Thursday, May 31, 2012

Liberty of London Quilting Cottons

Alright, one last Market-y post.  This was my favorite fabric-geek news out of Spring Quilt Market so I decided to give it a post all its own.  Liberty of London has created it's first collection of quilter's cottons. 
Previously, Liberty has been famous for their Tana Lawns, which while they were absolutely amazing (I petted some once at Purl Soho -that's as close as I've come) they were also rather pricey. (Around $40 a yard in the US.) Now there will be Liberty prints at more affordable prices at local quilt shops here in the US. (Affordable relatively speaking. They won't be cheap, but compared to $40 a yard, it will be a fraction of that.)
I lived in London as a student (lo these 20 years ago) and we LOVED to walk through the iconic tudor-style Liberty department store. Back then I used to love to scope out the clothing - especially the amazing (and expensive!) wedding dresses.  If I had the chance to go now: I would scope out the fabric. Obviously.
Fortunately for all of you other fabric nerds out there, we don't have to wait to get to Liberty of London itself to be able to play with their gorgeous prints! They should be arriving in shops this fall, in the US and elsewhere. UK even sooner.
Now I need to bust some serious stash to make room for the influx.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Simply Color Ombre Quilts

Now that Market is over I can share a few other projects I was working on beforehand. I was given the chance to create a trio of quilts with some of Vanessa's ombre fabric from her new collection, Simply Color.
Each of these quilts was made from just over a yard and a half of continuous yardage, cut into 5" squares.  The different shades of the ombre fabric create different colored blocks and are then resewn into a baby quilt. The quilting was done by Monica Steelman.
 I made quilts in three different colors to hang in Vanessa's both at Market. Ta-da!
Vanessa's whole booth was so cheerful and colorful. I love that Bloom applique flower quilt behind her, also made with the ombre fabrics.
And here are some of the other coordinating prints. 
This collection will be available in shops in October.

Finally, many thanks to all those who entered the Market Loot giveaway last week. The first thing I could think of was what my brother used to say when he was 10-yrs-old: "Holy Schnikes!" The winner has been announced and emailed. I wish I had loot to share with all of you!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Kansas City Quilt Market 2012 part 2

Michael Miller, Cotton Couture
We now return to the continuing saga of Kansas City Quilt Market 2012: Part Deux.  
Well, I'm sure you can guess who was one of my favorite people to find at Quilt Market: Sandy Klop. There are other big name designers at Market that people swarm around: me? I love Sandy.  But you knew that already. (I'm trying really hard not to scare her though, so I didn't stalk her the whole time.  Even though I was tempted.) I've been a huge fan of her fabric and colors and quilts for years, but she is just an all-around delightful person as well. 
Some other parts of the Moda area (clockwise): Sweetwater's new collection, Mama Said Sew: great. Bonnie and Camille's latest collection, Marmalade. Love it. It's so fun to punch up their aqua, red, and pink with a little bit of yellow and orange. Liesel Gibson of Oliver + S is so lovely in every sense.  One of my favorite people to talk to. She has a new collection called The Ladies Stitching Club as well as introducing The Straight Stitch Society. Cutest things. Read their Manifesto, it's awesome. Also the incredibly talented Jan Figuroa.  Her booth was amazing, as always.
A few other booths for Moda. I always love the details in the Basic Grey booth. Love the color spectrum buttons!  A few new designers for Moda this year: Zen Chic - the cutest couple from Germany. Their booth was one of my favorites at Market last year. Also Pat Sloan's new collection for Moda, Eat Your Fruits and Vegetables. So bright and cheery!  I'm kicking myself that I don't have more pictures of the Moda area.  But if you want to see more, and actually feel like you are there, visit the Moda channel on YouTube for tours of all the booths as well as interviews with the designers.  
The Free Spirit/Westminster fabrics area was also visually stunning. Above left is Anna Maria Horner's booth - I loved the butterfly shaped fabric swatches and on the right is Tula Pink's booth.
My favorite Free Spirit booth belonged to Denyse Schmidt. (Shocker, right?)  Someone told me that this was Denyse's first booth at Quilt Market. Again it was so much fun to see her quilts in person and preview her new collection, Chicopee. (More bias plaids! I love those.)  I was also able to have her sign my copy of her book, Modern Quilts, Traditional Inspiration. Yes, I was giddy. 
I always love the Robert Kaufman/Kona fabrics booths. They are so full of color!  They have a new collection of cheater modern quilt blocks - so brilliant! - on the bottom right. Those aren't pieced blocks. Awesome, right? The Kona booth was full of amazing quilts featured in the We Love Colorbook, including the amazing quilt on the left made by Jennifer Sampou. 
 Another favorite booth was the Art Gallery booth. Gorgeous! Don't you love the padded fabric color tiles on the wall? I love the color of Art Gallery. In fact, the only fabric bundle I brought home is one of their bundles of Oval Elements. SO gorgeous and the fabric feels like silk.
More color.  Bright color collection seemed so hot this year. (going clockwise) Above left is Thomas Knauer with a quilt he made using his new collection Savannah Bop, inspired by his daughter. SO sweet. Incredible applique patterns by Don't Look Now. Cute Monica (aka Happy Zombie) with her latest collection for Lecien, Winterkist.  And cute new Pam Kitty Morning collection for Lakehouse. (The quilt with the houses was made by Nanette. I can't take any credit for making something so wonderful, but I did get to personally schlep that quilt to market in my own suitcase, for Pam's booth. It was tough, but someone had to do it.)
Adorable Melody Miller, of Ruby Star fame, in her very retro-inspired booth. I love the Pyrex, vintage sewing machine and even vintage Little People! The Seven Islands Fabric booth, home to Echino and Kokka fabrics is always one of my favorites. I love their whimsical collections.
Other new and upcoming pattern designers (clockwise): Carolyn Friedlander. Amazingly gorgeous modern quilts. Very sweet Shea Henderson, local KC girl with her first booth at market as well. Natalie's Beyond the Reef booth was right across from the Geared for Guys booth where I helped, so we got to visit a lot. Natalie and I were both part of Bee Beautiful a couple of years ago- and this was the first time we met in real life! Allison of Cluck Cluck Sew: her second booth. Her patterns are some of my favorites.
Finally, some other fun details of Quilt Market. The empty bobbin earrings worn by the very fun Marmalade Fabrics girls. Also, an amazing zipper necklace.  Where will people appreciate these kinds of things more than in a giant convention center full of other sew-y people? And finally, for my boys. Darth and Chewbacca. Because nothing says "quilting" quite like Darth Vadar.

