Entering design mode.

Thank you to everyone who participated and left comments in my recent giveaway! It was such a treat to read about your projects, challenges and successes in sewing (and life…) in 2014.


As for me, I’m feeling a little light on things to say. After tons of sewing for myself and for others last month, I couldn’t be more in the mood to dive into a big heap of design work. I have a lot planned this year already, and I’ve been eager for the time to put my head down and work out some ideas in the studio.

It doesn’t get any better than that.


design development_carolyn friedlander


First up on my list…



and looking to QuiltCon.


quilt austin house_carolyn friedlander


It’ll be here before we know it.



Best of 2014 + a giveaway.

What a year.

Here are some highlights as I look back.


yellow clam bag . carolyn friedlander  Sew Chic Botanics top . carolyn friedlander  new trees to plant  mini sunrise blocks . carolyn friedlander  glamper  brown plaid shirt . carolyn friedlander  falling water  Carolyn Friedlander Aurifil thread set in the Aurifill booth  Totem quilt . carolyn friedlander  Post quilt . carolyn friedlander  Savor Each Stitch . Carolyn Friedlander  Savor Each Stitch_quilts on ladders_Carolyn Friedlander  Carolyn Friedlander_red wall_Spring 14 Market  carolyn friedlander_booth award  Carolyn Friedlander_Savor Each Stitch photo wall  crazy coaster_Savor Each Stitch_Carolyn Friedlander  circle lattice_savor each stitch_carolyn friedlander  kona bundle at Pink Chalk Fabrics_Carolyn Friedlander  fabric cards . carolyn friedlander  there's a cat in my binding  plaid envelope blocks . carolyn friedlander  shopping at quilted threads  sunrise quilt for Ellen  adventures in vermont  Aerial Grove quilt_5_Carolyn Friedlander  Bartow quilt being quilted. carolyn friedlander  Bartow Kona Quilt_Carolyn Friedlander  Nest Egg tote_2_Carolyn Friedlander_web  carolyn friedlander studio  8_big stitch coasters_finished coasters_carolyn friedlander  Nelson-Atkins Museum lawn  light at the Nelson-Atkins Museum  Kim Eichler Messmer Studio  Indigo Doe Fabric_Carolyn Friedlander  Missouri Star visit  home grown pineapple  doe fabric stack_carolyn friedlander for robert kaufman  Doe Coordinating Kona Solids_strips_Carolyn Friedlander  architextures crosshatch colors_carolyn friedlander  Doe Wide Fabric_Carolyn Friedlander  Doe Outhouse detail_carolyn friedlander  nest egg tote_black doe_carolyn friedlander  Doe Catenary_carolyn friedlander_detail  doe couch_carolyn friedlander  doe couch totem and focal_carolyn friedlander  Making Doe Circle Lattice cushions_Carolyn Friedlander  doe whole cloth tied . carolyn friedlander  Doe fabric bias tape . carolyn friedlander  doe shirts quilt_carolyn friedlander  doe city gym shorts . carolyn friedlander  Shibori Wiksten Tank trim_Carolyn Friedlander  Doe fabric mini charm packs  Doe Trail Tote . Anna Graham  fabric selection_carolyn friedlander  outhouse making_carolyn friedlander  circle improv with Sherri Lynn Wood  camp stitchalot  doe fabric infinity scarves_carolyn friedlander  brown crosshatch archer . carolyn friedlander  bathroom demolition_carolyn friedlander  Totem quilt for Laurie_15_Carolyn Friedlander  Go Anywhere Bag for Laurie_detail_Carolyn Friedlander  blue and green nesting boxes_2_carolyn friedlander  Doe lined envelopes_carolyn friedlander  alturas nest egg tote . carolyn friedlander  Jacob shirt_lego detail_Carolyn Friedlander  black white and nani iro nesting boxes . carolyn friedlander  new knitting project  Doe fabric in print_carolyn friedlander



Thank you so much for your support! Seriously. I can’t tell you how touching/wonderful/exciting it has been to read your comments, see your projects, and meet you at events. Because of that, I thought that it would be fun to wrap things up with some giveaways from the year. Here’s what we’ve got:


+ Post quilt pattern

+ Totem quilt pattern

+ a copy of Savor Each Stitch

+ Doe fat quarter bundle

+ Nest Egg tote quilt pattern

+ Catenary quilt pattern

+ Outhouse quilt pattern

+ 1 yard of Kona pickle (just because I like it so much, and it was new this year too!)


