Wednesday, July 27, 2016

A Slice of Summer

Hello creative friends! Be sure to head over to the AccuQuilt Blog today for my latest guest blog post...there you will find a complete tutorial for my "A Slice of Summer" placemats with all the details, so you can make a set of your very own...

These cheerful summertime placemats use traditional piecing and are perfect for a beginner...and the entire project was cut on my GO! Fabric Cutter (project is GO! Big, GO!, and GO! Baby compatible) using the GO! Qube Mix & Match 6" Block and the 2" Strip Cutter:

This project is great for scraps or fat quarters...and while I used summery fabrics, these placemates would look great in a variety of colors/prints or holiday fabrics. Each placemat finishes 18"W x 12"H - and the instructions are written for a four placemat set. Another interesting fact about this project: although the center of each placemat is a 9” quilt block, I used the 6” GO! Qube to create it - just another versatile way to use the GO! Qube.

To complete the look, you can easily make coordinating cloth napkins, as you can see in my table top photo...

So be sure to stop by the AccuQuilt Blog for a materials list and step by step tutorial, with images:

...and while you are there, check out a plethora of inspiring projects - there are endless creative ideas to get you in the sewing/quilting mood!

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Sunshine and Positivity

Hello friends...thanks for stopping by today! I thought I would pop in for picture-filled blog post...I wanted to show you what has been inspiring me and a few current/recent projects. Last weekend, I headed to Illinois to visit my mom and her husband Dan at the lake for a little time away....sometimes when you feel discouraged and the weight of the world is resting on your shoulders, taking a road trip can really put things into perspective. I thought I would share some photos I took of the beautiful gardens my mom nurtures/perfects daily and the peaceful lake - these images (and my time there) brought joy to my soul and reminded me of what is really important. It was quite enjoyable attending some of the lake community's "Summerfest" activities, including a water skiing show...and visiting some of the rural/local establishments. I was also able to do some modeling stitching and a little design work surrounded by nature...and I even got to have a long, leisurely breakfast with a very dear stitching friend before heading back to Iowa.

I managed to get quite a bit done in my studio over the last few weeks...lots of custom sewing, model stitching, and needlework finishing...and even quite a bit of design work. Here are just a few recent finishes...and I have more creative things in store to show you soon!!

Lastly...a little wisdom for a Saturday evening:
Recently, someone has been trying to steal my sunshine and intentionally hurt my feelings - even going as far as to tell me to stop designing cross stitch. It's hard not to let negative people bring you down, especially when it comes from someone you thought was there for you....we all know that familiar saying: misery (negativity) loves company. I have done a lot of self-reflection over the last month and I am choosing to be happy and better myself...surrounding myself with those who make me a better person and want good/positive things for me. I like being a happy, fun-loving person - I LOVE designing, creating, and having my own business - I like going to the gym and trying to live a healthy lifestyle - I enjoy taking care of my home, yard, and husband - I like being young at heart - and I love taking photos and sharing things that inspire me on social media. I will continue to do all those things, because they bring ME joy. My advice:
Be happy - be you (you are perfect just the way you are) - be positive.
 Don't let anyone attempt to steal your sunshine...

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Snow Much Fun

A couple months ago, I was busy working on today's feature project...yep, when we were all preparing for summer, I was hard at work on a snowman project (such is the life of a designer - always working months in advance)! I designed this "Snow Much Fun" wall hanging pattern especially for AccuQuilt...and now that they have released the pattern on their website, I am finally able to share it with you.

If you are a regular reader of my blog, then you know I like to use my AccuQuilt cutting die shapes in unique and creative how I designed a plethora of animals using only the GO! Owl cutting die in my GO! Talk To The Animals quilt. For the GO! Snow Much Fun Wall Hanging, I had the challenge of designing a quilt that made a fun selection of snowmen using only the GO! Holiday Accessories die and the the GO! Circle-2", 3", 5" die....add in the GO! Square-8 1/2" (8" Finished) for the applique background blocks and the GO! Strip Cutter-2 1/2" (2" Finished) for binding and you can EASILY cut this out this intricate wall hanging in an afternoon.

Since this project pattern was created for a July release, I wanted to use a bright assortment of colors...and Robert Kaufman Kona Cotton Solids seemed the perfect choice!...and although you can't see them in these images, I used some actual buttons for embellishing (instead of appliquéing some of the very small circles). I also had fun naming each of the blocks for the pattern instructions (like "Snowman Stargazer", "Snowman Snow Globe", "Snowman Love").
If you want to try one or more of these blocks, but the wall hanging seems a little daunting, here are some other suggestions...make one block and use as a mug rug...use your favorite blocks to make a table block would make a cute winter potholder or trivet...or use four blocks and make a mini quilt. Any of these options would make a heartfelt holiday gift!

So, go visit the patterns section of the AccuQuilt website and download this wintry wall hanging pattern...which for a limited time is FREE - yes, I said FREE!

(and during the month of July, the GO! Holiday Accessories die and the GO! Circle-2", 3", 5" die are on sale)

....and if you want to see more on how to make this cheerful project, AccuQuilt has posted a video with more details and tips for cutting all the shapes...

I hope you will make a Snow Much Fun project...and if you do, please be sure to share a photo with me - I would love to see your interpretation of my design!