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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Quilt Show Goodies

I didn't have a lot of time to shop the vendors at the show, but I did come home with this beautiful amethyst basket.
 It supports the Heifer Project and I love that buying this basket helps someone halfway around the world.  It was made in Ghana, Africa of Elephant Grass with goat hide handles. It supplies milk to needy families.  This is my third basket from the Heifer Project, but I especially loved this color and shape. (And doesn't Jubilee Tribute look pretty on the chair?)
And then on Saturday my number was picked during our Chinese Auction and I won this cute basket of some fat quarters, thread, note pad and book.  It's always so much fun to win something :).
Still trying to recover.  I'll be back to normal soon.
Happy stitching,
Karen

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Vintage Blooms Has a New Home

Well, my "baby" has a new home.  This is our opportunity quilt that was raffled off at our Quilt Show.  Yesterday at 4 PM, out of over 6,000 tickets, we picked one lucky winner.  She lives about an hour from Pensacola and had been at the show Saturday morning.  What a lucky girl!
After we had taken the quilt down and were closing things out, I realized that in three days, I had not had a single picture taken in front of the quilt. Grrrrrr.  But a friend overheard me and sent me this picture today.
I have a vague recollection of someone taking it.  But these are some of my sweet co-workers.  In fact, the woman in the blue striped shirt is the one who machine quilted Vintage Blooms.  She did such an amazing job.  I hope the new owner will love this special quilt as much as I have.  
More to come soon, I'm still trying to re-enter real life LOL!!
Karen



Friday, April 11, 2014

My Jubilee is Wearing Blue

Our Quilt Show opened today and we had over 700 people! Can I say as Show Chair I am completely exhausted.  But I wanted to share my good news about my Jubilee quilt. As you can see, it won a blue ribbon.
At 4:45, I realized I hadn't taken a single picture. So I grabbed a friend and she took these pictures.
The quilt looks great but I think I look pretty tired - but oh, so happy.  I'm going to share some thoughts about my Jubilee journey soon, but right now I am just so happy to share these pictures and enjoy the thrill of seeing my quilt hang in the show.  By joining The Jubilee Quilt Project, I was committed to making a quilt for me, by me to celebrate me.  I think this is my most favorite quilt of all the ones I have ever made.  
I am beyond thrilled. 
Tired, but thrilled.
Karen

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Trying Something New - QAYG

The other day I had a few spare moments and it was time to play.  I had seen this technique on Maureen's blog and was very intrigued.  I decided to use my blue scraps and some "boy" I Spy fabrics and try it. (See the kitties?)
Why is it that the minute you touch your basket of scraps, it explodes!  And I mean big time!  After looking for blues to use, I couldn't even begin to get the top back on.  I'm going to have to do something about that someday (maybe after the Quilt Show :)).
So after I found some blues and cut my 2 1/2" strips, what looked like a very simple technique was not so simple (or at least to me).  It's a quilt as you go project and I do like that part.
I made the panels smaller (6" versus 8") as I knew it would be a child's quilt, but at this point it looks a little too long for the width. It's also going to shrink a little when all the rows are sewn together.  So would you call this a chevron or a herringbone quilt? Just wondering...
Here is one panel not trimmed off yet - you can see the basic technique.   I got this far and then kind of got sidetracked (imagine that LOL) and haven't done any since this point.  I'll finish this up soon and we'll see how it turns out.
Here is the back side, the strips are sewn right to the strip of batting.
So when I got sidetracked, I decided to start a new quilt  (of course!)- one that has been on my bucket list for a while.  It starts with these simple one row log cabin blocks set on point.  I'm using all stash and so far I'm loving the colors and the way they look together.
6 down, 62 to go (for this part).  It's going to be a pretty big project, so you will definitely be seeing more of this.

We had take-in this morning for the quilts for the show.  The judging will start Monday morning!  Yikes, it's really going to happen.
Have a great weekend, I may get to play a little this afternoon :).  Trying to stay un-stressed.
Karen

