Category Archives: Inspiration

Day 30: Project Quilting’s Starting Soon

Lost your quilting mojo? Sometimes smaller projects with tight deadlines are super helpful in getting it back.

Project Quilting (PQ) is a series of one-week challenges. Season seven starts on January 3rd. Check out the full calendar here.  Post your completed projects and win random drawings for prizes. Vote for your favorites and win viewer’s choice. One week to create, another to vote, then another challenge begins. There are six challenges per season.

I’ve participated before and am looking forward to getting back into the groove of sewing. Here’s what I’ve made in previous seasons.

Day 7: Instagram #getyourquiltywishesgranted

Here’s another #31dayblogchallenge post. Happy Monday you guys!

Something cool’s happening in the quilting community on Instagram. If you’re on it you should check out the hashtag #getyourquiltywishesgranted and participate. Here’s how it works. Search that hashtag and check out the wishlists. Grant some of those wishes before posting your own.

How awesome is that? I hoped to find some piecing thread and have three people sending me Aurifil. Really! I’m thinking putting another ask out there for tree blocks. I don’t yet have enough for the final border of the turtles quilt.

getyourquiltywishesgranted

What’s most exciting for me is the giving. Here’s a photo of the first 12 envelopes going out with tomorrow’s mail.

wishesgrantedmailgoingout

There’s small prints for a postage stamp quilt, traditional fabrics for an aunt who’s a new quilter, low volume scraps for a background, animal fabrics for a toddler’s I-spy quilt and more. This is for the quilter who’s looking for mice.

mousefabric

Pictured here are 40ish pieces of 16 polka-dot fabrics. The lady making a polka-dot quilt is going to be thrilled that she has more variety. My cost? Time and a postage stamp. If she had to buy these 16 fabrics, it’d be 1/4 yard minimum from a quilt shop. That’s 4 yards of fabric when all she needs is this little bit. How wonderful that this community movement is happening? I’m not the only one helping her out so she’ll receive even more variety which will make her project all the more interesting. That sure makes me feel good.

polkadotfabrics

Isn’t that a great way to kick off the holiday season? Happy Hannukah to my friends who celebrate and happy holidays to all. See you tomorrow.

Day 4: You’re Beautiful. Really!

You’re beautiful. Yes you. Really! Take that in for a moment and then click play on this video. Watch people react to Shea Glover telling them they’re beautiful. But first grab some tissues. You might cry. I did.

 

 

 

Check back all month during the #31dayblogchallenge for daily posts. See you tomorrow!

Day 1: Six Favorite Small Businesses

31dayblogchallengeWelcome to day one of the 31 days blog challenge. This challenge is Cheryl Sleboda’s idea and I’m glad to be a part of it. I’ll be blogging every day from now until the end of this year.

Yesterday was Cyber Monday, which wrapped up the Thanksgiving holiday weekend shopping specials. The 30% off moving sale is still happening in my etsy shop. You know, ’cause I’m still moving and want to have less stuff to shlep. Anyway, I highlighted a few of my favorite small businesses this weekend on the quiltartbymegan Facebook page. Here they are in one spot. Check ’em out!

6favbusinesses

Alex Cook is the artist behind the Multi Mural Project. Community art at its finest, messages like “You Are Loved” are painted on places like school walls, city streets, and inside prisons. It’s led and organized by Alex and the community come in and help paint within his outline with colors he’s chosen. Here’s Alex’s website which includes the murals as well as his musical and written art.

Fed By Threads is a clothing store (in Tucson and online) with American-made organic clothing. It’s body-positive and built to pay everyone from designers to sewists living wages. This is in stark contrast to most clothing companies which use sweatshops overseas to manufacture most of their products. Facebook ’em here and check out their website and shop here.

Katwise makes whimsical coats out of old wool sweaters. Watch her Facebook page for announcements on when the next sale will be. You’ll want to be waiting at her etsy shop when it goes live because they sell out in minutes. No kidding. She also has patterns if you want to try your hand at it. I’ve made a bunch of arm-warmers from her tutorial.

Gregory Patrick of Mad Man Knitting is a blogger, author, and pattern designer. He knit teddy bears and worked his way out of homelessness with this small business. His story is inspiring and his stuff is super-cute. Here’s his website and Facebook page.

X-bility has experiential learning courses that have enhanced how I view myself, my relationships, and the world around me. They’re well worth flying into St. Louis for. Check out their website and Facebook page.

Carol Carter is a watercolor painter. Check out her website here: and find her on Facebook here. She’s great at posting photos of her paintings on Facebook so you’ll want to follow her page. Carol does commissions as well as buy-now paintings. She also teaches.

See you tomorrow.

Studio Tour 2 of 2

I’m excited to be back with you on this blog, Facebook, and Instagram. As always, the etsy shop continues to be up and running with new quilt art by Megan in there all the time. (See what I did there?)

