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For Lisa Marien, it all started with a building. A 130-year old building to be exact. While on vacation she checked Facebook and learned that a friend who owned a candy shop in her Lake City, Minnesota hometown was moving and wanted to sell her building.dscn5584 Continue reading

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Cut… sew… repeat…

That phrase has been in my head all day.  I’m not sure who to blame as I don’t yet know who owns the adorable little notebook with that printed on the cover.

May-Designs-Notebook

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Geysers and geezers…

Old Faithful.

I’ll get to that in a moment.  Did you have a good weekend?  I spent it with Bern Ina, a lovely older Swiss gentleman with impeccable manners.  He helped me finish my Go Four It quilt – picture coming soon – and the Snapshots Block No. 1.

For those who asked about the pattern for the black-and-orange four-patch quilt, the pattern is in the April 2015 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting magazine, available now through the end of March at a quilt shop, book shop or grocery store near you.  There are three very different four-patch quilts from ModaLissa, April Rosenthal and Edyta Sitar.  Mine is a variation of April’s Buried Treasure quilt – it’s the same block in a different setting.

APQ-Go-Four-It-Issue

This will be a busy week with QuiltCon starting on Thursday.  Moda folks will start heading to Austin this afternoon and a few will be staying through Sunday afternoon.  I’m excited about going and seeing the sights, quilts, people and vendors.  (It’s a quilt show so there has to  be shopping, right?)  Did I tell you that I’d signed up for some classes last Summer?  I’ll let you know what I learn.

No.  I will not be getting a tattoo.

It isn’t that I think I’m too old for that sort of thing, it’s that I know it isn’t “me”.  But apparently I am old… “old faithful”.

Okay, so the comment was in the context of patterns and how “I” – Miss Rosie’s Quilt Co. – was like “old faithful” in that many of the older patterns were still sought-out by quilt shops and quilters.  (P.S. Thank you!)  Still.

With the advent of PDF. patterns, online shopping, and social media, there is no question that the quilt pattern business has changed since I started writing patterns in 2002.  The “shelf-life” is still relatively short – less than a year – and many come-and-go pretty quickly.  Timing can play a huge role in how well a pattern does, and the level of difficulty generally has very little to do with it.  Dear Jane and the Farmer’s Wife quilts continue to be popular, but in the fourteen years since Terry Atkinson published Yellow Brick Road, it hasn’t been out of the Top Ten Patterns sold by distributors.

It is THE Old Faithful of patterns – it’s the perfect beginner quilt, it’s the perfect baby-graduation-going off to college quilt and it works in every style of fabric.  (And yes, almost every pattern-person I know wishes she’d thought of it.  But that’s why Terry is so good, we didn’t “see it” until after she’d done it.)

But back to patterns.

I’m often asked if I look at, buy, read and use other people’s patterns.  Of course I do!  I’m a quilter and I buy patterns because I love the quilt and I cling to the notion that I’ll someday be able to make every one of them!  I’ve even made several… though I will own up to sometimes often usually changing one or two teeny, tiny things.

So what are the most popular patterns right now?  Bags.  Lots of bag patterns – the Weekender Travel Bag by Amy Butler and the Beatle Bags by Abbey Lane top the list, followed by a couple of bag patterns by Terry Atkinson.  Do you make bags?  I enjoy it but I’d rather make a quilt.  Like one of these “best selling” patterns – I have a couple of these patterns.

Top-Patterns-Collage

Row 1 – Atkinson Designs Yellow Brick Road / Basic Grey’s Mesmerize / Bunny Hill Designs’ Merry, Merry Snowmen.  Row 2 – Bunny Hill’s I Believe in Snowmen / the stack of everything I pulled in the warehouse / Bunny Hills’ Christmas Wheels.  Row 3 – Crab-Apple Hill’s Gingerbread Square / Jaybird Quilts’ Toes in the Sand / Thimbleblossoms’ Swoon.

Do you have any favorite patterns?  (Bonus points to anyone who mentions one by Miss Rosie’s Quilt Co.)  I probably have every pattern published by Sandy Klop of American Jane, and most of those from Jen Kingwell.  Steam Punk has been on my “to do” list for almost two years.

But when I’m asked if I have a pattern that I love, once that I would consider as an “old faithful”, you-can’t-go-wrong=with-this-pattern… Vanilla & Blooms by Fig Tree & Company – Joanna Figueroa.  I.  Love.  This.  Quilt / Pattern.  It’s out-of-print as a paper pattern but still available as a PDF download.  Both versions are terrific and I can’t think of any pattern that shows off gorgeous fabric better than this one.  It looks good in every style of fabric.  Especially Fig Tree fabric.

Fig Tree Vanilla and Blooms

The other one is Swoom by Thimbleblossoms – Miss Roskelley.  Even though I’ve seen what seems like a thousand versions of Camille’s quilt, I’ve yet to see a single one that wasn’t spectacular.  Not one.

Camille's Swoon Quilt

“Old Faithful”.  It’s much prettier than it sounds.

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