Thursday, April 25, 2013

V and Co: what kind of quilter are you?

confetti by V and Co.
 this last weekend i was given the opportunity to speak to a group of lovely ladies in the Des Moines area. i was asked to speak the Des Moines Modern Quilt Guild.
me and my i heart you quilt at the modern quilt guild in Des Moines

i get nervous over these things. the thought of "will they think i'm too traditional?" always crosses my mind. as well as when i get asked to speak to a non modern quilt guild i get nervous and think "will i be too modern for them?"
i get asked one question a lot.

what kind of quilter are you? are you modern or are you traditional?
houndstooth by V and Co.

it's probably one of the most asked questions i get.
even for magazines i'm quoted because i've had to give answers on this matter.

so  when i was asked to present to the modern quilt guild my take on using traditional blocks in modern quilting i was super excited to talk and share my thoughts.
as i started to create my powerpoint on modern quilters and modern quilts using traditional blocks again i was hit with the thoughts of "this has been happening since day one. since day one someone got cold and needed a cover. then they needed to make it bigger or fix it and thing led to another...and now centuries later we have quilting not just as a way to keep warm and cozy, we also create art with fabric."
i heart you by V and Co.

i spoke about how colors, textile prints, and arrangement of blocks, or lack of blocks, or making it have a less than perfect (wonky for a lack of word) block can create a completely different look to what starts off as a traditional quilt block.

my message to them was that quilting as they already know is usually categorized into two groups, modern and traditional and really this is good in some ways and not so good in other ways. it's good because well, on both sides, we find others who like the same looks in quilts, and who like the similar color combos, techniques, and we help each other and support each other get excited about this wonderful sewing and quilting thing.
bubbles by V and Co.

it's not so good because you sometimes feel like you can't learn from the other group.
that is sad to me.

have you ever seen someone teach because they love something so much? even if you don't necessarily find what they are teaching, pleasing to your eye? that passion they have is real and you can always walk away learning something from someone either the material they teach about or about that person and their passion.

my message is the same today as it was the first time i learned to sew. this sisterhood of traditional, modern, or in between quilting should be just that. a sisterhood. seeing quilting for what it is, a wonderful art, one that has been around for centuries, one that we can continually keep changing, bringing back old customs with new colors combos, techniques, new tools, or shortcuts.

yes, i'm excited that we have a "modern quilt generation". there will be a stamp on what quilts will look like from this era. but we can not be so arrogant to think that traditional quilters are dying out and modern will take over. as well as traditional quilters can not be arrogant in thinking that these new wave of quilters don't know how to do a thing or two.
i've learned so much from both sides. and this has always been my message. do not shut out the other side.

rembrant vs picaso.

both artists but very different look.

so when i'm asked what kind of quilter i am...modern or traditional?
kaleidoscope by V and Co.

my long answer is this:
"i am traditional quilting and modern quilting who got married and had kids. each of my quilts has it's own look, it's own personality, and is a product of both parents. that's what kind of quilter i am."

my short answer is:
i'm just a quilter.

thank you to the Des Moines Modern Quilt Guild for asking me to come and speak. it was so much fun getting to meet you and see all your beautiful projects, and the wonderful things you are doing as a group.
barn dance by V and Co.

i love to be surrounded around quilters of all generations. i hope my daughter will be able to appreciate the things i did when we were considered the new wave of quilters and i can't wait to see what her generation will be doing when it's their turn to make a stamp in this forever timeline we call quilting and the art of it.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

V and Co: getting my embroidery on and 15 years

yesterday i continued to work on things for market. 
i am doing a school house with Aurifil threads and i will be showing off a few things i've made (including this little bag) with my line of threads with them.
 one person asked if i did the embroidery by hand. uh no. but thank you for thinking i did that by hand.
 nope the embroidery was stitch #431 on my Bernina 580 
these threads were created for my simply color line. but go great with my simply style line as the colors are close enough that they transfer pretty well!
 the bag pattern is my color block pouch. (the large bag of the three)
it's one of my favorite to make as a gift for sew-y friends because it's fast and easy and totally a necessity.

