Palettes to Points: Quilt Design with Lee Monroe of May Chappell

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Lee Monroe is the creative brain behind the pattern company, May Chappell, and she is coming for a weekend of fabric, fun and food at The Green Apricot.  Join us for the whole weekend, or just for a portion.  Do what fits your schedule, but by all means, don’t miss this opportunity to learn from a pro!

If you ever wanted to learn about the nitty gritty of quilt design, this is your chance. We’ll begin with a color theory dinner lecture, then spend two days in the studio working on designing and creating your own signature block.  Plan on going home with a block that you can either finish off as a mini or a pillow, or plow on to make a complete quilt of your own original design.

And, as a bonus, Lee has agreed to teach her Clutched/Cased patterns as an additional workshop on Saturday evening.  Attendees to Palettes to Points will have priority for registration for the additional class until August 14.

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So, here’s the schedule…

Understanding the Rainbow Color Lecture and Dinner– Thursday, Oct 26, 2017, 6:30-9:30pm
Do you love color? But sometimes feel intimidated by fabric selection? You will learn the basics of color theory and how those concepts lead to better quilts! There will be lots of quilty eye candy showing the different types of palettes that you can use. You’ll leave armed with many tools to pull fabrics for your next project. This class is great for all levels of sewists. (This event takes place at the Hilton Garden Inn in McDonough, GA.)

From Concept to Precision Points: Designing a Quilt Block– Friday-Saturday, Oct 27-28, 2017, 9am-4pm
Step up your piecing game! This class will focus on improving techniques and learning multiple ways to create block elements with the basics; half square triangles, flying geese and square in a square. There will be lots of tips on making these units precise as well as ways to attach these units together with perfect points. We will talk block design and create our own blocks with the elements. We will discuss how color and value interact within the design and can create secondary designs. This is a two day workshop that is great for confident beginners to intermediate level sewists. (This event takes place at The Green Apricot studio in McDonough, GA.)

Palettes to Points: Quilt Design with Lee Monroe includes dinner lecture on Thursday evening and two-day class Friday to Saturday.  Dinner on Thursday and lunch on Friday and Saturday are included.  $260 per person.  Limit 16. Click here to register.

Understanding the Rainbow Dinner Lecture Only.  Includes color theory lecture, trunk show, and dinner at Hilton Garden Inn in McDonough.  $45 per person. Click here to register.

 Cased/Clutched– Saturday, Oct 28, 2017, 5-7pm  Have you always wanted to make one of those cool bags with a hard frame? Well, this is the class for you! We will sew up and learn all kinds of tips for attaching the frame. Great for confident beginners! You can make either the Clutched or Cased size in class.   $35 per person, or 6 Member hours. Limit 16.  Palettes to Points attendees have registration priority until August 14.  (This event takes place at The Green Apricot studio in McDonough, GA.)  Click here to register.

Traveling from out of town for this event?  Why not stay at the Hilton Garden Inn in McDonough?  Mention The Green Apricot for a group rate of $109/night for a double queen room.  678-827-7200, after Aug 2, 2017.

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Lee has been creating since she first discovered crayons at age 2! She’s from a family of quilters and learned everything from her mother, affectionately known as The Guru. She loves all things fabric—from zippy pouch to queen size quilt—and everything in between. With a love of color and bold graphic shapes, Lee enjoys designing patterns and teaching all types of classes, while sharing her adventures on her blog, www.maychappell.com. She is a trained graphic designer which shows in her clean aesthetic. Her work has appeared in multiple publications, including Stitch, Quiltmaker & Modern Patchwork. Lee is also a BERNINA Ambassador and Craftsy instructor. She is President of the Triad Modern Quilt Guild. Lee lives in beautiful North Carolina with Mack the Chihuahua.

 

The Green Apricot Getaway- Fall 2017

When: October 1-5, 2017

Where: Crossville, TN

What:  BYOP Retreat

How Much:  $375 per person (Limit 12)

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Crossville, TN is located on the Cumberland Plateau in the Appalachian Mountains. We’ll be there at the beginning of October, and the temps should be mild and the leaves beginning to change color.  This retreat is literally about getting away- away from the noise and busyness of everyday life and slowing down for a bit of selfish sewing.  We will be staying at a 12,700 acre resort that boasts of golf courses, riding stables, indoor and outdoor pools, multiple lakes and other activities including massage services (swoon).  There are restaurants on site, and several more to choose from just a couple of miles away. But who cares about all that?!?  We are here for the sewing…

BYOP– This is a Bring Your Own Project style of retreat.  Plan on starting something new and dedicating a solid several days to working on it.  I will be working on the Stag Nation quilt by Sewn Into the Fabric, and I will gladly teach it to whomever wants to join me.  Or, bring a project from home that you want to finish up.  We’ll have access to one large common sewing area for three days, and there is also plenty of room for cutting, sewing and relaxing in the units where we will be staying.  There will be enough room in the common area for all attendes to have their own sewing space. Please do not bring personal irons or cutting mats to the common sewing area, although you are welcome to have them in your unit.  

