#putacassettetapeonit

I've been off the grid lately. I've been in the depths of writing my boombox pattern (side note spellcheck is pretty sure when I write "boombox", I mean boob box... interesting). 

While I've been underground I have been enjoying the notifications from Instagram. It seems people are using my cassette tape pattern and putting them on zippy pouches! So clever! I was chatting with my friend Dana (@danahannah310) about how we should, instead of Portlandia's "put a bird on it", we should flip it to "put a cassette on it"!

Which brings me to these photos. This is Sherri (@sherrichalke). She's a ray of sunshine! She tested the Hard-core Mixed Cassette Tape Pattern and  when she was done the mini quilt, she used the cassette pattern pieces and combined them with Sonja Callaghan's (@artisania) bag pattern (second, side note: Sonja taught me how to paper piece!) Sherri and I went to Quiltcon 2016 together and I must say the bag was quite the hit. But I think also because of her sun shiny smile!

 

 

Eventually it all gets done. Right?

My husband and I both turned 40 the same year. We wanted to do something to mark this milestone. He jumped out of a plane. I took a Denyse Schmidt workshop in Portland.

I didn't even know what the workshop was about... I thought maybe we were doing log cabins. It didn't even matter to me. I showed up with my two toned fabric and started the workshop making perfectly pointy pinwheels. Then we were instructed to deconstruct them. Wha huh? Okay. I was pleased with the experience but life happened and the blocks from the workshop were tucked away. 

Skip forward two more years. Back then I was still coordinating workshops for the Fraser Valley Modern Quilt Guild. We brought in Barb Mortell again. She had previously taught our guilds first workshop back in 2011 or 2012. This time she was teaching us all about triangles. I had known Barb for sometime and asked if I could go rogue and do my own thing. She said 'go for it'. What I remember most about this workshop (which was two days of intense sewing) was feeling like I had found my voice in colour among all those triangles.

I finished sewing the triangles together shortly after Barb's workshop. Last summer I put the wide boarder on and had it quilted by Bev Funk. I'm not sure where my motivation came from but recently I've been finishing up old projects. I didn't sign up for any finish alongs but darn it I should have! Oh well... Either way I'm happily satisfied with the quilt. It feels great to get one project done!

Now only 1,293,286 unfinished projects to go!

A three year wait... So worth it!

I'm in love with San Francisco. For years I've been accompanying my husband there. He works and I drink up the atmosphere and reload on trends and inspiration.

Three years ago I discovered the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art... their gift shop that is. The SFMOMA had been under construction and last year we missed their opening by two days! This year I headed straight there... but it was closed Wednesdays. Really? Really!?! Still even with one more day of waiting, so worth it. I was there by myself which was probably for the best. I would have most likely grabbed whoever I was with and shock them saying, "LOOK! LOOK! IT'S A fill in blank."  Which is what I wanted to do to the security guards. They seemed completely unimpressed that they were standing by an Andy Warhol. AN ANDY FREAKING WARHOL YOU GUYS! But don't worry, I played it cool like a cucumber. I'm sure my eyes enlarged every time I got excited but I didn't attack anyone (that I was aware of).

These pieces were a few of my highlights. Some pieces I remember from art school days and some are new to me... but I LOVED them all.

For International Women's Day I posted some of my favourite pieces on Instagram. I posted a FRIDA KALHO!!!!! This is the only painting of hers I've ever seen in person. I still can't believe it, her wedding painting! And I also posted some new artists to me. I'm so in love with Susan O'Malley's work, I can't even! ... and Diane Arbus, that kid with the toy grenade just gets me right in the gut.

As a side note I just signed the MQG Exhibition Agreements for the Best of Quiltcon Travelling Exhibit. My Say Anything Quilt was selected to go on this world wide show traveling through the US, Australia, Japan and the UK. I wish I was going with it! Still none the less, u n b e l i e v a b l e .

Makers and Shakers

I LOVE learning. I love challenges and I love how the world opens up as it happens. Our first creative assignment in Make it in Design's Winter School was...

WE INTERRUPT YOUR REGULARLY SCHEDULED PROGRAMMING TO BRING YOU THIS VERY SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT:

Holy Smokes! I opened my UPPERCASE newsletter last weekend and saw my "Say Anything" quilt featured!!! AND my "Hardcore Mixed Cassette Tape" quilt AND as an added bonus there was a link to my "Control Freak" quilt too!!! Eep! 

AND NOW BACK TO OUR REGULARLY SCHEDULED PROGRAMMING.

