Before making a tote bag for a quilt, I thought practicing would be a good idea.
We all have particular mental blocks and challenges and I can easily get myself confused when it comes to sewing things properly. I know I could easily sew something inside out with twisted handles, or somehow have the handles stuck inside the body of the bag. And once confused it can be hard to get back on track.
Since this was to be for the use of younger people, I searched my stash for something with kid appeal that wasn’t too girly or babyish and that would not show every mark. This fabric seemed to fit the bill and also the critters aren’t directional.
This bag has just one side seam, which means a directional fabric would actually have been okay. The side seam in fact makes this a nice bag for books, it’s that bit easier to slide them in and out. And the striped lining is cool.
All in all I’m quite pleased with this, even the handles are lined with batting and quilted.
It’s functional so in my book although the fabric is traditional, it’s modern because of the emphasis on “get ‘er done!” and “make something useful!”
Jane Dunnewold is the creative force behind this first ever exploration of how quilters are using digitally printed fabrics from print on demand companies such as Spoonflower. Of course Spoonflower is the leading company in this groundbreaking field, and they are co-sponsoring the exhibition. It will premiere at the 2015 International Quilt Market and Festival in Houston this fall.
Details of size, etc. are all on the pdf. Worth calling out:
Quilts must be made from at least 50% digitally printed fabric. It is not a requirement that fabric be designed by the quiltmaker, but the designer must be credited.
The other pertinent rule is no online/social media sharing of work in progress until acceptance and rejection notices have been delivered.
Submissions open March 1 to April 5.
Spoonflower turns orders around fast so even if there’s nothing lurking in your stash of too beautiful to cut, you’ve got time to design and order your own fabric — trust me on this, it’s not hard — or just go shopping for other designers’ fabrics.
Since this is for a quilt show (as opposed to bed quilts) you don’t have to confine yourself to cotton. Spoonflower can print designs onto silk, jersey and now even Minky (think pushing the envelope with soft fuzzy baby blankets in non traditional colours and designs). Of course quilts have to be quilted and quilting on Minky might be a bit challenging, but interesting.
The other pen is a regular ballpoint I enjoy writing with because the ink is the same luscious turquoise as the pen barrel, and the same colour as the Frixion ink.
Marks on fabric or paper made by the Frixion can be erased with heat, either by pressing or using the eraser on the end of the pen (which apparently works because of the heat it generates when you rub it on paper).
As you can see, I was making binding and thought I was using the Frixion pen to draw the stitching lines.
Sewing the wrong side to the right side instead of right sides together
Not having locked my beloved turquoise ballpoint away before starting to sew
Oh well, at least it’s binding so I can make sure the ballpoint goes on the inside. I have pinned a scrap of bright fabric by the line so I can be certain of doing that.
By the way, although Frixion pens are handy things to have around, the lines can reappear if the fabric is exposed to freezing temperatures, although they fade once the fabric is at normal temperature.
For the holiday meeting in December the Victoria Modern Quilt Guild had a mug rug swap.
This is the rug I received fro “Dragon Lady” Laura (it’s the subject of her art not a reference to personality!). Laura doesn’t blog but had enclosed a handwritten note which I thought I’d memorialize here, as a way of easing myself back into blogging without going crazy right off the bat.
Dear fellow Modern Quilt Guild Member
I’ve noticed that the blogs of modern quilters include information about fabric choice and construction considerations. So here goes (in my low tech way 🙂 )
Spool fabric was found on a field trip to the Sunshine Coast. I’m thinking this one was from Carola’s. Right away I knew I wanted to piece improvisationally and add some white to complement the mug. So that I did. Top is quilted with Wonderfil cotton Tutti TU 03, bottom is Aurifil 50 wt 3320.
Hope you enjoy the mug rug with its spools and the heart fabric showing quilting love.
Have an amazing, creative 2015.
Ironically it was Laura who saved my bacon as we were putting our efforts out, because I had completely missed the point that the mugs and rugs were supposed to be wrapped, and Laura came to my rescue with a spare plastic bag.
What was my mug rug like, you ask? Well, erm, I had the best of intentions of taking pix, but with one thing and the other that didn’t happen. However, I took two somewhat stripey fabrics and a triangle ruler which I’ve had for years but never actually used, and put together a hexagon. The mug I chose was white with a real knitted cable knit sweater to keep the contents warm for longer so hopefully the recipient enjoys it!
Believe it or not I had my test block from yesterday out and very carefully (as I thought) followed it. But something got lost in translation. Can you spot the non deliberate error?
Yep, I had the red triangle and square sewn together wrong.
There might be all kinds of secondary patterns with these blocks, although not something I’m about to start exploring at this juncture. However knowing me I can bet even if I set out to make a gazillion of either block it would probably spawn a number of deviant blocks despite my best efforts. Could be interesting though if done in three fabrics consistently. You would end up with a scrap effect without actually using scraps (which is usually what I’m doing!)
Decided to go with the repeated diamond shapes in the background fabric.
What do you think?
Not wanting to use up all the Kona Cottons I went with the palette I’ve chosen for the next workshop I’m taking, which is Mile-a-Minute, coming up soon, as the supply list says it’s okay to bring orphan blocks. I’m curious to see how similar the method is to building slabs, which I’m still doing.
I subscribed to Lesley Riley’s 52 pick-up, which is a year of weekly creativity prompts to encourage more regular art and creativity. Feeling accountable to a supportive group of other people is helping me to form better habits.
And every day I succeed in spending time creating, I get a star!
In real life the stars look better than they do in the photo, which often happens with glitter and metallics. They’re foiled, a technique I’ve had a lot of fun with for years. You can get the foils and special glue from Jones Tones.
But, breaking news! and not good, although definitely a first world problem, Dharma Trading, the go-to source for all things fibre arty, posted that the foil is being discontinued and they (Dharma) are looking for a replacement. In the month since they posted, the more conventional colours have been snapped up but they still have purple, green and blue.
I fused the square fabric onto the Disco Dots to have a little more body to stand up to the writing and foiling and free motion quilted along the lines.
We are working on our banner and the challenge is for each member to create a six-inch block using the fabrics we’ve been given.
These are arranged from light to dark. I thought had them organized correctly but decided to take a black and white photocopy to double-check. I was close but had the cactus as the third lightest but in fact it’s really the second lightest. At first I had the cardinal as darker than the glacier and then changed my mind.
As all we have to produce is one block each, there will be lots of left over fabric. Hmmm, we may have to have another challenge to do something with those.
The block I’m thinking about making is a riff on the fish block I’m using for Pirate Girl’s quilt, which is itself a riff on an Ohio Star block. But this block is twisted and will be made in three colours rather than just two.
Of course as I sit here writing this several other twists and possibilities spring to mind. I have worked out to make the edges first and audition the centre once the edges are done. Production would have started this morning but rotary cutters and small kids are not a good combination …