Monday, April 11, 2016

:: winner(s)!!!

First, I want to thank all of you who left comments. What a joy to read them all! 
I really wish I had a Frivols tin for each of you!

I did though, decide that I would draw not one, but two winners. So...

Congratulations to Chris & also to Mary on Lake Pulaski!

I've emailed both of you sweet ladies & can't wait to hear from you so that I can send you your Frivols Tin.

Thanks again for all the fun comments & I hope each of you continue to look for the sweet little frivolous things that make each day special!


Friday, April 8, 2016

:: those wonderful little Frivols...

Today were celebrating!
. . . Celebrating all the fun little frivolous things that are a part of our lives.
Have you ever thought about the small things that you like to do or surround yourself with ... just because they make you happy?

The wonderful, creative folks at Moda did that for all of us this past year with those sweet Frivols kits in those adorable Frivols tins! I was honored that my Windermere line was featured in the #4 'Frivols
 tin... with a wonderful quilt designed by Moda's own Carrie Nelson called 'Lakeland'.

So, as the year of Frivols is quickly coming to an end... we are wondering... what are the fun little frivolous things that we do... ??? For me it's this...

Every two weeks or so, I find myself drawn to a local flower stand & can't help but bring home a bunch of pretty flowers. They just make me smile every time I walk by them. They are the little frivolous thing I've been doing... just because!

So... is there something that you have found that you are doing that is a little frivolous?

Share it in the comments below & you will be entered to win my Frivols tin!

Hope you have a wonderfully frivolous day!


Thursday, February 11, 2016

:: ...introducing 'Bespoke Blooms'

It's coming in May!

Just in time for spring to be in full 'bloom'... & summer knocking on the door...
Bespoke Blooms will arrive in May! (I'm so excited!)

There's a little story behind this special line - starting with the fact that its making it's debut a wee bit later than I originally planned - but because of my broken wrist at the end of 2014 - I wasn't able to use my hand to draw & couldn't get all the artwork completed in time for the mill to have enough time to prepare it for Fall Market 2015.

So - even though it will be a bit late for the all the spring lines debut (that's Fall Market) - I'm still very excited about the timing of it's arrival. Right around May - we are all itching for fresh air & all that is crisp, clean & airy to fill our days, & I think that the prints in Bespoke Blooms will 'fit the bill' perfectly!

The term 'bespoke' refers to things that are specially made & the Bespoke Blooms collection is specially made & perfect for lovely quilts. The small scale makes them perfect for the quilts I like to call 'littles'. The sweet floral prints & coordinating tone-on-tone prints, stripes & classic ginghams create a wonderful palette for quilts ranging from  lovely 'littles' to everything bigger, charming home decor, & even sweet garments.


I've had a lot of fun creating the new patterns for this line - each with a larger version of the quilt design & a 'littles' or mini version as well.

The first one is 'Bailey'... it's an updated version of my earlier 'Bailey' quilt (...named after my favorite fluffy little man). It comes in sizes ranging from 80"x 80"  down to a 'little' 15" x 15"!

Next is Mills Cabin - another updated pattern for several years back. We've gotten so many requests for it (& ran out of stock!) that I thought is best to update it & also add a 'little' version(!) You will notice that for the larger quilt (68" x 68") I used the latest 3 Sisters line 'Larkspur'... (I love this line!) - & for the 'little' version (17" x 17") - I used my Bespoke Blooms fabrics.

Inspired by a vintage quilt (as so many of my designs are!) - Stepping Stones is special because I have a soft spot for nine-patches. (sigh). There's just something about their simplicity that I just love. (... this would also make a wonderful almost-beginner quilt!) It features two colors & a background fabric - adding to the clean fresh look. The large quilt is 78" x 78" & the littles is 26" x 26".

The final pattern is Ella. Sweet Ella. This is one of those designs where you can feature a few colors - or go real scrappy... Ella is definitely sweet that way. The large quilt is 72" x 72" & the littles is 22" x 22".

