Archive for the ‘Quilting’ Category

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35.6 Golden Card Trick Quilt

June 22, 2014

In my “year of FMQ” I have sat down and finally quilted this card trick quilt that I have had in the works since April of 2009. Making it my oldest UFO.

I do realize that there still needs to be one small line I missed on the card trick block itself and the corners aren’t tacked down – said I would get to them later & forgot that I never finished them until after I put my FMQ foot away for the day.

card trick showing the quilting full

The card trick & square in square blocks are quilted on the top with a golden/orange contrasting thread.

card trick straight quilting in orange brown thread

But the threads on the straight lines in the ditch around the blocks are much lighter – a light taupe for some of the straight lines.  For the swirly details I decided to pick a color in between the lighter taupe and the golden/orange, and use a golden yellow color thread for quilting.

card trick quilting ring around diamond in square fmq

Quilting is swirls and long feathers in a box around this section.

And circles and a pinched block for the middle of the blocks.

card trick quilting in between the tricks quilting

This quilting went rather well, and is the largest thing I have pushed through my Janome Magnolia machine. Not too hard to do, but too much bigger would be harder than this.

A small amount of success for finishing the quilting. I have been weary of “overquilting” this quilt, but I think this one plays nicely with some curves and some straight line free motion quilting. I have basic straight lines in the borders.

straight line border quilting

I could alternate with fills, but currently they are left plain, which is fine with me at this time.

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35.4 Requilting the Dancing Ribbons Quilt

June 15, 2014

This quilt has had a LOT of ‘redos’ on it, and now I am redoing the”final” quilting as well. This project was considered finished in January of 2013, I put down the 20th to be exact. It has been hanging on the back of my front door in the time since the quilt has been finished – the sleeve went on long ago.

The recent talk of some of my online quilting friends of Round Robins has lead me to look at many different Round Robin pictures on Pinterest & other places, which has caused me to think of how delightful this Dancing Ribbons would look as an on-point center of a larger quilt.

I have been subscribed to Ann Peterson’s Craftsy class “Quilting Big Projects on a Small Machine”, and I was watching it recently, and I think I can take her medallion quilt techniques and put corners on this quilt and set the already quilted quilt on point.

The original design.

Dancing Ribbons at the Show

This quilt has always been special, but it has been missing the “fantastic-ness” I usually love in quilting. That AND I LOVE changing things up, adding a little bit more, and a little bit more.

All this talk about Round Robins and turning a quilt on point reminds me of my favorite picture of my small dancing ribbons quilt.

Dancing Ribbons Quilt

I have also recently been watching Cindy Needham’s Craftsy class on Wholecloth Quilting and between two two classes, I have been brave enough last weekend to rip off the binding, rip out the piping and rip out the adequate but not spectacular FMQ done on the outer edge (which ripping took way too long considering there wasn’t all that much of it really).

So this went from a finished project to an unfinished project that I have renewed excitement about.

I decided a variation of the last post what I want to do with this quilt, posting an EQ7 picture of what I (currently) envision the finished quilt to look like.

dancing ribbons medallion choice5

Over two different days this past week, I have tried to purchase the brighter versions of blue for the outside. I have yet to decide exactly which blues will go. The first batch all the blues were exactly the same shade.

dancing ribbons corner colors

 

 

Now I have a more varied number of blues and a different in between color. Freshly washed.

dancing ribbon fabric choices 2

 

Still living with the colors & values right now to see what I like.

On Tuesday, I spent a generous amount of time creating ‘sunshine & shadows’ (Cindy’s term) by adding crosshatch lines as background filler to the currently finished quilting project.

And a few stitches in the middle of the quilt for the yellow portions.

crosshatch quilting on negative space

Then I found this really great picture of quilting online which inspired my own version of the spade/heart shape, modifying the design of Gerri Smit to put in the corners of my original quilt to give the quilt some light pizzaz.

drawing inspired by a quilt on pintrest

I have improved some on my FMQ this past year, and 2014 is the year of FMQ, so this is very exciting to me right now!

