Thursday, September 29, 2016

Design to Inspire - September Challenger Laura Piland

Meet our September Challenger: Laura Piland!

My husband and I grew up in the same town in Kansas and met in high school just before he left for basic training in the United States Air Force. He served four years, and was stationed in Kansas for the same amount of time. Then we moved to Las Vegas, Nevada for his job. I taught middle school math for most of the time we lived there. I loved it! Math has always been my favorite subject!
Also while living in Las Vegas, I got an inkling to make a quilt for a friend after she had a baby. I had sewn a little bit as a kid, but never made a quilt. I used internet tutorials and YouTube videos to teach myself everything I needed to know! I also called my mom and grandma for quite a bit of advice! That first quilt was made six years ago. As soon as it was finished, I started another. And another. And…I was hooked!

About four years ago, we decided we wanted to move somewhere with lots of trees. We also wanted to move to a small town and start a family. Those desires led us to Mountain Grove, a small town in southwest Missouri. Since moving here, we have had two boys. The oldest is now 3 ½ and the youngest is 1 ½. I am currently staying at home with them. This new challenge of dealing with toddlers has led to much more quilting! I like to say quilting is to me what fishing is to my husband! It keeps me sane!

Sweet Hexie Pillow with Sew Bee It! Collection
Mountain Grove is about an hour away from the “big city” of Springfield, Missouri. The area is referred to as the Ozarks. There are lots of trees and hills, called the Ozark Mountains. We live on a small farm about ten minutes into the country. The dirt road that leads to our house has trees covering several parts of the road. The days just started to get cooler this week, and I am really looking forward to the leaves changing colors! On the way to our house, there are five low water bridges. I had never heard of those before moving here!

Basically, they are concrete patches in the road where the creek flows right over the road. So we drive through the creek five times on the way to our house! During a heavy rainstorm, the water level in the creek becomes too high to pass through. The rest of time, my boys like when we drive fast through the water to make big splashes! Oh, the life with boys!

Pillows and Quilt with Sew Bee It!
Mini Quilted Books
In the six years since I started quilting, I’ve made 79 quilts! 38 of those this year! I’ve made mini quilts, mini mini quilts, table toppers, table runners, baby quilts, and large quilts too. I sometimes make things other than quilts, but I always go back to quilting. In 2014, I wanted to make 14 quilts in 2014, but I didn’t hit that goal. So I changed it to 15 quilts in 2015 – and ended up making 27! I think I’m well on my way to my 16 quilts in 2016 goal too! Ha!

 (You can see all my quilt finishes on my blog!)

Sew Bee It! Quilt Close-up
I don’t really have a set style or type of quilt that I love. However, I really love trying new things! I rarely make the same quilt twice. I always seek out new techniques and short cuts. I don’t want to waste the precious sewing time I get! I tend to like more modern quilting designs, but I don’t limit myself! I’m always willing to learn something new!

I sew almost exclusively on my vintage Bernina 930 Record. I bought it just after starting my first quilt. I quickly realized the “just in case” hand-me-down machine I had was causing more frustration than it was worth! I use my Bernina to piece and quilt. I have a walking foot for straight-line quilting and a darning foot for free motion quilting. I’m not sure I could trade it for any other machine! I love it!

 Finished Quilt with Sew Bee It! Collection
This year, I discovered that writing quilt patterns feeds my love of math and teaching! I have written a few patterns and will be releasing some more very soon! It is a goal of mine to teach quilting classes at quilt shops or quilt guilds one day!

Sew Bee It! Apron 
The online quilting community has really helped me find my “tribe!” I love connecting with quilters all over the world! I’d love to “meet” you and get to know you too! You can find me around the web on Facebook, Instagram, Ello, Pinterest, and of course, my blog. I like to share the stories behind the quilts I make along with behind the seams photos. In fact, I have a blog post up about my Desire to Inspire Challenge with lots of behind the seams photos!

Sew Bee It! Weaving Pillow
Facebook: Slice of Pi Quilts -
Instagram: @sliceofpilife -
Ello: @sliceofpilife -
Pinterest: Slice of Pi Quilts -

I have truly enjoyed the Desire to Inspire challenge this month! I still have a fabric panel and some other fabrics left over, so be sure to keep an eye out for more projects from this fabric line! Thank you Henry Glass & Co. for the opportunity to work with these beautiful fabrics!


Shelly Comiskey said...

I LOVE each one! Laura you've done a FABULOUS Job!!

Miriam said...

Laura, your projects are all delightful! I especially like your hexi pillow. You definitely inspire! Best wishes to you from Kansas!

Rosa said...

So beautiful fabrics.

Danette Stankovich said...

Very cute projects!