Yorkshire Rose Quliters Guild of Toronto

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Meet a Canadian Quilt Blogger: Reece Montgomery of Happy Okapi

There are so many amazing things happening in the online world of quilting, so we thought it would be a great idea to share some of the people who are out there - online and IRL (in real life!) - who are making the quilting world go.

In this post, we will introduce you to ReeceMontgomery from Happy Okapi

Yorkshire Rose Quilters Guild (YRQG): Why did you start blogging?

Reece Montgomery (RM): I taught myself to sew from online tutorials and lots of trial and error. I found I wanted to share what I was learning. I was also seeing that a lot of people (mainly Canadians) were frustrated at not being able to find the beautiful fabrics and notions our neighbours to the south were able to access so easily and affordably. I love shopping online and thought this would be a way to help spread the news about some of the great Canadian resources we have. From there, my passion grew to wanting to share the latest patterns and trends, but still keeping up with Canadian content.

YRQG: How do you connect with your readers?

RM: I try to keep fairly current on my blog, but even when I don't have a new post up, I like to share deals, sales, and new patterns on my facebook page, and you can always see my latest projects on Instagram

YRQG: Which of the projects featured in your blog are the most popular with readers? Why?

RM: My readers seem to really like when I host sew-alongs. I think this is for several reasons: Some of them really find a second way of explaining things helpful in putting together a complex project. A lot of them already have the pattern, but just need a push to get started. Most of my sew alongs also have discounts and prizes, so it motivates people to complete the project. Lastly, it's always more fun to "work together" even if it's virtually. I usually create a hashtag and all the participants can see what everyone else is working on.

YRQG: How are you celebrating Canada’s 150th on your blog?

RM: I teamed up with some other Canadian bloggers and did a Cross-Canada Blog Tour, with a large focus on bag making. http://www.happyokapi.ca/blog/canada-150-speaking-and-sewing-canadian. We featured Canadian pattern and fabric designers, along with amazing shops. It was a lot of fun and really quite incredible how talented the designers and makers are in Canada.

YRQG: Do you offer any bonuses or special content to your blog subscribers? If yes, do you partner with any other bloggers or retail outlets to offer those bonuses to readers or to increase the reach of your blog?

RM: I do have a sales tab on my site, which I update regularly with sales, including exclusives discounts just for my readers. I also like to have giveaways and try to obtain discounts for readers if it's relevant to what I'm blogging about.

YRQG: What bloggers or teachers are you inspired by?

RM: So many! I love Anna Graham of Noodlehead's elegant and humble style. Conversely, there is nothing subdued or understated about Libs Elliott and I find her energy so catching! Lysa Flower is someone else I find so inspiring, her creativity just blows me away! She's always making something that catches my eye and makes me wish I was faster so I could make one too. 

YRQG: Where do you find ideas for your content?

RM: All over! I've almost always got my jaw on the floor when I'm browsing Instagram. I really can't believe the amazing things people create. I don't just follow sewists either, I follow all sorts of artists: metalsmiths, potters, knitters, weavers, even body painters. I find it all so energizing and humbling at the same time. I also get ideas from just everyday life: if I'm looking for something or I see a lot of people asking the same thing, then I realize that's a good topic to blog about. 

Monday, 13 November 2017

Sew and Share at the November Meeting

Isabella shared her quilt, Inukshuks. This is a baby quilt made from a kit she got at a York Heritage Guild meeting. This quilt is going to Scotland for her cousin's first grandchild.

Shirley shared this tote bag that she designed and made as gift bags:

Anne shared her quilt, Seasons by the Lake, for this queen quilt that she designed based on a picture in a book: 

Claudette shared this iPad cover she designed:

Debra shared a quilt that her friend, a former member, made. The pattern is Castenguay, designed by Rose Marie, using a nine patch and applique:

Gail shared this sweet baby quilt using a pinwheel pattern:

Gail also shared this queen quilt - an inspiration for us all to work on quilts to submit for the quilt show!

Monday, 6 November 2017

What's happening at our November meeting this Wednesday

This month we will be hearing Johanna Masko's presentation: Blocks Unblocked – Deconstructing Sampler Quilts based on her experience with Laurie Aaron Hird's
"Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt."

Johanna Masko is a patternmaker, designer, and instructor, and she will be sharing  her methods for breaking down traditional blocks into simple units, and shows us the underlying grid structure that form the foundation for most geometric blocks. She will also give tips for working with small-scale patchwork and ideas for streamlining our piecing, whatever the project might be.

Johanna has two blogs: Seams Likely and Johanna Masko Quilts.

Date: Wednesday, November 8
Location: Danforth Mennonite Church, 2174 Danforth Avenue
Doors open for socializing at 7:00 pm
Guild meeting starts at 7:30 pm 

Don't forget your mug for tea, your change for treats and library raffle, and your membership card!

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Christmas Idea - Custom Tea Towels

Have you heard of Spoonflower?  It's an online site that allows you to print your own fabric in a variety of different substrates, including Kona cotton, canvas, and knits.  You can upload your own designs or choose from hundreds of thousands of designs by other people.   It's easy, you choose the design you want, select the kind of fabric you want it printed on, and the yardage, starting with a minimum size of a fat quarter.  

Spoonflower has some great ideas for creative projects, including this one, turning old recipes into tea towels.  Do you have some old recipes that are family favourites, or older recipes from previous generations that you cherish?  Turn these treasures into tea towels for everyone in the family to enjoy for years to come!  

Here are the step-by-step instructions to make this charming mementos:


Have you ever used Spoonflower before? What projects did you use it for? Tell us about your experiences in the comments below!