Outside the Comfort Zone

27 Sep

Fellow Quilters,

As I sit writing this post, I am enjoying the last of the local peach crop for this year – a definite sign that Fall is here.  Autumn is my favorite season, with the clear blue skies and brightly-colored trees.  We get lots of red, gold and yellow foliage mixed with the evergreens.  Fall walks are glorious, with the crisp air, no more flies or mosquitos, and the earthy scent of fallen leaves.  I try to step on every dried leaf just to hear the “crunch”.  Even a short walk is enough to clear the cobwebs of all-day computer work as I design quilts for upcoming fabric collections and write instructions for soon-to-be-released patterns.

Speaking of patterns, have you enjoyed the blog posts and free patterns from the My Happy Place Row-Along?  I was one of the first bloggers on the tour, and every Tuesday and Thursday until October 4 there are new rows for you to try.  Here are the still-active links:

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Clever Chameleon | Adventurous Applique and Quilting
Heleen Pinkster Quilt Design
Cynthia’s Creating Ark | Seams To Be Sew

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Songbird Designs/Brenda’s Blog | Powered By Quilting | Kissed Quilts
Happy Sewing Room | Sew Joy Creations

Thursday, September 27, 2018

BobbininQuilts | Daydreams of Quilts | The Quilted Snail | Scrapdash

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Words & Stitches | True Blue Quilts | Miss Loreen’s Schoolhouse
Meanderings Along Lizard Creek | Creativeblonde

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Quilt In Piece | Jaded Spade Creations | Mountain Meadow Designs
Masterpiece Quilting | Pamela Quilts

Tuesday, October 9, 2018
Show and Tell Day

The winner at my blog is – drum roll please! – Christi of Shelby, NC who prefers the ocean.  I totally get that.  There is something mesmerizing about walking along a beach listening to the surf lap upon the shore.  A packet of Christi’s favorite colorway of Stonehenge Gradations will be on its way to her shortly.

Last weekend was my annual retreat with the quilters from GEM Sewing in New Liskeard.  I taught a bobbin quilting workshop and an improv piecing workshop, and the students did amazingly well.  No issues at all with the bobbin quilting and couching.  However, all that changed when I demonstrated the first improv block.  As I randomly whacked it in half with the rotary cutter to insert a new strip, I could hear a few gasps.  This was definitely NOT the way some of the quilters were accustomed to piecing their blocks!  Everyone took a giant step outside their comfort zone, rose to my challenge and completed block after improv block with success.  Here they are after just one block!

The GEM quilters after piecing their first improv block. Diane was weak from the stress of random cutting and piecing.

The GEM quilters after piecing their first improv block. Diane was weak from the stress of random cutting and piecing.

Here are 2 more of the blocks:

GEM retreat green improv blocks

GEM retreat green improv blocks

Gem retreat pink improv blocks

Gem retreat pink improv blocks

Many of them are well on their way to getting their quilts finished.

Blocks being auditioned for a layout

Blocks being auditioned for a layout

During the evenings, I worked on my own projects alongside the gals, and managed to get 2 tops pieced for my Alternate Gridwork trunk show this upcoming Saturday September 29 at Simcoe Sew & Quilt in Barrie (from 10am to noon).  I am working on getting at least 2 more tops done for the trunk show.  Then I’ll start the list of quilts to be made for Fall Quilt Market in Houston.  I’ll be making the blue version of my Good Vibrations,

PC231 Good Vibrations queen-size in the blue color option

PC231 Good Vibrations queen-size in the blue color option

and the throw size of Solstice Star using Stonehenge Gradations Solstice to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Stonehenge collection, in addition to 4 others.

I am also part-way through piecing versions of 2 new patterns:  Besties (using Northcott’s Girls of the World)

PC225 Besties lap quilt using Girls of the World

PC225 Besties lap quilt using Girls of the World

and Glass Menagerie (using Northcott’s Zoometrix).

PC226 Glass Menagerie lap quilt using Zoometrix

PC226 Glass Menagerie lap quilt using Zoometrix

I’ll post links and some of my step-by-step photos next week.

 

See you next week!

