Thursday, December 27, 2012

Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays from our house to yours.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Winner of What Made You Smile Today

And the winner of the what made you smile today is Karen.
Karen said:
The memories that came to me as I read your post make me smile. I'd love to win the fabric and pattern to make the tree for my daughter's teeny, tiny US Army barracks room so far away from home.
December 5, 2012 5:22 PM

Monday, December 10, 2012

Guest Blogger

I am a guest blogger on Fat Quarters' blog - The Jolly Jabber.
Check it out here.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Me Time

Every year I put a lot of time and effort into decorating our home for the holidays.
By the time I get around to doing something for my studio I have run out of steam.
I know I could just hang a wreath on the door and call it good but for some reason I feel  a wreath on my studio door is just not creative enough - on a studio door it might even be considered boring. 

 I always end up doing nothing...I guess that would be NO creativity and REALLY boring.

Doing nothing might not be so bad if I still had the beautiful old original doors.
Nothing says ugly and uninviting as an aluminum door.

This past week while shopping in Minneapolis I spotted a manikin 
all decked out in Christmas attire setting in front of a clothing store. 
She was so stickn' cute that I decided I must make one for the studio. 
If I was up to speed on technology I would have been able to snap a picture
 from my cell phone for all of you to see.

 Unfortunately my sad little dated phone does not have those capabilities - but I keep her because 
I like her. She is my favorite color 
and it still works for its original intended call for help when I am stranded on the highway.

 Yesterday I decided to take a half of a day off for some Me time to make a festive manikin for my studio.
I had a manikin as I sometime use one for market display.

Instead of using fresh greens for my lady's skirt as the shop in Minneapolis did, I opted to use parts of a vintage white Christmas tree that I purchased a couple of years ago at a vintage shop.

 I really wanted one of those vintage Christmas corsages 
your grandmother used to wear on her coat lapel during the holiday season. 
If you have time to spare you can buy this corsage here.

I could not find one in the local antique shops 
and I did not want to wait for one to arrive via mail 
so I opted to make my own with ribbon, greens, and bulbs.

 The shop in Minneapolis used burlap for their bodice. I made my bodice from a vintage piece of velvet. I was trying to have a Project Runway moment by draping the fabric on the manikin. They make it look so easy on PR. Well not so. I struggled. I added rosettes  along the seam line of the skirt to cover up the raw edge as no sewing was used on this dress - just pins. Joy - yes I have named her Joy - worried that the rosettes would make her hips look big - I assured her they did not.

Here she is all finished and looking very festive for the holiday season.
In my opinion Joy is not boring.
She makes me smile every morning as she greets me at my studio door.

What has made you smile lately?
Leave a comment telling me what has made you smile lately and you will be eligible to win a Merry Medley Charm Pack™ and the pattern to make this tiny tree using the Charm Pack. It is super easy and  there is still plenty of time to get it done to enjoy during the holidays. If you don't get it done this year - well Christmas will come again. You have until midnight December 12th to leave a comment.

Keep smiling.
From my Heart,

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Facebook and Winners

Big news - Pieces From My Heart now has a Facebook page! Yep we are finally up to speed with the rest of the world.

"Like" us here to keep up with the weekly happenings at Pieces From My Heart.

And now onto the reason you really stopped by this blog

I usually have generate numbers to be my winners.

However, because there were some interesting stories that I wanted to share with you, I decided I would hand pick the winners. Here are the winners - all with an interesting story.

And the winners are:

Fourth place winner is a Karen O. who has ties to Cheetos. She works for the company that makes the cheese coating. Very important job, as without the cheese coating there really would not be a Cheeto.

Karen will win an Everlastings Charm Pack™, a Candy Pack, a bag of caramel corn from The Chocolate Season and a bag of Cheetos.

Karen O said...

I can't figure out why I am only the 4th comment!

Although this isn't directly about my hometown,

I do work for the company that makes the cheese coating for Cheetos. :)

September 9, 2012 12:50 AM

The third place winner is Giddy 99. Giddy 99 obviously is a very creative person. She has come up with a solution for the orange finger problem which many of you complained about. Very good idea although I don't know if I could resist licking my finger and jamming my hand into the far corners of the empty bag to mop up all of the yummy little cheesy crumbs.

