Final Weekend En Provence Progress

En Provence upper right hand quarter - November 26, 2017
En Provence upper right hand quarter – November 26, 2017

I added “Piecing” to the hashtags for this post. Immediately my mind revised that as ‘interminable piecing’. I don’t really feel tired of this project, but there are a LOT of seams and I am ready for this top to be finished. Good thing I made significant progress over the weekend.

The upper right hand corner is finished and this means that I have 4 rows of 3 blocks to finish. If I had 4 days free, I could finish the top by the weekend.

I have been sewing the border on as I go along. Using the ‘self-bordering’ technique makes the border much more precise in terms of matching seams. You also don’t have long seams to sew (and match) or borders to add once the center is done. I use this technique as much as possible. It makes my life so much better.

Color My Quilt-November

Color My Quilt - November - Melinda
Color My Quilt – November – Melinda

I started my contribution to the November Color My Quilt project for Melinda pretty soon after the October meeting. I meant to do more, but I just ran out of time.

Again, I used all scraps and did some Improv piecing. I was a little mean, but I couldn’t cut off that curve. It was part of the scrap that I used and I liked it. I am sure it will get cut off in the final piece, but perhaps Melinda will keep it.

The pieces have a fall-ish look, but are also bright.

November Color My Quilt Shards
November Color My Quilt Shards

The shards made hung together surprisingly well. I think the colors Melinda wanted were clearly defined and easy to use. There were lots  of blocks this time, which made me happy. Someone made a block using the method from Sarah Goer‘s class.

Stars Return

You might remember me talking about the first star donation top. I don’t always get to see the finished product, but last week at the BAM meeting, I got to see it finished.

Star Donation Quilt
Star Donation Quilt

Erin quilted it. She doesn’t make a lot of her own quilts, so she quilts a massive number of charity quilts.

The setting looks pretty boring compared to Stars #2 and Stars #3, but I had to make it in order to get to those two. Erin’s quilting makes it look a lot better!

I was thrilled to collaborate with Erin and look forward to seeing what she does next.

Book Arts Jam

Last weekend was exhibition weekend. I barely spent any time actually sewing. In addition to PIQF, the Book Arts Jam put on and exhibit and vendor hall with book artists vending. I have gone before and wrote about my visit in 2015.

The event is put on by the Bay Area Book Artists (BABA) organization and was held at the Palo Alto Elks Lodge. I went because I have, as I have said, a sincere but underdeveloped interest in book making. I always went to support Maureen who has sold postcards at the event during the last few exhibits.

Lilly's by Marilyn Howard
Lilly’s by Marilyn Howard

The exhibition has a gallery in one room and the vendor hall in the other. The exhibition made me realize that I am much more interested in the container than in the content of the books.

I know that creating content is important (ahem, see my blog), but for me in the context of this event, I felt myself drawn to the containers.

There were all types of book-like objects, some barely a book and some made from books rather than being books themselves. There were some accessories and a Barbie book.

Backwards Cover Book by Jamila Rufaro
Backwards Cover Book by Jamila Rufaro

One of the things that has been stumbling block for the next book in my series is the closure. At the Book Arts Jam, I saw one, Backwards Cover Book by Jamila Rufaro, artist use a magnet as a closure.

Why didn’t I think of that?

I have a whole bunch of sew in magnet closures I use for bags and they would be perfect! I don’t know how strong the magnet will be in the context of a book, but I can experiment now that I have an idea.

Sliceform Book by various BABA members
Sliceform Book by various BABA members

I saw some paper art that I would consider more like origami or papercraft (perhaps Scherenschnitte??) than bookmaking, but what do I know?

The colors make this look like a Thanksgiving decoration. I would love to enter this into the San Mateo County Fair. I found a site with instructions and some templates that can be printed. I didn’t see fruit, but didn’t look very hard. Looking at various shapes and site discussing sliceform, I can see that I could easily get sucked into that craft.

Vendors

Vendor book with items for sale
Vendor book with items for sale

There were probably 15-20 vendors. Some were selling items, a number of them were selling cards and others were selling supplies. I saw one vendor selling documents like deeds and other types of contracts.