                     

Shown above: Stag Nation by Sewn Into the Fabric

Accomodations– Mulitiple 2-bedroom units with full kitchens, washers and dryers, dining and living room space.  Units are located close to one another.  No housekeeping will be provided during the retreat.  

Food– The Green Apricot will provide lunch and dinner while in the common sewing area Monday through Wednesday.  Some staples will be provided in each unit, but all other meals will be the responsibility of the attendees.  Grocery stores and restaurants are all just a couple miles away.

Travel– Travel is not included.  The closest international airport to Crossville is 110 miles away in Nashville.  Please keep this in mind while planning.  

Check In/Check Out– Check-in begins at 5pm on Sunday, Oct 1, and check-out is at 10am on Thursday, Oct 5.

Fees, Deposits and Canellation Policies– 

  • Fees include accomodations for 4 nights, sewing space, lunch and dinner for three days for each person.  Payment in full without incurring a $100 fee is due August 15, 2017.  Final payment is due September 15, 2017.  If the reservation is not paid in full on September 15, the reservation and all fees are forfeited.
  • Registration requires a $200 deposit per person that is nonrefundable, but is transferable with approval by The Green Apricot. 
  • Cancellations before September 15, 2017 are fully refundable, less the deposit. Cancellations after September 15, 2017 are not refundable.  Remember, you can transfer your reservation to someone else.

 

Click Register Now to reserve your choice with the appropriate deposit.  (Please note that you are not registered if the deposit is not paid.)  Because of system limitations, it is possible to overbook.  If that happens, and I am not able to honor your request, I will refund your deposit promptly.  Reservations are limited to a total of 12 people (including myself).  After the reservations have been confirmed, I will send a link for the remaining balance due.

Please let me know if you have any questions before you register.  You can email me at thegreenapricot@gmail.com, or text or call 770-584-3498.

#mommade

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I remember my mom making this years ago when I was much younger. Being a maker is definitely something gained from both my mother and grandmother. Grandma had a little closet off of the dining area that she had packed to the ceiling with note cards and paper and glue and a sundry assortment of crafting accoutrements. To me, it was like Grandma’s secret stash. I never saw anyone open that brown slatted folding door except Grandma. It was like her version of Mary Poppins’ bag. Of course, I was a kid and didn’t live close by, so I’m probably totally wrong and her stash was more likely spread all over the house, carefully tucked away. For instance, I recently inherited her sewing machine, and until my mom gave it to me, I never knew it existed. Which is crazy because she sewed stuff all the time, especially things like adult bibs and comfort pillows that her ladies group worked on together. But I digress. 

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Mom did needlepoint, cross stitch, crochet, garment sewing and crafting, and looking back I can see how she understood how things went together. I have a tendency to attack stuff because I like it and want to make it and I’ll figure out how to do it as I go. She seemed to have been a bit more methodical about it. She also had a stash of fabric and crafting supplies that I was obsessed with when I was growing up. The button tin was a favorite, as I’m sure it was for most kids of a sewist. 

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I think it was hard for her to teach me. I wasn’t very patient, and I didn’t want to start with basic stuff.  I remember her making clothes for me- shirt and shorts sets when I was younger, and my mermaidish prom dress with enormous sleeves when I was older. She was very good at garment sewing, and she taught me that if you don’t cut it out correctly, you may as well throw it away. 

Grandma doesn’t craft much anymore because she says it frustrates her that she can’t make her hands do what she wants. My mom doesn’t sew anymore either, but I wish she did. I keep asking her, and I will keep asking her. Who knows, one of these days she may get the bug again. I’m grateful to have a few things that she has made, but I’m even more grateful to have the memories of the things she’s made. I’m grateful for memories of Grandma sitting at her spot at the kitchen table by the sliding glass doors gluing together little Christmas broaches made of foam and pipe cleaners for her group of friends.  It matters to me. 

