July 15, 2014

My Turn! (2014 New Quilt Blogger Blog Hop)


Plum and June
It's finally my turn to introduce myself for the 2014 New Quilt Blogger Blog Hop, and on my birthday too! It's so nice of you to drop in to help me celebrate. Too bad we can't share cake through our computers.

A huge thank you goes to Beth of Plum and June who has put so much into giving us new bloggers the chance to introduce ourselves. There certainly are a lot of us and it has been so much fun meeting new people these past few weeks.

My name is Leanne and I've been quilting since the start of 1997 (17 years!). My mom gave me a quilting magazine as part of my Christmas gift and taught me what I needed to know to make my first quilt as a wedding gift for a friend. It was almost double bed size and featured hand applique, hand embroidery and hand quilting. Unfortunately, I don't have any idea where I could find pictures of it right now, but I do know it had horrible ripples on the back, because I didn't baste it enough, and the binding was a total mess. But it was my first quilt and I was incredibly proud of it!

Since then I've learned a lot. Here are some of my most recent finishes.

My Spin placemats, one of three patterns available in my Craftsy pattern store. It took me a long time to realize I could design my own quilts rather than following someone else's pattern, but now I'm having fun playing with designs.


My Scrappy Log Cabin, which took me a ridiculously long time to finish, but I'm so happy that it is finally done and I can see it every day when I look in at the bed in our spare room. I haven't posted about this one yet but, as you can see, I finally got pictures so it will get a post of its own soon.

My Schnitzel and Boo Mini Quilt Swap quilt, which is my absolute favourite of all the quilts I've ever made. I feel like with this quilt I can comfortably say my free motion skills have progressed from beginner level to intermediate level. Still far from perfect, but I love what I'm able to add to a quilt now with the free motion work and I'm no longer terrified that I'll ruin a quilt top by trying to fmq it.

And here is one of my many, many works in progress, my epp hexie flower quilt. I'll soon be finished the top, since I only have to fill in the rest of the edges so that they will be straight. Then I get to figure out how I want to quilt it. After piecing the whole thing by hand it seems a shame to machine quilt it, but I know hand quilting would take me f-o-r-e-v-e-r. I know this because I have one quilt that took me six years to finish!

My blog's name, Devoted Quilter, is actually the result of me playing with words a little. Yes, I am a devoted quilter, but I also post a Christian devotion on Mondays. These devotions are snippets of how I see my faith relating to everyday life. Sometimes the devotion relates to quilting, but it could also be about anything from our family vacation to the Olympics. You can see all the devotions I've shared here.

As part of the blog hop, we were each asked to post a blogging tip and a quilting tip. I have two tips and they could both be applied equally to either blogging or quilting. First of all, if you don't know how to do something, don't be afraid to ask for help! Quilters, and quilt bloggers, are a generous bunch and will do whatever they can to help you master a new skill.

Second, don't get stuck thinking that the way you've always done things is the way you have to do them. I started out hand quilting everything, and thinking that machine quilting was somehow cheating. But I wanted to give quilts as gifts far more often than I could if I spent years hand quilting each one, so I gave in and tried machine quilting. Now I can't imagine why I resisted for so long! I love machine quilting and the level of detail I can do and still finish quilts in a reasonable time frame (well, except for my scrappy log cabin). So don't be afraid to branch out and try a new way of doing something. It may become your new favourite.

For some non-quilty information about me, my husband Paul and I will celebrate our 15th anniversary in a couple of weeks and we have three great boys. Aiden is 12, Zachary is 10 and Nathan is 6.
This was taken on a snowshoeing afternoon back in January

I love the ocean and I've lived close to it all my life, in Nova Scotia, Nunavut and now here in Newfoundland.
I also love to read, especially fantasy like Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series, George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire or Brandon Sanderson's The Stormlight Archive. I also enjoy Karen Kingsbury, Kristen Heitzmann and the Love Finds You series. What do you like to read? Any favourite authors I should try?

I'm slowly getting into gardening. So far we have strawberries and this year I added a patch of green beans. I don't really know what I'm doing, so I'm just figuring things out as I go along. Our growing season is pretty short, but I'm enjoying seeing things sprout and grow.

I've been a part of the quilt blogging community for almost a year and a half and it has been a wonderful experience. Thank you to everyone who follows my blog, or follows me on instagram (I'm @devotedquilter). It's so much fun to get feedback on the things I'm working on and to make friends with quilters all around the world.

Now that you know a little about me, here's a list of the other participants in the blog hop today. I know they'd all love to hear from you too.

Sharon @ Fabrics and Flowers
Serena @ Sew Giving
Carmit @ Quilting Rainbows 
Jenny @ Jack's Room

Thanks for stopping by and have fun visiting everyone else!

25 comments:

  1. I was actually eating a piece of cake (chocolate, yum!) while reading your post! So maybe we can share cake :) Love the pic of the icebergs - that is something we definitely never see in Australia!

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  2. Happy birthday, Leanne!
    I used to read a lot of fantasy when I was a teenager but I stopped when I couldn't figure out what to read next. Back then, my favourites were Anne McCaffrey and Raymond E Feist.
    I am very impressed with your FMQ skills, and I agree wholeheartedly about asking for help. If you ask, people will help.

