Celebrate Earth Day!

Earth Day is April 22nd and it’s a holiday I can really get behind. I love any opportunity to celebrate our Mother Earth! My kids are really growing up fast and I am so proud to share with you how my daughter Ruby and her friend Cooper are trying to make a real difference in the world by supporting a threatened species.

Small Rob n Ruby

Every year, National Geographic hosts a Geography Bee. This competition is designed to inspire and reward the curiosity of students across the globe for a chance to win college scholarships and the glory of being the National Geographic Bee Champion!


This year, they extended their Geography Bee into a Geography Challenge too, so middle schoolers were also allowed to compete to find a solution to problems facing a species and their migratory patterns. Ruby and Cooper chose the Monarch butterfly because we are in their direct migratory route between Mexico and Canada.

Small Ruby project

For their project, they created an ingenious clay morsel loaded with milkweed seed, the only food source for the Monarch larvae to eat. Unfortunately, people have been removing milkweed from their yards for years and now much of the food for this butterfly migration has disappeared.

Small group ruby

The team led by their teacher, Mr. Wilcox, took 2nd overall and we were able to celebrate all their hard work with a fun day spent in the company of explorers from National Geographic! It was a fantastic moment.


As quilters, I know that you all do so much to reduce, reuse, and recycle! After all, quilters can’t help but use every last scrap. I want to know what you’re up to this Earth Day. What will you do in your neighborhood to help keep the balance on our planet?


Rob’s 6th Year Reflection

Dear Friends,


As of today, I am six years alcohol-free! I haven’t had a drink in all that time, and I really don’t miss it any longer. That’s not to say that the past year has been super easy, but I am still better off today that I could have ever imagined.

When I began my sixth year without drinking, I was struggling to find another habit to grab ahold of. I was getting wrapped up in all of the things I felt I was missing out on. As a person who experiences addiction, I often find myself wanting something more, but that doesn’t mean I will always feel tortured by this desire. I know it’s important to focus my energy on the positive things in life. I have so much to be thankful for, but I was struggling to try and live up to self-imposed standards of excellence that were extreme.

Thankfully, over the past few months, I have started to take better care of my mind, body, and spirit in all of the things that I choose to do. That was key for me. I realized that I have a choice, and that I am responsible to act for myself and own the consequences. Whenever things seem out of control, I now have learned to stop, take a deep breath (or three), and recite the Serenity Prayer:


God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,

The courage to change the things I can,

And the wisdom to know the difference.


Now, I am doing my best to focus on the things that are truly important. I am trying not to let challenging situations discourage me. I am also trying to accept that every day won’t be perfect. In order to truly learn, we must allow ourselves to fail, so that we can grow.

I believe that God has created me for a purpose. His plan has been set into action, and my responsibility is to show up and walk a faithful walk. I don’t need to be perfect, but I want to live with a heart full of love for others.

So, my plan for this year is to remind myself daily that when things are getting dicey, it’s because I’m trying to be in control of the situation, and most likely I have missed an important detail. My job is not to drive this magic bus, but to be in a good seat with a great view of all of the blessings that I have received.

Thank you so much for being a part of my journey, for reading this story, and supporting my efforts to improve my life. If I may offer any encouragement to those on a similar path, please don’t give up, and when you fail (as we all do), don’t let that failure become a setback. Instead, pick yourself up, and use it as an opportunity to launch yourself in a positive direction.

Feel free to drop me an email if you need some love and support. I’ve got your back! It can be a great journey this year and we’re all stronger together. —Rob
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English Paper Piecing with Violet Craft

English Paper Piecing with Violet Craft

Imagine, if you will, a quilting superhero. She has out-of-this-world sewing skills, creative talents that defy description, and the superhuman ability to simplify even the most intricate projects.

English Paper Piecing with Violet Craft

Folks, I’m here to tell you that such a person does exist, and she has a name befitting her talents. Ms. Violet Craft is in the studio today to share her knowledge of English Paper Piecing. Click HERE to watch the tutorial and pick up your “The Lion” kit. This is one project you won’t be able to put down!

Check out a new tutorial every Monday!

Cozy Mermaid Tail Blanket

Make your own Cuddle Mermaid Tail Blanket with Rob's easy tutorial!

Rob demonstrates how to make a mermaid tail blanket out of fleece. He uses Cuddle Embossed Dimple Minky Yardage by Shannon Fabrics and Soft Cuddle Stone Aruba Yardage by Shannon Fabrics. Click HERE to watch the full tutorial and get the supplies!

This simple tutorial shows you how to create your very own mermaid tail blanket!

Click the button to watch the full tutorial!

Check out a new tutorial every Monday!

Indestructible Luggage Tag

Check out Man Sewing's Indestructible Luggage Tag Tutorial!

Never fear for lost luggage with this  Indestructible Luggage Tag!

Globe trotters, today’s your day! I’m working on a fabric luggage tag that can really take a beating. It’s made from a solid piece of James Thompson canvas, so it’s incredibly strong and durable.
Customize this project with your favorite fabric color, cool decorative stitching, or even a bit of applique. Then slide in your business card, and you’ve got a unique tag that’ll last for years to come. 

