• Another Class at NW Quilting Expo

    Another day – another class to promote. Today, I will promote my 3-D leaves.

    These leaves are fun to create and make wonderful ’embellishments’ for quilts and garments . With a good batik as a starting point, they look surprisingly real. Adding to the realism is the design source, I use real leaves as the patterns for these leaves.

    In the class, we will explore the basic process  of stitching, cutting and shaping the leaves.

    You can find the class registration on the website for NW Quilting Expo along with more information on cost, supply list etc.

    Lovely ruffled Ginko leaves grace a nature quilt
    Lovely ruffled Ginko leaves grace a nature quilt
    Autumn comes and the oaks shed their leaves
    Autumn comes and the oaks shed their leaves
    Flaming maple leaves drift on the wind and carpet the forest floor
    Flaming maple leaves drift on the wind and carpet the forest floor

  • My Classes at NW Quilting Expo

    Good morning everyone. I’m delighted to tell you that I will be offering several classes at the 2015 Northwest Quilting Expo taking place in September at the Expo Center in Portland Oregon; follow the link for more information on the show and classes.

    For the next few days, I will be posting details and pictures of the projects in the classes I am offering – pictures fill classes and as most venues, the expo registration only had room for one image per class so I’m taking the opportunity to share more images and a more thorough description of what you can learn in the class and the possible applications for the techniques.

    The class I’m profiling today is Hand Lettering on Fabric ; offered on Thursday September 24 from 1-5 pm.

    If you are like me, you may have experienced the ‘trailing letter syndrome’; this is where you don’t plan your letting well and you either run out of room (or don’t center a block of writing well) or perhaps a line of lettering looks good for the most part and then takes a dive at the end of the sentence. The method you will learn in class will allow you to create neat, well balanced lettering, explore unusual fonts or create your own special letters and add artistic drawn graphics – even if you are convinced that you can’t draw.

    The applications for this are varied ranging from creating unique lettering  or graphics as a part of your artistic design on the front of the quilt to making the very special label on the back of your quilt. You will also discover a world of free design resources if you are among the ‘artistically challenged’ when it comes to creating original designs.

    This class is suitable for beginners and more accomplished quilters and fiber artists alike; you may create your own label for a quilt that you have made or make a sample project with graphics and a quote from some resource templates I will have. I have posted several images ranging from unique quilt labels I have created to lettering on the surface of a quilt – even a custom drawn ‘fabric’ I created for a quilt when no suitable commercial prints were available.

    A masterpiece quilt deserves a masterpiece label. A 'parchment scroll' graphic label tells the story of Sarah, the mournful subject of the quilt.
    A masterpiece quilt deserves a masterpiece label. A ‘parchment scroll’ graphic label tells the story of Sarah, the mournful subject of the quilt.
    I made this label for my Aztec Sun Calendar quilt. The graphic design is the central figure from the stone carving that was the inspiration for the quilt.
    I made this label for my Aztec Sun Calendar quilt. The graphic design is the central figure from the stone carving that was the inspiration for the quilt.
    This lettering appears on the front of a small Art Journal Quilt I created to commemorate the teenage summer i spent trying to master the Gordon Lightfoot song that I loved so much
    This lettering appears on the front of a small Art Journal Quilt I created to commemorate the teenage summer i spent trying to master the Gordon Lightfoot song that I loved so much
    Many years ago I made an Egyptian themed quilt that I wanted to include a 'papyrus' scroll design. There was no such fabric available and so I had to design my own using an authentic ancient papyrus as the source design. The hardest part was to put all this work into the drawing and then to tear and distress this finished panel to mimic an ancient fragment scroll
    Many years ago I made an Egyptian themed quilt that I wanted to include a ‘papyrus’ scroll design. There was no such fabric available and so I had to design my own using an authentic ancient papyrus as the source design. The hardest part was to put all this work into the drawing and then to tear and distress this finished panel to mimic an ancient fragment scroll
    This butterfly shaped label was created for my collage butterfly quilt and goes beyond a standard rectangular 'business card' type of label
    This butterfly shaped label was created for my collage butterfly quilt and goes beyond a standard rectangular ‘business card’ type of label

  • Art Journal Quilts at Pioneer Quilts and Sewn Loverly

    Next Friday, August 7, I am holding my monthly class on Art Journal Quilts at Pioneer Quilts.

    The Journal Quilt Project was started back in 2004 as a national challenge for quilters to form groups and create artworks in an 8 1/2″ x 11″ format to explore new techniques. Group members were to challenge themselves to try something new and then keep a journal about their projects. A display of many of these quilts was part of the International Quilt Festival in Houston every year.

    Though this was the inspiration to start my two groups – one is at Pioneer Quilts in Portland Oregon on the first Friday of each month, the other is at  Sewn Loverly in Wilsonville Oregon on the third Friday of each month, I have structured the groups a bit more casually than the national project. For one thing, I am not adamant that students stick to the 8 1/2″ x 11″ size, they can make their projects any size they wish though keeping them small is advised. I also do not insist they finish their project every month, the last thing I want is someone hesitating to come to class because they ‘did not do their homework’; it is enough for them to try the technique in class though they are encouraged to make something from what they learn. I also do not have them keep a journal about their projects; I wrote far too many ‘What I did on my summer vacation’ essays during my youth, that kind of regimented requirement would be enough to discourage ME from taking the class.

    The ‘purpose’ of the class is to expose quilters to the more unusual and artistic side of fabric and fiber. The projects are small and the financial investment in the materials and the time investment in the project are minimal so you don’t end up with yet another expensive UFO floating around your sewing room.

    My own personal motivation for this was when I decided to try my hand at machine made needle lace and I proceeded to prep a fairly large piece of a favorite fabric (now out of print – of course) and buy two medium spools of variegated machine embroidery thread. After a fairly small small section of the project consumed half a  spool of $10 thread, I realized: A) I did not like the texture I had chosen to do, B) I should have used a double layer of wash away stabilizer AND should have hooped the work  and C) finally seeing the small amount of coverage created by this densely stitched technique,  I was going to have to purchase at least another $100 worth of thread to complete my project. I abandoned it about $50 poorer and minus the last of my favorite (out of print) fabric but much wiser. If only I had ‘tested’ the process on a small, page sized project, I would have figured out all the logistics BEFORE wasting time, materials and money.

    Both shops have a lovely group of participants each month and in addition to the lesson, I share my current favorite art or craft book (the only place I can get myself into more trouble that a fabric store is on Amazon!). It’s nice to get a chance to thumb through a book before purchasing it. AND – we taste CHOCOLATE! I bring some unusual, sometimes exotic form or flavor of chocolate to share each class. Add a ‘Show and Tell’ for students to share their completed projects and there you have my Art Journal Quilt Class. There is room in both shops for more participants, contact the individual shops for more details.

    Last week at Sewn Loverly, the class explored weaving fabric strips to create panels that can be embellished if desired (see my prototype ‘Little Treasures Left by the Tide” below). Next Friday at Pioneer Quilts we will learn to make 3-D ‘Pebbles’ to applique onto a pre-quilted background panel (see below). I’m already so pleased with my resulting prototype that I can’t wait to try this on an artistic table runner.

    3 Dimensional stuffed pebbles inspired by beach combing finds at the Oregon coast
    3 Dimensional stuffed pebbles inspired by beach combing finds at the Oregon coast
    Little Treasures Left by the Tide
    Little Treasures Left by the Tide