It’s time for a Blythe pay-it-forward!
I’ve been making dresses just for funsies, and now I’m giving them away in a pay-it-forward. Check out the Blythe Pay-it-forward group.
Leave a comment with your name and the one(s) you’d like to win – I’ll do a random drawing for each dress. Let me know what you like about it/them! I’ll do the drawing on Sunday, July 8. Shipping is on me, and international is just fine.
May’s Blythe Swap theme was Raindrops and Umbrellas – perfect for spring here in North America. I swapped with Carrie, who is an awesome swap partner (we’ve swapped before), so I was really excited. We both agreed that things that are garden-related fit right into this theme as well.
I received such an amazing package! Carrie included outfits for both Neo and Middie Blythe, as well as a bunch of cute accoutrements and even furniture!
I also had a lot of fun making things for Carrie. I had found some vintage hankies and scarves at recent estate sales, so I used those to make some of the dresses I sent. Of course I also made some handknits!
Modern quilt – it’s a term that can be defined in a number of ways, but probably falls into the ‘I know it when I see it’ category. One common feature is the use of large blocks, larger than you’d commonly see in many traditional quilt styles, anyway. That’s the basis of these ten quilt designs, each of which includes a list of materials, a cutting list, directions for making templates, fabric recommendations, step-by-step piecing instructions, and palette suggestions.
Quilted Celebrations: 18 Designs to Capture Life’s Milestones with Needle and Thread by Amanda Murphy
There’s virtually no limit to the number of occasions on which you could gift a quilt. Murphy includes ten designs for new baby, birthdays, religious rites, graduation, wedding, anniversary, and commemorating a life here. She also includes ideas for personalizing the quilt to the specific recipient. These ten projects utilize a variety of quilt blocking techniques, and could easily be adapted to suit another occasion or no occasion at all. Templates are included.
The Halloween Blythe Swap was a lot of fun again this year! My partner has now had the chance to post her photos of her received package, so I, in turn, was able to upload my video of what I sent to her.
What I sent:
And what I received:
Thanks to both my partners, Jane and Jenna, for such an awesome swap!
Anti-gerrymandering art quilt is probably not a phrase that too many people have found occasion to utter, but it’s been on my tongue for the last few months as I worked on this piece.
I’m happy to say that you can currently see it in person if you can get to Mount Pleasant this month, as it’s part of the Pop Up Show currently happening at the Morey Gallery at Art Reach.
In this year of What-In-The-World-Is-Happening-Here 2017, politics feel super messed up and there are so many people in power doing terrible things that hurt all of us, but especially the most vulnerable among us. How those politicians can live with themselves, I can’t imagine, except that I guess human brains are pretty good at justifying things that are in one’s own self-interest and the generally Old White Dudes in power have a lot of practice. It feels so overwhelming – how do we fix what’s wrong when many of our elected officials are actively undoing the good we’ve been able to achieve in the past? It can be hard to know what to do or where to even start, but I’ve been trying to identify smallish things that I can actively take part in that might help. Working to end gerrymandering is one of those things and this art quilt is an expression of my frustration with the current system and an attempt to bring attention to this problem. As part of the gallery show, it is, if anyone is interested, for sale. If it does sell I’ll be donating half the proceeds to Voters Not Politicians, an anti-gerrymandering group in Michigan. And I fully encourage y’all to donate to this good cause regardless! Michigandalfs (and everyone) deserve better.
You can also check out a process video of me working on this piece:
This month I participated in a swap – as usual, for Blythe, but this time specifically for a 12×12″ quilt. This swap originated in an online group for Blythe sewing enthusiasts and I was super geeked to see it. I’ve been thinking of making a Blythe-sized quilt for some time and this was the perfect excuse!
My partner and I have swapped before so we kind of know each other’s tastes a bit, which made this so much fun. Here’s a video of me unwrapping the quilt she sent me (also includes pics of the one I sent to her).
Wise Craft Quilts: A guide to turning beloved fabrics into meaningful patchwork by Blair Stocker
So many people I know have quilts like this – created from shirts and other items that have special meaning. I have not seen many books focused specifically on these, though, so this is nice to see. Stocker offers 21 designs using a variety of types of material, including baby clothes, a wedding dress, table linens, and even bike race numbers (used to create a picnic blanket). Surprisingly, a t-shirt quilt is not among the projects here, but there are tons of instructions for creating those online. Many of these projects could be adapted to use whatever material you want to use – it wouldn’t have to be reuse of something existing, or could be a combination of reuse and purchased fabrics. There are a lot of options here, as well as inspiration for repurposing existing materials.