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French Accent Tote Bag using French Themed Toile Laminate Fabrics!

28 Feb

French Accent Tote made with Laminate Fabrics

I made this tote bag and absolutely LOVE it. The first one I made I gave as a gift to one of my son’s teachers for the holidays. Finally I got one made for me and I carry it absolutely everywhere. I use it to carry all my daydreaming items. Books and magazines I want to read, projects I want to work on, my iPad that goes with me anywhere and anything else that simply is to bulky to throw into my purse. This way I always have something to do when I’m out and about whether at doctor appointments or carpooling the kids around. The Laminate Fabric is not difficult to sew with at all and give the best look EVER!

I was able to quickly constuct the bag within about an hour and a half. It was a fun project that didn’t take long and that made me feel GREAT! And the best of all, I get to carry it around with me all day long and enjoy it day after day. I love the velvet rick rack accents and the pockets inside to organize small items. The laminate fabrics that I used are from the Lost & Found collection designed by My Mind’s Eye for Riley Blake Designs. These fabrics are for sale by the yard my Stitches Quilting website along with four different quilt kits with different combinations of four unique laminate fabrics from the Lost and Found Collection. If there is a kit fabric combination that you would like for me to put together for you just email or call and let me know. The kit includes everything you need from the coordinating laminate fabrics, cotton fabrics for lining and handles, pattern, velvet black rick rack, fusible interfacing and stablilizer perfectly cut just for you! No need to run to the fabric store to pick up necessary items. All you will need is thread and a little bit of time. Perfect gift to give to others!

Happy Stitching,

Deanna
deanna@stitchesquilting.com

 

Quilting Motivates Me

22 Feb

I organize my life and balance my responsibilities so I can enjoy it!  Quilting is always waiting for me in the background if life does get crazy and I need to put it on the back burner.

Quilting motivates me first of all so I can live a long healthy life to execute and complete all the amazing things I dream to create.  I love my family and want to be healthy like eating well and exercising so I can hopefully avoid unnecessary disease and pain to be fully functional and capable of doing the many things I day dream about long into life.

There are so many ideas buzzing around in my head that I want to execute that I hope that long healthy life is waiting for me.

That’s the beauty of quilting; there are so many different things you can do from piecing a quilt top together, strip piecing for easier quilt, to complicated piecing, machine appliqué, hand appliqué, domestic machine quilting, long arm machine quilting, hand quilting, hand piecing…. too much to name.

Secondly, quilting motivates me to live an organized life.  By living an organized life, I will have more rewarding time stitching away.

 

Thirdly, quilting is my reward!  I get every room put back together after an evening of children being home, clean the kitchen, throw a load of wash in, prepare dinner, get necessary mundane tasks completed like paying bills and then quilt, quilt, quilt away!  It feels great; even if it is only for a short bit of time.

 

When I worked on my master’s degree while at the same time worked at my husband’s office and managing kiddos at home, there was not much time for quilting.  There was just no room for creativity to flow BUT I longed for it.  I couldn’t wait to finish and for life to settle down to enjoy the colors and fabrics and creation of beautiful things for loved ones.  There is a time and season to all things.  Well as I was working on my master’s thesis and to break the barrier for motivation, I bought some special fabrics for a quilt pattern that I had longed to complete from many years prior.   The pattern came from an old quilting book that I had admired and tucked away.

 

Then I LITERALLY slept with the fabrics under my pillow and in my bed with me every night.  I would fall asleep touching the fabrics and admiring the color collection carefully fanned out, after a long day of forcing myself to be disciplined on my project.  In the morning I would wake up and again touch them then turn with the determination to get my mountain work done each day.

 

Finally, the day arrived and I finished my master’s thesis.  I had done all the work for whatever reason comfortably sitting in my bed on my laptop.  When I pressed send on the email to my professor with the master’s thesis attached, I turned to my fabric and smiled!

 

I then went down stairs to my sewing room, dusted off the sewing machine, rotary cutter and mat and started playing with the fabrics.  It was just a sweet quilt for my son that played soccer that would become a wall hanging in his room.  But that quilt represented so much to me, the freedom that I know had to be creative again and the discipline I used to do hard things.

The quilt that was made from the fabrics I slept with

I finally did it! Finished my Master's degree!

The quilt now years later still hangs in his room as he is now on a competitive soccer team.  I have made several more quilts for him in his room for him to feel the warmth of his mother’s love.  That mother’s love spills over as I attend all those soccer games taking amazing photographs of him with quilts to sit on or keep me warm.  That mother’s love also spilled over as I went to all the amazing wrestling matches for his older brother and sat there hand appliquéing wrestlers with a tiger head and took pictures there.

Wrestling Quilt I made for Nick.

Quilting enriches and motivates me to be a better person and keep my life prioritized.
 
Quilting motivates me to live a balanced life so I have time to put a healthy hobby like quilting in my routine. Quilting is so spectacular and there are just so many pleasing things to do with it!
 

My soccer player now! I love that little guy! Such a pleasure being a mother.

My happy wrestler that threw me a smile while wrestling to his mama for the photograph. I love that guy!

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Quilting Samples to Delight the Soul and Create

15 Feb

There are so many quilts that I have made through the years!  Here are just a few samples for you to enjoy.  Let me know if you need any fabrics or patterns to make the quilts.

Happy Stitching!

With Love, Deanna
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Sewing with your teenager a Whimsical Brown & Pink Trendy Quilt – Ouch she sewed through her finger!

20 Aug

Emily's Finished Quilt

I love to share quilting with others and teach them the love of the craft. I especially enjoy sewing with my teenage step-daughters! I have taught many classes through the years to young teens. It is amazing what they can create and how good they feel about themselves as they gain confidence with learning a new skill. The pride they see in their eyes as they look at their final project knowing that they made it themselves is amazing!

