Tag Archives | behind-the-scenes

Baby Morris quilt in the works.

Since I’m usually having to wait to share things in the works, it feels totally indulgent to be able to share some pics of an in-the-works quilt! This is a baby Morris quilt that I’m working on for a friend.

Baby Morris Lawn quilt . carolyn friedlander

I like a project like this because it’s really just a big game of playing with fabric. And lawn. Geez. So soft. I keep my lawn fabrics in one bin/area, which makes the fabric pull an easy dive into that pile. I’ve got quite the mix of things.

Baby Morris Lawn quilt . carolyn friedlander

There’s plenty of my new lawns, but also a heavy amount of Jen Kingwell’s lawns. Jen’s were actually a big starting point, because I couldn’t help but buy a bundle of them at a LQS recently. They’re so pretty! (BTW I plan/dream about making a Morris lawn for myself using hers and mine and whatever else…)

Baby Morris Lawn quilt . carolyn friedlander

The fabric play is endless with a project like this. With each new piece, I get new ideas for color and print pairing. I find it to be super exciting and a massive mental break.

Baby Morris Lawn quilt . carolyn friedlander

Other fabrics included are some Alexia Abegg, Woodland Clearing by Liesl Gibson and some Aneela Hoey, which is not lawn, but I love the color and print, so it made it in.

Baby Morris Lawn quilt . carolyn friedlander

Baby Morris Lawn quilt . carolyn friedlander

Baby Morris Lawn quilt . carolyn friedlander

Pattern : Morris Lawn

Fabrics : Friedlander Lawn by me, Moving on Lawns by Jen Kingwell, Mesa by Alexia Abegg, Woodland Clearing by Liesl Gibson, Vignette by Aneela Hoey

Baby Morris Lawn quilt . carolyn friedlander

The top is complete. Now I need to baste and quilt…and then gift it.

Baby Morris Lawn quilt . carolyn friedlander

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Friedlander Fabric

Today, I’m finally able to tell you about my newest collection with Robert Kaufman, meet Friedlander fabric.

Friedlander fabric . Carolyn Friedlander

Yes, that’s right. I got super creative with the name, but maybe not exactly in the way you’re thinking.

But really, this is a special collection that’s feeling pretty personal in many ways. To be fair, all of my collections have felt personal, so personal that there has not been one release that I haven’t been on edge going into it. Not a huge distinction, but worth saying.

Ok, let’s take a few steps back, because there were many steps that got me to Friedlander.

Friedlander fabric . Carolyn Friedlander

First thing is that I have this thing with trees. In fact, I’m kind of a tree hoarder…if that’s possible. Since getting my house almost 3 years ago, I’ve planted at least 50 trees on the property.

I know, sounds a little extreme. (Maybe it is?) We could also blame my sister who is a landscape architect…

Her opinions aside, I don’t think it’s too extreme, because I think the property really needs them, and I’ve spent the last 3 years dreaming about what these trees will look like as they get older and bigger. In doing that, it means I’ve been paying waaay more attention to trees in general. I’ve been scoping out their various shapes, types, levels of upkeep…or non-upkeep. It’s been fun admiring something that I’ve always admired but with a newfound reason.

In my constant tree gazing, I’ve noticed many things. One of my favorite things is the way different things can shape them–be it us, animals, the environment–it all plays in to not only the trees, but to how they look and what they can do.

The huge oaks in all of the pastures around me are just one of my (many) tree obsessions. After many years, they can get huge and full of incredible character. They can be perfect, yes, but they can also have these crazy-twisting trunks and low, forever-reaching limbs. Their presence shapes the landscape in a way that feels both grand and comforting.

Sand Live Oaks . Savor Each Stitch

photo by Alexis Wharem for Savor Each Stitch

Around here many oaks are covered in Spanish moss, which softens the look of them and the way the light comes through. It can also make their details more of a mystery, which is why seeing oaks in places without the moss seems dramatically different.

So there’s that, but there’s also this really cool thing that happens to oak trees (and most any other tree) in the pasture. The cows graze their leaves, resulting in an almost perfectly horizontal band of nothing green from the ground to cow-mouth-height, which averages out to a very even line. From afar, this line is pretty striking, and what’s even better is how clearly you can see the limbs and trunks below that line in their twisted, crazy-shaped glory. It’s the perfect contrast in opposites.

In admiring this, my interest is in the natural being at odds with the interference, and ultimately, it had me thinking about the impact we have on everything around us. How the cows can impact the look of the landscape, how I’m impacting the landscape in my immediate yard…it goes on.

I never knew my paternal grandfather, but he’s the one responsible for the cattle ranch and citrus groves that I grew up around. He started all of it, and I’ve often thought of what I know about him through the world he shaped, through the world I’ve always seen.

grove . savor each stitch

photo by Alexis Wharem for Savor Each Stitch

The trees that I’ve planted are tiny, they’re growing, but they were so tiny when I planted them. It may be 50 years before any of them grow into the character that I’ve dreamed for them, and who’s to say where I’ll be when that happens. Yes, I could certainly be here, in the same place and enjoying the trees and their shade, or there could be someone else in my place, and (I hope) they’d be enjoying them. I can only hope that their legacy impacts someone else in the way that the landscape of my grandfather has impacted me.

So really, this line is in many ways a tribute to him. Friedlander is a name, it’s his name. It’s my name too. But this collection isn’t just about him or me. It’s about the marks we all make.

In choosing to be makers, we’re all making our own marks, which I think is pretty great. It’s inspiring in fact.

