Saturday, August 8, 2015

A Blast from the Past . . . . .

I made this quilt top 5 years ago . . .
But I wasn't sure how to quilt it.
Quite a bit of unsolved emotion here.
I have left it languishing for these past years.

And now, I have an opportunity to have a private master class.
Long arm quilting with a great talent.
I need to bring a top . . . . . 
I took this out and looked at it and thought,
"Yes, now is the time."
So, I FINALLY pieced the back.

The idea of finally quilting this top is having a good effect on me.
I was feeling like I had lost my MOJO.
It happens from time to time for me.
Sometimes you need a bit of shove to get back on track.

 * * * *

Here is my postage stamp quilt blocks.
I decided to jump on the bandwagon with others
in my guild. 
 Helen, Kim, Earamichia . . . . the list goes on!
Instead of doing it charm like,
I decided to make 16 patch blocks.
My cousin's wife had a quilt made by 
her grandmother that inspires mine.

And here is a peek at what I sometimes do on the side!
I was so lucky to be asked to officate
at a friend's wedding.  My daughter was also a bridesmaid.
It was one of the best weddings I have been involved with, 
so much love and community.
They did everything themselves which made it so special.
 They are the cutest couple!

on another note . . .  
tonight I am watching one of my favorite movies . . . . 

Anthony Andrews, Jame Seymour and Ian McKellen.
Swoon worthy indeed.  Hehe.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

A Fabulous Quilty Day . . . .

I had sooo much fun today!
I started out at Christie's Quilting Boutique for
A Christmas in July sewing day
with the wonderful Kate Spain!

We made stockings and tags.
You know how I love sewing in a group!

All the happy busy bees at work.

Kate also spoke about her design process
and getting her ideas from head to paper to fabric.

There was much fabric stroking. Hehe.

Here you can see how her drawings transfer to the fabric.

Kate combined two designs to come for this fabric.
It was really interesting to see the progression of her ideas.

Unforunately I couldn't linger there because . . . . . 

I was headed to Ridgefield for a Denyse Schmidt workshop!
The Aldrich Contemporary Museum hosted our afternoon of fun.

Denyse first gave a talk on the work
Nancy mixes art she creates with found objects.
Many of her pieces look like nine patch blocks.

The mixing of materials and objects to create 
a sculptured piece fascinating.

She takes blocks of wood and wraps them in fabric,
or paints them and adds other elements.

After Denyse's discussion,
we moved to the studio for some sewing 
and design work.

There were all ages and levels of expertise in the room.
 We were going to sew some nine patches by hand!

Denyse showed how you could construct your blocks,
but really anything goes.
There were pre-cut blocks to use,
or if you brought fabric, templates to cut your blocks.
The old fashioned way, trace and cut.  
That's how I learned to do it a million years ago!

Denyse spent time with everyone.
She taught the youngest in the group how to hand piece.
So sweet.

Here is my first one.

And I managed to get two more done too.

The blocks are up on the wall in the classroom at 
The Aldrich Contemporary Museum.
Anyone may go in and add a block it they wish.
In a few weeks they will all be sewn together
and made into a community quilt.

I met some very fun and interesting people today.
I really needed to get out and do something fun.
A day well spent!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

The Mermaid Quilt is Done!

A few months ago I was at Victoria's studio
to use her sizzix for my double wedding ring quilt.

While I was there, she had a few things up on the wall . . . 

 The more I looked at it, the more I saw a mermaid tail! 
I went right home and started cutting out parts.

I needed to figure out how to make the rest of it look 
like a natural tail.
And of course I could use the wave sizzix die 
to make the ocean waves.

So I sketched out a curvy bum for my girl.
And I decided I didn't want it to totally disappear behind the water,
So I used the blue colorway of the same fabric.

See, it looks lost with the waves going right over it.

After I got the body and water done,
I let it percolate for a bit.
I needed to do the hair, 
but wasn't sure how I would tackle that.

I cut out paper pieces to see how it looked.

Score!  I cut out a bunch more,
and at our retreat last weekend, I raw edge appliques them down.
I'm hoping when I wash it, it gets a soft rumbled edge.

 Onto the quilting and binding.
I used invisible thread!
My first time trying it. 
And I loved it!  My mistakes don't jump off the quilt at you.

I fussy cut the binding to blend into the edges.
It wasn't a total win, but not a failure either.

I'm very pleased with the quilting on this.

Blustery swirls in the background,
organic waves in the water,
echo lines in the hair.

