Quilters Lead Pieceful Lives.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Happy Hedgehogs

While looking for fabrics for the "Mama Elephant" quilt , we saw this cute and colorful hedgehog fabric and just had to buy it!  And who doesn't like smiling hedgehogs!!!!!

Luckily, the next quilt in the queue was a baby quilt (for our friend Linda's new grandson Aiden), which was to include royal blue and white.  So I quickly sketched out a simple nine-patch on the spot, we found the blue and white, a matching multi-colored stripe, and voila!

And we bought enough hedgehog fabric to make a matching morsbag for Linda.


Tuesday, May 13, 2014

A Personal Post

This is not a post for another new quilt by me. Rather, I am using this forum for a personal message (with a quilting tie-in).  Please allow me this indulgence.

I am a member of the Illinois Chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. Last Saturday, the day before Mother's Day, our chapter participated in the "Mother's Dream" quilt project. This is a national project to visually (and viscerally) craft our powerful statement about the impact of gun violence on families. We made dozens of quilt blocks in honor of loved ones lost to gunfire. THANK YOU to St. Sabina in Chicago, and Purpose Over Pain for hosting us! More than 60 guests from all across the state made this gathering such a success.

These blocks, and dozens of others from around the country, will be stitched into quilts. These will then be displayed at Mom's events to reinforce the daily tragedy of gun violence.

While we were making the blocks, the moms (and a few dads) shared the stories of their sons and daughters who had been killed. Many of these were random shootings. Though some happened many years ago, their pain was still very real.  Here is one example:

Fire chief, and Purpose OverPain co-founder, Annette Nance-Holt holds the quilt squares she made. May 10, the very day of our quilting bee, was the 7th anniversary of her beloved son Blair's shooting.

To see the entire album of photos from the event, please click here.

And, if you feel so moved, please click the Mom's link above and add your name to the cause.

Thank you.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Mama Elephant and Elephinfant

Welcome to a new generation!  Camden Sherr was born on May 3 and is the first great-grandchild for my mother-in-law Pauline.  The new parents, Jesse and Amy, created their nursery with an elephant theme.  I wanted to do something other than  a)  paper-pieced elephants (done that too many times!), or b) some cutesy elephant fabs (done that too). So after a bit of research, I was able to find this great pattern.

This is a very different kind of quilt than I have made in the past.  As I said, it is not paper-pieced, nor is it a "blocks" quilt.  Rather, per the pattern, strips are cut in various lengths (from the appropriate colors), and then assembled in columns. Then the columns are joined. All straight 1/4" seams!!!!
For the quilting on the elephants, I did stipling, but again, unlike what I usually do. Normally, when I stiple, I just do random loopy lines (as I did here in the sky/background), but try very hard not to cross any previous line.  Here I wanted to simulate the look of elephant skin:

So I went for a cross-hatch look.

For the ears, I did straight-line shadow quilting.

The lovely lady-like eyelashes were a late addition suggested by my wife. So cute!  And if you've ever seen an elephant up close, you know they really do have long eyelashes!

PS:  also in the queue is a monkey quilt from the same pattern author. Stay tuned!