Weekends are what we all look forward to. Ah, the promise of it- all that time to do ‘other stuff’ – besides work! Last week we had a weekend in Brisbane. We had a night out, and of course I took some photos.
Brisbane- August 2016
There’s something about city skylines and cityscapes that I love, and often a theme in my art quilts.
This was Brisbane at night…
Brisbane – August 2016
just as impressive as New York at night- don’t you think?…
Karen Mundt NYC- from the Empire State Building; October 2015
We even had a steam train ride in and around the city. It got me thinking. We live about an hour from Brisbane and even though I visit Brisbane fairly regularly I don’t know it overly well as I mainly just go into the city. There is a lot about it that I haven’t seen so there is always lots to look at and investigate if you put your mind to it.
And I have a couple of photos from the recent Gatton Quilters meeting day. Kaye finished this quilt top that she was working on at our Coolum retreat, using the Grandmother’s Fan block:
This was Cornelia’s blue and green block from last month’s challenge- note the ‘banana hair’ in the centre that she made and dyed that beautiful blue:
and another one from Cornelia- she was catching up!:
I’ve had some fun thinking up a small quilt- 6″ square- for my quilter’s group monthly colour challenge. This month it was all about green and purple. We could create anything using any techniques and materials to the loose theme of flora and fauna, but we could only use the two colours of green and purple. This is my little thistle flower.
Karen -thistle flower
I did it as an exercise in thread painting. I started out with a photo of a thistle that I printed onto some inkjet printable fabric. I also had to choose some threads to use so pulled out all the green and purple threads I had!
I certainly didn’t use all of these, but I did need to have a variety of darks, mediums and lights to choose from. It was then a matter of just starting somewhere, so I started in the middle, primarily with some colour that I knew would be behind, or underneath, other more prominent colours on top. This next photo was just after I started, with dark olive green in the middle and lighter highlights:
That bright green was used in the middle and was later covered up to leave just little specks of it showing through. A close-up:
It took lots of free-motion stitching back and forth to get the coverage. I just wanted the main flower to be stitched and to leave the printed photo as the rest of the background.
Here is a photo of the ‘sinchies’ made by the rest of our talented group:
L-R Bottom row: Jan M, Cornelia, Lyn, Jan K; middle row: Meryl, Helen S, mine, Helen H; Top row: Shirley, Trish, Marilyn
The best part of these challenges is seeing what everyone else comes up with! Happy quilting!
What better way to spend a weekend- sewing and quilting to our heart’s content! This weekend was the annual sewing getaway for the Gatton Quilters group. We go up to Coolum on the lovely Sunshine Coast where we have a large room for everyone to spread out and do their own thing for the whole long weekend. We have our meals cooked for us, there’s no cleaning up or housework or interruptions. Yay!
My sister and I went up together and we had a lovely trip visiting a couple of quilt shops on the way and a great lunch at the organic marketplace at Forest Glen.
I took a few different projects to work on. I caught up on quite a few Splendid Sampler blocks,
and started piecing lots of bright squares together for a children’s charity quilt that I’m making with the group.
There’s plenty of room to spread out…
and big tables to lay out quilts when putting them together or preparing to quilt…
We get to see each other’s projects that in progress…
and some that get finished…
Colleen- started in a curved-piecing workshop
and this one also by Colleen- such great colours together..
Here I am working intently on a block…
and Amanda making great progress on her fresh colourful quilt for someone special….
There’s lots of consulting and advice given…
and we get to check out other’s sewing accessories and books and magazines..
and of course the group photo- I’m second from the left in the back row, and Amanda is in the front row, second from the left.
But, all good things come to an end, so back to work we go. Hope you all have a great week ahead!
I’d like you to meet my giraffe that I’ve named Gorgeous Georgie- cute, isn’t he!
Gorgeous Georgie- Karen Mundt
He is a little art quilt I made in response to a challenge within my local art quilt group. We were all given a piece of fabric that had to be used in whichever way we wanted to make a quilted piece with irregular edges. This is the fabric we were given- a batik in browns and yellows and green:
To begin with, I couldn’t think what to do with it so I pinned it on the wall for a couple of weeks just looking at it and waiting for inspiration. One day, when I walked into my sewing room, it occurred to me that the fabric looked very much like it could be an animal, and as my favourite animal is a giraffe, I thought – that’s it! I decided I would create it by using a fabric collage method. First I had to find a picture of a giraffe that I could use just for the outline and shapes. That took some time, because I wanted one with the head looking directly at me- I didn’t want the whole animal. I found this one on Shutterstock (royalty-free) images:
I photocopied the picture to the size I wanted, then used a plain piece of white cotton to trace the giraffe head and neck- just the main lines and features. My plan was to create the collaged piece first, then cut it out and applique to a final background. I could place it so that the horns on the top of his head protruded from the background, as well as leaves from a tree over to one side, and this would satisfy the criteria for irregular edges.