And if you didn’t notice earlier, here are my attempts at adding pizzaz. Didn’t take many different takes at getting this right, this design I didn’t have to practice too much, and it adds so much detail to this quilt.

Dancing Ribbons Freshly quilted with Details

Today was another sewing day, but even though I have momentum on this idea, because I am still hashing out the colors in my head for the right fabric, I changed direction and did some straight line stitching all over my card trick quilt (now my oldest UFO).

Card Trick has been basted for a month or two. I chose an orange/brown color thread over the top of the card trick pieces which I think ties together the colors nicely even though none of that color even shows up on the quilt.

card trick straight quilting in orange brown thread

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35.2 Gimme Quilt Bling aka Make it Shiny

May 31, 2014

I have spent the greater part of today either researching free motion quilting (fmq) or actually practicing/doing free motion quilting.

Once I get onto Pinterest boards, I jump from board to board to board and see many examples of beautiful, exquisite, intricate free motion quilting designs.

Here’s mine. Depending on what date you check it, there will be more things here. Currently at 349 pins, but it’s MY fastest growing Pinterest board, so I expect to be at 500 shortly.

The more I look, the more I see that catches my eye. The more I know what I like on quilting and what I don’t.

And the more I want to quilt and free motion quilt.

A while ago I bought some shiny metallic threads. I think many of them came from Fabric Recycles. I had never metallic threads until this past month of quilting.

My soft Scrapitude started it, being so springy-springlike-pastelly.  I have been looking at my light verigated metallic thread for a while so I had to try it out.

metallicthreadonsoftscrapitude

 

This was a picture from last week, I decided this week to add to the metallic and I decided on the design to be able to do it. I don’t know that I got any other better pictures of the bling, but here is the “hopefully finished” (I will explain this qualifier in a second) Scrapitude wall hanging quilt.

scrapitude with lots of fmq

There are many different areas and quilting threads on this quilt. I had more that I had wanted to do on the outside, but for now I decided to stop.

Here’s the very center that has a storm-at-sea feeling, surrounded by vines, surrounded by orange peel types, surrounded by boxes of pearls.

center of crapitude fmq

And a close up if you centered on the box of pearls.

circularblock with vine and peas surround fmq

I added on the left side, a block that I am calling the Pea Pod block, as that is what it reminds me of – pea pods, and I like eating peas.

And there are two shiny triangles, and a vine on the top and bottom, and I found a really cool circular swirl design that I really liked for the center. The design was modified by a pantograph design that I saw online this morning. The circular swirl is also done in shiny variegated metallic, but it is hard to see the metallic flickers in this light.

I had put this quilt aside for a portion of the day, before making some final decisions about the center blocks.

And noticed a couple of things.

I am not finished with some finished quilts.

I am noticing a really nagging feeling/desire to undo-refinish two quilts.

This does not imply that I am ripping (that I know of) any more than the binding on one quilt, and maybe resewing the sleeve on the other quilt.

I can’t recall if I ever posted this little scrappy quilt before.

This is how it has been hanging on my wall for at least 5.5 months.

scrappy jewel tone quilt

 

And the quilting on it is okay, but I keep staring at it, and thinking – this quilting needs more…. Needs More…. NEEDS MORE….. NEEDS MORE!!!

See …. nagging feeling …. I have been screaming inside my head like that for a while now, but until Scrapitude and the shiny thread, I didn’t know how much this jewel toned quilt wanted bling of its own!

And granted, in the above picture, quilting isn’t easy to see, but it was verigated pinks, and pretty, and a nice pattern (something I decided on a quilting pattern like 2.5-3 years ago, but never finished the quilting until last fall today.

All this searching & quilting lead me to put in some ovals in spots and to do some metallic echo bling (name of a band, right? – here’s Metallic Echo Bling ;))

And this was requilted-overquilted-blinged up-shinier today during quilting sections of Scrapitude.

scrappy jewel bling

Here’s the center echoed out.

center bling echo

And the sides of the ocean waves more echoed. In addition to the ovals inside the arches.

metallic ocean wave echos

Only problem I forgot is that I had already attached the sleeve. So now the quilting I did today has tacked down the sleeve and will now have to be sewn down again or find another way to hang this quilt.

