Summer Sewing: 4 Totally Awesome Tote Bag Patterns

I like my bags big and with easy access to all my stuff, which these days includes diapers in two sizes, random toys, and (always) fruit snacks, so totes are my go-to. Casual, durable, and big, they’re good for so many reasons, and they make a great canvas for embellishing. From dyeing to beading to fabric painting to (of course!) machine embroidery, I love totes for their embellishment potential…and because you can never seem to have too many.

Here are a few of my favorites, hand-picked for summer toting. Just imagine these lovelies with a bit of embroidery. Act fast and get these digital patterns (and more!) at 30% off at, now through July 10th.

slingpurse 225x300 Summer Sewing: 4 Totally Awesome Tote Bag Patterns printstotebag 225x300 Summer Sewing: 4 Totally Awesome Tote Bag Patterns

vinylbeachtote 225x300 Summer Sewing: 4 Totally Awesome Tote Bag Patternsreversibleslouchtote 225x300 Summer Sewing: 4 Totally Awesome Tote Bag Patterns   

Top left:  Sling Tote

Top right: In love with Prints Tote

Bottom left: Vinyl Bottom Beach Tote

Bottom right: Reversible Slouch Tote

Sew up one of these beauties today!

If you need some embroidery design ideas, head over to From a sweet message stitched in text to large florals, travel designs to cute forest creatures, there are so many ways to make a custom bag for yourself or to give as a gift.

CMEGRDN 300x249 Summer Sewing: 4 Totally Awesome Tote Bag Patterns CMEFORESTFRIENDS Summer Sewing: 4 Totally Awesome Tote Bag Patterns CMETWR 255x300 Summer Sewing: 4 Totally Awesome Tote Bag Patterns

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Join Mark Lipinski and the Slow Stitching Movement Web Seminar

This NEW and ILLUMINATING web seminar introduces a revolution within the yarn, textile and needlework industries: The Slow Stitching Movement, launched by international quilt and fiber art personality Mark Lipinski. With Mark as your inspiration and guide, The Slow Stitching Movement web seminar will prepare you for a higher form of creativity and important knit, crochet, and needle crafts. This web seminar will start June 25!

SLOW STITCH LOGO Join Mark Lipinski and the Slow Stitching Movement Web SeminarWith this webinar, you’ll learn:

  • Approach your yarn and needle projects in a totally different way.
  • Recharge your passion for patterns.
  • Engage the connection between your body, your fiber art, and your legacy.
  • Expand your creativity, self-esteem and even your spiritual journey.
  • Tap into your right brain, to train and develop your imagination.
  • Find the creative genius in you.
  • Implement your creative thought in today’s too-fast world.
  • Heal your life, emotions and boost your physical health.
  • Create groups and habits to support your creative vision.

If you’ve hit a creative wall, if you have more yarn and thread than you do inspiration, if all of your projects are beginning to look alike, or if you’ve been knitting, crocheting, and/or stitching for years and have nothing wonderful to show for it—The Slow Stitching Movement is for you.

Mark brings years of professional and personal experience to the seminar, as he explores with you informational and transformational message of The Slow Stitching Movement.

There will be an opportunity for discussion through a question-and-answer session during the web seminar, and after.

You will be hard pressed to find a more entertaining lecture and enjoyable quilting class than one taken with international quilt teacher and quilt fabric designer and creator and former Executive Editor of Quilter’s Home magazine, Mark Lipinski. Dubbed “the bad boy of quilting” by the international press.

We hope you slow down and join us!

About Mark Lipinski
As a designer, Mark’s work has been seen in McCall’s Quilts, Fons and Porter’s Love of Quilting, McCall’s Quick Quilts, Quiltmaker, American Patchwork and Quilting, Quilts and More, The Quilter, Irish Quilting, and Fabric Trends magazines and has been a guest on HGTV’s Simply Quilts. He has also launched a line of his own quilting patterns, called The Quilts of Pickle Road. Mark has been commissioned to design products and workshops for Island Batiks (Bali and California), M&S Textiles(Australia), Langa Lapu (South Africa), Wrights EZ Tools, Libas Limited Silk, Lakehouse?Fabrics, Northcott Fabrics, Maywood Studio, Andover Fabrics, Benartex Fabrics, and Prym Dritz.

Markport 1024x585 Join Mark Lipinski and the Slow Stitching Movement Web Seminar

In order to provide our customers with the most secure shopping experience possible, our sites are getting an important security update.

You are receiving this message because your current internet browser may be at risk of not being able to access our sites after June 17th.

To prevent any interruption, here are a few links with instructions to update to the latest browser version (or, for Internet Explorer users, update some security settings).

Switch to Google Chrome’s newest version
Switch to Firefox’s newest version
Mac Users: Update to Safari’s newest version
Internet Explorer users: download IE 11 or update security settings in your browser.


