Archive for Books

So, what’s new?

Well, hello! How goes it? What’s new? I have a little something new to show you. A fun little book that Sarah and I did. It just came out, and we’re pretty pleased.

little quilts book

One makes the quilts and writes and finishes such a thing well before it is actually printed and distributed, so when I got a copy in my hands, it was brand new to me again. What a treat! It is such a sweet little book to look at. I really do smile when I flip through the pages. But then again, I may be a little biased.

paper dolls book

 

We hope you enjoy it! If your friendly neighborhood Amazon is sold out, I do have copies to sell for anyone stateside. I am happy to sign it. Unfortunately, logistics prevent my getting Sarah’s signature too for you, but you never know, you might run into her one day. Feel free to leave a comment if you would like to buy a copy.

The other day with the help of modern technology, Sarah and I talked about Little Quilts with Stephanie Kendron of Modern Sewciety. You can listen to the podcast over at Stephanie’s lovely site.

episode32art

 

I gave myself a pep talk beforehand. It was morning so I drank a little coffee but not too much coffee so as to induce aimless babbling. I haven’t listened to it yet myself, but I will.

Sarah and I are planning a blog tour for the book toward the end of the summer. I promise to tell you all about it when we have it ready to go.

Other than this wonderful book excitement, I — like you, I’m sure — have been busy busy with life. My now 14 year old seems to be the center of the busy universe.

I hope this finds you all well! I promised to keep you apprised of goings on around here!

 

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Hand Quilted with Love blog tour

My dear friend Sarah has written another book. Maybe you’ve heard of it — Hand Quilted with Love. I’ve horned in on her book blog tour to celebrate her talent and creativity, among her many other fine attributes.

I admit that I squeal every time I get to take a sneak peek into her latest work. Yes, I am lucky that way. So, she may have showed me some of the quilts from the book in advance. And I squealed like a little girl and once again decided that I wanted to make every quilt in the upcoming book. Seeing as I am still working on quilts from the last book….ahem…why not dive in and start a quilt from the new book too?! Frankly though, I see nothing wrong with that because, as the book’s subtitle says, “Patchwork projects inspired by a passion for quilting.” And who doesn’t get a little carried away by the passion for quilting? And I can feel Sarah’s passion for quilts in each of the designs in Hand Quilted with Love. And so I get carried away and squeal a little and decide that every one of the quilts speaks to me (and says “make me….”).

In the sewing room, you will find my copy of Hand Quilted with Love duly page marked on All That and the Hatter.

handqwithlove
hatter
hatter2

You will find a stack of light Kaffe Fassett shot cotton fat quarters and a stack of Liberty Lifestyle Stile fat quarters.

stacks

You will find me puttering around with background stripe combinations and cup and saucer combinations and teapot combinations.

cupapp

potcups

teacups

You might also find me squealing like a little girl over the fun I’m having with Sarah’s lovely design. This one is VERY, VERY satisfying to undertake as well — put the thinking cap on on occasion, it’s a good thing.

Sarah’s new book also includes an incredibly special design. You might have seen it. Or been a part of it. Along with squealing, there was crying. Which is to be expected. Seeing it in print took my breath away. Not in a bad way. Just in the way that it is.

basslinetxt

The version in the book is Anabel’s quilt.

bassline2

At fall quilt market, I picked up my quilt. I have slept under it every night since Sarah presented it to me. In fact, she had it on the bed at the hotel. I am still overwhelmed by your kindness and generosity and caring for us. I thank you all from the bottom of my heart. Please know that not a day goes by when I don’t look at this quilt in amazement and appreciation. It is a great comfort to read your names and admire your fabric choices. Thank you.

mybassline

In the future, I hope you will also find me making more of the quilts from Sarah’s wonderful new book. Congratulations, miss! I’m thrilled for you, I admire your talents and hard work and I’m so happy to call you a friend!