Anyway, here’s part 2 of the art studio tour. My for-sale items are all in the closet in labeled Xerox boxes. I chose the Xerox boxes for these guys because they fit nicely and the boxes themselves are kind of ugly. Practical without beauty, they’re great behind closed doors. I enjoy the organization too because I no longer have to search through multiple boxes to find something. Bags have their own box, as do Christmas tree skirts, scarves and bibs, tableware and more.

11377169_900855396641584_5267504011435058330_n11401522_907349879325469_6198389971319529987_nHere’s my desk workspace. I have the computer, sewing machine, and projects I’m currently working on here. I also have a wooden desk and long folding table to use now. The table was in the garage while we were cutting wood but we’ve finally finished installing all of the wood flooring. It’s so exciting to have room to spread out! I’ll be basting a quilt in a few days and it’ll be super handy to do that on the table rather than on the floor.

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Between the wall of shelves and the closet is my tower of UFO’s. It holds some of my unfinished projects, all labeled and sorted. I love the fact that this is a tower of drawers so I don’t have to unstack anything to open a bin. One of ’em is stuffed full of crumb blocks. Aren’t they pretty?!

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Quilt Inspiration Part 1

The laptop died so I’m using my old PC. I found some fun things on it like a quicklink to Neopets. There was also a folder with photos of quilts I liked back then. Thought you guys might enjoy seeing some of them. This is one part of a series so you can experience a few at a time.

I don’t have any makers’ information on these. If you have any information on them please contact me. I’d love to know and share it.

thumb-1279147150339-1 This is such a cool way to set sampler blocks. I also like the strict color palate.thumb-1271625013030-_004 Here’s a fun kids’ group quilt. It looks like each child was given a square to decorate then someone made them into a quilt.thumb-1271725197555-100_3672What a great man-friendly quilt. I love the sashing fabric. Simple and striking, this pattern would also be fun with novelty fabrics.

thumb-1271973642699-_carmel_lattee I love the movement this shattered style makes. This would be great over the fireplace in autumn.

thumb-1272048404413-img_3544It’s a log cabin! The blocks are diamonds and it’s stunningly beautiful.

What do you think of these quilts?

Don’t worry. I’ll have a studio update for you guys soon. I’m working on moving all of my stuff in there from the living room, kitchen, bedroom, multiple closets…

It’s a Girl Quilt.

My friend Katie posted photos of a gender reveal party today. Look at their sweet happy faces.

katies having a girl

The baker was given a piece of paper with the baby’s gender written on it. Parents didn’t find out until the moment this photo was snapped. Pink cake = baby girl! (Check out Katie’s blog for her chocolate covered oreos recipe. )

Baby girl might need something special from Aunt Megan! Let’s look at some cute baby quilts. These designs can all be altered to be for boys or girls. I haven’t yet made any of these. Click on ’em for more information including designers and makers. Which are your favorites?

scary monster squares quilt

 

goldfish quilt

paper airplane quilt

purple circles quilt

argyle quilt

 

Check out my quilting Pinterest board for more inspiration.

I’m working on a floral baby quilt and one with Raggedy Ann fabric. I’ll show them to you guys once they’re complete and photographed! Maybe I’ll head to the playground to take the pictures.

 

Linking up with Weekly Inspiration.

Fine Art Doesn’t Belong in the Nursery

My for-sale quilts (mostly) are for two kinds of customers: lovers of heirlooms and fine art; and those shopping for baby. I also have arm warmers and table runners but I’m mostly in those two categories. I’m working hard on learning marketing and merchandising and came across this great article.

craft-fair-display

 

This article includes photographs of booths whose displays enhance their products. Landscape paintings are on easels made of tree limbs and natural soap is in an antique washing machine.

big megan with photo

 

This got me thinking my photographs in this blog and the etsy shop. A future craft booth would look different depending on the audience I’m looking to reach. How much better would it be if the products were displayed more relevantly? Art quilts like the portrait quilt above should be in a minimalist, gallery-like setting. Maybe they’re hung on a black curtain with spot-lighting. Balloons and brightly colored backdrops would not be appropriate. They could be photographed above a beautiful fireplace or fancy bed.

pink d9p finished

Baby quilts, on the other hand wouldn’t make sense in that setting. Maybe they’re draped over a crib or spilling out the drawers of a changing table. A kids’ picnic table and stuffed animals would be awesome. As for photographs, why not have a baby playing on the quilts?

duckie bibs double sided

I don’t have these props yet but some of them can be found cheaply at thrift stores and yard sales. We have no other use for a crib but I’ll be on the lookout for a rocking chair… and a local friend with a baby. 🙂

 

Linking up to Show Off Saturday.

Guest Blogger Jim – I Was Never Alone

Today’s blog post is written by my brother Jim. Our Mom died a few days after he was born and my brother, sister, and I have all had to deal with abandonment issues in one form or another. Here’s part of Jim’s story in his own words.

