Sunday, April 23, 2017

Springtime Northern Lights

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Its been a while since I shared some Northern Lights photos and last night around midnight Tim and I walked out on the lake ice to get a few pictures.   It was nice to be out in only –5’c temperatures to take pictures but this time of year the lake ice is very noisy!  As we walked out across our bay to the main lake the ice was cracking and popping which added to the excitement of being under the lights.  These first pictures are taken looking northwest back out our house.

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As we walked back I wanted to get a shot of our house lights with the lights.

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As the lights faded I wanted to get a shot of my birch trees which you see so often in my quilt pictures.

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Thursday, April 20, 2017

Gravity #3

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This is Megan’s Gravity quilt and it is a pattern by Jaybird Designs. This is the third one I have quilted and you can see the other two here and here.  I have changed up the designs a bit in the center blocks, added more swirls but used a lot of the same design elements as before.  The big change this time is the background design. Megan sent me a picture from a blog called Schnig Schnag so I used her design as my inspiration.  Love how it turned out but a lot of ruler work!

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I used a lot of rulers on this quilt and they were my QP Curved Templates and the QP Edge straight rulers.  I didn’t do any SID as all the seams are pressed open, I usually prefer to SID but this quilt pattern does not need it.

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The batting is Quilters Dream Blend.

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I made myself a template for marking the background design. I used a double blade Exacto knife and old x-ray film to create the template.  Then I used my Bohin chalk pencil to mark the corners of the design onto the fabric, not the whole design, just so I knew where to aim my ruler as I stitched it out.

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I used Monopoly for the center quilting and two shades of grey for the background designs. I used #410 for the two darkest diamonds and #408 for the three lightest grey diamonds. The bobbin thread was a light grey Bottom Line for the whole back.

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You may have noticed there is snow on the lake again!  We had 25cm of snow fall on the Easter Long weekend!  I took these pictures this morning while the snow was still hard and dry from the below zero temps last night. Should get up to +9’c today so it will be a wet sloppy mess soon enough!

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Thursday, April 13, 2017

Liberty of London

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This is Rae’s quilt which she made for her daughter in law who picked these Liberty of London fabrics.   I had never seen this fabric line before and it is beautiful.  Lots of tiny floral prints in soft colours.    Rae didn’t use a pattern and cut the fabrics into squares then added a white sashing.   I picked the Wave on Wave pantograph, used white So Fine thread on top and white Bottom Line on the back.

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The backing is a white Cuddle and Rae purchased a thin white poly batting to keep the white fabrics nice and bright! It also works well with the Cuddle to keep the quilt light.

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The snow has been melting and most is gone in the yard but of coarse now we are now under a ‘Winter Storm Watch” for the Friday and Saturday. We could get up to 20- 30 cm of fresh snow!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Batman!

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This is Brittney’s Batman quilt and since the focus of this quilt is her piecing I used the Ebb and Flow pantograph to keep the quilting simple.  I used medium grey So Fine thread and Quilters Dream Blend batting.

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She used an image by Eric Dufrense to create her quilt, no pattern.  Here is the image she based her quilt on.

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I asked her if she wanted to share her story of how she made this quilt and she was very kind to write about her year long process.  Here is her story which I will add between the photos.
This quilt is made for my husband, Will.  When he was completing his journeyman in April of last year, I decided to make him a quilt for his graduation; which lucky for me was a whole year after he finished school (between graduation, moving, starting a new job, and getting married I didn't have a lot of free time haha).
When I decided to make Will a quilt I wanted something that would have meaning to him. Will is a comic book and Lego fanatic so I started looking for quilt patterns that related to these. I had already decided that I didn't want to make him a quilt with comic material, as he is a grown man and I wanted something more mature, so the majority of patterns I came across were paper pieced. Having never done paper piecing before, I decided now was not the time to learn (but the joke ended up being on me, as I would not only paper piece while making this quilt, I would have to design them myself!). It was during this search I stumbled upon Eric Dufresne geometric batman. After having been mislead that this was a quilt pattern, and scouring through Web to find it, I decided I would design the pattern myself! How hard could it be, right?”

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“I started designing the quilt in April 2016. Planning cuts and Fabric in October. And started sewing in November. The biggest challenge for me was designing and mastering paper piecing. After designing and sewing the first block I encountered  my first problem - the image had to be mirrored so the finished product appeared the right way. My second problem was that some of the pieces could not be sewn the way I designed the block. This led to me cutting the block down to be able to sew the block and subsequently led to my next discovery... remember to add your quarter inch! After these discoveries I was sailing! (However, I think every paper piece had at least one rip out if not more; I still struggle with estimating the right size of fabric required). After almost finishing the quilt I discovered my third big mistake, which was to design the block for the final size, then add a quarter inch all the way around. I designed my blocks with the seam allowance already present, which caused problems with lining things up. Now I know for next time!”

