BAMaQG Anchor

Christina is spearheading the drive to make a quilt for the nurse who coordinates and founded the Blankets for Babies Project at Stanford. Christina is racking up the hours in front of the sewing machine, but is still a relative newbie, thus she called on me to do some applique’ on this quilt.

Make a Splash from Moda Blog
Make a Splash from Moda Blog

The quilt, Make a Splash, is a free pattern on the Moda Blog (scroll down as once you click on the pattern an Adobe Acrobat window will open in your browser, so there is no direct link).

Anchor detail
Anchor detail

It took me awhile to get it done. With my travel and various things happening, I only got to it last Thursday. I snuck in some time after work to do a bit of applique’. I am pleased that my part is finished and I can hand it off to Christina again. Don’t get me wrong; I am always pleased to help the guild. I just have so much going on right and I felt like I was letting Christina down by not getting it finished. Now it is and I can move on to the 2,000 projects I have going.

Kelly’s Color My Quilt

The guild meeting was Saturday. It was a good time, but I wasn’t really in the mood for some reason. Last week was busy and I had a lot of people to deal with in stressful situations, so I might have just been overloaded with external stimulus. Still, I was glad I went.

I always feel like I am offloading a truck when I go to a BAM meeting. I hand off donation quilts, pet beds, donation blocks, free table items. At the meeting last weekend I also had a Color My Quilt piece to show and give.

Kelly's group of Color My World chunks
Kelly’s group of Color My World chunks

It was Kelly‘s month and she she had an interesting idea. The responses were very cohesive, I thought, which was great. Some others seem to think we weren’t doing the challenge right, but I like cohesion in a quilt, so I thought this group was very successful.

My Color My Quilt Piece for Kelly
My Color My Quilt Piece for Kelly

My piece is at the top and I was pretty happy with it. It was one of the largest, as you can see. As someone pointed out, I don’t make small quilts. πŸ˜‰

I learned this technique when I took my second quiltmaking class at Fort Mason from Sonya Lee Barrington back in the Dark Ages. I really had fun using it this time. It was nice to make swooping curves. I didn’t want to use black and didn’t have the Pepper that Kelly suggested on her sheet, so I stayed with brights.

There was some discussion about ‘chunks’ at the meeting.I have used free form piecing on two of the pieces. I thought I used that technique on all of them, but I made a checkerboard for Cheryl’s. This has led me to think about what could be a chunk besides free form piecing. I know a strip of Flying Geese could be a chunk, but blocks seem to be out of favor in terms of chunks. If I get a month, it probably won’t be until next year, so I have a long time to think about it.

Kelly seemed pretty happy with her chunks. I talked with her about her thoughts regarding putting them together. Obviously, it is too soon to really know what she will do. In the course of the discussion, it occurred to me that I could make chunks to intersperse among those from friends and that could help to bring the different pieces together.

So far, I have participated in:

This month is Gerre’s month and I have to get busy on her piece as I have a lot going on between now and the next meeting.

Guild Merit Hexies

Gerre is the president of the guild. Late last year she started talking about merit hexies. In her idea, they were kind of like merit badges in Scouts.

At the meeting on Saturday, I received my first group of hexies and a lovely bag, made by the fabulous Gerre, to keep them in.

Merit Hexies - March
Merit Hexies – March

The most meaningful hexies to me are the special ones that indicate I have participated in some event or activity the guild is sponsoring. Those are on the left of the photo above, except for the Text Challenge hexie, which is on the far right.

The regular fabric hexies are for other volunteering such as making charity quilts.

Gerre wants people to make something out of their hexies that aren’t necessarily sewn together in a Grandmother’s Flower Garden kind of way. She made a pillow where the hexies are spaces apart in diagonal rows and appliqued on during the quilting process (appli-quilted). This is appealing to me. Depending on how many I receive, I could recover one of the couch cushions with a hexie pillow cover. The Zen of Making has a tutorial for an EPP Travel Kit that takes either 14 or 21 hexies.

After the meeting, during the small groups time, I learned a new way of basting fabric over hexie papers. Gerre did a demo and I helped her to restock her supply. It was fun.


Gift Bag
Gift Bag

Today I received a very kind gift.

It started with the idea to give the guild officers a gift at the end of their terms. Guild officers have a tough job. It is all volunteer organization and there are few perks if a person doesn’t get satisfaction from leading.

