June 18, 2015

Saskatoon Modern Quilt Guild's First Ever SHOWCASE!

Our Saskatoon Modern Quilt Guild is so excited to have presented our first ever showcase. We called it a "showcase" instead of a "show" because it wasn't juried and there were no prizes or categories, etc. It was just guild members showing what we've been up to. People outside our guild were invited to show their "modern style quilts", too, but nobody but members submitted. We also had some great vendors, a concession, and members sold some of their handiwork, contributing all profits to the guild.

So much planning and preparation went into the event with some particular members really taking on a heavy load. I'm so grateful to them for taking charge and for organizing the rest of us. We only had 2 hours to get the showcase ready for the public but, much to our surprise, we had it all up and ready in 1.5 hours! Everything went so well. No snafus at all! Most importantly, I think we at least covered our costs and we acquired some more new members!

Here are some photos from the event.

Here are our fearless leaders, Jaclyn and Carly, with a van full of quilts organized and ready to hang. We're gathered in the parking lot waiting to get into the building. Jaclyn even has her daughter, Little Miss Tim Bit, strapped on her back. What a trooper! 

Most of us were on hand for a group photo before the doors opened. Some people came later and some weren't able to come at all due to prior commitments. Thanks to those who made our banner! This is the first time we've used it. I think Lisa finished stitching it the night before the show. We all contributed blocks to it and various members did the brunt of the work. Nicole, in the front sitting on the floor, is our guild's event planner and she did so much work to make this happen!

Tarra was in charge of our concession. We all brought baking.

I think over 250 people came! This table has lots of so nice handmade things on it for sale.

I hung 3 large quilts of mine – Counting Stars, Linked, and the Plus Quilt I made for Luke. Considering Luke's is 3 years old, it's held up rather well, I think.

I noticed a woman at the show wearing a blouse made from fabric I have in my stash and then it occurred to me that it's the same fabric I used in Luke's quilt. Fabric spotting!

Sheila and three of hers. I especially love churn dashes (the one on the left).

Patti with her giant plus quilt and and her half-square-rectangle quilt. Patti makes so many inspiring quilts. She had several beautiful minis on display, too. Watch for the beautiful paper-pieced lion at the bottom of this blog post.

Tarra with her raspberry kisses quilt. The back with the stars and the kids catching fireflies is beautiful, too.

Kathryn and her first ever quilt! Quite an undertaking for a first project, I think!

One of Sonya's. The back of it is gorgeous ... much in the same vein as Tarra's.

One of Jaclyn's. She had several in the show. I especially love this one that she made as a wedding gift.

One of Kelly's ... Kevin liked this one in particular.

 Bev had many quilts in the show but was unable to be here herself.

A coupe of Lisa's many beauties. The first one is a Modern Alphabet using Tula Pink fabrics and the 2nd is flying geese made with Anna Maria Horner fabrics with lots of negative space for her to practice her longarm quilting techniques on.

Carly ... the master of improv. She has a whole different approach to quilts than me, which I greatly admire. I love all her quilts. There is so much story to them. Her spider web quilt is one of my very favourites. Do you recognize the representation of Star Trek uniforms in the 2nd one? The 3rd one below is a Punisher quilt especially for a brother-in-law.

I also love the blue and orange improv quilt made by Carly. Beside it is a colourful one made by Jaclyn.

We have a lot of nerds in our guild. I say that most affectionately. Star Trek and Star Wars are  represented in the two quilts below. Come to think of it, everyone in our guild is probably a bit nerdy!

The bargello quilt at the far left in the photo below was made by Nicole.

You can see my two circle baby quilts at the bottom of the photo below.

Jaclyn made the quilts at the top left and bottom right of the photo below. The rest were made by Bev (I think).

And look at all the mini quilts in the 3 photos below. Why mini quilts, some of you may wonder? I used to ask myself the same question ... until I set up my quilt studio in Luke's vacated bedroom. What better way to decorate the walls of a quilt studio?! Plus it's a nice way to test a pattern or technique or to make something that requires much more work than you are prepared to put into a large quilt. We've had two mini quilt swaps amongst our guild members and these are a lot of those. It's really special to look at your wall and find a beautiful little piece of quilted art made by a guild friend.

One of the minis below might even be meant for me. We'll find out at our next meeting when we do our swap! 

The two I made are both in this top photo. The 2nd from the left at the top is "raspberry kisses" and the one below it and to the right is is "prismatic medallion". FYI, see the mini at the bottom with the blue and white background and the hexagons? The hexagons form the chemical symbols for chocolate and wine. Brilliantly imagined and constructed by Sheila.

The lion by Patti and those piano keys (at least that's what they look like to me) are by her, too.  I love it! The "clean and dirty underwear" are by Kim. She made those for her husband to set his precision tools on in his shop.Hilarious!

So many pretty minis. I wonder ... I wonder ... I wonder ... which of these beauties is for me? Or is mine one that's missing? I have to wait another week to find out.

We had several vendor booths. I hope they did well. They looked busy!

I hope you enjoyed a peek at the show! Thanks to those of you who came in person!

My Confetti Stars Block for Tarra’s Traveling Quilt

Tarra has a star theme going on for her traveling quilt ... obviously.

So many people in my guild (Saskatoon Modern Quilt Guild) have jumped on the foundation paper piecing wagon and they’re making beautiful things. So I decided I would take this opportunity to give it a go.

Isn’t it pretty? I love the swirly background fabric. It gives a shooting star or fireworks effect, I think.

Here are the blocks that have been made so far! I can't wait to see it finished!

It's a very good thing I'm so pleased with how my block turned out because I really didn’t like the paper piecing process! I’ve never unpicked so many seams as I did on this little project. And all the waste fabric and weird shaped leftover scraps … and the mess of paper and thread and scraps all over my little studio! Not my thing. You paper piecers ... have at it!

