Hi! Welcome to Week Two of the New Quilt Blogger Hop, and to Faith and Fabric – my little piece of the online community. It’s been a fun few months so far, and special thanks to Cheryl, Yvonne, and Stephanie for coordinating this fun hop. Without further adieu, here’s a bit about me and my site:
SHARE YOUR FAVORITE QUILT STYLES
My quilting style is the way I share and express my faith through fabric. I’ve been sewing for many years, and started quiltin a bit by accident after inheriting several large tubs of fabric when my elderly neighbor, Mimi, passed away. One of my first quilts was one she started, and it was an honor to finish it as a gift to her great grandson.
Once I started quilting, I searched for quilts celebrating Easter, Christmas, Advent…and couldn’t find any that were what I was looking for. So, I started to design my own! One of the first quilt patterns I released was for the Advent Wreath – this is one of my favorites, as it serves a beautiful visual reminder of the Advent season when out on our dining table. It’s a combo of paper piecing and applique, and was really enjoyable to design.
This past Easter, I wanted to move away from applique and design a quilt that had a definitive image but was made exclusively from blocks. I hadn’t made a log cabin block before (crazy, no?), and really appreciated how the log cabin design could be manipulated to create a pattern within a pattern. I used both a standard (in browns) and modified (in watercolors) log cabin block to create the effects in the Easter Sunday quilt, and am so happy with how the colors fade! I’m also appreciative to my friend, Lia, who held up the quilt on an especially windy day at the beach so I could snap a few shots.
When I’m not quilting, I love hand sewing with felt. I’ve recently finished a felt activities book for my son, and am working on another round of Jesse Tree ornaments for my niece and nephew. One thing I really like about hand sewing with felt is how portable it is; I can bring the felt into the living room each evening and sit with my hubby while we chat or catch up on a show.
One new adventure I’ve started this year is a pop-up shop with a few friends on Instagram; each Tuesday, we – along with a guest artisan – offer handmade items for auction! Zelie and Co. has turned into not only a great way to share my wine bag / metal stamped charm sets with individuals who share my love of wine (ha!), but the opportunity to connect with other insanely talented artisans has been wonderful. We’re continually inspired by each other’s work in different mediums, and encourage each other to be our best!
TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF AND YOUR SITE
I grew up in a small town in New Jersey, and have been crafting for as long as I can remember! The school I attended had a program similar to Girl Scouts, except the focus was on creating: roughly once per month we would meet at the leader’s house with other girls in our grade and learn a new skill. Cross stitch, baking, candle making, cake decorating, embroidery, painting…having this level of exposure for so many years (K-6th grade) really opened the door – and my eyes! – to the many ways you can creatively express yourself. While there are some ways that are better left to others – like painting – sewing was one I always enjoyed. Speaking of enjoying, I also love the beach, red wine, and running…just not necessarily together 😉
Fast forward many years to college in California. I met my future husband the first week of class, and we’ve been together ever since. I earned my MBA with a concentration in MIS, and a week after finishing my thesis married my man – it was a busy month! I then worked in the corporate world for ~13 years until becoming “mom”, and am thankful for the opportunity to now stay home with our young son.
Blogging, for me, was something I got into after I started staying home with my son. I was an HR-IT project manager, and spent *a lot* of time in front of a computer. When I started staying home with little man, I missed that – and turned to blogging as a way to fill that need. My blog itself is a mix of two things: faith and fabric. I share the ways our family celebrates our Christian faith throughout the year, as well as quilts *usually* centered around this theme.
SHARE A TIP
This is a fun question! One of my tips recently appeared on Sew Mama Sew: How to Sew with Outdoor Fabric. Living near the beach means I’m often reupholstering our outdoor fabrics (saltwater + sun wreak havoc on outdoor upholstery), and it took me a while to learn how to work with these thicker and often coated fabrics.
I also thoroughly enjoy writing a series each month on Small Business Strategies for an online publication. As a small business owner, being able to connect with, learn from, and share the work of other small businesses is *very* important to me. What tips on quilting, sewing, or blogging do you have?
THE REST OF THIS WEEK’S HOP
Thank you for stopping by, and I hope we can stay connected! Here are some of the other talented quilters in my hive who are sharing a bit about themselves this week; stop by to visit them *as well as* win some great prizes!
Jennifer @ Inquiring Quilter
Abigail @ Cut & Alter
Jamie @ Small Town Stitchin
Irene @ Patchwork and Pastry
Just for fun, this post links up at some of these great Catholic and quilting sites!
Janis Altomare says
I loved the info on working with outdoor fabric. I have some cushions that have been “saved” so far from the trash. I’ve been afraid to try to redo them. I might have to try one.
Hi Janice! Looking forward to seeing how your cushions turn out.
Abigail @ cut&alter says
What a lovely introduction! That cross quilt on the beach is just stunning and such a lovely location.