 

Patti

Ready, Set, Go… Snowboarding

4 Sep

Fellow Quilters,

Woop!  Woop!  Today is the first day of the My Happy Place Row-along organized by Marian Pena of Seams to be Sew – thank you Marian for organizing this fun event.  This is the 4th year of the Row-along and Marian has managed to round up a whopping 47 fantastic designers for this 5-week event.  Guidelines of the Row-along can be found here. Along with 4 other designers, I am leading off this fun event that includes free patterns for rows that depict our happy places, and giveaways at each stop.  If you’re new to my blog, welcome!!  In it, I like to share stories of my mostly-quilty life, along with tips and insights.  I hope you’ll visit often, and even subscribe.

 

My Happy Place Knobie from The Fat Quarter Gypsy

My Happy Place Knobie from The Fat Quarter Gypsy

When Marian proposed this year’s theme of My Happy Place, many thoughts popped into my head.  Quilting is a BIG part of my life.  In fact, I have this terrific Knobie from The Fat Quarter Gypsy hanging on the handle of my longarm.

After all, my heart sings when I’m quilting.  However, several of the other designers selected quilting themes for their rows.  So what, then, should I choose?

Anyone who has followed my blog for more than a few months knows that my second love has to be snowboarding.  But how could I incorporate this into a row??  It would have to be vertical, and include snow-covered mountains, perhaps interspersed with some trees.  I thought of one of my all-time best-selling patterns, featured originally in McCall’s Quilting, then showcased in an 8-part quilt-along series.  McCall’s called it Misty Pines, however I call it Winter Solstice (available here).

PC190 Winter Solstice

PC190 Winter Solstice

Could I make a variation of it?  Absolutely!  Introducing On the Slopes, (click to download) a 12” wide x 30” high row/wall-hanging perfect for your favorite skier or snowboarder.

On the Slopes by Patti Carey

On the Slopes by Patti Carey

I gathered a selection of textures from a variety of Northcott collections, including Stonehenge Gradations, Naturescapes, Toscana and Artisan Spirit Shimmer.

Selection of Northcott textures

Selection of Northcott textures

I needed 7 different values of grey from snow to medium grey.  After cutting all the pieces, I kept the greys in order for easy reference.

greys in order

greys in order

To easily cut the triangle pieces using the template, I butted my ruler up to the edge of the template, then moved it to cut the piece.  This saved me from inadvertently shaving off bits of my template.Butt ruler to the edge of the template

To easily cut the tree fabrics into quarter-square triangles, I aligned the squares on the vertical and horizontal lines on my cutting mat.

quarter square triangle cutting

quarter square triangle cutting

Then I gathered the components for each tree block and placed them in stacks for quick assembly.

Assembling the tree pieces for chain-piecing

Assembling the tree pieces for chain-piecing

While sewing the mountain sections, I positioned the patches so that the seams were pressed toward me, thereby preventing them from getting twisted under the feed-dogs on my sewing machine.

Delectable mountain seams toward me

Delectable mountain seams toward me

I did the same thing when sewing the columns of the quilt together, sewing the columns from bottom to top.

Assembling the columns with seams toward me

Assembling the columns with seams toward me

Here is my quilt top, finished except for the applique.

Finished quilt top minus the applique

Finished quilt top minus the applique

In the pattern, I include appliques for a skier as well as a snowboarder.  I haven’t decided if I’m making this for me (snowboarder) or a friend (skier).  Perhaps I’ll do one of each!  This project took less than a day, so I could easily make another.

I hope you enjoy making this wintery scenic row as much as I enjoyed designing it for you!  Here is a list of the other designers and their blogs.

Tuesday September 4, 2018

The Quilt Rambler | Duck Creek Mountain Quilting | Cheryl LaPlante
Patti’s Patchwork

Thursday September 6, 2018

 Be A Quilter

Pretty Piney | Ms P Designs USA | Creatin’ in the Sticks
Freemotion by the River | Any Pattern   

Tuesday September 11, 2018

Barbara Dieges | Upstairs Hobby Room
Quilt Art | UlaSewing / SzycieUli

Thursday September 13, 2018

Pumpkin Patch BC | Sew Incredibly Crazy
A Quilting Chick | Patchwork Breeze

Tuesday September 18, 2018

Just Let Me Quilt | Elizabeth Coughlin Designs | Quilt Fabrication
Renee’s Quilting Addiction | Made By Marney

Thursday September 20, 2018

Clever Chameleon | Adventurous Applique and Quilting
Heleen Pinkster Quilt Design
Cynthia’s Creating Ark | Seams To Be Sew

Tuesday September 25, 2018

Songbird Designs/Brenda’s Blog | Powered By Quilting | Kissed Quilts
Happy Sewing Room | Sew Joy Creations

