Monday, November 21, 2011

A Tale of Two Quilts

Hi everyone:

This is a tale of two quilts - one for a celebration and one for healing. 

If you know me, you'll know that I can drag a project out for a very long time (you only have to count my UFO's to know this), but give me a deadline and I'll have a quilt whipped up lickety split. 

A few years ago - 6, to be precise - I started to design an anniversary quilt for my parent's 50th anniversary. I had lots of time - almost a year - to finish it. Piece of cake! Well, the designing took longer than I thought (boy, did I learn a lot during this process!) and then I had to put it together and, well, I think I was actually in over my head on this one. Needless to say, I didn't get it done in time for their 50th anniversary. I did get most of it finished in time for their 53th anniversary, but was stuck on how to quilt it. Again, I was overwhelmed. Finally, I tackled it and it turned out not too bad. Then, I was hung up on doing a continuous bias binding, which I had never done before. Again, I eventually got to it and finally the quilt was done. In time for their 55th wedding anniversary. Well, actually the quilt was finished a couple of months prior to this and I was able to give it to my parents when they were out visiting me this fall.

Mom and Dad with their 50th anniversary quilt
Just after their visit, my father had a heart attack and so another quilt needed to be made. I used my Chock a Block pattern since it's quick and easy. I was under a deadline on this one as I was flying back to Ontario to see my Dad and wanted to take the quilt with me. So, I bought the fabric Thursday afternoon, started cutting and stitching on Friday, finished the top on Saturday and quilted it on Sunday (thanks, Cathy!). 

"Out of the Rough" from
Chatterbox Quilts' "Chock a Block" pattern
Back of the quilt flipped to the front to show pieced top
So, what did I learn from these two quilts? Well, a few things. First, most projects aren't really as difficult as I think they are. Second, I can finish a quilt in just a few days when I put my mind to it. And third, I need to spend more time quilting and less time thinking about the quilting!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Media Excitement

Hi everyone:

There have been so many things happening lately that I almost forgot to tell you my exciting news. I'm doing a happy jig about this one! I've had another pattern published in a magazine! This time, it's my wall hanging, "Baaack in Black" and it's featured in the fall issue (issue 15) of Irish Quilting.

My inspiration for this project came from the AC/DC song of the same name (although spelled a little differently) combined with the image of the "black sheep" of the group. This quilt features fusible web appliqué with a little hand embroidery thrown in for embellishment. A black sheep, some fluffy white friends and a few shamrocks thrown in with one four leaf clover, and you have "Baaack in Black". 

I have to tell you that I was sweating a bit about this project as I had a narrow timeline on it and there was a postal strike going on by the time I completed it. This would normally not affect me too much, however, as I had to send the quilt to Ireland for quilting and photography, I was a bit worried that it wouldn't make it there on time. Thanks to Purolator, it arrived before the deadline and all was well. It's now safely back in my studio and has the distinction of travelling to a country that I have not (yet) visited. It wouldn't say if it kissed the Blarney stone while there, but I have a suspicion that it did!

There are many other beautiful projects in this issue, so I hope you have a chance to pick one up at your local quilt shop or bookstore and give it a browse.