Way back in February of 2009 I wrote the very first blog post for A Thread of Red. This was the little stitching I made for that post. Shortly afterward I began decorating the second shop and continued writing the blog. Not long after that, we moved to our current location and, well, you know the scoop. I'm still here. There's a reason for that, you know - it's where I belong.
I know the mechanics of quilting, what a scant 1/4 inch is and why it's needed, how to bind both by machine and by hand, the value of color and balance, how to properly use a ruler and rotary cutter and more. But, here's the thing - I'm not the greatest quilter, yet I do love making quilts. My seams are never perfect, the back sides are usually a bit messy and need some serious thread snipping and my free motion quilting skills do leave a bit to be desired. Mostly because I rush. Time is rarely my friend. Still, I am not afraid to keep sewing and making quilts that will be wrapped around my family, my friends and, sometimes, strangers.
The reason for that is because I am surrounded by people who consistently teach me, encourage me and appreciate my efforts, coworkers and customers alike. And I watch them do the same things for you.
Yep, you. All of you. The seasoned, the novice, the timid, the expert. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't learn something. Because, truthfully, we cannot all know everything. If we did we wouldn't need each other. That's the key.
Whenever quilters gather there is lots of teaching, applauding, reassuring, praising, guiding, laughing, chatting and more all laced with a strengthening dose of friendship. It cannot happen without you. You belong here. That was the message of that first blog post and it is still the same today. Because, you know, we kind of love having you around.
See you at Shop Hop next week!
Mins (aka Karin Smith)
Tuesday, March 21, 2017 11:22 AM
Tuesday, March 14, 2017 11:21 AM
|Maker Kaitlin Downs|
For any of you quilters out there who want to venture into bag making, but don't know where to start.. this post is just for you!
- Read through all instructions before you start, including general instructions which often include important information about seam allowances, finishing instructions, and tips to help your finished product be the best it can be.
- Prep all fabrics, interfacings, and other required materials before you begin any sewing. This includes pressing/ironing all fabrics, cutting according to pattern directions, properly labeling all pieces (this is HUGE!), and fusing any interfacings with their appropriate fabric pairs.
- Lastly, take your time! This is where I struggle the most because once I start a project it's hard for me to take a break. I just want to get it done, NOW! However, just like in any project, rushing through can lead to incorrect cuts, skipping important steps, and not being happy with your finished project. If you mess up or skip a step, take the time to correct your mistake before proceeding! I cannot stress this point enough. Keep your seam ripper very close, it will be your best friend!
Once you've chosen your fabrics and interfacings, its prep time! I cannot stress how important it is to read carefully and label all your pieces in this step. I promise you will thank me later if you label your pieces, instead of thinking "I'll remember which piece that is."
Now that you've prepped and labeled everything, it's time to start sewing. Remember this is supposed to be enjoyable! Take a deep breath before you begin and give yourself a little pep talk. You can do this! You've already done most of the leg-work in prepping and now all you have to do is sew. Remember to go step-by-step and take your time.
That's it! Now that you've sewn through all of the steps of the pattern you should have a gorgeous, new bag! If you made the Fiji Tote, then your mind is probably thinking of all the amazing combinations of fabrics you can come up with for this bag. It is one of the most versatile bags, and it looks so different with different fabrics!
Once you've mastered the technique, the possibilities are literally ENDLESS! Change the dimensions, add an eye-catching feature to the main panel, change up the strap options, varry your pockets, and so much more! Below are my favorite pictures of the Fiji Tote, and the maker is listed below each picture.
|Made by Quilting Mayhem|
|Made by Katrina Hamer|
|Made by Keepsake Quilting|
|Image from Annie's Catalogue|
|Image from Annie's Catalogue|
Have you made a Fiji Tote? If so we'd love to see your pictures! Post them in the comments below or email them to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuesday, March 7, 2017 11:19 AM
It isn't just about looking at the photos and marveling about the creativity, though. I've stumbled across some fun techniques, such as the quilted feathers tutorial, and unique approaches to creating these works of art, too. I was really intrigued by the "Parts Department" concept described for the Abstract Houses quilt, which is made up of quilt blocks in various sizes, styles and colors, blended with black and white elements. Who doesn't have a myriad assortment of orphan blocks that never seem to be useful? I know I do! Wouldn't this be a great challenge idea! Who's up for it?
Until next time...Life is short. Buy the fabric!
Tuesday, February 14, 2017 4:55 PM
|Scrappy Quilted Tote Bag from A Bright Corner|
|Kawaii Scrappy Trip Along from Mochi Studios|
|Scrappy Bookshelf Quilt from The Last Piece|
|Postage Stamp 2 from My Purple Patch|
|Scrappy Fence Rail from KatyQuilts|
|String Quilt by Crazy Mom Quilts|
Tuesday, November 15, 2016 10:54 AM
Just simply click on the recipe name to be taken to the recipe.
Pumpkin Trio Pattern by Indigo Junction
Lemon Squeeze Cardigan by Snapdragon Studios