Alison is really great. She always brings something to work on after the meeting. I have brought things in the past and I seriously thought about bringing the BAMaQG IRR quilt to stitch on. I think I need to try my hand at Big Stitch again at home before I start Big Stitching in public.
This time she brought scraps. She brought them to sort out. I didn’t get to ask her how she normally stores them. What I saw was a big bag in which they were shoved.
Alison was sorting scraps to make these 12/5 x 4.5 rectangles to make a quilt from a book called No Scrap Left Behind. She started out using a foundation (tracing paper), but found after a few blocks that she didn’t need it. This is definitely a block you make with what you have and then trim to the right size.
I like how the sizes of the strips are different. Alison said that she doesn’t use any strips larger than 2.5″ wide and I think that makes sense. I like the skinny little strips as well. They add a bit of pop to the block. I am kind of excited to try this, not that I am done making the Bias Rectangles for more of the Spiky 16 patch quilts.
This block sparked my interest. I have a ton of scraps. I do use them, but the piles are not getting any smaller. This block would enable me to use different scraps together. Once finished, I could put the blocks together in different ways to make interesting and fun donation quilts.
I needed to rest at the beginning of March, but knew I had a pillow swap to finish by the April meeting. My recipient’s color preferences were listed as:
Green (lime, pickle)
I wanted to be sure my design was modern, fit the desires of the recipient and wasn’t too difficult to piece. I immediately thought of the Alison Glass fabrics I used for the Triple Star. Except for the white, I thought those fabrics would fit well with the desired color scheme.
I had a pillow I thought was made by my pal Amanda stuck in my mind. I asked her about it and she suggested Pinterest. I immediately found the design for which I was looking – the X Plus O block. Once I had the name, I found a lot of examples and spent a happy hour laying on the couch and looking at them.I also found an example that I thought would be good inspiration.
Before I could really sew again, I worked on the design using EQ8. I was able to play with the size and get the elements right.
After I could sew again, I went back to working on my Sew Together Bag project. In the middle of that project, I needed a break, but didn’t want to reset my machine for piecing. I knew that if I did, I would have three more UFOs and another year would pass before I could give the gifts. Cutting was a good idea, so I cut out all of the pieces.
One of the helpful parts of EQ8 is the ability to print out rotary cutting directions. I found a bug in the process of doing this, which I reported to the Electric Quilt Company. It turned out not to be a bug; they don’t consider a lozenge shape to rotary cuttable. I was able to figure out the size to cut a square as I plan to use the flippy corners method or the Simple Folded Corners Ruler.
I also used the Spoonflower zipper installation instructions. I acually watched the video and found it to be really helpful. I am pleased with how my pillow’s zipper closure came out, though I had to redo it a couple of times. I think the problem was the zipper foot I used. I used the flat snap on zipper foot. I didn’t feel like I could get as close to the zipper as I like. As a result I didn’t catch the seam allowance, which makes a closed up area around the zipper. I should have used the tall, skinny foot. I am used to it. I didn’t use it because I was sick of installing feet and resetting settings on my machine. I paid the price.
We exchanged yesterday and everyone did a wonderful job. I am behind Christina, but you can see my pillow over my head.
Rhonda led us in an exercise using unconventional materials, e.g. not fabric. For me, these materials were unconventional in terms of quiltmaking, but familiar in terms of creativity. I love working with paper and don’t get to do it enough.
Rhonda brought quite a bit of stuff for us to work with, but not enough that we spent the whole time rummaging for materials. I saw a shiny binder clip as she was introducing us to the materials and an idea started to form in my head.
Everyone’s pieces came out so differently. It was exciting to see the creativity at work. I didn’t take photos of all of the pieces. I was too engrossed in my own work, but each of them were different and exciting in their own way.
I am pleased with the way my piece came out. I am also pleased that I was able to finish. Ever since I saw Nancy’s map piece for the last show and talked with Maureen about her work with maps in her collage group, I have been wanting to work with maps. I am going to check to see if there is a category at the fair that will be suitable for this piece.
The CQFA meeting was Saturday and it was a really good one.
We swapped ATCs, as usual. I wasn’t inspired and really waited until the last minute -Friday morning – to make mine. I used what scraps were on my cutting table despite my lack of enthusiasm about the project.
I focused on making the cards as technically perfect as possible. I think I achieved that goal.
I must work on the next batch sooner, so I am not working under the wire next time.
The top is finished and I am on to putting together the back. I don’t think I will make my deadline of having this ready for Big Stitching, but I have made great progress and see the light at the end of the tunnel.
There is much more space and lightness in the piece and the solid areas will provide some good spaces for stitching.
