Thursday, September 24, 2015

This Might Be Done

On my design wall today. It might be done. That's the fun of improvising - I get to decide! Your thoughts are welcome ...

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Much to tell

I took a break from blogging. I've been recharging my batteries and looking for new creative challenges. I've been transitioning from work for others to work to please myself. Its a welcome trade. I've been dabbling with making mosaic and find that it is inspiring my stitching. Who knew!

Other recent sources of inspiration:

The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters by Sherri Lynn Wood. I took it along to the mountains and studied it. It offers a fresh approach for making quilts. I like it. The work above is inspired by her rhythmic grid score.

Surprisingly, The Life-changing Magic of Tidying (the Japanese art of decluttering and organizing) by Marie Kondo has also helped with my creativity. Her suggestion that we only keep things that spark joy is helping in my sewing room.

Last but not least, I've been following the work of Mandy Patullo on her Thread and Thrift blog. Check it out. It is really inspiring for me.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Linda's Leftovers

A very pleasant part of having talented friends is that occasionally you admire their latest project and they say, "You like it? Here, it's yours!" And that is just what happened with this lovely little quilt that I am calling Linda's Leftovers.

Linda Frost is a wonderful artist who also has the very good habit of finishing things! She said she found these little half-square triangles leftover from a project so she put them together. Each square measures 1" - the entire quilt measures 12" x 12".

Look at this detail of how she quilted it - simply but effectively:

Linda said the fabric is by Fabri-Quilt of Kansas City, from a line they created several years ago. We all admired this red!

Monday, June 22, 2015

Betsy's T-Shirt Quilt

I went to Austin to get this photo - here's Betsy's quilt of her favorite high school / college t-shirts.

It's made in the same way I made Kate's quilt, adding pieced strips around the t-shirts so they would all fit together. Sometimes I added a strip of solid fabric too.

I ended all the madness with a solid stop border and then added the larger border. Lori Kukuk did the quilting on this one too - an allover pattern that is perfect for the use this lap quilt will get.

A lot of their t-shirts had little designs on the back and sleeves - I liked fitting them into the entire quilt design.

I took the leftover t-shirt pieces and stitched them inside a pillow case and took them to our local humane society. They use those for pet beds. That felt like a good use for those scraps! Here's the back - I embroidered our names and the year on the sunflower block.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

What a Show!

Kudos to everyone who came together to create the first Kansas City Regional Quilt Festival. I was there yesterday and it was a resounding success! The exhibits were great, the vendors were awesome, guild participation was exciting in the hallway of amazing opportunity quilts. There were lectures, classes, celebrities ... and crowds! I arrived early Friday to witness long lines of folks waiting to get in, full parking lots!

There are so many inspiring quilts to see - I love this one by Emily Coffey in the Best of Quilt Con exhibit. The juried quilts are truly wonderful, as are the guild entries.

So go! It runs today and tomorrow and there is something for everyone. And remember, you can always go home with a photo of yourself as Sunbonnet Sue - just stop by the Kaw Valley booth right outside the exhibit hall entry. Who could resist that?

Thanks to Nancy Wakefield (right) - the show was her idea!

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Farewell, Linda Brannock

A sewing idol of mine has passed away. Word arrived that Linda Brannock died on May 20. She was 76.

Linda was part of the talented team that produced so many wonderful Red Wagon books back in the 1980s. I collected them all and dreamed of making fanciful designs like theirs.

I jumped at the chance to work with her several years ago when she agreed to publish her final book with the Kansas City Star. "Miss Jump's Farewell" was the result. It was such an exciting project for me as I got to visit Linda in her home and studio in Independence, Missouri and also be involved in a photo shoot there. And I got to know kind, fun Linda as we worked together on her book.

She leaves behind a devoted husband Robert. They had a dog Sugar that they both adored - I hope she survives to keep Bob company.

Here is Linda's own story about her work:

“This all started when I wanted a quilt. In 1974, there were not many for sale and not any that I could afford. So I knew I would have to make one. Finally, I found a class and began this great journey.
“I started teaching in 1980, to a group of friends in my basement. After practicing on friends, I taught at eight different places and traveled 200 miles a week.
“I created patterns for local businesses: Quilt Country, then Evening Star Farm, Red Wagon and now for Quilter’s Station. I have loved the last 27 years – many joys and stresses. I've enjoyed traveling, teaching, attending quilt markets all over the U.S., and designing fabric for Moda.
“I started my own pattern business, the Star Quilt Company, in 1993 and loved it for 10 years.
“What am I going to do now? PLAY…”
I admired the small quilt above - it was in LInda's studio - and she gave it to me. The square measure about 1 1/2" - the total quilt is 13" x 14". It's tied in the middle of each square with embroidery floss. The back is shown below ...

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

$3 Fabric Bag Sale

Woe is me. I have PLENTY of fabric but still cannot resist the temptation of acquiring more, especially when I can get a bag full for $3.

All of us who love thrift shops have our favorites. One of mine is a little Catholic charity shop in Nebraska City. We were driving near there yesterday and made a stop. In the shop window was a sign "Clothing Bag for $3."

Oh dear. My resolve went right out the window and I headed for the clothing racks. At that point, it becomes pure fabric shopping for me. I look for cottons on the men's, women's and children's racks.

The sales staff encourages stuffing the bag as full as possible (mine is a bit over-full). My count reveals I have 11 new fabrics to play with. Several are men's XL shirts, which we all know yield considerable fabric. There are also 2 items I might wear a while first.

Better commence with the cutting and sewing ...