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What are you passionate about?

I’m sure you’ve heard the old saying, The things you are passionate about are not random, they are your calling ~Fabienne Fredrickson

Fear and discomfort can paralyze you unless you choose to lean into your passion. When opportunity knocks, you are tempted to answer, right? Opening that door will be scary, will make your palms sweat, but may ultimately push you toward what you’ve been ignoring.

The things you are passionate about are actually your calling. When I decided to write my first book, I couldn’t help but wonder if I really knew enough about creating knitting patterns. Would people be able to follow along? Would I lose them? Would they love my style?

I realized that I DID know what I was doing. I WAS doing it. I had (still have) a successful Etsy shop, my blog had (still has) a strong following, I was doing interviews with successful creatives, and working my life was full.

My passion was my calling and I believe, to this day it still is. My books, Dishcloth Diva and Dishcloth Diva Knits On, are still going strong. They are found on Amazon, and will be added to my Etsy shop where my fans of my patterns can have them, as well.

I’ve recently tried a new adventure. Real Estate. For those that know me, and those that are just getting to know me, know that I’m realistic, emotional, passionate, sociable, grounded, adapt well to a situation, outgoing, though far removed from the “typical” real estate professional.

Oh, I wanted to be the best real estate agent in the worst way. I would spend the day at the office, look at properties online, send out handwritten notecards. People often ask me, why did you get into real estate? Well, my answer is always the same…HGTV.

#thestruggleisreal

the struggle is real

I love the glamour side of showing a buyer a property, helping the seller get to the point to be able to list their home. But, what others don’t show/tell is the other side of real estate. The scary contracts, the negotiating and more negotiating, knowing your role, feeling a sense of concern for your sellers/buyers when it’s not going so well, being accused of putting words of others in their mouth, being so stressed out that my body struggles to stay well, and most importantly, for me, is challenge in making everyone happy. Because, as we know, that is utterly impossible.

The emotional side to all this is real. It’s a hard job. No, I’m not afraid of hard work, but honestly, the older I get the more I realize it’s on my terms. I come from a hospice nursing background where my job was to console and educate families losing loved ones.

Why do I mention that? That’s who I am. Whether I want to challenge that or not. I love who I am. I love the person I’ve become as I’ve gotten older. I just don’t love being stressed over something that’s not in my control.

Well, nothing is actually. 🙂

Today was an eye opener for me. I’m not sure where it came from, but it came through pretty loud this morning. I’m not about to ignore it.

Blogging is my passion; it’s something I’ve neglected because of the recent job shift. I’m about to find a way to take this passion of writing and put it into something that will help others see their passion, live through mine, and be a part of a community that feeds into a creative side.

blog computer

Because that’s what’s important, right? And, the reason you follow me here. Thanks for that!

What’s next, Deb, you’re probably wondering? Please stay tuned and find out. I’m sure it will be creative and involve a lot of knitting and writing.

So, for now, friends, decide what you’re passionate about. It may just be your calling.

Hugs,

Deb

 

baby blankets, deb buckingham, dishcloth diva, etsy, http://schemas.google.com/blogger/2008/kind#post, knitting books, knitting dishcloths, knitting patterns, ravelry

Am I Missing Something?

Hi Knitters!

Haven’t we often heard that question, whether someone truly didn’t understand your intentions or they just missed something. Seriously, there’s a way in which it is interpreted.

Right?

I need to explain to you all what exactly I do, and who exactly my audience is, at this time.

I began designing in the year 2008. My focus was myself at that time, as I was somewhat of a beginner knitter. After I watched countless videos, read 100’s of books, and watched my friends as they made their way through a beautiful project, I realized what kind of designer I should be.

A designer that focuses on the simple. Simple Detailing. Simple stitches. Just. Simple. From that time till now, my audience has been beginners. I’ve taught beginners. I’ve walked beginners through issues. I’ve designed for beginners.

So, when someone questions my intentions from said project, I get a bit defensive. Though, after reading back the posts she and I wrote, I quickly deleted it. Why? Because it goes back to what I just wrote, I’m a simple designer with the beginning knitter in mind. They don’t know how to stripe the yarn or how many stitches to cast on or even do the math to figure them out. I love to be the one to do that for them. I often receive emails asking me, if I used your dishcloth pattern and wanted to make it bigger, how would I do that. Simply put…know your gauge, stitches per inch, with said yarn and needle, and multiply that number by how many inches you want the finished object to be.

Simple for the more advanced knitter, but not for the beginner.

