Archive for May, 2012

Quilting and Stuff

Monday, May 28th, 2012

I have managed to find a few snatches of time to sew the final seams together and prepare for the quilting –and even to start the quilting a little bit. I was hoping to be further along by now but there have been too many distractions.

Everything had to go on hold so I could clean up the studio for a local magazine writer who was coming on Friday. The photographer for some reason didn’t come, so I guess I get to do it all over again later.

Tomorrow morning we will have roofers here tearing off all of those 30 year guaranteed shingles that they put on 3 years ago. It must have been somewhere in the small print that the guarantee was only for wind, not hail. Anyway–the dish on the roof will be down for a couple of days which I think means no internet for me. So I will get at least this one post up and probably no more til I get back home from MT as I don’t know how to do it on the road. Which is where I am going to be, because:

Thursday I get to start my much needed vacation. I will be flying out to meet my friend Del in Las Vegas and we will drive up to Montana to enjoy a week long workshop with Ruth McDowell. It is going to be so much fun! Del and I are always looking for a good excuse for a road trip and this is one for sure. This will be about the last (if not THE last) workshop Ruth is doing before her retirement so we figured we needed to be there!

I got an unexpected surprise in the mail Saturday – an envelope with a First and a Second place ribbon from the Kaw Valley Quilt Guild Show!  They do Viewer’s Choice and don’t announce it til the following guild meeting which I had to miss. The small butterfly quilt that I had donated to the Charity Silent Auction won First and Majesty won Second. That’s crazy. The butterfly was not that special! Click on July 2011 in the side bar to see it again.

Entries and Computer Stuff

Monday, May 21st, 2012

Sunday afternoon I cut the grass pieces. I don’t know when I will get the time to sew them, but there is no rush, it’s not due til Oct.

I have been doing a lot of computer work, getting the things ready to send in for the Seasonal Palette portfolio. I thought they had to be there by the first of June but no, it’s the first of July. So for once I am ahead of the game as it is going out today!!

Last year I missed the entry deadline for Houston because it is June 1 and that just seems too early for a show that isn’t til fall. So I prepared that for this year, and it will go out today too. I wanted to enter “Longhorn Splashdown” but it I goofed and entered it somewhere else so it will not be available. Again – Houston requires the work to be there in August for an October show, so it messes with my mind. This is the last year that one will be eligible to go there, too. Juggling these things is a full time job!! I couldn’t do it at all without my spreadsheet to keep track of everything.

Need More Fabric!

Friday, May 18th, 2012

So far this is about 29″ wide by about 33″ high. I only had a half yard of the green batik, 18″ of width so not enough to do the final piece at 29+”. I tried different ways to cut it, but nothing works. I like the simplicity of few fabrics here so decided I needed to try to find more of this fabric. It was from my stash, so who knows how old it is or where I got it!

Since I had to go to KC Wednesday we planned a stop at Sarah’s in Lawrence and sure enough, she had it! That is probably where I got it in the first place as I usually buy half yards of batik unless I know I need more, and Sarah’s always has such a good selection. I got a yard and the new piece seems a little darker but it was almost the end of the bolt and it will work.

I have been working on preparing the journaling materials about “December Dawn” for Seasonal Palette which need to be in by the first of June. Yesterday I worked most of the day on that and I’m hoping to finish up today.


Tuesday, May 15th, 2012

One of my early childhood memories is going to the zoo in Chicago with my mother. My favorite exhibit was the penguins! The Topeka Zoo currently has an exhibit of African Penguins on loan from the Omaha Zoo so yesterday we went to check it out. Apparently they spend most of their time just sitting on the rocks, going into the water every 45 minutes or so. We checked back several times and must have just missed it once as they were preening the water off themselves. It was hard to get a good picture through the glass, and here is the best one even though the middle bird had to move his head.

I think these small inactive African Penguins would not really have made much of an impression on a small child. Those in my memory were Emperors and I loved to see them swim and do their funny side to side walk looking like fat men in tuxedos.

It was a beautiful day in the mid 70’s but still, most of the animals were just sleeping and not offering much in the way of photo ops. The Black Bears were at least awake.


Cow Faces

Sunday, May 13th, 2012

Since the last progress update, I decided that the cows should have white faces after making one with a black face that disappeared! The middle cow, though needed to have a black face. Not a whole lot of progress to show, but there are a lot of seams! I’m loving the sky and the batik grass.

When I went outside in the morning I discovered that something had snipped the flower heads off of my newly planted zinnias! Who would do that?

On Judging

Friday, May 11th, 2012

“Majesty” recently returned from showing at Denver Int. I am constantly amazed at the things judges comment on. “Knife edge to (of?) quilt should not allow front to show on the back.”