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Down in the River to Pray

Did you guess this one???  I'm not sure who did the palm trees, but I do know who did the elephant. And mine was neither of those :). The rules of this challenge were - pick a word, pick a color, pick a technique (all out of a bag).  Then, the word had to be in the title of a song, and the song had to be the theme of the quilt.
This is what I wrote to describe my quilt.
I'm not super comfortable with art quilts, and that's what made this a good challenge.  I'd had this piece of fabric for a while and I knew it had the look I wanted for the sky.  Trying to find fabric to represent mountains, water, ground, etc. is always a challenge and I didn't want to have to buy a lot, so I was hoping it was in my stash.  Several different batiks did the job for the mountains.
Next came the trees, shoreline, water.  I was really liking it at this point.
I checked with a friend of mine who's an art teacher to make sure I had the perspective right.
Here you see the bench and the rust colored foreground.  Once I realized I had the title of the song wrong and elminated the bench, I knew that something else was wrong, I just couldn't figure out what.
The next few pictures show the angst I was having with the foreground.  What I finally decided was that the rust was all wrong.  So I went for the grass/pebble look.
Here I was tring to create a shadow under the tree.
When I finally realzied the rust was wrong, I began to just pile on possible choices.  I liked all the other parts of this quilt and it frustrated me that I couldn't get this part right, especially when it was right in the front.
This is when you walk away and just do something else.  Fortunately, I had some time left before the challenge was due so I waited for this quilt to talk to me.  Unfortunately, it didn't talk very loud.
I just pushed on until I had to make a choice.  After days of fiddling with the fabric, I knew I was getting close - or close enough for me.  I still didn't think it looked great, but I was at the point where I needed to just fuse this thing down, quilt it and be done!
It was finally time to quilt - yay!! I didn't feel like it needed a lot of quilting.  I went with just impressionistic quilting - I'm still not sure if I like the quilting or not.  
My technique was embroidery - not my strong suit.  So I decided to just do some birds flying by.
So here it is.  I think my favorite part is the water and the cat.  I love that it seems the cat is patiently waiting for his owner to finish so they can go home.
As always, I learned a lot.  Acutally, what I realized is that I'm really more comfortable with applique or pieced quilts.  I'll keep trying things outside my box, but hopefully I'll feel more equipped next time.
Happy stitching,
Karen

Saturday, March 29, 2014

The Pensacola Slice Quilt

One of the special exhibits at our upcoming Quilt Show will be the Pensacola Slice Quilt.  For those of you not familiar with slice quilts, the idea is you take a photograph (or in our case a painting), get a very enlarged copy of it, and cut it up in slices.  In this case, the painting was copied (with the artist's permission) and enlarged to 4 ft. high by 10 ft. wide.  Then it was cut into 12" wide slices and handed out to people in the guild.  They were given a color reference slice of what it needed to look like, and then we waited.  Twenty people participated, so we ended up with 2 slice quilts. This is one of them.
Each slice is self bound and has a hanging sleeve on the back.  All 10 one foot sections are displayed together.  So cool!!!
The first section starts with a RR trestle bridge that is known in Pensacola as the "Graffiti Bridge".  It is painted almost daily with different things.  Then there's the big beach sign leading out to Pensacola Beach - very iconic.
It seems I missed a section, with Old Christ Church downtown (built in 1832), the big beach ball and the Blue Angels in formation (you can see them on the first picture).  This is our old Saenger Theatre (built in 1935) downtown.  It's been restored and it's beautiful.
Last is a shrimp boat (yes, we have wonderful fresh shrimp here) and the Pensacola Lighthouse (I kind of cut that off).  I was on my lunch hour and there were people in the gallery room where this was being displayed so I kind of rushed.  I'll get some good ones at the show.
Also hanging was our Guild challenge from last year.  It was called "Music of the Night".  I'll post next about that, I've got several pictures of my process.
I participated in this challenge and my quilt is hanging.  Any idea which one is mine??  (I'll reveal in the next post).  It's not raining here today - :).  Happy stitching - I'm headed up to my studio to play!!
-Karen

Friday, March 28, 2014

An Evening with Silver Threads Quilt Guild

I am finally beginning to feel like I've caught up with myself since March 6th - my husband's surgery.
One of the fun things I've done is take a short trip over to Ft. Walton Beach, FL - just down the road from Pensacola.  I was asked to present my trunk show for the Silver Threads Quilt Guild. 
I got there a little early and drove one block off the main road, and found this quiet little spot.
It was warm enough to roll the windows down and listen to the birds and ducks.  I'd remembered to bring a book to read, and so in the midst of my craziness..... I spent an hour just reading, listening and enjoying.
The presentation went well, what a great group of ladies.  This is Kerry who plans the programs - she was such a delight.  I got to share my quilting journey with them and totally enjoyed my evening off from being "Nancy Nurse" :).  You can see a few of the quilts on the table, but no other pictures.
There have been lots of other happenings, and I'll post about those soon.  Two more weeks until the Quilt Show :)!  My DH is progressing well.  He sees the infectious disease doc next week, hope it's good news.  We are still taking it one day at a time.
-Karen