Category Archives: Stash

Mini Charm Club

I’ve still got my hexagon diamonds project (I’m not a Machine) on my mind, even though I’ve been working on Tiny Flower Garden.  In the interest of adding a variety of fabrics  to my tiny-hexagon stash, I decided to subscribe to Fat Quarter Shop’s Moda Mini Charm Pack Club.  I got my first shipment and I’m pretty excited about it:

FQS Mini Charm Pack Club Nov 2014 WM

I love how it’s packaged and I know my fabric will stay flat and clean until I use it.  This set is looking a little beige and drab and old-timey, but that’s nice sometimes, too.

The downsides are that only Moda fabric lines are included and that I won’t get any of those surprise old fabrics like when I beg or buy another sewer’s scraps.

Mini Charm Pack – Figures

One more mini charm pack basted onto 1″ and 1/2″ hexagons.  This time, it’s Figures for Moda, which I love.

MCP Figures Big HP

Eight repeated patterns, so 34 unique patterns in the line.  1″ Hexagons, all spread out:

MCP Figures Big Spread HP 2

And the sixteen 1/2 hexagons in a dark, nighttime picture:

MCP Figures Small HP

I really like this fabric line, but these 1/2″ hexagons aren’t going to be too useful in my main hexagon project (“I’m Not a Machine”), I think, because two of them are mostly white and the dots have a lot of white background.  We’ll see, though.

Yellow FQs

I was at the fabric store and had to add some yellow fat quarters to my stash in a bid to alleviate my yellow diamond problems.

Yellow FQ Stack HPYou got me.  Two of those are orange, not yellow.  I’m still pretty orange-obsessed.

Even though I’ve changed focus to my tester flower garden project (Tiny Flower Garden), my main hexagon project (I’m Not a Machine) is never far from my mind.  I hope these yellows blend with the ones I have, so I can get moving on it again as soon as Tiny Flower Garden’s done.


Mini Charm Pack – One for You, One for Me

MCP One for You One for Me Stack HP

I just love how stacks of basted hexagons look: so much color and promise.   Another mini charm pack (2 1/2″ squares) done.

As before, I used each fabric pattern on the 1″ hexagons and used all of the repeat fabrics to make two 1/2″ hexagons.  If the colors work out, one each of the 1/2″ hexagons will get added to my hexagon diamonds project, “I’m Not a Machine”, and the other will get added to the as-yet-unnamed scrappy small hexes project.  The 1″ hexagons will become…something.  Dunno yet.

MCP One for You One for Me Flat HPHere they are, all spread out.  This pack, “One for You, One for Me” had 28 patterns, with 14 repeated.  Honestly, I’m glad to see all of the repeats.  The tone-on-tone swirls will be perfect for “I’m Not a Machine”.  The dots might, too.

I’m a little disappointed at how the large-scale patterns get lost on the 1″ hexagons.  I mean, I expected that, but there’s something messy-looking about them.  I’m still going to use them, but maybe I need to look for mini charm packs with more repeats and/or more basic patterns?  I don’t even know how to do that, since the previews in the online stores just show the unique patterns and–duh, I just figured it out.  Count the patterns shown and subtract from 42, which seems to be the standard number of pieces in Moda charm packs.

Maybe the little bits of the bigger patterns will be charming in whatever I make the 1″ hexagons into?  I’ll just keep basting and see what I have and how they mix together when I have more.

Mini Charm Pack – Elementary

I could not resist buying a mini charm pack (a package of precut 2 1/2″ squares from one fabric line) and seeing if I could use it for fabric variety instead of buying or begging more scraps.

MCP Elementary All HP
I basted one square of each different fabric in the pack to a 1″ hexagon (without trimming!) and each of the repeat squares to two 1/2″ hexagons.

MCP Elementary Big HP

I really, really like this fabric line, Elementary for Moda.  Moda mini charm packs seem to always have 42 squares.  This one has 32 patterns with 10 repeated.

I’m not sure what I’m going to use the 1″ hexagons for yet, though I’m thinking throw pillows.  I had the papers already, so it made sense to use them.  I doubt I’m going to feel confident enough anytime soon with my 1/4″ seaming to machine piece with 2 1/2″ squares, so it was either use the 1″ hexagon papers or put the fabric away.

I got a nice amount of 1/2″ hexes from the pack, one of each pattern for my hexagon diamonds (when they’re recognizable colors), and one for my “scrappy whatever” project.

MCP Eementary Small HPThis picture ended up super tall.  Sorry.

I’m pretty excited about using mini charm packs, since the repeated patterns are usually the more monochromatic ones, which will fit well into my hexagon diamonds project (I’m calling it “I’m Not a Machine”–I’ve gone back and tagged posts about it with that name).