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  3. Nice to meet you and happy birthday. I wish we all could share some cake. What a beautiful part of the world you live in. I love your log cabin quilt. My log cabin was a long term project just finished it earlier this year.

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    1. Thank you! It is beautiful here. We love camping around the province so we can explore more of it. Glad to hear I'm not the only one who took a long time with a log cabin quilt!

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  4. Happy birthday! I'm singing happy birthday to you in my head (much better for everyone that way). :) I have really enjoyed getting to know you through the blog hop. I know what you mean about realizing that you don't have to always follow someone else's directions. That moment of realization was pretty amazing.

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  5. love love love your log cabin quilt, it is awesome. I'm still in the follow someone else's direction, but I'm happy doing that.

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  6. Happy Birthday Leanne! Hope you had a lovely day. It's very nice to meet you and I'm thankful that you've done an introductory post, it's great to read more about you and what inspires your quilting.
    Jen

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  7. Happy Birthday! Nice reading more about you! I just finished the latest George R.R. Martin book in the series. Now I can't wait for the next one (although I won't read his teasers!). Lovely quilts!

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  8. I'm sure it's late by now but 'Happy Birthday!!'.
    I've enjoyed your blog for a little while now, both the quilty and the devotions :)
    I love the photo of your hubby and the boys. They look like they've had a really fun time.
    I love living by the ocean too. But it gets a little bit windy sometimes, eh? :)

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  9. Happy Birthday! I loved seeing the picture of your family. I have been married 14 years and have three boys. :) I can't wait to see more pictures of your scrappy log cabin.

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  10. Happy Birthday Leanne! I love that you have three boys too! Being a fellow Canadian, I can sympathize with a short growing season! Your quits are lovely! I love the quilting on you mini quilt! I'm an avid reader too- I have enjoyed Alan Bradley's novels (and he's a Canadian too!).

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  11. Happy birthday! And you're so right that you don't have to do things the way you've always done them, though sometimes those habits are hard to break. I have a Nathan too :).

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  12. Happy Birthday! I'm doing a hexie project, too, but much smaller than yours :D I plan to turn it to a bag. Will look forward to see your finished hexie.

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  13. HI there, fellow blog hop post! Wow! Your mom didn't take it easy on you with that first quilt. It sounds like a doozy! It's nice to find another Nova Scotian blogging around out there. Your EPP quilt is amazing - I've yet to make anything bigger than a pillow or a table runner!

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  14. Visiting from Plum and June's Blog Hop. Nice to meet you! I'll be a no-reply blogger because Blogger and Blogspot do not play with Wordpress, but don't worry about replying. There isn't anything I can do about it. Lovely quilts, and it must be pretty where you live. Carole @ From My Carolina Home

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  15. I love your mini quilt! The quilting you did on it looks gorgeous. I like your hexie project, I've just started one and have a feeling it will be a work in progress for many years to come! Nice to meet you, and Happy Birthday! I would love to share a slice of birthday cake, I love cake.

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  16. Hope you had a Happy Birthday! Love your log cabin quilt. Your hexie flower quilt will be awesome. You mean you have many WIP too - most of us do - I know I'm guilty! Nice post.

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  17. Happy Birthday! Love the hexies quilt. I really like to read John Scalzi in SF at the moment!

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  18. That is awesome that you do a devotional! I love your hexies quilt! I hope you had a wonderful Birthday! What a fun way to celebrate! Nice to meet you!

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  19. Happy Birthday for a few days ago :-) Your quilting is exquisite - your mini quilt in particular really pulled me in!

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  20. What a great pic of the ocen view! I would love that too. Well what can I say. I don't read. I'm having hard time to concentrate on reading and I don't relax while doing it. That's why I create instead :)

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  21. Late visit on the blog hop! Beautiful quilts and your FMQ in particular looks amazing, the detail on your scrappy log cabins is just incredible. You must have a lot of patience. I love the sea too and we live near enough to go often, I can't imagine living far from the coast now either. Favourite books - I love reading and seem to have quite an eclectic mix these days. I frequently enjoy some of my teenager son's books - Jonathan Stroud's Bartimaeus trilogy was great recently. For grown up books, maybe Jasper Fforde - a bit strange but very clever! And I've just finished reading a Margery Allingham book which I really enjoyed. I could add lots more but they'd all be a strange mix!

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  22. Hi, Leanne! Popping over (finally - very belated!) from the hop. Your hexie quilt is gorgeous! As is your favorite quilt - I'd definitely agree you have some excellent FMQ skills because it's lovely : )

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  23. Hi Leanne - it's so nice to finally get to know a bit more about you (I say finally because I'm just not getting through the last bunch of blog hop sites!). What a lovely environment you live in and you have an adorable family. Your S&B mini is incredible! I would say, yes, you definitely have reached a level beyond beginner - looks more like advanced to me. :) With two small kids (almost 5 and almost 3), all I've managed to finish reading this summer was The Signature of All Things. Loved it!!

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Thanks for taking the time to leave me a message. I love hearing from you.

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