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Around the World Blog Hop

Hello friends! I was recently invited by Jen Kingwell to participate in an Around the World Blog hop. After admiring her style and designs for a few years, I feel SO LUCKY that I got to meet Jen in person this year. You can read Jen’s post here.

About a year ago I was invited to teach at the Fat Quarterly retreat in London this past summer. When the list of other teachers came out I literally shrieked out loud when I saw that Jen would be one of them. Getting to take a class from her was a something on my dream-bucket-list.

Getting to know Jen in person was such a treat! She is SO real and genuine and lovely.

Just act natural.

Now a little bit about moi. 

I learned to quilt from my mom when I was young. My mom was always a sewer and knitter growing up. In the mid-80’s she took her first quilt class and came home and taught me to hand piece. These are my first quilt blocks. I’m still kind of amazed that they’re around. Because who’d a thought where this quilting thing would take me.

I made a few more quilt blocks using that pattern and later my mom took one of them and designed and made a whole quilt with them and quilted it by hand. This quilt was on my bed for years!

It wasn’t until I had my first baby almost 16 (gulp) years ago that I started to really make finished quilts. I was craving a creative outlet and this was so perfet. I haven’t looked back since. 

I think my favorite part of the quilt-making-process is designing the quilt and choosing the fabrics. Sometimes it’s finding the design and then finding the fabrics I want to work with, but most of the time it’s the other way around. Usually its the pile of fabric that inspires me to create or find just the right design to fit the fabric. I guess fabric just inspires me! Whenever I feel my quilting ‘mo-jo’ start to sag, I go clean out my fabric. I am quickly restored and ready to start a new project.

Don’t worry. It doesn’t usually look this clean.

My sewing space is right off the kitchen – we converted our never-used dining room into a place where I can sew not far from the action of the house. (I have four kids, and I need to know what’s going on…) I have a spot in my basement where I keep all of my fabric, books, junk, etc. but I rarely sew down there because it’s just too far away. I try to contain the mess it the basement still, but having a place to leave my sewing set up and still be in the heart of the action has been amazing. And as a bonus, the room has two windows facing south and west for the best light in the whole house!

In 2003 I started working part time in a local quilt shop which I LOVED. I only worked for a few hours on Saturdays and it was my weekly escape where I could talk to other quilters, pet the fabric, and earn a little bit of cash to support my quilting habit. While there I also started designing quilt patterns to make samples for the shop.

Modern Maples quilt here

In 2008 I first discovered blogs in general and shortly after that, discovered blogs where people showed their quilting projects. I felt like I’d found a new slew of best friends! Especially finding people around my age who shared the same love for fabric and cutting it up and sewing it back together.

Soon after that, I decided I wanted to share some of my own projects and started writing this blog. Six years and over 1,000 posts later (crazy!) I’m still at it. When I started writing this blog I never would have dreamed of the places it would take me – like teaching in London last summer. The best part of the experience has been meeting sewists and quilters from around the world who have become real life friends. Amazing.

 

This past April my first book, Fabulously Fast Quilts, came out. The first time someone asked me if I’d ever thought of writing a book was 3 1/2 years ago. And I was floored by the idea. It took me another year to think about the idea and decide if I was really confident enough to do it. And then it took another year of hard work to write 12 new patterns and produce the quilts to go with them. Then another year of waiting while the publisher did their magic. April of 2014 seemed so far away. And now it’s come. Wow – it’s still a little bit surreal. I think that maybe someday I’ll write another book, but nothing in the works at the moment. Too much real life to deal with right now.

I was born and grew up in Salt Lake City, Utah and now live with my husband and four kids about 30 miles south of the city. We live in a pretty spot that is surrounded by mountains and still has some farms and open areas with a little town that still has an old Main Street with the library and the post office on it. But there’s also a Target and a Costco not far away so it’s a winning combination. 🙂 We love to travel – whether it’s close to home like the red rocks of southern Utah – or farther afield like our trip to England this summer.

So there you go. More about me than you probably ever cared to know. 🙂

 

Let me introduce two more bloggers and talented quilt designers that I’m tagging and who I feel lucky enough to call friends. Watch for their posts in upcoming weeks:

Sharon McConnell of Color Girl Quilts

I love every aspect of making a quilt, from choosing fabrics to designing a pattern, to the sewing. It’s fun to mix up lots of different prints, and I am not shy about using bright color. I like a challenge, so you often find me making curvy quilts, paper piecing, hexagons…whatever I can dream up!

 
 
Amber Johnson of A Little Bit Biased

I was born in California, raised in Washington state and have lived in Utah ever since I met and married my husband.  We love it here!

I have two children (a boy and a girl) and a cute little dog named Molly 🙂  

My two favorite hobbies are being a soccer mom and quilting.