It was also a lot of fun to baste the 1″ hexagons without trimming that squares.  I’ve heard that the added bulk is bad when it comes time to quilt, but we’ll see.  I’m thinking about getting a die cutter.  If I’m going to be doing a lot of EPP, trimming the fabric to size is already getting tedious, and I haven’t even done it too much yet.

Orange Fabrics

Seeing a distinct lack of orange in the scraps that I bought from eBay, I decided to buy some.

Orange Fabric Goodness WM

Pretty, right?  I needed way more oranges for Sec’s pumpkin quilt, and now I have them.  Most of them are half-yard cuts, except when I got the bolt end.  But buying these (and the rest from that order, which is not pictured as it’s not orange) was tedious, time-consuming, and frustrating.


I’d ordered some fabric once before from (they don’t get a link because of my awful experience with them–keep reading), so I went with them again since I already had an account.  I spent a good amount of time putting fabric into my cart, but I wasn’t able to checkout.  When I hit the “checkout” button, the cart jut reloaded.  I restarted my browser. No dice.  I tried a different browser.  Nope.  I even restarted my computer, even though the problem clearly wasn’t on my end.  Of course that didn’t fix it.

So I contacted their customer support, spent a lot of time on hold, then explained the problem and said what I’d done to fix it.  She couldn’t deviate from her script, which was frustrating, since it meant she couldn’t discuss the problem with me.  She asked me to take a screenshot, even though I told her that it would just show the cart looking like the cart, but she insisted.  So I took a screenshot of the cart and emailed it to her.

A day later, after clicking on that stupid “checkout’ button a lot more and getting progressively angrier, I got a canned “we’re kicking it up to our engineers” email, but I knew it would go nowhere.  I would have abandoned the whole thing, but I’d spent a lot of time picking those fabrics, most of which were on sale.  Other online retailers had some of the prints, but not all, and I just wasn’t interested in looking through my lengthy cart and finding all of the fabrics somewhere else.

I was ready to write the whole thing off, but I tried one last time and the transaction went through.  I saw what the problem had been right away.  Whatever module or system or service they use to calculate sales tax had broken, which made the whole transaction fail.  This is ridiculous, since the sales tax was eighty cents or so on a very large order (which almost didn’t get placed).

Any real ecommerce company would have let the transaction complete and eaten the sales tax.  I did let them know that I was able to complete my purchase, but I never heard back from them.  Once I contacted them about it, a good company would have apologized and given me a discount or a coupon or something, anything to make me less angry at them for wasting my time over their problem.

I’m used to fantastic customer service because I buy almost exclusively from Amazon online.  I wish Amazon sold fabric by the yard.  Or precuts.  Amazon needs to buy, like it did with could use Amazon’s cart technology as well as its “You bought this on <some date>.” technology.

Anyhow, that’s the tale of why I don’t like shopping with  Storytime’s over.

UPDATE (19 Nov 2014):  I’ve been getting’s “deal” emails for a while now (because even though I said I’d never use them again, I have an account there already and inertia is a powerful force) and they very seldom have sales for more than 15% off, but they almost always have a 15% off sale going on, which in my eyes is like the electronics store perpetual going out of business sale.  (Which is illegal.)  Bottom line, avoid  There are better online fabric stores (like Fat Quarter Shop and Connecting Threads), especially for quilting cotton.

eBay Scraps

The title mostly says it all:  I bought scraps on eBay.  A LOT of scraps:

EBay Scraps HP

Isn’t it lovely?

I need a good variety of fabrics so I can eventually make the fabulous scrappy X Marks the Block quilt, but I don’t know many people who sew.  Jelly rolls (2.5″ x width of fabric) give a variety, but each is usually within a specific designer’s current line, so there aren’t THAT many different patterns.  Also, they’re not cheap.

Enter eBay.  I did a bunch of searching and found a lady who was selling the big Priority Mail boxes stuffed full of scraps.  Unlike other sellers, she IRONED hers!  That alone was worth some mark-up.  Overall, including shipping, her box was surprisingly cheap and I got a great variety of fabrics.

As soon as I opened the box and saw all of that FLAT fabric-y goodness, I made sure to win the auctions for her other two boxes.  On average (because someone actually bid against me for one of the boxes–the nerve!), each box of XXX lbs of fabric, which is approximately XX yards, cost $XXX, including shipping.  I think it was a great deal and gave me an instant stash.

There are gaps, though.  I’m missing oranges and yellows.  Greens are a little spotty.  There are plenty of blues, which is great, but too many pinks for my taste.  There are also a lot of Christmas-y novelty prints and giant flower prints, neither of which I’d have bought new.  But I saw on one of the quilting blogs I follow (Bonnie K. Hunter’s) that quilters say “If you don’t like a fabric, you haven’t cut it small enough.”  Ha.  Some of those fabrics will end up as teeny-tiny pieces, I’m sure.

I’m excited to start cutting into it (and glad I don’t have to iron it).