Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Peacock Quilt

This gorgeous quilt was brought to me by the husband of  one of my clients.
Richard does absolutely stunning handwork, as you can see! 
I love the fact that he and his wife both quilt and compete against one another at the state fair.
They are both very talented quilters and are as sweet as can be.

I'll be honest with you, I struggled quite a bit trying to decide how to quilt this quilt. I knew that I wanted to really maximize the quilting on the white fabric, but after drawing up about 4 different designs I still wasn't sold on what I had.
The only thing this quilt really "said" to me was that I needed to frame the peacocks with an oval and then do filler quilting on the rest, but I just wasn't sure of what fill to use. Since this quilt felt more traditional to me, I decided feathers might work.
I went ahead and quilted out the first block, and guess what? 
I wasn't in love with it. Ugh!
So began the unpicking.

After spending a bit more time researching design ideas and drawing them out, I finally settled for what I'd call a little bit traditional and a little bit modern.

The peacock feather wreath seemed geometric enough that I decided a more modern back and forth line fill would suit it nicely. When I tried quilting feathers around it, it felt chaotic and cluttered.

The peacocks got the lovely quilted feathers on the outside of the oval frame and paisleys on the inside.

I think I hit a good balance of curves and straight lines.

I encouraged Richard to not only enter it into the state fair, but also into HMQS next May. I'm not sure if he will, but I think it would do really well there. It's simply stunning in design and handwork execution.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Natalie's Round Robin Quilt

Back in January I held a "Thank You" giveaway on Instagram.

Bear with me while I share a little backstory to the giveaway.

You see, I joined the Instagram quilting community a little over a year ago.
Before then, I only had a small handful of quilty friends, and most were a good 20 years older than me. 
When I started on Instagram, I'll admit I was a bit uncomfortable with the open format. I was used to Facebook, where you 'allowed' people into your life. This was initially true on Instagram, but then somehow people I didn't know started following me and commenting on my posts. I honestly was unsure how to react. It was cool, but could I trust these people? And they didn't even really know me, and I sure didn't know them! 

But then I noticed something great happening. The more I posted and followed others' posts, the more I got to know them and they got to know me! And before I knew it I had hundreds of new quilty friends who were cheering me on in my quilting endeavors and inspiring me with theirs!

So, in January, with the start of a brand new year, I decided I wanted to give back to the Instagram quilting community that accepted me with open arms. I did two drawings. The first was for 50% off a quilting job (custom or edge to edge). I'll be posting about that quilt in a few posts.
The second was for a completely free quilting job. 

Natalie was the winner, and this is her quilt.
I had actually met Natalie once at a Modern Quilt Guild meeting, but until she dropped her quilt off to me I hadn't realized that we had met in person, even though we had been Instagram friends for a while.

Natalie's quilt was part of a Round Robin done by her quilt guild. If, like me, you have never heard of a Round Robin...each member does one border on each quilt. Because each person has a different style of quilting, each border is made to compliment the owner's style, and so each quilt turns out completely different. (There may be more rules to it, but this is my limited understanding of how it works.)

These Round Robin quilts were displayed at HMQS 2015 in Sandy, Utah. It was an honor to machine quilt this for Natalie. She is such a sweet person and a very talented quilter!

There were so many different areas to quilt on this quilt that my quilting plan for this quilt was literally to load the quilt and just have fun quilting it. My only goals were to use the piecing as my design guides and then repeat design elements throughout the quilt. Natalie said she liked feathers, so I tried to incorporate those in different areas of the quilt.

I loved each border of this quilt, but my absolute favorite was the blue and orange braided border. I honestly don't know why I fell in love with it, especially since orange has never been a favorite color of mine, but my eyes just kept coming back to that border.


Monday, June 1, 2015

2015 HMQS Quits of Valor Challenge 1st Place Winner

I had never made a Quilt of Valor quilt before entering this challenge.

I don't have any relatives in the armed forces, but I honor and respect those men and women and their families who valiantly serve and sacrifice for our country. I love the thought of giving something back to them.

For many reasons, including lack of time due to other commitments, I knew this quilt needed to be relatively simple in both piecing and quilting. But, I believe that simple things can sometimes be stunning, and that was my goal for this quilt.

I looked through my quilt books and patterns and found this simple Stars Over Ohio pattern in Sherri McConnell's book Fresh Family Traditions.

Quilting Treasures provided their Patriotic Pop and Salute to Summer fabric by Studio 8 and Liz Kolansky. I chose three different white-on-white fabrics for the background. I knew framing the stars with white fabric would allow me to show off my machine quilting.

All pieced and ready to be quilted.

I photocopied the pattern in black and white (for personal use only) and drew out different quilt designs before I loaded the quilt.

The motif inside the white area is a digitized design by Kimmy Brunner. I thought it fit perfectly with the 'star' theme I was sticking to.

I used one layer of Hobbs 80/20 batting and White Highlights thread by Superior (now discontinued but I still had some on hand).

I love the pattern created by the quilting on the back of the quilt!

I thought this quilt turned out beautiful! But I was still shocked to learn it had won 1st place!

 It just goes to show that simple really can be stunning!

When I quilt I usually listen to audiobooks. I get them through my local library and an App called Overdrive Media. I want to remember the books I read, so I'm going to start documenting them here.

As I quilted this QOV quilt I listened to the following:

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Mindy's Medallion HMQS AdornIt Challenge 2nd Place Winning Quilt

A little over a week ago, I was on my way home from a cruise and heard the news that my AdornIt Challenge quilt had won an award at HMQS in Salt Lake City. Sadly, I was still traveling when the awards ceremony happened, so I had no idea what award my quilt received. But the next day I managed to slip out of my class with Angela Walters for a few minutes to find a 2nd place ribbon on my quilt. Whoo-Hoo! 

The challenge was to use the fabrics made and selected by AdornIt in a quilt of any size. I chose a pattern called Medallion out of Angela Pingel's book, 'A Quilter's Mixology.'

This was my first attempt at curved piecing. My mom gave me a curvemaster foot for Christmas, and that pretty much secured my success! This small quilt was seriously a piece of cake to put together.

I auditioned a couple of designs for the center medallion. I love the design below, but in the end I went with something a little different.

Just a quick pic to show how many tools and templates I used to quilt this quilt.

I had so much fun designing and quilting this center medallion. This is the kind of quilting I'm passionate about!

I wanted to do some micro quilting but knew it wouldn't show up on the busy fabric, so I kept it to the areas on the mint green solid fabric.

The back shows off the quilting so well!

I decided to add a little sparkle with crystals. It's a little hard to capture that sparkle on camera.

This was my first time using crystals on a quilt. It's crazy how much time they take to put on!

I was told by one of the judge's helpers that the judges thought I used too many crystals on the quilt. To each their own, right?!

And here she is hanging at the show!