Quilts from Quilt Market 2016 • part 2

The following quilts were exhibited in the center of Quilt Market this year, in a special exhibit.  They are the prize winners from Houston, and the area around them was always calm and quiet, so it was a nice place to visit.  Here are the rest of the pictures I took.

QMBrown_WhyKnot

Why Knot? is by Tanya Brown, who writes: “This quilt was inspired by watching my Cub Scout son practice knot tying, an exercise designed to torment the uninitiated.  In this piece, the metaphorical nightmare of becoming hopelessly engulfed in one’s own knots is made real.”  Follow the link on her name to read her (hilarious) description of how this piece came to light, as well as interesting reading on her process.
QMFleschner_RavendaleStar1

Ravendale Star, by Linda Fleschner, is a quilt where she did not design the entire thing before she started but knew that she would “use the Ravendale paisley print in a Radiant Star.”  She goes on to say, “When that was finished, I designed the border feather, staying with a black and white palette–a big departure from the bright colors I normally use.”QMFleschner_RavendaleStar2 QMFleschner_RavendaleStar3

(Okay, I took this one because it bulges slightly in the middle, just like mine do.  However, mine aren’t as intricate or beautiful or amazing as hers.  This is my make-me-feel-better-about-my-creations shot.)
QMFogg_VisionsApplePie1

Laura Fogg‘s Visions of Apple Pie.  Her artist’s notes say: “Looking up into a loaded apple tree on a hot summer day, I imagined all of the things I could make with the glorious fruit.”

QMFogg_VisionsApplePie2 QMGorder_AnniversaryRoses

Anniversary Roses, by Susan Gorder.  She writes: “The appliqué rose blocks and borders were my take-along project on many trips over several years.  Once the top was finished, it took me another six months to hand quilt.  Instead of traditional grid quilting behind the appliqué, I decided to quilt feathers and to repeat elements of the border design around the center blocks.”QMHayward_WhiteHoles

White Holes by Peter Hayward.  His notes state that “I wanted to take the basic concept behind op art quilts to a new level by adding color gradation and concentric lines as a way of enhancing the 3-D effect.”QMIke_magicalZone1

Magical Zone, by Keiko Ike.  She writes: “I wanted to create a mysterious quilt with design and color.  I perfectly pieced the extremely sharp points in the Mariner’s Compass, which is normally difficult to finish flat.”QMIke_magicalZone2 QMIke_magicalZone3 QMKotani_CoastalTown1

A Coastal Town is made by Nobuko Kotani and quilted by “14 friends from Kanagawa.”QMKotani_CoastalTown2

She writes: “This started from a fabric I found while I was on a trip.  The pattern on it was interesting, so Katy designed a town with many unique houses along a coast.”QMKotani_CoastalTown3 QMKotani_CoastalTown4 QMKotani_CoastalTown5

Can you tell I loved all the details?QMMarquez_Dance1

Dance, by Marisa Marquez (of Madrid, Spain): “Every little girl’s dream is to become a dancer–elegant and graceful.  As we grow up, we continue dreaming.”QMMarquez_Dance2 QMMulheren_AudreyII

Audrey II Plus 3, by Marianne Mulheron.  Her notes say that “In response to a Spring Into It quilt challenge, I used real springs to attach three dimensional baby plants to their carnivorous mother, Audrey II, from the movie Little Shop of Horrors.”QMNozawa1_mysteriousletter

Mysterious Letter, by Noriko Nozawa.  Her notes say: “The Kana letter, which is a Japanese inherent letter, is the main theme of this work.  Although I used the Japanese traditional letter, I added a sense of fun by changing the color, placing the letter randomly, and repeating it.”QMNozawa2_mysteriousletter

I love all the different textures in her quilt.QMPerejda_ArroyoGrandeAlbum1

Arroyo Grande Album is by Andrea Perejda.  She writes: “Folk-art appliqué has been an interest of mine for many years.  I started with Threadbear’s pattern for their Civil War Bride quilt top.  I altered it considerably, adding personally meaningful motifs and appliqué sashings.”QMPerejda_ArroyoGrandeAlbum2 QMWasilowski1_birdonbranch

Laura Wasilowski‘s Bird on a Branch #6.  “This quilt,” she writes, “depicts a view of my front garden.”QMWasilowski2_birdonbranch QMWeichselbaum_Exuberance

Exuberance, by Enid Gjelten Weichselbaum, was “[i]spired by the layering of colors created in watercolor paintings.”  She “used layers of bright organzas to ‘grow’ a joyful bouquet of flowers and a transparent vase.QMWeichselbaum_Exuberance2

That’s it for my quilt show today.

Shine Circle quilted

I’ve been working on my own quilts, finally tackling the hard job of quilting through two layers of batting (some make this look easy, but really, they are lying. . . unless they are on a big machine).

OCT Working on borders

I’m also working out the thorny problem of those pesky border instructions for our Oh Christmas Tree border post, which is coming up quickly.  Don’t worry.  I’m on it.

ChristmasTreeLogoSM

It’s all coming July 2nd–just in time to stay home that weekend and sew!  We’re almost finished with that quilt. Just keep on  quilting; we want to see YOUR quilts next year in Houston, and then Quilt Market!

A Look at the Quilts at Quilt Market 2016

Giveaway Banner

First, I need to report on the giveaway held in the last post–all your comments were terrific! and seemed to be a healthy range from “just the kids” to “adults have a great time, too.”  I really liked the ones that said to include them both–so now you know.

The winner was Number 7HalloweenGiveawayJune2106. . . and it was Leslie, so I’ll get those shipped out to her right away so she can keep going on her Halloween quilt.  She wrote: Leslie comment HalloweenI do miss the homemade donuts that our neighbor used to make and for which we, as children, would double back around for.  Now it’s only wrapped candies, and we Moms all sort even those for scary things, but I do like Leslie’s perspective.  Okay, here we go with the quilts.

QMBleiweiss_TuttiFruittiAlleyway1

Tutti-Frutti Alleyway, by Susan Bleiweiss.  She writes: “This quilt is part of my ongoing series of art quilts which celebrate the use of vibrant color and whimsical imagery.”QMBleiweiss_TuttiFruittiAlleyway2 QMBranjord_BlueprintLife15347 Redfox Circle. . . Blueprint of a Life, by Sandra Branford.  Her artist’s statement: “Using my collage skills, I created a fantasy story board of my imaginative home.  Through my original designs, I define myself and take the viewers on a journey through my mind. . . some wit, a few brains, and loads of imagination.”

QMBranjord_BlueprintLife2

And as an English teacher, I smiled when I saw the misspelling in this text.  (You’ll have to find it yourself, and no, it’s not “hors d’oeuvres.”) Whenever I find typos and misspellings in things I write, I die a little of embarrassment, so I understand how things can get overlooked.QMBrown_Triology

Trilogy, by Peggy Brown.  “My goal,” she writes, “was to start with a painted free-flowing design, add collage and overlays of more paint, and compose a well-designed and unique painting on fabric — an art quilt.”QMCoatesPerez_PinkBird1

Pink Bird, by Judy Coates Perez  (Check out the quilting in the following photos!)  She write that she likes “painting images inspired by nature, using photos of real birds as reference for a pose, then altering them graphically; simplifying details, creating new patterns, and choosing different colors to create unique stylized birds and plants.”QMCoatesPerez_PinkBird2 QMCoatesPerez_PinkBird3 QMCoatesPerez_PinkBird4 QMDaniels_LongWinter1

Long Winter Flower Basket Sampler, by Eileen Daniels.  During a “long, cold winter in Wisconsin” she “became addicted to embroidery.”  She writes that she “spent hours listening to podcasts by Jonathan Welton and to my husband reading books aloud as I designed and embroidered this quilt.”QMDaniels_LongWinter2

I noticed more embroidery in this show than I’ve seen before–a welcome addition!QMDaniels_LongWinter3 QMDay_CubanBallerina1

