Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Quilt Camp Day 3

Here we are on day three and we are pretty close to being on schedule. I think we finished half of the tops and are close to being done with the rest of them. This was the day that we needed to accomplish the most. Everyone in these photos was hard at work on the machines. One of the adult helpers is in the background on the left.
This was the end of the day after everyone had gone. We are fortunate to be able to leave everything as it is and lock the door and walk away, knowing it will be undisturbed until morning.  

This quilt top on the left was the first one to be finished. This was made by the only boy in the group. He was with us 2 years ago and he finished first then too

These next photos below show some of the completed tops.
Most of them are face down on the quilt backs and ready to be sewn around the edges. We will be layering the quilts and sewing around the edges and turning them. We will also tie them instead of quilting. Past experience has shown us that machine quilting and binding are too ambitious a project for our time constraints with new quilters, some who have never used a machine before.  

These last two quilt tops on the left are almost finished. There always issues with some of the machines and that puts some of the kids behind. Of course there is always some frog stitching and doing over that slows them down.

The adults step in and help with some of the ripping when it starts to become discouraging.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Quilt Camp 2010

Quilt Camp got off to a good start yesterday.  We have 12 young people from 6th grade through 12th this year, eleven girls and one boy, all of them really nice kids.   We have a nice big room with good light to work in and plenty of tables so we have a good workspace for everyone.

Because most of the kids have not had prior experience with rotary cutting all of the cutting is done at the cutting stations in the center of the room where there is an adult (adults) to supervise. The first picture here shows the cutting area and a few of the sewing areas. In the far background is my sample quilt that never got beyond the top. We had 2 sample tops finished and one complete quilt sample. That's enough for everyone to understand what the quilt is supposed to look like.  We applied for and received a grant from NEORQC which we used to purchase 2 new Janome basic sewing machines with no bells and whistles. Over the few years that we have been doing this we had acquired 6 used machines, some more reliable than others,  and all of us adult helpers brought our own machines for the kids to use.  The 2 new machines were a welcome addition. Only a small number of the kids have a machine they can bring. It is a big surprise for us quilters to realize that not every home has a sewing machine these days.
The other pictures show some of the kids and their quilts which they have started to lay out in preparation for putting the top together. They all chose their own fabric and I think they did a good job.

Sunday, June 20, 2010


This is "Serengeti Babe", a convergence quilt I made a few years ago. I used Ricky Timm's method and this quilt turned out to look like it was the background for something more. I had taken a class with Jane Sassamen and I used her technique to make the giraffe. I love giraffes because no matter how poor your drawing skills, they are easily recognizable. I cut out some of the flowers from the large print fabric and fused them and satin stitched around them. The name of the fabric is Serengeti Blossoms and the giraffe turned out to look kind of juvenile hence the name.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Thursday I went to the NQA quilt show in Columbus. It was a nice show; there was a good mix of vendors and the quilts were over the top. The show is not as big as some and it is possible to see most of it in one day. I went on a bus with a group from a LQS so it was a one day trip. I didn't buy much because I am not buying fabric for anything that I am not either currently working on or something I am going to go straight home and start.
The batik giraffe panel is 18 x20 and I only found 2 fat quarters of the batik print but nothing else called my name and told me it had to go with the giraffes so I decided I would work with what there was. I am not sure what I will do with it but I passed on a batik giraffe panel another time and I was sorry I did.

This is my other purchase, some fat quarters or half yards of Kaffe Fasset fabric. After seeing all of the work that  Wanda Hanson (Exuberant Color) has done with the Kaffe fabric I have been looking at it again.  I got an email ad from Hancock's of Paducah and ordered some charm packs and a Jelly roll at really bargain prices (how could I resist). I only received one charm pack and one jelly roll because they ran out. So..................... of course I needed more fabric.

These are a few of the blocks I made with the charms and jelly roll strips. There were a lot of dark strips in the roll and I am leaning more toward lighter and brighter. This will be an on going project I will work on them and add to them and when I get enough I will put them together. Maybe I will add another round of strips to each block......Maybe not.

