Tropical Dreaming

While others are dreaming of a white Christmas I’m tropical dreaming!

 

 

Last night was a “three quilt night”. Burr!

Five Hundred Twenty Seven Day Countdown!

I am sooo excited to announce publicly that I will be teaching on a Stitchin Heaven Quilting Cruise in 2019! The website just went live a few hours ago and I couldn’t wait to blog about this!

Tropical Dreaming of a Quilting Cruise
I couldn’t be more thrilled – hope you will join me!

Perfect Christmas Present For The Quilter in Your Life – YOU!

Imagine yourself on a relaxing cruise surrounded by the beautiful blue sea

The details are all on the website Stitchin Heaven Travel    They offer travel certificates that would make perfect stocking stuffers.

I dearly love cruising.  And it’s so much fun to combine that with quilting! This will be the third opportunity to teach on a quilting cruise and I couldn’t be more excited! Once again I will be teaching an original pattern using Studio 180 Design tools!

The ports of call are familiar to this seasoned cruiser – Cozumel, Jamacia, and Grand Cayman.

Tropical Dreaming with Beautiful Tropical Flowers of Roatan
We visited Roatan this past October and I loved all the tropical flowers!

Quilting Cruises Are The Best Tropical Dreaming!

I’d love to tell you more, and don’t worry! I will – but I need to head out to the Island Quilter’s Guild Holiday Party! More later!

This is Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler, dreaming of that Tropical Vacation! Hope you will make plans to join me!

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Best Laid Plans

Day four 31 day blog writing challengeYesterday didn’t go exactly according to plan..you know what they say about best-laid plans…my word is “be flexible.”

The afternoon sewing plans were interrupted by an unexpected visit from our son and daughter-in-law.  No problem. Family first. So it was evening before I was able to begin my table runner project.

 

cutting diamonds with the Diamond Rects tool by Studio 180 designSunday Sewing Recap

All was going according to plan…Pieces cut out very quickly using the Diamond Rects tool by Studio 180 Design…read the instructions…even the disclaimer of making a few units first before chain piecing…hum…

Looks like this project will have to wait a little longer.

When all else fails, read instructions – time to frog….

The quilting term frogging means to rip out seams

Plan B

Switching gears in the evening I had a phone appointment with The Redneck Quilter, a fellow Certified Instructor with Studio 180 Design. We are collaborating on a pattern that will be yet another secret sewing project over the next few months before the big reveal. I will share more about this later, but here are the beginnings of a color palette based on my twilight moon shot (above) taken going to dinner the other night near Galveston Bay.

Island Batik Basics – great inspiration for the next secret sewing project.

Best Laid Plans for Today

Today’s a new day! Excited to begin putting together this Harley Davison T-shirt quilt for a customer. It’s a surprise Christmas gift for his wife!

Harley Davidson T-shirts to make a quilt by The Quilt Rambler

For those curious as to how I construct my t-shirt quilts here’s a quick little video our son produced earlier this year for me.

 

This is Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler, wishing you a happy Monday!

 Teaming up with www.blog.muppin.com for the #31dayblogchallenge

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Sunday Sewing – Christmas Style

Red Aurifil thread matches the fabric perfectly for hand sewing a hanging sleeve on the back of a quilt

Day 3 of the #31dayblogchallengeSundays are my day of worship. The afternoons I consider my “day off” and I generally spend it in the studio with a little Sunday sewing. As much as possible I try to do relaxing projects, usually personal vs business. That’s my plans for today…

Side note:  if you follow me on social media you will recognize my hibiscus from the front yard. This is the first one I have “picked”  – I thought it would look cheery in the studio!

Studio Update

Last night I finished the binding on the 2nd customer T-shirt quilt. She will be picking these up later in the week for her Christmas gift giving.

Monday morning I  will work on the next quilt in line. I’ve got several more to go before the holiday.  It’s always fun to see what other people collect as far as t-shirt memories go….

