Pattern Making

I decided to try my hand at designing my own foundation paper piecing pattern. All in all, I think it turned out pretty well! 🌵

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The finished product!
A close up… the finished block included 27 sections of fabric!
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My very first templates didn’t include seam allowances, but I added them as I traced each section onto the tracing paper I would be sewing on.
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After making the initial design, I transferred it to some tracing paper.
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Deciding to use a directional fabric for the body of the cactus and the background brought another set of challenges, but I learned a lot from the process!
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I’ve also been practicing my quilting and getting the stitches on the front and back of the quilt to match… I think I’m making progress.

Have you ever designed your own pattern? How did it go?

Making Time to Make

This week has been busy and exciting. Winthrop students had spring break, so my schedule was a little wonky and I managed to get a couple of days off too. I drove a 16-ft box truck for the first time to deliver work back to an artist… that was exciting (those mirrors were AMAZING). On Wednesday I went up to Charlotte and got to do some printing with one of my wonderful former professors, Dr. Gardner, and my friend Willard. The press is a Vandercook that Dr.Gardner rescued from a basement stairwell at Winthrop and restored. It is a dream. Here are some photos of the day. img_2418.jpgimg_2417.jpgimg_2418.jpg

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Willard, the cat whisperer

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I love the level of collaboration involved in the printing process.
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The finished product!

 

Filling the Toolbox

I spent some time this weekend working through an Intro to Free Motion Quilting workshop hosted by HollyAnne Knight at String and Story. It was awesome! I always love to learn new skills and techniques and this was no exception. I’ve got a lot of ideas floating around in my head for pieces I’d like to make soon, and working through quilting and sewing tutorials is helping me build an arsenal of tools to bring those ideas to life. Working in a different medium can be daunting and scary, but it can also jumpstart new ideas. I am really enjoying stepping back into the basics and honing my skills. If you are on the fence about learning a new medium or skill, I would encourage you jump it as fast as you can! Here are some photos from the workshop!

If anyone is interested, HollyAnne is offering another free (!!) Intro to FMQ course on March 17. More info can be found here.

A simple meander.
A loopy meander.
Some switchbacks
My personal favorite- the swirls!
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Some quilting ideas for my North Star quilt block (also a pattern from String and Story). Check out my Instagram to see that block!
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Exploring another FMQ motif

I have also made a little progress on my Mandolin block! I’m really enjoying this as a project I can take with me and work on when I only have a little bit of time.

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Progress on my Mandolin block!

Some Sewing

I’m hoping to get some good documentation soon, but here is a look at some of the sewing I’ve been doing lately!

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My first complex pieced quilt. I am very proud of this and was excited to incorporate fabrics from my grandmother and my great-aunt into this one. 
Little baby hexies for an undetermined project.
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Little pins.
An english paper piecing project inspired by this mandolin block from Jodi at Tales of Cloth.
A mini foundation paper piecing Eculid Ave quilt from Sassafras Lane.
A close-up of a mini improv quilt.

 

Something New

I’ve seen a lot of changes over the last year or so, so I’ve decided to start this blog. Maybe I will keep up with it, maybe not. We’ll see!

First, some life updates.

After getting my BFA and MAT from Winthrop in 2015/2016 I taught middle school for one year. That year was a lot of things. It was great, exciting, scary, stressful, hilarious (have you ever met a middle schooler?) and very eye opening. I finished that year defeated and burned out from teaching, but having learned a LOT. Something I know a lot of first year teachers understand well. After that, I decided not to jump right into another teaching position. I was still passionate about education, but did not want to jump back into a classroom with such a bad taste in my mouth. Later that summer, I ended up back at Winthrop and began working as a gallery assistant part time and teaching a gallery practicum course. Through the following months, my responsibilities increased and the University posted an Assistant Director position for the Galleries. I applied and interviewed, along with other candidates and was chosen for the position. Since November 2017 I have been serving as the Assistant Director along with my gallery assistant and teaching duties. While vastly different from teaching middle school, I have thoroughly enjoyed this change of setting. I am in an arts field, working with the community, and still getting to teach… it’s amazing, really.

In my year of teaching, I didn’t have time to make much solid work as an “artist” beyond lessons and examples for my students. But, “makers gonna make” so I was always tinkering with something or another.Working only part time over the summer gave me a chance to make up for some of that time and I got to spend a lot of time just playing in my new studio (/guest bedroom). During that time I fell in love with sewing again and have been teaching myself how to quilt. I’m hoping this blog can be used to document some of that.

I’ve decided to call my blog In the Studio because as a maker of things, I feel that life is a studio (wow, mushy I know). I can’t not make, so that’s what I do. It may not always be “art” per-se, but there’s always something creative that keeps me ticking. So here we are, thanks for reading along. 🙂