Fun with Friends in the NYC Fabric District

Every year after the big BBQ, no matter what, we go to the Fashion (Fabric) District to score some fabric and trim!  Our mission was to invade Pacific Trimming (my absolute favorite trim, buttons and findings store).


You’ll know you’re at the right place when you see the big arse orange button in the front window.


Connie has been helping me find the best goodies in town for several years.  Years ago while shopping at Pacific Trimming I accidentally left behind one of my big bags full of trim.  When I realized, I called and Connie said she had it and would hold it for me until I was back in the city.  For that, I am beyond loyal.  Whenever I bring my out-of-town friends on a fabric shopping adventure, the first place we stop is there!


Lady M™ (aka Myrinda of Fabric Hound) has never missed a trip in the last 5 years!  Here she is special ordering a top secret item.


My dear friend, Jenn (aka Peppermints and Petticoats) recently moved from Canada to New Jersey.  This was her first time to the big BBQ and also her first time out shopping the District with me.  I think she might have been a bit overwhelmed with all the choices.  But the good news is now that she lives closer, we’ll be able to go fabric shopping in the city often!

Ok…now for the loot!

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I used to go to MJ Trimmings and really loved all their stuff.  However, I can find a lot of the same things at Pacific for a lot less.  Some of the rhinestone and glass buttons were only $1 each!

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Of course I needed to restock my rhinestone buckle supply.  And with Pacific’s selection, I felt like I hit the jackpot!  You can get them for $2 (standard ones) and even the fancy Chez ones for $10!

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I found some awesome trims at great prices!  I had to get the polka dot pleated ruffles with black lace edging, a hologram ruffled elastic, chiffon elastic with orange tinsel edging, some soft sparkly pink trim, a double gathered net trim and some pink/brown zebra ribbon.

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And check out these beautiful velvet ribbons I couldn’t pass up!

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After leaving Pacific, we stopped into a few other stores where I found some beautiful silk shantung in bright pink and aqua.  I even scored a $3 a yard black textured net with rhinestones!  But the biggest find of the day was this gorgeous silver metallic open-work fabric encrusted in sequins and crystals for less than 1/2 price (originally $26/yard which I talked the seller down to just $10/yard)!

Definitely a successful adventure!  Especially when I can do it with my friends!

P.S. – I know many of you are waiting to hear about the big BBQ which was held Saturday, August 1st!  Let’s just say, I’ll need two blog posts to fill you in with all the details!  Stay tuned!


How CPSIA Impacts Small Businesses

Yesterday, the House Small Business Committee, Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight held a hearing on The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act and its impact on small businesses.

Rick Woldenberg has a post up about the hearing and subsequent press release of the committee.

In other news, the CPSC voted yesterday on  NAM’s request for stay of enforcement on Tracking Labels.  It was a split decision between Nancy Nord and Thomas Moore…ugh!  That means it was denied!  NAM says labeling fosters confusion.  More posted on Amend the CPSIA here.

Oh…I’m missing Quilt Market with Lady M™ and Mary the Craft Addict™ this weekend!  I should be there in Pittsburgh, but I’m not.  DRATS!


And a big HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Patty Young (aka ModKid Boutique)!  She, too, will be at Quilt Market (Booth #2531) having a blast without me!  Be sure to stop by her booth and check out her new Mezzanine fabric line for Michael Miller!

With friendship,


organdonormiracles Sew Much Fun Sweepstakes


Enter HERE!


CPSIA–Just When You Thought it was Safe to Get Back to the Sewing Room…


Guidance on the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) for Small Businesses, Resellers, Crafters, and Charities

Nothing like waiting until last minute?  Unbelievable!


Not sure how the rest of you feel, but this whole CPSIA stuff continues to mentally and physically DRAIN me!  I spend a tremendous amount of time reading, bewildered, rereading, twittering, disseminating information, testing, retesting, and banging my head against the wall.

It has all knocked the life out of me.  Some think it’s no big deal.  But the reality of it is another story.


Read the latest 7 items from the CPSC from this past Thursday and Friday.  Now before you get all excited and think you are off the hook, perhaps you should read some of the thoughts around the web:

Fashion-Incubator:  3 Days Until National Bankruptcy Day

Senator DeMint:  Congress Turns Toy Story into Nightmare for Small Business

Rick Woldenberg:  The Emperor Has No Clothes

Rick Woldenberg:  CPSC Commissioners Speak Out

Rick Woldenberg:  CPSIA More Serious Message

Overlawyered:  CPSIA Roulette

Overlawyered:  What Will Be Enforced?

