Hello again! I am back from summer vacation. That means the annual La Rue de Fleurs’ end-of-summer sale will kick off in a few weeks. The End of Summer Sale will run September 12 through 24, 2022, and include my best prices for the entire year on all in-stock handmade goods.
Before the sale, I would like to give you an in-depth preview of some of the newest makes. Since everything I make is either micro-batch or completely original, once it is gone, it is gone for good. I almost never repeat projects, certainly not quilts. The preview is intended to allow you to make a decision before the shop sale opens so you can grab your favorites before anyone else. Because each item has a lot of details and special features which make it one-of-a-kind, these in-depth looks at the quilts, blankets, bags, pillows, etc allow you to see everything about your treasure that may not fit in a shop description.
I try to write a blog post for each project, and often film process videos, so all of those will be linked along with a quick recap of the newest items hitting the shop. If I haven’t written about it before, I will try to do so now so we are all caught up. In addition to finished makes, I will be giving a little preview of items I plan to have finished for the Perry County Council of the Arts Holiday Artisan Market and for my own shop this holiday season. But before we get into the product snapshots, I would like to share a few bits about my summer, in case you’re interested in what else I’ve been up to lately.
What I did on my “Summer Vacation”
As a mom and micro business owner, the notion that I get any actual “time off” is silly. I am kind of always working, just with a more intense schedule and workload during some times of the year and less at others. During the kids’ summer break, I also try to schedule myself lightly and not make too many commitments to myself or anyone else. Last year I had two different summer camp residencies, which I was extremely grateful for, (you can read about them here and here) but it took a lot of time away from my kids. My son is getting older – he’ll be 15 next week – as is my daughter, and much to their teen chagrin, I try to spend every bit of unused screen time making them do things with me.
Ah, yes, Longwood Gardens, that was a great day! I had never been before. We live about two hours away and were able to schedule it in with a trip to visit my sister and nephew who live nearby. If you’re like me and you love gardens, go! Meanwhile, here is a little garden pron to get you through until you can get there in person.
Most recently, we were lucky enough to spend a few weeks on vacation as a family in the Florida Keys! It truly is a hot, tropical paradise. We saw sea turtles and alligators on day trips to Dry Tortugas NP and Everglades NP. We ate at amazing restaurants and had key lime pie in Key West. And we enjoyed a lovely home on the canals of Key Colony Beach. The trip was exciting, adventurous, and relaxing, just what you would hope for from a vacation. Here are just a few of the attempts to capture the beauty of the Keys.
“The Fields” Collection
Okay, okay, I could reminisce about the summer for an entire post, but that was not probably what you signed up for. As originally promised, let’s get to the new items I have made for the shop. As you can see, I love to visit gardens and landscapes I admire. They provide me with inspiration in the mixing of colors and textures as only mother nature can. The fabrics used in “The Fields” collection, was inspired by my daughter’s request for a more mature blanket for her pre-teen room that would combine “an artist’s sketchbook with wildflowers.” You can read more about the details of those fabrics and how I choose bundles here.
In addition to finishing a long overdue PMB (patchwork minky blanket) for my daughter in June, I also used that bundle of fabric to create a PMB for pattern publication in We Like Sewing Magazine. “The Fields” PMB has been returned to me following its photo shoot in Chicago and will be up for sale shortly in the Etsy shop. Check for it in the Patchwork Minky Blankets section. The backing is a super soft rosette minky in cream, which rolls over the patchwork top and compliments the colors of the patchwork perfectly.
In addition to the traditional block design of my classic PMBs, I like to use more of a brick shape and other rectangles for a more scrappy look. I will also have a version of “The Fields” PMB using the original bundle with the addition of a few other coordinating fabrics to expand and remix the combination. Here is the completed top of “Garden Path.” Garden Path will also have the rosette minky swirl in the same cream color as the backing and rolled edge and will also be listed in the PMB section.
In addition to the two larger throw sized “The Fields” and “Garden Path,” I plan to make smaller kids or baby-size PMB with yet another remix of the fabrics. That would likely not be ready until the holidays. I will share an update as it is completed and listed, but here is a sample of the fabrics.
The off cuts of this bundle also made a quilt! The X-Mark Throw Quilt, which dropped to the shop earlier this summer, was made entirely from the leftovers of trimming “The Fields” bundle. Combined with a few other strips of fabric from my stash, The X-Mark quilt used up a lot of strips and helped me create a new pattern, which I plan to release next year.
In addition to “The Fields” PMB for We Like Sewing, I also created the Eco Bottle Bag pattern. I don’t often make bags, so testing the pattern while writing it was essential for me to work through all of the steps. Therefore, I created several bags just to write the pattern, and then a few samples to send off to the magazine to photograph for publication. You can purchase some of the tester Eco Bottle Bags in Black Geo and the fabric combination I sent off to WLS, Meadows. Meadows’ floral fabric was originally bought to go with The Fields collection, but once I got all of the fabrics, I decided two feature florals were too much. I still adore the design, however, and it worked perfectly as the feature fabric for the bottle bag.
Lastly, from this bundle, I used a few of the trimmings from the X-Mark quilt to create these super adorable mug rugs. “The Fields” bundle was truly one that kept on giving and giving! You can find more details about the mug rugs in the Etsy shop link here and here. I also made a few mug rugs in a similar style with a moodier, more masculine color pallet just for fun. Here are a few pictures of each, but you can see all in the Home Goods section of the Etsy shop.
Whew! I really thought I hadn’t done much this summer. As it turns out, I am a lot more productive when I look back than I thought. This is only about half of what I have to show and tell, so I think I’ll make this a two-part post. Check your email next week for the rest of the goodies I have for the shop and sale. I still have a whole new collection to talk about!!
As always, thank you so much for supporting my small business and creativity! Janice
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