Category Archives: update

Joining the Quick Curve Ruler Sew-Along

I’m late to the party. At the beginning of summer Thelma of Cupcakes ‘n Daisies started a Sew-Along in which participants could make any design using the Quick Curve Ruler (QCR) by Sew Kind of Wonderful. No rules, only the goal of completing the project by Labor Day.

I knew right away that I wanted to join Thelma’s Sew-Along. I’m a huge fan of Sew Kind of Wonderful patterns, designed by sisters Jenny Pedigo and Helen Robinson. They recently designed some patterns for Cut Loose Press, and this one, Dancing Churndash, caught my eye:

dancing churndash quilt
Dancing Churndash. Pattern by Jenny Pedigo and Helen Robinson for Cut Loose Press.
(Photo used with permission.)

Do you recognize the classic churn dash block? Helen and Jenny gave it a playful contemporary spin. I couldn’t wait to make it. The only problem was that the pattern wasn’t yet available when the Sew-Along began in June. Last week the patterns came in at the Pine Needle and I quickly scooped one up.

Like Thelma, I always make a test block before embarking on a project. Here is my test block:

dancing churndash test block
Dawn’s test block, 15 1/2″ square

I’m using several fabrics from the Gray Matters line by Camelot Cottons plus some other greys and yellows in my stash. I reversed the values in Jenny and Helen’s version; my background is white and the narrow center strips are dark.

For the narrow center strips I used a Daiwabo cotton sateen that gradates from medium dark grey at the selvage ends to very pale grey in the center. The strips are a little too dark, I think. I may replace them with strips cut a bit farther away from the selvages, hence lighter.

Even so, I’m happy with my test block. The pattern calls for a 3 x 3 grid of 15″ blocks, with the quilt finishing at 45″ square. I’m thinking about making a 4 x 5 grid so that my quilt finishes at 60″ x 75″ — a nice lap size. I might even put borders on it to make it larger.

Thelma has already finished her Quick Curve Ruler quilt top, and so have a few others who joined her Sew-Along. Despite my late start I should be able to get my quilt top done before the deadline. After all, Labor Day is still five weeks away!

 

 

 

Posted in gradated fabric, Quick Curve Ruler, update | 2 Comments

2014 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Walking the Streets

In my last post I showed you a few of my favorite quilts made by the artists and quiltmakers who taught at Teacher’s Affair, the week of classes preceding the 2014 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show in Sisters, Oregon. Now I want to show you – in no particular order – a sampling of the 1300 or so quilts that lined the main and side streets of Sisters on July 12, the day of the quilt show.

Deconstructed Peacock (65 x 83) by Kim Graham of Boise ID
Deconstructed Peacock (65″ x 83″) by Kim Graham of Boise ID

 

Quiet Village (50 x 50) by Anita Johnson of crooked River Ranch OR
Quiet Village (50″ x 50″) by Anita Johnson of Crooked River Ranch OR

 

Rose City Skyline (54 x 55) by Cheryl LaRobadiere of Beaverton OR
Rose City Skyline (54″ x 55″) by Cheryl LaRobadiere of Beaverton OR

 

Meandering Thru Greece (96 x 96) by Anne Zick of Hinsdale IL
Meandering Thru Greece (96″ x 96″) by Anne Zick of Hinsdale IL
Meandering Thru Greece detail (96 x 96) by Anne Zick of Hinsdale IL
Hand Quilting Detail on Meandering Thru Greece by Anne Zick

 

Uncle Sam's Bow Ties (88 x 64) by Jodi Nelson of Sandy OR
Uncle Sam’s Bow Ties (88″ x 64″) by Jodi Nelson of Sandy OR

 

New Yellow (84 x 84) by Carol Webb of Sunriver OR
New Yellow (84″ x 84″) by Carol Webb of Sunriver OR

 

Standing Together #2 (51 x 50) by Patty Six of Santa Barbara CA
Standing Together #2 (51″ x 50″) by Patty Six of Santa Barbara CA

 

A Ribbon Runs Through It (84 x 84) by Linda Cloudas, Bend OR
A Ribbon Runs Through It (84″ x 84″) by Linda Cloudas of Bend OR

