Memory Quilts for Young Children

The request I receive most often from clients is to create a memory quilt using baby clothes. 

Mother’s have a hard time parting with those special baby clothes that are full of memories. These are photos of photos, and eventually I will take clearer pictures with our new digital camera, (still waiting for it to come). 

Lately, I’ve had requests from potential clients to post some photos. So for now, I hope these will provide a sense of just one pattern that I’ve used to make memory quilts out of baby clothes. 

I made hearts for the girl’s quilt using baby clothes, and made stars for the boy’s quilt.

These are close-ups using pockets and labels from the baby clothes, which I hand appliqued into the hearts or the stars.

2 Works in Progress

Happy Fall. This is my favorite time of year. I love the crisp morning air. Taking a walk by the Hudson with the breeze which is so invigorating. 

I attended Ithaca College, and we used to call this sweater weather. The teddy bear quilt is completely quilted; in the ditch, and then around the 24 bears, I did a meandering stitch, and added some loops. It was a little tricky getting around the heads of the bears, but I love the way it came out. 

Now all that’s left to do is trim it, add the binding by machine, and finish it by hand; one of my favorite parts of the quilting process. 

Transforming the quilting studio is moving along really well. Almost all my fabric and stash is up on the shelves. Thanks to my wonderful husband.
Still two more large boxes to organize!!

Quilting Trends Fall 2013

Every season I like to see what trends are showing up in Brick & Mortar, online stores, blogs, and in the hands of other quilters. There are always lots of predictions, but seeing what shows up in quilting projects is a whole other matter. 

I love checking the Pantone 2013 home dec report, above, which usually is published at least 6 months in advance. So what am I observing? The pantone colors are showing up in fabrics, particularly in the solids. 

Prints that are popular are including animals, letters, numbers, sheet music, even a scrabble print. I’ve been seeing a lot more cats than in years past. Also a lot of hexagons, geometric shapes and chevrons, and not only in fabric, but quilt block designs. 

Blenders seem to be tone on tone, which are really pretty and versatile. See http://www.cottonpatchquiltshop.com/shop/Whats-New/White-on-White-and-Black-on-Blacks.htm from the Cotton Patch Quilt Shop. Also take note of their very cool sale. 

I will say that one of my favorite new lines is from Patrick Loose, called Dazzle, http://patricklose.blogspot.com/These bright tones with simple designs on them are beautiful and fun. 

Search the web and blogs and let me know what you are seeing in quilt and fabric trends.

Works in Progress

Happy Monday!!

I’ve been hard at work at my sewing machine. I’m only prepared to share 2 out of the 3 active projects I’ve been working on. The first is a block I made for one of the members of the Modern Quilt Guild of The Hudson Valley. I have never done improvisational quilting until this block. I am loving it – and mixing my fabrics up with some modern fabrics. 

And the king size quilt from Maple Island Quilts, called the Show Off. Only 90 more blocks to go to finish the blocks!!

Last week was a very busy week, and I forgot to mention a brick and mortar store that has saved me in the past with an out-of-print fabric. The Cotton Patch Quilt Shop in University Park, Florida, which I found during a vacation this past February when we were checking out Bradentown, Florida. The shop was fabulous. 

When I came home, I signed up for their newsletter, see
http://www.cottonpatchquiltshop.com Well, they have incredible sales. One was 10 days of a sale, which if you live out of town, and I do, they offered a great incentive. They featured various notions each day. Some I bought, because I needed them, and some I already had. (I am budget conscious, and will post in the future some tips about how to buy stash and notions, without breaking the bank). 

They kept track of my order, (and other out-of-towners), and at the end of the 10 days, mailed the order for just one shipping price. Now that’s a great bargain!!

The Many Lives of Selvedge Edges – Part 2

Selvedge Edges – Part 2 

Earlier this week I wrote about the importance of selvedge edges. One of the biggest reasons I save them is in case I need to track down out-of-print fabrics. 

For example, if you were looking for a Moda Fabric – Snowman Gathering. It has a code number 1080 11. You would google 1080 11 Moda Snowman Gathering, and your results would bring you to many shops. .                                                                                                                                                                        . 
1. As I mentioned part 1 of this series, I will call customer service at the fabric manufacturer with the information. They are often a wealth of information, and have provided me with some brick and mortar stores names and web sites they think still have the fabric I am looking for in stock. (More about brick and mortar stores and oop fabrics below). 

 2. Of course a google search is the fastest and easiest way to begin your search. Use all combinations of color code and manufacturer to search. See above. (I’m a part-time public reference librarian, and I can’t stress the importance of this enough). And different search engines do yield different results, so don’t discount google chrome, Mozilla, Internet Explorer, or any other one which is not your default browser. 

