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December 3, 2020
Looking Back and Moving Forward from Professional Quilter

The end of the year is often filled with planning activities. For many creative people, though, the thought of planning is beyond boring.

It can be black and white — after all, it does involve looking at numbers. When you get right down to it, though, getting your big dreams and goals down on paper and figuring out how to accomplish them is creative. Especially when you get out those colored markers and pencils!

For more than ten years, I have hosted an annual Planning Day. We always start with looking back.

Instead of jumping into what next year looks like ...

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November 6, 2020
Is it time for pruning? from Professional Quilter

A few years back at our home on the Chesapeake Bay I replaced five KnockOut® rose bushes. For years they had been beautiful bushes, full of continuous color, and tall enough to provide a barrier between our patio and our neighbor’s. Best of all, this rose variety was supposed to be disease resistant and did not need spraying. I am not one for heavy garden maintenance, so it was wonderful to have inherited these easy-care varieties with our home purchase.

The problem was that a couple years earlier we noticed these bright, thick red shoots. Our landscaper suggested pruning ...

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October 29, 2020
Finding Your Social Media Platform from Professional Quilter

Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, Twitter, TikTok, SnapChat.

Do you get the feeling that you need to be everywhere on social media?

And then you worry that if you are, you’ll never get anything else accomplished?

You are not alone with that thought.

It does at times seem that everyone is everywhere. Just because it seems that way, it’s not really true.

And, you’re right, you won’t get anything done if you are always on social media.

The good news is that you can have a presence on social media and have it work for you. Here ...

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October 15, 2020
Evening rituals complete your day from Professional Quilter

Some time ago I wrote about the power of morning rituals and how they set you up for success.  Evening rituals can be just as powerful to end your day. They add a sense of completion, build confidence, and set you up for the next day.

If you think about it, your evening rituals can have a significant impact on how your next day goes. A good evening can translate into a good morning. Unfortunately, a bad evening often leads to a not-so-good next day.

I think of rituals as mindful practices that you make that can be come habits ...

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October 7, 2020
7 tips to start and grow your blog from Professional Quilter

Do you have a blog?

I have been blogging consistently since early 2007. First my blog posts were monthly with an occasional extra post. Within 18 months I went to twice a month. Another 18 months later, I went to weekly posts. Occasionally I posted twice a week.

This summer I announced a two-month break when I decided to post every other week.  With this short break the exception, I have not missed a week in a decade. That is a lot of writing!

Why blog?

Not everyone enjoys writing. Not everyone is good at writing. You can get past ...

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September 16, 2020
Play your own game! from Professional Quilter

It’s football season!

That was reason to celebrate in my house. My husband is a football fan. He’s a fan of most sports. And our local team, The Washington Football Team, won.

It’s been interesting to watch is happening to sports in our time of COVID-19. We’ve seen stadiums and racing parks filled with cardboard cutouts of people. Fake crowd noise.

I live in a home where “Sports Center,” “Inside the NFL,” and similar shows are often on the television. I am sure some of you can relate. Most often they become “white noise” to me ...

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August 9, 2020
Let's wrap up June (since it's already August!) Log Cabin & A Unicorn from caledonia quilter

Log Cabin - I love the colours in this.  The quiltmaker wanted it quilted "like in the magazine".

That involved feathered swirls in the blocks, from the center out to the corners, and then a simple meander in the rest of it.
No s.i.d. kept the cost down a bit.

Unicorn - this is all paper pieced.  Whoo baby!  

Thankfully the quiltmaker sent me a pic of how she wanted it quilted.  Otherwise I'd probably still be staring at it wondering what the heck to do.
I had to get a little bit of technical help from a longarm ...

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July 28, 2020
#ChallengeAccepted from Where Art & Life Meet

The photo above of my sister, me and my mother, was taken by the amazing photographer, John Kelly. We are in the midst of a heat wave here in New York City; staying in is a welcome relief. Which means more time to design, and during small breaks, watch videos like this one, which my… Continue reading #ChallengeAccepted

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July 22, 2020
Getting to the Sale from Professional Quilter

Early in my career as quiltmaker, I sold my work.

I took commissions, I did juried craft shows, and I was the only quilter in a fine arts co-op with a storefront.

I saw my share of objections to sales. I still see them today. And, today, with the coronavirus changing our sales process, you might even see more objections.

The price is too high. I need to talk to my spouse first. I can’t make a decision today. I need to look at other items. I need to touch the fabric or see it in person. I’m ...

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July 11, 2020
Private Quilt Coaching! from Lisa H Calle's Blog

I am so excited that I can barely contain my excitement! The past few months have been challenging to say the least. We are all in a similar boat… our quilt shows have been cancelled which means that all of those classes that we all signed up for just went POOF! So what’s a quilter to do… we turn to our online options. Sometimes these are good and other times not so good. I have the perfect solution!

Private quilt coaching… you are in your studio, I am in mine and we come up with a game plan specific ...

