Tuesday, November 3, 2015

LeMoyne Star Quilt

Back in 2011, I visited Marit and her mother in law, Linda Dodd.  
Linda has a rich quilt-making heritage.  She kindly showed us some of the family quilts.
This one really caught my eye.  I took several photos and vowed to make one like it.
You can read the quilt's story at the bottom of the post.

After studying the quilt closely, I realized it was pieced by hand.  
I tried, but couldn't find an easy way to piece it by machine and keep the integrity of the original.
 Besides, I needed a travel project.

So I bought Jessica's great book and learned how to do English paper piecing. 
Her instructions are very clear and easy to understand. 
Plus, she shows you how to make the perfect little travel sewing kit. 

Forty-nine stars--mostly made on trips--and over a year later, 
I decided it's time to start connecting them.
My plan is to make 100 stars.  

I found the red I wanted, and began cutting squares.

This weekend I began connecting stars and squares.  Very exciting!

I can't believe I've taken on such a labor intensive, long term project.  
But something about this quilt kept talking to me.  

Recently I remembered this block is called LeMoyne Star.  
My mother's name was LaMoyne--a different spelling, but still--
and her favorite color was red.  

Here's the story of the quilt. 
Linda's grandmother, Dora Stevens, made the quilt from 1940's feed sack remnants. 
The remnants came from dresses that Linda's mother, Elsie Mae Peterson, 
had sewn for two of her daughters, Ester and Carol--Linda's older sisters.  
It was war time, and Elsie took great care to find matching feed sacks 
so the girls could dress alike. 

The quilt is tied with red embroidery floss. 
It has a pieced back.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

White and Red and Stitched All Over

I was at the beach last weekend, and used the opportunity to photograph my recent finish.

This quilt was started over three years ago! 

Most of the quilt is stitched in ivory perle 8--hard to see in the photo, but lovely up close.

The top row is stitched in red perle 8.  
Here you can see the large Baptist Fan design from Barb's wonderful stencil.  

The border is a table cloth I found in a thrift store in Norway several years ago.

The back is another thrift store find.

"Quadriga Aprinette?"  According to Google, it means "five sided apron."

Some good reminders from the beach.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Gwen Marston Workshop

I got to take another workshop from my favorite teacher, Gwen Marston!
I've taken several workshops with Gwen, and I've learned something new each time.

Her message is always this, "Make YOUR OWN quilts."

When she pulled out this quilt, I was thrilled!
I saw it in one of her books years ago, and decided it's my favorite she's made.
She explained how she got the idea from an old quilt.  

Look at that quilting! All by hand, of course. 
The label shows she was making abstract quilts over 20 years ago.

Here are some students' work, all made in the two day workshop.

This one is mine.  It's the start of a background for a folk art appliqué.
I used Sujata's technique for making the broken dishes blocks.
The light ones are 2".  I've never worked so small.  
Crazy?  Maybe, but each one is so dang cute!

I feel very fortunate and grateful for the opportunities to be around Gwen Marston.  
She, more than anyone, has shaped my ideas about quilt-making.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Two Great Quilt Shows

I saw two great quilt shows in the San Francisco area recently
featuring my favorite kind of quirky quilts!

The first was an exhibit curated by Roderick Kiracofe 

This was the entry, all sweet old quilt tops hung on clothespins.

Here are some of my favorites quilts, many are from Roderick's collection.
You'll recognize some of them from his wonderful book, 
It was thrilling to see them up close!

Dots and stripes!

All made of hat bands.

This one was particularly intriguing.  

All the pieces were sewn on only three sides!
Hmm, little pockets?

He also incorporated some newer quilts.

By Sarah Nishiura

By Joe Cunningham.

I got to visit with Roderick and have him sign my book!
If you'd like a signed copy, you can purchase it here.

The next exhibit featured quilts from Eli Leon's collection

Here are a few highlights. 

By Rosie Lee Tompkins

By Rosie Lee Tompkins

By Angie Tobias

By Mattie Pickett
Love that pink binding!

By Sherry Byrd

By Mattie Pickett
My favorite of all!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

On the Design Wall

A few weeks ago, I took a class with the wonderful Sujata Shah called "Organized Chaos."

I used the fabric on the left for the color scheme.

Sujata said, "These blocks are like potato chips."
She was right!  I just kept making more and more.  

And more!  I was having so much fun, I decided to make it a queen size quilt.

I've always been fascinated by kaleidoscope quilts, and 
Sujata's pattern has a special twist.
I just love the way some of the blocks seem to burst out of their seams!

This is about half the quilt, not yet sewn together.
My design wall isn't big enough for the whole thing, so I'll make one section at a time.

A final check on value before I begin sewing the rows together.  
OK, ready to sew!