Greetings from South Jersey! This is the final week of the 2017 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop, and I hope you’ve enjoyed visiting all of my colleagues. I know I’ve enjoyed getting to know each of them over the past months while we planned for this!

New Jersey road map
See that part with, like, one road? That little dashed circle is my neck of the woods!

The Basics

There’s a bit of background already on the “About Becca” page, so I’m just going to stick to bullet points so I don’t repeat myself too much.

  • I live with my husband, two teenagers, a big galoot of a Labrador retriever, and a charming fluffy hamster on my family’s cranberry farm. I’m a fifth generation cranberry grower. (You can watch a video of me talking about my family on the Ocean Spray website. Seriously.)
  • I’m only a second generation quilter. My mom is my best friend, my biggest fan, and my partner in crime. She’s my enabler–“Just buy the bolt!”

    Blackhawk crew chief
    I loved my helicopter.
  • My husband and I met in Germany, and eloped in Denmark. (We were both stationed over there with the US Army. I was a Blackhawk helicopter crew chief for six years.)

    New York City marathon finisher
    In skinnier days.
  • I learned to sew because I couldn’t find maternity pants long enough for me.
  • I learned to quilt because. Just because.
  • I’m a runner. I’ve been kind of on sabbatical for a while (and the scale says “for waaaay too long”) but I still consider myself a runner. Why do I run marathons? Because.
  • “Because” is why I do most things.

The Quilts

I started quilting in the fall of 2011. I took a class at a local quilt shop (hi The Village Quilter i love you) and was hooked. I’ve spent the last five years soaking in everything I can about quilts, and quilters, and fabric, and techniques, and I can’t guarantee depth of knowledge, but there’s certainly breadth. You could call me a jack-of-all-trades, master of none.

It’s been interesting trying to define my quilty voice. The more challenges and swaps I enter, the more I discover what my style is. I like a lot of color and texture and variation. One quilter described my work as “perky,” which might be pretty accurate.

vintage market landscape quilt
Our county fair holds a quilt challenge. For this one, we were given a fat quarter of Riley Blake’s Vintage Market. I think this was three Game of Thrones episodes worth of fussy cutting, and it was worth it.
Nevertheless She Persisted landscape art quilt
This was made for the Women’s March Craft Swap. It now resides in Germany, but also appears on unitedwequilt.com.
row of jelly roll race quilts
I, uh, may have a jelly roll problem.
purple squares quilt
I love this version of the BQ quilt. I made it for my young niece, and had fun free-motion quilting it. She cried when she opened it. She wanted a Monster High doll.
rainbow mini quilt
This is my absolute favorite mini, and I’m pretty sure I’ve overshared it, but…I don’t care. “More Alike” was inspired by my experience at the 2016 Sew Pro Convention.

The Upshot

I’ve given a lot of thought to what kind of advice I can give about quilting, about blogging, about anything really, and the best I can come up with is this:

DON’T BE AFRAID.

Don’t be afraid to use your voice. The people who go to your website, or your Instagram account, or Facebook, or whatever, they all go there because they’re interested in what you have to offer.

Don’t be afraid to experiment. Cut that fabric, the only person who can appreciate it in your stash is YOU. When you put it out there for everyone, you can still look at it. Try that technique, you might love it, and if it really sucks, no one has to know about it but you. Check out that self-hosted WordPress, you’re a creative person and you can make it your own! (Um, but in the case of your blog, make sure you do a back-up before you experiment, mmm-kay?)

Don’t be afraid to reach out to other people. We’re all more alike than we realize. We all have something to learn, and something to teach, and something to say that’s worth listening to. I’ve been lucky enough to meet some amazing quilters, and they’re all really approachable. Break that ice!

Rainbow Dash Come At Me Bro

I was kind of nervous (okay, scared) about heading out to Sew Pro last year. I didn’t know anyone there, and I wasn’t sure I had the skills or the knowledge to feel like I fit in. I wrote a post about how I (mostly) got past that.

So, now you get to go and visit the other quilt bloggers in my hive! Make sure to stop in with our fearless hive leader, Leanne of She Can Quilt, and enter the fabulous giveaways. Then check out the other co-hosts of the 2017 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop for links to the remaining blogs!

The co-hosts:

Leanne : She Can Quilt

Yvonne : Quilting Jet Girl

Beth : Cooking Up Quilts

The following members of the Let’s Bee Quilt’n hive are posting today:

Sharon  : Yellow Cat Quilt Designs

Gwen : Tillalili

Wendy : Pieceful Thoughts of My Quilting Life

Tell me about a time you were afraid to do something, and what you did to try to get over it. Did it work?

