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Click here for link list to all the organization articles.


 

Many a quilter dreams of having a dedicated studio space. Often reality does not allow such dreams, while children, work and other obligations take precedence. When the time and budget does allow for a personal studio space, there might be a number of things to consider that just may not have been on your radar. This is the first of four studio visits wherein we present obstacles, ideas, and tips from fellow quilters who have generously shared their projects as from an idea to finalized space.

Like many quilters, Alex's studio was for many years in a 12' x 14' former bedroom. Over time, quilting items began migrating throughout the house, due to the lack of space in the studio. Fabric was stacked in piles in a nearby laundry room, while books found homes in various other areas of the home. Having things scattered around the house frustrated Alex. With little time to dedicate to quilt work, she wanted to be more efficient by containing everything in one area. Unfortunately, there was no extra space available in the house. The hunt for a new home began. It was during this time that Alex's father made the suggestion of bumping out an existing bedroom wall into a portion of the backyard that, at the time, was not being used. Thrilled with the idea, this solution allowed the family to stay in the house they loved while providing a dedicated studio space for Alex. With no house purchase needed, money was saved for the expansion, which began in 1999.


View of the backyard from Adair's bedroom.

What were the 'must have elements' of the studio?

I don't like a lot of visual distraction in my work space, so storage for fabric, batting, completed quilts and others supplies needed to be out of sight. I prefer to design on a design wall, so I needed a large amount of dedicated wall space. To keep a unified and neutral color scheme, I chose creamy white as it would allow me to add interest with colorful art and family mementos. Good natural light and a dedicated office, separate from the studio, were on my must have list as well.

How did you approach the project?

I visited the studios of Yvonne Porcella and Freddie Moran to gather ideas as well as to determine what would work/not work in my space and budget. Seeing another artist's approach gave me good ideas for how to incorporate them into my own area. Talking with Yvonne and Freddie also gave me the opportunity to ask questions from those I trusted.


(Adair's bedroom window is removed and a half-wall is built to enclose the new office space)

Did you use an architect or designer? What was your budget?

An architect worked on the initial design while another design expert tweaked it a bit. Both individuals spent a great deal of time listening to what my needs and desires were. With a budget of $60,000, most of the cost went for structural work (Framing, roof, floor, plumbing, windows, electrical, etc.). We did include plumbing in the subfloor as it would be a plus for resale. The idea being that the space could at a later date become a family room with a small bathroom.

What did you have to eliminate or edit on the project?

I would have liked to have included custom built-in work/cutting tables, book cases and other items, but with $56,000 going for the majority of structure that meant that the remaining funds had to be seriously stretched. To stay within budget, my Dad helped to build the cutting table using two doors that rest on sets of stock kitchen cabinets. Curtains hide large storage areas underneath. Along the far wall (under the circle quilt) another laminate counter hides more storage.

By making the cutting tables I was able to still have enough in the budget to allow for the Elfa storage system that is in the cabinets. It was a big investment, but the cabinets are still in great shape after all of these years.

(My father built the sailboat when he was 16.)

Tell us about the process. How long did it take?

The entire job took four months start to finish. We could have made the space larger, but at just under 500 sq. feet we stayed within our original tax bracket. This was something we did not know until the architect made mention of it.

Along with the new floor, framing and roofing of the structure, a portion of the wall in the existing bedroom was opened to house and hide my office. The other side of the wall (in the studio) allowed for built-in bookcases and a television. The electrician installed plugs into the floor to avoid the need for cords along the floor. Skylights were installed in the roof and clerestory windows provide natural light. The sliding patio door was installed so that I could enjoy my garden and have easy access to the backyard.


(Kitchen stock cabinets provide storage under the large cutting table)

Describe the completed studio and how you feel about the space?

The studio is a light, open and airy space. With everything in shades of creamy white, it is a calm space while color is introduced with art and family mementos.

