Monday, September 24, 2012

Designing Monday

I have been sewing away on the black and batik quilt squares from the class I took over a week ago.  I am trying to decide whether to make the centers of each square random, all the same color, or follow a pattern of some sort.  When I look at it now, my eyes wander all over the place.  I have stalled at the moment on sewing until I make this decision.

I continue to sew on the 3rd of my orange and black series, but don't have enough to photograph.

Big News:  I now have a design wall.  I saw somewhere on the Internet where a quilter stapled a piece of flannel on the wall, no fancy frame, etc.   Joann had flannel on sale for $3 a yard.  I bought enough to wall paper my whole house, I think.  LOL!   So I put together enough to hang on my wall and then tried to staple it on.  I had to get my husband to help me as I couldn't stand on the ladder, hold the fabric, and staple at the same time.  It took a few tries, but we finally got staples across the top.  The staple holes in the wall are so small that I am hoping that they will not show.  That's the theory anyway.  I did end up using some duct tape on the bottom corners and side to make it lay flat.  As we were hanging it up, my husband had to ask, "Why are we doing this?"  Even after explaining, he wasn't convinced.  Once we were done, I put up the pieces of the quilt I am working on and told him to come look.  His insightful response was "Hmm."  Followed by," How do those pieces stay on there?"  I said, "You're the engineer, you figure it out!"

So the design wall is working well for me, but a quandary for the non-quilting husband.  That seems to be a common theme in much we do these days.  LOL!

Stop by Judy's blog and see more fun designs.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

A Chance to Learn

Our quilt guild hosted a teacher this week named Charlotte Agnotti.  I had not heard of her before, but she teaches at shows around the country and publishes a number of patterns.  She talked at our guild meeting on Tuesday night and showed 5 or 6 quilts that are in her new book.

On Wednesday she led a class for our guild.  I opted to take the class as we don;t often get national teachers.  The pattern that she selected was very very basic, so not much challenge.  The pattern includes lots of hourglass blocks.  Charlotte uses the Easy Angle ruler to make them.  I have such a ruler, of course, but had never used it, so was anxious to learn how she uses it and hopefully discover how to eliminate the wasted time and fabric associated with making HST's with oversized squares.  Much to my dismay, Charlotte's method still requires oversizing, trimming and waste.  So it was worth trying to learn how to use the ruler, but I probably won't change my way of making HST's.

At the end of the day, I had these two blocks done.  I really expected to have much more finished, but there was a lot of cutting and a lot of chatting.  It was a nice day overall and I got a chance to talk to several of the other students.

The color scheme of a black background and batik colors is way out of my comfort zone.  I have been
collecting batiks for years, so I was excited to be able to use them.  

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Quilt Expo Continued

Here are more of the Quilt Expo photos from last Thursday.  It is such a treat to be able to see such quality work.  Definitely great inspiration.

This next quilt is a Christmas quilt.  It is done in blue and cream with red and green trees and red and green in the long star.  There are machine embroidered motifs in each of the light spaces between the star points.

Here are some closeups.  A snow man embroidery

Gorgeous quilting and a a paper pieced star

 I love this border ... a scalloped keyboard
 A pineapple quilt with appliqued border.  Love love love it.

I love how there is a scalloped border on two corners and squared off corners on the other two.

 This quilt is so sweet.  It had the word "Alpha-Baat" in the title because there are sheep.  The tree on the right has lots of tiny pieces of fall colored fabric fused on in a 3D kind of way.

I love this border too.  I think these blocks were cross stitched.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Designing Monday

I finished my #2 orange & black quilt.  These are such fun and cute little quilts.  Hope I can make a couple more before October sets in.

Stop by Judy's blog to see more great designs.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

More Quilt Expo

I tend to enjoy applique quilts since that is my favorite form of quilting.  Therefore most of my photos tend to be of appliqué.  Hope you enjoy seeing more of the sights of Quilt Expo.

 This quilt is orange and black.  Since I am making quilts in that color scheme, I couldn't resist taking this photo.This quilt commemorates the Civil War.
 You can see in the close up that each black horse has a name tag.  There are quite a few of them around the border.  I am not sure what the elephant is doing in the Civil War.

This quilt won Best of Show.

More to come.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Quilt Expo

I had such a fun day travelling with my friends to Quilt Expo.  We yakked and laughed all day long. My mind was still buzzing after I went to bed.  There is always so much to see and shopping to be done.

I hope you enjoy seeing some photos of quilts that were on exhibit.  Jean Lohmar from Galesburg, Illinois had a whole hallway of quilt and was on hand to share info about them. She told me that she only machine appliqués and machine quilts everything on her domestic machine- a Bernina.  She said she has worn out more than one machine.  Her colors are really stunning, too.  Here is her work.

 This is my friend, Carolyn.  She has fabulous red hair.  I hope she is not touching that quilt!
 This is Jean, the quilt maker.  She designed this quilt and spent a lot of time describing to me the techniques she used and where the fabric came from and showed me how she cut specific patterns from the fabric.  She was really great to talk to.

She had many more quilts on display, but these were some of my favorites.  Hope you enjoyed them.  I'll have more to share next time.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

It's the Big One, Elizabeth

Remember Sanford & Son?  Whenever Sanford didn't want to deal with something, he always faked a heart attack and yelled, "It's the Big One, Elizabeth."  Well, yesterday was the Big One for me.

No, I didn't have a heart attack or even heart burn.  It was my birthday and I turned the Big One.  It starts with a 6 and ends with an 0.   Fortunately my friends and family made it pretty painless.  My daughter sent beautiful flowers ....

My husband gave me a gift card for a spa. OohLaLa!

My friends rallied with fabulous fun.  Lunch out, and bags of goodies...

I even had a fun Skype visit from my great niece and nephew who are starting their first day of kindergarten today.

Tomorrow is Quilt Expo in Madison.  This is Nancy Ziemann's production and it is always fun to spend the day with friends  oohing and aahing over the gorgeous quilts.  I will try to take lots of pictures and share them here.  My camera battery is charged and ready for action!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Designing Monday

I finished the first little Halloween quilt that I showed last week and moved on to #2....

I am trying to decide whether to use
           solid black. . . . .  .

or a patterned black for the setting squares and

I already have 2 or 3 more quilts in my brain that I would like to make in this same orange and black color scheme.   I don't know why I didn't think of this years ago.  I really like how these look.

Our daughter made it safely to Saudi Arabia.  She left here at 6:00 am on Monday and arrived at her apartment about 7:00 pm on Tuesday (which was Wednesday there).  She had been traveling or sitting in airports that entire time.  Before the week was over she had already taught two days.

She now wears an abaya - a long black overcoat anytime she is on the street or in the presence of men.  In her classroom (which is all women) she can remove the coat and her scarf.  The temp there is 100+, so I am sure it must be stifling hot with the coat.  She also wears ankle length skirts and must wear sleeves that at least cover the elbows.  Fortunately she is very flexible and none of this seems to faze her.

On her first night there, she went out to dinner with several other women from the US or Great Britain. In the restaurant they were placed in a curtained room.  Each time the waiter arrived to serve them, he had to announce himself outside the curtain and the women made sure they had their scarves on, etc.  As soon as he left the room and drew the curtain, off it all came.  I am sure this must have been very comical as he came and went quite often.

Enjoy some quilting today.  The Y is closed today, so I can have a whole day of fun.

Be sure to check out lots of beautiful designs at Judy's blog.