Friday, October 17, 2014

I don't know If I can do it justice.

But I'll try! You would never believe how these quilts are made! I'll try to explain with photos.On Wednesday I went to My Girlfriend's Quilt Shoppe to see a trunk show by Carmen Geddes.
She makes traditional quilts using very modern methods.

Using this printed, fusible interfacing product from Quiltsmart,
you cut your fabric pieces and fuse them to the interfacing panels, between the positioning lines. Then you fold the interfacing along the fold lines and sew along the stitch lines.
This photo shows the panel after the vertical seams have all been sewn, but the horizontal seams have not. This is a panel for a quilt like the one in the top photo.
You can check out her YouTube video of this method here. (See the video on the bottom of the page.)
Here is another quilt top from the same panels, just different fabrics.
 Since this was just a top, we got to see what the back looks like.
 The interfacing is sturdy enough to keep the quilt square, but soft enough that the finished product is not stiff. Here is another quilt made from these same panels.

 Guess what--there are even panels for mini quilts! : )
But it isn't all just square stuff. Take a gander at these beauties--all still made by fusing your cut pieces to the printed interfacing, and folding and stitching. Click to enlarge any photos.

Then there are the quilts with all those curved or Y-seams. There are printed shapes on the interfacing that you cut out and sew "rough to right" sides together. You slit the interfacing and turn the fabric right side out. Now your shape has a finished edge and a fusible back. You fuse it in place and use invisible machine applique (or decorative stitches, if you prefer) to secure it. The quilts below were all made using this method, or a combination of the two methods.


Apple Core--back

Apple Core--front


This was Carmen's backdrop showing quilts using a variety of the techniques.

When the show was finished, Kris, the shop owner, gave us the opportunity to try a small sample piece. Kits were ready and waiting--no charge--and they had a few machines set up for us to use.

 This was the sample--it would make a great hot pad.

We followed step by step instructions to make our own leaf using the printed fusible interfacing. Due to a goof creative cutting, my leaf is cream, instead of yellow.

I had been intrigued by the method, but hadn't expected to be so impressed. I came home with the pattern for the small Lone Star blocks. They didn't have any of the mini square interfacing on hand, or you know I would have picked up some of that, as well! : )

Well, I feel my words and photos have been inadequate in conveying what I experienced, but I tried. Carmen was a delightful presenter. She is an experienced teacher, very knowledgeable, with a fun sense of humor.
It was a very fascinating 3 hours. Well worth the time and the price didn't reflect the value of the event (cost was only $5 and we received a $10 coupon to the shop that could be used that day). They always have a Wednesday special, and it happened that if you spent $25 or more on this Wednesday, you got a free copy of one of the MSQC Block magazines. It really was a good day to be at My Girlfriend's Quilt Shoppe!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Quilting (Quietly) with Kim

I spent Friday in Rupert, Idaho where my favorite not-so-local quilt shop, The Gathering Place, hosted a workshop with Kim Diehl.
Kim was gracious enough to pose for me in the display of her stuff at the store.
  This was what we worked on. Most of the class time was spent making the Dresden and learning her invisible machine applique technique to attach it to the background. The last 30 minutes of class she demoed her wool applique method and we could quickly try it on a wool penny to see if we had any questions.
This is Dresden Dish Garden. Pattern currently only available at workshops.
There were around 20 women in the class, and they were a focused bunch. This was the quietest group of quilters I have ever heard (or not heard)! There was much of the time that no one was talking at all, we were all concentrating so much on the work at hand. Can you imagine that--quilters not talking?
With all of that focused work, you'd think we would have accomplished an awful lot, but this is as far as I got before it was time to pack up and come home.
I'm auditioning wools to put the smaller penny in the middle.
 Kim is an excellent teacher, and I highly recommend her. She will be going along with Bonnie Hunter on her upcoming Caribbean cruise in November to teach a wool project. She is booked to teach through the end of next year and then she says she isn't planning on traveling to teach anymore. She will focus on her books and fabric lines. So if you have a chance to take a class from her, you might want to grab it while you can.

I was not able to do her Saturday class, but this is what they were going to be working on. I believe she said it is from her Simple Whatnots Club.

This was something she had prepared for an upcoming class. It is very small, and she finished it with Big Stitch quilting. So cute.

This was what she taught at this workshop last year. This gal brought it back to show Kim and get some ideas on how to quilt it. It is very pretty. I love the darker backgrounds.

Other than this class, I haven't had much time to stitch since my last post. These are the projects that got a bit of attention during the week. My Fall themed "Lamb For All Seasons" is all cut and ready to fuse.
 And I have almost completed all of the square-in-a-square units I need in order to make the 6th border on my Primitive Gatherings Tenth Anniversary SAL project.
Once this border is completed and attached, there will be little wool applique flowers in the corners. This has been a really fun piece to work on. I have enjoyed the leisurely pace, and I always love Lisa's designs.We are supposed to be finished sometime in November, and I am really curious to see where Lisa takes us from here.

This week Carmen Geddes is coming to a LQS to share her technique for making traditional quilt patterns using her Easy Piecing Grid. The idea intrigues me. I've watched a couple of Youtube videos, but I am curious to see how it looks in real life, and since the fee was only $5, I figured it was worth seeing. I'll let you know what I learn.

Until next time,
Janet O.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

What to do with leftovers!?!

I got my miniaturized version of Kim Diehl's "All In A Row" sewn into a flimsy.
 Here it is with the book next to it to give you some perspective. It is just under 12" square.

 I had a few leftover tiny 9-patch blocks (3/4"), so I had to put them to use. This is what "materialized".

