Aurifil August Designer of the Month — Michele Foster

September 1st, 2014

aurifil 2014 Aug designer of the month Michele Foster

Didn’t I say last month when I wrote up the July Aurifil Designer of the Month post, that I would be Johnny on the spot with August??  Well, obviously, it didn’t happen as today is the 31st….and I am just now writing it… Just so you know, I did have my block done very early in the month.  But August zoomed by with so many things. Many life changes in our family. Out oldest, Noel, is in his first apartment now, and our second boy (sorry, man now) Max will be living with Noel next week. That leaves Mimi here at home with us.  The boys aren’t that far away. Noel is still coming home every weekend. But still it’s a state of flux. I spent most of August working the day job and helping get Noel situated as well as organizing a yard sale (it rained the day we had planned…so it didn’t do so well!)  Anywhoo….Onto this post.

August’s Aurifil Designer of the Month is the very talented (at both quilt design and organizing community) Michele Foster from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Michele is the brains, heart, and soul behind the Quilting Gallery, one of the first quilt online “groups” I remember seeing way back when I started getting into the blog world.  She has been very instrumental in getting a lot of fun free patterns out there and helping promote many, many designers!

Read more about Michele, here in her interview with Pat Sloan.

And here’s her block, The Aurifil Button:

aurifil-block

Directions for the block are here.

And here is my block done in a print from Valori Wells’ Wish line, and assorted prints from Liberty.

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And here’s Quilting Tip #8 from Natalia.

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so now, here’s the WINNING part….you can win a box of Pat’s Aurifil thread just by making this block and posting it on the Aurifil Flickr page here.

And now I am finally getting this posted, and I see it is past midnight on the 31st….so yeah, it’s officially September people….I hope I will get you the September Aurifil block earlier!
Happy Labor Day, US peeps….and Happy September everyone else!

Aurifil Designer of the Month — June

June 23rd, 2014

And It’s June already! For me that means #2 Son just graduated from High School…..the years have gone by so quickly, I can scarcely believe it!

So since it’s June, we have another Aurifil DOM to share! And that Designer is Heidi Pridemore.  Very whimsical designs as obviously indicated by her company name.  Be sure to read Pat Sloan’s interview with Heidi here.

aurifil june designer of the month Heidi Pridemore

Her block is called Chain Links. It’s pretty fun, and it has a great second design going on when you make multiple blocks and work them together (I always love that!).  If you check out the interview link above, you will find the
“story” behind Heidi’s block and how they look laid out as a group.

June Block Flat

Here’s my version of Chain Links in the Liberty prints and more Wish by Valori Wells.

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Make your version of this block with these directions. Then make sure to post a photo of your block here to be eligible for the monthly drawing of a BIG Box of Aurifil Threads ($120 value!)

And here’s the Tip of the Month from Natalia Bonner.

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I took a quick photo of my versions of the first six blocks in the grass this morning…not the best light…should have waited just a little bit longer…

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I think that for my next few blocks, I need to use some more of the medium and darker prints.  What do you think?

GenQ-ville….. (and the winner of the Seaside Table Runner)

May 21st, 2014

Gypsy 2\

So I just got back from  Quilt Market in Pittsburgh…..I am still finding photos I took to put up on  Instagram so be sure to follow me there  as bluenickelstudios. It was crazy fun, and I have a ton to share (and even a giveaway!) but for today, I wanted to share about my Gypsy River Camp quilt that was published in the March April issue of Generation Q.  I know, I work there, but I never got a post up about this issue because I was working so fervently on three (wait, four) different Quilt Market projects as well as the Day Job and the Gen Q stuff.

The above and below picture are how the quilt appeared in the magazine.

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Below is my first version of it.  I made this one for the Birch booth at Quilt Market a few years back, but never patterned it.

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And here is the back with the front shining through it. .....and one of the cats, Trinket, I think.  (she looks a LOT like Broba, so I can’t quite tell from this photo)

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You can still get a copy of the issue that quilt is in here. Find the March April issue with the adorable Sara Lawson on the cover and click to purchase.

And now for the winner of the table runner from this post........drumroll please…..

Rose Smith who wrote:

My favourite fruit is Mango. Mmm!! I enjoy it as a fresh fruit, or as a flavouring in sorbets, ice-cream, juice, anything really. It’s delish!

As I wrap this post up, I just realized that although there were two “subjects” to share, they both involved Sara Lawson to a degree….Serendipity falls into play again.

Happy Sewing peeps! I am going back to massive pattern writing and editing for my students who are taking my classes this summer at Sisters.  I am really, really behind on that road, and I am so grateful for the patience of those students have been super eager and waiting for me to catch up. The patterns will be available for sale to all soon.