Thursday September 27, 2018

BobbininQuilts | Daydreams of Quilts | The Quilted Snail | Scrapdash

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Words & Stitches | True Blue Quilts | Miss Loreen’s Schoolhouse
Meanderings Along Lizard Creek | Creativeblonde

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Quilt In Piece | Jaded Spade Creations | Mountain Meadow Designs
Masterpiece Quilting | Pamela Quilts

Tuesday, October 9, 2018
Show and Tell Day

Words & Stitches | Upstairs Hobby Room | Powered By Quilting
Elizabeth Coughlin Designs
Clever Chameleon | Creatin’ in the Sticks | Sew Joy Creations

Visit each designer’s blog to see their row and download the pattern for free within 1 week of their post.

Now for the giveaways!  I will randomly select 1 winner to receive a bundle of eight 1-yd cuts of Stonehenge Gradations (see them here).  To be eligible, please leave a comment on my blog by midnight September 10, telling me what your happy place is.  In your comment, please let me know which colorway you would like should I draw your name.

EQ8 software - a $259 value

EQ8 software – a $259 value

Please also enter here to win the grand prize, a copy of EQ8, the amazing quilt design software I use every day to design my patterns. This prize will be given out at the end of the Row-along.

Enjoy the My Happy Place Row-along, and please stop by each designer’s blog to collect their pattern and enter for their giveaway.  Have fun!  I can’t wait to see your Row-along quilts!

 

Cheers,

Patti

Ready, Set…

31 Aug

Fellow Quilters,

Happy Friday!  Today is officially the last day of the last week of summer – 😦  I am busy prepping (a.k.a. baking) to go to a friend’s cottage for the last long weekend of the summer.  Earlier today I worked on my row quilt for the My Happy Place Row-Along that starts next Tuesday and runs for 5 weeks.  Along with 4 other designers, I am leading off the Row-along!  There are some fabulous giveaways each day.  Here is a little taste of my row:

Row-along preview

Row-along preview

Here’s what my sewing table looked like earlier today.

My sewing table

My sewing table

Until next Tuesday, have a great weekend!

Cheers,

Patti

Christmas in July and More

1 Aug

Fellow Quilters,

This past week I have been particularly busy with several quilty things, including:

  • Strike-offs for my batik fabric collection for Banyan Batiks. It was like Christmas in July!  I just about hugged the FedEx driver when he delivered my parcel.  This was my first look at my collection on fabric, and I was over-the-moon excited.  Some of the fabrics were fabulous – even better than I expected – while others will need some tweaking.  Overall, I am very pleased, and can hardly wait to get started making up projects with the collection.  I will be showing the collection at Spring Quilt Market 2019 in Kansas City, so I will have lots of time to make some great quilts and accessories.  Unfortunately, I cannot show you anything from the collection yet, however suffice to say that there are some unique fabrics in it.
  • Designing patterns for 3 more fabric collections from Northcott’s September 2018 release. Here is an image from the contemporary floral group, likely shipping to stores late Spring 2019.
    upcoming Mod Trellis pattern

    upcoming Mod Trellis pattern

    I also played with this batik collection that has a large stamped print.

    upcoming Flower Boxes pattern

    upcoming Flower Boxes pattern

    Lastly, I had fun with a darling collection by Alaskan artist Barbara Lavallee – I find her artwork irresistible!

    upcoming Quilting with Mama pattern

    upcoming Quilting with Mama pattern

    In total, I designed 7 patterns with fabrics from this release – that’s a lot of computer time.  One of my favorites is this design for the 10th anniversary Stonehenge collection – it includes Celtic motifs.

    upcoming Stonehenge Solstice Star pattern

    upcoming Stonehenge Solstice Star pattern

    I will be making this up for Northcott’s booth for Fall Quilt Market in November.

  • Developing new classes for Mountain Quiltfest 2019 next March 20 – 23rd in Pigeon Forge, TN. This is always a super event, with world-class teachers.  Next year’s instructors include Nancy Mahoney, Linda Hahn, Klaudeen Hansen, Cheryl Sleboda and Bonnie Hunter, the scrap queen!
  • I drooled over the latest issue of McCall’s Quilting that arrived in my mailbox this week. MQ1810-COVER-LoResThe September/October issue has an abundance of Autumn color, including 9 Fall-themed projects or articles.  I was tempted to dig into my stash for some orange, gold, rust and moss green fabrics to try one or 2 of them.  This issue also has my Jaded Facets table runner/bed runner – Woop!  Woop!
    Jaded Facets bed-runner/table runner

    Jaded Facets bed-runner/table runner

    I made it with Stonehenge Gradations.  Here is a close-up of the quilting. DSCF3425This project is based on a block I designed for Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Volume 13 back in 2016.  It looks so different in the current issue of McCall’s!  It is easier than it looks, like most of my designs.  If you don’t have a subscription to McCall’s, you can find this issue on newsstands for another month or so or order the e-zine here.