All of the patterns (paper & PDF version) will be up on the website early next week.

And there's more!...

Coming mid-March, a sweet little booklet - filled with 'littles'... classic quilt designs - all in miniature versions (littles!)... (I'm so excited about this!) More about these 'little' lovelies soon!

Moda reps are out on the road(s) - showing my Bespoke Blooms collection to quilt shops all over - so be sure to let your local quilt shop know that you would like to have Bespoke Blooms nearby for you!


Monday, January 18, 2016

:: Moda All-Stars All in a Row blog hop!

A little over a year ago, I was so pleased to be asked to be a part of this wonderfully fun project… a book that Moda & Martingale Publishers were planning called ‘Moda All-Stars All in a Row’.  We were each asked to design a row & the book is filled with all those rows as well as wonderful ‘filler’ rows designed by Moda’s own Lissa Alexander. 

I chose a spring theme & my row is called Garland Knot. I made mine from my Ambleside fabrics & it was so much fun to make!

A fun part about this blog hop - is that I also get to make someone else’s row… & I got to make the adorable row by Carrie Nelson… called Row Houses! This is Carrie’s row…

… & this is mine! (…in process!)

I’m making mine from my upcoming line, Bespoke Blooms, & I’ve made mine with three houses (or as my friend called them ‘beach houses’!) - so that I can finish it to fit on a smaller wall that leads to my kitchen area. That’s the fun of these rows & this book - is that you can make them to fit you (…&/or the person you want to make a special treat for!)

If you decide to play along with us… & make my row (Garland Knot) - or - if you decide to use any of my Moda fabric lines - Ambleside or Windermere  - for your row quilt - be sure to share it & tag it on Instagram with #garlandknot, or #rowbyrowAmbleside, or #rowbyrowWindermere, or @brengr, (or you can email me ( a photo of your row(s) if you aren’t on Instagram) so that I will be sure to see it! Then on March 15, I will draw for a prize from all the entries! I can hardly wait to see what you do!

One of the very special things about this book is that all proceeds from the sale of the book are being donated to No Kid Hungry, an organization dedicated to ending childhood hunger in America. You can find more info about them here:

Also, just to hep you get started…. if you leave a comment to this post - I will be drawing the name from all comments & someone will win a copy of Moda All-Stars Row By Row! I will draw a name on Saturday, January 22 & send your book to you. (Please be sure that your comment is not listed as a ‘no-reply’ email listing! I need to be able to email you!)

Be sure to see all the other rows & the fun from the makers! Here is a schedule of the hop:

January 18:  Brenda Riddle (here!)  & Carrie Nelson

January 19:  Corey Yoder  &  Janet Clare

January 20:  Me & My Sister  &  Barbara Brackman

January 21:  Pat Sloan  &  Edyta Sitar

January 22:  Camille Roskelley  &  Kathy Schmitz

January 23:  Sweetwater  &  Blackbird Designs

January 24:  Anne Sutton Laurie Simpson

January 25:  Lisa Bongean  &  Joanna Figueroa

January 26:  Betsy Chutchian  &  Jen Kingwell

January 27:  Kate Spain  &  Sandy Gervais

January 28:  Kaari Meng  &  Kansas Troubles

Besides this fun blog hop… Martingale & Moda have a super contest that will start as soon as this blog hop ends! Here’s a bit of info to peak your interest!

 It’s a Beauty of a Contest 

·    Contest entries will begin February 1 and runs for 6 weeks. Contest ends March 15 
·    Participants will need to buy the ‘Moda All-Stars All In A Row’ book, make your   
favorite row(s), join the Facebook group #AllInARowQuiltAlong and post a picture with your quilt top of rows joined together. 
                One row= one entry. 
                Two rows=two entries, etc. 
Your Facebook name is the name that will be entered into the contest. (open only to US entrants) 
·    For every row in your entry - you get an entry in to the It’s a Beauty of a Book Contest. There will be 5 prizes - like the five finalists in a pageant—plus weekly random drawings for related “beauty” prizes. All will be drawn from entries from above.


