Posts Tagged ‘quilt’

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42.9 Grey Dresden quilt to help work through sad feelings

September 12, 2018

In the brief couple of weeks at the end of one project (guild show) before ramping back up with the opportunity quilt project, I have been working out my feelings between two different “art quilts”.

The last quilt I posted about the Dresden petals offset ended up being the “sad color quilt”.

It seems strange to be working in color pallets leaning towards grey and neutral, but also cathartic.

Last I posted was an offset Dresden petal with strange circles. I actually took the design a little bit farther before I got stuck.

 

I started making the grey petals to complete the design and settled into the light grey petals for the bottom of the flower. Then, since my other project I was working on just beforehand was a stained glass quilt, I thought about making a “stem” out of the premade bias tape I was using for that.

And can’t some other petals pretend to be leaves since they were pretending to be flower petals,

And then, can’t some other petals pretend to be grass, and be present at the bottom of the quilt. The flower has to have something to sprout from, doesn’t it?

I have glued down the stem as it is, I am not 100% certain I like how thin it is. But perhaps it could represent the thin feelings of the weight of the heavy flower being held up by a thin feeling of support, ready to crumble at any moment, but still holding strong anyway.

During the making of this quilt, I have been spending a lot of time working through some thoughts about how I am as a friend, about how much work I am spending towards others, how much I have been putting off grieving a loss of mine from earlier in the year.

How I have thrown myself into my responsibilities, even when that doesn’t mean “work” for me this year, well this is all in addition to working and driving, and having my normal crazy hours. How much I have done for the quilt guild I am part of, and how much I feel others might be smothered by what I am doing & overdoing, and how much it feels like I have been wanting to take a step or two back, but not being able to, and how lonely it feels to see others not feel so trapped in the feelings of getting too much done.

How I have been selfish, and selfless, how I have used other people, how I have helped other people, how I have sacrificed, how I don’t have a good support if something would go wrong. How unreasonable my expectations are of myself and of others. How much can I be expecting from others if needed. How to ask for help when things are going too awry. How I don’t feel deserving of help even if I do ask. How I haven’t been “really listening” to others.

How disappointed I was in a lot of areas, even thinking back to last year when we missed seeing the “great American eclipse” due to poor weather in our area, despite being directly in the center of the path of totality.

Anyway, in the background, I was working on this quilt, giving it “life” trying to create a pleasing design even when the thoughts I was having wasn’t exactly pleasing. I was listening to someone talk about working though issues at the same time.

Something about that was comforting. I obviously still hold some of the negative feelings I thought while making the quilt, but the act of putting the negative thoughts into the quilt as dark lines, dark themes, grey themes was nice. And then the idea of making a picture of my negative thoughts and putting them behind me, shrinking them down, and giving myself a safe space. It was nice. Pleasing. Kinda “whoo-whoo” but also needed, and reminding me how things were when I was a little kid.

I have sorta stopped working on the quilt now. I made a yellow sunshine that both compliments and contradicts the dark and the grey, and I keep trying to figure out what to do wit it. I have covered it up some with a grey piece, maybe to try to put out my grief from not seeing the eclipse last year (anniversary of it was during the time I was working on this quilt).

I was thinking about “sunflowers” as this is the Sunflower State that I live in now. Maybe I could make the yellow to either represent the sun and the eclipse or the sunflowers.

But not quite sure how to do it.

Someone in a comment accidentally through autocorrect called this the Offender Eye without seeing the yellow piece. Which might be an apt name for this quilt when it is done instead of grey Dresden quilt.

 

I have ideas of a darker pieced border with light grey diamonds around the center of this quilt.

Currently the thing is glued down with washable glue only. I would like to get some of this stitched down. Probably not the droopy yellow sunflower part.

I did glue down the borders on each of my circles with the bias tape and boy, does it make my “circles” look much more smooth.

All the feelings for the last few months have been feeling very BIG, very overwhelming. I know my natural “anxiety state” helps drives some of these big feelings, and anticipation and grief, and a ball of cuddly old feelings. Suddenly felt like the feelings were also overwhelming. And how it would be easier to shut some of this down for the time being, with intent to explore further in the future.

But, suddenly, with the wisdom of the guy I was listening to, the shift focused onto a much brighter quilt suddenly. And then, working on the grey quilt wasn’t quite as important as it was the previous week.

