Ahhh! I cannot express how much this has already changed my life. This whole idea has been on my radar for about a year now, ever since I started getting serious about freemotion quilting and then discovering this on Leah Day’s blog. Honestly, I thought it would be such a hassle to get this set up, so I just kept putting it off. Now I’m sad I waited this long!
First, I must give all the props to Leah Day. Because, you know, she IS a quilting goddess, and this whole quilt suspension thing is genius. Now, I don’t know if this is her original concept or not, but this is where I found it, and so I’m going with that. Go here for her original post about how to do this set up.
The items you need for this setup are easy: 3-4 sturdy door/drawer handles, bungee cords in various lengths, but definitely some long ones, and clamps that do or can have a hole in the handle.
This cost me about $30 total. Honestly, it can be a lot cheaper depending on one, what you already own or have available, and two, what is available for purchase in your area. I probably could’ve rummaged around in my husband’s work shop and found all the things I needed, but I wanted new things so as to not take the chance of ruining a quilt with some unseen grease or dirt on one of the items. Also, he doesn’t come and rummage around my sewing studio for things, so I try to extend the same courtesy. Well, sometimes I do.
Also, I could’ve probably found the bungee cords and clamps in a smaller pack, but this is what was available at Home Depot, and I donated the extra items to my husband in return for his labor. It’s a good barter system.
From there, it’s really easy. The clamps came with a small hole in the handles, but not big enough to get the hooks on the bungee cords through them. So he drilled bigger holes. He used a stud finder to get the handles installed on the ceiling, which is always interesting in this house. That wasn’t working out too well, so he just used a tiny drill bit to drill in various places until he found the studs.
As for spacing of the handles, it’ll mostly depend on where your studs are located. You want them to be a good bit back from your sewing machine to keep the quilt from crowding your machine or disturbing your thread. I put mine about a foot back from my machine. The fourth handle in the back may not ever be necessary, but Paul thought it might be a good idea for an especially big quilt. Who knows.
Here’s Daddy’s helper, who is also a camera ham and demanded a photo op:
I used the four longest bungee cords that came in the pack, which will work for bigger quilts by themselves I think. I kept some shorter ones so that I can use this method with smaller quilts, since I tend to do intricate work on smaller quilts. You can see an example of how she combines the smaller bungee cords with the bigger ones in her post. I also kept some extra clamps for this reason.
I should also say – no, the clamps will not harm your quilts as long as you are careful. Make sure you fold your quilt where you’re going to use the clamp so that the clamps aren’t tugging on your fibers.
My other concern was how much hassle this would be for quilts where I’m just doing a large, repetitive meander or similar pattern to cover a quilt. I was afraid that I would have to get up and adjust the quilt so often I would be annoyed. But on this twin quilt where I am doing a twirl design, it’s working out beautifully. I cannot tell you how smooth my stitches are simply because the drag and weight of the quilt have literally been lifted.
So, Our Epoch is going through changes. I’m still working on the details and figuring out how to go about some new things, but I don’t want to keep it all a big secret.
For one, the retail side is going to scale back quite a bit. I probably won’t continue stocking fabric lines, at least not for awhile. Honestly, the marketplace is PACKED with wonderful retailers that are always offering good deals and high-quality products. I have enjoyed my time as a fabric retailer, but my son (who is now 4!) is hitting an age where our homeschooling is more in-depth. I don’t think I can realistically offer the level of customer service I demand of my shop and also take care of my family, which is my first priority. Also, I have so many other great things planned for Our Epoch that I’d rather leave the retail to those who are doing such a good job of it, and focus my attention to the other services I can offer the quilting community.
It is hard, though, especially at Market time. It’s hard saying “no” to all the beautiful fabric lines that are releasing soon!
I am not giving up the retail altogether, though. I will continue to stock notions and other basic supplies (thread, templates, quilting products, etc.). I am also going to expand the “special order” options, things where I know I can offer you a great deal, but I am not able to keep them in stock all the time. And for my customers that like to order Kona by the bolt for their own supply, this will remain an option.
All this leads to the shift that’s coming… and that is QUILTING! I mentioned in a post recently that I’ve realized my calling is to be of help or service to the next generation of quilters that want to take their freemotion quilting to the next level. I am not completely sure yet how or where I will be of the best service, but I have several ideas and plans that I am setting in motion. Everything ranging from tutorials, to videos, to reviews of quilting products, to a resource database of methods and techniques already out there.
