diy, fabric, quiltcon, quilts

i’m writing a book!

April 29, 2015

While I was at QuiltCon, I got in touch with the wonderful folks over at C&T Publishing and showed them some of my work.

Turns out, they liked me, and my quilts, and my ideas, and now I’m writing my first book for them!  I couldn’t be more excited.  I’ve always loved their Stash Books division, and now I get to be a part of it myself.  Wow!!

I can’t talk about the details just yet, but I can say that I’ve got plans for some cool new stuff that I can’t wait to reveal.  Writing a quilting book (err, well, any book) is an excruciatingly long process, but, I have no doubt that my hard work will pay off as soon as I get to hold a copy in my hands!

diy, fabric, quilts, tutorials

flying geese quilt block tutorial

April 17, 2015

Last week I taught a class at my favorite quilt shop in the whole world, Q-First in Quilting, which also happens to be about a mile away from my house in Lexington. (Lucky me, right??)  In class I taught my favorite method for making Flying Geese units using squares – 1 larger square and 4 smaller contrasting squares, strategically stitched together to produce four Flying Geese units all at once.  Instead of having to tediously cut tiny triangles, or waste yards of fabric by using rectangles and squares, using this method will save you time, and will hopefully help you fall in love with the Flying Geese block.

Click here for my step-by-step tutorial, and check out my other free tutorials here

flying geese step by step

fabric, quiltcon, quilts, travel

quiltcon 2015 recap

March 9, 2015

When we got back from Austin, I was so worn out, I didn’t get around to posting about the amazing time I had at QuiltCon 2015.  Originally created by the Modern Quilt Guild, QuiltCon was the first modern quilt show of this magnitude, with over 40,000 attendees this year.

Our flight home was canceled because of an impending ice storm in Dallas, so we wound up staying another day.  What started as a headache and an inconvenience turned into a fun extra day for Ryan & I to see more of Austin together, and of course, eat more BBQ.

QuiltCon was the first juried show I’ve ever been a part of, so I was anxious for the show to open so I could see my quilts on display.  Ryan came with me the first day and we walked around the show, checked out the vendors, and saw some absolutely stunning quilts.  After seeing everyone’s work, I could hardly believe that 4 of my quilts were accepted into this show.  They were all so – beautiful!  I knew I had finally found my crowd of quilters.

My favorite entry, “Modern Sunset,” was the first quilt of mine that I spotted.


Me and “Modern Sunset.” I made this with all hand-dyed fabrics!

When you first entered the hall, you were greeted with this amazing quilt, “Eames Blocks.”  Designed by Lorena Marañón, pieced by Jen Carlton Bailly, and quilted by Gina Pina, it was the grand prize for the MQG raffle.


“Eames Blocks,” QuiltCon 2015 Raffle Quilt

I went to classes and lectures with some of my favorite professionals.  Angela Walter’s lecture on machine quilting sold out!


Machine quilting lecture with Angela Walters

I took a block printing class with Lizzy House, my biggest hero!


Lizzy House and me!

My “Absent Minded” quilt was hiding off near more vendors and took me a while to find!  I love the striped accents in the binding.  Definitely doing more of that soon.


My “Absent Minded” quilt

The highlight of the trip was on the last day of the show, when I walked past “Turn Down For What” to see that it had sold!


“Turn Down For What” is SOLD!

In case you didn’t see my first post-modern quilt, here’s the story beind “Turn Down For What”

There were so many beautiful, well-executed, finely crafted pieces at QuiltCon.  I’m already waiting on pins and needles for QuiltCon 2016 in Pasadena!  Not only do I get to experience the best show on earth, but I’ll get to visit California for the first time!

Here are a few of my favorite pieces from the QuiltCon 2015 show:


“CPU” by Katherine Jones.  Winner of the Panasonic Bias Tape Challenge!


“Modern X” by Christa Watson


“Deux” by Colleen Wootten


“Face #1″ by Melissa Averinos.  Winner of the Judge’s Choice Award!

quiltcon, quilts, studio, travel

“Turn Down For What” – The Making Of

February 20, 2015

turn down for what instagram


“Turn Down For What” was my first venture into post-modernism.  I wanted it to be exaggerated, wild, and a little campy.  You don’t turn this quilt down.  Only up.

I got the idea while finishing up my other entries for QuiltCon 2015, and the entry deadline was approaching fast.  Sacrificing sleep, and my sanity, I was determined to get it finished in time.

I used machine appliqué for the lettering and managed to finish the top in about a day, and when it came time to load it up on my quilting machine, I was convinced that I’d be in fine shape to finish before entries were due. I fired up my machine, an old Singer Industrial that had been modified and stretched into a 16″ longarm.  Tough as nails, easily fixable, and ridiculously durable.

I’ve made hundreds of quilts with it and haven’t had any problems.  That is, until it was time to quilt “Turn Down For What.” The motor sounded fine, the stitches looked fine, but after about 5 minutes of sewing, I noticed that my fingers were tingling.  Convinced that my mind was playing tricks on me, I persisted, until I experienced my first heart palpitation mixed with a buzzy feeling that’s hard to describe.  After that, I realized that the tingling was very much real, and it appeared that my Singer was shorting out and producing a live current that was traveling down the machine body and out through the metal handles.

My machine was shocking the crap out of me while I was trying to sew.  It was no joke either – my husband got out the volt meter and confirmed my suspicions – 110 volts running directly through the metal frame.

My machine was, in fact, trying to kill me.

I was faced with two options: finish the quilt with the machine shorting, (possibly resulting in a fire and/or death), or give up on “Turn Down For What” and wait for parts to replace all of the faulty 1940′s fabric-covered wiring. Determined to get it finished, I knew I wasn’t going to stop.