Stitch ‘n Swap!

May 7th, 2014

booktour2

Okay peeps! I knew this was coming and it was so crazy around here, I never told you about it!!  The timeline is short but you have a chance to win yourself  of the copy of  Stitch ‘n Swap that was created by my teammates at Generation Q and I and a whole lot of our friends for Stash Books.  I have been wanting to make placemats for our place for years now, but never seem to find the time…..I know placemats, right? How hard could that be to take time for? Well, I never did, but for this book, I finally made myself to it. I think the frustration for me is keeping it simple enough for placemats, but still will a lot of design, color and pattern going on.

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So I made two sets for the book, mainly because we couldn’t quite decide which we liked better.  This set “Modern Broken Dishes” ended up in the book. Seen above in a much better setting than they will ever see when they get back to me, although, we do have glasses a bit like that.

For the design, I simply looked at one of my many books on traditional blocks, found the Broken Dishes block, and played with different variations. Obviously, I basically took the basic concept and changed it entirely, so it really isn’t a Broken Dishes block any more, but I did keep the “original” 8 triangle together concept.  I know, that’s how I roll.

Here’s one of the place mats:

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And here’s the runner:

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And here’s a horrible picture of the second runner that I made for the book that they didn’t have space for:

runner vertical

Really, it looks much better in person. When I get it back here, I will take a better picture of it. I somehow managed to trash ALL of my original pictures of it when I made it last summer.  Since it didn’t make it in the book, we did get the instructions as a free download that you can get here. The placemats are simply those side bits around the center vertical bit.

The book has a BUNCH of other fun projects too,  you can check out the entire list of contributors here and see more of what’s in the book that way.

Now onto the Giveaway part!

How does this giveaway work?

 Go ahead and comment on the original Generation Q Stitch ‘N Swap post letting the GenQ team know if you’ve ever participated in a swap and the coolest thing you’ve ever gotten in a swap. That’s it!


And here’s the kicker, there’s no time to lose! Click on the Link above and comment on that original post. Three books are going to be given away to three commentors on that post Thursday May 8th.  (That’s Tomorrow!)  Go. Now. Comment. Good luck!

(and PS, I will announce the winner of  the peachy tablerunner  top tomorrow….so come back to check that out!)

Aurifil Designer of the Month — April

April 30th, 2014

And then there was April. There was? I barely blinked and it is over tonight at Midnight. Well, I did actually do a lot more than blink. Which is probably why this post is just getting done today.  Since I am part of the Aurifil Designer of the Month 2014 group, I committed to posting my cohorts in the group every month. Sorry Angela, I didn’t forget you, I just got really, really behind.

So without further ado, Meet Angela Yosten.  Her interview with the lovely Pat Sloan is here.

2014 Angela Yosten Apr Aurifil designer button

And here is her Block, a nice Traditional Bear Paw with a little added border.


12 - Bear Paw Block


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You can download Angela’s Bear Paw Pattern from here.

And here is my version of the block in the Liberty and Wish Voile I have been working with:

liberty aurifil block 4

Note, I made this just now, and I have no time to do the hand-stitching bit.

So remember YOU can win a Big Box of Aurifil thread EVERY month just by making these blocks and posting them here. So you might as well make some. Someone’s gotta win. And even if you don’t, you will have 12 great blocks at the end of the year.

And here is the Aurifil Quilting Tip of the Month from Natalia Bonner.

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That’s it for today Peeps! Onto more sewing and writing here! Enjoy your day!! (don’t forget I am still taking comments on this post for a little prize through this coming weekend)

Jaybird Sew Along and Giveaway!

April 28th, 2014

Jaybird 6

I stopped by to visit with my friends Sara and Julie the other day (check all of the other visits out too, Sara is hosting a bunch of reviews on Julie’s patterns and rulers)......okay Virtually stopped by, whatever…..that’s where I talked about the above runners made with Julie’s Seaside pattern. But today here is where I am going to give one of them away…..Just the top, you will have to quilt it yourself….but at least the piecing is all done.

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I also wanted to show you all of these little bags I made with a lot of the Jelly Roll leftovers. I can’t believe how much fabric was in that Jelly Roll!!

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All of the fabric in these projects were from one yard a jelly roll of  Joanna’s new line Mirabelle  (with the exception of that one fleur de lis stripe cream and tan print in the lining of that middle bag [and a few more]. That print is an older Michael Miller print). I am making a TON of these bags that will hopefully be filled with goodies from my many industry friends for giving away at Quilt Market and Quilters’ Affair coming soon.