Cuban Ballerina, by Jennifer Day.  She writes: “This quilt is based on a photograph that I took of a ballerina with the National Cuban Ballet in Havana.  She is dancing in a wonderful old building built in the early 1900s that has fallen into ruin since 1959.  This quilt is a testament to the young ballerina who is gracing the building with her beauty in dance.”QMDay_CubanBallerina2

More threadwork, but this time by machine.  It was stunning.QMRehak_TeaforTwo1

Nancy Rehak‘s Tea for Two.  “Inspired by Cindy Needham,” she writes, “I took an old tablecloth of my mom’s and created a quilt.  It was a challenge for me to design my quilting to highlight the tablecloth.  I named it Tea for Two because my dad used to sing that song to us when we were little.”QMRehak_TeaforTwo2 QMRidgway_TreeTokyo

A Tree Grows in Tokyo, by Helen Ridgeway and her friends: Anita Crane, Mary Ann Hildebrand, Linda Humphrey, Marilyn Lampman, Holly Nelson, Bonnie Sprado and Barbara Woodman.  The artists’ statement reads: “This was a collaboration by the eight members of the Sew Be It Bee.  We each hand appliquéd a block from Kumiko Sudo’s book.  One of our members, Mary Ann Hildebrand, designed and made the tree, using a scrunching technique, and made the cherry blossoms out of Yo-yos from a synthetic fabric.”

QMShearer_EagertoLearn1

Gillian Shearer’s Eager to Learn – Afghanistan.  “In 2011, in Wakhan Corridor, Afghanistan, Ellend Jaskol recorded this image of two girls eager to learn at a new school in Sust,” she writes.  “They were studying in a temporary tent until the school was completed.  The power of educating girls is slowly breaking through.  ‘When you educate a girl, you educate a nation.’ ”
QMShearer_EagertoLearn2 QMSim_Journey1

Journey, by Grace Sim.  She writes that “This quilt allowed me to try techniques I have wanted to try for a long time — fabric manipulation, liberated blocks, crazy quilting, modern quilting, Broderie Perse, and the use of buttons and crystals.  I used them to form my favorite Italian landscape.”QMSim_Journey2 QMSim_Journey3 QMSim_Journey4

More quilts are coming.

I realized in doing this post that if a person desires to become a quilt artist, it’s pretty important that they create a place in space to reside: whether it be a blog page, or a gallery of images, or just a single place where people like me can go and search in order to read more about them. There are many platforms that can be used: Instagram, Pinterest, blogging, Tumblr, etc.

I was unsuccessful in a finding a couple of the above artists.  In this day and age of >instant< and >quick< and rushrushrush there is a tendency to overlook the long form of blogs.  But they become important when looking at the bigger picture, or, your journey as a quilter. So if you are just starting, you might consider building your own little place where people can find you.  While there may not be much more than four walls and a piece of carpet (where others might have several fully-furnished rooms), it will be your space.

Hallowe’en 1904 QAL–Step Five • Giveaway

Step 5 halloweenQAL

ATTENTION!!  THE LAST TWELVE REMAINING PATTERNS OF HALLOWE’EN-1904 IN THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD ARE NOW AVAILABLE FOR SALE AT PRIMITIVE GATHERINGS ONLINE.  

ONCE THEY ARE GONE. . . THEY ARE GONE!!!

Okay, see the rest of the post for the backstory.

halloweenqal_pattern cover

When I was at Quilt Market, I stopped to see Alma Allen of Blackbird designs in her booth in the Moda section and asked her if she had any remaining Hallowe’en-1904 patterns.  Because I’m running this QAL, I get a lot of questions like, “Where can I get the pattern?” for as you know, they’ve been rather elusive.  Downright scarce, actually.QMarket_ModaDesigner4

 (Alma is shown above with her newest quilt, The Raven.)

“Well, actually,” she said (and I paraphrase), “I was going through the warehouse and found the last box of those–didn’t know I had them.  There’s twelve.  Would you like them?”  Gulp, golly. . . YES! for I knew that a lot of people had been looking for them.  I walked over to Lisa Bongean’s Primitive Gatherings Booth across the way (Lisa is the nicest person ever), and since it was the last day of Quilt Market stammered out my request asked her if she would buy them and get them for us?  Yes, she said.  And she has.

So here’s a link to the LAST REMAINING 12 PATTERNS ON THE FACE OF THE EARTH that you can buy.  Get over there right now and get them.  Alma does not intend to make this available as a PDF file after these are sold, so if you want one, you know what to do.  Well. . . actually there’s only 11 now.  (I just bought one.)

 

Giveaway Banner

And yes, I do have a giveaway today, but it’s not the pattern (go and get one, NOW, before they sell out).  Read through to the end to find out what our giveaway is for today. Now, on to the business of our Quilt-A-Long.

Halloweenqal4_0

If you remember, I left you with the instructions to get your wonky/appliqued stars done and get them assembled into a block, and add those corner triangles.  This month, you are going to make half-square triangles (HSTs) until your rotary cutter falls apart.  I’ve updated the previous post about making wonky stars, as I refined the method as I went.

After making all these wonky stars, I just have to say it’s probably about similar the work in terms of appliqué vs. wonky.  You’ll be sick of either method by the time you are done, but you’ll also be an expert in that method, too.  (Making gives, and making takes.)

Halloween4_2 laid out

I laid all the blocks on my kitchen floor to motivate me to get going again.  Notice that three of the “starry” blocks have orange stars, one has black stars and one is a mix.  The big triangle borders are varied; I used deep green triangles on that one in the second row to the far right, but it’s so dark, it reads as blackish.
Halloween4_3

Now it’s time to make half-square triangles until your hand falls off. . .or your rotary blade needs changing.  I use Bloc-Loc rulers to make my life easier in trimming, as it has a groove in the underside that nestles onto that fold of your seam, keeping it from moving around while you trim.  I can do a whole bunch at one sitting and I think they are more accurate.Halloween4_5

Now commandeer the guest bedroom, and lay out your star blocks.  Lay out your HSTs around the edges.  Because we use the 8-at-a-time method (talked about in an earlier post) I have multiple sets of 8 identical HSTs.  I used three sets per block, swapping out a few here and there to keep the eye moving around my quilt.Halloween4_4

Sew them on, as discussed in Step Three (that earlier post I keep referring to).  Halloween4_6

Because I had four appliquéd blocks, it was a no-brainer to put them in the position above for the initial run-through of placement.  One by one, I put up the star blocks, auditioning them.  Of course, I could have planned out where the dark triangles were and the HST color placement, but I didn’t.Halloween4_ninesquares

This is how I ended up, complete with a whoops: Halloween4_7ooops

I’ll fix that today.  But now I’m caught up with our QAL, and getting ready for the last step (yes!!) in our quilt making: the borders.

Here’s our schedule:

Step 1 (Preparation): February 13, 2016–buy all the fabrics and find the pattern.  Mine was purchased from Common Threads in Waxahachie, TX (www.commonthreadsquilting.com).  The quilt measures 90 by 90, which is too large for me, so I’m only doing nine blocks.  Each block is 20″ square, and with the outer borders, that should come to roughly  65″ square.  I may change my mind, but this looks good from here.

Step 2: March 13, 2016–Cut out the quilt: the tan backgrounds of the squares, the border triangles, the smaller half-square triangles, strips for the wonky stars, but save the piano key border for later.

Step 3: April 13, 2016–Assemble four blocks and add large appliques; use Thelma’s method (of Cupcakes and Daisies) for adding the curlicue stem. Make and add half-square triangeles (HSTs) around these blocks, using the 8-at-a-time method of HSTs.

Step 4: May 13,  2016–Cut and make the wonky star blocks from templates and strips.  I’m doing five blocks, so will need to make twenty wonky stars and true them up.  Add on the large outside triangles.