I didn’t realize when I made my first quilt back in 2008 that I would love the quilting more than I love the piecing. Don’t get me wrong, I still love piecing. I always will. But I find myself fantasizing and planning the quilting the entire time I’m piecing. I even dream about quilting. A lot! I think I would’ve embraced this and accepted it a lot sooner, but I don’t think the right resources were out there. I guess you could say I’m a ‘modern’ quilter, but I have a lot of traditional in me. I like modern fabrics, but I like traditional patterns, or traditional patterns with a slightly modern twist. I find myself taking the quilting greats and modernizing it a little.
My fear is that modern quilters, or any quilter, really, will feel that they can never move into more complex quilting designs. I know it can be discouraging trying to get the hang of FMQ, planning the quilting, etc. I want to make quilters feel comfortable with their process and their progress. I want you to be the best quilter you can be, to find your groove, and to feel confident with each quilt you complete.
There are some bigger things planned, but I can’t really disclose those yet
This journey has been amazing. I listen to a lot of motivational books, mostly about business, goals, positive thinking, etc. I know that no one is successful without lots of starts and stops, lots of failures and roadblocks, lots of mishaps. I love the retail business… but it’s just not working. I have to remind myself that it’s okay that it isn’t, and that letting go of something that isn’t working opens up the time and energy for something else that will. That isn’t my calling. So I’m opening the opportunities to do more of what IS my calling.
So thank you to all of you. Thank you for supporting me and standing by me while I figure this out. Thank you for having lifted Our Epoch up to a somewhat recognizable name. Thank you for being a customer. I hope that all of you will continue to follow Our Epoch and find something else that helps you on YOUR quilting journey.
With this shift, I feel that the fun has only just begun!
I am so excited about these gosh darn Quiltsmart bags. The best thing is when I go to a guild meeting and one of our members shows up with something that totally blows me away. The Quiltsmart bags do just that. In fact, pretty much everything that Quiltsmart has put out so far is incredible. The bags are especially impressive to me because honestly, I love bags, but I truly suck at making bags. Like every quilter, I long to carry beautiful bags that I made myself. It’s like a trademark, or an identifier. But I am easily frustrated by most bag patterns and the process of making them.
Enter Quiltsmart Midi and Mondo. By the way, everything you need (including charms and mini charms) can be found in my store. You can find the Quiltsmart materials here.
I wish I would’ve done this bag with Fusible Fleece to begin with, but I will next time. I used the Moda Comma by Zen Chic line, 3 Mini Charm Packs.
So here’s how it goes – and I’m doing this because it is not conventional by any means. Just to say “it’s easy” and try to describe it, it just doesn’t work.
This tutorial is based on the Midi bag, but the methods are the same for either bag, the Mondo bag is just bigger. As mentioned before, using Moda’s Mini Charm Packs really makes the process easier since there is no cutting involved, but you can use any 2 1/2″ squares that you want.
The Midi bag requires one panel of pre-printed interfacing. Follow the instructions and cut the different panels from the big panel. Now, I like to do the layout and ironing on my ironing board so that once I have the squares laid out, I can just iron it and not mess anything up.
As you can see, the lines make it easy to know where to put your squares. They don’t have to be exactly perfect, since we’ll sew on the lines later and creative perfectly – and I do mean perfect – intersections.
Here is what they look like all laid out. At this point, I use my silicone ironing cloth since the panel is adhesive side up. Pres – not iron – for a few seconds, then lift the iron and place it again, until the entire panel is secured.
Once the panels are ready, it’s time to sew. Turn the panel over, and (following the instructions on which lines to sew first), you fold on the line, and use your 1/4″ quilting foot to sew each line. Then you sew the lines in the other direction.
Do this for all the panels. From here, it’s almost like making any other bag, except the pre-printed panels also have markings to know where to line them up when sewing them together and where to fold, etc. Here you can see a few of the seams lined up, ready to sew.
Unfortunately, I neglected to take pictures of the rest of the process, but it is really easy. Once the panels are sewn together, you repeat the process with the lining fabric, then add the fusible fleece if you choose. Sewing the lining in gave me the most anxiety, but it is the ONLY bag I have ever gotten right. It was very easy. Just make sure you watch where your handles are when you are sewing the lining.
And there you go! As I said, it is the same process for the Mondo bag. Furthermore, if you have some skills, you can add pockets (that is included in the instructions). You can also add grommets and enhance your handle. This bag can be customized to fit your creative style!
Everything you need to make a Midi or Mondo bag is listed in my shop. The thing I really like is, because once you make one, you will start inventing reasons to make more, once you have the pattern, you just need to buy the interfacing (and fusible fleece if you choose), the pattern is reusable. So I have an array of options available. Let me explain each option in more detail:
The BASIC Kit: If you haven’t yet made a bag and don’t have the pattern, this is a good place to start. This includes the pattern and enough pre-printed interfacing for one bag.