yep. i'll be making a few more. :)
and i'll be making a few other things with my embroidery machine and thread here soon too. watch for it on the We All Sew Blog for BERNINA. :)

also this last week my youngest one was caught on camera eating a microphone.
this was taken before the kindergarten moosical.  she obviously is lacking in the personality department.

we also (the husband and i) celebrated 15 years and one month this last sunday.
yep, last month we celebrated 15 whole years of marriage.

i married a pretty cute boy 15 years ago.
and today i celebrate 15 years of being with my best friend, the love of my life, the guy that can make me laugh so hard i pee, the guy i can look across the room and with one look i know what he said with that one look. i'm married to one of the hardest working men i know and a great example to my boys. i celebrate 15 years with the guy i have 4 kids with, countless of memories, a few trials we have been able to go through and look back at and learned from. i am celebrating 15 years with the man that mirrors my desires to have a good family life, mirrors my desires to create a safe home for our children, the man that mirrors my sense of humor, and the man that continuously tries to keep smiling.
i am one lucky gal i said yes. one of these days i'll have to write down our story. it's pretty hilarious. :)

this week i'll also write up about my time at the MQG in Des Moines. they asked me to talk about traditional blocks in modern quilting . it was fun and i got to meet some lovely ladies and got to talk fun stuff with them. :)

here's a blog post by one of the members! it was so nice to meet you veronica!!
we'll talk soon!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

V and Co: reverse hopscotch done

 i finally finished quilting and binding my reverse hopscotch quilt for my friend.
and keep getting asked the same question:
how did you make it.
okay well here is how i made it:
*first i got my hopscotch pattern
*and where the stars are i just reversed it and placed the printed fabrics where the white fabric was and then made the stars white.
*and then because i wanted to use up some of my scraps, instead of doing a square in square, i did a nine patch.

 yes? now you see it?
super fun, stash buster quilt
 then for quilting what i did was:

straight line quilting. i've only quilted a few of my own quilts and by far i love the look i get when i straight line quilt.
how i created the straight lines was by using my walking foot and the little bar attachment that i can adjust and measure out how far i want my lines to be.
after i make my first line i use that line as my guide to create the next line...and you just keep going so forth and so forth. 

till you finish the whole quilt and it looks totally awesome all straight line quilted.

 for the back i wanted to pick a fabric that would go nicely with my two fabric lines and the green in the pezzy print by american jane was the winner.
i wanted to have a back that would look cute all on it's own

 so which ever way you fold the quilt...
 you end up with cute and nice to look at quilt.

i love making baby quilts. and i will make them for patterns all the time. but what i love making baby quilts as patterns, is when i make a baby quilt that is going to be given to a specific baby. 
when that little guy shows up i hope to take a few pictures with him in it. :) 
now, i have ANOTHER friend having a baby...this time it's a girl.
i'm thinking my bloom quilt  or kaleidoscope baby sized. or maybe i'll just have to make something new all together. hmmmmmmmm. 
the wheels are a turning.

Monday, April 15, 2013

V and Co: check it out appliqué love

hey hey hey! so check it out. i have a nice little project in this next issue of Quilts and More 
this time around i made a cute little rice bag to take care of aches and pains in your neck or to warm up those toes!
and well i think you all know that i have a thing for appliqué.
 i love that you can do whatever you want and place it where ever you want. total freedom.
petal applique bag
dresden plate part 1 dresden plate part 2on a zippered pouch.
bloom quilt 
appliquéd wreath 

and then you know my love of hexagons and appliqué:
hexagon applique bag
confetti quilt.

so when i got to create a fun project for this magazine i decided to add my love of applique and hexagons again:

 one thing is for sure this will be a great project to create this season so you can give it to as many wonderful women (or men) for Christmas.