Step 5: June 13, 2016–Assemble the rest of the star blocks, by adding their HST borders. In the pattern, they are mixed up and varied, but also harmonized (some have a mix of orange and black, some have just black, some have just orange.)  Make your own rules and go with it.

Step 6: July 13,  2016–Arrange the blocks on your design wall and stitch together.  Cut the pieces for your borders.  Make the four corner pinwheels.  Sew borders together and attach them to the quilt.

Yes, I combined the last two months, so we’ll be done early–so you can get it quilted!

Giveaway Banner

Steam-A-Seam 2 giveaway

When I was at Market, I talked the people at the Steam-A-Seam booth (The Warm Company, who also make Warm and Natural Quilt Batting) telling them how much I liked their fusible product for the quilt I’ve been making (I used it on all the appliqué parts). I also used it on my Christmas Tree Skirt and really am a fan. Next thing I know she’s handed me some packages for a giveaway, so here I am, giving it away.  There are two packages of Steam-A-Seam 2 sheets (5 sheets, 9 x 12 inches in size) and two packages of Lite Steam A Seam 2 (8 sheets of 9 x 12 inches).  The Lite Steam A Seam 2 has upper and lower case letters printed on the the release sheet, so when you fuse them down, then cut them out, they’ll be going the correct direction.  They also include one blank sheet for your design. Very cool product.

To win all FOUR packages (share with a friend), please leave a comment telling me if you think Halloween should be a kids’ holiday (candy, traditional costumes and pumpkin carving) or an adult holiday (more sophisticated, more zombies, blood and gore, fewer pumpkins).  I’ll pick a winner and announce it on the next post. UPDATE: Giveaway now closed.

1halloweenQAL logo

Patriotic Home Sweet Home

Patriotic Home Sweet Home_3

Had a little fun yesterday, prepping up for the class I’m teaching this morning.  Patriotic Home Sweet Home_2

I decided I needed a mini patriotic Home Sweet Home mini quilt to show for a class sample.Patriotic Home Sweet Home_front

Finished it last night.  It has to wait its turn to be quilted, as I’m already working on a bigger quilt right now.  Pattern is up on Craftsy and it will finish at about 18″ square.  Choosing all those fabrics was waaaay harder than I thought, so if you make this, take your time.  The square house in the lower right has fabric from my first pieced quilt, decades and decades and millennia ago.

Shine_quilting1

I unpinned Shine: The Circle Quilt, sandwiched in another layer of (wool) batting, and re-pinned it this morning, and I’m now starting to quilt it, digging into my Summer 2016 Goals.

07teachers-art4-popup

Just a wee post today, as I’m having fun teaching!

May’s Blocks (and some of June)

Random Number 6

Because my husband is busy this afternoon recovering from our trip (see below), I used an online generator to pick a winner today for the felt, and it’s Elizabeth (what a great name, eh?) who goes by catskillquilter.  Congratulations, Elizabeth!  I’ll be in touch to get that sent out to you.  I have two more giveaways lined up in the next couple of weeks, one courtesy of Uppercase Magazine, and the other from the Steam A Seam people (that one’s on June 13th–in conjunction with our continuing Hallowe’en 1904 QAL).  I’ll have some great news as well about that fabulous pattern.

MCM May 2016_Carla

Here we go, first with quilt blocks from our Mid-Century Modern Bee: Carla of Grace and Favor asked for a modern churn dash block, saying she likes mustard and plum.  Above is my block, but I was tempted by this, from @myquiltdiet:
Sawtooth Churndash

I thought it would be fun to try, but Carla said “Too much work!” I could hear the laugh in her voice, so I smiled and went with tweaking the center bars to give it a bit of a twist.  I hope she likes it.

Spelling Bee May

In our Spelling Bee Quilt Bee, Susan of PatchworknPlay asked for words to make up her saying, which she’ll reveal on her blog.   I first took three words with “w’s” but then Simone had none, so I gave two back, leaving me with the above.

Zion16_1

Since NOT staying at home seems to be the thing I do the best lately, we headed out Friday for a mini-reunion with my husband’s family in Zion National Park, about 7 hours away.  You can tell who has been coming there for ages (this makes about trip #20 for me) as we say “heading to Zion’s” as if there’s a possessive element there.  (However, I do feel like it’s “my” park.)  To try and catch up with my patchwork, I took some Chuck Nohara blocks on the road, stitching them in the car and in the park.
Zion16_2

We invested in new air mattresses this year, twin blow-up beds, and those of you who have slept on a queen air mattress with another person while it slowly deflates all night long, know exactly why I replaced our aging air mattress.  It also helps that my favorite camp quilt, Hearts in the Pines, is made for a twin.  The pattern is out of print, but you can find the blocks in this previous post.  My husband’s bed later on got a green nine-patch, but he left it off because it was. . .

Zion16_8

…pretty dang hot this weekend. Snapshot was from the next day, where it turned out to have a high of 103 degrees F (about 40 C.)Zion16_3

My husband and I, my son and his wife and boys always go out to dinner at Zion Pizza and Noodle Company the first night, as we all love their pizzas, and who wants to cook after setting up camp? I love their scallopy crusts.
Zion16_4

We were tasked with getting the S’more supplies.  I cracked up when I saw a whole section just dedicated to this.Zion16_5

We rejoiced to have my husband’s niece (shown here in the Virgin River with the  youngest of her six children) join us.  Several weeks ago she underwent surgery for a brain tumor, and while under anesthesia, had a stroke.  She awoke to a mostly paralyzed left side and has undergone significant physical therapy just to be able to walk with occasional hesitation.  But she’s walking! She’s our own little success story, and she and her husband and family are our very own heroes.Zion16_6 Zion16_7

Throwing rocks in the river was great entertainment for my grandson and the other small cousins. (No, he couldn’t lift that one.)Zion16_9

I left the river early because it was too hot, and went back to camp.  I picked up my Chuck Nohara stitching, sitting quietly in the shade, watching (and chasing away) the squirrels.  All of a sudden I hear a sound directly behind me, and using the reverse camera on my phone, caught this shot.  One of the other little cousins came running over, saying “Bambi’s here! Mom, Bambi’s here!”

Because of the above sitting quietly, I’m all caught up with my Chuck Nohara blocks from April and May:

April 2016 Chuck Nohara May 2016 Chuck NoharaNow to head into June!

Oh Christmas Tree QAL–STEP 5

STEP5XmasTree

Today is Step 5 of our Oh Christmas Tree Quilt-a-Long (#ohchristmastreeqal), following a pattern by Wendy of FlyingFishKits and which was published in Simply Moderne issue #3, by QuiltMania. As always, we have an assist from Wendy of  Wendy’s Quilts and More (blog) and wendyquiltsandmore (IG), as she is slightly ahead of us in her creating.

Giveaway Banner

And because of the nice people at National Non-Wovens, we also have a giveaway of 100% wool felt, and their new colors of their rayon/wool felt. Read through all the way to the end to find the giveaway. Giveaway is now closed.

This month we’ll look at possible under-the-tree scenes; there are four:

(1) the reindeer cavorting, as shown in the original pattern,

Wendy Full Tree

(2) Wendy’s packages,

(3) nothing, or

OhChristmasTree_Full Tree

(4) a nativity scene.

First, Wendy’s packages.

WendyPackages1

She has included photos, with a tape measure so you can see the overall length.  Remember, also, that she added a few extra flowers and leaves on her tree, as described in our last post. WendyPackages2

When I asked her about the packages, she wrote:

“You’ll see the boxes range from 2” to 3” and were really just cut from scraps of felt.  So whatever is left over.  I used threads to make them look like presents (including my Wonderfil Dazzle – which has bult in sparkle). And added a few novelty buttons from my button box.  I’m even going to add bows from ribbons once it’s quilted.”WendyPackages3

“So total length of presents = about 14”.  I just fiddled around until I was happy with the layout.  Sort the layout before stitching, because then you don’t need to stitch on the bits that will be covered up by another present.  I went for a range of colours and stitched a variety of patterns on them, just like real presents would appear under a tree.  I didn’t attempt balls or bikes, just kept it very simple.  You can imagine what might be in them.”
WendyPackages3 WendyPackages4back

I also asked her if she had embroidered them before, or after, she’d attached them to the backing:

“I had to check if I embroidered before or after I attached them.  The back view shows it was after.  I tend to take things cautiously and add more if I think it needs more.  Feel free to include that back view photo – sometimes it’s easier to remember if you’ve seen a photo.”

