Thank the World with Our “Heroic Hearts” Tote

Hey, sewing & quilting friends! How are you doing? We know many of you have been working tirelessly, sewing masks for local medical staffers, first-responders, friends and family, and beyond. At the same time, you’re stitching to express yourselves, occupy some newly-found free time, and reap the therapeutic benefits of needle and thread. And so, we invite you to join us as we Thank the World with a new and equally meaningful project — the Heroic Hearts Tote

Sarah Maxwell of Designs by Sarah J, in conjunction with Marcus Fabrics, has designed a 6” pieced heart block, incorporated into a 17” tote bag, to pay tribute and give thanks to these very special people in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Ideally, a quilter would stitch up the bag, then add a “Thank You” gift, which could be baked goods, fruit, self-care items, a gift of fiber art, etc.

“We’re challenging all of our quilting friends to Thank the World along with us, by making Heroic Hearts Totes and presenting them to any heroes they choose — hospital staff, teachers, neighbors, first responders and others”  Sarah explained.

Marcus designers are also joining Sarah in the program by designing their own versions of the tote, with the 6” Heroic Heart block as the common design element. Each will provide instructions for her own variation, allowing quilters to recreate their favorites. 

Designers and quilt shops will be sure to offer kits, and we also invite you to dig into your fabric stashes for this challenge. Use your own choice of fabrics and customize the bag as you like. It’s a fun and practical way to build community, show appreciation, and connect with other stitchers both near and far!

“The focus here is on showing encouragement and support to the many thousands of people who are getting us through this unprecedented crisis,” said Stephanie Dell ’Olio of Marcus Fabrics.

And while competition isn’t the goal of this challenge, we can’t wait to share everyone’s inspiring photos of the totes and their makers, to be considered for fun fabric prizes throughout the challenge, rewarding creativity in both the tote design and the tote bag contents!  Makers should include any or all of these hashtags when posting:

#heroicheartstote       #heroichearts       #heroicheartsblockstars       #heroicheartswithmarcus   #marcusblockstars         #staysafeandcreate      #staysafeandcreatewithmarcus

DOWNLOAD the FREE TOTE PATTERN!

And be sure to follow us on Instagram and Facebook for updates, shared photos from our designers and friends, and more. Thank you for everything you do! Stay Safe, and Create…

Welcome, 2020!

Thank you, quilting friends, for another year of support and inspiration! So, how did you do in 2019, creatively speaking? Did you learn any new techniques, complete some long-standing UFOs, take on a favorite BOM quilt, attend any cool retreats or expos? If so, Bravo! and if not, we’ve got a fresh new year to indulge ourselves (not to mention a fresh new decade) so there’s still hope ; )

We wish you a Joyous, Healthy and Creative New Year! One filled with your favorite Marcus and Studio 37 fabrics, great patterns, handy notions and fun gadgets — and of course, some time to enjoy it all… Happy 2020!!

Meet Your New Favorite Fabrics…

It’s August, and at Marcus Fabrics & Studio 37, that means it’s time for one of our biggest and best introductions of the year! Whether your creativity leans more toward traditional/ reproduction style, or you prefer a more trendy, contemporary feel (or maybe BOTH??) we’re pleased to present you with a plethora of exciting options from your favorite Marcus designers! To get more fully acquainted with these beautiful collections, visit MarcusFabrics.com

First, let’s get started with Marcus…

Golden cheddars, rich blues, traditional prints and shirtings, and the building blocks of a great quilt!

You’ll also love these designs from Studio 37:

Bold colors, florals, dots, stripes and textures!!

Fun stuff, right? And not only for quilts, but also for crafts, home decorating — from pillows to table settings — to handwork, applique, mending, embroidery, artful clothing and sew much more. Enjoy!

Let’s Go Back to School with Pete the Cat!

Sew This Great Gear NOW!

With July half over already (!)  the time is right for planning and sewing back-to-school gear, and Pete the Cat makes it fun for everyone! Our PETE THE CAT: BACK TO SCHOOL fabric collection is available in quilts shops everywhere, and we’ve got a couple of great free projects, too…

This quick-to-sew drawstring duffel is perfect for pint-sized pupils, showing off the overall panel design with crayon print lining/facing. Make the matching zip-up crayon case, in the crayon print as shown, or your favorite Pete print.

      

The backpack is expertly modeled by Zuri.  Her mom and dad say Zuri is quite familiar with Pete the Cat through her various school activities and library visits, and she’s a big fan!

     

If you’ve got pint-sized Pete fans at home too, DOWNLOAD the FREE PROJECT now, and get them excited for the new school year!

©1999, 2010 James Dean by arrangement with MerryMakers, Inc.Pete the Cat® US Reg. #3820216, #4903976. Manufacturers Require a License

So…Who Won the AGED MUSLINS???