Last week, I posted about quilt patterns, and solicited your opinion.  I’ve had some great feedback – thank you!  There is still time to comment if you have not already done so.  I will randomly draw a winner from all responses posted by August 8, so please take a moment to send me your thoughts.

Until next time,

Cheers!

Patti

Sashiko, samples, studios and survey

25 Jul

Fellow Quilters,

The last time I chatted with you, it was April, and I was knee-deep in snow.  Now it is July, with sweltering temperatures, and I am thinking wistfully of snow, hoping the thoughts will keep me cool.  Our area has rather high humidity levels, so 80° feels more like 100° with any amount of activity.  My desire to go for a good ride on my bicycle has been over-ruled by my desire not to pass out from heat stroke, so my bike is languishing in the garage.

So, what have I been doing instead? Well, I’ve been keeping myself very busy with numerous guild presentations and workshops, including the Georgian Bay Quilt Guild, Oakville Sewing Centre and Napanee Heritage Quilt Guild in May, followed by the Hamilton Quilt Guild and Simcoe Sew & Quilt in June.  Here is a pic of the sashiko class at SS&Q – 18 enthusiastic gals.

sashiko class June 2018 at SS&Q Barrie

sashiko class June 2018 at SS&Q Barrie

 

Due to the overwhelming response, a 2nd class has been scheduled for October 13.  Next month, I will be presenting a trunk show and workshop at the Chatham-Kent Quilt Guild and also teaching a bargello class at SS&Q.

In May, I was also crazy-busy whipping up samples for two 30-minute presentations for Quilt Market, the industry’s semi-annual trade show.  Northcott has the stunning Imagine collection (with 5 fantastic panels!) shipping to stores in December, and with the help of my colleagues, I designed and stitched up 7 quilt tops and a dress in 5 days.  Here is a link to one of the Schoolhouse presentations .  I’m wearing the dress that I made, with my sparkly boots!

In June, I wrote patterns – 8 of them, in fact – and tested them, so I currently have 10 projects in various stages of completion.  There is Shaded Tiles, made with the fabulous Stonehenge Maplewood (the ombre fabrics make this quilt glow),

PC210 Shaded Tiles

PC210 Shaded Tiles

and In the Reef, a pattern for 2 different options of a tropical lap or throw quilt featuring a digitally-printed underwater seascape (Coral Reef).

PC211 In the Reef

PC211 In the Reef

Then there are 4 different winter/holiday patterns:  In the Woods, with vintage-looking Spruce Mountain (I used the lengthwise border stripe in a horizontal strip quilt),

PC222 In the Woods

PC222 In the Woods

Cameo Stars, with ethereal Stonehenge Joy to the World (I fussy-cut the block panel into octagons),

PC223 Cameo Stars

PC223 Cameo Stars

Gifts Galore, using the fun and funky Fa La La,

PC224 Gifts Galore

PC224 Gifts Galore

and Tree Line, made with Banyan Batik’s Winter Light (I used a stamped tree border print in this modern quilt, making it super-quick to whip up).

PC230 Tree Line

PC230 Tree Line

I’m also working on 2 patterns using Amish Life, based on the charming artwork of renowned artist (and quilting friend) Pat Buckley Moss.  I have gone on several quilting cruises with Pat, and it was a thrill and an honour to design with her fabric.  Her collection includes some printed cameos, a panel and a border stripe, and I used them in Bordering on Amish

PC212 Bordering on Amish

PC212 Bordering on Amish

and Snapshots of Life.

PC213 Snapshots of Life

PC213 Snapshots of Life

While cutting out the cameo blocks, I came up with a little tip:  I needed to cut the blocks 7½”, however my ruler is only 6” wide.  I positioned my ruler so that the 3¾” line was centered in the cameo and cut along the edge of the ruler.  Then I grabbed my smaller 4” x 14” ruler and positioned it beside the 6” ruler so that the cut line was at the 1½” line on the small ruler.  Voila!  I could now accurately cut a 7½” wide strip.