Thanks, Wendy–this is a great alternative!

Secondly, if you are going to do the reindeer, just follow the directions on the pattern, embroidering them before you put them on, then attaching them as we did the flowers and birds.

Third, do nothing.  I’ve heard from some of you, and there seems to be an ambivalence about whether or not to put anything.  You may want to hold off until you get your borders on, then decide.

OhChristmasTree_Undertree1Full Scene

Fourth, the nativity scene.  I looked and looked for something that might work, finally adapting a folk-style couple with Baby Jesus between them, found on an Eastern-European art site.  I had thought about a silhouette of Mary and Joseph, but it just didn’t look right with our folk art flowers and birds.  I tried making them larger, as I realize it looks now as if the birds could put Baby Jesus into their nests, but I would have had to adjust the background placement about 3 months ago, and there was no way I was going unpick everything and re-do that.  So I decided that they would just look like one of those Nativity Scenes we put up around our house: smaller, a replica of the Holy Family.  In  the end, I am happy with how they turned out, but I always try to give you an idea of what I was thinking.  If you are doing options 1, 2, or 3, we’ll see you next month when we’ll do the sawtooth border (border #1).  But keep reading for the Nativity Scene how-tos.

Holy Family

First up, the pattern, free of charge, no cost, no frills, and yes, you’ll have to improvise the manger and Joseph’s beard.  But the price is right.  Click this link in blue to download a PDF file of the pattern: Holy Family_OPQuilt  (Don’t click on the illustration.)  Print this out at 100% or larger (I used 100%).

JOSEPH

OhChristmasTree_0JosephPattern

Here is Joseph’s pattern, all cut out.

Basic steps:
1. Cut paper pattern pieces out; I cut a slit up Joseph’s robe pattern to get at the face and the under-robe.  I left the headscarf section on top in place for now.
2. Cut out the robe out of felt (don’t cut a slit up the center of the felt), then snip a slash in the middle to cut out triangle-shaped center, following the cut out of the paper pattern.  After doing that, cut pattern, freeing up the head scarf piece.  (I show it above all together, but really the paper pattern is in three parts.)
3. Cut face out of interfacing, and bond to face fabric–don’t make the face fabric too pink.  Joseph lived in the Mediterranean.
4. Cut under-robe, by tracing around the triangle-shape with a marking pencil, then cutting 1/4″ away from that tracing.  I tried to use stripes for both Mary and Joseph’s under-robes.
5. Cut out head scarf, by the same tracing method described above.
6. Cut out deep background out of black felt.  SEE BELOW.

OhChristmasTree_Joseph's underlay

I realized, after doing Mary, that the under-robe needed much more support than just cloth.  So I laid the pieces as shown above onto some black felt, and cut 1/4″ around everything.  That larger black felt piece (deep background) will be largely invisible, but is needed so the center section doesn’t become too floppy.
OhChristmasTree_1Joseph

7. Trim the face to 1/4″ around the interfacing.OhChristmasTree_2Joseph

8. Pinch around the lower edge to establish a fold line for appliqué.  No need to do the top as it will be hidden by the head scarf.OhChristmasTree_2aJoseph

9. Find the center, fold up the “chin” and pin in place.  OhChristmasTree_3Joseph

9 (cont’d.) Appliqué down the face lower edge (see above photo for details) to the black (deep background).  Fold under the top edge of the under-robe and appliqué that just under the face.  They need to touch. Place head scarf onto felt robe piece.  Fold under lower edge and attach to face opening in the felt with tiny stitches.  Then fold to the back and tack down everywhere.OhChristmasTree_4Joseph

This is how things looked from the back.OhChristmasTree_5Joseph

10. Center the under-robe/face piece behind the robe/head-scarf piece; pin.OhChristmasTree_6Joseph

Lifting up the edge, trim away the excess.OhChristmasTree_7Joseph OhChristmasTree_8Joseph

Tack into place from behind.  It will really be anchored by the embroidery stitches you do, but you don’t want it slipping around while you handle it.  All of the above steps took about 30 minutes; it looks longer because I’m describing them to you, but since this is smaller, the stitching goes quickly.

MARY

OhChristmasTree_Mary1pattern

Repeat basic steps with Mary, but there is no separate step for the head scarf.  Make a (deep background) piece out of black felt for Mary as you did for Joseph.  (I didn’t, and I wish I had, so ignore that tiny deep background piece above (and below) and create one as large as Joseph’s.)OhChristmasTree_Mary3pieces

In addition, DON’T trim the upper edge of Mary’s face piece until nearly the last step, as you need all that extra.  DO trim the “chin” area to 1/4″ seam allowance, then pinch along the fold line, as you did for Joseph’sOhChristmasTree_Mary2bfacefront

Pretend this is all on a (deep background) black felt piece, as is Joseph’s. It should be.  Construct in the same fashion, turning up lower edge of face and appliqué onto black felt piece, then do the under-robe the same as Joseph’s.  OhChristmasTree_Mary5assembled

Mary doesn’t have a head scarf that is a different piece of fabric.  Women in her day and religion didn’t show their hair, so I purposely didn’t make hair for her; you be the judge of what you want.OhChristmasTree_Mary4pinned

Pin the under-robe/face piece in place and tack down from the back, as you did for Joseph.  Sorry for the nighttime-on-the-sofa-cushions photo.OhChristmasTree_Mary6embroidered

Now add the embroidery.  I put several lines of “scarf” on her, alternating navy and red threads, then another line of “braid,” closer to her face, to lower her forehead (foreheads shouldn’t be too large otherwise they’ll look funny).  I used blue slightly slanted stem stitches, to give texture.  I did a back stitch to outline the fold of her robe, then up around her head, mostly to anchor the robe/face/deep background piece in place.  I did a backstitch about 1/3″ away at the hem, narrowing as it came near her face, then around the lower edge.  I added small flowers and decorative French knots.

OhChristmasTree_1Couple

Time to add some embroidery to Joseph.

OhChristmasTree_Undertree6

I did two lines of stem stitch on the scarf, acting as a braid holding it on.  Then I figured out his beard by tracing a shape off the pattern about 1/2″ long, as wide as the opening, and in a wide arc at the top on his face.  I used felted wool to get the right texture.  Tack that on.  Then start adding embroidery to the robe: back stitch, seed stitch, building up layers of design.

I actually gave some thought to the colors I used.  Knowing that red is for the Savior’s robes after He’s resurrected, I tried to incorporate that in.  Purple in my mind is for royalty, so Mary got some of that.  Of course, Mary has to be in blue–she just does.  I always think green is about life and living things, so Joseph got that color.  You decide what colors matter to you, and where to put them.  I stitched Joseph’s decorative lines in a variegated thread, so they have some depth to them.

OhChristmasTree_Undertree4

In stitching the vertical lines, be sure to get narrower near his face, and farther apart nearing the hem of his robe.  Add eyes.  They are not French knots, but merely a tiny stitch.  Set Mary and Joseph aside.

BABY JESUS

OhChristmasTree_Jesus1

Here are the pieces cut apart, with wool felt.  DON’T CUT THE YELLOW LIKE THIS.  I learned my lesson from Mary and Joseph and re-cut the lower yellow to be sort of a large oval; see below.OhChristmasTree_Jesus3

And here’s another DON’T DO.  Don’t appliqué the face ON the white.  I’ll show you a better way in a minute.OhChristmasTree_Jesus4

Here’s the face appliquéd on like his parents.

