This past Quilt Market in St. Louis looked like a fun one. I wasn’t able to attend in person but I did have a plethora of quiltings hanging throughout.
Today I want to show you my latest for Timeless Treasures and Dear Stella. Each quilt has a free pattern attached to it.
First up, and probably my favorite, is the Space Station Quilt for Supernova by Rae Ritchie. I love Rae’s design style and it is always a pleasure to work with her prints.
My older son helped me pick the fabric placement for this one. He loves space and one days he wants to be an astronaut/karate kid/hockey player. This quilt gets to live at home with us. HE was absolutely thrilled when “his” design was picked for the collection, and doubly so when he saw the finished quilt. The pattern is available HERE from Dear Stella.
Next is the pattern CHOMP! for the Dark and Stormy Collection I just LOVED the sea theme and immediately thought of sharks popping out of the water. During the process I am pretty sure my family managed to come up with more than a dozen unique shark puns as name suggestions for the pattern.
The shark teeth can be made 3D or pieced. I thought it was clever to use the pirate head print for the teeth. Tee hee! You can find the pattern HERE.
For Timeless Treasures I got to play with a more traditional collection, Zephyr by Alice Kennedy. There are 22 neutral and greyscale hues in 15 unique prints. I loved how they all played together, and the varying levels of contrast meant I could create a lot of depth and texture without adding color.
The first quilt, Halo, is my favorite. I grew up in northern Alberta and at night, with the moon shining brightly, you could often see (what we called) “moon dogs” haloing the moon. The shimmering ice crystals were my inspiration for this quilt. You can find the pattern HERE.
I probably overquilted it, but I don’t care! The black spaces were calling to me. I used a deep navy thread for a subtle glow against the black fabric, and to prevent eye strain while I was quilting. I quilted a series of loops, swirls, straight lines, and circles. This quilt gets to live at Timeless headquarters in New York. (Does that mean I get to say I have art hanging in New York? I’m going to say YES!)
The second quilt, Marbled, I wanted to play with simple shapes that make a complex texture. I wanted a tile wall-inspired flow and form to the quilt. Pretty sure I succeeded with that. You can find the pattern HERE.
You won’t find it in any quilt shop, or at the bookstore, or online.
Back in October of 2013, I read an amazing blog post about one bloggers experience writing her first book. I had been sketching and playing with ideas for a while, and I was so inspired that I finally wrote up a proposal and submitted it to a publisher. The Aquisitions Editor at the company was wonderful. She was encouraging, friendly, and very helpful. She took my proposal to the submissions team, and came back with some suggestions and changes. More designs, and a change of topic. My first idea, while solid, was too niche. They asked if I could adjust the topic. So I did. After a month of back and forth, I has a contract, a book to write and 15 quilts to make. In 6 months. It was a very short time, given that most books are given 12-18 months for a deadline. But I had lots of support, lots of energy, and agreed.
Fast forward to May 2014. My manuscript was done, the quilts were in the binding stages, and I had planned my trip to bring everything to the publisher and finally meet everyone in person. My deadline had come, and I had met it.
And then I got the phone call.
During the months that I had been busy writing, sewing, writing, and sewing some more, the company had been purchased by a larger book publisher. Which meant changes to the direction of the company, replacement of almost all of the upper management , and a slash to the number titles being produced that year. Unfortunately, my book did not fit with the new image and direction of the company. It was cut from production.
Sitting on the other end of the line, trying to stay positive and keep the frustration, confusion, and sadness out of my voice was one of the most difficult things I have done as a quilter. Fortunately, the call came during one of the rare visits I am able to have with my grandparents. My Grandma, who taught me to quilt and encouraged me to try anything and everything, stood there and held me as I cried.
My son came running over at that moment and gave me a huge hug. And just like that, tears turned to smiles. We started brainstorming about what I was going to do with 15 full sized quilts.
My awesome Grandparents and little H
It still took time to regain some of my confidence. Although intellectually I knew it was nothing personal, because we put so much of ourselves into our craft as quilters, it was hard not to sometimes think why wasn’t I good enough. It was when I started actively looking for the silver lining that must be there somewhere that I started to really grow as a quilter and a designer. During my writing period, I was put into contact with several fabric companies. I reached out to them again, this time asking about designing the free projects used to promote new fabric lines. I also started shopping the patterns around individually and basically cold calling other fabric companies about designing for them as well. It was a HUGE learning curve. I suddenly found myself awash in technical writing, trying to produce professional quality illustrations and drawings, and full scale templates from scratch. I purchased the Adobe Creative Suite and learned to use Illustrator and InDesign. Am still learning to use them. And along the way, I found my creative voice.
