Quilt Market & Festival

I offered to help setting up in the RNK/Quilters Select Booth, getting to meet some of my new co-workers. This has been so much good. I ran into Alex & John Anderson. As you probably know Alex has a line of product with RNK called Quilters Select. Even before I joined the company I started using Alex’s mat, rulers, and rotary cutter, and they’ve been a great addition in the studio.

I did a facebook live with Alex.

Karla Overland of Cherrywood announced the 2018 Cherrywood Challenge, the color is PURPLE and the shades are gorgeous!! It’s available here at Festival right now, and should be up on the site very soon.

I’m in booth 951 with Maria from Pinwheels selling Daiwabo Taupe and Oakshott cotton. I’d love to see you, even if it’s for a brief hello and hug.

I am going to try to get in to see the quilts in the next day or so. So watch Instagram for pics.

Enjoy your stitching!

Teri

Where have you been all my life?

I have fallen in love.

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The Sizzix Big Shot Pro arrived on my doorstep a few weeks ago. After taking it out of the box, and opening the box with the dies, changing locations twice, it sat there humming a little tune looking for my attention. Well, it’s mechanical, it doesn’t really hum. You’re a quilter you know what I mean. We get a new tool to make our quilting life easier, get it home, and have zero minutes to piece.

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There’s a project for the magazine I’m doing that requires hexagons, big ones. I am quite adept at cutting these on my own. I can read a ruler, find the correct angle. Cutting twenty four hexagons? Queue procrastination. I am aware that the sooner this gets done, the sooner it goes where it needs to, then things happen in the correct order, and I can turn in copy to Melissa & Jake on time. It’s really weird, they like that kind of thing.

I digress.

After taking the plastic off the die, setting aside the paper wrapper that Sizzix carefully designed to show said hexagon off in fine fashion. After pressing the Hoffman Indah Solids, doing a wee bit of preparatory rotary cutting to the size needed for the die, layered things up, I took a deep breath and turned the handle. And voila! hexagons in a matter of seconds.

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Can I just tell you what would normally have taken a couple of hours, took under thirty from pressing to finished hexagons. Oh my word, die cutters where have you been all my quilting life? This is one happy quilter.

Once the hexagons were done, a bit more prep work so that when all this gets to Melissa it’s ready to go.

With a bit more time before making dinner I pressed a few SewBatik bits in preparation for some piecing.

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I’ll share progress on that later, when I get to do some piecing. In the meantime…there are articles to write, fabric and quilts to ship, and a day job to find.

Happy Quilting!

Teri

 

Doing the (prep) Work, the next part

At some point in my quilting journey I knew that teaching was a next step. How did I know? Well, another quilter asked me one day, “Teri, when are you going to start teaching?” Well, I guess . .  soon. It took me a bit, but I figured out that I wanted to teach machine quilting. (Shocking I know!)

double-irish-chain-full-viewWhat was the prep work for this? It started with the quilt I made for my bed. A Double Irish Chain in Amish (sort of) colors. What you can’t see in this photo is the machine quilting around the last 10 to 12 inches of blocks and border. This quilt took a really long time, at some point I got fatigued, saying, “I’m done! with! this! thing!” and took it to the sewing machine and just finished. I bring it when I teach locally to show what happens when there problems with tension and speed. It’s a great teaching tool. I love this quilt. I see so much in this quilt that allows me to help new quilters on their journey into quilting.

Next up, come up with a concept.
What style of machine quilting will I teach? What information is so key to what I do as a quilter that my fellow lovers of quilting will appreciate?
What order will the day progress?
How do I develop hand outs? What will my handouts look like? How many pages?
Do I use books and/or other tools that are out there.
What do I do that is different, different enough to invite quilters in to take said class.
What do I want to see at the end of the class?
What do I want my students to leave with?

