Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Are you ready for IEC 2013?!



Internet Embroidery Club (IEC) from Martha Pullen!

The Internet Embroidery Club (IEC) is a calendar year membership (January through December) providing embroidery designs of the highest quality for members to download to their own computers. 

When you join, you will be able to download all the designs (January through December) of the calendar year for which you join. Once you sign up, you are automatically given 300 designs and each month a new design-of-the-month is revealed and sent to you! 

 For the price, the value of joining the IEC is phenomenal.

In addition to receiving email notifications as each new design is released, current IEC members will also receive special discounts on select embroidery CDs.

Members may purchase any of the past IEC years at anytime, and access to those designs does not expire after the year is over. Browse all of the designs from 2001-2011, then visit our online store to purchase any of those years.

On the new site, you can:

  • SUBSCRIBE to the brand new 2013 IEC
    • Do this before 12/31 & you can LOCK IN the low price of $49 for LIFE!

  • SHOP previous years' designs!
    • COMING SOON... individually priced designs & bundles!

  • EXCLUSIVE Member Benefits!  
    • Monthly Bonus Designs
    • Special Embroidery CD Pricing
    • Store Discounts

 Do not delay another moment!  Sign up, and take advantage of this awesome deal!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Black Friday and Cyber Monday Sew Deals

Black Friday and Cyber Monday
is coming soon…
 and Martha Pullen’s Store and Sew Beautiful magazine have pulled all the stops 
to make sure you get great deals for all your heirloom sewing needs.

Take advantage of low prices to get stocked up for Easter.

 Turquoise and Shrimp silk dupioni layered beneath organza create the 
canvas for Kari Mecca's lace appliqué technique coming in the 
January 2013, Easter issue due out in mid December.
I am going to cheat just a little here and give you a sneak peak at two of my favorite dresses coming up in the new Easter issue, due to release in mid December. Why not take advantage of Black Friday deals for your Easter sewing? When you’re ready to dive in, everything you need will be waiting on your sewing table, and you will be able to pat yourself on the back for buying early at the best prices. Use the Black Friday or Cyber Monday discount to stock up on beautiful shrimp silk or turquoise silk dupioni and some silk organza to make one or both of these designs. We promise, these are “easier-to-make-than-they-look” dresses. All of the step-by-step instructions for creating this lace look will be included in the January 2013 issue, and the pattern is “Fairytale Dreams,” new from Kari Me Away. Plan ahead, save now, and you’ll be ready to start on this amazing design as soon as your magazine arrives.

 Sweet Swiss Dot!!! 
This dress by Kathy Dykstra is the FREE PATTERN in our January 2013 issue.
Perhaps you favor a more traditional heirloom look and are thinking along the lines of dotted Swiss, or maybe heirloom batiste, which  you can snag for a special discount with a coupon from November 22-25. The FREE pattern next issue is perfect for heirloom fabrics, and it’s just your style. Designed by Kathy Dykstra, “Olivia’s Swiss Dots and Rosebuds” is fashioned with a unique, asymmetrical placket. This pattern will be provided on the pullout centerfold in sizes 2m to 24m, and the details include delicate little bullion roses and a sweet-and-easy smocking plate. After flipping through pages of beautiful batiste dresses shared throughout the upcoming issue, you’ll not only be ahead of the Easter planning rush, you’ll be ahead on your budget when you take advantage of our pre-season deals.


 All of these dresses were made using the "Pascale" pattern
Okay, I get it. It is Christmas time!! I apologize if pushing Easter at Christmas is putting a damper on your holly jolly spirit. So for you quick sewists who are just getting started on your holiday finery, we have lots of festive fabrics. Be sure to check out the rich scarlet red, wine, green and silver holiday silks for those amazing smocked portrait dresses. Don’t forget the great value in a “Pascale” pattern as well. You probably recognize the "London Bridge" dress in wine silk by Janet Gilbert from the current November 2012 issue (it includes a free smocking plate). In last year’s holiday Sew Beautiful (Issue #139), we featured our popular “Pascale” pattern in three different ways (pictured above). One was a winter wonder in white velveteen with black soutache trim; it included instructions for designing with soutache braid by machine. The other two were scarlet red silk dupioni dresses. One was smocked with an original design by Helen Lively (included in the magazine) and the other was an original bodice pattern by Khristal Jouett (included on the pullout centerfold). This issue was one of my very favorite back issues because it was packed with so many Christmas ideas. 

