Pacific International Quilt Festival • 2019

But first!

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I’ll be speaking and giving a workshop locally, at the Citrus Belt Quilters Guild.  The lecture, titled Abecedary of Quilts, will be on Friday morning, October 25th.  The Workshop, which is a Two-for-One class (Home, Sweet Home and Merrion Square) will be Thursday, October 24th.  This is my last local presentation, and the last for this year; I’m excited to meet all the quilters at the Citrus Belt Guild!

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Now on to PIQF: Pacific International Quilt Festival.  I’d been reading Gillian Travis’ blog for some time, enjoying her small quilts, generated from her photographs from her travels abroad.  When Susan took her class at Road, and recommended it, I wrote to Gillian, asking if she ever taught in the States (she’s British).  Why yes, she replied.  I’m teaching at PIQF.  I hopped on the computer and registered for her class.

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One of the first quilts she showed us in class, was the one above, based on a visit to Burano, Italy.  I had similar photos, and was really excited to make this (the above is a composite of several photos).

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Gillian provided patterns for us to work on smaller versions of Burano, or smaller version of a Yorkshire Village.  I chose Burano, and above you see my progression from tracing to placing to fusing down.  I got so far as to fuse it to my background (the blue in the upper left corner), and right now, it’s still folded up in my bag, still unpacked.  I’m looking forward to unfurling it and getting back to work on it.  We pinned our class’ versions up on the wall:

Some even got to making the white frames around the windows.

PIQF Lecture1I really enjoyed this class, and was happy to move from there, to her lecture that night, where we enjoyed more visions of her work and her stories.  My friend Leisa and I also attended two more evening events: David Taylor’s lecture on Wednesday night, and the Fashion Show of Creative Garments on Friday night (photos are up on IG), which we both really enjoyed (especially the narration by Rachel Clark).

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Leisa (L) and Tracy (R): we went around on Thursday and looked at the show together.  And how about that PINK ribbon, behind their heads.  Now there’s one I could covet.

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Here’s the one that everyone wants: a blue ribbon.

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And Tracy won this for her quilt Sew She Did, which she designed, pieced and quilted. Congratulations, Tracy!

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A closeup of one of the blocks.

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On Saturday morning, I went and said good-bye to my two quilts that were in the show.  Annularity (above) was in a nice placing, all by itself in good lighting.

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Ladybird (above) also was placed well, with okay lighting.  I talked to one woman who gave me a full (and lovely) critique of what was going on in my quilt.  It was nice to talk shop with a complete stranger.  I also saw (and got a photo with) Roberta Horton, who really launched me from beginning quilter to serious quilter.  I’d taken classes with her at Houston, and I was a complete fangirl when meeting her.

As someone who has traveled to Houston, QuiltCon, Road to California, Palm Springs, and Virginia shows, the last two Mancuso Brothers shows, as well as to Long Beach, I have to say that some venues have real difficulty with lighting (all the Mancuso shows and the Long Beach).  The entire show felt like it was in a greenish cast, and not nearly bright enough.  My husband told me he could see it in the photos I posted on Instagram.  That first night, halfway through, everything all of a sudden went brighter, and I realized they hadn’t “warmed up” the lights.  So none of the photos I took at the beginning are any good.

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One of my quilt heroines, Tanya Brown, whose work I have followed for many years, had Cranky Claus hanging in the show, along with Life Nouveau, but they were horribly placed.  She gets into Houston every time, so I was suprised where they’d hung her quilts.  It made me belive that maybe the organizers/hangers didn’t know who she was?  My friend Lisa has helped hang Road to California for several years, and I know the effort that show goes to in displaying each quilt to its best. Their lighting is very good, as well.

The other issue I had was that some quilts got hung that shouldn’t have been: poorly designed, poorly made, odd choice of materials or subject.  When speaking with one of the Mancusos, I asked how many quilts were submitted: “Roughly 450.”  How many quilts are accepted? “Those that meet our standards.” (evasive) I pressed on, asking, How many quilts are rejected? “2-5%.”  So then you hang nearly everything. He mumbled something about that standards business again, but I had my answer.  I did smile when I saw that their webpage listing their award winners didn’t use the photographs from their contest venue. (I saw most all of these.)