Be sure to visit the other stops on the blog tour:

SewTake a Hike - 4th May

Belinda Stitches – 5th May

True Up - 6th May

LilysQuilts (UK) – 7th May

Creative Dabbling (Australia) 8th May

Mrs Schmenkman Quilts (USA) 9th May  (you are here)

I’m A Ginger Monkey (UK) – 10th May

Petits Elefants -(Australia) 10th May

Prints Charming (Australia) – 11th May

RedPepper Quilts (Australia) – 12th May

HandMade by Alissa (USA) – 13th May

Meet Me at Mikes (Australia) – 14th May

Sew Mama Sew (USA) – 15th May

Since I have been away away away for so long, I’ll include some updates. I came back from quilt market in the fall to news of another serious health concern in my immediate family. It was jarring and once again scary and it set me back somewhat. But all is now well and we’ve been lucky to have had the best outcomes all the way along.

I have also been keeping up with the kid. Here are some recent action shots because it seems that she is all action and I am her personal assistant making sure she is where she needs to be and she is fed and garbed.

girl

girl2

girl1

Good kid.

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Quilting From Little Things blog tour

Welcome to this Quilting From Little Things blog tour stop! Where to start in talking about lovely Sarah and her latest book? Firstly, thanks, Sarah, for having me as a tour stop!

Isn’t the cover beautiful? The insides are just as delectable — and just look at Madam on the front (I hear she has become a bit of a diva what with her fame, as she should). I will admit to being enamored with every project in Quilting From Little Things. I will admit I have hopes and dreams to make every quilt in the book. I will admit that I started my number 1 Bucket List quilt from the book, Hanging Lanterns, with hopes of having it done by the time of this blog tour.

You may recall The 800:

Here is Sarah’s Hanging Lanterns:

Isn’t it beautiful? Yes, it is.

Here it is in repose:

::sigh:: Who doesn’t love a Dresden? But long strings of Dresden “lanterns?” Just knock me over now.

Well, I won’t exactly admit defeat just delay. Here is my progress:

We are to the applique. It is meditative. I have enjoyed every step of this quilt. I will continue to enjoy until this wonderful design of a wonderful quilt is done.

I will admit that I have been less than inspired to creativity lately, but Sarah’s work always inspires me instantly. As other blog tour stops have described, Sarah’s concept for this book is a small project to give you a taste of a method or technique and a larger project once your appetite has been whetted. I appreciate that every project is interesting and lovely AND the larger project is not just a larger version of the smaller project — the larger project expands on the idea and develops it further. Genius, if you ask me.

I will admit that I may be biased because I adore her, but Quilting From Little Things is my favorite quilting book in my collection — inventive, gorgeous, motivational, inspiring — you know, like Sarah herself.

Next plans are to make Night Garden:

I may begin that while I’m working on the applique for Hanging Lanterns — a little machine work, a little handwork.

There is so much to admire about the book and its author. Please don’t hesitate to treat yourself to a copy if you haven’t already (no, really, what are you waiting for?? it is an excellent value!)

And, look:

Get an extra $5 off Quilting from Little Things! Visit Store.MarthaPullen.com and use promo code QUILTLITTLE to get your exclusive savings. Details: Promotion expires 7/31/12. Sale and bonus offers are for “in stock” items only, while supplies last. Martha Pullen Company reserves the right to correct pricing errors.

GASP! Such a deal!

Thanks for stopping and reading and checking out my Bucket List Hanging Lanterns project! Be sure to visit the other stops on the tour and see what other cleverer people have to say about Sarah’s new book.

28 Nov: Fat Quarterly
28 Nov: Amy Ellis
29 Nov: Thomas Knauer
30 Nov: Camp Follower Bags
30 Nov: Ryan Walsh
01 Dec: Happy Zombie
01 Dec: Moda Lissa
02 Dec: Mrs Schmenkman Quilts
02 Dec: True Up
03 Dec: Pink Chalk Fabrics
03 Dec: Pam Kitty Morning
04 Dec: Sew,Mama,Sew!
04 Dec: Pat Sloan

I’m up for a bit more applique now. As with so many things I do these days, small steps and forward motion. Sarah’s book and the Hanging Lanterns project are, of course, more to me now than just quilting deliciousness — they are respite and focus and a record of progress. And I should really say thanks to Sarah for that!

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Waiting, waiting, waiting

While we (I’m assuming I’m not alone) wait for the new Kaffe Fassett book, Quilts in Sweden, we can take a drool-worthy look at the quilts via Gloriouscolor’s Quilts in Sweden fabric packs (so, SPOILER ALERT, don’t look if you’re patient enough to wait for the book).

