Tag Archives: creativity

All the choices!

Yesterday I had a clean slate on the design wall and time to play. I thought I’d start some big new art project  or at least transform an old project into some cool new art piece. I looked through piles of stuff that had been sitting on the shelves.

Selected a queen size top to get ready for basting and decided that it could wait until warm weather. Then I can set up several tables in the garage, spread the thing out and make it easy on myself. Went through all the other tops in that stack–nothing spoke to me, but I don’t have as many waiting as I thought–only 8 or 9, not the 17 I thought were there! I guess I have managed to reduce the stack a bit over the years. I have sent a few out to longarmers!

On another shelf, packed neatly away in it’s own little bag, with all the extra fabric, was a quilt I had started in a workshop. I liked the fabric quite a bit, but never quite got back to finish it. By the time I got everything out of the bag and looked it over, I figured I might as well make it a useful size and at least add it to the stack waiting to be quilted!

As I looked over the parts, I remembered part of the reason I packed it away. It was one of those mystery patterns, and you put squares over the end of the rectangle and sewed it and trimmed it to make the triangle at the end…and I did that with the wrong fabrics right at the start. I hate the wastefulness of that, but I did it–and with the right fabrics–and got the thing put together.

I spent most of the afternoon putting together those little cut off triangles because I couldn’t stand to throw them away! They were mostly a little bit different in sizes but I persevered and got them together well enough to use for a little border.

It was frustrating at first, but after a while I slowed down, let go of the frustration and it became a relaxing, repetitive exercise.

And I’m going to use those blue and blue ‘wrong’ rectangles for another border. It will simply read as blue and it will be fine.

And I will be happy because I’m using up that wasted fabric, the top will be a good sized throw and one more project will be out of it’s bag and on it’s way to a useful life!

Not what I thought I’d be doing at all, but simple and relaxing are often the best things for you, in spite of yourself!

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Filed under Non-traditional Quilts, Fabric, Thinking About Quilting!, Color, Use Up the Stash

Workshop fun day

Today was a guild workshop day, with Mary Hogan. Mary wrote the book String Quilt Style, but today’s workshop wasn’t about her great string techniques. Today was a free design play day and I loved it!

Many design classes teach the typical art school design definitions and use many of the same type of exercise. Very clear but can be dry at times. Mary gave us tasks and let us ‘free form design’…she wanted to enable us to express our own unique creativity.

I did not take pictures of what anyone else created. I didn’t even take pictures of everything I created! We were too busy MAKING stuff!!!

This was my first one. Then busy, busy, busy! The great variety and beauty was astonishing as the day went on and pieces were hung on the wall. We did our own thing, yes, but we looked and learned and discussed what we saw. We were able to think outside the box and get ideas from outside every else’s box, too!

These are my last pieces…a series because I used the same background fabric and palette of materials. I like it and that first one enough that they will be finished, not thrown in the box of class samples that just sit and gather dust!

This was such a wonderfully fun day. Thanks to Mary’s direction and instruction, we learned, laughed and had a great day!

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Filed under Designing Quilts, Learning New Things!, Non-traditional Quilts

Is it done?

There are not nearly as many beads on this piece as I had first imagined that it needed. Actually, I started out with the idea of beads in the circles and then arcing outward.

As soon as I did that, I questioned it! I continued for a while and then took that arc out. I put beads in every circle, randomly.

I cogitated for a while and added some beads as outlines of the big thread circles.

Better–but is it enough?

And will it bother everyone who looks at this that the top is not one circle but two arcs on different circles?

Or shall I call it done and get it trimmed and mounted on a canvas?

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Filed under Art Quilts, Beading, Color, Contemporary, Designing Quilts, surface design

VERY sore fingers now!

I stitched and I stitched and I stitched and I used up all of that variegated thread that I started this project with!

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It was enough to get a layer of stitches throughout the project–but where do I go now?

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I can add more stitches to the triangles, and the cut-out triangles and the background rectangles or some combination thereof. But not with that same thread. Of course, I can look for more of that thread when I get home. I believe that it was a purchased product, not one that I dyed. Or I can use some of the 20 skeins of floss in that thread bag that go with what I have! Probably, in the spirit of unity, I should put on a lot of beads that are the same, don’t you think?

My beads and beading supplies are at home, except for the ones I bought down here. None of them are right for this project. Do I need to buy more? I DON’T think so…and thank goodness the store is closed for two days. I may get out of here without another stop there!

In the meantime, I have another project that I can start on. Similar to this one, but a bit more subdued. I’ll give my fingers a bit of a rest and then I’ll begin on that!

Love stitching!

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Filed under Art Quilts, Color, Designing Quilts, Handwork, surface design

My fingers are sore again!

Yep-my fingers are sore from stitching-and I love it! That only means that I have found time to get back to doing what I love the most, hand sewing.

Mostly, though, I started out feeling very disappointed. Planned on stitching on the project-that-I-cannot-show-you. You would think, with all this thread that I brought, that I would have any color needed.

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EVERY color–except black! How could I not have black? Nope–none, and not a store close that sells it. Sooooooo….once again that project got set aside. I need it three days after we get back from this trip, so guess what I’ll be frantically doing after we return? And the sewing machine that I use for finishing my edges is at the spa…I will need to put the thinking cap on and figure out an alternative edge finish for this one!

Good thing I always over-estimate how much time I will have sewing. I brought along two extra pieces that the embroidery thread is also intended for–and I do have the right colors for that!

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This is project one and I have started it! It has so many pieces and parts and colors that I wasn’t sure where to start. I picked a bright, variegated perle cotton and simply started!

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As I finished this first triangle, I made a decision to stick with that same color thread throughout. There needed to be at least one unifying factor.

Going to continue on with this one until I run out of that thread…hope there is either enough to finish or that it’s a purchased thread and not one that I dyed. But since improv is what I do………….onward!!!

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Filed under Art Quilts, Color, Contemporary, Handwork, surface design

Quick carpet fix…

I know you love these carpet designs as much as I do….here’s the latest!

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And the chair fabric that is paired with it.

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Love the combo!

And that’s it for the carpet for at least a few more weeks. Hope to have more quilty things to blog about!

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Filed under Color, Life

Progress is being made

Taught Rule Breaking Quilts at Friendship Knot Quilt Guild today and thought I’d show you pictures of pieces from starts to almost finishes! There are a couple that I just did not get photos of, but sometimes people pull the pieces off the design wall to actually get them assembled and then I miss the opportunity!

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As often as I have taught this, I am always amazed at how different each piece is. Totally unique in both construction and the artistic expressions of each student. I’m so grateful that I get to do this!

Tomorrow is Quick Start Quilting and Monday is Your Design Here. Two more days of fantastic fun for me…and work, work, work for these women! I do hope they are having fun, too!

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Filed under Color, Designing Quilts, Learning New Things!, Non-traditional Quilts, Quilting, Teaching Quilting