I still get calls about the free little “Elf Feet” smocking plate from the Chadwick Heirlooms pictorial (pg. 19). Another one of my favorite articles from that issue is the Sweater Refresher from Patricia Key. This designer is a genius at repurposing out-of-date sweaters into new, wearable art.  Her instructions are easy to follow, and so many people have discovered how fun it is to actually design sweaters using their sewing machine instead of knitting needles (a great recycling project for gift-giving). We still have a few of these back issues available and print copies of all back issues will be 50% off on cyber Monday; so don’t miss your chance to get one before they are all gone. 

Merry Sewing Season,
Kathy Barnard

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Did you also wonder....?? Twitter question answered!

Do you recall this article in our recent 
Ribbon Issue?

We were contacted via twitter by @SewShine, asking about the beautiful flowers that were shown in the pictures of this article, "Origami Ribbon Trim" by Sis Hutchison, but there were no instructions within the text.

I was happy to inform her that they were made with Kari Mecca's Whimsy Sticks!
We sell them online at our Martha Pullen Store.  It is a very simple technique, with instructions right on the package!

In fact, we even have a quick video you can watch that shows the technique, taught by Kari herself!

If YOU run across any questions about the magazine, a particular article or you just want to say "Hello," please do...

We love being "social" !!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Would you like to meet Martha?

You could WIN an ALL-EXPENSES-PAID TRIP to the Martha Pullen

PLUS: See your item FEATURED in Sew Beautiful magazine & website!




Share the love and care you put into all of your precious sewing creations with fellow Sew Beautiful readers!

You asked for it -- we provided!  We have expanded to include 7 categories!

We'd like to see the work you're most proud of in seven categories:
  • Christening Gowns or Christening Suits
  • Babies (Newborn to 24 months, non-Christening)
  • Children (2T to 6)
  • Children (7-14)
  • Adults (18 and up)
  • Quilting (bed quilts, baby quilts, lap quilts, wall hangings)
  • Sew Beautiful/Martha Pullen (Entries must be made from a Martha Pullen or Sew Beautiful pattern. This includes stand-alone patterns and patterns from the magazines and books.)
(All entries need to be made either by hand or machine in order to be eligible for entry. No purchased or ready-made entries allowed.)


The contest is open to artists in the U.S. and abroad. All entries need to be made either by hand or machine in order to be eligible for entry. No purchased or ready-made entries allowed. Employees or associates of F+W Media, Inc., Martha Pullen Company, Sew Beautiful or their immediate families may not enter. Competition sponsors reserve the right to reject work deemed unsuitable for publication or that does not meet above criteria.
All digital files must be submitted online. You may enter work in any and all categories; there is no limit to the number of entries you may enter. Image files cannot exceed 2MB. The file format must be JPEG. Please avoid using punctuation and characters when naming your files. If your work is selected as a winning entry, we will contact you about sending a hi-res replacement.
All entries are $50. A credit card, check or money order for the required jury fee (in U.S. funds drawn on a U.S. bank) must accompany entry. You may send one check to cover all entries. There will be a $10 charge for returned checks or declined credit cards. Credit cards will be charged within 90 days of contest deadline. Charge will appear as "F+W Contests."
Enter Online
DEADLINE: All entries must be postmarked no later than November 15, 2012.
Entries will be prejudged and finalists will be chosen by the judging panel from Sew Beautiful Magazine, Stitch, Craft Create Magazine and Martha Pullen Company. Award winners and honorable mentions will be selected by the jurors named above. All properly prepared entries will be viewed and judged. The jurors and editors reserve the right to re-categorize the entries.
All of the winners will be notified by December 31, 2012. The results will not otherwise be made public until they are announced in Martha Pullen's Newsletter and recognized on the Martha Pullen and Sew Beautiful websites. Non-winning entrants will not be individually notified of the results. Your cancelled check or credit-card charge will be notification for receipt of your entry.
Occasionally we make portions of our customer list available to other companies so they may contact you about products and services that may interest you. If you prefer we withhold your name, send a note with your name, address and the competition name to: List Manager, F+W Media, Inc., 4700 East Galbraith Rd., Cincinnati, Ohio 45236
*Economy class - continental US or not to exceed $1000 outside continental US


