Sunday, December 30, 2012

2012 at a glance

This year I have had a lot of fun with a lot of different fabrics, I think my favourite thing to work on was the Soul Searching quilt....but boy did I make mess with getting all those fabrics out the cupboard!

My stretch project is definitely Mrs Billings, all those little pieces, and all that hand sewing :)

 but I do enjoy challenging myself with odd fabrics like the Brendan Mably Regency Dapple.

The laugh of the year was this photo of my Crossed Block quilt getting onto Flickr Explore...I had so many nice comments on what a great photo this was...but it really was what I always do....try and find somewhere big enough to hang a quilt.

The adventure of the year was of course my trip to Houston with my mum, but it wasn't all quilts, we managed to do some sight seeing too....yes that is THE Liberty Bell.

Next year is going to be a year of finishes, as the local guild has it's exhibition coming up in September,  I am trying decided which quilt will I quilt to put in the exhibition....or maybe I will do two ;)

In preparation for the "big sew", one of the ladies from the guild is looking to sell her Janome 7700, she has kindly lent it to me for the holidays so I can play on it...moving away from the Bernina is a big decision!

Also I have recently kitted out my sewing space with a new bookshelf which is helping me be a bit more organised, 'cos that's my goal for 2013....ORGANISATION

Yeah it's never going happen...but everyone has to start the New Year with a goal or two, so more organisation is one of mine for 2013 !

So good bye 2012.....and hello 2013...let's make some great quilts in the new year!

 1. Prints Charming scrap pillow, 2. Pink Scraps, 3. Regal Dapple, 4. Block-a-Palooza angle, 5. Orange Sunburst Fun, 6. Purple Soul Searching, 7. Crossed Block quilt, 8. Vintage Holiday....getting there, 9. block 9 Blogger's BOM

Happy New Year :)

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas

Christmas is almost upon us, the last part of this year has just flown by, particularly since my return from Houston, when you bring home an extra 20 kilos of fabric and books, it takes a while to squeeze everything into the cupboards :)

My favourites things from Houston,  that were the last to go away into the cupboard were these darling dresden plates...I have 20 of these babies...these fabrics are so cute...

Whilst in Houston there were so many stores that sold felt, and I eventually succumbed to these projects.....

I left them out for a while because I thought I might work on them for this Christmas, but alas that didn't  happen...time conspired against usual ! Note gorgeous hand dyed felt!

What I have been working on is a small gift for a friend, I had been playing around with my aboriginal fabrics a little while ago and made this...

 ...and really liked how the colours came together, so I used the scraps to make this little A4 quilt, it will sit flatter once I have finished sewing the binding on.

...the stamps are really fun, I am going to try and use them again.

And of course the "small" project that gets a bit of work from time to time, is my Mrs Billings quilt, it's looking quite smart! Although a little small still :(

And as I have a couple of weeks off soon I am hoping to get some work done it, unless I get side tracked onto something else of course...but the thing I really want to say today is Merry Christmas! I hope you all have a lovely time with your family and friends.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Houston - Power of the Machine

As I walked around the International Quilt Festival I marvelled at the intricacy of the work that the quilters have achieved, clearly masters of the machine.

First and second place in the Merit Quilting sponsored by Bernina caught my eye for obvious reasons, first place Super Star by Marilyn Badger really shone with it's pops of green and blue, and up close the detail in the quilting was way beyond anything I have ever attempted!

and second place Five Bar Blues by Diane Loomis, attracted my attention with it's simple piecing, but intricate quilting.

But what about this beauty, Fiesta Mexico by Karen Kay Buckley and Renae Haddadin

This quilt won the Master Award for Innovative Artistry sponsored by Maywood Studios (a prize of $5000)

Check out the machine embroidery on Adventure Awaits by Sue McCarty. My eldest son is a big Lord of the Rings I wanted to show him how it translated onto a quilt!

Of course it is always quilts with pink or red that catch my eye...

