Friday, December 15, 2017

Good and Better

Yesterday started off well enough. The MOD-Q newsletter popped into my email inbox, and there was my Follow the Dots quilt in the Quilt Stories: Headline News feature. Editor Helen Butcher of the Quilters' Guild of theBritish Isles, had written a while back asking if she could include it, so I knew about it, but it was still a fun surprise to see in my feed.

And then things went uphill from there, when I got notification that Follow the Dots had made it into 2018 QuiltCon in the Small Quilts category. Oh yeah. I would have loved if our guild quilt had gotten in but that didn't happen. With over 1430 quilts submitted and room for 360, it is what it is. Honestly, I'm thrilled to have even one in the show.


A bonus was hearing that my Bee Sewcial beemate Felicity/@felicityquilts had her #felicityquiltswinter accepted! It's a group quilt, made in collaboration with the 2015 #beesewcial women @shecanquilt@marci_girl@spontaneousthreads,
@quiltsforthemaking@weshallsew@spontaneousthreads@entropyalwayswins, @diane_stanley_sews, and myself. Considering I wasn't there when my own Bee Sewcial quilt, Mod Mood, was in the show, I'm hoping to get in on the group photo with Felicity and her "Winter."

So back to Instragram to scroll through and see what got in and what didn't. They are all equally inspiring!

Monday, December 11, 2017

The Gift-Giving Frenzy

In the most recent issue of The Scrap Basket, I did a round-up of sewn items perfect for gift-giving. Of course, I'm not the only one thinking in that vein, so I'm sharing a few more ideas here, as I also gather up links for other great gift lists I've seen across blogland. In the mix you'll find purchased gifts for sewers and creative business owners as well. Consider it a round-up of round-ups!

The Color Block Pouch tutorial by Svetlana/s.o.t.a.k handmade

More ideas? Do tell! About as far as I've gotten is a handful of gift-bags!

Friday, December 8, 2017

Ultra Violet

For some reason, the challenge of creating something with an 'assigned' color holds an unexplained appeal. Such is the significance of the newly-announced Pantone Color of the Year in my little quilty world. I'm not really into fashion or seasonal trends, but I do like exploring with color and fabric and know I'll have fun with Ultra Violet! Daughter dear has already ordered official Color Swatch Cards for us, so we can do some fabric matchy-matching, which is all part of the fun. 

A little déjà vu is in order, more for my benefit than yours, I know! But I do enjoy reviewing my pantone-inspired journey as I head off on the next one!

:: Greenery 2017 :: "Evergreenery"

:: Rose Quartz and Serenity 2016 :: "Pantone Meets Bias Tape"

:: Marsala 2015 :: "Sizzling"

:: Emerald 2013 :: "An Emerald Table"

:: Tangerine Tango 2012 :: "Tangerisk"

So how about you? Will you be giving Ultra Violet a go? Like it or not, I think it's a great exercise! Several of the colors above are ones I never would have chosen to work with, but I've come to appreciate most of them (still love that Marsala!). And I have no doubt dabbling with them has expanded my appreciation of color, and for that, I'm glad.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Maximalist Improv

"Time to laugh and play, no rulers, no neutrals, all the colours, maximalist improv.... Just have fun and make a block or two that make you feel happy." Well it doesn't get much better than that in bee-block land, now does it? But that's exactly what Leanne/shecanquilt set forth last month for Bee Sewcial.

It's probably no surprise that I went right back to playing with improv techniques I've enjoyed these last weeks. I managed to make the bottom block without any ruler, per Leanne's request, but I got going and forgot as I was trimming the spikes in the top block. I swear, I put that ruler away as soon as I caught myself, ha! Though I was pulling from the scrap bin for the spikes, trying to use quite a few colors, I found I ended up with a loosely-defined palette that is unique but inviting. May have to explore that further one of these days...

Monday, December 4, 2017

Wholecloth Narrow

Don't you love those projects you don't even know you need, then all of a sudden you're deep into it? That's exactly what happened Saturday night after decorating the house up a bit for the holidays.

We have a skinny ledge between our kitchen and dining room, and it was just calling for a little runner to dress is up. Just 8 1/2" wide, it didn't need much, and doing a bunch of small piecing didn't really fit my inclination nor time-frame. Rummaging through the stash, I found a width of Light a Candle from the Moonlit Collection by Rashida Coleman Hale. This print definitely did not need to be cut up, so I did the obvious and moved straight-away to quilting it.

Aurifil 50wt 2325 (Sand) coordinated really nicely, and with a layer of batting behind, simple improv curves down the length of the piece gave some semblance of flickering candle flames. I went ahead and used the entire WOF, and rather than any kind of binding, just backed the entire runner, which finished at 42" long.

So here's a glimpse of it, already in use! We've received a piece or two of Lenox Holiday from my parents every Christmas for over two decades so we've built a beautiful collection, and I kinda love a few of my favorites at home on the new little runner.

Friday, December 1, 2017

2018 QuiltCon Submissions

It was fun to see and hear about the quilts Yvonne/Quilting JETgirl and Heather/
Quilt-achusetts submitted to QuiltCon 2018, and I told them both I'd eventually post mine, so here they are!

First, I submitted Doing the {Pink} Flamingo  in the Group or Bee Quilt category on behalf of Seattle MQG. It was our first giving quilt of this year, and the guild outdid themselves making improv blocks that featured Pink Flamingo, the Kona Color of the Year. The Pink Flamingo and backing fabric were donated to the guild by Circa15 fabric studio, and we really appreciated partnering with them. Also, it was quilted by guild-member Pam Cole.

Considering Refiner's Fire was my most liked post EVER on Instagram, I couldn't resist going ahead and entering it in the Improvisation category. At 40" square, it barely fit.

And beings it's one of my very favorite finishes of the year, in went Improv Alliance in the Modern Traditionalism category. This one was just a joy to make during the guild's 2016 block-of-the-month, and it's extra special since my guild-mate Matt Macomber beautifully quilted this one for me.

I struggled to choose just one more to submit and finally settled on my most recent finish, Follow the Dots, which I intentionally kept small enough so that it fit in the Small Quilts category.

So for better or worse, there we go. I'm disappointed I didn't get this year's Bee Sewcial quilt done in time, but I let it overwhelm me, and just need the right timing to get back to working on it. Meanwhile, it is what it is! Sharing a quilt out in the world is a humbling and exciting thing, and I figured it's definitely worth a try!