Wednesday, October 1, 2014

October Block Hive 11!

What is your name?  Karyn Ashley-Smith (screen name TheStylishHome, left over from a redesign/real estate staging business I used to run)
Where do you live?  SouthEast Connecticut, originally from Cape Cod, MA
Tell us about your family. I'm fortunate enough to still have my grandfather (he's 90, and still active! You might see him driving down the road in his dump truck delivering a load of loom or shells). I have one son who is grown & gone and starting a family of his own, and 2 very little ones still at home (2 &3)

My husband is super supportive (thank God!). Neither one of us can figure out why he goes along with my wild escapes....but whatever.... thankful it works for us *grin*

We have 2 dogs & 4 cats at the moment. We foster dogs, so that number fluctuates.

My boss works my schedule around my husbands schedule, so one of us is always around with the kids, but rarely are the two of us home at the same time (THAT makes for some tricky sewing time, so if I was a teensy bit late with your block, that may have been why).
Tell us about how you got interested in quilting. My ex-sister-in-law tried to teach me about 20 years ago (can I get a do-over on that please Roberta???) About 10 years ago, it just resurfaced, and the time was right!

How do you organize your fabric stash? Sorry, no pictures of this one. I am mid-move of the sewing room and would rather die than show you guys the rubble I am working through. I organize by color on bookshelves, and scrap (anything smaller than a FQ) get stored by color in clear plastic drawers. Precuts get stored together by size. I also have little shelves/totes of "specialty" type things together (holidays, metallics, asian, or anything else I'd use together....hey, it's MY system, right??)

Who is/are your favorite fabric designers?  I totally shop by what I like, not by name, but I do notice that Andover, Blank fabrics, or Moda tend to be on the selvedge when I look. 

What is one thing you have learned that you wish you knew when you first started quilting? TAKE YOUR TIME! It's not a race. Enjoy the process. YOU WILL IMPROVE.

What is your favorite sewing/quilting tool and why should we all go out and buy it? June Taylor Perfect Square Triangle Ruler.... Love her strip ruler, but the HST... PERFECT EVERY TIME!

OK......done with the BLAH BLAH BLAH...on to the good stuff!

I've been holding my breath for months, hoping and praying that no one would do my block *yay!* It's not unique, but I knew from the start it's what I wanted!

I'm a HUGE fan of books. I have about as many shelves of books throughout my house as I do shelves of fabric in my sewing So, I REALLY want a bookshelf quilt.

I'm linking to a few existing tutorials, but PLEASE feel free to add anything you want to this! I chose this quilt for this type of swap because I want all the different personalities to shine through :) 

If you want to add things in addition to books, some ideas are 
coffee/tea cup
spider webs
(please don't write in the dust LOL)

We are Christian and celebrate the holidays. We have TONS of cookbooks and gardening books, Christian related books, kids books, fiction. My husband is big on Astronomy, Bee Keeping, Mountain Bike Riding. We LOVE nature and any outside activities (camping, skiiing, sledding, fishing, biking, swimming). My daughter has a "nature/rock" collection. Psychology, motivational, home decor, crafty books....

I'm hoping you just have fun with this and feel free to embellish as much or as little as you'd like.

I'd love to have 16" high blocks, length is totally up to you. Please (if possible) use black in the background. (you have creative freedom, if you see something that you think looks like wallpaper and think that would make a cool bookshelf backing, feel free to toss it in there!)

If you have any questions, please feel free to shoot me a message. I've attached some images I found floating around the web, and a couple basic tutorials.

Thanks! Seriously cannot wait to put this together. Two of my all time favorite things in one place!


This one is my favorite and think mine will look more like this with the individual blocks.


  1. I am not in your hive neither am I a participant in the Stash Bee, but I hope to get in next year.

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE your bookshelf Bee blocks! I have been saving selvedges for years just for a bookshelf quilt, and this is the first I've seen of one in years.

    If you have any interest in receiving an extra block from me - even though I am not really in your bee - I will be happy to make one. Just email me at No worries if an extra just won't fit.

  2. ummm, I've emailed her with a HUGE YES!!! LOL!

  3. This is going to be such a fun quilt! I can't wait to see what your hive mates come up with!


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