Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Out and about

We are still on the loose in Houston. Having a fabulous time! Today was a beautiful day, up to the high 80's, and we drove up to Old Spring Texas for some shopping. Yesterday we went south to Galveston to sit by the ocean. Tonight we plan to take in the preview night of quilt festival where they will award prizes to the winning quilts. Tomorrow, who can say what might happen? (well, I do know that I need to obtain another suitcase). We are having a fabulous time, did I say that already...

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Exhibits are open

It's the show floor at Quilt Market, where the space is divided between wholesale vendors in one half of the building and quilt shows in the other half.
In no particular order these are some of my first impressions. The photos will have to speak for themselves because I'm using the blogger mobile app which doesn't allow me to put them in any particular order or to add captions. ( or maybe it does but I don't know how to do that)
These are photos taken by the iPad camera but perhaps tomorrow I'll bring along my real camera for photos of the lovely quilts.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Hello Houston

We made it here finally yesterday, after many delays. There are four of us here in Houston to attend the Quilt Market. We're pretty excited. Also it is warm here.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Snow Day

First snowfall of the season....  and it is quite a lot of snow.  I decided to post lots of photos for those of you who can't just step outside into this wonderland.

the temperature is hovering around freezing point, so I don't suppose the snow will last too long, but it is pretty while it's here!

On another note, I have become quite enamoured of Chevrons.  Also known as ziz-zag quilts, or streak of lightening...   more on this later!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Block 4, Gemstones

 This is my second post today! but it is info you need to know!

 We had a block come out on Oct 20th, called Gemstones!
Block 4, Gemstones
 and this is what I am stitching on today...

Batik Charm Squares-- Counterpane Block

Counterpane blocks, all sewn together!
I went a bit overboard this autumn when it came to ordering in charm squares.  We have lots and lots of them, especially in batiks.  but they are so pretty!
I had 4 packs that I took home with me, which I decided to sew into one large quilt top.

  (note! along the way, I discovered that my charm squares were not 5" x 5", but more like 5-1/4" square! so if you get some, you might want to double-check their size!)

A while back, (oh, my goodness, it was almost a year ago!) I tried out a quick sew technique, here,
and I decided to do a bigger project with it.
Basically the idea is to sew all the squares together, and then cut finished blocks from the large gridded piece. 
So, I sewed four sections of blocks, 4 columns by 10 rows.  So although I jumbled up all my charm squares, each pack would yield one 4x10 unit.
 I decided not to sew all the units into one large grid, because it is a bit easier to handle smaller pieces.
Next, I cut off half the block from the left side, and sewed it to the right side.  Then I cut half the top row off and sewed it to the bottom.
 I'm sure you can see where all this is going...

this blocked off area shows where the individual block will appear
 This is the finished block!  I have consulted my reference copy of Barbara Brackman's "Encyclopedia of Pieced Blocks" where it is identified by several names, --A Plain Block(1896), Nine Patch, Sheepfold Quilt (1934), Irish Chain , and Counterpane(1934).  I prefer to call it by the last name.
so then you can cut the section apart to get 10 finished Counterpane blocks! Yay!
 I sewed them together with sashing from a pale apricot color.  I had it on hand, and I liked the look, it seemed to lighten it all up a bit. I cut the sashing at 1-3/4", so it finishes at 1-1/4". 
all 40 blocks with sashing
 Now, if you only used 3 charm packs, you would have 30 blocks, so it would be this size!
30 blocks
 and if you used only 2 charm packs, it would be this big:
20 blocks
 Although it looked fine as a horizontal grid setting, I decided to turn it on point, and so I did, using that very tricky "turn a quilt on it's side" technique.
 I added a bit of an outer border, and this is where I'm at with it now.  I don't think that it really needs an outer border, what do you think?

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Saskatoon Modern Quilt Guild on Facebook

I started a Facebook page for the upcoming modern quilt guild ,here
So I hope that link works. There are lots of good blogs that focus on this style of quilting too, such as as a stitch in dye, freshly pieced, or many more.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Modern Quilt Guild Anyone?

Well, this idea has been floating around for a while now, and so I thought I would take the bull by the horns and just Start!
( By the way, the photos are just random ones I've used before, because I can't do a post with no photos!)
Would you like to be part of a new quilt guild based in Saskatoon?

The Modern Quilt Guild has a web-site, here, where you can find out more about the group, but I am going to copy quite a lot of their information here to save you the trouble of opening another window.