Two walls of tall cabinets hold my fabrics, batting and other things out of sight. Along the back wall of the studio is a very large design wall. The cutting/work tables sit in the center of of the room. The space has good energy and lots of natural light from the windows, skylights and patio door. I love the large design wall, worktables and my Horn cabinet. White non-loop carpeting is there to ensure that this area is 'off limits' for small children. I don't want to have to worry that someone might step on a pin.

Two white wicker chairs by the patio door provide seating for reading or drinking a cup of coffee. It's a great place to relax or look out into the garden. John and I often spend our evenings reading, or watching TV while I stitch in this studio space. It is one of our favorite places in the house.

 
(Closets for fabric, quilt batting, completed quilt storage)                                                        (Elfa Storage System)

What do you wish you could change?

After many years, the worktable furniture is starting to show wear. It was built on a very tight budget and is not very ergonomic. At some point in the future I will replace the system I currently have, but otherwise I love this space.


(Backyard view towards the studio)

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There are triangles galore in this block by Jinny. Do you know what it is called? Play the game and find out.

 
 

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In Ricky's version of Jingle Bells, you'll get to see him perform in a whole different way. It all started with the piano located near a mine shaft. Yes, Ricky is actually standing on top of an abandoned mine. To learn the whole story about the video, click here. For behind the scenes photos from the shoot, click here. If you'd like to order Ricky's music, click here.

Click on the photo to see Ricky, Dashing Through the Snow!

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Alex just found this "gifts for sewing lovers list" by Erin Van Handel at Sie Macht. Are any of these on your wish list?

Click here to see the list.

Click here for Alex's pencils.

 

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Melissa Mortenson is the girl behind the Polka Dot Chair Blog. Last summer she visited Norway and was enamored by all of the gorgeous knit work. She took one of the knitting patterns that she spotted in Norway, and simplified it so she could turn it into a patchwork project. Melissa used gridded interfacing to make the prospect of stitching 169 squares of fabric together a bit easier. Want to make one? Head on over to WeAllSew.com to get the instructions.

 
 
 
 

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Rosa Rojas wan't satisfied with her appliqué. So she invented a better way. No glue fingers. No hot iron. And you can achieve tiny circles. Watch show 1912 to see Rosa in action. In Show 1912 you will learn:

  1. Rosa's invention of the Apliquick tools
  2. Rosa's easy Hawaiian Quilt Method
  3. Ricky's Twisted Cording Trick to help make your quilts win ribbons

  

See Rosa's favorite tools in our shop right now.

They are great, high quality tools, that do the job and last for a lifetime.

Amazing tools, wonderful Christmas gifts, and a way to appliqué that you will love. 

 

REMEMBER, GET 30% OFF!!

You can get a 30% off your next purchase coupon after you

Join or Renew your premium (Star) membership.

That will save you $11.70 on the Apliquick Sticks alone. You cannot get those tools anywhere for less.

Great for YOU or a wonderful Christmas present for a quilting friend. 

Sign up and then shop.

 

 

 
 

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Cheryl writes about Antonio's Quilt on her blog:

A few years back a friend of mine in the Calgary Modern Quilt Guild, Katrina Hertzer, posted a picture on Instagram of her son painting. Aside from the fact that her son is adorable I was completely smitten with his painting. So smitten that I went to the sewing room that afternoon and made a block inspired by his in progress painting. Then I decided it needed friends. And a lot of improv pieced background.

Click here to read the whole article.

Star Members can watch Cheryl in Show 1911: Slabs, Curves, and Shrinking Ahead.

AntoniosQuiltbyCherylArkison - 36 Pieces Non-Rotating

AntoniosQuiltbyCherylArkison - 100 Pieces Non-Rotating

AntoniosQuiltbyCherylArkison - 289 Pieces Non-Rotating

AntoniosQuiltbyCherylArkison - 36 Pieces Rotating

AntoniosQuiltbyCherylArkison - 100 Pieces Rotating

AntoniosQuiltbyCherylArkison - 289 Pieces Rotating

Original Photo: Mary Kay Davis

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Cheryl writes about Antonio's Quilt on her blog:

A few years back a friend of mine in the Calgary Modern Quilt Guild, Katrina Hertzer, posted a picture on Instagram of her son painting. Aside from the fact that her son is adorable I was completely smitten with his painting. So smitten that I went to the sewing room that afternoon and made a block inspired by his in progress painting.  Then I decided it needed friends. And a lot of improv pieced background.

