Sew Modern online!

Some of you may have noticed that I have some sponsors over on my sidebar now. One of them is Sew Modern, my local shop where I also teach. We are so lucky here in LA to have access to such a great shop that carries so many of the wonderful new fabrics out there. I mean c’mon now, they carry EVERY color of Kona Cotton! How many people get to see that when they walk in to a shop?? We are a lucky bunch. But now you’re lucky too because Sew Modern has just launched an online shop! Click on over and check it out – and don’t forget their sale section – it’s pretty killer…

Now it’s not every day that I go bonkers for a fabric, but now and then, some comes along that makes me feel faint. These latest arrivals at Sew Modern, Yoshiko Jinzenji’s fabrics, are some of those!

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The second they showed up in the shop I snagged two yards of each. They are so unique and gorgeous.

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In celebration of launching their online shop, Sew Modern is giving away a half yard set of these three beautiful, sophisticated fabrics. Leave a comment here and I’ll pick a winner on Friday.

P.S. The winner of the copy of Modern Mix was Sam. Congrats and keep an eye out for an email from me!
P.P.S. I know it’s been giveaway central over here recently. Not on purpose – just a timing thing. I promise I’ll be posting some actual sewing at some point! Ha.

Modern Mix blog tour

It’s my stop on another book blog tour today. This time around it’s for a fellow Stash Books author, Jessica Levitt and her book Modern Mix.

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The mix that the title refers to is solid and patterned fabrics.  If you follow my blog at all, you know I’m a real lover of solids. Jessica’s book proves over and over that solids set off a project and give patterned fabric some room to breath and be appreciated.

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The book is chock full of projects that use all different quantities of solid fabrics and each one is beautiful.

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The projects range in size and complexity. Everything from big bed quilts to pillows and little pouches.  So many great projects here – you’re certain to be inspired to get to the sewing machine and sew some of them up!

And I’ll bet you seriously want a copy of this book, huh?? Well you get a chance to win one right now! Leave a comment on this post and one lucky winner will get a copy. I’ll pick a winner on Wednesday the 12th.

If you’d like to follow along, the remaining stops on the tour are:

Monday 10/10:  Stop Staring and…Start Sewing
Tuesday 10/11:  Quilting is My Therapy
Wednesday 10/12:  Stitch Magazine Blog
Thursday 10/13:  Oh Fransson
Friday 10/14:  Generation Q Magazine
Saturday 10/15:  Quilt Dad
Sunday 10/16:  Confessions of a Craft Addict
Monday 10/17:  Amy’s Creative Side
Tuesday 10/18:  Pink Chalk Studio
Wednesday 10/19:  Connecting Threads
Thursday 10/20:  Keepsake Quilting
Friday 10/21:  Juicy Bits

Good luck!

A quilt and a winner

The LAMQG had its second anniversary meeting on Monday night. It’s crazy how quickly those two years have gone by and how much The MQG has grown since then!

We coordinated an anniversary swap and I was sewing for Liz. Her adorable little baby girl is right at the age where they can always use one more quilt to put on the floor, so I quickly put together a little one for her.

LAMQG swap quilt

I had to use scraps she gave me and I could only add one new fabric. Obviously I added the yellow. Oh and I cheated and added the binding too. Figured a stripy binding was worth a little cheating!

LAMQG swap quilt

And thanks for all of your comments on the Quilt Retro blog tour post. I used the random number generator and the winner is Anita! Congrats and keep an eye out for an email from me.

Quilt Retro Blog Tour

I’m happy to be a part of the Quilt Retro blog tour today!

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This book by Jenifer Dick is so cute! It’s filled with clear concise patterns, along with lots of encouragement form Jenifer about how to make the patterns your own.

But what really stood out about it to me was that it’s filled with appliqué. You don’t see a lot of appliqué in modern quilting, and it’s a nice change of pace to see it here. For example, check out the cover quilt, called Outside My Kitchen Window.

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The book has so many detailed how to’s and tips and tricks for appliqué – so helpful for me since this is an area of quilting where I have so much learn!

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And oh what’s that? You’d like to win a copy of Quilt Retro? Ok! Jenifer was generous enough to help make that happen!  Just leave a comment here and I’ll draw a winner on Wednesday.

This is just the start of the blog tour so tomorrow be sure to check out Quiltville for the next stop.

Around the sewing room…

I’ve been planning…

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(Need to get started on the Habitat Challenge!)

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…piecing…

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and quilting!

This actually isn’t how I usually work. Normally I have one project going that I finish before I start another but recently I’ve had too much on my plate to work that way.  Makes me feel scattered but what can you do? I’m still getting work done…

And thank you all so much for all of your kind comments about my latest quilt. There were so many great name suggestions.  I heard Crossroads from a few people and I really liked that, both because the piecing looks kinda like roads (let’s go with it…) and because the piecing crosses itself.  So that’s what I’m going with!   Thanks again for all of your ideas!

Another finished quilt!

Ok – so I have no clue what to name this one so if you have bright ideas please leave ‘em in the comments! This is the one I was starting back here

Commission

I have been leaning more and more on non-block based quilt designs but I also love to improv. piece so I have been thinking of ways to combine the two. I feel like this quilt is a good example of that. Personally, I love it.

