Giveaway: Soft and Stable from ByAnnie

Lazies, Today let’s get to know Annie Unrein of ByAnnie, pattern company. Annie shares her unique Soft and Stable batting and offers a giveaway.

Greetings, Joan and Fellow Lazies!

I’m so thrilled to be asked to submit a guest blog post for Joan and her readers. I have long been an admirer of Joan’s products and love reading her blog and newsletters.

Let me begin by introducing myself: I am Annie Unrein, a quilter, pattern designer, teacher, and product developer. Please visit my website to see my patterns and read about my newest product, ByAnnie’s Soft and Stable™.

I developed Soft and Stable™ because I was looking for something that would give good body and stability to my purses without making them heavy or stiff or hard to sew.

Several years ago, when my favorite quilted designer handbag wore out, I noticed that it was made using a foam stabilizer rather than batting.

I promptly went looking for something like that to use in my projects and finally found a foam-type product. I used it for several years, but it had a number of drawbacks: It was stretchy and not very stable. It had fabric only on one side of the foam, so I had to be careful when sewing. (If the foam side was against the feed dogs, it wouldn’t move!) And, I couldn’t buy that product at a price which would enable me to provide it to wholesale customers. I got yelled at by more than one store for having a supply list in one of my patterns calling for a product that they couldn’t offer!

I finally decided to fix what I didn’t like and went to find someone to make the right product for me. I spent months working with various manufacturers, testing and re-testing products until I got what I wanted: a dense yet resilient foam with a soft, napped fabric on each side that sews easily without stretching out of shape.

I introduced ByAnnie’s Soft and Stable™ in black at Fall Market in Houston last fall to great reviews.

Customers are loving it and many pattern designers are adding it to their projects as well. NOTE: Due to popular request, Soft and Stable™ is now available in white as well.

I am often complimented on the professional appearance of my bags and purses. Though I’d love to say that they look good because I’m such an excellent seamstress, I really can’t take all the credit. Using the proper tools and supplies makes all the difference between a project that looks store-bought and professional versus one that looks homemade.

ByAnnie’s Soft and Stable™ is by far the most important element used in any of my purses, bags, or other projects. Using Soft and Stable™ in place of batting or other fusible interfacings gives my project a firm foundation. The bag isn’t slouchy or wrinkly. Yet, because ByAnnie’s Soft and Stable™ is so lightweight, the purse (when it’s empty anyway!) weighs hardly anything.

I love using ByAnnie’s Soft and Stable™ in handles, too— that soft, cushiony feeling is so nice for shoulder straps or handles.

The other advantage to using Soft and Stable™ is that I do not have to quilt the fabric to the batting/foundation unless I want to. I often choose to quilt the fabric to add a decorative element to the finished piece, but it is not an absolute necessity.

For instance, when I designed the Serenity Shoulder Bag, I wanted all of the focus to be on the texturized flap. Had I used batting in the bag, I’d have had to quilt the fabric in the body of the bag. Not only would those quilting lines detract from the finished appearance of the bag, but the bag would be slouchy when put together.

With ByAnnie’s Soft and Stable™, I am able to attach the fabric pieces used for the body of the bag to the Soft and Stable™ by sewing just around the edges. No quilting lines! When I’m done, my bag stands up beautifully, supporting that gorgeous textured flap.

That extra support is especially nice when you are using wooden fashion handles, such as I used on the On the Town handbag pictured above. Even though I’ve attached some relatively heavy handles, the bag holds it shape and stands up beautifully.

If I do choose to quilt the fabric to ByAnnie’s Soft and Stable™, that’s easy, too. I just layer the lining fabric (face down), the Soft and Stable™, and the main fabric (face up). Pin the layers and you’re ready to stitch.

The slight texture of the fabric finish on the Soft and Stable™ slightly grabs the fabric pieces, so there is little shifting of layers as you sew. And, as you can see in the photo below, I can quilt a large piece and everything is still nice, flat, and stable.

Sometimes, I skip the fabric layer on the bottom and just sew the main fabric to the ByAnnie’s Soft and Stable™. Again, because Soft and Stable™ has fabric on BOTH sides, I don’t have to worry about the foam catching on my feed dogs. Everything moves easily through the machine.

ByAnnie’s Soft and Stable™ is also wonderful for home dec items, such as placemats or table runners, too. My friend, Ricci, made this set of placemats using my Set A Pretty Table pattern and a selection of fruit and vegetable fabrics from her stash.

A modified quilt-as-you-go technique and foldover self binding make assembly quick and easy. In fact, Ricci got up on Saturday morning, decided she wanted something fun for her dinner party that night — and made a set of eight placemats (and cooked and cleaned) in time for the party!

Using ByAnnie’s Soft and Stable™ in place of batting makes beautiful, sturdy placemats that are extra easy to make and that will wear beautifully.

It’s easy to mark lines on the Soft and Stable™ using a chalk marker. This helps align the pieces for the flip and sew assembly. And, because Soft and Stable™ is polyester and not a fusible product, it’s easy to press the pieces with an iron as you go.