The FULL Kit: This is the same as the basic kit, but also include the Fusible Fleece needed. Fusible Fleece adds some structure to the bag to make it more sturdy but does not make it stiff at all.
The MATERIALS ONLY Kit: If you already own the pattern and want to make more bags, this is a great option. It includes enough panels and Fusible Fleece to make one bag.
PANELS ONLY: If you already have the pattern and want to make more bags, but don’t care to use the Fusible Fleece, you can purchase the panels by themselves.
If you have any specific questions, please feel free to ask, and I’ll get an answer for you! Also, if you buy the materials and run into any problems, I am always happy to help. If you make a bag, please end me pictures, I’d love to share!
I don’t know that I’ve ever had a quilt that gives me goosebumps like this one does. The funny thing is, it is nothing more than a practice piece. It isn’t a gift, a usable quilt, or anything going in a show. It’s just something I threw together to try some new techniques. Which opened a lot of doors, because it gave me freedom to try so many new things I’d wanted to try and hadn’t yet had a chance. Every time I walk by it or see it, I can’t believe that I quilted it. That’s my work.
(click to enlarge)
I must apologize – the weather has been rainy and nasty, so I had to do indoor pics. As soon as the weather straightens out, I’ll have better quality pics!
I first want to stress that I quilted this on my Janome 7700 Horizon. I say this because I have received so many comments assuming this was done on a longarm. It wasn’t! I’ve never quilted on a longarm in my life, and I never intend to. There’s nothing wrong with it, it’s just not for me. I enjoy the motion and challenge of sit-down quilting. And also, it’s cheaper I’m not saying this for bragging rights (though, I do have certain thing for domestic quilters!). I say this because I feel like I’ve been on a mission the last year or so to encourage people to give quilting on their domestic machines a try. Cast aside the fear, play around, find your groove. You DON’T need a a longarm to produce beautiful quilting!
As a side note, I have included a short quilting biography at the end of this post, so you can see that I haven’t been quilting (or even sewing) my entire life, that I am still fairly new to it. But I didn’t want to clutter up this post with so many words.
That being said, this piece was a bit of a practice piece to take my quilting to the next level. I just completed my Mandala Spiral Quilt (blog post coming soon) that was juried into this year’s East Cobb Quilt Guild. It is a fabulous quilt. I wanted the quilting to be phenomenal. I gave it good effort, but it fell short. I sort of blame it on the deadline being moved up 6 months – while that really did effect the final outcome, I doubt very seriously I would’ve done the appropriate amount of quilting to do the piecing justice. The biggest thing I took away from the judges comments was that the piecing was beautiful, but there is not enough quilting. Having a graphic design background, I treated quilting like a graphic piece – don’t overdo it. After a conversation with two seasoned, trusted quilters, it turns out you can’t have enough quilting. There is no such thing as too much. This is a scary concept to me, and I had no idea how to fill an entire quilt without using some flimsy background filler that wouldn’t have complimented the piecing.
I recently invested in several Sharon Schamber DVDs and materials, as she is by far my most favorite quilter on earth. I have a copy of Machine Quilting Unlimited that features her “Mystique” quilt on the cover, and that is the very quilt that spoke to me in a way that I wanted to transform my quilting. For the last three months, I have searched and studied everything I can find to become a better quilter, and also to find out what kind of quilter I want to be. The issue is so beat up and worn out because I seriously stare at it and think about it every night before I go to sleep. I have dreamed of quilting through many nights, and woke up both tired and motivated.
I stumbled across Lisa Calle’s “Emerald Isle” quilt, which also spoke to me, since it took a very simple design and made it into this beautiful piece of art. I ordered her “Divide & Design” DVD immediately, watched it the second it arrived, and got to work.
Perhaps my biggest revelation is that I am a QUILTER. I think I love the quilting process even more than I love piecing. This surprises me for some reason. And it must be true, because this little practice piece took about 4 hours of cutting and piecing, 25 hours of design, 10 solid hours of marking the quilt top, and 15 hours to quilt it. All that for… practice I was so excited about the project, though, that once the design was complete, I crammed all of the marking and quilting into one week (which is not easy while homeschooling a little one!).
So here’s a little walk through of my experience (click to enlarge):
I pulled several Art Gallery fabrics from my stash that were dying to be used, since my plan was to take a super, super simple and “boring” top and turn it into something amazing.
I had half-square triangles in mind.
