I thought about how to use it for several weeks and finally decided on Turning Twenty Again. It’s an old pattern, but I’ve seen it made up in many different fabrics and it’s almost always spectacular and modern-looking. The fabric I bought was 8 fat quarters, and Turning Twenty Again is a pattern developed for efficient use of fat quarters, so it seemed a good match.
I needed a little more fabric and found this dot in my stash–it had the same appearance of linen texture as the original fabric and I thought it went perfectly with the others.
The next question was what else to add. After auditioning several options, I decided on this cat fabric. The eyes are sort of of dots, too, and the color coordinated well. I made the blocks and put them on the design wall, and…Eek! Is it too busy? And when I see it overall, I do not like the tan fabric I added, even though it is similar to the beige-green that came with the fat quarter set!
I’ve had it on the design wall for a week trying to decide what to do. One option is to put the squares together with sashing and a border to kind of calm things down. I auditioned a dark blue fabric and a turquoise fabric for that–both are Moda grunge, so they have the same linen-look texture.
Another option is to take the blocks apart in order to add these birds from the same collection, giving a greater variety of prints. I think if I take it apart, I will remove the tan fabric I don’t like, so the birds could add variety AND get rid of the tan!
From there we go into the wild options. They are legion, and include the possibility of cutting the blocks randomly and inserting solid strips. Or I could replace some pieces with the birds and some with the turquoise grunge.
And of course there is the perennial option of putting it away for a month and then looking at it again to see what comes to mind.
This week I received notice from Meander Publishing that both Modern Quilts Unlimited and Machine Quilting Unlimited are to cease publication immediately. I am a little surprised, given the ever-increasing popularity of both machine quilting and modern quilting. The notice cites the “soft market” for magazines as well as the costs of producing a print magazine.
For me personally this is a disappointment, both because I have enjoyed reading Modern Quilts Unlimited and because the magazine has published several articles by me. My most recent submission was to have been published in the upcoming July issue of Modern Quilts Unlimited, but they will be returning the quilt to me instead. The July issue of Modern Quilts Unlimited will not be published at all, and the July issue of Machine Quilting Unlimited will be digital only.
The front page of the Meander Publishing website hasn’t caught up with the news as I write this, so I’m not sure how widely it is known. I predict that this will leave a vacuum in the modern quilt magazine market that will be filled shortly by something from the Modern Quilt Guild. Their agenda seems to be to own the definition of modern quilting, and a magazine would further that aim.
I expect this is disappointing to Vicki Anderson, the CEO and editor of the Meander Publishing magazines. She has put a lot of effort (and probably money) into these publications. I am sorry to see these magazines go.
I recently started teaching at A Stitch in Time in Franklin, NC. It’s as “local” as quilt shops get for me in this rural area, so I’m very happy to be able to teach there. It’s an excellent shop and I sort of have to work to avoid drooling on the fabric…well, you know what I mean 😉
So here is the quilt I will be teaching in July…
Scrap quilt made with strips that finish 1″ wide
“Red Pepper” is made from a quilt pattern entitled “Yellow Pepper”
Happy Squares, one of my original designs
Of course, while I was in the shop I got a little fabric! This is a specially-printed piece from Hoffman California that has 8 coordinating fat quarters in a 2 yard cut!
There were other nice prints in the series, but I’m a fool for dots. If you need some, too, you can order from A Stitch in Time (and no, I do not make any money from it; this site is non-commercial).
My modern guild is having a challenge to produce quilts for display when the traditional guild has its next show in the fall. The guidelines are: no more than 36″ on any side, and using some Riley Blake solids whose colors were extracted from a landscape photo chosen by the guild. The quilts aren’t due for several months yet, but I had a brainstorm and produced mine already. Here we go:
The quilt is faced rather than bound
And here is a detail. In case you haven’t caught on, this is the one that was stained by basting spray. However, that came out just fine with dry cleaning.