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41.1 End of March 2017, Did you March A Long soldier?

April 2, 2017

Hey, I am going to keep this short. I did just accidentally erase another blog post just a moment ago.

It’s the end of March 2017, did you find yourself doing March A Long this year? #marchalong

This past week I worked on bobbins and getting these pieces cut down to 1.5 inches.

I am going to put plain black in between the double rows. I think it will look nice.

I ran out of pieces for it, so even though I want to make it bigger, I really can’t with what I already have cut.

Then one day I wrote up the entry form for my quilt going into the guild portion of the show. Quilt on the left below. 40 X 40. Grandma’s Footstool. It’s kind of a Grandma’s Choice block next to a Foot Stool block (from Quilter’s Cache).

Next to it is the 1.75 unfinished block quilt that will shrink to probably half the size when sewn together. Looks like I have 2 great leader and ender quilt projects.

But next, probably needs to be the quilting on the show quilt. Right now it’s only ditch quilted and I would like to do more. I found my drawing from a year ago.

Using this fancy thing called paper and pen. 😉

Anyway, I look forward to hearing about your month? Isn’t March Awesome? March-A-Long rocks!

 

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40.8 End of Second Week March A Long 2017

March 12, 2017

I got this little 15 minutes of talking about our 15 minutes of quilting today, earlier than projected. Longer audio than originally planned.

Thanks to everyone who has posted already!

Yay, I got the paper removed from the ladders and bubbles quilt!

Boo, I wasn’t actually prepared to do that before the week was over!

I am waiting on more fabric to arrive by mail to figure out borders for it. Here’s some of what I already have. Most of the border will be darker, with hints of lighter, but I am still not sure on it yet.

My first inclination is to do this with it at this time.

I also might modify the spool block in here too since that would be a good compliment.

I was talking about donation quilts. Quilts for Cure posted a lot by String & Story. More info on the donation at the Quilts for Cure site. I am not participating, but several other people I know are and have been. These are the navy and yellow hearts.

I also wanted to share some beautiful henna and Moroccan style designs that reminded me of quilting designs. I wish I could do something this good. I put up a picture from an Etsy Store of an example of what I am talking about. Excellent work by LITDecor on Etsy.

 

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40.7 End of First half week of March A Long 2017

March 5, 2017

Hey guys, I put together audio for the end of the first half week of March A Long 2017.

We are sewing/quilting/prepping/organizing/shopping …. sewing & quilting tasks for 15 minutes a day for the month of March.

Personally I have been ripping out papers off of this guy.

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I am pretty haphazard with how the papers are being ripped. Some of today I was actually methodical in working on rows instead of just bouncing around everywhere.

Please feel free to report back in comment here, on any day. Next post will hopefully be up Monday afternoon or Tuesday early early morning the 14th due to previous engagements on this upcoming weekend.

I find it easier for me to wait until Sunday, but I know that’s not always convenient for all of you. Comment on this post or any other on March A Long, or link back to me. I will get links approved as fast as I am able, but I don’t always reply. But if I know you’ve posted somewhere, I will do a shout out in Audio Form.

Hope you enjoy!

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39.0 First BOM – Stained Glass

January 17, 2016

For the brand new year, I happened upon a brand new BOM that I decided to join up and work on.

I love the stained glass look for quilts, and this one just spoke to me this time.

A designer for which I know little about, lives in Europe, I have bought one of her patterns before and the quilt is on my list to do, Ula Lenz has made the Ray of Hope quilt in hexagon style.

I have already completed the first block, here are some of the pieces I was working on.

20160110_111726.jpg

I had a bright bag of orange, purple, pink batik scraps that I knew just “went together”. I think someone from my guild donated them to me at the last retreat a year ago. I had kept the fabrics separate from the rest of my stash, hoping to find a use for them.

I remembered seeing these fabrics recently, so I located an appropriately dark batik that I had bought to use for some purpose that matched these pretty batiks.

20160111_164555.jpg

I have already cut out the border fabric for these blocks, the way Ula has us do the quilt is to make sashing and fun border wonky stars in between each of the hexagon blocks.

There are many color ways that would look fantastic for this quilt. I have luckily got the first block done, so I hope that I will be able to remind myself to download her next BOM when it’s posted at the beginning of each month.