As you can see, the top was, indeed, quite boring. Exactly what I was going for!
Next up was to design the quilt top. Here I have tracing paper taped over a print out of the quilt top. If you are a freemotion quilter and you want to learn how to do this, I cannot recommend Lisa Calle’s “Divide & Design” method enough. She is BRILLIANT! There’s a reason her quilts win awards. As a side note, I use the Fine Line tools to mark my quilts (first time!), which I’m working on a blog post about that later this week.
After I had a design I liked, it was time to mark the quilt. Now, Lisa is a long arm quilter (and a really good one at that!), so she doesn’t mark her quilt tops. Also, the Fine Line tools were made so that you can put them on your quilt top and run your foot along the edge instead of marking. I am NOT comfortable with that, at least not at this stage. Instead, I used an array of Frixion Pens to mark my top. I used the two different colors so that I could keep track of thread changes, though only I would understand what any of it means on this quilt! If it weren’t for Frixion pens, I’m not sure how much more complex this process would’ve been…
I cannot express the anticipation of ironing away the marking lines for the first time. I mean, you get an idea of what it will look like, but having all the black and orange lines makes the marking lines so prominent. I was DYING to iron away the lines (my husband was even anxious). I know it’s silly, but my eyes kind of watered a little when I saw the subtle lines that brought it all together.
So here’s the final product! I did wash it on a gentle cycle in cold water, and I dried it in the dryer on fluff air with no heat. I didn’t want it to be too stiff (but needed to wash it to remove the last of the markings), but heat would’ve crinkled it up too much.
So here are some of the other things I experimented with, other than to go all out on quilting. Anyone who knows me know that I, and my shop, endorse only Aurifil thread. I use Aurifil thread for EVERYTHING, specifically piecing and quilting (and making other stuff). I love it. I swear by it. But Aurifil doesn’t make, yet, anyway, a thread for “heirloom quilting”, which is this detailed work you see here. I love my Aurifil, but it is simply to heavy for this work.
Upon the recommendation of Lisa Calle, whom was kind enough to answer my question very quickly on Facebook, I decided to give YLI 100 weight Silk thread a try. I later found out Sharon Schamber and pretty much anyone that does detailed quilting uses it. I was a bit intimidated but I have to say, my machine took right to it! I did a sample piece and you literally could not tell which was the front and which was the back (with the Aqua color even!). I am in LOVE with this thread. Needless to say, we’ll be stocking it soon.
I mentioned the Fine Line rulers earlier. Oh, how I love these. These things are amazing. I have the small and medium curve rulers, and the large curve is on the way. I just used a regular template for marking straight lines, but I need to have at least one or two of the straight rulers, too. These will be available through the shop as special order items. I cannot recommend them enough!
The last thing I did differently was my binding. I have tried a few different versions, but nothing “clicked” with me. I sweat every time I do a corner, because it’s pretty much luck that they come out right. In fact, the judges specifically mentioned my “rounded corners” on my show quilt. I searched high and low, and discovered this tutorial on how to do perfect show binding. I found (finally!) a needle-nosed tip on a container at Joann’s. They’re new, in the quilting section (not the notions), and they are made by Dritz. To say that I am impressed with this method is a true understatement. Not having pins shifting and creating waves and bunches made such a difference. My corners are perfectly mitered. I can’t believe how much I smiled while doing binding.
Now, I did divert from her version of invisible binding, the part you do at the end. I found this tutorial last year and I have gotten it right the first time every single time. So I guess you could say I use a hybrid of these two methods now. It might be that the method in the previous tutorial is similar or the same, but honestly, I didn’t bother finding out.
This Sharon Schamber method has been recommended to me several times, for show quilts, so of course this will be the next method I try.
Because of this experience, I am already back at the drawing board, planning the quilting re-do of the spiral quilt. Yes, I am ripping out about 80% of the quilting and doing it again. I am contemplating busting my butt and submitting it to the MQX Show this fall in Portland. I have until August 20 to submit my form, and if accepted, it would be sent off late September. I can totally do this! And yeah, I’ll redo the binding, too!
A little more about my quilting experience
One of my new year’s resolutions (the only one I’ve stuck to, as a matter of fact…) is to improve my quilting. I didn’t always know I’d be a quilter. I learned to use a sewing machine in 2008 out of boredom, thinking I’d make a closet full of custom closing. That didn’t work out. I experimented (horribly) with quilt making and saw some potential. I joined the Atlanta Modern Quilt Guild in 2011, and the inspiration I drew from the women I met meant no looking back. But like most modern quilters, I was more of a “piecer”. I mean, I could hold my own and quilt some straight lines, playing it with safe stitch-in-the-ditch.
