Monday, May 2, 2016

Bound in Denim & a question : :

Now that it's officially May, it has fully hit me that I leave for Quilt Market in just fifteen days, which means my Nightfall sewing just kicked into high-speed! Rather than diving into a new blog post first thing this morning, I made yet another pillow composed entirely of what little bits of strike off pieces remain scattered around my sewing room. I'm now down to just small patches & narrow strips, but I'm going to try my best to stretch them into as many projects as I can in the days ahead!

Bound in Denim

One constant in each of the samples I've made for my Nightfall booth so far, is the use of AGF's new Denim! I've mentioned more than a few times now how much I love this denim, but I'm starting to realize just how much I love it when combined with Nightfall!

I recently made an extra large roll of denim binding in the Solid Smooth Cool Foliage, with the intention of using it to finish up my Moon Struck Quilt.

Denim Binding

Binding & Moon Phase print

This particular shade of denim looks so perfect with the steely blue & mustard yellow prints in Nightfall!

Bound in Denim

But as I worked on new pillows over the weekend, I kept reaching for that same roll of denim binding!

Bound in Denim

Bound in Denim

Ahhh, I just love it so much!!

Today I had just planned to gush about this denim binding, but since I have a stack of newly finished Nightfall projects next in line to blog about, before I jump ahead I want to ask how you feel about me sharing so many of my Quilt Market prep projects? I've seen now, several times, where folks are finding it irritating or bothersome to see so many designers sharing the projects they're creating with their new, not yet released fabric collections. One comment mentioned that by the time the collection hits stores, they're already so sick of seeing it. As a designer, that reads a little harsh, but I can understand it to a certain point. Put aside all the excitement I feel for each new collection and how wonderful it feels when all the behind the scenes work that went into creating it is finally revealed and I get the green light to share photos & projects. The reality is, preparing for a show like Quilt Market is a tremendous amount of work. Almost all of the sewing time I have has to be dedicated to creating projects for it. Because of this, I truly don't have much else to blog about, and I love to blog as much of my sewing as possible. After all, this is my journal, my daily record of how I've grown as an artist and now designer. As a great lover of fabrics, I still get so excited to see the release of my favorite designer's new collections. If I see it prior to Quilt Market, well then I can't wait to see how they put their booth together at the show.

I'm curious how you feel, does it become overkill or does seeing all the projects generally make you excited for a collection?

Thanks in advance for joining the conversation! ♡ Maureen

Friday, April 29, 2016

A Fabric GIVEAWAY : :

It's Fabric Giveaway Friday!   

Forest Floor FQ Bunde Giveaway!!

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My sponsor Lady Belle Fabric is run by husband and wife team, Rob & Brooke! In their shop you'll find both bundles and single cuts of handpicked fabrics that are fresh, modern, and fun! Designer fabrics include many of our favorites -- Art Gallery Fabrics, Cotton + Steel, Free Spirit, and Moda, just to name a few! Lady Belle Fabric's goal is to offer the most gorgeous lines of fabric, as quickly as they can! 
   
SHOP  *  Instagram  *  FACEBOOK
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We hope you enjoy visiting the Lady Belle Fabric sites!! 

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For this week's Fabric Giveaway Friday, Lady Belle Fabric is offering the winner a beautiful Fat Quarter bundle of Bonnie Christine's newest fabric collection for Art Gallery Fabrics, Forest Floor! This bundle will include a fat quarter cut of each of the 20 gorgeous fabric prints that make up this wonderful new collection! How very generous!!

You can find the Forest Floor collection newly available in the Lady Belle Fabric shop as a Fat Quarter Bundles and half yard bundles! Be sure to check out this amazing shop!!


Forest Floor FQ Bunde Giveaway!!

In addition,
Lady Belle Fabric offers a pretty bundle of Forest Floor coordinating solids AND they have restocked bundles of my Fleet & Flourish collection, as well!! 


Forest Floor coordinating Solids

Fleet & Flourish is back in stock at Lay Belle Fabrics!

Lady Belle Fabric is generously offering my readers 15% OFF all fabric bundle orders from their shop throughout this Giveaway until Midnight on Monday! Prices will be as marked in their shop!!

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Enter to win! 

Here's how,
 
1. Simply leave a comment here in this post! We'd love to know which of Lady Belle's Bundles are catching your eye, feel free to share! (one entry)
2. Follow Lady Belle Fabric on Facebook or on Instagram! Just be sure to let me know you do by making a separate comment here for an extra entry! (optional extra entry)
3. My followers get a third entry! Just let me know that you do by making a separate comment here to record that entry.
(optional extra entry)
4. Help spread the word!! I know that many of you already do, so I thought it would be nice to add that as another way to enter! Whether by Instagram, tweet, facebook, pin, blog, etc... (optional extra entry) 

That’s 4 possible entries! Enter now through Monday, May 2nd!! Winner will be picked at random and I will announce their name at the bottom of this post, here on the blog!