Giddy 99 will win an Everlastings Jelly Roll™, a Candy Pack, a bag of Porker Valley Toffee from The Chocolate Season (toffee with bacon), a bag of Cheetos and a pair of chop sticks.

giddy99 said...

I DO like Cheetos! But I despise the "cheese dust orange fingers" and so I eat Cheetos with chopsticks.

My husband laughs, but I don't have those freaky orange fingers, either. :)

And if I'm EVER near there, I'm going to see that Big Cheeto. That's right up my alley. :)

September 11, 2012 11:21 AM

The second place winner is Deborah. Visiting all 50 states is on her Bucket List. She has a trip to Iowa planned for later this month. Certainly a visit to Algona to see the Big Cheeto will be a must stop.

Deborah will win an Everlastings Layer Cake™, a Candy Pack, a bag of Seasoned Pretzels from The Perky Parrot and a bag of Cheetos.

Deborah said...

I love Cheetos, I just munched on a few as I drove 2 1/2 hours this evening from a visit with my parents. I'm also excited that later this month I am making my first visit to Iowa (not sure where we are going) as I am working on one of my bucket list items (visit all 50 states) and Iowa and a few surrounding states are on my "need to visit" list. Your pillow pattern is darling, can't wait to make one.

September 9, 2012 8:54 PM

Our first place winner is Julie in WA.

I choose Julie because Julie grew up in Edgerton Minnesota, just an hour and fifteen minutes from my home town of Jackson. I was only 6 years old at the time but I can remember Edgerton's big deal event. Edgerton is known as "The Little Town That Could" or maybe I should say "the little TEAM that could", as it was the Edgerton basketball team that put Edgerton on the map - literally. In 1960, before schools were divided into classes according to size - 1A, 2A, 3A, all schools competed on the same level no matter their size. So in 1960 when Edgerton Minnesota (pop. 961) beat Austin Minnesota (pop. 27,908) to become the Minnesota State Basketball champs, it was a VERY big deal. In 1960 if you were from Minnesota, you knew about the Edgerton basketball team and you were rooting for them to win… except the 27,908 people from Austin. Go here to read all about it and watch a video about "The Little Team That Could". It is one of those feel good stories.

And Julie has even been to the Grotto - also known as the eighth wonder of the world.

Thanks for the memories Julie!

Julie will win an Everlastings fat quarter pack, a Candy pack, an Emerald's Restaurant (home of the Big Cheeto) gift certificate and a bag of Cheetos.

Julie in WA said...

Gasp! I've been to the is amazing! Right now I live in the SEattle WA area, but I, too, was born and raised in Minnesota, in Edgerton to the west of Jackson. I don't know that anyone famous ever really came from Edgerton, but legend has it that our little town was not on the map until the boys won State Basketball back in 1960.

September 9, 2012 6:12 PM

This has been such a fun blog hop. I hope many of you can come to my little town of Algona to see the Big Cheeto. Please keep in mind that the Cheeto can only been seen when Emerald's Restaurant is open. Their hours are - Lunch: Tues.-Fri. 11:00 - 1:30 and Dinner: Tues. - Sat. 5:00 to close. They are closed on Sunday and Monday.

Thanks so much to everyone who followed the blog hop and took the time to leave a comment. I learned so many interesting little tidbits about your various communities.

Winners please email me your addresses so I can send out your prizes.

Remember to "Like" us on Facebook.

Happy Cheeto munching.

From My Heart,


Saturday, September 8, 2012

Sew Sweet Moda Blog Hop Day 5

Welcome to Day 5 of the Sew Sweet Moda Blog Hop.

Today you will travel to Iowa, then on to New Jersey and South Carolina to visit Lauren and Jesse Jung, and finish up in California to visit Joanna of Fig Tree.

As you probably have already figured out, this blog hop is about our home town. Bruce and I are both originally from Minnesota. He a city boy from Jackson and me a farm girl, raised on a farm south of Jackson. A job brought Bruce to Algona, Iowa in 1971.

I moved here in 1973 after we were married.

We have lived here all of our married life.

