Birdsong Bows: January 2012

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Entries for the "Love is in the Air" accessories challenge

Thanks to the 8 women who sent photos for our seventh challenge! The theme of this challenge is "Love is in the Air," and I asked participants to send a photo of a bow, hair flower, or other hair accessory that fits the theme!

There will be two awards! The first winner will be chosen by The winner will receive a $15 gift certificate generously provided by The Ribbon Retreat.

But there's another prize! The second way to win is to have your friends, family, Facebook friends, etc., vote for you! There's a poll in the upper right corner of my blog (in the sidebar). Ginger's bow landed in my Spam filter, which showed up late (totally NOT her fault), so I added her bow on Monday and had to add a separate poll below the main poll - if you'd like to vote for her, please note that it's right below the main poll. Voting will continue until 9:30 a.m. Eastern time on Saturday, Feb. 4. The winner will receive her choice of a free tutorial or 2 de-stash ribbon mixes from Birdsong Patterns! :)

Enjoy the entries! And thanks again for participating. I will post the winner here on Monday, Feb. 6! Please check back here and on the Birdsong Facebook page for an announcement of the winners.

From Amy:

From Ashley:

From Becky:

From Evelyn:

From Lora:

From Melina:

From Mindy:

From Ginger:

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Hair bow/fabric flower Challenge 7: Love is in the air

The theme for our seventh challenge is simple: Love is in the air! You may make a boutique bow or bow set, a headband, a bowband, a funky loopy bow, a fascinator, a hair flower -- basically, anything you've fashioned out of ribbon or fabric -- following the them of "love." The hair bow or flower must be made from a Birdsong tutorial or pattern. You can focus on making your accessory romantic, cute, elegant, or whatever style you choose!

There will be two prizes again. The first will be chosen randomly, by The winner of the random drawing will receive a $15 gift certificate from The Ribbon Retreat!

The second way to win a prize is through "Voter's Choice." I'll put all the bows on the blog and will host a poll in the sidebar beginning Saturday, Jan. 28. Invite your friends and relatives to vote for your bow! The winner of the Voter's Choice Award will receive a FREE e-book from Birdsong Bows and Patterns.

To enter, E-mail your best photograph of your finished product (either on a model or not) to me at deanna [at] by 2:59 a.m Pacific time (11:59 p.m. Eastern) on Friday, Jan. 27 (so, basically before you go to bed Friday night). Please keep your photos around 600 pixels wide, so that they're neither too big nor too small. And remember: They must be recognizably made using at least one Birdsong tutorial or pattern. No more than one entry/photo per contestant, please. If you're on Flickr, feel free to post a photo to the Birdsong Flickr Photo Group as well, for all to see!

Good luck! I can't wait to see your entries. :)

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

And the winner is....

The winner of the Jan. 17 "Fill in the blank" drawing is Maggie St. Jean! I used to select a "winner" in each of the 4 posts, and then had select the final winner from those four!

Maggie, you've won a $10 gift certificate to The Ribbon Retreat, and $10 off any order from Birdsong Patterns! Congratulations! Please contact me at birdsongbows [at] gmail [dot] com and I'll tell you how to collect your prizes!

Thanks to everyone who entered throughout the day - I really had fun reading your responses!

Here's mine - in case you're curious! My favorite time to sew and craft is when my kids are in school, or on Saturday mornings. My favorite part about making accessories is seeing my creations on my daughters or other little girls. When it comes to crafting/sewing, I'd love to learn more about surface and textile design - I've made many quilts, but would love to get into art quilting. And my personal style? Casual, but colorful. :)

Have a great one!

Photography Month! Photography makes the listing, Day 1

I am in love with fantastic photography! Successful online sellers, including those who sell on sites like Etsy, Artfire or their own sites, know that when it comes to grabbing a customer's attention, there's nothing like a crisp, clear photo of their product. Combine that with a cute, fresh, face - and - swoon!
This month I'm going to feature some of the great photographers I've had the honor of working with, and I'm also going to share some tips on how to make great photography "work" for your business, if you're a seller. So, sit back, grab a cup of tea or coffee, and enjoy!
Today I wanted to share some recent photos taken by Ashley Glasco Photography. I sent her a fabric flower fascinator from my latest pattern, the Scarlett flower, and let her do her magic.