Gift Bag
Gift Bag

For the past few years, I have gotten people to volunteer to make bags and then encouraged the guild to bring one small gift for each of the officers. I like this idea better than making officers quilts. While quilts or blocks can be a great memory, they are a lot of work and we all have our own quilts. We all make our own quilts. I think providing a bag with a variety of gifts is a great thank you.

Annotated Bag Contents
Annotated Bag Contents

Today I received the same kind of gift. It was a bag made by Cheryl full of lovely treats, including some chocolate. πŸ˜‰ There are a number of things that will stock my new Sew Together Bag (I haven’t made it yet) with an embroidery kit.

There was also Thread Magic, some fabric, tea, band-aids, which I hope I don’t need. πŸ˜‰ there was a spot remover and an inside joke for the arch supports.

I am so grateful to the guild for this gift. I don’t do volunteer work for accolades or event thanks. I don’t do volunteer tasks that I don’t want to do. This gift was such a wonderful and unexpected surprise. Thank you.

CQFA February ATCs

February CQFA ATCs
February CQFA ATCs

I made a second CQFA meeting in a row. It was exciting to have two weekends in row to devote to doing what I wanted.

As per usual, I made ATCs for the meeting. I never quite know what design I am going to use until I do it. Often, I look in my scrap drawer to see what is available. On this day, I had straightened up the scraps from some tunics I had made. There were some large pieces of Philip Jacobs fabric available without much rummaging and I used that to make the flowers.

In this case, I also wanted to use some of my new Sue Spargo Perl-type cottons and came up with this design to do so. I had some trouble getting the stitch to be smooth, but as I worked through the cards, I got the optimal length worked out.

I noticed from looking at the last group of ATCs that I tend to embellish them.

As in October, few people made ATCs. Bron and I were the only ones who had any to share, so we exchanged one each with each other. I made an extra one when I got home and will use these for the April meeting, assuming I can attend.

ATCs Again! Finally!

December 2016 ATCs
December 2016 ATCs

I finally made some ATCs! After missing several meetings, then not having time to make any before the October meeting I feel like I have reached the summit of a high mountain. Additionally, I used the charms that have been sitting on my cutting table (or falling off repeatedly) for months!

I wanted a fall theme to go with the leaves and it is still Fall, though it feels like winter some days.

Today is the CQFA meeting, so we will see how they are received.

Freddy Moran Lecture

Freddy Moran -
Freddy Moran -

At the end of July, I went to a Freddy Moran lecture at the San Francisco Quilter’s Guild. I am not a member, but they do get good speakers, so I try and go once in a while.

End of July? I know. This post has been laying around for awhile.

I like Freddy’s work because it is bright and I like her work because of her collaborations with Gwen Marston. I have heard her speak a few times and have dozens of quilts from the books she has written on my “to make” list. Actually, I want to make quilts as bright as hers more than I want to make the actual patterns. She inspired me to use dots and colors as neutrals.

Freddy is getting quite old (approaching 90) and her husband died last year, which sent her into a tailspin. She talked about the changes in her life affecting her work and methods in the lecture.

Freddy started out her quiltmaking “career” with a sampler quilt, but didn’t feel she was very good at the technical aspects of quiltmaking. She didn’t start until she was over 60 and her kids were grown, which she thought was part of the issue. At some point she made a house block and that sent her off in the direction of multiple house blocks. She made a number of house quilts and found that bright colors were what she liked. She doesn’t think she is particularly good at technique and now doesn’t even sew much.

Freddy showed a number of quilts, which look different from her house quilts. I could still see the ‘Freddy touch’ when I looked at them as well as the influence of her collaboration with Gwen Marston. I especially like the basket quilt. I’d also love to make a row quilt like hers.

Freddy Moran's Applique'
Freddy Moran’s Applique’

She is doing a new collaboration with her quilter now where she glue sticks fabric and motifs to a background fabric and then her quilter “appli-quilts” the pieces to the background.

She has other new pieces which remind me of Mary Mashuta’s “Pushed Neutral” technique, which was so intriguing when I started making art quilts.

I really enjoyed the lecture. I wish I could go and spend time with the various quiltmakers I admire and see what they think of my work.

CQFA Show and Tell

Rhonda and I ducked out of the BAM Retreat to attend the CQFA meeting. They are often conflicting at the moment, which is a challenge. I didn’t want to leave the retreat, however I have missed so many CQFA meetings that I felt bad about missing another. Since Rhonda was going, I decided to go for the meeting, but not stay for the workshop.

