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New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada
Welcome to my world where I try to figure out what I'm going to do next! These days, it is mostly quilting, but you never know what it might be... come find out with me!

Friday, July 10, 2009

bits and pieces and firsts and lasts

its Friday already! This week I've accomplished a lot of little things that I didn't necessarily start out the week expecting to do, and some of the things I thought I'd get to just didn't happen. Such is life, or at least my life! (my apologies for the wonky layout that follows!)
I should try Camille 's over at Simplify Three things list - maybe I'd stay on track better!

Speaking of Camille, and Carrie at La Vie En Rosie, they have put a challenge out for quilters to show their first quilt, and their most recent quilt, with comments on what they have learned in the process. My first quilt, way back in 1983, was a single big star, made with half square triangles. I don't have it, or a picture of it as it was made for a wedding present for a friend. It was red, blue and tan, machine pieced and very minimally hand quilted. As I recall, it was about 4' square. I took a rather long hiatus from quilting at that point, moved across the country, went back to school, and generally got on with doing other things. I continued sewing and eventually found my way back to quilting in the late 90's. I will show you a picture of my first quilting project at that time. It was a Seminole style pieced table runner, done in a class.

It was a lot of fun to make, and I still use it regularly - at the moment its on the coffee table in the living room. Picking fabric is always over whelming for me - I think with this one, I walked into the store, spotted the fabric I used in the border, grabbed the first things I saw that went with it, and that was that. I'm not necessarily a yellow and blue kinda person, but I do find the colours nice and cheerful!

My most recent completed quilt (I have made and completed a small quilted purse shown a few days ago) would be this one that I made in a Judy Farrow workshop. This was an incredible amount of fun, and very freeing! Judy is such fun! Curved free form piecing - no worrying about whether you have an exact 1/4" seam, or if anything actually matches up. Fabric was from my stash and is not limited to cottons - I have velvet, satin, silks and what I call liquid metal lame in it.
These more "exotic" fabrics are leftovers from dance costumes I make.

The picture is not great and doesn't show the true gradations, but do you get the idea??!
The detail shows the silk insert in some of the pieces. This was also used as the stopper strip in the border.

What have I learned over the years? a consistent 1/4" seam is really nice with traditional piecing and does get easier to achieve over time, but not to get hung up with it as sometimes interesting results can be achieved with curved piecing that doesn't need such consistency. Not to worry about the quilt police - I make quilts for my enjoyment and creativity and they may not be liked by everyone. Experiment! I explore as many different techniques and methods as I can. I have great fun with art quilts, and enjoy more traditional ones as well. Mixing fabrics, dyeing, painting and all kinds of manipulations can be a lot of fun.
Always looking for what comes next,


Carrie said...

For someone who finds picking fabrics overwhelming, you sure do a terrific job of it!

The tablerunner IS cheery and happy! And I love the white and black quilt you made in your workshop ~ that's amazing! Mixing all those different types and weights of fabric must have been a challenge but you sure made it look good!

Thank you for sharing and for joining in!

Rachel said...

Wow - that black and white quilt is incredible! I would think all those curved seams would be difficult.

a good yarn said...

Whoever said quilting was a journey knew what they were talking about. Your black and white quilt is fantastic! Ann :)

Victoria Findlay Wolfe said...

I love the free piecing on this quilt! I say, go all out and make another even crazier. it's stunning!