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Monday, December 29, 2014

EU VAT & What This Means For from blank pages...

Have you heard about the EU VAT law's that are going into effect on January 1, 2015? As in 2 days from now? Will, just Google it and you'll find loads of confusing information. 

Basically it means that any seller of digital items sold to a consumer located in the participating European countries, must pay a VAT (value added tax) to the country where the digital item was purchased. In order to do so, the seller must provide two forms of evidence of the location of the buyer, and pay the taxes, which vary by country, every quarter. The seller must also keep this information for ten years. Basically this is a LOT of work that is nearly impossible for small businesses like myself. Way more expensive than the $1-5 I might owe in a given year. 

How this effects me:

I sell most of my patterns on Craftsy. Craftsy is not doing anything to provide the needed information to the pattern sellers to be able to pay the tax if we wanted to do it ourselves, and will not be handling the VAT for us. 

What this means for Craftsy: I will be removing all of my paid patterns for their site. I'm not sure how this will affect them, as many shops have already closed and will be closing shop before the 1st. I'm assuming they will lose a lot of business, as people won't be referring their customers to their site to buy patterns. The ideal thing would be that this hurts them tremendously, and they decide to help us out!! Even if that means they start charging a small fee to sell patterns on their site. We'll see. (Not that I want them to be hurt by this, as I wish everyone success, but sometimes a little incentive helps the masses).

Etsy: is sitting this out as well. Even though it seems they should be responsible, they have stated that they will not be. Supposedly they will sometime in the year provide information to shop owners to deal with VAT, but who knows when that will be. A lot of people will be discontinuing the instant download feature for their shops and emailing patterns personally. Though this is only a solution for UK buyers, and not for buyers in other EU countries. I personally don't have time to do that anyway. My customer service would go down the drain!! I believe I have found a solution that I can sell patterns to those outside of EU,  and can still include the instant download feature, using CraftHub.me, which works with Etsy, and actually had better features than Etsy for instant downloads. I'm still looking into it and don't have everything figured out completely. But I'm hoping it will work as smoothly as is like. If it doesn't, I may just increase shipping costs to $100 to EU buyers to deter them from purchasing from me.

That sounds horrible and that's what I hate most about this!! Reading so many discussions and comments, and so much talk of people simply restricting sales to the EU. My heart breaks for everyone who will be facing a possible storage of patterns to choose from!! Not awesome!! I am looking into working with a different website to host my patterns, that will take care of all fees and VAT stuff for me. I will update you with this info as it comes together. This will make all my patterns available to all EU customers!! Wahoo!! I'm not about to leave you out!! :) 

As for bigcartel, I'm pretty sure they are not doing anything about this, and I will be looking into another solution for selling my patterns, perhaps on my website, or a similar host as bigcartel, that will cover the VAT fees. 

So what's the story for right now??? 

Starting January 1, 2015, I will be closing all my pattern shops. I think I'll be able to get them back up and available the quickest for US customers. It will take the longest for European countries, and probably all other countries??? I'm not sure how long it will take. 

If you have been wanting to buy any of my patterns, nows you're chance, until, I'm not sure when. There are solutions, and I am going to find them. Hopefully it will be a smooth and quick transition, but really, it's just a mess right now for everyone. 

I have a coupon code running until the 1st for my Etsy shop and Bigcartel shop.
and save 15%. 

Thanks for all your support!! I hope you are having a wonderful holiday!! 

I'll keep you updated! :)


Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Happy Holidays!!

Wishing you and yours a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!

A gift I can share with everyone, save 15% off in my Etsy shop and Bigcartel shop until midnight January 1, 2015. 

I hope you all have safe travels, warm snuggles, and feel the love of this beautiful Christmas season! Whether you are surrounded by family, or all alone, I am thinking of you and wishing you all the best!! Thank you for your support, love, and encouragement! Love you!!!