Hmmmm- what’s a knife edge? Maybe if you sewed the back to the front like a pillowcase and turned it right side out, that might be a knife edge, I don’t know. I did a faced edge on this quilt because I didn’t want it traditionally bound. It was a design decision. I stitched the backing inside the seam line of the seam allowance as one does for garment facings so that it would turn slightly to the back and not show on the front and would also help the thickness of the area to lay flat. It came out exactly as I planned. The facing finished at 1-5/8″ and there is a uniform 1/8″ 0f the front showing on the back. What the heck difference does it make if some front shows on the back? It’s a wall quilt, you don’t see the back. The main thing is no back shows on the front and it is very neatly done.

She also said there were threads on the back that should be trimmed. I quilted it with invisible thread on the back. It took me almost 5 minutes, but I did find one thread that needed to be buried, I don’t think trimming is adequate.

And lastly “Quilting design, although dense, could be varied in size scale to bring more dimension to the quilt.”

And I suppose if I had done that she’d be saying it wasn’t consistent. The quilting reflects the content of the different areas and is done in many different threads to compliment those areas, equal amounts of stitching helps the finished product to hang flat and square.

Sometimes I wonder if judges even consider their reputations! Clearly this one was scraping to keep me out of the ribbons here which I thought was pretty obvious when I looked at what did win, the top two awards going to the same person, whose work was nice but not exceptional. I don’t expect to win everything, but I do expect impartial, knowledgeable judging.

Wednesday Fun

Thursday, May 10th, 2012

Yesterday was fun. We went to town to find a birthday gift for the great-grandson who is turning two. Wow, toys and their prices have changed since ours were little! Then for lunch, we tried the new Stirfry Buffet. I thought it was pretty good. Then we went on to visit the Mulvane Art Museum because I wanted to see a textile piece I had heard about in the student exhibit. It was a large tie-dyed image of a sheep, really quite amazing, I thought! Of course pictures were not allowed so I can’t show you.

We discovered that Crafts National was also showing there so had to check that out. Some really amazing work there, too, running the gamut of style and materials including some quilted works.

From there we decided to visit the Designer’s Showhouse which I like to do every year looking for ideas to try. While it was a perfectly lovely, comfortable feeling old home, there was really no wow factor this year for me. The landscaping was nice, but I couldn’t help wondering what the newly planted Knot Garden would look like a year from now, with it’s lavender which likes to be dry juxtaposed with things that prefer moister conditions and varigated sage which I have not been able to overwinter here. But for now it’s quite nice and the day was perfect for enjoying it.

From there, it was basic grocery shopping with a stop to get a couple of more pink KnockOut roses which I should go plant right now, before it gets any warmer out there!

But first – here’s the latest photo of the work in progress:

SAQA Auction Quilt

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

My SAQA Auction quilt, “Blue Pacific” has been posted and you can see it here. This year I let them take the photo as I was having trouble getting the tiny beads to show. If you click on the image you’ll see more detail. While you are there, check out the rest of the entries, and do check back because there are bound to be more before the deadline in June.  I noticed in the line above mine, there is one with three wind turbines!

Someone sent me this photo snapped at the recent KVQG show in Lawrence of the famous David Taylor of Colorado, as she said he was examining one of my entries. Apparently he was teaching in the area and had some down time. We both compete in the same categories, sometimes he beats me, sometimes I beat him….


Tuesday, May 8th, 2012

After working a little on Sunday and some yesterday, here’s where we are on the turbines. I had to take time out to package a bunch of patterns to fill an order as I have neglected that part of the business lately.

Saturday we went to a plant sale that was supposed to start at 8:00; we got there only a few minutes late and it was already picked over with long lines at the checkout so I didn’t get much. Just some basil, sweet potatoes, egg plant, coleus, zinnias and a foxglove. The weather has turned cooler with some rain so it has been good weather to plant and weed.

New Work

Friday, May 4th, 2012

Finally! I have been working on drawings for three new works, and yesterday, at last, I cut some fabric!

When I saw this piece of Shibouri by Desiree Vaughn on line, I just had to order it for the sky in this piece. It is a generous half yard so it dictates the size I can do and I am struggling to even get all of the pieces cut. This will be my entry this year in the Inspirations exhibit and again, the photographer I am teaming up with is Tammy Patterson who did the photographs for the last two year’s exhibits, the elk and the mountain goat kids. I had mentioned to her that I wanted, someday, to do something around wind turbines but hadn’t gotten a good picture. She sent me some and this work will be a combination of two of her photos. There will be three turbines and three cows.

Today I am scheduled to work at the Topeka Art Guild Gallery and stay on to work the First Friday open house this evening. It will be a long day and I’d rather stay home and work on this new work!