Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Let me run this by you...

I was cutting some fabric yesterday for my fabric bundles and started thinking about what a person could craft out of the 18,5" squares included in every bundle. I know that a lot of you buy my fabrics with a plan in mind, but I wondered if I might inspire someone on the fence about buying a bundle by offering some suggestions on how to use the fabric.
Anyone familiar with this blog or my online store knows that I not only pattern and dye the fabric, but use it in a variety of projects.
Like this:



and this:



In the past, I've offered the bundles as an entry into my hand-dyed fabrics. For a little money you could get a variety of patterns and colors and hopefully be as enamored of hand dyes as I am. The bundles were comprised of at least 4 different colorways and/or patterns, but they didn't necessarily coordinate together. They were usually leftovers from whatever I happened to be dyeing that week.
I want to take these bundles in a new direction by offering coordinated groupings of colors and patterns that are specifically geared for use with the bundles. I should stop right now and say that I'm just starting to work on this idea. Hell, I only came up with it yesterday. But I've already have my first project and will hopefully be able to officially roll it out in the next couple weeks.





This pillow top is crafted out of 16, 5" squares. It's very simple to sew together and, because each bundle has 18 squares, it features a pieced backing so that every bit of hand dye is used.




I'm currently describing this bundle grouping as "acid" colors, but if anyone has a better or more enticing name, please chime in. My plan is to have 2-3 different bundle groupings that have the same color theme, but might not all consist of the same patterns. Make sense? Right now I'd like to include this grouping as well as one that focuses on reds and aquas. Again, suggestions appreciated.
When I add these bundles to my store, I'm going to include a free pattern detailing how to make this 18" square pillow for those who purchase a bundle. In the interest of making the pattern accessible to all, I used a commercial cotton for the remainder of the pillow and binding. That information will be included in the pattern along with detailed and illustrated instructions. The PDF instructions will be emailed.
I'm also working on a baby quilt that uses 2 bundles for the top. I love the idea that you could make something out of hand dyed, one-of-a-kind fabrics for the price of a couple bundles and some solid commercial cotton.
It's probably a marketing faux pas to talk about this before it's all ready, but I don't care. I like to think of it as building anticipation and also, I'm so excited about it I don't really want to keep it to myself.
Back with more about this soon.

30 comments:

Jen said...

I would be REALLY into this! So, you know, here's a vote of support! Great idea!

Jessica said...

I think it's a terrific idea, because (and I hope I'm not alone here) one of the things that's keeping using hand-dyes at arm's length for me is confidence in combining them well. This type of offering would be a stepping stone of sorts, I think.

As for a name for that first bundle, when I saw the pillow, I thought "citrus"--but not sure how to reconcile the blue. Whatever you call it, that combo of fabrics is beautiful!

Karen said...

This is a great idea! Its very much like when commercial fabric designer make samples of products using their fabrics and then sell those patterns or books of patterns. Only yours are 10X's cooler ;)

Charlotte Lader said...

fantastic idea!

stephie @ narrative self said...

Hi Malka, I have to say that like Jessica, citrus was the first thing that came to my mind!

I think it's a great idea, I understand from a friend that runs quilting courses that people like to make their project EXACTLY like the samples she brings. Saves thinking I guess, and you know what you're going to get - in your case, something really special :)

r0ssie said...

I think it is a great idea. Even just to have the color-coordinated bundles where a person knows what they are getting would be great.

Amy said...

Great ideas! I don't think I even knew you had these little bundles. I might have to put that on my wish list... :) I've been dying (oh! ha! totally unintentional!) to get my hands on some of your fabric!

Nichole said...

i think it's a fun idea. i have never used hand dyed fabrics so it would be a fun and safe way to give it a go without a huge investment.

Cori said...

Love the idea!

Gail Baar said...

I would definitely be interested in bundles of fabric, and a baby quilt would be a perfect idea for me. I am looking for handmade fabric for little quilts so they are just a little different than usual-can't wait!

Amanda said...

I've been reading your blog for a while and just yesterday looked through your etsy. I loved everything and wanted to buy a bundle, but didn't know what I could use the 5" squares for. So, now I think you are reading my mind! I would love to purchase a bundle that comes with a pattern for a pillow. I already have too many handmade pillows, but one more won't hurt, right?

Jennifer said...

What about "electric" instead of "acid"?

Jilly said...

I was also thinking citrus -- I see someone else has already suggested it though. Sounds fun.

Carol said...

I have bought one of you bundles before. Love it. but due to the diversity of colors had a bit of trouble incorporating into a project. But have since used them all in other things. I love the idea of colorways together. And how lovely that you would include a pattern!!

Beth said...

When I looked at your etsy shop a mere 2 hours ago there were some bundles to buy and now they are GONE!! I would love to buy bundles or scraps - absolutely! I love the idea of making patchwork pillows with these. I have been loving your work for some time! Please let us know when you place more in the shop!

larissa said...

Great idea! Please reserve several bundles for me!

ashlina said...

awesome job. i am so impressed. loving your blog

Donna Gillette said...

Malka, I've been following you for a while and anticipating my latest fabric order from you. Your idea to coordinate packaging via specific colorways/projects is a great idea. For those of us who love your sense of color combines might I suggest offering packages that include the opportunity to copy or even expand upon what you've created and shared with us on your blog. For instance, I would love a package that allows me to make the shoe-fly quilt in all the various fabrics that you used or enough of whatever current fabric colorways you are making. Because of you I am researching the Gee's Bend quilts and planning a quilt for my daughter. Cant wait to see the other suggestions as well as what your fertile mind comes up with!
Donna Gillette
Holland Patent, NY

wishes, true and kind said...

Sounds like a great idea to me!

Kathy said...

that's a great idea to offer a project with the squares. I tend to avoid buying those "bake shop style" bundles of fabric cuz I have no idea what to do with such small pieces.....

connie said...

I vote yes!!! I love the idea. I think if you coordinate them you should offer some that are not coordinated for those of us who like to make things on the wild side. :-)

Amber said...

I think it's a terrific idea!

Amy said...

Another vote for citrus here.

Cindy said...

Your work is always so beautiful. The colors are so exciting.

Ravenhill said...

Fabulous idea! Your fabrics are so enticing... You have the best eye candy here!
Emily xoxo

Patricia said...

Love your idea---but now when you put them on your etsy, they will probably be all sold out before I get a chance to buy one or two or three :-(---I will keep looking!

ArtShades said...

It's got to be Citrus - first thing that came to my mind and others it seems! Lovely idea and your enthusiasm for it builds anticipation quite brilliantly. Great marketing I'd say! I might even be tempted and I live in the UK....

Cheryl Arkison said...

I'd call that the Mango bundle.

Personally, I'm not a kit/bundle person. But there are a lot of people who are. And it would be a great intro to your fabric.

julochka said...

i love the idea of a bundle with a purpose, even if i might not actually make the intended item. :-) bring them on, i say! :-)

thefinaltouchideas said...

That is a great idea!