Hitchcock pillow!

In a birds-of-a-feather Crafting meet-up at BlogHer ’11 called Modern Marthas (as in Stewart), I had the pleasure of making the acquaintance of the adorable Kate from PeepThread. She is a fellow blogger, mama, and sewist. Her blog is gorgeously photographed and bright. I am happy to say that we are now blog friends. (Hi Kate!) Take a look at the hilarious and creative way she used my Wonky Little Houses™ Pillow pattern—a Hitchcockian throw pillow. Great storytelling in this pillow. I have this same Echino bird print, but never thought to use it in such a clever and illustrative way. See more on her blog here. read more

Humility in the patchwork

Well, I just found my humility for the day. A four inch square of patchwork just took me down. No joke. If it were always smooth sailing, we’d get so bored, wouldn’t we? I’ve never met an art form that didn’t put me in touch with my humility in short order. But, $%@#!&*. I had to rip out the smallest corner of my new quilt FIVE or SIX times today and each time that little square of fabric became more and more of a mess. Weird, because it was for no technical reason or something that was beyond my reach…just simple, straight sewing. But if you lose your focus, things tend to collapse. The first time it happened I ripped it and sewed it again. By the third time, I thought of the buddhist monk raking his zen garden– the beautiful patterns raked into gravel and sand for hours and hours. And when he is done– he gathers a handful of fallen leaves and throws them onto his work. As if to say: I am not perfect. I am not in charge. I am not above nature. I am just a humble man. Things change. The wind blows…more leaves will fall soon enough. I LOVE stories like that– stories about man’s ability to attain humility and practice it is an art form. Like the Tibetan Buddhists hunched over sand mandalas for fifty or sixty hours creating elaborate patterns and images in sand. When they finish, they wipe their hands through it to symbolize impermanence. OK, so I didn’t mean to throw leaves at my quilt…but the results are the same. It is all fixed now and you can see the work in progress above. I am super excited about it. It is my newest pattern. It is the companion to my Wonky Little Houses™ Pillow pattern. The Wonky Little Houses™ Quilt pattern. It will be released and for sale in my etsy shop this month! Oh, and below are some monks making a mandala and then another erasing one.

Wonky Little Houses :: Classroom

Today, I taught my Wonky Houses pattern over here. I swear I learn WAY more from my students than they do from me…but we all have a good time. Every time I teach I am amazed by people’s innate talent, and their spunk, willingness, and creativity. The best part is seeing each person’s vision. Every single Wonky House quilt is completely unique and a reflection of its maker. No matter what me make, it always becomes a self-portrait– but this is especially true in sewing. In four hours, most people only finished two or three houses so these are very much in progress. Just look at what these women (and one girl) created. We had sisters, a mother and daughter…it was a really fun day… read more

First patterns…first giveaway!

I am trying to write this post but I keep deleting the whole thing because I have no words (ah hem…for once.) I think the pictures above speak more clearly than I can (also a first!)

I have officially published the first-ever sewing patterns for two of my designs. It was a lot of work and it took a village. I am so grateful to the amazing friends I have in my life who helped me with the graphic design, photography, editing, and proofing of my patterns. I am absolutely excited beyond words. (Flip, Lisa, Cyndi, Val, Jill and Sarah…thank you for your help!) read more

Wonky Little Houses Pillows finished!

Hi. Here they are–my finished designs. I love the archetype of the little house and all that it might mean and stand-for as an icon. And then I just love birds. They are decoration for the ages. It seems that art history is filled with little birds…flitting about, bringing a bit of string…being birdies. When I was in art school, there was no insult more complete, no critique more insulting than to call something decorative. That would be like saying to someone’s face, “There is nothing in your heart or mind. You are a ninny and the work you make is meaningless.” Except that would be kind compared to calling something decorative. I could wield that knife-like critique with the rest of them. read more

Wonky Little Houses…almost finished

Hi! Here they are…almost finished! I just have to put on the piping/binding. Am so excited because they have been sitting in an unfinished state for months. I’ll be teaching a class on this Wonky Little House design (as a mini-quilt or pillow) this spring over here and I am publishing the pattern soon. My fabulous and wonderful dad swooped in over Thanksgiving and bought me a Bernina. He believes in me. Always has. In fact, he knows way more about fabrics and sewing and construction than I ever will- so he gets it. He totally gets why I needed a really good machine. And he is the best dad in the whole world. Want to go into business with me, Pops? I need a partner. We could sell pillows and puppets? read more