Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Modern Relief - Japan

As you know, the world is reeling from the recent devastation that has rocked Japan. The modern sewing community has once again teamed up to help with the start of Modern Relief - Japan. Over fifty modern quilts are being donated by members of the community and will be raffled off through a fundraising effort. For every $10 donated to MercyCorps, you'll get one ticket for the quilt raffle.

The event kicks off on April 4th, 2011 and new quilts will be added to the raffle every week. The fundraising will continue until May 16th, and I'm really excited to see how much money we can raise by then.

I'm hard at work on my quilt for the project and I can't wait to show it to you. I'll share more when I can, but in the meantime for more information about Modern Relief - Japan, please visit our blog at www.modernrelief.com.

Thursday, March 17, 2011


The Anni quilt is my entry for the Modern Quilt Guild's Project Modern: Challenge 2--Monochromatic. It's made out of four shades of pink solid cotton, and the design was inspired by the Modernist artist Josef Albers' series of works titled Homage to the Square. His wife Anni was a fibers artist who worked as a weaver and also designed textiles. Anni believed that fabrics should be considered as an art form in and of themselves, in both their functional use day to day, but also in their use as hanging works of art. So, I felt it was fitting to name my quilt after her.

I sketched out this quilt design a few months ago, after browsing through some works by Albers. I thought his square paintings would relate nicely to quilt blocks.

Collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art

In my design I decided to shift the layout of the squares. I placed the smallest square directly on the base of the larger square, instead of having the square float inside the larger one, as they frequently do in Albers' paintings. While I was planning the project, I was immediately drawn to using pink fabrics for the quilt. After a long, cold winter, I thought a nice pop of pink would would do me some good.

The quilt measures 62'' x 62'', and each of its four large blocks measures just over 24'' square. I used four shades of pink cotton: the center of the smallest square is Robert Kaufman's Kona Medium Pink, the middle sized square is Moda's Bella Peony, the largest square is Bella Magenta, and the sashing and binding is Kona Pale Flesh.

The backing is Bella Peony with one small pieced square, repeating the design on the front of the quilt.

I really think the large scale of the blocks, with the shift in color from lighter to darker pink, gives this quilt a lot of movement. The framing of the blocks with the palest pink provides visual emphasis to each pieced square, but also ties everything together in the form of yet another square.

I love the look of heavy quilting and all the texture that it adds to a quilt. I decided to use 1/4'' straight line quilting with light pink thread for this project because I think it really compliments the square motifs of the design.

Jeff first introduced me to Albers in college and here is a photo of Aidan and Olivia in front of a version in red at the Dayton Art Institute. As you can see, our family is a fan of Albers' work. ;)

I'm really pleased with how this project turned out and I can't wait to make more versions of this in lots of different colors! I'l be writing up the pattern soon and sharing it with you here on the blog, and I'd love to see your version of Anni too.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Chocolate Easter Bunnies

Here's my take on the chocolate Easter Bunny! These designs are brand new to my shop and will only be available for a limited time. I've used solid chocolate brown fabric for the rabbit and Amy Butler's Laurel Dots in Cherry for the girl version.

Each applique is machine stitched with a zig zag stitch for design and durability.

I used Amy's Laural Dots in Periwinkle for the boy version.

I think these will be perfect paired with some jeans for an Easter egg hunt!

MQG Project Modern: Challenge 1 Prize

I can't believe I keep forgetting to blog about this. You might remember that my Yield quilt was chosen as a winner of the first challenge of the Modern Quilt Guild's Project Modern, and here is the awesome prize that I won. Talk about happy mail!

Look at all this loot! It was like Christmas all over again.

There was a copy of one of my favorite quilting books of all time, City Quilts by Cherri House.

I actually already own a copy, so I'll be giving this one away to one of my lucky readers soon.

Look at all of the quilting supplies and color card from C&T Publishing. It will be so great to experiment with new techniques with these goodies.

I also received a beautiful bundle of fabric from Fabric Worm in shade of pinks and purples. This was great because I don't have a lot of prints in these colors.

And look at all of this batting! Six yards, which will keep me set for a while.

And a sweet note from the Guild.

Plus I get that cute little button that is now in it's new home on my blog. How awesome is that?! Thank you again to everyone at the Modern Quilt Guild, C&T Publishing, Robert Kaufman, Warm & Natural, and Fabric Worm for such an amazing prize!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Gee's Bend, the play

photo by Pitkin Studio
This afternoon, Jeff and I are going to a preview performance of Gee's Bend, a play by Elyzabeth Gregory Wilder, at the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park. I've been fortunate enough to be able to see three exhibitions of the Quilts of Gee's Bend over the past ten years or so, and I'm really looking forward to seeing some of those extraordinary women brought to life on the stage. Here's the synopsis from the Playhouse's website:

Interwoven with gospel music, Gee’s Bend, a heartwarming and powerful play by Elyzabeth Gregory Wilder, celebrates the human spirit. The inspiring story of the women of Gee’s Bend, Alabama, who sew quilts that turn out to be magnificent works of art, and their deeply personal journey which parallels the turbulent history of African-Americans in the 20th century. The true story of these wonderful women has already touched millions who viewed their stunning quilt work through a national exhibition tour and features in Newsweek and Oprah Winfrey’s O Magazine.

The play runs through April 9, so if you're in the Cincinnati area, I encourage you to check it out.

crazy wind = not so good photo shoot

Hopefully it will go better next time. :)

Friday, March 11, 2011

work in progress

I am finally almost finished with my next quilt, and I have to tell you, I'm pretty excited about it. It's made entirely out of solid cotton fabrics in four different shades of pink, and I'm hoping to bind it today and get some good pics of it this weekend, weather permitting.

{ Thank you, Mother Nature, for the fresh dusting of snow this morning...where in the world is spring???}

I came up with this pattern a couple of months ago and decided to use it as my entry for the Modern Quilt Guild's Project Modern: Challenge 2. I've never made a monochromatic quilt before so it's been a fun challenge for me...although I may not be able to look at pink for a while.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Hooty Hoot Wonky Block Quilt

You know you're behind on your blog when you've got so many projects, and you keep forgetting to post about them. Case in point--I finished this quilt last September and it was featured on Riley Blake's Cutting Corner College in December. I used Hooty Hoot Kangaroo by Shari Butler of Doohikey Designs for the quilt, which was displayed in Riley Blake's booth at Fall 2010 Quilt Market in Houston.

Hop on over to the Riley Blake site for complete instructions and a tutorial on the quilt. Please let me know if you make one--I'd love to see it!

And I have to share a couple of pics of Aidan and Olivia that I took during the photo shoot that day. I love these guys.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

pink + gray + doggies

And a few polka dots...equals super cute, at least in my book. I recently made this custom outfit with my twirl skirt and an appliqued ringer tee for a little girl's birthday, and I love how it turned out. I used Michael Miller's Tammis Dogs in Gray, which is one of their Tammis Keefe tribute prints, and paired it with Ta Dot in Candy.

For the applique design, I simply layered two different sized circles over each other.

And I made sure to include the little girl's favorite pup from the print.

I love that pink puppy! But my favorite dog is this little Boston Terrier, who reminds me of a slightly more neurotic version of my Rosemary.

This outfit will soon be available as a custom order in my etsy shop, so keep your eyes open for it!

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