I shared with you the little pinwheel kit I received from Kathie (Inspired By Antique Quilts blog) to replicate her little quilt shown here. That flimsy is now all sewn up.
Since I cut my pinwheels smaller than Kathie's, I had some little 1¼" squares leftover. I planned to sew them into little 4-patches with some of the blue fabric as squares in between them. 
But before I could do that, another little bundle of fabrics arrived from Kathie to recreate a little churn dash she shared recently that I just fell in love with! You can see hers here.
I couldn't resist these rich reds and browns. and very soon I had made my own version. I had already dug a few red/brown repro prints out of my stash before her fabrics arrived so I slipped a couple of my own fabrics into the churn dash mix. Isn't that red print in the setting blocks and borders gorgeous?
Even when I try I can't make things the right size. After getting all of the pieces cut for this little beauty, I realized I had cut the HSTs too small, so I had to reduce the size of the churn dash blocks. I set out to make 4" blocks, but these are just under 3". I added the little brown border to increase the quilt size a bit. I will bind it in brown, too. It is the perfect fit for a new-to-me second-hand table that just found a home in my bedroom. When this gets quilted,  it will reside here.
The leftovers from this little project will go back to Kathie. She didn't have time to cut a kit and just sent me everything left from her little quilt. It was way more than enough! I'm sure she can put it all to good use.

Another blogger who has been generous with her leftovers is Terry (Terry's Treasures blog). She just completed the top of a beautiful barn quilt seen here. She offered me the bonus triangles and I gladly accepted. As I have been working on all these little projects shown above, I have been getting some of these bonus triangles sewn together.

I've already made a few little pinwheels, trimmed them down to 3" and used the Disappearing Pinwheel method to cut them up, ready to create little ornaments.

Do you save your quilt leftovers, or do you pass them on? I have long enjoyed the challenge of creating something from my Mom's quilt leftovers. I could probably do a whole blog post on those projects. Why do other people's leftovers seem more appealing than our own? : )

Until next time,
Janet O.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Is it really Fall?

I finally took down my patriotic decor after Labor Day, but with daytime highs still lingering in the 80s it has been hard to get in the spirit of decorating for Fall. Haven't been able to bring myself to drag out the boxes of decorations, but I did hang a few little quilty creations.
Autumn Afternoon (approx. 8x10") now has a home on this Shaker peg rack in my kitchen, along with a little Fall colored basket ornament that turned out a little too wonky to be gifted or sold, so I get to keep it!

I also got the Halloween "Lamb For All Seasons" (adapted from Primitive Gatherings Old Glory Gatherings pattern here) completed and hung (12" square). It is the first thing you see when you enter our living room. Can you even tell there is a crow on the lamb's back? With the dark green background I don't think it is very obvious. The photo makes the whole thing look brighter than it really is.

On Tuesday I signed up to take a class from Kim Diehl on Friday, but it turns out the class isn't until next month, but that is a whole 'nother story!! But it got me thinking about my favorite Kim Diehl patterns, one of which is "All In A Row". I love churn dash blocks, and there is just something about this version that grabs me. I have made a table runner in this style, but never the full quilt. Do you know what is coming next? Could I miniaturize it? Well, you know I have to try.
 The blocks will finish at 1 3/4". The 9-patch centers are 3/4". I think I will sash it with the fabric they are laying on, but I haven't chosen a cornerstone fabric yet.

I prepared a couple of them to be ornaments, trying out a pinwheel in the center of one, instead of the 9-patch. I haven't yet stuffed and backed them, but they will be about 1/4" smaller than my pineapple, log cabin, or basket ornaments.

The structure of the churn dash on these blocks is different from the ones in the Disappearing Hourglass. The DH block is divided into three equal sections, so on the bottom one in this photo I tried the DH method. Raewyn threw down the gauntlet when she made a little Disappearing Hourglass block that was only 1 3/8". But I didn't even try to go that small, let alone smaller. This one will finish at about 1 5/8", a whole quarter inch larger than Raewyn's! See, I do make big stuff! : )

There are a bunch of these little 9-patch blocks left from making the centers for those blocks. I have a plan for them that I hope will work. More to come on that.

Kathie Holland (Inspired By Antique Quilts blog) makes the greatest little quilts. Well, she does great bed quilts, too, for that matter. I am so glad she is back blogging. I really missed her.
Recently she posted a sweet little pinwheel quilt which you can see on her blog here.
She sent me a little kit to make my own copy of it. I'm sorry, Kathie, but after making the HSTs I got carried away and cut two small HSTs from each large one. Now, instead of 6 4" finished pinwheels, there will be 12 one and a half inch finished pinwheels. I just get started cutting things down to size and I don't know when to stop. But I am loving these vibrant reds and bold blacks. And what a great border fabric. Thanks, Kathie. I hope you don't mind me messing with your design. I have really enjoyed working on this and hope to have it finished soon.

This beautiful little quilt arrived this month from Doniene. She really has me pegged where color and design are concerned. It went right up in my "Quilts from friends" corner. There was a beautiful scarf that she had made that came, too, but I just realized I didn't have a photo of it.
Such sweet gifts from a generous friend. Thank you!

Well, I am still woefully behind on my UFOs for the year. That mini trunk show in May really derailed me and I am having a hard time getting back on track. My Garden Maze Quilt still languishes on my design wall because I can't find a border fabric I like, so I distract myself with minis. I am a sorry case!

Just thought of how I can tell it really is Fall. Dad's pears are ripe and we enjoyed a lovely pear pie recently. Yummm! I shared the recipe a couple of years ago, but if you missed it and are interested, let me know and I will email it to you.

Until next time,
Janet O.

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