Rainbow Hexi Mini Quilt

The quilting world is going crazy with hexagons right now. It seems like everyone has hexies on their mind. I had a friend approach me to make a gift for her co-worker. She didn’t really know what she wanted but she gave me a price point. So I started thinking and dreaming and going through my instagram feed for inspiration. Then I found some awesome hexi mini quilts that you display as art. I fell in love and so did my friend! I absolutely fell in love with a mini quilt from Heartmade Life (Click here to see her blog post about it) but I wanted to go brighter and bolder and this is what resulted!

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The recipient of this mini quilt is one of the happiest people I know. She always has a smile on her face and something positive to say. The bright and happy feel to this fits her perfectly.

IMG_0578 So many fun fabrics went into this. I think that is my favourite part about quilts like this. As I was putting it together I was reminiscing about other projects that some of these fabrics have gone into.

IMG_0591I’m going to have to make another one because it really wanted to stay right there in that cozy corner.

IMG_0577I want to make tons of these mini quilts and cover all my walls with them. It’s satisfying when a project comes together so quickly and adds so much fun and colour to a wall.

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How I spoil my kid

I guess that should say kids but my oldest child seems to get spoiled in this way more than the youngest. Totally not fair at all. I’m not even going to make excuses. Hopefully some day I can even the score but at this rate it will be hard for her to catch up. See my oldest begs for quilts and blankets to be made for her. She has 6 quilts and I can’t even begin to determine how many blankets she has. She steals them as I make them. Or sometimes she just steals the fabric and pretends it is a blanket. One day I received a message from her daycare teacher admonishing me for sending my child to school with just a piece of fabric as a ‘blanket’. She of course was kidding, mostly.

This is the first quilt that I made my oldest. We were team green. Or team ‘I rather wait until the birth to find out so that I could pester my husband daily about boy and girl names.’ He was a curmudgeon when it came to names. He turned down many awesome names because they were ‘weird’. Obviously he didn’t grow  up as one of 500 Amandas in his class.

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Owls were all the rage back then. You know way back in 2011. I picked out some other adorable owls but I was told by a few that they were much too creepy.

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These Owls and Koala’s were adorable! While I was making it I was sure this was a very gender neutral quilt. I was delusional. Pregnancy throws off my sense of right and wrong. This was purely ‘boy’ oriented as I was convinced I was having a boy.

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Surprise! I had a girl! She wore a lot of boy clothes at first. Poor thing! I was also convinced that my second was a boy as well. Nope. I’m 2 for 2. I’m leaving it at that.

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Back to the quilt. This was my 2nd quilt ever. I was super proud. I didn’t even have a pattern for it. The wise quilting ladies at the quilt store helped me figure out all the Maths. Another pregnancy truth is that it robs women of their ability to do simple math. I’m still recovering this skill. One amazing thing about this quilt is that I used free motion quilting! No one told me that was a hard thing. I used free motion on my first quilt in small amounts and for this one I went all out. Now I’m much more reserved in my use as I’ve learned it is hard so now I fear it. It’s all mental.

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This quilt is loved though. Alice loves it and it is a staple in our quilt rotation. However, she is a girly girl and as she has aged (almost 4 years) she gravitates to her quilts that contain pinks, purples, dancers and Hell Kitty (her word for Hello Kitty). She has also expanded her tastes to pieces of black sequined fabric with raw edges that I hear from daycare spread sequins all over the place. I chuckle every time she decides to take that fabric to daycare with her. IMG_9256-2

Where it all began

Many moons ago I use to be obsessed with knitting. I loved to spend time buying lovely wools, yarns and I would even spin some of my own. I was HARDCORE into yarn. A few times I was tempted by fabrics but I turned my back and went back to my wool. I outright refused to sew. Well that’s not true there was that time that I had to sew 30 smocks for work but that wasn’t really sewing. AND I used Walmart fabric that was $2.99/metre. So that doesn’t count.

Upon finding out I was pregnant with my first child and being underemployed I discovered this urge in me to make a quilt for the baby. So I went to my local quilting store to take a look. I had no clue what I was getting into. No clue. I was still under the impression that the actual quilting was a waste of time and ridiculous. Boy was I foolish! So long story short I walked in, fell in love with a quilt for me (not the baby), signed up for a class, bought a new sewing machine and started to hoard fabric.

IMG_9227At this point I had no clue there was such a thing as traditional quilting or modern quilting.

IMG_9255-2I did know that the dark cranberries and forest green fabrics didn’t call to me.

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Then I found fabrics online that made my heart happy. And that is when I found out that I was in trouble.

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Deep, deep, deep trouble.

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This is the quilt that started it all. This is the quilt that I grab first to curl up under on the couch. This is the quilt that my children play with almost daily. This is the quilt that helped me find my passion. For this quilt I am most thankful.