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“Of course paper piecing wasn't the only problem I ran into. I ran out of fabric, on more than one occasion, and luckily Shari Dyck at Road 17N is a wonderful human and would often send out my order the same or next day, and it would arrive 2 days later. I also had originally designed the background to be geometric as well... but as soon as I started cutting I decided I couldn't be bothered with that and changed my plans to what it is now. The v and Co ombre worked so fabulously for the background I'm not even upset about this change. However, if I were to make this quilt again I would not use v and Co ombre for the grey and yellow, but rather buy three solids that suit my needs. It made my cutting difficult and there are a few pieces I'm not overly happy with because of it.”

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I finished Will's quilt at the beginning of February, just in time for his grad. I, of course, had to present him with the unfinished product, but I was so proud of it, it didn't bother me and I'm so excited to have Kathy quilting it! I had the support of my mom the whole time; although she would not touch it and often reminded me that I'm crazy and stubborn. Will is over the moon about the quilt and can't wait to the it back so he can start using it”

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Thanks Brittney for sharing your story, I think many of us can all relate to your process of making this quilt!

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As you can see the lake ice has very cool patterns right now as a result of some really warm days. It is still very safe to walk on just the top layer is starting the candling process which only goes down about 8 inches.  I’m sure there is still a good 30” of ice on the lake.

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Thursday, April 6, 2017

Lucky Stars

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This is Patty’s Lucky Star Quilt and the pattern is by Atkinson Designs.  She purchased it as a kit from Fat Quarter shop and it uses Moda’s Grace fabric which is a collection by 3 Sisters.  Patty is my client that lives in Germany and I have quilted for her a few times now.  She started piecing this quilt when she was deployed to Djibouti for seven months and finished it at several quilt retreats with her quilt guild in Germany; Rheinland Pfalz Quilt Guild.  She lived in a tent and set up a sewing station on foot lockers so was very busy in the evenings sewing many quilt tops.  Here are some pictures of her tent!

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She asked for custom quilting and wanted the stars to pop so I stitched in the ditch around the stars and the cross hatched the centers to give it a traditional feel.  I then added a border of loops around the background in the blocks to frame the stars.  Next I quilted open feathers in the sashing to add great texture.

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I used a beige So Fine thread on top and a beige Bottom line thread on the back.  The batting is Quilters Dream Blend.

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The temperatures have been above freezing during the day so the snow is melting quickly.   We decided to cut down a tree that has been infested with bugs before it decided to fall on its own towards the house!   This is a good time of year to drop it on the lake as the ice is still thick.  We will cut it up for firewood and clean up the mess on the ice this weekend.

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Sunday, April 2, 2017

Teaching and Travel.

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I had a busy week last week as it was Spring Break and we travelled down to Winnipeg to help move my mother in law from her house into a 55+ apartment complex.  We got her settled and the house is now up for sale and I think she will be very happy in her new home.  While we were down there I arranged to teach a Beginner Quilting Class at Road 17 N  Quilt Shop in Winkler, MB.  The shop owner Shari just moved her shop to a new location and it is so bright, open and inviting!  I thought I would share a few pictures of her shop so you can see this one should be on your ‘must stop’ list when you travel through Southern Manitoba.

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They set up a waiting area with a couch, TV and kids table.  Very smart!

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I found a few of our Highway 10 Designs quilts on her wall too!  Here is Lug Nuts over the Popcorn bar.

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And here is a miniature version of our Good Vibrations pattern.

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Now to the reason I’m there!  I was teaching a Beginner Quilting Class and we made a baby sized Quarter Sections quilt.  Many of the 13 students had never made a quilt before and some that had quilted before  made the larger versions.  The classroom was large and bright so everyone had lots of room to work and there was a higher cutting table for everyone to use. I’m happy to report there were no injuries/bloodshed during the class!

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Here is Verena and Ann working on twin sized quilts.  I loved the fabric Ann was working with so I ended up coming home with my own bundle of Sunday Supper by Sweet Water! 

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I had a mother/daughter teams working together which is lovely to see.  They were working on a twin size quilt with fun Cotton and Steel fabrics.

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There is Shari helping me out with my class because she is awesome!

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Here are a few of the baby quilts up on the design walls and one with the center finished.  Most of the student finished all there blocks and some were able to finish sewing the centers together.

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Love the fabrics on this one that Stephanie did!

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Thank you to everyone that took my class and to Shari for inviting me out to teach!  I hope we have hooked a few more ladies into our quilting world!