Sunday, June 30, 2013

Template Fun

It was HOT this weekend, so I stayed in and made this crib quilt top for a friend's granddaughter.

"Jacks" 36" x 48"

I used this template, which I'd bought a few years ago.  

Funny how those things pop up at just the right moment!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

A Day with Loretta Bennett

I got to spend Saturday with Loretta Bennett of Gee's Bend, Alabama!

When Stephanie heard she would be in the area for another project, 
she organized a sewing day for Gee's Bend quilt fans--like me.  
Thank you so much, Stephanie!!

Here's Loretta showing how she takes apart jeans.  There's a pocket perfectly picked off.  

To her right is a polyester double knit block she made.  She's wearing a t-shirt made from the design.  
(She had been at Pilchuck school as an artist-in-residence.  The t-shirt was made there.)

After telling lots of stories about growing up in Gee's Bend, 
she took a strip from each of us to show how she makes a quilt out of anything she has.  

All that, plus a leg of denim, and wa-la!

Behind her you can see some of the blocks made by participants in the class.  
Loretta will take these home and put them together into one quilt.  

Loretta is a really lovely person.  Besides being talented, she's humble, generous, patient, and kind.
You can see some of her quilts here.

I finished this top, which I started in 2011 at another Gee's Bend class in Sisters, Oregon.

Below are some details.

Now, I've got a whole lot'a quilting to do!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Gwen Marston on Lopez Island

I've just returned from four days with Gwen Marston and friends on Lopez Island, Washington.

This was one of several workshops I've taken from her.  

She never fails to be witty, good natured, helpful, talented and SO much fun.  

This retreat was all about making medallion quilts.
Here's Gwen with the flimsy I made during the first two days.

This is the start of one I worked on the last two days.

Photo by Sharon Risedorph, shown with permission from Roderick Kiracofe.

The inspiration is this quilt in Roderick Kiracofe's book, QUILTS, at
It's made between 1950-1975 in New Orleans by an African American quilt maker.


Here's Gwen showing the book, while everyone took notes about how to order it.
If you like quirky quilts like I do, you're going to want this book!

The retreat took place at this historic one room school house, set in an idyllic field. 

One day, I heard a "baa" and looked out the door to find a herd of sheep passing by!  
If you look closely, you can see a black border collie working the herd.

Our hosts were two lovely women who did everything to make sure we were all relaxed and happy.  
One has a great little quilt shop on the island.  Isn't this a fun sign?

Each day started and ended with a ferry ride from and to a friend's place on a nearby island.

And a drive past driftwood sculpture.

One morning I spotted these deer outside my bedroom window.

The last night, we all made a scarecrow for our friend's garden.  

Ah, the island life!

Sharon and Anita were also at the retreat.  It was a real treat to sew with them.  
Check their posts for photos of the participants' quilts and thoughts from Gwen.