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Worlds are about to collide!  I’m the seventh stop (and maybe in seventh heaven) on Amy Butler’s Big-Old-Blog-Tour-Celebrating-Her-New-Book Piece Keeping. Even though I’ve got my own Paper Obsessed Blog Tour happening right now, I wanted to take a breather to show you what the Amy Butler has been up to.  Have you seen this book?

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It’s ridiculously cute and incredibly inspired.  Amy and I discussed Piece Keeping while we were at Quilt Market in Salt Lake City, UT.  Remember?  We made our Letters from Home quilt from her new fabric Eternal Sunshine for her booth.


We chatted a lot about how the book was filled with all kinds of different fabrics, not just the beauties that Amy herself has designed.  As a fellow designer and artist, I agreed that it’s wonderful to pull inspiration from lots of different places.  Mixing and matching various substrates that have richness of color and amazing textures found in fabrics like cotton linens can be so rewarding.  I’m impressed that Amy’s new book pulls from a huge range of fabrics and textures.

One of my favorite projects in the book is the Stash Pouches project.  The book includes instructions and patterns for three sizes of pouches.  I landed on the large.

IMG_7543.jpgI wanted to incorporate some elements found in her inspiration, namely the leather pull and the metal zipper, so I headed to Diagon Alley to find my supplies.  Just kidding.  But I did go to a place that is pretty much where Harry Potter gets his supplies for Hogwarts.  If you’re remotely close to Indianapolis and have just a slight interest in working with leather, you need to go to Landwerlen Leather at 365 S Illinois Downtown Indy.


The outside is so unassuming with the mailbox numbers glued to the window with its hand lettered and painted sign.  But inside…

…it’s a dream world. Established in 1908, you’ll find old cabinets filled full of leather sewing supplies.  They are a leather supply and shoe findings warehouse for the leather trades, small manufacturers, and hobbyists.  And it smells INCREDIBLE like leather.

I got my goods, felt inspired, and set off to make my Stash Pouch.  I chose to use Robert Kaufman’s Metallic Essex Linen with a piece of vintage plaid I’ve had in my stash forever.  This also seemed like a good time to pull out a little hunk of Heather Ross’s Far Far Away printed on lightweight cotton linen to use as the lining.


Amy Butler made construction easy to follow and I truly appreciated that each of the pattern pieces told you exactly what to do as well as the book itself.  Piece Keeping celebrates patchwork, so of course, the flying goose is the star of this bag.  I mean, I love the flying geese. [Check out our Row by Row Experience block as evidence.]

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My most favorite part of this bag, however, is the sweet pleats.  They make the entire project.


I added a little bit of my Paper Obsessed stamp fabric to the interior, just a little embellishment. I knew I loved it and I figured Amy would like the succulents hidden inside.


Here’s the view before I sewed it together.  Notice there’s a sneaky pocket inside, too.


Want to peek in on a sample of the book with a sample of the instructions?  Check it out here.

Amy Butler, Chronicle Books, Free Spirit Fabric, and Renaissance Ribbons are all giving away amazing swag with this blog tour. Each stop provides one winner a copy of the book, a fat quarter bundle of Eternal Sunshine, and a slug of Amy Butler designed ribbons.  Leave a comment here and tell me what kind of sneaky treasure do you want to hide inside your Stash Pouch or tell me about the most amazing store you’ve ever been in that was unassuming from the outside but inside, there was total magic.  I’ll draw one commenter randomly July 22 at 8:00 AM.  Please make sure there is way to contact you (either through your link or by adding your email to the comment).  Thanks for playing along.  Don’t forget to find me in other avenues or visit me in the store at Crimson Tate!


·         July 11 – Chronicle Books

·         July 12 – The Root Connection

·         July 13 – Suzy Quilts

·         July 14 – Rock Paper Scissors

·         July 15 – 100 Billion Stars

·         July 16 – Carrie Bloomston

·         July 17 – Late Night Quilter

·         July 18 – Heather Givans of  Crimson Tate [Alohamora!]

·         July 19 – A Gathering of Stitches

·         July 20 – Heather Jones Studio

·         July 21 – Make It In Design

And if you’re inclined, hop on the Paper Obsessed Tour, too.  We’d be happy to have you.



CONGRATULATIONS TO MARA!!! SHE’S THE WINNER OF THE RANDOM DRAWING.  And thank you to everyone for the fantastic stories.  🙂

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Final Stop on the Succulents Blog Hop and TOTAL GRATITUDE

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View from inside my house. Woodruff Place Victorian neighborhood. Note the sand colors.

