Sunday, November 9, 2014

For my treasured new Quilters (young and old)!

I thought I'd use today's blog to cover some basics for beginning quilters whether young or old.

All the different cuts of fabric can be confusing to  someone not accustomed to the "lingo".

The wide range of cuts can make putting together your first quilt much easier. So, for the beginners, here it goes.

Fat Quarters-18" X 22"
Fat Eighth-9" X 22"

Fabric Strips-2.5" x 44" (wof-width of fabric)
Skinny Strips-1.5" X 44"

Charm Squares-5" squares useful for many projects
layer cake squares-10" squares

1/8 yd = 4.5"
1/4 yd= 9"
1/2 yd=18"
3/4 yd=27"

I hope this tiny little primer on fabric cuts is helpful ;)

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Happy Tuesday Morning!


It's been a creative past week here at Seaside-I went to the cutting table and began putting together fabric collections and quilt kits.


I used to do business on a site called QuiltersAuction (it is currently not up and running and not owned by me) and there I found many wonderful customers who loved the kits and collections we created here at Seaside.


For some "quilty"/ "sewy" types the fun is in pulling all the fabrics together. For others that part is a chore. They might just wanna have a gorgeous bundle of fabrics arrive and then pick a pattern, or have an entire kit arrive and begin sewing!


We love to put those things together here at the Shop. And while the previously mentioned site had the "auction" feel, most of my customers did the purchase now option so that they were certain they got the items they wanted.


And so as I began rebuilding my site on the new host, I was sure to include Fabric Collections and Quilt Kits as specialty sections. Also, I am busy building the "Beachy" fabrics section so that we become known as "the" online shop for beach fabrics.


So, if putting together the fabrics isn't your cup of tea, check out the gorgeous groupings we have at Seaside. And if you have a project in mind...say, a purple quilt, or a beach quilt, or a baby quilt~ just send us your thoughts and we'll pull together some ideas and send you some photos for your approval. 


Many of our kits now include the amazing Quilters Dream Batting in them, as well as the pattern and all the fabrics for the top of the quilt.


We, of course, have backing options available at an additional cost.


Wishing you a joyful day and as always,


Happy Quilting/Sewing,


Barb






                                                      Dear Stella Kit
                                   

                                                  Satsuki Quilt Kit


                                               Satsuki Table Runner Kit


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

"This is my first quilt ever"

"This is my first quilt ever."

I thought she was kidding..you know, teasing me. 
 I had a customer order some fabric a few weeks ago and we had trouble making ourselves clear via the internet, so she gave me a call. What a story she had.

The quilt shown above was the first piece of quilting she ever did. Her name is Mary and she is a character! Mary had never quilted a day in her life. Her sister was a quilter though. And Mary saw a picture of a Paula Nadelstern quick and promptly called her sister to request one be made for her. Well, much to Mary's surprise, her sister was not much into those teeny tiny little kaleidescope pieces. 

So Mary set out to make this quilt herself. She did not even have a complete book. She had a class pamphlet she had found somewhere and when she neared the end of her project she realized there were pages missing. So, her husband, who was a surveyor by trade, took his vast knowledge of angles and together they figured  out how to finish her project!!!

She went into her local quilt shop to get something to complete the project and the ladies were having a guild meeting in the back. The cashier that waited on her engaged Mary in a conversation during which Mary said, " I am not a quilter". Now, she had that stunning piece of art with her. So the cashier yells back to the guild ladies.."hey, y'all come look-this gal says she's not a quilter!!"...

Below are some other photos of her "young" work. She clearly, in my opinion has a gift that is rare.



 These were quilted by the renowned Timna Tarr, who said she had to sit down when and breathe when she first began to work on Mary's quilts. 



I am not sure when I have ever been more inspired..To sit down with a book, well, sort of a book, and do work of this quality is just breath-taking! You go Mary! (She's only in her 60's-imagine what she'll do when she gets some experience lolol!!!)

What a pleasure it is to serve my wonderful customers! Especially when I get to know them a little!

Happy Quilting on this first day of Fall!

barb

Monday, September 1, 2014

My List of Quilts....

The list of Quilts I've Yet to do....

Do you have this list? Either written or just stored carefully in your mind..

Of people who have touched your life so deeply  that you know there is a quilt in there just aching to be born for them. I do...

And I need more hours in the day-for to not make these quilts will break my heart. They simply must know that each stitch represents a moment or a memory or a thought of them that has touched me. A gift they have given me that without the quilt they may never know of their offerings to my heart.

Words often fail..Actions do not.  They reveal the hearts of those around us.

I have made quilts for people who, as it turned out, only wanted the quilt-figuratively speaking of course. But you get it-the "thing" was all they needed from me. Not the "stuff" behind the "thing". And those quilts, and those people have faded away now-not of my choosing. Of theirs. But the love I sewed into those quilts lives on. It waits for no welcoming door or offer of acceptance. It just rests there with love on it.

I have a quilt on the machine right now that i am struggling with. It is nearly ready for binding. But somehow, to finish it may signal the end of something I am not ready for. At least I tell myself I am not ready.

But I am determined it will be finished before the cool weather sets in here and it will go to the person I love and it will say the words I cannot find.

And then I will begin the next one, and then the next one, and then the one after that..