 ... to create your own font using lino cuts! Yes, please, again! I headed over to Opus Art Supplies to pick up some more lino and wouldn't you know it, they had ALL the neon ink colours. You know they had to come home with me right?

As I was working on this project the Women's March on Washington (and all over the world) was happening. Did you go? Did you make a pussy hat? Didn't you feel so proud. A sea of Makers and Shakers!

"The Future IS Female"

The first time I saw that slogan was on a T-shirt in Modcloth's online shop. After I posted the slogan in my font on Instagram someone told me you can buy the same shirts (for cheaper) over at Otherwild AND 20% of their proceeds go to Planned Parenthood. Gotta love that!

This Much Fun Can NOT Be Legal.

Wow! January. It's like I blinked and it's over. Now we're half way through February! How does that happen? I guess time flies when your having fun! Which I had during Make it in Design's Winter school first week (which started in early January). 

We were given two briefs and two creative exercises over this four week course. Our first brief was to create a pattern around these key words: Boho Glam 70's Rock. Yes please!!! Happily I found more than enough inspiration and realized I had oodles of content for three mood-boards. The first board was about shapes. The second was about the subject matter, in this case crochet patterns. The third board was all about colour. And as you can see I love ALL the colour!

I created myself a Boho playlist and settled into drawing. Interestingly enough I didn't even use these detailed drawings. Once I started blocking shapes in I knew they'd just become colouring pages. You never know sometimes. Anyways I was super thrilled with my design and I plan on creating a whole collection around it shortly!

I'm Overwhelmed... but in a good way.

I wasn't 100% sure what making sewing patterns entailed. All I knew is that I wanted to make them. Then Instagram. To my shock and delight upon completing my Mixed Cassette Tape Quilt, requests for a pattern flooded my feed. It gave me momentum, encouragement and the kick in the pants to hurry up and do it already! Then, the same thing happened with my Control Freak quilt (pattern released in December 2016) and recently with my Say Anything quilt (pattern coming 2017). You have no idea how tickled and grateful I am for those requests.

What I wasn't prepared for... I don't even know how to put it into words. All I know, it's BY FAR my favourite part of being a sewing pattern designer. See the look on Laura's (@lbaker537) husbands face Christmas morning! When I saw that photo I realized this pattern is out in the wild! People are making it! This project has become part of their daily lives. 200%! that's how much Sara (@sewsweetness) blew up the pattern to make a snugly quilt for her son! (Photo not shown but seriously go check it out!) Amazing! Rebecca (@hugsarefun) also made a pillow for her husband and so did Ann (@stitchsupplyco), again for her son. All were made to be opened Christmas morning... I'm a little verklempt! Thank you for welcoming these patterns into your life. It gives me the warm fuzzies all over! 

 

See ya 2016 : : Hello 2017!

If you had to be a super hero, who would you be? I'd be the Flash. My brain works WAY faster than my  hands. This often leaves me feeling like I don't get much done. One thing I love about Instagram's #bestnine each year, it always makes me realize plenty happened and plenty of projects got made. 

Typically #bestnine2016 is your top liked photo's on Instagram. This first photo was mine. After completing it I also realize, so many things happened in 2016 that didn't make the list. I went rogue and made my own #bestnine2016 (photo 2).

Reflecting on a year always leads to plans for the new year. I'm quite excited about 2017! I've registered again with Make it in Design School. Likity split Winter School starts January 9th! (Photo 3) Right after winter school I head into the Ultimate Portfolio Builder Module 4 program. Lots of drawing and designing for 2017!

Happy New Year! Let's create as many joyful memories as we can! xo

Photo 1: Say Anything Quilt : : @Bespokeoutlaw tested and made a bag out of my "Control Freak" pattern : : She also floored me by making me this Frida Kalho bag for my birthday. I still can't get over it! Sneaky girl! : : @daymoonquilts sent me a photo of her Mix Cassette quilt she made from my pattern. LOVE! : :  I started and FINISHED my website! : : I attended Latifah Saafir's Clamshell workshop put on by the VMQG : : I released the "Control Freak" Pattern-phew! Finally : : Life is RAD! T-shirt by Locomotive Clothing & Supply Co.; Alice Cooper costume brought to you by me : : The month of November was dedicated to creating the "Say Anything Quilt". It was a whirl wind but SO worth it!