Sunday, June 13, 2010


Yesterday our quit group met at church to go over fabric choices with the teens who are going to be at Quilt Camp. they are choosing their own fabric and we wanted to give them some guidelines. After they left we each did our own thing.
I finished the hand stitching on the back of the last border on this quilt. I made this for a  class to demo the quilting in sections technique I use. It was quilted in 5 sections for the body of the quilt and 2 border sections. I took the photo at the church so I could lay it on the floor without moving a lot of furniture. All I have to do now is sew on the binding and I will be done. when I was working on this I had all my braid strips randomly sorted into  stacks of 5 color families and the whole quilt and then some fit in a shoe box. I am usually not that neat so i was really impressed with myself for getting so organized.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Quilt Camp

I finished my sample quilt top today it is 53 x 65 . As usual I was overly optimistic about what I would accomplish.  I'm not sure what anyone else got done because no one finished theirs on Tuesday. We had a lot of things to discuss and little sewing got done.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Quilt Camp

The last week in June we have Quilt Camp  at our church for the teens, actually for 6th grade through 24 years old. In other years we have had a couple of college girls that wanted to come so we raised the age limit. This is our 4th year and we have 11 girls, 6 of them returnees. We have 5 adults working with the girls and we are all returnees too. It is not really "camp" we are at the church from 10 AM until 3 PM Monday through Friday.

Tomorrow we are getting together to go over the lesson plan and we will all make a quilt top so we will all be on the same page with our instructions. I cut out my kit last week so I could be sure that the yardage and cutting instructions were correct. We are doing that much ahead of time so we can get the top done tomorrow.
I went ahead and made my strip sets and cut the blocks I wanted to make sure I had not done something creative with my arithmetic. Below are the blocks for 2 partial rows. The pattern is Warm Wishes. We like to keep it simple because most of the girls do not sew at home. I will post pictures tomorrow when we have our practice tops done. I am optimistic and believe we will get them done tomorrow.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Small and cheerful

Two weeks ago I taught a class on Quilting in Sections. I had a large quilt that I used for demo but I needed a small piece that was easy to spread out and use also. I put the center together  and quilted it and then quilted the borders and added 2 and used the other 2 for demo. It's a good thing I decided to do this because I encountered some things I needed to point out about using an inner border when quilting in sections. I finally put the binding on the other day and I just need to do a little quilting in the areas where the sections were joined.
I needed something I could put together fast because I decided I needed another demo piece 2 days before the class. I looked through my box of orphan blocks and found these 4 that were left from the row by row swap that didn't work out. I had ordered the fabric in the border a month or 2 ago from Marshall Dry Goods. They had only 5 yards in stock and I ordered all 5, after all the price was right. I can see myself using this a lot because it is so bright and cheerful. I don't have any big projects in mind so it will probably pop up in a lot of places.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Still more red white, and blue

This is the last of them.

This little flag is 10 x 7 inches. My friend Pat gave me the  piece of fabric from a flat fold that was repeats of the flag. I layered it and turned it pillow case style and hand quilted it. I pinned it to a small piece of foam  core so it will stand up and in the summer it sits on a shelf inside my front door, right across from Urban Renewal. 

Below is the Mariners Compass that I hand pieced before paper piecing came along. It is 23 inches square and hand quilted. It was for a quilt  guild challenge. We were given a fabric pack and  we could add up to 3 fabrics and a background. I think I only added the light background. At present it sits across a foot stool by my usual sitting place in the living room. I used to have it on a small table and I spilled coffee on it. You can see the stain  in the photo but it is not so noticeable in person.

Next is one of 2 place mats I made 2 years ago. I wanted to see how I liked using the that inner border with the small squares before I went ahead and used it on a large quilt. they spend the summer on the 2 hutches in my dinning room. 

These three little angels are about 7 inches tall and were made more than 20 years ago,  probably shortly after I first started quilting. I used to make and sell cloth dolls and designed them so I would have something small to sell.  I took the idea from the wings and the arms from a pattern called "Oh Susanna" for a little hanging doll. I think the pattern was from Country Threads. Right now they are on top of a shelf unit to the right of my desk but they will probably move because I set things there when I am on a ladder getting things off the higher shelves in my closet.

That's all of it. Well, I do have a big quilt that I made for my husband using some photos and Alexander Henry motorcycle fabric. I can't get a decent picture of it anywhere inside our apartment so for now it remains unseen here but it does spend the summer sitting folded up on top of the cedar chest and the rest of the time folded up inside the cedar chest.