The fabric had within it different areas of predominant colour, so I cut it apart and divided it up so I had a mainly dark group, mainly lights and a green group. I could add in a tree with leaves that would use the green pieces.
I then added to these fabrics other assorted scraps in the right colour-tones and cut them up into smaller pieces. I started placing all the pieces, taking careful note of where the darker sections were on the picture I used as my guide. It was important to carefully look at every scrap I picked up for its value; darker pieces can be used to indicate curves in his face, along his nose and jaw etc. I have followed the techniques that Susan Carlson teaches on her blog and in books.
Each piece had a dab of glue on the back so it would stay when placed, the edges were left free so other pieces could be placed under and around where needed. Many pieces were added and taken away and moved here and there.The eyes were assembled as little parts on their own before placing down, and building around them.
As shown in the photos, I started at the top of the head and moved down. The long neck had darker pieces placed first with the large ‘spots’ in a lighter value added on top.
Once I was finished with placing all the pieces I added a little more glue to the edges of the pieces to make them secure. I then free-motion quilted all over as well as adding a backing to the horns that would be sticking up past the edge in the final piece. For his little mane, I used the selvedge edge of a piece of black fabric which had been treated with bleach discharge so it had a mix of dark brown and black along its edge. I made the background out of some blue hand-dyed fabric with a brown homespun. The tree was made in a collage fashion with some of the leaves made as separate pieces as they would be attached to the tree but not completely sewn down. They also had to be double-sided as they were sticking out past the edge.
I did more machine-quilting over all of it to secure the various parts down and create the background of the landscape and a little perspective. I probably haven’t got it all completely accurate, but I’m using artistic license here! I added the backing in the pillow-case method after most of the quilting had been done, and then just added the final stitching to secure the layers and finish it off.
I like him- I think he looks cute!
So, what do you think? What would you have made with the piece of batik fabric?
Here are some pictures of the pieces made by the other members in my group:
L- Shirley R-Allison
I really like this one by Trish- very clever I thought:
This block is for the Cherish do.Good.Stitches group quilt that I am contributing to this year. It is an Octagon block, very easy to make using paper foundation, piecing a large triangle unit then joining them together into squares.
I can see that once you have a whole lot of these blocks and assemble them together they would make an excellent colourful ‘scrappy’ quilt. The corner triangles would form a secondary octagon as well.
Speaking of colour, the Gatton Quilters Art group has started a small monthly challenge. We have to produce a 6″ block using whatever methods we like, but only two colours. The colours for our first month were blue and green.
Karen Mundt- blue and green
I had a beautiful piece of blue and green batik fabric that I thought would fit the bill, so decided I would just hand-stitch all over the batik, improvising as I went along.
I echoed some lines that were suggested by the shapes in the colour swirls and played with a few stitch variations. I also used a variety of thread weights to contrast the texture. I then just finished the block with a small facing finish.
Do you remember that old saying about blue and green should never be seen together? Rubbish- I think they look fantastic together!
These are the blocks produced by others in the group. The best part of such challenges is seeing the endless variations that can be produced by people expanding their imagination and having a play.
L-R Row 1: Shirley, Marilyn, Helen H; Row 2: mine, Lyn, Trish; Row 3: Helen S, Jan K, Meryl
Helen H and Trish
Lyn and Jan K
Looking forward to seeing what next month’s blocks using green and purple will look like!
I went to a quilting workshop recently. We all had to take our sewing machines, our irons and ironing boards, a cutting board…
a random pick of fabrics, including old blocks left from previous projects and sewing tools, but no rulers.
The day was spent playing with fabric, making free-form cuts in fabric and adding them to any other bits of fabric that your hand might fall on.
I decided to use a lighter colour scheme than I usually work with- some creams, whites, browns and muted colours. These blocks I’m showing here haven’t been trimmed yet.
I also took some old blocks left from a previous project and split them up, then added some slivers of hand-dyed colour.
Our tutor, Peggy Phelps, started us off with some ideas of blocks to start with using lots of techniques such as strip-piecing, wonky flying geese, chequerboard units and uneven log cabin blocks.
