I have been loving the early spring we had. It has been really busy though. I had a lot of fun at the American Embroidery Conference in Marietta at the end of April. I taught a few classes on Embird and one on fun ways to use applique designs. I introduced a few new sets too. Granny helped a lot of people make a zipper bag at our table. We collected $100 which we donated to Kids in Distress.
I've been seeing requests for simple shapes to make patches on a lot of my mailing lists. So I created Patches - Basic Shapes 1. It is a set of 7 basic shapes in 2 sizes, that all fit in the standard 4x4 hoop. They are basically done like my regular applique designs, but I've added another step and instructions for making free-standing patches with them. These are like blank canvases where you can add your own design and/or your own text to make patches. You can also use them to make key chain fobs and magnets. These are available on my website, Pegboard Crafts and also at The Stitchery Mall.
Here is a key chain I made using the design Patch_OvalB (the larger oval) in my set. It is really easy and takes a minimum of supplies. You can use scrap fabric and scrap stabilizer. It has pretty fabric on the back of the key chain and is stiffened with a heavy stabilizer like Timtex or Stitch N Shape. Instead of putting matching thread in my bobbin, I used a permanent marker and colored in my white bobbin thread on the back. I purchased the key fob and key rings from eBay. Another option would be to add a grommet to one end instead of the metal key fob and insert your key ring through it.You can download a PDF file with full instructions from my website on the Patches - Basic Shapes page.
My daughters, Kim and Katey, are making key fobs to help raise money for their ride in Pelotonia in Columbus, Ohio. Theirs will look something like this one. You can use the design Rounded Rectangle 1B from the same set to make a similar one. This ride benefits the James Cancer Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. They have a common interest in riding this year as their aunt was diagnosed with uterine cancer at the end of 2011 and has been undergoing treatment at James. If interested in donating to their ride requirements, here are their links. Kate is at https://www.mypelotonia.org/riders_profile.jsp?MemberID=63816. Kim is at https://www.mypelotonia.org/riders_profile.jsp?MemberID=112032.
I also showed how to make magnets using these shapes. They are basically done the same way. Instead of a key fob or key ring, I cut business card sized sticky backed magnets to the back side when finished. I will be adding a project sheet for one of them next month.