Thursday, August 23, 2012

Liberated Serendipity

YAY - my finished quilt!  

Approximate size: 48" by 50"
I have entered it into my local guild's annual quilt show - Rising Star Quilt Guild in Lexington, MA - set for the weekend of October 13 and 14, 2012.  Thanks to the organizers of this round robin for the challenge, to Nancy S in joining me on this creative diversion, and thanks to everyone else for their encouragement!

I had so much fun playing with free motion quilting on the larger quilt, that I used similar techniques on this mini-quilt.  I will be donating it to the Guild to sell as part of their Mini-Quilt auction.  I laid the mini-quilt on the back of the larger quilt to get more contrast in the photo.  The mini-quilt is 12" square.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Plauderecke: Quiltausstellung Höchstädt 2012 Teil 2

Plauderecke: Quiltausstellung Höchstädt 2012 Teil 2
I especially appreciate the beautifully saturated colors of these quilts. And, perhaps even more, the very wide variety of styles of design. A lovely vicarious tour for me. Thank you.
Kay in NJ

Friday, July 20, 2012

Finally done!

Tea With the Queen
When Pattilou asked us to consider "color" in Step 3, I was stumped.  Already had quite a bit of color.  Black and white didn't seem right.  So I went to the stash and came up with a funny little cup fabric I'd picked up somewhere.  It had the orange and purple, but also dashes of other colors. I'm still not wild about that green, but keep telling myself that a bit of tension color-wise is not a bad thing.

Then came Step 4, and Jan's advice to look for "the gift of Serendipity".  It happened to be the weekend of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and I was thinking that those cups wanted to be tea cups, and how there seemed to be some crown-ish shapes in the center. I've been in a London state of mind, since a good friend has been living there for 18 months and I had the chance to visit in December.  And with the Olympics on the horizon...

Anyway, what do you think I found in my embellishment box that day?  A little charm with a picture of Big Ben on it!  Serendipity for sure. Did you know they've renamed it's tower after the queen?  It's "Elizabeth Tower" now.  So my little quilt has a story!

Can I show you one more thing?  I saw this on someone else's blog and this is the first time I've tried it. I cut two squares that I folded in half and stitched into the top corners on the back along with the binding. Now, a dowel will fit in there for hanging (mine hasn't been cut to length yet in the picture).  I liked that.  Easy peasy for a small piece.

Thanks to the hosts for their inspiration.  And to everyone else here, too.  I love seeing how your pieces have come together!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

At the flimsy stage

A bit slow in getting to this point, but nonetheless a flimsy has emerged.  

This is what it looked like after adding colour.  As the piece had a fair amount of colour already I added the white with black and white circles, and trying to make it a bit bigger and less square, added the two yellow strips.

Next, Serendipity.. hmmm...  using the floor to see this layout, and I think it will work, two different purple pieces, the 4.5" green made squares and the 3.5" mauve strips interspersed  with some on the yellow and turquoise bits.  A liked it more at this point before putting the bits together.

And the final flimsy.  I think it will (it had better!) improve with quilting!  I wanted to make it as big as possible without spending any more time on it (a mistake!).  I have loved the process, thank-you.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Home sweet home....

"Home sweet's complicated!" is the name of my Round Robin 2 quilt.
The leftover teal and black half square triangles at the top right were created for a Frieda Khalo quilt I made for a friend last Fall. I enjoyed the process of making fabric by randomly grabbing scraps from my overflowing tub! Slashing and inserting strips brought a whole new dynamic to the piece! Color is never a stretch for me..I'm downright gaudy at times, but color excites's my "thing"! I chose grey Kona to surround my houselike has a calming effect. But now nothing can be too calm for my taste so I got busy with colored threads, both my Aurifil for the triangles at the rooftop and vivid pearl cottons for the random stitching at the top. The vintage colored buttons and the colorful stitching help to balance the riot going on inside that house!

                         I don't know anyone who has a perfectly calm house and 
      Life is an adventure with ups and downs, bright days and dark days, but  
                                            home grounds us through it all!

                        And that's me...loving my imperfect home and life in spite of
                                                      its inevitable complications!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

liberated round robin 2 latecomer

HI Lib Friends,
I have been working on the RR2 quilt slowly but surely. This is what it looked like when I took it with me to Wisconsin last week and began quilting it. I am now doing handstitching with embroidery floss. Tomorrow I head to Cedarburg, WI to visit the quilt museum there on Thursday for a cheddar quilt exhibit, so it will go back to WI with me!! I decided to use solid grey fabric to surround my houselike creation, which I believe is definitely the influence of the modern quilt guild I have belonged to for the past couple of years!
I have free-motioned words and appliqued it as well...I think our final reveal is this weekend, so I am trying to complete it by then. As usual I am enjoying the journey..I love creative meandering!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Serendipitously finished

I had been wanting to make something with words a la Tonya Ricucci, so I decided the Serendipity direction meant I should do just that.  The phrase "What could happen?" is sort of a family motto and/or running joke for my family and it seemed to go with the whole liberated challenge.  I made the words then didn't like the way it was going together with the rest of it.  So I took off the sawtooth border and moved it to the top and added the lime green swoosh at the bottom to balance it out.  Then I added the green stripe border and machine quilted it.  The quilting is far from perfect, but I still love it!
It is 24 x 18 1/2 inches.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Serendipity - Hmmmm?