Photo 2: I won a portfolio review with Elizabeth Olwen through Skillshare! : : I joined Lori Weidenhammer in a booth at Mini Maker Faire : : In August we attened our cousins Stephen and Marion's Wedding in Tuscany (yep, that was a biggie!) : : I was in two shows this year. Quiltcon and VMQG's first quilt show :: New friends made in 2016, my favourite part of any year! Techinally, this isn't my photo and I technically meet @sewhungryhippie late in 2015 but I really came to know her in 2016 (she's a keeper!) : :  She also wrote about me on her blog, how sweet is that! She also included me in a curated list for Sew Mama Sew! : : I taught a block printing workshop for VMQG : : You win some you loose some,  a VMQG polaroid block lotto (spoiler alert. I didn't win) : : But I won this! First time I ever won anything on Instagram, it's from @tearosehome!

 Again Happy New Year and hello 2017!

 

Be a CONTROL FREAK and Enter Sew Mama Sew's Giveaway Day {You know you want to}

I was blown away by the response to this pattern. You guys are astounding and I am very grateful. The giveaway has now closed and the winners are:

Azure Messmaker (love the name!). HRH DMK. @cpeicheff tagged by @reacemontgomery (I'm awarding the pattern to both, I recently won something on Instagram and it was weird the person who tagged me didn't win anything.) Congrats and again thank you everyone for all your love!

I' Hooray! It's here again! Sew Mama Sew's Giveaway Day. To celebrate I've (FINALLY) finished my Control Freak Pattern. Yay!

Do you have a gamer in your life? Do they annoyingly go out and buy the latest games leaving you scrambling trying to figure out what to get them? They won't suspect this! If you know the basics of paper piecing (if not hello YouTube!) this pattern is doable before the 25th of December.  My most excellent pattern testers made bags with the pattern, not mini quilts. The pink bag is made by Jonna @bespokeoutlaw (on Instagram). She quilted the Konami code on the back.  I know... brilliant right! (Don't worry your gamer will know what the Konami code is. I hand on heart promise). The second photo is from Amanda @Acolyerpix (on Instagram). I just adore her colour choices. Two other testers made larger quilts and one made a pillow as a Christmas present, for her husband.

Yada, yada, yada, but how do I enter? Good news! There are three ways to enter and there'll be THREE WINNERS! Here's how you increase your odds by a baz-zillion! Go ahead and enter each way!

Option one: Leave a comment below saying what your favourite video game is, and why OR comment on who's your favourite gamer, and why.

Option two: Pop over to Facebook HERE.

Step 1. Like the Lysa Flower Page

Step 2. Leave a comment same as before answering, what's your favourite game OR who's your favourite gamer, and why!

Option three: Pop on over to @lysaflower on Instagram

Step 1. Follow me

Step 2. For every friend you tag you're entered to win. Now those are great odds!

Step 3. Win {The most important step, wink, wink. Am I right or am I right?!}

"The fine print": International entries are welcome. The giveaway is open until Sunday, December 11, 2016 5pm EST. Three winners will be notified no later than December 14th, 2016. The winners will also be emailed the Control Freak PDF Pattern no later than Friday, December 16th, 2016. (Honestly I can send it to you on Sunday)

Good Luck! Let the giveaways begin!!

PS. If you really, really can't wait here is the pattern listing on ESTY.

1989 called and they want their Boombox back.

Holy moly! Talk about sewing like a mother trucker. That was a whirlwind of a project. I posted it's making on Instagram. Are you on Instagram? Love Instagram. If you are on Instagram think of this as an instant replay. 

From start to finish this took about a month. You'd think a month would be oodles of time... but it's not. It's really not. I'd been sitting on this idea for a while now but when the idea did come to me it was as though I was struck by lighting. After my Mixed Cassette tape quilt I had been searching for something to new to do with it. Then BAM! Memories flooded me with my first boombox... and they ended with John Cusack holding a Boombox over his head in the 1989 movie, Say Anything. *Spoiler alert* I called this quilt, "Say Anything"

Okay, that's all I got, I'm going to go have a nap. I'm pooped!

 

"Unfortunately" EXPECTATION

"Unfortunately" is a word that is like a punch in the stomach. I know because I HAVE been punched in the stomach. I remember it so clearly. I was five. A classmate, a five year old boy in kindergarten came up to me with two other boys at his side and punched me as hard as he could in the stomach. As far as I could tell, for no reason. I didn't fear him, in fact I liked him. I completely didn't expect  a punch in the gut. I remember falling over. Winded. I wondered if I was going to die.  

I received an "unfortunately" about a month ago. It winded me. Even though I knew it was a possibility. After I caught my breath I realized it also felt like a punch in the face. I know what that feels like too. Three years ago I started boxing. I was in the ring then, BAM!! I knew the risk getting in the ring but what I didn't expect was how mad it made me. Not that I got hit but that I didn't move out the way. I knew better.  

