Monday, May 31, 2021

May Cornucopia


Here it is, the May Cornucopia of useful and interesting links I found during the past month.


Congresswoman Katie Porter is always seen on my tv with a beautiful quilt on the wall behind her. Turns out, her mom is Liz Porter (as in Fons & Porter), and the two of them have done an adorable interview Mom/Daughter video. Here's to more people with quilt appreciation in Congress, like Mazie Hirono from Hawaii with her art quilt backgrounds from Sandra Smith and Cindy Griselda.


This is a very well done video walkthrough of the Rosie Lee Tompkins quilt retrospective show.


Nigella Lawson does it again, after 40 years of making banana bread the same way, I may just have to switch over to this Chocolate Tahini version on occasion because it's divine.


A great interview with textile artist Bobbi Baugh about her use of printing on various types of fabric.


I'm looking forward to seeing what Create And Sustain does in the diverting textiles from landfills area. 


An interesting watch: Sustainable Sewing-Repurposed Materials, I've only watched just this first part but I found it pretty useful, lots of ideas and resources.


A fun thing to try out, do a Surface Test. I'm going to check out the PBS series The Art Assignment videos on youtube.


Kaffe Fassett and his niece, artist Erin Lee Gafill have a new book and a museum exhibit currently showing at the Monterey Museum of Art through October. It's not the same as seeing an art exhibit in person, but they've generously posted an image gallery here of the exhibit.

Friday, May 28, 2021

All Village

It's All Village All The Time around here. Mostly because of the many piles of pieces and parts with little labels for the sizes to help in further cutting. You can see the stack of uncut charm squares, there's a whole lot left to cut up and use. Maybe that's a good title: All Time Village
I'm assembling a few at a time and am trying to keep it pretty random as far as which pieces are chosen to use, but I am arranging until I like all the combinations. I'm also snapping a picture before I start sewing so that I get them sewn together "correctly".
Here's how The Village is looking so far with a bit of the background strips. They look so fun together, I'm loving how all these wild prints work.
This one is my favorite so far, it makes me smile.

It really is fun working with these fabrics. They really are different in most ways, designs, colors, and even the fabric types. 
Another favorite.

The fabrics with some English words are sometimes quite amusing to me. The translations aren't always exact which is just how translations are a lot of times. I'm glad it's not written in Japanese characters because I wouldn't have a clue what it would be trying to say. Lovely Animal indeed. Maybe that's a good title: Welcome to Lovely Animal Village.

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Village In Process


I'm still working on assembling my first row of the Village. I've gotten a lot of roof sections made so far and more than enough of the other parts cut out. 
I'm laying out just a few at a time to make sure they work visually. I love how varied they're turning out.

Saturday, May 22, 2021

Ground Broken on Village

 Actual construction has happened. Ground-breaking I know. Haha, as in starting to construct a village, you'd need to break some ground. A bad joke if you have to explain it, but anyway.

I cut out 5" charms from the Lecien stash and there was a whole lot of it, much more than I'd remembered. And on the whole it's quite a lot brighter and more saturated colors than the majority of the Bunny's and my other stash squares.

 So to test out if it was going to work, I put some of each up on the design wall alternating in order to Make Visual Decisions Visually (MVDV). I thought it looked pretty darn okay.

But to make sure it was really going to work it was time to make some actual blocks that combined the two types of fabrics. I made some with chimneys and some without and I think they look pretty good all in a row. I think the smaller pieces of the fabrics in the block, instead of the entire 5" charm square work out just great. I did some fussy cutting for the windows, if you look closely there's an owl, a panda, a mermaid and a cat looking at you. This is the light blue background fabric, which I might use for the whole quilt, haven't decided that yet.

Friday, May 21, 2021

Colors of the Year

 As you may already know (since we're almost halfway through 2021!) The 2021 Pantone Color of the Year is instead Colors of the Year for 2021 as in two colors. They've chosen PANTONE 17-5104 Ultimate Gray + PANTONE 13-0647 Illuminating. I quite like the page Pantone has for designers on how to use this combination in a palette.

