At the beginning of the year I decided to make some changes to my blog. I am no longer accepting advertisements because posting regularly has become more of a burden and things seem to have changed. Blogging doesn’t feel like it did when I first began in 2007. Back then I felt like I was talking to friends, sharing ideas and inspiration in a community. These days it feels like that community has devolved to quick Instagram glimpses, character-limited tweets, and solipsistic Facebook posts. Don’t get me wrong; I often enjoy the brief communication and instant feedback, but there’s definitely something missing. Maybe I need to actually leave my house to find community.

Anyway, I’ll be posting less frequently, but I am still making things. I just submitted another fabric collection for Kokka, which will be shown at Spring Quilt Market. And I’m excited to be trying some new substrates in this collection! I’m working on a new book idea, but feeling overwhelmed by the processSo I’ve been trying to use time effectively and to find that tricky balance between work and family life. Not easy.

Above are some Instagram photos to show what I’ve been doing lately. Making baby things! Working on auction projects. This year, we decided to skip the school quilt and make a piece of art, so I cut 380-something tiny balsa wood houses and the art teacher is working with the kids to paint and collage them. And I’m working with my older daughter’s fifth grade class on this paper stampede project. You can see her horse samples above. I found the tutorial and templates from Ann Wood over on Design Sponge. And in the bottom left photo, you can see that I made a block using a design from each of my Kokka collections. This is a work in progress for an upcoming block tutorial. And on the bottom right is a sneak peek of a design from my next collection!

Oh, and I’m also hauling kids around town, mediating their constant bickering, and making mediocre dinners. But I don’t have photos of that.

Sad News

kathreen ricketson

I’m deeply saddened by the loss of our friend and colleague, Kathreen Ricketson, founder of Whip Up, author of quilting and craft books, and the creator of Action Pack family magazine. Although I never met Kathreen in person, we worked together on a number of projects and I have been inspired by her amazing blog for years. A force in the handmade world, she influenced so many people with her creativity and her integrity.

Beyond her honest and thoughtful words, she really lived a beautiful and creative handmade life. This year she and her family left home to travel around their native Australia to live the slow life, to explore the natural world and connect with one another on a new level. The incredibly sad circumstances of her death and the tragedy of her two children losing both of their parents in a single day is too much. I hope her children will somehow feel the love that is pouring in for them from around the world. Kathreen touched so many lives through her work.

It looks like they have created a fund for Kathreen and Rob’s children, so please check in over at Whip Up for more details. Or just click the button below to go directly to PayPal to donate now.

The photo above was posted by Kathreen on her blog just a few months ago.

True Up & Bolt Neighborhood

Today 1, 2, 3 Sew is making the final blog tour stops over at True Up and Bolt Neighborhood.

If you love fabric as I do, then you are no doubt familiar with Kim Kight’s blog, True Up. Today she asked about my Fabric Fives, so you can see the fabrics I love and those I use often. Kim also talks a bit about my next project — a fabric collection!

In addition to giving birth to an adorable baby boy this week (Congratulations!), Kim has just finished a book called A Field Guide to Fabric Design that will be out this fall. Looks like a great book for aspiring fabric designers as well as those who just want to make their own unique creations.

And Bolt Neighborhood is also part of the blog tour today with a pattern review and book giveaway! Bolt is a great fabric store in Portland that I so hope to visit someday. Melissa has whipped up the Tiered Bag project from the book using a beautiful silk fabric. Go check it out!

Thanks to all of the wonderful sites who have hosted the blog tour over the past two weeks! If you missed a stop on the tour, be sure to check out the full list below.

Eyelet Headband Tutorial on CRAFT

Lunch Sack Pattern and Book Giveaway on Sew, Mama, Sew

Review and Giveaway on Oh My! Handmade Goodness

10 Things that Inspire Me, posted by Rachel Faucett for Babble

Book Review and Giveaway on Everything Etsy

Book Review on Not Martha

Pattern Review on Modern Kiddo

Stamped Tea Towel Tutorial on Indie Fixx

Book Review and Giveaway on Patterns by Figgy’s

Podcast Interview about publishing a craft book on Papernstitch

Book Review and Giveaway on House on Hill Road

Book Review and Giveaway on Coquette

Pattern Review and Giveaway on Bolt Neighborhood

Fabric Fives on True Up


Book Reviews & Giveaways

Today 1, 2, 3 Sew is visiting over at Coquette and House on Hill Road.

Natalie of Coquette is the former editor of CRAFT and now fills her time with blogging and spending time with her little girl. You should also check out Natalie’s other blog Coquette Maman, which focuses on fashion and style for moms and their kids. Today she has posted a review of the book, photos and she’s offering a giveaway!

House on Hill Road is a lovely blog where Erin shows us her sewing, crafts and life with kids. It’s a warm and cozy place and makes me think I should have a cup of tea when I’m reading it. Erin has made a couple of the mouse pincushions from the book and in addition to offering a book, she is also giving away one of her little mice. So sweet! Be sure to check out Erin’s shop where she sells these great quilted camera straps (pictured above).

Thanks to Natalie and Erin for being part of the blog tour!


Podcast on Papernstitch

Today the blog tour heads to Papernstitch where I did a podcast interview with Brittni about the process of publishing 1, 2, 3 Sew. Brittni Mehlhoff manages this fabulous exhibition site, showcasing some of the best talent in independent art and handmade design. Her blog is packed full of excellent resources for crafty businesses and those who love handmade.

In addition to getting to hear my raspy voice and Alabama accent (pretty sure I called a blog a “blawg”), you can hear about how I found a publisher, edited the book, and some of the not-so-glamorous details of the book-making process. Like the story of the real setting of this seemingly idyllic photo below.

Photo by Laura Malek.

So head over and listen to the interview with Brittni. And I apologize for the feedback. We did the interview via skype and it seems that I should have used a headset or microphone or something.

Thanks to Papernstitch for being part of the blog tour! Oh, and I’ll soon share a sneak peek of that new project I mentioned!