I had the pleasure of taking a freemotion quilting class with Freida Anderson in April of 2010. I will never forget that class. I was so overwhelmed with information, but she really gave me the confidence to get beyond straight lines. I will never forget the most important words, in my opinion, spoken in that class: “You have the exact same information I do. The only difference between you and me is the amount of practice.” That blew my mind, looking at my crooked, long-boob looking feathers next to her flowing, supple, strong feathers. With practice, my quilting could look like hers. That was something to chew on.
I played it safe, still, through 2011 and deep into 2012 by using a meander stipple on pretty much every quilt I produced. But I was good at it! Late in 2012, our Guild joined forces with the East Cobb Modern Quilt Guild to host an exhibit called “Thoroughly Modern”, in which I pieced and quilted Emily Cier’s “Ascend” quilt. I intentionally picked this quilt because of it’s open space and opportunity to stretch my quilting legs. I pulled mostly Leah Day motifs from her 365 Days of Freemotion Quilting, and a few from Angela Walters. I remember thinking, as I was quilting it, “I want this to be the quilt that I do really well now, but that I look back one day and feel that it was quite amateurish.”
That quilt was completed in January of this year, and honestly, after the quilting I just did on this piece, I feel that day is already quickly approaching.
I apologize sincerely for the hiatus. I had to get through tax season, and fortunately, I eventually escaped unscathed. Whew!
With this madness behind me, it is time to focus on all the goods coming in 2013. There’s so much out there!
I must first apologize, as the Our Epoch webstore has been out of commission quite a bit lately. We’ve grown so much in the last year, so much faster than we expected. I’ve been searching for a solution that will meet our needs, and sampled a few other options. I’ve come back to our current platform and have committed to make a few tweaks to it, then I think we’ll be back on our feet again. The main area of improvement on the website is making it easier for local customers – you will be able to load your shopping cart as you would on any website, but you will have the option to pick it up in person (i.e. at the next AMQG meeting, or at my house, etc.) instead of paying shipping charges. Also, you will have the option of paying via PayPal at the end of your transaction, or delaying payment until you pick up your order (if you want to pay in cash, with a check, or receive an invoice).
These functions already exist on the website, but they seem to be hit or miss. I am working to make sure this option is available for you all the time on all items. This imperative as I usually offer sales and specials here that I don’t offer on Etsy, and I want to streamline it as much as possible. So thank you for your patience with the instability of the website. I hope it will be 100% within the next two weeks. In the meantime, please check out the Etsy Shop to see what’s in stock – this shop is kept up-to-date, as I try to do inventory every day. If you see something you like, you can email me and I’ll send you an invoice. This is especially good for local customers so that we don’t have to worry about shipping charges.
On to the good stuff!
This year is going to be another big year for us. We are expanding in a few different directions, starting with yardage. Print yardage, to be exact.
Our Epoch is already stocking Moda yardage, but we will be increasing the number of bolts we stock that coordinate with popular lines of precuts. I took a hiatus from Riley Blake last year for various reasons, but we’re bringing them back this year! We’ll be stocking select Fat Quarter Bundles and lots and lots of yardage – too much good stuff to pass up! If you haven’t already, take a look at the upcoming lines with Riley Blake. If there is something that catches your eye, please let me know and I’ll see about the availability.
As you know, Art Gallery bundles are available, but we will most certainly be picking up several of their luscious print yardage this year, no doubt! We are also looking at picking up Blend Fabrics, which offers a wide variety of unique prints by up-and-coming artists. Jessica Swift is a local favorite, and I have enjoyed her prints for years!
And perhaps our most exciting news, we are expanding to Freespirit/Westminster! Tula Pink, Anna Maria Horner, Denyse Schmidt, Heather Bailey, Joel Dewberry… need I say more? I am anxious to see what Spring Market brings for these amazing designers. We’ll also be looking at Michael Miller later this year to add to our yardage selection.
I wish I could name all of the big changes coming, but there’s so many. Hang on to your hats and make room in your stash closet!
Is there anything particular you’d like to see? Now’s the time to speak up!
Tomorrow kicks off Shop Hop in Atlanta, and I don’t really get to participate (except for the locals that hop on by!), so I figure it’s a good time to do a sale for all you good folks. There is so much in the shop right now, I’m out of room!
I know the weather is just starting to warm up down here in the South, but that doesn’t mean we can’t get a start on our holiday sewing projects, right? I have some BEAUTIFUL holiday Sample Spree items that just came in. The lines won’t be available for another 3 or 4 months, but I have them for you a little early! My holiday stuff sells so fast when the holidays actually roll around, so I can guarantee you when the next batch of these items come in, they won’t be near as low as this price, and they won’t last long.
