Located in Brockport, NY, Liz Hamilton has channeled her passions into her licensed in-home bakery. A love that started in childhood led her to The Culinary Institute of America after high school, where she studied Baking and Pastry Arts. She continued to bake for friends and family while working in a restaurant kitchen and Wegmans Patisserie in three different states!
Liz took a little time off to start a family, but decided she wasn’t done baking – she even named her business in tribute to her daughter, Mackenzie (Kennie), who shares a love of sweets and baking.
Although KennieCakes & Confections is a “custom order” in-home bakery, meaning she is not a “walk-in” retail establishment, she offers lots of delicious goodies to choose from, none of which sit on shelves because it’s all baked fresh to order! Whether you want cookies, cupcakes or specialty cakes for birthdays, showers or weddings, she can do it! She’ll even provide Decorate-Your-Own Cake & Cookie Kits so you can invite friends and family to join in the fun.
Artfully crafted, each piece is beautiful…and did we mention delicious?! Check them out online at kenniecakesandconfections.com to place an order, and show your support for local business – two reasons to feel oh, so good!
Introducing one of our new designers, Sheri Rector, of Rainbow Moon Treasures
Sheri has designed an extensive line of patterns, all with a unique style and flare. She has been quilting since she was a teen, despite being disabled since age 17 in a high dive accident resulting in mild traumatic brain injury, fibromyalgia, back pain, etc. However, over the years her brain rewired itself to compensate for the damage. She now creates artwork in various forms with ease and finds complex geometric figures easier to remember than a paragraph telling a story!
Now in her 40’s, Sheri has finally found something she loves and is good at – creating designs and patterns. All of her patterns include many size variations from very small through King sized, with easy to follow instructions and easy to sew patterns, using single size squares only and no curves or diagonals. With so much versatility and variety to choose from, you’re sure to find something of hers you like.
No matter the answer, you should keep on the lookout. Why? Because it’s the newest way to brighten someone’s day.
You may be more familiar with the painted rock project, the concept is similar. Both involve stashing a little trinket, whether it is a painted rock or a quilted heart. The rocks are designed to be photographed and hidden in a new location for someone else to find. The hearts are meant to be kept and cherished.
Each heart has a tag on it reading, “I need a home.” And each one was hand crafted by someone in order to bless others with a simple act of kindness.
Sewing and Sowing
Participation is encouraged, whether through making hearts and hiding them, or by posting images of found hearts. Check out www.ifoundaquiltedheart.com to learn more, including the origin of the project as well as photographs of hearts that have been reported.
Introducing a new designer, please welcome Heather Kidd of Stringtown Lane Quilts.
She is a mother of 3 boys, expecting her 4th child in June. Congrats to her! She lives with her family in a small town in Idaho. They enjoy the outdoors and doing things together as a family.
Heather’s mother, who is a great long arm quilter, taught her daughter to sew and now quilts all of Heather’s projects! Heather loves everything sewing and quilting. Her sister, cousins, aunts and a grandma all sew too. No doubt they all believe as Heather does; you can never have too much fabric! Heather says she has really enjoyed building her stash.
Heather has provided us with more than a dozen of her designs, including several door/wall hangings and an adorable baby/toddler quilt. Her favorite technique is appliqué, which is why she started designing patterns that went with every month.
We are very happy to include Heather in our quilting community – we have lots more love and inspiration to share, and we’re confident she will be a great addition to our flock!
What types of patterns sell the best here at QuiltWoman.com?
There are two ways to answer this question: What always sells well, and what is selling well right now in 2017. Keep in mind that these are VERY GENERAL suggestions and there are always exceptions to the rule. If you have something that your friends think is great, go for it!
What always sells well:
Patterns with a huge WOW factor – at any skill level – many people buy patterns above their skill level in hopes that they will one day get there or have someone else make it for them. The WOW can come from the design or the color arrangement.
Patterns that look complex but are simple to make – the best example I have of this is our top selling pattern that sells well year after year – Take Four Placemat.
Take Four Placemat Set Pattern CF-224
Which also falls into the next category – Small Simple projects. These always make great gifts. They also give great satisfaction because you can whip up a small project and feel accomplished between those big projects that might take you years to finish. Even those of us with advanced skills love to make simple projects.
Very simple appliqué – the cuter the better.
Patterns that can use many styles and types of fabrics that are readily available or scraps out of your stash.
Patterns that show a new technique or a new easier way to accomplish an old technique.
Patterns that use new gadgets and notions that are popular.
Any fad motif such as Owls which have been very popular lately – I think it is still a good idea to jump on and ride these waves but know when to move on and don’t expect ongoing sales for years.
Right now these are selling well:
Bright colors are very popular as well as black backgrounds. These contribute to that WOW factor.
Animals – especially wild and jungle animals. One nice thing about this is that they appeal to boys and men. We never seem to have enough patterns for them.
What does not usually sell very well: Anything with a limited market. This means it will appeal to a limited audience or for a limited time. I’m not saying you shouldn’t design them, just keep in mind that many of these may sell very well when they first come out and then not so much over the long haul.
Advanced skill level
Seasonal except Halloween and Christmas which always sell year round
Fabric specific – works only with one specific fabric line
Geared toward one sector of the population such as one state, one age group, etc.
Patterns that have already been done to death – one more pattern with traditional star blocks is not really where you want to spend your time.
One thing that many of our designers do is what we here at QuiltWoman.com call a “face lift”. This is where they take a pattern that they published years ago and put new fabrics in the cover photo project. This can be done by actually making the quilt or by a virtual computerized image. We will talk about images in a later post. Keep this in mind as you are creating your patterns and you will be able to leverage your work for years to come.