Overlawyered:  CPSIA Fifty Stars and an Asterisk

Overlawyered:  CPSIA Chronicles February 10th

The Common Room:  There’s a Difference Between a Policy and a Law

The Common Room:  CPSIA and State Attorney General

The Common Room:  Open Letter to NRDC

Shopfloor:  Ambiguous Enforcement-Certain Disruption

CPSIA by Numbers (Part 1):  How Much Safer Will CPSIA Make Us?

CPSIA by Numbers (Part 2):Stochastic Approach

CPSIA by Numbers (Part 3):  Scary Sounding Chemicals


(Note:  Yes, I did eat the tires off my first carriage….LOL!)

Honestly, I don’t have a game plan yet.  I rented an XRF gun to lead test my boys’ clothing line and everything else in my sewing studio (over $400/day).  All fabrics, elastics and trims passed.  Problems occurred with some snaps and zipper heads (thankfully I have lead-free substitutes).  Not sure if the reflection of the silver on these items gave me false-positive results.  So what I’ll need to do now is have these items in question re-tested by a professional (more $$$).

But the good news is I can continue to sell for the next year.  Yet, unless the CPSC decides to allow component testing next year, my business won’t be able to survive the high cost of third-party lab testing.  Kathleen of Fashion-Incubator sums up how I feel.

With friendship,




Design Your Own Ultimate Sewing Room Contest

C O N T E S T       H A S        E N D E D ! ! !


Can’t believe I forgot to mention this!  Have you entered the / Craft Stylish Ultimate Sewing Room Contest yet?  There’s over $7,000  in prizes!  Prizes include:

FabricComGiftCard Shopping Card Value – $1,500

Baby Lock

Baby Lock Ellure Sewing Machine Value – $2,499

Reliable Corporation IronMaven

Reliable Corporation IronMaven™ J490A Value – $399

Reliable Corporation C81 - Vacuum & Up-Air Pressing Table

Reliable Corporation C81 – Vacuum & Up-Air Pressing Table Value – $499

Fabulous Fit Dress Forms Pro Series® Misses Regular Form

Fabulous Fit Dress Forms Pro Series® Misses Regular Form Value – $687

Sylvia Sewing Cabinets Model 810 work table

Sylvia Sewing Cabinets Model 810 work table Value – $1,099.95

American & Efird

American & Efird Mettler Thread 28 Spool Gift PackValue – $82.10

Threads magazine

1-Year subscription to Threads magazine Value – $32.95

Threads Fitting DVD Series

Threads Fitting DVD Series Value – $99.95

Threads Industry Insider Techniques

Threads Industry Insider Techniques Volume 1 & 2 Value – $59.90

The Best of Threads DVD-ROM

The Best of Threads DVD-ROM Volume 1 & 2 Value – $99.90

Here’s the Official Rules.  Hurry–the contest end December 31, 2008!

Here are the two sewing room designs I entered:



Design Your Own Ultimate Sewing Room NOW!  Check out the sewing room gallery to see what others have created.  Creating a sewing room online is so simply—really.  Go do it now!  You never know if you’ll be one of the winners, KWIM?


Sew Urgent – Help Save My Daughter’s Life


>>>>>>>>CLICK HERE<<<<<<<<<<


Things continue to be difficult.  But where there is life, there is hope. 

I’m forcing myself to blog so I can update all my dear friends and family about what is going on with my sweet Sunshine Girl, Marielle, as her kidneys fail.  It looks like we are on the way to the local emergency room again tonight–she’s in terrible pain and a bit lethargic.

After continued difficultly getting calls returned and kidney donor evaluation packages send to those who have come forward to donate their kidneys, we’ve given up on the Philadelphia hospital of ever finding a living kidney donor.  They’ve recently told us they will only test family members and the closest of friends.  They’ve taken it upon themselves to decide who our friends are.  Philadelphia has only tested 3 donors in 4 months.  To say I am furious is an understatement.


