Friday, June 17, 2016

More hand stitching...

Earlier this month I took a "conquer the curve" workshop with Pepper Cory.
my sleepy "fabric guard"...

So far I've finished one block.  I do however have the rest of the blocks all cut out.

finished block..string of pearls

These blocks are not for the faint of heart!  The five blocks are listing in order of difficulty so I hope by the time I stitch this strawberry block together I will not be quite so intimidated!

I did "cheat" a bit and put together the 4-inch star blocks by machine.  The blank spots have drunkards path blocks....those I'll sew by hand!

I chose fabrics to go with the southern folk paintings in my kitchen.  My eyes are doing well right now so I can "see" the red...

when I started piecing this zig-zag top my eyes couldn't see red so not a lot of red in it...either I'm going to pull the red and orange pieces or add more so they don't look so orphaned!

It is way too hot here to do much in the garden.  The daylillies are in full bloom.  The red one above was given to me by my friend Paula last year and is doing well in my front garden!

Sunday, June 12, 2016

On the design wall

I'm jumping from project to project these days...

This is what is on the wall today...above is a quick table runner to use up some of those 5 inch charm packs that seem to multiplying in the studio.  (I'm blaming it entirely on Missouri Star and those daily deals....duh!)

Then there is this other pre-cut that uses 10 inch blocks...

and finally is this project.  This one has a long story...

Started out when I though "what a neat process" when I saw a women demo a technique to make these "easily."  So bought the pattern and the past few days have used ever nasty work I learned in the army.

cause this is what one of the first 5 blocks ended up like!  Easy my #@%!  So I went back to using my easy angle and in a few minutes had 4 perfect (ok almost perfect but perfectly useable!) blocks.

Not all techniques are right for all people (I know many quilters who have never gotten the hang of paperpiecing or needleturn applique!)  I like to think I will try just about any new method...but that doesn't mean I have to stick with it!

Friday, June 10, 2016

Quilt Show Haul...

I mentioned in my last post that I did my share of shopping at the North Carolina Quilt Symposium show last that I am unpacking I am seeing just how much I brought home!  zikes!
my finished curve block from Pepper Cory's Conquer the curve workshop

I did go with a list and found several of the items I "needed" for projects.

This group of fabrics and embellishments from Fiber on a Whim out of Atlanta fits that category.  I love the different fabrics - burlap, linen and cotton.  I've had a drawing on my idea board for a couple years now...time to start!

Years ago I made two simple table runners using French fabrics I bought on a trip overseas.  I donated one to a silent auction and the other I gave to a friends.  Always regretted not getting enough fabric to make another!

But now I have the fabric and will make one soon!

Also got some neutral fatquarters (when did fatquarters hit $3?  I must have been napping!)

Also got some fq sets of Pepper Cory's shot cottons.  These fabrics are the chameleons of the fabric world - they play well with Kaffe Fasset fabrics, reproductions and even 1930's.  Some of these are going in to my neutral quilt.  The others are going into my applique stash!

My birthday splurge was a new set of Kai scissors.  I was only going to get one but they had this show know how that goes.  These grip the fabric while you them.  Even today when my hands are a bit shaky I can cut well.  And so much safer than rotary tools on a day like this!!  (the little fabric tied on the handle is the warning label for my DH...if there is fabric on the handle he knows it cannot be used for anything but fabric!)

I like having an envelope of mixed needles in my carry-around stitching bag.  These are a new brand to me.  After using them on two projects I have mixed feelings.  Not as easy to thread as some of the large eye clover needles and thicker that most of my needles.  That said I think they might work well appliqueing batiks where I tend to bend my regular Milliners or straw needles quickly.

I bought a few patterns...things that I don't see locally.

This one really caught my eye...has two of my favorite things -strings and curves!

Next year they have quite a line-up for instructors.  You do not have to be from North Carolina to participate.  You do however need to sign up early to make sure you get the workshops you want.  Usually starts around January...

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

North Carolina Quilt Symposium!

