Monday, August 3, 2015

a change of seasons {cultivate blog tour}


When sweet Bonnie Christine asked me to participate in the blog tour for her current collection, "Cultivate," how could I say no?  (If you're not new to the house, you might recall the "Birds and the (Honey) Bees" quilt I stitched up last year for another one of her lines, "Sweet as Honey.")

And as an added incentive, right now Art Gallery's hosting the "Cultivate in Fall" Challenge.  The prompt?  Create a fun, unique project inspired by the idea of change.

Hmph.

I paired eight prints from Bonnie's collection with similarly-hued Liberty tana lawns to construct the leaf.

Initially, my mind went to this place of reaping all that summer has to offer.  But then I had a conversation with someone at work about my in-laws' upcoming move.  You see, a few months ago, my husband's parents put the wheels in motion to move south to spend some time with my sister-in-law and her family.  My colleague acknowledged how bittersweet it must be.  (We've all pretty much lived in the same city since childhood.)  Then she paused a moment, adding, "A change of seasons."

The soft hand of Art Gallery is quite the match for my favorite tana lawns ;o)

That simple phrase, used to sum up such a momentous occasion in our lives,  struck a chord.  And from that little seed of observation grew this medallion:  a turning leaf, signaling change on a dial of the seasons.


I just love how the vibrant colors of Cultivate melt beautifully into one another as the leaf changes from green to yellow to orange to brown, with the point appropriately fixed halfway between summer (II) and fall (III).

I spring II summer III fall IV winter

The starting point of something to keep Gigi and Poppy company as they sip morning coffee on their new deck.  And a small effort to honor a lifetime of memories stretching across all seasons:  Easter egg hunts for the golden egg; summer nights on the screened-in porch; trail riding at the turn of autumn; and of course, the holidays.  Most of which will soon join the ranks of "Remember when..."s, with uncharted adventures waiting in the wings as we all adjust to the pivot.


A change of seasons indeed.


Of course at 38" round this certainly isn't suitable for keeping anyone cozy just yet.  But soon enough it will be throw-sized and tucked away in the truck before it starts rolling south.


And in the interim, follow along with the rest of the tour for loads more inspiration.  Up next is Caroline of Sew Caroline, followed by many many talented makers.  So go ahead, check out the full line up :: the fun is just getting started ;o)

Thanks so much for stopping by!

Sarah

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Monday, June 22, 2015

catching liberty {#dreamcatcherquilt}


Do you ever get an idea so stuck in your head that you can't stop thinking about it, until the time finally comes to get started, and then it feels like a *...meh*—until the very end, when it all somehow comes together even better than you'd imagined it could to begin with?


No? ...Just me?


Welp, I'm there.  With the roygbiv liberty #dreamcatcherquilt.  And if it weren't just a bunch of floating feathers right now I would totally be tempted to stop while I'm ahead.


But, seeing as a dreamcatcher without a hoop would be as effective as a fishing net without the, well, net, that's not exactly a winning option.  So instead, I'm scrutinizing my initial selection for the hoop :: this whimsical Alice in Wonderland-inspired Liberty lawn...


On the one hand, yes, it's a bit busy.  (If you've been here before, you've likely picked up on my tendency to stick to monochromatic everything.)  But when it comes to wild dreams that need some catching... I mean, come on.  So I have to say, multi-coloration aside, I'm inclined to go with my gut on this one.  Not to mention one big upside of bias tape appliqué :: getting to see a little preview before having to commit :o)

Dare I ask for thoughts?

;o)

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Wednesday, June 17, 2015

#cityscapequilt

A couple months ago, my cousin asked if I would consider taking on a commission project.  Now, I generally don't sell my quilts (because, as Molli and Sam have so thoroughly and expertly explored, "We are $ew worth it.")  But being ever so optimistic about my newfound "free time" (read:  maternity leave), I enthusiastically accepted the challenge :: a skyline-inspired quilt in soft blues, greens, and creams for her best friend's mid-June baby boy.


True to form, I kicked off the chain piecing with a stack of 4" oakshott squares, churning out an array of monochromatic HSTs for the "sky" while I continued to mull over how it would all come together.  Until the mid-June baby turned out to be a mid-May addition, at which point I cleared the design wall and starting shaping out that #cityscapequilt sky.  Once I had found a happy medium (read: gradient), I started piecing some improv low volume buildings to fill in the blanks...


After a little rearranging, and some itty bitty baby building construction...


I was ready to bring it all together.


Quilt it.


And send it to its new home.  (Which, I'm told, was going to be inspired by this serene little Serena & Lily nursery.)


From what I hear, it's a big hit.  Which kind of makes my heart sing.  Loudly ;o)

Linking up with Amanda Jean for finish it up friday!

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Sunday, May 17, 2015

BQF: painted leaf quilt no. 1 {roygbiv}

As some of you may recall, last December my Canadian #igminiswap partner (and an ethereal painted leaf in @freepeople's IG feed) inspired this lofty leaf design...


which I am now humbly entering in this year's Blogger's Quilt Festival :: ROYGBIV category.