Ashley combined my headband with the cute outfits created by Designs by Shine. If you make clothing or hair accessories for sale, it can be difficult to decide which listings to have modeled, since it's often not cost-effective to model one-of-a-kind (one-offs) or complicated designs that you know you'll sell only a few of. But if you've created an outfit or accessory with mass appeal, think about having it modeled!

And don't you love the cute heart accessory by The Polka Dot Pickle? Adorable for Valentine's Day!
Ashley Glasco is an on-location, natural-light photographer in the Richmond/Mechanicsville area in Virginia. Enjoy looking through her website!


Thursday, January 12, 2012

New Pattern: The Scarlett Flower

Birdsong's newest fabric flower pattern is the elegant Scarlett Flower! No sewing machine is required for this beginner's project. Use this beautiful flower as a hair accessory, on a purse, or a belt. You can also create it for every day use or special occasions like weddings! Enjoy this - it would make a great Valentine's gift as well!

Thank you to Christi Nelson of Rawsii for the beautiful photos of her baby girl!


Friday, January 6, 2012

A look back, and a look forward: Welcome 2012!

First - my look back. Not at my own year, but at the life of an avid sewist. My mother-in-law sewed her entire life, and dedicated herself to the craft after her three children were grown. She's suffering from Alzheimer's, and can no longer do what she was passionate about for years. Her health is declining, and she now has 'round-the-clock care at her home after a fall in November. Mr. Birdsong and our oldest daughter, pictured above, took the 4 1/2-hour drive to the Cincinnati area to visit her over the holidays.

They brought back some of her favorite things - a sewing machine, serger, and many, many sewing books. Some were written as recently as the 1990s, while others...well, we'll just say they're oldies-but-goodies.

I'm sad to admit that, while we shared a love for sewing and quilting, I've really had a hard time talking to her over the past year. It's just know what to say. Mr. Birdsong calls every day and my daughter tries, and I chime in here and there, but mostly I want to remember her the way she was, and not as she is now. I need to work on that; work on talking to her more (a good resolution, maybe).

I have been poring through her books, and really enjoy seeing and reading her copious notes, comments, and swatch libraries. I will learn a lot from her, even if she's not able to help in person:

Mixed among her sewing books was a glossy manual about this history of the Apollo missions, lol. Well, maybe it wasn't so mixed - maybe Mr. Birdsong brought it home "just because."

It's funny, because I had no interest in sewing until about 13 years ago, and then rushed to my mom for help. My mom is also a sewist, and even received a much-cherished Singer sewing machine for her high school graduation. I have that, too (so now I'm officially a 3-sewing machine, 2-serger house, yikes). I could not have imagined that someday I'd be sharing my sewing ability with others. Thank you, Mom!

For the past five years, Birdsong has been mostly about bows. In 2011 I branched into fabric flowers, and this year you'll see the addition of (you guessed it!) sewing patterns. (Yes, you've reached the "Looking Forward" part now.) They'll be fun and easy to make, even if you've just started sewing. At heart, I'm a craft and accessories sewer. I've made quilts for 10 years and love making useful items and accessories. You'll enjoy sharing what you've made with your children, and showing them around your house. In between I'll also keep creating popular flower and bow tutorials, because we all need flowers in our lives!

This blog will also undergo some small changes very soon - look for a new page design, advertising options and a great new site where you can get your tutorials instantly, without having to wait for me to wake up in the morning! Additionally, I'll be beefing up my blogging schedule and already have another free flower tutorial to add within the week. ;)

Have a blessed 2012, everyone! I can't wait for the ride, and I'm so glad you've decided to join me.