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

53 Replies to “Welcome to Week Four of the 2017 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop!

  1. Hi Becca, I enjoyed reading your post and learning more about you. You are so right about being needing to be brave. I am just finding my quilting voice. Being part of the 2017 New Quilt Bloggers group has helped. I learned new technical skills, but mainly I learned how to be brave and find my voice. I was able to do this by reading the blogs of others and then writing my own blog posts. I am going to Spring Quilt Market for the first time next week. If I start feeling afraid, I will reread your post. Thanks!

    1. Thank you, April! It’s been good getting to know you, too. I hope you’ll post about Market when you get back, because I’m SO JEALOUS and dying to hear what you think!!

  2. I’m so happy you posted your location! I love finding new quilters from New Jersey! I’m in West Long Branch, on the shore up near the top.
    Your BQ quilt is beautiful, and your comment about your niece made me laugh. I’ve disappointed several children over the years.

    1. HIIIIII CAN YOU HEAR ME YELLING DOWN HERE??!? I’ve been running across nearby quilters in the strangest places lately. I also get a kick out of hearing about disappointed children, so maybe we should get together for coffee….

  3. Great to meet you! I have overcome my fear of public speaking by just jumping in and doing it. I meditate before I speak, and just put myself in God’s hands and let HIm take over…it worked!

    1. Good for you! I’m glad you found a strategy that works for you. Fear of public speaking can be crippling.

  4. I laughed out loud while reading your blog. You’ve got a great voice in the quilting blogosphere. Thanks to the New Quilters’ Blog Hop, I’m following you. Keep up the fun work!

    1. That sounds like it should be a slogan for something…hmmmm. Glad I’ve gotten to know you through the hop!

  5. This made me laugh. And cry. I will go out and buy a few bolts. And cut into my favorite fat quarter. Love u

  6. So wonderful to get to know more about you today! Yes, don’t be afraid is amazing advice and I would add that especially in this community, which is by and large friendly, welcoming, and enclusive. Thank you so much for joining and participating in the hop!

    1. Thank you for hosting! It’s been a wonderful experience, thanks to all of the friendly and welcoming New Quilt Bloggers and co-hosts!

  7. Hi Becca…. It was fun to see how different each jelly roll race quilt looked. That’s a great problem to have! You made it look fun! Great advice about using your fabric. A Fat Quarter Bundle isn’t any good just sitting on a shelf. And there will always be a new collection coming out that can take it’s place. Happy Quilting!

    1. You should have seen all the jelly roll lint on the floor during that project! I left footprints of it all around the house. It was kind of amazing, but difficult to photograph. 🙁

  8. Love NJ and cranberry bogs! I grew up in PA and now live in Massachusetts and Maine and remember fondly many weeks in Cape May. NJ always feels like almost home to me. SewPro looks interesting but haven’t updated their website. I think it is always good to try something out of our comfort zone.

    1. Oh, yay! My husband is from PA, and I grew up in Cape May County. We’re practically neighbors! I keep hearing rumors that there will be another Sew Pro, but I wish they would update the website to reflect that. It feels like the momentum is being lost…and it was such a terrific experience.

  9. Becca,

    I loved learning more about you. I like that you do things “because”: you sound like a neat person. Keep up the good work. Thanks for the tip of trying. I like that.

    1. Thanks, Kathy! I hope you keep on trying new things. I can’t wait to see what kinds of tutorials you come up with!

  10. Becca it was so nice to meet you today. First, thanks to you and your husband for your service!! I am glad you are blogging, I feel you. I’m with your Mom, buy the bolt.

    1. Thanks, Jan, it’s been good getting to know you, too! We’re going to have to come up with a “buy the bolt” meme.

  11. haahaha cracked me up – “may have a jelly roll problem.” I bought my first one a few months ago and am still utilizing the pieces in projects (see baby on the way post being the most recent).
    I wonder if I could be called a “perky” quilter also. *grins*
    Popped by from the hop, stop by for a visit some time.
    http://thriftshopcommando.blogspot.com

    1. Tami, I think you qualify as “perky” and then some! Especially if the All About Me on your blog is accurate. I totally dig that Snapdragon description.

  12. I enjoyed your blog post. You’ve accomplished quite a bit. I’m visiting from Blooming Quilters’ Hive. I did kind of have a fear of the whole blogging thing. Belonging to the group has helped.

    1. The group really has helped. Finding people with similar concerns definitely makes fear more manageable! I’ve completely changed my site, and I feel like I’m finally finding my voice (and people seem to like it, so yay!).

