Back From Vacation

Back in early February, when the snow and cold were relentless, (it hasn’t exactly let up), we decided to make a spontaneous decision to go someplace warm during the last week in February. We left New York very early last Sunday, to go to Scottsdale, AZ, and came back on the red eye this past Saturday night. 

We had a great time doing nothing. Sometimes I get so busy, stitching, planning new blog posts, researching and writing them, I don’t get time to just relax and hang out, not to mention get enough exercise. 

Before I left I wanted to post this WIP,which came from Faith Jones blog. It is the first QAL, I have ever participated in http://www.freshlemonsquilts.com/?s=lighthouse+quilt

 

I finally finished the quilt top!! My goal for March is to have it basted and machine quilted. Wish me luck.

Happy Quilting!!

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Winners Of Faith Jones Pattern Give-a-Way and Another Give-a-Way

Congratulations to Fran, Robin and Laurel, who have won a pattern from Faith Jones. If you haven’t already, please e-mail me at acbeier71@gmail.com with your mailing address, and the pattern you would like for your prize. 

Well, we all know how much quilters love fabrics. But I’ve noticed something else quilters love about as much. Chocolate!! And, Monday October 28, is National Chocolate Day. So my very good friend, Maria, who is a real Chocolatier from Chocolations,http://www.chocolations.com/ in Mamaroneck, New York, and I are offering another little give-a-way. A lovely assortment of truffles, chocolate bark and bon-bons. 

Please leave a comment in my comment box letting me know which quilting magazines are your favorites, or telling me what you like most about quilting. This give-a-way can only be done in the U.S. because the prize is edible and perishable. Sorry. I can’t change the rules on this. The winner will be announced on the morning of Tuesday, October 29.


Good Luck!!




Sources for Out of Print Fabrics – Tomorrow Announcement of Winner of Faith Jones Patterns Give-a-Way

If you still haven’t entered the chance for tomorrow’s give-a-way, there’s still time. Please leave a comment in the comment box and answer one of the following questions; What is your favorite pattern designed by Faith Jones? Or what is a new skill or technique you would like to learn? 

I interviewed Faith last week. This is the link to the interview and give-a-way chance. http://www.hudsonvalleyquilts.com/2013/10/interview-with-faith-jones-of-modern.html Good luck!! 

Looking for a little more of an out-of-print fabric, when you need it is a frustration quilters all share. So I created this go-to post. I will update it every six months with additional sources. So please send me an e-mail at acbeier71@gmail.com if you have one you have had success with.  

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). 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. 

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.

Give-A-Way – Faith Jones Patterns

Our give-a-way from Faith Jones of Modern Quilts by Fresh Lemons, is three patterns from her online shop, has been extended until midnight on Wednesday, October 23. The winner will be announced on the morning of Thursday, October 24. In order to enter, please leave a comment in the box below, telling us what your favorite pattern is by Faith Jones, or a new quilting skill or technique, you would like to learn. 

Good Luck!!

Interview With Faith Jones of Modern Quilts By Fresh Lemons and a Give-a-Way

Before I began my blog, I read a lot of quilt blogs, and several stood out. http://www.freshlemonsquilts.com/ introduced me to modern quilting, (which I now love), provides lots of useful quilting information, and is fun to read.




Faith Jones is a talented quilter, designer, blogger, and one of the three authors of a book to be released in December, Vintage Quilt Revival, which I can’t wait to see.

Below is my favorite Quilt by Faith, called This Way, That Way. It is featured on the front page of the Modern Quilt Guild, http://www.themodernquiltguild.com/ How cool is that?

And here is our interview;