Algona was founded in 1854 by two brothers, Ambrose and Asa Call, who named the city after the native word for "Algonquin waters".

Population: 5,560.

I won't bore you with any more history - if you need to know more - Google it.

We were asked the question does anyone famous live in your town?

Algona's claim to fame does not reside in a person but in a thing.

The world's largest Cheeto resides in Algona Iowa.

Yep that’s right I said Cheeto. Weighing in at 1/6 of and ounce and the size of a small lemon.

How did we come to have the largest Cheeto.

Long story short:

A navy petty officer, Mike Evens, based in Pearl Harbor bought a bag of Cheetos for his 3 year old son.

This Cheeto (or as I see it - a blob that looked more like a chicken McNugget.)-was found in the bag.

He decided to auction the Cheeto on Ebay.

Bryce Wilson our radio station disc jockey at the time headed up a campaign to buy the Cheeto and bring it to Algona. He was able to bid $180.00 with the plan to enshrine the Cheeto and put in on display as a tourist attraction.

However Ebay cancelled the auction as prices reached millions of dollars.

Evans liked what Algona wanted to do with the Cheeto.

He said they could have the Cheeto if we donated the $180.00 along with a $1000.00 donation from Frito-Lay to a food bank. We did so.

The Cheeto arrived by mail on March 10th. 2003.

It was shellacked and placed on a velvet cushion encased in Plexiglas.

David Letterman wanted to do a show featuring the Cheeto but Algona had to turn him down as they had already struck a deal with Jimmy Kimmel.

The Cheeto is on display at Emerald's Restaurant at 1515 N. McCoy Street in Algona. And like many of us know… with age comes shrinkage - I think it is now smaller than a small lemon.

And that is how the Big Cheeto came to Algona.

When you come to see the Cheeto - because I know you are all booking your flights now - be sure to take time to have lunch or dinner at Emerald's Restaurant. It is owned and operated by Chad and Molly Berte and the food is WONDERFUL! Tell them Sandy sent you. (FYI they do not serve anything with Cheeto as an ingredient!)

Now onto what this blog is really all about.

Moda's new pre-cut call Candy. Forty-two little 2 1/2" squares of sweetness.

Each designer was asked to make a project using the candy squares. We then did a show and tell with these projects at the Moda School house at Spring Quilt Market. Well some of us did. The day of school house I woke up with one of my migraine headaches. I have pills, but it usually take me a good 8 hour sleep after taking the pills before I am feeling "normal". So I tried to fight it off with extra strength Tylenol. That did not work so at 12:00 I gave in and took one of my miracle pills. School house was at 4:00. My headache was gone but needless to say I was still "loopy".

As we were all heading up to school house it dawned on me I needed to take some of my new quilts to show along with my candy project. I set my candy project down to pick up some quilts… yep you guessed it… and walked away without my candy project. For me school house was a blur.

You know the warning on the pill not operated heavy equipment after taking these pills. They need to add or do a Moda School House!

This is the little pillow that no one has seen until now.

It is made with a my line Everlastings.

You can download the instructions here.

And there is more FREE to be had.

Leave a comment - anything - who is famous in your town, what is famous in your town, do you like Cheetos, do you not like Cheetos, and you could win one of these four Everlasting pre-cuts. Each of the 4 winners will also win a bag of Cheetos along with some other "Algona Goodies". We will announce the winners on Sept. 15.

Make sure you stop by to visit Joanna, Lauren and Jesse today too.

Good luck to all. I'm glad that you stopped by to learn a little bit about Algona.

I hope you will come to visit Algona sometime.

Beside the Cheeto we have:

Two quilt shops - Seams to Me and Heartland Quilt Shop. And many in the surrounding area.

The Chocolate Season. Yummy!

The Perky Parrot. Coffee shop by day martini bar by night.

The Pet Kingdom. Everything your pet could possibly want.

Three antique shops. Home Store Antique, The Vintage Shoppe and the Vintage Shoppe Too.

Phoenix. A gift shop with a lot of repurposed items.

The Market. Another great gift shop.

POW Museum.

The Grotto of Redemption. Located in West Bend, IA. - just 20 minutes from here.

