Monday, March 31, 2014

Home at last!

Every weekend in March I was in a different city and state teaching workshops for the Original Sewing and Quilt Expo What a great time I had! Quilters and sewists can choose a variety of classes taught by experts in the quilting and fashion world. There are fun fashions and creative quilts to see, and lots of vendors offering the latest in quilting and sewing tools, gadgets, embellishments, and patterns for sale.

I have started taking a vendor booth at the Sewing Expo events when I am teaching workshops. The first weekend in March I was in Hunt Valley, Maryland, then Duluth, Georgia, then on to sunny Lakeland, Florida, and finally last weekend in Schaumburg, Illinois. Here is my vendor booth in Schaumburg. I sell my Creative Grids® trim tools for log cabin, pineapple and hexagon blocks along with Cut Loose Patterns that support the tools.

The newest patterns are the Upstairs Downstairs Log Cabin (upper left corner), I Spy Hexies (2nd from right on bottom row), Cut the Cake Hexies (2nd from left on bottom row), and designed by Gudrun using the Log Cabin Trim Tool Two, Courthouse Lanterns (2nd from right on top row). The patterns are available and will be added to my website later this week.

For awhile there I was not sure if I was coming or going with all the travel this month. But now I am home until the Spring Quilt Market in Pittsburgh the 2nd weekend in May, my grandson's wedding in Asheville, NC over Memorial Day weekend and then the Sewing Expo in Indianapolis the last weekend of May.

What will I do with two months of freedom? Sadly the first thing this morning I am off to the dentist. Once that's over I am going to tackle my garden. First a spring clean-up then planting. When I take a break from the garden I will, of course, be sewing and making fun new quilts that you can make too.

I have a new trim tool being introduce at the Spring Quilt Market in Pittsburgh. It's a big secret and we are planning a "huge reveal" at market. As soon as the reveal is over the 2nd big reveal will be on this watch for it in mid-May. Patterns will be available for the new tool and the quilts are really fun and exciting.

For now, it's off to the dentist. UGH...

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Pineapple rules!

Last week I taught workshops at the Sewing Expo in Lakeland, FL. My Pineapple Workshop was sold out and I sold over 48 Pineapple Trim Tools in 2-1/2 days. On Saturday afternoon they were all gone. I have ordered 60 for the Sewing Expo this coming weekend in Schaumburg, IL.

Garden Path Quilts, A Blog by Barb About Everything Quilts, has posted a great photo lesson on the blog on how to use my Pineapple Trim Tool. Here is the link to the Garden Path Quilts blog.

Here are some of the quilts I have made using my Pineapple Trim Tool. They are all Cut Loose Patterns and are available on my website along with the ruler by Creative Grids.

From top to bottom the quilts are Pineapple Salsa, Pineapple Pizzazz and Tropical Fruit.

Monday, March 17, 2014

How it started.....

Last year I received an email from Midge Concannon asking permission to offer for sale a quilt she made using one of my quilt designs....Cambridge Square. Of course I said yes and Midge was thoughtful enough to let me know about her successful quilt marketing. Here is Midge's story in her own words...

"I contacted you last year about getting permission to sell a quilt made from your pattern "Cambridge Square" that appeared in the May 2010 issue of The Quilter Magazine.

I had the quilt on consignment last fall at Keepsake Quilting in Center Harbor, NH and it did not sell.  In December, I put it up for sale on Etsy and it just sold for $1400! (link to Midge's etsy shop: I'm so excited and hope that the buyer in Houston, TX will enjoy it as much as I did making it.  I sent her an email with a little "bio" about the quilt and gave you full credit for being the designer of the pattern.

Just wanted you to know, and I thank you again for granting me permission to sell this beautiful quilt."

Midge Concannon, Plymouth, MA

Midge's Cambridge Square Quilt

Detail of the Cambridge Square Quilt

This is the beginnings of my love affair with the log cabin block, the Log Cabin Trim Tool and the strip piecing tools (Pineapple and Hexagon) that followed. To see more about the tools, visit my website:

In a follow-up email Midge said: "My success is your success as well. Your design was beautiful and the cutting & assembly directions were perfect." Blessings, Midge

And I say, thank you Midge for sharing your success with all of us. I made this quilt for  The Quilter before I designed the Log Cabin Trim Tool, but you can see that the blocks were made in the same layout as the trim tool and are a hint of what was to come. My thanks to you too, Midge. I love to see what quilters are making with my patterns and tools.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Georgia Quilt Show

Here I am at the Sewing Expo and Quilt Show in Gwinnett, Georgia. I taught my first classes for the Sewing Expo here 2 years ago. Debbie Hutcherson signed up for my Lickety Split Log Cabin workshop. The workshop project called for 20 blocks. Debbie loved using the Log Cabin Trim Tool so much she made 120 blocks! Way to go, Debbie. Yesterday she stopped by my vendor booth to show me a photograph of her quilt.

Debbie added a white sashing strip to two sides of her completed blocks to give the interesting zig-zag setting as she turned the blocks a half turn in each of the rows. Can you figure out how she did it?

Here is the answer! Debbie made vertical rows and you can see by the two enlarged blocks on the left the direction of the white sashings in the rows. Note that Debbie did not add her "logs" or strips in the usual manner with 2 light strips and then 2 dark strips around the center square. Instead, she used bright colors randomly placed. The white sashings on two sides help define the blocks in the finished quilt. Debbie said she tried to make no two blocks exactly alike, Did she do it? Even she is not sure and we're not counting. The butterfly fabric shown behind the blocks will be Debbie's borders.