Sunday, December 3, 2017

Tequila Sunrise

Photo Credit: Adina Johnson

This is a Judy Niemeyer pattern - the Glacier Star.  Judy is extremely well known in the quilting world to the point where if someone refers to a "Judy Pattern" everyone knows what they mean.  She and her team have produced a gazillion of these very elaborate paper pieced patterns.  Find her patterns at Quiltworx.  

I had always wanted to make one just for the challenge so when my friend Carol said she was going to attend a "Judy" retreat in Abbotsford a few years ago, I decided to go with her (instructor was Maureen Wood).  I got a good start on the thing - learning the paper piecing technique.  Up to that point, I hadn't done a lot of paper piecing.  Once you do a "Judy" quilt, you can do any paper piecing!  

Anyway - out of time at the retreat and lots of customer quilts, etc., Judy got put on the back burner until my next retreat with friends the following spring.  I worked on it some more and at at least one more retreat.  At some point I got the inside completed - the 60" * 60" section that is on-point in the pix above.  I decided that I would give it to my sister as a (belated) wedding gift but wanted it big enough to go on her bed - queen size. Happily there is an extension to the pattern so I ordered the additional corners, which, once made, make the quilt into a 90"*90" queen size quilt.  

I finally got it finished, quilted, then bound it in time for the photo shoot last weekend - Adina Johnson took the pix - they are wonderful!  

No kidding - this quilt has taken the longest of any I've made - and cost the most!!!!  I think when Chris gets it, there will be a few conditions attached!!!!  But I think she'll love it - when I give it to her for her 5th anniversary (so a bit late...).  It's been pretty fun to make. 
Photo credit: Adina Johnson

I took a few pix just after I finished quilting it so here are a few of my pix (below):

This is the reason (above) why we need a pro to take a few pix of our quilts. Can't get a proper full on shot.  Need some equipment to do that.

Photo Shoot!

I organized a "Quilt Photo Shoot Day" for the Calgary Modern Quilt Guild with professional photographer, Adina Johnson.  We had the shoot at Adina's home last Saturday.  I couldn't resist taking some (five) of my favourite quilts to have photographed.  Here are the pix by Adina.

"Tequila Sunrise" - a Judy Niemeyer Glacier Star pattern. 90"*90" version. Blogged about it here.

"What the Hex" - my own pattern, although the design is ancient!  Blogged about it here.

"Key Lime Galaxy" - my own pattern and design.  I blogged about it here.

"Stella Venandi" - I couldn't think of a name so I found the Latin translation of  "Hunter Star".  This is one of the Hunter Star layouts in Deb Tucker's Hidden Treasures book.  I blogged about it here.

"Big Bang" - my own design and pattern  Who else would do something this nuts?  😀 Blogged about it here.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Time Warp and a Small Announcement

Time Warp!

It's been awhile since I've posted - I have been busy with quilting and a few other things.  As I have done from time to time, I am posting this "catch up" so fasten your seat belts.  And I have a small announcement to make - it's at the end so keep reading/scrolling down.

First up: a few customer quilts.

Ronnie wanted this quilt to be quilted in a "manly" way.

This is Donna's Monopoly quilt.  Note the top hat and locomotive quilted into the centre panel.  She asked me to put "Doug" in jail because I guess Doug is getting the quilt and he is, as she explained, "not the person you want to play Monopoly with".

Sandra brought me a really sweet little heart quilt top made by her 97 year old Grandma and asked if I could quilt it.  Unless I am asked otherwise, I quilt and take the quilt off the frame - that's it.  I don't trim or bind.  I know some quilters do trim, but I'm not comfortable doing that as everyone has their own special way of doing things.  So I generally just leave the quilted quilt to the maker to finish as they prefer.  Sandra, as it turns out, is a non-sewer so when I presented her with her quilted but not finished quilt, she was a bit baffled by what the next step would be.  So she left it with me and I finished it off for her.  She is planning to return it to her Grandma, but confessed that she hoped her Grandma would give it back to her!  😊  I love the stories that go with the quilts I quilt!  (Of course I didn't get a good pix, when I called her, she came right away - she lives near me.)

I quilted these appliqued snowmen for Liz.  We were both happy with the way they turned out.  Stars in the corners and through the border sashing - swirls (of snow is my thinking) on the rest of the border.