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Hurt Book Sale notice: Meet The Dressmaking Technique Bible

In the winter, you’ll find me knee-deep in quilting mode, but summer….summer is for easy, breezy garment sewing. And this summer, I’m hoping to beef up my garment-sewing know-how, with a little help from The Dressmaking Technique Bible.

This book is a must-have for the modern sewing library: 272 pages of clear illustrations, helpful how-tos and everything you need to whip your hemlines into shape, all for $14. Take a peek…and consider giving this book a home!

Adoption Notice Dressmaker Bible1 Hurt Book Sale notice: Meet The Dressmaking Technique Bible                Take advantage of prices up to 50% off and bring home a good book!


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Need A New Sewing Machine? HUSQVARNA VIKING is having the Biggest Sale of the Year!

HUSQVARNA VIKING is having  the Biggest Sale of the Year!

The biggest sale of the year is going on right now at HUSQVARNA VIKING retailers. Sewing, embroidery machines and embroidery software are up to 30% off MSRP June 1-14.

Click here to find the perfect machine for you!

Topaz40 embroidery abovewebb image1 1024x716 Need A New Sewing Machine? HUSQVARNA VIKING is having  the Biggest Sale of the Year!


Ruby Royale mom embroideringwebb image5 1024x636 Need A New Sewing Machine? HUSQVARNA VIKING is having  the Biggest Sale of the Year!

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Invest In Your Passion With 40% Off

Whether sewing is part of your work, your creative outlet, or simply a hobby that brings you joy and happiness, we share your love.

 Invest In Your Passion With 40% Off

I’ve been sewing since I can remember. For me, sewing is the perfect blend of creativity, analytical thinking, and the occasional math problem. There’s nothing quite like the sense of accomplishment as you finish the last stitch, try on a finished garment, pack a handmade bag for the first time or give someone a hand-sewn item that they treasure. It’s not until recent years that I’ve realized how important sewing is to me, how important it is to make time for my creativity (and ultimately myself), to stay inspired with classes and new information, to connect with this vibrant community of ours, to expand my skills.

Summer is an excellent time to invest…in yourself! And with our 40% sale, it’s easy.

Visit now through Sunday to take advantage of our 40% off Friends and Family deal. Just enter SSIA40 at checkout for 40% off your purchase. And do feel free to help us spread the word and connect online.

And, say hello to us on Facebook and Twitter!

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Happy Summer! From Creative Machine Embroidery!


FFSUMMER40 400x350 SSIA Happy Summer! From Creative Machine Embroidery!


We at Creative Machine Embroidery would like to extend our thanks to you with a 40% off discount at our Shop Sew it All website. All you have to do is enter the SSIA40 code and enjoy all the goodies you have been wanting to treat yourself to, or even treat someone else to a summertime gift.

Enjoy the sun and the sale!

Jessica Z Head Shot Cropped 200 150x150 Happy Summer! From Creative Machine Embroidery!






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TGIF and a Giveaway from CME

Did you see in the Creative Machine Embroidery magazine Mar/April 2015 issue that we have a giveaway of the wildly popular book Freehand Machine Embroidery by Poppy Treffry?

Well, we do! And here it is. This book will get you started on all sorts of fun machine embroidery projects. Poppy Treffry shares her design ideas, tips and techniques for making adorably cute projects.Poppy Treffry 2 2012 0x800 TGIF and a Giveaway from CME

Her book is filled with simple project ideas such as needles case kits, pin cushions and sewing kit books. She moves into more complicated projects like tote bags, quilts and backpacks. Each project has clear step outs and instructions. Plus, freehand machine embroidery is a great way to ease into other areas of machine embroidery.


Check out a few of the cute projects embellished with freehand machine embroidery (all images property of Poppy Treffry/D&C).

Freehand Machine Embroidery designs1 TGIF and a Giveaway from CME

Poppy bag TGIF and a Giveaway from CME

HappyHolsWashBagfromFreehandMachineEmbroiderybyPoppyTreffry1 TGIF and a Giveaway from CME


And, she makes it all so simple and easy to do. So, if you would like to be entered to win a copy of her book please make a comment below on your favorite projects to sew and embroider.

One winner will be picked on Thursday, April 30th and announced on Facebook fan page.

To check out more great books head to where you can take advantage of FREE SHIPPING!


head shot200 TGIF and a Giveaway from CME

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Bead Embroidery Giveaway!

This is for all of you embroidery enthusiast out there! Have you been noticing all of the lovely beaded embellishments right now? Everywhere I look! Handbags, Peter Pan collars, shoulder embellishments, ballet flats, denim jeans and statement necklaces, oh my! It is amazing what a few beads can do!

Sometimes I have the urge to sit down and work with my hands. Hand embroidery gives me a creative outlet for stress relief. The simple motions and small work space give me a piece of mind.  If any of you need a new hands on activity that won’t break the bank, bead embroidery might be for you. I will list a few of my favorite bead embroidery books to get you started or if you are experienced in bead embroidery, I will show you a motif book that will further your love in this creative outlet.

Bead Embroidery Stitch Samples

bead book 500w 243x300 Bead Embroidery Giveaway!


