Mitering Like Magic!

Want to see some magic from Expo faculty “wizard” Debby Kratovil?

Special thanks to the special guest blog from Debby this week!
Magical Mitering – Attic Windows with Savannah Fabrics

Lovely garden themed fabrics: Savannah Collection by Benartex

One of my most requested techniques is that which I refer to as “Magical Mitering.” The Savannah Collection is perfect for this in that I will treat groups of 4 small panels as a “window” unit. For example:

 Two sections of 4 small panels
Two groups of panels with “attic window” strips

Each set of 4 panels measures 9-1/2″. I commend Benartex on making sure that the black sections between each panel measures 1/2″ so that I didn’t have to destroy one panel to cut out another. I was able to get the required 1/4″ around the outside.

I cut the two contrasting strips (yellow and black prints) at 2-1/2″ x wof. Because I am mitering, the strips have to be longer that the 9-1/2″ sides by at least 2-1/2″ twice. So, I cut them at 9-1/2″ + 2-1/2″ + 2-1/2″ , which equals 14-1/2″. You can throw in an extra inch for safety. So, what does this look like?

The first strips extend at least 2-1/2″ beyond the two sides as shown

Center the first two strips (yellow) and sew with 1/4″ seam to panel center. Note that my stitching goes BEYOND the end. We do NOT begin and end 1/4″ away as in traditional mitering. This is important, as you will see in the next photos. I used black thread for demonstration only, so you can see the seam.

Press seams TOWARD the center, so you can see the inside edge of the strips
You now see the extended stitching AND the inside edge of the strips
This stitching will be your visual guide when placing the next set of strips.

Now it’s time to add the next set of strips. Using the extended stitching as your guide to place your sewing machine needle EXACTLY, begin sewing at the stitching and end at the stitching on the other side.

Begin stitching as shown; it’s ok to backstitch to lock in place

How do we press the seams of this second set of strips? AWAY from the center. Then we fold the black strips at a 90 degree angle as shown, which amazingly resembles a miter.

WAIT! IT IS A MITER!
This magically forms the miter without having to wrestle an alligator
Remember I told you that pressing the first set of strips TOWARD the center was important? Here’s why: You use the raw edge of that strip as your guide for aligning the second set of strips (in this case, the black floral). That’s how you get a true 90 degree miter:
Notice how the fold begins right at where you dropped your machine needle
This works on ALL corners
All corners can be folded in the same way
Fold back, pin and get ready to stitch.
Yes, this is stitched with a tiny zig zag and monofilament thread.
Wait? Can I see the back?
Look closely; you can see the stitching. Trim away the excess folded under fabrics.
And now for the reveal of the entire block using my Magical Mitering technique:
Magically mitered strips. You can call this Attic Windows, also
Remember: First two strips get pressed TOWARD the center. The last two strips are pressed AWAY from the center.
I made 4 of these panels. Two of the blocks have yellow on the side and two have yellow on the top and bottom. This way the same colors don’t touch. Well, what does it look like?
13″ blocks and YES! I mitered the borders, too!
 For some reason I get carried away when I start sewing. I almost never make something small. Don’t these Savannah panels look like window panes viewing a lovely English garden?
Want to see more from Debby Kratovil? Come see her at Original Sewing & Quilt Expo in Baltimore, Atlanta, Lakeland and Schaumburg! Debby will teach Vortex Quilt (BYOF) and other piecing and quilting classes.

You’ve Got To Try THESE At The Expo!

Have you heard of the exciting new Features and Events the Expo has added this year? If not – it’s not too late to join in on the fun!

Join us Friday evening from 6-7 for a fun, social, informal gathering showing off what you’ve made, want to make, or come if you just need some general sewing inspiration! It’s been a hit this year – attendees have so enjoyed the creative environment (not to mention there are great prizes and tasty snacks!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s be honest, who doesn’t love a style makeover experience? Get a one-on-one experience with a fashion expert! This showcase features some of our fashion teachers that work with participants to create a whole new look and instill fresh confidence! Some fashion personalities featured include Barb Callahan of Barb Originals, Cynthia Guffey, Carol Steinbrecher of Style Solutions LLC, and Linda Lee of The Sewing Workshop!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Come see young, enthusiastic sewers show off their projects at our Sewing’s Next Generation runway event. Each Saturday afternoon at the Expo, youth ages 9-18 have the opportunity to present their handmade goods, whether it be fashion or quilting related. Know of a young sewist who might be interested in participating? Visit our website to get all the details!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

OSQE has three locations left on the calendar for 2013. Join the Expo in Minneapolis, Tinley Park, or Overland Park – or go ahead and join in on all three!

