Wednesday, September 25, 2013

RIley Blake Fabric Fest Re Cap

My name up on the big screen..

I finally have some time to blog about the amazing Riley Blake Fabric Fest that I was able to teach and work at.  I had so much fun I almost forgot about the extremely long days I worked during the show.

Curved Piecing Pattern Handout

I worked behind the scenes at this event quite with Quiltique, the local shop that I work at. We were the man power behind the Fabric Fest store. I helped set-up and arrange all of the vignettes of fabric for the store's display - and take them all down.  Typical Andrea fashion, I failed to get any photos of it.  I missed the fashion show because I was so exhausted and needed to go home - but I heard it was amazing.

The store turned out to be a huge success and people loved seeing all of the great Riley Blake fabric lines arranged together with projects.  And the trims...have you seen the Riley Blake trims? Oh my..

You can check out some of the store photos at Amy Smart's blog - she was smart enough to take some photos.

Big Stitch Students
I taught two classes at Fabric Fest and both classes were amazing.  My students were wonderful (aren't all quilters?) and were so quick and eager to learn.    

More Big Stitch Students

First class was Big Stitch Quilting.  Everyone did such a great job and picked up on the quilting stitch so quickly.  The second class was Curved Piecing for the Modern Quilter.  Again a wonderful selection of students. Here is a look at some of their blocks...

How wonderful is the neon with grey?

This above photo was actually an almost finished quilt top! Crazy! I love seeing everyone's fabric selection for the quilts I make.

The Riley Blake Staff was so great to work with and did such a wonderful job at creating and organizing this event. They even took a handful of the Riley Blake Team and Instructors to the Donny and Marie show.  I have to admit - I had never listened to any Donny or Marie songs but I was pleasantly surprised at what a great show they put on.  I ended up going afterwards with a group of instructors and designers to Max Brenner for some yummy dessert/dinner.

Super Delicious Banana Split Waffle

I am so glad that I do not make it out to the Strip that often.  This place would be so tempting to go into every time I was remotely nearby. I was able to meet some amazing people and share my love of quilting with some wonderful students.  I had such a great time at Fabric Fest I hope to do it again next time.

Monday, August 19, 2013

A Busy Summer..

I feel like I have neglected this blog space, yet again.  I guess I have a semi-decent reason.  I have been stitching, and stitching, and stitching on my embroidery machine. About seven million stitches to be exact. 

The quilt is Feathered Star by HoopSisters.  I am teaching it at Quiltique.  It pretty much has consumed my summer.  It is a very large quilt, 93X108 so I will have to find some way to get a picture of it when it is entirely done.  I am still hand-sewing the binding on.

It feels so good to get a project like this accomplished.  Next up I am conquering the Tula Pink City Sampler.  I cannot wait to jump into this quilt, I would rather piece than embroider any day.

I have a very busy schedule the next month, so maybe I will pop back in.  Instagram is just so much quicker and easier.  You can find me there as 'andisew'.  See you there.

Monday, June 24, 2013


Welcome all Fabric Fest blog hoppers!  I cannot express how excited I am to be teaching at the very first Riley Blake Designs 'Fabric Fest' right here in the place I call home, Las Vegas.

I feel so privileged to have been asked to teach at this amazing conference filled with spectacular teachers that I have to pinch myself at times to make sure I am not dreaming.  I will be teaching not just one, but two classes at Fabric Fest (still pinching!) - Big Stitch Quilting and Curved Piecing for the Modern Quilter.

First a little about me...I currently work and teach at Quiltique in Henderson, Nevada - an amazing quilt shop.  I have been sewing since I was a child but more seriously in the last 12 years or so, mostly focused on quilting.  I have never been afraid to try anything and started my journey as a self-taught quilter.  I have picked up so many hints and tips along the way from quilting friends and many, many, great teachers.  Currently, I am obsessed with the modern movement in quilting and founded the Las Vegas Modern Quilt Guild a couple of years ago.  


The first class I will be teaching is Big Stitch Quilting (it is full but sign up for the waiting list!).  If you haven't noticed hand-stitching is very popular in the quilting industry today.  Learn how to use big stitch quilting to speed up the hand-quilting process while getting a unique look.  In class we will make a pillow that showcases a large print. Using Perle Cotton thread we will enhance the pattern by quilting around the design. 

The print will make all of the difference for this project.  You want to focus on a print that has larger design motifs with a simple background.   Small, busy prints as shown above are a bad choice for the beginner "big-stitcher"; even though it is completely adorable.

This print, Ashbury Heights by Riley Blake, is what will be included in the class kit.  This print is perfect! You can easily stitch around the motif and even add some accent stitching to the background if desired. If you are taking the class and need help deciding on a print shoot me an email ( and I will assist you in finding the perfect print!


Curved piecing is all the rage right now and I don't know about you but before I tried it I was terrified of it.  I had this bad mental vision of 50 pins around each curve and hours and hours of cutting templates.  Not in this class!  This class will show you some tips to make curved piecing simple and effective.  My "Indie Chic" quilt will be the class kit if you would like to purchase.  For this quilt grab a Riley Blake Rolie Polie, some background fabric, and the Creative Grids Split Seconds Ruler and off you go!

