Sunday, July 28, 2013

The Always Changing Studio / Or Let's Just Make a Mess Again

My Studio is in a constant state of flux, as I grow as a quilter...more accurately, as I start to understand what sort of quilter I am. In the sewing  studio world, one size definitely does not fit all. And of course it goes without saying, one small change may have a huge, domino effect. 

It's helpful to make note of the things that are working in your sewing space and the things that are not. My need for photographing my quilts better has resulted in a few changes. First, I relocated the design wall and made it larger...both helpful moves. But, It was still rather problematic to up set for a good photo shoot, as I had to move furniture around each time.

I then came up, with the deceptively, simple idea of moving my large cutting table in the other direction....all was solved, or so I thought. When I actually went to use my space I realized I was a little lot wedged in, when sewing on my Bernina, which is set into the cutting table.

 The book case, behind me, had to go....but where?? I also had a piece of furniture, under the design wall, that I kept having to climb over....along with the book case it ended up in the other room with the long arm (yikes there will be a domino effect in that room as well).

I now had some more space to play with......I hung up several curtain rods I still had stored away, to create a place to hang several works in progress, a necessity for us multiple project types.

I'm so silly, fussy when I do this type of stuff, it's a good thing I do it actually very handy husband ended up in emergency the last time he hung a curtain rod (over 15 years ago), he hasn't hung one up since. Hmm, do I detect selective un-handiness?? 

It was a relatively simple job....but every time I time I start to clean up, I make more mess.

I'm so easily distracted.....
How about a new curtain hiding the doorway to the crawl space? I'm kind of liking that fabulous Ikea fabric I've had hidden away for several years.
 I should be finishing the binding on Rachel's quilt.... and I will be.... as soon as I finish cleaning up.
Well, off to actually clean up....or make more mess...what will it be?
That reminds me, I now have room to add two more panels to my design wall.........

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Accidental Use of Negative Space

Things were moving along swimmingly...... 
I was enjoying the almost magical process of joining the Quilt As You Go rows. 
It did cross my mind, that once again I had fallen short of my use more negative space. 
 I was also reveling in the fact, that the backs of QAYG quilts are usually interesting.... just as a by-product of the technique itself
 Then as I lifted up the quilt I realized I had sewn one of the rows on backwards!! (The far left row should be facing the other way)

 And there you have it.....a quilt with a fair bit of negative space and all by accident. 

I pulled out my trusty seam ripper and pulled it apart, but not before taking a picture.....I just might have some potential in the negative space quilting zone after all.

Back on track and hopefully finished for some binding choices.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

All is NOT as RANDOM as it Might Appear....

Seriously, there is a method to my madness... 
Looking at this project, one might does one even prepare for a quilt such as this?

I start by digging through my massive stash and then I cut a huge amount of strips....but really, I do have somewhat of a method.
After one quilts for a while, you start to realize what sizes of strips you have a tendency to use over and over again.

Here are my go to sizes:
  • Two and one half inch strips 
  • Two inch strips
  • One and one quarter inch strips
  • Four and one half inch strips
My reasoning being, not only can they be used for piecing the blocks, but for binding, joining my Quilt As You Go blocks using either wide joining strips or narrow joining strips and for applique strips, as they are the right sizes.

Since so much of my work is improv I don't worry about cutting more strips than I need, which as you can see, there is no if, but, or maybe about it....I always cut more than I need, but I'll always find use for them.


Friday, July 19, 2013

In the Quiet of My Studio

After a crazy busy week, I found some calm, in the quiet of my studio.....sigh. 

Amazing how some music in the background and a little quilting time can bring such refreshing. 

I started joining some of the blocks for Rachel's Quilt. 
As usual, I still have several design decisions to make along the way.  In all honesty it's not over until it's in completely done that is. 

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Switching Gears

It always takes me a little while to switch gears... going back and forth from BC to Alberta. 

I transition from:
The coast to the prairie
Downtown living to suburbia
Husband working from home to husband gone all day
No family to grandma mode
One studio to the other
And last but not project to the other, as I try not to bring projects back and forth.

I told myself just to go into the studio....and see what happens.

I managed one block....for Rachel's Quilt. Hopefully that's all it takes me to get back into the zone. Only one more block to go!!!


Wednesday, July 10, 2013


A last walk along the shore, as we get ready to go back home. Even though it was fairly windy I couldn't  resist taking some quilty photos. 
I'm always a little sad to leave to leave my beloved west coast but look forward to seeing my precious little grand kids back home.

Leaving projects behind midway is usually a little difficult as well, but I have plenty of projects to return to, in Alberta and try to resist carting projects back and forth. I'll be excited to return to this one soon. 

Saturday, July 6, 2013

What Angle are You Coming From?

Once again, I have completely underestimated the visual impact of this piece.

The angles and mostly solid colours are producing a stronger piece than I expected.

This morning I was just playing with some different layouts...
Layout #1
Layout # 2
Layout # 3
Layout # 4

Now see what happens when I rotate the photos....everything looks totally different to me. Just hanging a piece in a different direction changes your perspective on it.

I'm not sure where this is taking me....ah, the joys of improv!!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

When the Quilt Starts Talking to You.....

 At a certain point, I find the quilt starts taking on a life of its own...
Not only that, it starts talking to me. 
Step by step it starts to unfold....... 
Stitch by stitch it starts to come alive.....

Quilt As You Go (QAYG) allows me to create large while working small. Quilting these angles is a easy when working in small sections.

I like getting complex designs with simple techniques


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