Thanks to everyone for your inspiring ideas about our AGED MUSLINS and NEW AGED MUSLINS.  If you haven’t already, take a few minutes to read thru everyone’s terrific ideas – including some we hadn’t even thought of!

Without further delay, the winner of our random drawing is Christina Northern, from the metro DC area.  We’re pleased to introduce this new palette to so many new fans, includung Christina, who commented:   “What an interesting idea. I have not seen this kind of thing before. But Aged Muslin sounds so interesting. Can’t wait to work with it and turn it into something distinct.”   

You’ll find most of the colors in your favorite local quilt shops now, and the newer saturated colors will be shipping soon.  

And watch for details of the new Aged Muslins BOM, Stargazing, by Krisanne Watkins of Quail Valley Quilts. (shown here)

A Year’s Worth of Creative Excitement!

A fresh year means a fresh start for our creative projects…check out just a few of the exciting things coming your way in the coming months from Marcus and Studio 37!

Sneak Peeks!  Watch for these collections online beginning February 1:

And get caught up with our most recent releases, online now:

A Few PEEPS Fun Facts:

PEEPS® marshmallow candies aren’t just for Easter anymore!  People who love the sweet treats can enjoy them on all kinds of holidays now, and since our new PEEPS collection will soon be appearing in your local quilt shops, we thought we’d share a few PEEPS fun facts with you.  Did you know…

  • 52 million PEEPS are made in an 8-week period for Easter sales
  • 21 million families purchase peeps each year
  • Easter candy as a whole is a $2.6 billion industry
  • Key consumers spend about $170.00 on Easter, which includes $24.00 worth of candy
  • PEEPS cannot walk, change expression or talk.  They only communicate through text bubbles  ; )
  • PEEPS people also tend to be avid crafters, so we know you’ll love the fabrics as much as the candies.  We’re thinking Easter basket liners, quilts, pillows, table settings, soft-sculpture chicks and bunnies, and sew much more!

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About Just Born Quality Confections
Just Born Quality Confections is a third generation family-owned company founded in 1923, headquartered in Bethlehem, PA, and the makers of PEEPS®, HOT TAMALES®, MIKE AND IKE® and GOLDENBERG’S® PEANUT CHEWS® Brand Candies are produced in Philadelphia, PA. All Just Born candies are made in the U.S.A.
The PEEPS® brand and the PEEPS® shapes are trademarks of Just Born, Inc., Bethlehem, PA, USA, and are used under license. ©2018

Introducing… IMBUE by Kim Eichler-Messmer

This month we’re excited to welcome Kim Eichler-Messmer to the Studio 37 design team, with her gorgeous debut collection of batiks, entitled IMBUE.

To imbue means to inspire or permeate with a feeling or quality; permeate, infuse, tincture, soak. This is how Kim  likes to think about hand dyed fabrics. “They are infused not only with color and pattern, but with the intentions of the maker as well. These modern batiks were printed and dyed by hand in Indonesia and the designs came from my own hand dyed fabrics. The colors are rich and saturated and the slight imperfections in the print add character, movement, and a glimpse into the process of their creation” she explains.

We love Kim’s creative philosophy, and the richness of her palettes. See all 22 designs online at Studio 37 Fabrics.  Visit Kim online and follow her on Instagram @kimemquilts.  If you’re attending, QuiltCon in Pasadena, CA, February 22-25, 2018, you’ll also have a chance to take her lectures and workshops and meet her in the Studio 37 Booth # 911.

WOOL Highlights: Our New BOM and More!

Did you know that Marcus Fabrics is quickly becoming the market’s leading resource for fine quality, 100% woven wools in the quilting and craft market? As a trusted wool supplier for over 4 years, we’re excited to be a part of the continued rise in appliqué and wool stitching projects worldwide, from traditional to trendy!

And we’re really excited to launch the Spring 2017 season with a brand new Wool BOM program, new precuts and fresh new inspiration to share! Check out the new Wool page on the Marcus website, where we’ve gathered the current wool links, tips projects and inspiration…and check it regularly for updates, new projects and more…

Now, about this beautiful new BOM program, “Tokens of Thyme”:

Pastthyme Patterns designed this beautiful 18′ x 24′ seasonal-themed design, a wool applique sampler great for a variety of skill levels. PLUS…it’s made with a 10′ x 10″ pack (20 luscious colors) — Who doesn’t love a pre-cut stack of WOOLS??

