Thursday, August 30, 2012

Plugging along on the Collaboration quilt

Lint and threads hanging everywhere.

I just realized that I missed a spot.
I hope this turns out the way that I have planned.

Those sampler blocks have been there for at least 2 years.

My design wall is more like a bulletin board.

Four, count them, four projects pinned to the wall to be dealt with.

I am plugging away at the quilting on the collaboration quilt. It is slow going. I need to take frequent breaks. I really need to get this guy finished up. I can send in the paperwork (due September 1st) because it just needs a photo, but I would like to get it turned in at the board meeting on the 10th.

I decided that this week for Off the Wall I would show what is on my design wall. There is a big blank space where the collaboration piece used to be pinned and I did not take a photograph of that. I have a couple of quilts pinned up, one is a group quilt that my friends made for my 50th birthday. The one halfway under it is from my friend, Lisa B.  Next to the quilts is a partial set of blocks from a block of the month that the Wales group did a couple of years ago.  I have 5 finished and the 6th partly there.  I don't know if I will even try to get the other six made.  Beneath that is a bunch of debris.  I pin things to the wall to remind me that I need to deal with them.  Then something else gets pinned on top of it and so on.  There are layers of crap there.  Like on the other side of the wall I have a piece started from a class in 2008, then 2 pieces of dyed fabric that will be a series on trees, then another quilt top (from a class taken in 2006, although, it has only been pinned to the wall for a couple of months). These are all pieces that I had wanted to work on.  And they are now all layered and who knows?...  there could be another project lurking underneath it all.  I am frightened to look!

I have had a major case of artist block this year.  I have had a difficult time dealing with the death of my only brother.  About the only thing I was able to do is knit.  Knitting is calming.  The last 3 months I have been actively working to get myself out of the deep hole of grief and move on.  It is a slow process, but I feel that I am moving in the right direction.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Starting off the week right!

I listed another dish cloth pattern.  This one is a variation on my Simple Straight Knit Dish Cloths pattern.  It is named Simple Straight Knit Textures Dish Cloths.  It is available for  99 cents at my Craftsy shop and also on my Ravelry pattern shop.  There are 4 different patterns included. I will have one more in this series of patterns, Simple Straight Knit Reversible Textures Dish Cloths.  It should be ready next week.

Another great start to my week, one of my fabric yarns is featured in an Etsy Treasury!  

Monday, August 20, 2012

I confess, I love my walking foot!

My walking foot in action!

Yes, that is a Bernina Aurora 440 Quilter's Edition.

Echo quilting.

Wavy lines.

I do a lot of wavy lines using my beloved walking foot.

My helper, Peaty.

He loves to crawl under chairs.

As I mentioned a while ago, I am working on a project that I cannot show publicly yet.  My friend, Anne, and I are working on a collaboration.  We each made a small art quilt top.  We then traded them. Next we had to "expand from within" the top and then quilt it.  We will have our reveal at the Utah Quilt Guild Quilt Fest Show next month.  We will be entering the quilts and then get to see what the other has done with our original piece.  I am working on the quilting. That is always a challenge for me as my free motion quilting skills are not where I would like them to be.  So I have to confess.  I do a lot of my quilting with my walking foot.  It is more versatile then you would think  Last year I co-taught a class devoted to different design ideas using your walking foot.  Both for utility and arty quilting.

Yes, that is a Bernina 440 with the famous BSR.  I am a Bernina gal.  I also have a 1080 that I absolutely love.  But when the BSR came out (about 6 years ago?)  I decided that I had to have it!  This for sure will cure my free motion issues!  Bring it on!  Well, yeah, the stitch is very nice and it certainly helps me with control, I could never get my foot and hands to coordinate very well, but guess what?  IT DOES NOT IMPROVE YOUR DRAWING SKILLS!    

I have taken more than several free motion quilting classes from a variety of teachers; local and more well known.  My biggest problem is the one thing they all say: practice, practice, practice.  So here I am with a deadline and no time to practice, practice, practice, before tackling the project.  Back to my trusty walking foot I run.  I will do as much as I can with my good buddy and then fill in the rest with some free motion.  