We did it.  We traversed across the blog-a-sphere and peeked in on a slug of creative friends who have put Succulents to good use.  I’m totally honored and proud of the company I keep, my friends and creative colleagues.  I wanted to cap off the tour with a little story of where the ideas came from plus a few more thank yous.

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The Beginnings of Caring for Succulents

The design process for me starts with pencil on paper.  And then again, more pencil on paper, from doodles to realism. I like to explore the range and often land somewhere in the fringe with elements of realism but mostly a whimsy style.  Through this process for Succulents, my first collection for Windham Fabrics, I wanted desperately to hangout in greenhouses and nurseries among the warm air that the cacti breathe.  As a mid-westerner, cold winter months draw me to those places of tropical relief.  And to think it’s only a short trip across town to smell the earthy dirt and moist air, I’ll take it.  If I’m going to be totally honest and reveal my absolute nerdiness (which I’m totally ok with) you should know that I’ve been a member of the Cacti and Succulent Society of America for the past 15 years.  I subscribe to the technical journal and read it religiously.  It’s always a great day when the journal shows up in my mailbox.  I dream of traveling to South Africa to witness some of my favorite plants in the wild.

In my not so distant past I had a huge collection – over a hundred varieties – of various succulents and cacti.  One of my favorite things is when people bring me cuttings of their heirloom plants.  I am thoroughly convinced that plants that are gifts grow much better than plants you buy for yourself.  It’s easy to share many kinds of succulents because the less finicky varieties just regenerate in new dirt.

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Flux‘s beautiful green typewriter

They don’t mind, either, if you neglect them.  In the winter months when they are sitting in all of my south facing window sills, I ignore them until they cry out, playing Mr. Obvious that they need a drink!  Being inspired by their funky leaves, sometime fat and transparent, is easily done.  Often succulents are totally CUTE, too, so that doesn’t hurt.

In this collection I wanted to pull together a slug of different greens that are sometimes difficult to coordinate.  So to add olive green to spring green to sage green, how can we make that work?! Lovely and luckily enough, those tones live together very harmoniously in the succulent world.  I love that the overall collection edges a little bit dusty and earthy.  I like to think that’s who I am.  If you add dashes of antiques and worn goods, it’s the spice of who I am.
It has been such a pleasure and immense joy to work with the gang of Windham Fabrics.  Let’s do it again! And in fact, I’ve turned in some designs for the second collection, so hold your hats.  We’re gonna take this ride again.
In the next few days, I’ll feature a tutorial on how to sew this quilt.  Subscribe, follow, pinch, poke, you owe me a coke, or whatever you do to remind yourself that you should come back here in a few days to see how to build this modern quilt I call Scandia.


Photos by Eric Lubrick

BIG FAT THANK YOUS!!  Here’s a short list of the humans I love and appreciate their help.  (Obs, there are too many to list, but these few need a special shout-out)

Thank you to Jamie MacDougall, my dearest and best friend, who made me lots of dinners and coffee when I would submerse myself into what I was working on so I didn’t have to worry about life details.

Thank you to David Barnhouse of Crimson Tate – truly my right-handed right hand man and bestie.

Thank you to Shannon Brasovan of Practice Indie who is my guru & yogi who has been teaching me how to keep balance in my life.

Thank you to Laura, Sandy, Alex, and Mickey of Windham Fabrics who just plain get me and are total pleasure to work with.

Thank you to Kristofer Bowman of The Inventorialist who allowed me to use his space to take some of the photography seen in the look-book and rushed vintage ledger papers over without questioning me on why.

Thank you to DeAnne Roth of Flux Antiques & Curiosities who allowed me the use of her super cool typewriter that I typed the text on for the collection and inspired one of the color-ways of the text prints.

Thank you to Chris DePrez of Fountain Square Clay Center who allowed me to come in an throw a bunch of pots for Quilt Market last fall.

Thank you to Joey Ponce of who is an all around amazing human.

Thank you to my mom who cleaned my house a couple of times when I couldn’t seem to get to it.  And thank you to my dad who has done a ton of ironing for me in the last year.

Thank you to the customers and community of Crimson Tate for entertaining me and sharing in the joy that has been this past year.  Thanks for supporting us and for dreaming with me.  Soooo good!  Don’t forget, today is your last day to enter the drawing for one of fourteen complete fat quarter bundles of Succulents.