I decided I would focus on the fact that my quilts hung in the same show as Tanya Brown and Tracy Cox, rather than my quilts hung in the same show as the fleece-lamé-fur-shells beginner’s quilt, above.  I was there once, at the place where this quilter was, and for many years, every entry of mine into quilt shows was rejected. I appreciate it when the judges a) limit the number of entries, and b) jury the quilts into the show.  It appears that this year at PIQF there was very little jurying going on, which makes for an uneven show quality.

Last Whine: when are these older shows going to come into the modern age and put Instagram names on the placards?  QuiltCon has done this for years, and it makes it easy to tag people when posting. Okay, on to the fun.

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One highlight was going to the show Friday late afternoon when everyone had cleared out.  We had the vendors to ourselves, and got to spend some time talking with Edyta Sitar and her husband. We may have purchased the pre-cut kit to make Tannenbaum, but also vowed not to pressure ourselves to get it done for 2019.

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Edyta Sitar and I: fangirl moment!

We also participated in the Bernina giveaways, the vendor mall (where I saw some old favorite booths — hi Cecile!), and met and chatted with new quilters.  We enjoyed the evening lectures/fashion show and came away with new projects to sew, as well as good memories.  I need to go and unpack and sort and pre-wash my bright tangerines and indigo blues (I was on the hunt for these fabrics) and decide what to do with my length of kantha fabric, but I wanted to get a post up quickly, while it’s still fresh in my mind.

Happy Quilting!

 

 

Prepping the Quilts 2018

Road to California Logo

Thank you all for the lovely words of encouragement you wrote in response to my last post.  I’m making my way through them, and will answer them.  However, everything I have done lately…is done lately.

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These two lovelies were juried into Road to California 2019, and so I spent a morning prepping them to head off:

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Now you see the bit of errant blue quilting thread…

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…and now you don’t…Prepping for Road_3

…thanks to these trusty friends.  This is an old quilter’s trick, mentioned in several older books I have.

Names on labels are covered up. I also had to make sure my name and contact information are included on the quilt, and I do that in a label near the hanging sleeve, and that’s covered up, too.

Quilts into a clear plastic bag, into their box, and off to Road to California, not to be seen until January 2019, in the show!

QuiltCon 2018 Wrap-Up

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QuiltCon is so many things: a quilt show, a conference with great speakers and classes, shopping–complete with short demonstrations going on, a chance to meet Famous Quilters, a chance to hang out with friends and people you don’t see much, and most of all, it’s quilts.  Lots and lots of quilts.  And fabric–did I mention that, too?

I arrived with Leisa Wednesday night in time for the beginning of the conference on Thursday, February 22, 2018.  I stayed until Sunday afternoon, about 10 minutes before they rolled up the rug and kicked us all out.  It was inspiring, exhausting, stimulating and I had a great time.

Three of my local quilt buddies came with me: Simone, Lisa and Leisa, and we met so many others at different lunches and dinners:

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from l: Joan, Mary, Leisa, Lisa, Cindy, me, Stephanie, Janice, Simone

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from l: Leisa, me, Mary, Joan (end of table), Cindy, Jenn and Heidi

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I was able to see my quilt hanging up Paintbrush Studios’ booth.  In the circles above (click to enlarge) it’s evident the booth was busy (center circle), and Deena, Amy Barickman and her mother were so kind and helpful.

I had TOO many classes, and generally I learned something new from almost all of them: QuiltCon 2018 ESE Classes.png

(Click on any circle to enlarge.)

I love the pencil case of my seat-mate in my Boho Embroidery Class.  I wonder what Angela would say about that sign (!), and you see the beginning of my printing.  Thank you to my daughter for the Amazon Gift Card which became a great squeegee.  My umbrella is crying–we need rain!

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Famous Quilter had a Craftsy film crew wherever she went and even in our class.  I thought the operator of the Steady Cam deserved a photo.

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Pineapple Fabrics booth at QuiltCon 2018

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I had was asked by the kind people of Paintbrush Studios to do a demo using their Painter’s Palette Solid fabrics, and since I love those solids, I knew it would be easy to talk about them…

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…until I saw that the cozy 20-seat demo space had been replaced by a large screen and 80 chairs.  My husband talked me down off the ledge, and Leisa cracked jokes to make me laugh and forget I was terrified.

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(photo by Leisa Plocher)

The first demo was difficult for a variety of reasons, but at the second demo on Sunday morning, I had a great time.  Thanks to everyone who came and I hope you were all early enough to get a kit.

