Saturday, October 31, 2009

Bursting to tell you...

OK, I'm done. I can't wait one more day to let you in on my secret. I just didn't want to jinx anything, you know? Drum roll please...

little girl Pearl is going to be in Woman's World Magazine!!!

Here's how it happened. I wandered into the Etsy forums one day this past summer, and noticed a post from Adam in admin. The title was press opportunity, and as it turned out two national magazines were looking for businesses geared to different demographics. "Magazine B" was a better fit for me, so I submitted a one paragraph essay on how I started my business.

You know, I had my daughter, wanted to dress her in cute things, couldn't find any I couldn't do better myself, started making them, people asked where I found them, etc., etc.

So, I promptly forgot about it until I received a call from a writer at Woman's World who loved my story, and voila, after a phone interview and a photographer came to my house (more on that in a minute), it should be in the November 16th issue! Which means that it will be on check out stands on November 9th.

Oh man. So, remember back to me having to clean my house for three days straight? Yep. A photographer who was contracted by the magazine came to my freshly neatened home to take photos of my workspace. Ah, there's the rub. My workspace is also pleasingly cluttered, and in an unfinished basement. It's true. This would not do.

So I staged a nice little corner of the living room with a few bolts, my sewing machine, and who else but the P. and her best friend B. Mine was of course the one trying to hide, and her best friend stealing the show all the while. I wish I could share those pictures, but alas they don't belong to me. I was able to take a pic of "my workspace" though, just to share.

I am thrilled beyond belief, a little nervous (certainly about the picture, hoping I don't look too cheesy), and so excited about the whole thing.

So check out Woman's World on the 9th, and know that my house NEVER looks that good. Take heart.

From Minneapolis,

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Halloween '09

My child, my child.

She is truly something.

Why you ask?? Last year, a scary bat. This year a blue coyote.

Coyote? A blue coyote?? Honestly, I don't know where she gets this stuff from.

I was a pretty normal trick or treater. I got hand me down costumes for the most part. One I distinctly remember was an ice skater where I actually wore my skates and guards. Walking around in ice skates was challenging after awhile. I was a squaw, a princess, a witch.

My daughter?? A blue coyote.

Actually, I love her originality. No one else is gonna be a blue coyote for sure. There will be 50 Cinderella's walking around but only one blue coyote.

For all other kids out there that want to be a blue coyote, I used McCall's 5956. It's pretty generous as you can tell. Blue fleece from JoAnn's, Kaffe Fassett Sludge paperweight for the ears.

Maybe next year we can use it again, and just change out the hood. She's already talking about being a blue hippopotamus. Hmmm.

From New Hampshire,

Sunday, October 18, 2009

I won't be at SOWA...

Sorry for the false alarm everyone. I had every intention of going, even if it was a little soggy. But when I saw that it was going to be torrential rain with highs in the 40's, even I'm not that diehard. I really did want to go, but the hassle of getting everything wet, again, just didn't make sense.

I will definitely be going ahead with more dates next summer though, so stay tuned for that.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

I'll be at SOWA...

Tomorrow!! Come join me if you're in the Boston area. Click here for more information and directions. See you there!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Quilt Market, Houston '09, Part 2

Without further ado...

Next up was Amy Butler herself, who is even more beautiful in person. And so nice too. I felt a bit conspicuous, because I happened to be wearing one of my gored skirts made from her nigella line. I think at least 20 people stopped me to ask what pattern I’d used. Too funny. Anyway, it was great to see her new line in person, because the photos don’t do it justice. I’m loving the navy blue and (you guessed it) lilac color palette. I am anxious to get some home dec weight too. Her booth was very inspiring and gorgeous as is inevitable.

I also stumbled on Michelle from Cloud9 Fabrics. I had seen this fabric on several coops, but didn’t end up purchasing any at the time. The only reason being I already have gobs of fabric, and I have to cut myself off at a certain point. But I gotta tell you that I am regretting that decision. It’s SO soft and lovely. It’s certified organic, and is manufactured to GOTS standards, so no nasty chemicals or heavy metals. The yellow polka dot was my very favorite, so I may have to splurge on this in the future.