HUGE HINT: WRITE YOUR PATTERN SO THAT THE COVER PHOTO CAN BE CHANGED WITHOUT HAVING TO CHANGE THE INSTRUCTIONS MUCH OR AT ALL. To do this, use Fabric A, Fabric B, etc. instead of Blue, Red, Purple. Use a color chart with references to the fabric letters and then label your diagrams with those letters.
The main thing I can say to you is that if you want to have a serious business, design for the market, not just for your own tastes.
Watch for more posts coming soon including topics such as:
Did you know that Santa is having a Ugly Sweater Christmas party! Santa and his reindeer are all so very excited about getting ready for the holidays! Quilt Doodle Designs makes it easy for you to get ready for the holidays too with their Ugly Christmas Sweater pattern. It’s never too early to work on a little Christmas project. All you need is some scrap Christmas fabrics, or a fat quarter bundle of your favorite holiday fabric and a free afternoon. They make quick gifts and are adorable paired up with a mug and some chocolate.
This is a fun pattern and would make a wonderful afternoon workshop for your quilt shop!
Button Kits are available from Just Another Button Co.
Pin your sweater body right sides together onto your batting. I like to use batting scraps for these types of projects.
Sew a 1/4″ seam….
Remember to leave an opening so you can turn it right side out.
Don’t forget to clip corners before you turn your sweater shape right sides out
The super fun part is decorating your sweaters. Trace all your design pieces onto your heat n bond, iron onto the wrong side of the fabric scraps and cut out.
A Christmas Ornament ugly sweater. Isn’t it cute and it’s not even done yet!
I got one of each design put together. I’m now ready to do my applique stitch.
I used a dark brown thread from Aurifil. I use the same color thread for all of my mug rugs just for ease of getting them all done quickly without changing thread colors. What’s great about this step is that you are appliqueing and quilting your mug rugs all at the same time. So easy!
After all my mug rugs are appliqued, it’s time to camp out in front of the TV for some hand work. As you can see, I have lots of threads to clip. I’ve put together a button pack for you thru Just Another Button Company with all the embellishments for the mug rugs. The pack contains enough buttons to do one of each design plus some extras… I added some snowflake buttons too. This slick button kit is also available in my Etsy Store.
Shhhh, this one’s my favorite..
Another super fun thing you can do with these is make a bunch and sting them together to make a garland! All you need is some red and white baker’s twine and some decorative clothespins.
With the International Quilt Festival taking place next month in Houston (November 2nd-5th.), we are all thinking about finding ways to bring more fabric home from the quilt show. Here is how to bring more fabric home from the quilt show.
Outsmart everyone- How to Bring More Fabric Home From the Quilt Show
Next time you are cleaning out your closet, think twice before you toss out those old clothes. Now that the airlines are limiting the amount of luggage you can take and making it more expensive to pack heavy items like fabric, a little advance planning can help you beat them at their own game. Whether you are flying or driving, getting that extra suitcase (the one you bought while out of town at the show) past the eagle eye of your significant other and payer of the credit card bills, will no longer be necessary.
Here’s the plan: Take all those almost worn out or out-of-date clothes and save them in a box labeled “travelling clothes”. These are the clothes you wear on the plane or in the car because they are all broken in and comfortable. So what if they were on their way to the rag bag – you’re never going to see those people on the plane or in the rest stops again anyway. Keep your goal in mind and your priorities straight!
Now if you are working at the show setting up and taking down booths, you can use some of those old clothes as work clothes too. Nobody cares how ratty you look on setup days. OK, so now you have packed as few nice wardrobe items as possible only for the days the show is actually open, leaving as much room as possible for fabric and goodies to bring home. But it’s never enough, is it? Until you ditch all those old clothes you didn’t want any more into the nearest Salvation Army bin or dumpster at the hotel and voila! More room for fabric!
Here is a handy planning chart you can take to the show:
1 pr. bikini panties = 1 fat quarter
1 pr. granny panties = 3 fat quarters
1 bra A-C cup = 1 fat quarter
1 bra D+ cup = 2 fat quarters
1 pr. socks = 1 fat quarter
1 t-shirt Sm.-Lg. = 3 fat quarters
1 t-shirt XL+ = 1 yd.
1 pr. jeans/sweatpants = 2-3 yds.
I have been designing patterns for Northcott Fabrics for the past 2 years and love getting to see the new fabric lines as they come out. This month I have completed three new patterns for their beautiful new line of Poppy themed fabric called In Full Bloom by Deborah Edwards.
Poppy Picture Window
The first pattern uses running yardage of poppy flower blocks surrounded by a funky border. I call it Poppy Picture Window.
This is a smaller throw or lap size quilt, 38″ x 44″. It is an easy pattern for a confident beginner since the only pieced part is the border. You could put any panel or large scale print inside the border.
Starlight Poppies is a larger lap quilt, 52″ x 52″ which is appropriate for an intermediate quilter, although I think a confident beginner could do it if they can do set-in seams.
Yup, there a few set-in seams in this pattern, so you may want to brush up on that technique before you tackle this one. But the vivid colors and poppy prints make it worth the effort.
The last one is called Amazing Poppies and is an intermediate level pattern, although it is all just squares and rectangles with quick corners. The challenge is making sure you have the fabric oriented with the stripe in the correct direction. The pattern provides complete instructions and illustrations for assembling the quilt.
This pattern uses just two fabrics in the quilt center. A poppy flower strip and solid white. It was fun to design and make. At 48″ x 56″ it is a bit too big for a wall quilt but great for a throw or sofa.
The In Full Bloom fabric will be shipping to your local quilt shop this fall. Ask for the fabric at your LQS. All three patterns are available for purchase in either a paper pattern or downloadable on the QuiltWoman.com website.