Despite my perpetual To Do List item to make ATCs, I didn’t make any. I wasn’t the only one. Poor Virginia had nobody with whom to exchange.

Tea in a Cafe
Tea in a Cafe

One of the most exciting things to happen to other guild is that there will be a show either in July 2017 or in 2018. The theme will be “In Conversation.” I immediately got a flash of an idea in my mind and drew it out in my journal. It is loosely based on a picture I took in Austria.

The picture is just the start. I want to add in some hands. I don’t know the angle yet, though straight on sideways or straight from the top would be easier to draw. I do like the angle shown in the picture, but I don’t know if I can do it credible justice. My UFO list is creeping up, but I am excited about this project and wonder if I can get started on it and get it to a good point before I lose interest?

Maureen's Book
Maureen’s Book

Anyway. Show and Tell was awesome. I was especially inspired by Maureen’s book. She is in a collage group that meets once a week. She has been doing some great stuff in that group. In a recent meeting, she learned about a simple Japanese binding and made a book.

The content/pages are always a problem for me. How many journals does a person need? Maureen had a genius idea to use black and white drawings from a previous class.

I love this book! The overall content and structure are great, but the best part is the little surprises inside. She added a window on to the next page. One of the pages has a rounded edge, again providing a glimpse farther in the book. Another page is cut at an angle and the following page is so carefully placed that the reader cannot tell they are two separate pages right away.

Julie brought her Tumbler quilt.

Dolores' Cube
Dolores’ Cube

Dolores showed an almost finished fabric sculpture. She has been working on studies to get the process down for awhile. I have seen the smaller ones, but was thrilled to see the large version.

Each side has a different texture. Some of them are achieved through quilting, but others are kind of sewing techniques such as smocking.

I love the textures she achieved, especially from some serious quilting on the sides.

Carol is still working in solids and brought two of her quilts. These are a follow up to the quilt she worked on at the Retreat. I really like the subtle shifts in color in the Tulip quilt. I know that there are depths that tone-on-tones achieve that solids can’t, however I can’t help but love what people can achieve with solids as well.

Jennifer brought more of her felted wool pieces. Nancy brought a journal cover she made using my tutorial. I was pretty excited about that, because someone actually used one of my tutorials! Virginia brought some placemats. Reva made a 3D owl. The list goes on and one. I am always so inspired by the ladies who create and share at CQFA.

BAM Retreat Projects

As discussed a couple of days ago, I went on the BAM Retreat. I didn’t just have boatloads of fun and eat until I was sick, I also made some valuable progress.

The Thanksgiving tablerunners have been hanging over my head. Thanksgiving is now 1.5 months away and the hanging became more like the Sword of Damocles than an item on my to do list. I am pleased to say that the two remaining have been quilted. I still need to make and apply the binding, but the quilting part is done. I didn’t get to the tablemat, but I am pleased with my progress.

One thing I did on the pumpkin tablerunner was use Aurifloss (12 wt thread). I used it in the machine with 50 wt Aurifil in the bobbin. There was more breakage than I normally experience with Aurifil. I really like the effect and was pleased that the 50 wt did not show through to the top. I didn’t have to adjust the tension.

I also made a few blocks for the Tula Pink City Sampler/ Tale of Two Cities project. The blocks were a good break from quilting, which I needed after I completed the quilting on the first tablerunner. Julie joined the #100blocks100days challenge on Instagram and, while I have not joined, it is inspiring me to work on them. Also, she is now ahead of me on making blocks! I need to get myself in gear. Michelle S was a good support for this project at the retreat.

I also FINALLY started the Valori Wells Little Cell Phone Wallet pattern. I really, REALLY need something to carry my phone and hotel key when I am wearing dresses with no pockets. REALLY. Since the project was small, it seemed like a good time to work on it. I had some trouble with the directions, which should be no surprise. I did get a good working sample by the time I left the retreat. It isn’t one that I will use for various reasons. I’ll write more about this pattern in another post.

While my descriptions might not seem like a lot, I was busy and working hard the whole time. I am pleased with my progress and will be really pleased when I can finish these various projects and cross them off my list.

BAM Retreat

We are going to take a break from the quilt class and talk about quilt retreats. I may slow down the quilt class just a little to catch you up on some progress I have been making.