So back to the giveaway.  Since this line reminds me so much of Peach Cobbler, leave a comment about your favorite fruit or fruit concoction or any story regarding fruit. I will draw a name sometime this weekend and send the winner one of the runner tops above. As I mentioned above the winner will have to quilt and bind it, but the piecing is all done for you.

And I have to get back to sewing and writing. I am almost caught up on my sewing, but my writing is SOOOO far behind. (and those of you waiting for the Quilters’ Affair patterns that I was going to have done months ago, I am eternally grateful for your patience. I am getting close to having them ready, but they are still not quite there….you are awesome for being so graciously waiting for them!)  (And this simple little post took freaking forever to get done…programs acting up etc…I need a faster computer…or I need to clean this one out {that is probably very true!})

Not So Secret……

March 29th, 2014

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So my dear friend Victoria Findlay-Wolfe came out with this line of fabric that came out last fall, so hopefully you can still find some.

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Scrumptious, isn’t it? Lots of layers, my favorite thing in prints. The hand of the fabric is nice to work with too.

So to show off how the prints play nice with each other, I did what any normal and sane quilter would do. I cut up those big chunks of fabric into smaller chunks of fabric and sewed them back together again with some “solids” from the Blue Nickel stockpile stash. More Maple Leaf blocks of course.

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That’s it for today.  I have more to catch up on, so the next few posts may be short but sweet, and of course, I will have pix to make your day brighter.

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the hand embroidered haven….

March 28th, 2014

Have you heard of Megan Frock? By now, I bet more of you have, but just in case you haven’t I want to share with you something wonderful Megan worked on for quite awhile under the radar, and brought to the light of day last summer or fall I think. (or heaven help me if I forgot,  last spring??)

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Megan sent me her wonderful book late last year….so bad of me, I don’t remember when….I loved it from the start, but like many, many things it fell behind the wake of my other adventures….which is no indication of it’s greatness to be sure.

I first met Megan when she was helping out our mutual friend Tula Pink at one Market. I barely spoke to her at the first one, I think I was crazy busy, and I think Megan was a bit overwhelmed by the amazingness of the whole event.  But at the last few Markets, I have had the opportunity to chat with Megan, and I tell you that each conversation is a treat in true Southern charm. Her accent is just delightful and her love of the craft it just as sweet.

the hand embroidered haven is Megan’s first book (I am sure she will have more!) and it is chock full of some great sewing projects with an emphasis on embroidery as a featured part of each project.

I truly love these zoomorphic framed projects below:

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I can particularly relate to the Rabbit Ears on the TV…..had those all of the time growing up…We could only get three stations, sometimes we were lucky enough to get the fourth station from the border of Washington State and Canada.

And Megan also has some great instructions for stitches…including some I had never heard of but sound compelling. Like the Couched Filling Stitch.

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And Twilling…I am sure I have seen this, but never knew what it was called. Love the full texture it brings to the needlework.

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But as you know already, I rarely get to carving out the time to embroider. So of course my first loves in her book were the quilts  and these two are my favorites!

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So that’s it for today. If you don’t already have Megan’s book, go right out and get it. You’ll be happy you did!

Oh, and the fabric behind all of these shots? Beauty Queen from Jennifer Paganelli for Free Spirit. New this Spring. Look for it, You’ll love it!

#NQAQB — March!

March 24th, 2014

NoGirlsAllowed

So we are in the March segment of the by now completely famous #NGAQB, the man cave version of the traditional quilting bee. Our Mr. March is Andrew Youngman from New York state.  Andrew is our OTHER Andrew.  Yeah, we had 13 guys…..and TWO of them are Andrew…not Andy or Drew …..both are Andrew….so it was kind of confusing for me for awhile there. I seemed to get the right blocks to the right Andrew though (Andrew #1 was Mr. February) !!

So Mr. March Andrew wanted us all to make this block with colors inspired from this photo:

Andrews inspiration photo

These are what I came up with:

NGAQB March block 1

 

NGAQB March block 2

Now the first one is my third one actually because I discovered that with this much piecing, I really needed to be using a scant 1/4” seam.  Sounds elementary,  but the following picture shows why it was necessary.

NGAQB fail

My first block ended up being 12 1/4”  not 12 1/2” unfinished.  That was not going to work in the sharing type situation that we had going on.  So I re-did it. And my extra block will end up going in the back of some quilt down the road.

We also decided early on to have each one of the #NGAQB members talk about themselves in each blog post. So here are Andrew’s words about himself and his life in the Quilt-Universe:

I’m the other Andrew, or Mr. March. In a brief introduction about me, I would tell you that I sent to art school and concentrated in photography. I now work in healthcare, specifically as an aide in Intensive Care and Cardiac Services.