Trimming the cameo blocks to 7 1/2"

Trimming the cameo blocks to 7 1/2″

Because of this flurry of activity, my makeshift sewing room is bursting at the seams!  I am running out of places to pile stuff.  I have been reading with interest, therefore, the terrific 6-week Creative Spaces blog hop hosted by fellow Northcott pattern designer Tammy Silvers of Tamarinis and her friend Cherry Guidry.  There are 16 pattern designers participating, sharing a plethora of tips on designing and organizing a sewing studio (a.k.a. room), favorite tools, and general management of the stuff that goes on in our creative space.  I have already picked up a few choice nuggets – thanks gals! I had to laugh at some of the photos being shared, and the quantity of some sewing notions (scissors in particular) that some quilters own.  I have 7 pair, including the large and small Karen Kay Buckley ones in my travelling toolbox and the pin-on ones for my longarm.  WAAAY less than others!  How about you?  How many pair of scissors do you use specifically for your hobby?

The other question I have for you relates to purchased patterns, and I would be grateful for your feedback on this.  I realize that patterns are not inexpensive – the average quilt pattern is in the $10 range. In comparison, a quilt magazine is about $7 and often contains 10 or more patterns.  I appreciate every purchase of one of my patterns.  I try to add value for the purchaser by including multiple sizes in each pattern.  Occasionally an alternate size isn’t appropriate, often because of the particular fabric being used in the pattern.  In these cases, I try to include a second design (as in the In the Reef pattern above).  How important is it to you to have multiple size or design options in a purchased pattern?  Please poll your quilting buddies (maybe forward this blog post 😊), then leave a comment below.  I will randomly select 1 responder to receive some of Pat Buckley Moss’ Amish Life collection.  I’ll leave this one open for 2 weeks, until August 8.  Good luck and thanks for your input.  In the meantime, I’ll be in my sewing room, plowing through 10 quilts…..

Cheers,

Patti

PS.  Congrats to Stephanie Woodward, the recipient of the bundle of lovely Canvas textures from Northcott’s Essentials.

Samplers, Shopping and Snow

9 Apr

Fellow Quilters,

As I write this post, I am heading to Mont Ste Anne with Hubby to extend our ski season by 2 weeks and enjoy the fabulous French cuisine in the charming restaurants of Old Quebec City.  My goal is to still be able to fit into my ski pants at the end of our vacation – a daunting task!  It is April, and all my local quilting friends are done with winter.  Mother Nature, however, does not agree, and there is snow in the forecast for the next few days.

Despite the weather, I had a fantastic 5 days at A Mountain Quiltfest in Pigeon Forge 2 weeks ago, teaching 4 classes, and presenting 2 trunk shows.  For the first time in my 5 years attending this top-notch event, it snowed.  Of course, being the lone Canadian teacher, I got blamed for the snow, not once but 3 times, and I’m okay with that – it comes with being a snowboarder.  I say, “Bring it on!”

The students in my classes did quite well, learning new techniques while enjoying the company of fellow students.  Unfortunately, I did not take pictures in 3 of the 4 classes – the only class in which I snapped photos was the Intro to Improv class.

Talented students in my Intro to Improv class

Talented students in my Intro to Improv class

More great improv blocks

More great improv blocks

The gals had a great time stepping beyond the boundaries of traditional piecing, and created some fabulous improvisationally-pieced blocks using fabrics from Northcott’s Willowberry collection, mixed with some ColorWorks solids and Artisan Spirit Shimmer.  It was a liberating experience for many of them, and I was as delighted with the results as they were.

I even took a class at A Mountain Quiltfest, from renowned quilter Karen Kay Buckley.  Karen’s specialty is applique, and I gleaned many nuggets of valuable information for future applique projects.  Not that I do much applique, particularly turned-edge, but the next time I give it a whirl, I will pull out my notes and incorporate Karen’s suggestions.  Karen spoke at length about the tools she uses, and I am inspired to build my own lightbox.  I also picked up a handy-dandy inexpensive compact foldable LED light for my travel sewing kit.

My new battery-operated or plug-in foldable LED light

My new battery-operated or plug-in foldable LED light

As in previous years, my trip to Pigeon Forge included a visit to the boot store, and once again I did not come home empty-handed.  I added a pair of dress boots to my collection of cowboy boots.

My new "dress" boots! I'm ready to hit the town!

