Sunday, June 21, 2009

Amy Butler does it again with style and flair. This book is really well presented, beautifully photographed and illustrated. It has a pocket of patterns in the front with good clear instructions for each project. The book is broken up into chapter themes like personal items, lounge room accessories etc. with easy, medium and more difficult projects (although none of the projects are really difficult just more time consuming and requiring more care preparation) in each chapter. Each project has finite dimensions with specific fabrics, tools and supplies required. Amy Butler patterns take you through the process step by step and if followed to the letter result in success. (A note though, a downfall of her patterns, I have found, has been a lack of explanations about why you are doing a specific step at that stage rather than later - it usually all becomes clear, but for a more experienced sewer who is used to knowing the purpose of doing something so that shortcuts or quickcuts are possible, this is a little frustrating when tackling a pattern for the first time).

process from idea to fabric

The proposal was presented at Spring Quilt Market last year. This is one of the original graphics that I showed to the fabric company reps, designed with Corel. In the next few weeks I’ll be showing you how the design is changed, refined (and improved!) for the printing process.

Work on the line began in earnest in January. The fabric will be shown to shop owners at Quilt Market at Houston this fall and show up in shops after that. Stay tuned as we follow the process from idea to fabric on this blog.

gorgeous fabrics

We all sigh with deep contentment when the door opens on a shop full of gorgeous fabrics. Did you ever wonder how that fabric comes to be?

In the many years that I’ve been quilting I’ve learned a lot about fabric, especially about what makes quilt shop quality different from that of chain or discount stores. But the design process, how the patterns on the fabric move from idea to yardage was a big mystery to me. That is until I was invited to submit a proposal to P&B Textiles for a fabric line.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Chairs cushions fabrics Designing

Awhile back, reader Kate sent over a link to this project idea from Cookie Magazine: paint mismatched chairs the same color to make a dining set. I like the 12" of unpainted legs on each piece. Note they carefully chose wood tones that matched each other, or the set might have turned out a little crazy looking. And kudos to Cookie for choosing an excellent paint color.

Bedsheet designing

Look at this room that Sarah put together for her 14-year-old daughter, using my Calliope fabric on some cushions. How lovely!

If you'd like instructions for making some quick throw pillows, here's a tutorial for a simple envelope pillow, the easiest kind there is.

I'm pondering Roman shades lately, after seeing a couple DIY tutorials on the world wide interweb. Maybe our orange room could benefit

More cushions, bags, upholstery fabrics

San Francisco company Swizzlestix produces paper goods and housewares with groovy colors and retro patterns. Looks like they like orange, too! Swizzlestix is offering a special giveaway to How About Orange readers. Just leave a comment here with a way to contact you and the name of your favorite pillow design (click here to see the choices), and one comment will be drawn randomly. The lucky winner will receive the pillow of their choice, free! Contest ends Friday, 3/20/09, at midnight CDT.

Fabric covered magnets

Some friends were over the other day, and I showed them how to whip up some fabric-covered thumbtacks and magnets. (See the tutorial here.) For the magnet version, you'd obviously glue on a magnet instead of a thumbtack. I know that seems readily apparent, but if I don't state it for the record, I am guaranteed to get emails asking about it.