Monday, September 29, 2014

Coming along... slowly - Sandy's Beautiful Applique quilt

Been working on a customer quilt for a week now and it's coming along... slowly. Besides its massive size - king and its exquisite applique - its just BIG!

So far.. all the applique has been stitched around and the quilting areas within the HUGE negative spaces are divided up, so now I'm on to the fill. Which is simple, but very time and thread consuming.

The bobbins are full - about 20 of them - and I'll putter along on it for the week and probably then some.

It will be in the Quilters by the Sea show in Middletown, RI the weekend of the 18th, 19th.

And, with the exception of the straight lines and a few of the shapes, everything else is free hand.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Rising Star Quilters of Lexington, MA

Bob and I enjoyed out trip up to Lexington, Ma yesterday afternoon. The trees are turning and the bright, sunny day made for beautiful views.

We got to Lexington early to find the guild meeting site, then drove into the village of Lexington to find some dinner. The Panera's was closed due to a lack of hot water so found another restaurant on Yelp, Vine Brook Tavern, right around the corner and had a yummy dinner there, (they even had GF pasta) then off to the guild hall to set-up. We've never had so much help schlepping all our stuff in - Bob does tend to bring a whole lot to sell... so set-up went very quickly.

My Power Point lecture on "You be the Judge" went well, they loved the trunk show of about 35 of my quilts, then had a chance to visit with many of the guild members to discuss my work. The guild's annual show is the weekend of October 24, 25 and I think it will be well worth the trip, here's their website for more info They had to change the show's location recently, always a nightmare for a guild and they seem to be handling the change well.

I'm always amazed by guild's that have annual shows. I've always wondered if having that annual routine is actually easier than the every other year scramble of my two guilds, food for thought.

Everything is finally unpacked and back in place, now to get back to quilting Sandy's very large applique quilt. Still working on the SID around all the applique, very time consuming but so very worth it for the final impact this quilt deserves,it's a beauty and I should have it ready to show you by the end of the next week!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Busy Weekend

On Friday, after a bit of a drive to Lowell, MA spent the day at the New England Quilt Museum pitching my workshops and lectures to a group of guild program chairs. The museum sponsors this day every year, this is their third, and it gets better each time. We're given 3 minutes to share what we do before the bell dings and the next presenter's turn begins. Tough to put all I do into a 3 minute blip! Enjoyed meeting all the other presenters and the guild members. Looking forward to hearing from the guilds, booked a few while at the museum.

Also had some time to spend with the current exhibit, "Down by the old Mill Stream" featuring quilts from the University of Rhode Island quilt collection. I had visited this exhibit late in the summer but it's amazing how you absorb different quilts each time. I remember that same thing happening at the Houston show when I was there a few years ago. You'd walk by a quilt and swear it hadn't been there the day before. I think your mind becomes visually "full" after a certain number of quilts. This phenomena was even worse at the Pilgrim Roy exhibit in April at the MFA in Boston. The quilts were of such high and strong contrast that one's brain filled up even faster.

On the way home, I stopped at Ryco in Lincoln to set-up for their Teacher's Tea on Saturday and got the last table with a plug for my laptop. Spent the day there on Saturday demonstrating EQ7 to lots of interested quilters. A number plan on joining my monthly EQ group meetings. We have a ton of fun exploring EQ.

Back to Ryco this afternoon for an EQ group. We spent the afternoon designing medallion quilts working with two pre-designed layouts from the Layout Library, then creating our own medallion layouts from the new quilt tab. They had fun trying out lots of unique blocks in their layouts, rotating and flipping the blocks to get the best effect, adding pieced borders, then coloring and fabricing them in. Some amazing designs. I always tease them that I expect to see a quilt or two at the next group meeting, I'm hoping some day they'll surprise me!

Here are two of the sample medallion quilts I designed today, both with the same purple and green color palette. The first is from the medallion layout library horizontal aspect, the second is an on -point version.

Let me know how you like them...

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Super Retreat!

On my way home from an amazing retreat in Colorado Springs, Co with 18 NQA Certified Judges. Flew out early to see a bit of the area, a quick trip through the Denver Botanic Gardens to view the Chihuly installation (they were closing for a concert - had an hour to cruise through)

Then off to the 6th floor Denver Art Museum to see an exhibit of antique quilts including a beautifully unique "Princess Feather". Took us a while to get to 6th floor as the elevators weren't running well and the altitude got to us pretty quickly.

The next day traveled up to Pike's Peak on the Cog Railway - breathtaking -  literally and figuratively, then drove through "Gardens of the Gods" before settling in at our retreat setting, The Hideaway. A very comfortable setting for 2 days of presentations by fellow CJs, each one informative and worthwhile.

I presented a PowerPoint on judging computerized longarm quilting complete with my first attempt at inserting video into a PP. Have to figure out how to get the tracking of the video and voice more in sync, may have to call Canon on that one as I've already tried the manual's methods. Have to call Canon anyway to get them to walk me through setting the video camera for live feed for all of my future quilting technique classes. 

A number of the presentations at the retreat were on fabric dyeing and surface embellishment - so inspiring, just makes you itch to try it all. Also had CO fiber artist Carol Ann Waugh come speak to us, really enjoyed her fiber compositions. And last but not least, a PowerPoint by CJ Beverly Fine, gave us all pause for thought as we contemplate the amount of time and attention we give to design evaluation as we judge. With design and workmanship being given equal weight in almost all judging venues: further study, practice and implementation of appropriately evaluative and constructive design comments needs to be emphasized going forward.

Ready to be home to Bob and the pups and get back to customer quilting.. only two to finish for the upcoming Quilters by the Sea show in October!