I’ve been missing around here, enjoying the quiet and magic of the holidays, and the potential of a new year. I’ve really been thinking about my goals, and what I want to do, and where I want to go this year. It’s been a lot of thinking and a lot of decision making. I think it must be something us artist-types have to do on a regular basis (probably everyone else, too)–evaluating where our plans are taking us, and trying to evaluate and course correct before we get too far from where our hearts really want us to go.
Over the break, I jumped in and made a Scrappy Tripalong quilt (it’s all the rage on Instagram, just check out hashtag #scrappytripalong, and follow me: amrosenthal–or I’m posting my pictures on my Facebook Page, too)–and as I’ve been working on it, I realized it’s the first quilt I’ve made just for fun, because I want to. Every other quilt I’ve made over the last 10 years has been as a gift, for a deadline, to show a pattern, etc. It was a strange realization. Pair that with the fact that I’m having so much fun making it, and I think I’m on to something. Creativity flourishes when it’s set free. If you’d like to make one, the tutorial is here.
This year, I’m excited to learn more, slow down, develop my personal style, and really marinate and become the person I want to be–do the things I’ve always wanted to do. If not now, when? Each month, I’m setting 5 goals (a la Gretchen Rubin’s Happiness Project), each month building on the previous. It sounds like a tall order, but when each goal is truly a delight to work on, I think it will be blissful and restorative.
I’ve also joined in on a few other things that will help me Become (my One Little Word) who I want to be. I joined in on Fifth and Hazel and Ollibird’s 365 Pattern challenge. I’m creating a repeating pattern every day this year to move me toward one of my goals: cultivating the skills necessary to design fabric. I’m making a schedule and committing to blogging more regularly. (I hope you don’t mind). I’m using Project Life to document these fleeting days, weeks, and months. I’m picking up my Farmer’s Wife blocks again (Posts about these blocks: 1, 2, 3, 4.) I’m decorating my newly remodeled studio–my shelving gets put in Tuesday, and then pictures! I’m eating better, exercising early, and taking my vitamins and supplements (if you’re curious, I’m in love with my doTerra supplements). I’m keeping my family healthy, and enjoying these last few months before my kids start kindergarten. I’m trying to get up the guts to start up the IVF process again. It’s not for the faint of heart. It’s a year of nurturing and growth, for sure.
And in case you think I’m forgetting you, my sweet friends, I’m most definitely not. Many of my goals revolve around sharing tutorials, creating a community, and learning more about my friends. That absolutely means we’re going to have lots of fun this year. Together.
What do you think, friends? Have you done any reevaluating yourself lately? Any creative (or other) goals for the new year? I’d love to hear them. Maybe we can help each other along.
PS First up? That Block of the Month I hinted about in September. I can’t wait to show you. Who’s in?
PPS My Home for Harvest pattern is being featured on the Fat Quarter Shop’s Jolly Jabber blog today–go suggest a fabric line you’d like to make it in, and you are entered to win a $50 gift card. Score!
I made this quilt back in April for a little sweetie named Nyah.
She’s my cousin’s best friend’s daughter (you follow that?)
In February of this year, shortly after her fourth birthday, she was diagnosed with Leukemia. She’s 2 weeks older than my goobers.
When I heard the news and asked my cousin how she was doing, she told me about the treatments, and the hospital stays, and how she was losing weight, feeling sick and cold all the time.
I couldn’t do much for the feeling sick, or the hospital, or the treatments–but I sure do know how to help someone who is cold.
Nyah loves being outside, and loves, love, LOVES rainbows. So naturally, a rainbow quilt was in order.
I started with a layer cake of Me and My Sister Designs spring collection Twirl for Moda, and no plan at all. I just started working. (It only took half the squares!)
I felt like the quilt needed her name on it somewhere. I remember as a little kid, anything with my name on it was just that much more special.
I wanted it to be soft, and snuggly, and as gentle as it could possibly be, so I found some coordinating chenille backing, and rounded the corners of the quilt.
I quilted it in an allover wave with a pretty light yellow thread. Kinda reminds me of those egg crate foam mattresses. Remember those?
I got news just recently that her treatments have done their job for now. Her counts are good, and her prognosis is positive.
There’s still quite a way to go for her, but thank heaven for miracles–and soft snuggly quilts that remind a little tiny girl that she’s loved by people she’s never even met.
PS I was thinking of making another of these…anyone interested in a tutorial?
Hey everyone! A fun treat for you today! I have a free block pattern up over at Gen Q Magazine, you don’t want to miss! Go check it out, download the free pattern, and while you’re there, explore the other cool tutorials and articles they have at their site. There’s some fun stuff there!
PS: Thanks for the love on the new quilt patterns! I’m looking forward to spotlighting them in the next few days and telling you a bit more about each! Also, I may just be posting a giveaway in the next few days…just as soon as I get some last minute Market sewing done…Mwa!
Two of my loveliest friends had birthdays last week, and I couldn’t help but pull some things together for them. I could picture in my head exactly what I wanted to make for them, and no matter how many times I tried to think of something store-bought that would be just as good, I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t settle.
So I just did it.
First, an oh-so-fun Cathedral window throw pillow in red and lime green, to match her bedroom makeover! (Lucky girl got some really cute beadboard and shelving in there too!) She said it matched just right, and I’m so glad. A few fat eighths of Ruby by Bonnie and Camille for Moda and some white yardage and I was on my way!
I’ve wanted to do a cathedral window pillow for quite some time, and lucky me, there was a great tutorial on the Moda Bake Shop that walked me through it. I was SHOCKED at how much fabric it uses. So much folding! It’s like origami magic with fabric.
Super fun, super time consuming, but super great results. I’m going to have to refrain from making about 5 for my own room, whenever I get around to redoing it. (In case you’re curious, the walls in my bedroom are a striking shade of mauve, a gift from the previous owner. I avoid my bedroom in daylight at nearly all costs.)
I’ve got one more gift quilt to finish for my sweet baby nephew (I’m in love with him) who’s already 3 weeks old (mini-Swoon, anyone?), another for a sweet little girl fighting cancer, and then I’m on to spring pattern writing frenzy! I’ve got all the quilts made up, and several of the patterns written and tested, but I’m waiting on fabric for the last two.
Have you ever made a Cathedral Window pillow or quilt?
PS Stay tuned tomorrow to see the quilt I made for my other awesome friend’s birthday…she used to be a Disney princess.