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February 2012

January 2012

Maxi Dress Pattern

So we have been hard at work making this new pattern and after lots of sweat, blood, tears and sleepless nights we are ready to reveal to you... The Maxi Dress.

Pat designed this dress thinking that the simplicity of this dress is what makes it beautiful. With an empire dress and contrasting band, the Maxi Dress will surely impress.

Take a look for yourself....


This pattern is super easy to sew


Looks great on all shapes & sizes... Comes from X small to XX Large


Use different collections to acheive different styles and looks...


Now check out our beautiful video with this pattern...


This pattern is presented in a PDF format... but not the downloadable ones; the Maxi Dress pattern consists of a CD with a 40-page PDF file filled with instructions supported by full color diagrams and step-by-step pictures.

Plus, the real-size printed paper templates are included! You don't have to print and tape pages together.

So basically, you pop in the CD to your computer and you're all set to start sewing!

Available now LQS or online 

Happy Sewing!!!


Pat Bravo & Team, XOXO

Bari J. introduces LillyBelle


Hello friends!

Since I've known her, Bari J. is an artist that has been reinventing herself in every way. She describes her style as "funky vintage" and I completely agree with her, but there's more than that. She is connecting with a large group of quilters that love "the vintage arts-and-crafts movement" and are not easily inspired by fabric collections these days.

LillyBelle, her first release with us, encompasses this concept. Here is a video preview. Enjoy!


Let us know what do you think. Are you as excited as we are?

Don't forget we will have a worldwide live Twitter chat tomorrow 1:00 PM eastern time, using #LillyBelle. You are all invited! Bari J. and I will be answering all the questions you have about LillyBelle and her joining Art Gallery Fabrics. Details to participate here.

Not on Twitter? You can still join the chat by posting your questions on our Facebook Event Page.


Love, Pat

We present to you.....


Every month we feature a "Sewing Room of the Month" and in January we would like to present to you ....  Michelle McCarthy Manteiga from  Stitch a Wish Designs. Below she shows us the transformation from playroom to sewing room and gives us details on why and how she did it. Kudos to her for exceptional organization in a small space :)


My new space – take IV

I admit that I do change things in our home. Often. I don’t know if it’s because my Mom was always moving furniture around and redecorating our home as a kid.

I really loved it when she did. I remember feeling so excited when she would change my bedroom around. The first night sleeping in my newly changed space was always so exciting and new!

My Dad would also change our home on a whim.  He would knock out a wall, add a new room and that wasn’t an out-of-the-ordinary-kinda-thing in our home.

Exciting for a little kid right?!?

The anticipation of what it would look like?

What else we could change?

Fun memories for me for sure.

Well, my in-home business and crafting space was getting tight. I suppose I was just outgrowing my space. AGAIN!

When I first started my lil’ in-home business, I started it sewing at our kitchen table. Then I moved into a little corner of our bedroom. And yet again into the corner nook of my husband’s office.

OLD SPACE - { My husbands office, my little space }


{ SWD in my husbands office }

{this little closet held my supplies}

My husband’s office worked well for a while, but it was getting tight. And lately, my husband has been working more and more out of his in-home office.

I always feel so badly when I have to lightly knock on the office door or quietly sneak in for supplies. Or I find the door is locked and he is on a conference call so I wait.

And roll my eyes.

I found myself getting very frustrated and unproductive.

I didn’t really want to sew because I knew it would be so much work, moving my machine out of the office and back to my original space ~ our kitchen.

I needed another space.

So after spending the summer with my kiddos, I realized that they really didn’t spend much time at all playing in our playroom.

And with 5 people, 2 dogs, a cat, a bunny, a bird and multiple fish, real estate is pretty tight around here.

I mean, not to sound like Debbie Downer or anything, but they didn’t really use the room.

They wanted to be in the kitchen, or living room, running around and snacking.  Coloring at “their own stool” and hanging with me or my husband.

Or they would play in their room, which is fairly large.

And it’s upstairs so it’s quiet. For a little bit.

Honestly, they like to be where we were, which is lovely, but sometimes this Mama needs a moment.

A moment of quiet.  A moment to think, to breathe or to use the bathroom in peace.

You understand right?!?

I recently broke the news to them that they failed the test (I didn’t say that exactly, but you get where I’m going). I told them I would redecorate, move my desk in, move the piano out, keep the television and reorganize the entire closet, leaving their crafts, Barbies and a handful of toys they actually play with. They were okay with that.

They were actually super helpful sorting through all of the “stuff”.

We sorted like this:

Keep.  Toss.  Donate.

Next, we went to pick out a wall color.

Here is where we had different opinions.

The girls wanted bright colors like purples, blues, yellows, even orange!

I knew I wanted a more neutral color because I didn’t want to do this again anytime soon.

We finally decided on Benjamin Moore’s – Sterling, a light cool grey color {after bribing them with ice cream cones}.

I also decided to add a chair rail, which I am very proud of if I do say so myself.

My husband showed me how to use the Miter Saw and it was surprisingly easy to do!

The chair rail wall beneath is an oops white mix I found discounted at the store, also Benjamin Moore.

So, here is the transformation.

I forgot to take a bunch of pics during because I was in my “zone”, you get that.



{I added fabric drapes in place of doors and kept everything off the floor}


I just love knowing where everything is and not being too cramped.