Quilting was introduced to me by my mother a couple of years ago when I asked her to teach me, knowing she wanted to get back into it. I made one small table runner and one lap quilt then put my machine away, only to pick it up again 6 months or so ago.


Thanks to social media, specifically Instagram, I started noticing more and more male crafters and quilters, and started to follow them and begin a conversation about an all-male quilt bee. And here we are.


I chose the Inverted Star block (available on craftsy.com) because I haven’t yet worked with half-square triangles and wanted the challenge. And I asked for the color inspiration to come from a photograph I took on my last trip with my husband to Key West. We’ve been there twice in the last year and love it. I asked for the #NGAQB men to help me commemorate this new favorite place of mine with these blocks.


To my Brothers in the #NGAQB:


Thanks you all for the stunning blocks that I’ve already either received or seen online. The work you each produce is amazing and I’m glad to be a growing amateur in such an elite group of fun and talented craftsman!


Please note I’ve updated my Instragram handle: It’s now TESTOSTERSEWN


So those are Andrew’s words about himself so you can know him a little better. Mr. April is a good friend of mine from way back and you will be thrilled to see the block he picked out. I know I am. It is one I have wanted to do for myself for quite sometime, but never found the opportunity to make…..until now!


Later Peeps, Plenty to do around here…...The Studio has many things that need doing, and now Spring has come to the Pacific Northwest, so I am getting the call of the wild (yard)  for some taming down again.


 

Aurifil Designer of the Month — Amy Gibson

February 21st, 2014

And it’s time again for the 2014 Aurifil Designer of the Month…..actually,  it’s past time, but I am getting the word out before the month is over, so for me, that’s a win!

2014 Amy Gibson Feb Aurifil designer button

February’s featured designer is Amy Gibson of Stichery Dickory Dock.  Read all about Amy in Pat Sloan’s interview with her here.


Click on Amy’s Mother’s Day block below for the instructions.


Mother's Day 1 Feb aurifil DOM


And here is my version of Amy’s block. Again I used the Liberty prints I have been hoarding saving and some Wish Voile from Valori’s past line with Free Spirit. And yes, I used one of the Liberty prints for part of the background as well.


liberty February Aurifil BOM


So if you don’t know the deal with the Aurifil DOM program here it is… Make the above block, take a picture of it, post it here on Flickr and then you could win a big box of Aurifil thread ($120 value!). Pretty easy, huh!?


and I think I missed this last month, but I got it tossed on here today…Each Month Natalia Bonner will share a little tip on Machine Quilting. So here is Tip #2… I am still hiring out my quilting mostly, so I dont’ know much about the actual quilting proces….not even sure if I “like” that part of it….so this tip is for all of you who do that part yourself…..(I am working on some ideas on how to get some of it done here myself. I don’t really have room or funds for a long arm yet, so I am thinking about getting a table top machine to for the purpose.)


2014 aurifi feb machine quilting tip button


 

Here’s the list of ALL of the 2014 Aurifil Designers of the Month….make sure to stop and say hi on their blogs!

Jan – Brigitte Heitland http://www.farbstoff-bridge.blogspot.com/

Feb – Amy Gibson http://www.stitcherydickorydock.com/

Mar – Emily Herrick http://crazyoldladiesquilts.blogspot.com/

Apr – Angela Yosten http://blog.angelayosten.com/

May – Amy Smart http://www.diaryofaquilter.com/

June – Heidi Pridemore http://heidipridemore.blogspot.com/

Jul – Camille Roskelley http://camilleroskelley.typepad.com/

Aug – Michele Foster   http://quiltinggallery.com/blog-posts/

Sept – Pat Wys http://www.silverthimblequilt.com/blog/

Oct -Jane Davidson http://quiltjane.blogspot.com/

Nov – Scott Hansen   http://bluenickelstudios.com/    Hey you’re here already! Hi!!

Dec – Carrie Nelson http://lavieenrosie.typepad.com/

Monthly Machine Quilting Tip – Natalia Bonner http://www.pieceandquilt.com/
Host – Pat Sloan http://blog.patsloan.com

So that’s it for today. I have pretty much booked the rest of my projects sewing and writing wise until Market now. I am pretty sure I have 3 quilts to make for fabric companies, FOUR of those patterns to write up for my Quilters Affair classes PRONTO! ( I was planning on having them done by February 1st…..and now I am looking at March 15th …and still not sure I get them all done by then!!.....good thing QA isn’t until July!! sorry future students for the wait!!) (Oh, and there is still some room left in my Monday and Friday classes there! Sign up while there’s still room!)

 

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