Monday, July 21, 2014

Quilt Inspirations

I feel as though I've been a bit out of touch with my blog and my quilting. I had no idea that this five week photography class, and the homework would be so time-consuming. Class is twice a week, four hours a day, with mega homework, and of course, practicing my new skills, so my photos will be more blogworthy. That is the reason I took this class in the first place.

On an amazingly, positive note, I have been challenged on many new levels, and feel energized. I'm surprised at how much crossover there is between quilting and photography, especially when it comes to vocabulary, composition, color and value considerations, and use of negative space, which is so much apart of modern quilting and more.

After these few tough years of orthopedic surgeries, and losing my mom six months ago, I am finally smiling and laughing again. I still miss my mom a lot, but I know how much she believed in education for life, and is happy that my journey is taking this turn. And, I know it would make her very happy, that I am coming out of the other side of grief in a healthy way.

Class ends on July 30, and I will be happy and sad. I need to get back to blogging, quilting, sewing, thinking about design and more. I will not photo and share the state of our home. (Too embarrassing). The dining room table is covered with paperwork. The computer is on one side, and on the other there is the sewing machine, cutting mat, quilt blocks in ziplock bags in various states of progress. I think this verbal picture is enough for the blog.

I am going to miss how much fun I am having, my classmates who are great critquers and an outstanding professor. This is the first class I've taken besides quilting, that has been worth it and so much fun.

I'm going to share a photo of one of my assignments; arranged composition using the quilt I'm almost finished hand quilting,with some notions. 




I've learned a lot about inspiration during this journey. And, I'm excited to write about that.


Happy Quilting, and I hope everyone is enjoy their summer.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Congratulations to Lawana Whaley!!

You are the lucky winner of a free gift certificate to Amanda Murphy's new Craftsy Class; 20 Fresh Applique Techiniques. Please e-mail your e-mail address to acbeier71@gmail.com so we can send you the link.

Enjoy your class!!

Have a great weekend, and Happy Quilting!!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Interview with Amanda Murphy

I am really excited to share this interview I had with Amanda Murphy. 

About six months ago I reviewed her book Color Essentials. Amanda is also the author of Modern Holiday: Deck the Halls with 18 Sewing Projects Quilts, Stockings, Decorations & More.





Thank you for taking the time to tell us about yourself and your sewing and quilting career.


1.    Tell us about your family, kiddos, husband, pets.
 
I live with my husband and two kids in North Carolina. 
 

2.    I read that you started quilting at an early age.
Well, I started sewing at an early age, but I didnt start quilting until    after my kids were born - about a dozen years ago.


3.   Tell us the story of how did you get started? Did someone influence you?  What was the tween Amanda like?
As a child my two favorite subjects were art and math, so I guess the fact that I like quilting and fabric design is no big surprise!  I also always loved history - decorative arts museum are my favorite.


4.   Where did you grow up? Where did you attend college, and did your major in fine arts help you with your quilting career ?
I grew up in Virginia and attended college at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh, PA.  I was actually an industrial design major but ended up working in print multimedia.  That experience has definitely helped me in terms of being able to keep up a website, put design patterns, etc.


5.   What inspired you to write Modern Holiday and Color Essentials? Are there any other books on the horizon?
Modern Holiday was inspired in part by all those gorgeous holiday fabrics that are now available!  I wanted to do a holiday book that was very graphic in nature - bold and fun.   

    Color Essentials is reflective of the work I did with color in college and also the incredible range of colors in the Kona cotton line. It walks the line between art and quilting for me. (And there are more projects on the horizon, but I cant talk about them yet.)


6.   Tell us about your relationship with Craftsy. How did it begin?
Craftsy originally recruited me at Market to teach classes in machine embroidery.  Now I also teach an appliqué class!


7.  Tell us about your classes with Craftsy, in particular your newest one.
I have two classes in the machine embroidery category - Elegant     Machine Embroidered Bags and Elegant Machine Embroidered Quilts.  It is so fun to pick threads to match quilting fabrics to make something really unique.
 
My 20 Fresh Appliqué Techniques is just that!  I teach your a variety of techniques that will really make your machine appliqué sing!  


 


Some are traditional and some are more unusual.  We make 4 small projects - all with a modern flair.  And we learn to embellish with thread and stitches beautifully!







  

8.   Are appliqué and embroidery your favorite sewing and surface techniques and what draws you to them?
They are some of my favorite techniques - yes.  I tend to love whatever I am working on at the moment!  Im fortunate to work in such a creative industry.


 9. Please show and tell us about your favorite project to date? 
My favorite project to date is my most recent quilt, Flower Power!  It uses a lot of the stitches and techniques I teach in my Craftsy class.  (A coordinating pillow is part of the class.)