In case you haven’t been reading my blog long enough to know about the condom quilt, here is a brief summary:
A couple of years ago I wanted to make a quilt from a QR code in such a way that the entire quilt top could be scanned to open the target website. Since I was going to be putting in a lot of effort, I wanted a QR code that had some meaning for me.
At that time I was working in public health, spending much of each day helping patients cope with various problems that might have been prevented by appropriate use of condoms.
When I looked for a condom-related QR code, I found that Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and Hawaiian Islands (PPGNW) had developed a QR code to be placed on their condom packages. Scanning the code linked to PPGNW’s “Where Did You Wear It?” site. The goal was to encourage safer sex through condom use.
The Original Code
My colorized version of the code
PPGNW graciously agreed to let me use their QR code in my design. I colorized their code and made my quilt, checking after construction of each section to be sure the whole thing still scanned correctly.
This is the finished quilt. That tiny embedded QR code leads to my blog.
I showed the quilt anywhere I could. (It isn’t just younger people who need safer sex.) That included guilds, quilt shows, and the folks in my office. After a year of showing it to anybody who would listen, I donated the quilt to PPGNW to be used in any way they wish.
I was very pleased recently to receive this picture of the PPGNW management staff with the quilt. That funny looking guy is their condom mascot.
The folks at PPGNW report that the quilt has sparked discussion, especially about the interaction of traditional crafts and technology. I enjoyed this quilt from start to finish and I’m glad it is now in its home.
Last Saturday I taught my “secret valentine” pillow at Studio Stitch in Greensboro (NC). Here are a few pictures of the finished pillow covers with their proud makers.
I’ll be teaching Yow again this spring, this time at A Stitch in Time in Franklin, NC. The class is scheduled for Friday, April 6. This is a lively quilt, and I teach three different ways to piece a curve perfectly.
This is made with bright batiks and templates from Elisa’s Backporch Design
The Gypsy Wife quilt is quilted, and bound, and ready to go to its “forever home”, as our daughter calls it when one of the animals she fosters is adopted.
I recently read a post listing pictures we supposedly should take of every quilt, and thought “not”. I think Rita, at Red Pepper Quilts, does one of the best jobs anywhere on her photos and posts about her quilts. She includes enough pictures for me to get a good idea of the quilt. Even better, she lists “statistics” about each quilt at the end of the post. So here’s my attempt:
First, a picture showing the back and giving a closer view of the binding:
Then, a picture of my favorite block. OK, that wasn’t Rita’s idea, but I like it 🙂
A picture showing the quilting:
Gypsy Wife Quilt
Pattern: Gypsy Wife by Jen Kingwell, with several modifications by me
Fabric: Just A Speck collection by Jen Kingwell,
Moda Grunge in various colors
And a few others
Finished Size: 61” x 66”
OK, did any of those pictures or details add to your experience of the quilt?
One of the things I love about blogging is hearing from people who comment and share their ideas. Here are a couple of ideas that I thought you might enjoy, too.
When I blogged about some household items that are useful for quilting, Peggy commented that she cuts up her old calendars and uses the numbers to label her blocks and rows.
It was the perfect time of year for that handy hint, so I promptly cut up an old calendar. The numbers worked great for labeling pieces for a complex project. I clipped them to groups of fabric for the various sections of the quilt using binder clips–an idea I got from Judy Niemeyer’s class years ago.
Another friend, Claire, responded to my post on making single-color slabs by asking what I do with fabric that is a mixture such that no one color predominates. I had been cutting out sections based on the predominant color, and that seemed to work. But…
When I came to this piece, I realized I had NO desire to cut out chunks small enough to be mainly one color. Then I started looking and saw that I had a number of prints from which I would NEVER be able to cut single-color pieces of any size.
So I made a block of multi-color pieces. It is pretty wild, but so were some of the fabrics that went into it. I’ll see how it looks with the single-color blocks when I assemble a quilt. What do you think? Make more of these or give up on the truly multicolored fabrics for slabs?