Based on my objections to paper piecing, you would think I'm a very organized, tidy person. HA! My problems with paper piecing just don't make sense.

Still, I really like what came out of this painful process! I hope Tarra likes it, too! I think she will.

This block is 12.5" unfinished and was made using a free paper piecing pattern (Confetti Star) by Amy Friend of During Quit Time.

These are my first two squares. The 2nd one was mite easier but the 3rd and 4th didn't give me that aha moment. Maybe I'm missing something. I finished without stabbing my seam ripper in my eye. So there's that!

May 15, 2015

Blogger's Quilt Festival Spring 2015 - Entry #2 - Baby Circle Quilts

spring 2015 BQF ButtonIt's the annual Spring Blogger's Quilt Festival created and hosted by Amy at Amy's Creative Side. It's grown into a HUGE online quilt show! A fabulous time to ogle quilts and find new online quilters to follow and maybe even connect with.

My apologies to the regulars for the repetition. To new visitors, thanks for stopping by!

My Entry #2 is in the category of  APPLIQUE QUILTS (this is the link where you will find all the other quilts in this category) and my entry is called ... the very original ... "Baby Girl and Boy Circle Quilts".  

These were started in preparation for 2 gender-unknown spring babies. Since my stash wasn't leaning toward "gender neutral", I decided to prepare for both possibilities, hence 4 circle quilts - two girly and two boyish. 

A lot of firsts here for this relative beginner/intermediate quilter. Circles. Raw-edge machine applique, organic wavy line quilting. It was fun to choose fabrics and threads for these. 

I didn't use any fancy applique techniques. I just cut 5" circles and placed them in the centre of 7" squares, securing them with a single pin, and then zig-zag stitched around the edge with a coordinating or contrasting thread. 
They washed up so wonderfully soft and cuddly. I like to imagine these quilts as being not only kind of I-Spy-ish in design but, more than that, inspiration for the telling of stories, singing of songs and nursery rhymes, word and number play, making connections, and ... as babies get older ... for a tangle of "toddler twister" games (left hand on snails, right foot on Paris, right hand on rain, left foot on glasses).  

Quilt Stats
Name: Baby Boy and Girl Circle Quilts (very original)
Size: 39" x 33" (37" x 32" washed)
Pattern: None - 5" circles and 7" squares in a 5x6 block arrangement
Fabrics: Various solids and prints from stash ... no particular fabric lines
Backing: Yellow and white dog and cat print on the boy quilts and pink cloud and castle brushed cotton on the girl quilts (I don't remember the fabric lines)
Binding: Black and white check on the boy and scrappy on the girl using fabrics from some of the circles
Quilting: Organic wavy lines using a walking foot
If you care to, you can read more about the girl quilts here and the boy quilts here. There are a whole lot more photos and chatter.

And here's a photo of one of the girly quilts with a little dress that will be soon delivered to a little Hannah who was born at the end of April. And this is a wee vintage crib ... the very one yours truly spent her baby nights in ... as did my 3 brothers.

Blogger's Quilt Festival Spring 2015 - Entry #1 - Counting Stars Quilt

 spring 2015 BQF Button
It's the annual Spring Blogger's Quilt Festival created and hosted by Amy at Amy's Creative Side. It's grown into a HUGE online quilt show! A fabulous way to ogle quilts and find new online quilters to follow and maybe even connect with.

I often forget or don't have anything ready to show. But this year I've been productive enough to join the fun. To those who visit my blog regularly, sorry for the repetition. To new visitors, thanks for stopping by.

My Entry #1 is in the category of  LARGE QUILTS (this is the link where you will find all the other quilts in this category) and my quilt is called "Counting Stars". It is a wedding quilt recently finished and handed off (a little late) to the newlyweds who have made their home in the middle of the beautiful Saskatchewan prairie where they are in full view of a magnificent sky from horizon to horizon. They see beautiful sunrises and sunsets, the daytime sky in all it's various glories, northern lights, and a vast blanket of stars ... hence the inspiration for this quilt. I grew up on a farm with the same vista's and I remember spending hours standing on my bed (instead of sleeping), looking out the window at the stars ... picking out the various constellations.

I have always wanted to make a "Sparkle Punch" wonky star quilt and so I followed the instructions for it (Oh Fransson has a tutorial but the link isn't available at present while her website is under construction) but used a variation done by The Girl Who Quilts. My quilt may not be an original design but there's none like it nor will there likely ever be.

I included a couple of Heather Ross fussy cut stars.

My colour choices were inspired by the multi-coloured fabric in the big star. I chose the medium grey background fabric (Moda Weave) to make the quilt a little less "girly". In fact, I tried to avoid blatantly girly fabrics. I love the background fabric. It has a nice linen-like look to it ... textural ... and it has a nice sheen, too. Depending on the lighting, the grey can appear lighter or darker than it actually is. 

I used the much coveted and now discontinued IKEA number fabric and some "bramble" for the back (hence the "counting" part of the title) and bound it with some of the leftover star fabrics.

You can read more about this quilt and see even more photos (if you really want to) here.

Quilt Stats:

  1. Name: Counting Stars
  2. Size: 78" x 100" (74" x 96" after washing)
  3. Pattern: Variation of Sparkle Punch by Oh Fransson (no link available) but inspired by this quilt made by The Girl Who Quilts 
  4. Fabrics: Background:  Moda Weave in Medium Grey | Stars: Various fabrics from my stash | Backing: Number fabric from Ikea and Bramble | Binding: Scrappy binding from fabrics used in stars
  5. Quilting: Done by Lisa on her longarm machine 

 Just by serendipitous happenstance, the happy couple have decorated their home with primarily grey and turquoise - a perfect match!