 

This Little House of Mine (84 x 84) by Jan Tezlaff of Bend OR
This Little House of Mine (84″ x 84″) by Jan Tetzlaff of Bend OR

 

Feathered Star (92 x 92) by Polly Sepulvado of Roseburg OR
Feathered Star (92″ x 92″) by Polly Sepulvado of Roseburg OR

 

Economy Quilt -- Garden of Eden (70 x 85) ca 1900. Maker unknown, exhibited by Diane Zalman of Bend OR
Economy Quilt — Garden of Eden (70″ x 85″) ca 1900. Maker unknown; exhibited by Diane Zalman of Bend OR

 

Night Star (86 x 86) by Marsha Savage of Manteca CA
Night Star (86″ x 86″) by Marsha Savage of Manteca CA

 

Midnight Stars (80 x 90) by Bev Viner of Prineville OR
Midnight Stars (80″ x 90″) by Bev Viner of Prineville OR

 

Sisters Summer Meadow (81 x 95) by Kim Graham of Boise ID
Sisters Summer Meadow (81″ x 95″) by Kim Graham of Boise ID

 

Ahoy Shannon! (55 x 72), a round robin quilt made by Blockin Robins, exhibited by Shannon Poe of xx
Ahoy Shannon! (55″ x 72″), a round robin quilt made by Blockin Robins, exhibited by Shannon Poe of Bend OR

 

Northwest Journey (54 x 65) by Patti Stewart of Bend OR
Northwest Journey (54″ x 65″) by Patti Stewart of Bend OR
Northwest Journey (detail) by Patti Stewart of Bend OR
Bottom Left Block on Northwest Journey by Patti Stewart of Bend OR

 

Kaleidoscope II (84 x 94) by Elayne Logan Currie of Bend OR
Kaleidoscope II (84″ x 94″) by Elayne Logan Currie of Bend OR

 

Poppy Blaze Big Bang (90 x 90) by Sheree Lloyd of Eugene OR
Poppy Blaze Big Bang (90″ x 90″) by Sheree Lloyd of Eugene OR

 

Pickup Sticks (60 x 60) by Nancy Kennedy of Portland OR
Pickup Sticks (60″x 60″) by Nancy Kennedy of Portland OR

 

Pantone 18-3224 Two (41 x 55) by AnnMarie Cowley of Hillsboro OR
Pantone 18-3224 Two (41″ x 55″) by AnnMarie Cowley of Hillsboro OR

 

Mayan Midnight (63 x 68) by Swan Sheridan of Vail AZ
Mayan Midnight (63″ x 68″) by Swan Sheridan of Vail AZ

 

Midnight Harvest Garden (86 x 86) by Anita Johnson of Crooked River Ranch OR
Midnight Harvest Garden (86″ x 86″) by Anita Johnson of Crooked River Ranch OR

 

Modern Crosses (80 x 80) by Shannon Poe of Bend OR
Modern Crosses (80″ x 80″) by Shannon Poe of Bend OR

 

Roots in the Hood (37 x 42) by Debbie Groshong of Bend OR
Roots in the Hood (37″ x 42″) by Debbie Groshong of Bend OR

 

For the Love of Country 64 x 67by Jacquie Gering
For the Love of Country (64″ x 67″) by Jacquie Gering

 

Remember (48 x 42) by Mary Hoover and Barbara Persing of Fourth and Sixth Designs
Remember (48″ x 42″) by Mary Hoover and Barbara Persing of Fourth and Sixth Designs

 

There you have it — just a few of the quilts that caught my eye. A mere two percent of the total number of quilts exhibited! Despite the fact that my friends and I walked the streets for upwards of seven  hours, there were sections of town, and a few hundred quilts, we didn’t manage to see. Still, it was a thrill to see so many kinds of quilts — and the efforts of so many quiltmakers – displayed on the streets of Sisters, Oregon on a single sunny summer day. A huge shout out to the owners and employees of the Stitchin’ Post, the  merchants of Sisters, the sponsors, and the many volunteers that made this year’s show such a spectacular and memorable event.