But there is hope.  We are in the process of transferring Marielle’s care to NY Presbyterian-Columbia University Hospital (NYP) in hopes their additional living-donor kidney programs will save her life.  Not only will NYP consider family members as donors, but are willing to evaluate EVERYONE (friends, associates and kind strangers) who wants to donate a kidney.  That’s right…EVERYONE regardless of blood type, antibody mismatch, age, etc.  They offer several kidney donor options for us:

Compatible Living Donor

Incompatible Donor Program

Paired Donor Exchange Program

Deceased Donor Program

Marielle will only match 1 in 50 people in the general population (average person matches 1 in 2). I  am asking EVERYONE who has ever loved a child as deeply as I do my daughter to please consider being a living-kidney donor to her. You might be the one who can save my daughter’s life.

If you would like to receive a donor consent form to see if you could be a potential donor, please print out this form:


Then send it to Joan Kelly either by email at or fax (212) 305-9642.  Be sure to put MARIELLE CARROCCIO as the Potential Recipient’s Name.

Please pass this information along to anyone and everyone.

I continue to be comforted by the tremendous amount of love and support from all of you.  Thank you seems to fall short.


Happy Halloween

Missing My Clique


All my sewing buddies went to the Houston Quilt Market this past weekend.  I was teary-eyed when I received a call from Mary, Lady M™ (pictured above next to a DIVA license plate…LOL) and Sheree.  I’ll definitely be joining up with them at the next market!

I even missed my buddy, Diana’s, wedding the weekend before.  While she and Anthony exchanged vows on a boat cruising the New York Harbor, I was sitting outside the Children’s Hospital in Philadelphia hoping the helicopters landing on the hospital roof might be the kidney my daughter so desperately needs.

I Can See Clearly Now

We made it back home early Tuesday night.  We drove about 100 miles back to our home in Staten Island, NY.  We started off at Exit 3 of the NJ Turnpike where there was a torrential downpour.  I got off at Exit 4 wondering how in the world I was going to drive in the terrible rain.  Marielle convinced me to get back on the Turnpike to beat the rush hour traffic.  When we got to Exit 5, I noticed the lighted driving advisory–CAUTION – SNOW AHEAD.  WTH?  Yep!  Here was heavy SNOW driving through PA and NJ.  Finally when we made it to our Exit (#10), the snow had turned back into rain.  What a LONG drive!

Still No Match


Yesterday we got the results of my youngest sister’s kidney donor testing–NOT a match.  To say we were all disappointed is an understatement.   I’m so proud of my sister as I know she was terrified at the thought of donating her kidney, but still was willing to do so.

My nephew is the next to be tested.  He should have his blood test tubes arrive by Monday.  Would you believe he just received his kidney donor evaluation package TODAY?!  He had requested it on October 9th!!!  The hospital admitted to sending it on October 17th.  Really?  You’d think they would speed the process along considering my daughter is in the final stage of kidney failure (she has just a mere 6% function left!!!).  Don’t they know how to use Federal Express?  Heck, what about USPS Priority Mail?  Guess not.


Moving along to happier things…When I returned home, I found a big box from Traci of Bloom Design filled with treasures of our BOO Swap!  YOU ROCK TRACI!  She sent all of my favorite things…


My first love….PEEPS and my 2nd favorite, DOTS!


Check out this awesome EYEBALL Truffle Lollipop!  ROTFL!


She even sent me a beautiful Halloween coffee mug…


and the coolest Skeleton Brew (aka Hot Chocolate)!


I laughed so hard when I saw the Potion Powders in 3 frightful flavors-Crushed Toads, Potion #13 and Eye of Newt!


But oh my!  The Lindt Chocolate Truffles filled with White Chocolate are too delicious to share!


Speaking of Halloween, because my daughter was hospitalized for a good part of this month, I never got around to putting out all my handmade ceramic Halloween decorations.  Not a single thing.


Mr. Diva™ offered to take the 5 huge Rubbermaid crates out of the attic and unwrap all of my precious decorations.  However, I’d cry if he broke any of them, so I passed on his offer (see last year’s disaster below).  This will ensure I will still have my complete collection of Halloween decorations next year, KWIM?  And the other good thing is I don’t have to pack them all back up tomorrow!  Perhaps I can get an early start of Christmas decorating…LOL!


Hope everyone gets plenty of sweets for Halloween!


