Sunday, April 4, 2021

Angels Abound

Wow... I can't believe it's been a whole year since I've written a blog post!  I guess I could come up with a bunch of reasons and excuses for that, but I won't bother.  The last year has been difficult for everyone for so many reasons... a pandemic, politics, quarantine, etc.  My focus was just on other things (including a new position at work, in a brand new organization!).  I'll try not to overload y'all with pictures trying to catch up!

First and foremost, and my inspiration for writing a new post... we FINALLY updated the pattern set for The Angel Quilt and added it to our website for purchase.  Woohoo!  We've gotten so very many requests for that pattern and I challenged myself to carve out some time to get it done.  Yippee!  It really is a cute quilt, and one that I've thought about recreating for myself many times.


The Angel Quilt by Sue Garman

Next up... I have a couple of learning moments.  For all of you longarmers out there, I'm sure you've heard quilters talk about making sure that the quilting density is fairly even across a quilt.  Maybe you've even experienced what happens when it's not.  That's what happened to me!  I quilting this cute quilt for a friend, to be used as a baby quilt for a boy, and she wanted fireworks in the quilting.  I found a couple of patterns, and she picked one that was very dense in some places and also had wide areas of no quilting.  I'm not blaming her at all.  I totally should have warned her against it, or even just not showed the pattern to her as a choice.  It ended up looking fairly lumpy.  After a bit, she brought it back to me and I re-loaded the quilt and just added another big meander pattern over the top.  MUCH better!  


Overall view of the original quilting, with just the fireworks pattern.

Close up view of the original quilting.  See the lumpiness and open spaces?

Overview of the quilt with the added overall meander.  Much better!

Second lesson actually turned out to create a beautiful quilt, and one that I'm very proud of having quilted.  This is a patriotic quilt that my same friend, Becky, had and asked me to quilt.  The blocks were each made by different women, and she put the top together.  The two tall blocks, Lady Liberty and Uncle Sam, were made by Mom!  I knew I wanted to do crosshatching in the background, and I also knew that Becky isn't a fan of really have quilting, so I planned to do big, 1-inch or so, squares.  So, I started marking off 1-inch marks across the quilt.  Oh goodness... I really am much smarter than that, and I am really good with math!  What did I do "wrong"?  Measuring 1-inch from point to point instead of side to side on a square makes a HUGE difference in the size of the square.  Thankfully, she loved the job anyway!

Overall view of the quilt.  I just love it!

Close up view of the top.


Overall view of the back of the quilt.  I just love the patriotic fabric she found for the center!

Next up, I have just a really nice quilt that I quilted for my guild's next auction (I think sometime later this year).  The top was donated for the auction, again by Becky (she keeps me busy), and I wanted to make it special so it will hopefully bring in some good money for the guild!


Overall view of the quilted top.

Close up view of the top.  Love the feathers and crosshatch!

Overall view of the back of the quilt.

Last thing for this month... I'll save some for next month maybe... I'm sure I'm not alone in saying that I sometimes buy things at big quilt shows, like the International Quilt Festival here in Houston, that don't always get made right away... or ever.  Well, I made a purchase a few Festivals ago that led my quilting friends to say that I needed "supervision" when shopping.  HA!  They tried to supervise me, which immediately led to another purchase that they thought would just sit on a shelf untouched.  The first purchase was the throw rug below, purchased from Primitive Gatherings.  It is comprised of hundreds of tiny charm squares folded and pressed twice into tiny triangle, and then sewn onto a muslin base.  It took forever, but I finally got it done!  It will not be stepped on, for sure... it's a table topper for the moment.  

So much fabric!  And it took so much time, I can't imagine ever actually putting it on a floor.

The second item is a leather rose kit that I bought from Gypsy Wood Leathers.  Another friend of mine, Cynthia, bought the same kit... and we actually finished the roses a few months after purchase!  Trust me when I say that these were an all day project.  You start with a piece of plain leather and some patterns... dye, cut, shape, finish... it's a lot of work.  But, they really are pretty!

Both sets of unfinished leather roses.

My three finished roses.

That's all I'm going to throw at you this month.  I've got plenty more to post about next time!  Until then, keep on quilting!

Jenny 

Sunday, April 5, 2020

Did You Miss Me??

Did you miss me?  I sure have missed writing blogs!  And, I don't really have any good reason, except that life got busy for awhile there, and then all this COVID-19 business took over the world.  Speaking of COVID-19... I sincerely hope that all of you are safe and healthy, and actively practicing social distancing.  I know my sister and I aren't even seeing each other right now, and the only reason we've been in public for anything in the last month is to go to the grocery store.  This is some scary stuff!