A&M t-shirts turned into a t-shirt quilt by The Quilt Rambler
College shirts make a great Texas A & M T-shirt quilt
Rush Concert T-shirts made into a T-shirt quilt by The Quilt Rambler
A collection of concert T-shirts comes out of the bottom clothing drawer to become a nice lap quilt

 Sunday Sewing Plans:

After finishing with the customer quilts I pulled fabric for my December Island Batik Ambassador challenge.  The challenge is to make a scrappy table runner. Well, scrappy is my middle name so I’ve been looking forward to this all year!

For those of you new to The Quilt Rambler I invite you to scroll through some of my earlier blogs to view the other projects I’ve made with the 2017 Island Batik Ambassador program. I am enjoying this journey working with beautiful batiks!

I chose a Studio 180 Design pattern and can’t wait to get the parts and pieces all cut out and sewn together – the perfect small project for the afternoon and the season! Check back with me tomorrow when I report in on my progress!

Christmas Island Batik 2.5" strips will be perfect for the Refraction table runner from Studio 180 Design
Looking forward to combining my love of Island Batik fabrics with my love of Studio 180 Design tools and patterns.

What are your Sunday afternoon plans? Are you still working on Christmas or Hanukkah projects? Please leave a comment below, I’d love to hear about your handmade items.

This is Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler keeping the blog short today so I can get a lot of sewing accomplished! See you tomorrow!

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 Teaming up with www.blog.muppin.com for the #31dayblogchallenge

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Would You Like to Be An Island Batik Ambassador?

Island Batik posted their application for the 2018 season of Island Batik Ambassadors just a few days ago and there are only a few days left to apply online.

Part of the application process is to complete and mail an unquilted block, which I just finished up this morning.
Birds of Paradise with Square Squared units
“Give Thanks”
 This block represents my gratefulness for this past year as an Island Batik Ambassador. Not only have I been challenged to create a project each month featuring fabrics from my ambassador fabric box, I have also learned a lot from the other ambassadors and enjoyed getting to meet several at Fall Quilt Market and Houston Quilt Festival.
It was natural for me to choose a block based a  Studio 180 Design. You can’t go wrong with Deb’s techniques and tools!  This block is from her technique sheet Birds of Paradise using the Large Square Squared Ruler.
A winning combination – fabrics from Island Batik with tools and technique from Studio 180 Design
The  block units called Birds of Paradise came together quickly using Deb’s tools and instructions
Making a traditional square in a square is made simple using the Large Square Squared tool from Studio 180 Design and extra special using Island Batik Fabrics

I have truly enjoyed being an Island Batik Ambassador this past year – and it’s not over yet! I’ve got to catch up on my October project (I’m blaming it on Harvey)  and work on my December and January projects. I can hardly wait to share these creations with you  showcasing fabulous fabric lines from Island Batik. January will be a blog hop similar to the one we did in September.  There will be giveaways too! So if you haven’t subscribed to The Quilt Rambler blog you should do so now as to not miss out on a single thing!

Birds of Paradise with Square Squared units
“Give Thanks”

It goes without saying that a lot of my projects will be made using the Studio 180 Design tools – I am so grateful to be a Certified Instructor and to be associated with such wonderful people!

I’m thinking I really like this block – I can see it in future projects!

So if you are wondering what it’s like to be an Island Batik Ambassador then check out the information and application. Fingers crossed that I will be able to be one again for 2018! Hope you will consider joining me on this journey!

This is Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler, with a grateful heart

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Quilt Market – Where Friends Meet

What’s better than Disneyland? Why Quilt Market and Quilt Festival of course!

Today was the first day of the vendor mall at the Fall International Quilt Market held annually in my “hometown” of Houston Texas. Yesterday was a sneak preview fondly called Schoolhouse – where attendees have hundreds of “classes” to visit and see the newest products and fabrics being introduced into our industry. In case you missed #thequiltramblerontheroad photo reporting of schoolhouse then you just need to visit my facebook page as it was well documented (grin).

Sew-lebrity Sightings:

Today was my socializing day….okay, so perhaps every day for me could be considered “social day” but today was well planned…and some of it not so planned…

What’s a Sew-lebrity you ask? Well, I borrowed the term from a gal I met today – I shared that I was taking photos of my “celebrity friends and she said, “you mean SEWlebrities don’t you?”  Of course I do!  So let me introduce you to a few folks I visited with today!

