Friday, August 3, 2018


This is Joan R's quilt.  Joan is one of my "special" customers.  She is legally blind and makes amazing quilts.  Although I have been declining most requests for custom quilting, I still have been doing her quilts.  She is a sweetheart - brings me baking (I don't bake so love that!).  

Monday, July 9, 2018

Row by Row 2015 - Only 3 years Late!

Remember way back in 2015, the first year we had Row by Row in Canada?  Well, I went a bit crazy and ended up with somewhere around 40 RXR kits  with little time to make them.   

A few of my quilty friends and I have been getting together occasionally for sew days this year so I figured that would be a good time to start making some of these darn rows.  I started with the easy ones and have maybe 10 or so finished.   Enough for a quilt.  

The ones I chose for this quilt had to meet two criteria:  1) they had to coordinate and 2) the stores needed to be in or around the Edmonton (Alberta) area.  This quilt will be gifted to my sister-in-law, who lives in Edmonton.  I explained the RXR thing to her back in 2015 when we were making the rounds to collect the rows.  She is a sewer and has made a few quilts so she "gets" it.  

I have a confession - there aren't too many RXR quilts that I've seen that I actually like.  Individually many of the rows are cute and some even more than that, but since they are all different (in style, colour and size - it seems some designers can't do math 😎 - assuming they were all to be the same size), and the fabrics are not necessarily coordinating (even though the kits are put together using fabric from the same company) and many of the initial quilts were slapped together quickly to try to win a prize.  I get all that.  But since I'm way past the point of winning anything, I can put together something that at least coordinates.  I won't say it's my favourite quilt, that's for sure, but it's not too bad given what we have to work with. 

As a reminder, the theme that year was "H2O" (water) - which is what I named my quilt.

The names given to the blocks by the designers, the store and town name are under the various pix.

"Mountain Beauty" - Country Quilts and More - Delburne

"We are Sailing" - Quiltessential - St. Albert

No name - Quilter's Dream - Edmonton

"Prairie Storm" - Creative Klutter - Irma (note the 3D prairie points)

I had a bit of the Bargello-ish strips left so cut them into these square-in-square blocks to take up some of the negative space around the rows.

"Tide Pool" - Material Matters - Drayton Valley

No name - Extraordinary Extras - Vermilion

A couple more comments - the "no name" ones may actually have names, but I misplaced the patterns and was lucky to find a pix on line that gave the store names, but not the row names.  I try to be organized, but I'm not very good at it!  

And I am wondering where a tidal pool is anywhere near Alberta!  😎😎😎😎

Serpent Geomorphology

This is another "exercise" done while at the "Joe Retreat" (Joe Cunningham) way back early in the year.  I've had it done for quite awhile, just haven't taken time to blog it.  I've been waiting to take some better pix of it, still haven't got to it, but will eventually - in the meantime, these will have to do.

Snake Paths by Paul Klee

Joe gave each of us a copy of a painting and told us to make a quilt based on the painting.  My painting was Snake Paths by Paul Klee.  So this is my quilt based on that painting.  I'm calling mine Serpent Geomorpholoy as a nod to the original painting.  It's sort of strange, but I kinda like it.  I think there should be "more sewing, less thinking" in my future.  That is my favourite "Joe-ism". 

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Art Deco is Launched!

I'm very pleased to announce that my first pattern, Art Deco, is finished and is now available for purchase!  At the moment, in hard copy only at your LQS.  If you would like it but your favourite store does not have, ask them to bring it inErie Quilt Art is my distributor.

I'm really happy with the pattern.  I've included a Colouring Sheet that can be copied and coloured to test out different colourways and/or to doodle a quilting design.  I've also included a diagram of the quilting design I used.  And as a bonus, if you scroll way down on the Art Deco tab at the top of the website, you will find a detailed tutorial on how to quilt it.  And - cutting diagrams that should be helpful.

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Playing With Art Deco and Checking Out cSPACE

Agnes and I went on an adventure on Thursday.  

