Welcome to another Meet a Quilter get together. This month let me introduce Bea. She’s a busy, busy mom, designer, blogger, quilter. It baffles me where she finds the time and energy to do all that she does…..
Hi everyone and thanks to Carol for inviting me to over today :)
I’m Bea Lee and blog at www.beaquilter.com
btw my name is pronounce Bee-ah, not Bee- I don’t have wings or buzz around and I don’t sting ;)
First a little bit about me, for those of you who don’t know.
I’m happily married to Dan and have 3 wonderful kids and #4 (another girl!) on the way in November: Bjorn is 12, Solveig is 10, Sonja is 2 (almost 3).
I am Danish- born and raised in Denmark- HEJSA! (that’s hello or hi in Danish).
I moved to FL when I was 18 to study computer animation (my dream was to work for Disney!). I loved to draw and I was good at math in school. I did get my degree, but got sick and tired of drawing, they didn’t really help me find a job, PLUS I had met my NOW husband, AND I got saved while in college. So my view on life totally changed, I wanted to get married and have kids! (more than 1 kid at least, I was an only child, so I was BORED, but I think that’s where my creativity came from, ha)
I have now been in the US more than half my life, so I consider myself more American in a way, than Danish, though I’m very proud of my heritage and miss certain things about there, but I don’t think I could ever move back, I’m too spoiled by the way of living over here! I could go on and on about it, but let’s get to the quilting part!
In 2004 my husband and I and then 2 yr old son moved to NC while I was pregnant with our oldest daughter and the church we started attending, was offering a quilt class over the summer and I figured I’d try it out. I had sewn a little in DK in school and also at another art school I went to for a year before moving to the US, so I figured I’d make a girl quilt for the new baby.
This is what 10 yrs of loving will do to a quilt!
I was shown how to draw it on graph paper and shop for fabrics at JoAnn’s and then how to cut and make a quilt from beginning to end. The teacher asked at the end of the class if any of us would “get into” quilting and I said NO, I like drawing and scrapbooking at that time…… oh boy, little did I know!
A few years later we moved to the country side about 45 min from our old house and hubby’s work (IBM) and I got a designated craft room that soon became a quilting room! I had already started making more quilts and donating them to church (they were UGLY! looking back now, but Hey, we all gotta start somewhere right?) and in our new neighborhood there were 2 other quilters and later 4! So maybe that was what inspired me and got me hooked more, but ALSO one day my husband sat down and looked at my quilting magazines and asked me if I’d ever want/need a long arm machine, as he had seen me fight with my regular sewing machine when I was trying to quilt it, I just felt like I couldn’t justify it, but of course I’d LOVE one, so after a while “we” settled on a Voyager 17 on a summit frame and I LOVED it and started quilting for others too- though that has almost died the last few years.
I also at some point got EQ6 and later 7 and started playing with it and designing quilts, I think that was my animation/graphics background that really drew me to that (pun intended) and one day I was looking at my quilting magazines and thought maybe I should email them and see about HOW to get a design published and I picked McCall’s and they replied back to send them EQ sketches and I quickly bombarded them with 100 or so sketches, which I then had to narrow down to maybe my top 20 and I think from the beginning they booked 3 if I remember correctly, my first one being this owl quilt that was published in Sept/Oct 2012!
I have a page on my blog about other published quilts.
One thing you might not know if you haven’t been published is that usually you get the fabrics for free from whatever manufacturer, PLUS you get paid to make the quilt of course (you have to ship it to them) PLUS you get the quilt back. So a lot of these quilts I’ve turned around and given away, I guess you could sell them again too, I just don’t have much luck with selling quilts.
Since we moved to the country, my local JoAnn’s or quilt store was almost an hour away so I started shopping mostly online for fabrics and tools and one of my favorite sites is connecting threads, where I also later started selling patterns with here.
I also have an etsy store
I also have to say that recently I became an ambassador for Island Batik, and love getting FREE fabrics and making something fun out of them.
Now WHAT inspires me the most????
YOU GUYS ahem LADIES!! I love looking on blogs and pinterest for ideas and inspiration, but blogs keeps my interest going and comments on my blog, keeps me motivated to post and do more.
Quilting is sort of a solitary hobby, but we are all part of the quilting community online and I LOVE that and have now become friends with a lot of you even though we’ve never met (that includes you Carol!)
I love blog hops and quilt alongs, BOMs and swaps, and I’ve hosted a several as well.
What do I currently have going on?
Since 2014 I started a monthly Accuquilt GO challenge, every month of the 15th I’ll show a different die and project for inspiration and it was an idea I had and at the end of 2013 I emailed Accuquilt about the idea and to ask permission to do it and they LOVED it and sent me some dies to feature (I already had quite a few) and they’ve sent me more since then, PLUS they recently sent me the GO BIG! which I didn’t expect at all, but I’m very grateful for and LOVE it.
A couple of QALs I’m doing this year are Covering America a weekly block for each state using a store bought pattern.
I’m also doing a Be Attitudes monthly QAL with a store bought pattern.
And a PEANUTS! QAL that’s very popular using free patterns by tweloquilting.
Then I have some swaps going on too.
One is a round robin that’s a lot of fun and this is the 2nd one I’m hosting.
PLUS a pincushion swap! We make one pincushion per month and send it to someone else, this is the 2nd year and there’s SOME who’s done it since the beginning, so like me they have quite the collection now. We’re doing 3 months at a time and just started this round, so the next one will be October-December.
Look here to see the awesome pincushions already sent.
I also like to machine embroider! I now have a 6 needle machine and have LOTS of fun with it.
Yeah, if you know me, you know I have a “thing” for owls.
I also like to make clothes for Sonja and Solveig and sometimes myself too :)
I don’t know what else to say, it was tough for me to do this post as I’m usually not the LOOK AT ME type, even though I show stuff on my blog it’s not because of ME, I feel like God gave me this gift of quilting and I want to GIVE back by inspiring, teaching and giving away quilts etc.
Thanks again for reading this!
♥THANK YOU♥ Bea for sharing with us today.
Whew! See what I mean… how does she find the time to get it all done??? Be sure to hop over to Bea's blog and join the next round of the pincushion swap. It’s a ton of squishy fun!!!
How about a giveaway!
Look at Bea’s patterns at connecting threads and leave a comment telling us which one you’d like to win! She’ll pick 3 winners on the 20th.
2. Bea will pick 3 winners randomly on July 20th