Longarm Sewlebrities and Local Sewlebrity:

As soon as I walked into the exhibit hall who would I see but Jodi Robinson! If you don’t know her you might know her quilts! Jodi has been quilting for many years but in recent years “found herself” in the Modern Quilting world – and is she ever rocking that world!  It’s been my privilege to taken longarm classes with her. Jodi, thank you for your continued inspiration!

Jodi Robinson of Jodi Robinson Designs

A few steps later I ran into Cynthia England, who I’m sure if you are a quilter you will know as last year’s Best of Show winner (3rd-time winner actually!). Cynthia happens to be “local” and one of my hometown friends. Not only is she a fabulous designer and teacher she is a total hoot as a guild speaker! It’s always so much fun when Cynthia is visiting the Island Quilters Guild. By the way, Cynthia lives in my in-laws’ hometown of Dickinson Texas – the same Dickinson that was all over the news with Hurricane Harvey, and yes, Cynthia’s studio and home took on water. She’s #TexasStrong and it is so good to see her at market – she will be here next week for festival too.

Cynthia England needs no introduction – her quilts are simply amazing

A little later in the day, I stopped by to visit with my friend Helen Stubbings. Helen is neither a longarm quilter or local (grin) as she is from Australia! But I’ve known Helen for a number of years as I met her online through her sister Tracey Browning who is an A1 Quilting Machine Dealer (one of my previous adventures was being the Texas rep from 2008  – 2014) and a few fall markets where we really got to know each other. Helen does amazing handwork and makes it look so inviting and easy. She has some really cool paper piecing items for my friends who find this their passion.  I highly recommend her just because she is so sweet – and it goes without saying she’s gifted in her area of expertise! Always good to get an Aussie hug from Helen!

Helen Stubbings of Hugs ‘N Kisses from “down under”

I also ran into Gina Perkes, whom I’ve known and followed since my early days as a longarm quilter and have had the privilege of taking a class with her. Gina has to be the most photogenic woman I know. Her smile radiates in her eyes and I believe it’s because it resonates from deep within. She’s always so happy and so encouraging. Gina, I wish you much-continued success with your longarm quilting and design tools. It’s always good to see you at shows!

Gina Perkes, visit her booth for longarm inspiration and tools

Island Batik Sewlebrities:

I have been counting down to Quilt Market for months! It is truly a magical time of year for me, but more so this year as I couldn’t wait to visit with my friends from Island Batik!  If you are a regular reader of my ramblings you will know that since January of this year I have been blessed to be counted among the Island Batik Ambassadors, quilters who share the same passion for Island Batik fabrics and who participate in a monthly challenge and blog about our creations using this fabulous fabric line! Well! Several of the gals were coming to market and some to festival – we just had to make arrangements to meet up!

First of all, there’s Nan Baker. Not only is she the keeper of the birthdays for our group but I find that she’s an encourager and a very talented lady. She has a passion for critters and keeps us all involved in Kennel Quilts – in fact, she taught a class to shop owners this weekend to spread the word on how others can get involved.  Nan also had a signature collection of fabric with Island Batik called Northern Woods, of which I was privileged to create a quilt to add to the collection, Mint Chocolate Chip.

Nan Baker and her fabulous fabric collection and patterns!

Another one of the Island Batik Ambassadors whom I spent time with today is Tina Dillard, her quilt is the “cover girl” of the Island Batik Fall Catalog! And she has a fabulous new block of the month called Rambin’ Star. We had a lot of fun visiting together, sharing ideas, and now will have a stronger Facebook friendship due to meeting in person! So sad that you have to fly home so early. Safe journey my friend!

Tina Dillard – Block of the Month – Ramblin’ Star
Yep, Tina made that Funky Friend!

I might as well throw in the photos Tina took of me with my quilts….

The Quilt Rambler with Mint Chocolate Chip made with Nan’s collection Northern Woods
The Quilt Rambler and Illuminated Journey – made with Paisley Dot Precut Strips

Just a few more Island Batik photos and Sewlebrities…

Caleb Willis, company president, and all around good guy! Can you see Tina’s cover quilt on the catalog!
Kathy Engle, VP and Design Specialist – she pulls together all the designer collections – such talent!