Thursday, November 6, 2014

3 New Patterns, 3 Coupons, and 3 Winners for a Giveaway!!

Hi there! I guess I have gone back to my old-non-blogging self. Sometimes I think, "if my life was only what I blogged about, I'd have a pretty boring life!" haha. Luckily it is not so. I am really excited to announce three new patterns that I've finished over the last few weeks!! Get  ready for picture overload! oh, and I have a 30% Off coupon for each new pattern (good only in my bigcartel shop), which is good until Saturday at midnight.

To save repeating myself, the patterns contain a lot of the same features. They all include:
  • Patterns for 3 different sizes of finished blocks: 6 inch, 9 inch, and 12 inch.
  • Cutting templates for each size
  • Instructions specifically for each pattern. (Paper piecing instructions not included, but I include helpful links in each pattern.)
  • Coloring pages. I included a bunch of different design layouts so you can plan just the block you want. :)

Here they are, in no particular order: (It'll be picture overload!!! But I hope you'll slow down and look at each one.) :) I also had amazing pattern testers help me with my patterns!! In an effort to not put too many pictures in one post, I'll save them for a different post. But I can't go without saying a HUGE thank you!! to each of them! They really helped me to smooth out the patterns!

Candy Wrappers

This is a fun versatile pattern with many options of how you can join the pattern to create different looks. Here are some mockups I made:

The block is created using an A pattern piece and a B pattern piece. When you use both A and B pattern pieces, here are the two blocks you can create, depending on how you orient them.

Here is a block you can create if you ONLY use the A pattern pieces.


Here is a block you can create if you ONLY use the B pattern pieces.


 Here are some examples of these blocks on a four block repeat. These designs would make fabulous pillows, bags, minis, mug rugs, etc. which you can easily make with the 6 inch and 9 inch pattern sizes.



 Here they are if you made 16 blocks into a quilt. :) I love these!

 I used this pattern during the summer when I made a pillow as one of my Handmade Birthday club gifts. It was hard to send this away.

While I was putting this pillow together is when I discovered the different designs with the A and B pattern pieces. Here's a picture I took with my phone... I think I want to make this again. :)

I think these would even look good in a quilt of alternating blocks of these! Wouldn't that be fun?!

You can find the Candy Wrappers pattern in any of my shops (Craftsy and Etsy). 

But, until Saturday night (11/8/14) you can save 30% OFF this pattern ONLY in my Bigcartel shop.
Use coupon code: SAVE30CANDYWRAPPERS

Starry Skyline

Maybe you recognize this pattern. I designed it for a Bee group on Flickr a few years ago. You can see the full tutorial for how to create it using HST's HERE. I LOVE this block, but I didn't really want to create a full quilt using that method. I finally turned it into a paper piecing pattern! AND I made a full quilt with it!!

My Halloween quilt! I was going to make it a fall quilt, and not use the orange. But my husband kindly reminded me that his favorite color is orange... so in it went! And I still think it'll be a fabulous fall quilt! :)
(there is one line that I REALLY messed up on, so I need to unpick it and fix it. So if you notice it... that is my own mistake and not how the pattern is.) ;)

This pattern is a bit more straight forward, so I'll just leave it at this quilt picture. But it sure is a fun one!

You can find the Starry Skyline pattern on Craftsy and Etsy

But, until Saturday night (11/8/14) you can save 30% OFF ONLY in my Bigcartel shop.
Use coupon code: SAVE30STARRYSKYLINE

Winter Holly

This is my most recent finish, and I LOVE it!!! I want to make a full quilt of this pattern too! I used to think one would have to be totally crazy to paper piece an entire quilt, but after making my Celestial Star quilt, I either have become totally crazy, or I realize that it's not crazy at all. ;) haha.

I'll start with some pattern mockups:

Here are two designs you can create from one single block.

These also make fantastic repeat patterns! Here they are with 4 blocks:

And if you used 16 blocks to create a full quilt. Um, yes please!!!

 This would be a gorgeous Christmas quilt!!! Or of course change up the colors, and it would simply be gorgeous!

While playing around I found this really neat secondary pattern... which also makes me see other patterns you could create by playing with value and color. :)

I am currently making a Christmas table runner that I am probably not going to put away after Christmas. ;) Here are the two styles I was debating on. My husband went out of town, so I haven't had time to finish it... maybe the kids can go to bed early tonight. ;)

These Cotton + Steel prints are perfect!!! I
'll use the two yellow prints in the top picture for the centers.