There's something rather dreamy about this leaf, if you ask me.  ;o)  Of course it doesn't hurt that it's pieced entirely of liberty of london tana lawn "scraps" (a favorite substrate in this house) paired with some of my favorite (let's be honestthey're basically all my favorite) low volume fabrics.


But it also holds a special place in my heart because it was the first thing I got to sew (Succulent Path aside) after a summer filled with morning sickness and a fall full of work (because how else would I replenish my liberty stash? ;P)

In fact, I'm so smitten, lately I've been thinking a bed-sized version is in order for our bohemian-rustic-chic master (the photo above was taken on our macrame curtains, and the one below on our brick bedroom floor).


And now that my mind is made up, the only question is... just how big should that big leaf be?  As some of you may recall, this one turned out to be 20" square, and the final pattern (the #auctionforeleni version, pictured below) finishes at 17".


While I'm mulling that over, I hope you'll take a look at all the other beautiful entries, and thank you so much for stopping by!

P.S.  This mini design is available on my new "patterns, etc." page if anyone's interested!  And I've included alternate "centers" (in place of the tiny sundial) in case teeny tiny curved piecing isn't exactly your thing ;o)

Sarah

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Monday, May 11, 2015

folksy fish {new patterns!}

For those of you who keep up with me on IG, these fish aren't exactly news.  Over the past several weeks (or has it been months?) I've been piecing together an arsenal of scandinavian-inspired fish.


It all started with a bit of oakshott and some scraps from my friend Heather of Crimson Tate's new fabric line, Succulents.


 

And then I ventured into Doe territory (somewhat prophetic, given that it was right around the time I decided my next Succulent Path would be a mash up of the two lines).


On to my itty bitty scrap packs of Karen Lewis Textiles...




And of course I couldn't resist digging into my Liberty lawns...


Neons...


Or the teensy bit of Anna Maria Horner in my stash (I know, blasphemy)...


Or capping them off with a cheeky bit of cotton + steel (you know, the catfish).


Now the only question is, when do I stop? ;o)  Certainly not just yet.  Not now that I've recently come into a charm pack of Gardenvale courtesy of my friend Amanda of Material Girl Quilts (she's closing up shop to focus on patterns, so grab her inventory while you can!)

As for these little fishies, if you'd care to sew a school of your own, you can get the patterns in my craftsy or etsy shops (the eight designs to date are available in two sets :: angular and linear).

angular series {nos. 1-4}

linear series {nos. 5-8}

And tell me, what other creatures should join this crew, fish or otherwise?  I've been sketching a few tribal-inspired designs, along with a few curve-free fellows.  Let me know if you can think of anything else you'd like to see in this sea!

Thanks for stopping by :)

Sarah

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Monday, May 4, 2015

scandi windmill quilt {oakshott scandinavia blog hop}

Welcome welcome!  



4 May :: Sarah Sharp {you are here!}
6 May :: Amy Sinibaldi 
7 May :: Rossie Hutchinson
11 May :: Elaine Poplin
12 May :: Sarah Fielke
13 May :: Nicholas Ball
14 May :: Lori Landerberger

I'm so happy to be a part of the Oakshott Scandinavia blog hop, and a big thank you to Lynne and Michael for the gorgeous fabrics featured in this post.


If you've been here before, you know I'm a huge oakshott fanatic.  (H-u-g-e.)  The color range is so brilliantly vibrant, and the latest scandinavia collection—though undoubtedly more subduedis no exception.


I had about a million ideas cross my mind when Scandinavia first popped up in Lynne of Lily's Quilts IG feed.  Ultimately I was inspired by the potential for playing with transparency given the muted tones in this new collection, so I couldn't help but request some more saturated shot cottons to add into the mix.  And as luck would have it, Oakshott's freesia F8 pack seemed like a perfect match.


I mean, really.  Here they* are all together:

*plus camargue and white marble, which I'd initially intended to use as sashing for this project 

Meant to be, no?

tiger mint + white marble = copenhagen :: lilac + bergen = tromso :: and so on... ;o)

As for the design, I opted for a traditional block (no surprise there) called "Indian Paintbrush."  Though I'm calling this rendition Scandi Windmill (#scandiwindmill), because (for me) Scandinavia brings to mind crisp, clean decor, folksy patterns, and a picturesque, blue-skied countryside scattered with windmills.


Perhaps one day I'll have the opportunity to fact-check my imagination and visit that part of the world.  But for now, this lovely little naptime quilt will continue to fuel our daydreams of Scandinavia.


The pattern will be available for free as part of this hop (in fact, all the designs will be compiled into an e-zine available via Oakshott's free patterns page, so keep an eye out for that!)  



For this 40" square quilt, I paper-pieced twenty-five 8" blocks and arranged them in a 5x5 layout, but this block would also be gorgeous (and less tedious!) at twice that size!  The 16" block pattern is now available as a free download in my craftsy shop.

Thanks again for visiting, and be sure to follow along the hop for some beautifully muted inspiration!

Sarah


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