Saturday, January 24, 2015

Quilt Memory Lane

My house had to be fumigated for termites this week and so I spent a couple of nights at my good friend and neighbor Esther's house.  Esther was the person who draged me to my first quilt guild meeting way back in 1995!  I had been making quilts for some years at that point, but moreless in isolation,  going to those meetings and seeing what other people were doing was more than inspiring, it was transformational!!!!
I walked into Esther's guest room and saw this on the wall.  It was one of those : Wow, did I make that?!  moments.  I had moreless forgotten about it but I made this quilt for Esther for her birthday not to long after I experienced the above mentioned epiphany.  Ester was into Amish style quilts and that got me started on a series of solids myself!  I think this quilt was about learning how to make Triangle Half Squares?!
I was not a very confident machine quilter at the time but I could quilt a straight line so I filled up all the blank spaces with straight lines!  
I'm not big on fancy labels but I checked to see if I'd made one and I was surprised to find this:
A testament to our friendship more than my drawing skills!  lol. It really does pay to add labels 'cause I could not have remembered that much info. about that quilt otherwise!
Across from this quilt was a wall hanging that Esther made about the same time!
Esther's own design, isn't it beautiful!
And also hanging in this room a "stack and whack" quilt, Esther made way back when that was a "new" thing,  probably around 1998?! 
Hard to believe all those colorful pin wheels came from one very colorful tropical print?!
I love the border and the background fabric really helps make the pin wheels 'pop'!
It was machine quilted by our local long arm quilter group (a novelty back then) by Mary Lundberg of "Flying Geese Quilters".
A year or so later the "Stack and Whack" craze had become so popular I remember going to a big quilt show and it seemed like every other quilt was that style!  It's funny how styles come and go?!

Well,  I did not expect to have a visit down Quilt Memory Lane when I had my house fumigated but it certainly made the chore a lot more fun! 
Happy Weekend!
cheers, Claire W.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Inspiration from Randy's Post...

About a month ago my friend Randy posted some really great pix of a small- private-collection-quilt-show being exhibited in the owner's apartment in Paris. Randy's friend Will knew that she would be visiting during the show and invited her along.  What a collection! And displayed in the owner's wonderful apartment!

I was so taken by one of the quilts pictured in Randy's post that I started working on my version of it the next day!  Now a little over a month later the top is almost done!
I wanted to make my version really scrappy like the original but I also wanted to make it with flannels which I did not really have enough variety in my flannel scrapes so I settled on a more coordinated look.  I must thank Randy not only for the inspiration of her post but also for the gift of several of the fabrics I used in the quilt including the yellow and red rose with purple background fabric which really pulls the whole design together!
Here is the original!
Here's how I started:  I thought the dark center print was very striking so I found a fat quarter that approximated that feel.  I decided on the size of the central blocks and then cut foundation fabric to help keep the shape of the outer rectangles and triangles under control.
 I figured there was way toooo much bias on the edges to just strip piece those sections.
Then it was just a matter of sew a strip-flip-iron-snip-audition-repeat.
audition...looking from a distance sometimes helps?! 
I plan on making this quilt again only using my 1800's scraps or maybe 
'30's.  Then it really will be scrappy like the original!  The foundation fabric was a cheap loose weave cotton which I would not recommend!  It did not hold it's shape very well. I think the next one I will use blank newsprint paper.  It will keep it's shape better and tear away easily when I'm ready to sew the final large pieces together.  
I feel like my quilting is off to a great start this year lots of fun ideas in the air (and internet)!
Happy sewing and quilting in 2015!
cheers, Claire W.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Well, Ive been getting in the Christmas Spirit by playing with my Christmas Fabric!
 I had this partial layer cake of really cute xmas Fabrics by Riley Blake.
  I had this idea to use the same layout as this flannel quilt I made a couple of months ago with a few minor adaptions...
The inner borders are pretty similar but by virtue of the 10" squares I had to piece the outer border...
That was as far as the partial (only 27 patches) layer cake would take me.  Not enough fab for a second outer border so it's quite a bit smaller than the flannel quilt.  It will make a cute wall hanging for someone!
Have a wonder filled Holiday Season!
Cheers, CW