Today is the day to vote for my bundle of fabrics titled Guccilicious, *here* and on Instagram.
On Friday, I introduced you to my bundle of colors, and the name, and today I’d like to show you what I made from that bundle.
It’s a variation of an old block titled Sky Rocket from the 1930s, but here I’ve changed up some colorations, shortened some sections and let the colors pop. At a later date, I’ll attach a link for a free pattern, but today…just enjoy and get yourself over to the blog to vote.
I’ve disabled the comments today on the blog so as not to be confusing, and will let you know later on when I run my giveaway for the fat-eighths of my Guccilicious bundle.
Head over now to cast your vote in Paintbrush Studios March Madness for my Gucciliccious, on their blog Inspired by Fabric, and at their Instagram account @pbstudiofabrics.
Today is the day we announce the Mad for Solids 2017, our quilty version of March Madness (we can’t let the basketball players have all the fun, can we?) There are 16 quilters who have chosen sixteen different combinations of fabrics, and we’ve been placed in a bracket of games:
I’m in Game 1–which is Monday. Yeah, I won’t really be challenging my opponent to a game of basketball in my driveway. Instead we will post info about our bundle of colors and you’ll choose the winner in each match-up. If you like hers better than mine, that’s fine–the point is to play and have some fun.
And what’s in it for you, other than a chance to see a lot of fabulous colors from the Paintbrush Studios line of solids? Paintbrush Studios will draw two people at the end of the contest during the championship game to win a bundle of their favorite fabric. You’ll love wanting to get your hands on this fabulous fabric. Click *HERE* to see the line-up of beautiful bundles of fabrics. (UPDATE–I fixed the link.)
And now, I’d like to introduce: Guccilicious!
Yes, I chose my colors for my bundle after looking at the clothes in the Gucci Designer Collection. The Fall Paris Fashion Shows are always held in Spring, and since I’ve had some down time for reading, I looked at several collections. The clothes are not what caught my eye in Gucci’s collection–it was the colors!
I went to my color chart, and started narrowing it down to the colors shown above. I tried to capture the essence of Gucci’s colors with my eight allowed choices.
So come back Monday to get a look at what I made with my colors, and to get the link where to vote for my bundle. When this is all over with in a week or two, no matter if I win or not, I’ll have a drawing for someone to win a fat-eighth bundle of my colors (essentially–my scraps) so you can have some Guccilicious, too! I’ve deactivated comments on this blog post, and will do the same on Monday’s post (so it won’t be confusing where to vote for my bundle), but I’ll let you know when I run the giveaway for my bundle.
I have been working with Painter’s Palette Solids for nearly two years now in various capacities (quilt designer, mostly) and I love these fabrics not only for their wide range of colors, but also for the hand–or how it feels. They are made by Paintbrush Studios.
I was contacted by them to help them with their launch of the fabrics, to make them a quilt for Quilt Market announcing these solids. I designed a quilt, sent off my fabrics request and started working. I fell in love with the saturation of color, the fine thread count–but not so much that it’s too lightweight, like a batiste (which wrinkles terribly)–but enough that it was easy-to-work with, to cut and to sew.
And since I was sewing for someone else and I was hyper-vigilant about matching the seams, etc., it also held up while I ripped out and resewed seams, without showing cloth fatigue or looking used. I was amazed at this new line of solids and have been working with them for a while now, waiting as they rolled out their fabrics for sale across the United States.
And now again, I get another chance to play with my beloved Painters Palette Solids! They are running a March Madness contest, starting Friday, and at the end of the contest, they will draw two winners to win free fabric…and I hope one of them is you.
More details are coming on Friday (3/24), with voting in brackets (just like the real March Madness) beginning on Monday, March 27th. I’ll have a bundle of colors that will go up against other quilters with their bundles of colors. Vote for the one you like the best in the categories, and send your favorites to the top (I like mine, but it’s also great if you like someone else’s too).
So, play March Madness Mad for Solids and vote for your favorite bundles. See you Friday.
Well, I finished up the top of my Liberty USA quilt. And in other breaking news, I also was cleared to take off my sling. My hands are now free-er than they were a week ago (and I’m even typing more, rather than dictating) but it’s still a slog for a long while. So, this quilt top will rest until I can figure out how to quilt it, since the left arm is more like a wet noodle than a functioning member of a FMQ duo.
But it’s fun to be at this place.