OhChristmasTree_Jesus5

Yes, he does resemble a Cabbage Patch Doll. OhChristmasTree_Jesus6

 So, instead, CUT OUT that oval-ish slit.  Tack the baby’s face in BEHIND the slit (easier to do at the beginning).  Stitch the swaddling cloth lines in blue around the face.  Then layer him on the yellow felt, with the red felt nestling in just below the white (see above, for the colors I chose).  Start anchoring everything down with stitches.  You can’t really see, but behind those purple cross-stitches is a small overcast stitch anchoring the white to the red to the yellow.OhChristmasTree_Jesus7

Now, doesn’t Baby Jesus’ face look better peeking out from behind the swaddling cloths?OhChristmasTree_Jesus8

I did the angled buttonhole stitch on his blanket, using yellow thread on the red, then tried to make a red fringe-looking stitch, as if there were fringe dangling down over the yellow (which becomes hay).  I did the hay stitches at the end.

Manger

The manger was a half circle of blue, into which I cut legs then straightened out the bottom edge, so it looks sort of like a pot with legs.  Or a step stool with a thick seat.  It’s slightly less than the width of the baby’s assembly.

All of the decorative wood-grain stitching was done as before I tacked it onto the background.  That is simply a stem stitch, done loosely and jaggedly, in a thinner thread (size 16 pearl cotton, but 12 would be fine), trying to imitate wood.  The small buttonhole stitch is how I sewed it to the background, and that happens when attaching all of the Baby Jesus’ unit.

Star and Star Trails

OhChristmasTree_UndertreeStarCut a 1 -1/2″ circle of yellow felt, and a 1 -1/4″ circle of light orange felt.  Embroider them as shown (omitting the outside small yellow stitches–that’s added when you tack it onto your background).

The star trails are about 7 ” long, about a fat quarter-inch wide, and are slightly wavy lines.  Sometimes they are a bit thicker.  Don’t be too precise with them, as you are making folk art.  In addition, make gradual waves — not sharp curves.  You can shape them into the slight curving shape when you attach them, largely because of their gradual waves.  I used a backstitch to put them on.  I did not attach them to the star, but stitched them on, making sure they all ended in one place, then stitched down the star over that.

OhChristmasTree_Undertree8 OhChristmasTree_Undertree9

Here’s a ruler showing the approximate placement of things.  The end of the tree is about even with the top of the blue manger.  I pinned and checked several times, moving things by quarter-inches until I got them the way I wanted them.  Notice that Joseph is closer to the tree, and Jesus overlaps both their robes.  It just looked better that way to me: you decide what you like.

I used a buttonhole stitch to attach Mary all the way around, but only did Joseph’s robe.  I switched to sewing thread and simply tacked down Joseph’s head scarf, without decorative stitches around it.
OhChristmasTree_UndertreeSewing

Now I’m starting on the hay for Baby Jesus. Notice that I completed the zig-zagging buttonhole stitch along the sides of his red blanket.  If you have yellow felt peeking out, trim it slightly smaller than the red and finish the stitching down.  In the photo above, Mary, Joseph, the manger and the upper half of Baby Jesus are all stitched to the background.  For the hay, I used a variegated light brown–golden yellow–med. yellow thread.

OhChristmasTree_Manger2WoodStitches

I started by making “hay” stitches all over, crossing each other, going over the edge like real hay would.

OhChristmasTree_Manger1Straw

I turned the needle around and “threaded” it through the fringe on his blanket, when I needed to stitch hay behind the fringes.  The thread colors in variegated run in long sections.  Above you can see that I went quite wide with the med. brown section, then when the golden yellow section came up, I went over that section again.  Some stitches are long, some are short.  Some are perpendicular to the lower edge (I did that at the beginning, to anchor it to the background). Some stitches are at a 45-degree angle.OhChristmasTree_Manger3FallenHay

I even put a few strands of hay on the ground, and had them fall over the yellow onto the manger and onto Joseph’s and Mary’s robes.  It has to look slightly dis-organized, like, well. . . hay.

Here are some more pictures of the Nativity, showing detail.OhChristmasTree_Undertree5 OhChristmasTree_Undertree4 OhChristmasTree_Undertree3

Mary was stitched down with a variegated blue thread; I like how it went lighter around her head.  Totally random.OhChristmasTree_Undertree2b OhChristmasTree_Undertree1Full Scene

Whatever you choose to do, please keep tagging your photos on Instagram with #ohchristmastreeqal, so we can all share in your progress.

Giveaway Banner

As I was wandering the aisles of Quilt Market, I found the National Nonwovens Company, who deals online with retail at Commonwealth Felt.  After seeing my enthusiasm for wool felt — I don’t think they’d had that much excitement in the whole time they manned their booth — they happily donated some samples both of their 100% wool felt as well as their wool/rayon felt blend in their new colors.

Felt Giveaway2

The packet on the left is a mix of fall/summer colors, including medium blue, yellow, red, white, green and black:

Felt giveaway 4

To win, leave a comment below telling me why you don’t think it’s crazy that we’re making Christmas things in JUNE (sometimes I think I’m crazy!).  I’ll activate the Husband Random Name Generator and pick a winner.  Good luck!

Here’s a recap of our schedule:

January, Step “prepare”: buy the magazine, books, gather your fabrics, buy the felt/wool, buy/find the pearl cotton.
February, Step 1: Make the tree on the background and stitch it down.
March, Step 2: Make 21 flowers.
April, Step 3: Make 10 birds and all the leaves.
May, Step 4: Appliqué down the flowers and birds.

June, Step 5:  Scene at bottom of tree–make, then appliqué onto background.

July, Step 6: Sawtooth border (reds); sew together and attach.  I’ll have another idea for you to try, as well.

August, Step 7: (finish up Quilt-A-Long): Make wonky star blocks, sew them together and attach border #2.

September, Step 8 Show and Tell, just in time for school starting again.  Please send pictures of whatever state your Christmas Tree is in–whether it’s just the bones of the tree, of a completed top–we want to see it!

Happy Stitching and we’ll see you in July!

Quilt Market • Salt Lake City (3)

QMarket3_wovenquilt

This quilt is called Over and Down Under, and is simply lovely.  I want to make twenty.  But this was a typical sort of sight and I’m afraid a typical sort of reaction from me.

QMarket_Beach Quilt

And another.  This came out last year, but to see it in person was really fun.  And thanks to you all for leaving me comments and for entering our giveaway.  The Husband Random Name Generator picked Mary of Lake Pulaski for the Elea Lutz book and Cathy C. for the Stashbusters book. (I’ll be in touch with you both by email.)  Actually I wanted to pick you all, so the next giveaway is on June 2nd.  And by the way, I’m working through all the comments where you asked me a specific question.  Thanks for your patience.  Now we continue. . .

QMarket3_Andover1

But I also get giddy when I see Alison Glass’ fabrics, as they are lush and rich and saturated.  These next few pictures are from Andover’s booths.  Today’s post is the last  of the business side of Quilt Market, before we break for an Oh Christmas Tree post on June 2nd.  Then I’ll return to show you the beautiful quilts exhibited in the center of Market, award-winning quilts from Houston.  Then we’re done with my lovely tumble down Alice’s — Quilt Market’s — rabbit hole.QMarket3_Andover2 QMarket3_Andover3 QMarket3_Andover4 QMarket3_Andover5 QMarket3_Andover6

QMarket3_ArtGallery5

Near the Andover gang is the Art Gallery gang.  Above are the ordering tables, and now we’ll stroll through the quilt fabric designers’ booths.

