Visit Your Local Quilt Shop Day!

This weekend is the blog tour for Visit Your Local Quilt Shop Day! I decided to take part because I LOVE my local quilt shop, Sew Modern.

I’m not the usual quilting story in that I came to quilting through the internet. Flickr and blogs brought on my love affair – not taking a class or a shop I visited. I didn’t have a local quilt shop until I was an avid quilter.

Sew Modern was opened up by a friend and fellow LAMQG member.

Sew Modern

Next thing you know, the LAMQG is meeting there…

LAMQG Nov. meeting

…and quilting there!

LAMQG Denyse Schmidt advanced workshop

It’s pretty much the clubhouse! Aren’t we lucky here in LA to have such a wonderful shop to spend time in?

Sew Modern BP Quilt

Nothing can replace the sense of community that seeing people in person provides. When I am at Sew Modern I always run into my quilting friends. Everyone loves catching up over some sewing machines and rotary cutters!

Elizabeth's visit to the LAMQG

And I haven’t even mentioned the FABRIC! Being able to see it, touch it and mix & match with the bolts is a sort of fun that you can’t have when you’re shopping online.

So don’t forget that January 24th is Visit Your Local Quilt Shop Day. I hope that you’ll hit up yours!

In a Sea of Blue finished!

Remember this idea? Well I got this commission finished up about a week ago. My first finish of 2013.

In a Sea of Blue

It’s a big queen sized quilt. And look, I’m taking a flat photo of it! Very exciting stuff. This is because for Christmas my husband got me a great photography set up for my big quilts.

In a Sea of Blue

Until the day comes that I have some fabulous enormous studio space where I can shoot my big quilts, this will be my set up! I need to figure out a better clip and hang system than the clothes hangers but I will… and then I’m hoping that I get the gumption to take it different places beyond my sister’s back yard.

Here’s a detail of the quilt after I’d washed it (these first photos are before I washed it) and it got that nice crinkle. I’d say that the colors are truest in this photo.

In a Sea of Blue detail

The orange is Kona flame and boy is it bright! But in this sea of blue it works. I was thinking about using negative space differently in this quilt… sorta like I pieced it with all of the blue. I know it doesn’t really read that way, but it’s an idea I hope that I find more time time to explore in the future!

QuiltCon Charity Quilts

Some of you may know that the MQG held a QuiltCon block challenge that lead to the QuiltCon fundraiser quilt and also a TON of extra blocks. All of those blocks are being used to put together a quilt for every bed in the Austin Children’s Shelter.

The LAMQG is putting together two of these quilts and I sewed up one of the tops. I received these great blocks:

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Then it was time to make some decisions about how to use them in the lay out. Since the quilt is going to be long armed, I thought I’d leave lots of negative space that can be filled up with some beautiful quilting. This bright vivid blue is also perfect for kids.

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You can see my process in this photo. I use Illustrator and design to scale. This makes it easy for me to sort out how big the fabric surrounding the blocks needs to be.

Another lil’ note about this photo – those two bits of sewing in the upper right of my design wall? I leave those there all the time as a constant reminder about what I should focus on with my quilting. The wonky log cabin was sewn up with Denyse Schmidts’ fabrics (I was sure she wouldn’t mind!) that she had brought for the LAMQG workshop and that I had in my house for about a day before mailing them all back to her. The A was sewn up in Elizabeth Hartman’s workshop using her freezer paper method. These two bit of sewing, to me, represent the 1) the freedom of design and sewing without thinking and 2) the importance of good craftsmanship. Having those there as a constant reminder is a good thing for me.

Anyhow – here’s the finished top and now it’s off to be quilted!

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I don’t know about you, but I’m certain these quilts are going to add a lot of vibrancy to the shelter. So thrilled that together the MQG can do this great charity quilting!

Happy New Year!

Happy 2013 everyone!

As we round the corner into the next year, I find myself a bit dismayed to discover that I have very little sewing to show for the year. Basically just these three quilts…

Pink Greater ThanIntersectionsBroken Plaid

I’m proud of all three but I sure do wish I’d had more hours at the sewing machine… But that’s ok! There are other quilts that are almost finished!

In a Sea of Blue

And I certainly did a lot with my year. QuiltCon, and working for the MQG, has been a huge and on going project. And there’s so much excitement with QuiltCon being less than two months away! Last year I also cast two seasons of Project Runway and together we raised over $17,000 for Action Kivu. But the biggest deal in my life is of course that this lil’ guy came along:

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Hands down my best project of 2012. Happy, happy new year to all of you and here’s to many more successful projects in the coming year!