And I also want to take my dancing ribbons and put it on point as a medallion quilt.

Dancing Ribbons Quilt

I could leave the sashing as the light blue, but I keep thinking I need to add corners on this quilt, so I will consider ripping out the binding, repurposing it for sashing or not using it at all, and adding something lively on the corners of this quilt. Then the quilt will be bigger and I will see it more the way I want to see it.

I think the round robin is helping me think about dancing ribbons in a new way, which is VERY YAY.

But also means that now I am “attacking” two finished & bound quilts to work on – the scrappy jewel that I posted that is now blinged out, and the dancing ribbons which is back on the design wall again. Crazy.

I may even try to find some blue metallic thread. Or not. I will have to really watch the Craftsy class again about “Sewing Big Projects on a Small Machine” by Ann Peterson, as there will be the best tips to making this thing go from finished quilt, to on-point quilt center.

So now I am not sure if I am finished even when I am finished. I know “editing down” has always been my weak spot (just ask anyone who used to listen to my podcast) but I will be glad to work on this quilt again, it’s been telling me for months that it didn’t like being finished the way it was, and I am finally in a position to figure out what to do about it – in theory.

But that’s how a good experiment goes. Just when you think you’re done, a new question pops up and throws you right back into the beginning of the scientific method all over again!

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35.0 Month and a Half Spring 2014 Report (picture heavy)

May 18, 2014

It was never my intent to be ‘blog silent’ for a month & a half. I am starting to let the blank page intimidate me. Excuses are easier to come by now, if I don’t write now, panic may set in and another week will go by without a post.

That aside, I have had an interesting month & a half since we last spoke.

1) I got my friend’s Sunshine quilt finished.

The week I sent it off, she was away for a few weeks out of state getting treatment. I finally saw the message she left for me two weeks ago, up until now I wasn’t sure if she had gotten the quilt or not.

She said it brightened her day. Which brightened my day.

So hugs to her.

I treated the quilt to an outdoor spring tour before sending it off to her. As a symbol of some of our outdoor bike adventures to this place called Cottonmill, the mall etc.

So it went to the park bench,

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And sat in the middle of the gazebo in the park,

sunshinegazebofrontquilt

And then in the prairie,

sunshinequiltprarieclose

And by a stream,

sunshinequiltbystream

And on a bridge over a stream,

sunshinequiltbridgeeast

And then it was sent away to my old friend!

2) Also missed in the last month, it was MayDay and Christmas all at once, I worked on these projects for me (the hair bows) & for the quilt boutique for the massive multi-guild show happening next June in Kansas City!

christmasstockingandmayflowers

Someone was tossing the embroidery in the trash and I decided to save it, and make a stocking pocket out of it. I hope someone will buy it.

Here’s another look at the stocking in different light.

stockingpaislychristmas

The ribbon flowers never showed up well in photographs. I am learning how to make individual petals & sew them together. I have a few more sets ready to sew, and then I sew them to a set of alligator clips I had already purchased.

3) I sent out my 1.5″ squares and I got some back!

1andahalfinchsquareswap

4) I worked on the center of my round robin quilt, going in the theme of pinks & purples.

center for round robin quilt darla

I put like everything in baggies for my next round robin partner and wrote a lot in my journal.

darlas round robin box before sending off

5) I received Daisy’s round robin center. I have already prepared a small snippet for you to see what I am heading toward. I forgot that my applique points aren’t as perfect as they could be, but this was the design I kept thinking about. As a result of on points in EQ7 and some form of block that is cut in pieces, but looks pretty cool in this context.

smallsnippetdaisy

At least I think it’s cool. It’s of a modern feel, that’s for sure. All these fabrics except the background are from my own stash and I used the focus fabric and fabrics she already had in place for the center to pick the right fabrics to add.

6) I started FMQ on my soft scrapitude. I am working in some shiny metallic thread on part of the quilting for the first time.

metallicthreadonsoftscrapitude

7) And I decided to make some orphan blocks into a table runner. I don’t have a lot of green based projects, so this was nice to work on!

greentiltbasted

So …. one and a half months of projects, 7 different types of things to work on during that time. Lots of stimulation.  A couple of bad days of panic about not posting, but if I waited much longer this list would be 5 times more. I hope you enjoy!

