It Simply Can’t Be!

 

 

 

 Nope still no quilting for this girl, and it’s FRIDAY!  Where did this week go? Today I am was at the University of Delaware with my middle son, Noah.  He had orientation. Yippee!!!  The excuses the rest of the week are MIA…

If you read my post No Quilting Game Here, you know that I was in Wisconsin for the US Open.  My wonderful husband surprised me with the trip!  We attended last year when it was in Pittsburgh, and as may of you know I captured a picture of Jordan Speith and myself.  Well, now it is a tradition for my husband and I.  This year’s trip proved to be challenging since the course was a little more wide-spread.   FYI,  Jodan has two State Police officers that follow him around the course…ugh!  Either someone ratted me out and gave him a  heads up that I would be stalking him for a picture, OR Jordan checked out my last post and learned of my upcoming visit.  I’d like to think he actually read my post!

Note the police officers in the pictures, and yes I know one might assume from what they see in the photograph that I was put behind bars for stalking Jordan.

No, I didn’t cause drama, just observing from the grandstand.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Although I kicked and screamed like a five-year old, I did come back to Pottstown, PA.  My temper tantrum quickly ended when I went to Newtown Quilter’s Guild to teach for the day.  They all mastered the Divide and Design so fellow quilters watch out! Take a look at what just one class had these students producing.

Just think this was just the beginning for these talented individuals.  Can you imagine what they will create in the near future? I am so anxious to see what their new skills and creativity brings to their fabric.  With a little practice they will all be unstoppable!

No Quilting Game Here

 

Graduation, a visit from my mother, a charity golf outing AND a trip to the US Open this weekend in Wisconsin…something had to give right?

I am off my game, or maybe I should say my head is NOT in the quilting game. There is no “off my game” about it.  Are my excuses good enough? Never mind, please don’t answer that.  Regardless of my rationale,  I simply did not have my work mojo this week, so I apologize for letting my readers down.  But once again I am proving that this quilter is human. At least I am consistent in that aspect, right?

Sorry folks but the idea of getting another picture of me and Jordan Speith does not bring the words “quilting, longarm, Proline Rulers or blog post” to mind.  I am currently trying to figure out how I am going to get Jordan to smile for the camera AND have me standing next to him.

Trust me if I do happen to capture a picture of, “Jordan and I”, there will be “something” posted for ya all to see! I guarantee my smile will be bigger than the one shown below.

Have a great weekend, and let me know if anyone else is attending the US Open. But please keep in mind I will not let you in any pictures with Jordan and I…sorry but sometimes a girl has to refuse sharing!

SaveSave

HS Graduation Brings a Sale?!

 

Yes, it’s another milestone in the Calle family!

Our middle son, Noah, is graduating for Owen J Roberts High School on tonight!  I am so proud and in disbelief as to how fast time has flown by over the past 17 1/2 years.  He will be attending the University of Delaware this fall, we couldn’t be more excited for him and know he will continue to make our family proud.

Why Not Celebrating Education with a DVD Sale?!

While many families are hosting graduation parties I decided to add a little something to my graduation festivities  and host a “Graduation Sale”!

So now through 6/12/17 take advantage of my $20 DVD Sale!

Maybe you’ve been curious on how I come up with my quilting designs.  My Divide and Design method  makes the concept of configuring how to quilt as easy as 1-2-3!  Take all the guess work out of “how to” by utilizing this video! For $20 you can put easy peasy into your design process!

Lavish

Perhaps whole cloth is more your style. If that’s the case then Mastering the Mini will be right up your alley! You will be a master of your own mini after this tutorial!  Yes, it’s just $20!


SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

Feathers Create My Happy Place

 

 

 

 

 

 

Feathers, feathers, feathers.  Yes, I do know how to quilt many other things, however, I absolutely love to quilt feathers.  As soon as I had finalized the purchase on my machine I was determined to master the technique of  quilting these beauties.   So, maybe you have just bought your first machine and are having the same thoughts I just shared of loving feathers , or you have a machine and simply haven’t taken the time to learn this technique. Well, then this post will come in handy!  Although this is an older video I thought I would repost it for some of my newer followers, and for those of you that have yet to tackle this motif.