So, this makers gonna make.  Because they matter to me. 

Quilt Market, Fall 2016, Houston, TX

I’m not 20 anymore.
If you know me personally, you know that most of my life I’ve had this strange obsession with acting older than I am.  However, how I feel after this past weekend at Quilt Market in Houston is no act!  Candy, soda, and very little sleep for days catches up to you hard when you are no longer 20.  Or 30.  Or, let’s be honest, 40.  I tried Persian food for the first time (amazing), had some of the best tacos of my life (Cuban style), and the kolaches and donuts were on point, but I should have considered more water.  I’d say I needed more sleep, but late-night time with sweet friends was totally worth feeling like I got hit by a truck.  And I’d do it all again.
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Market was really fabulous.  I’ve been several times before, but I’d have to say that I felt especially productive on this trip.  While yes, it is fun and exciting to see all the new everything, it is also a lot of investment, and takes a lot of focus to make the trip truly useful not only to the business you represent, but also to your clients and customers.  I hear a lot of people say they wish they could go, and I think they would think it is fun in a lot of ways, but reality is that it probably isn’t exactly what 0ne would expect it to be.
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For most business owners and representatives, Market begins with Schoolhouse.  It sounds like you go there and learn how to make stuff, but really, you go there to learn about new product lines and how to market them to customers.  Yes, you get to see a lot of the designers  and their work up close and personal, but honestly, the presentations have a tendency to be rushed, and are kind of just a series of sales pitches all day long.  There are some giveaways, piles of papers, and you go through a lot of business cards.
There isn’t a lot of actual shopping at Market, with the exception of Sample Spree. Sample Spree is in a lot of ways is like Black Friday at Wal-Mart in Smalltown, USA where every resident of the town is there because they have nowhere else to shop.  The purpose of Sample Spree is for businesses to get materials they need to introduce products to their customers before they actually get a shipment of goods.  It takes time and money for shops to make samples for lines of fabric, and the precuts available at Sample Spree make it so that they have what they need to make a sample before the fabric line comes to the shop.  As you may know, The Green Apricot doesn’t sell fabric lines, but what does happen here are workshops.  Workshops that I want people to be excited about.  So, most of the fabric I buy there is to drum up a bit of excitement about what is happening in the studio.  Having said that, I also buy some just because I like it, just like most everyone else there.  I also look for the new products I want to review for guild presentations and the like.  I can buy one or two of these at Sample Spree, but have to buy multiples on the Market floor.
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The Market floor is all about merchandising.  It’s all about getting businesses to buy quantities of all that is new.  Shopping at Market is not like shopping at Quilt Festival, or other shows.  Quantity is the name of the game, and taking a chance that from the thousands of offerings, you’ll be able to choose what your customers want and need and thereby keep your business profitable.  What will you do if you buy 15 yards of a fabric, and only 2 yards sell?  How about if you buy the whole line, which is more like 300 yards?  It’s a risky business, and it’s a lot of money.  Vendors know this, and they work hard to display the merchandise in a way that helps retailers to say, “Oh, I see how I could show that to my customer.  I see how I can demonstrate how to use that.”  Every stop at every booth involves questions like, “What’s your show special?  What are your minimums?  Shipping rates?  Are you with a distributor?”  And that’s after you’ve already talked with them about what exactly it is they are selling.
 In other words, yes, Quilt Market is a lot of fun.  And it’s inspiring.  And it’s overwhelming.  And it’s an opportunity.  And it’s an investment.  And it’s a lot of work.

Churning Green

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I love quilting books and patterns to the point that it’s almost sick.  Like seriously, the obsession with everything about this industry is real.  I just can never have enough quilts or pictures of quilts or plans of quilts or thoughts of quilts or ideas of quilts.  It’s a bit concerning, really.

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And people like these two like to feed my obsession.  Meet Liz Evans and Elizabeth Evans, and if you are double taking over their names, you should be.  They are sisters-in-law, and cohorts in quilting.  Together they have written The Simple Simon Guide to Patchwork Quilting, and it’s a good thing they did.

I never get tired of a beginning quilting book, even after all these years.  Sure, I’m pretty familiar with most of the basic techniques, but I still love them for a few reasons.  This book is a good example of what I mean.

First, the fabrics and photos are updated.  Doesn’t seem like that’s a big deal in the grand scheme of things, but I love that it helps to invite new quilters into “our world.”  Crisp, clear and modern constantly mean something different, and it helps to keep our creative blood flowing.