2015

So we are a month into 2015 and so far I’m pretty pleased with it. I think 2015 is going to be a great year! I’ve taken a lot of time to stop and think about where I am, where I want to go and what is really important to me. The one thing that I keep coming back to is that I need to slow down. I always feel the need to do it all, to do more and to be everything to everyone. This year I’m trying to change that. I need to slow down and enjoy where I am, who I’m with and what cool things every moment has for me. A big part of this is that I’m learning how to say no to people or projects. I also need to keep reminding myself that to end up where I want to be I need to be present in the moment I am currently in. Anyway, enough with that crap, I was so busy last year with getting stuff done that I didn’t get to share a lot of what I actually accomplish. So here are some pictures from one of my favourite quilts this year.

238My friend contacted me and said she was looking for a wedding gift for a friend and would like a quilt made. She had some scraps from the wedding decoration to give me to incorporate into the quilt. So she sent them my way and gave me a few idea’s and told me to have fun!

183The box had some great, vibrant colours to work with so I went to my stash and started to build up coordinates to fill out the quilt. We had decided to go with Anna Maria Horner’s Feather Bed Quilt. It was perfect for a scrappy quilt and is always gorgeous.

photo (41)It took me a couple of miscuts to figure out how to get the feathers to cut out properly but once I got it it was smooth sailing.

Earlier that summer I had made a trip to purchase some fabric from a friend and had bought some Habitat Singing Forest fabric by Jay McCarroll. I just loved it. I’m not completely sure why but I was just drawn to it and knew it would make an awesome quilt back.

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I wasn’t disappointed! This quilt was the perfect fit for it!

For the quilting I just decided to follow the direction of the feather vanes and surround each feather. On the back of the quilt then you would have an outline of each feather with no quilting within it. I forgot to take pictures of this. Here is a grainy close up of the front.

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I also decided to try cutting actual bias binding for the first time. This Riley Blake Happy Stripe fit the colours in the quilt perfectly!

il_340x270.443981967_3oyzNormally I just straight cut my binding but I knew cutting these stripes on the bias would be the perfect echo of the vanes in the feather.

IMG_3119The finished product just made me so happy. I equate the happiness of me finishing a quilt I’m absolutely in love with to what some people call a ‘runners high’. Let me tell you I do some running/jogging/moving my feet while gasping for air and I have never once felt ‘high’ or super happy after a run. Usually I just want a cheeseburger or a milkshake or to not move for a month. The feeling I get after finishing a great quilt keeps me going for days and this quilt kept me going for weeks.
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Christmas Orders

I’ve been very absent from my blog. I’m sorry😦  I finally got my dream of dedicated time to sew and I thought I would have tons of time to keep on top of my blog etc. In reality the extra time got eaten up by custom quilts and orders! I’ve been busy to say the least! I’m excited to get back some photos of my quilts this week and will be showing them off on here.

But I’m having a custom item sale! Head on over to my facebook page for the details http://www.facebook.com/fabricheart and see for yourself. I will only be taking custom orders until Dec 1st. After that time just my current inventory will be available.

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Summer Time Crazy

Life has been busy and full and fun and exhausting. I’ve been off on a few adventures and haven’t been sewing as much but I still have been doing a ton of fabric related things.

I left the Great White North to go on an epic fabric adventure. I neglected to take many pictures. I was having too much fun to stop and document. That must mean I should take the trip again, sometime soon! I went down to Philadelphia to meet up with some internet friends who are avid fabric enthusiasts. My friend mrs ptb makes had scored an awesome deal on some fabric and I needed to have a ton!  So I made the trip down to her because it was cheaper than shipping and plus road trips kick butt! Our friend mkelly decided to join in on the fun and travelled up to Philly to get some fabric too!

First things. My car doesn’t do American.

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No Problem! A few sticky flags and some rough estimation I was good to go!!

I had an amazing trip away full of food, laughs, fabric, fabric shopping and just great friends! I came home with 2 large rubbermaid’s full of fabric! I wish I had taken a picture. I need to take more pictures. I needed a new place to store all my new fabric and my stash. Having it spread between 6 different rubbermaid’s made it really hard to pick fabrics for projects. So now I have this! mts ptb has a bunch of fabric left and she is selling it through her stash shop if you need some deals go to http://www.mrsptbstash.etsy.com.

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Look at all the fabric! And there is still space for more!!!!

I’ve been spending a lot of time finishing up projects that I have had on the go for a long time. Like this quilt for my Mom that I started in 2012. Hi Mum! I love you!!! Notice that new fabric? I hope you like it!

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151 blocks done, only 20ish left to go. I thought I was done all the blocks and then I recounted and readded and determined I need to go back to school to learn the Maths.

