Tuesday Tip: Keeping Warm

Today’s Tuesday Tip features one of the Expo’s sponsors, The Warm® Company!

Insul-Bright®,from The Warm® Company is a great insulating material for use in home sewing and crafts.

The polyester fibers are needle punched through a non-woven material and through a reflective metallized film.  The fiber resists conduction and the metallized film resists radiant energy. Energy, either hot or cold, is reflected back to its source.

When using Insul-Bright®, add a layer or two of cotton batting, like Warm & Natural or Warm and White, to absorb condensation.

Insul-Bright® will be used in the Flying Geese potholders you can make with Jean Nolte, Editor of Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting Magazine in the Cleveland Expo Make It Center.  The batting is all cut and ready to sew!

Insul-Bright® will also be used to make a handy kitchen Table Trivet in the Expo Class Embroidery 101 at the Expo in Baltimore, Atlanta, Lakeland and Worcester.

Sewing ABC’s and 123′s

Thread is  one of the most basic things you need for any sewing or quilting. There are all-purpose threads, cotton quilting threads, bobbin threads, hand sewing threads, upholstery threads and they all come in a wide array of colors.

There are so many kinds to choose from, but how do you know which is the best thread for your project?

Thread is sold by weight. But what does THAT mean?

The answer can be confusing because a finer thread has a higher weight number than thicker thread. It seems confusing, until you know how thread weight is calculated.

The thread weight is determined by how many meters of thread it takes to weigh 1 gram. It takes more yards of fine thread to weigh one gram, so finer threads have a higher thread weight.

For example, it takes 70 meters of 70 weight bobbin thread to weigh 1 gram.For a 35 weight thread, like Coats Cotton Covered Dual Duty XP™ All Purpose thread, it takes only only 35 meters of Dual Duty XP thread to weigh 1 gram.
Dual Duty XP is suitable for most hand and machine sewing.

Thanks to Coats & Clark for helping us learn more about thread and for generously sponsoring all the sewing thread used at Original Sewing & Quilt Expo in the classrooms and in the Make It Center.


Tuesday Tip featuring Expo Faculty Jean Ann Wright

A quilter’s fabric stash is a palette of color for making a quilt…be it traditional or modern. For years my stash was piled haphazardly in teetering stacks that threatened to collapse in a chaotic pile when I tried to search through a stack for a particular color or print I knew was there…somewhere! I thrive in the chaos, I am most creative when I have everything everywhere, but I don’t want to waste hours and hours of time on the hunt for the fabric I need to make a quilt. When I get a new idea for a quilt I want to start sewing right now! I don’t want to waste time looking everywhere for the fabric I need. I want to be at the sewing machine.

Then I attended a presentation by Anita Hallock on organizing and storing fabrics. Her system was so simple I couldn’t believe it. Simply take a length of yardage folded over as it comes off the bolt, wrap it around your 8″ x 24″ Creative Grids® ruler, slip the ruler out, fold the fabric in half from folded side to selvedge side and wella! You have neatly folded fabric. As you wrap more and more of your yardage into individual “folds” you will love the way they all come out the same size and stack ever so neatly on any bookshelf.

I spent one summer folding my huge fabric stash. Every evening I would sit on the sofa and fold fabric as I watched TV. Surprisingly this was a very soothing activity that settled me down at the end of a busy day and put me in a calm frame of mind before going to bed. Folding is a repetitive activity that brings peace of mind and what could be better than stroking all that lovely fabric!



Here is what my newly organized stash looks like. You can see that I chose to store my fabric by color family in the bookcase with fewer storage shelves. I can now find any piece of fabric I need at a moment’s notice saving hours of time when I am ready to start a new quilt.

In the taller bookshelf I stored specific fabric collections from the fabric companies that I have designed quilts for using those collections. The empty space is for new fabrics I may buy in the future. The long folds in the three shelves adjacent and below are at least five yard cuts that I buy on sale for quilt backings. By the number of backings I have stashed it looks like I have lots of quilts to make in my future.



Check out more from Jean Ann Wright:




And, of course, come see her at the Expo at any of the first 3 locations teaching a variety of classes including:

See the entire list of classes and workshops online at sewingexpo.com!

Tuesday Tip: Fall Fashion Must-Haves

With fashion week’s recent conclusion, a Tuesday Tip is most definitely necessary to highlight the DOs of fall fashion 2013.

Must-Know Fashion Highlights:

1. Put a beanie on it.
Don’t be afraid of hats. Embrace them! (And the hat hair that comes with it!)







2. Dark nail polish.
The go-to color: Oxblood







3. Chunky sweaters, especially gray.








4. Fall’s fashion color: Emerald Green









Original Sewing & Quilt Expo’s fall is busy, busy, busy with SEVEN Expos on the horizon! To get your fall sewing and fashion into gear, check out our website, www.sewingexpo.com to see all of our locations, classes and workshops and so much more!



Tuesday Tip: Lost and Found

This week’s Tuesday Tip may seem highly generic, but could also be highly important and even life-saving to those of you whom it applies!