Abigail, thank you! I’m so happy with the quilt (and location) too.
Jen, What a wonderful post. Your quilts are a beautiful reflection of you faith. The colors are so bright and stunning. This group has been so full of info and I have very much enjoyed getting to know each blogger and becoming more confident in my blogging. Have a super week. Hugs, Heide
Thank you, Heidi – it’s wonderful to mix the fabrics with faith. So many ways to create!
anna Brown says
Very nice ty for sharing your story your log cabin cross is very pretty… email@example.com
Hi Anna, thank you. Log cabins are an easy block to make, and one I can now cross off my bucket list.
Yvonne @Quilting Jetgirl says
Hi Jen, it was great to read more about you and your quilting journey today. In terms of a blogging tip, I really recommend learning how to schedule posts. Learning how to do that really freed me up and helped improve the quality of my posts. Instead of sitting down, writing, and hitting publish, I have time to proofread and edit now! For a quilting tip, I spent a lot of time trying out lots of different thread brands and thread weights with my sewing machines (I have a Bernina and an APQS long arm). I found one that both are happy to sew with, which means I only have to buy one kind of thread and that way I have lots of color options “in stock” to choose from!
Yvonne, that’s a great tip. Scheduling posts is something I need to work at…I tend to go in bursts, publishing 3 this week and none next week, and so on. Scheduling them in a more even release would be a solution to that.
Jennifer Wiltrout says
I love how you incorporate your crafty side with your faith. Kudos to you! Great designs too! Happy stitching!
Hi Jennifer, thank you – and happy stitching to you as well!
Janice Holton says
Hi Jen, Your log cabin cross quilt is gorgeous! I love the way the colors blend on it! Your blog already looks like you have been doing this for years!
Hi Janice, thank you! The color blends came out so well…I was pleasantly surprised that it flowed as evenly as it did. They are so different, and when I was selecting them I admit my fingers were crossed that it would work!
Hi Jen! Great post. You really create beautiful things. I really appreciate all the help and coaching you have given me through this hop!
Ann, it’s such a great opportunity to learn from each other, isn’t it? I’ve learned a ton from all of you, too. Really thankful for this program.
Hi Jen! Your post made me tired! You’re so busy! The Log Cabin is one of my favorite blocks, it is so versatile! Yours is very pretty!
Haha, Stephanie – I just don’t do well at doing nothing and tend to fill the day 😉 Thank you for your kind words!
Anne Boundy says
I love your Saltwater mermaid blocks! 🙂
Thanks, Anne! They’re so much fun to make 🙂
Hi Jen. It was nice to get to know you a little better. Something about reading your post made me feel quite peaceful. I intend to come back for more of the same! Having a post featured on Sew Mama Sew is a real coup! It must have been so exciting. Did they contact you or you them – how DID that work?
Hi Sue, thanks for your kind words. Re: Sew Mama Sew – I pitched an idea to them, along with some photos. Give it a try!
Kate Heads says
A very interesting introduction Jen. You have a great eye for colour.
Thanks, Kate – working on pairing colors is *always* a work in progress.
I love the colors in your Risen quilt. That is so pretty. Also the beach settings! That must be so inspiring. Thanks for sharing today Jen!
Hi Jodie, yes, having the beach so close to home is definitely an inspiration! I have a ton of blue, gray, and tan fabrics…all beach tones 😉
Hi, Jen! Your Risen quilt is gorgeous! I feel like I have a much better sense of who you are and why you quilt after having read your post. 🙂
Sarah, thank you! I’m so happy with the Risen quilt, too.
I think I’m tapped out on tips after kicking off the hop, but I loved reading yours!
Keep on in your faith and focus!
Holly, thank you for stopping by!
i also like how you combine your crafty side with your faith. I’ve come across your blog before and it’s nice to know a little more about you.
Thanks, Lisa. I’m really happy to be able to combine two areas that are both important to me.
Great post! I loved learning about you more and how you started quilting. Great designs!
Thanks, Cheryl! Learning about everyone’s backgrounds has been one of my favorite parts of the hop, too.
Thanks, Cheryl! Learning about everyone’s backgrounds has been one of my favorite parts of the hop, too.
Jen, great intro post! I have been following you on Instagram and remember seeing your Easter Sunday quilt and I just love it from the beautiful colors to the incredible testimony! Well done!
Aww, Paige, thank you!!!
Jen Shaffer says
Jen, that Easter quilt is stunning!
It was so nice to get to know you a bit better. I look forward to digging deeper into your blog, and hearing more from you.
Thank you, Jen! It’s one of my favorite quilts, too.
Karen @Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats says
Very beautiful cross quilt! So nice to meet you on the hop.
Thanks, Karen, it’s been wonderful to meet so many talented folks!
Lorinda Davis says
Jen, you do such beautiful work! I love how you share and glorify God with your talents.
Thank you, Lorinda!