Quilting Essentials will be the title of the posts where I share some of my best tips and hints that have made me the quilter I am today. (For good or bad!) My hope is that you'll find something useful in what you read here, and more so, that you'll share tips with me, and other readers in the comment section. I won't have a schedule to regularly post Quilting Essentials, but hope to do so monthly. I have many deadlines and obligations of things I have to do that I can't promise a post on a certain day, but will try my best for monthly.
This began when I asked you for your comments on what you'd like to read about in future blog posts. So many of you asked for piecing tips, and about how I design quilts and fabrics...so sharing some of my design experience is where I will begin.
I do not have a formula. I wish it were that easy! I work very hard at feeding my creativity and it has become second nature for me. I get inspiration everywhere now, although it wasn't always that way. While on my Mt. Rushmore trip, I was inspired by the Black Hills National Forest.... in the colors, for quilt blocks, and with nomenclature. I have learned to pay attention to a lot of things I never did before. You never know when inspiration will strike!
Very often I am smitten with a block that I want to use, and begin to see possibilities in using it in a quilt. But often as I set out to design a quilt with a particular block, I end up going a different way altogether in the finished design. Sometimes fun designs come out of playing while I'm working one quilt...I end up with another quilt altogether that I can use later.
Sometimes, it's playing with fabrics...auditioning and sorting. Some combos are just so striking that you HAVE to make something from them!
Designing fabric is very different. When I begin, I have the fabric colors and kind of prints in mind. What colors will the collection be? What 'feel' do I have for what I want the quilt to look like? That 'feeling' is something that is hard to describe, but is a huge factor in how everything about the collection will turn out. I trust my instincts implicitly. After I know what colors the collection will be, and that feeling I want, I design the quilt next. Once the quilt is designed, I create the fabric I need to make the quilt, keeping many other things in mind, like how many skus or pieces there will be in the collection? Is it a well rounded collection with a variety of interesting prints, lights, mediums and darks? Even the name of the collection and the name of the quilt play into the design of the fabrics and quilt.
Inspiration comes in many, many forms. Blocks, old fabrics, quilt designs, the name of the collection or quilt, and antique, even a place I've visited, or something obscure I've seen can all add to the creative process. I really enjoy talking with my designer friends about how differently creativity manifests itself because it really is so different for everyone. Many quilt designers don't ever begin working on the quilt design until they have all the fabrics for the collection complete, and I wouldn't want to work that way....but that's just me. I happen to work in reverse. Each person creates in their own special way.
If you enjoy Pinterest and pin images of clothing, hair styles, home decorating, quilting, etc...you feed your creativity, too. Seeing a little something here and there often sparks an original idea of your own.
Please share a blog comment about creativity, or about what other things you'd like me to write about in future Quilting Essentials blog posts for a chance to win a little Quilting Essentials Fat Eighth Pack!
Quilting Essentials Fat Eighth Packs to give away!! Look for my Quilting Essentials posts on Facebook and Instagram, and share with your friends for a chance to win, and tell them to visit my blog for some helpful piecing tips in the coming months.
Be well.....and happy stitching!