Friday, January 19, 2018

Year of Colour

Through our creative year, I think we all get a little myopic. I know the project at hand usually holds my focus, and even though alot of us take a moment to look back at our year as a whole, Emily and Stef of Makelight have generously given us a way to look at those twelve months in a new way.... totally by colour.

Emphasize Saturated / Emphasize Brighter Colours

By their own definition, Makelight is "a membership community for creators, makers and doers." Offering both free and members-only classes, there's also a blogful of thoughtful articles - definitely worth a glance.

Center on Favorite Colour / Order Colours by Time

As they did last year, they are offering a free tool to let us visualize the colours that we used on Instagram in 2017. Not only that, but we can see our personal colours in a variety of ways. Note the categories under each photo of my own, as the colours are reorganized. Each circle represents one of ten significant colours extracted from each image I posted, and the size of the circles indicates both how significant the colour was in the image, and how well liked it was by my followers. Pretty amazing, right?

Rainbow Mode / Order by Popularity

If you're like me, you'll get lost in it all for a bit, examining and pondering. Check out Your Year of Colour. Then share on Instagram with the hashtag #YearOfColour!

Wednesday, January 17, 2018


You guys. It was three months after submitting my article to Curated Quilts that I held Issue 2 in my hands and saw my Creative Reset project in its pages. It was immensely satisfying.

When I was asked to create a tutorial for one of my pincushions from last summer's pinnie parade and list some tips on reviving creativity, it felt a very natural request.... something I was totally comfortable creating and writing about, which isn't always the case these days. And truly, an improv log cabin block has been one to call to me over and over again.

So if you happen to get a chance to read the article, know that you are receiving a part of me. The ideas I share are exactly what I do when I find myself in that unsettling place. And though these improvisational pincushions were the result this time, the same processes have led me to equally satisfying places and got me going again at other times. Ie. they work for me.

Gee whiz. I kinda keep forgetting that my Steeped in Tradition also appears in the Gallery section of this issue. Considering this quilt was sold at QuiltCon in 2016, it's always good to see it again!

If you have yet to explore a copy of Curated Quilts for yourself, consider giving an issue a try. I've found it to be a beautifully published and inspiring quilting journal. And I'm pleased to have had a part in it.

Friday, January 12, 2018

Influencer.... Who Me?

For better or worse, I'll admit to doing a fair amount of purchasing on Amazon. Not a 'shopper' by nature, add in a full-time job and a penchant for sewing as often as possible, and I prefer to get what I need quickly and easily.

Enter in the Amazon Influencer program. Basically it's a way for a creator like me to make recommendations to other creators.... like you! And I decided to go ahead and join the program because I get asked to make recommendations ALOT. Folks want to know the tools I use to do what I do. So now there's an easy way to let you know. Here's a peek at what I've put on my page so far....

And if you want to take a look for yourself, just click the link below.

No pressure! And please, rest assured I'll only include things on my page that I either use myself or otherwise can honestly recommend. Even though I may get a small commission on these items, I would never suggest anything I'm not willing to stand behind. You can count on that.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

2018 Finish-A-Long :: Q1 List

A new year, a new quarter of the Finish-A-Long. Believe it or not, I just have two wips, and they are both going on the list.

First is Looking Up, a carry over from Q4 last year. The top is now pieced and basted, ready for quilting. And courage. It will happen, I know it.

And then I'm making a table runner for my mom's birthday. Over 90" long, it's still in the design process, but it's coming along. Time is of the essence, so I have little doubt about this one, and I'm very much looking forward to the quilting stage.... soon.

So that's it! Short but sweet. I'll get these two to the finish line and then we can see what's next.

Linking up with the 2018 Finish-A-Long Q1 link-up.

Friday, January 5, 2018

2017 Finish-A-Long :: Q4 Finishes

So it's time to report in for Q4 of the 2017 Finish-A-Long! I am happy to say I finished 4 for 5 this quarter, and the only reason I feel badly about number 5 not being finished is because I let it get the best of me. I don't like that feeling, but it's the reality, and I think this month (quarter?) I'll finally be able to face it. I sure hope so.

But still,  I did finish 4 projects on my list, and I'm perfectly satisfied with that.

1. First up was Venti, second in my series of tumbler quilts. 

I was actually midway through quilting at the beginning of the quarter, so a finish was pretty predictable. This one was an experiment in value, and I fully expect more such experiments and tumbler quilt in my future, tho not necessarily in the same project.

2.  There were just a handful of improv spikes when I added this project to my list, all created from my scrap basket.

spikey was the happy result. I really enjoyed these improv blocks and the crazy scrappy palette. In finishing it, I tried a new-to-me quilting design that felt a perfect match for those spikes.

3.  For a few years now, I've made my own everyday bags, and this time, the Traverse bag  by noodlehead called my name.

Working with my fabric choices and the hardware I purchased right from noodlehead made this bag a joy to sew together. I made the large version, and I've found it so roomy, I haven't even used the pockets under that snapped flap, but I do love the look!

4. And finally, just in the nick of time, I finished my Minimal Day Sampler, the Seattle MQG 
block of the month project last year.

I hadn't appliqued in so long, I pretty much devoured each month's block assignment. And it felt great having this as my first finish  of the year.

Soooo.... one big, challenging project will carry over on my Q1 list, and the rest remains to be seen! If you'd like to join the Finish-A-Long for 2018, here's all the info. It's a fun, low-pressure way to keep moving on those works in progress!

Linking up with the 2017 Finish-A-Long Q4 linky. 

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Minimal Day

It's been nearly a year since Seattle MQG started its 2017 block-of-the-month, each block a lesson in needle-turn applique. Jonna/@bespokeoutlaw was our hostess, presenting a project inspired by two pieces of jewelry designed by her great uncle, Russell Day. Intriguing, right? If you compare the finished quilt with the photo below, I'm sure you'll be able to see some similar shapes.

My fabric choices included Carolyn Friedlander's linen-cotton blend, euclid, as my background fabric; and a bundle of Anna Maria Horner voile scraps for the applique. [The prints are from her Little Folks line; the brown, I'm not sure.]

In constructing the quilt top, I chose not to use sashing, but did add uneven borders. Wanting to incorporate more AMH fabric in the back, but not necessarily voile, I was happy to find a fat-quarter of her Honor Role in my stash. Pieced with a couple of coordinating solids and some natural Essex was simple but satisfying.

Quilting was done in Aurifil 50wt 2309 (Silver White), echoing shapes in some sections, and creating improvisational designs in others, all done with my walking foot. The actual color blended into the background, while the quilting really provided some stand-out texture. Measuring 38" x 38", a binding in natural Essex finished it off in a subtle way.

I found it very compelling to create this quilt inspired by a real person's designs in a very different medium. Note to self! I did find that the combination of the Essex and my quilting made it difficult to get really clear photos. Even so, it was an enjoyable excursion back to the days where I did alot of applique, and doing so with more modern designs was a treat.

This project was on my 2017 Q4 Finish-A-Long list! If you want to see all the block designs, they can be found on the Seattle MQG website. We've tagged our Instagram posts with #seamqgbom2017 and #minimaldaysampler. Linking up with Finish It Up Friday!