Friday, January 26, 2007

My Work In Progress

My brite logs quilt before I added the borders.
This is my current WIP and my goal is to have the quilting finished by the end of next week. Of course I have been quilting this one for about 3 months now off and on between customer quilts. It will be entered in the Fiber Arts Fiesta this year and the deadline is beginning to loom ahead. Right now seems like there are million things keeping me from working on this. I just need to schedule time on it to get it finished. I will post some in progress photos of it next time I put it back on the longarm. I am figuring about 3-6 hours of quiltng and it will be ready to trim and attach the binding, hanging sleeve and label.............oh the end is in sight!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

You Can Indeed Make A Silk Purse Form A Sow's Ear!

The first photo of the fabric with the boomerangs on it is the challenge fabric that was the reason for my quilt. The second photo is a close up of one of my shapes where you can see the background fabric as the predominant fabric. Each of the blocks "well if you can call them blocks" has a part of the fabric in it, with the exception of the largest block which is a semi circle. I figure if I cut that fabric apart into just the colors I would then be able to separate myself from those hideous boomerangs and just concentrate on color alone.

The finished quilt is off to Phoenix where it will hang for a couple of weeks to be judged by a viewers choice contest. I will see how it fared against the other creative entries the first week of February. There were 26 quilters that accepted this fabric but not all of them will complete an entry. I do know that there are some that have finished and others who gave up and admitted defeat.

Now that this one is out the door I can concentrate on my brite log cabin quilt. For me it is all about the process. Once a quilt is finished I am pretty much done with it with the exception of just admiring it as I would my children. This one will be hanging in my daughters room once it returns home. She has just fallen in love with the colors and design.................she did not care for the fabric that this began with.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

My First Quilt For 2007 Finished!

Well it is finished! This was a hard project. I had to begin with a fabric so ugly it sent me screaming from the room. In the end I finally rethought my first idea and decided I would try to do this challenge after all. This gave me less than a month to make this quilt.
The first step was the hardest and that was just deciding to actually do this challenge. I had decided on the round shapes I ended up manking. These are made in a rather spontaneous manner and I made them as I went. The was no preplanning. I first cut up the challenge fabric into its various colors leaveing me with piles of just color in the various little designs on the fabric. Then I concentrated on making the round shapes useing chalenge fabric in each of them with the exception of the very large shape that is a semi circle. This one was actually my trial and I liked it so kept it for the compostion. I kept working with parts until I felt there were enough. I then rethought my background color. The origional blue became the binding.
We needed to try a new techinque for this challenge and I did several. I made the round shapes which I had never tried. I also incoorporated non quitng cottons in many of the shapes. The shapes were also satin stitched to the background as they were raw edge.
In the end I was quite happy with the composition. I am most pleased with the allover quilting design I used for the just sort of happended and I am calling it swirls and spikes!

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Today will be a long day!

I cannot believe that I am down to the wire on this challenge. I need to quilt it today and attach the binding tomorrow. That means some serious time with Merlin (my longarm). I have threads picked and waiting. Now I just have to begin with that first stitch. It seems once I begin that the ideas just flow. Here is the top. I now wish I had taken a photo of the fabric before I began but it was so ugly I decided not to. I will refer to a link where a photo can be seen in a later post.

Sunday, January 7, 2007

In Praise of a Mess

This morning I was on the phone with a quilting friend, and having a cordless phone this enables me to wander wherever I like. We were discussing something fabric related so I wandered into my studio and sat in my chair. Well let me tell you I have been working on a project so the usual mess was even more of a clutter. During the conversation my eye happened to catch the fabric I had been working with on my challenge quilt. I had been pulling pieces of stash out of the drawers and previewing them and occasionally cutting off a piece to use. Well the top two pieces were just singing at me from that pile where they had be haphazardly tossed. One was a metallic blue green with gold and the other a deep orange/rust also with gold metallics........................what a pair. I am defiantly going to have to begin with the two of them and go from there in adding more fabrics!

Friday, January 5, 2007

The Advantages of Being a Packrat

I have to say that I do have a tendency to collect all sorts of odds and ends in the hopes that someday they will find a place in my work. Last night as I was working on my challenge quilt, which is almost a finished top, I was using my embroidery threads to satin stitch all the raw edges of the pieces to the background fabric. It occurred to me that I do have quite the collection of threads. Where ever did all of these threads come from? I am sure when I purchased them each of them was selected for some reason. Were I to go to the store with my top and select these threads today I would likely not find them, or pay a fortune to acquire them. In the end I would likely only buy a limited selection of colors and my quilt would not have the same sparkle that it does.

In working on this current mystery project I also decided it was time to really start doing something with those two big plastic bins of scraps set aside for "crazy quilt" projects. I did use some for my last quilt and it sure added some extra shine. Those satins and other unknown fabric content fabrics are a challenge to work with but they really have a welcome place in my work. I am actually thinking of using them in some of my more scrappy projects as well.

Until I figure out how to attach the actual photo here is a link to my last quilt in which I used my stash of assorted crazy fabrics:

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Enchanting Journey

As the new year begins I began to think that it would be good to record my thoughts, creative processes and activities. I had resisted setting up a blog because of the time required but have decided to give it a try as a beginning to the incoming year.

I hope to keep a record of my quilting and ideas. Hopefully this format will enable me to analyze my thoughts and help in the creative process as well as allow my friends to view my work and give me feedback.

My current project is a challenge quilt and it is a true challenge. The biggest challenge is the short time remaining to complete this project. At this point I do not want to reveal to much about this piece because being a challenge I feel it is secretive and I want to wait till the piece is finished to explain the processes in its creation.