Sew Much More Pink Sewing Goodies

Are you a sewing junkie enthusiast like me who drools when you find a cool sewing notion, fabric, trim or gadget?  Yes, I love a good find, but it’s so much sweeter when it’s PINK!  KWIM?

So I thought I’d share some things you might enjoy…


Pink Measuring Tape Ribbon


50 yards of 2 1/2″ Wide Pink Elastic


Hot Pink Picot Edge Elastic


1,000+ Pink Braided Knot Buttons


Imported Pink and Red Flower Fabric


25 yards of Pink Polka Dot Netting


Pink Crocheted Apple Embellishment



Pink Atlas Sewing Machine


Pink Sovereign Sewing Machine


Pink Baby Ballet Slippers to Embellish


Pink Rhinestone Buttons

Happy Sunday Sewing!

With friendship,



Sew…F is for Fabric Sourcing

Fabric Sourcing

When designing a clothing line, you’ll need to find fabrics and order sample fabric yardage.  Sample fabric yardage is important as you’ll need it to test the color, texture, shrinkage, fade, drape, etc.

Not all fabric is available for reorder or permitted to be used in manufacturing.  I knew I couldn’t use Heather Ross’ licensed prints as she uses them for a line of pajamas.  Still couldn’t help but salivate, KWIM?



Neither could I use this awesome Springs’ licensed NASCAR print as it’s not permitted in manufacturing.  Apparently, there’s a bedding company that has exclusive rights to it…ugh!


Some prints are only available to quilt stores for resale to the home market.  I found this to be the case of many fabrics I wanted such as RJR Fabrics and Marcus Brothers.


Others are available, but cannot be reordered.  I was disappointed to learn Robert Kaufman, although they have some yardage available, will no longer be printing their blue camouflage fabric.  It matched another camouflage fabric in my line perfectly.


Many fabrics are simply discontinued by the time you go to production.


Thankfully we have the Internet and Google…I can’t imagine what clothing designers did 20 years ago if they lived outside of the main fashion districts, KWIM?  Anyway, start by Googling wholesale fabric, fabric manufacturer or fabric converter.  Steer clear of fabric jobbers.  They usually have end lots, discounted fabrics and cannot reorder fabric for production.

Here’s some links to help you in your search:

Infomat Fabric Company Listings

Apparel Search

The Cottonworks’ Global Fabric Directory

DMOZ Textile Listings

Fabric Link’s Fabric Company List

Canadian Fabric Sources

Virtual Garment Center’s Textile Company Listings

Davidson’s Textile Blue Book

Fashiondex’s Fabric Directory

Once you find what you’re looking for, call or e-mail the fabric company.  First introduce yourself and tell them what you are trying to source (color, weight, type, etc.).  Ask about their ordering minimums, wholesale pricing and whether fabric is able to be reordered for production.

If you can work within their perimeters, then ask for fabric swatches, color cards (both free) or purchase sample yardage.  Sample yardage often costs a little more than wholesale pricing, so expect to pay it.

You can also go to Textile Shows.  Before going, check out Fashiondex’s How To Shop the Fabric Show.

LA Textile Show (TALA)

Textile America

Material World


Tex World

Premiere Vision



Fashion Incubator wrote a great post about How to Buy Wholesale Fabric.  Check it out!

Fabric Sourcing is VERY time-consuming.  Just when you think you’ve found the perfect fabric, POOF!  It’s gone and you have to start your search all over again.  Happy hunting!

With friendship,



The Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER DIAMOND Sewing and Embroidery Machine is Unveiled….DROOL!


The Designer Diamond™ has just been unveiled by Husqvarna Viking.  If my currency conversion is correct, it should retail at approximately $7,000.00 USD.

Now anyone who knows me, knows I just love Diamonds…so I REALLY must stop myself from stumbling by my local Husqvarna store and putting one of these beauties in my trunk.  Really.

Truth be told…Mr. Diva™ would buy one of these for me in a heartbeat.  All I would have to do is look at him a certain way casually mention it.  But if I am honest with myself, I know I just don’t need it (I already have 6 Vikings).  I may WANT it…but the purchase of yet another Husqvarna sewing machine would be pure greed overkill.  I think my next sewing machine purchase will be an industrial coverstitch machine…yep.  However, I’m thinking it might be best to get the four Industrial straight stitch machines out of my garage and put them to use before I purchase another machine, KWIM?

Happy Sewing!


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