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34.2 Kings puzzle borders cometh

February 23, 2014

The very exciting Kings Puzzle quilt was brought out again last week.

The quilt guild was lucky enough to receive a presentation about “something blue” by a local quilter – Barb Eikmeier.

During that presentation Barb showed a blue & white version of the King’s Puzzle quilt by Lois Hattleberg. Lois & Barb are friends.

Lucky me that I was able to show my red and black version of the same quilt top at the meeting Barb attended, so she got to see the version I made.

royal red kings puzzle shown at guild 2

And I opened my mouth & said something about making borders at the retreat the following weekend (last weekend from this time frame).

So I brought the top, and an assortment of deep red fabrics, and my graph paper.

The first evening of the retreat, just doing some drawing & some thinking I think I figured out what I want to do for borders for this top that will compliment & hopefully not detract from the wonderful piecing of this top.

kings puzzle border plan and ispiration fabric

Since the Kings Puzzle quilt in a bargello style quilt, mimics the style of an orange peel design, I looked at the red fabric with orange peel pieces that also reminded me of a cathedral windows quilt setting.

And I have made a cathedral windows style quilt with the 10 minute block method before!

So I came back to this quilt on the last day of retreat (had a few other things on the ‘had to do’ list first), and started thinking & playing with scale & design.

I have cut the center pieces of the cathedral window blocks, I actually am going to make a change to my first cuts so I can border the cathedral windows differently on some blocks, but I am still using the bright red fabric in the centers of the blocks.

I am going to make an outer border & an inner border of red that have some of those cathedral window blocks in between.

I wanted the very outer border to have a darker red border. I have two acceptable options.

Option #1 – the best option right now.

kings puzzle with first option border fabric

A close up of the same fabric (colors slightly off due to flash etc). This is what I like best right now still.

kp border solution 1

But this next fabric would be nice too, I think. I don’t have enough (yet) of this fabric, but I like the darkness of it more. But not so much the chevrons (doesn’t work as much in THIS design. Or the thing seems very purple to me too.

kp border solution 2

I have been thinking about next year’s regional quilt show, and wondering in the back of my mind if I can push through all the way to finishing this quilt to get it done before the deadline for that show. This is one that speaks to people a lot.

If not, I will try to enter my exothermic wonders quilt in the regional show. If they let me. The finish date for “Exothermic Wonders” was Christmas 2012 so by June 2015 it will be 2.5 years old which is .5 years out of the ‘acceptable quilt age’ for this particular show. So maybe not.

Better press on with King’s Puzzle.

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34.1 Dragons Unleashed

February 22, 2014

My dragon was so scary on the gold, that an evil wizard decided to encase him in in wood.

dragon wood border

A valiant knight heard tale of this viscous dragon. He set off on a quest to try to slay him.

knight sihlouette

First the knight had to find his way among the circular maze of the Celts.

celtic knot original placement

The dragon then encased himself in a wall of fire & flame.

celtic section and dragon section

The knight, confused, warm, walking in circles, called upon the angels for help.

celtic angels

A castle in the background will be calling for help and the success of the knights’ travels.

Stay tuned for that portion of the story after these messages (other projects)

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33.5 More custom Free Motion Quilting on Fans And Bows

December 10, 2013

I have been working towards quilting this red and white quilt top of mine for over the past week.  I have done a little each day, worked on a little every day, trying to figure out what to do on each section each day, getting a little further in trying to make the designs symmetrical.

I have not finished, but I have been doing an okay job at the FMQ on this red and white quilt.

DSC05757

I have these antennae guys in the corners between some of the red white 9 patches.

You already saw the corner arches, but I decided to go over the tops in red.

DSC05768

and I have some more red quilting in some of the other sections. Like on my fans. Here was the first day. Red on red if you can see.

DSC05764

The design on the fans becomes more evident when I quilted the red on the black.

