Friday, July 28, 2006

New, Not-So-Secret Identity

New Hot Project

I challenged my friend Joan to make a quilt for an upcoming contest, so we are both working away on these new hot projects. The design will be a secret, though, until we're both done. I will, however, give you a sneak peak into some of the fabrics I may be using:

I thought this picture was so pretty. I wish I could have my fabric out and spread around all the time! Well, maybe not.

Amy Butler Fabric

This is the first thing I bought after the fabric buying hiatus!

It is a heavyweight cotton Amy Butler fabric from Japan. I whipped up a bunch of her small Swing bags for my family when they were visiting. They were so easy, that I think I'll make one from this fabric. The lining will be the Hoffman batik next to it.

Ginger Takes A Nap

When I'm sewing Ginger likes to come in for a little nap. Obviously, her favorite place is whatever pile of fabric happens to be around. Even though she's a long-haired cat she doesn't shed much. Thankfully!

On a project note, this is the expanding pile for the agapanthus quilt. Since our fabric shopping hiatus is over, I picked up a few new greens (lower left hand corner).

Right now I'm working on another project with a fast-approaching deadline, but I'll be back to this quilt SOON!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Peaceful Moments

I have a lot of pictures and new projects to post, and will do so later tonight. But in the meantime, here is a thought I want to share.

While I was working on a new quilt yesterday, I realized that there were two specific moments during that day where I was completely at peace. The first was with Bruce and Cody, first thing in the morning, while we were floating in the water at the beach. The second as I was patiently pinning a long curved seam I was getting ready to sew.

Two very simple pleasures, at least for me.

What brings you peace?

Monday, July 10, 2006

Janome Article and the Beauty of Blogs

A short time ago I received an email from Brian Boys who writes PR articles for Janome. Turns out Brian did a search on Janome 1600's and my blog popped up at the top of the list! He read my post in which I raved about my new machine and asked if he could interview me for an article.

Well, the article is out on the Janome website. You can see it HERE. Short, but sweet!

BTW, article or no article, I think I'm a Janome convert for GOOD!

France Patchwork Article

Good news! The article on Hawaiian Quilting that I wrote for the French National Quilt Guild's magazine, France Patchwork, has been printed! There is a two-page spread in the magazine - you can order a copy or see about a subscription at France Patchwork.

It is a lovely magazine. I really enjoy the international ones, like this one (of course!) and those from New Zealand and Australia. It is full of inspiring photos and patterns, too. The only drawback is that it is printed in French. I knew I should have taken French in High School!

Veronique, my contact at the magazine, was lovely and very helpful. All writing assignments should be this easy! Thanks, Veronique and France Patchwork magazine!

Sunday, July 09, 2006

A Good Start

I reorganized my sewing space so I can work more efficiently on my new quilt. This arrangement works out pretty well even if it is a bit claustrophobic. At least I have the sliding glass door to look out of. It would be pretty nuts without some sort of window.

Here are the greens I've chosen:

And the browns for the dirt:

The first few pieces sew together!



Isn't it great when the animals calm down and everyone is getting along. Very sweet! Too bad they're not like this all of the time. But then, I guess it wouldn't be quite as fun.

Jeff & Debbie's New House

Bruce has been helping his brother, Jeff, build his new house in Kula. Here is a view of the back of the house (sorry for the tilt - the house is actually level!).

This is the view from inside the living room. The entire back of the house opens up to a view of the infinity pool and beyond. Amazing.

This is the master bedroom with the pool waterfall trickling outside. More pictures soon!

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

New Project

I finally started the agapanthus "lily of the nile" quilt! I'm thankful I didn't make it any larger, or I would have had no place to put it up and work on it! It's sitting on a 6' counter section in the laundry room/studio. I'm coloring in the leaves so I can easily tell the green from the background as I make the pattern pieces. I'm going to be piecing this using Ruth McDowell's technique.

I've enjoyed using my Primacolor pencils, which I've had for a LONG TIME. I've especially enjoyed coloring! In fact, I need to color more often.

Here it is with the "dirt" colored in. "Where are the blossoms," you ask? Well, that's one part of this project that has created huge anxiety for me. But, after some thinking and some good advice from my friend, Joan, I'm going to applique the blossoms so I get a better dimensional effect.

Here's a closeup of the center. I'm going to cut a strip of each of my green fabrics and put them up on my design wall to see if I have enough value difference. I may need to fill in with light/lights and darks. I plan to use mostly bright green commercial tone-one-tone fabrics, but we'll see what happens. Stay tuned!

New Thread

Got my order from Web of Thread, and picked up a few spools during a short stop at Sew Special Too here on Maui. Don't you just love new thread? It's almost as good as new fabric! You know from a previous post that a group of eight of us ladies have been on a fabric purchasing hiatus since January and no one has cracked! Our "diet" is up on July 21st. We're planning a purchasing party on Sunday, July 30th. Wooo-hoo!

Fun with Cody

Say "Cheese!"

He enjoys the view, too!

First kayak ride!

He's definitely a beach dog.

He's not spoiled, is he?

Judge's Comments

My turtle quilt "Honu" just came back from the NQA show. Thanks to my net friend, Teri, I got to see the fabulous quilts that were in my category. WOW!

I got good judges comments:

  • Fabric choices used to create turtle are wonderful
  • Machine applique stitches should be closer together (what?)
  • Background quilting is appropriate water theme
  • Good binding technique (yeah!)
  • Successful portrayal of turtle.
Now, don't get me wrong, I'm very happy with the comments, especially the binding one, because that's an area I've been working on. The one that bugs me is the "machine applique stitches should be closer together." You may have read my previous posts about machine applique and how I don't like the smooth, mechanical satin stitch look, especially for my quilts. At least my stitch was consistent. You can judge for yourself by looking at the closeups in my March Archives. SO, I am taking this with a grain of salt. After all, one of my other quilts, "Night Light," uses the same technique and it won 1st place in the wall hanging division at this show last year.