One interesting drawback to this whole one-arm thing, is that you can’t clean up the sewing room very well. So the day after I got my sling off, I noticed the pile of Sarah Jane scraps on the top of the cutting table, as it was one of the last projects I did before heading into surgery. I had wanted to make Eliza a doll quilt to match her big-bed quilt, and now was my chance. I scissor cut some pieces, sewed them together, and finished the top.
I tried quilting my HQ Sweet Sixteen, practicing on a quilt square scrap, but it was a no go. You need two hands for that. So I used my walking foot on my regular machine and was able to get it quilted. Off it goes into the mail today!
I’m not doing much cleaning, or sewing, but I have been doing some thinking about where we get our inspiration from.
This is Ingrid Blood’s Bye Bye Rubric Cube. I have seen it twice now, once in the fall, and once at Road to California, and thought it was terrific. Then, because I sit and read and read and read (lately), I found this:
Look familiar? I wonder if it’s more than a coincidence that Blood used Edna Andrade’s abstracts as inspiration (even to the use of that red center), but I have no way of knowing. Andrade, although she died some years ago, was more popular at the end of her career and after her death. She worked in the Hard Edge school of painting, of which June Harwood was a “member” — a painter brought to my attention by my nephew, who is observant in All Things Art & Design. (I actually have two nephews like this, and their IG feeds are always full of interesting images.) These painters’s ideas are ripe for the picking by modern quilters, as they have a distinct lines between edges, which suits our medium of fabric. Here’s some more Andrade:
I remember being in a discussion in a class taught by Ruth McDowell, where someone posed the question if she should be acknowledged when we finally finish our quilts. Typically self-effacing, she offered that it would be a nice gesture to acknowledge those that inspired us, or helped us.
Why are we loathe to state our sources of inspiration? Does it diminish our efforts, or is it really unnecessary? Andrade didn’t acknowledge the other hard-edge painters in the corners of her paintings, but Wikipedia notes that:
Andrade listed artists who particularly influenced her style including Paul Klee, Piet Mondrian, and Josef Albers. Andrade also notes that she was influenced by architectural design, philosophy, mathematics, and design (Locks bio). She was specifically inspired by things such as astrophysics and Freudian psychology, contributing to the complexity and detail of her paintings.
And from the notes from the Locks Art Gallery:
I think many of us are skittish after the Modern Quilt Guild laid down the law on “derivative works” last year, and we are skittish about recognizing where things come from, just in case the Quilt Juries don’t let us in. While I do think there is some good things that came out of the pronouncement last year (just how many floating rectangle quilts can we invent?) it also did harm to those of us who dabble far and wide in our inspirations. [For an excellent recap of that tempest, head here.] I hope we come back to a more even pitch, so that we can give credit to things that inspire us, just as Andrade did.
I would never have this quilt if it hadn’t been watching the Apple Keynote address when they launched their iOS system changes a few years ago. I boldly put the inspiration on the entry form when I entered it into QuiltCon a couple of years, and they rejected it. Did they reject it because of the Apple connection? I’ll never know, but it doesn’t really matter. Yes, it’s derivative and yes, I love it. It hangs in the front hallway of my home, and it’s still a favorite. Instead of worrying about whether or not quilt juries will accept our quilts if we springboard off of someone like Andrade, we should make what we love, from what inspires us, and not be afraid of our inspiration.
But I also hate Pinterest when I’m trying to do an image search. I recently was searching for “wonky row quilts” and everything took me right over to a Pinterest page, which is a crazy way to try to find something. You have landed on this interminable page of images and then you have to search the page again, without the benefit of Google’s search engines. So this is now what I do.
Your type your key words into the splash page (the first page in a website) that looks like either the one above or the one below.
You are used to the above two views, where you can find your way to an image library. I included the first view so you can see how maddening it is to get all those Pinterest results (and no, I don’t think the Pinterest’s search engines are better than Google’s, but then that’s another post).
You’ll see lots of images, and when you click on one, the screen will split to highlight your choice.
Head to that link up there at the top, the one that says “Search by Image.” Click on it to be taken to this page:
There are several basic subdivisions of this page, and they can be helpful, at times, but I’m looking for a source that doesn’t refer me back to Pinterest. These results are usually in the “Pages” section. Avoid any Pinterest listings, and head for pages that have an address that starts with “https.” You may not need to drill down like this, but in the case that you are looking for the origin of a specific image, these tips may help.
Want to find out if something has been posted from your blog?
In Google Image Search, click on the camera.
From the desktop, drag into the box a photo (or paste in the photo’s URL if you know it). I’ll do my Christmas tree skirt, which I know has gone a lot of places.
This is the result. While there are multiple results, most of them were for other Christmas Tree Skirts.
