Bye-Bye 30s

"The first forty years of life give us the text: the next thirty supply the commentary." - Arthur Schopenhauer

I turn 40 tomorrow. It's a little hard to believe I will actually be the age I once declared to my mother "I will NEVER turn 40!" on her 40th birthday (sorry Mom!).

I'm a little sad to leave my 30s. Not because I'm getting older, but because the last 10 years have been so amazing. Some of the most life-changing events I will ever experience happened in my 30s.

I got married.

We bought a house.
I had my first baby.

I started a blog.
I started a podcast.

I had my second baby.

Along the way I matured into the woman I am today, and feel I will continue to be well into my "golden" years. It's funny because while I have always been a goal setter, I kind of figured I'd want to slow things down a bit by now. But I can still think of so many things I want to see and do both personally and with my family. 

I am so excited for these years to come!



New Pattern: Happy Birthday Owl

I turn 40 in a few days. To celebrate with a little crafty goodness, I sketched a little owl in a birthday hat then turned him into a mini quilt.

Like my Pumpkin Perch Owl, I used Timtex interfacing in place of batting, to stiffen the quilt and make it easier to prop on an easel. I like having little pieces of my art on my desk at work and home.

I pulled together colorful scraps from my stash and using fusible applique, my birthday owl came together in about an hour.

I have listed the pattern on Craftsy, and am so happy with the response I've already received from my 2 patterns! Watch this space for more to come.

Hoot! Hoot!



CGM Podcast #55: Tell Them Nothing

Listen to the episode 

Show Notes 

Life Update:
  • Having lots of fall fun with the family
  • Upcoming "kids free" weekend so hubs and I are hitting the road for a wild and crazy time...furniture shopping!
  • Planning a family Disney land/sea trip in 2015...we will tell our kids NOTHING about it until the day we set sail.
  • Someone hold me back from putting everything but the booth curtains in my suitcase when I get to Quilt Festival.

WIPs and FOs:
  • Spiderweb quilt...I'm back to 85"ish" blocks and explain why
  • Thinking of making a Modern Maples quilt
  • In Threes cardigan for Sam is almost done!
  • I've published a pattern on Craftsy and will have several more this year.
Book that helped me learn computer generated drawings for my patterns:  

 EQ6 Applique Drawing by Angie Padilla

Classic Movie Review:

 Bell, Book and Candle
with James Stewart and Kim Novack

Book Review:

Release Me by J Kenner 

Thanks for listening!



Pumpkin Perch Owl Pattern + Giveaway Winner

My new pattern is live on Craftsy! I've given it the title: Pumpkin Perch Owl and it is a tabletop mini quilt. I've displayed mine on a small easel.

This was so fun to design and make. I used my favorite way to make quick art quilts, fusible applique. It's a great way to use up your scraps, and have something cute to display on your fall table.

I must admit that I've become rather partial to owls and their big-eyed cuteness. I have more patterns with them as the focus in the works, and I've included a sneak peak at pattern #2 below.

The winner of the free copy of this pattern is comment #4: Sewgirl.  Congratulations! Please check your email for a message from me. Thank you to everyone else that left a comment. I hope you'll stop back and see what else I have coming.

Here's a sneaky peek at the next mini quilt pattern I'll be releasing soon:



Excited! + a Pattern Giveaway!!!

I've been working on several patterns to offer for sale on Craftsy. I am very excited to give you a sneak peek at the first one, to be released Wednesday, 10/16.

It's kind of hard to believe that such a little quilt (6" x 7") could take so long to write up as a pattern! Admittedly, my learning curve is pretty steep....I had to figure out the best program for turning my sketches into clean lines, learn the program, then draft the pattern. Then comes the step-by-step instructions for making the project. Honestly, I almost gave up several times! What seems so simple to just straight-out make, can be very complicated when trying to find the right words to accurately explain to someone who may be brand new at these techniques.

I am nothing if not tenacious though, and finally I have what I think is a pattern that is straightforward, breaks the fusible applique process down, and allows anyone to make this little quilt in just a few hours, at most.

Watch this space for the "Pumpkin Perch" Owl pattern on Wednesday. I will post a link to it on Craftsy. And I have several more patterns to come this year....because it's true that the first one is definitely the hardest to write.

I would love to give one of you a free copy of my pattern, delivered by email, on 10/16. Between now and then, leave 1 comment below about a pattern you like over on Craftsy. Earn another entry by Tweeting this post and leave a comment that you did. I will draw 1 winner on Wednesday morning. Please be sure you are not a no-reply commentor or leave a valid email address in your comment. 



What I'm Reading This Month

I am officially buried deep into 2014 advance reads, but there are several books from this year I still plan to get to. Here are a few I will definitely be picking up this month:

 Allegiant by Veronica Roth
(on sale 10/22/13, this is book 3 in the Divergent series)

 Out to Lunch by Stacey Ballis
(on sale 12/3/13, I am reading an advance copy)

Blameless by Gail Carriger
(Book 3 in The Parasol Protectorate series)

 The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan

What are you reading this month?




Prizes! Prizes! Prizes!

I am SO behind on giving away prizes for the Banned Books Week Challenge. Thank you to all of the entrants for participating and your patience!

If you missed out on the Banned Books Week Challenge that Sandy and I hosted, you can still check out the beautiful mini art quilts in our virtual show here.

Here are the prizes and winners, randomly drawn, from all 2013 entries:

Prize #1: Liberty Love by Alexia Marcelle Abegg
WINNER IS: Carole Wool (wool4all)

 This is a very popular book featuring 25 projects using Liberty of London fabrics. 
You can easily substitute your own stash if you don't have Liberty fabrics! 
This book also has the very popular Marcelle Medallion quilt, popping up all 
around the web and Instagram.