You can't really see it in the body and tail,
but I did clamshell cures in the body of the tail,
and echo lines in the fins.

I am just loving this quilt!!
You have until June 30th!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Our Retreat was a great success!

Last weekend 29 of our guild members and friends trekked into the hills of
Pennsylvania for a weekend sewing retreat.

We had so much fun!
This was our first retreat together.
And so there was a bit of a learning curve for everyone.

The road trip was only about 2.5 hours by car.
Must have a perfectly packed car!

We were lucky enough to be the only group there last weekend,
so we had lots of room to spread out.
We took over the chapel and game room areas.
Everyone got their own table, and we set up ironing and cutting stations
through out the room.

This year's theme at Ladore is safari . . .
There were lots of decorations.  Hehe.

Everyone got a goodie box . . . 

Our first arrivals setting up and getting started.
Kim's mom was able to join us 
and that was such a treat for everyone!

I finished piecing this top the first night!
Yeah!  My Kate Spain fabric with Victoria's tumbler template.

The kid also finished a top with her Kate Spain fabric.

Emily and the kid having a chuckle at my expense.

I got to work on my mermaid quilt for the sizzix challenge.
Deadline is June 30th!  I'll make it, will you?

I had organized a group activity where everyone brought 
a block and we were going to try to make a quilt during the weekend.
Needless to say, everyone had their own projects that held their attention, 
and this project didn't make it any farther than this!

We raffled off the blocks and Anne D. won them.
Can't wait to see what she does with them!
Hope she brings it to our first meeting in October.

We had four sets of mother-daughter quilters.
That was a real treat too.

We played "Chopped - The Fabric Addition"
players got a bag of 20 scraps and had 45 minutes 
to make a block or small top.  No pantry items allowed.

It was hilarious!  
The comments flying around the room were priceless.
Some of these ended up in the block lotto, 
but others went home with the chefs.

Bernadette and the kid horsing around before we left.

I took home our group EPP project.
Hoping to finish it up this summer while I'm travelling.

Here is a group pick.
Such a talented group of ladies!  
I can't think of a better way to spend the weekend.

Hope this becomes an annual event!

Sunday, June 7, 2015

My last meetting as Prezzy of the NYC Metro Mod Quilt Guild . . .

Yesterday was our last guild meeting of the year,
and also my last as President.
Two years certainly whizzed by in no time!

I have had the MOST fun leading this group.
Of course, it didn't start out too smoothly.
Not that any of them would have known it.
I was terrified!

First I was following Victoria Findlay Wolfe as president,
so you know, no pressure there.

Then there was my fear of speaking in public,
my inability to remember names on the first meeting.
And my general fear of failure.

But, what a group!  They are so supportive.
Always suggesting ideas, and helping whenever needed.

I was so lucky to have the best board members too!
Even when they could see I was faltering, 
they stepped in and smoothed things out. 
And after I got into a groove, I was fine.

"If someone asks you to do something you don't know how to do, 
always say yes.  You'll learn so much."
And boy was he right!

We've done some wonderful things in the last two years.
Charity projects.  Group Challenge quilts.
Group sewing days.
General shenanigans at meetings.

Here is Gotham Quilts vending our last meeting.
The two owners are members of our guild.
We always try to support our mom and pop fabric vendors.

Although I did say to a couple of queeps,
that I felt like I was bringing a bunch of
alcoholics into a bar, by having them there.
I think everyone benefited in the end.

When I got to our meeting space, this little drawing was hanging 
over my desk at the front.
The space is used for all kinds of things and children's
art work shops too.
I was so tickled to see it there!
 Then my buddy Brian showed up with this
little lovely.
A mermaid with attitude!
(And my hips)

I only got to take a few pics since I was the MC.
But this one I had to share.
Cynthia made this for the back of 
a wedding signature quilt she made.

Cynthia is a very talented quilter.
And I am so happy to say, our new president!
I handed over the "coat of arms" and the bell.
She is going to be a wonderful Prezzy for our group.

And look at this!  My Mods all made very 
cool signature blocks.  Kim designed the layout so that
you can make all different designs by moving
the blocks around.
It is amazing!  I just threw them up there.
I'm going to play with these!
A few more on their way I understand.
I love a good puzzle.

But, the fun isn't over yet.
Next weekend I take 30 of them on a three day retreat!
Out to Amish country to sew the weekend away.

Emily gave me this hilarious book yesterday too.

I'm thinking there needs to be some kind 
of a challenge here . . . 

So to my Mods,
Thank you soooooo much for a great two years!
I had a ball.