Just a few things today. Two very good things. One not so much. We will start with the not so good.
We generally (like always) use our blog for positive subjects. Today, I'm venting. Just for a little bit and then I'll be over it. Here's what happened: Last night I had the sudden urge to see what was happening in the scrapbooking industry. The CHA convention is held every year around this time, and because we used to be in scrapbooking we had a booth at the show for 8 or 9 years. I sometimes miss it, especially at CHA time. So I was just interested in what was going on. Which led me to several scrapbooking sites. When I opened one page, I couldn't believe what I saw. Our fabric! This one:
From our Authentic collection. Designed by us in 2008 and in stores in 2009. Only it wasn't fabric. It was paper. And it didn't have our name on it. It had another company's name on it (which I had never heard of). And it was being sold. For money. By someone else. To be fair, the "designer" added the word "enduring" to our design. I guess that was his/her insurance that they weren't copying. If you are interested, you can find the image of the paper design here.
I don't get outrageously mad very often. But this was one of those times. Here's the thing. I totally understand that we are all influenced by what we see. I am. In designing, I'm influenced by magazine covers, store windows, a font on a billboard, a word in a book, lots of things. I'm also influenced by other designers. It is impossible not to be. There are things I love and things I don't. But...it can only go so far. It is totally unethical, not to mention illegal to copy someone else's work and claim it as your own. For goodness sakes if you are going to copy, change the words. Or the fonts. The style it was put together. The color. Seriously.
I also get that there isn't a copyright on words. Or numbers. Or stripes, dots, plaids, whatever. But this is ridiculous. I know there will be people thinking "why is she making such a big deal about one paper design?". There are about a bazillion patterned paper designs out there. This one isn't going to make any difference. I get that. But I also know we spend hours upon hours trying to come up with unique collections that represent our style. It's just the principle of it. Ok, I'm done. Here anyway. I will contact that company, give them my view on it and it will be over. Thanks for letting me vent.
Now, on a lighter note, we are so excited to be a guest blogger today over at A Little Bit Biased (Amber at GiGi's Thimble). Actually, Susan was the guest blogger. She is extra excited today that Amber gave her the friendliest designer award. She let us know about it first thing this morning. Anyway, Amber is totally sweet herself. Check out her blog, and a few photos of our studio here.
The last good thing is that we have a winner of our latest contest. Congratulations to Karen, who wrote:
Always love the charms ladies, soooo cute!
Just e-mail us at email@example.com and we will get a charm in the mail to you.
Oh, one more good thing. Mom is working on yet another Valentine project. Thought we were done with Countdown to Kisses, but I guess not. We will show you later this week!
For our second day of our "Countdown to Kisses" series, we are featuring 3 new prints in our Etsy shop:
Love Is All You Need:
Love Lives Here: (those are the words printed around the square):
And simply Love:
They are available in our Etsy shop now.
Tomorrow we have planned a fun project that uses a new technique that we are so excited to show you. See you then!
Last week my sister promised we would have some new quilting subway art in our shop. We did have it started, but not nearly done! I wasn't aware of the post until I read our blog a couple of days later- which made me get in gear and actually finish it (there's nothing like announcing something to the world to motivate you). I thought we would probably have it done on Friday, but to my surprise, we finished today!
We designed the print around classic quilt squares. We have one in black and white:
And one using our Hometown colors:
They are on our Etsy site now.
I hope everyone is having a great summer- sometime we will catch up on our blog and actually tell you what we've been up to. Right now, I have 2 anxious kids who want to go swimming- so off we go! Have a happy Tuesday.
New News, New News!
1. We are in a book - Countown Calendars to be exact! This is a fun book from CT Publishing. You guessed it right, it has projects all pertaining to counting down to an event. Check out the Book Trailer above to see some of the projects. Be sure to watch the entire video. You know why???? Because our project shows up at the end with #1. For more information about this book you can click here.
2. Countdown to Christmas is here! And we are featured today on Fat Quarters Shop Jolly Jabber.
and finally #3 -
3. My flowers have survived another week! Yes the automatic sprinkler is still working!!
Have a Great Monday
I really need to ask myself that question! And the answer is sorta. We are still busily preparing trying to remember everything and get everything done. One thing that we have been working on for awhile (not just for this quilt market but for many many quilt markets) is jewelry. We came out with some charms for our "Make Life" collection but were not completely satisfied with them. This time around we are happy, happy, happy!!!!
Here is a sneak peak of our Hometown Charms that will debut at Sample Spree -
OK - I have to get back to work!!! And don't worry if you are not going to Quilt Market we do have plans on putting the charms on our Etsy site. Sorry - not before Quilt Market or the day we get back but soon I promise!!!!!
We had so much fun and success with our "Sunkissed" art prints, that we knew we would do some for our latest fabric collection, Hometown. We created these to take with us to Quilt Market next month because we think stores would love to display (and sell) these alongside the Hometown fabric. But we also wanted to let you be able to customize them and put them in your home. Oh- and we think they would make a great Mother's Day gift.
There are 4 new prints. The first is my favorite. It is simple but really cute. It is called the "Hometown Definition Print". My sister is putting this one in her yet-to-be redecorated guest room.
It looks even cuter with a Hometown quilt:
The second is called the "Hometown Bunting Print". I think this is really funny because a few months ago we didn't even know what a bunting was- until we asked all of you!
Next is one similar to one of our Sunkissed prints.