I think the title of my new book, Vintage Vibe: Traditional Quilts, Fresh Fabrics captures my style perfectly.

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15 Comments

  • Reply
    ~Diana
    December 15, 2014 at 11:41 pm

    "Petting the fabric…" so totally me! Love the pink quilt your mom made and yours are so fun. Your "glamour shots" are fun~nice to be able to laugh at ourselves 🙂 Nice to get to know you a little better~

  • Reply
    diane
    December 16, 2014 at 12:37 am

    Amy I'm so glad I have met you and I learn so much from reading your blog. Thank you for sharing your creativity and also little bits of your person life , travels and glorious outlook on our world. You are a very special human being

  • Reply
    Sigi G
    December 16, 2014 at 6:57 am

    I so enjoyed this recap and all the pictures. Some of your comments are so identical to my own that it was really uncanny. People nod their heads out of politeness when I try to explain the joy I experience just being in my sewing room, but they don't understand. It just felt so good to know – I'm not alone out there. Thank you Amy! Though I never hand sewed a block – my oldest daughter

  • Reply
    lifesloosethreads
    December 16, 2014 at 7:30 am

    Very much enjoyed getting to know you! It's interesting and awesome where life has taken you! My sewing room is a converted bedroom (my engineering husband took out a built-in bookcase off the family room) that he made opened up into the family room. I can also be close to the action and pop into my sewing/writing room (yes … I also write a humorous column for a local newspaper) any hour

  • Reply
    dolores
    December 16, 2014 at 9:46 am

    Yo chica….yep…I&#39;m a lucky one to have you as a real life buddy and it was so much fun at the FQ Retreat with the lovely Ms Kingwell…you two were a hoot!;)<br /><br />I have a quilt top half way sewn up from your book but of course since I am going to keep it I had to put it aside til the new year….but it&#39;s first on the list!;)<br /><br />Hugs to you and the fam!<br />xoxo

  • Reply
    Margo Yang
    December 16, 2014 at 10:08 am

    I&#39;ve long been an admirer of your works before I found your blog. Since then I&#39;ve enjoyed reading about you, your beautiful quilts and your darling family. It seems as if I&#39;ve known you for a long time. I, too, love to pet fabric! Thanks for the inspirations, Amy. It&#39;s amazing to see how your quilting journey have taken you. Keep up the good work.

  • Reply
    Fabric Fanatic
    December 16, 2014 at 11:03 am

    Amy thanks so much for this particular post which really gives us insight into your journey as a quilt artist. I love reading about you and your family. My son and family live in Holladay and while I&#39;ve only been to Utah briefly, I feel like he&#39;s living in a wonderful place because there are so many quilters there. lol.<br />

  • Reply
    Irelle
    December 16, 2014 at 11:36 am

    Nice to know a little more about you. Congrats on all you have accomplished in this wonderful world of quilting. And thanks for the blog about Sarah teaching elders to quilt in NY – I sent her a bunch of fat quarters today 🙂 Keep up the good work!

  • Reply
    OPQuilt
    December 16, 2014 at 2:03 pm

    This post is very fun to read, and really describes the you that comes through in your writing and IG-ing. So glad you shared your life and times with us, and all those beautiful quilts! (I, too, love Jenn Kingwell quilts!)<br /><br />Elizabeth

  • Reply
    LynCC
    December 16, 2014 at 2:44 pm

    This was a really fun read, Amy. 🙂 I love watching your blog, and your style is fun!

  • Reply
    Karen
    December 16, 2014 at 7:49 pm

    Pretty seductive look with that pile of quilts, Amy! 🙂 ( I suspect that this is just a small fraction of the quilts you&#39;ve made in all these years) . Honestly, you are my go-to teacher and inspiration source as I begin quilting at 66. Merry Christmas to you and your family! (And as a former middle school teacher, good for you for keeping an eye on things!)

  • Reply
    Ginny
    December 17, 2014 at 5:03 am

    Great post Amy, so nice to get to know you a bit better, and read about your life and quilting journey! Love your blog and a glimpse into your world.

  • Reply
    Katy Cameron
    December 17, 2014 at 2:51 pm

    It&#39;s great the places that quilting takes you, and you&#39;ve deserved all the wonderful places it&#39;s taken you :o)

  • Reply
    Anne
    December 17, 2014 at 10:51 pm

    I love these trip around the world posts because it&#39;s nice to learn more about the blogs I follow like yours and even find new ones. Your work is inspiring.

  • Reply
    Amber Johnson
    December 18, 2014 at 3:19 pm

    It was fun to get to know you more Amy! I admire you so much – your scrappy quilting style, how your business and blog have taken off, and most of all how genuine and sweet you are in real life :)<br /><br />Thanks for tagging me in the Around the World Blog Tour. I look forward to posting soon and reading more about other bloggers!<br /><br />Merry Christmas!<br />Amber

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