But in the Pinterest results below, I did notice it’s been pinned nearly 3,000 times. (This photo gets around.)
Another reality of the Google Image search is for personal security. Say you want to find out where an image of your grandchild or child has gone to? Pop in their picture. Many images are lifted from Facebook, so please be careful about what you post, and never post a child’s image without their parent’s permission.
Hope this helps in your searches.
UPDATE: If you know how to use Boolean Operators, you can also add -Pinterest.com to your search terms. (That’s a minus sign before the term you don’t want to show up in your search.) I have mixed success with these, so I didn’t write them into my post, but one of my commenters mentioned it. Try it, to see if it works for you.
I am the Queen Bee this month for the Gridsters Bee, and thought and thought and thought of what I could do. I happened on this design while surfing the blogs, and something about it just made me smile. Since I am one month post-op on my interminable rotator cuff repair recovery, I realize that it’s probably because I just needed some happy-cheery-goofy-fun in my life.
Yes, I made the tutorial and wrote it all up before I went in to surgery, perhaps anticipating the need for something happy-cheery-goofy-fun. To start us off, here’s something to get you in the mood for making my block this month (stop it about 3:00):
Yep. Somehow little piggies have gotten in my heart and under my skin and I want a whole quilt of them, although I may add a barn or tree to break things up. I first found them on Gayle’s blog, Mangofeet, where it says she is a bonafide farmer. She found them on Sally’s blog, The Object of Design, which is where I found a tutorial for littler guys. And I found Gayle, by following a link from Bonnie Hunter’s Quiltville’s Linky Party for her En Provence mystery quilt. Connections everywhere!
Before I leave all the attributions, please visit Sally’s tutorial page, where she has other tutorials for bunnies and fish and all sorts of creatures.
But mine are slightly different, both in size and in style, so I wrote up atutorial for what I want. Since they are small, I’d like you to make me two, if you wouldn’t mind. I used Gayle’s post for inspiration (also look *here.*). To make it easier on yourself, make them both the same, but if you get adventurous, it’s okay to flip the orientation of the piglets, or make one going up and one coming down. But really, keep it simple so you aren’t calling me names in the middle of this process.
Again, while Sally has a tutorial (linked above) and she is the designer of this block, I changed up a few things (like the dimensions), so please follow along and make my piglet according to my tutorial. The piggies are all scrappy, but I do need:
sky–a consistent low-volume or “background–no need to make them the same fabric, but the do need to be the same lightness: pale blue, cream, white, tan, low-volume with grey/tan/etc. prints. Avoid prints with too dark of text or design so that it throws it to a muddy tonality. Some background prints are fun and will make the quilt more sparkly. It’s okay to mix up the borders, but I’d probably stick to the same fabric around the piglet.
body–a medium value fabric: small print or geometric, floral, Kaffe, but avoid fabrics that look “splotchy” when cut this small (such as cutting a giant polka dot in half)–generally anything in your stash. Have fun. Make me some colorful piglets.
ears, feet, snout–a darker-toned fabric that stands out from the body fabric
tail–embroidery floss/Perle cotton to match your piglet, to embroider the tail. Pattern is not given for this, but below are some piglet tail ideas. Please use a back stitch. More info in the tutorial.
Gayle showed hers on a tilting grassy hill, which I like quite well, so that’s what I’m asking you to make for me. Copious amounts of photography and images and text follow, but really it isn’t too hard. The following directions yield one piggie, so cut everything out double, out of two different piles of scrappiness.
Lastly, I follow standard print journalism standards: the caption in UNDERNEATH the image (MQG had theirs backwards on their award-winners page and I was so confused!)
Cut the background (sky).
Cut the body fabric.
Cut the accent pieces of snout, ear and feet.
Step one is to snowball body fabric onto the background fabric, using the 2- 1/2″ square pieces of background and the 1 -1/2″ square pieces of body fabric. Then the last snowball is a double: use one 2- 1/2″ square of accent fabric and snowball on one 1 -1/2″ square of background and one 1- 1/2″ square of body fabric. Press the snowball corners to the dark side, and trim after pressing. With the double-snowball, you’ll press one square’s seam allowance toward the accent fabric and the other toward the body fabric.
Step two is to gather the other pieces together: Line up the 1 -1/2″ x 4″ pieces in body and background, AND the 1- 1/2″ x 3″ pieces in body and accent. Place on the front accent piece (snout) and the back background piece on the large body piece (lowest piece).
Step three: sew the strips together and then press to the dark side on the top one. I don’t care which way you press the bottom one, but I went towards the dark as well.
