South Bay Quilters Guild visit

SouthBayQuilters_0

Last week, I had a great time, visiting and teaching with the South Bay Quilters Guild, with a meeting on Tuesday evening (August 21) and a workshop on Wednesday.

SouthBayQuilters_3

My hostess for the event was the ever lovely Melanie, the VP of Programs.  I arrived at her house in Torrance in the afternoon, where we visited before I freshened up and we headed to the meeting, held in Redondo Beach.

First up (after a fine dinner at a local restaurant, where I was able to meet several guild members) is set up, and above you can see my quilts, all laid out in order.  I think I brought 40 quilts, a mixture of large and small, for my Quilt Abecedary trunk show.

SouthBayQuilters_4

Once I was ready, I strolled around their guild as they have a “happy hour” before the meeting starts.  Their Opportunity Quilt for their annual quilt show is shown above, titled Jovial French Bluebirds.  Their quilt show is February 16-17 in 2019–I’m impressed that they do this every year.

SouthBayQuilters_4a

She wore her handmade costume for Show and Share. You should have seen her shoes!

SouthBayQuilters_5

They made flowers for all the Board Members to wear, so that people could find them easily if they had questions (I blurred out their names).

I did my Trunk Show and from the looks on people’s faces, they were engaged — it was a most satisfying experience.  Then the meeting went on to business, and the installation of their new board for the year, as this was the first meeting of the year.  They have an ambitious slate of classes and events, and an enthusiastic guild.

SouthBayQuilters_5a

South Bay Quilters Board

SouthBayQuilters_6

After my talk, it’s always fun to see people look closely at the quilts.

SouthBayQuilters_7

The next day we headed up to the Palos Verdes Library, where the workshop would be held.  I’m always impressed by art in public spaces, and this library was beautiful.  My workshop was Two-For-One, where I teach a small quilt of my own design and Free-Motion Quilting basics.

I set up my quilts and supplies in the classroom with the help of Sue, the Workshop Chair, and Melanie.  The classroom was spacious with a large bank of windows on one side, giving lots of light.  We got to work, and below are some of the results of the morning:

SouthBayQuilters_8aSouthBayQuilters_8b

SouthBayQuilters_8

SouthBayQuilters_8c

FMQ kits for the afternoon

In the afternoon, we switched to free motion quilting, and after a series of nine separate lessons, many were feeling comfortable with the technique.  I enjoyed how positive everyone was, as well as interested in learning a new skill.SouthBayQuilters_9

By the end of the workshop time, everyone was tired and ready to go home.  I snapped this photo upstairs as we were ready to head to the parking level: the sun had come in through an atrium, shining through to the sphere.

Thank you, South Bay Quilters, for a wonderful time!

South Bay Quilters
Website
Instagram
Facebook

Now this is fun! Annularity hits print

Screen Shot 2018-08-13 at 7.48.03 AM.png

I’ve been waiting for this, and even though I still don’t have my paper, in-the-hand catalogue…hooray!  my quilt, Annularity, has hit print.  This is a screenshot of the digital catalogue.

The direct link to this page in the Fall Keepsake Quilting catalogue will allow you to order yourself a kit, if you like.  I’ve made two of these…now it is your turn to play with color and with the cool Painter’s Palette Solids.  (Or, if you want, you can just order the pattern.)  Thanks, Keepsake!

Happy Quilting!

Northern Star Medallion Top Finished

 

Northern Star Quilt TopIt was a lot of mind over matter, but I finished the borders, worked out the measurements and sewed everything together.  There seemingly was a big canyon between where I was last post and where I am now: getting it ready to quilt, but really, it wasn’t that hard once I settled down, stopped freaking out and followed Melanie’s advice.

Aug2018_Gridsters.jpg

I finished the Gridster Bee blocks for Linda for August.  I like her idea of lots of churn dashes all the same size, but in a variety of fabrics.  If you head to our hashtag on IG, you can see that Linda has already received some of the blocks.

Fire1 August 2018.jpg

The same night I finished the Northern Star Medallion top, I stepped outside to see this.

Fire August 2018.jpg

We drove up to the top of our neighborhood to see where the smoke was coming from–way over yonder in Orange County on the left bumpy mountain.  California is burning up, and it’s only the beginning of August.  When I first moved here 27 years ago, we only had fires in September, just like clockwork.  Every year there would be one big one, and then it would be done.

2018 Fire Map.png

Tonight the fire map looks like this and it’s not even September.  Oh yes, we also have an earthquake map, a smog map, but we don’t generally have snow or flood or tornado maps, like some of you do.

Free Scissors.jpg

This morning I had to have a couple of stitches taken out from a recent procedure, and the doctor was about to throw these into the sharps container.  When I asked, he gave them to me.  I washed them up and put them in my sewing supplies–those tweezers are great for grabbing the end of the seam of an HST to keep it from going wonky, and I’ll find a use for those scissors. Yes, I’m still sewing on my hexies.  I think I’m halfway there.

 


NorthernStar_front yard

Look at that yucky sky in the background–seems like it will be a good idea to stay inside and start quilting!

Northern Star update

Northern Star Medallion v3

The last time I worked on this, Neanderthals worked on chipping rocks for tools.
The last time I worked on this, Bing Crosby was crooning White Christmas.
The last time I worked on this, I had straight cut bangs and was in fourth grade.

