Tuesday, June 29, 2010
I will be teaching at a few shows starting in August.
Laura and I will once again be going to Birmingham UK for Festival of Quilts. We have such a great time there we just keep going back. This however may be our last trip. SOOOOO if you haven’t seen us there or taken our class be sure to sign up.
I will be teaching “Field Poppies”. I fun and easy fused quilt. The colors in this quilt are just gorgeous, so dramatic and rich. It is just yummy. I know you will love making it. Come on everyone come on over to the UK for a fun weekend. :) you won’t regret it.
Sept 24-26, I will be at the Indian Summer Quilt show in Fargo ND. I am teaching a new Little landscape class, machine quilting and Laughing Leaves. All great classes. I will also be giving two lectures, one on machine quilting and one on my new book Fabric to Dye For.
And I will be teaching again in Houston at the IQA show. November 3-7
Wednesday November 3rd
Blue Trees 9-12
Machine Quilting 2-5
Friday November 5th
Machine Quilting 9-12
I hope that if you are near any of these venues you will think about taking one of my classes. We always have a great time and I would love to see you.
Sunday, June 27, 2010
Summer is here, the flowers are blooming, and it's time to be outside, not sitting in your sewing room. BUT when the mosquitoes and gnats drive you crazy and force you inside, you will want some new fabric and tools to play with. So, I am offering you a free gift in the month of June with orders of $20 or more. This special comes all the way from France. Bohin, a French company, makes a fantastic iron cleaner. This is one of my favorite "tools" because it keeps my iron shiny and clean, a must for fusers - but all quilters need to keep their iron surface clean. Once you get and use your iron cleaner, send me a review and I will post all the comments here on my blog.
Coming in August is my appearance on the Quilt Show.com. The Quilt Show with Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims will offer free to my newsletter followers a week of viewing. Send this link off to a friend who may not be signed up so that they too can benefit from this great offer. There are so many wonderful episodes to watch on the Quilt Show.com that this is a great opportunity for everyone to check it out, if you haven't already done so.
I also want to give you a heads up on a quilting vacation coming up in 2011. Have you ever wanted to get away in the middle of the winter? Well, here is your chance. Judy Coates Perez and I will be going on a Mexican Riviera Cruise February 20-27. Why not come with us? We will have three great days at sea to socialize, make some new project, sew and have fun. Check it out here at http://www.sewmanyplaces.com.
Saturday, June 26, 2010
Friday, June 25, 2010
Thursday, June 24, 2010
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
I collect images. I think I have mentioned before that I take lots of digital images of things that interest me. I store them on my computer in files in Picasa, a free program from Google. I then back up my images off of my computer on a portable hard disk. Images take up a lot of space.
Here are some the images I have of windows. Some day I may incorporate these ideas in to my art work. Anyway the images themselves attract me.
Monday, June 21, 2010
Katazome is a form of paste resist surface design. That is, a paste made from very sticky ingredients, in this case rice flour, that is pushed through a stencil to define a pattern on a piece of white yardage. Wherever the paste sticks to the cloth, it will resist, or prevent, any color from staining that spot. So the rice paste is resisting the color to create a design on the fabric.
This past weekend I took a Katazome class from Karen Miller in Madison WI. Lois Jarvis organized this weekend after seeing that Karen Miller was traveling cross country with her husband on vacation ending up in Nova Scotia. Karen posted that if there were any groups along her route that were interest in taking a class she would be willing to stop and give a class. Lois decided it was a great idea and contacted Karen and set up this great opportunity. We held it at the Goodman Community Center, a renovated iron works building.
We had a great time carving our own stencils out of mulberry paper called "shibugami". Shibugami has been treated with persimmon tannin and smoked as a preservative, and has a deliciously nutty aroma.
Diane getting ready to laminate her stencils.
Joy, Sue and Lois working on their stencils.