My new “dress” boots! I’m ready to hit the town!

I tried on a couple more pairs that could easily have come home with me, however my luggage had no room, so I saved them for next year’s trip.  I have already been invited back for A Mountain Quiltfest 2019 – mark your calendar for March 19-23 – and will join renowned teachers Bonnie Hunter, Nancy Mahoney, Kay Nickols, Linda Hahn, Cheryl Sleboda and the inimitable Klaudeen Hansen.  I was Klaudeen’s cheering sidekick at the ever-popular Show & Tell event.  Several students from my previous classes also showed their completed projects, and it was thrilling to see them!  I am already looking forward to next year’s Quiltfest.  I may have to devise my own cheering apparatus for next year!

I have several projects on my plate currently, among them is finishing up instructions for 13 new patterns.  My meagre graphics skills are getting a workout!  So far, I have completed PC216 Mod Squad (using Shibori),

PC216 Mod Squad pattern using Banyan Batiks Shibori

PC216 Mod Squad pattern using Banyan Batiks Shibori

PC217 Abstract (using Primitive Lines),

My PC217 Abstract pattern, shown on the back cover of McCall's Quilting June 2018!

My PC217 Abstract pattern, shown on the back cover of McCall’s Quilting June 2018!

PC218 Morse Code (using Ikat Sketch),

PC218 Morse Code using Banyan Batiks Ikat Sketch

PC218 Morse Code using Banyan Batiks Ikat Sketch

and PC219 Sophie’s Garden (using Sophie),

PC219 Sophie's Garden pattern using Banyan Batiks Sophie

PC219 Sophie’s Garden pattern using Banyan Batiks Sophie

all featuring collections from Northcott’s new Banyan Batiks division.  I have also completed PC214 Oh Canada Chevron,

PC214 Oh Canada Chevron pattern using the STRIP-R fabric

PC214 Oh Canada Chevron pattern using the STRIP-R fabric

made with the new Oh Canada STRIP-R (pre-printed 2” lengthwise strips) – this quilt is made with only 3 fabrics! – and am working on a version for the Stars & Stripes STRIP-R as well.  Both patterns include a throw size that meets the Quilts of Valor guidelines.  I shall post pictures of the remaining new patterns next time – hopefully they will all be completed by then!

The other very exciting project I am working on is a fabric collection – whoop whoop!! It is for the Banyan Batik division, and will be part of the Fall 2018 sample release if all goes well.  I have been on a steep learning curve, without any formal training in illustration, and Creative Director Karen Gibbs is patiently guiding me along.  I am surprised by just how much I am enjoying the design process.  Taking that first step to put pen to paper was terrifying, however it has been quite a rewarding experience.  There is still a lot more work to be done before the collection is finalized, so I’m keeping me fingers crossed that we meet the deadline for the release.

One of my recently-completed projects was purging my sewing room.  This was done out of necessity – Hubby and I listed our house for sale.  The kids have moved out, and we figured this was our chance to sell it before they think about moving back (LOL!).  Hubby met with the stager while I was at QuiltCon, and noted her recommendations for each room – “Remove this, relocate that”, etc.  When she got to my sewing room however, she just rolled her eyes, sighed heavily and said, “Do what you can in here to make the room look less cluttered”.  Clearly, she was not a quilter!  I should have taken “before” and “after” pictures, but the “before” picture would have been embarrassingly cluttered, probably bordering on hoarding.  Having seen a few quilters’ sewing rooms in my travels, I know I’m in very good company!  Hands up if your sewing room is too cluttered for photos.  Now that I’ve cleaned mine, I have full access to my entire cutting table – all 36” x 72” of my cutting mat instead of the previous 22” x 54” that was not covered with piles of stuff.  I am not using it though, since I need to keep the room spotless for any potential viewings.  Instead, I have a make-shift sewing room at the ski cabin that will suffice for now.

During the purging process, I took a good hard look at my Stash of projects, most of them being older pattern kits.  With those 13 new patterns, I have enough to keep me busy for a while, so I have been donating quilt kits to the guilds I have spoken to recently.  It has truly been a weight off my shoulders to de-stash, and I highly recommend it.  It gets rid of the guilt of having unfinished (more like un-started!) projects that are likely also unwanted.  In reality, if I had wanted to make them, I would have done so years ago.  Now I am free to start new projects, and perhaps even purchase new fabric.  Speaking of which…

Michelle Dunn of the online shop Kallisti Quilts  was the guest speaker at my LQG last month, showcasing her comprehensive selection of unique Japanese and African fabrics, and I somehow ended up purchasing a bundle of to-die-for Japanese yard-dye wovens.

