna (lantern), lepre (rabbit) and libri (books). My impressive vocabulary will undoubtedly come in handy as soon as I step off the plane in Italy and need to locate 'books on hunting rabbits by lantern light.'

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Love That Fabric: For Big Guys & Little Guys

Wednesday, 27 October 2010 9:00

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We've heard it again and again… it's tough to find appropriate fabric for guys; big guys AND little guys. So, this month we decided to go on a mission for guy fabric. As we looked around and tried to choose fabric, we realized that it totally depends on what you are sewing. If you're making pajama pants, the contemporary floral that would be acceptable on the curtains or even a duvet, is all wrong on guys. So, we looked for fabric that would work for guys' pajama pants. When you look at it that way… it actually is difficult to find fabric for guys. The majority of fabric is marketed to women; for women, girls, babies and home décor. In the end, we found a decent assortment of fabric by cherry picking collections for the more masculine or boyish prints. Take a look at some of our faves.

Italiano Kitchen: Bambina Apron

Tuesday, 26 October 2010 9:00

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Yesterday we featured our Italiano Kitchen Mama Apron. Today, we have a matching version for Bambina. We've switched to the Cream Parole fabric, but kept the same bright red bias binding and the same Cha Cha Stripe for the kick-skirt, ties and tattered flower. The steps for the two aprons are nearly identical, just in a 'mini-me' size for a bambina approximately size 8/10 (the waist and neck ties allow for a lot of adjustment so it would go a little smaller or a little bigger). We've listed the supplies and tools again as well as the smaller cutting instructions. Once you have everything ready to go, simply click to the previous article for a step-by-step tutorial.

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Italiano Kitchen: Mama Apron

Monday, 25 October 2010 9:00

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We love aprons here at Sew4Home. So we knew our Italiano Kitchen would not be complete without them. In fact, it would not be complete without two of them: one for Mama and one for Bambina (it debuts tomorrow). Inspired by those wonderful 1960s dresses Sophia Loren wore in her movies, our apron design combines a lovely wrapped front with a full, peek-a-book skirt. It looks oh-so sophisticated and rather complex to make. But... no tears, no drama, no throwing of plates. In true S4H-fashion, we keep the sophistication, but lose the complexity. Construction is step-by-step easy.

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Italiano Kitchen: Bistro Napkins

Thursday, 21 October 2010 9:00

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My favorite part of Italian cooking is the sauces. Spicy red sauce with lots of chunky vegetables. Rich alfredo sauce with extra garlic and parmesan. They're all deliciously drippy. And, none can be properly eaten without a nice, big napkin. Our Bistro Napkins are generous at 20" x 20" and feature a fun border strip along the bottom of each. Cloth napkins are truly one of the very easiest projects for a beginner, and a great way to 'go green.'

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Love That Fabric: October

Wednesday, 20 October 2010 9:00

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It's October and raining here in the Pacific Northwest. Even though it was sunny just two days ago, I already miss the warm dry weather! But, far from gloomy are our four charming collections featured this month. From farm animals, to mod flowers, to a leisurely weekend fabric; plus a new stunner that I have a crush on.

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