Among the designers, I was able to meet Tammy Silvers and Jackie Kunkel both of whom I’ve been following on social media. I am amazed and inspired by their collective creativity and design. Their new lines with Island Batik are Elementz and Blue Moon. 

Tammy Silvers of Tamarinis
Jackie Kunkel of Canton Village Quilt Works

Studio 180 Design Sewlebrities:

Oh my, the day just kept getting better! It was a huge reunion to get to visit with Deb Tucker, Sue Tucker, Sarah, and Hailey! I’ve missed Tuckerland. The only thing that would have made this better was getting to visit with Jeff Tucker, but someone had to stay home and take care of the cats….er…warehouse!

Sue Tucker, Sarah Furrer, Karen Overton, Deb Tucker, Hailey Tucker – Studio 180 Design!

Becoming a Certified Instruction (CI) with Deb has been the best career decision I have ever made!  Not only did I get adopted by this fabulous family, but I’ve been adopted by 79 other CI’s, many of whom I was able to meet today (and a few I neglected to get photos with – but hopefully there will be another opportunity!). Here are just a few of my Sewlebrity CI friends!

Phyllis Fay and Beth Sidley, with Tucker University
Running With Scissors gals: Ellen Cicak, Kathy Webb, and Heidi Chase
Shanena Fredricks, Linda Wirtz, Deb Tucker (photobombed us), Karen Overton, and Brian McCoy

These guys and gals are ready, willing, and able to come teach workshops or lead Tucker Universities in your local quilt shop – of course, it goes without saying that yours truly can do that too. Here’s the listing of all the CI’s 

But wait, there’s more!

As my day was wrapping up having  juggled between the Island Batik booth and Studio 180 Design (I seriously didn’t go anywhere else today besides the food court and to see my friends at FiberCo, but that’s another day’s story) I was walking along when a lady stopped me and said “oh, I hoped I run into you!” Well, low and behold it’s my text editor Leslie Meltzer whom I’ve only talked to once via email! Leslie was recommended to me by my graphic designer Lindsie Bergevin and we will all be working together to get my patterns into print before the fabric ships to quilt shops the first of the year. For fun I thought our photo should be black and white, kinda reminded me of typeset years ago in the newspaper (dates me I know). Well…it’s late so what can I say…

Leslie is going to make sure my pattern directions are free of typos and easy to follow, Can’t wait!

Thanks for hanging out all the way to the end…there’s so much more I wanted to say, especially about my CI friends but the clock just struck 11 PM and I do need my beauty rest so I can drive back downtown tomorrow for more Quilt Market adventures. And yes, to all my Island Batik Ambassador friends I will do my best to go around the booth and a get really good close-ups of all the quilts. It’s an honor to be counted among you! Your designs are inspiring. To my S180 CI family – what can I say but I love you ALL – you have been so overwhelming good to me and supported me through all the “Harvey mess” that I can’t truly voice my feelings because I tear up, and it’s too late in the evening for that!

This is Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler, reporting in from Fall Quilt Market! More Hugs and Photos Tomorrow!

Like and follow me on social media ~ there’s photos and such all across the internet ….this rambler loves to be #TheQuiltRamblerOnTheRoad

What Does The Quilt Rambler and Studio 180 Design Have In Common?

Upcoming Event with Studio 180 Design

Besides the fact that I love love love Deb Tucker’s Rulers and Techniques…

How about a future trip to include a full week of Certified Instructor Training!

Yes, I love Deb’s Rulers

Studio 180 Design And The Quilt Rambler
My all time favorite ruler is the Rapid Fire Leymone Star Ruler

Those of you who know me know that I believe that you can never have too many rulers! That said when it comes to specialty rulers that truly make my piecing life easier I turn to Studio 180 Design. Deb’s techniques make me look like a champ in the piecing department.  I know, I fired the quilt police years ago, but I’m not afraid of them when I piece using these rulers.