You can find the Winter Holly pattern in any of my shops (Craftsy and Etsy). 

But, until Saturday night (11/8/14) you can save 30% OFF this pattern ONLY in my Bigcartel shop.
Use coupon code: SAVE30WINTERHOLLY

Alright, and that's it!! What do you think?! :)

I hope you enjoy them!


Now how about a giveaway?! If you sat through all that, you've earned it. ;)

Use the rafflecopter below to enter. Three people will win a copy of all three patterns!! Can you tell this post is all about three's?! Three patterns, three winners, three coupons, three-ty (thirty, haha) percent off.  The giveaway will be open until Saturday night. Good luck!!

***If you purchase the patterns (so you can take advantage of the coupons - I think you have to purchase them separately to take advantage of all three codes) and then you win them, I will happily refund your money!  So don't worry there. :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

Have you heard of the Around the World Blog Hop? I had a few people invite me to join, so I decided I'll give it a go. It's been fun to look back and see lots of different people's posts, and see what everyone is working on.

I was tagged by Amanda of Material Girl Quilts. I mentioned her in my recent Celestial Star blog hop, as she was one of the sponsors. Amanda is crazy talented!! You should definitely go check out her blog if you haven't already. :)

As part of the blog hop, there are a set of questions to answer...

1. What am I working on?

That's kind of a tough one. I just finished up the Celestial Star QAL, which kept me pretty busy. Though I feel like I'm a little in between projects right now... besides the ones I can't share. ;) I'm am working on a few new patterns, as well as other projects. :) I have been catching up with my Handmade Birthday Club gifts though! Here are my latest finishes that I can share:

I made this fun little mini for Di.


and added a tissue cover and a few other goodies. :)

I also finished up this pillow for Rebecca.


and some extra goodies for her too!

I love how they both turned out!! and I'll be working on sharing both of these patterns soon. :)

2. How does my work differ from others in its genre?

This is a hard question to answer. I think the biggest difference I notice about myself, is that I always have to come up with something new. There are so many great and amazing designs out there that I LOVE, but for some reason I always want to try something different and create my own designs or patterns. I think that is something that really fuels my desire to quilt. I love sewing and quilting, but constantly coming up with new patterns and designs really adds so much dimension to my own personal experience when it comes to quilting. Perhaps the design process is my first love, and sewing and quilting are the vehicles I use to make those ideas a reality. :)

3. Why do I write/create what I do?

I kind of answered this in the previous question. To be more specific to my designs, I really like math, and geometry. I've always noticed shapes and how things fit together, especially designs of symmetry. I like figuring out how to put everything together, like a puzzle. I don't know...

On the flip side of the question, why do I design and create in the first place? I have a young family, 4 children 6 and under (the oldest was 4 (about 3 weeks shy of being 5) when the youngest was born) so they are all very close. When they were really young I did not enjoy taking them places because it was too crazy for me! Too stressful. So quilting became my hobby, and still is often my outlet from stress and the day-to-day routine of cleaning and those mundane mom tasks. Love my family and my children, but my hubby and I both realize that I need an outlet. ;) He's awesome!

4. How does my writing/creating process work?

Often I'll start doodling on graph paper. That used to be my all-the-time go-to medium, but it seems like I don't have any near me as often. I'll often do rough sketches on my phone in a drawing app. They are usually always really horrible, as the apps are kind of like using Paint. But at least I can get my ideas down. Then I'll work in Illustrator, where I can create, design, manipulate, and change my ideas until I have something I love, or maybe just like. Illustrator is my best friend in the entire process!! I love the freedom I have there to do so much. As well as how quick it is to make small changes and compare, without having to start over with a new drawing every time. It saves me a lot of time.

Then I fine tune my project, turn it into a pattern, print it out and start sewing. I'll often take notes as I use the pattern, on things to adjust and change. Then once it's ready, I type up my patterns in In Design, do some proof reading, and size checking, and there it is.

