08 September 2014

Around the World Blog Hop: From Wales to . . . Idaho?

Quite the jump, wouldn't you say? While Idaho does not have the charm and history that Wales does, it has it's own kind of raw beauty. And I love it.

The lovely Jennifer at Glinda Quilts invited me to participate. And you don't say "No!" to Glinda. She has a wand, and she knows how to use it! Here's her post from last week. She is an amazing lady (with or without her wand) who makes "pants bags" and quilts for soldiers and for just about everyone she knows!

It's funny. She called me SuperWoman. I actually think I'm Wonder Woman. I even have a t-shirt. 

See? By the way, one of the FEW pictures of me you will see on this blog. EVER. Cherish it.

1. What am I working on?
What am I not working on? Let's focus on the two big things in my world at the present moment: my first quilt patterns for sale, and Christmas. 

This is my first pattern, called Make It Do, which is currently in test/writing phase. But I finished my flimsy! We'll see how well I write a pattern after my friend Katie is done with hers. (And the blurriness of the photo is intentional - just a teaser shot until the pattern is written and for sale).

I've got four more in the works, so stay tuned. I'll do a big reveal when I get each one done, plus a giveaway associated with it, just to get you started.

If you want to see my goals for the quarter, you can look at my monster of a list over here. But Christmas is priority. Dolls, doll clothes, sleeping bags for the stuffed animals, a patchwork Weekender for the mother-in-law, a quilt for my mom. You know. Easy stuff. Or not. Plus, another patchwork Weekender for an awesome friend, ANOTHER patchwork Weekender for another awesome friend, my first t-shirt quilt, and a tie quilt. Yikes. Buy stock in Dr. Pepper, because this girl is gonna need a lot to get it all done!
2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
Honestly, I have no idea. I think we all see things we like, and make them in a way that suits us best. It's our own little spin, or interpretation.

I majored in Creative Writing, and it always amazed me in poetry classes to hear my classmates interpret my poems. I mean, in ways I didn't intend at all! But that's how quilting is: we buy a pattern, and unless we use the exact same fabric in the exact same way, our quilt is going to turn out differently. And that's how it should be!

And sometimes, it's just "I need to use this fabric in this quilt because I don't want a million little squares left over for some random project down the road." Also known as my Texas Roadtrip Top and Bottom Border Decision.

My other example: I didn't want to waste a panel of fabric from the Simple Life line when I made my quilts for my girls. I also didn't want to figure out mitered borders on my Quite Contrary quilt. I'm not cool like my friend Kate. So I did some corners on my borders:

Again, not brilliant, but it needed doing and I'm happy with the result. I wasn't a huge fan of those strawberries though!

If I'm different at all it's my love of Bella solids instead of Kona. I've never jumped on the low-volume bandwagon. Or grey. Or negative space. Just not my thing. I make pretty things that I like. Whether they are "of the moment" is not worth my time considering. 

I discovered my other difference last week. I haven't made something from a pattern, exactly as written, in, well, forever. I add borders, or blocks. I'm always making them bigger. We like our quilts bigger around here. They make better quilt forts.

3. Why do I create what I do?
I've been sewing for 30 years now. I started in 4-H, making aprons and sweatshirts and skirts. I made my first quilt at 18. It wasn't until my first child was born that I really got bitten by the bug. And then quilting became my therapy. 

I just supported my husband through 8 years of school - undergrad (for both of us!) and law school - and quilting and sewing became my outlet. It helped me make some fabulous friends. It helped me through postpartum depression more than once. 

I mentioned I have five babies, right? And I homeschool? It's actually a fun method of homeschool lessons for us - color, math, business. Writing a pattern takes some English muscle too. So we work together. My daughter has great eye for color (although she inherited my distaste for pink), and my boys just want more R2D2 quilts. And there's a rumbling for Calvin and Hobbes quilts, heaven help me. I'd better be prepared to make 3!

And my hobby keeps us warm all winter long!
4. How does my writing/creating process work?

I'm a busy momma. I homeschool/unschool our five children. This involves lots of strewing. It's also work, for me, but so rewarding. That being said, I do have downtime, so I'm on Instagram and blogs, looking at all the gorgeousness that's out there. I especially love linky parties with pictures. I've been thinking about starting my own!

I'm usually inspired by the fabric first. I see a line I love, I buy some of it. Or a lot of it. Maybe a lot more of it. Then I find a project or two or ten.

Once I've found my projects, I get to work. Sometimes there's math involved, especially now that I'm designing my own quilts. LOTS of math, but I've always loved math, so that's a good thing.

Sewing comes in fits and starts. It's perpetually interrupted, but such is the life of a homeschooling mama and I wouldn't change it for anything. I've also started a sewing group with some ladies at church, so there will be some blocks of uninterrupted sewing time coming up. Just in time to finish those Christmas presents!

And now, I nominate my good friend Kate from Katie Mae Quilts. She is a rock-star quilter with two of the funniest cats I've seen. My kids want to adopt CC. She is also a rebel and will be doing her post next Wednesday, so you have to wait two whole extra days!


  1. What a fascinating post to read. Your children are adorable. I love how you involve them in your quilting.

  2. I think I like you even more! Lovely insight to you and your creativity - super woman, wonder woman, fabby woman - beautiful family, gorgeous quilts and bags - I think you're just great, missus and I'm so glad to have 'met' you :)

  3. Hi Jennie...funny to literally find a neighbor through blog land...as I live 45 minutes from Boise! Love your blog and quilts. I added ya to my blog roll so not to miss out on a post and hope you'll stop by and join us on Tuesdays for my Tuesday Archives Linky party. Val from myplvl.blogspot.com


"The more things you do, the more you can do."

Lucille Ball