Creative Bee Studios on YouTube

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

Creative Bee Studios is now on YouTube!

With exciting new Creative Bee Studios videos being added to YouTube, you can watch short clips to learn more about patterns and techniques any time you want!

Most assuredly, the queen of quilting on YouTube has to be non other than her majesty, Jenny Doan!

Years ago, Jenny, with the help of her kids, started recording videos. Those videos led her to fame and fortune and ultimately saved the town of Hamilton!

A great resource for quilters and crafters of all kinds.

Why add Creative Bee Studios to YouTube? Firstly, it’s a great way for many quilters to learn in the comfort of their own homes. Secondly, unlike online shopping platforms, videos let quilters see more and learn more before deciding on purchase. Thirdly, its a great way to share little tips and tricks which I normally share in classes and workshops.

Creative Bee Studios on YouTube

Being creative on YouTube includes knowing what to look for!

Not only can you learn just about any kind of quilting or stitching technique, you can learn to cook, play ukulele, train a dog, or build a fence!

My hope is to teach more quilters about the nuances of value and the fun of using both sides.

With more and more online business and increasing costs of doing business, it’s more important than ever to get click-throughs and followers on all social media.

image of video from creative bee Studios youTube

How you can help Creative Bee Studios on YouTube.

All I ask is a few clicks of your time! Here’s what you can do and it won’t cost you a dime.

  • Use the link above to go to my YouTube channel.
  • When you get there, click the SUBSCRIBE button.
  • Watch some videos and be sure to click the “like” (thumbs up) button.
  • Tap the bell icon so you’ll be notified when new videos are posted.
  • Click the “down” arrow where it says “Read More” to find the video description and helpful information. Click on the links there!
  • Share with everyone you know!

I am forever grateful for your support and interest in my creativity!

Be prepared for some laughter and bloopers. Funny things happen when the camera is rolling!

Perhaps I’ve come to this moment kicking and screaming, but the moment is here! Why be hesitant? I’m telling you right now, it’s really HARD!

Creative Bee Studios on YouTube

Learn more about Bubbles the Baby Whale Cuddle, Treasures, and The Adventures of Bubbles the Baby Whale soft book panel!

SHOP more than 50 quilt patterns that use both beautiful sides of fabric!

Learn more about using both sides of fabric HERE!

It’s a Whale’s Tale

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

It started with a sketch and ended up as whale quilting fabric!

First things first: this sketch was made for punch needle, not whale quilting fabric. But sometimes things have to simmer a while. In other words, ideas need to age like a fine wine or quilt fabric that has yet to find its rightful place!

Surprisingly, Bubbles (and his focus fabric) had already been designed before this tail sketch became part of a fabric. Read about him in Uncork the Bubbles!

First, the sketchy whale tail.

image of whale quilting fabric and sketch
Sketches to fabric.

Learn more about how to use Spoonflower at Spoonflower How-To.

The whale tail shown above, with a sand dollar and seashell, are rough sketches made years ago. The first result of the tail sketch is in a tiny frame here surrounded by seashells and a “watercolor” whale.

Punch needle before whale quilting fabric.

Image of punch needle whale
Punch needle whale tail.

Click here to see Redbubble merchandise with the blue whale shown above.

Initially, having numerous designs in my Seashore Friends Fabric Collection on Spoonflower, it had not dawned on me to use the whale tail sketch. However, it didn’t take long to work this tail into an interesting stripe of whale quilting fabric.

Deciding on the elements for the striped design.

Putting the whale quilting fabric design all together.

Furthermore, the initial fabric design began with a collection of sand dollars. Next came the sand dollars. Finally, because I was searching for an interesting third element, I remembered the whale tail punch needle.

Lastly, I made sure the directional elements went both North and South, to give more usability to the fabric.

See matching merchandise in my Redbubble shop!

See the Seashore Friends baby quilt that’s made with both beautiful sides of my Spoonflower fabrics!

I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing this fabric’s simmering process!

Enjoy YOUR quilting journey!

Felicity, the Teapot Quilt

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

Question: if you had a little Pioneer Woman fabric, what would you do?

Answer: make a little teapot quilt from both beautiful sides of Pioneer Woman fabric!