The video I am sharing below is a tutorial on formal feathers, some quilters refer to it as the “hump and  bump”.

 

 

Whether you are new feathers, or just needed a refresher on fine tuning your skills I hope you found this video beneficial.  By the way what are your favorite motifs to quilt?

 

SaveSave

Never-Ending Quilt Lesson #3

 

I had good intentions, and  grand plans of getting a ton done on my never-ending quilt over this holiday weekend.  But as we all know what happens with “good intentions” it did NOT happen.  The weather on Saturday had the golf Gods calling me to my favorite place.  “Lisa, Oh Lisa if you grace my greens with your presence I will ensure that you have an amazing 18 holes”.  I needed no begging and with no further ado I was having a blast swinging my clubs.

Even thought I did NOT provide my 4 year UFO with  any TLC on Saturday, Sunday or Monday; I did get make sure I gave it some love on Friday.  So to ease my conscience I thought I’d share what I accomplished on Friday with everyone…as promised.

I agonized and agonized over what to do in this area of pink.  After a lot of painstaking consideration I eventually reached a decision but not before I mentally put myself through hell.  Thoughts where having a relay race in my mind “oh my, I am going to put the wrong thing here and it’s going to look horrible” and “what if I discover I HATE it, I’ll be picking it out till the cows come home” (sound familiar).  At some point I had a small epiphany.  And that was realizing that this quilt could already be perceived as ruined due to the bleeding that it incurred. Understanding this little notion had me putting aside any further fickleness on my decision-making process.

 

I contemplated many different ideas as to what I should be incorporating in the below portion of the quilt.  The thought of applying feathers was a brief consideration; but it was a fleeting prospect since there wasn’t enough space for them to become a reality.  In addition, the area in yellow just opposite of the pink was intended to feature the same technique, therefore creating a mirror effect.  Now as I reflect on my choices, in hindsight, placing feathers on one colored area and echo lines on the opposing colored area would have enhanced my design.  But if you think I am ripping anything out you are highly mistaken.  As with the bleeding color, this too stays and I move forward.

I’m not in love with the feather motifs that I applied, in fact, those I really did consider ripping out.  But thank goodness I am working hard on combatting my compulsive behaviors; because now they are starting to grow on me. I can’t say I love them yet, but maybe in a few more days we will move beyond the feelings of toleration.

So a few more steps along this adventure have transpired and as I move forward a feeling of excitement is beginning to stir within.  Hopes of salvaging this piece are becoming a possibility.

Lesson #3:  The lesson learned during my Friday quilting was this; prior to Friday the feeling  of being “hopeful” or “excited” did not exist.  This quilt has reminded me that regardless of our initial thoughts and feelings are, there is always hope in what we do.

Are you working on something that has you rethinking your original design?  Have choices you’ve made ended up pleasantly surprising you?

Please feel free to ask me any questions regarding my designs or choices I have made with thread, batting etc.  I’d love to answer any questions you may have.

 

SaveSave

SaveSave

You’re a Hard Habit to Break/Make

 

One, two, or three( cannot go beyond three), yes, we all have them.  Habits, whether good or bad, take up space in our daily routine.  I figure after sharing my quilt travesty why stop there? I might as well turn the page on the open book of Lisa Calle.

Bad Habit #1:  While I am quilting I have a tendency to throw all of my thread snips onto the floor.  This then requires me to vacuum up all those lovely little snips at a later date.  Dare I say a much later date, an extended date that I push-off as long as possible.  The consequence of this snip littering has me entering a store with various colors and lengths of thread dripping off my pants.    I look like an episode of Project Runway gone bad, really bad.  I keep forgetting to keep a lint roller in my car, definitely not the way to break my habit but it would allow me to keep an intervention from occurring.

