The Author

The Author
Brian Haggard

Upcoming Trips

Upcoming Trips
Join Me!

My Dyslexia

Having the skill to write, spell, and punctuate has never been my strong suit. Growing up as a young child I was always nurtured to be creative and artistic which came naturally to me but I could never quite grasp written language. I now know that it's a learning disabilty with a name: DYSLEXIA.

I write from the heart and I make my best effort to get the words on the page properly but as you'll see I don't always succeed. I ask you to enjoy what I write and post but to be understanding and kind. Brian

Things you want to know


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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Come Join Me in the Caribbean!


Hello Everyone!

The Ireland trip was everything I had hoped it would be and more. I have lots to share with you about our adventures.

Right now I am busy playing catch-up! I will post shortly about our fabulous trip to Ireland.

I did want to get this information to you ASAP, though.  Next February I will be one of the hosts and teachers on  a seven day Caribbean cruise.  It is a wonderful opportunity to take classes from some of the best in the business and I would love for you to join us.

It's a win-win! Get out of winter's frosty grip and enjoy the sun, sand and blue waters of the Caribbean while immersing yourself in your favorite passion!

Gotta run!

Take care,

Here is all of the pertinent information about the cruise.

Friday, May 30, 2014

~~~Downton Abbey,Indy Style~~~


Hello All,

Recently, the kind ladies at  Back Door Quilts gave us all an opportunity to experience a bit of the Downton Abbey magic. They hosted a lovely tea that  Lady Grantham would have been proud to attend. 


They also invited us to step back in time and come dressed in vintage styles popular at the turn of the century and worn by  the characters of the PBS hit series, Downton Abbey.  

My Assistant, Jody-my Mom,Debbie-
and good friend, Cathy

I was very honored to be asked to speak during the tea.  I have known Linda and Teri, the owners of the Back
Kevin and me with our lovely hostesses,
 Linda and Teri
Door, since I was eleven. We 
won't discuss how many years that has been. Let’s just say, a lot! They have always been so supportive and  they gave me one of my first teaching jobs at the tender age of sixteen. 

I presented a crazy quilt block that I made using the new
Downton Abbey fabrics. They have become so popular! 
The crazy quilt inspired by the Downton Abbey fabrics

I wanted to reflect a vintage feel while making this piece. My choices of stitches,trims and buttons 
emphasized that style. If you want to see more of the Downton Abbey inspired  fabrics ,the full line is available at the Back Door . 

I also shared some information about the customs and habits in vogue during this period. The gentlemen and
Kevin and me
Looking every bit the
English gentlemen
gentlewomen had such elegance and grace.  Their homes and lifestyle were on such a grand scale, I find it fascinating.  

Most of the attendees got into the spirit of the day and
dressed in vintage costumes from various Downton Abbey time periods. Everyone looked fabulous and some even pulled
true antique pieces out of grandma's cedar chest, to complete their looks. 

Doesn't everyone look fantastic?!

Robin Brown
Looking stylish in
her vintage hat.  

It was enjoyable wandering through times gone by for just a little while, and bringing a little of the Downton Abbey elegance to Indy.

Debbie, Jody, Me,
 Kevin and Cathy

Much thanks to Linda and Teri for providing such a charming backdrop!

Right now, I am hard at work preparing for my trip to Ireland. For those of you joining me on this journey, see you very soon. Not to worry if you aren't making the trip though, I will be posting tale of our adventures upon my return.

Tata for now!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

A Labor of Love


Hello Everyone,

Today, I would like to share a project with you that has been a “labor of love” for me.

Since my main focus on the blog has been about quilting and fabric design, some of you may not know that I am also an interior decorator. Over the past eighteen years I have had the pleasure of working with many wonderful clients. It has been gratifying for me to help them realize their vision of what will make their homes beautiful and unique.   

Recently, I had the  happy opportunity to be able to do this for my parents, in their new home.  Their dream home has lots of room with high ceilings and  plenty of gathering space for the family. Oh, and a big garage for my dad.  


 My parents, Richard and Debbie Haggard are pictured below. They are an energetic pair that, are always going and doing. Mom likes to shop and Dad likes to take her and wait patiently while she looks. They are both very artistic, so I guess the apple didn't fall far from the trees.

Here they are in their new living room.

Aren't they cute!
I selected black for the walls in this room because I knew it would make the white wainscotting pop. The black also goes well with the colonial furnishings. The color worked even better than I had hoped. 


I wanted this part of the living space to
 resemble an old early american tavern. 

Over the years, my parents have collected many wonderful antiques and interesting pieces. One of my biggest challenges has been deciding which pieces from the treasure trove of goodies, I would use in my design.  This was difficult at times because I have fond memories of so many of them.


  My parents like the authentic colonial style and lean towards that when decorating. My mother also has a very soft spot in her heart for the white-on-cream shabby chic look, so I tried hard to combine the two.


We found this wonderful old window and decided to hang it in what Mom calls her sun room. It is a small sitting room in the front of the house and does get very sunny.  I added some interest with the mural and urns. We designed this room in the Shabby Chic she loves so much. 

Below are some other design elements of the room.