See you at the Expo!

 

Classes, Classes, Classes in Raleigh!

Well – I’m officially a part-time “empty nester,” and it’s time I start sewing again.  There is no longer a bed or evidence of a teenage boy living in my sewing room!  I have organized all my “had-to-have” patterns and fabrics and I’m ready to roll for Spring and Summer sewing.  But first I think I need some refresher classes that sound great at Original Sewing & Quilt Expo in Raleigh this June 20-22.  I checked to make sure the following classes still had plenty of room in them (often the hands-on classes sell out early), so here is what I plan to indulge in:

Thursday:

What Does This Fabric Want to Be?  – how great will this be for my HUGE stash of had-to-haves…9:00 – 10:00

Laminated Beauty Bag:  Let’s Make Up  -  this sounds really fun!   12:30-3:30

Downtown Bags  -  you can never have too many fun bags, right?   4:00-5:00

Hipster Chick  -  sew many techniques in this class – I’m excited to have a travel e-reader sleeve and learn how to do a monogram!  6:00-9:00 PM –will sleep well tonite!

Friday:  

Mix it Up  -  Another class with ideas for using different fabrics (different teacher, also)  9:00-10:00

Soup to Nuts Bracelet

Bead Soup to Nuts Bracelet  -  I saw a sample of this….so awesome!!  12:30-3:30

3:30-6:00   -  SHOPPIN TIME!

Color Me Confident  -  I’ve always wanted to know if the colors and fabrics I love are good choices for me.  I’m bringing lots of swatches!  6:00-9:00 PM

Saturday:

Seven Core Sewing Skills  -  Fabulous sounding class from an impeccable seamstress  10:30-11:30

Seams Make the Difference  -  I’d REALLY like to know more than serged finishes!   12:30-3:30

Sew,  I am bound and determined to push myself with a pretty strenuous schedule, because I KNOW I will come home with completed projects, samples and knowledge to get myself back on the sewing track.  Next time I go to an Expo,  I think I might dabble in some beginner quilting classes!!!!   RALEIGH,  here I come!

Georgia Quilt Show

Have you ever entered a quilt contest?  Once a year, the hard work of quilters from around the world is showcased at the Georgia Quilt Show. Now’s the time for you to pick what masterpiece you want to enter!  Read all about the Contest Rules on our website.  The Online Entry Form will be live in early May, so you have a few weeks to finish up that special project!

Georgia Quilt Show will be at the Cobb Galleria in Atlanta, Georgia on September 19, 20 & 21, 2013.  Attend in person, or vicariously through your quilt!  Submissions due by August 2, 2013.

If you need inspiration, check out the winners from the 2012 Georgia Quilt Show…

Crimson Promises, Sharon Schamber- Best in Show

Forever in my Heart, Lahala Phelps – Best Hand Quilting

Storm at Sea – Bay View, Sheri Schoenebeck – Best Machine Quilting

Symphony of Roses, Barbara Clem – First Place Bed Quilt

Everlasting Bouquet, Molly Hamilton-McNally and Cindy Seitz-Krug – First Place Large Wall Quilt

Buried Treasure, Mary Kay Mouton – First Place Small Wall Quilt

Coming Home to White Oak, Kathryn Zimmerman – Second Place Bed Quilt

Butterflies Flew to my Garden, Marie Anne Coadic – Second Place Large Wall Quilt

The Palmetto Quilt, Carolyn Friedlander – Second Place Small Wall Quilt and Judge’s Choice

Ever After, Linda McCuean – Third Place Bed Quilt

Rainbow Nouveu, Margaret Solomon Gunn – Third Place Large Wall Quilt

Cowgirls Just Wanna Have Fun, JoAnn Camp – Third Place Small Wall Quilt

Sunflower Serenade, Marlene Shea – Judge’s Choice

The 2012 Georgia Quilt Show was judged by NQA certified judges Beverly Fine and Holice Turnbow.

Original Sewing & Quilt Expo: Atlanta!

3 days. Gwinnett Center. So. Much. Fun.

Filled with joy, inspiration and so much creativity, the kick-off of Original Sewing & Quilt Expo shows for 2013 began in Atlanta, Georgia.

Here’s a sneak peak into some of the highlights and happenings of this awesome event!

Check out Amy Butler’s Alchemy Collection by Rowan. The show included 10 esteemed garment designers – including some of our own Expo faculty. With Linda Lee commentating, the audience saw unique pieces from the fun, print-filled fabric, really taking our fashion show to the next level of excitement! Join us at the next Expo to be one of the FIRST to see this great collection!