I just got back from a quilt retreat. BAM went to Sunnyvale together, had a lot of fun, ate some food, got to know each other better and worked on our projects for 2.5 days. We did a lot and a lot happened, so I might write multiple posts.

It was a great retreat and I had a great time. I felt like I got back in the swing of sewing, at least a little. The Peacock Quilt is still on the design wall taunting me.

Mad for Mod 2016 Sponsors
Mad for Mod 2016 Sponsors

First, the sponsors were fantastic. You wouldn’t believe the gift bags that we got. I finally took everything out and looked at it when I got home and felt like the bag was magic. More and more kept coming out. I was very pleased with what I got, though I didn’t expect such a gift bag.

BAM Retreat Goodies
BAM Retreat Goodies

Not only were there actual things in the gift bags, but also a lot of codes for discounts and free quilt trials. I received two FQ packs of fabric as well as a pack of Aurifloss, a number of patterns, some other threadΒ  and many new things to try out. Amy, the vendor chair, worked hard and did a fantastic job.

BAM Retreat Sewing Space
BAM Retreat Sewing Space

My sewing space was small, but adequate. We knew in advance that we would only have a small amount of space so I planned accordingly.

The rest of the room was a regular conference room, but there were French doors that led out to a small grassy area, so we had plenty of natural light as well as fresh air and a nice spot to have cocktail hour. πŸ˜‰

BAM Retreat Cocktail Hour
BAM Retreat Cocktail Hour

Meals were included, which didn’t work out super well for me, though I think everyone else enjoyed them. My stomach was still a bit off from my trip and from being sick, so I am blaming those things rather than the caterer. We also had cocktail hour on Friday and Saturday. I didn’t drink, but the snacks were well labeled GF and tasty.

Although I came home on Wednesday and left again right away on Friday, I was glad I attended the retreat. I think it was hard on my poor DH, but perhaps coming home and leaving again two days later gave him a taste of what he had been missing. πŸ˜‰

Cargo Duffle Finished

Cargo Duffle - Finished
Cargo Duffle – Finished


I spent the Sunday after the workshop finishing the Cargo Duffle.

I really, sincerely disliked all the prep work, but was thrilled to see how this bag turned out. it has substance. I was going to give it away, but I am keeping it. I really like the fabrics I chose, even though I chose the green because I thought I would give it away. I love that text fabric.

Cargo Duffle - Finished (interior zipper pocket)
Cargo Duffle – Finished (interior zipper pocket)

I am also thinking of making another one. I know. I know. I am crazy, but I keep thinking about how I would make a second one differently. I want to see if I can do it again better. ALSO, I do have to make a bag for one of the guild officers.

For example, after cutting out the straps, I would just sew them. After cutting out the pockets, I would sew them to the lining. I think it would be less confusing. Yes, I would still have to quilt a bunch of pieces and panels,, but I think it would be easier. It might not have worked when I didn’t know how to make the bag, but now that I have an idea, I think it would work better for me.

Helpful Tutorials

  • How to shorten a zipper – IndieSew
  • How to put the Cargo Duffle lining and exterior together – video by Emily Dennis

Fun Sew Day

I had a great time at the Sew Day yesterday and really got a lot done!

Gerre & Jaye work area
Gerre & Jaye work area

It was a small crowd and I was the second person there! That was shocking since I have to go far to get there, but it was a great opportunity to chat with Mary a little and get to know her better. The tables were all there since camp is over, but they were sticky and dirty, so we spent some time cleaning them. We also set up a few tables and the cutting table. By the time we were satisfied we were still the only people there. We both started to sew and continued to chat. Bang on 11am, others rolled in and the party really got started. πŸ˜‰

I decided that I would work on projects that were hanging around. First up was the Circles Charity Quilt. Gerre and I started working on it at the May Sew Day. MAY!!! I can’t believe it has been 4 months.

Circles Charity Quilt
Circles Charity Quilt

I had worked on it a few times after Gerre gave it to me, but it was hanging around not getting done, so I decided I would work on that even if it took me all day. It turned out that I only had a little more to do. I had about 6 circles to applique’, tying off threads and trimming. It didn’t take me very long at all. I pressed it and gave it back to Gerre who will quilt it or give it to the guild to quilt. I am really pleased with how it turned out.