2014 carolyn friedlander patterns fabric and book


To enter, leave a comment in this post sharing your own favorite project or moment from 2014. I’ll randomly pull winners for each item listed above at noon EST on January 1, 2015.




Nesting Boxes: green, blue, botanics and doe.

I also made this set of nesting boxes.

blue and green nesting boxes_carolyn friedlander


blue and green nesting boxes_2_carolyn friedlander


blue and green nesting boxes_3_carolyn friedlander


blue and green nesting boxes_4_carolyn friedlander


But I’m keeping them for myself.

Right now, I’ve got them loaded up and sitting next to my sewing machine with all of the very important things that I need to keep close by–seam ripper, screw driver, sewing feet, needles, stiletto, seam gauge, etc etc.


Pattern: Nesting Boxes by Aneela Hoey

Fabric: Doe, Doe Wide, and Botanics in blues and greens.





Sewing for my nephew: Legos, Mini Coopers, and the Jungle.


It’s fun having a little(ish) one to sew for. My oldest nephew just turned 4, and I’ve always loved figuring out things to sew for him. I mostly try to stick to things that he’ll enjoy wearing. Personally, I love a good button-up and didn’t realize that he’d be a good candidate for one until I noticed him wearing one recently. He lit up when I asked him about his shirt–the fabric was festive–and so I knew it was only a matter of time, before I’d be making one for him myself.


While at my local fabric shop a couple of weeks ago, I let him pick out some fabric.


Jacob shirt_jungle close up_Carolyn Friedlander


After only a little debate, this jungle fabric was his choice. I threw in a bit of architextures for contrast in the collar stand.


Then, I found this fabric at Bunny’s. I’ve had a long obsession with Mini Coopers, plus I love grids, and of course my nephew loves Legos–so it was perfect.



Jacob shirt_lego fabric_Carolyn Friedlander



Jacob shirt_lego on floor_Carolyn Friedlander


The pattern that I used is by Alexia Abegg and can be found in her book, Liberty Love: 25 Projects to Quilt & Sew Featuring Liberty of London Fabrics. It was fast and easy, and I’ll definitely be making it again. There’s also a men’s version, so if I really wanted to go for it, I could make a matching shirt for my brother. Some father/son coordination could be adorable.


Jacob shirt_lego collar_Carolyn Friedlander








Nest Egg tote meets Alturas.

alturas nest egg_1_carolyn friedlander


I made this for a friend…


alturas nest egg_2_carolyn friedlander



alturas nest egg_4_carolyn friedlander


…using my new nest egg tote pattern and a block from my alturas quilt.

The fabrics are a mix of things that I pulled on the fly. There’s some doe, botanics, and architextures, as well as Robert Kaufman Essex and Chambray, Kona Pickle, and a mysterious blue sewing print from my stash. The decorative elastic that I used was a perfect (and lucky) match. I stocked up on a few colors when I found them at The Common Thread in Austin this past summer, and I’m glad that I did. This color came in super handy. When I used it here, I folded it in half and topstitched it together for a more streamlined look.


alturas nest egg_5_carolyn friedlander


alturas nest egg_6_carolyn friedlander


alturas nest egg_7_carolyn friedlander


In keeping with all things round, I thought it’d be a fun touch to throw a doe roll-up in there along with some other sewing-related goodies.


alturas nest egg_9_carolyn friedlander


alturas nest egg_8_carolyn friedlander








Sewing for baby: Go Anywhere bag by Noodlehead.

In addition to the baby Totem quilt, I also wanted to make my sister a diaper bag before the arrival of her new baby. After doing some research–which included polling Moms who sew–I got the tip that Noodlehead’s Go Anywhere Bag is very well suited for the task. So, I went for it.


Go Anywhere Bag for Laurie_Carolyn Friedlander


The bag was fun and easy to make. I can see how the design works well for carrying and organizing just the right amount of stuff without making it look or feel like you are toting your entire life with you. To make it super sturdy, I quilted the exterior panels and used a ton of stabilizer in the handles.