March 15: Heather Givans of Crimson Tate

March 16: Eric Lubrick of Eric Lubrick Photography

March 17: Sarah Sharp of {no} hats quilts

March 18: Lindsay Lefevere of ellesquare

March 19: Karen McTavish of McTavish Quilting Studio

March 20: David Barnhouse of Crimson Tate

March 21: Meghan Eschbaugh of Calvin and Carolyn

March 22: Brooke Starnes of Crimson Tate

March 23: Matthew Wheeler of Kapa Quilts

March 24: Samantha Howard of Bobaloo Kids

March 25: Amy Garro of 13 spools

March 26: Amanda Castor of Material Girl Quilts

March 27: Heather Jones of Heather Jones Studio

March 28: Heather Givans of Crimson Tate

In closing, comments that celebrate who inspires you, helps you endlessly, or make you happy receive a big hug and high five.



March 26 :: Amanda Castor of Material Girl Quilts :: IT’S HERE!!! SUCCULENT SHELF PATTERN IS HERE!!

Total hearts in my eyes for Amanda Castor of Material Girl Quilts.  She is total happiness and incredibly creative. I can’t wait for you to see all of the variations of Succulent Shelf, a paper pieced pattern that she has created!  I’m thinking I’m going to make a bed sized version of all of these cute little potted plants. Heather4112Photo by Eric Lubrick

Head over to her blog and see what she’s been up to and make sure to find her pattern.  It’s a keeper!!  You’ll find her at

Let her know what you think and don’t forget, we only have two days left of the blog tour.  So join in.  Get inspired.  Leave comments on each of the blogs for fourteen chances to win!! Thank you Windham Fabrics for giving away fourteen complete fat quarter bundles of Succulents.  Tomorrow we meet Heather Jones.  Love that kid!

March 15: Heather Givans of Crimson Tate
March 16: Eric Lubrick of Eric Lubrick Photography
March 17: Sarah Sharp of {no} hats quilts }
March 18: Lindsay Lefevere of ellesquare
March 19: Karen McTavish of McTavish Quilting Studio
March 20: David Barnhouse of Crimson Tate
March 21: Meghan Eschbaugh of Calvin and Carolyn
March 22: Brooke Starnes
March 23: Matthew Wheeler of Kapa Quilts
March 24: Samantha Howard of Bobaloo Kids
March 25: Amy Garro of 13 spools
March 26: Amanda Castor of Material Girl Quilts
March 27: Heather Jones of Heather Jones Studio
March 28: Heather Givans of Crimson Tate

Matthew Wheeler of Kapa Quilts Blogging about Succulents + {GIVEAWAY}

IMG_5403QuiltCon 2015 was INCREDIBLE.  I can’t emphasize enough that if you haven’t been, you need to make room in your schedule, if possible, to attend the Modern Quilt Guild Convention.  Did I ever tell you about the time that Denyse Schmidt tried to throw me under the bus?  It’s a good story.  You should ask her about it.  Here we are after sitting on a panel together with Jacqueline Sava of Soak and Mary Fons, formerly of Quilty Magazine.


While in Austin, I had the pleasure of meeting Matt Wheeler of Kapa Quilts and in no time, this kid created the cutest set of baskets using Succulents.  I wanted you to see his creations so we reserved this date for him.  Head over to his blog and look at what he’s whipping up.

Don’t forget, your comment on each blog will be entered into a drawing of fourteen fat quarter bundles of Succulents!!  Here’s the line-up.  We’ll see you back here tomorrow to hear what Sam Howard has to say about using Succulents.

March 15: Heather Givans of Crimson Tate
March 16: Eric Lubrick of Eric Lubrick Photography and Oar to Oar
March 17: Sarah Sharp of {no} hats quilts
March 18: Lindsay Lefevere of ellesquare
March 19: Karen McTavish of McTavish Quilting Studio, blogging at Crimson Tate 
March 20: David Barnhouse of Crimson Tate
March 21: Meghan Eschbaugh of Calvin and Carolyn
March 22: Brooke Starnes of Crimson Tate
March 23: Matthew Wheeler of Kapa Quilts (today’s stop)
March 24: Samantha Howard of Bobaloo Kids,blogging at Crimson Tate
March 25: Amy Garro of 13 spools
March 26: Amanda Castor of Material Girl Quilts
March 27: Heather Jones of Heather Jones Studio
March 28: Heather Givans of Crimson Tate