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July 8, 2020
Set Your Business GPS! from Professional Quilter

biz-gps

Recently on my way to Maryland’s Eastern Shore, I got caught in a mass of slow traffic. Anyone from these parts knows we only have one way to reach the beach, and that’s using the Chesapeake Bay Bridge in Annapolis. Its two spans date to 1952 and 1973 and can’t handle today’s traffic. Slow-downs and waits are a normal occurrence, particularly during the summer, so I try to time my trip to avoid them. Despite my best efforts, I was stopped.

Because of the nature of the journey, my GPS isn’t of much use. It ...

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June 24, 2020
Grow Your Business With a Business Journal from Professional Quilter

Business Journal

One of my favorite practices as a creative arts entrepreneur is to keep a business journal. As the leader of your business, you have so many hats to juggle that it helps to have a place to track those ideas. It also helps you make decisions about where to grow your business and yourself.

I know that my clients who keep a business journal, find it extremely valuable, a real difference-maker in their businesses. This is true regardless if journaling is done in a pretty book, on an iPad, or with our weekly Success and Strategy Summit tool.

Have you ...

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June 12, 2020
My Fabric Design Process – An Ask Me Anything Discussion from Christa Quilts

In one of my early Ask Me Anything episodes in the Christa Quilts Group on Facebook, lots of folks were interested in my fabric design process. So I’ve put together some images and files to share a peek into how the process works for me, and my experience in designing fabrics for Benartex.

GRIDWORK at Quilt Market Fall 2019

Quilt Market Fall 2019 GridworkMy Gridwork fabric line, shown at fall market last year.

About five years ago, I decided to get serious about designing fabric. As part of that goal, in 2016 I went to an industry event sponsored by Sara Lawson @sewsweetness ...

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June 9, 2020
My Pattern Design Business Experience - Part Seven! from Quilting Affection


This week I want to wrap up this blog series on starting a pattern design business and thank everyone that has read it and continues to follow my blog posts. Over the past several weeks, I have talked a little bit about myself and why I decided to start my business. Additionally, I covered what it took to start the business and how it has changed over time. Then I jumped into what my average day looks like and how I handle the challenges of running a business.

Before I close, I want to build a little more on a ...

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June 2, 2020
My Pattern Design Business Experience - Part Six! from Quilting Affection



Welcome back to my blog series on starting and running a quilt pattern business. If you have missed any of this series, be sure to check out Part 1Part 2Part 3Part 4, Part 5.

Last week, I started to highlight a few of the unexpected benefits of starting and running a business and focusing on building.  Showing how my self-confidence has grown from facing the challenges of running a business. This week, I want to focus on a few of the challenges and how I have dealt with them.

There are a lot of challenges to running ...

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May 27, 2020
Practice — and success — look different for everyone from Professional Quilter

In our current COVID-19 state, some things have opened; others have not.

Yesterday I went to an outdoor yoga class. It was at the local Y. The class was limited to nine participants. We were socially distanced, each of us having a parking place for our mat.

It was nice to participate in a “normal” activity. I came away relaxed and with a feeling of peace. Wonderful for our times.

I used to practice yoga on a regular basis. Today, I don’t practice as much as I’d like. No real reasons. I just don’t.

So what does ...

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May 26, 2020
My Pattern Design Business Experience - Part Five! from Quilting Affection



Welcome back to my blog series on starting and running a quilt pattern business. If you have missed any of this series, be sure to check out Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4 Last week I continued to talk about the commitment to starting a business, focusing more on the time commitment. This week, I want to highlight a few of the unexpected benefits of starting and running a business. These benefits are not centered around just a quilt pattern design business. Still, I believe it would come with running almost any small business.

When I was ...

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May 25, 2020
My Pattern Design Business Experience - Part Four! from Quilting Affection



Welcome back to my blog series on starting and running a quilt pattern business. If you have missed any of this series, be sure to check out Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

Last week, I talked about the commitment to starting a business. First, I hit a little upon the research that should be done before starting, then the financial and time commitments that may be required. This week I want to focus on what my average day looks like and the type of work I am doing.

Now to start with, not every day is the same; it ...

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Virtual Quilt Market Spring 2020: You’re Invited! from Christa Quilts

I’m excited to be a part of Virtual Quilt Market June 2–4, a brand new event from Quilts Inc. Traditional quilt market has been reimagined in light of current events and it’s going to be so interesting to see everyone’s creativity come shining through!

Virtual Quilt Market

I’ll debuting my 6th fabric line for Benartex called Good Vibes which is a nod to good vibes and happy times of my childhood as a kid growing up in the 80s!

There are 10 low volume prints and 10 saturated colors, all featuring my signature, colorful geometrics. Here’s a ...

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May 13, 2020
Boost your business with video conferencing from Professional Quilter

We’ve been in our current sheltering mode for nearly two months. Regardless of when we exit this, our ways of doing business will be forever different.

One of the most significant changes will be around technology. More people will continue working from home. More people will continue using the Internet than ever before for learning.

If you haven’t quite yet embraced this, it’s time to jump on that bandwagon.

On our Members’ Studio coaching call this week, we focused on using zoom, one of the video conferencing platforms. As an early adopter of zoom, I’ve seen ...

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