Envelope Project

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

To Market . . . To Market

Yay!  Friday was Schoolhouse at the Houston Quilt Market.  Donna from DonnasLavenderNest and I headed out early to the George R. Brown Convention Center.  Since we live here, it's super convenient.  We gathered lots of information and there was lots of laughter.  Can you say "Tula Pink"?  That girl is funny!!  And so, so nice.  Her fabrics, etc. are beautiful.

There were lots of freebies, and really that's why I go.  Maybe my agenda will change when I'm a serious marketeer!  But for now, I'm all about the goodies.  (Pics to come later.)

Actually, I was on an information mission and in my quest to figure out how to buy fabric, labels, specialized zippers, etc., I met a man whose company prints fabric.  I was super excited and I can't wait to design my fabric and have it printed.  Almost all conversations had the sentence "what's your minimum order?" in there somewhere.  And therein lies the rub.  In this business, it's go big or go home.  A 2-color cotton printing is only $4.50/yard, but the catch is the minimum order is $750; 3-color is $1,200.  That's a boatload of fabric, my friends.

So after Schoolhouse on Friday, Donna and I headed over to Pappasito's for some Mexican food ... and maybe there was a beverage or two in the mix.  Then we headed back to the GRB to wait in line for Sample Spree to begin.  This is a big deal.  I think the ticket price to this shindig is $15.  The doors opened at 8 p.m. and the Moda tables were swarmed immediately so I had to stay away.  Too many people.  I walked the room and just couldn't bring myself to get excited about fighting the crowd to try and get a bargain.  It was either that or the fact that I already had two bags hanging from my shoulder that were packed with goodies and the thought of adding more weight to the mix just "weighed" me down!

While we were waiting in line, I started talking to the girl behind me.  Donna and I chatted her up for quite awhile seeing as how we had 1.5 hours to kill.  We found out she was a fabric and pattern designer and she had a booth at market.  We were both super excited to pick her brain on how the process works and she was kind enough to give us lots of information.  She gave us her booth number and we told her we'd visit her on Saturday.

Saturday, Donna and I trot off to the GRB again, only this time not quite as early.  We were exhausted from the night before.  Our plan was to walk each aisle and in the process, we stopped and talked to numerous people.  On Friday we went to the Lakehouse Dry Goods presentation given by Holly Holderman.  On Saturday, we met Holly and Pam from Pam Kitty Morning.  What nice ladies.  Holly and Pam both gave us a lot of their time and answered all of our questions about designing and selling fabric and patterns. 

As we continued walking the aisles, I spied some gorgeous fabrics in the Blend booth.  I was drawn to fabrics designed by Jessica Swift, Amada Murphy and Josephine Kimberling.  I ended up ordering 2 bolts of fabric from each of these designers.  I got the added bonus of meeting "Joe" (the owner of Blend). 

Walking Market took all day and around 5:15 p.m. we realized we hadn't seen our designer friend from the night before.  We looked up her booth number and off we went.  Plus I wanted to get another glimpse of the fabric I had ordered early in the morning.  Imagine my surprise when I saw the Blend displays again and realized I bought fabric from Amanda Murphy who happened to be the girl we were looking for.  She was the designer from the night before.  Wow!  Full circle amazement!  We popped over to her booth and said hello.  I'm sure I was gushing from my recent realization that I bought fabric from the girl I spent an hour talking to the night before.  What a way to end my day.

There were many amazing "famous" people there.  Well, famous in the quilt world.  They're mostly just regular people and most were totally approachable.  It wasn't my first Schoolhouse and Sample Spree, but it was my first "market" day and it was simply glorious.    

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Late Night Musings

Sometimes I wake up in the morning and have ideas on things to make.  Then I realize I have to go to work.  Ugh!  Does anyone else hate (in my case) the 8-6 drudgery?  Don't they realize that's peak creating time.  Yikes! 

But, a girl does what a girl's gotta do and so it is at night that I attempt to put my ideas into motion.  The other day I was thinking I should make a wallet with a zippered compartment.  So last night I sat down and whipped out this little gem.  I'm using the leftover quilted material I have from my yoga and "etc" bags.  I like the way it turned out so I think I'll make some more.  Anyone need a special quilted wallet?

 I also made a couple little wristlets out of material from Donna's Lavender Nest
Wallet has a zippered pocket and 2 other pockets. 
Lots of babies were born this past year and I'm behind in giving gifts.  Uh, oh.  So, this morning I quilted up this little gem.  Now I need to make some binding, sew it on the quilt and put it in the pile for Thanksgiving delivery.  Yay!
 front - Creative Thursday prints
I love trying to use up all the scraps when I piece the back and also when making binding.
Well, the afternoon is here and I guess it's as good a time as any to go make that binding.  Or . . . maybe a nap??!!  Hmm . . .

Blast From the Past

A year ago this week my Mom passed away.  It's still hard to believe that she is gone.  I wish it weren't so. . .