So here’s what’s on sale in the shop, and these prices are exclusive to those of you who subscribe to my blog, Facebook, or Twitter. Have I told you lately how much I appreciate you?!
Locals who will collect items in person, please message, comment, email me, or whatever with what items you would like and I will send you an invoice. For those that aren’t local, you can do the same, but please include your mailing address so I can figure the exact shipping charges.
As always, these items are in limited number and they are first come, first served. I put in parenthesis how many of each item I have in stock, and I will try my hardest to keep it updated. Please feel free to ask if I have any left if there’s an item you are interested in. These prices do not apply to previous orders or items already on hold. I added a link to the Moda swatch sheet which shows you all of the prints in the line.
Thank you again, kind folks. It is such a pleasure sending beautiful fabric to you!
MINI-Charm Packs (normally $3-4)
All mini-charm packs from all lines are $2.00 each
Comma by Zen Chic (10)
Simple Marks (10)
Boo Crew (10)
Charm Packs (normally $8.50 – $9):
Simple Marks by Malka Dubrawsky (11) – $7.50
Summersville Spring by Lucie Summers (11) – $7.50
Mind Your Ps & Qs by Keiki (11) – $7.50
Keep it Sassy by Olive Sandwiches (10) – $7.50
Aspen Frost by basicgrey(10) - $7.00
In From The Cold by Kate Spain(10) – $7.00
Winter’s Lane by Kate & Birdie Paper Co.(10) – $7.00
Boo Crew by Sweetwater (9) – $7.00
Happy Go Lucky by Bonnie & Camille. (10) – $7.00
PB&J by basicgrey (12) – $7.00
Oink-A-Doodle by Jenn Ski (8) – $7.00
Jubiliee by Bunny Hill (10) – $7.00
Boho by Urban Chicks (4) – $7.50
Glamping by Mary Jane (12) – $7.00
2wenty-Thr3e by Eric & Julie Comstock (12) – $7.00
Avalon by Fig Tree & Co. (12) – $7.00
Spring House by Stephanie Ryan (12) – $6.50
Noteworthy by Sweetwater (4) – $8.00
Comma by Zen Chic (4) – $8.00
Jelly Rolls (normally $28.90 – $30):
Winter’s Lane by Kate & Birdie Paper Co. (2) – $24.90
2wenty-Thr3e by Eric & Julie Comstock (4) – $24.90
Comma by Zen Chic (2) – $24.90
Architextures by Carolyn Friedlander (Robert Kaufman) (6) – $32.90
Boo Crew Dessert Rolls (3) – $24.90
Layer Cakes (normally $28.90 to $30):
Aspen Frost by basicgrey (1) – $24.90
PB&J by basicgrey (2) – $24.90
Glamping by Mary Jane (2) – $24.90
Noteworthy by Sweetwater (1) – $24.90
Get A Clue Nancy Drew (1) – $24.90
Spot On! by Robert Kaufman FQ Bundle – Beach Ball colorstory (1) – $24.90
Spot On! by Robert Kaufman FQ Bundle- Bubble Gum colorstory (1) – $24.90
Mama Said Sew by Sweetwater FQ Bundle (1) – $85.00
2wenty-Thr3e by Eric & Julie Comstock FQ Bundle (25 pcs.) (2) – $59.90
Oh the Places You’ll Go (Dr. Seuss) by Robert Kaufman FQ Bundle(3) – $26.90
Juggling Summer by Zen Chick Fat Eighth Bundle (1) – $45.00
I’m excited to announce that Our Epoch is expanding to begin offering Art Gallery Fabrics!
There are many reasons why I choose Art Gallery. For one, just look at their fabrics. They speak for themselves! Two, none of my local shops sell their fabric, which is a shame. I have seen numerous advertisements for Art Gallery in magazines, but it wasn’t until I visited a quilt shop up north, well out of driving range, that I actually felt their fabric. Art Gallery uses an exceptional thread count and finish, which makes this a luxurious-feeling cotton experience.
From their website, “Art Gallery’s designs are printed on 100% Premium PIMA cotton that is mercerized to ensure the absolute brilliancy of all colors. They are printed on a narrow width of 44/45″ and have an exceptional thread count and very fine weave.”
Pat Bravo is brilliant. What I like most about Art Gallery fabrics is that they feel a bit more … the words escape me… grown-up? Refined? I love that they are playful, but they retain their elegance to create a totally different quilt. Pat Bravo, Angela Walters, Bari J, Sarah Watson, and Jeni Baker are all designers for Art Gallery Fabrics.