DSC05767

And there is some overstitch of red on the quilting next to the fans. So I have a few more plans to cover over with red in places, and probably have some more white areas to do once I figure those out.

The back taken at some point really shows the quilting since the back is more black in nature.

DSC05765

And I haven’t yet made up the stitching in the brown sections of the border.

And I have a black lace that I have been wanting to add to this quilt for almost 2 years now.  But that will be added after the main base has been quilted.

I always wanted this quilt to have a lot of quilting. Glad that I waited until I could be “good enough” to quilt this, but not perfect.

I have used a lot of inspirations (no feathers as of yet), I have used a few techniques that I liked, double outlining things, doing rows of beads / a.k.a. pebbles (stone bridges). And swoops.  Now that I’ve started this, I need to keep inspiring myself to finish so I can knock off one inspiring quilt that has been on my list for a really really long while.

I have to start & stop sometimes due to the heat of my plug-in. Which also works out good for my shoulders too. This thing is one of my larger ‘wall quilts’ so it is probably considered lap size. I could consider quilting something bigger on Aquata, and maybe after this, I will do just that.

 

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33.2 Kings Royal Red Puzzle quilt top complete

November 30, 2013

The main thing I worked on at the last quilting retreat, and the last two weekends since, has been the Kings Puzzle quilt.

The pattern is called King’s Puzzle, created by Lois Hatleberg, and published by QuiltWoman.com

This past weekend I finished sewing all the blocks together and all the sashing together in the blocks.

kings puzzle top outside

The original pattern done with a light background and dark red blocks. Our LQS had a light background and blue for the dark areas.

kings puzzle quilt

And I had thought I was going to attempt this a year ago, and at that time I had cut out strips for all the dark reds. But I was missing something. I didn’t quite have enough fabric for the whole quilt to be that red & that black.

So in my mind I set out to do 3 different colors of reds. A dark, medium & light, but all very saturated reds.

Two days before leaving on retreat I found the right color of ‘bright (light value) red’ for the quilt, and I had already bought the other two reds.

It was hard to estimate how much of each red I would need since I knew I was going to separate out the middle and edge of each design. In fact I pretty much ran out of (twice) the middle color of red that dominates much of the quilt space.

Before I started actually cutting this time around, I did some diagramming & thinking.

kings puzzle self instructions page 1

First I had to know the general area for medium & dark & light and then I had to count them. Never underestimate symbols and colored pencils in helping plan out things.

I used symbols such as L for light, D for dark in sections that would be important.

And then I just had to flat out count what I had.

And then I redrew the strip sets & calculated (wrongly originally for the row 6 actually) how many of each I would need based from the drawing I had done above.

kings puzzle self instructions page 2 and 3

And then I had to estimate how many strips to make of each color and label, label, label.

labeled strips by width for each row

And then I could make strip sets.

kings puzzle strip set

And then cut the strip sets into strips for the final blocks.

kings puzzle strips and more strips

And then get the strips in order to make the blocks.

kings puzzle first block layout before sewing together

After making several blocks. This was the last afternoon of retreat how far I was some time in the middle of that afternoon.

kings puzzle quilt blocks on design wall

I worked then on getting all the sashing complete (or close) before leaving the retreat center.

DSC05673

And so upon coming home I had a few sashing pieces to rip out because when I changed one of the long sashing sub-pieces, I didn’t rename it a different name and so didn’t create enough smaller sub-pieces of the right size.

And then a few blocks to complete.

one chunked section of kings puzzle quilt

And so now I have the top complete, minus borders.

kings puzzle top complete inside

Good thing I had things ultra organized & sticky noted and grouped & pinned. It helped tremendously in getting the thing together without wanting to tear out my hair. Or stop. I would have stopped on this, I never would have gotten back to it.

Not complicated, but very time consuming.

A true bargello? I don’t know, but it is of the same style, strip sets broken up & resewn together.