A huge boost to my personal growth was joining the Quilt Design a Day facebook group, and meeting a wonderful group of creative, talented, like minded individuals. On a bid for advice, I opened a group chat with four other individuals from QDAD. That chat group now has almost 51,000 messages in it between the five of us. Everything from technical support to just shooting the breeze, we have covered almost everything in that chat. We have all gotten to know each other very well, and are looking forward to finally meeting at Quiltcon this year. I have been able to build a good reputation with the fabric companies- you can find many free patterns on the affiliate sites. Just look under the Free Patterns on my menu bar. And I have a few patterns coming out in magazines throughout the year.
I have been able to pull myself back together, but I never did get the chance to properly thank those who were a part of the process when I wrote my book. I want to take the time to do this now.
My wonderful husband for his unwavering support, taking care of the laundry and cooking, and reminding me to eat and sleep on occasion.
My grandmother for teaching me to quilt, and being the first person to tell me there are more ways than the “right” way to sew something.
My parents for being my biggest fans, cheerleaders, babysitters, and personal PR reps. (If a strange lady on the street hits you in the face with a quilting magazine, its probably my mom!)
Holly Broadland, Felicity Ronaghan, Amy Dame, Matt Wheeler, Stacey Murton, and Arita Rai, for making quilts and testing out my patterns and providing some very valuable support and feedback. I never would have made my deadline without all your help!
Joan Nicholson of Maple Leaf Quilters, for taking on the huge amount of quilting in such a short time, being there last minute when I really needed it, and continuing to be there for me.
Finally, my son, who inspires me so much I can’t put it into words.
Thank you all, from the bottom of my heart, for your love and support and inspiration on this journey.
I also wanted to pay back the support and sponsorship shown to me by Michael Miller Fabrics, Timeless Treasures, and Warm Company. They provided most of the materials for the book quilts. So I have decided that any quilt made with the sponsored materials will be a FREE PATTERN. I will be releasing them throughout the year. The first will be today.
Linked In- Fabric provided by Michael Miller Fabrics, Batting from the Warm Company
Linked In is a beginner friendly quilt that uses rotation in the blocks to create the interlocking squares. I love interlocking blocks and was so happy to be able to come up with my own.
Quilting by Joan Nicholson of Maple Leaf Quilters
The pattern is available for free in my Craftsy Shop. I am working on a platform for patterns here on the blog, but for now, enjoy! Just CLICK HERE.
Thank you to all of you as well, for reading along with me over the years. I look forward to the next few, they are going to be awesome!
A huge thank you to everyone who visited for The Reclaimed West Blog Tour.
I wanted to reply to everyone’s comments, thank you all so much for your kind and encouraging words! I drew the winner of my free pattern, and the lucky number is……#25! Beezus, who said “Congratulations Stacey”. Yay!
Welcome all to my day on the Reclaimed West Blog Tour. ( If you are here for the Blogathon Canada tour and giveaway, click here after reading all about this wonderful tour and entering this giveaway, and if not, check out both for some great fun!!) You can find all the tour dates and blogs here on the Timeless Treasures blog. They are a super group of very talented ladies, so check them out!
I cannot even begin to describe my feelings to you all, having a design chosen as part of The Reclaimed West Tour. So a little back story might be in order.
I own almost every Judy Niemeyer pattern there is. She is one of my biggest influences, and it shows constantly in my work. I have made her Amazon Star in three sizes, 18″, 40″, and the full 104″. My Sapphire Star quilt, made from her Glacier Star pattern, has been juried into multiple shows across North America and even took home a ribbon from the Canadian Quilters Association. I have a private running challenge with my Grandma over who is going to finish her Pepper Dish first, and I was even able to provide an extra copy of Birds of Paradise to someone after the call went out on Quiltworx Facebook page. I love Judy and Judels work, and will even get up extra super early on sale days just to get the latest patterns.
Being a part of the launch of her new fabric line, The Reclaimed West, is a huge deal for me. Understatement of the year maybe….
I could ramble on and on about how beautiful the fabric is, the richness of the colors, the striking prints (only Judy and Judel could romanticize cows to the point where I would willingly sew with them), and the soft silk feeling of rolling around in a pile of…I mean…sewing with the fabrics. Instead I will show you with the introduction of my new pattern:
Star of the West
When I saw that Timeless Treasures was looking for submissions for the line, I fell out of my chair and immediately got to work playing. I knew that I wanted to do something to show the influence Judy had early on when I first started quilting, but at the same time keep true to the aesthetic that has evolved into my own style. So I started playing with the layouts and negative space. And playing…and playing… and playing.
