Nope. Not that kind of lab work... nothing medical, though this did involve needles. Sutures - stitching. And I'm sure some anxiety and pain was involved... though not on my end of things.
I'm referring to the Scrap Lab projects for Quilts 'n More magazine.
This one. This is the most recent issue - Fall 2014 - and yes... Used with permission from Quilts and More magazine. 2014 Meredith Corporation. All rights reserved.
If you don't already know, the Scrap Lab projects started almost four years ago with Camille Roskelley of Thimbleblossoms and Joanna Figueroa of Fig Tree Quilts as the lab techs - the "designers in residence". They were at the helm for two years - eight issues - and I was invited to participate for what would be their last issue. I'm sure that's just a coincidence.
After that issue, Jill Mead - the then-editor of Quilts 'n More - asked if I would like to be part of the new "design team" with the amazing Patty Young of ModKid Boutique. Heck, yeah! Sign me up! (I have a bad habit of jumping into things without realizing exactly what would be involved.) Not too long after our first couple of issues together, Jill moved to another desk at American Patchwork and Jody Sanders took over the helm at Quilts 'n More. I'm sure that timing is just a coincidence too.
While we were originally asked to be the team for a year, Patty and I wound up doing seven issues. The task for each issue was the same - Patty and I, and a "guest designer" were sent a fabric "packet" and we had to use it for our projects. We couldn't add any fabric to it - except for a backing or lining that wouldn't show. We didn't have to use all of the fabric sent, but what we used had to be a "representative" of the packet. There were a few other "suggestions" - no zippers and any embellishments had to be easily obtained by anyone wanting to reproduce what we'd made. Oh, and you had to make something different from what the other two were making, and from what you'd made before.
In case you're thinking this sounds a lot like "work", you'd be wrong. It was one of the most enjoyable things I've done. If there is one thing I could change about it, it would be that we didn't get to go to the Quilts 'n More offices at Meredith Corp in Des Moines for a day to hang out and sew. Jill and Jody are smart, funny, amazing women, and seriously awesome quilters. Patty? Genius - The "guest designers" over the seven issues were Shea Henderson of Empty Bobbin Studio, Valori Wells, Monique Dillard of Open Gate Quilts, Lori Holt of Bee in My Bonnet, Allison Harris of Cluck Cluck Sew and I'm forgetting someone. (A pox on me for that oversight.) Wouldn't you love to sit and sew with these ladies?
The thing about all this is... I really dropped the ball this last year and never shared what we'd been doing.
This issue was with Lori Holt's beautiful Gracie Girl fabrics...
I made a bag!
When I was a teenager, I made lots of bags but somewhere along the line, I stopped making them - I blame Cole Haan and Coach. I love that out of the eight projects I made for Scrap Lab, two of them were bags.
By the way, this issue is also terrific for the giant Log Cabin quilt on the cover. It was made by Moda Lissa using Floral Gatherings and Floral Shirtings by Primitive Gatherings. I made a "version" of that quilt - that means I just started cutting and sewing strips and "loosely" followed the pattern - using scraps and pieces from several Bonnie & Camille collections. I'll show that to you next time.)
I also made a bucket... it was on my "bucket list". :::snort:::
Shea made the cute quilt on the wall and Patty made that awesome backpack. Metro Ovals - we were sent seven fat quarters of the Metro Ovals and a 1/2 yard of Kona Cotton in Ash.
I made a pillow...
The newest issue - shown above - had Patty, Monique and moi playing with batiks. We each received a Tonga Treat in Boysenberry - 20 strips measuring 6" x 44".
I made all three of these framed pictures using about 1/4 of my strips and half-triangle squares of the same size. All three frames are standard size, easily found at any "big box" craft store, Target and Walmart, and frame shop like Aaron Bros.
Framing blocks and "quilt-y" things is one of my favorite things to do.
And again - all pictures are "Used with permission from Quilts and More magazine. 2014 Meredith Corporation. All rights reserved."
The last project will be in the Winter 2014 issue that comes out in November - I think. Patty, Allison and I were given a fat quarter bundle of Allison's beautiful new O Clementine fabric - coming out next month, September. And I made a quilt. Finally! It's pretty cute - it measures 64" x 64" and all you need is a FQ bundle... just saying... should you want to plan ahead.
A little part of me is a bit sad that it's over as I really did enjoy every single challenge and project. There were times when I was absolutely 100% certain that I would never.ever.not-in-a-million-years.ever get an idea for what to make. And that was part of the fun of it all. I know! It sounds crazy... but I read once that having limits and restrictions force you to be the most creative - they push you further outside of your comfort zone because you have to find a way to make it work.
So thank you to Jill and Jody for inviting me to play along.
And I'm sorry that I was a little bit late sometimes.
(That was where the pain and anxiety part of this story came in.)
I'm back tomorrow with an "around the world" sort of thing.
(I know. I won't believe it until it happens either.)