It made me mad that this "unfortunately" clocked and winded me. My goal this year was to FAIL BETTER. Try, fail, try again but that pesky frenemy of mine "EXPECTATION" snuck in when I wasn't looking... and sucker punched me. GAH!! I didn't realize how much expectation I had hanging on this thing. A good friend of mine keeps reminding me "Expectation KILLS joy". And I know it, I do know it BUT... it's stealthy. I'm watching you "expectation".  I'm going to look for you every day. As for you "unfortunately" it might not be the last time you're gonna knock me off my feet but I'm going to bounce back up so fast you won't know what hit you.

P.S. At times I've felt like just taking the gloves off, laying them on the mat and saying, you know what? You win. I'm out. After the "unfortunately" I had decided to closing down my blog (not the whole website but the blog). I've been told blogging is dead anyways. I even wrote the final post but I couldn't do it. I couldn't pull the trigger. Writing has never been super easy for me but there is something I don't want to let go. For whatever reason I'm not done yet. I guess I haven't reached the count of 10.

VMQG Repeat Block Printing Workshop

I woke up at 2am.

Wide awake.

I felt nervous. Wait... no. Excited. Was that butterflies in my stomach? I realized I hadn't felt this way since I was a kid waiting for Christmas day to arrive. 

This all had fallen into my lap. Months before, in the back of my mind, I was thinking, "Gee, I'd like to get back into teaching again." This past June, Vancouver's Modern Quilt Guild's workshop coordinator, Amy popped by my booth at Maker Faire. She asked if I'd be interested in teaching a surface design class. Weird how stuff like that sometimes just lines up, hey? We chatted back and forth and landed on a Repeat Block Printing class.

Jump forward... so there we were, October 2nd in Vancouver at the Croatian Cultural Center. I was tickled when I found out it had sold out! We had the ink, the lino blocks, the carving tools, the brayers (rollers) and the time. The students jumped right in with both feet. They embraced each step as we moved along through the day. 

Then repeats. Gah! Repeats get me every time. I showed them how to create and carved a true repeat. It was our last project of the day and the students didn't disappoint. I was taken by their prints; their motifs, the colours they used, some people even blended their inks! I have even more photo's posted on my Instagram feed. These guys really stepped up to the plate.

There's nothing better then to see someone's face light up to, "Oh I get it!" and resolve to that mutual look, "Okay, I'm hooked."

I know I was there to teach but I think it's me who needs to say thank you to everyone for being so keen, so open and just going for it. Thanks for quenching my thirst to teach again!

Who Inspires You?

Have you ever come across someone who just, in your gut, inspires you. I've been fascinated with punk lately (trust me this is going somewhere). Not the mohawk hairstyles, torn and safety pinned back together clothing or even the healthy drug appetites of Sid and Nancy but the DIY movement that was born out of it. And if DIY (Do It Yourself) is punk, see those two ladies holding up quilts, (Mrs S is on the left and Mrs Mac in on the right.) then they should be punk royalty.

Here's the simplified version: In the 80's they couldn't find a school to teach their dyslexic children so they started one. It became James Cameron School (which also accepts kids with other learning disabilities too). Think about that. They started a SCHOOL! Who does that? They started with 8 kids in a basement and grew a whole school, learning as they went. Making HUGE differences in the lives of families and children. They allowed these kids to thrive after wilting in the regular system. Humbly, when I asked them, mind boggled, How? Mrs. S replied, "You just do."

You just do.

Not everyone does that.

But they did. 

Appropriately, the slogan of the school is " Changing I Can't, to I can!" These ladies inspire me to go  forward, with no guarantees and give it all I've got. To just do.

Gaw, it makes me want to give them big smooches on their cheeks! But since that might be some what inappropriate, I made them each a quilt. Because you know us quilters, if we love you, you get a quilt.

So it's official, I love them! Do you have someone in your life that does that for you. Maybe they don't even know. Who gets the fire in your belly going and makes you want to just go for it?

CIRCA 15 FABRIC STUDIO... We're all going to be okay.

As he walked to the car, I could see the weight of the world on my son's shoulders. He slumped down in the front seat and stared straight ahead. Then he asked, ”Have you seen “Humans Need Not Apply?”

I hadn't at the time. I have since though.

"We watched it in Socials" ... ahh, good old Socials. When did Socials go from interesting facts to complete doom and gloom?

"Basically", he continued, "by the time I have kids everything will be automated and nobody will have jobs."

