9/28/2014

Art Prize: a Bit of the Quilting Side

On Saturday I met my daughter and her boyfriend in Grand Rapids so that we could explore some of the Art Prize entries around the city center (approximately 3 miles). The art pieces are displayed inside and outside many venues (hotels, museums, restaurants, businesses, etc.) You can read more about this event HERE

I took photos of some of the quilt-related pieces that we came upon. Please click the links I have included to find out more about the pieces or places I've mentioned in the blog.

RUST BELT was an interesting quilt by Jenny Lynn which compared the 1950 and 2010 populations of some of America's largest cities and showed decline in all. I like that she used the colors red, black and white. I appreciate that she used math to calculate the difference in size of the inner and outer squares of each block. 
(Click the link to Rust Belt for better photos than mine. Bright sun shining in the windows from behind the piece made my photos under par.) 



At the same venue (a bank) was MISSION PENINSULA BARNS. These paintings by Linda Bassford depict 9 of 10 barns on the Quilt Block Trail through Old Mission Peninsula (located in the northwest corner of Michigan's Lower Peninsula). She arranged the paintings, framed in a shadow box, using a 3 x 3 block layout, like a quilt. You can find out more about the Barn Trail HERE.


INDIGO GEMS of ARGUS was also at this venue. This quilt was made with cottons and feathers. It appeared that some type of yarn was used in the seams of each of the blocks. Robin Greve tells about her quilt in the artist's statement:
"This is an art quilt that is made with a 3-dimensional appearance and the Golden Mean Ratio ( 1+1=2, 1+2=3, 2+3=5, 3+5=8, etc.) in the different proportions. It is then assembled in a nontraditional method after each square/ rectangle is first quilted."


I was drawn to the piece, FEEL BEAUTY. The texture was so inviting, although I did not touch it. I will quote the description from the Art Prize website as it explains the piece much better than I could: 
“Feel Beauty” Fiber Mural exhibit engages the senses. The viewer interacts with the work and is encouraged to touch and feel their way through the mural. “Feel Beauty” was completed using all monochromatic white fibers connected in various sized embroidery hoops. Technical fiber manipulations were employed to create different sensual topographies, from hard to soft, round to ridged and deep to shallow. This mural raises awareness of blindness and learning through senses other than sight. We are exploring the tension between what we see and feel. This project begs us to question art for the other senses, and what the role of aesthetics is in this process. Is there a non-visual aesthetic? What does beauty feel like? This is a collaborative piece, designed by Hark + Hark, and executed with the assistance of UC professor Brooke Brandewie and 29 local fiber artists from Cincinnati, OH.


While this next piece is not a quilt, I was fascinated by the work involved by this young artist, Megan Harrigan, from Traverse City, Michigan. THE BEADED TREE was spectacular. Megan was standing by her piece and I was able to talk to her. She said she spent 10 months, about 5 or 6 hours a day (with it on her lap most of the time) sewing beads to the heavy canvas on which she had previously painted her tree. She wanted the sun to shine through and the colors to add life to the tree. 


I hope you have enjoyed seeing some of what we saw on our walking trip around Art Prize. And now I will leave you with the beautiful painting nature had for me on my drive home. (I did pull off on the side of the rural road to take this photo.) 






9/26/2014

Quilting with Friends

I spent this day quilting with friends. There were 3 of us and we had a very relaxing, enjoyable time sewing, sharing ideas, discussing recent quilt shop excursions. We said we need to do this more often and are planning a sewing day in October. 

These are the projects I was able to finish today. 

For the church craft bazaar I made 2 table runners with a Christmas border print
I am amazed at what creative minds and the equilateral triangle ruler can make!


For Christmas gifts, Michigan potholders with the embroidery machine.


 And a pillowcase for (I can't say, because it is) a Christmas present 
for someone who likes Star Trek.


Have you been busy with holiday gift sewing? or sewing for a fundraiser?



9/24/2014

Giveaway Winner and Chevron Quilt Finished

The winner of the eye spy charm pack from my Curious Cat blog post 


was selected today using the Random Generator. 
Comment # 13 was selected: 

Congratulations to Lee who I have emailed and will send the pack to as soon as I get her address.  



The Chevron Quilt
I have been working on this chevron quilt for over a year. It was requested by my younger daughter for her newest apartment after she graduated from college and started her career. 

She designed it. We shopped for the fabrics so she could pick out the colors she wanted. I used EQ7 to design it for her approval. She wanted a king size quilt for her queen size bed (looking down the road if she gets a larger bed).