That’s what this collection is about. It’s about all of us shaping the world around us and leaving our own marks in whatever way that may be.

I always say that I can’t wait to see what you make, and I mean it. With each thing I release, I feel like I’m just passing the baton. I’m waiting to see how you continue the story.

Happy mark making and world shaping, because that’s what this is all about.

Friedlander fabric . Carolyn Friedlander

Friedlander fabric . Carolyn Friedlander

Friedlander fabric . Carolyn Friedlander

Ok, now we’ll switch to the practical details, here we go.

Friedlander fabric . Carolyn Friedlander

+ First, there are 25 pieces on quilting cotton. Yay! Color, line, and texture inspired by mark making and world shaping. Always a fan of less guidance of the specifics, I’ll leave it at that and wait to hear what you think each of them is and means…

Friedlander fabric . Carolyn Friedlander

+ Second, I couldn’t be more thrilled to announce 12 pieces on cotton lawn! Are you familiar with the Robert Kaufman lawn? It’s ridiculously amazing and perfect not only for garments (think the makings of your favorite blouse), but for quilts too. You’ll want to swaddle yourself in some lawn ASAP. Trust me.

Morris Quilt . Carolyn Friedlander

+ Next, as far as patterns go, I have four newbies releasing this fall–3 of which are previewed with the fabric release (and visually referenced here…more specifics later), and 1 that will stay a surprise until Quilt Market next month. I’m really excited about all of the new stuff.

Pine Quilt . Carolyn Friedlander

Oh, and there is more that I’ve been working on, but you’ll just have to stay tuned to find out.

Friedlander fabric . Carolyn Friedlander

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Totem Quilt in Euclid.

Would you believe I made this in just 1 day?

It’s true.

Totem quilt in Euclid . Carolyn Friedlander

That’s kind of what happens when it comes to fabric release time. There’s always a super long list of things I’d like to make in conflict with time and the reality of what actually can be done. To be clear, I’m always an optimist when it comes to this stuff and work hard to use every minute that I have available. In the case of Euclid, my to-make list was no joke.

euclid project planning . carolyn friedlander

In fact, I tried to be super organized to maximize the output. Above is a shot of my “command center”. (Ha!) This was my visual map and guide to the desired projects. Since euclid spanned several categories–clothes, accessories, quilts–I needed a way to organize them in one place to keep me focused, and I needed to be able to see them all at a glance…because visuals are the best reminders for me. The projects are organized by category with snap shots of each and some fabric swatches.

Maybe this is more than you want to know, but while I was doing this, I realized that it’s a helpful consideration for just about anyone, because we all have our limitations–whether it’s because a project list is long or because we have limited pockets of time to do it or whatever. For this reason, I’m always trying to figure out the best ways to organize myself so that I can make things happen when I’ve got the time to do it.

Oh, and can we talk about the waiting game? Yep, just like you might be waiting for fabric to hit the store, I have to wait for my advance yardage to roll in, and the waiting can be tough, because you’re only left thinking/dreaming about all that you want to make with it, which for me usually means the project list gets longer…not always a good thing, but even more of a reason why some good project planning can be helpful.

Anyway, back to my quilt.

Totem quilt in Euclid . Carolyn Friedlander

I really really wanted to make a quilt with euclid in time for the release. And I really wanted to include some carkai, because I love pairing different substrates and different prints in the same piece. It can be a fun way to play with texture and an enticing way to play with color and print. My Totem quilt was a good candidate for doing this. There is a lot of opportunity with fabric and fabric combos, plus the paper piecing makes working with different types of fabric super easy, and the size and scope of the project seemed do-able for my limited amount of time.

Totem quilt in Euclid . Carolyn Friedlander

Let’s talk game plan. I only had 1 day to make this quilt a reality. Actually, scratch that, it wasn’t even a day. Lexi was coming late afternoon for the photo shoot, and I only had from the time I woke up until the time she stepped in the door to make this guy happen. Here’s what I did.

The night before I printed out all of my templates and trimmed them down so that they were ready to go. I also prepped my fabrics, which in this case meant culling and cutting what I wanted to include in the project.

Totem quilt in Euclid . Carolyn Friedlander

Then, I got a good night’s rest and woke up super early to get started. As I made my blocks, I laid them out to make sure I liked how all was progressing. I find that block planning can only get me to a certain point, and that even with limited time I like to be open to making changes as I go if needed. Seeing and assessing while a project shapes up is how I work, even under a deadline.

After getting all of the blocks made, I added the side panels to finish the top, prepped my backing and batting, basted the project…did my hand quilting…because yes, I really wanted that to be included…then I finished with some free motion quilting…doable.

Totem quilt in Euclid . Carolyn Friedlander

I attached the binding just before Lexi showed up to take some pictures. And I guess there was a little cheating here. I attached the binding on the first side with machine, but didn’t have time to hand tack the back down before the shoot…that part was pinned (another great use for those handy appliqué pins!) until I attached it post-shoot. (Sneaky, right…)

Totem quilt in Euclid . Carolyn Friedlander

So yeah, that’s the story of this quilt. I’m glad it happened. And don’t think I won’t come back to this project again, because I’ve had fun making it every time. (See here and here.)

Totem quilt in Euclid . Carolyn Friedlander

And the nice thing was that I ended up leaving it pinned in place for a few weeks after the shoot and was able to enjoy it.

Totem quilt in Euclid . Carolyn Friedlander

Pattern : Totem Quilt (wall hanging size)

Fabrics : Euclid and Carkai

(All photos by Alexis Wharem of Greenprint Photography.)

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