For in the end-all that matters is love. In whatever form you give it.

Happy Quilting,

barb

Saturday, August 30, 2014

The "Rules" of Quilting.....

I had a young quilter contact me this week for a batting. And she needed it quickly so i sent it off straight away..

I just heard from her again this morning and she was so discouraged.

She had been into a local quilt shop where she was berated for her choices in thread, binding technique plan, and her decision to not pre-wash..

She was so discouraged, in fact, that she was contemplating whether she should continue to quilt or not...

I was appalled. As a craft, many of us desire to see quilting thrive. And it is seeing a resurgence in those trying to learn the art of quilting.

But, like all crafts, and forms of art, I do not believe there is "one right way" to quilt. And I do not think we will attract young quilters who may be able to learn some of the intricacies of quilting when we approach them with the "rules" from the past.

None of her choices were going to "ruin" her quilt, her machine, or most importantly, the gift of love she was offering to someone in this quilt.

To encourage the love of the art, perhaps as shop owners, we ought to embrace that our jobs are just that..to encourage "art" the way the creative person is envisioning. I am not saying we cannot offer helpful pointers about getting good cuts, or angles or strip piecing..But when we offer "our advice" without being asked, we are simply trying to assert our "right way" over someone else's idea..

I have no time for that. The world is already full of people who are discouraged at every turn. If you cannot lift someone up in their endeavor...well, maybe quiet is the answer..

Wishing you a happy quilting day,

barb

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

A Quilters Dream Batting Primer!

Wow! To say my blog has been long neglected

would be a gross understatement. 


Here I am though-ready to start fresh!






This photo is of the amazing Cotton Stuffing

 produced by my friends at Quilters Dream 


Batting.  They do not sell directly to consumers

but through quality quilt shops both online


and storefront. Having used all the battings 


available here in the US, they are,  hands down, 


my favorite. The quality is ALWAYS there and 


they have the most amazing customer support 


staff.



On to the useful information-I am often asked 


which battting to use for a given project.



The choices can be overwhelming. There are 


cottons, polys, poly blends with cotton, silk, 


wool, recycled green battings, and midnight 


black poly battings. These days there are even 


battings with fusing attached to make projects 


super easy.


People often believe that the choices reflect the 


quality of the batting. With Quilters Dream 


Battings, this is not the case. Rather, the choices 


represent the weight of the lofts.



Each of the battings listed below is connected to 


a link on the Quilters Dream site that may have 


additional information you may find useful.



All of the quilters dream products can be 


purchased on my site through this link: Quilters 


Dream Battings.


For example, Cotton comes in 4 Lofts:



request-this is the lightest, thinnest of the lofts 


available. This weighs about 3 oz/square yard 


and is 1/16" thick.



select-this is the mid loft batting. This weighs 


about 4 oz/square yard and is 3/32" thick.



deluxe-the loft becomes noticeably heavier here. 


This weighs 6 oz/square yard and is 1/8" thick.



supreme-this is the thickest of the cotton lofts 


and weighs  8 oz /square yard and is 3/16" 


thick.



Polyester Battings:



Available in 3 lofts-



request-this has the same thickness and weight


 as the cotton request.


select-this has the same thickness and weight as 


the cotton select.


deluxe-this has the same thickness and weight


 as the cotton deluxe.



Quilters Dream Puff Batting-A fluffy light 


batting. This batting comesin only one weight 3 


1/2 oz/ square yard and is 1/3" thick.



Quilters Dream Midnight Poly Batting (Black)-


This now comes in only one loft-select and 


weighs 4 oz/ square yard and is 3/32" thick.



Quilters Dream Angel Battings-100% flame 


retardant fibers-This is available in two lofts:



request-which is 1/16" thick and weighs 3 


oz/square yard


select-which is 3/32" thick and weighs 

oz/square yard



Quilters Dream Orient (a personal favorite of 


mine)-this is available in only one loft-select 


and weighs 4 oz/square yard and is 3/32" thick.



Quilters Dream Wool(this is AMAZING wool!)-


this beautiful wool weighs 3 1/2 oz/square yard 


and is 3/8" thick.




Quilters Dream Fusion-This wonderful product 

is available in Cotton Fusion or Poly Fusion and 


in two lofts-Request and Select. The weights


 are comparable to the select cotton with similar 


thicknesses. This is a solvent free 


fusible batting! 



So your choice here is do you prefer cotton


 or poly and thinner or slightly heavier.




Quilters Dream Green Batting-This batting 


sometimes strikes fear in people. (totally 


unnecessarily i might add ). It is made from 


recycled green plastic bottles and it is so soft 


you will be totally stunned. It is the palest of 


green shades and works so nicely in 


any project. Its weight is similar to the request 


cotton, as its thickness.




Quilters Dream Blend Batting-This is a 70% 

cotton, 30% poly blend of fibers and is a delight 


to sew on. This comes in only one loft and 


weighs 5 oz/square yard and is 1/8" thick.



Last, but certainly not least, is the fantastic 


Sweet Dream Stuffing! This product,  made 


from luscious 100% cotton fibers 


is 18" wide and 120"long when unrolled. 




And so concludes today's lesson on battings :) 



Happy Quilting and Sewing!


Barb