Commission Detail

I quilted with dense straight lines (as usual – expect to see a whole lot more of this outta me – I’m loving it these days) and then less densely through the piecing. You can see the quilting really well on the back.

Commission Back

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Quilting the Queen Baby Quilt

Thank you so much for all of your nice comments about the quilting on the Queen Baby Quilt. I though I would share more about how I did it, so I put together some step by step illustrations that should make it very clear.

I recently took a workshop from the amazing Angela Walters and one of her biggest tips about quilting is that you need to plan how you’re going to work through the quilt in advance. This of course makes sense, but sometimes I get too impatient and just jump in. Not anymore!

I should add that my straight line quilting has improved dramatically since I started sewing on the Janome Horizon. (Full disclosure – they did sponsor me with the machine but I would recommend it regardless.) The combination of their feed system and being able to turn the pressure of my presser foot waaaay down have made it so that I don’t deal with fabric shifting like I used to. Amanda Jean did a post on this recently and the follow up post has lots of helpful ideas.

Additionally, the size of the Horizon makes it so that I can easily turn the quilt in my machine as needed. And there’s a lot of turning happening with this quilting because I turn a lot of corners. I keep my lines equidistant by just using the edge of my walking foot as the guide for each seam.

The quilting started with this basic idea.

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We’ve all seen it before – the idea of making blocks into beads on a string… Pretty simple, right? But with all of that negative space, I knew that I wanted to fill it in with dense straight line quilting, so I had the idea to echo quilt this first concept.

So I started quilting!

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First I sewed a line that was the beginning of the idea.

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Then I worked my way out to the edge of the quilt, filling in all of the negative space. My quilt was in my machine turned 180 degrees (meaning sewing from the bottom to the top) while quilting these lines and I slowly worked my way out, so that more and more of the quilt was to the left of my machine. You can see that when a smaller section of the negative space got filled in (like between the blocks or below the bottom block) I just stopped making those turns.

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Next up, it was time to fill in two of the blocks with freemotion quilting. I did this before finishing the straight lines so that I could keep the fabric smooth through the whole process. If I quilted dense lines all around the blocks, and then quilted the blocks, any extra fabric (in an ideal world there wouldn’t be any but I’ve learned this lesson the hard way) wouldn’t have anywhere to go and would bubble and ripple.

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I then continued with filling in the straight lines. Because there’s so little negative space between the blocks, I knew I had to fill in the framing line around the second set of blocks now or there wouldn’t be room for it later. Lots of planning ahead!

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Then I filled in all of the space between them. There was only room for a couple of complete lines (that run from the top to the bottom of the quilt) between the blocks, so I then filled in the top and bottom spaces, again echoing the pattern that the quilting lines created.

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And then it was time to freemotion quilt the last two blocks!

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Finally, the last framing line happened…

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I echo quilted around it to the edge of the quilt…

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And finished up by filling in the corners, again echoing the existing quilting pattern.

And there you have it! It is time consuming, all of these straight lines, but I think that the result is so worth it. I love that it is quilting that takes the piecing in to consideration, yet it is graphic and works to create a very modern feeling quilt.

Modern Quilt Guild happenings


So much going on with The MQG these days. We just announced a call for quilts for an MQG exhibit at Fall Market 2012! This is very exciting stuff and I know that it will be an amazing show!

And meanwhile, are you going to Market or Festival in Houston this year? There’s going to be two different meetups kindly hosted by The Houston MQG. All are welcome and it’s always so much fun to meet other like minded quilters from around the country and world.

Go MQG!

Sew, Mama, Sew! Modern Block of the Month – September

September’s block is posted over at Sew, Mama, Sew!  Triangles! How very unlike me, huh??

Sew, Mama, Sew! Modern Block of the Month - September
Hope you enjoy it!

Queen Baby Quilt

Sometimes friends having a baby have a great last name (Queen in this case) and you just gotta use it when naming the quilt! Well, that and the fact that I’m the absolute worst at coming up with quilt names and there you have it… The Queen Baby Quilt!

Queen Baby Quilt

I loved the central gray sorta plus sign created in this quilt, and was doing that that again here. I was also exploring intentionally ever so slightly wavy seams. Not just cutting with no ruler, but also cutting both pieces of fabric at the same time (overlapping them a bit) before sewing them together. Fun stuff and something I’m gonna do more of. It’s a subtle difference, but it does effect your “wonky” look and I’m ever continuing to explore that… It’s endless that wonk exploration, isn’t it??

Queen Baby Quilt Detail

I did dense straight line quilting (yes, I’m stuck there right now) but I tried to mix it up a bit by outlining the blocks and then echoing that outline. And I filled in the blocks themselves with the wavy watery pattern I just did on my mother’s quilt. I will be handing this quilt off to its new lil’ baby owner on Saturday and I hope he loves and cuddles with it for years.

I’m headed to NYC for Fashion Week for all of 36 hours tomorrow. And in other exciting news, I found out that I’m going to the Emmys this year! Fun!! Project Runway is nominated and my fingers are seriously crossed that it’ll win. My outfit is 90% sorted out. Now I just need to get used to walking around in my new super high stilettos…

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