My “reward” was to work on the Petrillo bag that I cut about 15 years ago. Not really, I cut it out, maybe, a year and half ago. It has been on my to do list forever and it was time to sew it, so I started. I don’t know why I waited because the bag started to look like a bag before I left. I was short some supplies, so I skipped a couple of steps, but did as much as I could in the time I had and really made some progress. I am really kicking myself or not getting to this bag sooner and having it take up space in one of my Chubby Charmers.

Angela basted one of the Pulse quilts the guild made. She is getting ready to quilt it. She was a rock star. She just got on with it and pretty soon the whole quilt was basted. I knew she would be working on it so I checked the Orlando Modern Quilt Guild website to see how they were progressing. They are really making progress. The creativity used in creating the layouts is wonderful. They have a lot of quilts completed and more in progress. I am so glad I was able to contribute.

Lizzie's IRR - before
Lizzie’s IRR – before

Mary worked on the Improv Round Robin project. She had Lizzie’s piece.

Susan worked on her Cargo Duffle and was able to finish that. Patti was sewing doll clothes for her granddaughters.

Karen was working on another quilt in her series of art quilts related to Black Lives Matter.

Gerre's Feathers
Gerre’s Feathers

Gerre pulled out some AMH feather blocks and was putting them together. She is pretty close as all the blocks are done and just has to finish sewing the rows. This is one of her earlier quilts and I love it.

One fun thing is that we talked about sewing – tips, tricks, techniques, hacks. Someone is thinking of making Sew Together Bags, so we discussed making them just as functional, but a bit easier. All in all, it was a great day and I really enjoyed myself.





IRR - June 2016
IRR – June 2016

My Improv Round Robin has returned. Ruth had it for a couple of months because I wasn’t at the meeting last month and she wasn’t sure whether to pass it along.
She added the bottom part with the curves. It is an interesting addition.
I am trying to decide whether to try and get more people to work on it or whether I should just do some work of my own and finish it. I have some thoughts:

  • It needs some space around the edges. The outside top and right side might need some of the turquoise solid to provide some breathing room.
  • It is definitely not square and I need to figure out what to do about that, if anything.
  • I want to add more Flying Geese, which I will do myself. Perhaps I will add them on the right.
  • I am surprised that more people did continue the Flying Geese motif. The time constraints were daunting, however, so I understand.

I do need to look at it for awhile.

Bay Area Modern June Meeting

I was pretty excited to get back to BAM to see my pals. I only missed the May meeting, but it felt like an eternity. I finally had some things to show. You, of course, have seen them all, but I showed:

My SIL came along. She hasn’t been a member of a guild in awhile, if ever, but I dragged her along. She said she had a good time, which made me happy.

June Charity Sew Day quilt
June Charity Sew Day quilt

More details about the meeting can be found on the BAM blog.

I missed the Charity Sew Day due to Political Wifery, but some of the quilts they made were shown. Michelle B. designed the pattern and they sewed the quilts together using the quilt-as-you-go technique. This was a brilliant idea as it made the quilting after the piecing unnecessary.

Claire's innovative quilt
Claire’s innovative quilt

Show and Tell was fabulous as well. Joy-Lily has finished her 100 quilts project. Not all are quilted, but she has a nice variety of pieces. Zoe brought her tiny baby and the black and white playmat she is making. I loved them both! Claire set a bunch of blocks together in a really unique and innovative fashion.

I know it isn’t true, but I feel like I haven’t sewed at all after seeing all the great stuff people brought.

Jaime will be leading a workshop on making the Noodlehead Cargo Duffle. She has made a few and has made some changes to the pattern including more pockets. I signed up because I admire Jaime’s bag making skills.

We both helped work on the Hearts for Orlando blocks, which I wrote a bit about yesterday. You can see the full details at the BAM blog.

I dropped Cityscape off with my SIL who is the new owner after the meeting. I think she liked it.

Orange T Donation Quilt Finished!

Orange T Donation Quilt
Orange T Donation Quilt

This is the quilt that Gerre and I worked on at her house a few months ago.

She finished it and brought it to Sew Day. I couldn’t believe that she finished quilting it so quickly! I was thrilled. Not just that it was finished, but also that we had another donation quilt to help give someone some comfort.

The oranges worked out really well and while we are working on the circle quilt, I am excited to cut for another T quilt. I am thinking of digging into those green bins and thinning out some of those fabrics. I also saw my nephew’s Wonky 9 Patch quilt over the weekend and think that blue would look great with the orange Ts as well.

Orange T Quilt Back
Orange T Quilt Back