A few workshop participants took a little time to get used to ‘not being neat’ but soon got into the swing of it!
And Peggy showed us some of her quilts where she has used lots of lovely bright colour!
I find that any workshop you can do is worth spending the time to do it- there’s always something you pick up along the way- whether it be a new technique or even some inspiration to try something different of your own.
The month of May is usually the month of the Biggest Morning Tea- a fund raiser for the Cancer Council in Australia. At our monthly get together for Gatton Quilters, we set a theme for our May meeting to somehow echo the time-honoured tradition of morning tea. This May, the theme was tablecloths, so members were invited to bring along one of their tablecloths. It could be the oldest cloth they owned, or the most well-used, the ugliest cloth or the one with beautiful hand-stitched embroidery. While I didn’t take this one along on the day, I thought I would show you here a tablecloth that was my Mum’s.
She made this back in the day when Hobbytex was all the rage. Do you remember the range of pens that could ‘paint’ on any fabric and you would colour in a pre-printed design? I think they are actually still available. Mum made quite a few things at the time, and us kids were always wanting to have a turn. Looking back at them now, I have a bit of a giggle at their ‘naive’ charm!
There were lots of lovely tablecloths brought in by the Gatton Quilters’ members- here’s a selection:
The quilters have also been busy working on quilts to donate to charitable organisations, from mainly donated fabric. Dulcie showed this half-square triangle block quilttop that she has made in blues and creams:
The whole club is pitching in to make these quilts to give to those in the community that may need a little help.
Hope you are having a good week!
I’ve been very busy doing some longarm quilting for others- so I don’t have a lot of my own sewing that’s new to show you this week! My supervisor, Dublin, lounges on the chair in my sewing room keeping an eye on me and occasionally gives me his opinion, although I don’t know where he thinks he gets his knowledge of quilting from…..
Last week at Gatton Quilters, we had a few people showing what they had completed over the Christmas break. Jan Knight showed us her little collection of ‘Gorgeous Girlz’ which she made over the course of last year as a monthly program with the Thread Studio. Lots of lovely little bits and pieces were sent each month, which Jan used to create these most lovely brooches:
Meryl has finished her lovely red-work quilt top: (apologies for the unclear photo)
.. and this is Marilyn’s butterfly runner:
In 2015, we were lucky to have a workshop delivered by Robyn Christoffel in thread painting, embellishing and 3D texture. This is Kaye’s rainforest:
In the meantime, I’ll get back to quilting. A little sneak peek of Lyn’s quilt-:
My local quilt group, Gatton Quilters, is going to work on some quilts to donate for charity this year. It’s nice to be able to make something for others that will make both the recipient feel good as well as the giver. We will choose a worthwhile group to receive the quilts, perhaps someone who has battled adversity or loss in some way. The quilts will be made either in group sewing days or by individual contributions.
I have also joined an online group to make quilts for charity. The charity bee is called do.Good Stitches and there are a number of circles of people making quilts. My circle is the Cherish group made up of people in Australia. The original do. Good Stitches bee was devised by Rachel of Stitched in Color and most of the other groups are in her home country, USA. These blocks are the first ones I’ve made for the year.
This first month’s direction was to make a ‘wonky’ star block – the star is to be white and the rest of the block either greens/blues or pinks & purples. So, I have made these two 12 1/2″ blocks and sent them off to our group organiser based in South Australia who will put them all together. A different person is designated to perform the role of assembling the quilt each month. I’m just one of the block makers! On to the next month!
I love Christmas, I love Christmas trees and I love families coming together at Christmas. There’s a real festive spirit when all the shops have Christmas trees and decorations. So, when I was away recently, the last leg of our trip was a stop in Hawaii and we did a spot of shopping- well, more looking than actual shopping! But, I couldn’t resist taking some photos of the Christmas trees that were all through Macy’s department store.
They didn’t just have trees trimmed with the same colour scheme on all the store levels as normally happens here, but each tree I saw in this one store was different!
They were all decorated so beautifully.
So cute and sparkly and colourful!
You can’t have Christmas without a Christmas party or year-end break-up, and Gatton Quilters was no exception. In addition to the gathering together we also bring along any ‘Show and Tell’ that may have been finished since last we met.
Meryl- White Challenge square
Lyn- Orange Challenge square
Jan M- Black colour challenge square
Marilyn- Red colour challenge block
Meryl- workshop with Robyn Christoffel
More of Meryl’s work, originating from the Robyn Christoffel workshop
We have lots of talented and creative people in our Quilting Group!
Happy Christmas to everyone