Monday, August 29, 2011

Final Summer Design Wall

My kids go back to school this week!  So now I have no excuses for not getting anything done.  Well, except for all those school, musical, and sporting events.

First up, on my design wall is my final Round Robin Surface Design Swap piece.  I have to figure out what to do to this.  It's been dyed, waxed, over-dyed, and foiled.  Darn... I was going to foil it.  I am trying to decided what to do next.  Paint? More foil?  Discharge?  It's hard to do anything that won't disturb the foiling that's already on there.  Hmmmm.....stay tuned......
And this mess is the result of a week's work on my ereader pattern.  Last week (sadly, my last post), was a big whine about cutting before quilting.  I got it right this time.  Quilt, then cut.  I'm currently auditioning fabrics for the front pocket.  There is a finished bag in the upper right corner of the photo.

For more design wall fun, click here to go to Judy's blog.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Mistakes and Blanks

My design wall is blank today.  I took down the stuff I was working on so I could work on my cutting table.

I cut out this for the latest thing I'm working on and realized that I shouldn't have cut it out yet.

I'm working with this and I'm angry with myself because now I've wasted this big hunk of this wonderful fabric.  Of course, it's not really wasted, I'll use it for something else.  But it still irks me.

I'm also using these fabrics for this project.

At Judy's blog, here, there are other postings of design walls.  Hopefully there are more successful projects than I have going on this Monday.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Appliqué Update Thursday

I've been working on all sorts of appliqué stuff lately.  This block is part of a "receiver's choice" block swap and the recipient of this block wanted botanicals.  I took a picture of one of my daylilies and played around with it in PhotoShop until I was satisfied.  Then I printed it out and used it to make this fused, machine-stitched version with some of my hand-dyed fabric.  I hand embroidered the filiments and used a strand of fuzzy thread with a strand of regular thread to make the stamens.

I had a tough time with this one -- the receiver wanted "sweets" and I immediately thought, "chocolate!"  But I couldn't figure out how to make a 9 inch block with the little candies on the fabric.  Then someone (probably me) mentioned "wine" and the idea took off.  This is a bottle of sweet wine along with the chocolates.

And in return, I received this adorable owl.

And this delightful turtle.  I love the fabrics in both of these blocks!
And there is progress on the CWBQ block.  I thought I would have had all the leaves sewn by now, but there are still a few that need to be stitched down.  I have saved the flowers for after the leaves as a sort of reward for finishing all those leaves!

To see other appliqué projects click here for Angie's blog.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Pets on Quilts Show 2011

SewCalGal is hosting another online Pets on Quilts Show with lots of fun prizes.  My kids and pets begged me to enter because it was so much fun last year seeing our wonderful pets and everybody else's online.   Click here or on the button at top of this post to see all the other entries.     
Viewers can vote for their favorite entries in several categories on Saturday and Sunday, August 20 and 21.  We would love to receive votes in the "Dog Theme," "other pet theme" and, of course, "art quilt theme."   I'll post a reminder on Saturday and I'll probably get up on my soapbox and talk about the puppy mill legislation here in Wisconsin.  

 First up is Rosie, posed on a quilt I made a couple of years ago.  This was the first large quilt I quilted all by myself and when it was finished, I felt like a confident machine quilter.

 This was an art quilt I made featuring Rosie on on our front porch.  It was supposed to be the first in a series of "View From the Front Porch:Summer."  But I never made anymore in the series.  I suppose I may sometime.  It's only 12" by 12" but packed with stuff.

This is "Repeat," the leopard gecko and her dinner.  I 'splained all about her here.  This is another little quilt -- only 8 by 12 inches.  You can read all about this quilt here.
And, sadly, Rex, who was such a big part of my entry in the show last year, passed on to that big exercise wheel in the sky this past spring.  We miss him and his shiny black eyes and his whirring whiskers.   My daughter wants to acquire a new inhabitant for his cage, but I'm enjoying the quiet...

Monday, August 15, 2011

Halloween Cat Quilt Top is Finished

I finished sewing together the top and now it's on the Waiting-to-be-Quilted pile.

What's on your design wall?  To see some others click here to go to Judy's blog.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

August BOM

Last week I was bad and didn't post about the August BOM meeting.  I got about half way to the shop and realized that I had forgotten to bring my camera.  So I had to use my phone to take a picture.  Then I had to figure out how to get it from my phone to my computer.  It's a pretty crummy picture, but the other one was worse.  I promise to remember to bring my camera from now on!

