Category Archives: Portland Modern Quilt Guild

A Funny Thing Happened . . .

. . . on my way to New York City.

New York City? Yes. My husband and I got back last night from a quick five-day trip to Manhattan to celebrate our wedding anniversary. While packing for the trip I had tossed a couple of quilt magazines in my carry-on bag. One happened to be the July/August 2014 issue of McCall’s Quilting.

Flipping through the pages of the magazine, which I probably hadn’t opened in years, my eyes landed on this advertisement for a new line of fabric, “Midnight” by Studio 3 for Quilting Treasures, to be released in the summer of 2014:

“Hmm,” I said to myself, “I don’t remember seeing this ad before. I really like these fabrics!” I do love the drama of black and white prints, especially with the addition of a bright accent color. “I wonder if they’re even available anymore, four years after their release,” I mused.

So . . . after getting settled into our hotel room in Midtown, I picked up my iPad and did a search for the fabric. Lo and behold, I was able to find almost every fabric in the line! You know what happened next, friends: I had a little shopping accident.

Look what was waiting for me when I got home:

And that’s not all.

While I was in New York, I paid a visit to VWF Quilts, the shop of quilt artist Victoria Findlay Wolfe. I got to say hello to Victoria and chat with her about one of my Works-in-Progress based on her Cascade pattern. She designs for Studio 37 Fabrics, a division of Marcus Fabrics, and has an amazing array of fabrics packed into her shop. I added these four to my stash:

The three on the right are from her “Futurum” line and I am already regretting putting back another bolt from the line without purchasing any. (Thank goodness for mail order!)

Speaking of mail order, there was one more package waiting for me when I got home, a purchase I had made a few days before departing for New York. This purchase I can attribute to Anne W., a fellow cat lover and member of the Portland Modern Quilt Guild. (If you are on Instagram you can find her at @pdxannie.) She posted a picture of some adorable Paris-themed fabric featuring cats and I impulsively ordered a couple of yards.

No buyer’s remorse here, though. I love this fabric! And look at all the goodies from the new-to-me shop called Sunny Day Supply that came with it:

That’s a postcard in the upper right hand of the photo (with a handwritten message on the other side from the owners, Mary and Shawn, thanking me for my purchase) along with charm squares and buttons and a postage stamp, all wrapped so sweetly. What a charming shop, with amazing customer service.

And the trip to NYC? Braving unseasonably cold weather, my husband and I managed to pack in four plays . . .

. . . and several museum visits, including the Museum at FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology), always a source of great exhibits:

It’s one of our regular stops, along with the Museum of the City of New York and the New York Public Library. Had the weather been warmer, we would have taken in a New York Yankees or Mets game as well. Next time!

By the way, our wedding anniversary is #37 and it actually falls today. On the agenda: a leisurely dinner out, where we will celebrate — with champagne, of course! — the fact that we have spent nearly four decades together.




Posted in cats, family, Portland Modern Quilt Guild, update | 11 Comments

Something in Common

Grandma's Surprise, both by Joyce Gieszler

Aren’t these two quilts striking? They were both made by local designer and teacher Joyce Gieszler, whose book Then and Now Quilts was published last year by Kansas City Star Quilts. These quilts have something else in common: they are made from the very same block!

Now look at this third version, also made by Joyce:

Grandma's Surprise, Joyce Gieszler, 3 of 3
Made with Cotton and Steel fabrics, this quilt is as contemporary as the the upper left quilt, made of Civil War reproduction fabrics, is traditional. I first saw this third version in January at the Pine Needle Quilt Shop’s Open House. Joyce was there introducing herself, her new book (which includes this design), and an upcoming class. I signed up for her class on the spot.

The block in these quilts is called Grandma’s Surprise.  Deconstructed, it’s a kaleidoscope block. Well, you know how I love kaleido quilts. Is it any wonder I wanted to make one of my own?