Side note: at the end of every class I think about what happened, including what can I improve, was there a disconnect between me & my students? Was there anything I could do to change that disconnect?

maine teaching 009The first class, “Beginner Free Motion Machine Quilting” was born. It’s changed a bit over the years. I teach technique, knowing and trusting that you, as my student, will have the tools at the end of class to grow, to expand your machine quilting motif knowledge. It is, by far, my favorite class to teach. I may not remember every student, but you have made a lasting impression on me. From you I’ve learned most importantly to be encouraging, particularly when things are going haywire in class. And they do go all haywire in class. That’s the place for everything to happen.
Partly, what I need you to see is the problem solving process. When I’m in a classroom that provides machines (I am so grateful to the companies that do this!) I have the availability of a machine expert. I don’t always call on them, because sometimes it’s not the machine. I want you to see what I do to problem solve when this stuff happens to me at home. And it does happen to me at home.
I also want to stop short, the negative thought process going through our heads as we learn. Oh.My.Goodness. This hurts my heart so much. I speak ill of my self, to myself. NOT COOL. If I can help stop that, all the better. We all know where the mistakes are. We so desire to be “perfect” that we miss out on the journey, we miss out on our growth. We miss out on the moments when we can take a risk. The classroom is the time to do that! Take a risk.
Our sewing rooms are the place to do that! Take a risk.
I take a risk every time I get up in front of a guild to speak or a group of students to teach. That’s my choice. I do it because this is a risk worth taking. Investing 6 in-person hours with you is the highlight of my time with you. Whispering in your ear that you can do this. Looking directly into your eyes and getting you to refocus on the learning part of it is so amazing. I see something change. I see a shift not only in your quilting, but in you. I notice.

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My prep work continues with a lot of practice, and experimenting. Dreaming. Taking Pictures. Drawing. Doodling. Trying new threads. Trying new batting. Trying new fabric!

This is where the new class ideas come from, some are still in development. At the moment they are on hold until I get this book finished! This too is a journey, one I’m thrilled to be taking.

I’m off to do some prep work (magazine meeting) but I’ll be back. There’s more to this prep work post!

Happy quilting,

Teri

Value-able

daiwabo fabricsThe other night my friend and I had a discussion about value. Color value. She is an artist who takes actual classes, paints, quilts, plays viola, you get the drift. Part of the conversation drifted to the new job and one component that I am struggling with, less and less, but still struggling. There is a learning curve with every new thing we take on, this is mine at this moment.
While I don’t have formal training as an artist I get color intuitively, I know the basics: the color wheel, how to use it, how to show others how to use it; I know what works for me and how to help new quilters select fabric and thread for quilts. This is what’s irritating about this particular struggle, I feel like I *should* get this, easily. Surprise! I don’t.
After a bit of conversation over dinner what I’m having a difficult time with is separating out the value. So we have a solution that I’m going to try out soon. The fascinating thing though is that while I’m struggling with this it’s what I’m working on right now for the book. And the funny things is that I get it! So you can see why this makes no sense. Ha!
Aside: we had dinner at The Bayou in Mt. Vernon, such good Cajun food!

I’m off to work for the day at the day job. Have a quilterly day!

Stash building

daiwabo fabricsI’ve deliberately destashed over the last few years letting go of fabrics that were once intended for tote bags. While these fabrics meant something for the tote bags they were not fabrics I’d use in quilts. It was work to be sure and worth the effort. What remains is fabrics I will use in quilts. Solids, hand dyes, Radiance, Batiks and a heavy dose of thread.

hand painted fabricsThis weekend I went on kind of a fabric buying binge and I couldn’t be happier. It all started with a visit to Jane Davila’s booth and these 11 fat quarters of hand painted fabric. Sigh. Oh just sigh. Next I went to Follow That Thread to see Donna Morales-Oemig’s booth. Donna lives in eastern Massachusetts, where they got a little bit, like over 100 inches, in an 8 week period. Bonus! Donna did some snow dyeing.

snow dyed radiance donnaSo, I’m at the booth, looking and staring at these pieces of snow dyed radiance in this glorious orange and shades of pink. I nearly had to get the bib out of the purse because these things are so freaking beautiful. I bought one, I bought the second one. There was one more I had my eye on. Hmm…at this point I’m not coming back to the show. Do I? Don’t I? Um, no…maybe some other time. I come home a happy camper.

Last minute decision Sunday morning. I’m heading back to the quilt show. I’d started playing with fabric for another project and am kind of excited to see where this will go. I’m using Paula Nadelstern’s Fabracadabra line, the idea for the quilt came from her lecture. I have a feeling I’ll need more yardage from this line. Oh darn. Fabric Shopping!!!