And there we go. Congratulations for hanging in there to the end of this word-heavy, picture-even-heavier, blog post. My brain is still mushy from trying to coherently summarize. I have a couple more small posts about other Market details and creations, but I'll save those for next week and give us both sometime to recover.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Kansas City Quilt Market part 1

Wow. Where to even start. I have to admit, I've felt completely daunted by the task of sorting pictures and trying to organize a succinct Quilt Market experience post.  It's about as overwhelming as the vastness of Market itself. Booth after booth of inspiring fabric, color, patterns and people. It's truly huge. I've tried to condense my thoughts and my pictures, but even so, I'm going to have to do a Part 1 and Part 2.

The first day of the Market experience, before the trade show portion, is a series of mini-classes and lectures called School House.  For one of the sessions I was able to listen to Denyse Schmidt talk about her new book Modern Quilts, Traditional Inspiration(above).  For those unfamiliar with Denyse, she is an icon and a major influence on the modern quilting movement as well as both pattern designer and fabric designer.  Her quilts are a wonderful mix of traditional with a twist and her sense of color is incredible.  Should I gush some more? It was truly a 'pinch-me' moment to listen to her speak and see her quilts up close. I did not dare to touch them for fear of my sweaty palms doing irreparable damage.
Another real treat was to hear Amanda Jean Nyberg and Cheryl Arkison share quilts from and talk about their beautiful new book, Sunday Morning Quilts. Both of them were inspiring. Amanda Jean's blog, Crazy Mom Quilts, was one of the first quilting blogs I ever read: "You mean there are women my age who like to make quilts and share pictures of them on the internet?!" She has been a perennial favorite ever since.
A few other snippets of School House: Emily Herrick sharing her new Shore Thing collection, Sarah Jane sharing Out to Sea, hilarious Jana sharing her first collection as fabric designer, Delicious Wishes, and the ever-energetic, Amanda Herring talking about Apple of my Eye.  (I was so excited that she handed out apples in her class because I was starving!) Pardon the blurry pictures. Inside lighting + distance = crappy shots.

My main reason for actually going to Market this year was to help my friend Emily man her Geared for Guys both.  Emily had not one, but two booths, this market. One for her new fabric collection for Michael Miller, Shore Thing and a separate one for her new book, Geared for Guys.  It's hard to be in two places at once. 