And a border fabric? I have two possibilities!

kings puzzle quilt border choices

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32.5 A Few Pictures from the AQS show in Des Moines 2013

October 27, 2013

I have  been slightly hesitant to post pictures of AQS show quilts, as I generally do not take the time/energy/camera battery life to gain the necessary knowledge to be able to post pictures of the quilts.  To my awareness, a point brought out by some discussion before the early October show, in order to post pictures at an AQS show, one needs to have the name of the quilt/creator to be able to post pictures publicly. This limits my pictures and makes me put off posting from the show.

First, if I post your quilt and you are the quilter involved & you do not want your picture posted, please kindly let me know. I tried my best to see the names through blowing up some of my pictures, and some names I am successful at reading more than others.

Some info about the AQS show from someone NOT ‘in the know’ about it.

It is held the first week in October in Des Moines, IA and I think it is the last of the officially sponsored AQS shows of the calendar year.

First, I want to say that the Machine Quilter’s Showcase that used to be held in Kansas City is a really good precursor/analog to what one sees at a AQS quilt show.  Vendors, quilts, special challenges/ groups. The Des Moines AQS show was bigger, but  very close to what one used to see here.

Des Moines itself is a fun place for a show, near the show are a few rivers, and a fun walking bridge.

walkingbridge

Back to the show. There were several categories of special exhibits at the show. I may be forgetting one or two, but I remember seeing quilts in the following categories. Sort explanation of the types of quilts found based on the best of my knowledge.

  • Quilted in Honor – quilts for service men & women. These were fantastic, and not all red/white & blue, and many had so much meaning wrapped into the quilt
  • Masterpieces – quilts that were exquisitely done, works of art on fabric
  • Claudia Pfeil – Fire & Ice exhibit – her quilts are amazing with tons of colors & quilting
  • Modern Quilt Challenge – quilts that were a part of the modern quilt atheistic
  • Tentmakers of Cairo – hand applique quilts with many colors & pieces
  • The Go quilt Challenge – quilts that were made using pieces from the Acuquilt Go cutter
  • Des Moines quilt guild quilts – local quilts, also had a subgroup of quilts that showed quilts over the generations
  • The Cow Parade – quilts using Mary Lou Weidman’s cow quilt book: “Out of the Box with Easy Blocks” that had cows in hilarious situations – a RIOT
  • Colorplay – 12 small quilts made by 12 artists that highlighted a specific color or group of colors. These were so much fun to see.
  • Applique Artistry – can’t remember details about this exhibit. Maybe these were some of the quilts for sale

The main show had 3 different sections to my knowledge.

  1. The general show
  2. The author’s section where sometimes authors did demonstrations of things from their book & stuff
  3. The quilt museum (this was a strict no picture area) where they had the miniature quilts display and when they say miniature, they mean miniature!!! Blocks the width of my finger with massive amounts of detail.

Plus a healthy section of vendors, area for classrooms etc.

A quilt or two from each section? I’ll see if I can do that.

Quilted in Honor.

This quilt: Patriotic Stars II by Sarah Vedeler of AZ

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Masterpieces

This quilt: Piece & Quiet by Cynthia England of TX

DSC04544

This quilt: Kentucky Dogwood by Natalie Sewell of WI

DSC04745

Claudia Pfeil

This quilt: Fire & Ice (I think) I have seen this before – from Germany

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Modern quilt

This quilt: I C U – Do You C Me? by Birgit Schuelier – from Germany

DSC04664

Acu-Quilt Go quilt (modern style)

This quilt: Playing with Color by Sandi Snow of FL

DSC04632

This quilt (2): Cherry Blossoms by Sally Manke (Manike?) of MI

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Applique Artistry

This quilt: Arabasque by Patricia B Campbell

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Color Play

Orange quilt set – by 12 different artists – cannot read details very well but including the description as a second picture below.

DSC04744

DSC04743

Cow Stampede (Cow Parade)

This quilt: Captain a-MOO-rica by Julie Post

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This quilt: Moo-dy Blues by Laurie Latta (sp?)

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Tentmakers of Cairo / Stitch like an Egyptian

This quilt: Dendon

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We saw Mary Lou Weidman’s talk about creativity

This quilt – the House that Jack Built

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The Main Show (other room)

This quilt: Shoreline Log Cabin by Karen Barr (one of my aunt’s favorite quilts). Most of the pieces are close to 1X1 inch, but looking closer, there are probably some 1X2 inch pieces in here.

