Monday, December 30, 2013

Modern Mondays

I had an idea today: Modern Mondays.  I'm beginning to really like modern quilts.  I like the randomness and surprise.  Modern quilts are those that have an element of "wow!  I wish I'd thought of that!"  There's something that I've come to expect from modern quilts and, for me, is the defining factor.  I may see a quilt that others define as modern, but it just doesn't quite fit my definition.  

I've been wondering why that's so.  What is that something that I need?  After my own quilt went to QuiltCon and I'd had the opportunity to view the quilts juried into the show, I really had to find a way to answer that question for myself.  Especially since the judges' response to my quilt was rather negative.  Again, I am okay with the fact that I didn't win and I mostly agree with the judges' opinions.  But the one line that said my quilt wasn't what they thought of as modern, had me thinking about the definition of modern even more.  Modern Quilt Guild definition.

I know now.  I'm not an expert (in my mind at least) but I know what I like and I'm metacognitive enough to be able to think about it and put it into words.  So my plan for 2014 is twofold: I will present photos of modern quilts and explain why they are modern; and I will create at least a few modern quilts of my own.  

"Reflections in Gray" fits the definition in some ways: the yellow is a surprise and the use of gray is modern.  However, now I think there is too much of the yellow.  (Less is more.)  The real problem is the fabrics.  I used the grays in my stash, but had I wanted to make the quilt truly modern, I've have used fewer fabrics and all would have been solids.  That's one of the oddities of modern quilts. They are supposed to look random and fresh and out-of-the-box, but in reality they are planned.  Sometimes down to every detail.   When I started out making the quilt, my intention was to make a quilt.  The modern elements happened once I started and I tried to make it more modern as I worked on it. Unfortunately, that's not how it works and it shows in this quilt. 

Lesson learned.  Now let's see if I can apply those lessons to a truly modern quilt and define it for you along the way.  Modern Mondays is my opportunity to focus on, think about and create modern works.  I hope you'll join me in the dialog and share your modern creations.  

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Sunday Quilt Inspiration: WHITE

Winter Wonderland

A girl from Louisiana does not see this often.  In fact, I've seen it only once on a visit to Canada many years ago.  I loved it almost as much as the students on the school trip with me.  Of course we were there only a week, so indulge me, please, if you are already sick of the snow and cold.  

Winter wonderland

Beautiful Winter Wonderland

winter wonderland

More white.
white colums

white pumpkins


.White poms

❖~.~ Cream, White, Ivory ~.~❖

white roses

Heart Shaped Christmas Ideas - MB Desire Collection
And the white wrap-up.

white quilt

Gorgeous White Quilt

lovely old blue and white quilt

I neeeed a white quilt!!!!!

Happy Quilting,

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Curtains and Cottons

Not your usual cottons, but Cotton's family.   Our little Maltese, Cotton, is 10 years old and getting too smart for his britches.   We've been having a problem with the puppies barking at anything that suits their fancy: a leaf, a stray animal (we live in the country so it's a problem), a plant moving in the wind, a knock from a visitor, their reflection in the glass, an imagined sound.  You name it, three Maltese race barking and yapping at it through the French doors.  It's a ruckus and an annoyance that I've decided to do something about.

I figure that if I cover the glass in the French doors, they puppies will have nothing to yap at.  So I set myself to covering the glass.  I purchased curtains and magnetic rods since the doors are metal.  Of course, the curtains didn't fit!  And the rods weren't strong enough to hold them up!  Gerr!  I threw everything aside and dealt with the husband who had just had back surgery.  Let the dogs bark!

Today I pulled those @#$%#@ (okay, maybe not so many symbols) curtains and rods out of the box and dealt with them.  The puppies, you see, have become even more aggressive toward outdoor monsters.  They may think they are protecting dad during his convalesce, but they are aggravating him.  He, in turn, is annoying me.  I could not stand another yapping, yelling, screaming night.  

I just cut the tops down and re-hemmed them so that they were shorter and less weighty.  The rods can hold one curtain apiece but if a fly lands on one, someone has to race the puppies to the French door and save it.  So how is Cotton getting to big?  Oh, he knows that there are monsters on the other side of the curtains and has figured out how to get his head there.  I'll add another set of magnetic rods tomorrow, but for tonight I have to deal with him.  

To make matters worse, he passed the information along to Little and now she's figuring it out.  Maybe they will forget about the outside once they get used to the curtains.  Even better that they can not peek through with new rods holding the bottoms.

Here's hoping that you are having a quieter night.
Happy Sewing,

Friday, December 27, 2013

A New Little Pouch

Some time ago I made a cute little pouch to carry my phone and other small necessities in while at work.  I’ve lost a few phones and small amounts of cash. 