I realized I was over-thinking things, and settled on a simple feathered star block. Then I found a color layout that I loved, and added the geese border. I wanted to reclaim that old favorite of mine, the lone star and flying geese, by adding some negative space and drawing out a little modern in the overall design. I created something that I loved, and sent it off with hope in my heart.
After I picked myself off the floor a second time, when I got the email saying my design had been accepted, I got to work drafting and writing. In true Judy style the quilt is foundation pieced. I love foundation piecing, it makes pointy points! Then the big day arrived with a box of fabric on my front step. I crawled on up and opened it and immediately started sewing.
I finished in record time (for me) and then I was stumped. How to quilt it? The finished size is 64″x 64″, not unmanageable on my machine. But I was stuck. I simply could not decide. I definitely wanted to pay tribute to the beautiful quilting found on all of Judy’s quilts, but also wanted to keep within the modern traditional. Enter Ann Olson of Ann’s Quilt and Stuff. She took my top and turned it into a masterpiece. She delivered exactly what I was looking for, free motion triangle fillers, straight lines, and these amazing triangle feathers in a tribute to the gorgeous feather work found on an original Judy quilt. I cannot even begin to thank Ann enough.
From start to finish, this quilt has been an incredible journey for me. To be a part of the blog tour with all these amazing quilters (almost all of which are certified Quiltworx instructors or successful business owners, or both) has been a joy and a privilege.
Star of the West is available from my Craftsy shop. The pattern is a PDF download, full color diagrams and pictures. The foundations are included in the pattern, but require legal size paper (8 1/2″x 14″ paper) to print. I am also giving away one of my patterns to a lucky commenter today! Just leave a comment at the end of this post. I will draw the winner on Friday, November 21 at 8pm (the conclusion of the tour). Timeless Treasures is also giving away an awesome Reclaimed West prize package here! You get an entry a day. Just visit the blogs of the day and follow the link back to enter each day.
Thank you for stopping by and allowing me to share my quilt with you. Please visit again!
I have been waiting patiently for MONTHS to post about this! I still have another week to go for the big reveal, but I am still super stoked!
This blog tour, running from November 17-21, is hosted by Timeless Treasures to celebrate the release of Judy & Judel Niemeyer’s first-ever fabric line, The Reclaimed West. This line is full of rich, saturated prints in a whole rainbow of colors.
My Day is the 19th, when I will be releasing my pattern for the collection. This whole process has been a dream come true for me, and I hope to one day meet Judy in person! But for now, fabric will do =)
There will be awesome giveaways on the Timeless Treasures Blog, and I will be giving away a PDF copy of my pattern right here! See you all next week!
*I was recently informed that the link to my pattern was bad! This has been fixed, thank you so much for your patience.*
You read it right, my very first pattern is now available under my own label: Stacey Day Quilts. I can’t even begin to tell you how excited I am. I have been writing for a while for a couple different companies, and the experience has been amazing. Forest Paths is the first in a long line of amazing quilty things to come (eeeeek!!)
Forest Paths Baby/Toddler Quilt
Forest Paths is 47″ x 58″ and is suitable for a confident beginner. It is available as an instant download from my Etsy Shop Since this post went up I have discovered that Craftsy charges no fees for patterns, so I have moved my shop! Please go HERE for the pattern at its new home! You may also find the link under the Patterns tab at teh top of the page. You can find the link here or under the shiny new Patterns tab. I wanted to feature the adorable prints and create some fun secondary designs in the spaces surrounding them. The arrow “paths” were a fun secondary design that appeared when I was playing with the block. The best part is, there are NO Y-seams in this one! That’s right! Just some simple piecing and a straight forward layout. Woo hoo!!
I really hope you enjoy the Forest Paths quilt pattern! Let all your friends know where to find it! Take a picture and email it to me, upload it to the Stacey Day Quilts Flickr group, or tag me on Instagram @staceyinstitches #forestpathsquilt yes I am finally on Instagram! Lets make this launch a success!
I designed Forest Paths for the Forest Frolic Collection by Timeless Treasures. The second I saw the fabric I fell in love. The woodland creatures traipsing about the forest are completely enchanting. I mean, come on- how cute are those little foxes? The main print, Nordic Woodland, is perfect for fussy cutting in a number of ways, and the support prints are just as versatile. The collection is whimsically nordic, and I cannot wait to get my paws on it.
Clockwise from top-Forest Houses, Foxes, Birds and Branches, Nordic Woodland
From left to right-Triangle Geo, Floral Tonal, Sketch in Breeze, Sketch in Ivory