  13. Finding our authentic voice is so important, and I try to remind myself that it can take a lot of ‘mistakes’ and creative exploration to know what it is we truly want to say. My favourite quilters are always those who have their own style, even when that style is not my own, because I love to see how they explore their own voice and bring their unique creative perspective to the world. Thanks for sharing your thoughts – I really enjoyed your story and your beautiful creations!

    1. Beautifully put! I infinitely prefer to look at truly individual work. Even if I don’t “like” it, I can usually appreciate it and learn something from it. It’s always worthwhile!

  14. Hi Becca, It never ceases to amaze me how many quilters consider themselves introverts yet then have the guts to push themselves out of their comfort zone and do amazing things. I’m in the first group, but not in second. It was fun getting to “meet” you through your blog. I like the saying you have at the top and I love your jelly roll problem. 🙂

    1. Janice, I’ve seen your blog. I’m pretty sure you qualify for both groups!! Thanks for visiting.

  15. Great post! I love how you have just dived in and have done what YOU wanted to with quilting … experimenting and finding out your own quilting voice!

    1. Thank you, Gail! My mother would tell you that I’ve pretty much always done what I wanted. And I would tell her that it all turned out JUST FINE.

  16. What an entertaining read! Thanks for the map showing where you live – it helped a lot. Love your quilts. The fussy cut challenge quilt was definitely worth the effort! And i laughe at the story about your niece!

    1. Thank you, Sue! I used to carry a map of the state around with me, because no one would believe there’s such a rural area in New Jersey, of all places. I’m a big fan of visual aids! That challenge quilt was a lot of fun. I ended up making a different version to keep for myself during a little “workshop” I gave for a friend! (I had cut way too many pieces to use in the first quilt…so I didn’t have to cut any more. Phew.)

  17. Becca, I love you. Why you ask? Because. hahaha 😀 Anyway I guess I never knew that you ran marathons! I’m signed up for the Disney Marathon next January and I’m terrified!

    Anyway, I love your quilts. The jelly roll fence of quilts is so great! and that mini, just let me swoon a bit over here (again!)

    something i’m afraid of that i’ve done? starting to do pattern designing and thinking that i never had enough ideas that would make it. Honestly JUST DO IT! that’s what happened. and then trying something new if it doesn’t work out.

    PS your “come at me bro” gif is the best

    1. Why do I love Sherry? Because, because, because, because, becaaauuuuuse! Because of the wonderful things she does!
      Wizard of Oz

  18. Becca, I love your post and reading about you and your quilts–it was energizing. I do love my cranberries mostly in my scones so I’ll be thinking about you when I’m eating one wondering if they came from your farm. I am really impressed with your service and learning how you started sewing. You and I probably both have the same problems finding pants long enough for our legs. I just love summer when I can wear capris. I’m also in love with jelly rolls or the 2.5″ strips–there are just so many patterns you can make with them. Glad to have gotten to know you through the blog hop and looking forwarding to reading future posts. BTW, your website is awesome!

    1. Thank you! I’m glad to hear you’re eating your cranberries…and your scones! I recently discovered the joys of cropped boyfriend jeans, which I’m pretty sure look just like the pants I wore in middle school that I got teased endlessly about. Alas, I was ahead of my time. Glad you like the site! I learned a lot from the other New Quilt Bloggers and made a lot of changes!

  19. Hello! Love your advice to not be afraid! I really wanted to go to SewPro, but it just wasn’t the right time. Would love to go next time though! I’m going to my very first Quilt Market next week! Thank you for sharing your work!

    1. I can’t wait to read your blog post about Market!! Because of course, there WILL be a photo-rich post, right? RIGHT??!?

  20. Becca, nice to meet you and great into post! You are a women of many talents! My husband and I eloped too!
    I just love how you quilted the circles in the background of your niece’s quilt! Great job!

    1. Thank you! I’d love to hear your wedding story–ours was far less romantic than it sounds, but it’s really all in how you tell the story, right?

  21. Hi Becca! I love your quilts, I can tell they reflect your personality, so full of life! Your blog is so cool and fun too. It was a pleasure stopping by 😃
    ~Abbie from the Hop

    1. Thanks, Abbie! I’ve made a lot of changes to the blog thanks to the tips from fellow New Quilt Bloggers. It’s come a long way!

    1. I’m ridiculously proud to say that I haven’t bought one since I finished all of those! (Yet.)

  22. Hello Becca, its lovely getting to know you. I love the way you justify things ‘just because’ I can relate to that 100% it covers everything with no need for an explanation! I totally agree with using your voice, sound advice. Even if it means stepping out of your comfort zone, you’ll be glad you did. What a lovely post I enjoyed reading it thank you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *