Hi there! I’m Karen and blog at CapitolaQuilter . I’ve been participating since the beginning of Finish-A-Long and am honored to have joined in as one of the International Hosts this year. It’s hard to believe we are already wrapping up 2017.
|Pre-QCon Selfie 2017|
Have you enjoyed reading the FAL Meet the Host monthly guest blogger posts? Well, now it’s my turn to to be featured in the series! Here goes a picture filled post starting with most importantly, my beautiful family.
I am married to a wonderful guy and we have two grown boys. We are incredibly proud of the men they have become and adore the women they have chosen to spend their lives with. Enjoying time with our granddaughter and watching her reach milestones that we remember when our kids were young like it was yesterday and yet a lifetime ago is quite the mind game.
Look how cute and little they were!!! My oversized glasses and shoulder pads date our family portrait and the “Big Hair-Skinny Tie” picture was the perfect share for my first ever swap called I heart the 80’s a Flickr group. I wish I still had that hand-dyed silk dress although in reality, we prefer jeans and a t-shirt. This summer marks our 35th anniversary.
|Flashback Family Photos|
|BeeSewcial “Reflections” Capitola Photoshoot|
|Santa Cruz quilt photoshoot by Anne Sullivan|
Thanks for indulging me – now on to the QUILTS!
The Early Years – Quilts from Patterns
Among the first quilts I made was a gift for my mother-in-law that included a picture of her seven grandkids. It is sweet with coordinating prints, fussy cornerstones, sashing and a border. Image transfer was high-tech at the time but peeling their faces off to iron down was totally creepy. Thank goodness Spoonflower came along!
|1998-1999 one of my first quilts|
|My Birthday Quilt-themed party Quilt|
|Old Italian Block 2012 and Split Nine-Patch 2011|
In 2013 local quilt store SueDee’s featured my quilts on display in a solo show. Using the MoStash and Friends+Fabric =AMSB bee blocks that I received and adding my own enlarged blocks, the Giant xPlus was a hit and is what I keep on our bed.
|a rare “Guy” quilt|
More than Quilts
Hart’s Fabric, a family owned independent brick and mortar fabric store since 1969 (a rarity these days) is still the same place I go to shop. My improv seagull, poppy field and mountains design was chosen for their 2016 Row by Row Experience pattern.
Original Designs and Influences
I didn’t make an All-Solids quilt until 2014 which seems crazy since that is the majority of what I work in now. Capitola Crossing was directly inspired by an antique quilt, details blogged here. It was displayed at Amish: the Modern Muse, a juried exhibit representing three Modern Guilds in the FiberSpace section of the San Jose Museum of Quilt and Textiles.
|Perspective, Dare to Fly, Goats Askew and Capitola Crossing|
My style has expanded to include Improvisation with Meaning in the Make since joining BeeSewcial. The Graphic and Minimalistic focus also comes from Quilt Design A Day, QDAD a Facebook group that I am admin for. Both encourage exploration and push me beyond boundaries more than I’d ever imagined.
The transformation of a design mock up to a finished quilt is a process I highly recommend trying. Here are four samples: Two challenges for our local show, “Resonate” for the AGF Heartland Tour Blog Hop, and Castle in The Sand a collaborative quilt with valued mentor Pam Rocco. As you can see I’ve deviated from he original design but have captured the essence which is more my goal.
|Left: Me & my Quilts, Right: BeeSewcial at QuiltCon|
|QDADers being silly|
This year I’m going to enter my absoulutely stunning Reflections BeeSewcial quilt and hope, hope, hope it is accepted. Now that I’ve puzzled this one together I should have no trouble with the next two, right?
|Reflections BeeSewcial Quilt|
Here are just a few of my favorite BeeSewcial blocks that I’ve made and a mosaic from 2015:
I was diligent about documenting blocks back in the Flickr days and am sentimentally fond of them despite how different in style they are.
|2012 Flickr Group Bee Blocks|
Quilting with friends is really special to me. Fortunately this happens on a regular basis with a small local group and annually with our guild. I’ve also managed to crash a couple of sister guild retreats too! My wish is to have a larger Multi-Chapter or Regional sewing meet up, a casual no frills opportunity to hang out with nearby peeps that I “know” from social media someday.
|Local Friends, Sew and Stroll|
We’ll be together at another QuiltCon in February – say “hi” if you see us. She’ll be the one perfecting her skills in back to back workshops and I’ll be the one striking up a conversation with a perfect stranger, embarrassing myself with fangirl selfies and sporting a blue volunteer t-shirt.
Looking Back and Moving Forward
Being part of our MQG guild chapter South Bay Area MQG from the beginning, serving as VP and chairing committees has made a huge impact. Learning from one another and being part of something bigger holds a special place in my heart.
|QuiltCon Charity blocks 2013|
I never would have guessed the first tutorial as a brand new blogger, Polaroids Chain Pieced would generate the highest traffic to date and show up on tons of Pinterest boards. A special shout out to my blog followers!
This summer I had the pleasure of teaching my first workshop, a technique and design rather than project based class. Students did great playing with parts and possibilities and their enthusiasm made for a fun time. I hope to have more opportunities in the future and am developing a spin off class that I’m excited about.
Last but not least, My Workspace
|Sewing in the Living Room|