Monday, September 1, 2014

Boos and Ghouls Introduction {Quilt Along}

Have I ever told you that my favorite season is Fall? Or that my favorite month is October? Being here in Texas, we don't get that full flavored Autumn season like I experienced growing up in Missouri. And to be honest, it makes me kind of homesick.

So, naturally I typically ignore all things Fall in an effort to keep my homesickness at bay. (Have I told you that my go to defense mechanism seems to be act like an Ostrich?!)

This year, I've decided, for better or for worse to embrace All The Fall. And I'm starting with a fun quilt along!

Boos&Ghouls Quilt Along button

With this mini quilt along, I will show you how to make these two mini quilts. One is a boy ghost and the other is a girl ghost. Get it, Boos & Ghouls? (I do love a good (or bad) pun!) Aren't they cute with their little spooky selves?

The minis are oh-so-easy and short and sweet. I plan on posting every Monday with the hopes of having the mini quilts finished JUST in time for my favorite month, October!

Here's the schedule:

September 1st - Introduction
September 8th - Fabric Stacks and Cutting Instructions
September 15 - Piecing the Eyes and Half Square Triangles
September 22 - Assembly
September 29 - Finishing and Show Off

For each post I'll also host a link-up party so you can join in on the fun via your own blog or instagram (#boosandghouls).

I'll be back next week to show you my fabrics and share the cutting instructions with you. I hope you'll join in!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Around the World {Blog Hop}

My friend Heidi, of Fabric Mutt, invited me to participate in the Around the World Blog Hop. Thanks Heidi! *waves* The blog hop is a casual get to know you blog hop that goes from one blogger to another with the aim of getting a peek inside how our creative brains work.

Maple leaf minis

Just how do I do what I do? What is it that I do? Who am I?! (Do you know? Please tell me! But seriously, do you ever feel like that? Everyone seems to know who and what they are, and I am just over here flailing about. I know others are like this so let me come out and say... I'm still figuring it out. And I'm fairly comfortable with that. Or I'll let you know when I get to the end!)

Maybe I'll just attempt to answer the questions? Yeah...

Maple leaf minis

1. What am I working on... 

This month, I'm finishing up 2 quilt patterns for release. I'll be self-publishing them as PDF downloads in late September, hopefully. I'm SUPER excited about them. Right now, awesome pattern testers are giving the patterns a whirl. In a few weeks time, I hope to be posting sneak peaks but for now I give you the quilt back of one.

Favorite quilt back ever.

Sorry that is obnoxious, but it could be my favorite quilt back of all time.

I did just finish the mini maple leaf quilts pictured through out! *high five*

Maple leaf minis

2. How does my work differ from others in its genre ... 

In short, I differ because I am me - whoever I turn out to be. I think what makes my work unique is my use of color, I like it. I like most of it. And I like a lot of it. I also like to work with a lot of singular shapes, not that that is all that unique.

I think what makes me really unique, is my tendency to straddle many lines. I love many genres, many specific and possibly unrelated parts of many genres. While I used get frustrated because I thought myself wishy-washy, frenetic, indecisive, and boring for not being able to identify a "style". Now I've embraced this part of myself as not a weakness but a strength. If I can't decide on whose category to fit myself into, then I will make my own category and take everything I love and moosh it all together to make one new awesome category that I love. And maybe indecision is a "style" after all because I'm not sure I want to be all that predictable.

But in the end, it turns out my style resembles a lot of what is being sold in the Crate & Barrel catalog. (Ironies and hypocrises abound!) So maybe I don't differ that much at all. ;)

Maple leaf minis
This one's my favorite mini maple! 

3. Why do I write/ create what I do? 

WHY!!!!???? I ask you, why!!??? There are many times where I've run myself ragged doing what I do and I find myself asking why I do this to myself.

The answer struck me hard in the gut last year, while working on my book proposal. At the time, I didn't know if my proposal would be accepted and I was constantly bothered by the doubting questions, "What if all this work is in vain? What if my proposal isn't accepted? What if everything I was working on was a sand castle waiting for the tide?"

The answer came quietly and poignantly one day... I create because it is who God created me to be. Be it a masterpiece or complete garbage, the act of me creating and making are to glorify Him and for me creating/ making can be a form of worship. You know that sweet spot where creating can feel almost like a tangible, ecstatic energy? That but also the drudgery part of creating and making.

From that day on, I knew that I create because of God. I am His brush, he is the artist. He may use me as He purposes and I will (try to) be obedient.

Maple leaf minis

4. How does my writing/ creative process work? 

There are probably a few different ways I approach a project, but I'll talk about 3 because they are most salient.

It could be weird, but usually I get a flash or a vision of a shape or color scheme I want to work with. I can't think about it too hard or directly otherwise it will disappear. I try to approach the vision peripherally if that makes sense. Once I have the vision, I sketch it out - first on paper then in illustrator. Sometimes, my sketches just stay in my sketch book to simmer or fester. Once, in illustrator I will make my virtual test blocks, play with layouts, and work out the math. Then if I like what I've been working on, I will make an actual test block, tweak the math or pattern. Then I will make the quilt. Sometimes, I will succeed in meeting my vision, but often times the finished product resembles my initial vision only slightly.

Other times, I just have an idea or a question that I want to work out without a finished product in mind. It's more like me asking a question and making/ creating my way to an answer. What would happen if ...? So I'll give myself some constraints or rules, and let the creativity go from there.

And other times, I just want to make. Not necessarily create anything new. Take the maple leaves. Nothing new, I just wanted to make some maple leaves.

Maple leaf minis

So that's that. Now for next week's Around the World hop ... I've tagged Kristy of St. Louis Folk Victorian, who is just a riot and smart and stuff. Christa who shares her quilty adventures over at Christa Quilts. And finally Allison of Little Island Quilting.

Thanks for reading!