Go Anywhere Bag for Laurie_detail_Carolyn Friedlander


Another bonus is that it’s a great design for showing off a favorite piece of fabric. The fabric that I used on the exterior pockets is a print from Ellen Luckett Baker’s first line with Kokka, called Stamped. My sister is a huge fan of this print (and I am too!), and I just happened upon some of it in my adventuring to different quilt shops this summer. When I saw it, I knew that a diaper bag was in order.


Go Anywhere Bag for Laurie_fabric detail_Carolyn Friedlander


The other fabrics that I used were some Essex Yarn Dyed in Indigo from Robert Kaufman for the body, some Doe for the handles, and two different pieces from Architextures in the main lining and exterior pocket lining. Then there is also a little bit of Botanics for the inside pockets. (This sister is the landscape architect, so I always enjoy making use of plant-related prints for her.)


Go Anywhere Bag for Laurie_inside pocket_Carolyn Friedlander


Go Anywhere Bag for Laurie_outside pocket_Carolyn Friedlander


My sister really likes it, and my brother-in-law likes it too! He said that it’s a bag he’ll be happy to carry around when toting their new baby and all of her associated necessities. Double score.



Go Anywhere Bag for Laurie_backside_Carolyn Friedlander






Sewing for baby: Totem quilt.


Totem quilt for Laurie_10_Carolyn Friedlander


Almost any day now, my sister will be giving birth to her first kid. I’m excited to be an aunt again. My brother has two little boys, and they’ve been a great joy in my life as well as a blast to sew for. My sister however, is having a girl, which will change things up. I’ve gotten so used to needing to be creative with what I sew for my nephews. While there are some great boys-sewing projects and fabrics out there, the options pale in comparison to the overabundance of projects and fabrics for girls.


Today and tomorrow, I’m doing a couple of posts for two things that I’ve made for her and her new baby. First up, is a Totem quilt.


Totem quilt for Laurie_Carolyn Friedlander


I started this project much earlier this summer, long before I knew the gender. Had I known what they were having then, it wouldn’t have changed much. I like the idea of creating something that can appeal to both baby–regardless of gender–and parents, and not necessarily cater to stereotypes. We don’t know what the baby’s tastes are going to be, so why not give her some variety? It was fun to make it more of a creative challenge to find a mix of things that would be pleasing to all parties involved.


Totem quilt for Laurie_11_Carolyn Friedlander


Eventually, we did find out the gender, and so I might have loosened up by adding more small florals, that still weren’t too in-your-face-feminine. I kept to a soft palette of pretty peaches and blues, with some chambrays, gingham and other wovens for added texture. Of course, I also made sure that all of my fabric lines so far were represented–architextures, botanics and doe.


Totem quilt for Laurie_12_Carolyn Friedlander


Choosing the fabric for the borders was a bit of a tough decision. I wavered slightly between going for more of a peach, but the soft Dusty Blue Essex linen that I went with was what I had in mind all along. It just looked and felt right. When I sister brought it into the baby’s room for the first time, we realized that the border fabric matched her rocking chair perfectly.


Totem quilt for Laurie_13_Carolyn Friedlander



Totem quilt for Laurie_14_Carolyn Friedlander


On the back, I went with a pretty Leah Duncan floral print. I didn’t have quite enough, so I was able to squeeze in a little bit of a Lotta Jansdotter print as well. I love how the combination of the two worked out in terms of both color and pattern. The binding fabric is from Lizzy House’s Catnap line.


Totem quilt for Laurie_8_Carolyn Friedlander



Totem quilt for Laurie_15_Carolyn Friedlander





Doevember recap.

We made it…


Doevember mapping_Carolyn Friedlander


Or, at least kind of!

Last month, a big goal for me was to make a better effort to share more of what I’ve been working on. I know that I’m not always so good at that, and things especially got a little lax over the last year as I tried juggling book writing and release, new fabric, new patterns, traveling to teach more, and then just keeping up with life in general. What I do is important to me, and I think it’s really important to share it with you so that we can all connect with and learn from each other.