When Joyce showed me a photo of the three-color quilt (upper right), I knew immediately that I wanted to make this version. I’m intrigued by the way color, value, and fabric placement completely change the look of a quilt. Joyce’s three versions illustrate this beautifully.

A basic kaleidoscope block is made of eight 45° triangles, forming an octagon, and finishes with four corner triangles to make a square:

basic kaleidoscope block
The Grandma’s Surprise block takes that concept to the next level:

grandma's puzzle block

Do you see how four triangles fill the same space as one triangle in the basic version? It’s still a kaleidoscope block — but a more complex and sophisticated one.

The quilts are made of nine blocks in a 3 x 3 grid. In the two quilts at the top of the page, Joyce made 12″ blocks so the quilts finish at 36″ square. The Cotton and Steel version is made of 16″ blocks with a 3″ border, finishing at 54″ square.

For my three-color version of Grandma’s Surprise, I chose red, black, and a very pale grey. Here is my center block:

center block, grandma's puzzle

It measures 16½” unfinished. The black print is from the Black, White & Currant 5 line by Color Principle for Henry Glass & Co. At a recent Portland Modern Quilt Guild meeting, guildmate AnnMarie Cowley surprised me with several large pieces from this line left over from a quilt project of her own. (Thanks so much, AnnMarie!) I’m delighted to find a project that puts her gift to good use.




Posted in kaleidoscope quilts, Portland Modern Quilt Guild, update | 9 Comments

Honeymoon in Paris


My quilt Honeymoon in Paris is back from the quilter, bound, and labeled. Here’s a look at the front . . .

2013-12, Honeymoon in Paris
Honeymoon in Paris, 56″ x 75″ (2013)

. . . and the back . . .

2013-12, Honeymoon in Paris, back
Leftover Blocks on the Back

Honeymoon in Paris
was quilted by longarmer Debbie Scroggy of All Quilted, LLC. I saw samples of Debbie’s work at a recent Portland Modern Quilt Guild meeting and decided to give her a try. I’m so happy I did! She offers a very fast turnaround time and does beautiful work.

I wanted a spacious airy edge-to-edge design for this quilt. Debbie gave me lots of options. As soon as I spotted the fleur-de-lis element in this quilting design, I knew that was what I wanted. Here’s a close-up of the quilting:

2013-12, Honeymoon in Paris quilting detail
See the Fleur-de-Lis?

Honeymoon in Paris
gets its name from the Paris-themed fabric (two prints on the front and the Eiffel tower on the back) and the double wedding ring block design. The fleur-de-lis motif in the quilting adds a bit more French flavor.

The pattern is Metro Rings by of Sew Kind of Wonderful. I really enjoyed making this quilt, which may be my last finish of 2013. The best thing about finishing a quilt? Starting a new one!




Posted in Portland Modern Quilt Guild, update | 9 Comments

“The Biggest Outdoor Quilt Show in the World”

Saturday, July 13. A perfect summer day in Central Oregon: temperatures in the low 80s with a light breeze. Thirteen hundred quilts hung just for the day on the fronts, backs and sides of buildings in the tiny town of Sisters. Dozens of other quilts hung inside businesses all over town. Thousands of quilt lovers and other spectators strolling the streets taking in the sights and sounds of the 38th Annual Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show (SOQS).

I was lucky enough to be there for the show and the week leading up to it. For the last seven or eight years (we’ve lost count), my quilt group, the Quisters, has rented a house for the week leading up to the quilt show in order to participate in Quilter’s Affair, a week of classes organized by the Stitchin’ Post Quilt Shop in Sisters. In addition to the talented teachers living in Central Oregon, instructors come from across the country and overseas to share their expertise.

This year I opted not to take any classes so I could continue to work on my ever-growing stack of Works-in-Progress. I was sorry not to have taken at least one class, especially after seeing how excited my fellow Quisters were about the ones they were taking, but I did come home with three completed projects — WIPs no longer! — and the show itself provided a plethora of ideas for new ones.