All In A Row Quilt-Along Queen (first prize) - FQ pack every month for 9 months (April to December 2016) + two new release books of the month for 9 months (April to December 2016) from Martingale. Company to determine which fabric/book, but May book will be Moda All-Stars Scraps Made Simple for anyone winning that month’s prize! 

All In A Row Beauty Book first runner up (second prize) F8 pack every month for 6 months (April to August 2016) + two new release books of the month for 6 months (April to August 2016) from Martingale. Company to determine which fabric/book. 

All In A Row Beauty Book second runner up (third prize) Layer Cake every month for 4 months (April to July 2016) + one new release book of the month for 4 months (April to July 2016) from Martingale. Company to determine which fabric/book. 

All In A Row Beauty Book third runner up (fourth prize) Layer Cake each month for 2 months (April and May 2016) + one new release book of the month for 2 months (April and May 2016) from Martingale. Company to determine which fabric/book. 

All In A Row Beauty Book fourth runner up (fifth prize) one Layer Cake pack (April 2016) + one new release book of the month for April 2016 from Martingale. Company to determine which fabric/book. 

Weekly Drawings from weeks 2-3-4-5: 
  • Miss Congeniality: (wait for it) 2 Charm Packs and 1 Book 
  • Talent Winner (hidden or otherwise): 2 books and 2 Mini-Charms
  • Stash Accumulation Award: 1 Mini Charm, 1 Charm Pack, 1 Layer Cake + 3 books 
  • Social Media Butterfly Award: Carrie Nelson's House Row See!! This is gonna be a lot of fun!

See!!! . . . This is going to be a lot of fun!


Thursday, November 19, 2015

:: Counting My Blessings

Hi Folks...
Just a quick little post about a very special addition to the website...

my Frivols tin is here!

I am honored that Moda's 4th Frivols tin features my just released line 'Windermere'!
I have a limited number & I've added them to the website (. . . & check out the new website design & layout!)
& because the design for this quilt (designed by the magnificent Carrie Nelson!) is a bit larger - we also are offering the tin with the additional background fabric & binding as an option.
(...although I know that some of you are simply collecting all the tins... & that's good too!)

Also, my annual 'Counting My Blessings' sale is back (...after I missed doing it last year due to my broken wrist)! You will find 25% off all patterns & pre-cuts 
(...& yes that includes the Frivols tin!)

I am so thankful for so many things & that includes all of you, & I just want to do this little something to let you know. Your encouragement & enthusiasm means to much to me!

So very thankful!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

:: Windermere is on it's way!

It feels like such a long time ago that I was at Spring Market introducing it...
but my second line with Moda - Windermere - is getting ready to ship!
(the first three photos are of Windermere)

I'm so excited!!!

We will have some special gingham bundles when the yardage arrives... & I will let you know then they are ready.

Until then - I have added some bundles & precuts of Windermere (linens too!) and Ambleside on the website as well as some more kits of Seedlings & a new kit for my Checkers pattern. The kit for the Checkers quilt is based on a vintage quilt & I am completely smitten by it. I made mine (& the kits as well) from a few of the wonderful French General 'solids'... & it is a wonderful year-round quilt.
You can find all the new things on the newly re-designed website (or click here!)

There is also some fun Ambleside 'scrap bags' available - (where all proceeds will go to our Quilted Comfort project!)

I'm keeping very busy these days - working on the new patterns for my next line that will be introduced in December.... (!) More on that soon!


Tuesday, September 29, 2015

:: nine months, three weeks, five days... (or so)...


How sad... that I've not done a blog post for that long! 

So how are you?!!! So much has happened, & even though in my mind, I think that I could spread things out over several posts... I know that I've failed on that one before, so I think I'll try & do a 'catch-up' post this time.

