The piles of stuff in my studio are like archaeological digs. The deeper you go the older the stuff. I tried to clean up one pile and found the trimmings from a quilt I made for Fabriquilt years ago. I sewed it all together and came up with this 12 inch square mini-quilt:
I had a couple of deadlines come up this week. First, I promised to make a Christmas tree skirt for a tree that will be in the Lawrence Festival of Trees, then I promised to make a quilt for a fabric company to be shown at Quilt Market. All things are possible when the deadline is months or weeks away, right? The festival tree is a skinny white tree with an over-the-top amount of gold and white bows. My plan was to make a skirt that was an iridescent white with ribbon and bows to make each section look like a wrapped package. Here is the result:
As always, I am not too impressed with my work...but the deadline was met.
The quilt was a rush job. I had three weeks to make a twin sized quilt that featured a new line of solid colored fabrics that will be introduced by Fabriquilt at Market. The theme of their booth is butterflies and flowers. The flowers on my quilt got deleted for time but here is what I ended up delivering:
A friend came up with a great name for this quilt. "A Flutter of Color". This quilt is ok, but if I could do it again I think I could do a better job of including more of the fabric colors. OK, now on to the next nagging project.
This was a fun project to welcome a client's latest granddaughter:
The new mother likes pink, white, grey and elephants. A quick search on the internet came up with pink polka dot and elephant print. Perfect! Then I "blew up" one of the elephants to make the applique pattern. Don't you love it when things fall in place like this?
One project for this summer was to make two Snoopy quilts for a friend/customer. I decided to use the "Sprinkle" pattern by The Happy Zombie which can be found here. After making a big stack of each of the three blocks required by the pattern, I decided I liked the one with the smallest amount of Snoopy fabric the least. Since I had made too many blocks, it was easy to decrease the number of those blocks in the two quilts. Then I made a third quilt using solid squares of Snoopy fabric alternating with the leftover blocks. Unfortunately, I forgot to photograph that last quilt. But here is the first and largest quilt:
And here is the back of that quilt which has some vintage "make your own stuffed Snoopy" fabric added in:
Just as I was finishing up the binding, I noticed that the fabric surrounding the Snoopies on the back a small hole in it. So I appliqued some small squares of fussy cut fabric randomly around on the back. One applique covers the hole:
My entries in the judged part of the KC Regional Quilt Show did not win anything, and my entry to the latest exhibit organized by the Dinner At Eight Artists was not excepted. But I put a couple of quilts in the county fair and won two blue ribbons. Guess you just need to know your best venue.
The Dinner at Eight Artists asked for a 40 inch square quilt this year with the theme of "Affinity". This is what I made:
The circles were formed by folding and clamping the fabric between plexiglass circles, and its opposite- a square with a center circle cutout, and then putting the bundles in an indigo bath. All of the spikes, or triangles, or feathers are done with thread painting. I call this piece "Green Loves Blue but I Like Red".
There is a very nice quilt shop in New York City called The City Quilter. I always try to stop by when I am in the big city. This time I was (more than a little) surprised to see my book on sale at The City Quilter! How about that? Naturally I offered to autograph them because why not? The friendly staff said sure... so... here I am. Sweaty from the walk from the subway but happy to see my old familiar friend "Robots in Space!"
The Kansas City Regional Quilt Festival is going on now! (More info here: http://kcrqf.com/) Stop by if you are in the neighborhood. It is very impressive event that has been put together entirely by volunteers. My guild is selling raffle tickets for a great starry quilt that will be given away in September. If you buy $5 worth of tickets you can have your photo taken in our "Sun Bonnet Sue" photo booth:
Amy Bradley has designed a lot of very cute patterns. My current favorite is a set of campers and family members. It can be found here. So far I have only made one of the campers for a friend of a friend,
but hopefully more will come soon. It is fun to put together a fantasy camper and accessories. Of course mine will include birds and a cooler full of soda and ice cream.
Unfortunately, for almost my entire life, I have been embarrassed about my mom's shoes. From photos I have seen I think that before she had children my mother had style and good taste in clothing. But life wore her down and high heels are not the shoe of choice for chasing three children around. She would settle on a pair of canvas tennis shoes and wear them until they fell apart. Generally those shoes would be splattered with paint or wallpaper paste or even concrete from time spent helping my dad repair and "flip" homes. She had very narrow feet that were difficult to fit and in later years she had a lot of arthritis pain in her toes. At least ten years ago she got a pair of green elastic sandals that became her go-to shoes, even in cold weather. They were bright green, two sizes too short and a size too wide. After a while they became worn and dirty and well, embarrassing. Twice I took her shoe shopping and she came home with replacements that she rarely wore. Last Christmas I special ordered a pair of shoes that were made for people who have trouble putting on shoes. Heavily padded warm shoes that she said were comfortable but they never became her favorite.
Last Wednesday mom passed away. Even though she had been on a long decline it still felt sudden. We buried her in the new "comfy" shoes and I put the green sandals in the trash. I was too embarrassed to send green shoes to the mortuary. Sorry mom.
On this Mother's Day it seems appropriate to consider the steps a mother makes during her lifetime. Steps taken in the care and feeding of children. Shoes worn working on projects that interested her husband a lot more than it interested herself. I wish her steps could have been easier.
Whoops, I forgot to post the info about the SAQA Regional Exhibit that opened yesterday in Kansas City! The theme is Midwest Metaphors. My entry in the exhibit is made out of six vintage flour sacks that I embellished with embroidery. (It was inspired by Andy Warhol screen prints.)
This weekend is the annual Kaw Valley Quilters Guild Quilt Show. It is held at Crown Toyota dealership in Lawrence KS. For more details click here. There are some great quilts to see and vendors to visit. The guild has a "boutique" where there are bargains in all types of sewing notions, fabric and books, as well as cute hand-crafted items. Here I am finishing the set up of merchandise:
Here is another baby quilt that I was asked to make. I used a panel print that was supposed to make a fabric book by Richard Scary. Just cut out the pages and added sashing with wonky star corner blocks. The front and back cover were a slightly different size so they needed some adjusting...but I liked including them better than leaving them out. A fast and easy project made from some pretty and pretty entertaining fabric:
A grey day here. The state song claims the "skies are not cloudy all day" but they often are up here in the northeast corner. Our basketball team is out of the tournament even though the long suffering husband and I traveled to Omaha to cheer them on in person. The seats reserved for a few lucky faculty members were within a half-dozen rows of the top of the arena, which started the event with a taste of the disappointment that was to come. Good thing we brought the new binoculars!
I have always made fun of people who travel long distances and spend big money to sit in the top rows of a venue and watch dots play basketball...a comfy chair in front of a HD TV makes so much more sense. I kept thinking Who is the dummy now? At least I got to help boo the governor when his face appeared on camera. To clarify: we were not booing his shirt, we were booing his policies and wrong-headed leadership of our state.
No Irish heritage here...and a holiday that does not focus on candy is easy for me to ignore. However, I did try out a bit of green sewing in honor of the season. Here is a block that is made from commercial flowered fabric that I used Rit Color Remover on, then clamped between two plexiglass circles and put in an indigo dye bath. Stitched with variegated green thread, it now waits for the next step: