Portfolio of older work

Monday, November 30, 2009

Interpret This!

I have been invited to participate in a 2010 Challenge making art quilts!  I am sooooo excited!  The other invited artists are art quilters and they, plus any followers on the site, will make comments (good, bad, and ugly) about my work.  What an opportunity for growth! 

I know in the art classes I have taken that my favorite part has been when we all had the same assignment and then to see how we each handled it so differently.  That would always open my mind to so many other possibilities that I had never considered.  I am hoping this opportunity will do the same for me. 

Please come and see me at Interpret This!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

What is red, white, and black all over?

After working hard to make the Winter Picnic quilt exact (sewing seams, checking points, ripping out seams, *re-sewing seams, checking points, ripping out seams: repeat from * until points match perfectly)  I need a day of the type of sewing I really enjoy.  So, this morning I am rewarding myself with working on an ongoing scrap project, Red, White, and Black All Over. 
I am using red, black, and white scraps along with some leftover red, white, or black blocks or half-triangles left over from other quilts.  I am also using some of the scraps to make blocks from Origami Quilts by Lousie Mabbs and Wendy Lowes.  I especially like the nip & tuck  and the posies for rosie2 techniques.  I may experiment with other techniques from the book but for the most part I want the quilt to just be free.  I want to just sit at my sewing machine and say, "Oh, these two scraps are about the same length and might look good sewn together."  and then to go for it.  Here are a few of my unique-shaped blocks.

This afternoon I will need to get serious again and work on Christmas presents and the Red and White Snowball Challege (and maybe wash dishes and fold some laundry).

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

November Schnibble--topped is finished!

Here is Winter Picnic on my design wall waiting to be quilted and bound.  That will have to wait until after Thanksgiving but since Sinta accepts quilt tops in the Year of Schnibble Challenge, here is my entry. 

Overall I am pleased by it.  It is very different than the Picnic picture on the pattern package.  Partly that is because of the difference in color palette but there are other changes.  The pattern gave us the option of making different types of baskets.  I dislike sampler quilts so I chose to make all the baskets identical.  I also was not particularly fond of the layout suggested by the pattern so I played with it.  I really liked this layout because of the strong pattern achieved by the positive and negative shapes.  I also decided to only highlight the sashing around the center baskets so the rest of the sashing is made from the background fabric.

Perhaps you can also see the element I added.  I reversed appliqued some flowered fabric  in the Kansas Winter collection that I fancy cut to highlight the flower.  I placed the flower in the center and then in the half-triangles in the middle of each side.  Here is a close up of the center flower.

The last change I made was in the border.  I thought the piano keys might fight a bit with strong layout so I decided to lay them sideways.  I am not totally thrilled with the border but it works sufficiently that I won't rip it out.  Once quilted I will bind the quilt with a black fabric that I used in the first outer border.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

November Schnibble

I have my winter picnic started.  The baskets are all assembled and I am ready to start on the border.  Here is a picture of a basket but you will have to wait to see the top till it is finished. I am not sure I am going to go with the piano keys.  I need to live with the basket arrangement for a day or two to decide the best compliment.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Progress on many fronts

Just because I have not posted my progress on my many challenge and Christmas projects lately doesn't mean that I am not working!  I have been making progress and believe I will be making even more progress this weekend and next week when I take several days of of work.

1.  I have completely finished two of the three pocket dolls for Christmas presents to granddaughters.  I have all the clothes made for the third and just need to make the dolly and the pocket.

2.  Now that the handwork is finished for the doll clothes, I am back to working on my Shibori.  My guild has a brown bag challenge coming up in December.  I need to put three pieces of fabric in a brown bag along with some information about me.  I want to include an indigo shibori piece with two coordinated dyed pieces.  This picture is the beginning of my stitching for the shibori piece.

3.  For the UFO challenge, Joy in the New Year, I have tackled my fractured quilt top.  It was too fractured for my liking so I have cut it more (does that make any sense??) and inserted strips ala Ricky Timms.  Here is a picture of my progress.  So far, I like the results.

4.  I have not yet started cutting and piecing the November Schnibble, Picnic, but I do have the pattern and have chosen the color palette (not my typical cheerful, even childlike palette).  Here is a sneak peek at the materials.  It is Kansas Winter.  I am making the Schnibble to hang in the office of a co-worker and he wanted a more subdued color.  I will be starting the piecing this weekend. 

5.  Kate's quilt is still folded waiting for attention. Keep the suggestions coming for it.  I am getting a much stronger feel for how I want to proceed.

6.  Last, I have started adding details to the fabric self-portrait I am making for my Mom. The large pieces of fabric are all fused together and now I am making the faces with various media--currently using water-color pencils but will continue with some stronger colors.  I need to take a picture and get your suggestions.  Later.  This is definitely one of those tenative pieces where I work very slowly.  You know, *do a little, live with it a while, do a little more, live with it, and repeat from *

Thursday, November 19, 2009

MQX 2010 Charity Challenge to Benefit the Museum

Okay, so I am insane but I am accepting ANOTHER challenge.  I figure I don't have to start this challenge until after January so I will have completed the UFO Challenge (due January 1) and the Red and White Quilt Challenge (due the end of January) and will only have the Year of Schnibbles project as an obligation to work on.  Who knows, maybe I will be able to connect the Year of Schnibbles and the Charity Challenge together!  Sinta, any chance the January, February, or March Schnibble could have a bear claw in the design?

Here is the information about the challenge:
The New England Quilt Museum is the beneficiary of this year's MQX Charity Challenge. Sponsored by Sew Batik, the charity challenge is an invitation to all quilters to create and enter a quilt using the luscious batik fabrics donated by Sew Batik.

This challenge quilt may be traditional, art or contemporary in style and it may be pieced or appliquéd. The only stipulation is that the MQX logo block, The Bear Paw, must be incorporated into the quilt. It may be the entire quilt or a single element and it may be pieced or appliquéd as a recognizable part of the quilt. Quilts must be no bigger than 45" per side. The deadline for entry is March 1, 2010. The Challenge fee is $30 and covers the cost of the fabrics, fabric shipping fees and quilt entry into the competition (quilt shipping fees and return fees are not included). To download complete instructions on how to enter the MQX 2010 Charity Challenge, click here.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Kate's Wedding Quilt

Okay, here is my plea for some suggestions. 

I started Kate's quilt years ago.  I think she has now been married for 3 years, maybe 4.  She has one little boy and is now expecting a second baby.  I would really like to finish it before the year is out.  Image her surprise if she got it for Christmas?  And I could count it in my UFO list for Joy in the New Year Challenge.

Here is the problem.  I think it is too long for the width and I would like for it to be at least a twin size when finished.  I am not sure what to add that will work with what is started.  Here is a not very good picture and some close ups of details.

Okay, here is the story the quilt is telling
Do you know the story of Johnny Lingo?  He prized his wife so much that he paid her father 8 cows as her bride price so that she would never have any doubt of her value in his eyes.  Well, when Andrew asked Kate's father for permission to marry her, Andrew brought 8 stuffed cows to give to her father.  So, the quilt has 8 paper-pieced cows that lead up to the paper-pieced temple, and a paper-pieced bride and groom.  In the sky the paper-pieced Angel Moroni is blowing his horn and dispersing the darkness. Both Kate and Andrew are return missionaries so the symbolism seemed appropriate.

The question is how to add borders that will bring the finished size up to what I need and will compliment the story of the center?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A vacation day for working on UFOs

I have been working on my UFOs.  First, here is a picture of my finished October Schnibble.  It is now waiting for my step-daughter, Bekka, to deliver our new grandson in December.

Here is the finished floating squares for my bed.  The gold in it doesn't really show up well in the photograph.  The quilt is brilliant in person.  When I show my husband a quilt design and ask him if he likes it, he always asks if it will keep him warm.  This one will keep him warm.

I didn't list finishing the self-portraits the kids made a few weeks ago but they all need to be bound.  Here is the first of the seven I need to finish.    After cutting his hair, this boy decided he would rather have a mustache so his self-portrait is a bit old looking for his 10 years of age.  Other than that, it looks just like him.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Big Day

Yesterday was certainly a big day!  First, it snowed.  First snow of the winter.  It was pretty coming down as it stuck to the trees and wires.  Today as the wind is blowing it down from the trees and wires in thick clumps, it is pretty again.  Unfortunately it is the beginnning of winter for me.