This is an amazing book for beginners! Inside, you’ll find a collection of 130 stitch patterns that incorporate beads, ranging from elegantly simple single motifs to complex all-over patterns to three-dimensional designs. Along with step-by-step instructions,  you’ll see numerous examples of how the authors have added these beaded motifs to hems, pockets, cuffs, collars, and handbags, or used them as home décor trim on pillows, curtains, and lampshades. The patterns inside emphasize beaded edgings and trims, as opposed to heavy, solid beaded fabric motifs found in other beaded embroidery books. You’ll be inspired and charmed as you discover endless ways to make lovely patterns with beads and stitchery. Available at the Interweave Store.

Bead Embroidery Stitch Samples: Motifs

Stitch Sample Motifs 225x300 Bead Embroidery Giveaway!

This book is the next step to beaded embroidery. This is a great book for beginners to advanced beaders. With 123 motifs that vary from elegantly simple single motifs, to complex all-over patterns, to 3-dimensional designs. Along with step-by-step instructions are numerous examples of how to use and place the motifs on hems, pockets, cuffs, collars and handbags; or as home décor trim on pillows, curtains or lampshades. Patterns emphasize beaded edgings and trims, as opposed to heavy, solid beaded fabric motifs found in other beaded embroidery books. Also available at the Interweave Store.

If the first two books sound inspiring and you cannot choose which one to buy first, I have a treat for you! They are available in a collection! At a great price you can get both Bead Embroidery Stitch Samples and Bead Embroidery Stitch Samples: Motifs at the Interweave Store.

Stitch Sample Collection 225x300 Bead Embroidery Giveaway!

Author Yasuko Endo makes craft and home décor designs and products for CRK Design. She has also appeared on a NHK program, Sutekini Handmade, where she presented bead embroidery stitch sample ideas and techniques. Yasuko is based in Japan.

 Guess what embroiders?! I have a copy of the Bead Embroidery Stitch Samples by Yasuko Endo to giveaway!! PRIZE TIME! 

To enter to win the prize all you have to do is answer the question below and a winner will be picked at random.

What is the one thing you would LOVE to embellish with bead embroidery (photos encouraged!)??

 Good luck and happy embroidering!!

Jessica Z Head Shot Cropped 200 150x150 Bead Embroidery Giveaway!-Jessica

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Embroidery Design Inspiration

Spring Stitching

The weather’s warming up and everything’s coming to life again! Including my inspiration. After the long, cold winter, the green of grass and new leaves and the chirping of birds has me thinking of a new grocery tote with flower embroidery, or kitchen towels with cute critters in pastel thread, or…

If you’re brimming with inspiration and looking for new embroidery designs, check out CME‘s new exclusive collections every issue, at

Like the Ribbon Garden embroidery collection:

CMEGRDN Embroidery Design Inspiration

Or the retro Diner Delights kitchen collection (featured on the May/June cover and project designed by yours truly):

CME DinerDelights Blog Embroidery Design Inspiration

(Coincidentally, you can also get the kit to make the cover project, which includes the fabric, place mat forms, rickrack and the entire Diner Delights collection.)

Visit for more embroidery inspiration, supplies and designs!

Happy Stitching!

Shoot 14091716805 150x150 Embroidery Design Inspiration


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Why Parisian seamstresses don’t get fat (even though they eat croissants)

French author Mireille Giuliano proclaimed years ago in her book that French women maintain slim figures even though they indulge in wine, bread, and cheese. I remember scoffing at that book and lumping it in with the rest of the “lose weight without even trying!” miracle-diet books. I’ll stick to my super-sized, fries-with-that American lifestyle, thank you very much.

Parisian seamstresses may be the one exception–or rather, the one group of French women who actually live up to Giuliano’s assertion. To create haute couture, with all of its detail and intricacy, and with such precision, must burn off the calories in at least one croissant. Heck, just embroidering a dress like this should burn off a bottle of wine, no?

f7964f6f51f168995df046ed8452212e Why Parisian seamstresses dont get fat (even though they eat croissants)

The (pregnant!) bride that closed the Chanel show during Spring 2014 fashion week. That’s an embroidered neoprene train, folks. Soak it in.

New York magazine actually described haute couture as “manual labor” when they peeked inside the Chanel workroom a couple years ago. (Which yes, it is, but talk about sucking the glamour out of Chanel with that phrase, “manual labor.” Show some respect.)

Hand embroidery takes time, patience, and a lot of concentration (at least for me). I feel like I must be breaking a sweat, but I don’t think I’ll be earning any Weight Watchers activity points from it (boo). So instead, I’m trying my hand at the projects in Artfully Embroidered, which uses vintage Japanese embroidery techniques on smaller scale projects that are just as beautiful as anything they’re cranking out over in Gay Parie.

You can grab a copy of Artfully Embroidered in the Sew Daily shop–pick it up and sew with me! We can still reward ourselves with chocolate croissant afterward, calories be darned!


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