That is my really quick explanation of how I create my patterns! Often I'll start with the first steps, and then start working on different patterns before I complete the entire process. I just don't have enough time to materialize all of them. But I'm working on that. ;)


Thanks for stopping by! I hope you enjoyed a little sneak peek into my world. :) It was fun!

I'd love to point you in the direction of a few friends who I think are awesome!! Though some have already participated in the blog hop, I'll share them with you anyway. Because hey, I don't mind traveling to the same place more than once, especially if it's somewhere awesome!! :)

Marian will be participating next week. She is so awesome!! We met a while ago and was so nice and sent me some cookies once. It was the kindest thing ever!! I also bought some cute earrings from her, and we swapped some charms once.  Let me tell you our complete history together... haha. Anyway, she's super cool. I had a dream a few weeks ago that we were moving to the town where she lives. I wish it were true! She'd be awesome to hang out with. :)

Courtney is an awesome friend I've definitely mentioned on my blog before. What can I say? She's the bees knees of quilting and quilty friends! :) She's awesome!! And I love her style! Everything she makes is so cute. :)

Leona, I met her in Florida before we moved - she moved to the area where I lived about a month or so before we left. I miss her. She's amazing!! Probably the kindest person I've ever met!! I will always cherish the time we did get to spend together before we moved away. :) p.s. she doesn't know I'm tagging her. oops. :)

Stephanie Daniels and Pam Lincoln also tagged me. They are both super great!! It's been fun getting to know them better over the recent months and however long it's been since we've become online friends. :)

Ok, that's way more than three people. Oh well. ;)

 Hope you are having a great week!! :)


Celestial Star QAL: The End & Winners!

Celestial Star QAL with from blank pages...

I want to say a HUGE thank you for everyone who participated in the Celestial Star QAL with me!! I loved your comments, kind words, seeing your blocks and projects come together and especially the finishes!! It was a blast!! {{Mwah}}!! :)

I also can't pass up giving a huge shout out to the amazing sponsors!! I hope you will continue to visit their shops and support them!! They are great! :)

i don't do dishes 


I was going to push to finish my quilt, but the quilt back I made, I ended up being very unhappy with it. So I scratched it. I decided to go with a one print back and if the color is what it is on my screen, I will be so excited with it!! I'm growing to really be a pink kind of girl. Weird - for me. But I like it. :) Of course, another Anna Maria Horner print for the back:

Anna Maria Horner Pretty Potent Flannel Banner Days Icing

Pretty Potent Flannel Banner Day Icing. 
I purchased this at Fabric.com, and was so happy it was even on sale! PLUS going through Ebates.com I got an extra 3% back. Not much, but it adds up. :) AND I'm so happy I wasn't at all tempted to add other things to my cart. Wahoo for shopping progress. ;)

I'm hoping to still get the quilt finished quickly. I can't wait to use it! Plus get some awesome photos of it!! :) You can see the best photos I've taken so far in this post. 

Alright, now to the part you've all been waiting for!! The winners!! Drum roll please...

For the 1 Block category, the winner of the $20 Westwood Acre gift card is Amy Morhan

For the 2-4 Block category, the winner of the $50 Fat Quarter Shop gift card is Cindy

For the 5+ Blocks Category, the winner of the $50 I Don't Do Dishes gift card and the Mochi Dots Bundle from Knotted-Thread is Kate

The winner of the Butterfly Dance bundle from Llama Fabrics is Kirsten

The winner of the Liberty scrap pack bundle from Queen Bee Fabrics is Lori

And the winner of the Birch charm pack from I Don't Do Dishes is Bria

Congrats everyone!! I will contact you about your prizes! :)

I hope you will keep linking up your blocks and your projects as you finish them!! I love to see all your beautiful creations! You are amazing! :) For those of you on Instagram, be sure to tag your photos with #fbpPatterns!! I'll be catching up on those spotlights and prizes soon. ;)

Thanks again everyone! It's like a bitter-sweet farewell being done with the QAL. It was such an intense part of my life for the last few months, I don't know what I'm going to do with all of this free time now. ;) lol. :)

Have a great week!!