*** Photo captions are available below Jim’s words. I didn’t want to interrupt.***


BabyJim1Hi, my name is Jim Masten. When I was born I did not know this, but my mother was sick until five days after I was born, when she died.

MomSunbonnetSueTo this day I do not remember any feelings of emotion towards my mother. For a while I had been really depressed and sad that I didn’t have a mother and I felt very alone and abandoned by God and my mother.

I feel that I’m being “abandoned” and I talk to my dad who also is very depressed about his loss of his wife (my mother). He always just says, “She was a wonderful woman” or “She would have loved you so much” and that really does not help me with the depression that I am dealing with.

MomTulipsSo, I turn to the Science and Health by Mary Baker Eddy and turn to the definition of Mother in the “Glossary.” The definition of Mother is something like, “Help” or “Caring” which, also does not help me. So, at this time I feel the most abandoned in my life.

Mom9PIn addition, when I met an important person in my life, Sheri Luster, I found out what motherhood was all about and what a mother is like. As I like to say, “Sheri is the mother I never had.” Even though it is kind of supposed to be the other way around.

jim and sheri spiffy at workAnyways, Sheri was caring, loving, and helpful. Which, did remind me of the definition of Mother in the Science and Health. So, I realized what a motherly figure in my life would do and it helped me.

JimSheriLastly, I saw my mother in Sheri and other women in my life.

silly faces with estey and jimI even saw my mother in my dad because he was a single parent and basically had all of the weight on his shoulders.

dad and baby jim professional photoThis led to me having a healing of realizing that I was never alone and that my mother and God were there right with me the whole time, I just did not see it. Also, recently when I was out of school sick for a week I visited a doctor’s office because of my sickness and I was nervous and scared and I felt really alone, like nobody was there for me. And then I realized that God was there, Sheri was literally there, and I saw someone walk by the door outside the room at the doctor’s office that looked quite like my mom.

proud mom after jimmys birthI suppose that could have been an angel or something but that was when my mental healing occurred for not feeling well physically and spiritually. So, that is how I overcame my feeling abandoned.

Jim's love from LA quilt

 

Want more? Jim has a Facebook Page. He posts daily insights and thought-provoking videos. It’s called Finding the Keys to Success.

 

  1. Here are some photos taken in the first few days after Jim (then Jimmy) was born. Mom’s looking at him with such love and appreciation.
  2. Mom, with a little creative consultation from teenage me, made this quilt while pregnant with Jimmy. She and Dad decided not to find out his gender until birth so most of his baby quilts have both pink and blue in them.
  3. Here’s another one of Jimmy’s baby quilts. This one is bright and cheerful, both of which it’s difficult to be while under the burden of depression.
  4. Here’s another pink and blue quilt Mom made. This one’s more simple and designed to be used, rather than displayed as wall art. There’s one more like this with kitties in the center. Maybe they’ll be used by children Jim loves someday.
  5. This is my favorite recent picture of Sheri and Jim. Don’t they look spiffy?!
  6. These two love their snuggles. Back scratches are often exchanged in church.
  7. Our sister Estey and Jim get the sillies when they’re together! Here they are making funny faces. She’s one of the women who mothers Jim.
  8. Here are Dad and Jimmy way back when he had peach fuzz for hair.
  9. Can you see how proud Mom is in this photo? She’s tired from the long labor too… but happiness shines through her eyes. If there’s ever a doubt that Jim was wanted all you have to do is look at this picture.
  10. I made this quilt for Jim’s 11th birthday.

 

I’m linking up to Thankful Thursday and Can I Get a Whoop Whoop.

A Brutiful Quilt for Project Quilting

This week’s project quilting challenge is sunrise/sunset. My quilt is called “Brutiful,” a term I heard this morning in a TED talk by Glennon Doyle Melton. It’s a mash-up of the words brutal and beautiful. Isn’t life both most of the time? This term is perfect for what I’ve been thinking about while designing and making the quilt this week. (Yes, only 7 days to make quilts in this challenge!) It’s thinking about a sunrise in autumn while in a deep dark pit. It’s the hope that in the brutal beautiful still exists and is accessible. With that in mind here’s my process story in photographs.

leavessunrise setting crumb blockssunrise big yellowsunrise small yellowsunrise start leaf
sunrise bold leafsunrise lines drawnHere’s the finished quilt. It’s 30×40 inches and has machine piecing, hand embroidery, hand quilting, and machine quilting. I did them in that order too. It’s bound in black so as not to distract from the dream. The sunrise is yellow, orange, and pink crumb-pieced blocks.Brutiful Quilt PQ Sunrise Challenge
Brutiful Quilt Close-UpClick here and check out the other sunrise/sunset projects. Vote for your favorites and be inspired by the art! 


I’m linking up to Slow Sunday Stitching and Main Crush Monday and Show and Tell Tuesday.