QMarket3_ArtGallery1 QMarket3_ArtGallery2 QMarket3_ArtGallery3

Maureen Cracknell in front of her new collection.QMarket3_ArtGallery4 QMarket3_ArtGallery6 QMarket3_ArtGallery7 QMarket3_ArtGallery8 QMarket3_ArtGallery9 QMarket3_ArtGallery9Makers

This is a collection of pillows, using fabrics from all the Art Gallery Collections.QMarket3_ArtGallery10 QMarket3_ArtGallery11

Exquisitely quilted little piece of deliousness in Bonnie Christine’s booth.

QMarket3_CS1

Cotton & Steel’s newest collection from Rifle Paper Company.  Their booth won first place at Quilt Market–for design, I suppose, because it was so lovely.  Here are some photos:QMarket3_CS2 QMarket3_CS3 QMarket3_CS4 QMarket3_CS5 QMarket3_CS6

There’s that first place ribbon.QMarket3_CS7

Such a teensy little sample!QMarket3_CS8

QMarket3_Lecien1

I hunted down Lecien’s booth because of this:QMarket3_Lecien2

This is Semaphore, Cindy Wiens’ quilt using my design, and it has been around the world, landing here for one more stop.  Cindy did a terrific job.  Mine is in the works; pattern coming soon.

QMarket3_unknown

I have no idea whose booth this was, but check out those chairs!  Those colors!  Wow!

QMarket3_Windham1

Windham Fabrics was another favorite stop, and I did stop at their Pop-Up Shop before leaving on Saturday to pick up a few things.  As I noted before, there was very little for sale on the floor; this was one place you could buy something.
QMarket3_Windham2

Felice Regina’s new collection Luna Sol (sorry I caught her with her eyes closed!)QMarket3_Windham3 QMarket3_Windham3a

Check out these hexies from Yellow Creek Quilt Designs–amazing.
QMarket3_Windham4

Marcia Derse and her new collection, Studio Alphabet.

QMarket3_Windham5

This is the corner for the new fabrics from Janine Vangool (of Uppercase Fame), inspired by designs from her magazine.  (She gave me two magazines and a skinny pack of charm squares to use in a giveaway–coming soon!)QMarket3_Windham6 QMarket3_Windham7

Natalie Barnes’ new collection Hand Maker.

QMarket3_RJR1

How many ways can I photograph this display from RJR?  Apparently, after looking at my photos, a multitude of ways.QMarket3_RJR2

RJReynolds is the parent company of many fabrics, most notably, Cotton & Steel.QMarket3_RB5

I hunted all over for this quilt for SloStudio, the colorful confetti-style quilt in the center, and found it at Riley Blake; I posted it up on IG, and kept looking around.  I apologize if I don’t have the names of the makers–the tables for the buyers were snugged up to some quilts and I didn’t want to interrupt the business of quilting. All the following photos were from Riley Blake’s booths.  You should also know they had the most amazing mint chocolate truffles, and I sampled one.  Okay, maybe two.QMarket3_RB4 QMarket3_RB6 QMarket3_RB7 QMarket3_RB8

Kimberly Jolly of the Fat Quarter Shop.QMarket3_RB3

Lori Holt, in the green, waiting to sign books.  She had a great booth with all her quilts.

QMarket3_RB2 QMarket3_RB1QMarket_RileyBlakeQuilt

Close-up of the above quilt.  I love how they pieced the squares and fused on the leaves.

QMarket3_Focus

Fabri-Quilt had given me my Focus quilt to take home with me, so at the end of that last day, I posed it on the door handle going out and snapped a photo, as kind of a good-bye.  I never ever expected to be here at Quilt Market, and quite frankly, wonder if I’ll be here again.  It was a whirl of creativity, fabrics, colors, people, ideas and experiences.  I’m so glad I was able to come.

QMarket_mapx

(map of convention center, showing Fabri-Quilt’s booth)

Quilt Market: Salt Lake City (2) • Giveaway

Giveaway BannerUntitled-1First off, congratulations to Dorothy, who won the giveaway.  I’ll be in touch with you, Dorothy, to get your mailing info and get that off to you next week. Thank you to all who participated, and especially to all who commented on my yank-out-the-carpet-from-under-me fall.  I’m pretty much fine, and am going forward, but you can bet I’ll look twice before coming out of an aisle.  That story also made it to Carrie Nelson’s MODA blog, as I had to tell a story to her to get one of her camping badges.  For a great recap of her Moda Designers’ booths, head over there.

Mom on young birthday SM

I’ll also have another little giveaway at the end of this post, to reward you for reading, AND in honor of my mother’s 88th birthday.  This is a photo of her back in the day.   They apparently used to take all their birthday pictures outside because the camera couldn’t really capture the light as well inside.  I think of that when I tend to use my mobile phone everywhere because its light-capturing sensors are the best.

QMarket Book Signings

QMarket_CTBookSignings

Book Signings

Quilt Market is about business–the business of selling, of buying, of hawking your wares, of displaying, of meeting your buyers, meeting the designers, meeting the authors.  Sometimes I would get a book at these signings, and sometimes I just snapped photos on my way past.  Some publishers were gracious, not knowing who their books were going home with, yet others were a bit cranky about the whole thing.  Considering that I buy from all of them, I’ll never tell who was cheerful and who was cranky, but it taught me a lot about that aspect of this business.

Qmarket_2ELutz

This talented lady’s book is part of our giveaway today.  Elea Lutz designs not only patterns, but also fabrics for Penny Rose (associated with Riley Blake Fabrics).  It’s a book published by Fat Quarter Shop and has charming pieced patterns, as shown in the quilt behind her.

stashbustersbook

The other giveaway (I’ll divide them into two) is the Stashbusters Book, by Sarah Maxwell and Dolores Smith, a wonderful collection of scrappy reproduction-style quilts.  I’ll choose two from the comments left below; let me know if you have a preference for which book you might win.

QMarket_AlisonGlassGirl

Once I left the cocoon of my Painter’s Palette booth and ventured out, I saw this young woman modeling the skirt found in Alison Glass’ LookBook.    It was like — pinch me!–as I encountered Famous People and things I recognized from all the advertising I see when I read magazines, or attend quilt shows, or wander through the web.  It was going to be a day of double takes as I walked among the Business of Quilting, the other side of the quilty looking glass.

QMarket_SassafrasDesigns

Sassafras Lane Designs, in all their colorful glory.
QMarket_renegades

Renegade salespeople in the lobby of the Salt Palace.  Great carpet, right?QMarket_QuiltSoup2 QMarket_QuiltSoup1

Quilt Soup.  (That’s not Barbara Jones, but a “booth babysitter,” she said.QMarket_Kokka

Don’t look now, but that woman in the Kokka booth is wearing a Wookie Backpack.  I was in line behind her later on at the Lucky Spools book signing, and she shared with us all the trending video of the woman who’d just purchased a Chewbacca Mask for her birthday.  I thought that was a neat coincidence.
QMarket_KatieCupcake3 QMarket_KatieCupcake2 QMarket_KatieCupcake1

These three pictures are from Katie Cupcake, by Amy Hamberlin.  I love that Midtown bag.QMarket_Jillily1 QMarket_Jillily

Jillily Studio’s booth was a sweet shop, complete with little bagged chocolate truffles they gave out.QMarket_Hoffman4

Hoffman Fabrics are in my neck of the woods in Southern California, and first started with Hawaiian print fabrics for the local surfers.
QMarket_Hoffman3 QMarket_Hoffman2

I don’t know if you can see it, but Latifah Saafir’s booth (Hoffman Fabrics) has a pair of tennis shoes slung over a wire–so LA.  I loved it!