Maureen was right next to the booth shown above. Her booth looks really professional. Simple and elegant, but visitors can also play with rearranging her postcards. That is an attraction for me. I guess the kid comes out. I am upset with myself for not getting a shot of her booth or the postcards I bought from her! ERGH!

I bought some little tiny journals that I will use as party favors from Kristi Conley-Brockie. I bought 5 and she will make me 10 more before January. I liked the items she had in her booth. I liked her work because the pieces looked like books, but imagery was also important to them. The octopus in the center of the book in the middle photo is particularly interesting to me.

Black Cat Card
Black Cat Card

I found the perfect card for my aunt. It is Halloween-esque, but doesn’t scream Halloween and nods to her love of black cats. I wrote her a letter that very afternoon and sent it off. I hope she likes it.

Sadly the card was not marked with the Artist’s name and she did not include a business card. 🙁

The weekend was busy and I was tempted not to go to the Book Arts Jam. I go to exhibits to expand my mind and I wanted to support Maureen’s hard work as she has always been helpful to me and does fabulous work. As you can see I went searching for sliceform and got an idea from one of the art pieces I might be able to utilize in my own work.

 

SIL Works

I have to say it is great to live around the corner from another quiltmaker. It is even better that she is my SIL. We had Craft Night on Monday, as usual, and I got to see some of her new works.

SIL MassDrop Donation Quilt
SIL MassDrop Donation Quilt

In terms of donations, she is on fire. She took one (or, perhaps, more) of the MassDrop fat quarter packs given out at the Retreat and has made two quilts so far from it.

The first one has a self-bordering effect, but the ‘border’ is  is part of the design. I like the larger and smaller squares for the design. She made another version as part of her seasons series using Pointillist fabric that is super cool. I’ll have to take a photo and post it sometime.

The other donation quilt, which I failed to photograph, is brilliant. She is using the stitch and flip method with Jelly Roll like strips, so the piece is quilted at the same time as sewn. The design comes out like a giant log cabin. This technique would be great for a charity Sew Day activity and would produce a lot of small quilts quickly.

SIL Design Wall, October 2017
SIL Design Wall, October 2017

SIL also has the Terrain quilt on her design wall. She has a layered effect going on on her design wall. The right arrow is pointing to it. You can also see some of the large back I made (arrow on the left is pointing to it) for the Terrain .

One of the good things about having a quiltmaker nearby is the almost instantaneous dose of inspiration. I can walk over, see what is on SIL’s design wall, go home and be reinvigorated.

ColorPlay: Shirt

ColorPlay: Shirt
ColorPlay: Shirt

I went to the Retreat last weekend. While there, SIL suggested I do a ColorPlay post on G’s shirt. I thought it would be great because there were a lot of bright-ish colors.

ColorPlay shirt default
ColorPlay shirt default

The default was …neutral, as usual. The Earth looks a little purple.

ColorPlay Shirt n.1
ColorPlay Shirt n.1

The first non-default palette is my favorite. I went to towards the turquoise. Ok, it isn’t really turquoise, it is Candy Green. I have never heard of Candy Green and that name kind of scares me.

ColorPlay Shirt n.2
ColorPlay Shirt n.2

Palette n.2 is an extension of palette n.1. I added a couple of neutrals. I am a fan of the gold, but it works well with the Ultramarine and the Deep Rose.

ColorPlay Shirt n.3
ColorPlay Shirt n.3

Palette n.3 is a combination of the neutral palette and my favorite, palette n.1. The Ultramarine stands out in this crowd. I also like the name of the Spice color.

ColorPlay Shirt n.4
ColorPlay Shirt n.4

Palette n.4 has colors that show up in other palettes. Although I see this as a more colorful image, I also realized that the embroidery was all of the same colors.

Have you made any interesting palettes lately? Please share.

What Else We Did at the BAMaQG Retreat

BAM 2017 Scrap Attack
BAM 2017 Scrap Attack

I wasn’t the only one busy at Retreat. A lot of charity blocks and tops were made. People also worked on their own projects.

MassDrop gave the guild a bunch of fat quarter packs to use to make charity quilts. The group did not disappoint. Right there, at least 5 were made. There were only about 4 packs left at the end of the day on Sunday, so I think others are in process.