What is modern quilting? the following is from their web-site:

What is modern quilting?
Modern quilting is a new and rapidly growing movement in the quilting world. A group of quilters applied their current tastes and points of view to this traditional craft and shared their work online.  Their fresh approach and new designs attracted sewers and quilters and the modern quilting movement was born.
Modern quilting, like all art, changes, grows and adapts from quilter to quilter as they find their own voice. Modern quilts reflect each quilter’s personality and personal style, and as the movement has grown, a modern quilt aesthetic, a set of principles that define and guide the movement, is beginning to emerge.
Modern quilts and quilters:
  • Make primarily functional rather than decorative quilts
  • Use asymmetry in quilt design
  • Rely less on repetition and on the interaction of quilt block motifs
  • Contain reinterpreted traditional blocks
  • Embrace simplicity and minimalism
  • Utilize alternative block structures or lack of visible block structure
  • Incorporate increased use of negative space
  • Are inspired by modern art and architecture
  • Frequently use improvisational piecing
  • Contain bold colors, on trend color combinations and graphic prints
  • Often use gray and white as neutrals
  • Reflect an increased use of solid fabrics
  • Focus on finishing quilts on home sewing machines
Sounds good? here's another excerpt,

The Internet has played an integral role in the development of modern quilting.  Through blogs, online tutorials and social media the modern quilting community interacts, providing inspiration and friendship for each other.  This has helped the community grow at an astounding pace, providing feedback and support at a moment’s notice.
In many ways, modern quilting has taken us back to the basics of the early quilters, when women of the day used the colors and styles of their time to express themselves creatively while finding friendship and community along the way.  Welcome to modern quilting!

By having a Saskatoon and area guild, the main reason would be to have fun!
By no means is it meant to duplicate the activities of our existing Saskatoon Quilt Guild,
Why start a new guild, when there already is an awesome quilt guilt here?-- Just a different activity, all quilting activites are good and complement each other!

So, I contacted the "organization" and let them know that there is a group of us here who is planning to start a group.

We will have the first meeting very soon!  Sunday, November 4th, at 2 p.m. at Periwinkle Quilting shop in Saskatoon! 

There, we will Determine what we want out of the guild.  This would be to ask ourselves
1. how often should we meet?
2. what should we do at the meetings?
3. who wants to be an officer? these would be people to fill roles such as secretary, communications person, or other such roles
4. where would we like to meet,?

For an example, again from the web-site
As an example, here’s what the LAMQG decided to do.
Monday Meetings:
We meet one Monday evening a month at Home Ec. for two hours.  At those meetings we deal with business, show & tells, people speak, we have fabric swaps and so on.  Lots of fun and inspirational times, but no sewing together at these meetings.
Weekend Sews:
We also meet one weekend day a month (alternating Saturdays & Sundays) in a room that we rent from a church.  At those meetings we all bring our gear – sewing machines, cutting mats, irons and ironing boards and we sew sew sew!  Some of these meetings are “free sews”, some are workshops on specific topics.  And at some we will sew charity quilts.  The options are endless!  These meetings are six hours long giving people lots of time to get some sewing done.
As our guild seems to attract younger members, we encourage meeting on week nights and weekends so that people with jobs and small children are able to attend.  Also consider your location and try to be central – if you can’t be, try to be fair.  Here in L.A, our Monday Meetings & Weekend Sews are on opposite sides of town so the commute alternates for members.
Step 6: Determine your dues and what they will cover.  For the LAMQG they are $50 a year and they cover all meetings. For some events with speakers we might require a small fee to attend, as needed.  We might also hold fundraisers as needed.
The first guild meeting for a potential new member is free.  The second & third are $5.00 each.  After that new members must join the guild to keep attending meetings.
Step 7: Set up a bank account for the guild. Your treasurer should head up this work.  These small first expenses for the guild can be covered by having the officers pay their dues right away.  Be sure you’re keeping a budget and track of all expenses.
Step 8: Consider becoming an nonprofit organization.  This is an involved process and we have a write up on how to do that here.  Please don’t let this step slow you down from starting with meetings and the good times, just make sure that you do get to it.
Step 9: Get started and have a blast!! These guilds are about friendships, inspiration and fun through quilting.

 I hope you will come to the meeting! and also, just drop me a line, or email or something if you're interested in it all.  I will start an online group in the next couple of days, if it isn't too hard.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

New felted wool

I spent some time yesterday dyeing wool for the store. So if you want some jewel tones or some autumn colors for rug hooking or wool appliqué they're in the shop now!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Shop photos

Because I was away for three weeks I needed to wander around the store and get reacquainted with it and with what's new. These are some unedited iPad photos:
It was nice to get back, and see the new Christmas pinwheel quilt that Joan sewed. Also a nice big stack of new fabrics from Westminster and Free Spirit!

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