This mini teapot quilt is the perfect size for a little spot (of tea) in your kitchen. First, this quilt fits nicely on a 12″ table top quilt hanger. Secondly, it’s a sweet little way to learn all about how to use BOTH beautiful sides of your fabric!

Why is she named Felicity?

The American Girl doll, of course! Felicity Merriman is a young girl growing up in Virginia in 1774. She’s spunky and adventurous at a time when she’s expected to do “sitting down kinds of things”. Needless to say, both my girls devoured the American Girl books and treasured their dolls. Most importantly, they received their first American Girl dolls, each getting Felicity, while on a trip to Williamsburg, Virginia.

Image of Girls in Felicity dresses
Paige and Jacquelyn with Felicity dolls and matching dresses at Williamsburg, Virginia.

We tucked them in bed after traveling all day, with sweet dreams of entering Williamsburg come morning. Much to their surprise, Felicity dolls were sitting on the ends of their beds when they awoke. Furthermore, their grandmother had made them and their dolls matching dresses!

Image of girls in Felicity dresses
Here they were making bread crumbs in the kitchen. They also took dance lessons and watched their dad march in the militia.

Paige and Jacquelyn happily played the role of Felicity while visiting Williamsburg and, to our surprise, the costumed workers played their own characters as well! They talked with the girls as though they WERE Felicity, the character from their beloved books and they were well-versed in Felicity’s adventures!

My youngest daughter, Jacquelyn, responded promptly to my request for quilt names and Felicity was one of her contributions. She also reminded me that Felicity learned to how to “take tea” in one of her books. Thanks, Jacq – perfect!

Why Pioneer Woman fabric?

Ultimately, to fully understand, one must read “Watercolor on a Whim”,

Watercolor on a Whim is an account of a trip to Pawhuska, Oklahoma, home of Ree Drummond, THE Pioneer Woman.

In case you didn’t click on that link (you really should, it’s quite fun), I should tell you the fabric choice had nothing to do with brand name. I didn’t even think about the (loose) timeline connection to Felicity until writing this post. (To be accurate, though, Kirsten is the pioneer girl doll.)

Pioneer Woman fabric (and, I dare say, everything else she makes) is about happy, beautiful flowers. As my daughter, Paige, says, “Ree makes no apologies for pretty!”

Ree makes no apologies for pretty!

Paige Cook

To be fair to Ree, she’s mostly all about her cooking show, but don’t let that fool you, she’s also a talented writer, and so much more!

Altogether, when Pioneer Woman fabric began showing up at our local Walmart, that’s when things began to click. In case you still haven’t read the post linked above, here’s a quilted wall hanging made from another design of Ree’s fabric:

Quilt made with Pioneer Woman Fabric
Dazzling Kate Quilt Pattern outside The Mercantile in Pawhuska, Oklahoma!
Image of Felicity Quilt
Felicity Quilt Pattern

Simply put, this teapot quilt is as easy to make as it is pretty (not exactly a quote, but I should credit Ree for that statement.) Make the teapot and lid from the REVERSE side; make the bouquet and binding from the RIGHT side. Add a fun, scrappy background to make the quilt sparkle with happiness!

This quilt is made with easy fusible applique and broderie perse techniques.

While supplies last, get Felicity focus fabric kits! (This is a pattern and focus fabric fat quarter; you add the five scrappy background fabrics.)

SHOP more than 50 quilt patterns that use BOTH beautiful sides HERE.

Bubbles Cuddle Stuffed Animal

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

Make a Bubbles Cuddle stuffed animal for your favorite baby in just a few steps!

Bubbles Cuddle is made with, you guessed it, both beautiful sides of fabric!

See Bubbles the Baby Whale Cuddle on YouTube! Learn more at Creative Bee Studios on YouTube

Not only is this fun stuffed animal sewing project made with both sides of fabric, it only has THREE pieces (plus his eyes)!

Obviously, this stuffed animal matches the Bubbles the Baby Whale character from the original wall quilt, mini table quilt, and soft book panel. Likewise, this little, baby whale is made with both beautiful sides of “Bubbles Geometric” fabric, also designed just for Bubbles!

Of course, you can make Bubbles with both beautiful sides of your favorite fabric! Learn more about How to Use Both Sides HERE.