Bad Habit #2:  Making sure my family is fed on days that I am immersed in my studio; which is typically Monday through Friday. Yes, they actually expect to be fed, they are obviously a bit clueless to what the addiction of fabric does to a quilter.  Let’s clue them in shall we…no dinner!

Good Habit #1:   And at this time there is only one that I am going to report, I need to think on a few others (or rather think if I have any others).  Prior to beginning a new project after completing one I MUST clean my studio.  I need to start my new design in an area that is nice and tidy.  But within mere hours I revert back to bad habit #1 as thread snips cover the floor, and various tools/materials take over my work space.

What habits take over your quilting life?  Please tell me I’m not the only one that allows their family to starve for a majority of the week? By the way there is always frozen waffles and pizza in my freezer!

It’s Not All About the Gift Wrap

 

So often we encounter quilts that are just stunning, I mean…AMAZING.  The bling incorporated into the design, the ribbons we see hanging from them; it makes us want to run and hide.  But believe it or not often it’s those quilts that don’t “sparkle” or haven’t won awards that are priceless.

It’s not always about the “gift wrap”.  Some of my most precious quilts are the ones that are utility quilts, or ones that I have created for those I love; not designs I made in order improve my quilting professionally.   For example the quilt shown below was a project for a dear friend who, at the time, was battling cancer.  There was no bling, or specialty fabric used, on the contrary, the emotional aspect of this quilt outweighed any materialistic part of this design by leaps and bounds.

Let’s also consider quilts that we receive as gifts.  My sister-in-law, Judy, who is kind enough to travel with me to shows (I’m sure many of you will recognize her in the picture below) made me that awesome quilt.  Now, I’m not insinuating Judy isn’t talented, my point is that this quilt wasn’t produced with all the bells and whistles seen at quilts shows, on blogs, etc.  Judy wasn’t “gift wrapping” her design so those in quilting community would rave about her talent.  No, this priceless piece was made just for me, and trust me this quilt and I bond every night on the couch (or taken on the road with me to shows).

The quilt displayed below was a gift my dear friend Mandy sent to me.  I was completely shocked to receive this beautiful quilt, as it was sent with the intentions of giving me a little “pick me up”.  Her mission was accomplished and she won the award for kindness and friendship!

So let’s face it, we can admire those talented quilters surrounding us. Fellow quilters that encourage us to better our techniques and push our creativity to another level are individuals we should respect.  BUT it isn’t always about the “gift wrapped” quilts.  Quite often it is those “silent” designs that in our hearts have ribbons pinned to them, and are wrapped with love; those are the quilts that truly matter.

Do you have a quilt that didn’t amazing “gift wrap” but mean a lot, or did you give a quilt that wasn’t all about the gift wrap? I’d love to hear your story!

Tune In for a Tutorial!

I have had many requests for the Baptist Fan pattern and how to accomplish this technique.  This made me realize that it has been quite some time since I have posted a tutorial, so today is your lucky day if you want to be in the know on how to accomplish the Baptist Fan!  So to my machine I will go and get this little instructional video going!


Before I get into full swing sewing away, I wanted to give everyone a little reminder that my birthday is TOMORROW! Which means my BIRTHDAY SALE will commence!  You can take advantage of 15% until May 7th!  Might be the perfect time to fill your cart with some circle rulers which will allow you to produce the lovely Baptist Fan design shown below.  My birthday only comes once a year so celebrate with me and enjoy a little retail therapy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I love the texture of the Baptist Fan pattern, and its traditional look; and in the first video I will educate viewers on how I do produce an all over Baptist Fan Design.  Now this isn’t a technique that you can complete in a few minutes.  It will take a little dedication, and many will say using a pantograph would be much faster.  I cannot deny that fact, however, I find that this treatment comes out beautifully using the ProCircle rulers, sizes 3, 5, 7, 9, and 11.