This circle print has been very popular, so we did one for Hometown:
The last one is my favorite (yes I have 2 favorites). It is a larger print (16" x 20") and celebrates all of your favorite things about your hometown. It is called the Hometown Alphabet Print:
Each letter can be customized, or you can customize a few and leave the rest of the letters and words as what is pictured in the sample. I love the idea of giving this as a housewarming gift- whether someone is moving to a new city or just across the street. My mom thinks she is getting this one, so I guess my Mother's Day gift shopping is finished!
A few other Hometown prints that we have shown before would also make great Mother's Day gifts. The custom Zip Code Print:
And the Custom Subway Art:
So, while you have to wait until August to get the Hometown fabric, the prints are available now on our Etsy site.
If you would like to win one, simply let us know which of the 4 new Hometown Prints is your favorite, and where you would hang it in your home. You have until Monday. Good Luck!
It has been a whole week since we blogged. Oops. Sorry. But it has been a very productive week. Last Thursday I went home a little frustrated and a bit lost about designing our next fabric collection. What a difference a week makes. We just finished up and and we are getting ready to send it to Moda. I can't give you any peeks but I will say we are very happy with it. It is our collection for next spring (2012) and it is well, very "springy" (not sure that is a word, but you get the idea). Those collections are always my favorite. Happy, warm and summer-like. Can't wait.
But back to Hometown. We have been super busy getting ready for Quilt Market in May. The binding is all that is left on 3 of our quilts. I thought I would give you a little glimpse of them. I love, love, love the quilting on these.
This one is my favorite. When I get a little stressed or the slightest bit unhappy, I just look at these circles and smile.
We plan on taking photos of the quilts in one our favorite hometowns, Fort Collins. It isn't really our hometown, but since Susan and I went to college there, we claim it. Besides, it really is much prettier than Fort Morgan- and Old Town Fort Collins will make a great backdrop for the quilts.
We can show you our next Label Crew project. It is a sewing organizer that allows you to keep all your necessities in place- and it is great to travel with.
Simply open it up and find pockets to hold all your goodies.
If you would like more information about the Label Crew, visit our website.
Okay, we can breath now. The fabric is designed, our quilts for Market are almost done and it's snowing outside. Yes snowing. Not too happy about that, but 2 out of 3 isn't bad. Oh, and we have so much planned for Hometown - quilts and other things, too!. We will start letting you in on it next week! See you then.
Thank you so much to everyone who left a comment about our new Hometown fabric line! We appreciate all of your kind words!! Look for this fabric to come out early this fall. We hope you like it as much as we do - we are very excited for this line. I am sure you are wanting to know this - THE WINNER of the Hometown fabric. So lucky Crisanne D. is our winner! She wrote -
I am so excited for Hometown! This shade of red is PERFECT! And the blue complements it so well! I have four boys, and have learned that nothing frilly is truly acceptable in our home. This fabric line will give me just what I want, and they have nothing to be opposed to!
Crisanne e-mail us with your mailing address and we will send you your very own Hometown fabric!
Remember a long time ago (probably 5 or 6 months) when we asked you what your hometown was? Some of you should, because we got over 1000 responses! Well, today I'm going to give you one piece of the puzzle. There are actually 3 pieces to this puzzle, but today is only the first step. We will reveal the other 2 pieces to the puzzle in the coming weeks.
Now fast forward to last week when I proclaimed on this blog that we were working on something and hoped to get it done this week. And a miracle happened- we actually got it done! Well, some of it anyway. Enough to let you in on it. So..............
We wanted to do something a little different. Not quilting or fabric, but something else we love. Now you know we love words. We also love designing and decorating and typography. And we absolutely love subway art. So we decided to create our own subway art and design and produce custom prints. We had a few guidelines we wanted to follow:
1. It must be high quality and printed professionally, We use textured matte canvas- which is an incredible surface. It produces rich color with and the texture gives the print depth. The inks used are the highest archival pigment inks.
2. We wanted to make it affordable. Subway art is everywhere, but it can be seriously expensive! We have different sized prints with different levels of customization. Therefore, we have different price levels to make it reasonable for everyone.
3. We wanted to inject some "Sweetwater" in the art. A lot of our prints will incorporate our fabric. That way you can coordinate your quilts with a piece of art to hang on your wall- think a baby quilt made with Sunkissed fabric paired with a coordinating print for your nursery (you will see that next week!).
We are just revealing a few at a time (the creation and framing and photos are taking us forever!). So, staying with the "Hometown" theme, here are our first 3 pieces, which are all black and white (great with our Authentic fabric). The first is all about your hometown. It includes street names of our town in Colorado:
Keep in mind that this print can be customized in a variety of ways. Instead of streets, you can use facts about your family or cities you have visited. It makes a great wedding gift- you can include things such as the wedding date, church, the names of the bridal party, etc. You can see other examples on our Etsy site. Here is one I did for my sister for Christmas- it also comes in this antique background:
The second print we are showing today is all about numbers. We all have important numbers in our lives- birth dates, wedding dates, number of people in your family, addresses, zip codes, etc. You can customize this print with your special numbers (notice the Authentic newsprint as the background):
This one also comes in a black background:
The last one we are showing today is one of my favorites. My sister designed something similar to this for her Christmas card a few years ago. She lists 15 facts about her family- such as names, her anniversary, activities her family enjoys, etc. It can also be personalized for an individual. We think it would make a great gift!
Okay, so those are our 3 for today. They are available now on our Etsy site.
So, do you want to win one!!!!!??????????
Simply leave us a comment and let us know which of the 3 is your favorite and where you would hang it in your home if you won. We will choose a winner on Monday- but check back before then- we will have more to show you!