Sunday, November 25, 2012

Miniature Binding

It's charity time with the holidays coming! I always have so much fun playing with scraps and busting my stash to create some quick little treasures. Here's an adorable holiday placemat.

It's as simple as choosing a feature fabric that speaks for itself and then adding a border fabric and practising a new machine quilting technique. Here's a quick sketch of my quilting pattern. I started on one side and stitched short, medium and long stripes and then matched up with opposite stripes on the other side. You just have to be sure you are sewing straight and use the same number of stitches for the short ends of the stripes. (I used 6 stitches every time to make it even.)

My local quilting guild makes holiday placemats for Meals on Wheels every year in November. This year we need over 30 for our local community. For this one I had just enough red for the backing and border and could find NOTHING in my scraps at home to match for a binding. All of my yardage fabrics were at the gallery studio downtown, so I decided to make an extremely mini quarter inch double fold binding by pulling around the backing fabric.

It's the wobbliest little binding I've ever done - I mostly bind by hand which, of course, is always perfect. (wink) But, it worked out quite well and if you look closely it's half the size of the usual hand stitched binding so it's as cute as a button. It looks like a machine sewn miniature binding. 

Last year I was in my Thursday evening writing group and a friend that I'd known for a few weeks heard me say for the first time that I'm a quilter. He jumped on the chance to ask me to give the quilting guild a message. He said the best part of his Christmas holiday is receiving his new placemat every year. And he really appreciates our generosity. I am so grateful, just so, so grateful for my wonderful family and friends.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Student Treasures

Sometimes I feel like I write this same blog post about my students again and again, but I can tell you for sure that I will never get sick of this topic - EVER! I just LOVE it when a student from a recent workshop stops by to show me her finished art piece or quilt and that is just what happened this week. Heather stopped by to show me her finished Embellished Fibre Art piece.

She made some wonderful additions to the basic pattern by couching the fibre on an angle and adding gorgeous bunches of beads along that as well. She also added further touches of the gold paint at home by using a dry sponge and attached a tiny gold pendant of a bird. (A little birdie told me that she is crazy about crows!)

Then she also pulled out her Inksations Table Runner. It is so gratifying to see the finished quilt from a pattern that I designed! And she quilted it herself by domestic machine. It looks amazing!

It eases my heart that quilters can follow the directions perfectly and I am always so impressed by the refreshing colours. You know how you love what you love and you tend to pick the same colours all the time? Well, seeing my pattern in every beautiful colour under the rainbow is just a dream come true.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Good Border Girl

If you know how much I dislike pinning you'd know that I'm being a very good border girl measuring and pinning a nice wide strip onto my charity froggy quilt for Prince George. A generous quilter named Barb there offered to quilt and bind it. Thank you darling! It will be in the mail today.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Embellished Fibre Class

This past Saturday I taught my Embellished Fibre class. It was a full house at the Art Gallery (which is such a nice venue!) and the ladies were fabulous (that means well behaved but adventurous). I love it when a student sends me a photo or comes back to my studio a few days later to show me a gorgeous finished piece.

The class is designed to explore a pile of fun techniques and just give students the tools to create something beautiful. I am so impressed by Jul's the triple stack beaded clusters and the fabulous bursts of stitch. Great job! Thank you so much for coming back to the studio to show me the finished art piece!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Charity Quilt (Prince George)

I have been requesting and receiving least favourite fat quarters (and more) from students in my classes for a few months now and I have quite a stash built up of little gems. But I don't think students are getting the part about least favourite. I have been receiving fabrics that are not only beautiful, but also colour coordinated with the other fabrics donations from the class. I have a sneaking suspicion that some of the ladies are getting together to hand in fabrics I can use together! But regardless of what comes in, I'm having fun and it is a challenge to use it all up so it doesn't take over my studio.

So for the Prince George charity quilt I'll have some fun piecing together either a spring time froggy quilt or a fabulous fall quilt, whichever one comes together faster. And the left over fabrics will be made into pet quilts for Critter Aid in Summerland as usual. Thank you ladies! Your package will arrive soon!

This beautiful plant!

I received this beautiful plant as a studio warming gift a few weeks ago from a potter named Enid. The pottery guild shares the basement of the art gallery with the artist in residence (me), so I see them all the time. Anyways, she came in with this lovely plant for me and my first thought was, "Oh, I hope I can keep this poor thing alive!" She had no idea that I do not have a single live plant in my home.

I don't know what kind of plant it is but I've been watering it gingerly whenever it is dry. It has these deep purple butterfly leaves and just started sprouting tiny delicate blossoms. It is so nice I can't believe it belongs to me. It really brightens my day every time I look at it. Thanks Enid!