This stuffed animal sewing project goes together quickly. Here’s how!

  • First, you will trace the template and cut your fabrics. You only need two “sides” and one “belly” for the body of the whale. Also, you’ll cut two small circles from the template for his eyes, which you will fuse in place.
  • Next, with a bit of hand-stitching, using an embroidery hoop trick, you’ll quickly have the eyes and mouth in place.
  • Then, you are ready to sew this guy together, leaving an opening for stuffing.
  • Finally, after stuffing the baby whale, you’ll hand-stitch the opening closed.

Lastly, give your little Bubbles Cuddle a hug!

Unlikely Quilting Tools

You might call it cheap entertainment, but I like to find useful quilting supplies in unlikely places. I also find it fun to use things for quilting that aren’t meant for that purpose.

It makes a necessary a trip to town a little more exciting.

First, you might wonder why I’d combine an ordinary trip to town with looking for quilting supplies. I guess I’m one of those people who could sport a “I’d rather be quilting” bumper sticker. The reason is because I tend to put some off things (like buying groceries) until I just really HAVE to (we have no food).

Therefore, my (let’s call it creative) mind has come up with a few ways to make these tasks more bearable.

The first one (if I’m at Walmart), is to see if there are any new Pioneer Woman products – that’s a given. (See Watercolor on a Whim about my trip to Pawhuska!)

Next, is that I am always, always, always on the lookout for items that have any useful way to be a part of quilting, sewing, painting, or crafting.

I have three to share with you today!

Image of Quilting Tools
Big scissors, hair spritzer, and popsicle sticks. And, yes, Bubbles in the background.

Hairitage Continuous Spray Bottle

You can find this item in the hair care products at your local Walmart.

It’s a continuous spritzer, very similar to one I’ve purchased at a quilt shop. This one has a light mist, but it does spray a bit longer with each pull of the trigger. These spritzers work especially well if you use a dry iron but want to mist your fabric for a good press. These also are a great tool for watercolor painting as they don’t leave heavy droplets. The best part is that it was about half the price as the one marketed for quilting. Now I can leave one at my iron AND have one at my painting desk – perfecto!

Whether they were expensive or not, I have always had trouble with steam irons that leak or spit. I have found it’s much nicer to use a dry iron and I control the moisture with a spritzer. No chances for rust spots!

Really Big Scissors

Next up is the very long scissors, found at Harbor Freight. I have no idea what they are meant for, but I use them to cut batting. They work beautifully! If I remember correctly, they were about $8.

Craft Sticks

Lastly, I have a little package of craft sticks (popsicle sticks) that I purchased for less than $2 at Hobby Lobby. I suspect they could also be found at a dollar store or discount store for even less. I chose the wider (about 3/4 inch) ones. There are 40 in the pack so I have plans for the rest of mine!

Use this little guy for projects that need to be turned right side out a pressed. This will help push the fabric outward to make the seam nice and flat. It helps to insure you don’t crease extra fabric while pressing.

Just position the craft stick on the inside on either side of the seam and gently push the seam outward while pressing with a small iron. The rounded edge won’t compromise the seam. This is especially helpful for curved seams.

Which brings to me the next thing I want to share with you, my friends…

Image of Bubbles Cuddle
Meet Bubbles Cuddle!

This pattern is coming very soon to my Etsy shop! He’s so much fun to make! He’s shown here sporting BOTH beautiful sides of “Bubbles Geometric Medium” fabric printed on Spoonflower’s Organic Cotton Sateen, so he matches the original quilt. Of course, you can make him with BOTH beautiful sides of whatever you want YOUR Bubbles to be!

Old Barns, Red Trucks, Mercantile and More

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

Nostalgia at Christmastime

There’s a nostalgia that happens at Christmastime for me more than any other time of year.

Nostalgia at Christmastime includes food, music, and decorations.

Does everyone have vivid memories from childhood? From an old rendition of a Christmas song (Time Life Collection) to “holiday” foods we made when I was a kid (Pizza Fondue), Christmas brings back strong and warm memories for me. Sometimes I wonder if everyone reminisces their childhood and feels strong nostalgia at Christmastime as me.

For instance, one display in my dining room this year holds a host of happy and varied memories. I’d like to share these with you. Some are from long ago and some are very recent.