Dawn shared this amazing quilt with us as part of Go Tell It.  We’ve teamed up with the Quilt Alliance to collect stories about quilts.  Dawn made this amazing quilt over a few years, following a watercolor technique to manipulate color.  We’ll link up to the video story soon so you can hear about the secret of this quilt…

A new feature at the show this year is The Spot, a hub of activity on the show floor.  Part of The Spot is dedicated to the Make It Center with a rotating schedule of fun activities from infinity scarves featuring Amy Butler’s Alchemy Studio Collection from Rowan to zipper flower pins.  The picture above is of a BRAND NEW SEWIST!  This was her first project – quick, easy, fun and DONE!

Last night was our first “I Made It Myself” event too!  A Friday evening social hour with food, drinks, new friends and all kinds of great handmade items. Hope to see you at the “I Made It Myself” meet ups at upcoming Expos!

Check out more pictures of the Atlanta Expo on Facebook!

Next stop…Lakeland, Florida! Then, back to Cleveland, Ohio!

Feeling inspired? Let us know how!

Alchemy – A New Collection from Amy Butler & a GIVEAWAY!

Thanks to Amy for giving us a peek into the creative process behind Alchemy!  Leave a comment about what you sew (garments, bags, quilts, all of it?) on this post for a chance to win a one yard cut of each of Amy’s new substrates – Voile, Sateen Bliss, Velveteen, Rayon Challis, Linen Cotton, and Linen Rayon. Giveaway ends on Monday March 11th at 9 AM EST.

Congratulations to Mary Arsenault, the winner of the fabric giveaway!

MY ALCHEMY STUDIO COLLECTION –  my first premiere collection dedicated to fashion sewing and created exclusively for my independent quilt shops worldwide!

Supple rayon challis, silky sateen bliss, flowy voile, buttery velveteen and soft linen cotton fabrics designed to all work as one stunning (and easy to buy) fashion group. Everyone is getting into fashion sewing, for themselves and for their homes! I want to make it easy to inspire fashionistas at every level by offering a cohesive collection in 12 skus . Imagine a pencil skirt and a voile blouse to go with, or a gorgeous rayon challis dress combined with a natural linen cotton jacket. Perhaps voile curtains with velveteen pillows and quilt. I had a ball with creating this mix! My idea is that in only 12 skus there is tons of versatility and variety in fabric substrates to allow sewists to make a wide variety of projects for garments, accessories, quilts and even home decor. The other key ingredient is the mix of colors and prints and that all of these different substrates coordinate and make one big beautiful story that allows the sewer to make a rayon challis blouse that will look gorgeous with velveteen pants, all from fabrics in this one core collection. My naturally inspired prints & bohemian graphics on these luscious substrates creates a new, fresh pattern mix to poetically layer and personalize. We all need great new ideas to get the fire going, and this is an exciting time to introduce the bright spark of fashion!

 I JUST COMPLETED MY ALCHEMY FASION RUNWAY SHOW THAT YOU CAN CHECK OUT HERE!!
Dalynn, Katie and I move you through an exciting experience where you get to the see the fabrics “in action”. It really does give you a whole new perspective and it was so much fun to create! Have fun watching!

HERE ARE SOME GREAT SHOTS FROM MY RECENT ALCHEMY FASHION SHOOT!

The Liverpool Tunic
The Emily Bag

The Drawstring Dress – Sew Red

Bag – Umami’s Fabric Canvas World
The Drawstring Dress – Sew Red

The Charm Clutch

The Roxanne Top – Victory Patterns

The Drawstring Dress – Sew Red
Bag – Umami’s Fabric Canvas World

Colette
Bag – Umami’s Fabric Canvas World
Dress – The Roxanne Top – Victory Patterns

The Charm Clutch

Fitz Patterns – Fabienne Shirt Dress
The Emily Bag

Lavender Sachet

Weekender – The Weekender Bag
The Drawstring Dress – Sew Red

AND MY DECORATOR FABRICS –  a brand NEW substrate mix of rayon and linen- it’s delicious and versatile!  I created this 8 sku mix to coordinate perfectly with my Alchemy Quilting cottons to add in that versatility piece again. Mixing and matching across fabric substrates gives us all so much flexibility and tons of ideas  The weight of this decorator linen makes it an exciting and versatile substrate. Heavy enough for upholstery, yet has a wonderful drape for all kinds of sewing projects!  I am planning on backing my new quilts with it.. it’s soft enough and very easy to sew with. I think this would be a great time to get everyone excited about home décor projects this winter! You can see by my illustration how easy it is to mix the decorator with my quilting fabrics.