10. How did you begin your business Amanda Murphy Design, and how did you grow it?

    I began by sending some design ideas to fabric companies and then started designing patterns. The books, the classes, and my relationship with BERNINA followed.

Modern Lace Fabric - Cool Tones Designed By Amanda Murphy                              


Modern Lace Fabric - Warm Tones Designed By Amanda Murphy





11.What do you see as emerging trends in fabric and quilting in the next 1-2 years?
I see a merging of the modern and traditional movements.  The modern aesthetic is definitely having an influence in the traditional quilting world and the techniques familiar to traditional quilters are seeping into the modern movement.  Also, the embracing of technology by the quilting community is bound to continue and it will be interesting to see where it leads.


Thank you so much for spending this time with us.

Thanks for having me.

Amanda has generously offered a give-a-way; a free link to her recent Craftsy class - 20 Fresh Applique Techniques.  In order to enter, please leave a comment in my comment box telling us what your favorite pattern line is
using this link; http://amandamurphydesign.bigcartel.com

I will announce the winner on this blog on Friday, July 18 in the morning, EST. Please be sure to leave me your e-mail address so we can get in touch with the winner. Good luck!!

On Another note, Plum & June's New Quilter's Blog Hop is containing. I participated and posted on June 3rd. There are many more great quilt bloggers to meet, so please click on the Plum & June Button on my sidebar.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

New Fabric from The Fat Quarter Shop

Quilters love when a squishy package arrives in the mailbox or comes to the door, because it means NEW FABRIC.

I ordered a fat quarter bundle from the Fat Quarter Shop. When I saw it online, I saw the hydrangeas and the colors, and I knew.....
these fabrics have a future in one of my quilts.


 











These fabrics are Tea Garden Sausalito Cottage by Holly Holderman for Lakehouse Dry Goods.

And as you can see, I'm practicing my photography from my very intense, (4 hours a day, two times a week, + lots of homework) class for five weeks. I have to say, this is a very good class, and I am enjoying it. More photos to come, but other articles and reviews too. 

Next week you can look forward to an interview from a fabulous teacher, designer and author who's known by many. And if you don't know her, I'm excited that you'll get to meet her via my blog. And, a little give-a-way might be included in that post too.
 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Quilting Photos with New Nikon D3200

This is a short post, but it shows some better photos of my finished quilt top. I used my new Nikon D3200. I promised I'd show better photos of the Moda floral fabric that is really pretty. Here goes....








I just received some beautiful new fabric from the Fat Quarter Shop. More photos of fabrics and quilts, as I learn these new techniques with a new camera, and finish with my class this month.

I am not straying from the mission of this blog, which is also to provide quilt news, WIP's, interviews, and book reviews.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

New Nikon Camera for Quilting Blog

I have done very little quilting since I last posted. Some hand quilting at night to wind down and relax, but that's about it.

What I have done; I began my intensive digital photography class which meets for 4 hours on Monday and Wednesday mornings for five weeks. I've been back and forth, as has my wonderful husband, to Staples and Best Buy, buying or returning addtional items, such as the correct external hard drive that is compatible with a PC and a MAC, a better memory card, a card reader, and a flash drive I can devote just to photos for this blog.

I bought a Nikon D3200.










I am getting used to working the F stop, shutter and depth of field manually and automatically. Over the holiday weekend I will be getting in some sewing, but you can be sure I will be getting in a lot of practice. It's a good camera.

Have a great Fourth of July weekend!!

Happy Quilting.


Sunday, June 29, 2014

King Size WIP

The top of my Show Off quilt is finally finished - 90 blocks later!!





Yes, it is king size, and I still have the borders to add!!  There are supposed to be three of them, each 2 1/2", and corner stones. However, when I decided to do this as a set, and I made this pattern for a single size quilt, I made one 6 1/2" border, and skipped the cornerstones. I felt with the cornerstones, it looked too busy, and distracted from the fabrics. And I feel the same way with this one too.





This is a close-up, and the photo doesn't do the fabrics justice. The focal fabric is floral Moda I bought years ago, and saved for a project, someday. I will take a better photo of it and post it, because it is stunning. (Tomorrow I start my digital photography class at our local community college).

I wish I had more of that floral, and did try to find some through my out-of-print sources, but even a Moda representative said, something like "Wow, that's an old fabric, but a good one."

So I am making two borders; one with a yellow and white fabric that picks up the center of those beautiful flowers. The outer border will finish up what's left of the purple fabric used here.

Only one other king size quilt in the pipeline, and then I will be focusing on lap, single and double size quilts for a long time!!

I don't know how many of you are following the World Cup. I am not a big sports fan. Somehow, I have gotten really caught up in it and am enjoying it. Let me know who you think will win, or if you are enjoying it and why.

Have a great week, and Happy Quilting!!  

 
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