Tell us how you began quilting?  Were there other quilters/sewers in your family? 
I have been around sewing and sewing myself as long as I can remember.  My mom made a lot of our clothes when I was younger and she has been a quilter my entire life.  However, I wasn’t interested in quilting myself until after I had my kids.  When I was pregnant with my son, I ended up going on bedrest for the last 8 weeks of my pregnancy.  My mom came to stay with us for a bit of time, to help out with my daughter.  She brought her sewing machine and taught me to make a simple, quilted bib.  A few months after my son was born, I used that knowledge to make my first quilt.
 How did you come up with the name “Fresh Lemons” for your blog/business?  
I started blogging without a super clear plan as to what my blog would become.  I knew I wanted to document my sewing journey.  I knew I wanted to my blog to be a light, fresh, happy and positive presence.  “Fresh Lemons” just popped into my head and luckily, Fresh Lemons Quilts was an available blog name. 🙂
I know you have a strong background in Computer Programming/Web Design. How did you get into quilt design?  
I think designing quilts really just came naturally to me from my graphics and math background.  I enjoy math (gasp!) and breaking down problems (or quilt tops and blocks) into smaller pieces to figure them out.  I also have experience in technical writing which helps when explaining tutorials and patterns.
What you would recommend to those who want to learn how to design fabrics and quilts?
Start sketching.  This can be done in a regular sketchbook.  It can be done online, using tools like Threadbias, GIMP, EQ7, Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator.  But take the time to sit down and be creative.  I often don’t have a plan or vision when I sit down.  I start sketching, drawing lines this way and that.  Combining components (half square triangles, rectangles, flying geese, etc).  And a plan eventually forms.
How would you describe the difference between Modern Quilts and Vintage Modern Quilts?
If you ask 100 quilters this question you will probably get 100 different answers.  When I think of “Modern Quilting” with a capital M, I think of something maybe improvisational, minimalistic design, bold color choices.  This isn’t always the case, but it’s what first pops into my mind.  
When I think of Vintage Modern Quilts, or Modern Traditionalism as I refer to it, I think of taking a historic or traditional block/design and using it in an unexpected way.  It could be a sampler, a medallion layout, a traditional block such as a Sawtooth Star, a color scheme like Red and White quilts.  Take those components and apply modern ideals by changing colors, making it wonky, or perhaps using negative space creatively.  The possibilities are really endless.
Tell us what inspires you in general, as well as, for those quilters/designers who have been quilting for several years, and want to take their quilting/designing to the next level?
I am inspired by all sorts of things.  I see patterns everywhere as I’m going about my day – catalogs, buildings, brick pavers, fashion, home design photos, even landscaping.  I also love reference books and have a shelf full of books with historic block listings.  There are also super talented bloggers out there on Flickr and Instagram.
What inspired you to come up with the designs for your new book, Vintage Quilt Revival, that will be released in December, 2013?
In November 2011, my coauthors Katie Blakesley, Lee Heinrich and I decided to write a book proposal based on the concept of Modern Traditionalism.  We took 20 historic blocks and designed a set of patterns to use these blocks in new and interesting ways – through changes in size, color, and layout.  While working on the projects, we were inspired to research and share information about various historical aspects of quilting.  From medallion quilts to mail order pattern catalogs, we included what we learned in sidebars in each chapter.  Our goal is to share modern designs while honoring the past.
What is your favorite part, and least favorite part of the quilting process?
Favorite – Pulling fabric!  I could pull fabrics for quilts all day long.
Least Favorite – Making and sewing on binding.  By that point, I just want to be done.
You have a family of 4, including 2 children, and have a thriving business. How do you juggle it all?
I am a mom and wife first and everything else second.  My kids are still relatively young (1st grade and preschool), so I’m trying to enjoy time with them while they still think I’m cool. 😉  I tend to do my sewing in the mornings when they are at school.  The afternoons are generally reserved for snacks, homework, Girl Scouts, soccer, t-ball, playdates, making dinner…well I’m sure a lot of you can relate!  
If I don’t get a chance to sew for a week, that’s ok.  I’ve learned to say “no” to things this year and not feel guilty.  There are a lot of great opportunities out there, and although it’s hard, I’m finding that balance.  I’m actually quite horrible at answering my emails in a timely fashion though.  I try to sit down once every couple of weeks because I don’t have a dedicated time each day to go through them all, research the questions and type up the answers.
When I was working on the book, my husband was great at managing the kids and giving me quiet time to work.  He’s a wonderful dad!
Quilters love fabric.  What are some of your favorites and why?
I have a special place in my heart for solids.  I love them!  My favorites are Moda’s Bella Solids, Art Gallery Pure Elements, and FreeSpirit Fabrics Designer Solids.  I like to keep my color cards handy so I can pick and match my solids.
As far as designers go, I love almost everything put out by Anna Maria Horner, Denyse Schmidt and Heather Ross.  Embarrassingly, I even have fabric tubs dedicated to them!  
I love text prints, especially if they have a cream background with black text.  I also lean toward buying prints that are monochromatic / tone-on-tone fabrics.
Lastly, tell us more about your community giving effort, and how quilters can participate?
The Community Giving page on my blog is relatively new.  There are a lot of quilt and block drives out there and I often get emails about spreading the word.  Whether it be a natural disaster, an accident or something more malicious, or an ongoing need, I’ve found that quilters are generous people and always want to help.  I decided to set up a special page where people can go if they want to help out in anyway.  If you have a quilt drive you would like me to include, just email me and I can add it to my page!
Thank you so much, Faith, for your time. This was a fun and informative interview with lots of inspiration. 
Additionally, Faith has generously offered a give-a-way, which are three free patterns from her shop.

Leave a comment in the http://www.hudsonvalleyquilts.com comments box telling us either, what your favorite pattern is in Faith’s online shop, or a new quilting technique you want to learn in the next few months.
We’ll pick and announce the winner on the morning of Monday, October 23. Please don’t forget to leave an e-mail address or a way to get in touch.
Happy Quilting !!