To further give us something to do while we wait, we can download a poster for the book (duly downloaded….wondering if I have any laminating sheets so I don’t get drool on my printed copy).

Very, very excited and I already see some quilts I’d like to make (the cover quilt, for example…and the barcode quilt….and the beach quilt…and…).

UPDATED TO ADD: Go get it over at Glorious Color!

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But who’s counting?

So. Where were we? Or where was I? You thought I disappeared, didn’t you? It felt like it there for a while. Lest you think I’ve been lounging on a beach or resting on my laurels, I have some things to show for my time.

I’m especially excited to have a quilt in issue six of the most awesome Fat Quarterly. Against Traffic is a foundation pieced kaleidoscope-y quilt using two shades of grey and all of Marcia Derse’s prints from her Third in Line fabric collection. I grew extremely fond of these prints while I sewed. And we spent a considerable amount of time together, so I think it says A LOT for Marcia’s fabrics that I still love them after all that togetherness. :-)

Love those fabrics!

I also wanted to show you the latest Dollies Online quilt for July called Mass Appeal:

I saw a vintage quilt with orange peel blocks on point in two colors and my head went boing.  Speaking of the Dollies Online, you can now purchase the downloadable patterns individually over at Sarah’s lovely web site. Mass Appeal will show up there shortly as well. I didn’t mind sacrificing that blue sewing themed Suzuko Koseki print for this quilt. It seemed a worthy use.

I’ve also been keeping up with the Farmer’s Wife blocks. Got a little behind when we lost power for three days. Here are some recents:

I’ve been digging through some of my old Kaffe fabrics and scraps of old projects. Going down fabric memory lane.

Last but not least, a step by step by step project, indeed… Sarah‘s Hanging Lanterns pattern. First, cut 800 (or more in case of goof ups…ahem), fan blades and sew them.

And turn them.


And press them.

And sew them together into arcs and get them ready for the next step.


As Sarah has reminded me, she did all of this already and I should not complain. No complaints. Just noting for posterity and recordkeeping and goal setting.

I’m also dabbling in the Japanese Boxes quilt from issue 81 of Quiltmania. I saw this quilt over at the gorgeous Facile Cecile blog. I couldn’t get it out of my mind. And then I re-drafted it ever so slightly so I didn’t have to cut anything in 1/16ths of an inch (sometimes my laziness instead makes my brain hurt a little more) and could use a rotary ruler. These are a little on the addictive side and very easy to sew on the machine.

So, that’s some of what’s going on here. I’ve missed you.

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1957.5 + 1970

What a coincidence! I’ve been puttering around with a block I saw while thumbing through Barbara Brackman’s Encylopedia of Pieced Quilt Patterns.

I have many old block reference books but only recently added this one to the collection. Clearly an oversight on my part. Clearly.

So, I’ve been puttering with this block working out sizing — the book is a block reference, patterns are not included — and today I arrived at a successful test block.

This is referred to as 1957.5, the Georgia block as published in the periodical Hearth and Home. My version came out to 8″ unfinished. It almost ended up bigger because I couldn’t initially work out the maths involved in sizing that corner square — it is inset into an corner formed by a seam that is pieced at a 45 degree angle. I persevered. Now I am happy with the size.

By coincidence, I said to myself, hey, I’ve been cutting a lot of 2″ squares lately for my One Block Over virtual quilting bee blocks. I wonder if those blocks are the same size as these blocks?

Would you look at that?

Now, the blocks to the right and left of 1957.5 are 1970 (only one page over from 1957.5), a spool block attributed to Nancy Cabot from 1938. This block has gotten the “Badskirt bump” lately. Amy (badskirt) posted a tutorial for the Japanese x and + block after loads of people went gaga over a quilt by Setsuko Inagawa, a picture of which the lovely Jan posted after her visit to the 2011 Tokyo International Great Quilt Festival. I went gaga as well. Happily for me, Amy posted her tutorial just as I was getting ready to send out fabrics for my month of the quilting bee.  There are loads of blocks to see over at the quilt-along Flickr group.

I have a sinking feeling I may need to make two quilts — or maybe three? — one quilt of only 1957.5, one quilt of 1957.5 combined with 1970, and one quilt of 1970.