Attached is a video of me sewing with my step-daughter Emily. When we first started this quilt, she actually sewed through her finger straight to the bone. Not fun at all! But Emily overcame this mishap and choose to finish the quilt! Watch the video to see her overcome her fear! Video to watch construction of Whimsical Brown and Pink Quilt with Emily!

Later I long armed it for her and it has been a quilt that she has been found curled up in all the time.

Enjoy quilting with your kids; not only do they learn confidence in doing different things but it is a bonding experience that you will grow together in. There will be long talks as you are stitching away and you will learn so much about your loved one. I try very hard to allow the student to do almost everything, so she truly has pride in her product and learned the skills. I want them to tell others that they made the quilt without a tinge of guilt that their step-mom or teacher really made most of it.

Happy Stitching!

Deanna

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I just got my NEW Long Arm Quilting Machine by Innova!!!!

10 Jul

My first Long Arm Quilting Machine in my actual home!

I just got my NEW long arm quilting machine by Innova!!!!  I am just simply soooo excited!  This is utterly amazing!  I have always wanted my very own long arm but it is difficult to justify the cost.  So I finally sold enough fabric to save up and buy the machine with cash!  I am in seventh heaven.  It is so exciting to wake up each day and be creative to start a project and then finish it!  WOW!  It feels so good to be creative and create.  I am just not able to quilt my quilts with my domestic machine anymore…. not with all the things that I day dream to do!  Wow it is going to be a learning curve but I have Teryl Loy from Let’s Quilt that I bought it from and with the purchase of the machine comes a three day course on how to make it work.  When they installed the machine they gave me a mini lesson too.  I also have my good friend Renae Haddidan, that is an expert award winning machine quilter.  She ordered the exact same machine as me and she said that she will help me too!

The exact machine I purchased was the Innova Quilting System 22″ long arm machine with the lightening stitch regulator.  The dealer I purchased it from is Teryl Loy at Let’s Quilt Training & Supply Center 929 W. Sunset St. George UT 84770 (435)817-4159 and their website is www.terylloy.com

Exciting days, months and years ahead!

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Here is a video of me purchasing the machine at the Home Machine Quilting Show in Salt Lake City Utah in May of 2010!

Purchasing my first Long Arm Quilting Machine

 

Quilting is Therapy!

15 Feb

Quilting is Therapy!  When I had my storefront quilt store in Yuma, Arizona, I always had a Quilter of the Month that was a customer of the store but that we would showcase her quilts.  It was an absolute delight to see the gorgeous quilts come out of the closets and drawers and hang them beautifully around the store.  I couldn’t wait each month to see the unique style of each quilter be unvailed each month and learn more about her.

One gal that I approached to be Stitches Quilting “Quilter of the Month” to have her quilts displayed in future months was hesitant.  She said that she loved to quilt and quilt and piece tops together but that she rarely quilted and finished them.  I told her it did not matter and that we wanted to see and display all her work.  She said she didn’t care about finishing them but that quilting was her therapy!

I agree 300% with that.  Quilting is therapy!  There is nothing like being discouraged in life and thoughtfully pause with beautiful fabrics, threads to execute something your mind has envisioned.  There have been many times that I have felt so downtrodden not knowing what to do, but in this confusion I would quilt and create while thoughtfully considering how to choose to react to an event in my life.  I remember those quilts so vividly and I am so deeply attached to those stitches.  It was through those stitches that I decided how to react or rise above a situation that was challenging.  Often I made quilts for other people at those times and I think that by serving another through my stitching, I was able to put my troubles into perspective.

I remember quilting while I was expecting my second child knowing that he had severe special needs and wanting to wrap this child with my love when he arrived.  I remember making a quilt when my little brother died to comfort my mother the first Christmas that he would not be with us.  I remember making my mother an intricate quilt and so lovingly picking out fabrics and designs when she was diagnosed with Lou Gehrigs disease.  I made that quilt to demonstrate to her my love and the quilt layed on her as she progressed through the disease and I cared for her until her death.  I cherish that quilt now in my home and the bond of the mother daughter relationship that it represents.  I remember being bewildered at the thought that I was quickly going to be facing a divorce and having three small children to care for.  The youngest was three months old and the second oldest with very severe special needs.  The thought of the challenges ahead overwhelmed me but what did I do… I quilted.  I quilted a simple quilt for my special needs son and as I stitched I knew that I would have the strength, dignity and resolve to face the challenges ahead.

I recall quilting in times of joy and anticipation to celebrate moments.  I remember vividly creating quilts with carefully selected fabrics for people that I loved.  I remember thoughtfully selecting fabrics to make a quilt for my fiance and current husband.  I wanted him to know how much I cared for him and appreciated his love.  He was so delighted to see me come off an airplane with a quilt tied in a bow hoping that it was something for him.  It was for him and how I enjoyed giving him something I created with my hands to demonstrate my devotion to him.

Quilting is Therapy…  there are so many challenges that we may face quietly stitching away while deciding our resolve or approach.  Quilting is Therapy… in the friendships that we create as we stitch, share and dream together.  I am so grateful for such a beautiful healthy hobby to embrace that helps me become a better individual while doing something so positive.  Whether we stitch alone or with others, pull out sewing machine and let it hum and sooth your troubles to become peace within your soul.  Allow yourself to lay fabrics on the floor next to each other for hours deciding upon a beautiful combination that will express what you need to share.  Give yourself the permission that no matter what you will face in life that you can still create and feel joy.

Stitch, find peace and be happy,

With Love,

Deanna

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