Barb has brought me a number of quilts for quilting but she tells me this T-shirt quilt is the first one she will keep for herself.  I can tell that it holds some really wonderful memories for her.  She's added in a few printed-on-fabric photos of her family, which makes it even more special.


In addition to a few "how to quilt" classes that I've taught lately, I recently taught a class on making a little spiral table topper.  I made the purple/black with the wizard in the centre as the sample for the store to display, then my class demo was the teal/cream.  (I did all the quilting on my domestic machine - used some "fancy" satin stitches.  I did this because most people taking these classes won't have a long-arm in their basements like I do!)  Here they both are.

The Lemoyne Star was made using the Lemoyne Star Studio 180 tool.  Makes it super simple and fast!

A lady in the class said she loved the wizard.  I'm not sure if she was expecting to learn how to make the wizard, too - it took the full class time just to get the first row of the spiral done.  I explained that the wizard was just a bit of jazz I added but that we should ask Janet, the store owner (Addies in Cochrane) if she would be interested in me doing a paper piecing class.  She is, so I will be teaching paper piecing on Jan 10 at Addies.  As the wizard is in a book I own, has copyright restrictions and is out of print now, to avoid any copyright issues I developed a pattern to use for the class.  It contains three separate blocks combined to make this little mini quilt.  The blocks range from really easy, to slightly more difficult. I think if a person can make all three, they should be able to tackle just about any paper piecing project.

I didn't have enough of the blue colours left to make a standard binding so thought this was my opportunity to try the facing style of binding.  I found a good tutorial here.   It worked well.  I'm very happy with it.  I probably wouldn't do it on a really big quilt - but never say never!  There are a couple of tricks to note if you decide to try it: 
1) "Press the facing strips outwards, then stitch through the facing and seam allowance about 1/8” from the seam."  this is an old garment making trick - it really helps to keep the binding flat once it's folded over.
2) make sure the corners are really secured so that the raw edge doesn't poke out at the ends.

Update: A FB friend also suggested this tutorial for the faced binding.  I haven't tried it yet, but the thing I like about it is the way she does her corners.  When I do my next one, I'll do the corners from the Silly BooDilly tutorial and the 1/8" stitching from the Terry Aske tutorial.  

'Tis the Season.... for E-Shopping!!!!

Craftsy had a sale, I couldn't resist 17 yd of solids for 1/2 price (with shipping it worked out to under CD$5.00/yd). Irresistible - so I ordered and the package arrived about an hour ago!

Also, I've been using my Brother Scan'n'Cut quite a bit lately - because I can!!!!  I ran out of fusible backing so ordered a bolt - it also arrived today!  This is the Vikings quilt top.  All the Vikings were cut with my Scan'n'cut - fabric first fused to the fusible backing.  It's one of many of my own quilt tops waiting to be quilted.

"Small Announcement"

I really love quilting and I love my customers and I love that they trust me to quilt their quilts and I love that for the most part they all seem really happy with my work.  But I had an avalanche of quilts come in this year and I was working way more on quilting customer quilts than I ever intended.  About a month or so ago I realized I'd hit the wall with customer quilts.  I want it to stay fresh and fun - not a job, which is what it was beginning to feel like.

So I decided to finish off the customer quilts that I have committed to quilt and then take a "hiatus" from quilting customer quilts.  I'm not sure for how long, but at least until spring.  If you are one of my customers - I thank you very much for placing your trust in me.  If  you (or anyone) need something quilted between now and the time I return to quilting customer quilts, I will be happy to refer you to another quilter.  We are lucky to have many talented quilters in the Calgary area.

What will I be doing?  I have a Tupperware bin full of quilt tops I have made that are waiting to be quilted.  I have a head full of quilt ideas that I want to play with and I also hope to develop a few patterns.  No end of things to do!  I just need time to do them!

Once again - thank you to all my customers.  Please stay in touch.  I will post when I'm ready to return to quilting for others.  And of course, my blog and FB page will continue as ever!  One of the reasons I do this blog is to share with other quilters - I learn so much from the things that other people are generous enough to share - it's my way of contributing to that body of knowledge and experience (good and bad!).