If you are going to be anywhere near St. George, UT the end of September, check out the quilt show!  It should be a fun event.  Anne and Lisa will be teaching a Surface Design class and also a Dyeing class (the venue has a place where they can do "wet" classes).

I joined a blog party!  It is called Off the Wall and is hosted by Nina Marie.  So check it out every Friday.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Lecture at the Springville Art Museum

A Teacher's Dozen

Anne beside her prizewinning quilt.

Zinnias in the museum's garden.

I drove up to Springville to hear a lecture by my friend, Anne. The lecture was in conjunction with the annual quilt show at the Springville Art Museum.  It was nice to see her and her talk went very well.  I had given her one of my quilts, A Teacher's Dozen, and she showed it in her trunk show.  Back in the day, I tried to get her to add quilting to some of her wonderful batiks.  She resisted.  Until she saw the quilt I had made for my daughter who had just earned a teaching degree.  The apple quilt is done using my Dice and Splice method.  I had made a replica of my daughter's quilt and finally decided that it belonged to Anne.  I am hoping to get the pattern for  A Teacher's Dozen revised and put up on my Craftsy shop in the next week or so.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Auction Blocks

The fabric from the kit.

Lines on the back.

I don't normally pin, but the instructions said to, so I did.

Chain piecing.

Trim the corners.

Press open.

I figured these little guys didn't need 2 pins.

Sew, then......

Trim and press.

Now the other side.


All those wonderful leftover triangles!

Press open and Ta Da!  Finished!

I just had to play with the blocks.

Eh, kinda different.

Packed and ready to turn in.

I am on the board of the Utah Quilt Guild. I attended a board meeting on Monday.  One of the board members is "mothering" a group quilt for the Hospital Auction which raises funds for research and education.  It is held every 2 years and the board members of the guild always make and donate a quilt.  Well, I wasn't really paying that much attention when Becky was talking about the block kits.  I figured they would be gone by the time the kits made it over to my side of the room.  Ok, really it was Louise's fault, she is just too good at mumbling under her breath that I end up listening to her comic take on everything instead of what I should be listening to.  So the blocks make it over to our table (and the meeting is continuing on, so I am trying to pay attention) and Louise takes one kit and tells me I should take the last one.  I hem and haw and Becky is just in front of us and says they are very simple, take one.  So I did. Eek! 8 blocks to make! But they are simple, so I guess it can't hurt me.  Becky had gotten permission from Karen Combs to use a pattern from her Celtic Pieced Illusions book.  Now remember, I wasn't paying attention, so I didn't see when Becky showed the quilt in the book.  And I don't own the book.  All I got was the instructions to make a specific block 8 times.  And on the drawing I received, there was a line that shouldn't be there. And Becky had an arrow pointing to the line with the word cream squares.  All I had in my packet were yellow squares.  So I emailed Becky and she emailed back that the yellow was really cream and that the line should have been whited out.  Cool.  I get it now! So I made my 8 identical blocks.  I have no idea what the quilt is going to look like since everyone's blocks are different.  It will be a nice surprise when Becky gets the top together.  So my lesson for the day, resist the urge to listen to Louise mumbling under her breath and pay attention to the front of the room. (even if it isn't as much fun)

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Is It Really August!?

I wrapped more cord for bowls.

Marcia's tumbling blocks, waiting for a border.

Marcia's Block of the Month.

Surprise!  Blocks from my Beginning Paper Piecing class!

Disappearing Nine Patch.

Nine Patch.

We had to put sew day on hold for a couple of weeks. First Marcia was out of town for a family reunion, and then I was out of town for a family party!  Funny thing is that we both went to the same lake!  But we were not there at the same time.  

Marcia worked on a block for a block of the month that a nearby shop is hosting.  It is going to be a very lovely quilt.  Black and white with an accent of deep purple.  She showed me a disappearing nine patch that she has in progress.  Looking through her cutting table, I found some blocks from a class that I taught at a retreat a couple of years ago!  They are just sample blocks to learn the technique.

Since I have finished the T-shirt quilt, I am trying to get some order in the studio.  So I brought a pile of strips (clearing stuff off the cutting table) and wrapped cord for two bowls.  I have a project with a deadline that I really need to get going on.  I can't show photos right now, but will later in the year.  Now to go back to the studio and get some more cleared off the cutting table!