What pulls it all together and makes it finished?  I thinkg with all the mixture of colors and techniques, both of mine needed a little grounding.  The blue was a great starter and I like how they have finished.  The squarer quilt is 18 x 18.5 and the rectangle is 18 x 22.5.  I have to finish sewing the binding on the larger one and completely sew down the binding on the squarer one.  With trips coming up, these will go along to be finished when it is just too hot to sit outside and I have finished napping.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Serendipity in progress

I've had these blocks on my wall for over a week now, waiting to take a good picture.  Wish I had better light in my livingroom!
Anyway, I've made progress toward finishing the quilt top.  I need to trim these blocks and determine how many more I need to make, then sew them together.  I won't make the deadline for Finishing the quilt, but I will finish it.  I like it!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Step 4 is complete!

I loved the idea of serendipity as the 4th step in this round robbin. to capture serendipity in this crazy little quilt top.  Then it came to me - the wonky trees I had previously made and were unable to incorporate in the design suddenly seemed to work.  How serendipitious is that?  One of the trees had an owl in the trunk, so I added a few more of the owls to the upper left corner.  Oh, and I changed the red pickup sticks to orange and added another purple. 

So here is my finished top in my garden:

It's about 26" square without the binding, which I think will be quite narrow.  I haven't come up with a name for it yet.  Let me know if a fitting name comes to your mind - I'm open to suggestions!  Otherwise it may be named after my youngest grandson's favorite expression "it's crazy everywhere". 

Thanks for the opportunity to participate in this wonderful round robbin.  I have really enjoyed watching everyone's work grow and change.  I'll post a photo when I finish this little quilt.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Olympic Gold For Wales x

Serendipity in my case was used as thus....

Seren  - Welsh for Star
Meaning - taken for the Oxford Theasaurus, I used alternative words to create the meaning for me, Luck, fluke or accident.
Lucky Dip - This is a time honoured traditional game used in Village Fete's and Fayre's throughout the UK during summer time, pay a penny or two, dip your hand in whatever we are using as a medium to hold either little items or raffle tickets.
Ity? - A word to add to the end to create the finished meaning, that follows Dip! ;-)

A crumble mess of Dresden plate parts ready at the off...

 The Dresden plate template itself, just  checking pre-race entrants for Liberation and Random-ness, all appears good at the start line, no drug testing necessary, these are clearly full of some colour 

 Not a single plate template in sight! The final furlong has shown the clearest entrant so far, heads above the rest, keeping in tradition with the Queens Jubilee ready with a China Cup of Tea....

 The back of the pack of leaders, bringing up the rear with a thick and sturdy batting 9oz, 

 Oh My Goodness, they didn't anticipate this one to push through the ranks, a near new winner has appeared, do we have a new winner on our hands?

From out of no-where comes the late entry... up the Final Furlong.... wobbly and a little battered around the edges.... not certain where the end is, but knowing its not too far away, and pleased with the race progress thus far, 

Stay here to see the final winner, the entrant on the podium is.......................................................................

 Seren's Lucky Dip'ity...

 Signature and Name plate

 Final item, with the gentle old lady I made her with... one of my trusted Elna 68's

The edges aren't picture perfect, infact they are very tardy, but what you all have to bear in mind is... I have never done this before, ever, this is my first time at creating a mini-quilt and indeed any type of quilt.   I took the challenge on to prove something to myself... despite my total lack of knowledge in this area, and being very out of my comfort zone, I did it.

from Zero to Hero, as we say, it was a long distance race for me, only a race against old mother time, but one nonetheless.  I am over the moon with the final item too. Yes some of the edge sewing hasn't quite gone into the ditch on the other side, but that is the beauty of this item, nothing is perfect, maybe with the exception of the name plate. Even the concept wasn't perfect, I have several blocks on the go for this Round Robin Event. If I had only one, I don't think I would have finished it. By having so many I was able to pick and chose as I went along which one would be shown on each stage, by having so many, I also took some of the pressure off. By having so many I managed to finish the item with slightly less colour than I had imagined, but love the colours that are in the block. All the rainbow colours are here, muted and some very small, but they are there, so in my mind, this block reaches out to all the conditions applied to it and is brilliant for any room.