So, if you want your purses, bags, and other projects to look like you bought them, not like you made them, give ByAnnie’s Soft and Stable™ a try today!


Annie is offering two prizes:
1) Serenity Shoulder Bag pattern + half-yard package of black Soft and Stable
2) On The Town pattern + half-yard package of WHITE Soft and Stable

Leave one comment below to enter. Annie will pick winners and notify them directly.

You have until 10PM EST on Friday July 15, 2011 to enter. Simple as that!!

Also, Annie is also offering a 10% discount on all Soft and Stable sizes to all Lazies through JULY 18, 2011. Just enter the code LAZY in the discount field at checkout at her website to get the discount.



You’ll find lots more info about Soft and Stable as well as a number of video tutorials showing how to use it in your projects at my website:

Leave a Lazy Comment

532 Responses to “Giveaway: Soft and Stable from ByAnnie”

  1. Clara Arvizu — July 12, 2011 @ 10:00 am

    This sounds fantastic. I will be asking about it at my quilt shop. If they aren’t going to stock it, an online order is in my future.

  2. Grace M Neal — July 12, 2011 @ 10:04 am

    I can’t wait to try this product. We have a lot of sewers/quilters in this area. Perhaps you can consider having an exhibit at the Quilt Odessey in Hershey, Pa.

  3. Karen Cottom — July 12, 2011 @ 10:14 am

    Where was this batting when I was teaching bag classes?!!!!
    Can’t wait to try this!!

  4. Melody?? — July 12, 2011 @ 10:15 am

    Annie! Your patterns look amazing.
    I especially ? the Serenity shoulder bag.
    Thank you for having a little give-away here at Lazy Girl Designs!

  5. Lillian — July 12, 2011 @ 10:22 am

    One of my local quilt shops has the black and just raved about how great it was to use. Glad to see you now also have white.


  6. Kim — July 12, 2011 @ 10:26 am

    This looks like a great product! Can’t wait to try it in the next bag I make. Maybe I’ll
    try the Serenity bag next.

  7. Laura — July 12, 2011 @ 10:34 am

    Wow! This looks like an incredible product! Can’t wait to try it out!

  8. Ramona Anderson — July 12, 2011 @ 10:36 am

    So excited to try Soft and Stable!! Hey – that kinds describes me!!!

  9. Cindi C — July 12, 2011 @ 10:39 am

    Wow! I can’t wait to try it!

  10. Lourdes Fay — July 12, 2011 @ 10:43 am

    I can’t wait to try Soft and Stable on my next bag.
    Thanks for the chance to win.

  11. Cory — July 12, 2011 @ 10:44 am

    I would love to try this product. It sounds perfect for bags. Thank you for the chance to win some. Take care and God bless, Cory

  12. Joan — July 12, 2011 @ 10:51 am

    This looks like the perfect product for a bag maker. Can’t wait to try it!!!

  13. Marla Ellis — July 12, 2011 @ 10:52 am

    I can’t wait to give this a try! Just what I have been looking for, thank you.

  14. carol — July 12, 2011 @ 10:53 am

    I just ordered the soft and stable on Monday. I can not believe it it has already shipped!! What service…I can not wait to try it..if this works which I am positive it will I will finally get the firmness in my purses that I have been looking for! Thanks Joan for introducing us to Soft and Stable.

  15. Julie D. — July 12, 2011 @ 11:03 am

    what a neat product – and what a neat story. I’d love to try some out.

  16. Carol Yates — July 12, 2011 @ 11:03 am

    Product looks great– plan to order some.

  17. hueisei — July 12, 2011 @ 11:08 am

    Thanks for the chance…
    I loves to have the pattern 😀

  18. Elaine Searer — July 12, 2011 @ 11:19 am

    I love the idea of your Soft and Stable. I will be purchasing some of this, for sure! Love your patterns, too.

  19. Florine Meredith — July 12, 2011 @ 11:21 am

    Soft and Stables is a product I would like to try!!!

  20. Dee Benson — July 12, 2011 @ 11:25 am

    I have a new grand daughter ( 8 Mos now) that will look adorable in one of your toddler sundress patterns ! I am anxious to try your Soft & Stable and use texture thread. Love your ideas….Dee

  21. Brenda — July 12, 2011 @ 11:49 am

    The purses are beautiful, and I like the idea of having the fabric cover on both sides of the stabilizer.

  22. Billie K — July 12, 2011 @ 12:19 pm

    What a great product. I would love to win.

  23. Robyn — July 12, 2011 @ 12:45 pm

    Looks like a really cool idea for bags & such

  24. Leanne — July 12, 2011 @ 12:58 pm

    Looks like a wonderful product! I’d love to try it, and possibly add it to my site!

  25. Marie — July 12, 2011 @ 1:15 pm

    This looks like an amazing product! Thank you for the opportunity to win some ( and a pattern to boot!) and good luck with this new venture!

