Monday, March 12, 2018

Get Thee to the Quilt Show! Inspired by the National Parks

Yesterday I had the opportunity to visit The Great American Cover-Up Quilt Show, put on by the Bulloch Hall Quilt Guild, featuring the Inspired by the National Parks Quilt Exhibit.

national parks exhibit, bulloch hall quilt guild, the great american cover-up, quilt show

You'll have to visit the website since photographing the quilts was not allowed. Let me just say that each grouping of quilts was amazing and inspiring. If you don't have the chance to see the exhibit, the next best thing is the book with photos and essays about each park and each quilt. 


I had the added benefit of visiting with a dear friend who is not a quilter, but whose family are national parks buffs. She has been to about half of the parks, and seeing these quilts with her was really special. I loved when she would recognize a park from across the room, and would share some memory from her childhood about visiting each one. 

national parks exhibit, hike, jan antranikian, bulloch hall quilt guild, the great american cover-up, quilt show
"Hike" by Jan Antranikian

The guild did a great job of using props and family photos from guild members to set the scene. 

national parks exhibit, foxy, marie wood, bulloch hall quilt guild, the great american cover-up, quilt show
"Foxy" by Marie Monks Wood

They also hosted a challenge among their own members, inspired by nature. I love how these turned out, and am so proud to know many of these quilters.

national parks exhibit, watched eggs never hatch, christie fouts, bulloch hall quilt guild, the great american cover-up, quilt show
"Watched Eggs Never Hatch" by Christie Fouts

The show runs through March 18, so there's still time if you are nearby. It's worth the trip!

national parks exhibit, swamp, wendy blanton, bulloch hall quilt guild, the great american cover-up, quilt show
"Swamp" by Wendy Blanton




Sunday, March 11, 2018

Going to Guild - Charlotte Angotti Returns

Monday was guild night, the first one of the year for me. In January we got snowed out. In February I had planned to attend and then, Tuesday morning, realized I had completely forgotten. Where is my head? 



But this month our speaker was the quiltalicious Charlotte Angotti with her bajillion gorgeous quilts and at least one story for each one that will have you wiping away tears of laughter.  



Charlotte has a gift for using color with simple blocks to bring light and movement to quilt designs. 


She is great at breaking down complicated looking designs and making them achievable even for newer quilters. She encourages you to use fabric from your stash, and teaches you new ways to look at old fabric.


In addition to the loads of quilts she brings - she couldn't even show them all - Charlotte is so danged funny! She sprinkles stories about how she came up with a quilt design with anecdotes from her retreats, lectures, and classes. 


My iPhone-tography doesn't do these justice, but friend her on Facebook to get a dose of color inspiration that will get your creative juices flowing.


Monday, February 26, 2018

Machine Quilting Monday - Free-Motion Meandering Blog Hop Week 4



It's the last week of the Free-Motion Meandering Blog Hop. Today, in addition to practicing the remaining designs, there's also a giveaway to win your own copy of Angela Walters's newest book. Be sure to visit Kristin and Vicki to enter their giveaways as well and improve your chances of winning.


free-motion meandering, angela walters, feather meander, giveaway

The first design is the feather meander. I thought I had taken better pictures of this one, but I guess I didn't since it's the one that definitely needs more practice! I attempted this design in the upper left and lower right blocks in the photo above, and you can see that I didn't quite get the hang of it. Time to go back and review the troubleshooting section of this chapter.


free-motion meandering, angela walters, improv quilting, giveaway

The final chapter of this book is all about improv quilting. I had a lot of fun with this concept in the blocks where the other designs didn't feel right.


free-motion meandering, angela walters, improv quilting, giveaway

I love using the blocks to help guide my quilting. 

free-motion meandering, angela walters, improv quilting, giveaway


Sometimes I combined designs to focus on certain features of the blocks. Angela does a great job of inspiring and guiding the development of your personal style, while helping you improve your technique. 

I hope you've enjoyed this preview of Free-Motion Meandering, and wish you luck in the giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Monday, February 19, 2018

Machine Quilting Monday - Free-Motion Meandering Blog Hop Week 3



Welcome to Week 3 of the Free-Motion Meandering Blog Hop! Kristin, Vicki and I are spending February with Angela Walters's newest book. The blocks I'm showing are all from the Michael Miller quilt that will be on display at QuiltCon with six other Quilts for Cure.


free-motion meandering, angela walters, paisley, freemotion quilting

This week we're practicing the paisley meander and the leafy meander. I love the loopy design of the paisley meander. It's easy to get into a groove and quickly fill a space. 

free-motion meandering, angela walters, paisley, freemotion quilting

You can make them all different sizes and add an extra echo to travel to where you need to be. Angela has some great troubleshooting tips for those times when your paisleys seem to line up instead of making a true meandering pattern.


free-motion meandering, angela walters, leafy meander, freemotion quilting

There are times when the leafy meander seems to suit the fabric better. I like how it gives the quilting such an organic texture. 

free-motion meandering, angela walters, leafy meander, freemotion quilting

Angela explains why sometimes your leaves aren't symetrical and how to avoid tension problems that can sometimes arise with this design.