All but two of my siblings gathered at her farm this past weekend to help clean out the basement.  It was a group effort and much progress was made.  There was mostly laughter.  We found things Mom had collected and we had to shake our heads in wonderment.  How many used bread bags and twist ties does a person need?  I'm sure a lot of it had to do with growing up on a farm in the Great Depression.  Everything was recycled.  My parents' generation was the original generation of recyclers.  I found a few gems:

 I guess we ate a lot of cherry pies???!!!
 50 lbs of onions - whoa!
powdered milk - do they still make this brand?
We were a family of 10 so everything was bought in bulk and even milk was stretched for a 50/50 mix of milk and powdered milk.  Um . . . yum!! . . . she says facetiously!!

It was a good weekend with lots of time for visiting family and meeting the new little ones.

The cycle of life continues . . . we miss you Mom.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Time Passes

and life goes on.  It's been a busy year this year.  But mainly, the "real" job just sucked the life out of my creative spirit!!  "No more", I say in protest!!

Luckily I still managed to find snippets of time to produce some sewing projects.  Lots of babies were born in the past year and I'm behind in making quilts.  The goal is to have most of them completed by Thanksgiving when I will hand deliver them.  I have 5 or 6 quilt tops ready to be quilted so I think I can achieve this objective.  Cross your fingers.

I finished this little jewel for one of my nieces.  Shh . . . it's a Christmas present.

The binding has been hand sewn to the backside and is now ready for gifting.  Yay!  I love its vibrant colors and hopefully she will too.

As most of you know, I opened "Ogmo Designs" this year where I featured my yoga bags and various other quilted bags.  Again, my "real" job has impeded progress on the website, but rest assured, yoga bags are being sold.  Recently I had a request to make a chair bag.  I know, I had to ask also, but yes, she wanted a bag for a folding chair.  So, I put the fabric on the longarm and produced this beauty for the client.

The goal for the rest of the year is to spend less time stressing about a job that isn't fun anymore and spending more time on the beautiful fabrics and paints and other fun goodies that are in my studio.  Yes, it's time to focus on the FUN!!  That's the plan. 

Sunday, April 27, 2014

As Promised

Well, okay, perhaps my meaning of "posthaste" was a little bit more liberal than I meant it to be!  But, as promised I give you some pictures of the wonderful quilting my friend, Donna, did for me.


Now, I just need to find some time to bind these quilts.  Anyone??!!
I have the sweetest new great niece that blessed us with her presence in April.  I'm not sure how she feels about polka dots, but here's the first of many quilts (I'm sure) that I'll make for her.

I bought a new die cut for the GO machine and thought I'd give it a "go" with this quilt!
Tonight's project is hand sewing the binding to the back of this quilt.  Not to ruin the theme of the quilt, the backside is all polka dots and the binding is made of the scrap polka dot material.  Too much??  Hopefully it'll be cute.  If not, I'll start working on the next one soon.  And yes, I may be using that word liberally also.  Unfortunately I have a "real" job.  Ugh!  I've been threatening to take one of my sewing machines to work and set it up in the back conference room.  Do you think anyone would mind?!!

And last, but not least . . . another apron.  It's a perfect project for when there is very little time, but instant gratification is a must.  Again, this material is from the "Scrumptious" line of fabrics that my friend, Donna sells in her store. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Where, Oh Where, Has the Time Gone?

I could have sworn I'd written a post some time in 2014.  Uh, I guess not.  Hmm . . .

Well, I have been busy and my brain has been churning.  There wasn't a whole lotta crafting/sewing going on in the month of January.  I will forever remember January 2014 as one of the most horrific work months I've had to endure in quite a long while.  Changes at work at year end are never a good thing.  Experienced employee gone; new employee 3 weeks into the job.  Not a good combination when trying to calculate a year end tax provision for a consolidated group.  After many, and I mean many long hours and 21 straight days without a break, January was over and I was on my way back from perpetual grumpiness!

February brought much joy as I opened "Ogmodesigns.com" and an Etsy store, "Ogmo Designs" where I'm featuring my awesome yoga bags, "etc" bags and wristlets.  If you are interested in any of the super-duper products, just email me and I will give you a 20% discount.  Can't beat that with a stick!  These bags are all made with 100% cotton and are quilted by moi!  You will absolutely love them!
 The outside of this yoga bag is made with 100% recycled plastic bottles!  Who would have thunk?
 The inside is lined with blue cotton chevron fabric.
 I LOVED making this bag.  It is a scrappy bag made with remnants of some of the other bags I made.  This is for the person who just can't decide what fabric she likes best.  This was so much fun to make, but took a lot longer than the other bags.
 This is the back side with more scrap piecing.
 Another view . . .
and another . . . because I just can't help myself!!

I continued my sewing enthusiasm in March and banged out quite a few bags.  They make me so HAPPY especially since my work life is taking a toll on me.  It's nice to come home and just "play" with material. 