::sigh::

Whatever the outcome, both blocks are great ones to use up scraps (especially the spool block/1970) and they are Goldilocks-sized — just right. I’m not sure why they seem to perfect at this size but they do. Hmmm, maybe I could even modify the center of the 1957.5 block so it has one rectangle rather than a different fabric square in the middle. Hmmm, I feel more puttering coming on…

Would anyone like a tutorial?

Comments (23)

Sighted in…

MY HOUSE!

It has been an exciting time mail-wise of late, as you will see. I just can’t help it, this is the most exciting mail of the year so far! I would venture to say that this is the most exciting mail of all of 2011 even though we’re not halfway through.

Really!

Sarah’s new book, Quilting, From Little Things, arrived at my house. I will confess up front that I got a little weepy going through the book — I am SO happy for my friend AND this book is THAT gorgeous! It is a triumph. I know Sarah’s my friend and all but, honestly, this book is at the tippy top of the list of best quilting books. For creativity, for fun projects, for technical know-how and for beauty. The photography by Sue Stubbs is spectacular. I felt like I could reach out and touch the quilts in the photos. Beautiful!

I also think my weepiness came from the fact that the quilts capture the essence of Sarah somehow (So Very Sarah TM) — and that is in a combination of things from the fabric choices to the visual references to quilting’s past (and moving those references forward to the present) to the abundant perle quilting to the technical expertise (clear from those great photos). I can’t explain it sufficiently but these quilts have Sarah’s DNA (and not from the time that she poked herself with a needle and got blood followed by spit on a quilt….I don’t know that that happened but you know what I mean). These are awfully big things that have grown from little things.

::sniffle::

And I’m not just saying that.

Like trying to pick a favorite child (well, I could since I only have one), I can’t pick a favorite quilt from the book. Maybe I will just call these “the ones I’d like to make first.”

Oh, dear, Hanging Lanterns quilt, you are  wonderful and beautiful…. I also like that we’ve seen snippets of the quilts on Sarah’s blog and now we get to see the full “reveal.”

Shining no less brightly is The Night Garden. ::sigh::

Oh dear, I really want to make them all first but I probably shouldn’t put a pic of every quilt here in my blog post. Bad form, no doubt. And I’m leaving out the eagles quilt that I love too. Shh, don’t tell the them.

And, oh, hello wall! I recognize those little quilts back there. How are you guys doing? You look happy in your Australian home! Toodle-oo from Mom!

In all seriousness, the book is a gem! Congratulations to Sarah and all the lovely people involved in putting it together! Bravo!!!

Don’t miss the Quilting, From Little Things blog tour going on now! Oh, and don’t forget to scroll down and read all about the book launch party. I was there in spirit and had to toast two days in a row just to make sure I covered the time change…all in a day’s work.

I would say don’t dawdle in getting yourself a copy of the book. I know that we in the U.S. won’t have the book in stores for some time to come, BUT, it looks like one can pre-order the book from the Book Depository in the UK.  The book is due in the UK early in May and the Book Depository has free worldwide shipping. I am a happy customer from previous orders.

Not to be overlooked, also in the package from Sarah was one of our Dollies Online quilts, Hugs and Kisses:

A is for adorable! I really need to get the number of that variegated thread Sarah’s been using too.

Thanks, Sarah!

Also not to be overlooked — see, didn’t I tell you the mail has been GREAT around here lately — I received my quilt from Doll Quilt Swap 10 from the ultra-talented and very angelic Carol (aka Mamacjt):

Isn’t it wonderful?! It’s called Colors Quartered and will be such a cheerful quilt on the sewing room wall! I can’t wait to hang it up. Those French knots slay me!

Thank you SO much, Carol!!

OK, I started a little organization project in said sewing room, so I’d better get back to it before we have to go to, let’s see, yes, the orthodontist today (back at that for a second round now that someone’s teeth are all in).

Happy stitching!

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Pat Sloan’s Tour of Ireland Blog Hop

Are you wearing green? If not, I’ll send my minions over to pinch you. I’ve already been pinched today. When I pointed out that there is green in one of my tattoos, the pinch was not retracted. Not even an apology. But I also got a St. Patrick’s Day kiss from the same person. Forgive and forget, I say.