I felt 100% relief in my bones. I knew he was wrong simply because I sew. After watching the show I still feel the same way.

Now don't get me wrong... I know many jobs will become automated. I accept that as a given. I believe the key is the pendulum. Take fashion: one season short skirts are all the rage, a few seasons later it’s all about the long skirts. Perhaps that's too fluffy of an example. Here's another one: Obama. Trump.

We all lead busy lives. Technology hasn't saved us as much time as promised. It’s made life faster. Which in this case, the pendulum is our saving grace. It gives momentum for movements like Carolyn Friedlander’s Slow Sewing Studio, Sublime Stitching and Embroidery… and don’t we all gasp when we realize someone has hand stitched an entire quilt... hello Sherri Lynn Wood! (Plus, did you know, mending is on trend right now in Britain?! Mending!!!)

With that "slow movement" pendulum, it includes trends to buy local and buying whole food. I suspect these “trends”, aren’t going anywhere. If anything the more things become automated, the more we see self checkouts, the more people will seek out handmade products, sold by the people who make them or grow them. Made by hand will be more sought out and become more precious. There’s a personality in these products that simply can’t be mass or auto produced. It’s simply impossible.

Another force behind that pendulum, with automation you loose connection to people. Connecting is something we sew-ers, sewists, quilters, crafters, create-ers, DIY-ers are really good at. We create connections through guilds, sew-ins, swaps, quilt bees, workshops, trunk shows, coffee klatches, in person and online (thank you technology for creating a smaller world and a bigger space for connection)!

Then (and I think even millennials would agree) nothing replaces walking into a beautiful store. Recently I popped by Circa 15 Fabric Studio, in fact I popped in again a week later because the first visit was so fantastic. I love the atmosphere, the FABRIC and of course the "in person", warm, friendly, knowledgeable service. Online is great and honestly I don’t know how you can have a brick and mortar fabric shop these days and not have an online store (Circa 15 has one). I do enjoy a little note with my name spelled correctly when I receive my online orders, still, I would never fully abandon the experience of walking into a beautiful fabric shop. It’s like a breath of fresh air and one that leaves me knowing, we’re all going to be okay.

 

VANCOUVER MODERN QUILT GUILD SHOWCASE August 27 - 28. 2016

It was like a breath of fresh air. Hung at the Shipyards in North Vancouver, this handsome place was perfect for VMQG's first show. Refreshingly, quilts were hung simply and without drape. Modern quilters often take great pleasure in designing the backs of their quilts. I overheard one woman say, " I don't know which is the back or the front, they're both so beautiful!" Plus I had to giggle a few times at how people's feet lined up with the quilts in my photos. Giggling and modern quilts. Totally. Allowed.

These photos are just a fraction of the show. The show was bursting with striking quilts. I arranged this gallery slideshow with the title cards before the quilts themselves (except mine and Amy Dame's). There were so many more quilts I wanted to include but realized after reviewing my photo's I seemed to have gotten trigger happy and at some point I stopped including the title cards... Yup, same thing happened to me at Quiltcon. Note to self: stay calm and title card on!

Amy Dame's quilt won the Canadian Quilter Association ribbon, voted on by the VMQG guild members. It was outstanding and was a no brainer it should have won. There's no title card but I included some close ups of her paper piecing. When I first saw her quilt I thought, "Huh. Stickers. Okay." Then I looked closer. Mind. Blown!

Also mind blowing was the organization of the show, the thought and care that went into it. Quilt shows are HUGE undertakings. Big hours of planning and prep are put into them, plus hanging them, manning them and taking them down (not to mention the security and returning the quilts).  As with all things of greatness, all that hard work that went into VMQG's show made it look easy breezy, fresh and beautiful.

HELLO (again!)

Welcome to my new little space. I'm thrilled you stopped by. If you're returning from my old site "Hello again!"  If you're new "Welcome, it's nice to meet you!" I think we're gonna have a lot of fun here. I'm so tickled with my new site. I've been wanting to do this for so long. It's a relief to put a big'ol check mark on my list that it's DONE! Have you had a chance to take a peek? Feel free to have a snoop around.

In making this new site, I've considered the intention behind each decision, each photo and each write up. I've also spent a good amount of time thinking about this blog and my intentions behind it. Here's how I see it: It's like having you over for tea once a week. Life is busy. It's nice to have a moment where things slow down. Without any rush we'll chat about things that inspire us: people, stores, books, magazines, events, funny things that happen in and out of the studio. We'll chat about what were working on and of course, everyone's favorite... show and tell.