We had a guest (Natalie Gerber) at our quilt guild (Calgary Modern Quilt Guild) meeting who has a studio at cSPACE King Edward.  Neither of us had heard of this place until Natalie spoke about it, but it's open to the public so we decided to check it out.  I took my Art Deco quilt because I'm still trying to get a pix of it that will be good enough to put on the front cover of the pattern I've written for it.  I didn't get one, but we had fun trying.  As you can see, it was a beautiful day, the colours are pretty good in the sun, but I need to put it on a rod so the whole quilt is visible.  So the official pix will have to wait for another day.  Still - I hope to have the pattern released within the next few weeks - it's very close now!

Of all the pix, this one would probably be best for my purposes, but it's inside, lighting not great, too much of an angle and Agnes still has to hold the corners so you can't see the top.

Still, we had fun checking out cSPACE.  It's a great "re purposing" of an old historic building.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

More Butterfly Pix

I'm getting closer.  We rigged up a frame to hang quilts for pix taking purposes.  There are still issues of lighting and stability/squareness, but one thing at a time.  So I am finally able to get a full on pix of my Tula Pink Butterfly quilt!  Then I took a few more close ups.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Butterfly's Garden

This is my own Tula Pink Butterfly quilt.  I'm calling it "Butterfly's Garden".  I quilted one for Gillian awhile back.  Coincidentally, mine was under construction at the time.  I got the kit from Craftsy well over a year ago - I think sometime in 2016  - and started chipping away at it last spring.  I put a push on and finished the top late in the fall but didn't get around to quilting it until after Christmas.  I finally got the binding and a label on it for our long-arm group meeting yesterday so it's on the list of completed UFO's. 😎 

It's mostly Tula Pink fabric, obviously, but I did add a few stash fabrics that worked.  Also, I bought more of the background fabric for the borders.  I liked the fabric in the kit - but not for the border.  I wanted the butterfly to be the main event and felt that anything other than the background would detract from that.  I also added an extra six inches on each side because I may want to actually use this one on a bed!  In the end, it's a huge quilt - not quite king, but certainly a generous queen.

I am often asked how I figure out how I am going to quilt a quilt.  The concept for this quilt is "garden"....  keep going for more explanation ....

Because its so big, I don't have a good space in my house to get a decent shot of the whole quilt, draping it over some furniture is the best I can do (below).  Lee D, in our long-arm group, took a pix of it yesterday so I'm stealing her pix (thanks Lee!), which is the pix above.

My idea for this quilt was that it would be a garden, hence the name.  The design along the bottom border is adapted from a book of Art Deco wrought iron designs.  The idea is that it's a wrought iron fence around the garden (below).

Of course there will be other butterflies and some dragonflies in the garden.... and flowers.... and leafy things (feathers).

For this quilt, I started by ditching all the blocks in the butterfly using DecoBob thread (most of the rest of the quilting was with Glide) .  Then I quilted the antennae.  It took a couple of tries to get them more or less symmetrical as I'm not computerized - this is one place where it would be handy.  But in the end I like the organic result of not-quite-perfect.  I pinned the borders down as I went.   Once I got to the bottom of the butterfly wings, I went back and quilted the butterfly blocks. 

When the butterfly was completely quilted (I did change colours to blend with the fabric in most cases), I did the half inch outline all the way around.  Next - I  stitched in the outlines for the "wrought iron fence".   Then I stitched in the butterflies and dragonflies.  Note that I used coloured thread for these motifs.  All the rest of the background/border quilting is with white.  

I gradually worked my way around the background and border, filling it in with what I hope turns out to be fairly balanced.  I don't usually sketch out what I'm going to quilt - it's all in my head so I just hope it works because all I can see at any one time is what is between the roll bars.

A note about the grid quilting.  First - I measure it and draw it on with air erase pen.  Second - it's ruler work.  Third - I often use a grid as a background when an area needs to be quilted but I don't want to put a busy design in that place.  In the pix above, as an example, if I had put feathers where the grid is, the dragonfly would disappear.  The grid is a sort of "neutral" quilting design that goes in "behind" a motif or feature design.

Above - can't see it very well but there's a "lattice" running up along each side.

Above - the "lattice" on the right hand side - the diamond shapes.

And that's my Butterfly's Garden.