Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Happy Halloween!! This year my sweet George bunny is a chocolate covered strawberry! Michael and I were brainstorming ideas that would be easy to make (I'd given up on finding something ready made), and that George wouldn't hate too much! He came up with chocolate covered strawberry after I ordered George a strawberry house/bed!

A little felt, embroidery floss and a tiny bit of stuffing went a long way!

Want to see some super cute outtakes? :)

Oh, hi!

Can I go out there?

This is my house!

Are we done yet?


Maybe I can wash this thing off!

Do I smell carrots?

Hmm, maybe I should go into my house.

I love my house.



Friday, October 30, 2015

1. Sam's graduation quilt!, 2. DSC_7308, 3. Blueberry Fans Quilt Finish, 4. Houston the #dmmqgtwistedsistersquilt has landed, 5. Little Tents, 6. Texture 😀 #quilting, 7. "Trying To Be Cool" quilt., 8. "Night and Day" Quilt, 9. machine quilted w route 66 / dave hudson /digitech patterns

Every two weeks I go through my favorite photos on Flickr, and choose nine sewing/quilting related projects to showcase here. These photos and projects are not my own, you can find the original images and creators by clicking the coordinating links! If for any reason you do not want your project featured here, please email me and I'll remove it!

Happy Weekend!

Patchwork Essentials at Quilt Market!

Friday, October 23, 2015

If you're going to be in Houston for Quilt Market this weekend, I hope you'll come see me! I'll be walking the floor too, so say hi and ask me for a bookmark!

Have a great weekend!

Patchwork Essentials: The Half-Square Triangle

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

It is finally time for me to fill you in on the details of my book, Patchwork Essentials: The Half-Square Triangle! If you missed my post on how and why I ended up writing a book, don't forget to check that out (here: My Author Journey). It's been a little nerve wracking thinking about writing this post, I have certainly been overthinking it. Then I remembered, this doesn't have to be the only post I write about it, it's just the beginning!

Basting the Convergence quilt in the lunchroom in Michael's lab building.

When I set out to write this book, I had a lot of ideas about what I wanted it to be. I wanted it to be more than a book filled with patterns, I wanted it to have a greater purpose. I really tried to be intentional about creating not only a book of quilt patterns, but a resource on the subject of half-square triangles. In my classes and patterns, I try to make sure that you're getting your money's worth. This may mean multiple quilt sizes in my self-published patterns, customizing instructions or "pro tips" as we like to call them in class. I thought a lot about this when writing Patchwork Essentials. Half-square triangles are a basic block, and certainly beginner friendly, but I also wanted to provide information and tools for the more advanced quilter. I'll save talking about the extras for another post, let's focus on the main bits today!

Interlocked Quilt from Color Emphasis. © 2015 Lauren Hunt for Lucky Spool Media.

There are three different construction techniques included in the book. If you were to make each quilt in the book, you'd get practice using each technique. Beyond the instructions for each technique, there are charts that tell you what size square to cut to achieve a specific half-square triangle finished size. If you're after a half-square triangle that's not an even number or 1/2" size, you'll also find easy to use math formulas for figuring out any size!

We found a goldmine of quilt photo shoot spots this weekend, YAY!

The twelve quilts in the book are split into four chapters. Each chapter explores a different way of creating contrast and movement in a quilt design using half-square triangles. The four chapters are Color Emphasis, Relative Scale, Patchwork Play, and Block Party. For example, in the Color Emphasis chapter the quilts use color/fabric choice and placement to create different designs.

The 60 blocks in the block chart are each made up of 16 HSTs, 960 total!

The Block Party chapter has a little something extra special. In addition to the three quilts in this chapter, you'll find a block chart. There are 60 different four color half-square triangle quilt blocks, sewn up in real fabrics, not digital! You can use those blocks to design your own quilt, or alter designs in the book. With the help of the technique charts/math you could make traditional 12" blocks, tiny blocks, giant sized blocks, whatever size you'd like!

Next week, let's talk about all the great extras we've packed into this book! In the meantime, if you're looking for a copy, pick one up here.

Happy Quilting!

American Patchwork & Quilting Podcast

Monday, October 12, 2015

Happy Monday! I'm excited to be a guest on Pat Sloan's podcast, American Patchwork & Quilting Radio, today! It will be live at 4:00pm EST (3:00pm CST, find your time zone here), and will be available to listen afterwards here. We'll be chatting about lots of crafty things, including my book, Patchwork Essentials: The Half-Square Triangle!

If you're new to In Color Order, welcome! I hope you'll take a look around! Here are a few reader favorites to get you started:

My Author Journey

Lined Drawstring Bag Tutorial

For more information about my fabric collections (my latest, Curiosities, is shown above!), see my Fabric page!

For more information on my patterns, and where to find them, see my Pattern page!

Art of Choosing: Creative Fabric Selection

Safe Sewing: Crafting with Arthritis

And of course, George bunny!