This is a closer look
at one of the urns

A millinery mannequin that caught our eye
one day

Birds, books and vines

Sewing, bits and bobs!


The pretty lady on the right of this picture is my Mom and some of you probably recognize the sweet lady on her left. That is my able assistant, Jody Baker. Jody keeps me organized on the road and is a talented fabric artist herself. She is also a close family friend and loves spending time with my folks.  You never know what these two might be getting up to next! 

Here are Jody, mom and dad enjoying the new house



I added a few pops of color to this shabby chic parlor, but the furnishings still hold true to the colonial style that suits this gathering spot so well. I wanted to showcase the high ceilings and sunny openness of this room without losing any of the coziness.

This little niche was the perfect place to put one of my mom's favorite paintings.


My dad picked one of the big rooms upstairs, as his lounging, TV watching, napping, work room. We carried the color, as well as the heavy pieces of furniture  up the stairs and down the hall to his more masculine but still colonial style room. 


Dad's desk. Yes, those legs are made of cast iron. 

Yes, these units were VERY heavy!

Some of my mom's oil paintings that dad wanted
in his room



This wall was bit of a problem area because of it's width and placement in the room. I worked around this by using a small antique chest and added height by going up from there. Isn't the small Windsor chair adorable!

What colonial home would be
complete without
pewter dishes. 

Well, I guess that's all of the tour for now. Like most things, this is still a work in progress. We haven't even begun to work on the fireplace and we need to find  a great place to put all of mom's antique dolls!

I hope you have enjoyed seeing my folks new home as much as I have enjoyed helping create it and sharing it with you.  

Wishing them many years of health and happiness in their  beautiful new home.

Love you guys!

Have you performed any "labors of love" lately? Tell me all about it!

Till next time,

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Hello everyone!

I’m sorry it has been so long since my last blog post.  Life just gets crazy sometimes!

I just completed a project that I thought might be of interest to you.   

I was putting together the kits for an upcoming quilting retreat and decided I wanted to include a beautiful piece of Venetian lace in the design.
The only problem was the lace was white and I needed it to be brown!

I decided to dye the lace, that way I could get just the color I had in mind. 

This process is really very easy and not very time consuming. I had the whole thing done in less than an hour.

It is best to have all of your supplies assembled before you begin. I typically use vegetable dye but any type of dyeing agent would work as well.

To begin, prepare your dye solution in a small pan or bucket. You will need a towel to lay the dyed pieces on. Make sure it is an old one because the towel will pick of some of the dye. I should mention here, that a pair of rubber gloves should be worn for this process, as the dye will be just as happy to dye your hands as anything else you put in it. Tongs or chopsticks can be used to pluck them out of the dye. 

The resulting color can be controlled by the length of time spent in the bath. Remember though, different types of fabric accept the color much more quickly than others, so check the pieces often to get the depth of color you want. 

Once everything is assembled, just start dipping the fabric in the dye then take it out when they are the color you wanted. Then just place them on the towel to dry.

When they are completely dry, press them with a warm iron.  I do this for two reasons. It sets the dye and makes the piece nice and flat.

The pieces in the photos were used for a pillow top, quilt square in the design of, “The Old lady in a Shoe.”  A project we made at the “Quilt Connection” quilting retreat.  

I hope you enjoyed seeing how “the magic” happens and that you plan a dyeing project of your own soon!

And don't forget to create a little happiness for yourself, everyday!

Bye for now,

Friday, September 27, 2013

Open Stitch on Sunday, September 29 is cancelled

 Hi All,

We will not be having Open Stitch this Sunday, September 29 due to a schedule conflict.

Our next scheduled event at The Crazy Haberdasher Studio will be our Silk Ribbon Retreat on November 8, 9 and 10. Hope to see you there!

The Crazy Haberdasher
Thursday, August 29, 2013

Retreat! Retreat! Retreat!

While your first thought when you hear the word "retreat" might be to turn around and run, we would like to invite you to JOIN us for a great time at The Crazy Haberdasher studio for a instructive but relaxing and fun weekend of crazy-quilting and stitching.

We will be gathering on Friday, November 8th; Saturday, November 9th and Sunday, November 10th and making a one block crazy-quilt featuring silk ribbon embroidery. Don't worry if you're a stitching novice or seasoned with a needle--we'll show you all the steps to get your block pieced and embellished. And, since we strive to make sure that your work shows your personal artistic personality--you get to work at a pace that suits you and make the piece as simple or elaborate as you want.

On Friday night we'll get started at 6 o'clock and begin by machine piecing your block. Once the blocks are pieced, we will put the machines away and start stitching. Class will end at 9, but the studio will be open until about 10 and everyone is welcome to stay and work or just sit and visit.

Saturday morning we'll begin again at 9 and work until 5. You won't need your machines at all--it's a full day of learning stitches and stitch combinations. I will draw personalized motifs on each student's block. We will break for about an hour for lunch mid-day. On Saturday evening, the studio will be open until 10 o'clock. We will go to dinner as a group for anyone who is interested.

