And the winners are…

20 Jul

First place goes to Linda Baldor of Richardson, Texas for her beautifully crafted Grasshopper.


Linda Baldor’s Grasshopper

The details of this creature are stunning!


grasshopperdetail2 grasshopperdetail3

Second place goes to Amy Micallef of Brooklyn, NY for her Puss Moth Caterpillar (Megalopyge Opercularis).  Awesome choice of insect.  Disgusting and beautifully strange at the same time.  Thank you Amy for introducing us to this little guy.




Third place goes to Liz Chesebrough for her quilted Yellow Jacket/Fly.  Beautiful, intricate piecing on this lovely quilted cushion.

quiltedbug quiltedbugdetail quiltedbugdetail2

In the children’s contest, the winner is Ava Henschel!

Beautiful work Ava!


Runners up are Anne Therese Patrone-Griffin for her Butterfly and Dragonfly

dragonfly butterfly

and Sally Smith of Roswell, Georgia for her Rare Red-winged Proboscis Bug.


Thank you to all who submitted insects to us.  We loved meeting all of them!   We have 2 more insects that will be making their way to us a little late and I will post pictures of them on our facebook page.  If anyone started but couldn’t finish in time or  just wants to make an insect just for fun, we would be thrilled to have them join the gang.  All our best, The Brooklyn General Store Gang: Catherine, Heather, Pia and Kate.

Here is the whole gang minus two.


And the Winners Are…

21 Aug

We have a wonderful collection of Colorful, creative, comical and really cool chickens in our chicken coop.  Thank you to everyone who participated in our contest.  The task of picking the winners was grueling.  They are all extraordinary.  We had 18 adult entries and 8 kid entries.  The winners of the adult entries are…

First Place:  Elizabeth Kenney for her fabulous Chickster couple Lila and BrodyImage

Second Place is Kusi Merello for Mike the Headless Chicken.  Yes, it is true, he did live.  Check out his story here.  I do think Kusi’s Mike is much more attractive than the real guy.


Third Place is Liz Robison’s Liberty Chicken.


For the Child Entries we have three winners…

Alex Powell, age 7 for her chicken in a kayakImage

Nora Connolly, age 9Image

and Greta Donahue, age 8


We also have 4 runner ups for the adult entries.  I wish we could have given everyone gift certificates but for these entries, we will be sending a gift.

Runners up are…

Elizabeth Chesebrough for her Quilted ChickenImage

Dana Lavelle for her Black Necked Stilt


Lisa Hodges for her felted chickenImage

And Nicola Gardiner for her hand painted chicken


To see all the entries, please check out our Pinterest or our Flickr pages in the coming days.  Thank you again everyone for your creativity and hard work.

All our best, the Brooklyn General Store Gang,

Catherine, Heather, Kate, Pia and Nina

Quilting Contest: Mystery Block 4

22 Apr

Here is the final block in our Mystery Block Quilting Contest. If you are just getting started, there are still a few weeks before the deadline so check out the last few posts and get started! We are super excited to see what all of you are making so don’t be shy about sharing on Facebook and Twitter.

mystery block 4

Improvisational Patchwork with Denyse Schmidt

15 Apr

We are looking forward to hosting Denyse Schmidt’s Improvisational Patchwork Workshop at Brooklyn General on May 5th.  Students be able to learn Denyse’s intuitive design techniques while building a foundation for bringing your own individual style to quilts or projects from her book, or your own creations.  You will create exciting, rut-breaking work that will change the way you think about color, patchwork, and your own creativity.  Here is a photo of one of her student’s work using the skills learned in her workshop.


You can read more about Denyse Schmidt here.  If you would like to attend the workshop, you can sign up here.

Join us!

Quilting Contest: Mystery Block 3

15 Apr

Welcome Back. We hope you are having fun with the mystery quilt project. We can’t wait to see what you are up to so please share photos and comments with us on Facebook and Twitter. If you are just joining us, there are still a few weeks left so check out our last few posts for all the details. Here is Mystery Block 3.

Mystery Block 3

Quilting Contest: Mystery Block 2

8 Apr

Spring Quilting Contest: Week Two.

For those of you that have already started, click on the image below to download the second block for our Spring Mystery Block Quilting Contest. If you are just joining us and want to get in on the fun, there is still plenty of time. Check out our last post for all the details and don’t forget to share your progress with us on Facebook or Twitter




Spring Quilting Contest

1 Apr

Spring is on it’s way! Celebrate the change of season with our Mystery Block Quilting Contest. Throughout the month of April,  Brooklyn General Store will post a new “Mystery” quilt block to the blog each week. Your challenge will be to incorporate all four blocks into a beautiful quilt that reflects the season. The quilter with the most fun and creative interpretation will win a Brooklyn General Store gift certificate that can be used to stock up on sewing supplies and the winning quilt will be displayed in the shop window for all to admire.

A note about patterns:

Patterns use are formatted to “paper piecing” assembly. This means that they do not include seam allowances. Contestants are not required to use paper piecing techniques but should be sure to add a consistent seam allowance to the pieces before cutting for accuracy in assembly.