Next year the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show celebrates its 40th year. I’m already looking forward to it!

 

 

 

Posted in Sisters OR Outdoor Quilt Show, update | 2 Comments

2014 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: the Teachers Tent

Where does one begin when faced with the prospect of trying to view 1300 quilts in the space of a single day? Saturday morning, July 12 — the day of the 2014 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show in Sisters, Oregon — my quilt group, the Quisters, and I headed straight to the Teachers Tent. On display were dozens of quilts made by the talented men and women who taught during Quilter’s Affair, the week of classes preceding the quilt show.

Among my favorites were these:

Gertie by Vivienne Moore of Salem OR 43 x 45
Gertie (43″ x 45″) by Vivienne Moore of Bend OR

 

Yellow by Lynn Koolish of Berkeley CA 34 x 34
Yellow (34″ x 34″) by Lynn Koolish of Berkeley CA

I’m sorry that the image above isn’t sharper.

 

Winter's Promise by Laura Jaszkowski of Eugene OR 29 x 49
Winter’s Promise (29″ x 49″) by Laura Jaszkowski of Eugene OR

 

Cannery Pier Hotel, Astoria by Sarah Kaufman of Bend OR 47 x 29
Cannery Pier Hotel, Astoria (47″ x 29″) by Sarah Kaufman of Bend OR

Sarah made Cannery Pier Hotel, Astoria by paper-piecing fabric onto 2″ and 3″-wide strips of calculator paper. I learned her method during Quilter’s Affair in her “Cityscapes” class — what fun! I’ve put my little project on hold for the time being but will definitely return to it.

 

Fringe Benefits by Sarah Kaufman of Bend OR, 17 x 39
Fringe Benefits (17″ x 39″) made by Sarah Kaufman of Bend OR

 

Nina by June Jaeger of Prineville OR 23 x 35
Nina (23″ x 35″) by June Jaeger of Prineville OR

 

Goat Ya by June Jaeger of Prineville OR 30 x 39
Goat Ya (30″ x 39″) by June Jaeger of Prineville OR

 

Blood Orange Marmalade by Hilde Morin of Portland OR 30 x 21
Blood Orange Marmalade (30″ x 21″) by Hilde Morin of Portland OR

 

Haystack by Ann Shaw of Camas WA 25 x 42
Haystack (24″ x 42″) by Ann Shaw of Camas WA

 

Folklore by Sue Spargo of Uniontown OH 48 x 46
Folklore (48″ x 46″) by Sue Spargo of Uniontown OH

 

Bright Hopes 2 by Pat Pease of Bend OR 46 x 52
Bright Hopes 2 (46″ x 52″) by Pat Pease of Bend OR

 

Shades of Gray by Judy Sisneros of Rocklin CA 49 x 66
Shades of Gray (49″ x 66″) by Judy Sisneros of Rocklin CA

 

As you can see, the morning sun was shining behind the quilt above. By the time I got to some other quilts, including those of Julie Herman of Jaybird Quilts and Sheila Sinclair Snyder of licensetoquilt.com, they were completely backlit by the sun. I planned to return to the Teachers Tent later in the day to get photos of their quilts. When midafternoon rolled around, I was on the opposite side of town. The temperature was in the mid-90s. I was hot, tired, and thirsty, and — yep, you guessed it — I didn’t make it back.

I did take many more pictures throughout the day, though, as my friends and I strolled around Sisters. I’ll post them soon, so please stop back by. In the meantime, I’d love to know which of the quilts above you like best — and why.

 

 

 

Posted in Quisters (Quilt Sisters), Sisters OR Outdoor Quilt Show, update | 6 Comments

Quilter’s Affair 2014

In the week leading up to the second Saturday in July, when the town of Sisters, Oregon hosts the world’s largest outdoor quilt show, the Stitchin’ Post quilt shop in Sisters puts on classes taught by local, national, and international quiltmakers and artists. This week of classes is called Quilter’s Affair. For several years my quilt group, the Quisters, has rented a house in Sisters and attended classes. One of our members, Vivienne, taught four classes this year.