  26. Shirley — July 12, 2011 @ 1:53 pm

    This looks to be a grand asset to the sewing world. I am looking forward to trying it. Thanks for the opportunity to win some product.

  27. Ginny — July 12, 2011 @ 2:54 pm

    This sounds really great. Can’t wait to try it. Looking forward to the chance to win some of your wonderful product.

  28. Heather — July 12, 2011 @ 3:35 pm

    For the past two years I’ve been so admiring the lovely handmade bags all over the blogisphere and I’ve flagged several for someday when I have the nerve and have improved my beginner quilting/sewing skills. To win a fabulous package like this would turn me from watcher/yearner to maker/doer. I’ll make a wish.

  29. Laura — July 12, 2011 @ 4:29 pm

    Oh this sounds like the perfect product for me! Making bags left and right all the time….!
    Need to make 4 bags for a trip we’re taking to see my DH’s cousins….always make them something….a new bag would be perfect! Especially with your soft and firm batting!

  30. Sue Mahlburg — July 12, 2011 @ 4:48 pm

    I love the ByAnnie patterns, so far have tried one. It turned out beautifully, easy to follow directions, and I get lots of compliments on my purse! Eager to try Soft and Stable!

  31. Angie Mastrangelo — July 12, 2011 @ 4:53 pm

    To know that we can purchase a batting, Soft and Stable, that will not make us question “I hope this batting will work!!!”. Also I don’t need to buy different batting for my quilting and purse making. Where can we purchase Soft and Stable? Thank you for knowing what we need. Blessings,angie

  32. Mary Shearer — July 12, 2011 @ 4:58 pm

    It sounds like you have figured out a new product that will be very helpful. More power to you!

  33. Dee Raymond — July 12, 2011 @ 4:58 pm

    FINALLY!!! A product that fills the bill for those of us that love to make bags/purses, but want them to look professional versus “homemade”.

    Thanks sooo much for providing this product.


    Dee in FL

  34. Christian Chandler — July 12, 2011 @ 5:23 pm

    By Annie Soft and Smooth stabilizer and the pattern looks super I’d love to try it.

  35. Donna Craver — July 12, 2011 @ 5:33 pm

    Ohhh I can’t wait to try your product. It sound like just what I need for my purses.

  36. Maureen Elsey — July 12, 2011 @ 5:42 pm

    Love to try your products, have you any locations in Canada where they might be available. Would love the chance to win one of the prizes.

  37. Nancy in DFW — July 12, 2011 @ 6:09 pm

    want some!

  38. Kate — July 12, 2011 @ 6:27 pm

    This sounds like a fantastic product. I love making bags, now I’ve got to get over to your site and take a look at the patterns as well.

  39. Teresa — July 12, 2011 @ 8:22 pm

    Sounds like the perfect solution for all those purses I make!

  40. Nancy Borden — July 12, 2011 @ 8:51 pm

    I make purses everyday. It’s my passion. I’d love to try the soft and stable

  41. Laura — July 12, 2011 @ 8:57 pm

    I love making purses and this product looks like the perfect solution to the batting issue. Can’t wait to try it. Going to your website right now!

  42. Teresa — July 12, 2011 @ 9:05 pm

    I love the ideal of soft and stable I would love to try it.


  43. Carol Karnes — July 12, 2011 @ 10:32 pm

    Loved checking out your site and videos. Love the bags and Soft & Stable…and the Texture Magic… many ideas! Are these products available in any brick & mortar stores or must the be purchased online?

  44. Quiltnut — July 12, 2011 @ 10:37 pm

    Love your purses…would like to win this new product so that I could try it too.

  45. Vivian Zug — July 12, 2011 @ 11:25 pm

    Soft and Stable sounds like the perfect product for many kinds of projects. I’m eager to try it on my Lazy Girl purses.

  46. Joan Babb — July 13, 2011 @ 12:03 am

    I can’t believe my eyes. I am making a bag for my sister and I have been fussing all day about the stiff interfacing I use so my bags will stand up. I feel like I have fought a bear by the time I get through. I can’t wait to try Annie’s Soft and Stable. I love the bags.
    Thank you, Annie.

  47. Wanda — July 13, 2011 @ 12:21 am

    What a wonderful product! I love making tote bags for my friends as gifts and this will go a long way to help improve their lifetime.

    I would love to win some to try!

    All the best.

  48. Evita Piepho — July 13, 2011 @ 4:36 am

    Thanks for having Annie here. I went to her site and really spent about 2 hrs. watching ALL her videos and ended up buying tons of stuff. I’m sure I’ll be able to make them for myself and presents. I had lots of fun creating in my mind and now to reality. Thanks again. Evita

  49. martha — July 13, 2011 @ 7:08 am

    Wow I would love that… that is a problem with my bags, they slouch, so this would be a fantastic product!!.. definelty going to ck out your site…… thanks for a great product!!

  50. Eileen — July 13, 2011 @ 7:23 am

    I’d love to win a package of the Soft and Stable, sounds like a great product!