Saturday, September 17, 2011

The Early Birds Have Arrived!

 WHOOOOPEEEE! It finally came! Can you tell that I was pretty excited when my box of new FreeSpirit designs arrived on Thursday? It is called Early Birds. Some collections just feel good from the start and this is one of those. So let's open this treasure box and see what's inside.

It usually takes a while to get reacquainted with your designs because it has been months since the artwork went off to the factory. But this time they felt like old friends. Look at those COLORS!

Of course, a mother has to love her children, so I'm biased. This is one of the designs that will also be done in oilcloth (laminated fabric). I see some fabulous tablecloths in the future!

Naturally, you have to stroke and caress each one as it comes out of the box... and then do it all over again as you sort them into their proper stacks. The beautiful hand of FreeSpirit fabrics makes it a tactile feast as well as a visual one. Then you have to unfold them and fondle them some more. Heavenly!

If you would like to see the whole line, visit my website. It is still under renovation, but the fabrics are all posted for your inspection. If you like what you see, pass the word to your favorite fabric store. The fabric will be available in November and they can see it in person at Houston Market, with their Westminster representative or on the FreeSpirit website.

The other nice thing that happened this week was that the October/ November issue of Quilter's Newsletter arrived with my article about designing fabric!  And if you go to the Quilter's Newsletter website there is another fun article by my good buddy, Nancy Arseneault. We are both Day of the Dead devotees and there you can see and read about her wonderful new Beauty Parlor de los Muertos Quilt.

So after such a quiet summer the autumn is starting with some nice energy. Let's sew!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Preserving the Green

As I still wait for the arrival of my new fabric, I have taken time to record some of the shapes and colors around me. The autumn transition has set in and all the colors are beginning to change. The soybeans and corn are turning yellow and the mums are beginning to bloom.

It is ironic that my designing time is in winter when all the inspiration is covered in snow. So these photos are my memory for the designing days ahead. As you can see,  green still rules in the garden.

On the quilting scene, I have finally taken the time to prepare some fabric for a portable project. I hate to sit idle and am always happier when I have some hand work. So I spent a day cutting 5" hexagons from freezer paper and fusing them to the backs of the Exotic colorway of the Iris and Bleeding Heart fabric from the Garden Divas collection.

Then I treated the seam allowances with Mary Ellen's Best Press starch alternative and ironed them to the back. In the following evenings, I basted the seams in place and then began to whipstitch them together.

Here are some of the kaleidoscopic results.

Pretty exciting and a bit addictive. The color contrast and the variety of scale make some interesting effects. The next step is deciding how to put them into a composition.

Cross your fingers for new fabric this week.