Yellow Donation Quilt
Yellow Donation Quilt

Gerre had taken my Yellow Donation quilt and quilted it. She was working on the binding on Friday at the Retreat. She finished it and, thus, finished the quilt at the Retreat. I was pleased that she had worked on the top I made. I always feel happy when Gerre and I collaborate, especially when she says nice things about my color combinations. 😉

Michelle S' map quilt
Michelle S’ map quilt

Michelle S was working on, what I think of as, a map quilt. She had a different name for it, but I thought the blocks looks like a map or aerial photo.

Retreat 2017 Workspace
Retreat 2017 Workspace

I didn’t take as many photos as I expected to. I was focused on sewing and getting as much done as possible. There was a lot of moving around to shared cutting tables and ironing stations. People were also very chatty and interested in what other people were working on. It is always interesting to be in a Retreat situation because you get to see how other people work, what they are working on and how they interact with other.

Unintentional Collaboration

You might remember that I used the flippy corners method to make the weird shapes needed for the Triple Star. This left me with a whole bunch of matched HSTs to be. I didn’t want to have them laying around, because I don’t want to be tempted into another project, but I also didn’t want to toss them out. They would make for a nice donation quilt.

Flippy Corners Blocks
Flippy Corners Blocks

I ended up giving them to SIL and sewed them into blocks within, what seemed like, five minutes.

They came out really well, I think. The colors are wonderful, as I already knew. It is nice to see them in another format as successfully as in the Triple Stars.

ColorPlay: Freeway View

Freeway View
Freeway View

The weather this week has been good. It has not been deathly hot and there have been some lovely clouds. I took a photo while out on a lunchtime walk, which I decided to use for this week’s ColorPlay.

We are using Bella Solids instead of Kona Solids this week.

I tried to click the shutter when there were few cars, but you can still see them through the trees. I liked the green in front with the hills in the back. I prefer green hills, but still thought this was a lovely view.

ColorPlay Sept 22 default
ColorPlay Sept 22 default

The default, as we have discovered is normal, was heavily neutral. This palette looks like a 1970s decorator showcase house palette.

ColorPlay Sept 22 n.1
ColorPlay Sept 22 n.1

I decided to try a monochromatic palette next. I was able to find six different blues in the photo. None of the colors are the bright turquoise I love, but the Little Boy Blue and Robin’s Egg aren’t bad.

ColorPlay Sept 22 n.2
ColorPlay Sept 22 n.2

I decided to see if I could create another monochromatic palette and was mostly successful with green. I find the greens to be good greens for nature, but not bright enough for my quiltmaking.

ColorPlay Sept 22 n.3
ColorPlay Sept 22 n.3

While really not my thing, I decided to try and make a palette with darks. I think I succeeded and I do like that dark blue. Otherwise, the palette looks more like the dresser of teenage boy than a palette I would use for a quilt.

ColorPlay Sept 22 n.4
ColorPlay Sept 22 n.4

Next, I looked at combining the two monochromatic palettes to see if I could get something that I might actually use in a quilt. This is a nice palette. I really like the Dark Teal color. That makes this palette for me. I am still not much of a fan of the Avocado. The Leaf color is ok, though it takes on some of the qualities of the Avocado when sitting next to it.

ColorPlay Sept 22 n.5
ColorPlay Sept 22 n.5

Finally, I wanted to see what I could do with the hills that wouldn’t produce a deadly beige palette. There is that Dove, which looks more beige than grey to me. This might make a nice soft boy baby quilt. It doesn’t have the contrast that people insist babies want/need, however.

Have you made any interesting palettes lately? Please share.

Color My Quilt – September

Joelle's Instructions - Color My Quilt
Joelle’s Instructions – Color My Quilt

I realized late last week that I really needed to get busy on Joelle’s Color My Quilt piece. I was prepared to start it early, as in right after the August meeting. Somehow time got away from me.

Like I did for Amy’s piece, I wanted to make something that Joelle could cut up and use to put the other pieces together. She also really wanted solids and the combination didn’t work for me.

I just started improv piecing. It probably isn’t challenging me at all, but I seem to be focusing on the color and worrying less about the actual design. I’d be a lot happier with this project if people were making blocks, but I understand that that is not the idea behind this project.

