31 Days of Blogging: It Begins!

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My friend Cheryl Sleboda has put forth a challenge:  “31 Days of Blogging”. What better time to commit to and prove your dedication to our blogs than over the busiest month of the year for most of us? I know I have gotten behind on my blogging, due to the classes I have been taking. However, I have even more classes coming up, but I still need to keep things going here. (Perhaps if I were able to limit myself to 15 minutes on social media a day like Cheryl, I’d get more done? Really Cheryl?? 15? Clearly you’re a goddess.)

Many days will be super light in content, perhaps even just inspiring photos from around my house and neighborhood. I had considered turning my blog into a sort of “Morning Pages”, but then realized that no one needs to be tortured by that sort of running inner commentary. There will be some bigger posts thrown in here and there, and I will also likely have a post coming up on the APQS site soon. Hopefully this sitting down to write every day will also spark first drafts for the future I can come back to, and hone and sharpen.

Today, I have set up a nest in my bedroom with my big monitor, bluetooth keyboard and bluetooth mouse (and laptop borrowed from hubby since I blew out the one cord that could hook MY laptop up to my monitor, don’t ask, I’m technologically dumb.) Yesterday brought a “snowstorm” (a disappointing amount of snow fell), but I have a beautiful few to either side of me of freshly fallen snow. Snow and freezing drizzle predicted all day today, so it’s a good day to wrap myself up into a lap quilt and soldier through some writing!

If you want to join this challenge, head over to Cheryl’s and sign up your blog! If you use social media, use the hashtag #31dayblogchallenge.

Straight Line Quilting on George

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One of the “must haves” for a George APQS is the hopping foot attachments set. It runs around $200 and offers three hopping, thread snips, extra screws and the tool to change the foot out. These feet are functional for specific needs when you’re quilting. Today, I will cover the high closed hopping foot (called the Platform) and and a long arm ruler to do straight line modern quilting!

You can also use the open to high hopping foot (called the Saddle Shoe).

Watch for future posts on the other varied uses for the different hopping feet!

Quilting Inspiration: Pencil cases

So, you’re tired of stippling and straight line quilting, and you want to come up with some new? Something more “you”? But where to start? This week, I will begin to show you how simple objects around your home can hold the inspiration for a new quilting motif design.

This week, I used my pencil case as a starting point for a new design.

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Specifically we are going to focus in on the orange part there. I have put together a short video showing how I worked through the process! Watch as I move from sketching, all the way to sitting down at my APQS George machine to quilt! I hope you enjoy.

Some important things to remember.

  • There is a difference between using something as inspiration and completely copying it.
  • You may need to really look at a complicated design and break it down – possibly even getting more than one design idea from one inspiration
  • Inspiring imagery is all around you: the pattern on your couce, a tissue box, packaging for items, magazines, everywhere!

I would love to hear about where you have found quilting inspirations!

Big News!

While I am sad that I am not attending International Quilt Market in Houston, I have plenty of exciting happenings going on here at home!

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First, I have joined the class Make Art That Sells with Lilla Rogers. I am already enjoying the class so much, and seeing results in my sketches and doodles. It’s amazing what a little direction with assignments can do to motivation and containing the chaos of my creative mind. I believe as I’m going through the course, I will write down “assignment” ideas that come to me, and assign them to myself after the class is done. It’s such a great and helpful way of building work for a portfolio.

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Our first week’s assignment entails Pyrex and pasta. We got the “big” assignment today, and I will begin working on that utilizing the mini assignments we did earlier this week into the “big one”. The best part? It’s designing fabric!

BIG NEWS!!! HUGE NEWS!!!

The other big news in my studio? Really, it’s HUGE news. I am happy to announce that I am now part of the APQS family, as George has found a home in my studio! I am so excited about this and can not wait to begin sharing my projects, and tutorials with you all. I am so amazed at how much more enjoyable quilting is on this gentleman! Stay tuned for a longer post all about George and getting to know him.

Let me just say though, that I am so impressed with this machine. There is virtually no learning curve if you’ve free motion quilted on a domestic before. Not to mention how much quicker it is to do a bed quilt on here than on my small domestic. Plus? It’s doing an amazing job on smaller art pieces as well. Here are a few snapshots of things I have already quilted on my George:

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George has got me in Stitches:

Music: “Stiches” – Shawn Mendes