Guild officers are underappreciated. I don’t think guild members realize how hard officers work. At our local modern guild, we make bags and fill them with gifts for the officers. A few people ‘volunteer’ to make bags and then we ask members to bring small gifts – one for each officer. Gifts must be new, unused and could be something that someone makes. If members don’t have the money or circumstances prevent them from making a gift, we ask for a note or card.
I like this idea. Many guilds make quilts or blocks, which are wonderful, but my feeling is that quiltmakers, even officers, can make their own quilts and blocks. Treats and small gifts make for a fun time opening and the bags, if nothing else, are always useful.
I have coordinated this process for the guild for a few years now. This year one member approached me about making a particular bag. She coordinated all the bag making, which was great! The bags made were picnic quillow types bags. The quilt folds into a bag attached to the quilt for easy carrying and folds out into a picnic quilt. She recruited makers, gave each some fabric so the quilts were somewhat coordinating and managed the whole bag process.
I was very pleased with the help I got, the way the Quillow bags turned out and the reception of the gifts. All in all I am pleased to have coordinated it again.
Tim and I worked on the Anchor quilt on Saturday. This is a true group project. Gerre organized it. Christina did the piecing. I appliqued on the anchor and Tim will do the quilting. The last time I talked about this quilt was back in June and it has been languishing. Now we are back on track!
Saturday, he did everything and I just stood there and helped him pin and gave my opinion.
We had to work on the back a little bit. The back was two large pieces and the big area of white was bugging Tim. We talked about different things we could do and finally decided on adding a piece that Christina had started sort of 1/3 of the way down the quilt. I think it broke up the white enough for comfort.
We also looked at quilting ideas. Tim had some ideas in mind and they were good. We found a couple that we thought would reflect the them and he will do the quilting soon.
The CQFA meeting was yesterday. It was a great meeting and we met in a new space, which is hopeful for the future of the group.
I used the ATCs that I made for the October meeting. As you might recall, nobody else made them so I had nobody with whom to trade. 🙁
It ended up being ok, because I probably wouldn’t have made them for this time since time has been short and I have been crazily piecing on En Provence.
I was really pleased that only four people were trading. I wanted one of my own and wouldn’t have felt right about taking one if more people had been trading. I could have made another, and that was my plan, but I didn’t get around to it.
From Left to Right (see second photo, above), Bron, Jaye, Diane and Maureen all made cards to trade. Since there were only four of us, we all got one of each.
CQFA is currently homeless, so we met outside at the Campbell Community Center. The plan was to listen to the lecture at Penwag after our meeting and they meet at the Campbell Community Center. Maureen brought quilts for some of us to sit on. Others sat on benches. We were a small group, but the weather was good so it all worked out.
Being a small group, there wasn’t much show and tell. I showed my in process Cosmic Wonder Dust scarf. Rhonda showed some pieces she is appliqueing for the Social Justice Sewing Academy and Marie S. showed some of her indigo work. Maureen brought a new magazine called Curated Quilts. It has no ads. That means it is a bit pricier, but has very nice photos.
I was pretty pleased with my ATCs, then disappointed to find that nobody else had made any. 🙁 No exchange this time, though I am ready for next time.
I am now trying to start on them early so I am not working on them at the last minute. I did start these right after the August meeting, however I only cut the background pieces and the interfacing. I still had all the sewing to do. I did get to work on them during the week before the meeting here and there, but I finished them the night before the meeting. Yes, I left the finishing until the last minute. Again.
This time my goal was to try out using the tulle over other motifs like I plan to do for the CQFA show piece that is in my head, but not yet made. It worked pretty well. I used schnibbles under the tulle and was pleased with the effect.
I thought I would just toss some schnibbles in there, but ended up trying to focus on the turquoise and pink schnibbles. I did add in one piece of leftover Lichen yarn from the Lichen scarf.
We went to the John Marshall lecture at Penwag after our meeting and I thought it was enjoyable. He is a white guy who grew up in a Japanese community near Sacramento and apprenticed to a dollmaker, I think, in Japan. His background is really different and his About page reflects his interesting bacground. He is also a good speaker and very personable.
It was fun to do something different during the CQFA meeting.
Well, I seem to be quite lackadaisical lately with the posts. I thought I would have more time this week and, apparently, didn’t. I was sewing, so there is that.
At the retreat, I started to sew together some Terrain rectangles I had laying around. You might remember that I made the Renewed Jelly Roll Race from this line of fabric. it started out as a disaster, and ended up pretty well after. At some point in dealing with the disaster, I must have cut up these rectangles, but I really don’t remember doing it. I especially don’t remember WHY I might have done it.
Regardless, they have been laying around bugging me. I brought them along to the retreat and when I was sewing the Mostly Manor Lozenge blocks together, I used these as leaders and enders.