Kidding.  But it has been a while.

Northern Star2_1

This is the fantasy version, done up in my favorite quilt software, Quilt Pro.

Northern Star2_2

The next ring was a series of Flying Geese.  I got the geese done and they didn’t fit.

Typical Medallion Quilt nonsense.

Those solid-color bands in between the pieces sections have many names, but Melanie, of Catbird Quilt Studio, also calls them Spacer Borders, and has a great blogpost on working with your pieced border and spacer borders to put the quilt together.  Another post of hers talks about designing medallion quilts in general, and is another great reference.

I wrote to her for advice (she really does know EVERYTHING about medallions and her blog is full of wonderful writing), and sent me a tiny example of how to do the math to figure it out:

Spacer Border Math.png

I did follow her instructions, trimmed some of the blue adjustment/spacer border, and the geese fit perfectly.  I also pinned them on a flat surface, working to keep the quilt square and not make any bubbles in the surface.

Northern Star2_3

Lovely night shot. It’s always late, lately.

Northern Star2_4

As per her advice, I cut the next border larger, and am now working on trying to get that last border to fit.

But this process this week has not been without some angst, as I first thought I was so smart to make a HST, cut that in half and then half again.  But that won’t work, as these last blocks have the colors in very specific places.

So I pulled out my triangle maker from Bonnie Hunter and started making the size I needed (I learned how to use her tool when I made her En Provence quilt in 2016-17).  Never let a new skill go wasted, or at least use it once in a while to keep it from totally slipping out of the old brain.

Northern Star2_8

In looking at the unit, I thought I would make the four-patch center, then adjoin the larger top/bottom triangles.  No.  It worked out better to create the unit above and sew them together.

Northern Star2_8a.jpg

I splayed the back seams so the joins weren’t so bulky.

Now I’m auditioning adding another teal border on top of the green, or cutting down the green adjustment border to fit the pieced border.  I’m leaning toward the second one.

I thought these last sections would go more quickly, but I was quite bogged down the other night, trying to figure the dang thing out.  I’m back on track now, I guess.  Medallion quilts are one of my favorite quilts, but they can be tricky.

Last weekend we spent a few days up in the mountains of Southern Utah, feeling a bit too hot in the day, but blissful at night as we enjoyed the quiet and the breeze and a rare double-rainbow.  I also taught Free Motion Quilting to some of my relatives, as well as how to sew hexies.  They were receptive, and it was a weird thing to be sewing out in nature, but the cabin had electricity, and they wanted to learn.

Here’s to summer. Let’s hope I get this Northern Star Quilt done before the snow flies.

Frivols 8 • August 2018

 

FrivolsButton

September’s box is Frivols #8 and is a tin from American Jane, with a whole host of fancy and fun prints.  The Moda blog notes that:

“There is a correction to the pattern – Background, Sashing, and Borders.  The first line should say 3 – 5 1/2″ x width of fabric strips.  From the strips, cut 18 – 5 1/2″ squares.”

Duly noted. I’ll figure it out when I get there.

CT-Bread-Butter

Here’s the layout of prints from their blog–colorful and charming. And I was happy to see that there are fewer half-square triangles in Sandy Klop’s quilt design.

The freebie for this Frivol is a sweet little tin with this month’s quilt design, that is just about the size of a charm square, perched up there by the bigger tin.  I also love the quote on this month’s card: “Be yourself.  Everyone else is already taken.”  While it is attributed to Oscar Wilde, this attribution — as in so many other quote attributions — is a little squishy.  For more discussion on this, visit the Quote Investigator.  In fact, if you read this article, it seems like Wilde was a bit more pessimistic about this whole idea of authenticity:

It is tragic how few people ever “possess their souls” before they die. “Nothing is more rare in any man,” says Emerson, “than an act of his own.” It is quite true. Most people are other people. Their thoughts are some one else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation. (c. 1900)

I happen to like the Thomas Merton version:

“In an age where there is much talk about “being yourself” I reserve to myself the right to forget about being myself, since in any case there is very little chance of my being anybody else. Rather it seems to me that when one is too intent on “being himself” he runs the risk of impersonating a shadow.” (c. 1967)

I have to say my favorite instance of this idea is from Gordon B. Hinckley, an earlier president of my church.  He writes about discouragement when he was called on a church mission at age nineteen, feeling like he could never do what was required of him:

I wrote a letter to my father and said, “I’m wasting my time and your money. I don’t see any point in my staying here.” And in due time a letter came back from him in which he simply said: “Dear Gordon. I have your letter of [such and such a date]. I have only one suggestion: Forget yourself and go to work. With love, your father.” [from here]

So often we can focus too much on ourselves, and how we feel from moment to moment. While this aesthetic — to “forget yourself and get to work” — seems to hail from another era, I like to think about it sometimes, when I often can’t find the energy to finish up the chore, to get the work done, to complete the task.  I felt that way with Frivols #7, as you probably know.  And somedays I have to ask myself: “What do I want to have done by the end of this day?”

Perhaps all this seems so far from the supposed Wilde quote of “being yourself,” but for me they are linked.  Perhaps the work is me, the getting done is the shaping of who I am.  And hopefully, in forgetting myself and getting to work, I will become my best self.

Frivols 8_ little tin

Onward!