Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Inspired Yet Uninspired

The blocks in this quilt were made by friends in my Loose Threads group and I 'won' them in our monthly drawing.  I say 'won' lightly because I was one of the last two women to win in our 15 month BOM and drawing event, so I was allowed to choose the color theme.  When I started putting the blocks together and created the layout I had big dreams. 

As I got further into it I realized that I a) must scale down my dreams to a more realistic outcome, and b) needed to be the only person happy with this quilt because it was not going to dazzle at any show. (My big dream - that I can make the jury cut of some really big show.  Think Ed Sullivan there ��). 

I copied Judi Madsen's work (green fairy quilts), and added a bit of my own work. Then, I soon got bored.  Rather than continue on with more ruler work, I'm just doing some mindless and super simple, fast fills.

I know I read this on someone else's blog but I can't remember who:  it seems so silly to spend so much time quilting something that has no purpose.  How true. What was I thinking?  Well, I will chalk this one up to another learning experience.  I think I need to go for broke, or just go for something utilitarian.  Whaddyu think???

(Another reason to love quilting for customers... I can quilt with a purpose!)

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Cobwebs and Cowboys

Karen made this cute little table runner, too.

I don't know why I never think of making anything smaller.  I think I will make a few.  It's seems to me many things I make tend to be over big, over quilted, over thought (I'm sure that's not proper grammar).  Why, oh, why, can't I make simple and small?  Table runners or dresser runners would make great gifts, too, don't you think?  

While I was out and about driving home from my daughter's home, I spied some working cowboys.  Unfortunately, I didn't have my nice camera with zoom, but I snapped these with my iPhone 5. It's nice to know that not all cattle are rounded up by helicopter. 

The day was dreary, and the view long, but thought I would share anyway.  Have a great day, and thanks so much for checking in!  If I don't already follow your blog, please send me the link!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Karen's Cute Snowman

This is such a cute table runner. Karen must have spent so much time finishing all those raw edges by machine. I didn't see one stray thread. Thanks Karen for sending me this cute piece!  Next up is her adorable Halloween runner.  

Thanks for stopping by!  

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Picasso, Matisse, and MOMA

When I so fortunately was given the liberty to wander the streets of Manhattan, I decided to peruse MOMA, Museum of Modern Art, for the first time.  On previous trips, I toured the other grand New York Museums.  Overwhelming to say the least.  I have little appreciation for modern art, but I'm so glad I went.  These are a few of my favorites and I apologize for not taking note of each artist's name.

Of course, I frequently think which elements could be used in a quilt.

Is it the shapes, the colors, the emotions?

I have never taken any art classes in history or appreciation, or even practical.  Two years ago I told myself I would get a bachelors degree in art, but I am questioning that now,  between grandkids, and travel, and quilting, and learning the guitar, I'm so busy!  
I think one might have some interesting conversations with these questions.

I've always loved this piece above, but didn't realize it was considered modern.  By Andrew 

Pablo Picasso.  His metal sculptures are on exhibit for a few months.

I did learn quite a bit about modern art while I was there.  I learned about cubism, and the history of modern art.  

Thanks so much for stopping by my blog and sharing s bit about my life!  I WILL have some quilty pictures soon!!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

My Ah-Ha Moment and New England

I've been feeling really dissatisfied with the amount of time I was wasting scrolling through Facebook and Instagram.  I would frequently ask myself "Why am I doing this?"  The waste of time, the egoism, the competitiveness, the addiction, the distraction... It hit me.  Instead of making me feel more social, I think it made me anti-social.  I had to be coerced to start FB in the beginning.  I was a holdout for a long time, but then I convinced myself I needed to do it.

I will admit, though, that I will miss seeing my little grand nieces and nephews, and the rare funny joke, as well as my friends' travel pictures, but I hope that those people will still send me pictures, call or email me when they want to share part of their lives.  

I even felt a sense of dissatisfaction when looking over quilting pictures.  What I could see from an IG photo, or in a quilt group photo just kept leading me more and more into a FB or IG funk.  It also surprised me (that's how ridiculously entrenched I was in the FB sinkhole) that so many of the Houston International winners were completely unfamiliar to me.  What?!?  A quilt winner who isn't on FB or who doesn't have a huge public social media presence??  (PLEASE, if anyone is out there reading this, if you are an avid social media poster, please do not be offended by my statements.  I'm not criticizing you, I'm just making a change for me.). I honestly assumed that all of the winners would have social media campaigns.  Naive, I know. 

