Quilted Bag

As my good friend Robin pointed out, true to form, I made a last minute project the day before leaving for QuiltCon.

I met some wonderful people and saw some gorgeous quilts and quilting while I was there. I also thought very hard about the changes that are happening in the quilting world. Really these are changes happening in every industry, the effects of social media (without it, the Modern Quilt Guild would not have grown so fast!), online shopping, and the enthusiasm these MQG members had for their endeavors. How do I reach these people? How do I continue to serve you, my readers, students, and others with my teaching, tips, and quilting adventures? (Not to sound too grim, but I just heard of the third quilt shop in my state of Virginia closing in the last 8 months or so.)

Fabulous people like Natalia Bonner, a big source of inspiration for ruler work.

I've got some great pictures to share, but first, I give you my last minute project.

I loved making this little cross-body bag! I did a strip of pieced triangles near the bottom, but the rest was done in Moda Crossweave, which I am pretty much in love with even though it's harder then all get-out to see your stitching on this grey version. Even with contrasting thread and some camera editing magic, it's even hard to see in some of these pictures.

 Some ruler work in the triangles of the front and a letter A in the turquoise square. Good thing I don't use red much....

Some freehand free motion quilting on the back. I thought I was just tired when I was having trouble seeing my stitches. Nope. So glad I didn't use matching thread.

It gave me a little spot to do some ruler work and was just big enough to hold just the essentials. I knew I didn't want to be toting around a bunch of stuff at the venue.

Of course I did end up carrying some stuff that wouldn't fit, like my new favorite mug. I envision telling my husband or kids that I need to do some quilting while subtly waving this mug around.

Quilting is good therapy!


  1. I would love to hear your thoughts on the changes to the sewing/quilting industry that you mentioned. I worked in the industry for someone else for a period when I left my 9-5 job, and have recently been toying with the idea of opening a quilt shop or online store to serve my local area. We have lost two shops recently, and I've noticed that those that remain are downsizing inventory. As you are currently involved, your insight would be enlightening to someone who has been away from the ins and outs for quite sometime. Will be traveling to Alexandria, VA in a couple of weeks, and I hope while I am there to be able to travel down to your shop.

    1. I'd be happy to talk with you! I think it's going to take a new set of skills to have a thriving quilt shop going forward, whether that's online or a bricks and mortar shop. Gone are the days of "build it and they will come" even with the best selection and pricing combinations. Some of the things customers appreciate most are the hardest to price...inspiration, education. enthusiasm!

  2. I love your bag. Don't be discouraged about the online fabric shops. There's plenty of room for a brick and mortar store. There's classes, personal service and advice, machine sales, machine repairs. And the best thing about your shop? YOU! You are an inspiration.