Simply put, some things we have are more than just things when they spark memories of loved ones, here and gone, and things we’ve experienced throughout our years.

image of plaster water wheel mill

Let’s start with this water wheel mill. Oddly enough, I painted it (probably during finals week) when I was in college. My aunt’s family owned a plaster shop. My friends and roommates and I would walk down to the shop on Broadway to pick out affordable gifts that we could paint for family. I suppose it was also a form of procrastination from studying, but let’s say it was a “break”!

The trees are made from the old red barn to add to the nostalgia at Christmastime.

See three wooden trees? These are made from an old red barn at our family farm. The barn is no more, but here, in it’s place, is a pavilion and cross. Notice the roof line of the pavilion mimics that of an old red barn?

image of pavilion and cross
Image of Lighted Church

Next up is this lighted church. This belonged to my mother-in-law, Pat. It plays “Silent Night” and the lights blink.

As the video scrolls, you can see a wool-wrapped candle with a snowflake made of fringed cotton fabric. Only a few years old, I made this wrap to add another texture to my Christmas decorations.

Image of P.Town

Behind the candle comes the lighted P. Town. and Mercantile. These are two buildings in Pawhuska, Oklahoma. Ree Drummond (Pioneer Woman) renovated these buildings (and more), making the town a tourist and vacation destination.

In addition, my daughter Paige and I spent her spring break on a “creative getaway” here and had a blast. We ate pizza in the corner of the balcony shown here! See Watercolor on a Whim to read about our adventures and the creation of “Watercolor Whimsy” fabric and more! These decorations will spark new memories in years to come.

image of mercantile
Pioneer Woman Mercantile

At the very least, click on the link above to shop for this lighted Mercantile building and see more items fun things from Pioneer Woman!

Crafty nostalgia at Christmastime.

Do you notice how many of these memories are connected to crafts and creativity?

Lastly, you find Merry, the good ol’ red truck quilt. One of my favorite pattern designs and, of course, made with both beautiful sides of fabric, she’s sure to be a part of our decorations for years to come. Merry reminds me to stay focused and never give up on goals, dreams, and creativity.

As always, you can learn more about quilt patterns, fabric, and merchandise at Creative Bee Studios.

Add a Little Joy

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

Use both sides of Christmas scraps to add a Little Joy to your gifts!

I think every stitcher has a Christmas stash. You might have leftover fabric from a quilt, stockings, or napkins. Personally, I don’t keep a lot of Christmas stash, just two cubbies (!). However, you don’t need much to add a little joy to your gift decorating.

About a year ago today, I was part of my local quilt shop’s Christmas Open House. See the sample gift bag with Little Joy. Download the free pdf (further below) on gift bags using your Christmas scraps. Consider adding Little Joy to craft paper covered boxes as well.

Image of Little Joy at the quilt shop

This mini pattern mimics the JOY and Joyful quilt patterns which both use the large template of JOY.

You can see that the tree is made with the front side of a Christmas motif and the gifts under the tree are made from the reverse.

Like all my patterns, it requires auditioning BOTH sides of fabric to test their values. You’ll want to see the tree first, then notice the gifts under the branches. In the quilt patterns, you’ll also audition your background fabrics and try to pull a fun variety of fabric styles together to give the quilt an added interest.

Of course, for your gifts, just choose a surface with the contrast you desire. If you choose blue bags and have blue fabric, your design will be subtle. Use white bags for a high contrast.

It’s just a simple and fun way to use up some fabric scraps and get a little playtime in!

Image of Joy
Joy Quilt Pattern
Image of Joyful Quilt Pattern
Joyful Quilt Pattern

Shop #usebothsides quilt patterns in my Etsy Shop: CreativeBeeStudios

Image of Red Truck Quilt
MERRY Quilt Kit

See the new products on Red Bubble by clicking the button above! Read A Christmas Passed HERE and Christmas (Quilts) in July HERE.

Wishing you JOY and MERRYiment this Christmas season and God’s blessing throughout the New Year!

Christmas Quilting by Julia

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

Julia’s trip to Missouri Star found her bringing home fabric to do some Christmas quilting!