and well if you want to get creative...this one comes with a removable make a few to change the look for the person you are making it for! (ahem or for yourself!)

tomorrow i'll show you the baby quilt i finished this weekend :) i feel the earth and myself thawing as i finally am starting to see green in the grass and the trees are trying real hard to get some leaves on them. my happy season is coming and i feel some fun projects at the tips of my fingers. :) happy face the stupid white stuff is almost gone till the next winter! whoot!
we'll talk soon! 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

V and Co: how to: shorten your maxi skirt so it fits you perfectly

i think i've mentioned before...i'm kind of short. and even with heels sometimes...skirts just don't work for me on the length. throw in the whole maxi skirt craze and well...i'm kind of like hmmmm, yeeeeah, that's not going to work.
case in point:

this totally cute skirt i found at maurices
it was the right color, the right size, the right price, and totally the wrong length.
story of my life.

so how did i get from point A of having a too long skirt that puddled at the bottom of my feet to point B of having an awesome skirt that looks like it was made for you you ask?
 just a few steps and we will get you on your way with the right length and adorably fitting maxi skirt.
no more tripping happening for you!

first things first.
 go in your closet and find the shoes you will most likely be wearing with your skirt.
obviously i have a thing for wedges and who can go wrong with wedges and maxi skirts?!

since last time i blogged and bragged about the awesome warm weather...we've had a little bit of a cold snap again and well the closed toed linen Target shoes won this last time i wore the skirt...but i can NOT wait to wear my open toed sandals once the weather cooperates again!

okay next:
-put on your shoes
-turn your skirt inside out and put it on where you would normally wear you skirt if it weren't dragging on the floor.
 -pinch up the fabric around your waist and look down or look in the mirror to see where you would like your skirt to fall.
mine was around 4"!!! total. (so 2" folded in your pinched fabric)
-pin in place your folded fabric right under your waist band area.
 -once you have one small section pinned in place. use it as your guide to go around the rest of the skirt pinning in place the folded fabric.
-take off the skirt leaving it wrong side out.
-grab some matching thread  (in this case i used navy)

now lets start sewing!

-place your sewing machine on the zigzag stitch.
on my BERNINA B580 it's the #2 stitch it was at the 1.50 stitch length and i then shortened my stitch width to 1.7.
-placing the pinched folded fabric on one side and the rest of the skirt and the waist band on the other side, stitch as close to the waist band as you can with your zig zag stitch.
(why the zig zag? so that when you put on and off your skirt there's stretch and no threads break!)

 - go around your whole skirt top.
 ready for the scary step?
-cut off your excess pinched folded fabric. carefully so you don't cut your stitches and you don't cut anything you shouldn't (i've been known to do both!)
 -when you turn your skirt right side will have a shortened skirt that looks pretty darn good and will fit like it was made just for your height.

pair it with a cute plain shirt, a pretty necklace and ahem an angry beaver look on your face...and you are ready to go!
well minus the angry beaver look. theres a reason why i normally crop my face when editing pictures. oh well.
go shorten those too long maxi skirts!!!
we'll talk soon.

Monday, April 8, 2013

V and Co: this last weekend

 this last weekend i felt like spring finally happened.
i got to sew a little and clean a little. we spent a lot of time watching GC with the family and spent some time outside...FINALLY.
we love weekends like this where we aren't needing to be anyplace, and really it's just all about family.
when the weather turned super nice we got some outside time... the kids were so excited to play in shorts and be in the sun.

 it's crazy that just a few weeks ago on our little trip we were all bundled up and looking like we would be pasty twilight lovers for like EVER. (hanging out in men's bathrooms...ahem)...

 no wonder every fifth picture i got of the kids outside were of them jumping for joy...and apparently opening their mouths making silly weird faces.
yep. spring has def placed a spring in our jumps.
i can hear myself getting happier.
we'll talk soon!

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