Now cut those strips in half. Exactly. The top strip set (A) will yield two with body and background fabric that will measure 2″ across. The bottom set (B) will yield body and accent fabric that will measure 1 1/2″ across.
Step Five is to lay them all out. If you were going to make a reverse-direction pig, you’d need to fiddle with that ear (double-snowball) piece to sew that up differently, otherwise, everything else is the same/can be moved around. (See second pig at the end.)
Sew the top row together, then the middle and yes…sew the bottom row of pieces together. Pressing instructions are in a minute, but generally press towards the dark. PLEASE DO NOT PRESS THE SEAMS OPEN.
This is how I pressed the seams. I just realized I pressed the legs the wrong way. Oh well. Either way is fine, but just not open. [NOTE: I show it correctly in the second pig, at the end.]
Time to tilt this little guy. Start by sewing on a 2- 1/2″ strip of ground–can be green for grass, or flowery for a meadow, or brown for forest floor or purple for Outer Space. It just has to have contrast to the background and side strips.
Sew on three side strips, by FIRST sewing on the top, then the two sides, all 2 -1/2″ wide strips.
UPDATE FOR MY BEE MEMBERS:
Please do not trim. After sewing on borders, just send untrimmed, untilted.
Now back to our regular programming.
Now to cut. Please check the areas in those red circles to make sure you are leaving 1/4″ seam allowances (one above the line, one below the line). Lay your ruler with the edge along the black line, above. Cut.
Now lay a square ruler at the bottom (newly cut) edge. Now play with the adjacent side it a bit, making sure to leave that 1/4″ in the circled area. Cut.
Now think about it as a beginning rectangle. Turn the piglet 1/4 turn clockwise so that the newly cut green line is at the bottom of the mat and the black line is to your left. Measure over 7 3/4″ from the black line; cut.
Measure 9 1/4″ up from the green line; cut.
Tilt the pig back to a proper vertical and it should look like this:
The piglet’s rectangle will measure as shown above: 7-3/4″ high by 9-1/4″ wide..
Again, this is the most important corner when you cut for the tilt. It’s so the ground will look merged together when seamed.
I made you an overlay, if you are nervous. Download the PDF file: piglet-tilt-overlay1 and print it out on vellum paper, or make a template out of this (too much trouble, I think). It will help you get the right angles.
Please print it at 100% or you will again find yourself cursing.
If you are really truly too nervous to cut this pig, send it back to me untrimmed and when I get better, I’ll be happy to trim it up.
Now let’s add the pigtail. Draw on a squiggle, originating from the pig’s backside edge. My drawn line is really faint, above because I don’t want to have to figure out how to get the pencil off. Sometimes I’ve just eyeballed it. Sometimes I’ve just scratched it in. See the picture at the top of the post for pigtail ideas.
Tie a knot in your perle cotton (I used size 8, but 5 or 12 is fine, too) and bring it out at the fold, at the beginning of your drawn line, hiding the knot in the seam.
Take one stitch (#1) and then skip a stitch, coming out as shown in the photo on the left. Now put your needle in the same hole as where you came out on your starting stitch (#2) and backtrack and stitch that empty place, which will put you on the road to backstitching the piglet’s tail on.
Insert the needle in the last stitch and pull it to the wrong side.
On the wrong side, weave your thread down from the top , then make a knot (below) by making a loop and drawing your needle through it. Continue weaving your thread for one or two more stitches, then cut it off.
Okay, let’s do it again, but with the pig flipped to the other side.
You can see how the ear needs the double-snowballed corners switched.
And the back, showing the pressing, this time with the correct pressing for the legs.
You have to think on this step: do you want your piggie going uphill? Or downhill?
I voted for downhill since I already have an uphill.
Here’s how I laid my ruler, keeping an eye on those 1/4-inch seam allowances.
Now you can see how I use my square ruler to find the next edge.
It’s really straight, even though the photo doesn’t look like it.
I put the ruler on as I described above, and worked it until I had the correct measurements of 7-3/4″ by 9-1/4.” I ended up trimming off a slice of a previous cut to get those dimensions. Then I do the tail.
Here they are together, but not sewn together.
That’ll do, Pig.
Thank you everyone! I look forward to a whole farmyard of little piggies, running around my design wall. While I attribute all these ideas to two very fine quilters: Gayle, of Mangofeet (she is hilarious to read) and Sally of The Objects of Design (who has made a stunner of an En Provence Mystery Quilt), all the photographs and instructions above are my own. Please do visit their blogs to see all the fun piglets that are running around there.