I thought you might enjoy a look at what we started creating in some of our classes. Vickie took Vivienne’s class Rhumba, making some spirited blocks in a variety of batiks:

Vickie's blocks

The blocks are constructed using an improvisational piecing method, then trimmed to size. Vickie is going to set her blocks as above, with the stripes alternating direction in each block. Here’s a look at Viv’s original quilt top, employing a different setting:

Viv's rhumba quilt top

(That photo was taken last summer at my house, at a gathering of the Quisters.)

Peggy and Deborah took a class from Julie Herman of Jaybird Quilts, based on her pattern, Day Break. Deborah is making her quilt from a palette of dusty pinks and leafy greens . . .

Deborah's Daybreak blocks
. . . while Peggy’s version is made of lots of different batiks:

Peg's daybreak  blocks
I stepped way outside my comfort zone to take a class from Laura Wasilowski, known for her whimsical art quilts made using hand-dyed fused fabrics  and embellished with embroidery. In her “Stitch After Fusing” class, we made a small flower quilt using her hand-dyed fabric. My flowers and leaves are a bit strange but I really like my little flower pot:

Dawn's flower pot quilt

(I tried a few different stitches, which is why you see those strands of perle cotton — hand-dyed by Laura – hanging down the front.) I’ve never been a fan of raw-edge appliqué but I may be undergoing a conversion.

Our Quilter’s Affair week sped by at lightning speed. Saturday, July 12, was a different story. It was the day of the 39th Annual Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show. We spent a leisurely day walking around town seeing as many of the 1300 or so quilts as we could manage between 8:30 am and 4:00 pm. What a fabulous show!

I took lots of photos but haven’t had a chance to organize them yet. I’ve had family from out of town and now we are heading off to a family reunion in eastern Oregon. I’m planning at least a couple of posts showing off the quilts from the Sisters quilt show so I hope you’ll check back soon.

 

 

 

Posted in Quisters (Quilt Sisters), Sisters OR Outdoor Quilt Show, update | 3 Comments

Oh, Dear Jane!

PicturesPictures2Pictures6

I wish I could say these lovely blue and white Dear Jane blocks were mine. In fact, they were made by Sherri Crisp of Knoxville, Tennessee. (Sherri and I are in the same Reach for the Stars cohort; I posted pictures of her latest sampler blocks in this post about a month ago.)

Sherri is one of those quilters (like me) who work on multiple projects at the same time. It seems to me that Dear Jane is one of those quilt designs that lends itself to working in fits and starts. Something about sampler quilts, perhaps?

The original Dear Jane was made by Jane A. Stickle of Shaftsbury, Vermont and completed in 1863:

original dear jane quilt

(Photograph by Ken Burris, Shelburne VT, courtesy of the Bennington Museum and the Vermont Quilt Festival)

Thanks to Brenda Papadakis, who drafted the 225 designs that appear in the original quilt and compiled them in the book Dear Jane (published in 1996 by EZ Quilting by Wrights), modern-day quilters can create their own versions.

Sherri’s inspiration was this blue and white version she found on Pinterest:

Jane Stickle Dear Jane quilt

(If anyone knows who made this quilt or the source of the photo, please let me know so that I can update my post.) 

Sherri has also made five of the border triangles, employing some clever fussy-cutting:

Pictures9

Pictures5

Breaking it down, the Dear Jane quilt contains 169 blocks, 52 setting triangles, and four kite corners. These triangle blocks finish at 5″ x 8″, and the square blocks at the top of the post finish at 4½”. Can you even imagine how many teeny tiny pieces there are in a finished quilt?

“I’m not sure if I will ever finish this quilt,” writes Sherri, “but I am having fun playing with it. I can make two to three blocks with only one fat quarter, so I am having so much fun buying fabric.” And I am having fun watching Sherri’s blocks come together!

 

 

 

Posted in Dear Jane, Reach for the Stars sampler quilt, update | 1 Comment

Reach for the Stars: Four New Blocks from Jenn V

Goodbye, June –  hello, July! Can you believe the year is half over? I swear, the first six months of 2014 have just flown by.