She helped with the sewing. I cut the squares at home. When she came to visit on the weekends, she would sew the straight seams 1/4" on each side of the diagonal center line. Then I would cut and she would press so we had half square triangle blocks that measured 9". 

We arranged them into the color rows and she sewed them together and I pressed. We make a pretty good team. (She is just getting started in this quilting journey.) 

Once all the rows were sewn together, she and I looked at various quilting designs. We used a printout of the EQ7 image on 8.5" x 11" paper to sketch some idea. 

She chose to have pebbles quilted in the white chevrons in the main part of the quilt, triangles in the borders and elongated peaks in the colored chevrons. Those are shown in the photos below. 



We had Michelle Fialek, a friend and fellow quilt guild member quilt it. I did the binding with the grey fabric.

My daughter was so delighted with the finished quilt. Here is the photo I took before delivering it to her. 


And the quilt I loaned her is now back on our bed!

Have you ever planned and made a quilt, or shared your quilting skills, with someone close to you?



9/23/2014

Ghostly Quilting for Val's Tuesday Archives Link

Today is Tuesday and we are linking our Ghastly Quilting Themed blogs with Val's Quilting Studio. I did not think "Ghastly" was quite what my Halloween-themed quilts were, so I will use the title Ghostly

I thought it would be better to place photos of my quilts in one blog and reduce your linking time so you can visit all of the quilters who have linked with Val. I enjoy participating in the Tuesday Archives. I like sharing my ideas with others (hope you all like it, too) and getting inspiration from others. 

So, here are some of the Halloween quilts, large, small, long and tiny that I have created in the past  8 years or so. Let me know which one(s) are your favorite(s). 

Long Kaleidoscopic Table Runner: 
I had this cut of fabric

And turned it into this long table runner. Close up of one of the blocks. I will be quilting it with a spider web design. 




Wishing Owl
This is Halloween-related, I think. I taught this as a class for children at the local Art Council this summer. His little pocket in front could hold candy treats. The idea came from Quilting Arts Magazine.

The Halloween Wavy Banner 
was made to hang on the front door. I used it as one of the inspirational ideas on the pattern I designed and uploaded on  PatternSpot.com.

Haunted House 
This is a wall hanging I made for my younger daughter during her first year of college to decorate her dorm room during the Halloween season. (And this is the only photo I have, sorry it is not the largest file size for clarity.)


Table Topper
I finished this quilt last year for the table. I used some leftover Halloween themed fabrics in more of a random placement.


Thank you for taking a look. I do hope you get inspired for the season. I am off to see what others have posted. 

Happy Quilting!




9/20/2014

August Travels Net Bargains and More

In a previous post I talked about the Row by Row patterns I picked up on travels in Michigan's Upper Peninsula as my husband and I made our way to Escanaba. 

In Escanaba we stayed with my husband's cousin and his wife. It is always fun to visit them. The guys go golfing or fishing (they went fishing this time) and Debbie and I go shopping! There are many antique stores and boutiques in the area. This year we discovered some new shops.

We had lunch at Stone's Deli. I had a Chicken Cranberry Walnut Salad that was very good. We headed down Ludington St. to the shops. We went to what I can only call a junk store. It was interesting looking at things I remember growing up with. I saw 3 California Raisin toys priced $1 each. I remember how popular these were when my daughters were youngsters. I didn't need any but it was fun reminiscing as the song played in my head. Does anyone remember the raisins dancing on TV to "Heard It Through the Grape Vine"?


I did find an old electric insulator cap. I have always wanted an old insulator cap and this one was only $2 and in great shape (only needed some leaves cleaned out of it). I also bought a camel-colored wool jacket, in great shape, for only $2! I will take it apart and felt it for projects.

We continued on to an antique jewelry store called Once and Again where I found brooches and pins of all styles, sizes and colors. I purchased these pins. 


The hedgehogs are so cute and I think they will be the next "new trend", so I am readying myself!

On one street corner we found what was left of this tree being used as a flower display. I thought it was such a great idea I had Debbie snap a photo. 



Our last stop was St. Vincent DePaul. There were many things to examine there. The sets of dishes were very nice, but I didn't need any. I did, however, find the book section. And for 25 cents each, I bought these quilting and craft books. 


Debbie bought drivers from a container of golf clubs and a 12-foot curtain valance. The clubs will be the rods to hang the valances (after she cuts them to size) on the windows in her husband's garage work area. She is so clever! 

Thanks for visiting. If you have ever found a bargain or treasure on a trip, let us know what it was in the comments below. Would enjoy hearing from you. 

My next post will be about the pincushion exchange and the Swoon block exchange I participated in as well as a photo of my daughter's quilt that we worked on together. Until then......happy sewing.