3. Amazon and Ebay are other great resources. One of my quilt group members found real vintage 1930’s fabric she was looking for on eBay. I am collecting 1930’s reproduction fabric for two projects, and just couldn’t afford the real thing. That said, I found enough for one of the quilts on Amazon, and another led me to an incredible brick and mortar story in Nebraska called Calico Annies. Annie had over 200 1930’s reproduction fabrics. I called her and told her what I was looking for and what I wasn’t, and I was pretty sure she nailed it. She said I could return them if they weren’t what I needed, as long as I didn’t take the packaging of the jelly rolls apart. GREAT. Again, thank you Annie. 

4. My local brick and mortar stores are very helpful too. They have often recommended online fabric stores such as fabric.com. I was looking through a recent copy of Quilty Magazine, and found Fabric Shack in Ohio, which sells online and is a brick and mortar store. A quick call was all that was needed to find the last 13 yards of a Kona solid, Hyacinth. 

5. One more word about brick and mortar stores before I plug online stores. Throughout the years, I have come across some great shops in the U.S., such as Little Quilts in Marietta, GA. I found them via a google search for a hand quilting template pattern I couldn’t find anywhere, but there. I was so impressed with their customer service and web site, that I subscribe to their newsletter which is full of great information and ideas. 

6. http://www.quiltshops.com and http://www.findmyfabric.com are two online fabric shops I haven’t mentioned that have served me well on my quest to find out of print fabrics. Others can be found by googling online fabric stores + out of print fabrics. 

7. A few of my quilting friends have had success at Esty. 

8. http://www.hancocks-paducah.com/ is another great web site and brick and mortar store. If you happen to be in Paducah, KY, you can also visit The National Quilt Museum. See http://www.quiltmuseum.org/ 

9. If you belong to a guild, send out an e-mail and attach a photograph of the out-of-print fabric. You never know who might have a suggestion. 

10. And we can’t forget the power of social media. If you belong to Flickr, Instagram, yahoo or google groups, by all means post what you are looking for. If you have a pinterest board, start a board, of Out of Print Fabrics that you are interested in. If you tweet or blog you can always upload a photo of the fabric. And of course, there is always Facebook. 

 I am sure there are many more sites and stores where you may have been lucky with finding that treasured out of print fabric. Please share your finds in the comments box below. In a month I will post all the finds of everyone who participates, and achieve it. I will also continue to add to it, much like I would for a wiki.

The Many Lives of Selvedge Edges Part 1

Selvedge Edges – Part 1 This is part 1 of a 2 part series on selvedge edges. Do I collect selvedge edges? YES!! Am I embarrassed about that? NO!! Do I ask my fellow quilters in the groups I’m in, “Would you save me your selvedge edges, please?” You bet I do. Okay, here comes the why, and there are a few reasons. Firstly, it does offer the handy color guide, which I sometimes refer to when considering other fabrics to choose for a project. Secondly, I have a lot of stash, some of which is old. When I bought this floral fabric a few years ago, I didn’t have a project in mind for it. But I do now, and what if I needed more than I bought? Fortunately, I had just enough. Well, it sure is helpful to have that information if I had needed to track it down. When I did need to locate an out of print fabric, I have called the customer service department of the fabric companies, and they have had suggestions of web sites, and even brick and mortar stores that might possibly have more of it, which is so kind and helpful. Thirdly, I am planning a quilt or a bag or something, someday made out of selvedge edges, and I’m sure I’ll need a lot.

(Photo from Google Images). I was looking on the internet and found some pretty interesting items made of selvedge edges. a great Pinterest board by Eileen Richardson shows some creative selvedge edge projects. “> And what about this cute girl’s skirt I found on google?

(Photo from Adventures in Fiber: Selvedge Edge Skirts).

I will not attempt this, but am impressed that someone made a dress out of selvedge edges; (Photo from Big Selvedge Project vintagericrac.blogspot.com) But the one I found this fall that really got me was a backpack made of selvedge edges.

(Photo from http://www.ebay.com/itm/SELVAGE-BACKPACK-Quilt-Pattern-From-Magazine-A-Great-Back-To-School-Project-/261255519576). What would you like to make or see made out of selvedge edges? Please leave a comment if you’d like. Part 2 later this week will cover sources to find out of print fabrics.

Out of Print Fabrics

I’ve been working on a 2 part blogpost about the importance of saving selvage edges and the relationship to helping find out of print fabrics. However, today I found the most amazing web site that helps locate out of print fabrics, that I decided to post an extra edition post today. The web site is http://www.findmyfabric.com/ I tested it with some of my old out of print Moda, Hoffman, Robert Kaufman, Windham, Kona; yes I could go on and on. They are growing, and are a hot site to keep your eye on for finding those lost treasures. Enjoy, and let me know about your successes or not. I generally don’t promote something like this unless I am super impressed.