I figured that other quilting bloggers have already made the same attempt to check out these colors, (again it's almost halfway through the year!) so I googled and found a couple which are fun to see.

I really really love this grey and yellow color combination and actually have a quilt project in process that I started collecting fabrics for in 2015 that I think is pretty much those colors. (ahead of my time?!) It unfortunately hasn't gotten much further past the I have a pattern, and have the fabrics chosen stage.

Well, I have a label on a box that it's in, that counts for something, right? But revisiting it because of the Colors of the Year feels a little auspicious and maybe it's finally finally time to get this quilt made.

This is the pattern that I was planning to use for this grey and yellow quilt project, Box Party. And I think this triangles fabric was going to be the outer border fabric. Or maybe the circles one below.

It's kind of fun to try and figure out if my specific "weird" yellow that I was trying to work with is really close to Pantone Illuminating or not. And whether or not the medium to light grey I chose are close enough to Ultimate Gray. But I'm not spending $12.50 to get a fabric swatch from Pantone though. So I'm relying on my various screens and hoping the resolution and color translation is close enough.  

I remember when I made my choices for this fabric pull going through a bunch of my grays and realizing that some of them were way too brown or a little too green or just too purple to go with the true gray I wanted. But looking at these in the sunlight, I think I'm still pretty far off. 

And the range of yellows is pretty wide as far as acidy-green to browny-yellow to sunshiny-yellow. I think I might have been going for adjacent shades so that the quilt wasn't too same-ish looking.

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Village Welcome


Well okay, the last two charm packs from Bunny's Designs arrived, which is 103 more to add to the 116 I already had either purchased or cut from my stash. 
Here's 144 of the charms, and there are only a couple repeats out of the three charm packs I bought which isn't too terribly noticeable with all this color and pattern going on.
Here's my entire stack of 5" charms ready to go. I don't have enough yet, so I still need to cut out squares from the L's Modern Basics by Lecien that I have in the Gypsy Wife in-process box.
Some random closeups of a few faves.
Really looking forward to starting in on cutting pieces for the Sewtopia Village sew-a-long today.

I'm going to be checking out the Instagram hashtag, #VillageSewALong2021.

Saturday, May 15, 2021

Remembering The New

This is my new secret gardening technique, I'm taking pictures of the new plants I add to my garden.
It will also help me remember where I bought the plants, in case I want to buy more of them. This one with the homemade tag written out on a tongue depressor is from our local CSA farm, Camp Joy.
I also hope it will help me remember that I have new plants to water. If I see these photos in my photo roll on my phone, it will hopefully jog my memory,
And to have access to all the plant information that is printed on the labels of the pots that I then recycle. I used to try and peel the stickers off and put them in a gardening journal, but that usually didn't work because they aren't made to come off easily
It's amazing how quickly one forgets how big a plant is supposed to get when it's fully grown. Just this month I realized that a plant I'd planted is possibly going to be 4' wide x 8' tall and I put it in a much smaller place. So it likely needs to be moved before it gets much bigger. But to know that, I had to look up the plant online and research its growth characteristics. The place I bought it from sells a smaller version too, and I'm not sure which one I bought. Maybe the plant doesn't need to be moved? If I'd taken a picture of the pot label, then I'd know for sure.
It will also help to know what the new plant's name is, which really doesn't matter to anyone but me, but I like to know.

Friday, May 14, 2021

House Building

Here's how all the 5" squares I've gotten cut out for the Village quilt. There are 116 here and I need 297 to make the pattern without a repeat. I also have a bunch of Lecien modern prints that I haven't cut squares from.That will brighten up the overall color palette quite a lot. Some of these squares are very very dark and they might not work out too well in a quilt like this, I'll have to go back and fussy cut out a piece that has lighter colors. I may need to add another criteria for fabric selection besides Japanese or Japan-related to expand my stash only fabric choices. I'm going to make a couple of the blocks to see how they look made up with these fabrics.

A slightly better picture of the background fabrics after washing. 
The three colors remind me of the sky colors in Japan that I remember.

Thursday, May 13, 2021

All Solids


I'm doing a laundry load of all the new solids that have come into my workroom. So here are the before pictures.