 

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Instructions can be found here and here (where you can also right-click to download the instruction card) in case you want the info.

 

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I also have a few samples from QuiltCon that I’m happy to share.  Leave a comment below if you’d like to try Painter’s Palette Solids.  I’ll pick one winner from the comments.  If you are a follower, leave me a second comment stating that, and you’ll have twice as many chances!

Giveaway is closed now.  Thank you!

Quiltcon Goodnight

I’ve been posting a ton of quilt images on Instagram, and will continue to do so for a while.

FYI: QuiltCon will be in Nashville in 2019, and back to Austin in 2020.  See you there!

Rainbow Gardens and Quilt Mascot?

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My Rainbow Gardens has made its way out into the world.  I was contacted by the Victoria Quilter’s Guild in Victoria, B.C. (Canada) to ask if it was all right if they used my quilt for their poster.  The theme of the quilt show and sale is the City of Gardens, which is one of Victoria’s names, according to the website for the city: “Victoria – otherwise known as the “City of Gardens” – is home to a number of spectacular gardens that range from formal to heritage, exotic to west coast, and multi-themed to mostly rhododendron.”

So, a quiet and reserved “YESSSSS!” was my response.  I soon will have the poster in my possession, which I plan to tape up on the door to my sewing room studio.

Rainbow Gardens Poster

While the real life poster should arrive here soon, I was sent this image of the poster by a an observant reader of mine, who saw the poster and sent me a photo of it.  If you are up in that area, put it on  your calendar — I would love to go to a quilt show that has live music.

Japan Tokyo 2020 Logo

Since we’ve all just finished watching the Olympics in Korea, I thought I would get you prepped up for the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics, by showing you their patchwork-like logos.  Can we make quilts like this?  They are auditioning their mascots now, because no matter where you are in or what you are doing in Japan, there is a mascot for it.

I think we need a quilt mascot.

Lady Liberty in Quilts

I made this image in my very first Digital Art Class; the other students thought I was pretty much a nut-case, but I still like Lady Liberty draped in a quilt.  But now as we are more international, we need a cute little quilty creature (I vote patchwork with some appliqué) to carry forward our message.

Go to it, you creatives!

Winter Pines • Finished!

 

Winter Pines
Quilt No. 193
73″ high by 64″ wide

You saw the sewing of Winter Pines and I’m back to tell you it’s finished.

The backing is an oldie from the stash; I deliberated whether or not to use it as I was “saving it for just the right quilt” but am so glad I decided to use it.  I love it with the wintery theme of this quilt — just the right colors.

My quilter did a great job, using one of my favorite edge-to-edge patterns: a swirling loop-de-loop.

I’m sewing the binding on another quilt that I’ve kept under wraps for nearly six months.  It will hang in a booth at QuiltCon, so the time is getting closer to showing you all, but first I have to make the label and get that sewn on.  Soon, very soon.

PS: Very windy day to photograph a quilt.

Road to California 2018

Ready, set, go into a busy week:

Tuesday: Cynthia England’s class with Lisa, my pal, who has moved away to Utah.  That’s Cynthia’s class sample, above.  I loved taking a class with Cynthia as I was there in Houston the year her quilt won the Best of Show and launched her career.  Upshot? Here’s another UFO for my collection, but I’m glad I took the class and learned the technique.

Wednesday was a day off: I picked up my new glasses, blocked a quilt I’m working on for Paintbrush Studios’ booth for QuiltCon in a month, cleaned the house, and did the laundry.

Thursday: I went in early with Leisa, another pal, and killed time until the show opened, and when it did, made a beeline to find my two quilts.

Here’s Shine hanging in its cubby with a dazzler gem quilt, which quite overshadowed it.  (See below for the link to Instagram, where I did post a lot of the quilts and their names/makers.)  But the fun was being juried into Road!

Then to find the second quilt: Oh! Christmas Tree, hanging with its buddies.  Again, a real thrill to see it there.

Now to tackle the shopping.  The layout, above.

First stop, Pineapple Fabrics, where they stock my favorite solid fabric: Painter’s Palette Solids, by Paintbrush Studio.  Even though I learned about these solids by designing a quilt for Paintbrush Studio, I’m quite in love with their solid fabric and needed a few colors.  Pineapple Fabrics sells them at the best price of anyone out there.

