Thursday, August 13, 2015

Coming right up a while. 

I've been needing a new every day bed quilt for a while now. Funny, I quilt for a living and yet my current bed quilt is falling to pieces -- from being well loved not neglect. 

So some of you know when I buy fabric my minimum is like 3 yards. Hehehe, I've since gotten worse, now I just buy the entire bolt - hey, you never know, right?!!

So I've been collecting some word fabrics. I have two from RJRs The Chalk Line collection and one from Red Rooster Cottage Basics. Well, they don't necessarily match except that they all have words. Here's a pic to give you all a reference

Cool huh?  I say they don't match because I'm like crazy monochromatic over here. It bothers me that the light fabric is cream instead of bright white like the words on the black. And that the grey is a hue or two off. But I must remember this is not a competition piece -- it is a bed quilt -- in a few years it will be a shabby pile of fabric that's been washed weekly, slept under and loved, and I'm sure the dog will add a rip or two somewhere.  It doesn't have to be matchy-matchy. 

So this morning the pup woke me up early and I sat down and doodled the quilt. Here's the plan:

I really like it. Although the matchy-matchy in me wants to do it in black, white, and grey solids. I think that would be awesome. Perhaps after I conquer the bed quilt, I'll make it in a smaller version in the solids -- we'll have to see. You know, in all my *spare* time, hahahaha!!!

Stay tuned, I'll be sharing it as I go...

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Famous Female Faces, AQS Grand Rapids, and a First Place win!

Yesterday I received a phone call from Andrea of AQS letting me know that our Journeys Thru Art entry, Famous Female Faces, had won First Place in the Ultimate Guild Challenge at AQS Quiltweek - Grand Rapids. OMG, I was thrilled! I had to pinch myself (twice) to make sure I wasn't imagining it. I don't care how many times you hear the news that you have placed at a national show, the same excitement runs through you each and every time! Immediately, I called everyone in the group... wow, calling 7 peeps with such exciting news really takes awhile.  I now feel for Andrea as she calls each and every winning quilt personally... whew!

Here is the official listing of all the AQS Grand Rapids winners - Congratulations!!

I can't wait to see them hanging together -- yes, YOU, if YOU are at the show, send pics!!

This project started back toward the beginning of 2014. We were sitting at a Journeys meeting, it was just three of us -- Pam, Natalie, and myself -- and we were casually discussing the project for 2015. Out of nowhere the idea smacked us in the forehead... a face. Okay, more brainstorming, a female face. We were soooo excited (me especially as I had been wanting to make a Lucy quilt for some time). It was almost painful waiting to discuss it with the other members. The idea was well accepted and our 2015 project was planned. A few of us immediately knew what face we would be working on, while a couple of others changed their minds several times. We were not very strict with our rules -- mainly it had to be an easily recognizable female face, and had to fit within the minimum of 30" wide and a maximum of 60" long. We were able to use any technique we chose. I like that they are all different, that bothers some people, but I feel each of us had an idea and a process we wanted to follow. I don't think they would have turned out as awesome if we were all forced to follow the same technique and/or be contained in one specific size.

For those that haven't seen them, here they are:
Lucy (43x53) - Karen Marchetti
Diana (39x38) - Pam Post

Carmen Miranda (31x36) - Marian McCoin

Lady Liberty (38x46) - Natalie Carlton

Mary (36x48) - Nancy Parsons

Pebbles (39x47) Kathy Rentz

Georgia's Pride (49x35) - Nancy Smith

Tina Simply the Best (33x42) - Barbara Lacey
Aren't they just the greatest!! And here is the awesome group of ladies that created these beauties:

Monday, August 3, 2015

AQS Syracuse - a fantastic blur!

What an awesome week - teaching at AQS Quiltweek Syracuse was an absolute blast!  My classes were filled with some of the most awesome students - it was a good mix of over-achievers, quilties, and newbies.

An almost full house in my Build-A-Stitch class -- these ladies had some fun creating their own unique stitches!!

And look at these awesome projects from my Effortless Trapunto class - these ladies did fabulous!

Day 2 started with Piece & Applique the Longarm Way - we were having so much fun I forgot to take pics of the finished projects.

And then one of my favorite classes - Spontaneous Art Quilt -

These ladies were totally in their creative zones:

After class I managed to get over to the show for a few minutes.  I found my Wicked Challenge hanging with the Cherrywood Exhibit - yay!

And then on Friday everyone was in Feathers and Fills -- it was fun!

And my last class was Big Border Breakdowns -- unfortunately, there was so much creative thought going on that I totally forgot to take pictures!

I did manage to walk the show in full on Saturday afternoon. There were some amazing quilts - congratulations to all the winners. Here are some of my favorites:

And I spent a few minutes in the Gammill booth, of course! What you can't see is the AQS cameraman -- can't wait to see the Tips & Tricks segment we filmed -- wondering how tongue-tied I was as I don't remember even speaking!

Oh, and I almost forgot... there was a feature article about ME in the Show Book, tell me that's not absolute awesomness -- here's a pic:

It was an amazing Quiltweek!! I'll be teaching with AQS again in March 2016 at Lancaster, PA. You can follow along my teaching schedule on my website.

