Friday, September 30, 2016

Modern Beauty

What a treat this quilt was! It came all the way from British Columbia, and I felt kinda bittersweet packaging it up to send back to my client, Deborah. I wanted to keep it!

It was such a modern, fresh, clean canvas for me to work with. The contrast between youthful, bold strips of color and clean white background is so striking. I felt very inspired, and a little sad that I couldn't try out ALL my ideas on this piece!

All my quilting is free-motion, hand-guided on an APQS longarm quilting machine.

 I worked my way through the this piece from top to bottom in the white areas first.

After I'd tacked down the white space, I was in love with how "bouncy" the unquilted colorful areas were. I talked to my client, and we seriously considered not quilting the colorful strips at all. I auditioned some ideas with water-soluble pen. 

Here's no quilting at all...

Here's continuous curve....

Here's straight lines 1/4" from the perimeter...

We agreed to go with the simple straight lines, to give those colorful strips an anchor, some structure, but still let it retain its puffiness. I think it was the right decision!

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Vintage Bed Quilt

Guys, here's how low I've slunk. I now consistently PURCHASE my quilt tops, instead of piecing them myself. This is the third or fourth time I've done it. I have yards of gorgeous fabric and stacks of yummy jelly rolls that are just languishing on my sewing room shelf. I simply love quilting so much that I don't want to take time away from it to piece anything!

The quilt on Eric and my bed was one that I pieced and quilting on my domestic sewing machine, maybe five years ago. I had fudged on the seam allowances in a few places, and they were starting to pull apart. Plus, the quilting (which I was so proud of at the time) is no longer representative of my style and capabilities. I look at it, and it just drives me nuts. I wonder what I'll think of my current quilting in a few years!

The one featured below was an antique quilt top that I purchased on Ebay, no less. I'm not altogether sure if it's truly antique, or maybe the fabrics are just low-quality, so they crinkle up like antique quilts. It was machine-pieced, of that I'm certain. Anyway, I thought the "Bear Paw" patchwork was lovely - after all, I'm a traditionalist at heart!

I applied my favorite edge-to-edge quilting motif: cherries and feathers (in deference to my most influential role model in all of life - Dolly Levi of "Hello, Dolly!"). All quilting was free-motion, hand-guided on a longarm quilting machine.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Cordelia's "Baby" quilt

Poor Cord! She's my TWO-year-old daughter, and she's just now getting her baby quilt. My mom has hand-embroidered a quilt for each of her grandchildren, and Cordelia is the youngest. The last one we did was for my now-three-year-old daughter, Hoxie, and I totally over-quilted it. So this time I tried to keep it simpler.

I used Hobbs PolyDown batting, for fluffy-ness. I think Cord likes it!

This is Hoxie (left) and Cordelia. I love 'em to pieces!

Hoxie was very proud of herself for folding this quilt up so nicely!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Poinsettia Centerpiece

This was a project for a client that was on a deadline. Her guild had issued their annual challenge to its members to submit a project that had stretched them beyond their comfort zone, encouraging them to try techniques, materials, or disciplines that they weren't used to. And this year's entrants needed to somehow incorporate BUTTONS. Yay! I love buttons!

So, Verena used fusible grid and assembled this centerpiece quilt. It was a very tricky process for her - and the tricky part for me was that it came to me as a sorta-complete quilt. Because of the very oddly shaped edges of the quilt, she had elected to sew the back to the front, right sides together, leaving a hole, and then turning the whole thing inside out. This way, there was no binding to worry about.

BUT that made it impossible for me to mount it on my longarm frame, and required me to quilt it on my domestic sewing machine. It's been a long time since I quilted on my domestic machine! I'm very thankful that I learned this discipline before ever transitioning to the longarm.

When Verena submitted the project for the guild competition, she enclosed her story of how this project came about, how she carried it out, and what she learned from it. Read it - she's a good writer!

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Paper-Pieced Placemats

I had a client email me recently, asking if I could quilt some placemats for her. She was on a tight timeframe, but I had enough flex in my quilting schedule that I was able to work them in. She didn't really care how they were quilted and gave me full freedom.

I loved the asymmetry of the pattern - with the flower all the way over to the side, rather than centered. I suspect the intention was to keep the paper-piecing visible when a plate is laid on top. But it really inspired me. I liked the funkiness of it, the asymmetry, the wonkiness, the I-don't-follow-tradition attitude!

I quilted each of the 12 placemats differently. It was a really fun challenge for me to keep things interesting! All my quilting is free-motion, hand-guided on a longarm quilting machine.