2012 coming to an end!

Boy that year flew right by, didn’t it??

I’m determined to get some good sewing time in these last couple weeks of the year. Quilts will be finished!! I’m shooting going to get these three done before the new year!

Bee Imaginative Quilt top Quilt top complete! Finished quilt top!

Yeah, that first one is from June 2011 – the waaaaay back machine! Let’s see how I manage.

Other stuff – a winner of 15 Minutes of Play was picked and contacted by Victoria.

And also, I’m on Instagram! Are you? I love it. You’ll be certain to see loads of my baby, but I post my sewing as I’m doing it too. Follow me if you wanna!

15 Minutes of Play blog tour

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Victora Findlay Wolfe‘s book, 15 Minutes of Play.

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I’ve known Victoria for a while now and her unique voice with her quilts has always impressed me. Her book reflects that voice so clearly and well! I’m a really lover of improv. piecing, but I’ve moved away from it in my design and this book reminds me to keep it in my repertoire! For just 15 minutes a day…

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Victoria’s idea of just playing with fabric for 15 minutes a day is a great one. It keeps those creative juices flowing, even when you’re very busy or feeling a lack of inspiration. I should take her advice more to heart! I work with fabric all the time, but sometimes I need to think of it in a more playful way. Victoria’s book focuses on that process and the inspiration it can lead to. Such a great approach!

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In world full of pattern books, this one helps you find your way and voice with play and who wouldn’t want that?? BTW – my favorite color to “play” with is blue. I’m always turning to my blue stash!

Now who wants to win a copy? If it’s a US winner they will receive a hard copy of the book, and an international winner will receive an electronic copy of the book, direct from C&T. Just leave a comment here on this post and I’ll pick a random winner on Dec. 12th.

Be sure to check out the rest of the tour!

Nov 29: Pat Sloan
Nov 30: Fat Quarter Shop
Dec 1st: Karen Griska
Dec 2nd: Angela Walters
Dec 3rd: Generation Q
Dec 4th: Tonya Ricucci
Dec 5th: Michele Foster
Dec 6th: Scott Hansen
Dec 7th: Amy Ellis
Dec 8th: Rachael daisy
Dec 9th: Jackie Kunkel
Dec. 10th: C & T Publishing

LAMQG retreat

I was able to sneak away this past weekend for a quick day at the LAMQG retreat. It always looks like a sewing bomb went off in the room at these things…

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It was so much fun to get to just chit chat with friends and sew for a day. I actually didn’t get that much sewing in but did tons of quilt back making and basting…

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…and got a start on my Center City quilt.

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A lot more work to be done but I’m on my way!

For those of you in the States I hope that you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!!

Here I am!

I’ve been gone a bit, huh? Sorry about that – just lots on my plate these days!

I have managed to get this top finished up. I love it. It might be my favorite quilt that I’ve made. Though that tends to happen with the latest project I’m working on…

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While making everything line up took a lot of attention, the hardest part was trimming the edges on the bias. HARD when you don’t have a large space to lay the quilt out on. My solution was to put it up on my design wall, draw the lines on with chalk and cut the edges with scissors. Not perfect, but I’ll square it up again once it’s quilted!

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Now to think through the quilting… suggestions welcome!

The process

This weekend I came up with a new quilt design and I got inspired to sew…

QuiltConQuilt

I picked out the fabrics.

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Got a really good start on it… loads of cutting and started getting there with the piecing.

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It was looking really pretty.

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My kid was super impressed.

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And then…just as I was getting in my groove…

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Yeah. No, that blue line doesn’t line up at all. Sigh. Seam ripper time… It’s all part of the process, right??

Tomorrow I’m headed to Quilt Market for the weekend. My first quick get away since having the baby. It’s gonna be loads of fun!

More traveling quilts action!

Worked on the next month of The Traveling Quilts this weekend. I’m all caught up now which is great!

This time it’s Jacquie’s quilt that I was working on. I received this:

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Jacquie wanted everyone to “add as much color as you’d like” but I straight up couldn’t follow directions at all. You can call me boring, but I just had to add some calm open negative space to the already very colorful and lively improv-ed panel.

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I added some interest by continuing the white and grey stripes from the center panel. I know it appears to be off square in the photo, but it’s not. I was actually pretty pleased with my execution of this but Gabe seems pretty bored with it, huh??

One other bit of business. I’ll be back in New Hampshire visiting family in a couple of weeks, so I’ll be speaking to the Seacoast and Boston Modern Quilt Guilds on November 3rd! Maybe you want to come? All of the details are here.

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