Luckily my husband (an electrical engineer) had a pair of high voltage gloves for me to wear.  This would protect me from the current, and would allow me to finish.  No guarantees that the machine wouldn’t burst into flames, but I was still willing to chance it.  “Turn Down For What” was meant to be in QuiltCon 2015.

I put on the gloves and kept going.  No more tingling, but the fear of an electrical fire kept me on edge.  I retrieved the fire extinguisher from upstairs as a cautionary measure, and perched it on my frame as a reminder of the risks I was taking to finish.

I kept quilting.  The machine did not burst into flames.  High voltage gloves were a huge success.  “Turn Down For What” got completely quilted, and I’m still alive to tell the tale.  Even better – it made the cut for QuiltCon 2015 and I got to see it hanging in the show earlier today.

The story ends with my husband rebuilding the entire machine so it’s as good as new.  No more shorting and it runs better than ever.  I’ve been considering getting a new machine, but now I’m having a really hard time justifying it because my totally-rebuilt Singer runs perfectly.

I’m here at QuiltCon in Austin, TX right now having a blast, and I couldn’t be happier to see the photos of “Turn Down For What” sprinkling the #quiltcon page on Instagram.  Despite the risks, no regrets.  Everything worked out like it should have.

Turn down for what?

camera bags

new camera bags

February 5, 2015

I whipped up some new dslr camera bags last week and I’m really excited about them. I combined cotton duck canvas with some of my favorite designer quilting cotton prints, resulting in some pretty groovy bags. Two of them with Tula Pink fabric, and one more with a piece from Amy Butler’s Glow collection.  Click the link to purchase – hope you like them!   camera bag in tula pink fabric   camera bag in tula pink fabric     camera bag in amy butler fabric    

diy, studio, tutorials

tutorial: diy recycled crochet rug

January 13, 2015

I made a rug.  My scrap bin was full, and I needed to get rid of it.  I had a lot of 2.5″ wide strips from extra quilt binding, so I decided crocheting the strips might be a cool idea.  Turns out, it was!  I wrote a tutorial on my process so you can make your own recycled crochet rug, too.

Click here for the tutorial, and check out my other free tutorials here


recycled crochet rug

diy, quiltcon, quilts, tutorials

quilt sleeve tutorial

January 6, 2015

Adding a quilt sleeve is really easy, I promise.  If you want to enter quilt shows, or just want to hang your quilt on a wall, my quilt sleeve tutorial will walk you through it, step-by-step.  Today I added a sleeve to my smallest piece that’s headed to QuiltCon 2015, and decided to write a little tutorial on my process.

Click here for the tutorial, and don’t forget to check out my other free tutorials!

quilt sleeve tutorial 17



I hope this was a helpful tutorial for those who might not know how to add a sleeve to their quilt.  This is only one method, but I love it because of the extra space that allows the quilt to hang flat.  Now, back to more sleeve-making for me!


featured, quiltcon, quilts, travel

see you at quiltcon 2015!

December 11, 2014

I am, first and foremost, a Modern Quilter.  My long-time love for quilting combined with a new style when I went to architecture school.  The cleanliness and precision of it all. It’s inspiring.

At some point I found out about the Modern Quilt Guild and QuiltCon and I knew I had found a place where my work fit in.

After becoming a MQG member, I entered 9 quilts into QuiltCon 2015.  I’m not good at making cuts, so I entered them all.

The moment I checked my email, I saw a list of messages that began with, “Thank you for entering…”  Never a good sign.  For a split second I was filled with dread until I scrolled down a bit further to reveal FOUR messages beginning with “Congratulations!”

Some of my latest quilts are, quite frankly, insane.  The craziest of my submissions are the ones that made it, which fills me with an indescribable pride.  My work is evolving before my eyes.  I’m excited to see where I go next.


#1 – Absent Minded, 2014.

absent minded by lauren palmer

absent minded, detail, 2014.


#2 – Modern Line Study, 2014.  Made for the Panasonic Bias Tape Challenge.

modern line study, 2014.

modern line study, detail, 2014.


#3 – Modern Sunset, 2014.

modern sunset, 2014.

modern sunset, detail, 2014.


#4 – Turn Down For What, 2014.  Lil Jon, he always tells the truth.

turn down for what, 2014.

diy, studio

new quilting studio

November 21, 2014

In the early fall, my husband and I embarked on our first major home improvement project: my quilting studio.  We painted, rearranged, and installed 400 square feet of ceramic tile in our basement.  It took the better part of 6 weeks for us to finish, and in the beginning of October I was finally able to move back in.  Before, the entire room was painted a weird cream color – including the fireplace, which I must say looks WAY better when it’s contrasted with the walls.  The yellow is called “Sheer Apricot” and it turned out just like I wanted.  “Studio Taupe” is the color on the fireplace.


olive tree textiles studio space

Somewhere during all of this madness, I submitted an entry to Quilt National, which was rejected.  At first I was really bummed, but I never figured I’d actually get in on my first try.  It was a warmup for other things.



fabric, quilts

I just submitted to quilt national 2015!

September 11, 2014

I’ve attended the Quilt National show at the Dairy Barn Arts center more than a handful of times over my teenage years. We used to visit our family friends in Athens, Ohio, where the show originates every other year.  As my interest in quilting grew, I found myself inspired by the skillful and innovative work demonstrated at the show, dreaming of the possibility of entering the show myself someday.  That day came today, when I submitted my application online.

Making its debut, is a wall hanging that I call “Southern Sunset.”  I hand-dyed all of the solid colored fabrics, improvised the top, and quilted it with modern echoing and straight lines.  I’m really happy with the end result.

Here she is – after months in the making!


Modern Sunset, 31″x39″.  Hand-dyed cotton solids, blended batting, thread.  Completed July 2014.