It’s free. As you can see, each of the hexagons will be done in three sub blocks, and several of them have different amounts of seams on them.

Paper piecing doesn’t scare me.

Here’s the pretty block without the border pieces.

20160111_164211.jpg

I hope I can keep enough of these fabrics in the quilt. I may try to find another light fabric to help with the contrast a little more on future blocks.

And here’s the block with border pieces. So now it can be sewn in square.

20160111_171420.jpg

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37.6 How Round Robins Work

May 23, 2015

This is a post describing how round robins work, or rather, how our round robin worked, complete with pictures.

If you missed a while on the blog or were redirected here from elsewhere, I was included in a multi-group internet friends (twilter-twitter quilter friend) round robin quilt exchange.

One fantastic lady, Daisy of Lazy Daisy Quilts decided to put together a round robin quilt exchange and asked for signups from interested people back at the beginning of 2014.

There were enough ladies who wanted to participate that we had 3 groups: Twilter Round Robin Group A, Twilter Round Robin Group B, Twilter Round Robin Group C. Our group was Group A

Basic Definition of a Round Robin quilt exchange:

Round Robin quilts are long-term projects in which each person works on other peoples’ projects during the time of the round robin, passing along a quilt idea, fabric, and a rapidly growing partial quilt top to each participant until the quilt ends back in the original quilter’s possession.

For me, it all started off with a pattern from electric quilt, a fabric choice & then a block.

center for round robin quilt darla

Here’s the first question I am asked when talking about the round robin: How does it work?

Generally, a round robin quilt (as our group did it) is an agreement between friends or strangers and friends to work on a quilt of someone else’s with the understanding that they will work on yours in return.

My role in the round robin:

  1. I made the center of the quilt. I decided what colors to be used & original quilt direction.
  2. I selected fabrics for the quilt to use in the quilt.
  3. I provide some kind of guidelines or suggestions to the others in the group for working on the quilt.
  4. I send the quilt onto the next person in the list (in the mail or in person). I am always sending to the same next person.
  5. I receive someone else’s quilt in the mail, with their center (or more), their fabrics, their instructions. I am always receiving a quilt from the same previous person.
  6. I work through an appropriate design to add a border to the outside of the quilt. Using math, graph paper, books or websites for inspiration, sometimes electronic quilt blocks or suggestion from Electric Quilt 7 (EQ7).
  7. I follow general guidelines by the round robin coordinator for each round to help spur imagination or direct the appropriate design. Not to be used religiously with all quilts in all situations, but to help stretch each quilter, and attempt to provide harmony with the finished project.
  8. I finish my section of the new border, sometimes making changes due to size restrictions, or fabric shortages which happens because we’re not always great at figuring out in advance what fabrics others would be appealing to the general design or just underestimation. Sometimes this step also requires purchasing fabric of our own.
  9. I write down something interesting in the process in the quilt journal. (optional) I write my name on a label provided by the original quilter (optional, but fantastically helpful in the end).
  10. I send the quilt top with my new border to the same next person in line.
  11. Receive the new quilt, repeat steps 5-10 until the original quilt comes back. I have a full quilt top and a full label and journal.

Twilter Round Robin Group A final collage

 

The coordinator has a lot of decisions to make before getting the round robin started.

The round robin coordinator’s role:

  1. They decide the groups (if more than 6 want to be part of the round robin) 5-6 people seem to be a good match for this round robin.
  2. They create a deadline for each border swap.
  3. The estimate the approximate amount of each type of fabric needed to make the quilt work, suggest the amount of background fabric, focus fabric, and other fabric to be used in making of a quilt top.
  4. The estimate the sizes of each of the borders to be proportional to the space on the quilt.
  5. They create general guidelines to help direct the future quiltmakers down a path to help create a good quilt and/or to ask people to work out of their own comfort zones.
  6. They coordinate the addresses and order of each person to do the round robin.
  7. They answer general questions, help figure out if deadlines need adjusted.
  8. They type up all the info and get it to the participants. Follow up if needed in some areas. Perhaps some handholding or drama-gathering if needed in some groups.
  9. Remind us it’s all fun.

Round Robin Twilter Group A

As you can see above, we had 6 different quilts with 6 different personalities and styles.

How does the passing of the quilts work?