June was a productive month for Jennifer Varney of Hudson, New Hampshire. In addition to revamping the center medallion of her Reach for the Stars sampler quilt earlier this month – you can read about here — she has completed four new blocks.

Here is Jenn’s Block 8:

JennV's Block 8
Jennifer Varney’s Block 8

 

Block 9:

JennV's Block 9
Jennifer Varney’s Block 9

Jennifer modified Block 9 so that the center blocks would form stars. I like it much better this way than the original design. (In fact, I did the same thing on my version!)

She skipped Block 10 — more on that later. Here is Block 11:

JennV's Block 11
Jennifer Varney’s Block 11

She modified Block 11 so the center is simply a four-patch rather than eight half-square triangles.

My personal favorite in this group of four is her Block 12:

JennV's Block 12
Jennifer Varney’s Block 12

The border print makes the block appear much more complicated than a nine-patch with four-patches in the corner. Check out the fantastic optical illusion of curves when all the pieces are square.

The original Reach for the Stars quilt was designed by Terry Krysan of Lakewood, Minnesota and presented in Quilter’s Newsletter magazine as a series quilt beginning last fall. As you can see, the quilt features a center medallion and 14 blocks, all set on point:

RFTS by Terry Krysan
Terry Krysan’s Quilt

(Used with permission. Copyright Quilter’s Newsletter. Photo by Melissa Karlin Mahoney.)

Jennifer’s plan is to arrange her center medallion and surrounding blocks in a straight set, which means her quilt will be smaller than queen-size and will require 12 blocks instead of 14. Of course it makes sense to pick her favorite 12 of the 14 blocks. That’s why she skipped Block 10. If I’ve counted correctly, she has one more to make, and then it’s on to the setting triangles and borders. Onward, Jennifer!!

 

 

 

Posted in Reach for the Stars sampler quilt, update | 1 Comment

New Pattern: Season to Taste

Last week I wrapped up Part 2 of a kaleidoscope table runner class at the Pine Needle Quilt Shop. The class sprang from two table runners I had made earlier this year – same design but totally different outcomes because of the fabric choices. I wrote about them in this post in March.

Both runners appear on the cover of my latest pattern, Season to Taste:

Season to Taste pattern cover july 2014-page-002
Dawn’s newest pattern

That’s Autumn Reflections on the left and a springtime version, Under Paris Skies, on the right. I’m thinking about making a summer and winter version, which will give me a quartet of seasonal table runners made from the same pattern, each very different from one another.

My summer version may already be in the works. For the kaleido block I was demonstrating in class, I used this floral fabric from the Gray Matters collection by Jacqueline Savage Mcfee for Camelot Cottons:

floral gray matters camelot cottons
Gray Matters, Camelot Cottons

Yes, there’s a lot of gray in this piece of fabric but it’s offset by a sunny yellow and bright gold. The white brightens it up even more. I bought a piece of the floral last year and was so excited when it was reissued this year along with some fabulous companion fabrics. Between the Pine Needle and Hawthorne Threads, I picked up several pieces in the line that will definitely find their way into another quilt.

Are you curious to see what this print looks like as a kaleido block? Well, here ’tis:

photo
Dawn’s Sunny Kaleido Block

 

 

 

 

Posted in kaleidoscope quilts, update | 8 Comments

The Sewing Bs

My two youngest granddaughters, Bonnie (age 14) and Beatrice (age 11), are here for a 10-day visit. This is the third year they have flown to Portland from San Francisco to spend part of their summer vacation with their granny and grandpa, and we are savoring every moment. All too soon, I fear, summer jobs and other commitments will keep them from spending as much time with us.

One highlight of their visit so far was a dinner cruise on the Willamette River. The girls were invited into the wheelhouse and both of them steered the ship — and they have Honorary Captain’s Certificates of Outstanding Seamanship from the captain to prove it!

Each year the girls work on a sewing project while they are here. Two years ago they each made a pillowcase and last year they made four-patch coasters. This year they made banners – you know, the kind with triangular flags attached to a strip. (A shout out to my friend Vickie Rooks for the suggestion.)

