Sunday Stash: AMH Mystery Bundle

Although I am trying really, really hard right now to resist buying fabric, I acquired quite a bit of lovely stuff during all that time off from blogging. So in order to have an excuse to participate in the link-up, I thought I’d share one of the more recent and (to my mind) interesting purchases I made. At least there’s more of a story behind the purchase than my usual, “I saw it. I thought it was pretty. I bought it.”

Craftsy usually has designer “mystery bundles” available for a pretty darned good price if you’re willing to take the risk. I thought about it for a looong time before doing it myself. What prompted me was this quilt, and a desire to challenge myself in terms of color and print choices. I have been following Little Island Quilting since before I started my own blog, and I LOVE how she puts fabrics together in ways that are so, so different from the way I do. But I’m kind of scared to try and imitate it.

Well, my experience in other parts of my life is that I learn and grow the most from experiences that are hard or scary. So it should work out that way with quilting, too, right? If I want to continue learning and improving, I’d better push myself! And what better way to do that than with a fabric selection that won’t allow me to fall into old habits?

AMH fabric2

This group is actually right in my wheelhouse.  🙂

So, after being amazed by Alison’s quilt, I ordered the pattern and purchased the Anna Maria Horner fat quarter mystery bundle. (Craftsy doesn’t have any right now, but they have other designers available.) While AMH designs some fabrics that intoxicate me, she also puts together some color combos that are about as far out of my comfort zone as you can get, so I felt a mystery pack of her fabrics would offer the kind of challenge I was looking for.

AMH fabric1

I like three of these prints. I think the deer are weird. The colors, however, are NOT me. Perfect.

And I was right.

AMH fabric4

With these three, the roses remind me of my grandma, and I am not a fan of hearts, but again, the colors are right up my alley.

The mystery pack contained a good combination of prints and colors that I am always attracted to with others that I would otherwise never purchase or use.

AMH fabric3

I am captivated by the “Sinister Swarm” print in the upper right corner. I even tracked down some additional yardage. The other three, however, I would never have purchased. I like the upper left but wouldn’t have had ideas about how to use it. The other two? I wouldn’t have even stopped to fondle them on the bolt.

Since I don’t expect these fat quarters to be enough to make the whole quilt, I also ordered the Kaffe Fassett Shot Cotton (Dark) fat quarter bundle, and will select some fat quarters from it to make up the difference in required yardage. I have also pulled all of the AMH from my stash to incorporate as necessary. (There isn’t a ton of it for the reason I mentioned above.) I admit, it’s a safety net to ensure that I will actually like the end product, but making a quilt you don’t like is no fun. I’ll push my boundaries a little further next time. 😉

Late to the party, but linking up with Sunday Stash, hosted this week by Ms. Midge. Because Molli’s busy posing for the paparazzi, y’all.

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Delay

I must confess these were added to my stash sometime in late June, but haven’t had time to photograph them until now. I succumbed to another of those dangerous emails that tell me what a great customer I am and here’s a coupon for my next purchase and it’s even valid on sale merchandise. They know I’m a sucker.

First up, some loveliness from Valori Wells‘ Quill and Blueprint Basics lines. I love these collections so much. If I could justify it I’d buy a whole bolt of most of them. I’m still waiting for the fall colors to be made available so that I can finish what I started at Portland SewDown, but these make me happy for now.

Top to bottom: Gratitude in Olive Leaf, Blueprint Basics Sun Kissed, Gratitude in Fig, Blueprint Basics Grappa, Salsa, and Iron.

Top to bottom: Gratitude in Olive Leaf, Blueprint Basics Sun Kissed, Gratitude in Fig, Blueprint Basics Grappa, Salsa, and Iron.

Next, I scored some of the “Out to Sea” line by Sarah Jane for Michael Miller fabrics. I’d used the Nautical Map print in blue to back a quilt I made in July of last year and loved it, but what sealed the deal here was the Find the Narwhal print pictured last. Irresistible! I currently have three (!!!) co-workers who are considering adding to their families, so these will get made into something for the first one to have a girl.019 020 021 022 023

Finally I selected some of the prints from the Mod Geek line by Sarah Johnston, last year’s Fabric8 winner on Spoonflower. (This link is for this year’s win–so beautiful!) I don’t know why it took me so long to buy these. They speak to the science nerd in me. 🙂

Left to right: Atoms Green, Neutron Zig Zag Grey, and Stripe Dark Grey. They are all from the Atmosphere colorway, and are sitting on Eyeglasses in Grey. There is also a Retro colorway which is blues and oranges.