Thank you Liberated Quilters of Yahoo fame for allowing me in, and letting me loose on the project x

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

70 West 100 North

My Liberated Round Robin piece is now complete.

For now it hangs above the fireplace.  My living room needs a little brightening for the summer months and it will stay there until I can get a quilt completed for the big wall where the stairs are.

Reporting on the serendipity of this quilt which would be to say that
Serendipity is the gift of finding valuable or agreeable things. 

I found some new skills while working on this quilt.  I paid attention to some posting on the Liberated Quilting Yahoo Group about invisible thread and decided I'd try my hand at using some.  I had some missteps and tension things to work out, but I'm sure I'll use this kind of thread again.  I also machine stitched the binding using the invisible thread and I liked how it works for that.  I have a hard time with hand stitching, so this could be a blessing for me!  It doesn't show up as much as using cotton thread for that finishing step.  The finished quilt measures 42 x 36 inches.

I also used some quilting ideas I'd not tried before:
I did a pebble stitch and some lines and on the dark blue small border I did a Greek motif to practice square corners.

  Serendipity happens each time I try something new!  I am glad it is completed though!  Now off to some other quilting project...

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

True Serendipity

Webster's defines serendipity as "The occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way: "a fortunate stroke of serendipity."

Just call me the finder of serendipity.  When I finished the last round of this RR, I looked at my two pieces and really didn't have any idea where I'd go next.  I didn't even like them all that much. But I'm not one to give up, so I just set them aside and waited for something to strike my fancy.  Then the "directions" came out for the next step - "Serendipity."  Huh?  I had no idea what that meant as far as quilting went - until yesterday.

I was pretty tired after doing some water aerobics, and decided to quit sewing for a bit and take a nap. As I was cleaning up and putting some things aside, I had to pick up a stack of little wonky stars that I'd made several months ago as leaders and enders.  Then about 15 minutes later, just as I was dropping off to sleep, it hit me.  "Use those stars!"  I'd been wondering what I'd do with them, and I realized I could use a bunch of them on these liberated pieces. I put them on the sides only - I think I'll start going rectangular on these instead of square.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Mary's Librr2 - Post Updated

We're heading for vacation in the USA for 5 weeks so I've been hustling right along to complete my project before we leave June1. It is finished except for hand-stitching the binding on the back side and adding a label.

But folks, I can't begin to say that I like this quilt -- such a silly design starting with the postcards that I rejected once and tossed in the scrap pile. I don't like them any better in their new home on this quilt.

Then, just to be doing, I used circular stencils (which I've had for years and never used) to cut my crumb fabric into a gazillion dots with no thought to what I might do with them. They are definitely weird!

I do like my crumb borders. I actually cut the outer one while squaring up a string-pieced project -- a bit of Serendipity. And I like the FMQ vines in the turquoise Added Color border And there is a bit more Serendipity in using the piece as an opportunity to practice meander stitching and other FMQ on something I wasn't stressing about messing up!! I suppose I'll hang this one in my sewing area -- at least until I can make something to replace it!

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Round Four

Wasn't to sure what that meant so I have been thinking about it and looking at my quilt so far. I liked what I had but still thought it needed something. I had these houses that I had just made recently for another project. first I tried them as a border. didn't like them so then just laid them on top. Much better so I started slashing and inserting again. I really like it so this is what I am doing for serendipity. I know this is supposed to be the final step but I like big quilts so I am going to keep going. It is 36x31 right now and I copied off the directions for liberated quilt #1 and I am going forward with those directions. Wish me luck. This was a lot of fun and I would do it again.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

In Search Of Serendipity

My wonky stars were seeming a little claustrophobic after the last round of color.  The pink seemed too much.  I also had two more stars to work with.  So, as much as I hate to rip.......I had to back off some.  I added the other two stars to balance out the center design.  I didn't have enough pink to completely encase the larger design, and I didn't think I wanted to anyway.  So I decided to cut some more of the yellow into that bright pink border.

  I was feeling pretty good about it now, but the stars are so subtle. I wan't to do one last thing to help them stand out against the bright colors, so I quilted around them.  I think you can see it, they almost puff out in person.  Here's another picture of one of them.

Now all it needs is the binding.  I'm thinking no more pink.  Do I do yellow...or come back with a light blue or white with blue print?  What do you all think?

Friday, May 18, 2012

Liberated Round Robin 2 --- Step 4

Good Morning --- This is Jan with Step 4 or the Final Step for LibRR2.

Everyone has made some creative quilt segments and it  has  been fun seeing how each person interrupted the steps and made them their own.

