May 15, 2014

register for #OHcraft!!!

The time is here! Time to register for the 2nd annual #OHcraft Sew-In! We had SO MUCH FUN last year at the first sew-in that we're doing it again! This year we'll spend October 3-5 at the lovely Shawnee Lodge and Conference Center, just outside of Portsmouth, Ohio.

To read about all of the weekend goodness and to complete the registration, click here. Registration closes on July 1st, or when 45 people have registered and paid for the weekend (please note that no refunds are able to be given after July 15 as that is when the bill to the lodge is due).

I hope to see you in October!!! :)

xo, Kara
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March 24, 2014

would ya give me a vote or two?

I participated in the 2014 Pantone Quilt Challenge at The Windy Side and I'd appreciate your votes to hopefully win a Viewer's Choice Award!

I made two projects that you saw here last week- a pillow and a quilt top- and you can vote for both if you feel so inclined! :)

To vote, first click here to access the blog post from which to vote; then, click the heart on the top right of each of my project pictures to give them a vote!

Vote #1:
I have one entry in section two- Minis. My picture is number 26 and it is titled me and elna: radiant orchid inspired pillow.

Vote #2:
 My other entry is in section three- Just the Top. My picture is number 14 and is titled me and elna: radiant orchid inspired quilt.

I really enjoyed working on both of these projects! If you would give a vote (click the heart in the top right of each picture here) to each of them, I'd really appreciate it!

Voting ends on Thursday, March 27th, at 11:00pm PST; if you like the pillow and quilt top I made and would like ask others to vote for me too, I'd love that! Thanks so much for your support, friends!!! :)

xo, Kara
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March 18, 2014

radiant orchid inspired quilt

So, for a girl who is not a fan of purple I have gone Radiant Orchid NUTS! After finishing my Radiant Orchid inspired pillow, I loved the way the purple tied everything together so nicely that I decided to make a quilt highlighting Radiant Orchid too!

I decided to make a throw quilt to cuddle up with on the couch, so I didn't want it to be too big but still big enough to wrap up in (the finished size ended up being 67" x 54").

This is the first fabric pull I did for my quilt... and I felt like a little something was missing. So, I took out a couple of the low volume prints and added some darker prints that I thought would work well with the purple. I used a lot of different fabrics in this quilt top, including lines from Carolyn Friedlander, Lizzy House, Lotta Jansdotter and Denyse Schmidt- some of my favorite designers.

Once I settled on the colors, I cut out around 200 5" squares.

Hind sight is ALWAYS 20/20 and I wish I would have used a proper pattern for this quilt! Instead, I just decided to wing it, as I always do. Which ended up just fine but I think using an actual pattern would really ensure that you cut just enough fabric that you need... instead of ending up with a square or two less of a certain print that you really wanted to repeat in the quilt! (Click here for a tutorial from Jeni of In Color Order. I [obviously] didn't use the tutorial so I can't personally endorse it but Jeni's tutorials and patterns are always spot on!)

I pieced this quilt top together a little over a week ago at a girls sewing weekend and am so pleased with the way it turned out!!!

I really love the way the different shades of purple are highlighted in this quilt; they're very dominant but because of the other shades they are paired with, I think you don't have to be a big purple lover to like this top. I never thought I'd say this, but I'm kind of seeing how purple can be used as a neutral... who am I?! ;)

Radiant Orchid has SERIOUSLY gotten me out of my sewing comfort zone and I LOVE it! I'm kind of already excited to see what Pantone's color is for next year... :)
xo, Kara
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March 17, 2014

radiant orchid inspired pillow

When Pantone declared Radiant Orchid the color of 2014, I didn't think much about it. I'm not a huge purple fan so it didn't really blow my skirt up.

But then I started seeing the way people were using it in crafty projects on Instagram and I really loved it! I decided to challenge myself to making some projects with this pretty shade of purple and I'm so glad I did.

I started small- with an 23" x 23" (finished size)  pillow for the living room. I dug through my most precious scraps and pulled all the pretty purples and some grey, mustard yellow and low volume prints that I thought would go nicely together.

My wife is making a quilt with batiks and while I'm not usually a huge fan, she had some great purples in her stash! I added some of those in too. Gosh, I love making projects with scraps! It's almost like my own personal I Spy project, remembering all of the other goodies these fabrics have gone into. :)

After I picked out the fabrics, I cut out 156 2.5" squares and got to work laying them out!

Once I came up with a design I liked, I sewed them together using a 1/4" seam allowance.

Don't you love the way unlined/unfinished projects look with light streaming through them? It's like stained glass, I tell you!

To finish this pillow, I used straight line quilting on the front and then a simple envelope closure on the back. I used my go-to bag and pillow fabric- a fake linen curtain from IKEA. They're great!

Here is my finished pillow!

I love the way this pillow turned out! I'm so glad I decided to go outside of my comfort zone and embrace Radiant Orchid! I like the way this turned out so much that I even made a quilt using this purple as the inspiration... but that'll be shared another time as the day job is calling. :)

Have you been inspired by Radiant Orchid this spring? I'd love to see what you've made! Have a great day, friends! :)
xo, Kara
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March 14, 2014

crafty friends are the best friends

Last weekend some friends and I went away for SEWING TIME!!!

Ok, so maybe there was some wine drinking and carbohydrate eating too. :)

Anywho, seven friends and I (including my bestest friend outside of my wife, my sister!!!) spent Friday evening- Sunday afternoon at Grailville in Loveland, Ohio. It was so great! We spent two nights in the beautiful Victorian mansion- House of Joy- on the property...

and then crafted the days away at a really beautiful building called the Caravansary!

one of the pretty [huge] windows in the Caravansary
We got tons accomplished too!
Above are projects completed by Carrie, Christy, Jill, Michelle and my sister.

I brought along 1,000,000 5" squares to make a plus quilt. On Friday night, I laid the quilt top out [about 1,000 times].

And on Saturday, I pieced it all together!

I used a lot of different fabrics in this quilt top, including lines from Carolyn Friedlander, Lizzy House, Lotta Jansdotter and Denyse Schmidt- some of my favorite designers. Up until about a year ago, I never felt comfortable pairing fabrics together from different lines; I always doubted myself and never thought that the prints I put together worked together. Pish posh, I'm over that now! I LOVE mixing lines and designers and pallettes! It's definitely my favorite part of the sewing process.

So, yeah- sewing last weekend was GREAT!!! My favorite part of the whole weekend though was spending time with some great people.

What do you need other than sewing, friends and wine I ask you? Answer: NOTHING

So- last weekend = GREAT! But what was such a nice surprise was when I woke up on Monday, I felt SO refreshed and ready for the week! I felt encouraged and renewed... funny how a girls weekend away can do that. :)

xo, Kara
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