There was something for everyone at this year’s show: beautiful traditional quilts, edgy modern quilts, and everything in between. Below, in no particular order, are a few of the quilts that caught my eye:

Mid Century Modern by Brita Kimmerly of Seattle WA, 52 x 60
Mid Century Modern, 52 x 60, by Brita Kimmerly of Seattle WA


Glacier Star by Pam Nichols of Powell Butte OR, 98 x 98
Glacier Star, 98 x 98, by Pam Nichols of Powell Butte OR


In a Spin by Gill Miller of Cambridge UK, 30 x 30
In a Spin, 30 x 30, by Gill Miller of Cambridge UK


He Watches by Janie Adams of Bend OR, 56 x 62
He Watches, 56 x 62, by Janie Adams of Bend OR


Spring Surprise, 41 x 57, by Beth Rietveld of Corvallis OR
Spring Surprise, 41 x 57, by Beth Rietveld of Corvallis OR


What You See by Kathy Doughty of Sydney NSW, 47 x 67
What You See, 47 x 67, by Kathy Doughty of Sydney, Australia


anns quilt
Cascade Kaleidoscope, 38 x 42, by Ann Richardson of Sisters OR


Two Color Mystery, 53 x 67, by Karen Shadley of Sisters OR
Two Color Mystery, 53 x 67, by Karen Shadley of Sisters OR


The Portland Modern Quilt Guild was represented by several beautiful quilts, including these three:

Spring String, 48 x 64, by Gail Weiss of Portland OR
Spring String, 48 x 64, by Gail Weiss of Portland OR


Sticks and Stones, 36 x 42, by Rachel Kerley of Hillsboro OR
Sticks and Stones, 36 x 42, by Rachel Kerley of Hillsboro OR


Gray Improv I by Cris Pera of Portland OR
Gray Improv I by Cris Pera of Portland OR


Every year the Stitchin’ Post Quilt Shop issues a challenge to its employees to make a quilt based on a theme, and all of the quilts are displayed on the side of the Stitchin’ Post building on show day. This year’s theme was “Streams of Color.” This shot captures most of the quilts:

challenge quilts made by staff of Stitchin Post
Challenge Quilts Made by Staff of the Stitchin’ Post

Two of my favorites are this one, incorporating hexagons . . .

one of the Streams of Color challenge quilts
made by Jean Wells, owner of the Stitchin’ Post and founder of the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show

. . . and this one featuring New York Beauty blocks:

Streams of Color challenge quilt
made by Paige Vitek, employee at the Stitchin’ Post in Sisters

Continuing on with the show:

The King -- Elvis, 82 x 90, by Randall Cooper of Madera CA
The King — Elvis, 82 x 90, by Randall Cooper of Madera CA


J'Adore Paris!, 41 x 42, by Kristin Shields of Bend OR
J’Adore Paris!, 41 x 42, by Kristin Shields of Bend OR


Barbara's Baskets, 68 x 80, by Janet Storton and Barbara Fergusun
Barbara’s Baskets, 68 x 80, by Janet Storton and Barbara Fergusun of Sisters OR


Parallel Lives, 44 x 52, by Patty Six of Santa Barbara CA
Parallel Lives, 44 x 52, by Patty Six of Santa Barbara CA


Forest Path, 53 x 68, by Patty Six of Santa Barbara CA
Forest Path, 53 x 68, by Patty Six of Santa Barbara CA


Green Orphan Blocks, 42 x 42, by Colleen Blackwood of Pendleton OR


Random Windows, 46 x 28, by Hilde Morin of Portland OR
Random Windows, 46 x 28, by Hilde Morin of Portland OR


Oh my! I just realized I’m not even halfway through my photos. I think I will end today’s post here and present another batch of quilt photos in the next day or two. I hope you will come back for more.