Julia chose a beautiful line of Christmas quilting fabric for her first large, quilted throw. Their first quilting project together began when, my daughter, Paige, and her best friend, Julia, took a trip to nearby Missouri Star this summer. While Julia chose a beautiful Christmas motif, Paige selected a warm, autumn line (see What is Quilting Heritage?).

Julia started with colorful layer cakes of a variety of reds which included traditional Christmas red, warm orange-y reds, and deep (almost burgundy) reds. The collection was rounded out with deep greens, black, warm whites, and lots of gold. To me her fabric has a traditional Christmas feel, but with LOTS of interest and sparkle to boot!

Christmas quilting

Next, Julia added a narrow green and gold border. Lastly, she chose a red and gold fabric for her outer, large border. Both border fabrics are found in the quilt center. Julia’s new Christmas quilt is a nice, large throw size.

Julia's Christmas Quilting

As you can see, Julia and Paige chose to keep their layer cakes whole. They got together for an evening to “play” (arrange their layer cake squares). Paige sent me black and white photos to show she was testing the values (YES!). See The Tricky Traits of Value for more information.

Image of Quilt
Paige’s autumn throw.
Julia showing her Christmas quilting throw
Julia’s cozy Christmas throw.

Before the girls got their quilts finished, Paige and her husband moved 1,000 away, ending the frequent couples’ nights, friend walks, and quilting together. I know they enjoyed living near one another again (they grew up as neighbors and best friends, but were apart after high school). They will cherish their memories of their young adulthood and, both newlyweds, their young married life together.

Julia’s quilt will hold warm memories for her.

Lastly, Julia had her throw quilted with swirls and holly leaves in red thread.

Christmas quilting motifs

Also, Julia shared her other Christmas quilting projects:

It’s so fun to know that twenty-somethings are enjoying quilting! I hope to share future projects by these two friends. What do you think they should do next…maybe a quilting retreat?

In the end, it’s fun to see a quilting journey begin so early in life. Here’s a reminder to you to enjoy your quilting journey!

Meet the Calico Needlers

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

The Calico Needlers Quilt Guild meets in Saint Peters, Missouri at the St. Charles Library. This day-time guild meeting starts bright and early at 9:30.

Even so, the room was filled with friendly quilters.

The Calico Needlers Quilt Guild is a fun group of quilters!

Everything about this event was smooth sailing! I am grateful for their kind welcome and hospitality and the ease of setting up everything from technology to hauling my wares!

For starters, each guild program presentation begins with selfies of the group. I am currently without my selfie stick, so disregard the mop of gray at the bottom of these pics!

image of Calico Needlers
It’s always a “Good Morning” when it starts with guild!

Likened to eating dessert first, we had the program straight away.

Image of Calico Needlers
Enthusiastic quilters!

In Our Quilting Journeys, I challenge quilters to ponder their own journeys.

Take a quiet moment, maybe over a cup of coffee or tea, to think about who has influenced your quilting journey.

First, many quilters have family quilters who either directly or indirectly expose us to the craft. In other words, “we get it honestly”!

Furthermore, our quilting journeys are influenced by many things, like shops we frequent (they choose what we see), friends, emails, sales, free shipping offers, retreats, and even Show and Tell!

There’s never a wrong reason for making a quilt!

As expected, much of the program is dedicated to sharing my quilting journey, which I often refer to as a “very curvy quilting journey”. With the newest curve in my journey being repeat pattern design, I remembered just days before the presentation a big influencer on the latest curve of my journey: Tula Pink.

Several years ago, at the Fall Paducah Quilt Show, fabric designer Tula Pink was the featured guest. We were fortunate to get tickets to “An Evening with Tula”. When Tula began her talk, she announced she was going to tell us the process of how she designs fabric. I guess I had been thinking about it back then because I took out pen and paper and made notes. She mentioned she uses Adobe Illustrator, a vector software for digitizing her designs.

Later, when I needed to update my laptop, I told the computer guys I would be getting Adobe Illustrator. I didn’t have a clue what it was or how incredibly powerful and involved this software was. But it was in my Tula notes!

Sometimes we are surprised by the memories we gain by quiet reflection.

The power point/trunk show continued with pattern quilts and what influenced me to make them.