A lovely bundle of 16 Japanese yard-dyed fat 1/8's from Kallisti Quilts, destined for a special project

A lovely bundle of 16 Japanese yard-dyed fat 1/8’s from Kallisti Quilts, destined for a special project

Did I mention that I have a sewing room chock-full of fabric, and a 35,000-square foot warehouse at my disposal?  I have a project in mind, however – a modern lap/throw quilt for a friend – and this bundle will be perfect.  I shall use one of my new batik patterns, testing it on this bundle.

Speaking of batiks, in my last post, I asked for your comments regarding your favorite magazines.  I randomly selected Christi, Sherry Southgate and Gloria at glorybquilts to receive some Ketan.  Please email me and I’ll get your prizes out to you.  By the way, survey says… Quiltmaker seems to be the most popular, and print versions are still going strong, although downloads have their benefits.  Thanks to all for sharing your thoughts.

Speaking of Quiltmaker, I just read the latest issue, and I love it!  DSCF3907The theme is sampler quilts, and there are some fantastic examples, such as Diane Harris’ red-and-white Nebraska quilt,

Diane Harris' fantastic Nebraska quilt

Diane Harris’ fantastic Nebraska quilt

and Scott Flanagan’s Carnival – it’s brilliant!

Scott Flanagan's innovative Carnival sampler quilt

Scott Flanagan’s innovative Carnival sampler quilt

At last Fall’s Quilt Festival, I was inspired to pick up the Electric Quilt Dear Jane cd and a fat ¼ bundle of Kaffe Fassett fabrics.  This issue of Quiltmakers may be the impetus I need to start my quilt – after the patterns are written…  What’s on your quilting bucket list?  Let me know by April 17 for your chance to win some Canvas, Northcott’s modern texture in 32 luscious shades.  Good luck!

Cheers,

Patti

B’s… Banyan, boarding, blogs, boots, Bevelled…

7 Feb

Fellow Quilters,

Hmmm…. The last time we chatted, it was November, and it is now February – what happened to the past 3 months?!?  I feel like I’m in a time warp these days!  As things have cropped up in my Inbox, I have been making a mental note to include them in my next blog post, and now the list is rather lengthy.

In November, I was lucky enough to spend 4 days in the Northcott booth at Quilt Festival in Houston, TX, meeting quilters and showcasing Northcott’s new batik division, Banyan Batiks.  Last summer I designed 6 patterns from various Banyan collections, and made up my quilts for the Banyan booth at Quilt Market/Quilt Festival.  Creative director Karen Gibbs has really pushed the envelope with Banyan.  Unlike regular batik collections, Banyan collections are theme-based, much like non-batik collections, and provide a coordinated group of fabrics that are designed to work together.  It makes it so easy to create cohesive quilts.  Furthermore, Karen has included some terrific designs, such as panels and awning stripes – highly unusual designs for batiks.

Abstract by Patti Carey (made with Banyan's Primitive Lines)

Abstract by Patti Carey (made with Banyan’s Primitive Lines)

I literally jumped at the opportunity to work with them.  Some of my patterns are traditional, however I pushed myself to create some modern-ish designs as well.  When quilting these, I went to my go-to resource on modern quilting – my stash of Angela Walters books – for inspiration.  Well, imagine my thrill when Angela, during her Quilt Festival blog post, actually showcased my Abstract quilt (made with the Primitive Lines collection) and pointed out the point-to-point quilting on it – WOOP WOOP!  You can see Angela’s YouTube post here .  My quilt is at the 1:30 point of the 22-minute video.  There are a few blogs that I follow, and Angela’s Quilting is My Therapy is one of them.  Last Fall I had the opportunity to attend one of Angela’s lectures, and I am now a self-confessed groupie.

I will be taking the Abstract quilt to QuiltCon later this month in Pasadena, CA, where I will be presenting 2 trunk shows: Alternate Gridwork, and Modern + Metallic.  I will be showing my other modern Banyan quilts, plus a few more that I’m trying to get made by then.  Northcott has a booth at QuiltCon, with lots of quilty inspiration and goodies. If you’re going to be there, please stop by and say hi.  One of the quilts in the booth is Colourwerx’s Mod TV,

Mod tv quilt by Colourwerx

Mod tv quilt by Colourwerx

made with Northcott’s brand-new Canvas texture.  Designer Linda Sullivan will also be doing a demo at QuiltCon, showing how to make the block from Mod TV.  I had fun quilting the sample for Northcott’s booth, using Angela Walters’ book (yet again!) for ideas.green tv navy tv I also quilted Colourwerx’s Spikey quilt for the booth – lots of ruler work, but I’m quite pleased with the outcome.