I will also show some other quilt layouts using the Split Seconds Ruler as well.  This one features Little Red Riding Hood by Riley Blake Designs.  This class will show you that you can conquer curved piecing!  There are a few spaces left in the class so grab one before they are gone.

In the next few months before Fabric Fest I will show you some more examples of both of the classes I will be teaching so make sure to check back with me!  

So...who wants to win??  Since I am a Vegas local I want to know what Las Vegas show you would most like to squeeze in while attending Fabric Fest?  Personally, I cannot wait for the Michael Jackson Cirque du Soleil show.  I will randomly choose a winner within 48 hours and the lucky winner will receive a mystery package from Riley Blake.  The mystery package will include some 1/2 yard cuts of Riley Blake fabric - what could be better? So, who will win? You will have to check back to find out.  Don't miss the rest of the Fabric Fest Blog Hop for more chances to win fabulous prizes, as there is not much time left.

See you all at Fabric Fest 2013!


During the blog hop, these great sites will be blogging all about Fabric Fest and the wonderful classes they are teaching. They will also be giving away some great prizes, so you'll want to keep this list close by!
Trust us.
You CAN'T miss a single day! 

Wednesday, June 5
Jina Barney of Riley Blake Designs
Thursday, June 6
Lori Holt of Bee in My Bonnet
 Friday, June 7
Elizabeth and Liz Evans of Simply Simon & Co
Saturday, June 8
Nancy Zieman/Deanna Springer of Nancy
Monday, June 10
Melissa Mortenson of The Polka Dot Chair 
Tuesday, June 11
Carolina Moore of Always Expect Moore
Wednesday, June 12
Paige Hill of Riley Blake Designs, Jennifer of Tatertots and Jello,
Becky & Kari of U-Create
Thursday, June 13
Amanda Herring of The Quilted Fish
Friday, June 14
Kim Christopherson & Kris Thurgood of My Girlfriends Quilt Shoppe
Saturday, June 15
Bonnie Bailey on Riley Blake Designs
 Monday, June 17
Lila Tueller of Lila Tueller Designs
Tuesday, June 18
Amy Smart of Diary of a Quilter
Wednesday, June 19
Lindsay Wilkes of The Cottage Mama
Thursday, June 20
Sue Daley of Sue Daley Designs
Friday, June 21
Eleanor Burns/ Sue Bouchard of Quilt in a Day
Saturday, June 22
Jenny, Natalie, & Sarah of Missouri Star Quilt Company
 Monday, June 24
Andrea Goddard of And I Sew
Tuesday, June 25
Becky, Brooke, Jamie, Kirsten, & Nikkala of The Crafting Chicks
Wednesday, June 26
Deonn Stott of Quiltscapes 
 Thursday, June 27
Sandy Workman of Pine Mountain Designs
Friday, June 28
Sydney Haglund of Memory Quilt Maker

Thursday, June 20, 2013

I Wish I had Photo Skills...


I spoiled myself this weekend by purchasing a new lens for my camera.  After a small amount of research I decided on the Nikon 50mm f/1.8 with the auto focus.  This was the first photo I snapped instantly after attaching the lens. This little guy is Whiskey, his tongue is always out.

I really want to USE my camera more.  I purchased a used Nikon D60 for quite a bargain last year and haven't even began to fully understand and explore all it can do.  For now, I just take photos and act like I know what I am doing, but truly I have no clue.  I hope to learn much more about photography and how to use my camera.

In the meantime I just keep snapping photos....

My cat.  One of them, I have another.  This one was found in the street three years ago as a little kitten, she really has no name but answers only to Kiki so I guess that is her name even thought I don't like it.

More baby Audrey.  My baby photo skills are so lacking.

Lastly, my time-sucker, complete and total time-sucker.  A block from my store sample, the HoopSisters Feathered Star. I will post more on this quilt later.  

This weekend I was able to sew The Staple Dress by April Rhodes while my embroidery machine was running.  Such a quick and easy dress!  I wore it today and I love it.  I highly recommend it if you want a quick garment that is easy to sew and very versatile.  I am already planning another.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013


My sewing this weekend turned out to have a very specific theme...mouse heads.  As in Mickey and Minnie mouse heads.

The first:  The Mickey Mouse Head Quilt
My cousins and I all grew up on the same street.  Which really made it like growing up with more siblings.

Here is a photo of most of us - I am very unsure of posting this photo, but it was the 80s.  Yes I am the crazy, center-of-attention one covering my sister's face.  Pay no attention to the clothes - it was the 80's...late 80's, by the way!  The little girl in the pink dress now has a little boy of her own who will be one at the end of this month.  He was actually born on my sister's birthday, who is only 12 days older than my cousin.

He loves MIckey Mouse and is having a Mickey Mouse party. Evidently, Mickey Mouse is still very, very popular.  I had no idea. 