So, I've decided to take a break from Facebook and Instagram.  I'm not sure how long the break will be, but it's been two days and I'm feeling better. I admire people who can pop on for a few minutes every couple weeks.  That's not me.  I actually feel like making this decision is almost the same as breaking any other addiction.  It's so crazy.  I've had so much more time to do the things I really love; for instance, read a quilt magazine, play my guitar, take an exercise class, and yes, change my blog face. 

I missed updating my blog, or as it was intended, an online journal.  I missed being able to choose which blog posts I wanted to see and when!!  So, I'm back, and I'm doing this for the right reasons.  I'm not trying to impress anyone.  I'm not trying to win over any customers, or to see my name in the Great Quilting Lights.  I'm just writing about my little world with an emphasis on quilting.  

I'm hoping I will have more time to do what I want, and that is to be creative, and to make things with that creativity.  If you're still reading my blog, thanks for stopping by.  I do appreciate it.  I've made some wonderful online friends through blogging, and I hope to stop by your blog to see what you're up to.  

So a couple weeks ago I was fortunate enough to go to New England (first time) and return to NYC.  It was such a beautiful time of the year to go!  

The leaves were turning throughout New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, New York.

A covered bridge in Bennington, Vermont.
These cute white churches were everywhere in the small villages.

Driving through the Catskills.
The Hudson River Valley

Just a lovely country road.

Near Ogonquit, Maine.

Thanks again for stopping by.  Hopefully I will have some quilts things to report next time!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Graffiti Quilting and OMG Quilt - Red Dot Rebel

I've been on fire with graffiti quilting!  It has been so liberating - no rulers, no plans, just stitching!

I found a fun group on Facebook run by Helen Godden (google her, you will love her work) and the challenge is to make an OMG quilt (organic, modern, graphic).  I finally found the time to take up her challenge and submitted this as well as my earlier piece.  This one met the guidelines and was inducted into the OMG Order of Creation as #53!

I can't wait to get back to my machine so I can do more graffiti quilting.  In case you are not familiar with this type of free motion quilting, Google Karlee Porter!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Out of My Box Design and Graffiti Quilting

Well just in case you haven't seen this yet... And I don't know how that could happen as I've blitzed FB and IG with it...here is my latest hair brained scheme. Tried hand appliqué methods and graffiti quilting for the first time. I definitely found an appliqué method I prefer - with stiff paper like cereal boxes or file folders, and starch and an iron.  I like the crispness it gives the edges.  Of course I can't use that with tiny pieces like leaves or stems, but for this size, it worked great.  

I loved graffiti quilting!  Thank you Karlee Porter!  It was so liberating.  I didn't mark or plan at all.

I'm already planning another...

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Another Plus Quilt!

This is the third plus quilt I've made in the last few months and I can envision a few more. They are great stash busters and so easy and quick. 
By changing the color scheme you can make it look so different. I think it really lends itself to the new, contemporary fabrics.  

Thanks for stopping by!!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Tehachapi Mountain Quilt Guild Raffle Quilt

I quilted this gorgeous paper pieced star quilt last year for my California guild and it will be raffled off next month at the Tehachapi Mountain Festival. I sure hope I win it!

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Why I am Addicted to Fabric #4 and What I'm Doing When Not Quilting

Wouldn't you agree?  Every quilt tells a story.  A story of a wedding couple, a newborn, a college or high school graduation.  I will be thinking of who will receive it, who will be comforted by it, what I was feeling at the time I designed it, what was going on in my life, where I was living, and so on. 

I'm becoming more and more surprised as I come across pictures of quilts from, say, 10 years ago.  They bring back memories that would otherwise have been forgotten.  

Beginning as a preteen through high school I kept a diary and wrote in it every day.  I have no idea where it ended up.  I moved in high school and I think I tossed many things I might have kept had I not moved.  I also had a pen pal in North Carolina with whom I faithfully corresponded for at least five years.  I'd give anything to read either that diary or those letters now to get a glimpse of who I was at that time.  I've always been intrigued with old diaries.  Ones I've found in antique or thrift stores, published fictional diaries, and let's face it - who didn't love The Diary of Anne Frank?

I don't have any desire to keep a diary now, but at least I can use my quilts and the quilts that I have quilted for others to help me remember events in my life.  This fuels my desire to create more.

How about you?  Did you keep a diary?  Do you keep one now?  

I'm not near my longarm and too busy to piece a top.  I have been here at the river hanging out with friends and family.  We've been to the pool almost every day, riding the waverunners, and done some boating at the lake.  Yesterday was crazy busy here so we watched all of it from the deck rather than dealing with all the crowds.  

We watched the fireworks from the airport overlooking the river and casinos.  They were spectacular.  


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