Joelle's Color My Quilt
Joelle’s Color My Quilt

I am pleased with my piece, especially the colors. I didn’t have enough solid scraps to do the whole thing in scraps, so I tried to keep it to tone-on-tones. When I started to stray, I stopped piecing. I didn’t intend for it to be so long and skinny, but that is the way it turned out.

SIL’s Seasons Quilt

SIL #2 moved back here from Maryland last year. Since then she has been getting comments about how she must miss the seasons. We do have seasons here. They may not be the four radically dramatic seasons of the East coast, but we have seasons.

SIL's Season Quilt -in process
SIL’s Season Quilt -in process

Anyway, she has started her Seasons quilt and the first bit of it is AWESOME! Part of the awesomeness is the cutting, but the other is the Pointillist Palette fabric. The picture is not ideal, but you get the idea. The quilt shard is not on a curve surface, but the Pointillist Palette fabric and the placement makes it looked curved.

Pointillist Palette was a great fabric line. It cemented my friendship with TFQ. We bonded over fabric. 😉 It was one of the first fabric lines I bought. It was one of the first fabric lines I remember being marketed as a fabric line. There was a reissue of some of the colors and new colors last year. Both SIL and I have large collections of many of the colors. I still have the idea -and some hope- that I will finish my Pointillist Palette series. Seeing SIL”s piece gets me thinking about my PP series.

Amy’s Color My Quilt Finished

Amy's Inspiration
Amy’s Inspiration

After hearing Karen talk about her quilt, I decided that I would do more of a strip piece for Amy, so she would have some pieces she could use to connect other pieces. I tried to keep the pieces long and thin-ish.

Amy's Color My Quilt piece in process
Amy’s Color My Quilt piece in process

Partway through the process, as I mentioned, I took out the piece and took a look at it.

I was trying very hard to adhere to the spirit of the words, but color balance kept creeping in to my work. In the case of color balance, left, of the in process piece, I thought it needed more blue towards the top.

After working through all of my thoughts and feelings, I am pleased with the way this came out. I worked on it over the course of several weeks in between other things until I ran out of time. I also focused on the placement of the color rather than the width of the strips, etc. I did try to keep the strips from getting to wide, though I really wanted it to be long, so some are quite wide.

Amy's Color My Quilt piece
Amy’s Color My Quilt piece

I wanted to make it about a foot longer, but ran out of time. I am pleased and hope Amy will be, too.

Amy’s Color My Quilt

Yes, this appears to the be the week of Color My Quilt.

Amy's Color My Quilt piece in process
Amy’s Color My Quilt piece in process

I decided that I would start work on Amy’s Color My Quilt piece right away. I used it as leaders and enders while I sewed fabric pieces that didn’t require a 1/4″ foot. It was a good plan as I have made enough progress to hand it in today even if I do nothing else.

Don’t get the idea that I was doing a shoddy job. I was eyeballing a seam allowance rather than using the 1/4″ foot guide so I could make progress, but not being shoddy. If anything most of the seam allowances are larger than 1/4″.

Of course, I want to do more. I think it needs more blue. If I don’t do anymore, I’ll be happy and not embarrassed to give what I have to Amy.

Color My Quilt WOW

The BAMQG meeting was….sometime in the recent past. I have a lot going on and can’t quite remember.

Karen M. Color My Quilt
Karen M. Color My Quilt

Anyway, one fabulous thing that happened was that Karen M brought her finished ‘Color My Quilt’ piece. I thought it looked fabulous. She talked quite a bit about how she put it together and where she added strips and bits and pieces.

Keeping the colors in the same family with a bit of spark really made this quilt come together.

Karen was asked to do a workshop on teaching people to put their own pieces together. She may do a hands on tutorial at the next meeting.

MS Color My Quilt

Michelle's Color My Quilt
Michelle’s Color My Quilt

The Color My Quilt project reared it’s lovely head again and I got busy making something for Michelle. My goal was to use my scraps, though I was determined not to skimp and paw through the fabric closet if there were no appropriate scraps.

One of Michelle’s words was shiny and I found some fabric that had a lot of shine, so I grabbed that. I also found some perfect purples. I was embroiled very hard in another project and this little piece allowed me to play a bit.