Let Rob from Man Sewing show you how to make this neat Indestructible Luggage Tag!

Click HERE to get the free downloadable PDF!

Check out a new tutorial every Monday!

How to Travel the Man Sewing Way!

Man Sewing gives me a lot of fun opportunities to travel and I’ve become a bit of an expert, if I do say so myself. Traveling can be cumbersome and draining, or it can be smooth sailing. I prefer to make things as easy as possible on myself and plan ahead. I’ve even used quite a few of my own tutorials to whip up some awesome accessories to carry along with me wherever I go. So take my advice, the extra suitcase is worth it to carry along the comforts of home.

Useful Travel Tips from Rob Appell of Man Sewing!

My travel must-haves include:

  • A tablet. This incredible device has just about everything I need to keep myself entertained, whether it’s with a book, videos, or music. Plus, it includes maps and email, to keep me connected. Did you know, tablets don’t even have to be stowed before the plane takes off, so I get extra time to chill.

Useful Travel Tips from Rob Appell of Man Sewing

  • Noise-cancelling headphones. Carve out a little piece of privacy with these lightweight, high quality headphones. And they don’t drain your battery life because they attach the old school way, with a cord.
  • My personalized coffee kit. I’m pretty particular about the way I like my java, so I skip the Starbucks line and whip up my own fresh batch of brew with a French press travel mug. It’s a total lifesaver. It also allows me to carry along energy bars and muesli too, which I can eat hot or cold. Watch my Kraft-Tex Coffee Kit Tutorial HERE

Kraft-Tex Coffee Kit Tutorial with Rob Appell of Man Sewing

  • A yoga mat. Every morning I like to start my day off with a zen moment. This yoga mat fits in my suitcase and goes everywhere I go. Did you know that some airports even have yoga rooms? I couldn’t believe it myself!
  • A Man Sewing water bottle. I don’t go anywhere without it! Stay hydrated with this rugged, stainless steel, wood-finish water bottle by Rockit. Keep it empty on the way into the airport, go through security, and then fill it up for the rest of your trip.

Rob Appell at Quilt Market 2016 with his Man Sewing water bottle.

  • My knitting tool caddy. When the urge to create strikes me, I’m always ready. Knitting is a great way to pass the time when I’m traveling, and it keeps me calm when the road might get a little rough. Learn how to make your own knitting tool caddy HERE

Knitting Tool Caddy Tutorial by Rob Appell of Man Sewing

  • A power adapter. Do NOT forget this handy item! Stay charged up between flights and keep yourself from getting bored while traveling. There’s nothing worse than running out of battery life at the beginning of a long flight.

Before you hop on that plane, remember, a Man Sewing trip is much more fun than just a regular trip. Traveling can be a lot easier when you have the essentials. Catch you later!

Extra Long Cuddle Scarf

Make an extra long cuddle scarf with Rob Appell of Man Sewing


Learn to make this extra long Cuddle scarf.

I’m always on the lookout for gifts that are cool, useful, and easy to make. This Extra Long Cuddle Scarf fits the bill. It’s super soft and long enough to really keep the cold out. Best of all, it’s a cinch to put together. Click HERE to learn how! 

Make this scarf with Rob Appell of Man Sewing!


(FYI: Cuddle fleece comes in tons of different colors and prints. Click HERE to find the perfect choice for everyone on your Christmas list!)

Rob at Quilt Market

Rob had a total blast at Quilt Market this year in Salt Lake City! We compiled a few of our favorite photos to share! Click on the photos to view them on Instagram and read the comments!

Have you met Rob at an event? Share your photos with us on social media using #mansewing!

Quilt market setup is underway! Having a total blast! #mansewing #Repost @mama_hersh ・・・ We’re all set up at Needletraven

A photo posted by Man Sewing with Rob Appell (@mansewing) on

Looks who’s ready for #quiltmarket this morning! #mansewing #jennydoan #msqc @mansewing @mommadoan

A photo posted by Missouri Star Quilt Co (@missouriquiltco) on

Hey look at that nice collection of thread! Market has been good to me this spring! #mansewing #aurifil #quiltmarket #slc

A photo posted by Man Sewing with Rob Appell (@mansewing) on

** Rob’s Thread box will be available soon, we’ll keep you updated in the newsletter and on social media! **


Best request of the day, “Can I touch your hair??” #mansewing #hair #quiltmarket

A photo posted by Man Sewing with Rob Appell (@mansewing) on

Is it a flower, or a hat? We’ll let you decide!!

Purl & Loop Loom

I quilt. I sew. I knit and dye and embroider. And today? Today I weave! I’m a lover of fiber art in all its forms, and I’m always on the lookout for cool materials and interesting textures and colors. This week I was inspired by Missouri Star’s new collection of yarn and an awesome little Purl & Loop loom, and right away I knew I had to put together a basic weaving tutorial.

In today’s video, I’ll run you through the basics of loom weaving including fringe vs. no fringe, thin vs. thick yarn, and even a few time-saving tips. Click HERE to watch the free tutorial! 

Purl and Loop Looms