Stencil designs, we didn’t cut these, they were Karen’s stencils that she let us use, pasted onto fabric, drying and waiting to be dyed.
Diane’s, Kathleen’s and Lois’s designs with dye added.
We had a great two days, I learned a lot of new techniques and I enjoyed being with creative people.
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
I blogged about an easy way to make a T-shirt quilt five years ago. I just recently made a new one for my nephew who just graduated high school and I thought it would be a good idea to re-blog about the process.
I think this is the easiest way to make a big heavy t-shirt quilt and wanted to share the steps of it for you.
The first thing I did was take my big 15” square and cut out all the t-shirts. I aimed to get any writing that was on the front or back of the shirts. Don’t worry too much about the sleeve or collar seams and be sure and save the backs as well you may need them in the long run, depending on how many t-shirts you have. Cut out bigger around than the 15” as it will shrink up a bit as you quilt it. Just use the square as a guide.
Second thing is to get the backing for the quilt. I decided to use flannel on mine, it makes it nice and warm, but it also makes it heavier so keep that in mind.
It takes 35 t-shirts to make a twin size quilt. I cut out the flannel using my ruler and rotary cutter, cutting across the flannel every 17 inches and then cutting that into 2 17” x 20” pieces. I used seven different boy prints of flannel to give the back a patchwork look to it. You can’t squeeze out three squares across unless the fabric is 54” wide and you want to have the backing pieces bigger than the front pieces. I then used a 17” square piece of batting to create individual sandwiches. It is much easier to have the batting and backing bigger than the top square to easily place the top square over a larger backing unit. I then quilted each of these squares individually and once they where quilted I squared them up again to 15”.
I then laid them out on the floor to arrange them. If you use different color flannels you might want to lay out the t shirts on the floor first and arrange the flannel so that no two that are the same are next to each other before you start the quilting process. Take a picture so you can remember the way you laid it out.
Jacob’s new quilt Erik’s quilt 5 years ago.
Once I had the arrangement that I liked I sergered all the squares together so that the serging is facing up on the top of the quilt and the flannel is all enclosed on the back of the quilt. It was a very fast and fun way to make a t-shirt quilt. It has held up very well to college abuse and Erik will have his for a long time. I am sure Jacob will too. By the way they were both TRILLED to get them. Boys love quilts too.
If you run out of t-shirt fronts you always have the backs. Remember it takes 35 squares to make a twin quilt. I used the backs and put family pictures on them using Bubble Jet and then quilted them. I put a traditional binding on the quilt using the left over flannel bits. You need to cut the binding wider than you normally would as the flannel adds bulk. I cut my 3 1/4” wide and then doubled it over.
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
I met the most interesting woman in my class in Mountain Home AR. Her name is Georgia Manning Lewis and she has a business called Buckets Gone Wild. She is a retired nurse and has started making covers for buckets, baskets and cups to help us look pretty and be organized. She was wearing this purse all during class with her cutting and measuring tools all handy on her person and out of the way on her working surface. I loved it and immediately wanted it.
She originally made it for traveling and it has several places to keep your passport and money.
I haven’t made anything besides a quilt in a very long time, but I am going to make this very nifty organizer. Be sure and visit her website, you will not be disappointed.
Monday, June 14, 2010
Landscapes have been fascinating me for awhile now. I have been enchanted with my Midwest horizons for years. I have been pointing my camera out the window at cornfields and soybean fields as I drive down the interstates. I have been sketching them in my sketch books as my husband drives. The most visible of these landscapes is the one on the cover of my new book “Fabric to Dye For” Illinois Landscapes.
But I have made many others as well and am getting ready to do a series on weeds. Here are just a few of my recent landscapes.
And two from an upcoming exhibit called Midwest Meditations
I will be teaching a class on Little Landscapes in September at the Indian Summer Quilt Show and Conference to be held September 24-26 at the Holiday INN in Fargo ND. I hope if you are in the area you will join us.