QMarket_Hoffman1

Fun also to see Hoffman’s newest line of fabrics from Thistlewood Farms.  Those blues! (And yes, that’s KariAnne Wood holding her quilt.)QMarket_HeatherJones

Heather Jones’ line of fabric is subtle, but I bought some at Sample Spree because I think it will work well in so many quilts.  One of my favorite types of fabrics are those that bring a punch of something new to the existing stash, giving it more life.  She has some great designs in her collection.
QMarket_FrouFrou6

Here is a series of photos from the Clothworks/Frou-Frou booths, across the aisle from each other.  Maybe because I was thinking about my trip to Geneva last week, and how I was missing the small prints from Europe, but I really fell in love with these fabrics (plus I love how they feel).QMarket_FrouFrou5 QMarket_FrouFrou4

I love their cans of projects.  Very clever.QMarket_FrouFrou3 QMarket_FrouFrou2 QMarket_FrouFrou1 QMarket_FreeSpirit5

Now, for a complete change of pace, this is the Free Spirit Booth.  I noticed more and more of this type of booth design among the big names: a central section for the business of ordering, and small alcoves for the designers.
QMarket_FreeSpirit4

Amy Butler’s section.  She also had a larger booth:QMarket_AmyButler

QMarket_FreeSpirit3 QMarket_FreeSpirit2

Tula Pink’s alcove.
QMarket_FreeSpirit1

Snow Leopard Designs by Phillip Jacobs (again, for Free Spirit Fabrics)QMarket_EHartman

Elizabeth Hartman’s booth, with the lovely creator in attendance.QMarket_CoriDantini1

Cori Dantini, for Blend Fabrics.  I loved their booth:

QMarket_Blend

QMarket_BrazilianThreads1

EdMar Company, a small vendor from Idaho was selling these gorgeous rayon Brazilian Embroidery Threads.QMarket_Benartex

Benartex.  I think you can see where all those beautiful quilts go that we see in “sneak peeks” on Instagram (and yes, I spelled “peeks” correctly).  Every booth was awash in beautiful quilts, and I must admit I hadn’t even hit the Moda booths yet, and I was already in overload.  So I thought I’d better head over and see Sherri’s booth, since I’d sewn a couple of items for her and had a sneak peek myself of some of her beautiful fabrics.QMarket_AQuiltingLife3 QMarket_AQuiltingLife2 QMarket_AQuiltingLife1

I could never get a photo that wasn’t blurry of these two women, so this will have to do.  The Moda designers were in clusters at this show, which didn’t give them much space, but that made meeting them easier.

QMarket_ModaDesigner QMarket_ModaDesigner1 QMarket_ModaDesigner2 QMarket_ModaDesigner3 QMarket_ModaDesigner4

That’s enough for today’s post. More is coming.

WWII Lincoln Memorial

Have a safe Memorial Day (or Decoration Day, as my mother calls it).  Leave a comment below to win a book in the giveaway.  I’ll choose one and announce it in the next post.

UPDATE: Comments closed.  Winner announced in next post.  Thanks to you all for entering!

Quilt Market May 2016 • Day One • Giveaway

QMarket1_sign

Yes! folks.  That is me standing under the sign, nervous and excited as all get out. Yeah, I know it’s a dirty job, but someone has to do it.  And there’s a little bit of a giveaway at the end, just to reward you for reading all the way through.

QMarket_overlook

I’d entered the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City that morning, dazed and confused even though several people had given me good advice for Going to Quilt Market.  I came down the escalators to the left (out of sight), trying to figure out what to do next, when a lovely woman walked towards me.

QMarket_Claudia and I

Claudia, the owner of Snowed In Quilt Shop in Panguitch, Utah showed me where to pick up my badge.  She then told me to pay for SchoolHouse (all-day classes) and for Sample Spree (really?  I’m going to that time-honored craziness??).  I designated her my “Handler for Quilt Market,” and off we went to Schoolhouse.

QMarket3

Wait, what?
QMarket3a

This is better.  We shared the building with burly guys wearing T-shirst that said Coal: Clean & Abundant, as they went to their meetings in a wing of the convention center.QMarket2

First up: a plenary session where the first 700 who picked up their schedules also got a ticket for a souvenir tote bag from Cotton and Steel.  I’d heard about the freebies here (actually less than you think) and was happy that I could get something fun right off the bat.  It opened with the officials telling us the stats of our industry, among other pleasantries.

For the very next presenters were the Cotton & Steel gang, all young women, announcing their partnership with Rifle Paper Company, and the new fabric line where they showed us us a video.  We had a small sample of it in our freebie bags.  We weren’t yet allowed into the exhibition hall, as everyone was still setting up their booths.  It dawned on me only later that I had a badge that would let me in.  (Trying not to overuse my Super Powers, here. . .) However, I didn’t have time to go in until later, as I was busy going to Schoolhouse.  Claudia and I went back and forth between the two sets of classrooms, about a 3-minute walk between them, until we wised up and chose classes in a clump next to each other.
QMarket4

This presentation by Ink & Arrow/Quilting Treasures was stellar.  I learned a LOT.  Every quilt shop should have attended this one.QMarket_Schoolhouse4

Plus the brownies in their little giveaway bag were a nice treat.QMarket_Schoolhouse5

Many of the Schoolhouse classes are like this one: an introduction to a new line of fabrics, in this case Frou-Frou, distributed by ClothWorks, Inc.  I liked what the head of Frou-Frou was saying about quilting being like cooking.  “Spaghetti” in column 2 is actually skinny tubing, suitable for spaghetti straps on clothing.
QMarket_Schoolhouse3

I loved Maywood Fabrics’ presentation.  Claudia won a bundle of their fabric.  She actually won two times that day, which is nice payment for her having to drag me around.
QMarket_Schoolhouse2 QMarket_Schoolhouse1

Somewhere in here, at the urging of my darling husband (yes, he is!) I went down to the floor to see my  quilt hanging up.  Sigh.  You read all about that yesterday, so I won’t bore you today, but it was wonderful.  (And yes, I’d finally figured out at that point that I had a badge that would let me do that.)QMarket_Schoolhouse6

After lunch it was more classes.  Here’s Anna Maria Horner’s Schoolhouse class, showing off her amazing quilt.  And skirts.  And fabric.  And more quilts. And her fine sense of humor.QMarket_Schoolhouse6a QMarket_Schoolhouse6b

(Reverse applique flower and leaves)
QMarket_Schoolhouse7

So glad to see her in fine form.  We’ve missed you, Eleanor Burns!QMarket_Schoolhouse8_moda QMarket_Schoolhouse8a_moda QMarket_Schoolhouse9_moda QMarket_Schoolhouse9a_moda

The Moda Schoolhouse was all about their program starting in fall and continuing through next year: “Be My Neighbor,” where they will give out “blueprints” of blocks to fabric shops, where we plebeians can get them.  I’ve already made a house quilt, (click *here* to see and to get free downloadable patterns, too) but after looking at this one, it’s mighty tempting to try another.

By now Claudia and I are dragging and we have to muster up some strength to make it to Sample Spree that evening. QMarket_Schoolhouse10

So we stayed in our seats through another designer’s presentation (basically a demo of all her new products and how we could buy them) then went next door to Moda/Martingale’s presentation of the Match Game, featuring quilty terms, and a cast of brilliant stars (some lined up above).  It was really funny, and very high energy and we had a great time.  Some of the quilts featured in the book are below, slightly blurry as they were parading them before us at a pretty good clip:QMarket_Schoolhouse10a QMarket_Schoolhouse10b QMarket_Schoolhouse10c QMarket_Schoolhouse10d QMarket_Schoolhouse10e QMarket_Schoolhouse10f QMarket_Schoolhouse10g QMarket_Schoolhouse10h

There.  Now you’ve had your fill of eye-candy for one post. (I do think I’ll get this book.) We went to find dinner and I took a photo of the sample spree line from the second floor, where people had been lining up for hours:QMarket_SampleSpreeLineQMarket_exhibitor floor

And then I took one of the market floor.  See those people laying green carpet over to the left?  Stay with me now, there’s a story there.  Claudia and I grabbed a salad for dinner, and ate it quietly away from the Sample Spree line.  She agreed to watch my bags while I went in for one last pictureQMarket_onelastlookz QMarket_onelastlook

I came out of the aisle just as three uber burley guys gave the green carpet runner a hefty yank to the left. . . and I fell down to the right.  Yes, so graceful, but the rug had been pulled out from under me, just like in the cartoons.  The burley guys to the right came running over.  One of them was the crew leader, and after watching me get up (again, incredibly graceful *ahem*) he insisted I go to the boss of the crew.  I followed him to the loading dock, where it smelled like brine, a storm coming in off the salty Great Salt Lake.  Kind of like being at the ocean, really.
QMarket_loadingdock

Then he insisted I go to the Floor Boss, who was driving around somewhere on a yellow cart.  You think if they were so concerned about my injuries that they would have put ME on one of those dumb carts and driven me around, but no.  I had to go with this guy, chasing around looking for the other guy on the dumb cart.  We found him, but I explained that I was going to miss my PARTY and that my friend had my bags and I needed to go and get them, and really I felt fine (but knowing the next day I was going to feel it).  He agreed to let me release Claudia so she could get in line.