At Craft Night on Monday we looked at different layouts and eventually settled on the one shown.
SIL and I are working on this together.
I brought some white for another project and we used a lot of it to make the background. SIL plans to quilt it.
If you want the full, official minutes of the meeting, check the BAMaQG blog. This will just be some impressions of things I liked or inspired me.
Three of us were chatting and admiring each other’s pedicures. I took a picture and posted a photo/joke up on IG about the latest BAM challenge. I wasn’t 100% joking though I don’t know if I have time to make something. We’ll see what people say.
I was invited to do a trunk show next month. Gerre had spoken to me about it several months ago and I had completely forgotten, so I was a little stunned when she announced it. Of course, I am extremely flattered. Since the meeting, I have been thinking about which quilts to bring. I can’t bring them all, because I don’t have them all. Also, there are too many even of the ones I still own. I am going to focus on my older quilts. I haven’t, for the most part, showed them at guild and I think they will be the most interesting. In preparation for this exercise, I am preparing some Throwback Thursday posts. Look for those.
Gerre is starting to talk about projects that can be made out of all of our merit hexies. She has started to collect ideas on a Pinterest board and there are some fun ones there. I am not sure what I will make. I don’t want to sew them all together like a Grandmother’s Flower Garden. I have enough EPP with the Half Hexie Star project.
The Charity Girls have some interesting blocks. I have never really been interested in the Monkey Wrench block. Of course, all blocks have beauty in their own way blah blah blah.
I think I must have missed the call for these blocks. I saw them laying on the table as I was wandering around and found them to be the most exciting Monkey Wrench blocks I have ever seen. I particularly liked the top one. I took pictures of it in detail in case I want to make some like it – for the charity project, of course.
I think all of the MW blocks use fabric cleverly and that makes them much more interesting than just using two colors/fabrics. My favorite is particularly interesting, not just because of the fabric, but also because of the reversal of foreground and background. I am not an eye researcher so I don’t know the particulars of how the eye sends information to the brain, but I think that I was looking at it more. My eye was moving around the block more because of the foreground/background switch. My brain was trying to make sense of the information the eye was sending to it. I am VERY tempted to try making a few of these.
The Charity Girls still have a lot of quilts available to quilt. This makes me nervous because I always bring quilt tops. I barely quilt for myself and quilting for charity might send me over the edge. I was pleased that someone had taken the Stars #2 Quilt right away to quilt. Another thing I don’t have to worry about.
Most of my info seems to be about Charity. There is a lot of interesting work going on with Charity right now. A lot of people stayed until the bitter end, but not a lot of people sewed. There wasn’t a lot I could photograph, as a result.
The last Charity effort I saw reminded me of my Renewed Jelly Roll Race Quilt. The colors in the fabrics are little bit dustier than my quilt, but this is still a very cheerful and attractive quilt.
It was a great meeting, as usual. The Board is doing a great job.
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.
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.
I wanted to make it about a foot longer, but ran out of time. I am pleased and hope Amy will be, too.
Saturday was the CQFA meeting and I actually made it! It was held in Maureen’s backyard. We sat around on outdoor chairs wearing hats and sunscreen had had our meeting. The meeting was followed by a workshop with Zoe Umholtz.
There is no news on the show, but I haven’t made my piece or my book yet, so I still have time.
My favorite part was the ATC exchange. I had mine made from early in the year when only Bron brought ATCs. We exchanged, I made another and didn’t have to scramble to make some before the meeting. Like Amy’s Color My Quilt piece, I need to get busy making ATCs for the October meeting. I have some schnibbles that I was eyeing the other day that might make great pieces.
In order from left to right, top row: Bron, Maureen and Diane.
Bottom row: Julie, Jaye, Angela, Nancy
I received some very nice pieces. There were two that I really wanted. I got one of them and am happy about that. Maureen (left, top) used some indigo pieces she made in a Zoe Umholtz workshop she took earlier. I think it was in honor of the workshop.
Nancy did some nice threadwork (right, top).
Diane (left, bottom) hasn’t been at a meeting in a long time, so it was great to see her. I saw her ATC and it made me want to pull out the others I have traded with her. She works in a similar style, so I think there would be some continuity.
I like the details on Julie’s piece (bottom, right) as well. The button and the little xes are wonderful and I like the texture.
I acted as workshop assistant for a few tasks, but mostly sat and knitted. I didn’t do any dyeing. Been there, done that and am happy to buy from people who enjoy it. I listened to Zoe’s introduction and watched as others folded and banded and dyed. I am also excited to see what comes out of the workshop. Julie got a lot of great photos and posted them.