Second, the techniques do get updated.  A book written 50 years ago wouldn’t have included any information about rotary cutters because, hello, they weren’t invented for quilting yet.

Third, the projects themselves get updated.  I love that in this book they have a great mix of quilts and other projects- everything from a bunting to a bib, from a pouch to a pillow.  Love it!

So, here’s what I made.  It didn’t take me long to make the top, but it did take a while to quilt it.  I love the simplicity of this project as a background for some massive quilting, so that’s what I did.

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Churning Green

I had copious amounts of this fabric in my stash, and it was exactly what I wanted.  If you come to the studio/my husband’s shop, you will see it hanging in the bathroom.  This color combination appeals to me, as it reminds me of a lot that we’ve been seeing from prominent fabric designers over the last few years.  The main print is an older piece by Laura Gunn, and I’ve been hoarding it for a while.

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I started quilting it the day our youngest went off to college.  I wasn’t in the mood for a lot of chatter, and I for sure needed chocolate.  Juan and I worked quietly and diligently, and for the most part, all went well.  However, I did run into some technical issues that eliminates this quilt from being shown anywhere but the bathroom.  Let’s just say I learned a lot, and am grateful for it, but am really sad because this started out as a great quilt and could have done well.  I may have to try again.

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I artfully staged this pic so that the biggest offense is not that visible, but I will tell you that a bit of it is peaking out at the top right corner.  Maybe I will write a post sometime about using a Statler, and some of the things I’ve learned since bringing Juan home a year ago.  It’s been an amazing process.

The irony?  This book was written as a beginning quilting book, and while I may be all “I know how to do that already,” I still ended up getting a lesson in the end.

Pride goeth before a fall.  (Prov 16:18)

Simple Knit Dress Workshop with Chrissy Weeks

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You chose your dress or tunic pattern (some options listed below). And we will make them together. First we will make a sample and adjust your pattern for fit. Then we will make your dress out of your “for real” fabric.

Supplies: Bring your machine and basic sewing supplies. Thread to match your project, polyester is best for apparel. You can sew on a regular machine and / or serger. We will have a couple sergers available for class use, but limited thread color options. Please make sure to pre-wash and dry your fabric. Keep in mind when buying your fabric that natural fiber knit shrinks up to 40% be sure to buy extra if using a cotton or silk knit. Sample fabric needs to be similar weight and stretch to your “for real” fabric. Good quality fabric is easier to sew and will give you a nicer finished garment.

Pattern Suggestions:
Colette Patterns,  https://www.colettepatterns.com  (Monetta, Myrtle)

McCalls Patterns (M7382, M7432, M7407)

Sew Caroline,  http://www.shopsewcaroline.com/ (Out and About Dress)

Any dress pattern similar to these simple shapes is appropriate as long as it is a pattern intended for knits!

Best places to buy knits:
Stores:
Gail K, in-town and Norcross,   http://www.gailkfabricsinc.com/
Fine Fabric, Jimmy Carter Access Road 6218 Dawson Blvd Norcross, (678) 894-2067
Joann’s (has surprisingly decent knits)

On-Line:
Fabric.com
http://www.girlcharlee.com

Thursday, September 29, 2016, 9am- 4pm.  Nonmembers- $36, Members- 6 hours.  Click here to register.

Jus a lil lovins…

There are few things more productive and powerful than a crew of creators with a passionate mission. So many of us have seen it, on either side of the line. 

Recently a friend of ours, Nisha Bouri, had an unusual, and quite honestly scary, illness. Thankfully she is doing better now, and is on the mend.  

When word began to spread amongst a dozen or so of us in the quilting community, it didn’t take long for several to step forward to organize an effort to show her we love her in the best way we know how.  

Image creds- Kim Martucci, weatherkim


Full disclosure here, I have very strong, very negative feelings about group sewing projects in general, so I was quick to offer Juan’s quilting services rather than making an actual block. And in the end, I’m so grateful that the rest of the makers trusted us with their offering of kindness and love. 


The quilt top was just stunning, and Juan and I both brooded over it for days before jumping in. We debated about an all-over pattern to kind of unify the message of the quilt, but in the end knew that Nisha would love it best if each block, and in turn each quilter, was given their day in the sun.




Seen enough?  I don’t think so. 

Photo creds- Karie Jewel, twokwikquilters

Photo creds- Karie Jewel, twokwikquilters

Photo creds- Karie Jewel, twokwikquilters


One more… The best one of all…

Photo creds- Amy Webb, amylouwhosews