I snapped a pic when my fabric yardage first arrived. OMG it’s like Christmas!!

I love this shot! The beautiful Kelsie is zen like in this sea of color. The bench, couch cushions and gumdrop pillow in the foreground are all made with my Alchemy Decorator Linen/ Rayon.

MY ALCHEMY LAMINATED FABRICS – I love working with these laminated fabrics. The soft texture and ease of use is the perfect combination for so many fun sewing and crafting projects. These 6 skus are some of my favorite prints! I love mixing my laminated with my new Decorator linen and my quilting cottons. For hot tips on working with laminated fabrics and links to great tutorials check this link out from my web site.
This is the “Emily Bag” from Ithinksew.com and it’s perfect for my laminated prints. I used my Decorator linen for the lining and handles.

The Emily Bag – The Emily Bag

The Emily Bag
Dress – The Roxanne Top – Victory Patterns

For loads of laminated inspiration you can check out my ‘Wonder” story in Blossom


Download my “Creative Project Suite” which has fabulous instructions for repurposing a vintage table and covering the top with laminated fabric.

MY ALCHEMY ORGANIC QUILTING COTTONS – 8 buttery beautiful prints! This collection launched in September 12′ and has been so well received!

Creating an organic collection has been a long time dream of mine and I’m proud to get to work with Westminster Fibers on developing and growing this category of material. There is an ever increasing demand for organic fabrics and I’m proud to offer this petite and powerful mix of prints.
This is a  sweet collective of my favorite botanical inspired designs translated in brilliant hues that are irresistible on my yummy 100% organic quilting cotton. This luxurious material makes the most delicious quilts and just keeps getting softer and softer with every wash. The incredible feel of the fabric & uplifting prints will have you dreaming up special projects for the ones you love! Printed sustainably with low impact dyes, my Alchemy fabrics  are certified organic through the G.O.T.S. affiliate Control Union Certifications – Netherlands  To see my full collection and loads of inspiration and project ideas check out my Blossom Magazine story “Indian Summer”
This is the end of my visit and I wanted to thank you for having me pop in today.  Thank you too everyone for your time. It’s been a joy to share my Alchemy Collections with you. If you’d like to connect or have feedback for me, hot tips, suggestions, I’d love to hear from you! You can drop me a note at amyb@amybutlerdesign.com or visit me on Facebook, Twitter – @amybutlerdesig1, Instagram – amybutlerdesign, and now on Pinterest.  Wishing everyone love, light, peace and wonderful creative adventures in 2013! XO AMY

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See Amy’s new fabric at the Expo!

 

Alchemy – A New Collection from Amy Butler

We are so excited to feature Amy Butler and her new Alchemy collection for our blog! Enjoy!

I am so grateful to have this opportunity to share with you about my new Alchemy fabric collections!  I love the whole process of designing my lines and at the same time thinking about new ways to have my collections work for my sewing friends. When I think about what my sewists need,  it’s passionate color, beautiful prints and lots of versatility in materials and types of fabrics to sew with. There’s a massive jump happening in our sewing world and we are all hungry to work on all kinds of sewing projects like fashion garments , home decor pieces, quilts, bags & accessories and all kinds of fabric crafts!  No surprise.. my full range of Alchemy substrates aims to meet all of these needs. I consciously kept the total number of fabrics smaller and concentrated for this collection so it’s easier for my sewists to mix and match prints and fabrics weights so customizing their projects would be fun and creative.  My goal was to design in total versatility, beauty and ease. Where can you find my Alchemy Studio collection?- at independent quilt and fabric shops worldwide! It’s here where you can have an amazing supportive and creative experience and find the highest quality education and materials.

Another fun piece in the creative process for me is coming up with new ways to share inspiration and ideas, this is one of the key reasons I created my “Blossom Magazine” & “Blossom Club”  so they could be a resource that offers you tons of creative opportunities and to be a voice that supports your heart and soul’s creative nudges… a way for all of us to connect and share about the things we value most and the things that call our passion forward. The other ingredient in the creative process that I love is story telling with my photography and marketing to give loads of ideas on what you can do with my fabrics. I know this is an important piece, it’s the emotive element that hits home and gets us all excited to create! I love it because it’s another way for me to express my vision and ideas and how I want people to experience the materials and I know it’s a great jumping off point that ignites quality creative time.

