Friday, May 28, 2010

MooseStash Quilt

While I do apologize for the photo of this quilt, I do have to say, it has become one of my favorite projects lately. A bear skin rug was stolen off the wall at the lodge my son works at. What was left was an image of where it had been, left on the log wall, from years of the sun shining on it. Something was needed to take it's place and do some camouflage. This is what became of that challenge. I dyed fabrics to make the background, then used one of my favorite BigFork Bay Cotton Company patterns for the moose in the corner. A search of birch tree leaves, online found a great line drawing that I was able to enlarge for the leaves, and there we have it. I just didn't have my usual place to hang it, for the photo. Combining designs opens many new doors for quilting possibilities. Hope it stirred some ideas for you too! Enjoy  your Memorial Day weekend, and please take a moment to remember those who have fought to keep us safe!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Satin Quilting

You haven't heard much from me lately, but I've been burning the midnight oil, so to speak finishing up a couple jobs. One of them here, is a beautiful satin quilt that was quite the challenge for me. Not being much of a garment sewer, I had completely forgot how difficult satin can be to stitch on. Man is that slippery stuff! But a suggestion from a friend to try out the quilt basting spray was the perfect answer for this quilt. It sure did cut my work down in half once I used that. My ex-neighbor gal and friend for the past 30 years made these beautiful embroidered blocks and asked me to set them in a satin quilt for her grandmother. They had made a similar quilt for her Mom a few years back.
I used big fluffy batting and tied it by hand with satin bows and pearls. I finished it off with a battenberg lace label on the back of it. Do you have any idea just how hard it is to find battenberg lace doily's anymore???? I had no idea it would be such a challenge. I finally came up with one in my stash of miscellaneous things in my sewing room. There was not one to be found in any store I checked on. I guess they are from a day gone by, too! That is sad, because they are so pretty.      Anyway this beauty gets delivered to grandma this week. I am sure there will be a few tears along with that special delivery. Now that's what quilting is really all about, isn't it!  :-)       Hope you have a great week planning your next project, that will be bring a few tears for someone special too!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Find Your Creativity

One my recent trip to Rhode Island for the "MQX" Machine Quilters Expo. I took a wonderful class from Cathy Wiggins on finding your creativity. The name intrigued me, but I had no idea what I was in store for. She sat us down with a workbook and crayons. We had to color a picture with our 5 favorite colors, then the same picture with our 5 least favorite colors. That was hard. Then we had to trade our crayons with someone else and color with their favorite colors. It sure was a challenge, when it should have been so simple. The proof was there. We do really respond much more readily to our favorites. After some exercises she had us take out magazines that we brought along. We cut out picture of things that we loved and put them in a pile. Then we had to break out our quilt magazines and rip out the things that we really liked in them too. As with most of the class, I freaked out at cutting up a quilting magazine. Cathy kept telling us that only keeping what inspired us was way better than keeping everything. Having so much around to look thru, takes away from the inspiration for the things we loved. (Yeah right! I was still sniveling about cutting up my quilt magazines even when I left. ) We took all the photos and pasted them into a journal that she provided us. On the plane ride home I kept thinking about that journal that we started. I did enjoy looking at the few things that were in it. Could it be, that it did really speak to me, because there were no distractions?????? I made a commitment to myself to "try" to clean out my old quilting magazines. The pile above is what was left after taking out the things that I loved. 2 bookshelves worth of magazines are now gone! Now that was a freeing feeling! 

This, I am happy to report, what is left from that challenge! I am sure loving the looks of it!  :-) .
I was very generous in what I chose to keep, after all it was 10 years of treasures! The patterns from quilting magazines went into plastic sleeves in a 3 ring binder, and things that spoke to me are now in my journal. We all have those calendar photos that we can't part with, and those special greeting cards that we love. I even added some photos of quilts that I found online, along with some things from online quilting magazines. What I am left with, I find myself thumbing thru almost daily. I'm not sure if it's the colors, the designs and patterns or just the lack of things that detract, that "speaks" to me, but I just can't seem to get enough of looking thru my books. I have read quite a bit, online lately from those who have done just this same thing, and the one thing I am hearing over and over is, that tastes change as years go by, and many find that the patterns they just had to save are now being replaced with new. Throwing out the old must get much easier as we grow into this. Another point, well made by one wise person, is that if we live to be a hundred, we will never manage to stitch out all the things we have kept for years. So I guess purging isn't really a bad thing now is it? Sorry I need to get back to looking and drooling over my journal! :-)
Oh yeah and finishing up those darn PIGS!  :-)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Quilted Table held a Spring table runner swap and I mailed this off to my partner the other day. I sure do hope she likes it. I used my hand dyed fabrics for this one. With the weather being so nice lately, I have spent a few days outside dyeing more fabrics. They seem to become part of projects before they are even dry and I have a list on the drawing board of yardages I need for a Mariners Compass class I am taking next month. Now if I can only decide of the color scheme!

While I haven't posted in the past week, I have been burning the midnight oil. I have a couple of projects to share with you very soon here. One has kept me offline and busy in my sewing room for some time now. It was a stretch for me, but I am happy with the end results and will have photos very soon.

Hope all your stitching days are happy days!