Call for Applicants – Studio 180 Design Certified Instructor

I was soooo excited when I saw the facebook post concerning this year’s Certificated Instructor Training offered by Studio 180 Design. It’s been something I have wanted to do for well over 5 years.

Studio 180 Design Certified Instructor
As seen on Facebook

Application Process to Train as a Certified Instructor

Studio 180 DesignBy the time I saw the post it had been “out there” for well over a month – how in the world did I miss it??  I quickly downloaded the application and found that it was pretty detailed.

Quilting Biography – The Quilt Rambler, Who Am I?

Certified Instructor This was time-consuming….I needed to rack my brain for some of the public “accomplishments” that I’ve achieved – teaching piecing classes, a little about my longarm accomplishments, publications, etc.

Quilting References – I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends!

Studio 180 Design Certified InstructorWhile I was working on the biography I asked a few folks to consider being a reference for me, a local shop owner/friend (location of past classes) and three quilting friends who have attended classes and/or workshops with me (one was a past guild president)…I later learned that my gals had their reference forms emailed long before I completed my application! Such sweet friends!

Block Submissions Needed to Apply for Certified Instructor

This part of the application was where the needle met the fabric! Deb has several rulers in her lineup – or as she puts it “Tools for the Realist, Not the Idealist“. It’s not surprising that I own every one of them! I’ve used a few of them more than others like the Rapid Fire Leymone Star Ruler, Rapid Fire Hunters Star Ruler, and Corner Beam.

The application had 6 line drawings for blocks that needed to be pieced and submitted. There wasn’t a size restriction, suggested color/value, nor instructions! Truly this was THE TEST! How well do you know how to use Deb’s Rulers?

My Blocks To Be Juried Into Acceptance For Training

Of course, I pulled fabric from my Island Batik stash. I just happened to have a 10″ square stack of Coastal Mist and redrafted the blocks to the sizes that would accommodate my fabric limitation to 10″ (except the background, I had yards of that!)

These blocks do not have an official name that I’m aware of….

Block made using Deb Tucker Rulers for Certified Instructor Training
Rulers Used: Rapid Fire Leymone Star, Corner Pop
Block made for Certified Instructor Training Application
Rulers used: Corner Beam, Tucker Trimmer, Square 2
Block made by Karen Overton Using Studio 180 Design Rulers for Certified Instructor Application
Rulers used V -Block, Tucker Trimmer
Karen Overton made this block using Deb Tucker Rulers for her Certified Instructor Application
Rulers used: Wing Clipper, Tucker Trimmer
The Quilt Rambler made this block using Deb Tucker Rulers for Certification Application
Rulers Used: Split Rects, Diamond Rects, Tucker Trimmer

 

Karen Overton's block submitted for Studio 180 Design Certified Instructor Training
Ruler used: Rapid Fire Hunter’s Star: Petite Star

Happy Mail – My Application for Certified Instructor Training

Since I was “a day late and a dollar short,” or felt that way due to learning of the application process in a very untimely manner, I took a whole weekend off to focus on the piecing of my blocks. As Deb said, “take your time, but hurry up.”

In the mail Karen Overton's Application for Certified Instructor training
My blocks and application are (almost) “in the mail!”  You may remember this photo from an earlier blog post.

The Wait

If you’ve ever waited expectantly, and who hasn’t, then you know I was on pins and needles awaiting a verdict.

Email from Studio 180 Design for Certified Instructor Training
Good news! I’ve been accepted!!!

Let The Countdown Begin!

Countdown until Deb Tucker's Certified Instructor Training
Even though I’ve known about my acceptance for several weeks, I just started my “countdown” today. By the way, 23 is my favorite number! Quilt in the background is Morning Glory, a new pattern by Studio 180 Design quilted by The Quilt Rambler

I’m sew excited to be going to this training. I have learned from others that it is very intense and equally very rewarding!  I hope I can pass the test at the end and be counted among a prestigious group of quilters known fondly as “CI’s”

With certification, my goal is to be able to offer more classes and workshops both locally and wherever the call may lead me. Can’t wait until I can say “Coming to a location near YOU!”

This is Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler,  giddy with delight to announce my acceptance to Deb’s Certification Instructor Training (I’m still pinching myself!!)