I know all of us have been affected in different ways and at different levels when it comes to COVID-19.  My guild's annual spring retreat was cancelled, which was usually a wonderful break to get away from work and the daily grind, get some great inspiration from fellow quilters, and catch up on some of those darned UFOs!  And, our guild's bi-annual quilt show was also cancelled.  So sad and disappointing!  I had five quilts entered, and was considering a sixth.  I do believe we will all get through all of this, and we just have to be patient, be careful, social distance, and maintain the hope that things will get back to normal!

Now, on to more happy adventures in quilting... just a few of the things I've completed over the last few months since my last post...

First up, a couple of floral quilts that I quilted for a friend of mine, Georgann.  She made these for a couple of her family members, and wanted all-over quilting on them.  I opted for the same pattern on both, gdaisyfaste2e from Stitch Happy, to match with the floral themes of the quilts.  I think they're both beautiful, and I'm sure they're very loved by their recipients!

The first of Georgann's two quilts.

A close up of the first quilt.  Check out that gorgeous border fabric!

The second of Georgann's quilts.

A close up showing the quilting and that tiny pinkish purple border.  Love it!

Another close up.

A photo of the back, so you can really see how the quilt pattern looks.
Another friend of mine and my group of quilter friends, Pat, is having health and memory issues, and the group has taken on finishing all of her UFOs for her family.  This is one that I took on quilting for her.  It has kind of a folk art feel to it, so I tried to stick with more traditional quilting... echoes throughout the background, light stitching on top of the larger applique pieces, what I call "shwoop shwoops" in the half square triangles, and a fairly simply border design.  I absolutely love how it turned out.

Overall photo of Pat's quilt.  I love the motion that the echoes give the whole thing.

A little closer view at an angle, to see more of the quilting.

Another closeup, with the border and half-square triangles.

Next is another friend's, Becky's, quilt.  This one is based on the pattern for Long Time Gone by Jen Kingwell.  Becky chose Civil War fabrics, though, and changed up some of the blocks within the quilt to better match her own tastes (and stash!).  I have to say, she originally wanted custom quilting for this quilt, and I spent several hours trying to figure out a set of patterns that would look good together, keep even quilting density, and showcase each of the different sections of the quilt.  I couldn't find anything, except possibly ditching the entire thing, so we decided to go with an all-over, and used Spiral pano 001, one of my very favorites, from Kimberlee Diamond at Sweet Dreams Quilt Studio. Love, love, love...

Overview of the whole quilt.  Beautiful!

A closeup view to see the quilting and all of the piecing!

Another closeup from a different angle.
Now, for another friend's, Jerrianne's, quilt.  Do you see a pattern here?  I haven't been getting many of my own quilts done!!  LOL!  These are simple nine-patch blocks, set on point and alternated with various shirtings.  Very scrapy, with I love!  And, and I have to say that Jerrianne's quilts are always a joy to quilt because they are so flat and so square.  This top was perfect!  We chose the Goose Down pattern by Dave Dennis, and I stretched it some so that the quilting wouldn't be that heavy.  As you may or may not know, heavier quilting stiffens up a quilt and makes it not-so-snuggly.

Overall of the quilt.  Perfect and beautiful!

Closeup view at an angle.

And now... on to a couple of my own quilts!  First up is one that I think has become my very most favorite little quilt that I have!  I've always had a thing for boot quilts, maybe due to my being born and raised in Texas.  And, add to that my alma mater being Texas A&M.  Last year, at the guild's spring retreat, Becky (same friend as above) had made a miniature boot quilt for our guild's mini quilt auction.  I fell in love!  Well, she gathered up some Texas A&M fabric scraps from a couple of quilters at the retreat, and made mini Aggie boot quilts for me and another Aggie friend, Cynthia.  I decided to really challenge myself with the quilting of this little guy, and I had an absolute blast doing it!  I'm not going to name all of the individual patterns here, but I used some fills and backgrounds from Anita Shackelford and Karen Farnsworth, the outer border is from Joyce Lundrigan, and the inner border is from Laurie Thomas.

Overall photo of Baby Boots.  It measures approximately 20-inches square.

Closeup view, at an angle.

Another closeup view.  So stinkin' cute!