Last weekend I got to spend my birthday at the North Carolina Quilt Symposium!
Me and Pepper Cory in front of her curved piecing sampler
They hold this even every year.  It is a great opportunity to take some workshops, attend some lectures and just hang out with quilters for a few days.  And bonus...there is a quilt show and vendors!
Best in show quilt...the Harry Potter Bookcase!  
Yes I did some damage at the vendor mall...but I'll hold that off for a future post.  Still haven't totally unpacked yet!

I took Pepper's conquering the curve workshop.  Strongly recommend it.  She is a very good teacher.
A 1930's 
and one of Pepper's recent patterns using the curve!
Also attended her lecture on Drunkards Path.  Love how she moved from antique through vintage and then showed her own interpretation of that pattern!  Also love her peppered cottons which I believe are the fabrics in her pattern!  They "play" well with so many other lines like Kaffe and reproduction fabrics.

Also attended a lecture on using the computer for quilting with Mary Ellen Kranz who authored "Blending Photos with Fabric 2."  Another great instructor!

I can see myself using that book soon!
Peace College in Raliegh, NC has a beautiful campus
Finally I took a lecture with Harriet Hargrave on Battings.  No photos...I was too busy taking notes!  What that woman doesn't know about batting is't worth knowing.  I think that deserves its own blog post!

Saturday, May 28, 2016

A "new to me" sailboat quilt

I went to a local estate sale this week because the photos online showed a stuffed sewing and craft room.  It was "stuffed" but not just with stuff but with people...boy was it a crowded sale!

I did however get a twin size quilt pieced in a pattern I had never seen before.  Now if I was going to make a sailboat quilt (again) this would be the last pattern I would choose!

Talk about making something difficult!  Anyway, I posted the quilt on a vintage and antique facebook site and within a few hours one of the members had the info I needed on this quilt...

I did give the quilt a good bath when it got had a few stains and really didn't smell so good.  Glad to report stains are gone and it smells fine!  Fabric are all solids: medium green, watermelon pink, and an off white.  The back is off-white and the binding is front to back.  There is some bunching in the batting.  I'm estimating mid-1940's.

I also got some vintage packages of needles.  These are tricky to buy since so many reproductions were done and sold in stores like Joannes but since one of the packets is printed with "made in occupied Japan" I'm pretty sure I'm good on these.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Some Denim in the driveway!

It looks like my love of textiles has extended into my choice of vehicle!

This is the stock photo of my new VW "jean bug."  It is actually a bit bluer in real life...

It is a blast to drive and I love the retro feel!  And it drives so much better than the VW's of the 70's!  Though I doubt I could change out the engine in this one like I did with my college roommates in her '72 beetle!

I'm wondering how the project on my design wall may have influenced my choice...

lots of Indigo on that wall!
And I was just folding an early carpenter's wheel with lots of indigo...and it is the indigo that is holding this 1848 quilt together!
or maybe it was my photo visits to Sibley Mill - a local mill that dyed and wove material for blue jeans until the late 1970's...
This is a quilt that has a back made from mill scraps photographed by a friend on the steps of Sibley Mill!

A few more quilts in my collection with denim.  Guess I just love my indigo, jeans, denim...

Monday, May 16, 2016

Pat Wys Workshop

Last week my guild had a workshop and trunk show with Pat Wys, Silver Thimble Quilt Company.

She wrote two book on using Neutrals.  Now I'm usually a brights or reproduction fabric fan (I know two polar opposites) but I really liked Pat's quilts.  Definitely something I'll try - most likely when I have to make a "guy" quilt!

Pat demonstrated several different techniques during the day while folks sewed on the quilt pattern they selected.  So we had lots of different colorways (ya, purple can be a neutral to some folks!)

It was fun to see the different quilts coming together.

The trunk show was wonderful...she and her husband brought lots of quilts!

I loved her Christmas book...ya, she brought lots of patterns and books!  And it is never to early to start stitching for the Grandmother started on New Years Day!

So I bought some neutrals at the Hancock's going out of business sale and added a couple from the stash that I will use on a quilt soon....