So what is Our Epoch going to carry? We’ll start of small, and move into yardage. I will be carrying the Color Story Bundles in my shop to start with. While I wish Art Gallery would offer pre-cut bundles of their lines of fabric, much like Moda, I am pleased that they offer varying bundles based on color instead of just lines. The Color Story Bundles pull fabrics from several lines and designers, and even throw in pieces from thier “Elements” lines, which are blenders or basics. This helps us to stretch our creative juices and use a variety of prints instead of the ease of one line.
Very soon, I will also begin stocking yardage from the “Elements” lines, specifically the Oval Elements and the Lace Elements, but eventually all of their “Elements” lines. And of course, the goal is to carry a wide selection of yardage from all of Art Gallery’s lines.
Now, about this special offer… in order to bring Art Gallery Fabrics into the shop, I am offering a killer PRE-ORDER deal on Color Story Bundles. To check out the variety of Color Story bundles available, please click here.
This will be a limited-time offer, and you must pre-pay for your bundles (including tax and shipping where applicable) in order to take advantage of the special offer. I have posted the regular prices of these bundles at the end of this post to help avoid confusion.
With that in mind, here are the prices for this special Pre-Order offer (click to enlarge):
*Bundles can be mixed & matched. If you buy three bundles of any size, you will get the maximum discount for all three bundles. If you buy two bundles, regardless of size, you will get both bundles for the second price.
Yes, I get that the pricing can be confusing, so if you have ANY questions, please let me know and I will help with anything you need. What it comes down to is, if you commit to buying three bundles of ANY size of fabric, whether 10 or 12 piece bundles, you will be saving 50% off of EACH bundle. That’s incredible!
So how do we make this happen? Here’s what you need to do:
1. Decide what Color Story bundles you are interested in from this link, and decide what size and how many bundles you want. Remember, 3 OR MORE bundles of ANY variety of size will get you the maximum discount price on each bundle.
2. Comment, message, or email me with what you want. If you are not local, I will also need your complete shipping information so that I can calculate your shipping charges (and tax if necessary). I will also need the email address where you will want your invoice sent.
3. I will email you an invoice with the items you requested, complete with applicable tax and shipping charges.
4. You will need to pay via PayPal, mail a check, or pay me if you are local and will see me soon in-person.
5. I am planning on putting the order in no later than March 14, but hopefully sooner. Once the order is delivered, your order will go out immediately.
This offer is NOT available on my website or in my Etsy shop; it is open only to you, my most loyal customers. If you would like to contact me, you can email me at email@example.com
Sometimes it helps to see what the regular price is before deciding how much you’re saving, so here is the chart showing you the regular price of these bundles (click to enlarge):
I hope you are as excited as I am!
What a great weekend, getting to finish this quilt! I’d had the Quick Curve Ruler in my shop, along with a few of Jenny Pedigo’s patterns, since last year sometime, I just hadn’t had the right project (or time!) to do something with it.
And then Michael Miller offered the Madrona Road challenge to the Modern Quilt Guilds. We signed up, and they sent us a bunch of fabric, which we cut down into packets for members that wanted to participate. I love this line so much, I decided to purchase a bundle of the other colorway (well played, Michael Miller). I am so glad I did, because making this quilt was so much fun.
I knew I wanted to use the QCR with this challenge, and I stumbled across this blurb in Fat Quarterly. The pattern was PERFECT for this line, in my opinion. The overview sounded easy enough, but I ran into huge snags, trying to figure out how to make it work (namely that first curve and the trimming). I consulted my BFF, and finally I was on the right road.
Seriously, the QCR is so easy to use. I love that you actually make the block slightly larger than needed so that you can trim down to an exact size, with even shape. I am so in love with this template. It’s not flimsy acrylic, either. It’s very sturdy!
For the back, I kept it simple. Before I was a quilter, I seriously hated pink. I guess that’s changed a little, huh?
I finished with a simple meander, and a Corn Yellow Kona binding. I am keeping this one for myself!
The Quick Curve Ruler and four of Jenny Pedigo’s patterns are available in my shop. Check out Jenny’s blog – there are links to GREAT YouTube videos showing how to use this template. You can’t go wrong. There are also numerous free templates and quilt-a-longs on her website.
I finished this quilt back in October for my best friend from high school and his family. Their little boy, Jacob, only stayed on earth with us for 7 days. I cried a lot making this quilt. You can read more about that on the Making Modern Memories blog.