Because we had a round that we passed quilts on to each other, and each person was in a different order, we were able to affect each quilt at a different stage of its development.

  • The first two quilts each of us received, we were only beginning to shape the look and feel of the quilt to follow.
  • The next round brought the middle into focus, the meat of the quilt,
  • The last two rounds were on the finishing side of the round, these were larger & took up more time & fabric.

Our round went like this:

Daisy passes to me, I pass to Diane, Diane pass to Laura, Laura pass to Tami, Tami pass to Tina, Tina pass to Daisy.

twilter round robin how the quilts got passed in a round

And each of us had our own version of that. The drawing above shows how the quilts were passed around.

My role in the round robin Group A, and the quilts as I saw them in the order I worked on them

Round 1 – Daisy

Since Daisy’s was the first round robin quilt I saw, it was the first one I worked on, and thus the smallest round to do.

This is a collage of the completed quilt of Daisy’s (on the left), the block as I received it, and the block as I finished it.

daisys finished quilt center and my portion

Once completed, I wrote in the journal, and on the label, then sent it in the mail to Diane.

Once Daisy was finished with the next quilt – Tina’s quilt, she sent it in the mail to me. As you will see I was always receiving from Daisy and sending to Diane. So I really only had to have 1 address.

Round 2 – Tina

Tina’s quilt only had her center and Daisy’s first border. The sky was the limit here.

tinas finished quilt center and my portion

The picture above is Tina’s finished quilt on the left. Top right is the original block, middle right is the quilt top as I received it, bottom right is the quilt top I sent out.

Round 3 – Tami

At the “halfway point” everyone was working on the opposite person’s quilt. I was working on Tami’s quilt when she was working on mine.

tamis finished quilt center and my portion

 

The picture above is Tami’s finished quilt on the left. Top right is the original block, middle right is the quilt top as I received it, bottom right is the quilt top I sent out.

Round 4 – Laura

Laura’s quilt was based on neutral fabrics. Greys and browns dominated the landscape of this quilt top with dramatic golds and blue hues thrown in for a smidge of color

lauras finished quilt center and my portion

 

The picture above is Laura’s finished quilt on the left. Top right is the original block, middle right is the quilt top as I received it, bottom right is the quilt top I sent out.

Round 5 – Diane

Diane’s quilt was mostly done. I was trying to figure out an appropriate finish for her quilt.

dianes finished quilt center and my portion

 

The picture above is Diane’s finished quilt on the left. Which is also the portion that I worked on and sent out to her. Top right is the original block, bottom right is the quilt top as I received it.

More notes about Round Robin Quilts & observations

Since it was a center-focused round robin where we added further borders to the outside of an already ‘finished’ project, so the projects usually take on a medallion feeling.

Each quilter has to essentially be a “border designer”, and has to be willing to either ‘do the math’ or make a program (like EQ7) do the math for them.

I used inspiration from either drawing graph paper, or Electric Quilt 7, or a book on borders, or pinterest pictures, or various books on techniques. Sometimes I tried several different versions of the quilt, but once I kept seeing one version in my mind more than 1 day, that is the variation I went with.

There is an option to do rows instead of medallion rounds, which would be the same amount of work on the last one as on the first one. This would work in a similar way, but are usually called “Row Robin” quilts instead.

The first round we received, we had a shortened timeframe, but we had less size to finish before sending it off. This was stressful for me, but I did get the quilt done by or close to the deadline most of the time.

Each swap we had different goals, different color pallets, different visions to try to work into the quilts. It is truly a good way to sew out of the comfort zone.

And since the twilters who were interested in this swap were all over the US, the boxes got some post office traveling time around the country.

Some of the early quilts I worked on, I was completely surprised with at the end.

We got to learn about each person as reading through the journal entries of the original quiltmaker, in addition to things other people said in the journal. I was inspired by things in the journal in addition to other blocks and items I saw elsewhere. Many times the journal dictated the “tone” of the quilt more than anything!

Math was very helpful in the round robin. Having the original dimensions of each quilt, then trying to figure out how to put blocks together with appropriate spacers was challenging, but a heck of a lot of fun.

It helped me to use a program like EQ7 to help with the math and to visually see if the blocks I were doing were too big or not big enough or if I needed to add spacers.