Here she is in her Shore Thing booth with her cute Dad. Don't you love his shirt made out of the sailboat fabric from her collection?  I also got to piece one of her new quilts (the one with the circles hanging over the blue shutter) and bind a couple others. (Including one on the airplane ride to KC.)  It was very fun to get a sneak peak of this new collection.
I was excited that I was able to get out and roam for a bit as well! Next door, also in the Michael Miller area, was Violet Craft and her newest collection, Madrona Road. SO. Cute.
And next door yet again, Sarah Jane's newest collection, Out to Sea. Just like last year with her Children at Play collection, she's created a boy color palette and a girl color palette, all with a nautical twist, including pirates, mermaids and narwhals
Above is Sarah with her awesome husband Ken who disassembled their old backyard fence to build the weathered wood wall on the left and crates on the right. Talk about an great team! I was lucky enough to do a little bit of sewing for Sarah's booth again this year. I did the piecing around the Ship stitchery (hanging above the adorable Narwhal head).
I also created this quilt, designed with Sarah Jane, to go with her map and ship panels.  There will be a free PDF pattern for this quilt when the fabric is released later this summer.
Another aspect of the Michael Miller area that I loved, is their color inspiration wall. SO many pretty pictures to look at!
Riley Blake has some beautiful new collections. Above left (going clockwise) is Amanda's Apple of my Eye, new collection The Simple Life, Lori Holt's Millie's Closet, and new designer, Carina Gardner.
Also at Riley Blake, the very sweet Shari of Doohikey Designs.  I love the zigzags in her new collection, Dress Up Days. Shari is about as sweet and genuine a person as you can find.
There were lots of newer fabric companies represented with some gorgeous new designs such as Dear Stella.  I especially love their Town and Country line - more London fabric! 
I also love the fresh collections from Birch Fabrics. SO adorable. It was one of my favorite discoveries at Market last year and the love continues to grow. 
Monaluna fabric is another new, adorable organic fabric collection. 
The designs are so fresh and cute.
And a final new and upcoming player in the organic fabric market is Cloud 9 Fabrics

And so we come to the conclusion of Part 1. My brain needs a rest. Your's probably does too. I'll be back with Part 2 later this weekend. Stay tuned...

Monday, May 21, 2012

Quilt Market Loot - Giveaway!

In honor of Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day, I am beyond excited to share a little bit of my Quilt Market loot with a lucky winner! This haul includes:
  • a Liberty corduroy market bag (did you know Liberty of London is coming out with a collection of cottons prints. Seriously. My favorite fabric-geek-news out of Market.)
  • The first issue of Fons and Porter's new modern quilting magazine, Quilty
  • Millie's Market Bag pattern by Izzy and Ivy
  • Collection of buttons from Robert Kaufman and the We Love Color book by Stash books
  • a collection of 4 mini-charm packs (2.5") including newly announced, not yet released fabric collections:

The mini-charm-packs include Kona's newest collection of solids, and for Moda: Eat Your Fruits and Veggies by Pat Sloan, Simply Color by Vanessa Christenson, and Little Black Dress by Basic Grey.

To enter leave a comment on this post. One per person. If you are a no-reply blogger, make sure there is a way for me to contact you. This giveaway is open to international entries. Giveaway closes May 25. GIVEAWAY CLOSED. 

Winner:  hollymade said...
Great giveaway, love the little mini charm packs!
May 22, 2012 8:46 AM

If you're new, thanks so much for visiting! I hope you'll stop by again.  If you've ever wanted to start a quilt, I have a whole series of beginning tutorials - everything from supplies, to choosing fabrics, to piecing, quilting and binding!  One warning: quilting is highly addictive.  Just don't want anyone coming back later and telling me that I didn't warn them.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Spring Quilt Market 2012

I just returned from International Quilt Market - the fabric industry's spring trade show. This was my second opportunity to attend Market (last year was my first in my home town, Salt Lake City.) This year it was held in Kansas City.  (Half the weekend I had the song, "Everything's Up To Date in Kansas City" running through my head. Name that musical!)

It was a weekend full of seeing lots gorgeous eye candy as well as talented, inspiring people. I woke up at an unearthly hour to fly home this morning, so I'm going to share my pictures and insights later this week when I've got my brain back to a coherent state. But come back tomorrow - I'm going to have a Market Loot Giveaway for SMS Giveaway Day!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Summer Go-Anywhere Bag

I was excited when Jen from Ellison Lane Quilts asked me to share a new project to inspire some summer-time sewing.  I've wanted to make a new bag for myself forever, and this was the perfect opportunity to try something new. 
For this bag, I chose Anna's Go Anywhere Bag pattern. I recently given a charm pack of Lotta Jansdotter's new prints from her Bella collection by the nice people at Windham Fabrics. The colors screamed summer to me, so I decided to try piecing a portion of the bag using them coupled with a few other fabrics from the stash. 
To make the pieced exterior pockets, I sewed the charm squares together to make a panel slightly larger than the pocket lining. 
Then, to give the bag some extra weight and body, I quilted the pieced panels onto some lightweight batting. (I did not put a backing fabric behind the batting.) From there I cut out my front and back pocket pieces from the quilted panels and followed the rest of the pattern instructions.
For the body of my bag I used a heavier linen-type fabric I got a while ago at Ikea. (I would love to find some more of that.) The lining is from Denyse Schmidt's Aunt Edna collection at JoAnn. It was just the right chartreuse to go with the Bella collection. I added a covered button to hold the back pocket closed.  Ta-dah! I'm excited to carry my new summer bag around Quilt Market this weekend!
Ellison Lane Quilts
To see lots of other summer sewing inspiration, visit these blogs:
May 9: Sew Crafty Jess 

And then don't forget to enter your own projects in the contests at Ellison Lane Quilts June 10-17. There will be fabulous prizes! Go here for all the details!