Regardless of which one you choose, these are quick filler designs that will add interest to your quilt. 

Check back next week for our final two chapters and a chance to win your own copy of Free-Motion Meandering.

Even better, be sure to visit the Michael Miller Fabrics blog to find out how to win fabulous prizes while fighting childhood cancer. WIN WIN!!


Monday, February 12, 2018

Machine Quilting Monday - Free-Motion Meandering Blog Hop Week 2



Welcome to Week 2 of the Free-Motion Meandering Blog Hop! Kristin, Vicki and I are spending February with Angela Walters's newest book. The blocks I'm showing are all from the Michael Miller quilt that will be on display at QuiltCon with six other Quilts for Cure.


angela walters, quilts for cure, swirl hook, swirl meander, michael miller, aurifil, hobbs batting, free motion meandering, free-motion

This week we're practicing the swirl meander and the swirl hook meander. They aren't that different, but I love the way that little hook helps fill the square spaces. 


angela walters, quilts for cure, swirl hook, swirl meander, michael miller, aurifil, hobbs batting, free motion meandering, free-motion

This design is a challenge for me, but Angela includes much more detailed diagrams and troubleshooting tips in this book, so it's gotten a lot better since I tried the similar one in the last hop. Practice, practice, practice! 


angela walters, quilts for cure, swirl hook, swirl meander, michael miller, aurifil, hobbs batting, free motion meandering, free-motion

I put a lot of swirls on this quilt, and they didn't all meander. The border is all swirls. I love them! Sometimes I feel like they are a little rounder and smoother if I have a little wine, but that might be justification.

Quilt along with us and be sure to share pictures of your progress using the hashtag #freemotionmeandering! 


Monday, February 5, 2018

Machine Quilting Monday - Free-Motion Meandering Blog Hop Week 1



Welcome to Week 1 of the Free-Motion Meandering Blog Hop! Kristin, Vicki and I are spending February with Angela Walters's newest book.

Let me start off by saying that, if you have always wanted to try free motion quilting (FMQ), or if you are just beginning, this is the book to get first. Angela's other books are wonderful, but this one really starts from scratch with details like how to set up your machine and which thread to use.

This week we're practicing the meander and the loopy meander. I love how Angela's illustrations show you every step of the stitch. She also walks you through some troubleshooting, explaining common problems and how to avoid or fix them. 


free-motion meandering angela walters

I practiced all the designs in this book on the Michael Miller quilt that's flying to QuiltCon right now. In this block, I did a basic meander. Meandering is great for getting the hang of FMQ, for letting yourself relax and play with the fabric and thread. Angela has helpful diagrams, photos, and instructions for when you catch yourself traveling in only one direction or repeating the same design over and over again.


free-motion meandering loop angela walters
I have no idea why the color is so off in this picture.
The pink sashing is the same on all the blocks.

Once you get the hang of meandering, you can add loops. You can see from these two blocks that changing the size gives it a different feel. You can also see from the block above that smaller loops are harder to keep smooth than larger loops. But that's why we practice!

free-motion meandering loop angela walters

Angela shows some fun ways to adapt this meander to the space you're filling, including borders.

Quilt along with us and be sure to share pictures of your progress using the hashtag #freemotionmeandering!


Friday, February 2, 2018

Mail Time - Vintage Pit Boss Postcard


There is something so fun about getting a postcard, and this one from Frances just made me happy! Apparently this is a real vintage cookbook about barbecue from the fifties - out of print but still available. Of course, The Pit Boss and I loved it. I think it will go in a little frame next to the door to the deck where the magic happens. 



Frances is sending a postcard a day for 2018. What a great idea to get you writing and reaching out to friends! 

Confidential to Frances: QuiltCon 2019 in Nashville is TOTALLY happening!



Speaking of Frances and writing, have you seen her latest book, Margaret Goes Modern? It's a book of short stories about quilters and quilting. Some of them you may have seen on her Quilt Fiction page, but several are new. It's a charming read, just perfect for a quick story before bed that will leave you with happy, quilty dreams. Right now it's a bargain on Amazon Kindle for just $1.99.

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