Saturday, April 29, 2017

Lions, Elephants, and Dogs--Oh My!

I just got back from the AQS Show in Paducah, KY. I am a Leo, so I'm REALLY drawn to anything lion. The Cherrywood Challenge 2016: The Lion King was at the show this year. All of the lion quilts in this exhibit were gorgeous. There were 120 quilts celebrating the 20th Anniverary of the Lion King in the display. Here are a few of my favorites (mostly lions) from the exhibit. The lion on the top left and right are the same lion. The right is a detail shot; it was spectacular.
(The lion on the right in the pic below is a repeat, but I guess that's okay--it was my favorite of the exhibit.)
Since most of the quilts I've shared so far are animal quilts, I'll show you the two animal quilts from the show that I really liked. The first is an elephant quilt (by Elizabeth Owens) called The Elephant in the Quilt Room." What a great use of homespun fabrics! The judges must have liked it too; it got a 3rd place ribbon.
The other "animal" quilt I liked in the show was this dog quilt by Elaine Wick Poplin called Linus. I really like the way she pieced the background, and the fabrics she chose for the dog were very well placed. The dog looked soft--almost like you could pet it.
I have a few other things I'd like to share with you from the show. The first is the SAQA "Made in Europe" exhibit. The exhibit itself includes 30 art quilts from makers in the SAQA Europe and ME region. These quilts celebrate geographical features of the region. Lastly, I'd like to share some of my favorites from the show itself. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Traveling Hexies

My husband and I recently made a trip to Colorado for a memorial for our nephew who passed away unexpectedly. Danny always loved my quilts. When we visited his home before the memorial, I noticed one of my wall hangings on display in the dining room. He was a very special person and will be missed.

To get to the memorial, we were in a car for 17 hours. Of course, it took another 17 hours to get back home. That gave me plenty of time to do some handwork, and I decided to work on my hexies. This is what I got finished while we were gone. 
I got lots of hexies basted, and I got this section put together. (It would have been a "totally finished" section if I had brought all my maroon hexies with me, but I ran out.)

Because I am on the road all the time (it seems), I have had to find a good way to work on my hexies in the car (when I don't have to drive, LOL). I want to share my travel sewing setup with you.
I use a metal sheet (a 9” X 12” magnetic bulletin board) with REALLY strong magnets which I had to purchase separately. (I found the same brand magnetic board that I own on-line. I didn’t find a 9” X 12” board, but they do offer a 12” X 12” board in several colors and they INCLUDE the really strong magnets. You can check out that board here.) This is what mine looks like.
I use Altoid tins to hold the pieces I am basting. The tins work perfectly for the little pieces I'm currently working on—1/2” hexies. I also use another tin to hold my tiny scissors, a pin cushion, needles, thimble and my thread. I use a big felt ball to store the appliqué pins I use to hold the basting papers to my fabric. The strong magnets keep the tins from sliding around. The magnets also hold my scissors and needle when I put them down so they never get lost in the car.  

When I’m working on sewing hexies together (as you can see in the top picture), I use small plastic boxes I purchased (from an automotive department) to hold my pieces. They work well with the magnets on my metal sheet because they have metal closing clasps. (If you look closely, you can see the clasp "attached" to the magnets.) Those metal clasps stick to the magnets and hold those boxes in place. I also use the magnets to hold my pattern piece to the metal sheet and to hold an index card on the pattern to keep my place.
I keep the metal sheet inside a zippered notebook cover which protects my pattern, keeps my magnets all in place, and holds the piece on which I’m working.
I hope you can use some of these ideas to make sewing on the go a bit easier for you. It is amazing how much you can get done while you are out and about.    

I have been thinking about what name I want to give my hexie quilt. I think I’ll name it “Danny Boy” in honor of our nephew. I think he would like that.