I have since added a crown molding to the top of this blue cabinet.  It was a challenge, cutting crown molding isn’t an easy task! I think I messed up two 8′ pieces to get this right.  Exhausting I tell ya.

But here is how it looks now…


 And with new pulls sprayed off-white.





{I love these big b&w pics of my kiddos}

The kiddos still have their TV and game consoles….

{ after - thread, tulle and more! }

 Originally I was thinking that I would get 2 bean bag chairs (since we already have one), but after researching them and seeing their $100+ price tags, I decided to go another route.

I found some large, super soft dark grey floor pillows at Target on clearance for only $11.00 a piece!

So I bought 3 of them and a soft body pillow.

The kids just love tossing them on the floor in front of the T.V. on a weekend night to eat popcorn and watch a movie.

And they don’t take up much room at all since you can stack ‘em on top of each other, they fit perfectly in a small corner space.

Speaking of spaces, here is my new work space… My-space-ahhh

{ after }

Since the “after” pictures, I found this little side table at Savers and decided to bring ‘er on home for a makeover.



I could tell she was a “she” right away with those curvy legs and pretty wooden flower embellishments.

She was just way too pretty to leave behind.

I gave her a new paint and stain job and she was just perfect for my new space.


I spray-painted the brass colored pull a pretty blue…

So things have changed a bit.

Some may say that I “stole” this space from my poor children. I disagree.

We are all happy with the new space.

I don’t consider it “my space” at all, we still call it the “playroom”.

“My office” just sounds formal and too possessive.

Stitch a Wish Designs Headquarters ??? While I like it, sounds much to much like a factory.


What have I learned since this makeover ??? I have learned that we are all happy with order. And organization, even though it comes few and far between with our busy lives and schedules.

We like to keep “stuff” just in case we may need it, and we like to know where to find it.

Everything should have it’s own home.

THAT is how this space is.

At least for now.

And I am thrilled with the “after”. And you know what “they” say ~

“When Mama’s happy, everybody’s happy!”

Gotta love that saying!

This was indeed the most exhausting project I have done to date.

Probably because I wanted it done yesterday, so I pushed myself for a week straight.

Sometimes 6+ hours at a time without a break.

However, it is my most gratifying as well.

Truthfully, I didn’t want it to take a week although I gave myself till mid-October.

I hate things to take that long.

I am impatient, have I mentioned that before?

I love my guys.

Thanks for stopping by!

... and THANK YOU Michelle for inviting us to your space. We think it's beautiful and hope that a lot of creative projects will be inspired by that space.

*** Post was taken and shortened for content purposes but you may read the post in its entirety on her blog:



P.S. Project Challenge 2012 PRIZES!

Ooopsss, ooopsss, and more ooopsss.... Our apologies to you!


Well because we forgot to announce what the prizes for each of the monthly challenges will be as well as the FINAL GRAND PRIZE for the winner that completes the most projects and makes the most beautiful project of the year!!!!

Sooo.... here they are!

MONTHLY PRIZE: bundle of 10 half yards and a surprise gift!


(not actual bundle.. styles/collections will vary)


Grand Final Prize: A brand new, super cool .... BROTHER PROJECT RUNAWAY Limited Edition SEWING MACHINE! (or equivalent)

Brother_ce_5500prw-400-400(ohhhh.... ahhhhh.... LOVE IT.... MAKE IT WORK... lol)


XOXO, Pat 

Challenge # 1 – Heat Therapy Pillow

Get those sewing machines out because the challenge is here…Projectchallenge_logoAfter a month of running around shopping, wrapping, decorating, partying and well overall living it up we decided that the first challenge should address this need. This therapy pillow is good for for relieving those sore and stiff muscles after the holiday season.

Heat the pack for 1 or 2 minutes in the microwave for a hot pack that will loosen up tight muscles, or place one in a plastic bag and toss it in the freezer to be used as a cold pack to relieve swelling.


  1. Join Facebook event to enter.
  2. Must use Art Gallery Fabrics (prints, blenders or solids, doesn't matter. We love them all! LOL).
  3. Must have minimum of 1 raw-edge applique shape (remember: KIS -not the last S because you're not!)
  4. Size doesn't matter in this case. Furthermore, if you feel Holiday exhausted like us, it's better to make many for all your aching muscles
  5. Must be creative (the more daring and bolder the better)


What you will need:

  1. Main Fabric: we used our Moorish Rug Aqua from the Bazaar Style Collection. 
  2. Accent Fabric (applique letter): we used Gems Ocean from the Bazaar Style Collection
  3. Muslin Fabric for the filler
  4. Double stick lightweight fusible applique interfacing


  • Basic: Rice, Beans, Buckwheat
  • Stimulate: Coffee beans
  • Aromatherapy: add aromatherapy oils to flax-seed and let dry before putting into bag. Another aaahhh.... choice is a few lavender dried flowers



Our Finished Product:


   (ohhhhh soooo soothing...)



   (notice the bag is not full and that will allow the pillow to conform to your body)


Tips: Do not over fill bag with filler. This will allow your bag to be molded and make it more comfortable.

Remember that this challenge runs throughout January.

Good luck and may your thread be strong and your machine be speedy!

Get set. Ready. Go!


XOXO, the AGF team