Quilts · WIP

WIP, RP, BB Can’t You See?

That’s Works in Progress, Rainbow Petals, Bee Blocks, can’t you see?  I just liked the rhythm of it all, especially after the previous post, with Emily Dickinson, a reclusive but prolific American poet, writing about her sewing.  And yes, that video was of my granddaughter, taking her first stitches.

Rainbow Petals

So the Work in Progress is my Rainbow Petals quilt.  This is a rainy-day-late-at-night photo, and we all know how those turn out, but if this looks familiar, that’s because it is.  (Check your iPhone.)  I first thought of this last summer, when — in bed recuperating from foot surgery — I watched the Apple Keynote talk about their new iOS7, and this logo kept flashing on the screen.  I took a screen shot of it and tucked it away.  I went to the Long Beach Quilt Show (final year) and bought sixteen different half yards in the Kona colors I thought would match, holding up my screen shot to double check the colors.  My friend Leisa and I arranged them at dinner that night, numbering the labels so I wouldn’t mix them up.  I’ve since seen another quilter try her hand at this.  I had thought to piece it, but now I think I’ll appliqué it by hand.

I’m still thinking over those dark middle petals.  While they “read” as black, they are actually forest green.


I also finished a first set of churn dash blocks for my Mid-Century Modern Quilt Bee and sent them off.  I kept thinking about them, unhappy with how they had turned out.

MCM Feb 2014

So I made another set.  I am one of those quilters who have ironed seams so long to the side, that I’m not very happy with my results when I have to iron seams open.  If the block is too small, and the seams are pressed to the side, I just take a bigger seam and press again.  But if the seams are pressed open, then it’s unpick, resew, re-press.  As I mentioned on our Mid-Century Bee blog, I’m just Open-Quilt-Seam-Challenged.

MCM March 2014

Cindy, also from the Mid-Century Modern Bee, wanted a spiderweb block, with a low-volume (muted) text center and solid strips for the web.  A great idea!

ABL March 2014_2

For March in my Always Bee Learning Bee, Marci wanted two Modern Maples blocks.

MQG Member Logo

And yep.  I did it.  I joined the Modern Quilt Guild as an Individual Member because my closest guild was MILES away, across the great wide scorching plains of Los Angeles Traffic — or Orange County Traffic — and I wasn’t able to attend their meetings.  Maybe in summertime?

WIP new button

Linking up with Lee of Freshly Pieced.

Four-in-Art · Quilts

Four-in-Art: Maps

The Four-in-Art group has chosen Urban as our overarching theme for this next year of quilts.  We will reveal quilts on the first of November in 2013, and February, May and August of 2014.

Our challenge for November 2013 is Maps, so it was with great interest that I viewed the exhibit sponsored by Quilts on the Wall, hanging at the Long Beach Quilt Show.  Their theme was also “maps.”


Uncharted, by Catherine Baltgalvis
Based on an antique chart with traditional compass symbols

Maps 12_Wintemute

El Camino Real, by Eileen Wintemute
Views of the early California Missions, found by traveling “The Royal Road”


A La Carte, by Shirley Wright
A garden plan for Vaux-Le-Viconte, a great chateau in France, built in the late 1650s

Some map quilts might be literal, as in the renditions above, from a garden to a quilt paying homage to traditional compass symbols.


Gone, by Laura Bisagna
An aerial map of her street, showing the houses claimed by wildfires

Other map quilts might show traditional maps, like the one above, but reveal pieces of the heart, like when Bisagna was evacuated from her home during a run of California wildfires.  She searched aerial photos, trying to discover any news about her house.  And through one of these photos, she realized that her “house was indeed gone,” as she wrote in her artist’s statement.


Tour de Apple Valley, by Carolyn Villars depicts a 50-mile race completed by her daughter-in-law, the map in the background showing the route taken.


Linda Anderson created this exquisite map of the “Mother Road,” or Route 66 in her quilt One Man’s Dream.  While I couldn’t discover from her statement whether or not her husband had actually traveled the road, I think the bas relief of the white quilting is effective not only as a map, but also as a background for the motorcycling figure.


“This quilt (Ice Core) was inspired by ice cores that are used to map climate change” wrote Annette Guerrero, the maker.


I loved the secondary layer of quilting over the color bands.


Body Map in Honor of  DaVinci’s Vetruvian Man, by Linda Friedman, pays homage to the classic map of the human form by Leonardo Da Vinci.


I loved this rendition by Patricia Charity of the romantic era of travel, of steamships and steam trains and great adventures.  She titled it It’s the Journey, for in those days, getting from point A to point B was a huge part of travel.


Karen Markley wanted to make a map of subterranean tunnels, such as those that contain subways, water and electrical lines, in her quilt titled Tunnels. This quilt is less representative and more evocative of what a person might find under their feet.


Beth Shibley’s Finding North is a rendition of a “modern compass,” and includes bits of maps that her husband used while hiking the Pacific Crest Trail.


taking the back roads, by Joanell Connolly was so interesting to look at.  While you might decide that the crosses imitate a vast cemetery or that the white circular shapes might represent trees as if drawn by an architect, Connolly gives no indication of what her map might represent, only saying “when life gives you a choice. . .”


How many times have I peered out of an airplane window, snapping pictures of irrigation circles with my phone?  This aerial photograph by Tom Lamb, inspired Carol Nilsen to create Layered Marks From the Sky, a map of a runway and taxiway at nearby John Wayne Airport in Southern California.  But it’s not just the landscape she’s mapped in her quilt, but “the routes of a millions of people aboard thousands of aircraft.”


Last three map quilts.

Somewhere Between Science and Fantasy, a quilt by Jo Griffith had a chifffon overlayer on a drawn, or printed, background.  Two closeups are below.




Bit Map, by David Charity.  All the puns you need.  Close up below.


Maps7_TabarGaits of Lake Hodges, by Mary Tabar

Not only is this a map of a lake, but also the “gaits” of the critters who frequent there.


I’ll leave you with Tabar’s thoughts:
“Every trail starts with a map.  A map helps us navigate our desires.”

I look forward to our group’s challenge quilt, coming this November.

Classes · Quilt Shows · Quilts

Long Beach Quilt Festival: Getting Ready

I believe in taking classes, when they interest you or teach you a new skill.  I’m headed to the Long Beach International Quilt Festival (or LB-QuiltCon, as I like to call it) and I’m taking three classes: two from Karen Stone and one from Kaari Meng, of French General.  Here are snapshots of the projects:

I discovered today that there is a Preview Night on Thursday night, where we get access to the quilt displays, vendors plus they have a Take-It-Make-It sort of set up of learning new skills.  I finally got organized this afternoon, printing out class supply lists, which led me to notice one curious thing.  I need no fabrics for the Stone classes, but did have to pay for a kit.  And they’ll have sewing machines for us to use (and charge us for, of course).  When I went to Houston a few years ago, I dragged a roller suitcase full of fabric with me to each of the classes I took.  What a change.

What a very nice change.  (I may sneak some of my fabrics in anyway.)