The Calico Needlers meeting continued on, with business and pleas for volunteers – a common thread amongst guilds. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to stick around for Show and Tell, my favorite part of any guild meeting! But I must say these quilters were most helpful and gracious to me as a speaker. Aren’t quilters the best?

While in the area, I made a stop to Batiks Plus and, eureka, I found a gem!

Hidden away, under another bolt of fabric was this bolt of Crystalia, the Hoffman digital spectrum fabric used in my original Phoebee pattern! Phoebee is the gal that started it all and helped me discover how to use BOTH beautiful sides!

See more about Designing for Hoffman Fabrics HERE.

Read more about Phoebee HERE.

A special note of gratitude to the quilt holder gals! You did a great job!

Finally, a big thanks to my new friends in Saint Peters!

Remember to enjoy YOUR quilting journey, Karla

Spoonflower How-To

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Discover Spoonflower’s fabric and home decor!

Spoonflower’s fabrics and home decor are so stimulating, I liken it to walking into Hancock’s of Paducah (or any fabric warehouse) for the first time, without a clear quilt plan or shopping list! There’s so much to choose from -it can be delightful AND overwhelming!

Where do you start?

This is an overall guide to Spoonflower’s fabrics and home decor. I’ll explain what it is and how it works. You will “walk in” with an overall idea of where to go and what to do!

First, let me say that Spoonflower.com is not a difficult website to navigate. It’s just that, as creatives, we imagine ALL the possibilities when encountering a new product or venue. When you consider there are thousands of designs that can be printed on a variety of products, THAT can be overwhelming!

Because there are so many possibilities with Spoonflower, I think it’s helpful to wander in with some idea of what you will see.

spoonflower's fabric and home decor
Example of traditional designs.

Basically, Spoonflower is a print-on-demand fabric shop. Artists create design swatches. You find the one/ones you like, choose the type of fabric you want it printed on and place your order.

Pretty straight forward, right? It is. However, when you “enter” Spoonflower, you can see thousands and thousands of designs, it’s easy to get distracted. (You think you want frog fabric but you’re suddenly engrossed in pages and pages of beautiful florals.)

artistic nature
Example of “artistic, nature” designs.

So here are some basics to remember when you visit Spoonflower so you can stay on track:

Let’s start with fabric. There are categories, color, and fabric types.

Examples of categories include Style (Traditional, Modern, Nautical, etc.), Animals, Nature, Occasional, Holidays, etc.

Twelve color categories include numerous swatches in each to really pick the colors you are searching.

When it comes to fabric types, hold on to your hats! Spoonflower prints on 24 different types of fabrics! Examples are Canvas, Performance Velvet, Jersey, Organic Sweet Pea Gauze, Chiffon, Performance Linen, and my favorite, Organic Cotton Sateen! That’s just seven of the twenty-four!

Keep in mind that artists upload their designs for you to choose to print. There are thousands of artists uploading lots of designs!

Fill-a-Yard is a great option!

Fill-a-Yard is a great way to get many different designs in one yard of fabric. When you choose this option you first pick the designs you want. Next, choose the template. Do you want two half-yards or 12 dinner napkins?

When you find designs you like, click on the designer’s shop to see more. You can “favorite” what you like so you can go back to see that designer’s newest work.

What about home decor?

Spoonflower’s home decor is divided into four categories: wallpaper, living and decor, dining, and bedding.

Wallpaper: Choose from Prepasted Removable (smooth), Peel and Stick (woven), or Non-pasted Traditional (pebble).

image of wallpaper
BUBBLES Wall Paper by Creative Bee Studios

Living and Decor: Order pillows, blankets, curtains, or wallhangings in your favorite designs!

image of pillow
Bubbles pillow on Spoonflower

Bedding: Options include duvet covers, sheets, pillow shams, and lumbar throw pillows.

My designs on Spoonflower, like Seashore Friends Fabric Collection, are hopefully just a beginning point for my adventure into design work.

Image of Bubbles Quilt and Fabrics
Bubbles Quilt and Fabrics

See It’s a Whale Tale for more about designing this line of fabrics!

Whale Quilting Fabric on Spoonflower

Now head over to Spoonflower.com and have a ton of creative fun!

Enjoy your quilting journey, Karla

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