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This quilt: Mickey & Friends by Jim Gropper (posting for my one very dear friend who loves mickey & minnie so much there was a M&M theme at her wedding).

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Author quilts:

This quilt: Through the Moongate by Karen Fisher from the book “Easy Grid Quilts”

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And at some point after this my camera died before getting a good picture of the grandprize winners.

So I hope you enjoy the pictures. Even a month late, it’s never too late to enjoy good quilting!

I have more to share about my trip to Des Moines, and I will try to get them into separate posts. Local quilt shops local to Des Moines & bridges to come.  Also a very special Vetrans quilt.

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32.4 Post AQS Des Moines Report Pre Show Self Shop Hop

October 9, 2013

Things have been interesting in the last two (or is it thee) weeks since I last blogged.  Health & computer issues mainly, but I did get to get away from Kansas to head to Iowa for a trip.

My aunt lives in Des Moines, and last year I had wanted to visit her for the AQS quilt show held there in October.  Last year, I had issues that kept me away, so this year I made it a priority to go.

And what great timing! Running out of fumes from work, a 3 day break was exactly what I needed.

I have all your requests down from the last post, some of which I have done, responded, some of which I need to go back & look up & complete. I liked all of your suggestions. Thing is that I’ve either been working or sick when I haven’t been gone at AQS.  This afternoon was the best I felt all this week since Sunday when my camera wouldn’t transfer any of my AQS pictures.

I had three days of fun, only one of which involved the actual quilt show.  I took a self guided “shop hop” on my way from KC to Des Moines, visiting shops that are either ‘close’ to my area, but definitely not shops I have been at before. Allow me to relive my travels by sharing my experiences.

Shop 1 – Quilter’s Quarters - Levenworth, KS

quilters quarter levenworth ks

Notice the ruby slippers? So Kansas.

This shop was cute. The front was several civil war sections, the middle was batiks, and the back room was sale fabrics and/or classroom stuff.  I liked the staff I talked to, it was a great way to start a shop hop.

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This shop had several BOM’s that were fun, and I liked several quilts in this section.

Look at their cute way to package their kits!

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And this quilt kit was just amazing, and just my style. Love the paint can. I didn’t purchase, trying to keep in mind I had lots more to do & see.

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A good start to my day.

Then I traveled to Missouri, and this shop didn’t allow pictures at all, so I didn’t get any pictures. On the way there I passed the bridge and had a lovely drive.

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Shop 2 – Peddler’s Wagon – Parkville, MO

This shop was right across the street from the mini golf course that I absolutely loved that I discovered a few years ago.

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The shop was nice, on a fairly steep hill, downtown Parkville. There is a touristy feeling about this section of “KC”, The store itself was one level, with a kind of ‘cut out balcony’ section above that rings around the central shop area that has many many examples of completed quilts on the walls & railings.  Also sale fabric was found on the upper level.

More about the shop I found interesting, that on the outer ring on the lower (main) level there were sections. They were separated by walls, and left many many different alcoves, which provided natural separation of types of objects. One section was halloween, one section was baby quilts, one section was notions, one section was books, several sections were fabric, many different kinds of fabric, and many different fat quarter rolls.

Then a little bit of a drive later, and into northern Missouri, there were two shops within about 20 miles of each other just along I35.

Shop 3 – Crossroads Quilting – Cameron, MO

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This shop was probably a couple of stores molded into one larger store, possibly clothing stores. There were different kinds of little alcoves in this store that reminded me of dressing rooms.

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This style of fabrics were a little more ‘country’ colors for me, but I was fascinated with all the displays and the bags and all of everything they had placed in the store & how it was arranged like a house!

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This was the first time I had ever seen a vertical quilt hanger like this.

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There are many more pictures of this store since it was so unique.  But here’s the first bed I saw on the journey too.

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Then just down the road, probably the most “internet famous” of the four shops.

Shop 4 – Missouri Star Quilt Company – Hamilton, MO

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Wow. Since I have seen and heard so much about Missouri Star Quilt company online in the last several years, I was kinda nervous & excited to be there. So much hype, but they also lived up to all the hype as you will see.