Monday, October 29, 2012

Turn Lace Scraps into Glowing Lace!

How many times have you finished a project & had leftover scraps of lace?  And usually, they are so small, there isn't much need for them, right?

Here is a quick and easy use for those scraps of lace that will easily brighten up a room!

Light up the autumn season with a collection of beautiful, lace-wrapped candles. This simple project will lend a delightfully eerie, yet elegant touch to your seasonal décor.

Glowing Lace
By Jessica Woodroof

Laces in cream, white and black (can be vintage or new)
Pillar and votive candles in cream, white and black
Glue stick
Paper towels
Scrap paper
Straight pins


1. Select an assortment of candles, and experiment with different looks by wrapping lace lengths around candles, temporarily pinning in place with straight pins. Once you have chosen your favorite lace-and-candle combinations, trim laces to appropriate lengths and unpin from candles. NOTE: Trim lace pieces a little bit longer than needed to avoid a gap between lace ends.

2. Lay a piece of scrap paper onto a flat work surface. Place a piece of lace, wrong side up, onto paper. Use a glue stick to generously coat back side of lace with glue. 

3. Carefully lift lace off of paper; press glued side of lace onto candle, wrapping lace all the way around. Use scissors to trim away any excess lace so that cut edges meet precisely end-to-end and lie flat against candle, creating a barely-visable seam. 

4. Wrap candle in a clean, dry paper towel. Place candle on its side on a flat, hard surface, and roll candle back and forth a few times to help adhere lace to candle and remove excess glue.  

5. Carefully unwrap candle from paper towel, making sure lace does not pull away from candle. Discard paper towel. Set candle aside and allow glue to dry before handling. NOTE: Glue may take several days to dry completely.

6. Repeat process with remaining candles to create a coordinating set.

Tips & Ideas
For a spooky, Halloween appeal, I tried to use simple, “unfussy” laces without many flowers. Vintage or stained laces can also help portray a mysterious feeling. 
I would advise working near a sink, as the gluing process can make your hands very sticky.
Thrift stores, yard sales and antique stores are great places to find vintage laces. You can also find a wide selection of new cotton laces in white, cream and black at
Be sure to always take extra care when burning candles, and never leave them unattended.

Jessica Woodroof is an artisan jewelry designer, handcrafter and homemaker residing in Huntsville, Alabama. She loves living a simple life with her wonderful husband Brian, and adorable cat Anna, in their lovely 1930s stone cottage. She spends her days baking bread, sewing, cleaning, decorating, gardening and creating whimsical pieces of wooden jewelry. You can find more of her work at and

Thursday, October 18, 2012

10k LIKES on Facebook!

Thank you!  Thank you!  

We love our fans, and to show you just how much, we are going to have a giveaway:

This magnifying table lamp will become your best partner when working with details. The combination of the 12w Full Spectrum Naturalight tube and the 3.5 in. lens will allow you to see details like never before. No more squinting, no more headaches, this Naturalight product will help you get the best result every time! And you will be surprised by how flexible the head is and how easy it is to position this lamp.

  • Small and powerful table lamp
  • 12w Natural light tube (energy saving)
  • 35 in. diameter lens (175X) with inset lens (4X)
  • Supplied with tube and lens cover
  • Height: 13.7 in.
  • MFG Brand Name : Daylight
  • MFG Model # : UN1040
  • MFG Part # : UN1040

You have until 11:59pm, Sunday, 10/21 to enter!  Click HERE & fill out the form.  

And remember to keep watching our Facebook page for new, interesting, & exciting material!