You may have the impression that to have this much stuff around I have a lot of space. Not so!  I live in a 2 bedroom apartment.
My dining "room" is really a dining L and the dining room chair that hold the one quilt sits against the wall so we can pass in back of my chair in the living room. It is right for us; I can clean it all in one day and I have one room for a sewing room. I Try to keep the clutter down everywhere but my sewing room. That is the one room that is too small of all my STUFF.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

More Red, White and Blue

I have a few more red, white and blue quilts; some of them I am using and some I am going to give to family.

The quilt on the left is not mine; it was made by another quilt guild member from a Country Threads pattern.

The quilt below is my quilt that I made after I acquired the unused house blocks from Kathy at our quilt guild flea market. I added the flag and the plaid borders and sashing. I call it "Urban Renewal". I hand quilted outline star blocks at the top of each house instead of the applique stars that Kathy has on her block. It was fun to make something from left over blocks that someone else made.   It is 29 x 52 and hangs right inside our front door for the summer.

I made the quilt below at least 17 years ago. It is 32 x 32 and it has been replaced by the Urban Renewal quilt. The writing  on the strip above the flag is The Pledge of Allegience. I am not sure why I had left over Debbie Mumm fabric; I don't remember what I made with the fabric but I wanted to use up left over motifs and strips from the Debbie Mumm fabric. I took the ideas for the blocks and the layout from somewhere but I am not sure anymore where; it was probably from more than one place.

The last quilt was for a flag challenge from my quilt guild. It is 32 x 24.
 Do you see a house and flag theme developing here? The writing on the light stripes is from The Constitution of the United States. The Courthouse Steps blocks are 5 inches square and the logs finished 1/2 inch wide. Someone gave a trunk show at our guild and one quilt was made with small log cabin blocks that were not paper pieced. At the time I did not paper piece and I still would never paper piece anything I could do any other way. Her quilt had a lot of small blocks, really a lot. When I was playing with ideas for the challenge I thought about the small Courthouse Steps blocks and told myself " Hmmm...... if she can do that, maybe I can too." And I did!  My thanks to Ruth for the inspiration. Of course I only made 4 and that was just right for me. A lot of them would have sent me over the edge.
These last 2 quilts I am going to give to anyone in my family who wants them; I know someone will. 

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

REd white and Blue quilts

I realized yesterday morning that Memorial Day was here and I had not changed out my quilts for the red, white and blue quilts. I usually have them out by Memorial day week end and they stay out till Labor Day because all the summer holidays are patriotic.

These  two quilts live in my dining room for the summer.  The one on the table is from a block swap that didn't turn out the way it was supposed to (everyone had a month and we were supposed to make a row of 6 blocks that represented that month) It turned out to be not a good plan.  I took the rows apart and used the blocks from them for small pieces that represented that month. This one was 4 of the blocks for July. The quilt on the wall is one of a series of quilts using and idea I found in a magazine for setting pictorial fabric with Birds in the Air blocks.  I made 6 or 7 quilts with different fabrics until I got "triangled out". I still have several fabrics I bought to use but sewing with my seam ripper in my hand matching all those points finally got to me. Enought was Enough !!

The quilt on the left is one that I made with blocks made by my Friendship group. I asked for them to be made in red white and blue It was going to be a tablecloth (one to actually use on the table when eating). I changed my mind after it was done as I really like it and didn't think it would hold up too well laundering the dark fabrics. It lives over a chair in the dining room for the summer.
My husband is holding the next quilt (under protest).
 It is folded up and sits on top of my cedar chest. This is another one with blocks from my friendship group. I asked for red, white and blue and yellow Jacobs Ladder blocks and then the next year I asked for the flying geese for 2 side borders.

This is a Pineapple quilt that hangs over the back of a rocker in a corner of the living room. I planned the layout so the blue fabric would serve as a border. It was published in the summer 2000 issue of Quilt Magazine. We saw the magazine in a store when we were shopping we bought 2 or 3 copies; my husband told everyone around us that it was my quilt in the magazine.  I am keeping him even if he does get grumpy when i ask him to hold up my quilts while I get the camera ready.
There are a few more but I will post them another time.