Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Got Scraps Top

Finally I have the Got Scraps quilt top finished and have started working on a pieced back for it.  Last week I had a doctor's appointment set for Wednesday, but HE cancelled as he was sick.  Doesn't he know that doctors aren't allowed to be sick?  Since I had stayed home from work for the appointment I had a little more time than usual to work in my studio.  I decided what I wanted to do with the border on Got Scraps and then I finished quilting the table runner that I promised I'd make for Gary's cousin.  The table runner will be the topic of the next blog post.  I haven't had a chance to photograph it yet, but, Sheila, you are going to like it!  Your fabric choices were great!  (Sorry, had to tease her since she hasn't seen it yet.)

I had been in a quandary when I finished the inside part of Got Scraps which is for our son Jeff.  It wasn't quite as big as I thought it should be, but to add another row of blocks each direction was going to make it a bit too long, I thought.  I finally decided on an inner border of electric blue and an outer border of a black fabric with polka dots.  Here is the result.

I think the electric blue is just what the quilt needed.  I'm sure I would not have been happy with the quilt without the border.  It seemed to need one.  What do you think?  My quilts have always talked to me and this one just kept telling me it needed something to stop the design and frame the blocks.  Usually my borders are pieced and more "creative", but this plain Jane border works in this case.

Wait until you see what the back will look like!  I've been digging through the blacks and piecing more of the 4-patches into strips and blocks to use on the back.  No point in having a plain Jane back even though I did find a fabric that there was enough of for a plain back.  My friend, Joyce, NEVER uses plain fabric on the backs of her quilts and the backs could be quilt fronts.  It's also a great way to use up those fabrics that you wonder why you bought.

That's it for now.  Next time I'll share Sheila's table runner before mailing it off to her.  After that maybe the back for Jeff's quilt will be done and I can share that with you.  Stay tuned 'cause rumor has it there will be an extra day this weekend.  Woo Hoo!

Until next time,

Friday, May 13, 2011

Going In Circles

Have you ever felt you were going in circles?  I do a lot.  It seems that I get up, go to work, come home, make dinner, and go to bed only to get up and start it all over again!  Sometimes it's my mind that goes in circles -- thinking about one thing and then another and back to the first again.  Please tell me that you feel the same way -- I'd hate to think I'm the only one with issues like this!

This study in yellow that I did with an online group a while back must have been done in one of those periods as was the quilt in the previous post.  It seems I was obsessing about circles at that time or at least making quilts using circles..

Our first assignment was to create a design and do it in black and white.  This was done with various paper. I had to get creative to find the values I wanted.  Some were cut from magazines and some were even the inside of envelopes copied in black and white on the copier.

The second assignment was to start with yellow and add black and/or white to it.  Though the example was done using papers, I first mixed yellow acrylic paint with black in varying degrees and white in varying degrees to see what tints and shades were made when mixing the paint. Then the challenge was to find papers of the same color and value that were created with the paint.  This was the result of that assignment.

Our next challenge assignment was to use the colors next to yellow on the color wheel going either direction.  I chose to go toward red so that various values of orange were part of the mixture.  I believe I ended up painting some of these spaces as I could not find paper the right shade of orange or red/orange.

We were next to do the same design using yellow and it's complement -- purple, again using various values in the piece.  I bought a lot of scrap booking paper for this one.  The magazines just didn't seem to use much purple so cutting the shapes from magazines wasn't going to work in this assignment.

The final assignment was to create a small quilt using yellow and our the design we had worked with in the paper mock ups.  Since I LOVE blue and yellow together, this quilt is the result of the yellow challenge.  Apparently many people are afraid to use yellow.  I've used it a lot because well, I already told you I LOVE yellow.  It's been one of my favorite colors for as long as I can remember.  I called this little quilt Mellow Yellow because I think it is a pretty "laid back" quilt even with as much yellow as is in it. You may notice that the binding changed color with the piece on the edge so that it almost disappears. That was a chalenge, too!

What do you think?  Was the study in yellow worth the effort?  Other than the fact I wish I'd had many more papers to choose from, it was really a fun thing to do.  It did take quite a while to complete, but I was happy with the little quilt that resulted.

What is your favorite color?  Have you ever done a study of it to see what happens when you add black or white to it?  You might be surprised.  It is also fun to go what I call through the color wheel mixing two complements.  I've done that with fabric and die and the colors you get can be a surprise.  Try it, you might like it.

Hope you are having a Mellow Yellow day!

Until next time,

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Square Pegs

"Be kind for every one you meet is fighting a hard battle." ....Plato

A few years ago, I created this little quilt with the catalyst "no squares allowed."  This was while I was meeting monthly with art quilters and this was the group catalyst for the month.  Since I'm a pretty conservative person, it occurred to me that there were times in my life where I felt like the "square" that was not allowed.  I'm sure you relate, especially if you think back to Jr. High and High School days.  Depending on the mood for the day, you could be in or out of the "cool" crowd.

As you can see, there is a square almost dead center.  That square is quilted in graduated squares.  The title of the quilt is "Square Pegs Into Round Holes Won't Go".  You might note, too, that the quilt is a 15" x 15" square.  It contains mostly circles and even the quilting is small circles.  However, the backing fabric is....... YEP, it's a small plaid with lots of squares. The background fabric is some that I painted.  All in all, I think it is a fun quilt that makes a subtle point.  Some people get the joke in the quilt and others don't.  It's okay, just look for the "square" in your vicinity and be kind to them.

Some days we are the squares and some days we are the cool circles.  Every day we have to remember that someone else is feeling like the square that doesn't fit that day and make them feel  like a welcome part of the group..

I'm glad you stopped by today.  Do you feel like the square that doesn't fit today or the cool circle?  Either way, you are OK in my book.

Until next time,

Monday, May 2, 2011

Let's Roll

It seems appropriate to post these pictures today.  These are of a quilt I made in response to the 9/11/01 terrorist attacks.  The quilt was part of an exhibit by AQS authors that traveled for 3 years following 9/11.

There is a lot of symbolism in this quilt.  The two towers are represented by the side borders, the top and bottom borders are a variation of New York Beauty, the four stars represent the 4 planes and there is a pentagon in the center of each.  Of course, the center eagle represents the USA.

It is somewhat difficult to see, quilted in gray on the blue background are the Statue of Liberty, The Liberty Bell, the words "In Remembrance" and "Let's Roll"

Let's hope that the death of Osama Bin Laden represents the beginning of the end of terrorism against the USA.  We must always remember those who died on 9/11, but we must also remember those who are still fighting for our freedom.

Let us always remember to celebrate and hold dear our freedom!

Until Next Time,