Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Seattle MQG QuiltCon 2023 Community Outreach Quilt

Back in 2019, Louise @imfeelincrafty and I ended three years of co-chairing the Seattle MQG Giving Committee. During that time, we coordinated two QuiltCon charity quilts - Fanny's Flashy Fans in 2018, and The Last Hurrah in 2019. So after a bit of a break, when our Seattle MQG Giving Committee chairs Ann @amarchand7221 and Marion @marion7486 were putting out a call for folks to head up the community outreach quilt for QuiltCon 2023, Louise said, "Let's do it!"

The theme was "Color Shift". Thankfully, Louise loves designing quilts and came up with a design that would work great for including a lot of guild members. Once that design was set, we consulted Kristina @fabricbubb to help us chose fabrics that fit with the warm MQG palette that we chose to use. 

Together, we settled on Kona Solids Regal, Velvet, Heliotrope, Morning Glory, Magenta, Geranium, Cerise, and Valentine for the blocks; Dragon Fruit and Candy Pink for background; Velvet for the backing; and Candy Pink for binding. (Just a portion shown below.)

Louise and I cut yards and yards of fabrics for the blocks, and distributed them to our members at our monthly meeting last July! Members who could took one or more, and got the blocks back super quick.

A LOT of guild members helped piece all the blocks, which was great. Then Kami @kamicombes, Terry @terrypeart, and Jackie @tinwoman48 each pieced a section, sending them back to Louise for final quilt top assembly. We had a pretty strick schedule planned, and folks stuck with it every step of the way!

Meanwhile, Louise was making the backing! She really has a knack for pieced backings, and we all loved what she came up with.

Then off the top and back went to Dionne @dinglebobbins, who did the quilting! Ann @amarchand7221 finished by doing the binding (and I think the hanging sleeve and label), and it was done!

The result is "Double Radiance." Thankfully, fellow Seattle MQG @seattlemqg member Chandra @bestcoasty was able to get photos of the guild's Community Outreach quilt hanging at QuiltCon 2023!

Special thanks to our Seattle MQG Giving Committee chairs Ann @amarchand7221 and Marion @marion7486 for their coordination throughout. They did great keeping everyone on the necessary schedule - yay! Double Radiance was a wonderfully collaborative project, and I was pleased to be a part of it.

Friday, February 24, 2023


So I was cleaning up after my recent quilt finish, and really didn't want to add the remaining scraps to the already overflowing scrap basket. Besides, they'd come from there to create The Bom, so why go back, right? 

The obvious thing was to sit down and start sewing them together. So I did, and then I sorted the random blocks by size and began piecing those together. Can't say I had high hopes for the result, but pure fabric play was the name of the game. And it felt good.

The design evolved, plain and simple. I was committed to just working with the leftovers and see where they took me. And at one point, I really thought I was done, even though the piece was just 15" x 18". But as my friend Lousie @imfeelincrafty said when she saw the photo, "I see more scraps! 😉" And she wasn't wrong.

So I continued on for a bit. With just a handful of small cream and berry scraps left, it truly felt done.

For the backing, I pulled a fat-quarter from stash, and even though it was about the size of the quilt top, I made it work. 

I quilted an odd little grid with three Aurifil 50wt colors - 2535 [Magenta], 2810 [Turquoise], and 4030 [Plum]. Deciding when and where to quilt with them added to the enjoyment.

When it came to binding, I very nearly used a pretty perfect stripe from stash, but I talked myself out of it. I did reach back into the scrap basket though, to find pieces that would work and be fun, since my remaining project scraps weren't enough. Perfect? Maybe not, but I like them well enough, and they definitely add to the spirit of the piece.

At 18" x 22", who knows how this little quilt will be used, but it's my first scrap finish for my 100 Day Project (aka 100 Days of Scraps), and I already have a few small piles of scraps for the next couple of projects. That's win enough for me.

Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Ten Years of QuiltCon

Life kind of took over this week, but I was still hoping to do a quick "Ten Years of QuiltCon" post with all the quilts I've been fortunate to have shown at QuiltCon over the years. 

2015 / Austin: Fissures - one of my first attempts at a modern quilt, shown at my first QuiltCon.

2016 / Pasadena: Mod Mood - a Bee Sewcial quilt that actually won 1st Place in the Group or Bee category. [co-creators include Felicity Ronaghan, Hillary Goodwin, Stephanie Ruyle, Karen Foster, Leanne Chaley, Diane Stanley, Kari Vojtechovsky, Marci Debetaz, Melissa Richie]

Steeped in Tradition - the only quilt I've sold at QuiltCon. I still wish I knew where it lives now.

2017 / Savannah - Yay or Nay

2018 / Pasadena - Follow the Dots

2019 / Nashville - Loosely Connected

Baconrific - another Bee Sewcial quilt. [co-creators include Leanne Chahley, M-R Charbonneau, Marci Debetaz, Karen Foster, Hillary Goodwin, Felicity Ronaghan, Stephanie Ruyle, Anne Sullivan, Kari Vojtechovsky]

2020 / Austin - Homage, a Bee Sewcial quilt. [co-creators include Leanne Chahley, Marci Debetaz, Karen Foster, M-R Charbonneau, Silvia Sutters, Stephanie Ruyle, Felicity Ronaghan, Kari Vojtechovsky, and Anne Sullivan] 

Note that Karen Foster's Bee Sewcial "Eyes" quilt was hung next to Homage.

