Well, after moving across the country and preparing for and teaching my first week of school, I’ve finally come up for air. I thought you might like to see my classroom and where those quilts went. As you can see, there is a space theme going on here.
Fabric works great for covering bulletin boards. This space themed line of fabric is from Connecting Threads.
One of the first things I teach is how to say my name. It’s easy for the kids, but still hard for the adults!
I will be joining the 30 paintings in 30 days challenge starting on Sept 1. I think this is the 5th time I have participated, so I didn’t want to miss it. I don’t know how I’ll have time, but let’s just say my “paintings” will be small and simple. I look forward to re-connecting with all my artist friends.
I enjoyed making the red and cream quilt so much, that I decided that I would use the same pattern to make a wedding quilt for my niece, Nicole. This one is queen sized.
I again made it scrappy because I am really trying to use up my stash. Nicole said she liked olive green so I incorporated that in the border. I thought blue and green would make a nice color palette for the quilt. I had fun with the custom quilting.On the back, I added some blocks I had made in an improvisational piecing class taught by Jackie Gehring. Who says the back should be boring?Congratulations to Nicole and Josh! They were married November 15, 2014. And I’m happy to say the quilt was finished in time so that they could open it on their wedding day.
So what do you do when you have LOTs of different fabrics? Make a scrappy quilt!
Pepper Cory, a guest quilt artist at our guild this week literally wrote the book on the Drunkard’s Path Block. I have always wanted to play with curved seams, so I took her one day workshop on Wednesday.
Pepper has been quilting since the late 70’s. She showed us a lot of options for using this curved seamed block–sometimes combining it with other blocks. Here are some of the quilts she showed us in class that she has made.
Love the colors in this one!
With 3″ blocks.
Larger with 6″ blocks Sampler blocks. Lots of interesting combinations.
Pepper has been quilting since the late 70’s. Here she is giving some feedback on one of my classmates’ block combinations. Despite this this poor picture, she really was happy about it!
I decided to use all my reds and creams to make a scrappy quilt. I’ve just sewn enough blocks to lay out the center. The individual blocks are 8″–which makes the curved piecing rather easy. When finished it will have 8 blocks across and 8 down. Then I will think about a border. So it will become a generous lap quilt for my new sofa. This way of configuring the blocks has several names: Love Ring, Lone Ring, Nonesuch, Rippling Waters, Jig Saw Puzzle or Ozark Puzzle–just to name a few. Trying to figure out how all the names came to be would be another puzzle! Pepper actually does give a lot of the history of this block and it’s variations in her book.
I’m determined that this will NOT become another UFO! Stayed tuned. This one WILL get finished before my next guild meeting (I hope!).
Just wanted to let you all know that I have made some progress on at least one UFO this week. You might remember this Halloween quilt top from my last post. Well, with the addition of some wide borders, it is now a little lap quilt! Now it’s ready to pull out for the Fall.With addition of the orange and green borders, it measures about 58″ square–a nice lap size.
At first I didn’t think that the darker green border was a good choice. But my main goal in finishing this projects it to use fabric that I already have! I probably would have gone for a lime green or purple, but this fabric is growing on me. Who says everything has to match perfectly? Hope it makes it more interesting. I picked up quite a lot of this fabric at a guild sale years ago. I loved the little ravens (or are they crows?). It’s an unusual print and I finally found a place to use it. I made the binding out of another Halloween print that I had around.Also right out of my fabric stash I found this orange diamond fabric that looks great on the back. I added some extra blocks (and more of the green) to make the backing wide enough. Pieced backs are always more interesting just using one fabric. I quilted it with an all-over spiral pattern as you can see. Nothing fancy. Got to get these projects done!I find I do have quite a few Autumn fabrics and colors in my fabric stash. It’s obvious it’s my favorite season and now I have another Fall quilt project to add to my collection!
If you are a quilter, you are very familiar with UFO’s (Un-Finished Objects). Dedicated quilters (and other crafters) have a LOT of those. I have too many to count. I buy all the materials, start a project, and then move on to something else before I ever finish. Some times I just buy the fabric and never start at all! Well, I’ve dedicated this month to FINISHING! I thought I would share some of these UFO’s and then let you know in the coming days of my progress.
Here are a few of the unfinished things I found lying around. I have dozens and dozens, so I will just give you a peek at a few.
This little Halloween table topper just needs to be quilted. Maybe I will add a border.
I found these blocks on Ebay some time ago. I’d guess they are from the 50’s or 60’s. They are handpieced. I added the polka dot and navy fabrics. I have six blocks. I could probably make a little lap quilt.
This little Fall stitchery is almost done. I hope it looks cuter when is is quilted.
Same with this tiny wallhanging. It’s my first attempt at hand applique.I’m ashamed to say I have purchased whole quilt kits that I never even started. I’m not even sure I like them anymore. If I do tackle them, I will probably update the fabrics.I liked this floral fabric a lot when I bought it years ago and found some coordinating prints. I started some piecing, thinking to make it into a quilted jacket. That’s not going to happen. But it would make a nice charity quilt.Here are a couple small holiday items. It wouldn’t take much to finish them. I just have to have a reason.
Loved the unusual color scheme in these holiday prints.