Left to right: Atoms Green, Neutron Zig Zag Grey, and Stripe Dark Grey. They are all from the Atmosphere colorway, and are sitting on Eyeglasses in Grey. There is also a Retro colorway which is blues and oranges.

Ultimately this last little stack will be combined with an Alexander Henry print I bought ages ago and have been waiting for the right fabrics to pair it with. I want to make a quilt based on this sentiment.  🙂

Future-ella.

Future-ella.

Happy stashing! I’m linking to Molli’s Sunday Stash par-tay. See you there!molli_sparkles_sunday_stash_button

Terra Australis

In my twenties, I was fortunate enough to win a scholarship to study in Australia. I lived in Sydney and attended the University of New South Wales. Exploring the city, dancing my weekends away in its nightclubs, traveling to other iconic places like Melbourne, Alice Springs, Darwin, and Frazier Island, playing rugby, seeing the penguin parade on Phillip Island, petting ridiculously soft Eastern Grey Kangaroos, snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef–I even managed to squeeze in enough studying to earn a master’s degree–it was an incomparable year.

So, when I first learned of Emma Jean Jansen’s “Terra Australis” line for Ella Blue, I knew I HAD to have it. I waited patiently for it to show up here in the states. Then one happy day I received an email from Hawthorne Threads. Yippee! But I wasn’t quick enough. By the time I had a moment to sit down and place an order, they’d already sold out of most things. So I had to be patient again.

A few weeks ago I had some downtime at work and happened to be perusing quilting sites when I discovered that Hawthorne Threads had everything in stock again–and lots of it! I’m only slightly embarrassed to say I went hedgehog wild. 😉 I bought the fat quarter bundles in both colourways (gotta have the “u” in there, since we’re talking about Australia), plus more yardage of my favorites. It was a major splurge, but I recently paid off my car, so justification was easy-peasy. (Hah! As if I ever really have trouble “justifying” a fabric purchase.)

FQ bundle in the "Eucalyptus" palette--lovely bright pinks and greens and turquoises.

FQ bundle in the “Eucalyptus” palette–lovely bright pinks and greens and turquoises.

LOVE the giant Warratah flower print.

LOVE the giant Warratah flower print.

Who can resist kangaroos?

Who can resist kangaroos?

FQ bundle in the "Outback" palette--light aqua, orange, and gray.

FQ bundle in the “Outback” palette–light aqua, orange, and gray.

I bought enough of the Warratah print in this colorway to back a quilt--or at least most of a quilt, depending on the size. :)

I bought enough of the Warratah print in this colorway to back a quilt–or at least most of a quilt, depending on the size. 🙂

The "Spinning Gums" and "Grevillia" prints are perfect reminders of all the weirdly wonderful flora of Oz.

The “Spinning Gums” and “Grevillia” prints are perfect reminders of all the weirdly wonderful flora of Oz.

I have about a hundred Sydney Harbour Bridge photos. It is beautiful. I love that this print is reminiscent without replicating the bridge in exact architectural form.

I have about a hundred Sydney Harbour Bridge photos. It is beautiful. I love that this print is reminiscent without replicating the bridge in exact architectural form.

I have absolutely no clue yet what I’ll do with these fabrics beyond “make a quilt–or two.” Emma Jean Jansen has plenty of inspiration on her site, but I’ll mull it over for a bit before making a decision. Regardless, I know I will love it for all the memories these fabrics inspire for me.

Linking up with Molli Sparkles for Sunday Stash–’cause Molli’s place is always where the party’s happening.

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Collecting Pretty

I’d been “good” the last several months. By that I mean I’d only purchased fabric intended with specific, already-planned projects, as opposed to purchasing fabric for the pure joy of buying something pretty for my collection of pretty.  😉

Then Fat Quarter Shop sent me an email bemoaning how long it had been since my last order with them, and enticed me with a 20% discount on my next order. I’d compare them to a crack dealer, but I doubt crack dealers offer discounts. So, my latest additions to that collection of pretty arrived yesterday. I love, love, LOVE the tonal Pearl Bracelets. Maybe even more than the originals. I will definitely be buying additional yardage of several of these.