Photo from the back of the quilt, which really shows the quilting done.
Last for this month, is one of my lessons in longarm quilting.  This quilt has been proudly named Snakebit!  I purchased the blocks at my guild's annual auction last August.  I do like string quilts, and this one has such bright, happy colors!  I just couldn't resist.  So, I laid out all of the pieces to my liking, stitched them all together, and loaded it up to quilt with an edge to edge pattern.  In this case, I used celestial pano 004, another one from Kimberlee Diamond at Sweet Dreams Quilt Studio.  Now, you may ask, why was it snakebit?  Everything seems to have gone so smoothly to this point.  HA!  I stitched out a couple of passes and noticed that there was a tuck in the backing.  ACK!  If it was a customer quilt, I would have taken out all of the stitched and redone it.  However, I figured this was a total utility quilt that only I would see, so move on, and chalk it up to a learning experience.  Okay!  A couple more passes, and uh-oh... somehow I didn't roll the quilt enough on the computer and two of the passes overlapped each other by an inch or so.  DOUBLE ACK!  Again, learning experience, and nobody will ever even notice except me.  I finished the quilting, unloaded the quilt (and noticed a few more tucks on the back).  Then... I sewed the dang binding on the wrong side of the quilt!!!  In any case, I do love this quilt, and I sleep with it every single night.  I'm always learning when I'm quilting, and I can only be glad that this all happened on my own quilt and not one that I'd have to fix.

Ack!  There's that first tuck that I spotted.

Double ack!  There's the overlapping passes that I spotted.

Overview photo of the completed Snakebit quilt.  So bright and happy!

Closeup of the top and quilting.

A closeup of my pieced back.  If you look closely, you might see a couple more tucks in there.
Well, that's all I have for this month.  I promise I'll be back sooner next time!  I've already got some photos ready to go for the next post.  Please, please, please, everyone stay safe and healthy while the world deals with this deadly virus.  I'll see you soon!

Keep on quilting!
Jenny

Sunday, November 10, 2019

Sisters, Part 2

Yes, yes, I know I'm SUPER late in getting part 2 out.  The last few months have literally FLOWN away.  I have tons to show and discuss, so maybe I'll get a couple of posts done before November is over!  So, here I am finally getting out the photos from the actual Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show.  Remember, the last post was of the quilt shows leading up to the big day!  Warning... there will be a lot of photos in this post, and not so many words.  There is just too much to share!

We arrived very early in the morning, because we wanted to start by seeing how they sort and hang all of the quilts...
The light of dawn on the main street in Sisters on the morning of the show.
The quilts are all lying out in black bags along the sidewalks in the areas where they will be hung.  The bags have labels on them.  Normally, having a quilt in a black bag would worry me terribly because I'd be afraid they'd get thrown away, but I'm pretty sure the folks in Sisters know better!  Hehehe.  They do look a bit like body bags, though...



Some of the quilts, like these that go up high on the side of The Stitchin' Post building, require the help of the local fire department.  It's quite a big deal, and there was an audience, with plenty of ladies hoping to get their picture with a fire fighter.




We also found a lovely tasting room for locally distilled spirits from Cascade Street Distillery that opens early on event weekends like this.  I highly recommend their spicy vodka bloody Mary!  And the Marionberry vodka to absolutely wonderful!

Quilting With My Peeps
And then there were all of the quilts... more than I can write about.  If I managed to get the maker's information, I've added it to the caption below.  The quilts were literally everywhere... hanging on the buildings, hanging on fences, hanging just about anywhere a quilt could possibly be hung.  Once we saw how they were hung, we saw all of the wires.  They are left year-round along all of the buildings.  The volunteers that hang them assured us that they wipe them down before putting the quilts up.







The main street is shut down for the day and people are everywhere, enjoying quilts and shopping in the local shops.

My Lovely Girls, made and quilted by Barbara Bowman and Sunny Days, made and quilted by Marcia Jacobson

Bend Sky made by Jan Tetzlaff and quilted by Tammy MacArthur; Rain made and quilted by Scott Hansen; Circled made and  quilted by June Jaeger














Be Square, made and quilted by Jill Huntington





Zinnia, made and quilted by Stacey Day





ABC's of Life, made by Harriet Bender and quilted by Sandy Lackowski





Shadow Liberty, made by Sarah Bond

Simple Folk, made by Sarah Fielke and quilted by Jeanette Bruce

Midnight at the Oasis by Jen Kingwell

Cow Abstractions by Violet Craft

Rattled, made by Tula Pink and quilted by Kathleen Riggins

Silver Expression, made and quilted by Colleen Blackwood

Flower Cocktail, made by Robin Long Ruth and quilted by Wanda Rains

Chic Country, made and quilted by Jenny Pedigo, Sew Kind of Wonderful
That's it for the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show photos.  And that's it for now.  I'll be back soon, with photos from the International Quilt Festival Houston.  Yippee!

Keep on quilting!
Jenny