Small town Missouri but a big & expanding store, run by family & close knit group of people, but a large group of people in & out and about on a Wednesday afternoon.

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By far, MOStarQuiltCo had the most amount of bolts of fabric over every other store I visited in person during the whole week.  Not so many precut fat quarters, but several precuts, although the bolt fabric was really really high.

Each of these (look at the picture below to see what I am talking about) ‘walls’ of four bolts high of fabric was repeated about 8 times or so, in addition to the many shelves, other areas, minkie & backing areas.

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And the staffing there was numerous and fantastic as well!

The fabric was organized by type / designer / line way more than it was by colors. Except for some areas.

Here you can see how ‘far back’ the store gets.

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Or maybe you can’t see that, I don’t know.

Anyway, what I failed to take pictures of was Jenny Doan’s studio where she shoots her videos from. I could see some stuff set up for taking pictures & videos well in the back.

When I told one of the employees that I was excited to be there, as Jenny came to our guild once and gave a presentation, they introduced me to one of her grand-daughters.  Jenny was in the newly acquired retreat center doing some kind of “live podcast” which I didn’t hear as much detail about, so she wasn’t around during the time I was there, but I did strike up a conversation with several people.

I got to see (no pictures) the large family picture they took, and Jenny has 7 kids herself, with such a large family it sounded like many of them were somehow involved with the store in some aspect or another, and many of them seemed happy to be there, and friendly to themselves and the customers.  I asked the granddaughter (sorry for not remembering your name :( but it was nice to talk to you) if there was a lot of pressure to quilt, and if she liked quilting at all, and she’s done a few quilts, but hasn’t done all that many.  She was helping me find the minkee for a guild scarf project, and then I was given to someone else to cut the minkee.

She talked of the expansion, the number of online orders they do every day, how they used to have classes, but haven’t had the space to do them for a while, how they have several buildings in Hamilton that they are considering breaking down into specific types of fabric shops, perhaps one that has chevron specific fabrics for example, and about the retreat center that was brand new.

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I looked around at some of the other fabrics, and then when I was checking out I noticed a lady who I recognized from one of the videos. I admitted I couldn’t remember which one, and she, like me, said she felt nervous about being on the video, was glad to do it, but it wasn’t her most favorite part of working on the store to be in front of the camera.

We talked about podcasts, since she was the one who said something about “live podcast” but she didn’t have a ton of details about it, I was just about a half hour late to see that in person from their retreat center. We talked about blogs and how it is so hard to have time reading people’s blogs and since google reader went away, how it was hard to sign up for blogs. I mentioned feedly & bloglovin and it was so busy that I bet she didn’t have time to record any of the info I gave her. But I understand not having time as well.

We probably weren’t “kindred spirits” but it was so nice to be able to chat so much about so many quilting topics with all the ladies at Missouri Star Quilt Company.  It was a very good side trip and I was very glad to drive the 20 miles from the interstate to see the place in person.  They had some kind of 5 year celebration they tried to get me to come back for, and I very well could have done so on my way back from Des Moines, but by then I was quilt shopped out.

One Last Stop – the Most Important One

And the last part of my ‘going to Des Moines’ quilt show was the meetup with Jackie, from Sew Excited Quilts.

I was running a little late with all this quilty goodness that I saw on the way to Des Moines, so I was almost at my aunt’s by the time we were going to meet up for dinner.  We met at Spaghetti Works in Downtown Des Moines, not all that far away from the quilt show.

It was so like meeting an old friend even though I think we have only met in person like 3 times before now.  It was great to catch up in person, see what we’re up to, compare lives, catch up with my aunt and have her meet Jackie (and her DH) as well.

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And wow I shared a lot about my trip, and this was only DAY ONE. The next post I will do will be about the AQS quilt show, but who knows when it will be written as it takes a lot of time to do this, and time is limited with all the work I am doing, and the quilting I am trying to do on an older project.

Take care everyone! Don’t get sick as it is hard on you when you’re trying to do a lot of things already!

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