Then on Sunday we will start again at 9 and work until noon. I will demonstrate how to finish the piece. Some of you will be ready to finish in class and others will still be stitching--that's just fine--there's no pressure to be at any particular point by the time you leave--it's about learning and enjoying which happens at a different pace for everyone.

The cost of the class and the kit is $195. Your kit will include everything you need to finish the top: a personalized photo transfer, fabric, foundation fabric, silk ribbon, perle cotton, and embellishments. You'll need to bring a sewing machine, neutral thread for the sewing machine, #22 and #24 Chenille needles, scissors, a rotary cutter and mat and rulers for cutting--at least a 12" square and a 24".

If you're joining us from out of town, there are several hotels less than 5 minutes from the studio.

Sign up today at My Store

Sunday, August 25, 2013

International Quilt Festival of Ireland - 2014 - Join us!

 Ok. We love quilting. We love travel. We love meeting new people. So. . .let's combine all three and join us for a fantastic, escorted tour to the International Quilt Festival of Ireland from June 3 to June 12, 2014.
The 10-day trip includes 2 days+ at the exciting International Quilt Festival of Ireland in Killarney. You'll get roundtrip airfare from Indianapolis, 4 and 5 star hotels, land transportation by private motor coach, breakfast everyday and dinner on four nights all for $2943.
In addition to escorting the tour, I'm excited to be teaching classes at the Quilt Festival! For more information and to book your trip, call Sew Many Places at 877-887-1188 or visit the website at Sew Many Places
If you or one of your traveling companions aren't interested in spending two days at a quilt festival--not to worry--participation is optional and it will be easy to enjoy Ireland with any number of other activities. 
The itinerary includes:
  • Killarney
  • The Dingle Peninsula
  • The International Quilt Festival of Ireland
  • Blarney Woolen Mills and Castle
  • Village of Avoca
  • County Wicklow
  • Galway
  • Cliffs of Moher
  • Kylemore Abbey & Gardens
Optional events are:
  • Town of Dingle tour
  • IQFOI Opening Ceremony and Grand Reception including dinner and an Irish Music and Dance Show
  • Panoramic tour of Dublin
  • Tour of Connemara Marble Shop and Celtic Crystal Factory.
Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Happy 4th of July

 Hello everyone! I just wanted to wish you all a happy 4th and may you all enjoy the day you have been given, make it count.
All the best from your friends at The Crazy Haberdasher.

Until we meet again,
Keep stitchin'
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Sunday, June 16, 2013

Giving New Life


Hello Good Friends!

I just wanted to share a little gift that I received for Christmas from Mr. Kevin.  As always, he is so good to listen when I say that something would be cool to have or that I would love to learn something.  Fast forward to last Christmas when I was given the gift of upholstery classes.  

I set out to find a chair and I looked all over the Southport Antique Mall where my studio is located.  My search was fruitless so let the power shopping event start! We looked the city over and I could not find the chair that I wanted to work on.

When we returned one afternoon I called one of the dealers at the mall and asked if, by chance, he had any chairs he didn't have on display.  He was sorry but everything he had was already out.  We decided to take one last stroll through the mall and when I got to my friend's booth (the guy I just called)--there was the chair of my dreams!  I called him to ask why he didn't mention it earlier  but he thought we'd already seen it.   Anyway, despite the confusion I found the chair I wanted. 


I enjoyed a great 6 week class at ModHomeEc.  Shelly Leer, the owner/instructor at ModHomeEc was amused by my custom gift certificate for the class and included it in one of her blog posts:  Shelly's Post.  Shelly has a fun studio and is a great instructor!  I learned lots.  I've dabbled in re-upholstery for many years but I have to say knowing the tips and tricks and having access to the RIGHT tools (evidently, a butter knife isn't the all-purpose device I thought it was) makes all the difference.  If you're looking to learn about upholstery, check out ModHomeEc--Shelly will lead you down the right path. 

You can see the end result here (I'm sure you're shocked by the color selections) which will take a place of honor in my new living room.

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A dear friend and how proud of her I am.

Hello good friends.  I am very happy to say that all is going well and I can't be happier.

I want to share a story about a good friend of mine. When I was in the early stages of deciding whether I should pursue being a quilter, and if I had what it takes, I made a pilgrimage to my good friend Janet Brandt. I was so nervous to show her my babies. As you know, no one wants to be told that his babies are ugly and put them out there in the world for total judgment.

Much to my dismay, Janet said what are you waiting for?  I said I didn't know if I have enough material to write a whole book? She very kindly said that I had enough content to write twelve books and to travel and teach.  As artists I do think we always  have a way of  thinking maybe we aren't good enough. She gave me the confidence to make that dream for me come true and for that I want to say to all of you--follow your dreams!  As for my dear friend, thank you for lifting me up in life.  You mean the world to me and I value your thoughts and opinions.

I am now going to return the favor with this link to my friend's world.  I call it a world because it is not just a blog. It is Janet through and through. Janet has created a wonderful world for all of us to live in and I want you all to go to her site and share one of the world's gifts that I have received. You can take the journey by going through the archives on her blog at

Thanks for tuning in and seeing a little insight on how I am who I am.
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