Keep up with all my creative endeavors on Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest!


My Author Journey

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Patchwork Essentials: The Half-Square Triangle
Happy Tuesday! I am itching to officially introduce you to my book, Patchwork Essentials: The Half-Square Triangle. Before I do that however, I'd like to share a little bit of the backstory on my journey that has led up to this moment.

Patchwork Essentials: The Half-Square Triangle
Mini quilts from my first quilt along, found here.

I had "write a book" on my list of things I'd like to do for a while before I actually took steps towards doing it. I first started to think about writing a book back in late 2011/early 2012. I had just graduated from college and moved with Michael to Wisconsin. Instead of getting a traditional job I decided to try and turn my hobby into a job. It was not an easy time in my life. I was missing home, and had no routine. With Michael in his first semester of graduate school, I was spending all day alone. This gave me a lot of time to work on figuring things out. This included writing my very first sewing pattern, the Lined Drawstring Bag Pattern. I also wrote the second half of my Art of Choosing series during this time. Things were starting to pick up, and I thought that writing a book might be a good venture for me. I actually spoke with an agent about an interested publisher, but a week later I was approached by Art Gallery Fabrics. So, writing a book took a backseat for a while.

Starflower Block
My first try at half-square triangles, a Starflower block, early 2010.

As time went on, I got discouraged about not writing a book sooner. Designing fabric and patterns kept me plenty busy and at times I thought my opportunity had passed. Then last year, I realized that I just needed to make it a priority. I didn't have time to write a book because I wasn't making time. Now the real question was what to write about? For a long time I thought I would write a book about color and choosing fabric. But honestly, I have no expert knowledge on the subject. I minored in Art in college, but most of my know-how is intuitive and pieced together. I feel comfortable discussing it on a basic level, but not in depth enough to fill a whole book. It took some serious consideration, but when I finally landed on writing a book about half-square triangles, it made perfect sense. Half-square triangles were one of the very first quilting techniques I tried. They have always been a favorite of mine, and I have made a lot of projects with them beyond the quilts in my book.

Patchwork Essentials: The Half-Square Triangle
The first quilt I worked on for the book, Opposites Attract.

Once I decided on half-square triangles, everything started to fall into place. I wanted the book to be more than just a collection of half-square triangle quilts, I wanted there to be intention behind each design. Each quilt in the book explores a different way of playing with the basic block form. I'll go more into that in my next post!

Sunset Tiles Quilt
Sunset Tiles, my quilt in Scraps, Inc.

After working with Lucky Spool on Scraps, Inc. and seeing the beautiful books set to be published by them, I knew that's who I wanted to work with. Shortly after Spring Quilt Market in 2014, I pitched my book, and by July I was busy starting on the projects. I completed nearly all of the writing and sewing that Fall and early Winter. Staying focused working on the book and projects almost exclusively was really challenging for me, both mentally and physically. As you may know, I have arthritis (for more on sewing with arthritis see my post here), so all the cutting and trimming definitely took it's toll.

Patchwork Essentials: The Half-Square Triangle
Forever saving the trimmings.

Procrastinating comes naturally to me, so I tried to be as organized as possible throughout the process and set myself monthly and weekly deadlines. I still managed to save a lot of the writing for later, but stayed on track with the sewing. There were definitely times where I felt like I was in over my head, or that I was never going to be done. It was hard not having that "instant gratification" to keep me motivated. My biggest motivator ended up being a spreadsheet taped to my sewing room door. It had each project broken down by step (fabric selection, cutting, HST making, trimming, etc). So each time I'd finish a step, I could fill in that box, which gave me a sense of accomplishment along the way.

Patchwork Essentials: The Half-Square Triangle
I wore a lot of different hats in the process of writing this book. I was able to have my hand in many of the decisions made about the structure, design, and even take a few of the photographs. While at times that meant extra work on my end, it makes me appreciate the finished product even more. In the end, I'm glad that I waited to write this book. Blogging, contributing to other books, working with magazines, and most importantly writing my self-published patterns has given me invaluable experience. It allowed me time to find my voice.

It still doesn't feel real, even holding the book in my hands. I can now add "Author" to my resume! I'll be back later this week to officially introduce you to my book, YAY! :)

Happy Quilting!


Friday, October 2, 2015

1. P1000540, 2. Polarity Quilt - Colour Version, 3. Twin Size Economy Block Quilt-Better Shot, 4. finished! mod sampler quilt, 5. Christmas Quilt, 6. Diamond Drop - Quilting, 7. The top is done! #schnitzelsndboominiquiltswap, 8. Phoenix, finished, 9. Progress on the kaleidoscope DWR

Every two weeks I go through my favorite photos on Flickr, and choose nine sewing/quilting related projects to showcase here. These photos and projects are not my own, you can find the original images and creators by clicking the coordinating links! If for any reason you do not want your project featured here, please email me and I'll remove it!

Happy Weekend!