Not many people made this block.  The main comment seemed to be: "it was hard."  And it was a bit troublesome.

I made a couple of them for the Sylvia's bridal quilt -- they're the little six-inchers.  I didn't think that they were especially difficult.  I think that might be because with smaller pieces, there's less stretch.  Or maybe it's easier to cut smaller pieces accurately.  I used templates for the curved pieces in the center, the corners are cut and put together like a Lemoyne star.
 I did have some fun with it in EQ7.  I couldn't find the block in the libraries -- it must have a different name.  Here it's called "Hands All Around."  It wasn't difficult to create in Patchdraw and I really like the secondary patterns that happen with this block.
 This block creates all kinds of secondary patterns when it's in a straight set.

I really like this on point version.  

Monday, August 8, 2011

Summer Sewing with DD

With summer school a fading memory and middle school rapidly approaching, I needed a fun project for my daughter and I to do together.  I saw this adorable Halloween cat fabric and a cute quilt made from it and thought it would be a really good project for us to do together.

Of course I cheaped out and didn't buy the pattern, so I had to make my own on EQ.

We had fun sewing the strip sets together.  I did the cutting and she did most of the sewing.

For a look at some other design walls, click here to go to Judy's blog.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Civil War Bride Quilt

 Readers may remember my infatuation with this quilt at the show in Omaha.  I posted about it here and you can read about it on Cheri's blog -- she is the woman who won the ribbons for this quilt in Omaha.

She kindly directed me to a blog that is all about the Civil War Bride Quilt.  I would include a link, but it has been closed off to non-members since I last looked at it.

She also directed me to Corliss in Australia who wrote the pattern and from whom I purchased  the pattern.  She can be reached here:

 I was so excited, I dyed up these background fabrics as soon as I returned from Nebraska.  They're a bit darker than they look on my monitor.

Then I dyed these fabrics for this and another project that I can't talk about right now.

 I pulled a bunch of fabrics from my shelves.

And I shibori-dyed a whole bunch of fabrics for leaves and animals.  These are the greens -- I can't find the photo of the other shiboris, so that will have to wait until I cut them up.
This is the first block -- I've finished about half of the leaves and part of one bud.  There are more leaves, but they're in my bag at the moment.  I'm getting much better at the hand-stitching -- practice really does cause improvement -- although I'm sure perfection is a ways off.  I've found that I get in a rhythm when stitching.  This is going to be wonderful when the football season starts.  I need something to do with my hands when all those players are standing around and this is it!  

Monday, August 1, 2011

Surface Design Redux

This is the piece I received for July in the Surface Design Round Robin hosted by the creative minds at "...And Then We Set It On Fire."

I held this one to the very end of the month (the time allotted) -- I was doing my stress-out thing because it has all this beautiful subtle color.  Initially, it was rust-dyed, then masked and painted with Setacolors.

I didn't think that my usual heavy-handed, in-your-face, gonzo approach to COLOR was appropriate here.  But what to do?  Again, this is not my fabric; it belongs to someone else and my usual approach to COLOR might not be appreciated.  Why not?  Well... ok.. not really sure why anybody wouldn't demand over-the-top color, but not everyone does.  Go figure.

 My first inclination was to add leaves and flowers.  I got out my hand-carved stampers and thought about it.  Hmmm.... then I got the bright idea of carving a new stamp -- a goldfish -- and doing a weeds in the water thing.  I thought I could mask off some of the greenish-yellow bars and stamp over them so it would look like fish hiding behind the weeds.  But then I didn't really like that idea for this -- I thought something more abstract would be better.  And I have the stacked triangle stamper and the curly cues.  Hmmmm...

I got out some of the sparkly Setacolors -- orange and lime green -- and mixed them with the lightning medium.  I used this because I was going for subtle (remember subtle?) and the color by itself is pretty intense. The lightning medium makes the color less intense without changing the viscosity of the paint --  very important when you're using stamps.    I didn't want runny paint.  I wanted nice clean images.

And here is the finished (for me, that is) piece on my design wall for today.  It's ready to send on to the next person.   Click on the photos for a closer view.

For more design walls, click here to go to Judy's blog.