Yesterday, online learning platform Bluprint, formerly Craftsy, sent an email to instructors saying the company would be closing over the next few months. This was at once surprising and completely unsurprising.
When Craftsy began about 10 years ago (because a guy received a quilt from his aunt), the quilters I knew loved it. It provided something new in the form of online learning, and it was well done. You could interact with the instructors, get answers to your questions, post your progress and make friends with others in your classes. It was amazing.
It grew like wildfire but then a couple of years ago it was sold to NBCUniversal and gradually became Bluprint, which most people I know did not like so much.
I never bought anything from bluprint, but I had plenty of patterns and classes in my “own forever” library which moved over from Craftsy. “Own forever” was their terminology, but now I wonder. You can’t own something that’s only viewable on a website that has ceased to exist.
Yesterday I downloaded—actually re-downloaded is more accurate—all of the patterns I had purchased. But now I need to hurry up and watch all of the classes I’d purchased before they disappear forever. Can you say binge watching?!
I confess that there are some I have never opened. I can’t say why exactly because they’re all topics or techniques that interest me greatly. And the teachers are top-notch. I especially love Christina Cameli, Debbie Caffrey and Pepper Cory.
I’ll spend a lot of time watching classes before Bluprint shuts down. My hope is that the instructors can eventually own the content and share it with us however they choose. It’s really a sad day for them and for users around the world who once loved this platform.
In the studio, I’ve been tackling UFOs, starting new quilts and machine quilting on the HQ Capri.
I spent a couple of weeks piecing a Gypsy Wife. I started this several years back but the pattern was full of errors and I only pieced one block before I gave up.
It’s a really great design and it’s fun to make, but I recommend that you get the most recent version of the pattern, and also that you join the Facebook groups for Gypsy Wife. They have files with all the corrections, which are invaluable.
I started out thinking I’d go for a 1950s Denyse Schmidt look, kind of vintage. But then it took on a life of its own and it’s just very bright and wild.
Lately my goal has been to see how many different genres of fabrics I can use and successfully make them work together.
This quilt has batiks, 30s reproductions, shirtings, uglies, neon, modern and fabric from the 80s, 90s and every decade since.
There’s Tula Pink, Cherry House, Art Gallery, Michael Miller, Paintbox Studio and Moda.
There’s Jen Kingwell (who also designed Gypsy Wife), Kaffe Fassett, BasicGrey and Cotton + Steel.
Ta Dot! from Michael Miller, Flea Market Fancy by Denyse Schmidt, souvenir pineapples from my trip to Maui and tiny prints by Janine Vangool all found a home.
For a scrap quilt like this, I think less about color and more about contrast. Each fabric needs to contrast in some way with its neighbors. The scale or the value (darkness or lightness) or the style must be different in some way.
Color is almost irrelevant. My stash contains fabric that I like (mostly), so that means bright colors. Even though I don’t think about color, my quilts end up being brightly colored! The moral of this story is to buy fabric that you LOVE. Then use it in your quilts and you’ll love them, too.
Can I tell you a secret? I am highly annoyed when a fabric store employee asks me what I plan to do with the fabric I’m buying. I have to grit my teeth to keep from saying something nasty. I’m a quilter, so I’m going to use it in my quilts! When and where, exactly, is unknown, but that’s what makes it so much fun!
Now I’m off to watch allllllll the Craftsy classes I bought but never watched. It will take me a while.