Finally, Sandi Henderson’s Meadowsweet, and Heather Bailey’s Nicey Jane. I was really glad to have the chance to see these up close. I am really psyched that Sandi decided to carry the henna garden print through to this collection, because it has so much potential as a great coordinate. My favorite was the melon colorway, but I love the others as well. Heather’s new line is so soft and sweet, and has her signature large scale florals, along with some great retro prints. It should be a lot of fun to work with.

The Market was also a great chance for me to touch base with the button distributors. I have had quite a bit of angst regarding the CPSIA, and am totally relieved that both Dill Buttons and JHB have decided to test, and have all the necessary paperwork on hand. I realize the law is not written with component testing in mind, but I at least feel that I will be covered and that cooler heads will eventually prevail in Congress. This has been a major worry for me, and I feel that it is finally resolved (somewhat).

So, I apologize for the length of this post, but if you’ve ever been to the Quilt Market, you will realize immediately that I really have only described the highlights, and there was so much more there to see. I haven’t even mentioned trims and ribbons, which really deserves a post unto itself. So, if you ever get the chance to go, don’t hesitate. Go be inspired, and do not miss the special exhibitions at the far end of the hall where they show museum quality quilts and fiber arts.

From Atlanta,

Monday, October 12, 2009

Quilt Market '09, Houston, Part 1

I hesitated to say anything because there was a bit of uncertainty about me actually making it down to Quilt Market in Houston this past weekend, but indeed I went. Wow. My head is still spinning. Honestly, even though I was dead tired I didn’t really sleep all that well with all the ideas flashing through my mind. So, for all of you here is the low down on what I saw. I’m going to break this up into two posts, because there is way too much information for just one!

First off, I just have to say that this was my first Market, so I didn’t really know what to expect at all. I knew a lot of the designers would be there, which was my main reason for going. Most fabric people are tactile, and I am no exception. I know in my head that it’s quilting cotton, but somehow just feeling the fabric gives you another level of inspiration that is irreplaceable.

That being said I have to start off with Anna Maria Horner. My hero. Not only is she a delight, but she is so utterly talented. And busy! She happened to have baby Roman there when I stopped in, and what a little cutie. Her new line is printed on cotton voile (rhymes with toile), and to be honest before feeling it in person, I was a little worried. How would it be to work with thinner fabric? Would it be a challenge to sew? Body? Drape? I’m here to tell you that this stuff is gorgeous. Gorgeous. And soft, too. The prints are darling, and she is incorporating the most fabulous shade of sophisticated lilac. Did I mention soft?

They are producing solid colors as well to coordinate with all the prints, and also a bit of texture with dobby. The absolute must have on my list is the dobby stripe in lilac. It’s amazing, and I am imagining all sorts of ways to use it.

Talk about soft, the flannel collection is to die for. I’m glad the P. is as old as she is, but while looking at this fabric, I yearned for her to be a baby again. It would be absolutely perfect for a baby blanket, and pajamas, etc. Come to think of it, I’ll be ordering a little bit for P.J.’s for her. I think some lounge pants out of this would be fabulous too. Hmmm, maybe I might need more than I thought!

So, here is what totally blew me away. When I introduced myself to Anna Maria, she described my daughter to a tee! I love to post my creations on her flickr groups for each fabric collection, and as it turns out she remembered me! What a thrill. Honestly, I felt a bit dorky, being star struck and all, but who cares, right? I’m allowed to be a bit dorky at quilt market. And her assistant Ally is just a gem and was so helpful. I am so envious that she gets to work in that studio all day.

My next stop was to Kokka fabrics from Japan. Etsuko Furuya’s new fabrics for the echino line are just utterly fabulous. I was going to wait to order, but just couldn’t. And guess what? There is purple in my future!! I have had so many of my customers request lilacs and purples, and there just has not been that much out there. So I am completely thrilled that the designers have finally delved into this wonderful color palette.

And I even got to meet and chat with Ms. Furuya herself. Decked out in a fabulous bright purple tunic, she was very, very sweet. I tried out my rusty Japanese, and felt even more dorky than when meeting with Anna Maria. I should have postponed my meeting with her because as the day went on, I was able to chat more and more in Japanese with the Lecien and Kokka reps, and would have been a lot less intimidated if I had had some practice first. At any rate she was incredibly gracious, and I can’t wait to get my hot little hands on those bolts.

So, I'm going to tantalize you and hang on to Amy Butler and all the rest in part 2, but I promise not to keep you all waiting for too long.

From Minneapolis/St. Paul, where it is snowing. For real.