Thursday, June 30, 2016

June's been a challenge

HI!  Greetings, and welcome back (to me, too).  

What a challenge this was!  I'm not a "modern" quilter.  We needed to incorporate one or more of these points.  
  • The use of bold colors and prints
  • High contrast and graphic areas of solid color
  • Improvisational Piecing
  • Minimalism
  • Expansive negative space
  • Alternate grid work.  
Then I thought about what I do make.  I've done some with bold use of colors.  I've done some with high contrast.  I've also done varied setting styles (maybe alternate grid work??)

And I adore using Island Batik!  


But I was stumped on what to make this time.  I pulled some fabrics from Red Tide, my preview collection.  Then I thought I should save that for the big blog hop thing in August.  

So I went through my box of older groupings.  I pulled the blue and greens from the Lavish collection, and played with ideas.  But this wanted to become an Oriental Fan table runner. 

I made the fans on my vintage machine, and had to get my new machine fixed (I broke the needle screw and needed to get a new needle clamp, requiring a 2 1/2 hr trip to PA, to Pocono Sew & Vac).  Got them finished and appliqued, then didn't like the setting fabric choices.  The top one has a little light aqua/green Island Batik design, and the bottom is solid white.  Just looked too blah.  Set it aside.  

Then I pulled the blues and teals from Red Tide again, and played with the idea of doing the Twisted 9 Patch pattern from Quilt In A Day.  I had the ruler and pattern for a while, but just couldn't start cutting the fabric.  

I was thinking about doing a Twisted Log Cabin in the pink/orange/red colors from Red Tide.  But I loved the look of the more white areas, and how they looked curvy.  So, I started cutting some of the pinks in my Island Batik tote.  Some were purchased, and others were from the Ambassador box.  

Then I read the pattern again, and realized I needed 4 lights and 4 pinks, not the 3 of each I had planned.  What to do??  I had already started cutting strips, and needed something that would work, and had enough yardage.  Okay, switch this to the "dark #4", put this in for "Light #3".  Oh, look, the piece I just got in the mail today works for that!  

I finally had some time last night to start piecing it, but the
wonky ruler is up in the studio, and Mom's sleeping.  I can't go up now.  Put it off until ...
This afternoon, I decided to play with the wonky ruler.  But wait!  I found a better setting color fabric for the Oriental Fan runner.  It's from Red Tide and was pulled for the Twisted 9 Patch.  But it works well with Lavish.  And the pale green 1/4 circle is from London Fog.  

Okay, get that runner done, at least to a top.  Quilting can wait.

It got photobombed by the Hollyhock bud, lol. 

I did decide to do more on the Twisted Log Cabin in pinks.  

This will probably become a baby quilt.  There's a mix of collections in this, and I have 9 blocks up to "Add light #3".  

Yes, it was a little crazy.  In between helping my mom, and taking care of things at our house, and fixing things, and gardening, and some family time.  Today is almost July 1.  My challenge isn't done, exactly.  
But I did try to do something more modern, more improv, more with bold colors.  Although using the Wonky ruler from Quilt In a Day isn't exactly improv, it will look more modern than a regular one.  

What I love about these challenges:  They make us think.  They make us do something different, and they allow a mix of Island Batik fabrics, not just one collection.  To me, that's fun.  In the midst of the daily challenges that come after the death of a parent, and a move, and other "high stress" issues, comes the challenge to just play with color and gorgeous fabrics, and make something pretty.  I may not be finishing much now, but I'm sewing.   I'm blessed to be an Island Batik Ambassador.  It's keeping me thinking and having fun, even in the midst of the distractions of other "finish me now" projects.  Thanks, Island Batik.  

Check the Island Batik Facebook page to see more of the June Modern challenge pieces.  I'm sure you'll be inspired.  

Thanks for visiting.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Opposites Attract Blog Hop and Giveaway!

Hi, and welcome back to my blog.  I know it's been over a month since I've written. 

I've been working on some things, but didn't blog about them.  I think I had mentioned that my dad was ill.  He had an infection, and passed away on May 15 from complications from the antibiotics he was given.  It's been a rough 3 months.  Although we were hoping that he would have continued to fight, he had just lost too much weight to fight again, when he had the final relapse of C-Diff.  He was a great man, and loved by many.  He's taught me so much, and was always proud of what I could create.  We are all missing him.  

In the meantime, I've also been working on getting my new studio set up, and working on some projects for custom orders, and my piece for this blog hop.  Marion of Seams To Be Sew invited a variety of bloggers to help celebrate opposites.  

We were to create a small quilt using 2 colors.  Since I had planned to make a pink and white wall-hanging for my new bathroom, I searched for a pattern to use.  I had planned to make the December 2015 Aurifil Designer of the Month mini, so I picked some of my red/pink fabrics from Island Batik, and Sprinkles, a fun neutral from the basics collection.  I had a sample of the main deep magenta from my Ambassador box, but purchased more.  I also used Raspberry, a basic from their collection to add the medium shade.  I picked these fabrics because they went well with my towels from Lands' End, Hot Fuchsia.

 Although it was rainy, the quilt matches some of the roses in my yard.  
 Island Batik's colors are so pretty!  I love the texture and quality of the fabrics.  Being an Ambassador is awesome!

When the quilt is finished (with the darker fabric for a binding) it will hang here, on the quilt rack I purchased for it.  All will be mounted correctly, not with tape and thumb tacks, lol.  I'll share when the whole bathroom is done.  I think it's going to add such a fun and pretty touch to the wall!  

If you hadn't heard, I moved back home to help my parents, and have a small basement apartment in their house.  The bathroom and kitchen in the apartment had black mold, so the bath was ripped out, and I've had most of it rebuilt.  I still need to do another coat of paint and add some shelves. but picked deep pink for the towels and accents.  We still need to finish the kitchen, and I'm using the 2nd floor bedroom for my studio.  Mom's really been glad I'm here for her, now, and she's having fun doing photo shoots and helping me pick fabrics for projects.  She even went to a quilt show with me.

With all the changes and happenings over the last few months, it feels really good to be sewing, quilting and blogging again.  Each day brings something fun, even with the sadness of missing my dad.  

Please also visit the other bloggers sharing today, and enter the Rafflecopter link for a chance to win a gift certificate from The Fat Quarter Shop, and another prize from DJInkers.

Teatime Creations
Sew Many Yarns

Thanks so much for stopping by, and I hope you enjoy the opposites!  


a Rafflecopter giveaway