* Note * This giveaway is open to EVERYONE! If you're a "no reply" or anonymous commenter, please remember to include your email address in your comment!

Thanks to all who enter our Giveaway! ♡ Maureen

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

A Diamond Weave Quilt : :

A Diamond Weave Quilt

Today I'm so very excited to share my finished Diamond Weave Quilt! This is the very first quilt/sewing project I started this year, back in the early days of January. My fabric rolls of Fleet & Flourish had just arrived and I was completely wonderstruck with all the possibilities before me. Traditional quilts, particularly those made up of half square triangles, had really been catching my eye at the time, so I decided to begin there, with lots of HST making! I didn't have a solid block plan in mind when I began cutting & piecing, but that's the beauty of making HST units ~ the options are truly endless!

Lost Ships

Once I committed to a block design, after making several, I shared a couple of posts here including a few different quilt pattern options asking for opinions on which layout you all preferred. It was really nice to receive so much wonderful feedback and to have the time to share so much of this quilt's process, after being so occupied with designing my next collection & those busy holiday weeks. I definitely didn't think it would take this long to get it completely finished & photographed, but we had such a beautiful, fun day hiking, exploring, and taking pictures together this past Monday, I think it was worth the wait!

A Diamond Weave Quilt

Once my thirty-six block quilt top was all pieced together I sent it off to my friend Melissa of Sew Shabby Quilting to add an allover floral stitched pattern design, she always does such an amazing job!

A Diamond Weave Quilt

For the quilt back I stitched together one large piece of my Fleet & Flourish Thriving Threads in Deep, denim colored ditsy floral.

A Diamond Weave Quilt

You can see how pretty the quilting looks against all that blue from the backside of my quilt below!

A Diamond Weave Quilt

For the binding I used my Gentle Mantle stripe in the Land colorway, full of the same blues, aqua, peach, & reds that make up this quilt!

Binding Stripes

Newly Bound

Throughout the rest of this week I plan to work on putting together a tutorial for this quilt pattern to share at Janome.com soon! I know you're all going to love making a Diamond Weave Quilt of your very own and I can't wait to see!

A Diamond Weave Quilt

Thanks so much for stopping by today!  ♡ Maureen

Monday, April 25, 2016

A Dragonfly Stitched Pillow : :

In addition to the Aurifil Stitched Owl pillow I made for next month's Quilt Market show where I'll present my newest fabric collection, Nightfall, I stitched up a second pillow, this time to illustrate my Nox Iridescence dragonfly print!

Dragonfly Pillow for Quilt Market

Just as I created the owl, I used my new Bohemian Garden Aurifil Thread set, choosing colors similar to those in the Moonset colorway of my dragonflies print, Nox Iridescence in Dim.

Bohemian Garden Aurifil Thread Collection

Nox Iridescence in Dim

Dragonfly Stitching

I actually sewed this pillow top together a few weeks back, before I had even received my strike offs. I used my Quick Quilt As You Go Craftsy class technique to make the pillow top, using a combination of Pure Element solids in Cabernet, Patina Green, and Nocturnal, Solid Smooth Denims in Frosted Sage and Infused Hydrangea, & Soft Sand Linen. For a little extra decoration I added some of the beautiful lace trims I had leftover from my Fall Quilt Market sample making and I top-stitched a few twists of recycled sari silk I had purchased years ago from Anthropologie that have been laying around the sewing room. I love the soft & tattered tassel look!

With Twisted Silk

My plan was to use it to feature my Moon Stories ~ bunny & moon main print in some way, but last week when I decided to "sketch stitch" my Nightfall dragonfly, there my pillow top was hanging & waiting, looking too perfect not to use!

Aurifil Stitched Dragonfly

I started by stitching out a large version of the basic dragonfly sketch I created for my Nox Iridecence print, using a dark navy 50wt Aurifil. Once the dragonfly outline was all stitched out, I simple added in layers of additional stitching, changing thread colors and playing with a combination of straight, satin, and decorative machine stitches. It's a lot of fun, just like coloring with Aurifil thread & my Janome sewing machine!

To finish my pillow I used more AGF denim ~ Soft Smooth Wicked Sky for the binding and a large striping of Solid Textured heavy weight in Scarlet Brick & Evergreen Slate for an extra sturdy pillow back!

Backed in AGF Denim

This 14" x 28" pillow size has become my absolute favorite! There's an ever-growing stack in my sewing room that I hope to offer in a pillow & quilt sale sometime soon!