Three golf courses. Algona Country Club, River Road and Spring Valley. (I had to have something for the men.)

Tomorrow we will visit Lily Ashbury, French General and Primitive Gatherings.

Happy hopping.

From my heart,


Monday, September 3, 2012

Coming Soon!

Coming soon a Moda Blog hop.
During this blog hop you will learn about each designers home town - along with some free patterns.
Here is the line up.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

If You Missed It.

I was a guest on American Patchwork and Quilting Radio.
If you missed it, go here to listen to the pod cast.
Again I I really sound like this?

Thursday, August 16, 2012

American Patchwork & Quilting Radio

I will be a guest on American & Quilting Radio
hosted by Pat Sloan.

On August 20th at
3:00 PM central time.
Go here to listen.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Guest Blogger

I am a guest blogger at Fat Quarter Shop.
Check it out here.
Oops...Fat Quarters has had a computer glitch.
This should be up by noon today. (Aug 6th.)

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Pumpkins Gone Wild Revisited

It is in the upper 90's here in Iowa.
I usually like summer, but this year the heat has been brutal and I am looking forward to welcoming Less Humidity to Iowa along with the cooler days of fall.

Speaking of fall, do any of you out there remember my Fall 2008 line of fabric?
The line was named Pumpkins Gone Wild.

The fine people at Magnet Works saw the panel from this line

and thought it would adapt well into one of their yard flags.

And with a little rearranging of the pumpkins,

it was adapted into one of their doormats.

I am going to use my doormat at the cabin. It will look great in front of my door which is painted Benjamin Moore Navajo Red...or as I call it, Cinderella Pumpkin Orange. And yes as soon as Less Humidity arrives, I will repaint the porch floor. Looks like that will be an every three years job.

If you are interested in getting a head start on fall decorating, you can go here to find a website or store who carries these items. Like everything these days, these two items will only be available for a limited amount of time - or as the saying goes - get them while you can.

Hope this finds you all staying cool on these hot summer days.

From my heart,


Friday, July 20, 2012


It has been a real juggling act here trying to meet all of my deadlines.

Spring into early summer is a crazy time of the year for me - many deadlines.

Since we last talked I have...

Designed my Christmas 2013 line of fabric.

Nature's Christmas.

In all of my 17 years of designing I had never done a nature themed Christmas.


Made Phenomenal Fall

and Monster Bash quilts.

Wrote and proofed the instructions.

Shipped the patterns.

Find them here along with our other new patterns.

Sorted through my Fall Market strikes offs - a tedious job -

trying to get about 80 swatches narrowed down to 40.

The line is named Snap Pop.

Computer generated my Valentines line quilts.

A couple of days after I finished generating I received the actual yardage.

We have a new schedule which allows us more lead time to make the quilts and produce the patterns. WONDERFUL!

So yes, we are already sewing the quilts…

I mean for real.

This will be the Layer Cake™ pattern which is a block of the month.

We have all of the pieced blocks finished - on to the appliqué.

It is titled Spring Sampler.

Think all things spring - birds, flowers blooming, a babbling brook.

Designed my Fall 2013 line of fabric.

Smashing Pumpkins.

We are currently proofing the Everlastings (fabric shown at market) patterns

as they will need to be shipped in mid August.

That's all for now - I must go - I am about to mess up my juggling.

Are any of you out there in the middle of a juggling act?

Happy juggling,


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Not About Groceries

Hello everyone. Yes I am still blogging. I was thinking about closing down this blog, because quite frankly, I don't have much to say. But upon visiting with fellow designer Laurie Simpson I found out it is okay not to have anything to talk about - and at that point you just take pictures of and talk about your groceries. Hmmm never thought of using my groceries as a blog subject.
However, today's blog is not about groceries as I really do have something to talk about. I thought I would share with you some of the places where you can find Sandy Gervais these days.

The fine people at Fons & Porter invited me to participate in an episode of Quilt with the Stars.
Sandy Gervais - a star - yep it's a stretch - but apparently they think I am a star - or they were desperate.
For this gig I worked with Mary Fons, Marianne Fon's daughter. Mary has many talents that expand way past the quilting world. I love her quirky, artsy personality and it is truly a joy to work with Mary.
Go to this fun little video to find out more about the fabulous Mary Fons.