2021 / QuiltCon Together virtual show - Autumn Steps, which was included in that year's QuiltCon Magazine - a first!

Note to Self, in the MQG Modern Classics challenge, made from the pattern by Karen Foster.

Rings, a Bee Sewcial quilt. [co-creators include Marci Debetaz, Karen Foster, M-R Charbonneau, Leanne Chahley, Stephanie Ruyle, Ken Smith, Felicity Ronaghan]

2022 / Phoenix - Redwork

Rings, a Bee Sewcial quilt that was eligible for the in-person show since it was accepted into the virtual show in 2021. [co-creators include Marci Debetaz, Karen Foster, M-R Charbonneau, Leanne Chahley, Stephanie Ruyle, Ken Smith, Felicity Ronaghan]

2023 / Atlanta - Horizon Views, a Bee Sewcial quilt. [co-creators include Leanne Chahley, Marci Debetaz, Felicity Ronaghan, Karen Foster, Stephanie Ruyle, Kenny Smith, M-R Charbonneau]

Italiano Antico, made for the Modern X Challenge.

So there they are! I feel pretty fortunate that these quilts have been juried into various QuiltCon shows over the years. I'm looking forward to (hopefully) seeing some photos of this year's entries at QuiltCon in Atlanta. I'm definitely missing being there and will be soaking in all the social posts that are shared!

Thursday, February 16, 2023

It's Winter, Witches!

You might remember that my Bee Sewcial mate, Marci @marci_girl's last prompt for the bee was "It's Fall Y'All" last November. Well she's back this month with another seasonally-themed prompt in "It's Winter, Witches!" Marci gave us quite a list of suggested Kona cotton colors, so first off, I looked to see what I had in my stash, and was pretty happy with what I found. 

Marci also gave us a Pinterest Board for idea inspiration. Though right off, I had an idea, and I stuck with it. My specific inspiration were the icicles that develop on the eaves of our roof during winter, as well as the drip drip drip that happens as they begin to melt. Two improv techniques immediately came to mind - improv spikes and improv dots - both of which I really enjoy creating.

Though each of the elements was time-consuming in themselves, I think the most difficult part of this block was deciding how to combine the two sections. In the end, I kept it pretty simple, as the block was getting big fast! I trimmed it to 20.5" x 20.5", plenty big for Marci to trim down later if need be.

Wednesday, February 15, 2023

The 100 Day Project

Though I've participated in one 100 Day Sewalong (project yet to be finished!), and a couple of my own 50 Days of Scraps, I've yet to participate in the official 100 Day Project. So 2023 is the year.

I so enjoyed the 50 Days of Scraps (both times!) that I think I'll do that again. I briefly considered a 100 Days of Brown - something that sounds more interesting to me than maybe you - so don't be surprised if I sneak in a bit of that too. Time will tell. I do enjoy the open-endedness of the scrap plan, thinking it could include a wide variety of projects, as well as working down the scrap basket that is very nearly overflowing. 

So anyone else joining in?

Monday, February 13, 2023


Oh it feels great to have another quilt finish. Especially since it's the Seattle MQG block-of-the-month that was begun last year. I worked on it in fits and starts, but when I finally decided it was time to finish it up, progress went really well.

If you remember, I filled in between the year's modern traditional blocks with Kona Pond, Jade Green, and Emerald. I had a small amount of a berry solid that was used too, and I think it really added a lot. Anyway, once the puzzling was done, I had fun making a pieced backing from some of the scraps and backgrounds I'd been using, along with a couple of coordinating stash finds.

For quilting, I finally settled on Aurifil 50wt 5006 [Light Turquoise], which may seen an odd choice, but a neutral didn't seem quite right. 

It took several hours  - between 8 and 10 - to do organic straight-line over the whole thing, and I was surprised how much thread I used! For comparison, the spool I used (which was new when I began) is on the left in the photo below; a new spool on the right. And the finished quilt is just 53" x 56". 

There's one little tip I thought I'd share, in case you want to try organic straight-line quilting. Once you are done covering the entire quilt with stitching, go back with a ruler and see how many lines of stitching are in, say a 3" section. In my case, in the segment shown, there were 12. Then I move my ruler across the quilt and see if there are sections that could use another line of stitching. If there are either too few lines or too large a gap between lines, I place a pin to mark where I want to go back and add more stitching. It's definitely not a science, rather all personal choice, but something to consider if you like.

For binding, I just had to go with matched binding

It took me a few minutes to decide what to use where, since obviously I didn't match in absolutely every section, but I am SO pleased with how it turned out! I think the placement of the binding adds a lot to the overall placement of the background fabrics, which pleased me to no end. 

So yay, my second quilt finish for 2023. I'm not 100% sure what's next, and that's a great place to be. Whatever, it feels good to be moving forward.


Linking up with Meadow Mist Designs' Favorite Finish Monthly Linkup.