This is a baby quilt turned into a family quilt. For the back, or one of the fronts, I made a heart using the Lil Twister tool (for 5″ charm squares) and the Ten Little Things charm pack from Moda. The best thing about any of the Twister tools is that they are SO easy to use, but make any quilt look complex and complicated. It’s easily one of my Top Ten recommendations. (click images to enlarge)
I did a log cabin-style border around the quilt several times to give it good size.
I especially love using this tool on prints that seem kind of loud or chaotic. They add to the feel of the design. It spices up quieter prints, and tones down the louder ones.
So I was left to figure out what to do with the other side. I decided to use the Twister Tool (for 10″ layer cake squares). Because I’m looking to expand my selection in the shop, I purchased a line from AdornIt to try, and I think it turned out lovely. This side has a bit more of a “grown-up” feel to it.
When Jacob passed, a good community of folks released red balloons in the air in memory of him, so I included this and a passage on the personalized label.
It was such an honor to make this quilt for my friend and his family. I only hope they know how much they mean to me.
*The Twister and Lil Twister tools are both available in my Etsy shop. I also have the Itty Bitty Twister tool for 2.5″ squares.
I just posted about this quilt over on the Making Modern Memories blog, but I wanted to post here to give more detail about the construction of the quilt, because sometimes quilters like those details : )
I knew immediately that I would want this to be the quilt I submit to the Thoroughly Modern Quilts exhibit that is being sponsored by our guild, the Atlanta Modern Quilt Guild, and the East Cobb Quilt Guild, one of the largest guilds in Georgia. We are so honored that they asked to partner with us to promote our cause. The exhibit is going on now at the Mable house in Mableton, Georgia.
I am a modern quilter. But admittedly, there is a huge side of me that is vintage. I love classic designs. I love classic designs-turned-modern even more. That’s what Emily Cier of Carolina Patchworks did with this pattern. She took a classic zig zag design and roughed it up a bit. I LOVE it. It is graphically bold and striking. I felt the need to add some late 60s coloring to it, so I used Sable, Bone, Olive, Peapod, and Tangerine.
The Front (click images to enlarge):
Other than the Kona Challenge Quilt that I made for the AMQG last year, this is the first chance I’ve had to make an all-solids quilt. I LOVE working with solids.
My goal in 2012 is to get myself beyond the basics of freemotion quilting. I have FMQ’ed several client quilts and quilts of my own, but I stayed in my comfort zone, doing only a simple meander, maybe a loopy design. I am to the point that I want something more complex and challenging in my quilts. So my goal in 2013 is to really work on my FMQ’ing skills in terms of new designs and not limiting myself to one repeating pattern on a quilt.
I decided this was the quilt to break that barrier. Ha! Why do I always do that on a really important quilt with a strict deadline? I dunno, I work better when I know there is a deadline to meet. I had already submitted a picture of the completed top of this quilt and been accepted into the Thoroughly Modern Quilts exhibit, so really, there was no turning back.
I started with the Peapod green color, doing a bit of an arrow/bird tracks/snow tires design. That was fun, actually, and helped to build up my confidence a little. My next “brilliant” idea was to do pebbling in the orange sections. Um, yeah. about an hour into with with a 4″ x 4″ section completed and I realized pebbling in solid zig zags could be… well, a disaster. Not only would it take forever (hey, I’m willing to put in the time and work for a design I think is fabulous), but also, it would made those sections so very dense. So I decided to improvise a la Angela Walters and break it up a little. As you can see, I did smaller sections of pebbling outlined a few times with a echo pattern. The end result? I love it.
The Sable section ended up being my favorite, though it was the most intimidating. I found a rhythm that just worked, and actually I was kind of sad when I finished those sections. In the interest of time, the Olive green ended up with a straight-line stitch.
And finally, in the Bone section, I did a swirl pattern, also quite intimidating. So much to think about, such as making them somewhat uniform and keeping the size of each circle consistent. It was fun, though. I wish I’d had a better plan for finishing at the end of each row, though.
The back (click images to enlarge):
Obviously having such varied quilting on the front makes for it’s own design aesthetic on the back. I love it!
I love, love, love this quilt. I have already decided this one is for me, and it will hang in our living room. Now that we have a house with walls suitable for hanging quilts, we’re starting with this one! I am even painting the living room a deep, olive green, which will coordinate nicely with this quilt.
If you’re local, I hope you will go see the exhibit. I have seen pictures of some of the 45 modern quilts hanging, and to say they are stunning is an understatement.
With this quilt, I hope to look back in a year and feel that it’s a bit amateur-ish because my freemotion quilting has excelled : )