Quilt with the Stars has three parts
Part one talks about the project that I made for their magazine For the Love of Quilting.

You can find my project in the July/August issue of For the Love of Quilting - on stands now. Check it out.

Part two is a small trunk show.
And part three is about me and my studio.
Go here to watch the three parts.

Like I said before it is always very painful to watch yourself on tape. At least this one they have me planted behind a counter and on a chair - no need to dance around like a dancing bear!

Have a great day.

From my heart,

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

A Painful Youtube

Hello everyone. I have no market pictures - remember no lens. I managed to get my booth all set-up the first day of set-up so I could lens shop on the second day of set-up. Unfortunately I woke up with a migraine - so no lens shopping for me. So the only pictures I have of my booth are what are on this youtube video. It is so very painful to watch yourself on video! Notice how I dance around trying not to get a butt shot in the video - I must say - hard as I tried - I did not succeed. :-(
KC booth video

I am sure by now you have found many posts with very nice pictures of market. Fat Quarters Shop is one of the shops that posts pictures every day of market. Check it out here.

Happy Quilting.
From my heart,

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Market Bound

It is 10:00 PM and I am still at my studio. We leave tomorrow morning at 6:00 for Kansas City. I have to get this blog posted and pack yet tonight. Typical market craziness. I have been such a bad blogger lately that I have seriously been thinking about closing this blog. It is just one more thing to add to my to do list - and I really don't need more on my list.

Sooo this will be quick.
I was downloading pictures off of my camera when I managed to get tangled up in the cord. Camera and myself went crashing to the floor. I am okay but sadly the camera lens is ruined. So once again this will be a no picture post. You cannot buy a camera lens in Algona, Iowa. I am hoping I can pick a new lens up in Kansas City so I am able to take some market pictures.

We will be showing 8 new patterns featuring my new line of fabric Everlastings.
Just imagine you are looking at 8 pictures of quilts.
I will also be showing:
This Block of the Month Series

And this Month By Month Series.

If you are a shop owner stop by my booth #127 to see the completed quilt and month by month projects. If you are a retail customer get all the details at you local quilt shop after market.

That's all for now.
Good night.
From my heart,

Tuesday, April 17, 2012


With the unseasonably warm Iowa weather, the lake season started earlier than usual this year.
There were boats out on the lake in March - unheard of for Iowa.
We have be wanting a greeter for our little lake cabin.
Someone to stand under the big oak tree by the front door to greet people.
Since the season has already started I thought I better get to searching for that perfect person.

I ran an ad in the local newspaper.
A greeter to welcome people to our lake cabin.
Must be cheerful and friendly.
Must be neatly dressed and have a good sense of fashion.
Must enjoy the outdoors.
Sunscreen and bug spray will be provided.

We received quite a few applications.
We rejected quite a few before we found just the right person.

I had one applicant come to the interview carrying a set of golf clubs and wearing golf shoes.

Obviously she would rather be golfing.

I had a duo apply - with one you got the other.

I have two grand dogs - Labradors -

I don't need any more doggie doo doo in my yard.


Another applicant came roaring in on two wheels.

Hell raiser.


Although I never specified whether we

wanted a male or a female, I only received one male applicant.

Can you say grumpy old man.


I had one who was really trying to play the fashion card.


Well she is right on with the color trends...

but did she break the one or two or

three too many accessories rule???


I even had someone apply who was driving a pink Cadillac.

Hmmm...I wondered - if we were gone for a weekend...

would there be some sort of a wild party going on at the cabin??


I was about to give up when Lola applied.

I liked the fact that she knew that wearing

a pretty blue hat would enhance her very blue eyes.

And who could refuse that cute pug nose and that big welcoming smile.

She wore a classic knife pleated skirt

in a very age appropriate length to the interview.

Just the right length to show off her long lean legs.

She was also wearing my favorite color - red.

And she has a purpose in life - to re-purpose.


Lola now hangs out under the old oak tree

greeting everyone who comes to the cabin.

Go find something to re-purpose and have some fun!

From my heart,