In the second tutorial I demonstrate how to complete a border.  Remember I am LAZY!  I don’t challenge the brain with additional math problems if it’s not necessary. I want to be working on my design not calculating numbers!  LOVE IT! For this specific border I incorporated the ProCircle Rulers, again selecting sizes 3, 5 and 7.  These rulers are extremely versatile, and can be utilized in so many ways! That being said more circle videos are in the works!  So hopefully you will have a better understanding after watching these tutorials on how to complete the Baptist Fan.  If you tried tackling this technique after watching these videos let me know how you made out!

I Will Not Deviate!

 

 

That is my way of thinking once I have a vision.  I am steadfast on moving right along the course I have planned, but there are times when a design does not transpire the way I originally anticipated.  This is especially true concerning the piecing aspect of my quilting.  Gauging the amount of fabric required has been an issue for me in the past. Unfortunately, when I miss calculated the material needed, I needed to incorporate some major creativity in order to make the project work.

Case in point would by my Hula Hibiscus:

Originally I planned to use more of the color blue so that I would enhance the outer portions of the quilt.  Obviously the end result was much different as I did not have enough blue and had to revise my plan of action!

Here is another example where I needed to abort the initial mission:

While producing the above small sample it became apparent that I did not have correct color thread.  My intended goal was to match the thread to the background, well change of plans for this quilter! My color choice of thread then had to be altered to a shade that was similar, or kind of similar to the background.  Again, not what I mentally manufactured for this design.  Boy oh boy does thread choice make a difference!  This little piece would appear completely different, if a blending thread had been used.

Regardless of the reason , sometimes being creative means revising again, and again, and again.  It may not be that you have miscalculated the amount of fabric needed, or neglect to possess the correct thread color; it could simply be that mentally your vision is taking your design in a new direction.  Whatever the reason, embrace what is being set before you and unleash the talent within.

Deviating from what you “thought” was the best plan, might just produce the most amazing plan ever!

Have you needed to revise, or deviate from your “original” quilt idea?  If so was it due to not liking your design, or (like me) you misjudged your design requirements?

 

“Raindrops on Roses and Whiskers on Kittens”

 

We all have a “few” of our favorite things. Those items that, if they went MIA,  would have us completely paralyzed from doing anything productive.  For me, there are those very obvious things like my longarm, and sewing machine that undoubtedly would prevent me from moving forward each day.  But in pondering the less obtuse items, there are three  favorite things that come to mind:

My Grandmother’s Thimble

 When I received my grandmother’s thimble I was thrilled to have such a pretty memento. To me thimbles weren’t a necessity to quilting. I felt they were very cute, and made nice, tiny decorative piece; but useful…no  I mean, really, how could a small piece of metal situated on your finger really become an instant force field?  Well, was I enlightened to the thimble’s importance! I felt like Mel Gibson in Brave Heart when I finally chose to spare my finger tips from being murdered by potential needle jousting. My fingertips and heart thank my grandmother on a daily basis!

Needle Threader 

 Even my red-headed assistant wants one of these (for those very, very rare occasions she needs to replace a button).  Once she saw me use this little gadget she was in awe and was very tempted to walk out of the studio that afternoon with mine in her bag.  No, replacing a button was NOT on her to-do list that evening she just fell in love with this handy-dandy device.  But for those true sewers, like me, I am happy to know that in a mere blink of an eye my needle will be threaded.  I can cast away those reading glasses, and wasted time making sure I am in a nicely lit area, this mini machine gets it done.  Since revealing this item to Drea I have kept a watchful eye out to ensure mine doesn’t go missing.  I might just bite the bullet and get her one for that once a year use.

Organizer

Okay, so this little beauty is so important that I felt simply posting a picture and writing a brief description would not do it justice.

Karen Kay Buckley’s Thread Bag

Karla’s Amazing Cherrywood Fabric

I have no affiliation with either of these two wonderful ladies…. Just love their products!!

  There you have it quilting friends, a couple of MY favorite things.

 

Now I know YOU have a couple of Favorite Things.   So please, do tell!