Click here to read the whole article.

Star Members can watch Cheryl in Show 1911: Slabs, Curves, and Shrinking Ahead.

Original Photo: Mary Kay Davis

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FREE $10 SURPRISE GIFT WITH ALL ORDERS OVER $25  

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Order online or by phone. If you choose to place a phone order on Monday, December 5th from 9am-2pm Mountain Time, I'll be answering the phone!

     
 

MUSIC CDs

Save 41% on Ricky's Christmas CDs

$10.00 (regularly $17.99)

Great stocking stuffer!

Christmastime and Christmas in a Small Town are both heartwarming. Ricky's Christmas CDs are professional recordings that feature original arrangements of timeless Christmas classics. Both CDs are extremely popular! If you already love these - spread that love with friends and family! Click through to see song titles.

     
     

Create Your Own Fabric Bundle (five yards)

Save 32% on Hand-dyed Fabric

It's an additional 15% savings on the regular Five Fabric Bundle (FIVE YARDS).

$85.00 (regularly $100.00)

Choose from one of the popular bundles shown below, or use this option to pick and choose your own five fabrics. This is the lowest price I've ever offered on the Five Fabric Bundle. 

     
     

Chocolate Caramel Bundle (five yards)

Save 32% on Hand-dyed Fabric

It's an additional 15% savings on the regular Five Fabric Bundle (FIVE YARDS).

$85.00 (regularly $100.00)

Includes: One yard each of Cinnamon Toast, Sedona Daze, Tangerine Dream, Desert Wind, and Rivendell 

     
     

Emerald Isle Bundle (five yards)

Save 32% on Hand-dyed Fabric

It's an additional 15% savings on the regular Five Fabric Bundle (FIVE YARDS).

$85.00 (regularly $100.00)

Includes: One yard each of Roasted Bell Pepper, Spanish Moss, Ode to Kermit. Cool Cucumber,  and Key Lime Pie

     
     

Feel the Heat Bundle (five yards)

Save 32% on Hand-dyed Fabric

It's an additional 15% savings on the regular Five Fabric Bundle (FIVE YARDS).

$85.00 (regularly $100.00)

Includes: One yard each of Red Hot Mama, Holly Berry, Pink Passion, Musk Melon, and Sunflower Power

     
     

It's Electric Bundle (five yards)

Save 32% on Hand-dyed Fabric

It's an additional 15% savings on the regular Five Fabric Bundle (FIVE YARDS).

$85.00 (regularly $100.00)

Includes: Two yards Caveman Multi-brite and one yard each of Coconut Snow Cone, Bubble Gum, and Dragons Breath.

     
     

Powder Puff Bundle (five yards)

Save 32% on Hand-dyed Fabric

It's an additional 15% savings on the regular Five Fabric Bundle (FIVE YARDS).

$85.00 (regularly $100.00)

Includes: One yard each of Cotton Candy, Musk Melon, Wisteria Blossom, Lemon Tart, and Caveman Multi-Tweeny

     
     

Seaside Serenade Bundle (five yards)

Save 32% on Hand-dyed Fabric

It's an additional 15% savings on the regular Five Fabric Bundle (FIVE YARDS).

$85.00 (regularly $100.00)

Includes: One yard each of Cool Cucumber, Caribbean Queen, Blue Suede, Shoes, Coconut Snow Cone, and Sea Maiden

   
     

Spell Bound Bundle (five yards)

Save 32% on Hand-dyed Fabric

It's an additional 15% savings on the regular Five Fabric Bundle (FIVE YARDS).

