Inspiration is everywhere.

Tiles

Yesterday Amy and I talked about inspiration while recording our podcast, it was so fun! I had to take a minute and think about where I came up with various ideas for patterns, and I thought today that I would show you just a few.

The first thing I mentioned as a place I find inspiration is in small collections of objects.

Russian-Rubix

Case in point? Russian Rubix!

RubixTiles

I explain the story behind this pattern in the podcast, go check it out!

concrete

Next place to find inspiration? Architecture! For me specifically concrete and steel detailing. You can see here, this concrete screen was my inspiration for Sweetie Pie.

Sweetie-Pie-Paper-Pattern-Cover

I’ve got about a billion pictures of various architectural details that catch my eye–then, when I have a minute where I need some ideas those pictures help me out a ton.

Inspiration2

Granny Squares by Gracious Rain

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Granny Square Quilt by Blue Elephant Stitches for Moda Bake Shop

I also draw inspiration from other crafting avenues. Knitting, crochet, papercrafting, fashion. I don’t have time to keep up on these hobbies on a regular basis, but I keep Pinterest boards and collect images that just conjure up inspiration. The granny squares that are all the rage? Straight out of crochet. Obviously I’m not the only one drawing inspiration from other crafting venues. :)

DahliaHue

I mentioned also that I get a lot of inspiration from new color palettes. I subscribe to several blogs that create new color collections from images, and it’s always fun to see new combinations that I wouldn’t have put together, but that are BEAUTIFUL. Even if I don’t love the palette, it helps me to see them and understand what isn’t working about those colors for me. A couple of my favorites? Design Seeds, and Photo Card Boutique.

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The last place that I talked about drawing inspiration from was menswear textiles. I have been known to stop men on the street and ask if I can take pictures of their tie, even–that’s me, the crazy tie stalker.

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Really, though, some of the most trendy and lasting patterns are inspired by classic menswear. Houndstooth anyone? Herringbone? How about chevron? All came from timeless wovens.

He-Zigs-She-Zags-Pattern-Cover

He Zigs, She Zags was inspired by a woven pattern.

So that’s my top 5 inspiration places! What inspires you? Have you had a chance to listen to QuiltCast yet? What do you think? Suggestions? Tell me your top 5!

xoxo

April

PS I still remember, New York. Here’s where I was on September 11th, from a post written in 2011.

 



Win a copy of Modern Neutrals! {Blog Tour}

Modern Neutrals-1

Hey there chickadees! I’m here participating in the last stop of Amy’s blog tour for her new book, Modern Neutrals. I know, I posted about the book a couple months ago, but I’m going to tell you a little more about it so that you can win one. Sound like a deal? Besides, this book rocks. I promise.

So. Modern Neutrals. It’s a pretty little book. More than that, it’s a book that is full of patterns you can use for everyone. Read: there are no appliquéd flowers or hearts or girly things in here–just crisp, clean lines. You can make something for your son, or husband, or boyfriend, or pool boy, or whatever. They’ll like it. You can also make something for your mom or sister or new baby niece. It’s that darn versatile. I mean really, can you imagine this quilt made in greys and pinks? Why hello gorgeous, tactile, baby quilt!

Modern Neutrals-2

Amy does a great job with her explanations and diagrams (she’d better, this is her third book!), and gives great tips on how to be successful at piecing the blocks. There’s a project or two that require paper piecing or partial seams but they’re minimal and explained well. You can make these.

If you’d like to win an e-copy of this book for yourself, head on over to Amy’s blog and visit the other stops on the tour. Then, click over to the form and answer the questions, press submit, and you’ll be entered. Amy will draw a winner on Tuesday from everyone who answered the questions correctly. Simple as pie. Then, when you win, you can thank me by making the cover quilt and sending it my way. Oranges, greys, and dusty aquas, please. Because that cover quilt? It’s my favorite.

Modern Neutrals-3

Hooray for awesome books, and hooray for pretty quilts. Double hooray for awesome, pretty, quilty books.

xoxo

April

PS If you’d like to just purchase your own copy, you can of course do that too. Amazon has it, and some other places.

 

 



Super Scrappy Soccer Quilt

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So. I made a quilt.

Soccer-Quilt4

A soccer quilt. The perfect kind to put on the grass and enjoy many a kick.

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It has scraps from about a million projects, and when I pull it out of the wash and the edges are all frayed? Mmmmmmm.

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All I did? Put backing, batting, and background on my longarm, and then placed the scraps where I wanted them, and sewed them right on as I quilted.

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Addicting, and awesome.

xoxo

April

PS, if you haven’t heard, me and Amy from Amy’s Creative Side started a podcast. Now, you can hear us being quilting geeks once a week. Your life is complete, I’m sure. ;) Head on over to Amy’s blog to hear us chat about our 5 Favorite tools under $25, and to see the links to our 5 favorites. One of these days I’ll figure out how to embed the link here, maybe.



Twelve Words Block of the Month #8: August Encourage

Twelve Words Block of the Month: August Encourage

August. It’s all about swimming pools, and sunshine. Am I right or am I right?

Twelve Words Block of the Month: August Encourage

So naturally, this block just had to be made from a nice pool aqua, and golden sun yellows, and some orange too, for the sweltering heat.

Twelve Words Block of the Month: August Encourage

Here’s the thing. By the end of August, I’m almost always at the end of my hot weather rope. A girl can only take so much sweating to death in the dry arid desert mountains. (<–Utah.)

Twelve Words Block of the Month: August Encourage

So that first little chill in the air that hits right around the end of August? One of my favorite things ever–because fall? Best season. Of course, Spring, Winter, and Summer are the best too.

Twelve Words Block of the Month: August Encourage

Turns out I’m a season girl.

Twelve Words Block of the Month: August Encourage

I love that the seasons always manage to change just when I think I can’t stand another day of cold, or hot, or mud, or wind.

Twelve Words Block of the Month: August Encourage

It keeps me excited and looking forward, encouraged, to know that change will come, and bring fresh new days with it.

xoxo

April

Instructions:

Cut the following:

(12) 3″ orange squares

(12) 3″ yellow squares

(24) 3″ aqua squares

(1) 3″ x 12″ linen rectangle

(2) 1-1/4″ x 2-1/2″ aqua strips

(2) 1-1/4″ x 11″ aqua strips

Piecing:

Pair each yellow square and each orange square with an aqua square. encourage-01

Mark a diagonal line on the wrong side of all yellow and orange squares and stitch on either side of the marked line, or use my HST Hack method to make 2 Half Square Triangles from each yellow/aqua and orange/aqua pair. Square up the HSTs to 2″.

encourage-02

Stitch HSTs into (6) yellow/aqua and (6) orange/aqua pinwheels. Make pinwheels by arranging as shown, stitching top two and bottom two HSTs together, pressing seams in opposite directions to allow the seam to nest. Stitch rows together. Square up to 3-1/2″. Set aside. encourage-09

Mark a 10-1/2″ x 1-1/2″ rectangle on the linen rectangle using a disappearing marker. Using the templates provided, applique the letters in the rectangle you just marked. Square up rectangle to 2″ x 11″.

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Stitch long aqua strips to both sides of linen word strip. Press toward aqua. Stitch short aqua strips to top and bottom of linen word strip. Press toward aqua.

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Lay out the pinwheels as shown, stitch together in columns, and then stitch columns together.

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Finish assembling the block by stitching pinwheel sections to bordered word strip.

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Finished block: 12-1/2″ x 12-1/2″

Download the block letters here.



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