Here’s a link to my “Blossom Magazine”!

Now I’d love to ” tour” you through my Alchemy Collections! For an extensive and fun tour from me in my Fall Quilt Market Booth, check out my YouTube video here that gives you my personal first hand descriptions and inspirations for all of my Alchemy substrates.

MY ALCHEMY QUILTING AND FASHION – 12 prints total and completely yummy for all kinds of quilting and sewing projects!  I designed Alchemy around the idea of transformation, and infusing elements of nature with exciting color and vivid graphic stories. My vision is to achieve a lovely chemistry of print, color, and texture. I love using my quilting fabrics for everything! The idea of multiple uses really feeds into the versatility concept and provides unlimited ideas and inspirations. I really am that girl that loves to make everything under the sun.. quilts, fashion accessories and home decor projects. It’s really how we all live and what we all love. So much fun!  You can check out my full range here!

Top Left – Free Alchemy Pillow pattern
Top pillow in stack – The Liberty Book of Home Sewing 
Bottom pillows in stack – Honey Bun Poufs

Middle Pillow – Free Alchemy pattern http://amybutlerdesign.com/pdfs/SSlicesPillowPattern.pdf
Bottom Pillow –  The Liberty Book of Home Sewing 
Left Pillow – Free Alchemy pattern – http://amybutlerdesign.com/pdfs/SSlicesPillowPattern.pdf

Gypsy Sling

Honey Bun Pouf 

Weekender Travel Bag 

Free Alchemy Quilt – http://amybutlerdesign.com/pdfs/ALCHEMY_Quilt_Pattern.pdf
Honey Bun Poufs
Gumdrop Pillows

The Swing Bag by Amy Butler

The Birdie Sling

The Weekender Bag

The Spice Market Tote

The Gypsy Sling

AND… please be sure to enjoy my FREE quilt and pillow patterns!

ALCHEMY FREE QUILT
http://amybutlerdesign.com/pdfs/ALCHEMY_Quilt_Pattern.pdf

ALCHEMY FREE PILLOW
http://amybutlerdesign.com/pdfs/SSlicesPillowPattern.pdf

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See Amy’s new fabric at the Expo!

  • Fashion Show – Garments from some amazing designers grace the runway at noon each day.  In Atlanta, Lakeland, Schaumburg, Baltimore and Raleigh.
  • The Spot – join us to mix and match Amy’s great prints and fabric types in infinity scarves! In Atlanta, Lakeland, Cleveland, Schaumburg, Worcester, Baltimore and Raleigh.

Show and Tell

There’s always inspiration around the office. Kari brought in a colorful quilt…

She did a great pieced back, love those colors!

Kari’s next quilt is based on this big bold fish print.  She is going to free motion quilt on print.  This is a great way to use large scale prints.

Liz’s quilting group is working on creating pieced houses for an auction.  Liz paper pieced this cozy home, complete with some cats in the windows.

All ready for quilting!

Ellen is a quilter, but she is making the jump to garments.  She’s making Barb Originals’ Cowl Girl top with a great stretch linen from The Wool House – both found at Original Sewing & Quilt Expo!

Feeling inspired?  Take a class at an upcoming Expo…See the calendar to find a location near you!

Jean Ann Wright: Courthouse Steps Quilt

On a recent visit to the Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum in Golden, CO, I was intrigued by an antique quilt made entirely of velvet. The quilt inspired me to make a quilt using Courthouse Steps blocks stitched in the new, modern style. I used the antique quilt as a guide, substituting white for red and adding other colors in approximately the same positions as the antique.

Inspiration Quilt from Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum

Using my Log Cabin Trim Tool to make the blocks so that each block would be perfect when finished. I slipped in slivers of color in some white blocks and bits of white in the colored blocks, taking the traditional Courthouse Steps blocks into the realm of modern quilts. I inserted the color slivers in various rounds of strips sewn around the center square. After squaring up a round of strips I simply sliced off one edge at a random angle with my rotary cutter and ruler, then stitched the chosen color strip in place. Then I squared up the round of strips again using the trim tool before starting the next round of strips or finishing the block. All of the slivers of color were added at a whim. There was no plan, just what was pleasing to the idea at the moment.

To continue the marriage of traditional and modern quilting I made the quilt to hang over my antique Victorian fainting couch. Here is a vignette of the quilt that completes the seating area of a small library-media room in my 100 year old house in Marietta, Georgia.

Learn more about Jean Ann Wright at her blog.

Take classes with Jean Ann at Expos in Lakeland, Florida.  She is even teaching a class about log cabin quilts!