$85.00 (regularly $100.00)

Includes: One yard each of Blackberry Cobbler, Red Currant, Wisteria Blossom, Periwinkiedink, and Fire Dragon

   
   

Sugar and Spice Bundle (five yards)

Save 32% on Hand-dyed Fabric

It's an additional 15% savings on the regular Five Fabric Bundle (FIVE YARDS).

$85.00 (regularly $100.00)

Includes: One yard each of Bordeaux, Mocha Magic, Mocha Mouse, Mocha Chiffon, and Vanilla Bean

   
   

The Great Hall Bundle (five yards)

Save 32% on Hand-dyed Fabric

It's an additional 15% savings on the regular Five Fabric Bundle (FIVE YARDS).

$85.00 (regularly $100.00)

Includes: One yard each of Anchors Away, Turkey Barn, Desert Wind, Cool Cucumber, and Mystic Morning

   
     

Wisdom and Courage Bundle (five yards)

Save 32% on Hand-dyed Fabric

It's an additional 15% savings on the regular Five Fabric Bundle (FIVE YARDS).

$85.00 (regularly $100.00)

Includes: One yard each of Good Gray-cious, Lichen It a Lot, Bronze Age, Spanish Moss, and Mocha Chiffon

     
     

Complete Fat Quarter Collection
(11.75 yards)

Save 32% off regular Hand-dyed Fabric price.

$199.00 (regularly $249.00) The regular price is already an 18% savings. This offer saves you even more!

The complete Fat Quarter Collection is an overdose of beautiful color. It represents all of our current colors. It's a great library reference, and also perfect for those hand-dyed scrap quilt projects. 

     

Synthrapol (4 0z. bottle)

Synthrapol is recommended for washing hand dyed fabrics.

$4.99 Don't forget to add this to your fabric order. 

Synthrapol is a special detergent used in pre-scouring fibers before dyeing, and in washing out fiber reactive dyes after dyeing. It removes dye molecules that did not bond and helps prevent bleeding. We have washed all our fabric in Synthrapol, but it is always recommended to wash them again in your water — the hottest wash possible.

 

 

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I received an inspiring email piece from one of my retreat students. Her name is Dr. Joan Fulton and she is the Professor and Associate Department Head of Agricultural Economics and newly appointed Provost Fellow for Diversity and Inclusion at Purdue University. She works with the five Cultural Centers on the campus — which include Black Cultural Center, Latino Cultural Center, Asian American and Asian Resource and Cultural Center, Native American Educational and Cultural Center, and LGBTQ Center. 
 
Soon after Joan took her new appointment she had the idea of creating a community quilt with the LGBTQ center. The plan was to invite individuals (students, staff, friends, faculty) to create quilt blocks that she would join together into a quilt. Participants wrote messages on cream colored pieces of fabric. She then taught them to sew random-width strips around in a log cabin patchwork style.
 
Momentum for the project grew each day. About the project Joan says, “It was wonderful to see the original ideas of the students emerge. The students were thrilled with their creations – as was everyone else.” Joan trimmed and assembled the blocks into the 54” X 63” inch quilt and quilted it.
 
In mid-November (2016) the LGBTQ center hosted 2 panels from the historic HIV/AIDs Memorial Quilt as part of HIV/AIDS awareness. The Purdue LGBTQ community quilt was proudly along side the panels. Visitors from the campus and beyond came to the Purdue Memorial Union to see the quilts. Joan said, “The students were so proud and excited to see how their blocks became something greater when combined into the quilt. The sense of accomplishment of working together on the community art piece was a positive force. It was especially inspiring to read all of the messages on the quilt – as they were all positive messages. 
 
(Purdue LGBTQ Detail)
 
Since I’m a huge fan of Hamilton (the musical), Joan made sure I knew that someone had included a Hamilton quote in their block — “Look around at how lucky we are to be alive right now!” 
 
Other quotes in the quilt include: 
Love is all that matters
Understanding is the key
The greatest of these is love.
We are all unique on the outside, but inside our heartbeat is equal.
 
(below: AIDS Memorial Quilt)

Show #1912 - Rosa Rojas 

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