So let's see... I know that Bailey caught you up a wee bit about what it was like just before Spring Quilt Market, including introducing my new line for Moda, called Windermere. You can see the upcoming line by clicking 'here'. You can also see all the new patterns that are up on the website...

I guess to pick up right after the happenings of my last post, (& something I didn't write about because at the time, I wasn't sure what the outcome would be... & I'm not a fan of speculation)... about two weeks after I got home from last Fall Quilt Market (around mid-November), I fell & broke my left wrist. (& I'm a lefty!). That put the brakes on a lot that I had planned to do right after Fall Market, like some house projects (painting, room sorting...) At first they thought I either broke two bones, &/or I might have some ligament damage, but thankfully it appears it was just the bigger bone & the break was clean. Unfortunately, I didn't get any physical therapy until the end of March, & so any detailed hand work was out of the question. (I did though, get a lot better at being ambidextrous!) With all that happening, I missed the deadline for my next fabric line to debut at Fall Market, but it has been sent to Moda & will hopefully be not too far behind. I'll let you know when it will be shown to shops (hopefully soon after the new year)... (I promise!)

My second line with Moda, Windermere, did debut at Spring Quilt Market, & I'm excited about it arriving in shops in November. (you can see the entire line by clicking on the 'Windermere' graphic on the sidebar.)  One of the fun things about Market this past Spring is that it was in Minneapolis & my brother, Scott & his family lives there, & he got to stop by the convention center & got a peek at what this is all about. He said he was surprised at how big it was (& this was Spiring Market - which isn't quite as big as Fall Market), & I was just so pleased to have him stop by. (That's Scott & me in my space in Moda's Designer Studio in the photo above.) 

After Spring Market, I was off to Norway! I had been looking forward to this trip ever since Fall Market when two lovely quilt shop owners invited my to come to Norway & do some workshops & trunk-shows. (Hi Åsne & Siw!!!) I had such a wonderful time... & that is something that needs its own post! So I’ll be gathering all my photos & will be back with those soon! (The first of the two photos of Norway in this post was taken at a bit after 10 pm!... gotta love the 'midnight sun'! The second was the lovely view I had of the Oslo Fjord that I had from my kitchen window.)

Until then, the new patterns are up on the website, both printed & PDF versions, & coming soon - some Ambleside (just in case you missed some) & Windermere pre-cuts. I just finished putting the finishing touches on my line for next Spring Market, & now that it’s sent in, I'm hoping to do some updating to the website... with some new items & a new look! I hope you check back to see!

Before I sign off, I want to thank everyone for all you enthusiasm about Ambleside. I have had so much fun seeing all the beautiful things you are making on Instagram  (including all the cute YouTube tutorials that Jennifer at Shabby Fabrics did using Ambleside!). It has touched my heart, & I thank you so much. Also, if you are following this blog, I want to thank you for hanging in there & waiting patiently for me to get my 'ducks-in-a-row' & start blogging again. It is one of my big goals to get much better at it! 

I will be back with a few more special things from this past Spring Market... & Norway!!!

❤️ Bren

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

:: "I'm taking over!… (somebody's gotta do it!)

Hi folks! It's me, Bailey... otherwise know as 'fluffybump'... (How embarrassing... but fitting I'm afraid. I am fluffy, & a cuddly kind of boy... so I just make the most of it! (I'm cool that way)

Anyway, I'm taking over my Mom's blog today, as she is up to her ears in getting ready for what she calls "Quilt Market". Also, I thought it was about time that she post something on her blog! She keeps talking to me (& herself too folks...) about how no one probably even looks at the blog anymore because it's been so long since she posted anything... (So, just so you know, she is at least thinking of you!...) She also tells me that she sometimes wishes she could clone herself so that she could get twice as much done... Now, I don't have any clue what any of that means, so I just tilt my head to one side while she tells me all the stuff she needs to do, & she thinks I'm really cute when I do that & so I get to make her smile (I'm cool like that...) & then I get lots of 'rubs 'n loves' & snuggles. (I'm good like that.)