This design is adorable, right? I’m just attempting to show you all what kind of designs you will continue to see. If you’re following me on Facebook or this blog, you quickly realize, the patterns you see are easy. Step by step instructions. No charts.
I love doing these. For me, it’s a pleasure to help the novice knitter get their bearings. It’s tough. We all were beginners at one time. We all had to take baby steps. So, there has to be patterns out there that address the beginner. Though, with that said, there are many knitters, myself included, who love a change of pace, a break from the sweater or shawl we’re working on. THIS type of project is perfect.
*stepping down (carefully) off my soap box*
Let me introduce my newest design.
I adore this pattern. And the texture it creates is thick and perfect for your kitchen. And did I mention it has the coolest, most simple, unique Icord? It does!
So, stick with me as I show you new patterns that will keep you sane or help you learn.
Hugs to you all!! You know my heart and how much I appreciate you ALL.
Knit On!!
Deb

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Storytelling, Knitting, and more

Hello Knitters!

I’ve been pondering all week.

What my next project will be. Do I write a story/novel? Do I create an ebook? Maybe a few new patterns. Do I…Oh the things I could do.

I write. I knit. I drink coffee. I drink tea. I love a good book (which you’ll hear about at the end). I love yummy yarns.

So, I decided to put them all together and create a short story and pair it with a few NEW patterns. I’m excited about this short story and I’m sure you will be too. It will be a fast read, yet fulfilling.

I can’t share the details (just yet), though I will tell you it’s set in a small town bookstore.

So, setting notes are complete. I’m working on the details of the rest. Characters are being sketched out. *smiling* I can’t wait to share with you.

I mentioned I read a great book recently. It’s called The Storied Life Of A.J. Fickry. I have been searching for that one book that could take me away for hours. After many failed attempts, I found it.

It was the one book that inspired my thoughts. In a small way, but in a way no less.

Click the link and head over to Amazon to read the details. It’s about a small town bookseller and his life. It has humor, romance, a touch of suspense. Friendships lost. New ones begin. Second chances at love. Book lovers will love this book.

So, my friends, stay close to this blog as I will be giving bits and pieces of my current WIP–short story meets knitting patterns.

Knit On!

Deb
designer/knitter/author/writer
Need a new pattern?

books, deb buckingham, dishcloth diva, fresh lemons, freshly pieced, http://schemas.google.com/blogger/2008/kind#post, interweave, Katie Blakesley, knitting, knitting books, lee Heinrich, quilting, swim bike quilt, vintage quilt revival

Book Review: Vintage Quilt Revival

With the help of Interweave, I’m thrilled to do (yet) another book review for you.

Are you a quilter? I am. I believe that most knitters are also quilters, well, in my circle of friends, anyway…

Paperback: Vintage Quilt Revival: 22 Modern Designs from Classic Blocks
Publisher: Interweave (2013)
Language: English
Authors: Katie Clark Blakesley ~ Lee Heinrich ~ Faith Jones

It sells for $27.99 US

That’s a steal. For all those projects, tutorials, quilt blocks, and inspiration, why wouldn’t you buy this? 

I truly believe the cover of the book can make or break your decision to pick it up/buy it. Am I right? 

Look at it!

This cover draws you in immediately. In fact, if you could crawl under the beautiful quilt and read a good book, or knit, you would be one happy camper. I know I would. 

These three ladies joined forces in the summer of 2011, and hosted a series of tutorials based on vintage quilt blogs on their blogs. I linked above to each of their names, and will definitely bookmark each of their blogs. They all seemed to have a family heritage of quilting. They each searched for inspiration in new and different places and were drawn to heritage quilts–quilts of the past. 


They talk in the introduction about themselves, the path and where it led them.

I caught up with Faith on Facebook and here’s a bit of advice she gave:

 “My advice would be – when paper piecing blocks (which is the piecing method of a lot of the blocks and projects in this book), be sure to always print out your templates at 100% or “Actual Size”, and always make a sample block first to make sure you are comfortable with the amount of fabric for piecing. Some people might be comfortable with smaller cuts, some people might be comfortable with larger. It’s a very personal preference.

Also, something fun with the book….Several of the projects use 12″ finished squares. You could easily take a project and swap in a different 12″ finished block to change up the project.

Finally You can keep up with book related information at www.VintageQuiltRevival.com

You will find step-by-step instructions for making a mini quilt, full-size quilt, table runner, baby quilt, wall quilt, and more, all with twenty classic traditional quilt blocks that are fresh and modern in style. 

