Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Making a Barn Quilt Sign

A Pine Belt Quilter member gave a program this spring on Barn Quilt signs she had seen on a trip and suggested that we might want to create some for our own quilt trail in our area. I have a small shop building in my back yard which can be seen from the street, so this seems a logical place for a barn quilt sign.
Our signs are two feet square and I decided on the 54-40 or Fight block in three colors--cream, apple green, and red, with black lines and black outside edges. I marked my design on the treated wood board with a pencil and began painting with a sponge brush, first the cream background blocks, then the green ones, and finally the red triangles.

Trying out my colors
Painter's tape helps
Drawing black on the lines; I will paint black outside edges

Rahrah and Elizabeth are bored

Thursday, October 16, 2014

A Little Fun Sewing

In putting stuff away after the quilt show I came across a Ziploc bag with some little 4-5" blocks and several pieces of fabric obviously left over from making these blocks. I imagine someone started this as a Children's Quilt and it came to me with some other donated fabric.
The fabrics were bright and cheery and a little wild, not something I would have thought of combining, but I liked them. There were five partial rows, not all the same length, with some black/white strips that looked like they might be planned for sashing. So I could not resist finishing it. I added a white strip to the end of any row that was not quite long enough, sewed the black strips between the rows and on both sides and began to figure how to use the remaining fabric to make the quilt as large as possible. Here's the result. It measures 43" x 52".

Next I cut apart a finished wall quilt that I had made using thickened dyes unsuccessfully. I cut it into 1" strips and sewed them back together with connecting strips and made several postcards. These were interesting, especially with the appearance of one of my favorite fabrics--a back/white Oriental-looking piece with unexpected bits of red, blue, and aqua showing up. This "favorite fab" is from a shirt I bought at a friend's garage sale a couple of years ago. It shows up quite often in my work and adds just the right bit of color to a mostly black/white piece. Thanks, Bill!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

A Melody Johnson Wall Quilt

Blocks on Parade, 17" x 23"
by Melody Johnson
I have long been an admirer and blog reader of  Melody Johnson's art work. She uses dramatic colors which fairly sing and vibrate. Recently when she posted a couple of pieces for sale I sent an email with my purchase request, hoping I would be early enough, since most of her pieces go fast. I was the lucky buyer, and the piece arrived just before our quilt show. I wanted to show it as the ultimate achievement during my Creativity lecture at the show. Now I will share it here; it's called Blocks on Parade.
Melody is an avid gardener, knitter, decorator (furniture rearranger!), and owner of two darling pugs. Her blog covers all the above. What she can grow in a backyard garden is amazing. I love having a piece of her art to hang in my home!
After Elizabeth's inadvertently getting shut up in the filing cabinet drawer for several hours, she spent most of the next day cuddling and sharing face baths with her sister, Rah-Rah. Tarbaby was unconcerned.

Rah-Rah and Elizabeth

Monday, October 6, 2014

What to Do When the Quilt Show is Over

Well, for starters, unload the car. Next, begin putting all those pieces I used at my lecture back in the closet or on their nails on the wall.

I had a houseguest and after we enjoyed eating out all week, I was ready to cook a proper meal instead of refrigerator findings, so a grocery shopping trip was necessary (the cats did not eat out all week). Then there were some emails to catch up on and more pictures and the winners page to post on the guild's blog.  Finally, I had a week's worth of checks and credit card charge slips to record. Pot plants needed some attention.

After seeing all the inspiring quilts at the show, several of us talked about how eager we were to get to our sewing machines! I keep lots of strips and squares cut and ready to sew. If I don't keep them covered, the cats bring several pieces to me during the night.
Tomorrow, to the sewing machine!
Elizabeth got closed up in one of these file drawers this afternoon and I hunted her for about seven hours, so she is sticking close to me.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Our Show Opens!

After all the receiving, judging, hanging, labeling, decorating, printing, and lots more . . . we had an entry hall full of people waiting to see our our show when the doors opened, in spite of a wet, humid high 80s morning. And they were not disappointed.
We have 340 quilts plus a Hoffman Challenge exhibit. We have a silent auction, boutique, 20 vendors, hallway display of quilters' other activities, free lectures every hour, door prizes, even chairs placed about the exhibit hall to sit and rest your feet.
It was rewarding to see ribbons on four of my five entries (pictures in yesterday's post). I presented a lecture on Creativity, where I enjoyed showing more of my work and discussing what inspires me.
White glove duty is my favorite quilt show task, because it allows me to circulate and see friends and also answer questions asked. It is quite satisfying to help people understand techniques they see, as well as how the quilts are categorized. For instance, TA means Team Applique; THMS means Theme Small; ART means Art (easy one); then there's ME/S/WC/O, which means Machine Embroidery, Stitchery, Whole Cloth, Other (needs explaining). 
A day at the show leaves my feet and knees screaming, but after a meal and visit at Patio 44 with friends, I still was able to catch part of Back Door Coffee House at University Baptist Church to hear Oh Jeremiah (local singer) and Laura Dragon (author of Hurricane Boy). All in all a most enjoyable day! And there are two more, especially nice because of a cool front with 59 degrees and bright sunshine.
The cats are not pleased; in fact, I hear "Oh, rats . . . she's leaving us all day again!"
Tarbaby and Rah-Rah

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Countdown to Show Time

Our Show Catalog
Our guild's show, Pine Belt Quilters 15th Biennial Fiber Art & Quilt Show, opens tomorrow in Hattiesburg, MS. Lake Terrace Convention Center's exhibit hall is filled with 340 judged quilts plus a Hoffman Challenge trunk show.
Linda Flanders prepares an 8-1/2" x 11" first-class show catalog which contains descriptions of all the entries plus sponsors, vendors, some guild history, and map of the show. My responsibilities have been helping to proof this catalog and to solicit sponsors and ads. My last task has been to prepare the winners pages, which can't be done until the judging is completed and all awards selected. Keeping tabs on all the numbers, quilt names, makers' names, and awards is a daunting task, but lots of checking and cross-checking gets it as accurate as possible. 

I have five entries in the show. Here they are.
High Rise, 2nd in Pieced-Small Category

Leaf Study: Crotons, 2nd in Art Category
Color Bars: Yellow, HM in Pieced-Small Category
Tribute to Tigger, HM in Zoo Challenge Category
Fish Out of Water
The show opens tomorrow and runs for three days.