Got plans for the day? Please add a blog hop to your calendar for the day and visit the other blogs celebrating the book, Tour Ireland with Pat Sloan!

Oh, indeed, I would love to tour Ireland some day. When Pat’s book arrived, I sat down and pored over it and honestly felt like it was the next best thing to being there! Beautiful photos, lovely narrative about the cities and towns the group visited, interesting facts and great travel tips provided by Jim West, the tour’s organizer!  Pat’s book is really like sitting down with an old friend and going through the scrapbook of her trip to Ireland. Very well done!

And then there are the quilt projects — 12 projects inspired by the trip. It is, of course, wonderful to read the inspiration behind each quilt.  My favorite is Pat’s Irish chain quilt in all its traditional goodness!

There are 12 projects in the book — some are pieced, some are appliqued in Pat’s trademark unfussy and FUN style.

Among the envious stops on the trip, the group stopped at the Guinness Brewery in Dublin. When I saw that, I thought of Guinness cake. Mmmm…. So, I’ve included a link to Nigella Lawson’s chocolate Guinness cake recipe. Mmmmmmmm…. doesn’t that sound mighty tasty?

All in all, Pat’s book is wonderful and makes the trip so vivid. I love that it also puts the quilts in a context and makes it more than just a pattern book.

Pat has two wonderful videos talking about the book. Take a look:

part 1

part 2

Would you like a chance to win a copy of Pat’s book?? Each stop along the blog tour will be giving away TWO copies of the book generously offered by Pat’s publisher, Leisure Arts. So, leave me a comment for a chance to win. Comments will be open until the end of the day on Saturday, March 19.

Be sure to visit the other stops on the Tour of Ireland blog hop:

Leisure Arts Blog
Pat Sloan
A la Mode Fabric
Mrs. Schmenkman Quilts –– you are here
Canton Village Quiltworks
The Happy Zombie
Crazy Mom Quilts
Pam Kitty Morning

If, sadly, you don’t win a copy, you can purchase a copy at Leisure Arts’ web site — the book will be 25% off through the end of March. So, if you want a little vacation without leaving your chair, grab yourself a copy!

May your blessings outnumber the shamrocks that grow.
And may trouble avoid you wherever you go.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

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The girl who…

The girl who went back to school.

The girl who finished her summer reading.

(Took me long enough. Hey, look, I made the cover of that book!)

The girl who finished her Doll Quilt Swap 9 quilt.

The girl who is happy about these things.

Comments (18)

When’s the next train?

You may know of my love for the Australians — genius quilters in that exciting place! So, I saw this sign last night and I got all excited!

Yes, please! Where do I buy tickets?

And then I saw this “guy”:

And then I remembered I was at the zoo and nowhere near the train station to Australia. ::sigh::

But, the animals were ever-so-active in the evening last night.

This guy cracked us up and was a little miffed that we were interrupting his evening schedule:

Same here:

I’m very sorry if we interrupted their evening, but I must say it was worth to see the aardvarks digging, digging, digging:

A girl can get thirsty from all that digging! They now have my vote for Favorite Animal!

I feel like I’ve been digging, digging, digging this week. There were kid’s bedroom reno activities. I may have had a tiny little snooze in the new loft bed — just to be sure it was safe up there. Safety first, I say.

There has been sewing, sewing, sewing.

I got to play with these cute witches:

Decided to put a little wonky four patch around her for border. I think witches get mad if you cut into them too much.

The wonky four patch idea comes from the most recent Fons & Porter magazine in a clever little pattern called Tipsy.

Fun and fast!

I’ve been chomping at the bit to get to a pattern from Pat Sloan’s new book Fast-Forward Quilts. There are SEVERAL quilts in this book that I’d like to make — pretty, pretty, pretty!

Anyhoo, the “fast forward” part of the patterns is the use of pre-cuts so you’re one step ahead of the cutting game when you begin.

I made my own pre-cuts for Pat’s “I Remember” quilt (shown on the book’s cover):

Decidedly a little spring-y in fabric choices but a definite cheerer-upper:

Happy, happy, joy, joy!

That pretty much hits the high points of the week — along with some nom-licious homemade hot sauce (which I don’t think we will ever run out of…). How was your week?

Comments (20)

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