Go "LIKE" our Sew Beautiful Facebook page too, where there is magazine exclusive content, sneak peeks & insider tips from the pros!  

We love you and appreciate you, our FANS!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Book highlight: How to Price and Sell Your Crafts

Price Your Crafts Right – Sell Your Crafts Fast
Thinking about selling those crafts you've been giving away as gifts or maybe you are just running out of rooms to put them in? Sites like are reporting record sales of handmade items. But craft makers taking the initial leap into starting a home business share a burning question: "how much should I charge for my handmade products?"
James Dillehay, author of the new book, How to Price Crafts and Things You Make to Sell, says that the key question you need to focus on is this: "How will people pay for products like mine?"

Dillehay’s book offers a wealth of guidance into the proper pricing of crafts and unique personal creations. Here are some of his best ideas on getting it right quickly:

Know Your Production Costs:
1.Identify the material costs - know exactly what it costs you to make an item. Include all materials, even small stuff like thread, paint, accessories, and other items that may have cost you only pennies. Example: a handmade gift contains $4 worth of materials.

2.Determine the cost of labor - what your time is worth to you. If your personal minimum wage is $12 an hour, then multiply $12 times the hours it takes you to make one piece. Example: the handcrafted gift takes one hour to make for a labor cost of $12.

3.Identify all your overhead costs. Cover overhead expenses like rent, utilities, phone, etc.  Look at your monthly costs and divide it by the hours you work or the number of items you produce. Calculate a unit cost for overhead.

4.Calculate a total cost per unit. Add the material cost, cost of labor and overhead cost together. Example: $4 + $12 + $4 = $20. This is the minimum amount you must recover when you sell the item, but not necessarily your asking price.

Research the Market Price:

5. Identify similar products in the marketplace where you will be selling. Document the retail prices. Research prices for similar items online. Visit local craft fairs or retail stores. Talk to the owners and ask them what items like yours sell for and what they are willing to buy them for. Note: stores will usually double or triple their cost arrive at the retail price.

6.Decide if you can make a profit. If the average retail price of similar items is higher than your minimum recovery cost, you stand to make a profit. Go ahead and start selling.

7.Reduce your materials, labor and overhead costs so you don’t lose money. Stop and reconsider. Can you lower your costs? Can you make the item faster? If not, look at alternative products to make.

8.Improve the perceived value.  Increase the perceived value of your item by improving or enhancing any number of its core elements, packaging or the creator’s reputation. Photography, product samples, packaging, display, location, environmental qualities, media coverage, the creators’ qualifications and unique accomplishments and credentials, every and any known way to add uniqueness and quality to the product for the customer.

Don’t lower the price:
Resist lowering the price. Don’t think that you’ll sell more because you won’t. Unique handmade products command higher prices everywhere. People associate low prices with cheaply made items. In fact, you may have to raise an item’s price till you find the best selling price.

How to Price Crafts and Things You Make to Sell
James Dillehay

List $ 12.99 (trade soft cover) $4.99 (Kindle edition)
Published by Warm Snow Publishers
 Available online and from the publisher. For more information visit

About the author
James Dillehay is a professional craft artist, gallery owner, and author of nine books. He has been interviewed in The Wall Street Journal Online, Yahoo Finance, The Chicago Tribune, Bottom Line Personal, Family Circle, The Crafts Report, and many more including Entrepreneur Radio and HGTV.
James is founder of, a social network where craft artists can buy and sell for free.

What People Are Saying 

"There's so much valuable information in here that I highly recommend it to any crafter who'd like to make a profit on her wares." ~ H. Grove, Maryland, USA

"An excellent resource . . . a well-organized book is nothing without solid information and the book delivers here."  ~ The Crafts Report
“Once I found this book I said “this is exactly what I need!” ~ Lene Randol
 “Pricing your art is an impossible task that James Dillehay has totally solved. This book covers EVERYTHING you ever needed to know about how to price your handmade crafts.” ~ CB Burton
“Well put together and very informative, every crafter can benefit from this information.” ~ Michelle T.