Pearl Bracelets Tonals Fat Quarter Bundle

Pearl Bracelets Tonals Fat Quarter Bundle

FQS has several of the originals on sale. Yay! (They were running out fast, though, so hurry your buns up if you wanna’ snag some for yourself.) I was also hoping for more of the gold color I used in a quilt I blogged about here, but they are out. Boooo.

The original Pearl Bracelets in green and kelly green.

The original Pearl Bracelets in green and kelly green.

I am a tiny bit disappointed with two of these last three selections. Based on photographs I’ve seen, I expected the blues in the Innocent Charm and Feathered Coral prints to be more saturated. They are still beautiful fabrics and I will have no trouble using them, they just don’t live up to my expectations of the color. Not so with the Sea Foam. Exactly what I thought it would be–gorgeous!

Chic Flora Innocent Charm in acai, Drift Sea Foam in blue, and Drift Feathered Coral in night.

Chic Flora Innocent Charm in acai, Drift Sea Foam in blue, and Drift Feathered Coral in night.

I don’t blame FQS for this. Every photo I’ve seen of these fabrics–from a variety of sources–had given me the same impression. And it isn’t the first time I’ve experienced this kind of minor disappointment. It just reinforces the fact that, as someone who prefers saturated color, I really need to see the fabric in person at least once before I buy online. I’m lucky that this area has so many good fabric stores so that I get to choose between the convenience of shopping online and the experience of seeing/touching in a brick-and-mortar shop. I know some of you don’t have that luxury.

However you buy your fabric, I hope you love it or can at least find a good way to use it. 🙂

Linking up to Sunday Stash, hosted this week by Quilts From the Attic.molli_sparkles_sunday_stash_button

Four for the MIL

So I’d been trying to be “good” by not buying any more fabric for awhile. “Why?” you ask. I have no clue, really, except that I already have so much.

Anyhoo, during my recent cleanup and reorganization, I was flipping through some of my quilting magazines and came across an ad in the back of last November’s American Quilter for a company called Thousands of Bolts. “Over 5000 fabrics under $5.00 per yard!! All FIRST quality quilt shop fabrics,” it said. The cynic in my head assumed they’d all be “fuglies,” but I took a look. Especially given that one of my truly two local quilt shops closed because the owners retired and the other moved to a new location that is better for them but not so local for me. (I say “truly” because I do still have plenty of options across the river in Portland, but that’s not always convenient.) Plus, what quilter can resist good yardage at a great price?

I would describe the majority of their fabrics as blenders, and I haven’t seen any indication of designer collections, though I didn’t expect to. I am a big fan of tone-on-tone prints, however, so much of what they offer is right up my alley. PLUS they have Moda Bella Solids and Robert Kaufman Pure Organic Solids in every color I can imagine. SO, they are going on my list of stash-building resources for sure. I took the opportunity to try and round out a collection of fabrics I’ve been accumulating for my mother in law’s quilt. Her favorite colors are “deep teal and true red.” This is what arrived yesterday:004The whole bottom row is way too green, so they’ll go into my stash. This is not supposed to look like a Christmas quilt! Also, the two ferny prints aren’t quite what I expected based on the online images–maybe they just focused on a part where I couldn’t see that there were ferns there…? I’m not anti-fern, entirely, I just didn’t want them for this quilt.

Luckily the four across the top are winners. The solids are Moda Bella, and the print collections are, from left to right: Spin by Whistler Studios for Windham Fabrics, Out of This World  by Jill McDonald for P&B Textiles, and Snowfolk by Cheryl Haynes for Benartex. They will be added to this stack005and eventually be sewn up in Julie Herman’s Lotus pattern. Sometime this year, I hope. I’ll find out once I give it to my MIL whether I got the “deep” and “true” parts of the colors right, but I already know I’ll have an extremely difficult time giving this one away.

First-time link-up to Sunday Stash! Whoop whoop!molli_sparkles_sunday_stash_button