Often times, I used my moleskin graph paper the most as it was the perfect thing to visually count other parts of the quilt.

Another note was to not try to overshadow the other people’s work. Since I try to do “big bold complicated” this was a constant worry for me, and something that at times reigned me in, and other times I probably ignored. Looking back, I ended up adding a darker border many times to the quilts I received. I don’t know if/what that says about me.

The most important part is to leave a part of yourself in the quilt that you’re working on. Being true to who I am is very important to me, even if I don’t always know what that looks like. So even during the “potential overshadows” I may/maynot have done, I still made quilts that were pleasing to me, that were something that I could do as well as I could.

That’s what matters & that is what’s special about these quilts.

In summary (visual)

The quilts as I worked on them, the center block, what I did to them, and their final product.

Round Robin Progress

Yay for round robins with friends!

 

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37.5 Twilters Entwined

May 4, 2015

Early April, after I got back from my slight failure of quilting the Samurai Sudoku quilt, I had a package waiting for me on the porch!

About a year (okay not quite that long) after we set aside time to do a Round Robin, they have finally come home to their owners. I am so proud of what everyone has done for me, with me in mind, and fantastic piecing skills and color sense!

Darlas round robin quilt finished top

One of the many amazing things about this quilt is that I managed not to look at it for the entire time it was away from home.

In the next post, I will outline how round robins work, but this one I will celebrate my fantastic round robin!

The 30 second explanation: I made the center, sent the fabrics and set of instructions, and others worked on my project just as I worked on theirs.

Daisy’s idea for this round robin was to include a Journal.

darlas round robin box before sending off

I covered my journal with pretty paper from michaels. Sent along the fabrics I posted here above.

darlas rr journal covered

And the ladies doing my round robin wrote all up in the journal too!

I am going to share the rounds and journal too.

I passed my center

center for round robin quilt darla

With my scribblings

darlas journal into page

Then Diane blew up the block to something fantastic & bigger!

darlas round robin dianes round

She posted her thoughts and ideas.

darlas rr journal dianes page

It was great seeing the designs here on paper.

Then she sent to Laura.

darlas round robin lauras round

Who came up with the first mention in the journal about the Entwined border mentioned on Quilter’s Cache site.

darlas rr journal lauras page

But the quilt was too small.

And then the quilt was sent to Tami, who did folded fabrics on all the quilts I saw her work on.

darlas round robin tamis round

And Tami had all sorts of ideas going that I even got 2 journal pages from her. More than that, but these two pages were different, showing the evolution of an idea!

darlas rr journal tamis page 1

darlas rr journal tamis page 2

Its interesting to see the creative process. I LOVE it. By the way some other mention of the Entwined border was here also.

And then the quilt and journal journeyed over to Tina.

darlas round robin tinas round

Who ended up taking the Entwined border idea and running with it, just modifying it slightly to fit Tina & me!

darlas rr journal tinas page

Which also reminds me of my weave quilt that I recently finished the top.

So three Entwined mentions help set me for this in name of the quilt.

And then our fearless leader, Daisy got to round it off.

darlas round robin daisys round

There is such great quilting space here. I love the subtleness of the darker shade of pink. It actually lightens up the center of the quilt a bit.

darlas rr journal daisys page

And yes, it was worth the wait.

So then the final project sent back to me and I found some dark that I had used in the early rounds and just did a quick small border on the outside. I did this because when I went to quilt my Sudoku quilt, I was leaving lots of room on the edges and was ultimately going to cut off a lot of that. This happened 2 days before I put the border on. So I went into paranoia mode about this wonderful quilt top, so to preserve the points, one final round added.

I really didn’t look at this quilt when it was traveling around. I was determined to make it a surprise. I may or may not have been the only one surprised by my quilt in the end. Each group member posted in flickr group when we were finished with our sections. I found I could post to flickr, tag it for a group, but not look through the group.

We had our 6 members. Some groups had 5, some had disastrous setbacks at first.

I trusted my group, and was such a proud member of the group. And they did great on my quilt!

darlas round robin start to finish

We also signed backing labels!

Darla Pink and Purple Round Robin top and name panel

And I am proud to say I have already finished piecing the back!

twilters entwined pink round robin backing

And the journals was just so yummy & special. My favorite non-quilty part!

Darla RR Journal Collage