And then, oh then. I’m in Pinwheels booth. I love the hand of Daiwabo fabrics. Oh my. So you see that fat quarter tower in the upper left of this post? Yeah. That. Well, I went back to Donna’s booth to talk with her and introduce her to a friend of mine. And there was that piece of snow dyed Radiance next to two pieces of Kona cotton that were snow dyed at the very same time. Yes I bought it. Then a funny thing happened. I met Diana Louie and a friend of hers. Who loved the fabric. I showed her the other two pieces. Yeah, they’re gorgeous but, that Radiance. oh my. So I did the only thing a quilter could do. I let her take it home and I bought one of the pieces of Kona. I do need quilt backing for the Radiance after all.

So a little fabric, and a little thread. In a few days I’ll post pics of a few of the quilts.

Happy Quilting!

Teri

I’m becoming a Lazy Girl

So sometimes I think I’m kinda lazy and while that may have some truth to it. I like taking the simple way out and following directions directions is not quite my thing. So when I got Joan Hawley’s Bendy Bag Pattern a bit of Dreamy Fusible Fleece, Joan’s Iron Finger, and Touch Up Pressing Mitt in the mail to test it out and do a give away i got excited. The book stuff has taken priority over the last few weeks. I needed a bit of a refocus so I made the Bendy Bag today one full one and two about half way.

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Bendy Bag Lazy Girl Designs

Joan’s directions are totally fab. Joan actually presses the steps. I, uh, did not press as much as Joan did. My bag might look better if I actually pressed along the way. Actually I’m quite chuffed with it.

These are great bags for carrying stuff around: a little hand sewing project – think hexies quilters.
Power cords for phones, cameras, tablets, smaller cameras with their battery chargers will fit in here as well.bendy bag next 2 Safety pins for basting quilts. Oh the possibilities are endless. Endless I say.
And since the possibilities are endless I’m hosting a give away!
Included in give away 1: Bendy Bag Pattern; Dreamy Fusible Fleece and 1/4 yard of a SewBatik fabric for the outside of the Bendy Bag.
bendy bag done side 1Give away 2 and 3 another of Joan’s Lazy Girl Patterns.

Please answer, “how has quilting made you bendy?”.

On March 23 I’ll hit the Random Number Generator and choose 3 winners.

Happy Quilting,

Teri

 

UPDATE: Congratulations to #12 – Susan; #5 Rachel Trindle and #7 Din Milem, you are the winners. I’ll be in contact with each one of you for your mailing address.

 

 

A sneak peek and congratulations

 

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On Sunday I visited Quilt Fest of NJ, one of the Mancuso shows. Sometime within the next few weeks I’ll have a blog post on the GenQ site on some of the quilts that captured my attention. The one quilt that I am going to post here is my friend Reneé’s quilt, “Let’s Hear it for the Girls”.  She won a blue ribbon on the beauty and it’s lovely. With everything else going on in the last year or so I’ve not made it to a guild meeting in a while so hadn’t seen this one. If you get a chance it’s well worth it. Click on the picture and that will take you over to Renee’s blog post on the quilt. She has some amazing work in general so poke around a bit.

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I stopped in to see Bruce with SewBatik. Bruce and Diane are two of the sweetest people and they make some seriously gorgeous fabrics. While in the booth a family from Brooklyn stopped in; the daughter is going to FIT, the mom is a quilter and so is grandma. The family is from Bruce’s neighborhood. It was kind of fun to listen in while they chatted about familiar places. The sweetest thing ever? Bruce hugging Grandma. I wish I could adequately describe the look on his face.

Did you know that Bruce designs their fabric? I admire that creative brain a lot. The first thing that caught my attention when talking to Bruce on Sunday is the “Almost Solid” fat quarter bundle. While designed for the Modern Quilter these rich clear colors are a perfect resting place in any quilt. I’m smitten with that orange myself.

Then

Bruce showed me the new Rayon Batiks. Oh.My.Goodness! These are gorgeous. And, I get to be the first one to share them with you. These are not on the market yet! Bruce checked the color on my camera to make sure they’re correct. These will be available later this spring. SewBatik has a full show schedule, so you can see them in a variety of places. There are a couple that will find their way into my stash as soon as they’re available.

Happy Quilting! Teri
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