These “orphan” blocks I picked up at a guild meeting. I’m sure I could combine them into nice charity quilt. Our guild makes quilts for a local shelter for women and children.Well, I could go on and on, but I will stop for now. Time to get sewing!
The paints called to me this morning, so when I should have been quilting (my job that actually brings in income) I was playing with watercolors instead. Well, at least I stayed with the quilting theme!
This week I finished a couple of charity quilts. These two were for the Quilts of Valor organization.
The first one, in red,white and blue, I quilted with an over all pattern I call Loopy Stars. It seemed appropriate.
The second was a little more whimsical in color and fabric choices so I used my Spirals pattern.
.Both of theses quilts were string pieced and used a variety of fabrics. It looks like a great way to use up scraps.
Unfortunately, I don’t know who pieced them, or I would give credit. I sent them off. The next person will bind them and then they will go to their recipients. It’s a wonderful collaboration and I’m grateful that I had the opportunity to do my part.
Our guild has a quilt show every two years. It’s a big deal. Last October our show featured over 300 quilts. If you have never been to a quilt show, you really should. Talk about eye-candy! You will see work that will blow your socks off. And you will never think that “blanket” and “quilt” are interchangeable words again!
Quilt magazines are my junk food. I need a fix everyday. This latest watercolor was inspired by a picture of an applique quilt that I noticed as I perused a old mag the other day. I haven’t really thought of myself as a collector, but I must admit I have quite a few quilting magazines. I subscribe to 8 or 10 and of course I NEVER throw them away. I guess I have accumulated hundreds (if not thousands). Where do I keep them? Everywhere! There are magazines stacked in almost every room in my house and basement. They are toppling over every where. Of course I need a stash in the bathroom and by my bed. My husband is very understanding. He hasn’t complained yet. What do I do with them? I flip through them constantly to get inspiration. To me they are quilters’ eye candy. It’s amazing that if you just wait awhile, you can flip through a magazine you have read before, and it all seems all new again. ( I guess my creative memory is very short). I have even gone so far as to buy used magazines by the box load off of Ebay. How embarrassing! Who doesn’t need all the issues of Quilters Newsletter and American Patchwork and Quilting from the 90’s? You never know what you will find. How many quilts have I actually designed and made from all of this inspiration you might ask? Very few, unfortunately. I’m too busy reading the magazines! Does any one else suffer from this illness?
Here are more pictures from the International Quilt Show in Chicago last week. I’m always attracted to wonderful quilting. Here are some great examples. Enjoy! (Sorry I failed to get the name of the quilters).
Last month Mary Lou Weidman came to our guild and I took an all day workshop. It was so inspiring. I love her whimsical style. She does the work that I dream of doing. We learned how to make “wonky” blocks. It was SO fun and freeing. Here’s what I got done in the workshop. Someday (soon I hope!) these blocks will go into a quilt.
If you want to try this kind of piecing, her process is well explained in her latest book:
I was so enamored of Mary Lou’s style, I went to Amazon and found a couple more of her older books (used) that are now out of print.
I’m telling you all this because there was a special showing of Mary Lou inspired quilts at the International Quilt Show last week in Chicago. The quilts were different takes on her cow pattern ( from “Out of the Box”)
I took some pictures of the ones I liked the best. Sorry I didn’t get the names of the artists.
Last weekend I was pleased to attend this fabulous quilt show in Rosemont, IL. The show went missing for 3 years, but now it is back. Yeah! I saw some fabulous quilts and even more fabulous quilting! I’ll share a few of the pics I took each day this week. I’m not a great photographer, but you get the gist. Of course they are even more wonderful in person.
Today’s Group: Happy Quilts that make me Smile
Fifty-Six Years Old by Naoko Hirano Japan
Tree of Life by Stephanie Adams Kansas
Brazen Blossoms by Diane Melms Alaska
3-D Sunflower by Martha DeLeonardis Texas
This happy guy is my husband, David, who quite willingly went to the show with me and carried all of my purchases in his backpack. What a keeper!
I spend a lot of time THINKING about sewing and quilting. I read magazines and books. Search Flicker, blogs and Pinterest. I drool over fabric on the internet and in fabric stores (and buy an awful lot of it) I draw quilt ideas in my sketchbook and all together fantasize about quilts all the time but have little to show for it. So I painted this little pic to remind myself that nothing will ever happen unless I sit down and DO IT.
As I told you a while back, I took a workshop from Gyleen Fitzgerald called “Scappy Pineapple” . Well I have finally finished 16 blocks that I think will make a nice table topper or wall hanging. Here is my finished block. I pieced it in a “controlled scrappy” fashion.
I took my colors from this focus fabric that I just love:
It’s “controlled scrappy” because although I used lots of different prints, I used the same red fabric in the centers and corners. I also saved the black to use in the last round of the pineapple. This creates a secondary design when all the blocks are put together. Here’s what it looks like.
Now I’m thinking about borders. I want to use my focus fabric for sure, but I also want a skinny inner border. I’ve narrowed the small border down to two color choices. Here’s the “audition”.
What do you think? The black is the natural choice, but I kind of like the “pop” of the turquoise. I would really appreciate some input before I complete the top. So should it be the black or turquoise? You choose.