I had hoped for a long fall.  Spring lasted to the first week in August.  Rain, and the resultant mosquitoes, made being outside unpleasant. Then we had two weeks of Summer.  Fall began the last week in August.  I had hoped it would last until at least the end of November as recompense for the Spring.  Instead we have snow and  lower than normal temperatures.

But yesterday did have some wonderful things happening.  I received my package from the Fat Quarter Shop.  Now I have the pattern for the November Schnibble and a jelly roll cake of Kansas Winter for the pattern--it will be a Thanksgiving Picnic.

AND I received the book "40 Fabulous Quick-Cut Quilts" by Evelyn Sloppy from Amazon.  It has the pattern for the red and white snowball quilt challenge.  Yeah, now I can start that too!

AND I got some off-white and cream fabric prints I had ordered from Christa's Quilts for the fabric swap.  I spent the afternoon washing, ironing, cutting and packaging the fabric to send off to my 7 swap buddies.  They (packages not the swap buddies) are all sent off today to their new homes.  I know that Sinta has already sent out hers so I should start receiving mine anytime.  Whoooo Hoooo!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

WIP--Ode to Fall

These are before and after pictures.  The one on the left is the before--a wonderful batik that looks like it has leaf prints on it.  The one on the right is after I did a rubbing of leaves with my new paint sticks.  I am not sure what the next step will be for this little quilt I am making.  Any suggestions?

I am a sucker for a give-away!

Laurie ( and have you seen her beautiful family picture at her blog?) told me about the free give away at Sweet Home Quilts.  I never win but I live in eternal hope.  Tee Hee

Special Exhibit at the New England Quilt Museum

Check out this fantastic exhibit at the New England Quilt Museum.  I am torn whether to attend it or not.  That is the only Saturday I have home in November to devote to quilting. So, I can go and look at other artist's fabulous quilts or stay home and work on my November Schnibble, tackle a UFO for the UFO challenge, finish my granddaugthers' pocket dolls, and/or work on the self-portrait wall hanging I am making for my mother for Christmas (well, let's be real, I would probably start a new project too).

Here is a picture of the quilt I made for my new grandson last year.  It is my first attempt at discharging.  This is a whole cloth quilt made from the dark blue fabric that I had painted with bleach then used paint markers to give some additional color.  I think it iwas the last project that I quilted by hand.  I used that new batting with 50% cotton and 50% bamboo.  I really like that batting--very soft and drapes wonderfully.

That is the Love of my life holding it.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Wrapped up in Sports

I just learned about this organization today when I read my e-newsletter from the New England Quilt Museum.  Wrapped up in Sports is a non-profit organization that is "dedicated to making, collecting and donating professional sports teams-inspired quilts for children in medical, social and mental-health need. "  That sounds like a good cause, doesn't it?  The organization is located in Boston and requests that the teams represented on the quilts be the Red Sox, Patriots, Celtics, or Bruins.  Maybe one of my next Schnibble will have a color palette of one of the Boston teams and sport-theme fabric.

Monday, November 2, 2009

UFO challenge

I have done it.  Joined the UFO challenge at http://tallgrassprairiestudio.blogspot.com/.   I am taking a few days off of work at Thanksgiving when I was going to work on a Thanksgiving feast. So much for cooking!!  Here are the projects I am counting.  I, of course, have several other project in process but none of them are far enough along to count in this challenge.

I counted 4 finished tops--
1.  October schnibble that I have pinned and ready to go

2.  crazy quilt yellow
3.  fractured crazy quilt (see the picture)
4.  9x9 quilt (actually put this together several years ago but it needs a border added)
5.  I am not counting the fall quilt because I want to do some surface technique on it first.  I'll show you a picture later.

And 3 unfinished tops
1.  Kates's wedding quilt (got married 3 years ago).
2.  The stars quilt I stopped working on 4 years ago to work on Kate's quilt.
3.  November Schnibble (not started yet but I have ordered the pattern).