I’ve also been focusing on projects such as this:

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Repairing doll clothes. Seamstress to the dolls. There is a happy little girl because of this. I live for those moments.

I’ve been dreaming of my next quilts and how I’m going to use all my fabrics. Then I saw this beauty!

 

Aviatrix Medallion by Elizabeth Hartman

I need to make one or five. I’m in love! So I’m going to!

I’m moving away from doing a lot of the smaller projects I use to do and I’m moving towards just making quilts and blankets. This is where my heart is. This is where I need to be right now. I’m looking forward to taking all my quilts in my head and making them a reality!!!

 

Getting organized with Craftybase

UPDATE!!! I have so many referrals I would love to share the wealth. If you are so inclined please leave a comment on this post with your referral code. If you are looking for a referral code check the comment section and choose one of the codes that are posted there. Then when you get your own code please feel free to come back and leave it in the comment section.

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In theory I like to be organized. I’ve struggled with keeping track of my inventory and limiting the time it takes me to price out items. Over the last 3 years I’ve tried a couple different programs but most weren’t user friendly or were too labour intensive. Come on people this sleep deprived Mum needs something easy to use that doesn’t require a lot of brain power. Lets face it, after 2 kids I’ve lost most of my brain cells and what few I have left seem to be used for things like remembering all the words to Disney songs and figuring out ways to trick my kids into early bedtimes. A couple months ago I discovered Craftybase and my life got a whole lot easier! It connects to Etsy directly to make managing orders, inventory and things that have shipped easier. So here is an overview of my favourite parts of it.

Tracking Expenses

  • When I put an invoice in for any materials it takes into account all shipping and taxes and applies a portion of those fees to each of my items to the price reflects the true cost of the item
  • I can quickly go back and find any invoice without sifting through a pile of paper or digging through my email
  • Keeps track of all my Etsy listing fees
  • When I’m adding a new invoice if I have purchased an item before I can link to it easily so I don’t have to add all the info again

Inventory

  • Shows me exactly what I have in stock with little thumb nail pictures which is fun for project planning
  • With the Pro version it will also tell me about low stock levels
  • It reminds me how much my inventory is worth (oh wait this feature reminds me I need to stop buying fabric so maybe I don’t like this feature)
  • Fully searchable with tons of options to help find the material I’m looking for

Projects (This by far is my favourite feature)

  • This section lets you build your project using the specific materials from your Inventory, taking into account your time and then gives you suggested prices for your products including various sale venues like Etsy, Market or Wholesale.
  • You can then make ‘batches’ of this product which then adjusts your inventory to reflect the product you just used
  • You can copy ‘recipes’ or what you use in a product to make things quicker and then just change your variations. This is very useful for all the eye pillows I make. I copy the recipe and then just change the outer fabric case.
  • This section also links to previous sales, how many you have in stock, previous sales, other fees associated with the item (listing fees for example) and current Etsy listings that you have for the item

Orders

  • Lists all your orders for items
  • Links automatically to Etsy orders but it is also easy to add orders from other venues (I wish it linked up with other sites like Paypal and Ebay)
  • You can quickly see what orders haven’t been paid for or haven’t been shipped

To top it all off this site gives you an overview of your cash flow, helpful reports for improving your business and an amazing contact list! I was going to take a bunch of screenshots to show you more of how it looks but Craftybase has already made an amazing tour and you can check it out here: https://craftybase.com/site/features

Overall Pros:

  • Keeps me organized easily
  • Has made me really evaluate how much products should be priced at
  • I can access it from any computer anywhere

Overall Cons:

  • Setting it up was a bit time consuming since I have a couple years of product to add but by doing little chunks at a time I feel like it is doable
  • It only links up with Etsy to download transactions. The rest of your transactions you have to input by hand.

PLUS their customer service is hands down amazing. I had an issue when I was using a trial of it and they were on top of keeping me updated with their estimated fix time on it (it was a global issue and they were working with Etsy to fix it). They were super friendly and encourage you to reach out and ask them exactly how to use their product.

There are 2 different versions, crafter and Pro. Crafter is $7.99/month and Pro is $12.99/month but if you use a referral link like this one (http://craftybase.com/ref/e0bd28b9you get 10% off per month AND if you continue to refer other’s you will get an additional 10% off more each month until you have a free subscription! So go ahead and click on my referral link and sign up for a free trial! If you like it sign up and you are already saving 10%.  I compared the price of craftybase to other online tracking programs and found that it is comparable or cheaper with the added feature of having the crafter in mind.

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Please note: I am not paid for this review (although if you use my referral link I will get a discount). I just really, really, really like this program and I think it is worth every penny to keep my business organized.