We have slashed, cut, created unruly fabric, re-purposed crumbs and spiced it up with color.  Now it’s time to put it all together into a completed quilt.   For this step I’m thinking  of a word


Serendipity is the gift of finding valuable or agreeable things.

Put your quilt top or quilt top  pieces on the wall, step back.  Start arranging your pieces into a look that makes you feel good.  Maybe take a photo of your quilt top or your various quilt top options.  What does it need to make it “pop”?

Should you have a border?  Solid or maybe Sawtooth?
Does it need more accent color or pattern?
Maybe some applique or embellishments?

What is your top missing? Or what does it need to be complete?  How does it make you feel?

You be the judge.

Use the gift of Serendipity to complete your quilt and most importantly have fun.  

For your final posting---Create an artist statement about your quilt
                                        Post with photos
                                                      and size of your completed LibRR2 quilt.   

My Final Posting for LibRR2 --- Since I knew where the final Step 4 was going to take us I decided to use Serendipity and complete my AAQI quilt.

After placing my mini quilt on the wall, taking a few photos, walking away and coming back just to look at the quilt I decided the quilt needed some "bling".  So I added a few square purple beads.  I continued my thought that the quilt looked like it was exploding and added the beads to accent that feeling.  I then completed the quilt with hand quilting. 
I'm calling my quilt Celebrate.  The liberated log cabin seems to be exploding with excitement.  I found it interesting that during the time frame this quilt was created, the Federal Government pledged to spend more money for Alzheimer's Research.  Since day one this mini LibRR2 quilt was earmarked to become an AAQI quilt, it seems the quilt is celebrating the exciting news to help find a cure for this devastation disease.
The quilt measures 9 x 8 inches

I look forward to seeing every ones completed LibRR2 quilt.  Have fun with your Serendipity!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Finally Finished

Well, it's better late than never.  Here's "Reflecting Pool", my Liberated Round Robin #1 project.


Adding color

I shouldn't be intimidated by this project but I am.  It took me three weeks to get up the courage to try this next step.  Sheesh!  I'm pleased to say that I'm happy with the results!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Catching up

I made some crumb blocks and then didn't know what to do with them.  Played around some more, then added some lime green bits.  Tried a couple of other things.

Then I decided to make a wonky sawtooth border for the top.  Pretty happy with it.  Eager to see what the next step is!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Round 3 done at last!

I decided to go with black and white, was feeling like I already had plenty of color. I had a piece of unused black and white strata, cut on 45 degree angle and added after I added a mostly black border to break the color from last round. Hope next round calls for color now I think it has to much black and white ;-)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Adding color...and I found an old UFO to use

As I was going through my drawers in my sewing room today, I discovered this:

I had started it last year for a challenge, and put it away while I got distracted with dozens of other projects.   It uses pretty much the same process as the one we're doing for this project, so I decided that I'd just do two of them now.

This step is to add color.  As you look at this piece, you can see lots of yellow.  I had a nice canary yellow solid in my stash, and added borders to this piece. I think they brought everything together quite nicely. : )

The piece below is the one I started for this current project - it began with the pansy block.   I wanted something bright and cheery, and was torn between red and green. My red wasn't cheery enough - so I went with the green:

Saturday, May 12, 2012

LRR3!!! I did it, I did it! I blinking did it!

Ah, Ladies, it took me some time, it took me some more grey hair (I don't actually have any but it sounds good), it took me some more wrinkles, and it took me ages! BUT I got there eventually....

You see the problem was, with the detail... isn't it always, we had to 'inject colour' - I already had so very much colour that my Blocks can't be removed from their box unless all viewing are wearing a welding mask and are behind a radio active shield... So you see my dilemma was huge :-(

I wrangled, and pulled, and tossed and turned, blew hot steam out of my ears and blue smoke from my nose, yet still couldn't find a way to complete this leg of the tour...

Until my beautiful partner (He who shall not be named), unwittingly pointed to my rather cluttered (and newly elongated) sewing table with a disgusted nose, which read - look at that mess, she needs to clear it up. I did and lo and behold, a fabric brilliant for this leg fell out from under the others. Black with multicoloured flowers, little flowers so from a distance it looks like a grey. Perfect I thought, I can frame, cut, slice, pin and poke with this and all will be good and calm in the Liberated Robin that is round and comes to visit us once a month....

Having avoided the blocks since the post detailing what we were to do came through, I got them out, pawed them, stroked them, wondered and pieced (mentally) and then came the hack and slice....

Which then prompted the sew up and seam...

Am I pleased with the results? Oh well, yes I am, very much so, and sew I should be... As should our own dear Queen... 'You'll see!'

There you are!!!! two blocks, I couldn't just couldn't do anything with my other two yet... thats a time will see one... But, I love the tea cup I did!!!! lol Can't have anything British without a brew can we?