Sunday, March 2, 2014

March meeting recap

Our March meeting was held at the Fremont Public Library in Fremont NH. Fifteen of our members were able to attend. The air was crackling with cold  excitement for our upcoming retreat at the Franciscan in Kennebunk, Maine! 

Above is a photo of a few block lottery blocks (I took the picture before they were all on the table). I can tell already that the purple and blue color scheme is going to make a lovely jewel-toned quilt for Samantha, our block-lottery commissioner and the winner of this month's blocks! I can just see orchids at the beach, don't you? Next month's lottery block pick is Drop Dead Cute's Starburst block.  Please use "saturated scrappy" as a color scheme--if you need inspiration, check out Drop Dead Cute's finished Starburst quilt.

Judy has wisely suggested that one of the items on our agenda for the retreat should be trying to make and collect blocks for Margaret's Hope Chest. We sent log cabin blocks last fall, and some of them have shown up in a quilt that MHC posted on their blog! Details about the heart blocks they are collecting can be found here. Of special note is that they are always in need of boy-appropriate quilts, so a dig through your blue-green-orange-brown-black-gray scraps may be in order. Judy has graciously offered to mail the blocks we are able to make, so please consider scrap diving and spending a few minutes sewing up a simple patchwork heart.

The sign-ups for the Michael Miller MQG fabric challenge are complete. If you told Peg that you would like to participate, the fabric will be shipping to Peg in mid-March and should be available by our April meeting. The MQG deadline for finished project photos is June 23. All the details can be found here, at the MQG's blog.

Diane thanked our guild for allowing our Riley Blake Challenge pieces to be displayed at the East Kingston Public Library for the month of February. I found a blog post featuring two of our quilts at the library's blog, here!

Samantha and Robin are teaching an improv workshop at the September meeting. They are asking that we donate scraps of any shape and size so they can prep them for the class. (Solids are appreciated.) Please bring the scraps to the April and May meetings so that they have time to prep them for our use.

At Show and Tell, Laura showed a Briar Rose quilt she finished this month. The block is Boy's Nonsense by Where the Orchids Grow.

Barbara finished a project bag as a gift (I think there were inside pieces I didn't get a photo of)

is working on a birthday gift for Nancy (four gingerbread men with hearts--appropriate!)

and finished this lovely felt pillow. The pieces are hand-appliqued with beautiful fine tiny stitching. I didn't get a photo of the back but Barbara chose a print from Allison Glass's Clover Sunshine--it looks wonderful with the red flower on the front!

Kali finished a orange-and-gray commissioned baby quilt. She used Disappearing Nine Patch, which people remarked looks very different depending on the background you choose! 

Kali pieced the cute fox-y backing using a diagonal seaming technique that cuts down on backing fabric waste. The diagonal backing calculator can be found here.

Kali also finished her Dear Stella Piper quilt that she showed at a meeting last year. I love how grown-up the pattern makes this line look--the black framing is just the thing to set off some of those white-background prints.

Nancy showed a paper-pieced-and-quilted panel for a tote she is making (pay careful attention, you may have deja vu in a moment)

and Mary's Catvent quilt is finished and hanging on her wall. Her rainbow of colors would bust any winter blues.

Mary also got bitten by the Economy Block bug, only she smartly added several solids to let her scrappy blocks breathe. I hate to choose favorites but this is one of my favorite Economy Block quilts yet!

Jess made a gift for her one-year-old nephew out of a panel she picked up at our unloved-fabric auction last November. I was glad she was able to stop and show it off on her way to the party!

Jess also finished this quilt from her auction haul (I believe this is Stephanie's Castle Peeps leftovers). Beautiful!

Sue Ann tried out Victoria Findlay Wolfe's made-fabric technique and made a Dresden star of her own design. She used decorative stitches and yellow threat to do the quilting. A beautiful use of scraps! (She also recommended the Frixion pen, which I found here.)

Karin made some cute zippy pouches

a whole bunch of Chicopee throw pillows (she says there are three more at home!)

and her Riley Blake challenge project, which she wasn't able to show at our January meeting. 

Are you having deja vu? Amy showed off her paper-pieced sock knitting block, which she designed and offered for sale at her Craftsy and Etsy shops this month.

This is a navy, gray, and coral quilt that Amy made in February. The tutorial is at the Sizzix blog if you are interested in trying it out.

And Amy also got bitten by the Economy bug, but she riffed on the design a bit and used her own paper-piecing pattern that makes the blocks a bit bigger. (She's offered it as a free download on Craftsy.) I love how she used the light value prints to unify her crazy here--a different take than Mary's, but both are so smart!

Peg finished a larger EPP hexie cushion. She says she doesn't let her boys play with this one on the floor :)

Nancy taught us some bias binding magic--I'll keep her handout close at hand the next time I bind a quilt that will get a lot of washing and wear. 

Other magic tips that got shared:

--the 4-at-a-time sandwich HST method (Paula) (see a tutorial here)
--use your clear quilting ruler to measure from the side of your fabric, don't use your mat, which could be inaccurate (Samantha) (also, different brands of rulers could be calibrated differently!)
--use Bottom Line thread from Superior Threads in your bobbin when quilting (several folks mentioned this to me when I had some quilting difficulties this week)

Final quick link: retreat information can be found HERE


Kali said...

So much info! Thanks for the wrap-up Laura!

Stephanie said...

Thanks for such a quick post! I always feel like I'm there even when I've missed it! :)