Darci Schipnewski of Pastthyme Patterns shares her inspiration for the design:
Tokens of Thyme reflects what I think of as the months of the year unfold. In the business of life, I wanted to offer something that was quick to stitch. Quilters will find the project to be versatile, with options for various finishing methods. With a manageable finished size of 18″ x 24″ this seasonal sampler will surely bring joy to your home, as you reflect upon the seasons of thyme.”  Read more…

Look for Tokens of Thyme at your favorite quilt shops beginning July 2017!  And until then, be sure to see the Wool page for other projects and more!

You’ll Love Carol’s New Club, Its Backstory, and Our Giveaway!


CarolBlogQuiltCU
This month, we introduce “It’s Not a Square” an exciting new program we know you’re gonna love! It’s a 12-month Club by reproduction expert Carol Hopkins, with AMERICAN SWATCH BOOK prints by Judie Rothermel. Best of all, we timed the fabric production to coincide with Carol’s new book, The 4″ x 5″ Quilt Block Anthology: 182 Blocks for Reproduction Fabrics (Martingale, March 2017).  We chatted with Carol to uncover some of the interesting backstory that led to this exciting Club concept:

 

  • The rectangular shape of the blocks is a big feature of the book. What brought that about?

I’ve been a part of a block exchange group for about 25 years.  Four of us had just finished a year-long exchange of 6” weather vane blocks and were looking for an easier, and less time consuming, block.  We decided to frame a 3” x 4” rectangle with a 1” border—easy cutting, two fabrics, done!  However, on her way home from our lunch meeting, Linda Koenig had a brainstorm which she followed up on with a note to all of us, suggesting that instead of just framing a plain rectangle, we create designs that would fit inside a 4” x 5” rectangle.  She tempted us by enclosing a set of four blocks she made and we jumped in, not realizing just how challenging it would be to come up with block designs that weren’t square!CarolHopkins

  • Your new book is titled, “The 4” x 5” Quilt Block Anthology: 182 Blocks for Reproduction Fabrics”. How long did it take to amass such a variety of designs, and how did you know you were “done” at 182?

We each agreed to design four blocks a month for a period of nine months.  Since we make identical blocks for each person in the group, that meant we each sewed 16 blocks a month.  That’s a lot of sewing, but the good news is, we each had 16 new blocks at the end of the month!  When Linda showed our blocks to members of another group she belonged to, they, too, decided to design blocks; however, they did not exchange blocks.

AmerSwatchGiveawayAt the end of nine months, 182 different blocks had been created.  The quilt on the cover of The 4” x 5” Quilt Block Anthology, contains all of the blocks designed by the two groups, and was made by Linda, who, sadly, passed away shortly before the book went to press.  Other quilts in the book and its companion on-line photo gallery vary in size from wall hangings to bed quilts and showcase a variety of fabric designs and colors.

  • Tell us about the color palette – any special significance?

In our block exchanges, my group always uses fabrics that look old–Civil War reproductions, pink-and-brown prints, blue prints with shirtings, plaids /checks/stripes, and red-and-green combinations.  Linda suggested the 1880s color palette of red, blue, black, pink, and shirtings because it was one that we had not used before.

While we were able to select fabrics from our decades-old personal stashes, I was concerned that there was not a fabric collection in the marketplace that captured the look of the blocks in the book.  Martingale’s Chief Creative Officer and I approached Pati Violick from Marcus Fabrics about the possibility of asking Judie Rothermel, the pioneer designer of reproduction fabrics, to create a fabric line in our color palette.  Thus, the collaboration between a book and fabric company emerged, and I had the rare opportunity to help curate a collection of 22 prints from Judie’s personal collection of antique fabrics that resulted in the AMERICAN SWATCH BOOK line.

CarolBlogGuideBlocksI’ve taken the book and fabric collaboration a step further to create the It’s Not A Square Club that will debut in quilt shops this summer.  Using the American Swatch Book fabrics, The 4” x 5” Quilt Block Anthology book, and detailed monthly block guides, club members will make six different blocks a month to create a 57” x 78” sampler quilt of 72 rectangular blocks.

  • CarolSpoolsAside from quilts, how do you see quilters using blocks of this size and shape, either individually or grouped together?

I envision quilters using individual 4” x 5” blocks for things like mug rugs, purses, fabric postcards, and even pockets on clothing.  A grouping of just a few blocks could make unique doll quilts, basket liners, table runners, wall hangings, or mini samplers.  One of the most fun things I can think of is getting a group of friends together to work on blocks for themselves or to swap with other quilters.  The book includes tips and guidelines to help you set up a block exchange or organize a club.

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AmerSwatchGiveawayLooks like one you’ll want to add to your project list this summer!  And to get one lucky winner stared, we’ve again teamed up with Martingale to offer this book-and-fabric bundle. To enter the random drawing, subscribe to our blog (at right), and tell us in the COMMENTS what you would love most about making this quilt… Comments received by next Wednesday, April 12, 2017 are eligible for the drawing…  Go!