Dragonfly Stitched Pillow

Hoping to be back with a new photographed quilt to share soon! Unit then... ♡ Maureen

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Nightfall Bags : :

A couple weeks ago when Svetlana of s.o.t.a.k handmade shared on her Instagram one of her Megan Foldover Tote bags she had just made using my Fleet & Flourish fabric, I messaged her right away to see if she might make another using Nightfall for my Quilt Market booth. I have a few of the same friends who have helped with making my samples since I started this adventure in fabric design, particularly with the small accessories, garments, and bags that would be a huge challenge for me, a quilter. I appreciate each of them more than I could ever say! Asking for help is one of my least favorite things to do, but when Svetlana's bag popped up on my IG feed, I completely fell in love! I had to her ask if she could lend her talents to help me showcase Nightfall with a bag or maybe two. Thankfully, she said Yes!

s.o.t.a.k Handmade Nightfall Bags

I sent her a package including some large cuts of AGF's new denims and some very small patchwork pieces from the Nightfall strike off samples I've received so far. I was confident Svetlana would make something beautiful, and gosh did she ever! I've honestly never seen handmade bags more exquisite, so perfectly made, with such an impeccable attention to detail than these. I was hoping for just one item, she sent me THREE incredible pieces!

Nightfall bag & pouch ~ s.o.t.a.k Handmade

First Svetlana made one of her Megan Foldover Tote bags, a PDF pattern she offers in her Etsy shop! The denim makes it nice and sturdy, the Nightfall patchwork along the top of the bag displays the prints she used so thoughtfully, and the exposed front zipper & each piece of hardware are just perfect!

Megan Foldover Tote ~ s.o.t.a.k Handmade

Before moving onto a second large bag, Svetlana used all the tiny Nightfall scraps leftover to make one of her adorable Lola Zipper Pouches! This PDF pattern is available in her shop, here, and includes two different pouch sizes. This one is the smaller of the two, each little patchwork piece measures just 1"! She used more AGF denim for the contrasting bottom band, zipper binding, as well as the lining. With each new project, the more I love these Nightfall fabrics & denim together!!

Nightfall Patchwork Pouch

Lastly, Svetlana used my Nightfall Mystical Woods Canvas to make one of her Jenna Tote Bags. The combination of the sweet, peachy-cream forest and dark solid smooth denim she chose for the exterior is so good! I couldn't have dreamt up a more perfect bag to showcase my Nightfall Canvas print!

Nightfall Canvas & Denim Jenna Tote

I can't wait to have these bags in my booth next month! If you're attending the show, you must stop by to admire them in person! I feel so lucky and have never felt more encouraged to try bag-making myself. If these bag are inspiring you, I highly recommend you visit Svetlana's blog & pattern shop!

I'll be back soon to share my new, "sketch stitch" dragonfly pillow!

XOXO Maureen

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

HST Pillow Set : :

I decided to finish last week's Nightfall & HST blocks into a set of pillows!

Nightfall HST Pillow Set

For a minute I considered making two more blocks to add to the pair I had already finished. This pattern would certainly make a beautiful & eye-catching center for a new quilt! Since each of the blocks I made contains just six 3" squares of my Nightfall prints to thirty HST's, I was concerned the prints would get lost in the sea of half square triangles, and so pillows were the perfect choice to keep the focus on the prints!

Nightfall Pillows ~ Bound in Denim

These pillows are for Quilt Market next month in Salt Lake, where I'll showcase my new fabric collection Nightfall, due in stores this August!

Nightfall HST Pillows X's II

The HST's are made using Art Gallery Pure Element solids in some of the colors I picked for the new line ~ peachy pink, moody blues, aqua, navy, yellow, and eggplant.

Nightfall HST Pillow

In addition to all these solid quilting cottons, I'm really loving the combination of Nightfall with AGF's new line of denim! The colors of this collection work so perfectly with all of the solid smooth denims. I don't think there has been a single project that I've made for Quilt Market since they arrived that didn't incorporate denim in some way!

Nightfall Pillows for Quilt Market

For this set of pillows I added a narrow border of linen to each block to bump the size up to finish for 20" pillow forms. I backed each pillow in the heavier weight Evergreen Slate and for the binding I used a lighter weight, the darkest shade of the solid smooth, Wicked Sky. This color and Cool Foliage are my current competing favorites! If you plan to buy Nightfall, I highly recommend you stash some of these denim colors, too!

Nightfall Pillow Set

I can't wait to see these pillows in my booth at Market in just a few weeks! I finalized my big plans last week and now I just have to get everything made! The sewing project on my to-make list for today is inspired by my dragonfly Nox Iridescence print, I hope to be back tomorrow with it all finished & photographed to share!

Nightfall Pillows

Happy sewing! ♡ Maureen