Monday, September 22, 2014

around the world {without leaving the house}

A few weeks ago I started noticing all of these "around the world" posts in my feed, but I didn't truly appreciate them until I started sifting through what a few friends had written.  And just when I was starting to feel left out, two invites popped up in my inbox within 24 hours of one another:  one from my 2014 valentine Anne of Play Crafts, and the other from appliquér-extraordinaire Casey of Casey York Design.  (Thank you both!)  I have such great respect for each of them as designers and I'm so happy to call them friends.  If you're not already familiar with their work, I highly recommend you change that, stat.  Anne just let the cat out of the bag about her upcoming book. And Casey's brainchild will be debuting later this fall, alongside which Casey has been hosting a wonderfully informative yearlong series, "Crafting a Book," for anyone who's got the publishing itch (raises hand).  (How I have the good fortune of having such talented friends still eludes me.)

As for little ol' me, I suppose I should turn to the questions...

What am I working on?
Whatever I can, whenever I can!  (Which albeit isn't as often as I'd like, but isn't that always the case?)  There's my liberty and oakshott gypsy wife (which, by the time I'm done with it, will be more of a gypsy king for our master bedroom).

A massive lyon-bear for our daughter's big girl bed.

The first glimmer of life in a "muddy" wintry forest for the nursery (see what I did there?)

And of course #opgivewarmth is always going on in the background, because the beds in our house are certainly not the only ones that need a touch of handmade comfort.

All the palettes thus far (July, erm, fell through the cracks shall we say); find out more on this page.

How does my work differ from others of its genre?
As my toddler would say, "Hmph?"  So against that backdrop, I think what sets some of my work apart (to the extent it stands out at all) is the thought that goes into it.  And by thought I mean overthought.  I don't know that I consider myself an activist armed with a needle and thread, but I certainly have found fabric as a means of expression on more than one occasion.

For instance, Liberty (of London) and Justice For All...

or Once Upon A Forest (a camp of forest creatures emblazoned with the words of environmental legend John Muir).

Stylistically of course there's my infatuation with a good gradient, and my use of monochromatic and analogous color schemes (I insist on taking the long way around the color wheel when I do choose to venture outside of a more restricted palette).  I know I'm far from alone in those regards and don't by any means consider them unique to me, but they do tend to define my personal aesthetic.

Why do I write/create what I do?
Well this one's easy.  Because I *LOVE* it.  Growing up I was both contemplative and creative, and in a serendipitous way this space acts as a wonderful outlet for both traits.  To many, I'm sure the concept of taking large pieces of fabric and chopping them into little pieces of fabric only to—wait for it—reassemble them into (yet another) large textile comes across as both anti-utilitarian and time less than well spent.  But I beg to differ.  I mean yes, in the most literal sense, I am simply reconstructing a version of what I had to begin with.  But I'm not doing it in a vacuum, and by weaving the fibers of the stories and experiences that inform my design process (read:  all that overthinking I was talking about earlier), I contend that—looks aside—there's something fundamentally different about the finished product even if the sheer physical matter may be the very same.  And so long as I continue to believe that to be the case, I'm going to keep doing what I do.

How does my writing/creative process work?
For me it's all about timing.  Maybe it's the (over)analytical part of my brain, but I just cannot help but try to make connections with what's going on around me.  And because I write and create here for no other reason than my own sanity, I have the luxury of not having to force the process.  So when I'm inspired, I latch on to that muse for dear life, eagerly awaiting to see where I'll wind up.  When I'm not, I simply wait for inspiration to strike.  (Fortunately (and unfortunately), it rarely takes much time; the trade off, of course, being a wish list a mile long!)

Tag some peeps!
To keep the conversation going, I'm tagging two friends, both of whom I have the pleasure of calling part of my local creative circle:  fellow "bee that shall not be named" members Amy of 13 Spools and Amanda of Material Girl Quilts.  I first met Amy earlier this spring and I knew from the start I'd found a kindred spirit:  she's an ombre-obsessed, paper-piecing queen (her first book is due next spring!).  Plus she's recently been showcasing some free motion quilting that rivals some of the best.  Amanda and I met a year ago, shortly after we both heard through the grapevine that there was another quilter in the office (yep, we're just three doors down from one another at work).  Which I believe makes her my first official in-real-life quilty friend.  (Tear!)  On top of that (as if I need to say any more), she's an impeccable sewist, a moda bake shop chef and the mastermind behind the layer cake sampler along (some of you may recall my gradient-fill version, pictured below).

Looking forward to hearing Amy and Amanda's reflections, and thanks again to Anne and Casey for the perfectly-timed tag :o)


  1. WHAT??? Baby baby baby yay!!!! Congrats :)

  2. CONGRATULATIONS! Fabulous news and such a cute sweet bunny!

    I am only really new to your blog (I found it via my interview with Nicole of Snips Snippets) and I've just managed to loose myself in your site for well over an hour. Your work is sublime and I'm just so envious of your talent, patience, thought process and use of colour and pattern.

    I can't wait to see more of what you do! Thanks for sharing.

  3. Congratulations! (and the bunny quilt is adorable!!!!)

  4. Always an inspiration, my hat tipped to you. ;-)

  5. Congrats! Where is the cute bunny pattern from?? I'm sure new baby will love it!

  6. Whoa whoa whoa, back up a minute... baby?!! Congrats dude!! That's freaking awesome! Can't wait to see the little quilt you put together, i promise the ninjas will leave it behind... at least until he/she gets a second quilt ;)

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