Rules and Requirements for Consideration:

  1. Contestants must incorporate all four patterns posted into the final quilt design. In other words, each pattern square must be used at least once in your submitted designs.
  2. Quilts entered must have a finished measurement of at least 36” on any side. The smallest quilts considered for this contest is 36” x 36”.
  3. At least one fabric purchased at Brooklyn General Store between January 1- April 30, 2013 must be used in quilts to be considered in this competition.
  4. Submissions will be accepted by email only. Contestants should email submissions to info[at] All entries must be received no later than 11:59pm (est) on Tuesday, April 30, 2013 and must include 3-5 images of the final quilt submission. Please format images at 72 dpi and no more than 800×1000 pixels.
  5. Applications must be submitted by email and include contestant’s contact information in the body of the email: NAME, ADDRESS, PHONE and EMAIL address of contestant as well as a listing of attached photo images (e.g., 1. front view, 2. back view, 3. detail).
  6. The winner will be selected and announced on the Brooklyn General Store website May 6th, 2013. Good luck!
  7. Here is the first block: mystery1

Marcie’s Work

15 Sep


Whenever I teach a sewing class at Brooklyn General Store I always make my students take their measurements and the reaction is always a series of groans followed by the words, “I don’t have to say them out loud, right?”  But when I ask the same people why they want to learn how to sew the answer is almost always because they want to make clothes that fit them.

It’s a sad fact that we have such an aversion to our own shapes.   When I was a senior in high school I lost 30 pounds (almost exclusively from above my hips, darn it!)  About the same time I bought my first vintage dress – a purple cotton lawn with translucent purple buttons up the front.  It came in at the waist and had a full skirt.  It was my first glimpse of what having something the right fit and shape can do for a girl and I was hooked.  Today my closet is full of dresses that fit similarly – both vintage and handmade.

After I graduated from college I worked for the designer Mary Adams.  Here I saw women of all shapes and sizes come to the store and walk out with the most beautiful wedding dresses that fit them perfectly.  It was a lesson in taking the time to make something right that I will never forget.  Each dress began with a fitting and was followed by a series of muslins before the final dress was even cut.  Making something fit is not usually something you can do on your first try (in fact, the bicycle dress above  had to be taken apart at one point because I needed to take the waist in and up) but the first step is always to know your shape.

My measurements haven’t changed much in the years since high school.  Since I will probably always have an extra large backside I make things that highlight the things I like about myself like my waist and flatter things, like my bum and thighs that I’m not so crazy about.  I’ve even grown to accept (and, gasp, even like) my knobby knees.

I always use my measurements as the example in my classes, I consider it a sign of trust.

So here we go – 32-27-42.  A perfect pear.

Catherine’s Work

21 Aug

Well, I have been working on these for almost 3 years.  I started them around the time   of our squirrel contest, during my squirrel obsessed phase that has never really subsided.  I started by designing them in my little graph paper sketch book.  I made the left hand first, then changed the design a little for the right hand.  Finally, I created the pattern with Stitch Painter, flipped the oak leaves and came up with my favorite pattern after I had finished the right hand.  As you can see, I am not one for making swatches.  Good thing my right hand is so much longer than my left.  I used Canopy from The Fibre Company with a little trim of Raumagarn.  I am happy to share my pattern charts for anyone wanting to make these.  Just send me a note or come in to the shop.

And on the top, if you please, they put a star made out of cheese.

18 Dec

One of my favorite children’s books, Mr Willowby’s Christmas Tree inspired this year’s Christmas window.  It would have been nice if I knew something about embroidery before I started.  I do love the new pearl cotton we have in the shop though.  Very few knotty mishaps and I went through at least 100 yards of floss.  My technique improves as I finish each mouse.  I’m still working on the baby mouse.

This email is filled with gift ideas for those whose crafty endeavors have left them plum out of time for hand made gifts.

Happy Holidays to all! 


Always a good choice for the beloved knitter on your list.
madeline tosh 

Madeline Tosh back in stock!

Dk, Merino light, and sock.

For the hand dyed enthusiasts, this yarn back in from


Classic Ticking Stripes in Christmas Reds from French General

Great for napkins, table runners and placemats for your holiday dinner.
Also great for wrapping!  $15.99 per yard.

Tools and Notions

Hand Made Needle Cases


Made by Crippenworks with vintage and other fabric chosen by Brooklyn General.


Vintage buttons 

 vintage buttons

Always an ever changing selection of vintage and new buttons.
Hand Made Pin Cushions
Tomato pin cushions made with over dyed recycled wool by Reclaimed Wool.
Books and Patterns
knit local

As informative as it is inspiring, this book is above all a stunning fashion source, with gorgeous projects that will leave you feeling good and looking even better.


Selvedge Magazine

Beautiful and inspirational, as always.Review the year with all the Selvedge Magazines of 2011.  $96 for 6 issues.


General Store
Little gifts for the reader… 

book plates 1 


 Holiday decor
Handmade felted Santa ornaments by Reclaimed Wool.
Made in Oregon of recycled wool.  $24

New from Coral and Tusk, festive kitchen towels in four different woodland (my favorite) animal themes.  Made in Brooklyn. $36 each

For weekend crafting…
Weekend duffels from Dominique Picquier.  Why not carry your crafts with a bit of French style?  All bags are hand printed with patterns inspired from nature.
Made in France.  $368

Not handmade but luxurious none the less.

Wallace Sewell and Swan’s Island throws in soft merino wool.  $400-$475.

For foul weather style.
 Katie Mawson scarves.  $130
Coordinating hats and fingerless gloves also available.  Made in England. 
Wallace Sewell scarves for him and her. Woven in 100% lambswool.  $80.
Made in England.
Give the gift of classes this year

Purchase a class in the form of a gift certificate and let them pick their own class.  Choose from many levels of classes in sewing, knitting, embroidery, felting, spinning and upholstery and starting in the new year, Crafterschool – an after school craft program for kids.



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