Origin of our Tuesday Tip:

Lost and Found. It’s a beautiful thing…when you remember it. Since we know our shop-savy attendees have lost things at the Expo, we provide a Lost and Found service.

Today’s Tuesday Tip:

Located at the Registration Desk, Original Sewing & Quilt Expo’s Lost and Found is host to things like prescription glasses, dolls, coats, wallets (!!), forgotten shopping bags (shown below) and even the occasional iPad or iPhone! Don’t forget to check the Lost and Found when you attend an Expo and have misplaced an item. Our awesome Regi-Team is there to help!

Pictured are some contents of a forgotten shopping bag from Raleigh, NC. What great Expo purchases from vendor Superior Thread that are just longing for their home!

Please call us if you think you may have forgotten something at the Expo. We may have it in the office or we could provide some information to direct you further.

Thanks for tuning in! Now we hope you’ll never forget to check the Lost and Found.

Also–be sure to check out our Fredericksburg show, happening in October. Over 40 faculty members! Our biggest class catalog ever! Want to request additional information or a class catalog? Click here!

Tuesday Tip: Walnuts

Are you all enjoying our Tuesday Tip segment of our blog?

We hope so!

This week’s Tuesday Tip comes from staff member, Kari Eckel. Her not-so-secret chocolate stash at work has filled many a chocolate-craving of mine. At this very moment she is driving across the country with her family. Safe travels, Kari!

Kari’s Tuesday Tip:

If you are thinking of making a pin cushion and the pattern calls for ground walnut shells and you don’t know where to get them – check out the local pet store in the bird and reptile departments.  Ground walnut shells are used as reptile and bird litter.


I’ve made some pin-cushions and filled them like this and it has worked out wonderfully!
Want to check out more accessory projects? Visit our website and select your city to view all of the great classes and workshops we offer!
Upcoming Events:
Pittsburgh – August 22, 23 & 24
Georgia Quilt Show – September 19, 20 & 21
To see all of our events, glance at our calendar!
Thanks for a great tip, Kari! See you again next week!

Tuesday Tip! The Colleran Way

This weeks Tuesday Tip! is brought to you by Original Sewing & Quilt Expo staff member, Holly Colleran! Travel expert and organization extraordinaire. Seriously…she’s quite good. Just check out her office:

Equipped with color-coated binders, sorted folders and not a hint of dust or grime to be found. Teach me your organizational-ways, Holly…

Holly’s Tuesday Tip:

“Use the project pouches sold at the sewing expo to organize your sewing area.  Each pouch can hold different projects ranging from holiday calicos to tatting supplies.  I like to stack them zipper side up on a shelf and put a label with their contents on the side of the pouch.  You can see at a glance your stash of projects and supplies!  And your supplies stay dust-free and organized.”

Inspiring, don’t you think?

She’s right. Those Expo Project Pouches are quite handy. Order now on our website and see our other Expo Products as well!


Thanks, Holly!

See you next week!

Tuesday Tip: Sewing Friends

Welcome back to our weekly Tuesday Tip post!

This week we are featuring another Original Sewing & Quilt Expo staff member, Cindy Costello! A lady with stashes of chocolate wherever she goes (which makes for a very nice friend to have around!)

Origin of Cindy’s Tip:

This is something she did recently that she enjoyed enough to share as a tip!

Cindy’s Tuesday Tip:

We all have those UFOs tucked away, and it feels like such an achievement to finish them.  If there is a project you need to complete, but have just lost the enthusiasm for it, ask a friend to cut the fabric for you.  It is much more exciting knowing that it will be done in no time if all you have to do is piece the fabric.  It always feels good to do something for a friend, too.  You both benefit!


I’d trade some of Cindy’s chocolate stash for some fabric-cutting duties for sure! ;)

Want to do more sewing with your friends? Bring them to the Expo! We have a Bring-A-Friend and Get a Free Class offer so you can cut and sew together! Sewing is better when it’s together.

Thanks, Cindy!

See you next week!

Introducing: Tuesday Tip!

Original Sewing & Quilt staff member, Lynn Lunoe, is highlighting our first-ever,

Tuesday Tip!


Fun Fact about Lynn Lunoe:

She loves driving, and if you have any questions about restaurants, hot-spots, and go-to’s in the greater Cleveland area, she’s your lady!

Origin of Lynn’s Tip:

Lynn is in the process of making flower girl dresses for her son’s wedding in October. This tip is derived from her experience with the treacherous fabric we all know as, TULLE!

Click here for the flower girl dress idea from Pinterest!


Lynn’s Tuesday Tip:

When gathering tulle for poufy tutus for costumes or for flower girl dresses, sew a wide zig zag stitch over 12 weight thread or gimp cord and pull that thread or cord to gather. Then, sew the gathered tulle onto a waistband. Makes it quick and easy – and poufy!


As a side-note, Lynn suggests singing broadways show tunes to make the process go faster.

Now you can sew that tulle with confidence!


Check out more from Lynn Lunoe in Pittsburgh in August where she will be teaching!