Monday, February 11, 2013

QuiltCon Preparation

As QuiltCon draws closer, I'm trying to sort out exactly what it is that I need to sew or pull together to help make my experience a little easier.

For starters, I'm taking 2 workshops and each has a list of supplies; which of course means that I'll need something to carry those supplies in.  Originally, I was thinking Amy Butler's Weekender Tote; but maybe Anna Maria Horner's Art Student Tote would be better this time around.  I haven't made either before and only have a week to do so.  No pressure.



 
 
One thing I don't have to worry about is a Lanyard.  While a simple lanyard will presumably be handed out at QuiltCon, I already have an awesome one made by my dear friend, Lynne.  It was a gift when we visited Spring Quilt Market in Kansas City last year.  I'm sure if you look on Pinterest or Google you can find a tutorial for how to make one of your own.
 

 
Now,  I've been to my fair share of trade shows or similiar events.  One thing that you should always have is business/networking cards.  You never know who you will run into, and besides it's sort of like in highschool, when everyone "traded" those namecards with their Senior Photos.  I placed an order last week with VistaPrint for mine; but there are lots of other options including something call Moo Cards; which are fun too.  And if shipping is a concern, you can always do what I did for years, use a template on Microsoft Word or another software program and print them yourself. 
 
 
I'm looking forward to meeting those that I've connected with online, and lots of new people too.  Make sure that if you see me, you smile and wave.  I'll do the same, and then we'll trade "namecards"...Hahaha!
 
Happy Monday!  
 
 

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Liebster Award & Paying it Forward

You can imagine my surprise when I received an email from Adrianne of On the Windy Side, telling me that she nominated me for a Liebster Award.  This is an award for up and coming bloggers, and a great way for people to discover new ones...since of course someone already gave them the Seal of Approval.

I'm honored that Adrianne selected me and now it's my turn to pay it forward.
 

The rules for the Liebster Award are pretty simple:

 
1. Thank and link back to the person who nominated you.
2. Answer 11 questions asked by the person who nominated you.
3. List 11 random things about yourself.
4. Nominate 11 of your favorite blogs that have (mostly) less than 200 followers.
5. Ask your nominated bloggers 11 questions.

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Here are the questions that Adrianne asked of me and the other 10 nominees.  This is a word and photo heavy post, so sit back and enjoy.

1. What is the first quilt you made like? If you have a picture - please let us see!
I unfortunately don't have a picture of my first quilt...don't even know if I have my first quilt anymore; but I do have some photos of some early quilts I made.  Back in the day I didn't make anything larger then 36x36 because I didn't know how to properly quilt them...which also meant that alot of my quilt tops went unquilted.  If I did attempt it they were tied or else quilted in the ditch so I could hide my horrendous quilting skills.
 
 

 
 

2. What is your favourite part of making a quilt?
I actually like all of it in some way, shape or form.   I know that's kind of a cheat answer.  Designing a pattern lets my methodical side shine, while picking pretty fabrics lets me play.  The cutting and piecing is relaxing and I love pin-basting because it's my first real chance to see the quilt "whole"...plus getting all of those wrinkles smoothed-out is kinda fun.  The actual quilting can be a challenge sometimes; but I'm trying to learn new techniques; which is always fun.  I actually hated binding quilts; but since I've learned how to machine bind, its much more enjoyable.
 

3. Do you have any pets?
While these little guys (Sid and Hank) don't technically belong to me, they do live with me since my Sister's apartment won't allow "rodents".  I've grown up with various rabbits and have always found them to make wonderful pets. 



 

4. What would your karaoke song be?
 I'm going to plead the 5th on this one, simply because I cannot imagine ever singing out loud.  I used to sing and dance when I was young; but about the time I hit puberty, that confidence disappeared.  I actually know ALOT of songs and the lyrics run through my head all the time; but you'll never hear me actually sing them.


5. Have you ever been to a quilting conference or retreat?
No; but ask me again in a few weeks and the answer will be a resounding YES...as I'll be at QuiltCon near the end of February.  I'm so looking forward to attending this inaugural event, not only will I be meeting many online friends/bloggers; but I'm taking two classes and even doing a little speaking myself.
 



6. Who in your non-quilting life knows you have a quilt blog?
The easy answer is my boss and countless co-workers; and sometimes it is a little strange when the subject comes up.  Some people understand that it's a passion of mine and get the "Art" part.  Yet, others just think it's something I do (like watching TV), not realizing all of the wonderful opportunities that this art form has given me...things like speaking engagements, being published, meeting fellow quilters/artists/designers, etc.


7. What is the strangest search term you've seen in your "Search Keywords" stats?
Green Aliens from Toy Story...this is both strange and yet completely understandable since I'm the one that actually typed those words in a blog post way back in February 2008.  I was trying to describe the paint colors that the previous homeowners painted one of the bedrooms in my home.  You should definately check out this blog post and this one, to see how much renovation was actually necessary for one simple room. 
 

8. How did you choose your blog name?
This is an easy one.  I started blogging when I bought my house back in 2007.  I had been reading lots of home renovation/decor blogs and when I bought my forever home (an 1880s Folk Victorian Farm House), I wanted to try my hand at blogging too.  Over the years my blog has transitioned from purely home renovation to quilting; but I kept the name.  It just seemed appropriate since my pursuit to turn my house into a home is equally important as the other aspects of my life.