Prize #2: Scrap Quilting with Alex Anderson
WINNER IS: Jackie (sewexcitedquilts)

 Not much needs to be said about Alex Anderson, and she
does a great job presenting ways to choose the best fabric combos to from your stash
of scraps, as well as block selection and settings to showcase them. Great reference book!

Prize #3: A Quilting Life by Sherri McConnell
WINNER IS: dkdemott

Featuring 19 projects including quilts,
totes, tabletoppers, and pillows. Sherri uses a 
combination of fabrics with a modern and vintage 
look to appeal to many.

Congratulations to the winners! Thank you again to all who participated and those who stopped by to comment on the entries. I hope it's inspired you to make a Banned Books mini quilt for 2014!



F.O.: Blooming 9 Patch

This is one of my oldest UFOs, the Blooming 9 Patch quilt. The pattern is from the book, Tradition with a Twist by Blanche Young & Dalene Young-Stone.

Unfortunately, I pieced this quilt so long ago (10+ years), I don't remember any of the details about the fabrics used. I do recall it's a fairly simple quilt to piece, although it does take awhile to cut all of the components.

It only took me another 6 months after pulling this from the UFO pile to send it off to Missouri Star Quilt Co. to be longarm quilted. This was my very first "quilt by check" quilt, and I am a signed-sealed-no turning back convert! They did a wonderful job, and the turnaround was only 2 weeks.

Amazingly, I did save enough of the border fabric to use in the binding, and part of the pieced backing. I am so pleased with how this quilt came out, and SO happy to check off another UFO as finished! 

I have added it to the UFO Along Group in Flickr - have you been adding yours? Don't forget that every finished UFO you put a picture of in the group is eligible for the monthly prize! This month's prize is a $10 gift certificate to The Quilted Castle. Don't miss out, add your finished UFOs all month long!


Linking Up Here Today:

Skip To My Lou



Thursday Thoughts: When You Want to Quilt More Than Anything Else....

Like a lot of quilter's, I find myself thinking about quilting a lot....like, a LOT a lot. I also consider myself a knitter and have a deep love for yarn and fiber, but I will always come back to fabric and thread as my main craft of choice.

And while I consider myself a pretty well-rounded person, with a lot of interests outside the crafting world- someway, somehow, quilting or the thought of it, seeps its way into my daily life. I think the only thing I think or talk about more would be books...and a lot of that has to do with the fact I think and talk about them for a paycheck.

But I really really love quilting, and often it's what I'd rather be doing more than anything at that moment. And sometimes I may sound a little nuts to a non-quilter (Muggle as Frances says)

Here's what happens when you like quilting more than...

The Outdoors
"Hey, it's a beautiful day out, let's take a walk!"
You: "Today is a designated sewing day, the first I've had in months. I'll open a window."

"Hey, you look a little tired. Fun night?"
You: "I was up late finishing a quilt. Before I knew it, it was 2 am."

"Have you seen that quilt everyone's Pinning? It's gorgeous!"
You: "I know, I love it! I bought the pattern and I'm adding it to my "quilts-I-want-to-make" list. I should be able to get to it in...23 years."

"I'm headed to IKEA, want to come?"
You: "Oh sure! I've been meaning to get another bookshelf for my stash...and there's this cute rolling cart I want to see in person before I buy it...and I need some backing fabric....wait, maybe we should take my van."

"Mom, what's for dinner?"
You: "1-800-Dominos"

"Maybe we should try yellow in the family room."
You: "Yellow?!?! I don't have any quilts that go with yellow walls!"

Chatting on the Phone
"So what do you think?"
You: "Huh?..oh sorry! I was trying to figure out why my tension is off...what were you saying?"

"Hey, let's get it on."
You: "WAIT! Pull the quilt back first, sheesh!"

Cleaning House
You: "Just don't invite anyone over for the next 3 months!"

Going to a Party
"Hey, so-and-so is throwing a party, want to go?"
You: "I only have 99 more triangles to sew together...so I'll pass."

"Boy, that new workout I'm doing burns a lot of calories."

You: "I count my sewing machine motor as calories burned."

Sending Email
"You don't have to put everything in caps. You got into a popular quilting class, I get it."
You: "NO YOU DON'T GET IT! IT'S WITH VELDA NEWMAN!!! VELDA.FREAKING.NEWMAN!" (insert favorite teacher here)

"So...I can't talk about quilts anymore. What else have you been up to?"
You: Silence.

And this is what it's like inside my head a little too often. Share your quilting-trumps-all experiences below, I'd love to know I'm not the only crazy one around here! ;-)

Happy Thursday!


WIP Wednesday: Binding

I am in the homestretch of completing a very old (10+ years) UFO. Sewing on binding is probably my least favorite part of the quilting process, but like a lot of things we don't like, it's good for me. Yes, I said "me" and not the quilt. 

By this I mean that while I don't really enjoy this type of hand sewing, it forces me to slow down, be calm and methodical, and take my time finishing a quilt that I have grown to love again, after having been at the bottom of my UFO pile for years.

While I bind, I am also watching episode after episode of Bomb Girls. This fantastic series is about the women who work at a munitions factory during World War 2.  Have any of you seen it yet? I am almost through Season 1, and can't wait to see Season 2. I've had this on my "What to Watch While You Wait For Downton Abbey to Start Again" list for quite awhile, but Daisy reminded me of it in one of her past podcast episodes. Thanks Daisy!

So besides the binding I have only 8 blocks left to make in my spiderweb quilt, then the squaring up of all 100 blocks will commence...as well as making sure it actually is big enough to cover my king size bed the way I want it to. I may need some extra wine if it turns out I have to make more of these string-pieced blocks..."so" over it!

What are you working on this week?


Linking up with:
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
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