These ladies outline the tools and techniques used in this book. 

Then, they take us through the patterns/projects: New Settings, New Color Approaches, Re-Imagined Blocks, and Sampler Quilts. A CD is included in the back with 12 printable template patterns. SCORE!

I then caught up with Lee on Facebook, and here’s what she had to say:
 
“This is book is great not only for people who want patterns to follow, but also for quilters looking for a book that will help inspire them to create their own designs. We’ve tried to give readers all the tools they need to put their own modern, unique spin on any traditional block. We hope you’ll come away from this book feeling like the possibilities are endless!”

And finally, I caught up with Katie on Facebook, and she had some fun information to share as well:
 
“One of my favorite things about Vintage Quilt Revival is that each chapter includes a history note. We enjoyed researching many aspects of vintage quilts– from pattern companies of the early 1900s to vintage feedsacks and many things in between.  I think connecting with the past, beyond just historic quilt patterns, is valuable for today’s quilters.

I just started a new series on my blog called “Grandmother’s Quilts: A Vintage Quilt Series.” I hope to feature vintage quilts from all over, including family heirlooms, quilts purchased at flea markets, great quilts and quilts with great stories. If you have one you would like to share, I hope you contact me at swimbikequilt at gmail dot com.”

Though I’m a knitter first, I couldn’t help but be excited about this book. Quilting falls a close second for me. I have SO many favorites in this book. I took some pictures of the pages so you could get a sneak peek. I dare not ear mark, so I’ve put in sticky notes to mark these fantastic projects:

Make The New World Pouch

Twinkle Mini Quilt

Double Dutch Table Runner

Spiced Chai Quilt


 

Sorbet Mini Quilt

As you can see, I’m clearly in trouble. No, not by anybody but me. Yes, I have things that need to get done, work related, but there’s always time for some quilting.

I’ve been a fabric-a-holic of modern fabrics for quite some time now. The colors and designs. The combinations of colors. All of this inspires my own knitting designs. I have a secret fantasy…to create my own line of modern fabrics. Shh…

So, I totally recommend this book. I mean, I seriously do! It’s full of great photography, fun and informative projects, along with a variety of quilt blocks. Go check it out. Order it online at Interweave.  You won’t be disappointed.

So, as I always say,

Knit On! (Or in this case, Quilt On!)

Deb

 

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Enabling You

Well, it’s Friday. The perfect day to show you something else I’m sure you can’t live without. 
 
My newest book, Dishcloth Diva Knits On! Is out and available. My publisher, Cooperative Press has been amazing to work with. The creative control is something no other publisher could offer me. I had the ability to shoot my own pictures (I am a photographer, and all), and have some say in how it should look.

I hope you ‘ll love my book as much as I do. Here’s a little bit about it:
 

From the author of Dishcloth Diva comes Dishcloth Diva Knits On!, featuring 15 more charming cotton dishcloth patterns inspired by colorwork, cables, open work, and traditional rib knitting. Each pattern perfectly walks that tightrope between elegant design and workhorse appeal in the kitchen and bathroom. Throughout this collection, Deb’s modern design, clear photography, and precise instructions will give you hours of simple knitting pleasure.
The book also includes a step-by-step guide to organize your own group “lapghan” project: knit each dishcloth square with wool instead of cotton, and you have the beginnings of a beautiful blanket that is appropriate for charity giving. Deb’s helpful tips make it fun and easy to start your own charity knitting group.

I’m thrilled to show you a few pictures from the patterns so to  enable you…they are sure to be oh-so-popular. 

Ella_mae-3_small2
Ella Mae

Nellie__3__small2
Nellie
Lucillebell1_small2
Lucille Bell
Virginia__2__small2
Virginia

I’m pretty excited, no, REALLY 
excited for this book. You can purchase the e-book on Ravelry or Cooperative Press website. 

The e-book sells for $9.95 US

The print copy will also be available soon on Cooperative Press website. 

Here’s a beautiful review and forward in Dishcloth Diva Knits On!:

“The “retro” charm of the patterns and their names captured my imagination from the start…. After casting off a large and intricate lace shawl, it felt so good to settle in with a cozy mystery and do something delightfully simple. Deb’s instructions are excellent and she has a couple of little tricks I particularly appreciated – like a built in i-cord for borders on several of the washcloths. No more floppy edges!… Deb’s deceptively simple book has become a mainstay in my knitting library. — Kelley Petkun, founder of Knit Picks

So, as I always say,

Knit On!

Deb