After Pineapple, I started out in the “Pavillion” which is really just a monster-sized commercial tent with awkward lighting.  The first row facing the courtyard was well-lit (above, a Kaffe booth that has a great selection), but as soon as you round that corner, the booths are less well-lit.  Actually I found the lighting overall to be a problem in the main ballroom, too.  It was fine in the small ballroom.  Turn up the lights, Road!

I zipped over to see Dora Cary of OrangeDot Quilts, as I follow her on Instagram, and love her work.

For some reason, this show seems to attract the scooter/walker/cane crowd.  At the entrance they have about 40 of these scooters lined up to rent. Here are some scooters parked alongside a booth.    Will I stop coming to these when I hit this stage?  Who knows, but I am counting on the fact that the online presence will be so strong that I can stay home and hit the vendors that way.

Here is “saw-though-the-head” and “scissors-through-the-head.”  I also saw “hairbrush-through-the head.”  I suppose, as a vendor, you’ll do anything to make your booth stand out.

Fun to see a bee-mate’s quilt hanging up in the Ventura Quilt Guild’s booth.  It looks great, Joan!  And here’s the instructions and the place to send the blocks if you want to contribute to the Thomas Fire Relief Quilts.

I didn’t just shop or take classes (more coming up), but I also took time to look at the quilts.  The one made from a Wendy Williams pattern (above) caught my eye.  I have a lot of the quilts, plus the placards that tell about the quilts, up on my Instagram feed beginning here.  Use the right arrow to advance through them, and I apologize again if you follow me on IG and I blew up your feed.

I had many favorites and wrote about them on Instagram, but I also kept looking at the quilting, trying always to improve my FMQ.

Leisa finished her class with Gyleen Fitzgerald on Pineapple Quilts, and on the way home we stopped by Blaze Pizza for an early dinner (and to catch up with our non-quilt-show lives), because we had…

…Caitlin’s baby shower to attend that evening.  I was the gift scribe, and being the oldest of the bunch I needed a translation program that spanned several decades.  For example, I would write “squeaky toy” and Caitlin would say “Thanks for the teether.”  I would then line out “squeaky toy” and write down what she called the plastic giraffe.  This happened over and over, and left me certain that I was waaaaaay past the child-bearing years.  The language was so different, it was like a different world.  The favors were tiny succulents, the food was divine (I need to get the recipes) and we took a marker and wrote a message on the diapers in the wire basket, above — messages that Caitlin would read at those midnight diaper changes.

Okay, back to the show.

Friday: Lisa, Leisa and I took the Mystery Triangles Class from Jenny Doan.  Another class where I chose it for the person teaching it, as Jenny Doan is fabulous.  This was the most relaxed class, and I really enjoyed it.  The quilt above is all the techniques/options rolled into one quilt.

Lisa finished a baby quilt top, using Christa Watson’s new line of fabrics, that have a lot of wow-factor.  Cute!

We ate lunch every day upstairs overlooking the dramatic hallway with the hanging quilts, and I loved this quilter’s bag, made for her by her daughter, who asked her what were the four most important things in her life.  I agree, except I’d have to make room for my husband’s name on there.  (Maybe leave off gardening?)

We did some shopping, then headed over to El Torito. where our little quilt group gathered for our annual dinner.  Some years we’ve been fewer in number, and some years we’ve been higher in number; this time Lisa’s friend Margaret from Idaho joined us (in the red).  Then we all hightailed it back to the show, where we took in Jenny Doan’s Trunk Show that night.  It was fun and funny and good to be there with everyone.

Saturday: I walked all the vendors one more time, then about noon, Leisa and I left.

Sunday: I had to pick up my quilts at 4:30 so I went early.  My experience has taught me that the show is pretty emptied out near the end, and I could walk the quilts and look at them one more time, taking photographs without any people in them.

I re-visited the Cherrywood Fabrics booth with all the Van Gogh-inspired fabrics and snapped these two panorama shots (which distorts the photo–it’s really quite rectangular).  Next year the theme is Prince, with purple fabrics, if you want to jump in.  They’ve had three collections so far: Lion King, Wicked, and Van Gogh.  I have loved them all. Click to enlarge the above two photos.

The dates for next year’s Road to California are January 17-20, 2019.  Make plans now to come to a terrific quilt show!