So as a see it, Mom's getting a two-fer! I do the blog post for the Moda blog takeover & she can stay in the studio & keep making those pretty quilts we all like so much! ... & yep, I love quilts too! I even have a couple of my own, & I'm known as the official quilt tester around here! (I'm really good at it too!)

Actually, I've been getting ready to do some writing for some time now... I think Mom has known about it too. Even when I was a pup, I would try and "help" Mom with some of the writing she needed to do. I think I had it all figured out, & then she went & got a new laptop several years ago, & it just got all kinds of confusing, so mostly I just snuggle next to her when she works on the computer... (Or if she's been too busy for too long, I pretend to ignore her... But really I know what's going on at all times!) 

So... here’s my take on this whole ‘Market’ thing... I know that when the man in the brown truck (that I like to bark at.... a lot...) brings big boxes like these, Mom gets all happy...! The first time, I thought it must be filled with treats (you know - like bones, & biscuits...) but no... it was filled with fabrics! Really Mom?

Then I know that I’d best get used to the fact that she will be sitting at her cutting table & sewing machine (even into the nighttime!) & computer a lot & I just get used to hanging around - getting snuggles when I can. 

I check in on her on a regular basis (I’m loyal like that...), & I even bring her my rope or fox just in case she needs a break & needs to play (I’m thoughtful like that)

The best part?... Even though she’s really busy for weeks on end... & she talks to herself more than usual... wondering why everything seems to take so much longer than she thought... All of this crazy stuff makes her really happy. Crazy.

But she’s my Mom... & I’m her little fluffybump, & I’m the best at the unconditional love stuff... So, I just let her do her thing... & I’m always on the ready for when she needs a snuggle. (I’m sensitive like that...)

Oh!... & because I’m also a great little reporter, I snagged some peeks for you!  (I'm sneaky like that)


Oh… & being the stealthy reported that I am… I thought I'd also let you know that Mom keeps talking about how excited she is about some of her prints on something called "linen"… (I have no idea what that means, but it obviously makes her ridiculously happy…)

So here’s to a great Market... & if you know a someone getting ready for Market - just give them a nod & a snuggle & let them know that everything will be all right... (but whatever you do - don’t remind them that they will be doing this again in 6 months!)


… & if you'd like to check in & see who else has taken over… Be sure to visit  the blogs of some of the other Moda designers!

April 27th –
Amy Ellis – Amy’s Creative Side
Anne Sutton – Bunny Hill
Pat Sloan – Pat Sloan
Joanna Figueroa – Fig Tree Quilts
Lisa Bongean – Primitive Gatherings

April 28th –
Kathy Schmitz – Kathy Schmitz Studios
Brgitte Heitland – Zen Chic
Vanessa Christenson – V & Co.
The Cutting Table – Lissa Alexander… uh oh…
Edyta Sitar – Laundry Basket Quilts
Rachel Brenchley – Basic Grey

April 29th –
April Rosenthal – April Rosenthal
Alma Allen – Blackbird Designs
Barbara Groves – Me & My Sister
Brenda Riddle & me - Bailey! – Brenda Riddle Designs
Kate Spain – Kate Spain

April 30th –
Deb Strain – Deb Strain
Jen Kingwell – Jen Kingwell Designs
Lynne Hagmeier – Kansas Troubles
Vanessa Goertzen – Lella Boutique
Karla Eisenach – Sweetwater
Janet Clare – Janet Clare Designs

May 1st –
Jan Patek – Jan Patek
Sherri McConnell – Sherri & Chelsi A Quilting Life
Betsy Chutchian – Betsy Chutchian
Laurie Simpson – Minick & Simpson
Sandy Gervais – Pieces From My Heart
Corey Yoder – Little Miss Shabby


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