 Apple Blossom Dance by Maggie Weiss

Leaf like Life by Dalia Eliraz

La Serrenata by Ann Horton

Digitised embroidery, and hand long stitch...lovely

Last but not least there was lots of great quilts from the Modern Quilt Guild on display, this one is Building Bridges by Jacquie Gering....make sure you pop over to their web site to see all of their quilts that were at the exhibit.

I could go on with these example of machine quilting...but I will stop now :) 

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Houston and back again

OMG what a trip! So many quilts, so much fabric, so much walking! Prepare for a big blog post :)

It's hard to know how to start describing the International Quilt Festival at Houston. As my first trip all I wanted to do was soak up the atmosphere, but there is so much to take in. Mum and I went every day for four days and we still didn't see everything!

First of all the halls are huge, and there are so many people, so all you can do is look at what is right in front of you, that way you don't bump into anyone :)

Here's what the food hall looks like at lunch time! This was only half of the hall, there was that many people again to the right of me.

On the last day after the tour buses had left I wander around just taking photos of how big the halls where! This first shot is of the hall is where all the quilts were, and the second photo is where all the retail stores where...the lights on the dark ceiling give you an idea of how deep the halls are!

Apparently 60,000 people visited over the four days the show was opened.

Enough of fact and figures! How about the quilts!

Wow....some of the quilts

Of course there was the Best of Show America, Let it Shine by Sherri Reynolds, my photos really don't do it justice....there are better photos over at Dutchbaby, and for the really curious there is a 5 minute youtube video to watch of Sherri Reynolds being interviewed, this also has some great close ups of the quilt.

There are thousands of Swarovski crystals that have been used, the words of the Gettysburg address quilted around the centre star...

Check out the back... it was all done a 20 year old domestic machine....impressive!!

A list and photos of all the winning quilts can be found over at the International Quilt Association website.

There was such a great variety of quilts, but I am a real sucker for quilts done by Japanese quilters, mainly because their eye for colour is so different, and the level of detail in their hand work is of my favourite quilts that had the most impressive hand work was The Twelve Days  of Christmas by Osami Gonohe, who won Third prize for innovative applique.

Aren't those little Santa's so cute?

 Busy elves....

The little white dots above the rooftops that look like snow are french knots...

I spent quite a lot time looking at this and it still kills me that the quilt is hand appliqued, and hand quilted!

One of my favourite quilts from the show that has a more modern feel to it is Majestic Tulips by Chizuko Kojima.

I love the use of the velvet and satin which makes parts of the quilt glow...

The colour palate is interesting....and again the quilt is hand appliqued and quilted.

In fact I don't normally do brown (actually not at all) but I did buy some yardage of the brown text print above....who knows maybe I will make a brown quilt!

And yes I acquired some other fabric...all I will say about that is...I bought my husband a new suitcase at Macy's which I was able to fill for the return trip. I will put together another couple of posts over the next week with some of my other photos.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Up, Up and away

Guess what? Today, Mum and I are flying to the U.S. for the quilt festival in Houston...

But first we have 9 days in New's my first trip to the U.S., the woolies have been dusted off .... Mrs Billings' triangles cut...and reading glasses purchased, as sewing all those little hexagons has strained my eyes!

Last week I tried really hard to get my vintage holiday quilt finished...but with getting ready for the big trip I just couldn't get it done...but so this isn't a quilt free post I thought I would share progress...

Finally pushed through my fabric paralysis and selected a little Denyse Schmidt print for the sashing and border...

As you can see it almost done, only the top and bottom borders to go...they will have to wait now...till I get back from Houston...oh so to you in November :)

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Vintage Holiday Quilt-a-long Blocks Done

Whoop whoop...finally finished the blocks from the Vintage Holiday quilt-a-long, I did two blocks in August then got distracted...the pieces for the remaining 10 blocks were cut out months the pieces for the Blogger's Block of the was driving me crazy with all these little piles of triangles and squares...and do you think I could remember the order of the blocks :( Note to self don't get over organised!

They are all quite cute!

Now I have gone into fabric paralysis over the sashing...hope to emerging from that soon!

However the decision on the outer border has been decided...see the pretty floral in the last photo...that's it!

Off to agonise over the sashing!