I made several quilts and had my dear friend, Donna, quilt up three of them.  If you have any quilt tops just lying around that you swear you'll quilt one day (but know you won't!), you should consider using  Donna's services.  She is super quick, very reasonably priced and produces an excellent product.  She won't disappoint!!

 Okay, this is a quilt I made and quilted.  Apparently, I haven't taken pictures yet of the quilts Donna quilted for me.  I will take pictures posthaste!
This little gem was made with a charm pack (or 2) on a day when I didn't want to think.  Just grab the pack and go.  Voila!  Instant happiness! 

April has me making bags and aprons and quilts, oh my!!  So much FUN!!!  I LOVE all of my fun fabrics and gadgets and mostly my imagination.  And then to top that all off with a weekly episode of "Under the Gunn" to get the creative juices flowing.  I really wish they'd show "real" time sewing with the contestants.  I have no idea how they create some of the stuff they create and I'd really like to see their processes.  Ah, heavy sigh.

These lovely fabrics are from the "Scrumptious" line that Donna sells.  

In addition, I've been doing "Project Life" (my own easy-going version), drawing, doodling, painting and journaling.  These projects just make me want to kick my heels up and cartwheel down the street!  But since I'm not sure if this 'ole body can still cartwheel, I've been pounding the pavement and ran a half marathon in January (during the whole crazy period referenced above), along with a 5k the following week, 1 5k in February and 3 5k's (in 2 weeks) in March. 

I hope all of you are enjoying your creative time as much as I am!!  Carry on.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

It's the most wonderful time of the year!  This year's festivities included card making.

 Paper, paints, pens, stamps - what could be more fun?!

The first round of cards and gift tags
Every year B-guy decorates the house and sets up the tree and villages and I get to come home and enjoy.  This is just a small taste of the Christmas beauty.  The last thing we do is trim the tree together.  Even though it's a small tree, it's perfect for us.
This is the back of an envelope with a small gift to my niece.  I love how it turned out.
I hope everyone is enjoying his/her holiday break.  Here's wishing all of you a new year filled with  love, health and happiness!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


Last week my good friend, Donna, from DonnasLavenderNest, met me for lunch.  It was supposed to be a birthday celebration for her, but I'm the one who ended up with all the goodies!  Thank you so much, Donna!
Donna went to Houston Quilt Market and picked up the brochure for me since I wasn't able to make it.  She also gifted me a Clover mini iron that she won. 
And, then she gave me these scrump-dilly-icious fabrics.  They are from the "Scrumptious" line by Bonnie and Camille for Moda.  Donna has these lovely fabrics and so many more wonderful pretties in her store.  You can find them here and here.  Go order some beautiful fabric now.  You definitely deserve a treat!!

And that, my friends, is one great way to start a holiday weekend!  Thank you so much, Donna for all of your generosity and friendship.  You know how to make a girl giddy with joy!!  I'm so thankful for our friendship.  Happy Thanksgiving to all!!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Looking for the Happy

And what makes me happy???  Fabric, of course.  And as much as I'd like to purchase all of the pretty lovelies I see, I know that I have way too much stuff!!  And I want to start making a dent in reducing the amount of "stuff" that I have.  So what do I do . . . I make more stuff!!  What???!!  Yes, I seem to come up with all kinds of crazy ideas during the days and sometimes I make those ideas come to fruition.

I had the day off on Friday and I woke up, looked at my bag of quilted scraps, looked at the wall of zippers and immediately thought of pencil cases.  I love, love how these little bags turned out.  Plus I used up a lot of zippers (in fact, I ran out of 9" zippers and had to switch to making small wristlets with 7" zippers) and a lot of quilted fabric that I just couldn't bring myself to throw away.

 Pencil cases
Pencil cases and small wristlets
Another yoga bag completed this weekend
A weekender tote finished this morning
A large and small yoga bag completed this weekend
Collection of small yoga bags

Collection of large yoga bags
It seems that people are liking my yoga bags (I mean, what's not to like?!) and I have sold quite a few of them.  Hopefully, I will get a store out there soon so more people can discover these absolutely beautiful and totally functional bags.
I also like these "etc" bags that were made with large pieces of quilted fabric scraps
And to satisfy my newfound love of drawing and paint and markers and the written word, I discovered these envelopes in the trash at work and promptly rescued them.  Here is my first attempt that is going out into the world.

Outside of envelope
Inside of envelope
And the other day I discovered the "Orphaned Postcard Project" and immediately signed up.  I picked the postcards that I wanted.  They arrived early last week; I wrote a note on each one and sent them back.  How fun!
And, lest you think I'm not quilting, here's my latest quilt top ready for the longarm:
It's a disappearing 9 patch 
And that, my friends, is my happy!  It's been a great weekend complete with cooler weather and a nice 4 mile run yesterday morning.  I hope each of you is finding your HAPPY!