I bought three colors for the background of the Moda Village quilt. 

They look so different in person versus the photo. I think I'll take another one after they're washed outside. In the store they looked like a nice three shade color step for the background "sky" of the Village quilt. These are all Paintbrush Studios Painter's Palette fabrics. Seeing them on the shelf next to the Kona cottons was a good comparison. They have a much smoother surface. I considered choosing a Kona color for the middle color but thought that the difference in fabric types would be noticeable. (at least to me!)

Then I also ordered from Curated Quilts the new fat quarter pack for their current mini-quilt challenge of Polygons. 

The colors are navy, olive green, rust, stone, eggshell and cream. 

They also had an FQ pack for the former challenge Applique Faces which I thought would be useful for faces or otherwise.

Monday, May 10, 2021

Art Together Now


I'm not exactly sure why, but this video from Ok Go Sandbox gave me a very good happy cry. 

I think I just truly miss seeing humans performing in person. 

Or maybe it's just seeing humans that I don't know at all out in the world in general. 

Human collaboration is really something when you think about it. And being able to do something together, even when we're physically apart is a miracle that I don't think we fully appreciate.

Saturday, May 08, 2021

A House Full


Here's the aforementioned charm pack from Sewtopia I mentioned, all laid out to see the wonderful variety of colors and fabric types that were included.
There are some very charming prints in this selection.

It's very hard to choose my favorite (s).

Oh these owls. And those lovely oval dots.

Sewtopia suggested using this cute house pattern from Moda, but it requires 297 5" charms. They're hosting a sew-a-long which sounds fun and starts later this month. I really like the cute house pattern, so I started cutting more 5" charms out of my box of Japanese fabrics. I'm only partway through, but this only added 22 for a total of 86. That's a long way to go to 297. 

I may just make a smaller version of the quilt or do some repeats or solids. I love all the versions of this on this blog post from Moda and also in the Instagram hashtag #ModaVillage.  My first thought on this one is to have an ombre of background solids go from darker to lighter and back to darker. 

Friday, May 07, 2021

Better Block

 Well that worked out much much better. I actually used EQ8 to check my math on the size of the squares to cut (to HST and 1/4 square triangle) before I did any actual cutting. I'm not sure why the organizers did the template thing for the triangles because it seems like a lot of extra work. Probably because it's a bit less straightforward as far as instructions go. Most of the people making these blocks are not quilt makers that have made a zillion blocks. I'm sending my two blocks out today and will look forward to seeing the finished quilts at some point in the future.

Thursday, May 06, 2021

Mother's Dream

As part of my participation in Mom's Demand Action, I signed up to make some blocks for the Mother's Dream Quilt Project. They sent out packages that included fabrics and templates and instructions. 
It's a pretty easy block with not too many parts. The templates were a little hard to use for the triangles, because I was using a rotary cutter and I'm used to rulers. 

And >>>VoilĂ !  A Mother's Dream block. That's the name of the block according to EQ8 at least. For my next one, I'm going to cut out a square and then cut on on the diagonal for the larger triangle and then cross cut on the diagonals for the smaller ones instead of using the templates, I think it'll be a little more accurate.

We're to write something to go along with the blocks that we make detailing our dreams as mothers for our children to live in a country with more sanity around guns. I'm still working on mine. Each quilt that gets made in this project has a block made by a mother who has lost a child to gun violence surrounded by the blocks from all the other mothers. I really like the symbolism of that idea.

Wednesday, May 05, 2021

Checkerboard Time


Proceeding along with a more improvisational approach to the Sister Artists 2 quilt. Somehow, I always go to the checkerboard.

 I guess I just love how checkerboards look and they're fairly easy for me to do well-enough for my purposes. I think it adds more interest and a contained sort of movement that a solid border wouldn't achieve.  I used the handy dandy Dritz chain-piecing cutter basket that friend Jaye gave me to cut the units apart. 

Using these two not too contrast-y fabrics with some of the off-white from the first border is a left-over impulse from the Lone Round Robin where I tried to repeat the main fabric in each border. 

This quilt is not going to be all borders, very soon I will be breaking out of all the orderliness of adding border after border.

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