Both girls wanted bright colors for their flags so we raided my stash for fabrics reading as solids and arranged them along the lines of the color wheel:

flag fabric choices

Here is Bea with her fabric choices . . .

Bee with fabric choices

. . . and her banner design:

Bea's design

Practically ROYGBIV: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet, with pink next to red at the far left. For each flag Beatrice cut two 8½” squares of fabric and one square of double-stick fusible web. She fused the web between the squares (that’s a press cloth on top):

Bee fusing her squares

When all the layer were fused together, she cut triangle shapes using a rotary cutter with a pinking blade. Then she inserted the top of each flag between wide double-fold bias tape and stitched along the tape with a serpentine stitch:

Bea at the  machine

closeup of a flag

Here is Beatrice with her finished banner:

Bee with flags 1

 

Bonnie will be starting high school this fall at the School of the Arts (SOTA) in San Francisco so she opted for four larger flags that spell out SOTA. We sketched out her design and color choices, which included white on black for one flag:

Bonnie with fabric choices

Here’s a close-up of her design:

Bonnie's design

Bonnie started out with 11″ x 8½” rectangles. After fusing the letters to the flags, she trimmed the rectangles into triangles. You will see below that the capital A became a lower case a. That’s because the School of the Arts actually presents its logo as SOTa, not SOTA.

Bonnie at work on her flags . . .

Bonnie cutting letters

Bonnie fusing letters

. . . and with her finished banner:

Bonnie with flags 2

 

Great work, Sewing Bs!

 

 

 

Posted in family, update | 8 Comments

Reach for the Stars: Colleen’s Block 1

My friend Colleen joined the Reach for the Stars club a couple of months ago. It’s not an official club, rather an informal group of quilters around the country working on a queen-size sampler quilt that appeared last fall as a series quilt in the pages of Quilter’s Newsletter magazine. Instructions are coming over the course of seven issues.

You may remember from a previous post that Colleen is using William Morris-inspired fabrics. Take another look at her center medallion:

2014-4 Colleen's center medallion on point

 

Colleen recently finished her first block, one of 14 that will surround the center medallion:

Colleen's Block 1 2

 

Like her medallion, this block will be set on point, so here it is in that position:

Colleen's block 1 on point

 

Colleen lives out in the country and has a huge garden to tend. I suspect that at this time of year it’s going to be difficult for her to find time to sew. We may have to wait a bit for her next block — but I think it will be worth the wait.

In the meantime, anyone who wants to join the club is most welcome!

 

 

 

Posted in Reach for the Stars sampler quilt, update | 4 Comments

Reach for the Stars: Block 12

Of the 14 blocks in my Reach for the Stars sampler quilt, Block 12 was by far the easiest to make — just five squares and four four-patches — yet I spent an inordinate amount of time fussing over it.

I spun my wheels initially just trying to decide which fabrics to use. I’m using several blacks, greens, and aquas and two different focus fabrics (from the same line), trying to spread them evenly throughout the quilt. Eons later (or so it seemed), I had my motif isolated from the focus fabric of choice and had settled on the white-on-black dot and the pale aqua batik.

Going with the original block layout, my block 12 looked like this:

Block 12 1

 

I knew I was going to change this layout. Because Block 14 is sashed in black, I was pretty sure that black in the corners would prove overpowering. I tried switching the position of the four-patch units:

Block 2

Better, maybe . . . but still too much black with the sashing to come.

I auditioned a green square in the center in place of the black:

Block 12 3

Nope. Too light.

What about a square of black in the center of the green?

Block 12 4

Ah, that’s better. I can live with that.

Here is the block all sewn together. . .

RFTS Block 12 before sashing

. . . and here it is sashed and positioned on point, as it will be in the finished quilt:

Block 12 7

 

Still too much black? Maybe. When I added the block to my design wall, it looked . . . I don’t know . . . heavy compared to the other blocks. What do you think?

RFTS 1 - 12

 

I also auditioned it in the center spot:

RFTS 1-12

It actually looks pretty good there. Maybe my Block 12 just became Block 13!

 

 

 

Posted in Reach for the Stars sampler quilt, update | 7 Comments