Monday, October 22, 2012

Summer Love (Part 1)

The group over at the Old Red Barn Quilt Along has taken a break from quilt alongs and issued a quilt challenge throw down.  You can find the details here and it isn't too late to join in on the fun.  I really wanted to participate but I'm not sure I will have enough time to finish up my quilt top before the deadline of the 31st so I am working on this project with that deadline in mind but am not fully committed.

So step one was to choose a color pallet for inspiration.  Of course I still had tons of those pinned from when I was considering joining the Dead Simple Quilt Along a while back.  I poured over color pallet sites for days but in the end I kept coming back to the same one and decided to just go for it.  I had talked with an online friend about this same pallet around the time of the Dead Simple Quilt Along and had mentioned how much it reminded me of Fresh Cuts.  Of course being the fan I am of that line I still had some prints sitting in my sewing room.  I ordered a healthy does of Bella Solids to go with the Fresh cut pieces and then I was ready to get to work.

 This pallet reminds me of Summer and for some reason I just kept thinking about summer love.  You know that easy kind they talk about in every country love song ever written.  And that made my think about carnivals and Ferris wheels.  Yeah I know it's not a very new concept but once it was in my mind I just couldn't shake it and decided to just let it be the inspiration it so clearly wanted to be.  I searched and searched for a block that gave the feeling of a Ferris wheel without being a literal interpretation.  I couldn't really find anything that I loved but in the end decided to use a block by Elizabeth.  I think it loosely resembles a turning bucket shape.  And so my summer love quilt has begun.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Find My Fabric

Sometimes I am asked to review services that would benefit my audience.  And while I have never participate before because I am only willing to share products I would use myself.  I did decided to share this site with you.  Although the following is my opinion of Find My Fabric, I do need to disclose that I am being compensated for this review.

Have you heard about  It's a pretty cool search engine just for fabric lovers.  I had the chance to spend some time on the site and wanted to share with you all the pros and cons I found.  I hope you will take the chance to look around on the site and that you will bookmark it for help in finding products you may be looking for in the future.

I really like the easiness of the search feature.  If you know the name of the fabric you are trying to find you can just type it right in the search box and it will search 100's of stores and return a list for you.  One of the best parts is that it displays the prices so no more clicking on links to compare who has the best price.

The one drawback to the search I found that it wouldn't be fair if I didn't tell you about is that the site only searches for the product in stores that are registered with the site.  These means some of those more obscure fabric sites may still be missed.  If you have friends or family that have online stores be sure to tell them about the site so they can check into registering.  The more stores that participate the better this site will serve all of us in the sewing community.

Another cool feature the site offers is the ability to search using something similar to facial recognition technology.  Say you have a piece of fabric and you don't have the selvage and you can't remember the name of it but you are having one of those OMG I am short of this fabric and I have to get more pronto moments.  Come on I know I'm not the only person that happens to.  You can snap a picture and upload it to the site.  The computer then runs that photo through the system and returns similar images.

I tried it and while it did find the fabric I was looking for it also gave me some other interesting products as well.  I searched for a gray polka dot and was a little surprised when rulers popped up on my screen.  So the technology may not be perfect but over all it was a success.  And ultimately I think I would rather it give me more options than be so specific it might risk not returning my desired fabric.  The rulers it showed me did after all have gray dots on them.

The site is still in a bit of a test phase right now but I know I will be bookmarking it and using it to find what I am looking for in the future.  Having all of the pricing alone in one spot is sure to save me some time and energy.  So go have a look around on the site and be sure to let me know what you think.