Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Saddle Pad for my CHSA finalist and Show Jumper (Suitability #7158)

My daughter's been riding horses a full four years now.  She's been showing in rated shows for three.  At the end of last year, she fell during a show as she was trying to move up to her first jumping class.  It was a rough few months as her confidence was shaken.

This spring she was still not confident enough to show in a jumping class.  Funny thing is, she jumps during every lesson she has.  She's good at it.  But she was afraid to do it in a show after her fall.  After some encouragement from the older girls at her barn, she showed in a jumping class this April.  Every time she did it, she was super nervous, but she dug deep, faced her fears, and continued to show in what's called Short Stirrup (cantering over cross-rails on a course) all spring and summer.  She racked up enough points to qualify for the finals, which happened this weekend.  She took 6th place out of the 12 riders.

I learn so much from her.  I couldn't be more proud of how she handled herself this year.  She matured so much.  She got to be a much stronger rider.  She is proud of herself, and I know this season taught her so many good things, that she'll take with her into the rest of her life.

6th place in Short Stirrup Hunter, CHSA Finals 2015

She got this great horse fabric, Wild Horses, by Exclusively Quilters at our local quilt shop's annual clearance this winter.  She's been begging me to make her a new saddle pad for her ever since.  After her performance this weekend, how could I not???

I've made this pattern once before, it's by Suitability #7158.  The hardest part was finding a good binding to use for the edges.  They take a lot of wear and washing.

Cover of Suitability #7158
Here's her finished saddle pad.  It's regular quilter's cotton, so it won't last more than one season with the abuse it'll take.  But it makes my daughter feel special to have something made just for her.  It's super easy to put together, with basic diamond quilting and normal cotton batting in between.  I found a 1 1/2" woven black binding on Etsy.  It looks great, but isn't super strong and it actually wore out on the first one before the fabric did.

Saddle Pad made with Wild Horses by Exclusively Quilters
The back I used because it's called Horse Blanket (seriously, what ELSE would I use?) and the colors looked great with the front to me.

Back made with Horse Blanket by Joel Dewberry
If you've ever made one of these, I'd love to hear about it, and I'd love to know where you got your binding.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

My First COVER and Some Summer Catch Up

The lazy days of summer. They are wonderful aren’t they? It’s light out earlier in the morning AND later in the evening, and still, I realize things are getting scratched off my to-do list more slowly.

I’ve had some pretty exciting things happen though, during July and August. I’ve plastered them all over Instagram, but I decided it was important to memorialize them here.

My first published quilt pattern was published in the British magazine Quilt Now, in it’s June 2015 issue, number 12. The quilt is an oversized version of a single block. I absolutely love the look of bold, large scale designs like this. It’s made with Petal & Plume fabrics, by designer Bari J. of Art Gallery Fabrics. I also made a matching pillow, and called the two projects a “nap set”.

The editor Katy Jones had told me which issue the projects would be in, but it was a complete surprise to find them on the cover of the issue! I was scrolling through Facebook, and there they were…

That's my quilt, ON THE COVER

I didn’t find a copy of the magazine until around July 1st here in the US. It was a wonderful, fun day for me. 

As if that wasn’t enough, Michele Muska invited my quilt guild (Southern CT MQG) to come to the Simplicity creative offices in NYC in early August. I took a day off from work and spent a gorgeous sunny Wenesday travelling to the city to meet 6 of my fellow guild members for the day.

Me, Michelle our hostess, and my guild members

Michele took us around the office, and introduced us to lots of the people who work in the pattern making part of the business. It was so much fun to hear about what each person did, how the process worked, and get to see garments actually being made up.

Then we met with some of the folks from other areas of the business to talk social media, sewing tools, and the future of quilting. It was fantastic.

Michele lives in CT and had done a wonderful trunk show for our guild in March with the quilts from her book Quilting the New Classics. The quilts were just amazing in person and it was a treat to see them all at once. The book is beautiful, and full of color and inspiration.

Michelle's Wonderful Book, hyperlink above

August and September will be filled with making t-shirt quilts for customers, a Kate Spain/Simplicity mini-tool challenge, and my swap gift for my partner at Glamp Stitch-a-lot. I’d better get back to work!