Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween 2011

I hope you and your family had a very happy Halloween! Jeff is out of town on business, so I took the kids to my dad's house for trick or treating. They had a blast!

Aidan was Captain Jack Sparrow. Even though we've never seen any of the Pirates of the Carribean movies, Aidan is obsessed with him. I made his costume using clothing that I found at the thrift store plus some things we had on hand. The shirt and vest are both Irish linen (score!) and the pants were actually a pair of Junior sized capris that I took in. I loved the weave of the fabric and the vintage looking brass buttons and I thought they made excellent pirate pants.

His lovely hair is actually two wigs, with a few strands of beads that I sewed in. Check out the view from behind.

Olivia wanted to be Dorothy Gale from the Wizard of Oz. I originally purchased a McCall's pattern to make a traditional version of Dorothy's dress.

But I ended up making one with my own pattern that I designed myself. That way I didn't have to deal with a new pattern (and zippers!). Plus, with the longer sleeve length she would stay a bit more warm if it was chilly out.

Olivia is tall and skinny! I made her a size 5 dress, which is the size that I've been buying her clothes in lately, but my dress was really big on her. So, I made a little sash and tied it around her dress. Problem solved and she'll have plenty of room to grow into the dress, which means lots of dress up time for her in the future.

Of course Dorothy wouldn't be complete without Toto, right?

And those sparkly ruby red slippers....

Last year I was at Quilt Market during Halloween, so I missed trick or treating with them. They were both so excited about going this year...

but Aidan can be a bit reserved sometimes. He skipped all of the houses that had any kind of spooky decorations.

Olivia, on the other hand, is pretty fearless and had no qualms about any of the houses. Not even this spooky fun house that she and my dad walked through.

Aidan skipped that to play with a neighborhood cat.

Both of them have loads and loads of candy, so I have a feeling that they'll be riding a sugar high for the next few days. Wish me luck. ;)

Bloggers' Quilt Festival Fall 2011

Hello, everyone! Thanks for stopping by today to checkout my submission for the Bloggers' Quilt Festival Fall 2011. Thank you very much to Amy of Amy's Creative Side for organizing this fun event, and thank you to all of her sponsors for donating such generous prizes.

My entry for the Bloggers' Quilt Festival is my Silo quilt, which is one of the latest quilts I've finished. And most exciting to me, it was also chosen as a winner in the Modern Quilt Guild's Project Modern: Challenge 4. The judge was none other than Denyse Schmidt, my personal quilting idol and the mother of Modern Quilting, in my eyes. The challenge for this project was to find your own voice and create a quilt that speaks to who you are as a quiltmaker.

My quilt is an original design of mine and it was inspired by a large metal silo that sits on a farm about 10 miles from my home. I’m sure I've seen that silo hundreds of times before, but one day I saw something new in it as we drove by, so I grabbed my sketchbook and drew out a plan.

I tweaked the original sketch a bit and then grabbed some fabrics and went to work.

For this quilt I used three solid colors of woven cotton: cream, pale blue, and a warm gray. I really liked how the colors worked together, and the combination reminded me of how the silo looks at dusk, when the entire structure seems to glow in the setting sun.

The quilt measures 64” x 67”. It is heavily quilted with horizontal straight lines to repeat the design of the front, as well as the grooves of metal on the silo.

I feel like this quilt is truly a reflection of my voice as a modern quilter. I’m often inspired by everyday places and things that most of us wouldn't even notice, and I’m always excited by the challenge to translate that inspiration into my work.

It was fantastic to be a winner of the Project Modern Challenge, and even more amazing since I also was a winner in the first and second challenges, too. But the most meaningful prize of them all to me is Denyse's words about my quilt. She said

Amazing, right? And completely humbling to me. So for Denyse (and you!), here is the back.

While the design of front of the quilt is very regular and structured, the back was designed entirely improvisationally. I used some leftover sections of the blocks from the front and added some scraps and bits of fabrics, and I pieced them all together with more cream fabric.

Thanks again for stopping by from the Bloggers' Quilt Festival Fall 2011 and for letting me tell you a little about my work. Be sure to check out all of the amazing entries in the festival to be inspired by tons of gorgeous quilts.
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