Monday, July 20, 2015


Yay storm delay. Nope, those aren't words I say very often, but tonight it was true. I had just finished basting a client quilt and boom... Thunder and lightning, and it was loud. Okay, no quilting for me tonight. Wait, I should be working on the Pelicans!

I hand washed the newest piece of silk that I ordered, swishing and scrunching making sure all excess dye was released. Then I waited for the piece to fluff dry and then a nice press and I was ready.   I began marking the areas of the water than will be painted. Unfortunately, marking was a far as I got tonight. Sleepy eyes were kicking in and that is definitely not a good start for painting. So here's where I'm at...
I'm excited to be working on this again. Changing from the appliquéd water to painted water was definitely the right direction. 
More soon!! 

Monday, July 13, 2015

The Pelicans

Progress on the pelicans has been nil.

If you remember, it was about a month ago when I was working on the water area, I was making the highlight areas (wave caps) from the lighter seafoam green into turned edge applique pieces. Well... let me just start with dupioni was not the best choice for turned edge - at least not on these tiny little curved waves. You can see in the pic how the curves aren't very smooth, some are almost pointy. Nope, not having that -- totally not how my brain was seeing this project. Time to rethink this!
Also, the more I thought about it the more I realized all those applique pieces would start to outweigh the pelicans. I really want the pelicans to be the main focus of the quilt; the water would serve its purpose as background. Oh, and the difference in the two greens was way too drastic (as if I needed yet one more excuse). 

What to do? Order more silk of course! I ordered a sea green which is darker than the light, but lighter than the dark that I already have. And my solution? Paint -- my old faithful Shiva Paintstiks will work perfectly to create the water movement while not detracting at all from the pelicans.
So like I said, not much progress, although I am still holding to my 10/1 deadline!

The rest of my quilty world has been going crazy, its all good though. I have packed up and shipped out all my class supplies for AQS Syracuse. I am so excited to be teaching with AQS!! It is a great honor and I'm hoping to see and meet many of you there! There may be some spots available in a few of my classes - everything from beginning stitches, to feathers, to some super fun take-home projects -- go check them out, just click on the photo or the link above.
On the client work front I've been trying to squeeze in a commission baby quilt between the scheduled quilts. It is amazingly cute, watch for a post about it soon on the other blog.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

It's almost time for AQS - Syracuse!

Can you believe that AQS Syracuse is just shy of 6 weeks away! I am sooooo excited to be teaching with AQS, like crazy excited.

I will be teaching six classes and would love for you to join me. I promise they will be fun, with my attention issues who knows what the plan is.... no really, there is a plan, but number one on the list should always be fun.

To view my classes, just click on the I'm Teaching at Syracuse pic below - it will take you directly to my class page.

So, check them out and maybe sign up for one, two, or more -- I look forward to meeting you and filling your brain with inspiration and ideas! Now, to get busy making up all these wonderful kits.

Oh, and not to drop a tease or anything, but there's more big news about Syracuse, but I'll have to wait to share that...

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Pelicans progress...

Well, it's slow!  I wanted to work on the Pelicans last weekend, but that thought totally flew to the wayside. I did manage to work on them for about an hour last night during the crazy storm. Here's what happened:

I started tracing the main highlight areas of the water

With my attention issues I got this far

I have to add the pup is severely afraid of thunder so most of my time was spent sitting with her. 

And then cutting the pieces out. I think they resemble wormy spaghetti more than wave highlights

So that's it (for now). Again I'm really hoping to work on the Pelicans this weekend. 

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Pelicans Progress

I haven't done much, except wash, re-wash, and wash again oodles of silks. Yes, there were some serious bleeders in the group. Hopefully they've all been taken care of, if not, it'll add to the excitement later. 

Just to keep all of you lovely peeps in the loop, here's where I'm at -

All of the brown tones are ready and waiting. 

And I just finished marking my main pieces of the brown pelican on my master copy. 

That's about it for now. I'm hoping to get some serious time into this project this weekend. 

Saturday, May 30, 2015

The Pelicans

I took this photo a few years ago.

knew immediately that It would one day be a quilt. I wanted to make it entirely of silk -- that was my mission last year at Houston, to purchase the silks I would need. 

So, a few too many dollars later here's what I had (and yes, I'm a little worried that I don't have enough blue-greens for the water, fingers crossed). 

Last night I finally created the master pattern from which the quilt would be based -- I used, which, to me is the easiest way to go as the printer isn't open at 11:00 pm. You just can't guarantee when creativity is going to hit. The drawing is approximately 52x29 -- not quite long enough for what I want so I'll be extending the concrete and dock a few more inches as well as possibly the background water. 

So here's the master pattern, which is essentially a line drawing to be used for placement. 

Thankfully, my ink lasted until the very last page - that was close!

Today will be full of pre-washing my silks to (hopefully) prevent any bleeding later. And then on to pressing with lots and lots of steam - the double check for any more bleeding.

I've given myself a deadline of 10/1/2015 for this one - not much time, I know!  I hope you'll follow along this quilts journey with me.