Posted in hexagons, Portland Modern Quilt Guild, Quisters (Quilt Sisters), Sisters OR Outdoor Quilt Show, update | 11 Comments

Cosmic Kaleidoscopes

Allow me to introduce Cosmic Kaleidoscopes, my second finish of 2013 and #6 in my series of kaleidoscope quilts. You may remember from a recent post, My Lucky Day, that I won a quilting session with Nancy Stovall of Just Quilting at last month’s Portland Modern Quilt Guild meeting. Nancy was able to finish it in time for this month’s guild meeting (Jan. 17). I wanted to show it there first before posting pictures.

Here is my quilt, enhanced by Nancy’s lovely work:

Cosmic Kaleido 600
Cosmic Kaleidoscopes, 60″ x 76″


Because the kaleidoscope blocks are so busy, I wanted the quilting in the background to be very simple. Nancy and I decided on slightly wavy lines that would simply flow off the edges of the borderless quilt.

The back is another story. I inserted a strip of the focus fabric and added some half-kaleido blocks made from the leftover focus fabric. Nancy used a lighter thread for the kaleidoscope blocks on the front, creating an almost lacelike effect on the back:

Back of Cosmic Kaleidoscopes
Back of Cosmic Kaleidoscopes


Just for fun, the label is the same octagonal shape as the kaleidoscope blocks:

Cosmic Kaleido label 500
Cosmic Kaleido Quilt Label


My quilt was on display at the Pine Needle last weekend . . .

Hanging at the Pine Needle

. . . and today it went to Silverton, Oregon where it will be shown at the Stitches in Bloom Quilt Show at the Oregon Garden this Friday and Saturday, Jan. 25 and 26.

About the fabrics: the Jacobean floral is from the Ruby line by Timeless Treasures. Before sewing the kaleidoscope wedges together, I sewed on sashing strips of a soft mossy green (Shadow Play) and a pale coral dot (The Emperor’s Garden), both by Maywood Studios. The background fabric — a soft inky blue-black with hints of charcoal — is Modern Textures by Marcia Derse, from the Riverwoods Collection for Troy Corporation.




Posted in kaleidoscope quilts, Portland Modern Quilt Guild, update | 7 Comments

My Lucky Day

My lucky day occurred two weeks ago, and I am still marveling at my good fortune.

I was at the December meeting of the Portland Modern Quilt Guild, which I joined last spring. The guild was having a membership renewal drive, and those who renewed at the meeting were eligible for prizes. Of course I renewed on the spot. I’ve only made it to a few meetings this year but I have been so impressed with the creativity and talent of the women (and a few men) who belong to the guild. And every one is so friendly. I usually sit down next to someone I don’t know and introduce myself. By the end of the evening I have a new friend. This time it was a lovely woman named Vickie.

There must have been 15 or 20 prizes awarded to renewing members, fun things like new books and bundles of fabric. Alas, I didn’t win a thing. Then one more prize was announced: a quilting session with Nancy Stovall of Just Quilting. Can you imagine how thrilled I was when I heard my name called? Nancy is an award-winning longarm quilter. “What does ‘quilting session’ mean?” I whispered to Vickie. “It means she will quilt a quilt for you!” answered Vickie.

I was so excited that the very next day I took a newly-finished quilt top to Nancy’s studio, and we talked about motifs and auditioned threads. Today I dropped off the backing, and now I just have to sit back and wait till Nancy works her magic. This is the quilt top:

Cosmic Kaleidoscopes

I’ve named it Cosmic Kaleidoscopes. Right now it measures 62″ x 82″, although the quilting process will draw it up somewhat. My goal is to get it bound and labeled in time for “show and tell” at the Jan. 17 meeting of the Portland Modern Quilt Guild and for the Pine Needle’s Open House Jan. 18 and 19.



Posted in kaleidoscope quilts, Portland Modern Quilt Guild, update | 4 Comments