So, I wanted to thank you guys for joining with me in the Doevember adventures last month–I especially appreciated all of your great comments and support! (I also welcome any of your feedback by either commenting here or shooting me an email.) As for my goals with this new month ahead, there are a few more things that I want to tackle, and there are definitely some projects that didn’t get shared last month, so stay tuned for all of that.


Coincidentally, Doecember could be another pun to make use of this month. While I have no official plans for it, I do welcome you to join in with me if you feel so inclined. My new fabric should be landing in stores this month, and I’m dying to see what you guys make with it!


And one final thought for the day–have you guys heard about Make Something Monday? I hadn’t until Cheryl Arkison mentioned it in her most recent newsletter. I have to say that this is a themed day that I’m happy to get behind, and I’ve already got an idea of what I’m going to make…







Bartow Quilt for Kona 30th Anniversary + giveaway.

I hope y’all had an excellent Thanksgiving! Mine was great. I ate, spent time with family, and just generally unplugged. I also managed to start in on some home improvements, which is what I’ll continue on with this weekend, but first, it’s my turn to share a new project.



Here’s a quilt that I did for the Kona Cotton 30th Anniversary.


Bartow Kona Quilt_Carolyn Friedlander


And it’s free.

The design is super simple, but sometimes that’s all you need. Konas are amazing to work with, and my favorite part about them is the beautiful range of colors. (There are now 303 of them!) This design is a celebration of that. I picked some old faves as well many new ones that they introduced this summer.


picking konas for bartow quilt_carolyn friedlander



I love working on projects like this that add so much color to your workspace! Wondering which color was up next was part of the excitement of putting it together.



Bartow quilt being quilted_Carolyn Friedlander


It was also a great canvas for playing around with some big stitch quilting…



Bartow Quilt Quilting detail_Carolyn Friedlander

Photo by Modern Handcraft


And now for the giveaway. Robert Kaufman has generously offered to give away a Doe coordinating Kona charm pack (which you could easily use to make your very own Bartow)! Leave a comment below mentioning your favorite Kona color in order to be entered. Drawing will end at 10am tomorrow (November 30, 2014).


Kona Doe Coordinates_Robert Kaufman


And make sure to check out these other great stops on the tour–so many great projects with Kona!

Week 1:

Saturday, November 1st: Johanna Masko
Sunday, November 2nd: Alyssa of Aria Lane
Monday, November 3rd: Dorie of Tumblingblocks

Tuesday, November 4th: Megan of Canoe Ridge Creations
Wednesday, November 5th: Daniela of Cozy Quilt Designs
Thursday, November 6th: Faith of Fresh Lemons Quilts
Friday, November 7th: Anita Grossman Solomon
Saturday, November 8th: Debbie of Esch House Quilts

Week 2:

Sunday, November 9th: Alex of Teaginny
Monday, November 10th: Darlene Zimmerman
Tuesday, November 11th: Nichole Ramirez with Aurifil
Wednesday, November 12th: Rita Hodge of Red Pepper Quilts
Thursday, November 13th: Lee of Freshly Pieced
Friday, November 14th: Julie of Jaybird Quilts
Saturday, November 15th: Latifah of The Quilt Engineer

Week 3:

Sunday. November 16th: Elizabeth Hartman
Monday, November 17th: Erica of Kitchen Table Quilting
Tuesday, November 18th: Karrie of Freckled Whimsy
Wednesday, November 19th: Valori Wells
Thursday, November 20th: Marilyn of Quilt Moments
Friday, November 21st: Cortney Heimerl
Saturday, November 22nd: Shayla and Kristy of Sassafras Lane Designs

Week 4:

Sunday, November 23rd: Shea of Empty Bobbin Sewing
Monday, November 24th: Carrie Strine
Tuesday, November 25th: Rachel of Stitched in Color
Wednesday, November 26th: Liz of Lady Harvatine
Saturday, November 29th: Carolyn Friedlander

Week 5:

Sunday, November 30th: Elizabeth of Don’t Call Me Betsy
Monday, December 1st: Emily of Carolina Patchworks
Tuesday, December 2nd: Ken Kaufman
Wednesday, December 3rd: Grand Finale!


Kona Cotton Solids 30th Anniversary