9. Are you a member of a real-life quilt guild?
Yes, I'm the Founder & President of the St. Louis MQG; born July 2010.  I had made a "resolution" that year to join a quilt guild as I had hoped to meet people who had similiar interest.  While on a business trip, I came across the MQG website and knew right away that was the type of guild I wanted to join.  As I looked at the list of guilds, I was amazed to learn that St. Louis wasn't among them.  In a moment of spontaninity, I emailed the MQG organization and told them that I'd like to create a guild in St. Louis. 
 
 
 
We are in our 3rd year now, going strong, growing and learning everyday.  Every meeting I leave feeling inspired by the talent of our members and all of the things that they have taught me.
 


10. What is your favourite sweet treat?
Entenmann's Single Serve Softee Frosted Donuts...yes, seriously.  These are the most delicious store-bought donuts that I've had.  And of course they are hard to find, at least in the stores near me.  I have been known to buy an entire box of them (yes, that's 8, two-packs) simply so I have them on hand when I need a little treat.  I know, they aren't good for you; but sometimes you just have to endulge now and again.
 
 

 11. Do you like to have something to listen to while you are quilting - like the TV, music, an audiobook?
My iTunes is always on, since my computer is only a few feet away from my sewing machine.  You'll find a little bit of everything on my playlists including songs by 30 Seconds to Mars, Enya, Ani DiFranco, New Found Glory, and even some Showtunes and Golden Oldies for good measure.

 
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Per the rules, I have to list 11 random things about myself:

  • I was a commuter student in college; but didn't have a car.
  • I remember quoting Abraham Lincoln "If you once forfeit the confidence of your fellow citizens, you can never regain their respect and esteem" when trying to explain to an ex-best friend why we couldn't be friends anymore, after she stabbed me in the back in jr. high.
  • My college essay was written about the TV show My So-Called Life.
  • I own my own cement mixer.  It was bought when I was renovating my garage back in 2007
  • When I was in 10th grade English Literature (one of my favorite subjects even to this day), I asked my Teacher for a list of her favorite classic literature books.  I still have the list.
  • In 2005, I participated in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) and actually wrote a 50,000 word novel (approx. 175 pages) in a single month.  It's a horrible novel; but I can say that I actually did it.
  • I had a small online business called Po-Ka-Dot some years back selling handmade knitting needle/crochet hook holders.
  • One Summer, I worked at the Six Flags Costume/Theater department, fixing and making costumes for not only the theater employees; but also the Looney Tunes Characters (Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, etc).
  • I've visited 7 countries (Canada, Brazil, England, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, and China) thanks to a handful of business trips.
  • I've been the Stage Manager of a handful of Fashion Shows; which involved many things including wrangling models, organizing cheography and styling
  • I go through 3 gallons of milk in a single week; but that is all I drink besides water. No soda, coffee, or tea for me.


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Here are the 11 Bloggers that I nominate.  I'm not sure how many followers these blogs all have; but it's not the quantity that matters, it's that you are missing out on all of their awesomeness.

1. Miss Stash Would
2. The Studiolo / Casey York Designs
3. Holly's Red Bike
4. X.O.
5. A Blood Recollection
6. Dashasel Sews
Sew and So Quilts
8. BeSpoke Quilts
9. Cut.Sew.Iron.Repeat
10. {sew} Allegorical
11. Secondhand Dinosaur

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Here are the 11 Questions that I am asking them to answer:

To make it simple, please answer the same 11 questions that I did above in bold. 



Happy Thursday !
 
Sunday, February 3, 2013

SeaGlass Quilt

A fellow crafter and friend of mine, asked if I would make her a quilt for her soon-to-be-born Son.  She told me about the nursery's theme and talked alot about sea glass and how she was inspired by all of its colors. 

I struggled...partially because living in the heart of the MidWest, there's not alot of opportunity to be inspired by sea glass or sea scape.  In the end, I went with my gut and with the help of my trusty Kona Color Card...committed myself to shades of green and teal.



I built an assortment around the colors, Candy Green 1061, Pond 200 and Jade Green 1183
Most of the fabrics came from Sew,Mama,Sew.


Kona Cotton - Candy Green 1061
Kona Cotton - Pond 200
Kona Cotton - Jade Green 1183
Skinny Vines Aqua - Valentina
Juniper - Pearl Bracelet
Cross Square Green - Chicopee
Foliage Blue - Architextures
Dot to Dot Jade - Mixmasters
Daisy Blue - Gabbie

When it was time to start cutting, I opted to skip the Daisy Blue - Gabbie as it was just too blue and decided to pull in an emerald dot print from my stash to round things out.

Then it was time to make lots and lots of HST (Half Square Triangles).



With the top pieced, and the quilt pin-basted I decided to go ahead and do my favorite meandering stitch to finish things off.

The quilt was gifted on Friday at a surprise Baby Shower.
It measured 54" x 78".



Looking back, I wonder if my subconscience was more inspired by the 




Happy Sunday!!