Keeping things safe in hand is necessary, and I’m the worst at setting things down and walking away.  No more, thank you. 

As you can see, my little pouch is much the worse for wear.  I’ve washed it a couple of times but the stains are here to stay.  It’s just time for a new one.  

Since I have a few days off, I figured I’d make another with a little different design—the length is now oriented up and down.  I liked a few things about the first one, so I kept those elements and added a few that I thought would be useful.

I like the three pockets and the metal clip on the back.  I also wanted to add a place for my school ID and wanted to be able to get my phone out without touching the bottom since a touch in just the right place can end the call.

 I really like the fabric and am hoping that the darker colors will hide the grime that I seem to attract.  Do you think it will at least appear clean for a while? 

The phone will fit in either the topmost or middle pocket, as will pens, so I have a few more options.  The smallest pocket is just right for lip balm and a small pill box.  (Gotta have some headache meds when 30+ teenagers are your clients!)  I’m guessing this will get me through till May. What do you think?

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Baby Dolls and Quilts

Know what you can do when you don't have to go to work?  Anything.  Anything at all. Anything you want to do.  Anything, even if it's useless.  That's what I did today.  Anything useless.  I made a couple of baby doll quilts.  For the little granddaughters, of course, but it's not as if they asked for the quilts, and the baby dolls surely didn't ask.  But what the heck....I had an idea.  And, since I don't have to work, I chose to play.

Baby dolls need quilts, too, don't they?  Can't have those babies getting cold.  Especially since they got strollers and beds and bouncy seats for Christmas.  It only makes sense that I make a couple of quilts to add to the hoard.  

Ta da!  Three little quilts: a red, a purple and a pink.  I decided to up the ante and set some rules.  First, I wanted to use leftover scraps and strips.  No cutting into the real stash and absolutely no purchasing.  That could not happen.  I did use some white from the stash but I tried to use up scraps and pieces when possible.  

It worked well, but it didn't make much of a dent in the scraps stash.  In fact, I don't know that it shows at all, but I had fun with the charge, anyway.  The little quilts were easy enough to make and once I made the first one, I decided to make the two other tops and quilt them together.  
That really moved things along and, obviously, I finished them up in no time.  Now they are just waiting for a visit from some little mommies.  That should happen this weekend.  I'm pretty excited to share these little quilties.  

What are you working on during the break?  Big or little projects?  Fun or difficult projects?  Anything unusual?

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas

Here's hoping you had a wonderful Christmas.  We had a quiet, uneventful day.  Our children came for the annual gift-giving last weekend because they all had plans for today.  That meant mass this morning and a visit from Richard's parents after lunch.  The rest of the day was free and quiet, so I even got to sew a little.

But let's talk about Christmas gifts.  Richard is such a sport.  He not only came with me to the Quilt Show in Houston in November, but while there, he picked up my Christmas gift.  I found a sweet little vintage button shop and fell in love with a particular button.  I didn't want to spend quite that much money, however.  Rich was with me and, after I decided to walk away, he returned to get the button I liked the most.  He also picked up a couple more buttons!  

I'm really a very lucky girl and have the best of husbands.    Aren't these beautiful?  

I could not have done better if I'd chosen them myself.  They are just beautiful.  The largest is about three inches across and the others are about one and a half (black) and one inch (gold).  I will use the single one to make a beaded brooch.  The others will go into the stash until I figure out how I want to use them

Rich also gave me two pairs of scissors.    The yellow pair is a new design from Fiskars called Amplify RazorEdge.  They are supposed to be the best and newest.  We'll see.

Finally, he also gave me a bolt of white bleached muslin.  It's my favorite backing fabric, so he knows it will be a hit.  

I gave him a belt, a pair of jogging pants and a watch.  He had asked for both the belt and the watch, so they really weren't a surprise, but surprising him is almost impossible.  He can read me too well.  So instead, I shoot for giving him what he needs but won't buy for himself.  All in all, we had a lovely Christmas.  I would have enjoyed having the children and grandchildren over, but we'll see them all again this weekend.  Besides, knowing that they are safe and happy is enough for any momma.

Merry Christmas!

Pin It Christmas

images of zillions of Christmas Nativity Scenes, Sets and Figurines - this one is pillars of heaven by dept 56

Christmas Nativity

My Mom always chooses a Nativity Christmas Card.

Christmas Nativity Sets | Christmas nativity

Vintage Christmas Nativity card,1903

I love this Christmas Nativity Quilt.  I wish my skills were developed enough to tackle this one.  So beautiful!

Merry Christmas to you and yours 
from Fleur de Lis Quilts and Accessories.