Spikey by Colourwerx made with ColorWorks and Canvas

Spikey by Colourwerx made with ColorWorks and Canvas

detail

After QuiltCon, I have several local guild talks – Haliburton, Hamilton, Kingston and Mississauga – then I head to Pigeon Forge, TN March 20 – 23 where I will be teaching 4 classes during A Mountain Quiltfest.  Three of the classes are full, however there is still room in my half-day Intro to Improv class on Wednesday March 21.  If you’ve never tried improvisational piecing, this 3-hour class is a “no pressure” way to dabble in it.  It is so liberating! I’ll have lots of fresh ideas from QuiltCon too!  I am also taking a class on applique, from Karey Kay Buckley – how awesome is that?!?  I have 2 pairs of the amazing Karen Kay Buckley scissors.  Karen is one of several high-caliber teachers at Mountain Quiltfest this year.  I think this is my 5th year at A Mountain Quiltfest, and I enjoy each year as much as the previous one – great quilt show, great vendors, great teachers, great venue, and a great city.  As well, my favorite boot store is just down the road from the convention center… just saying….

When I go to events such as QuiltCon or A Mountain Quiltfest, I try to squeeze in classes as my schedule permits.  It is a wonderful opportunity to learn from the experts, since these events draw top-notch teachers.  I have been in classes where the teacher questions why I am taking the class, and I respond, “There is always something new, another nugget of knowledge”.  I am always on the lookout for quilting classes, particularly longarm classes, particularly for modern quilts.  The quilting design class I’m taking at QuiltCon should give me some ideas and inspiration, so I’ll report back in a future post.

Speaking of classes, I am once again taking snowboarding lessons with my boarding buddies.  I really need them this year, since, after 2 years of demo-ing new snowboards, I treated myself to one that is the correct length for me.  It is 2½” shorter than my old board, which doesn’t sound significant, but it is HUGE!  I can turn on a dime, but I don’t have the stability of the longer length.  It rides very differently than my old board, and for the first few days, I looked and felt like a rank amateur.  After much practice, though, I am improving. Instructor Tim even had us riding “switch” (reverse), and doing small jumps in the terrain park last weekend.

My new snowboard and my ski jacket - a match made in heaven

My new snowboard and my ski jacket – a match made in heaven

Even though I chose my new snowboard because of the features, the color of it clinched the deal – it matches my ski jacket perfectly.  Secretly I think we were meant to be together.

Speaking of snowboarding, I received a picture from quilter Vicki Spiering that I want to share with you.  Vicki made this fantastic quilt of her snowboarding son and drew inspiration for the background from my Winter Solstice pattern.

Shred the Gnar by Vicki Spiering

Shred the Gnar by Vicki Spiering

My boarding buddies and fellow boarders at Northcott think this is an epic quilt!! The fabric Vicki chose for the board is perfect! The back story for this quilt is inspiring, and I thank Vicki for sharing.  It represents so many memories for her.  She actually made 4 different backgrounds before she found the “right one”.  I was so thrilled when Vicki gave me permission to share the photo of her quilt with you.  “Shred the Gnar” is on its way to AQS.  Good luck Vicki!

I have some prizes to announce for my last blog post, part of Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Blog Tour.  The winner of the magazine and packet of Stonehenge Gradations Mixers is Betsey, while Lyn M. and Susan S. receive packets of the Mixers.  Congrats!

I just finished quilting my latest pattern, Bevelled, made with a 2½” strip pack of Banyan Batiks’ Ketan texture. DSCF3848

PC228 Bevelled by Patti Carey using Ketan strip pack

PC228 Bevelled by Patti Carey using Ketan strip pack

It was super easy to make and I am loving the Ketan.  I have some extra pieces taking up space in my sewing room, and they need to go.  For a chance to win a packet of Ketan, please leave a comment by February 15th telling me your favorite quilt magazine(s), and if you prefer print versions or on-line versions.  I will give away 3 packets.  Good luck!

Cheers,

Patti