I decided why not make a gigantic Mickey Mouse head quilt - seems easy enough.  I added his name because I cannot seem to make baby items without a name on them.  I will be out of town for work during the party so I want to make sure I have it done before.  I figure it will make a great mat to open the presents on.  

It finishes at about 54 inches wide by 43 inches tall.  It was really simple and I LOVE how it looks so far.  It still needs to be quilted.  My 830 was running embroidered blocks for a store sample all weekend and I refuse to quilt on the smaller machines now that I have been spoiled with a 12 inch throat machine.  I am using the Quilter's Dream Dream Puff batting for extra poofiness.  I made this in just a couple of hours and I really love how it looks - I may make a Minnie one for my niece. Or maybe Hello Kitty - so hard to decide.

The second: Minnie Mouse Head Onesie

My niece, who is almost four months old now will be attending the party.  My sister wanted her to wear a Minnie Mouse outfit. I appliquéd a quick Minnie Mouse head onto the onesie to match the skirt my sister found.  

I have made her a onesie each month for her one month birthday.  The first few were not so easy to appliqué on.  Now the they are getting bigger it is becoming a little easier.  Of course, I had to try it on her.  I think she likes it...she needs a bow...I know.

I was also able to sew with my friends on Sunday at a local quilt shop.  I worked on my scrappy trip.  That seems to be the project I take with me to do some mindless sewing. I got a lot done this weekend thanks to this horrible heat wave.  I have no desire to leave the indoors this time of year.  

I will post photos later of the above mentioned embroidery sample that is sucking up all of my time right now.  I am so close to done, yet I am pretty much over it.  I hate being in that spot, but it happens on big project.  These small projects are good to squeeze in when you are at that point - instant mouse head gratification.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Little Bits of Sewing...

This weekend I got a bit of sewing done that was not work related.  It has been awhile that I have made something simply because I wanted to do it.

For quite some time I have been wanting to make a mini-sized Swoon block.  I absolutely LOVE this block.  Making it with the Creative Grids Quick Trim Ruler makes it quick and easy. This ruler is a must-have for me.  Watch their great video to see all that it can do.

The original blocks finish at 24 inches.  I wanted mine to finish at 8 inches.  This means all those little half square triangles have to finish at one inch.  One, tiny inch.  I actually made them at about two inches and cut them down to a perfect 1-1/2" HST.  When piecing this tiny, accuracy is completely necessary.

I used some of my Denyse Schmidt Chicopee fat quarters I had waiting to go into something.  The background is the a light grey small polka dot that was in the Vintage Modern line by Bonnie and Camille for Moda.  I bought yards of all of these small polka dots. They make wonderful background fabrics and are in such yummy colors.

I was playing around with pieces of the unfinished block and fell in love with this block layout.  I have to experiment more with this at the larger size - love it!  

My new sewing space is pretty much back together and organized. I will take photos when It spruce it up a little more.  My mom had two vintage Danish chairs with low backs and no arms that I am going to cover for the sewing room.  They were my Great-Grandmothers, and they are perfect sewing chairs!  I am excited how it is all turning out and will post more on it later.  I also will be doing some major de-stashing.  I cannot believe how much stuff I have accumulated.  Way too much stuff.

I am ending my weekend watching Arrested Development on Netflix.  I decided before I watch the new episodes I am going to re-watch the series.  It amazes me that this show has not been on TV for years, yet is still so current and so popular. So, until next time I hope you enjoy my Mini Swoon.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Wonky Panel Quilt

I made this quilt in 2011.  It was for a class at the store that I work at on improv piecing.  I also discussed how to figure out some simple quilt math to finish quilts to the size you desire.  I finally was able to bring the quilt home with me last week.  I always enjoy bringing quilts home after they have been shop samples.  I almost feel like I have a new quilt to cherish. 

This quilt was quilted by the amazing Angela Walters.  I was fortunate enough to snag her to quilt this shop sample.  She quilted some frames that mimicked the wonky blogs in the empty blue space of the quilt. I took this as a perfect opportunity to frame off some of my favorite characters from the Appleville panel by Suzy Ultman (by Robert Kaufman, don't know if it is available anywhere anymore).

I had a lot of extra fabric.  I seem to always overestimate when I make a quilt with no pattern.  I used the remaining pieces for the back. I pieced in some of the panel scenes as well.  

Here are a few more close-ups.  I love how much texture the quilting gives it.  Angela is AMAZING! 

On another note, I purchased Wreck this Journal by Keri Smith today at my local Barnes and Noble.  I am really excited to start this journal.  Have you heard of them?  There are a few in the series now. I have been longing for one for a while.

Basically, you do as the book tells you.  Each page is different.  The tasks range from drawing with glue to smearing dead bugs on the pages.  I started today with a simple one:  spray a scent on the page.  My book now reeks of Hynotic Poison by Dior.  I figured I would give it a nice scent as I am assuming it will get pretty stinky by the time it is finished.  Should be fun! I will let you see my progress.

Later this week I should have together my next sample for Fabric Fest.  Can't wait to show you!