Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Sneak Peek #2 - Gone Apple Pickin'

It's fall ---
apple pickin' time -- time to wander taking in the beautiful colors -- time to go for a hike and soak up the warmth of the sun a cool crisp day...

time to quilt?
It's always time to quilt, but fall inspires some amazing ideas.

This week I am sharing a quilt that was inspired by many, many a fall day spent wandering through the mountains, seeking that u-pick orchard. Picking a couple of bushels of apples, then heading back into town for a slice or two or three of absolutely scrumptious mile high apple pie! YUM...

There's no pie here now... but here's the quilt and some photos that remind me of those special fall moments.


There's no pie now....but maybe soon.
Do you have a favorite apple pie recipe?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Sneaking a Peak #1

I pulled out the calendar the other day and realized that OMG my latest book is moving FAST towards its release date.

Producing this book has come with a big mix of emotions, but I love the quilts, and I love the opportunity this book gave me to work with some amazing long arm quilters. I am planning to share a bit more about each of these quilters over the next couple of months, so stay tuned for the fun!

But, the book really is about the quilts...
the things that inspired them...
and how I tried to simplify these inspirations to their graphic best.

In this space -- on Tuesday's over the next few weeks I'll be sharing some of these quilts along with their inspirations.

This week I'm sharing my favorite....

I know I they're my kids and I shouldn't have a favorite, (but I do-shhhh, don't tell the others).

meet Aspen Dawning
this photo of the aspens taken in
Lassen Volcanic National Park was the inspiration
and the incredible Cory Allender of St. George, UT
was the long-arm quilter.

I hope you enjoy this sneak peek --

If you want to get a signed copy and a special e-Pattern created specially for this release just click over & pre-order now!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Spinning the Wheel - Picking a Winner

Happy Monday! It was time...
This morning the wheel was spun,
and the lucky winner of Sam Hunter's new book Quilt Talk is:

I had a lot of fun last week...
reading the words that you all want to stitch
into your quilts definitely got me thinking....

Thank you all for sharing your words, and I hope you pick up a copy of Sam's book to get those words stitched into your own project.

If you'd like another chance to win a copy you may want to visit Sam's blog today for the final stop on the blog tour!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Whisle Stop on the Creatives Worldwide Blog Hop

What a concept! Get Creative bloggers from around the world to share their blogs and get the skinny on what goes on in their studios and their minds, too!

This is what ran through my mind when friend and fellow art quilter Deborah Weir from Southern California invited me to join in.

I encourage you to check out Deborah's blog and visit the many others linked in for the fun.
I accepted the invite and am please to share a bit about myself here, and then pass along the torch to bloggers who will be carrying the Creatives Worldwide Blog Hop forward:
Chris Janne - Crafting from the Underground
Mandy Leins - Work from the hands of Mandy Leins
Stephanie Young - WoollyThyme

Meantime....The 4 questions being asked?
#1 - What am I working on?
I have just enjoyed a top to bottom clean up in my studio after a long stretch on work on my latest book. It is my 4th, and I think the hardest for me so far. There are special ideas I wanted to share in this book. Some of these include techniques on how to simplify design, and how this process actually helps the 'uniqueness of ourselves' shine through. There are also ideas on formatting, construction and presentation of our simplified and fabric-ated quilt works that will appear in these pages.
The release date for -- Fast-Piece Applique is January-2015.
and, with the clearing off the desk my mind is swimming with possibilities.
#2 - How does my work differ from others in the genre?
While I fell in love with quilting -- building in blocks, and the wonderful stitches that tell a whole story on their own... I have a need for curves, sinuous lines and color!  Curves not just within the quilting stitches but curves in the fabric that combined my love of landscapes with my love of fabric -- And, color -- well, the color that the heart feels when standing amongst great natural beauty. I accomplish this and continue to build upon this with my Fast-Piece Applique construction methods.
#3 - Why do I create what I do?
I love the process -- the problem solving -- the heart wants what the heart wants.

#4 - How does my creative process work?
I believe my process is one of unfolding.... there is the seeing, the capturing of and idea that spins in the heart picking up speed as the how to is identified. The creating ensues --- on whatever track is needed to meet with the inspirations needs --- and once the piece is completed - enjoyed, delivered.... a new idea begins to spin and pick up speed.

The path is now clear and ideas are spinning.
And, the quilts I am sharing here are all project pictures from
Fast-Piece Applique! (first time yet)

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Hexie This!

The little hexagon of quilts passed has transformed itself over the last several years. Taken on by a whole new group of quilters beginning their fabric journeys.

They have become bigger, smaller, brighter and darn right cute at times, but the most historical fact about hexies has not changed. They are addictive! I personally have warded off the small -- grandmother's flower garden sized hexies by sharing that free package of hexie papers from the quilt show with my good friend (and beginning quilter) Angelique.

See what happens?!?

My own hexie trail lead off in an entirely different direction.
I took pics & postcards from a summertime trip and mixed paper and fabric hexies for this wall hanging.
I used sheets of self-seal laminating pouches for the paper hexies, and there is batting used for the fabric hexies.
It was a bit of a trial run to see how everything stitched together, but I am pleased and can see lots of possibilities.

Are you intrigued?
I will share the pattern and how to's if you'd like...
just let me know.

Friday, September 26, 2014

There's A Quilt In there Somewhere

possibly two or three...

This past week my sister has been visiting and I have been sharing some of my favorite places with her. One, last week was Garden of the Gods in Southern IL. It amazes me how the landscape can change so dramatically - seemingly out of nowhere.

Yesterday, we visited the Mineral Museum in Marion, KY. David & I found this during a hit the road, it's spring road trip our first year here and I've been taking people back there ever since. There we learned about local geology and discovered fluorite....

The museum is quite a treat, and my favorite room is literally in the dark where slices of these minerals are lit up. I'm thinking there is a quilt in these wonders...

what do you think?

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Simplify to Find Your Self

It seems like a zillion years ago that I started the art quilters group out in California -- Quilts on the Wall: Fiber Artists.

I did this after several years in traditional guilds and a burning need to find 'like minds'.
I was not disappointed!

Back at the time, and even now, quilt artists who wanted to expand on their art careers were told they needed a body of work. It seemed to be on everyone's agenda.

Over the years I have come to understand that our voice is shared by the choices we make.

In my latest book - due out in January I share some basic lessons on how to simplify the visual things that surround us everyday into interesting designs. Once we have those design ideas then we dig around in our personal tool kits (which I personally think should include Fast-Piece Applique how to for stitching fabric) and bring them to life.

Want to make something 'uniquely' you? Simplify!

The simplifying process begins with us...
1st by choosing the subject we want. (something we love or something that has us intrigued.)
Then with every detail we remove,
or area we change,
it becomes more and more our own.

The cover quilt for my newest book is a good example.
This photo, taken while on Martinique  while I was on a teaching cruise with World Quilts to the Caribbean was the inspiration for this quilt.

I loved this scene! The beach, umbrellas and beautiful Caribbean waters.
You can see what I edited out,
what I chose to emphasize and in my case, repeat.
All things that this photo reminds me of,
and through simplifying make my quilt, my own personal take-away from that walk along the boardwalk.

A teacher that I met and became fast friends with on that trip asked if she could use that photo as inspiration. Of course, I said, for I know Michelle would create from it would be totally different from my own.

Try if for yourself. Do you have a small group of quilters that you work with -- ask them to create a small quilt from a photo you provide. Then stand back and be prepared to be amazed!

Do you want a bit of a head start on learning Fast-Piece Applique....
join me on-line for my workshop

'Shaping Up with Fast-Piece Applique'!