Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Barn Quilt

 Quilt number 7 is complete for the Through Ellyn's Eyes project. In keeping with my buildings theme, this one is a barn. A tiny barn! With a teeny tiny barn quilt....

that teeny tiny barn quilt measures 3/4" square. Yup. It's so tiny.

I used Kona Red, Capri and Chartreuse, and Kona Corn Yellow and Glacier for the itty bitty quilt part. The finished quilt is 18"x20" and was quilted on my domestic machine with a walking foot. I added a little bit of hand stitching on the barn.

So, seven weeks and seven mini quilts! Onward...

Friday, August 20, 2021

More Triangle Play

More than two years ago, I was inspired by this triangle pattern, created in stone on a highway bridge near my home.  

I managed to create a foundation paper piece pattern to represent each section and, after some playtime with the pattern, made this mini (still unfinished) to replicate the bridge.
Then, I put it all in a box and promptly forgot about it, as we do. Sigh...

Fast forward to this week, when I pulled it out again and decided to use those triangles in a playtime mini for my Through Ellyn's Eyes project. I decided to use my Kona Red, Orange and Tangerine since that gave me the most monochromatic shaded look (not really. humor me here. Honestly it ended up with quite a bit of contrast).

The finished mini is 12" square and uses 3 FPP bridge patterns and 3 reverse patterns. I quilted it with my walking foot in several thread colors to match the fabrics, echoing the angles in the triangles. I'm calling this one Triangle Play 2.

So, with six quilts on my design wall, I can see some trends evolving! Several more ideas are already in my sketchbook which is good. I had worried that I would run out of steam, but that does not seem to be the case! Whew!

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

Blocks for E.A.

 It is my sweet friend E.A.s turn to request bee blocks from our Quilts Unscripted bee, I'm telling you, every month I appreciate the quilters in this bee more and more. Each one offers up such carefully thought out prompts that encourage me to dig deep. This month was no exception.

E.A. asked us to explore the idea of holding space for someone, whether that means thinking about people who hold space for us, being fully present for us, or us holding space for others. She wanted us to think about how that feels and to create identical (or as close to identical as improv can be) pairs of blocks on this theme.

After many interesting conversations with people close to me, some deep personal thought, and maybe even a few tears, I created two pairs of blocks for her.

For my first pair, I used blues and grays to represent turbulent waters. Often when I am struggling with something in my life I feel like I am drowning (interesting since I have a pretty intense fear of water to begin with). The lightness at the top and the rays coming down represent incredible people in my life who hold out their arms to me in my darkest times and pull me from despair. For some of them, holding space means sitting with me, listening to me and holding me until I find peace. For others, it means speaking difficult truths into me in a kind and gentle way.  (deep enough for you? if you came here for laughs today I'm sorry to disappoint!)

My second pair of blocks takes a whole different turn. They illustrate how it feels for me to hold space for my three adult children (represented by the three triangles above). The soft pink at the bottom represents home, where my husband and I both literally hold space for them, if they ever need a place to land, and figuratively hold space for them in our hearts. I believe that knowing we are always here, believing in them and ready to catch them if they need us, has allowed them all to soar and succeed. The really cool thing has been watching them hold space for each other over the years. 

So I thank E.A. for giving me the means to articulate (both in words and in fabric) thoughts that I have had for many years. These blocks will be winging their way to Nashville soon.

Monday, August 16, 2021

a collaboration with Ally

A few months ago, when all of the kids came to visit, Ally showed me this image she had created on her iPad and asked if I could make it into a quilt for her. Challenge on!
While not colors I usually work with, I was happy to do it for someone I love. I set about collecting fabrics  with Ally in mine. I enjoyed every step of putting it together.

And just in time! This week Ally receives her MSW (Masters in Social Work) from UT Arlington. Quite the accomplishment! And she was able to achieve this remotely from her home during the pandemic, with her trusty dog, Malibu by her side.

Nice work Ally!


Friday, August 13, 2021

Sit a While

 Quilt #5 in my Through Ellyn's Eyes series is complete! I somehow became fascinated with the graphic image of a chair. I love the meaning behind it too, a place for a friend to take a seat and spend some time with me. Community is so important to me and having a cozy place where my friends feel comfortable hanging out has become so valuable especially during the isolation of the last year and a half. Often during that time friends would drop in on my front porch to chat, swap bee blocks, pick up guild door prizes and the like. We would always end up sitting a while, masked and safely distanced. Who knew chairs could be such an important symbol?

This quilt was improv pieced using Kona Red, Glacier and Capri. I walking foot quilted it on my domestic machine and bound it in red, adding a few hand stitches to the front as I often do. It finished at 17" x 18".

As I continue to work through this project, I find that my series is sorting itself into some distinct mini categories along the way. Specifically, this quilt alongside my Casting a Light quilt forms the beginning of a graphic images category.

Both quilts feature a single image and both have tiny hand stitched x's on the binding.

I realize now that my aqua pearl cotton is a size 12, making it more subtle than the other colors which are all size 8. 

So, there are now five completed quilts in my projects. to read all of the past posts about this project, click here.

I already have my next quilt idea rumbling in the back of my mind, and it will match up nicely with another previous quilt. 

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Mod Tree

The MQG just completed a challenge called the Make-a-difference challenge. Entrants made a "tree" quilt and submission fees were all donated to Trees for the Future. It was a worthy cause and a fun challenge, so I jumped in and made a tree quilt. 

Winners, chosen by member vote,  were announced today, so I can finally share mine with you. While it didn't win, it was very fun to make. As usual, the design came to me in the early morning hours one day. I hurried to get it into my sketchbook, then pieced it together. I really love the bold, graphic nature... you'll see more of that in days to come. I quilted it with my walking foot on my domestic machine and especially loved the echo quilting I did on the left side of the tree.

Though not part of my Through Ellyn's Eyes project due to colors used, I can see how it fits into my aesthetic. Maybe I'll make another in my project colors? We'll see! 

Congrats to those who won prizes. The quilts were all awesome, and all very different. I loved seeing them all.
Mod Tree 24" square

Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Triangle Play

 Do you have a favorite shape? I love triangles. More than all of the other shapes! I'm not sure why, although I do love things in odd numbers (three sides anyone?). I love to play with triangles in improv quilting so it seemed like a natural place to go next with my Through Ellyn's Eyes series.

I originally intended to make more triangles in several colors, but, I'll be honest, I got bored with it. So, Kona Orange and Kona Tangerine it is, with tiny pieced lines in Kona White. This finishes at just 12" square.

I quilted wavy ribbons on my domestic machine and big stitched the binding down with perle cotton. Again with some tiny X details just because they make me smile.

So, four quilts done in my series. And I do love the outcome of this little test. More triangles to come for sure....
which one is your favorite so far?