Friday, June 17, 2016

Surprise! Quilts Show Up in Unusual Places.

Earlier this year a kind quilter named Joan emailed me asking about the fabrics that I used in my Steppingstones quilt in Annie's Lap & Throws Quilts book.

At first I was a bit confused, because I didn't know this publication, so I looked it up online.  Oh!  Of course, a new compilation of previously-published designs.

My Steppingstones design was originally published in a QW publication back in 2011/2012.  It's nice to see it again in publication.

  Here's my original drawing of the design:

Here is a photo of  Joan's finished quilt, which she kindly emailed to me.  Joan is gifting this quilt to her brother. She added two more vertical rows to make the quilt larger.  Isn't it wonderful?  Thanks for sharing, Joan.

It's funny, but I don't always know when Annie's republishes my patterns in new compilation publications -- it's too hard to keep track of these things, so it's always a surprise to be flipping through an Annie's book or special publication and see one of my designs.  It makes me smile.  This is especially fun if I'm at the grocery or craft store. For just a minute I feel like a celebrity.  LOL!

 When I was looking through the Lap & Throw Quilts book on Amazon (see the link above), I also just discovered another one of my designs, Spring Baskets.  Surprise!


Yes, quilts can pop up in unusual places.  

Remind me to tell you about the "CEMETERY QUILT" sometime........

Monday, June 13, 2016

In Between Projects....and a Little Marketing

Well I'm off to a good start on the Marketing front.  I decided to start by contacting the wonderful companies who gave me fabric/batting/tools/etc. to use for the book.

Riley Blake Designs
Moda (United Notions)
Robert Kaufman
Cotton + Steel
Mary Ellen Products
Fairfield World

Hmm.  I think that was all of them.  I've heard back from several already AND I have even talked to a couple on the phone to brainstorm ideas.  I'm still waiting to hear from several of them, so I'll probably contact those ones again in case they didn't receive the email or whatever.

I've started talking to a couple magazines too, but I've barely scratched the surface on this avenue and need to get back to it.

I am definitely going to host a blog hop with C&T.  I've already received the guildelines and info.  F-U-N!  I had such a fun time participating in the Quiltmaker Magazine 100 Quilt Block Volume 13 tour that I wanted to do it again, but this time the focus will be my book, of course.


While I was waiting for my box of fabric for 3 magazine projects, I decided to do a little cleaning in my studio.  What an interesting experience, to say the least.  I did a little re-arranging along the one wall and then started sorting and organizing a bit.  OH MY!  What a lot of stuff I had scattered around my space.  I found notes from my first book, Orphan Block Quilts, which released in 2010.  Not to mention all of the scraps of paper from magazine pieces and just little notes that don't mean anything now.  Ugh!  Apparently I have a paper problem.

One of my favorite things to do with 8 1/2'' x 11'' sheets of paper that only have printing or writing on one side is to cut the paper into quarters and use the clean side for notes.  I even do this at the library where I work.  Too bad we can't wash paper, huh?

Anyway, here are a few photos from my "dungeon" studio.  My studio is located in the back corner of the basement.  I keep trying to steal a little bit more space as everything seems to multiply when I'm not looking....LOL!

What a mess!  See the stack of papers?  Those are from my first book!

 One of my favorite pieces in my studio -- my moveable giant ironing station with storage.  I worked on actually putting things in the bins.  Hidden clutter, YAY!

This is where I store my usual basic yardage.  Folded with an 8" ruler so everything is uniform.  Divided by color.  I also have some collections housed by themselves -- fat quarters (also organized by color), 1930's reproductions, 1800's reproductions, Christmas, Fall/Halloween, Patriotic, and PRECUTS (of course!).

Here's another view of my storage wall.  AND there's my amazing sewing machine and BFF -- my Janome 8900.  Too bad about the exposed concrete floor though, huh?

As I was cleaning up and re-organizing, I also found a lot of items that I didn't want anymore so I got those ready for an upcoming garage sale.  You know.....I must help to fuel the underground quilting movement.

Of course I was just getting into the cleaning groove when my box from Moda came today.  Here's a peak inside my box.  Ho hum.  It figures, doesn't it?  Hopefully I'll get back to it before another 6 years passes.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Ugh.....Time to Start Marketing......

Well, it's now a little lest than 6 months until my new quilt book comes out sew -- you guessed it -- time to start marketing.

It's funny, you know, because the real work of writing a book doesn't even begin until after you're done with edits and revisions and projects.


It's like a bad word, isn't it?  But, in order to get your product (in my case, book) out there in front of people, there's a lot to be done.

I thought I'd write this blog about some basic marketing ideas -- some I've used for previous books and others are new ones that I'm going to try out.

Traditional Marketing Techniques
  • book signings
  • trunk shows 
  • teaching classes
  • visiting quilt shops
  • sending out mailings to quilt shops
  • talking, talking, talking
  • book reviews in magazines
  • submitting projects/articles to magazines 
  • connecting with guilds, groups, and other organizations
  • Quilt Market/Schoolhouse Lecture

Social Media/Internet Marketing Technique
  • website
  • blog
  •  Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.
  • blog hops
  • guest blogger
  • host giveaways
  • contact bloggers and ask for book reviews
  • internet quilting radio shows
Well, this is a good start, but I bet I forgot some so I ma add more ideas at a later date.

Do you have any ideas to share?