Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Reversible Quilts

Just spent another weekend with hubby at the family cabin.

I love going there and getting away from the routine at home. Somehow, it is easier to tackle certain sewing projects, reports, bookkeeping, or read, without the distractions of Television and Internet (especially Facebook!)  I usually take too many things to do, but I did get a few things accomplished or started.

First of all, I am still working on my Grandmother's Flower Garden  (see a few posts back).  I only seem to work on that at guild meeting, or at the cabin.  I managed to sew a few more hexagons together.

I read a really great book, Art Quilt Workbook, by Jane Davila & Erin Waterston.  Good chapters on the fundamentals of an art quilt, and the different techniques to try.  Lots of inspiration, and ideas to explore with my guilds Art Group.

I also read another little book, Marbling Fabrics for Quilts, by Kathy Fawcett and Carol Shoaf.  Our Art Quilt Group is getting together this week to do marbling with shaving foam, so this book showed me the basics of marbling and I feel better prepared to play this week!

I am going to be showing my Monday night quilt group how to make a quilt-as-you-go reversible quilt soon, so I had to make one myself and prepare a lesson plan as well.  I think it is a good technique to learn, especially for someone who can't quilt a big quilt on their domestic machine.  And it is a great way to use up scraps.  I just brought a bundle of fabrics I had together from a previous project, so it took some time deciding which fabrics to use for what.  I had to walk away after awhile, because I was coming up with roadblocks, as I had only brought cream-coloured thread with me, and it was not going to work with the fabrics I wanted to use! Finally, I figured out how I could make it work, so off I went!  I followed the technique used in the book called Reversible Quilts, by Sharon Pederson.

Inspirational view!
Thread works with these fabrics

view from the sewing machine
fabric strips

Fabric A
1st strip in place, pin
flip over to Side B
Pin 1st strip side B in place, so it doesn't interfere with seam
flip back to side A and sew seam
Open both seams, Sides A & B, finger press, pin side B open

working on side A, continue to sew and flip strips across
When side A is complete, finish side B in same way.  Trim
Layout #1
Layout 1, reverse
Layout #2, my favorite
I am just planning on making a tablerunner with this, as it is too labor intensive for me!
I still have to decide on sashing strips, before I can finish this.

Hubby and I did some exploring

recent wolf track

Wolf kill
Beautiful Spring day!

I apologize for photos not being in the ideal spots!  Some day I will take the time to learn to do this properly!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Convergence Quilt Class

The other day, I got together with a few ladies from the guild I belong to, and I led them through the process in how to create a Ricky Tims Convergence quilt.

Once you make one, you see many more possibilities in your stash and fabric shops!

We had alot of fun, even when I made them rip out seams!

Laura chose these gorgeous batiks.

It became this lovely rectangular wallhanging, after a small mishap  became a design opportunity!

Laura was also Miss Speedy (there's always one in every class!)  who got a start on her second one!

Rosemary chose another bold set of fabrics that sang themselves into existence!

 Irene finally found a use for a favorite fat quarter.  Doesn't that inner border just sparkle?

Joy worked quietly away in her corner and produced her own masterpiece.

Sheila thought her fabrics were dull, but I considered them soft and gentle, and serendipity would have it that she had the perfect inner border hidden away in her bag!  Seriously, it was not planned!

Jude plugging furiously away....She had some great tips to share, too.

A fishing tackle box to organize all her sewing stuff

A lint roller stick to the top of the machine to catch loose threads!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Adventures in Snow Dying

A couple of weeks ago a few of us from our Quilt Guild got together to try our hand at Snow Dying.  We are members of an Art Quilt Interest group that gets together about once a month, to try out some art quilt techniques.  None of us are experts, so we just pick something to try, do abit of research on it, and then give it a go!

We soaked our fabrics in a soda ash solution, wrung them out and scrunched them, placing them upon raised platforms made up of dish drying racks, shoe drying inserts for the clothes dryer, deep freeze baskets, tupperware vegetable keeper inserts, etc.  It's amazing what one can find at home to use! 

We then ventured outside and collected snow into buckets, and made a pile of snow on top of our fabrics.  The snow was a granular type, quite icy even, but once it warmed up inside, it stacked and stuck nicely.

Dawning masks and gloves, we sprinkled dry dye powder onto the snow using straws with the ends cut on the diagonal as scoops.  I used this technique (sprinkling the powder) in a class at a quilt conference a couple of years ago, and really enjoyed the results of this method.  

We also tested some dye solution that was about 10 months old, from our fabric painting workshop, it had been stored in the fridge and coldroom all this time, and it still seemed to work!

I had some "bonus" fabric lying around, stuff that wasn't of the best quality, so I decided to place it in the bottom of my tray, to soak up the leftover dyes once the snow melted through.  It had not been pre-washed, being an after-thought, and soaked in the soda ash solution.  It still came out very well!

The was the red/blue dye stripe, it wasn't very impressive

I just love the intricate patterning

Overall, we were all excited and pleased with the results.

3-D patterning
Smoke-like patterning
Bonus Fabric
Bonus Fabric
Bonus Fabric