Now I’m carrying all my loot from today, and following this guy around.  Back to the loading dock, where we get another boss, who determines that I should to see Security. (But my PARTY!! I want to scream, for that’s what Sample Spree was to them–how could I explain what would be the mad dash of frothing quilters straight for the Rifle Paper Company new fabric line by Cotton & Steel?)  He takes me along the back of the convention hall, to a wide gaping doorway and I realize I’m looking at Sample Spree and nobody is in here!!  Did I take advantage of this and grab a stack?  No.  Like a good little girl, I follow the guy through the other doors, out into the hallway, where everyone in line is looking me, like “How’d she get in there?”

We go down the lines of foyer-sitters, into the office.  He says “This is the lady who fell down.”  Wait.  I pipe up to say, “I didn’t fall down.  Someone yanked the carpet from under my feet!”  I was asked to wait while they called for an EMT, and while I was waiting, would I write a description.  The EMT guy arrives and wants me to go in an ambulance to the ER.

Meanwhile. . . I can see the lines start to move into Sample Spree.  I turn to him, and say “My Party is starting! I’ve got to go!”  He assesses me (no slurring of speech, no fuzzy vision, no impact to the head, appears to be somewhat sane and walking straight); I sign waivers to not to go the ER in an ambulance.  But by now, I’ll be at the back of the wagon train in the Sample Spree line.  So I look at him and say, “You look official.  Can you walk me to the front of the line and get me in?”  He smiles, agrees, and we pass by hordes of frothing quilters, and I slip in past the Quilt Police, into Sample Spree.  I’m still achy, my hip and ankle are sore, and I know I’m going to feel it in the morning, but hey–I made it it to The Party.

QMarket_SampleSpree

This sort of image was not unusual.  I decline to show you my group of bags so as not to incriminate myself, but I got in about halfway through the long line, and no, at that point there were no Rifle Paper Company stacks to be had unless I bought ALL of the new Cotton & Steel lines for a mere $271, which would include their tote bag.  Um, no.  But it was fun going around, seeing the FQs (Frothing Quilters) grab and push and terrify those on the inside of the tables as they snapped up their stacks and bundles, and overheated their credit cards.

Basement apt

I did see Claudia later on, and she asked how I was.  She’s lovely and terrific and as she was still shopping, and I was pretty spent (in all ways), I headed home to my sister’s new apartment in her basement, where I had a lovely space all to myself.  I took some ibuprofen, and while I was uploadiong some IG photos, all the power went out around me.

I looked outside: dark.  I looked on IG: all the quilters in the hotels downtown were freaking out, saying “Way to go–the Fabric Geeks broke Salt Lake!”  Sounds like the party was still going on.  I knew the light would wake me up when it came back on in the middle of the night, but I rolled over and went to sleep.

Giveaway Banner

Because I was surprised at how little freebies there were (I had to purchase most of my souvenirs, except for the bag I mentioned), I have one giveaway here and a couple of more over the next two weeks, courtesy of the people I’ll name.

Felt Giveaway1

This first one is a charm pack with lots of colors of 100% wool felt, for those of you who are working on your tree (another one’s coming on June 2nd).  The colors are beautiful:

Wool Felt 3

It’s from National Non-Wovens, and they also donated some for our next Oh Christmas Tree post, just in case you don’t win this round. While this is a vendor, they will sell smaller quantities to us quilters at Commonwealth Felt.

In The Pines Book

The other item I’ll throw into the giveaway is this book by Carolyn Culling McCormick, In the Pines, from Kansas City Star Quilts.  This is a book of paper-pieced patterns so you can make the more traditional pine-tree quilts with tiny pieces.  The paper-piecing makes is manageable.  Leave a comment below and I’ll activate the Husband Random Name Generator and pick a winner (one winner will get both items).  This will close on Saturday, May 29th, my mother’s 88th birthday.  (Happy Birthday, Mom!)

NOTE: Comments now closed.  Winner to be announced in next post.

Next Up: Day Two of Market

Starry Compass Rose

StarryCompassRose_front

Starry Compass Rose
Quilt # 156

Starry Compass Rose EQ7 sketch

I’d like to tell you the background about how I went to Quilt Market.  I was contacted by Paintbrush Studios in November of 2015 to see if I would design and make a quilt for them using their Painter’s Palette line of solids.  At first I was like, who is this? but soon got to corresponding with Anne, a delightful woman with a great sense of humor.  She turned me over to Deena in the design department, and I sent over a rough sketch.  Then another.  We soon had several renditions flying back and forth over email, which meant not only did I have to design a quilt for them, and sew it, but I also had to learn how to express myself in EQ7 (cue: grimace).  I learned it “enough” and produced the sketch you see above.StarryCompassRose_booth3

Of course, all this is stuff I couldn’t mention on the blog, but I worked on this steadily from late November until mid-February when I sent off to them a quilt top, binding, backing and a label.  Someone else would quilt it.StarryCompassRose_booth1

As a thank-you for this experience, I made them Focus, a small quilt to hang in their booth at QuiltCon. While at QuiltCon, I screwed up my nerve to ask Sue and Deena if I could get a pass to see the quilt at market, and they arranged it.StarryCompassRose_quilting5 StarryCompassRose_quilting4 StarryCompassRose_quilting3

But I was most interested in seeing my quilt, all quilted up by Denise Marieno, at Quilt Market.  I was sad to see it go in February, but ecstatic to see it now, hanging in the Painter’s Palette booth.  I checked on the progress several times on Thursday as they set up their booth, watching as they moved it from an inner spot, to an outer spot.  They were very happy with the result, as was I.  Denise did a terrific job of quilting it.StarryCompassRose_quilting2 StarryCompassRose_quilting1 StarryCompassRose_booth2 StarryCompassRose_label

So now it’s gone, and who knows when I’ll see it again, but oh, what a high! to see it at market.  I hope I can work with them again sometime, as I thoroughly enjoyed the process and the people at this company.

I’ve spent my life in unheralded endeavors: a young bride having babies, a mother at home, a student, an adjunct professor, but no one praises your skill at loading a dishwasher, managing a complicated carpool schedule, or compliments you on the nice comments you leave on student papers.  So to come into Quilt Market and to see my quilt hanging there as a professional quilt designer was an experience I won’t soon forget.  It was like someone patted me on the head and said “You did great,” that my skills were recognized, instead of just giving service or being a cog in what passes for Higher Ed these days.  I certainly don’t regret being a mother-at-home, nor of my years of teaching.  I don’t regret being an older student, trying to fit in with the 20-somethings who were writing edgy short stories that included drugs and sex, while all I could come up with is little stories of mothers and fathers and families that somehow always included a quilt somewhere.

But to round that corner that first morning and see this quilt?
Oh, so satisfying.

tiny nine patches

Next post: Day One of Market, going to Schoolhouse, a Tumble, and a Giveaway