August Meeting and the Sew Together Bag

I hope everyone is enjoying their summer so far.  Here in Louisiana, it is getting HOT!  Luckily, quilting usually involves a lot of air conditioning.  Happy, happy, happy! This month’s meeting will be Saturday, August 15th 10:00 – 12:00 (official time, but we will sew past that time for anyone sewing with us.) Quilt n Stitch, 6049 Cypress St, West Monroe, LA 71291 The main event will be putting together the Sew Together Bag.  If you would like to sew with us, read on.  More details will follow.  If don’t want to sew, but want to join us, you are more than welcome to visit with us while we sew. To begin, I thought we could take a look at a couple blocks that Anita Grossman Solomon demos in her ‘Piece Traditional Quilt Blocks’ class on   She has a method of cutting blocks so the pieces come together with very little waste.  You know those little half square triangles that mount up as we’re creating quilt tops?  Well, there’s none of that.  I plan to bring the pineapple block and the economy block.  I love her method and hope you do to.  Or at least walk away with more ideas to incorporate into your quilting.

SewTogetherBag_1But on to the Sew Together Bag.  This is a clever little bag designed by Sew Demented.  You will be amazed by the amount of stuff you can pack.  Rotary cutters, scissors, thread, needles, marking pens…they can all fit and still there’s room! If you would like to sew with us, buy the pdf pattern here.  You will want to choose your supplies and fabrics, and prepare your fabrics before the meeting.  I REALLY recommend you google ‘sew together bag’ before choosing your fabrics.  There are some really beautiful versions out there and you can really get a feel for the option that appeals to you. Supplies needed (taken from pattern):

Main fabric:  1 fat quarter

Lining Fabric:  1/2 yard

Pocket Lining:  1/3 yard

Binding fabric:  1 fat quarter

1/2 yard fusible lightweight interfacing   (I would use something closer to midweight myself, but that’s personal opinion.  For my bag, I used Shape Flex.)

1 – 18″ zipper

3 – 9″ zipper

Optional Pincushion – wool roving or similar stuffing

Needle Landing – wool felt

The bag appears complicated, but once laid out comes together really well.  I hope you join us.  In the meantime, stay cool!! Cheers, Ramona


July Meeting and Sampler Quilts

MODA Modern Building Blocks

MODA Modern Building Blocks

Saturday, July 11th,
10:00 – 12:00
Quilt n Stitch
6049 Cypress St
West Monroe, LA 71291

Join us for our meeting this Saturday as we discuss ideas for sampler quilts and how they work in the ‘Modern Quilt” world.  Sampler quilts are such a traditional quilt and yet still have so much personality depending on block sizes, fabrics, colors, etc.  Then add a more Modern touch and change up the scale and you can recreate the whole thing!

The quilt shown above is Moda’s Modern Building Blocks sampler released last year (I think) and it does a great job of incorporating many of the characteristics of the Modern Quilt Movement.  If you are interested in seeing a more comprehensive write up of what Modern Quilting is, go to the MQG site here.  To quote them, some characteristics include ” the use of bold colors and prints, high contrast and graphic areas of solid color, improvisational piecing, minimalism, expansive negative space, and alternate grid work. “Modern traditionalism” or the updating of classic quilt designs.”    In the sampler above, you can see the alternate grid work, high contrast and use of color, and definitely an update to a quilt classic.

A well loved traditional sampler is the Dear Jane which has been recreated in so many different ways!  Many quilts are in the traditional fabrics and colors, there are also two color, high contrast versions, and in recent years I’ve seen this quilt in bright, happy colors.  If you haven’t seen all the different versions, a quick search on Pinterest would let you see what I’m talking about.

I thought it might be fun to share with each other our favorite samplers and ideas we may have for our very own sampler.  Which blocks, placement, color schemes, fabrics would you use to create the perfect sampler?  Join us Saturday and share ideas with us.  We’d love to see you there.

Happy quilting, Ramona

NOTE:  There was previous discussion of having a sit and sew at this meeting.  We will not be holding that sit and sew.  Please let me know if you have any questions.

June Meeting and the 2015 MQG Charity Quilt Challenge

2016 QuiltCon Charity Quilt - Color Palette
2016 QuiltCon Charity Quilt – Color Palette

At our last meeting we discussed the possibility of creating a quilt for the 2016 QuiltCon Charity.  You can see full details here.  The goal is to create a quilt using a predetermined color palette and improv with intent.

As I approached the idea, I thought an improv quilt may be a relatively easy thing for our group to do.  Ha!  As we discussed the possibilities, it hit me what a personal thing improvisation is for a creative person.  We all see creative possibilities so differently!  Which is what makes the creative community so awesome and interesting.

At the end of the discussion we decided we would have sew time at our June meeting, bring fabrics that match the defined palette, and work together on this top.  I’m going to be honest, I still am not sure what to expect at this meeting, but I expect to have a lot of fun and to receive a lot of inspiration!

Meeting Information:

Saturday, June13, 2015
10:00 – 12:00 (sew until 3:30 if you chose)
Quilt n Stitch
6049 Cypress St, West Monroe, LA 71291

Be sure to read the Charity Quilt post for more information regarding fabrics to be used in this quilt.  Many of us have fabrics in our stash that work.  If you don’t have all shades, bring what you have.  We can possibly mix and match once we start sewing.

The MQG created a few posts about some of the charity quilts that have been created.  One of my favorites actually reminds me a bit of one suggestion from our meeting.  (Click the photo to see the full blog post.  Quilt by Kansas City MQG.)

kansas city pic1And another by Knoxville MQG:

knoxville pic1


Fussy Cutting and English Paper Piecing

Join us for our May meeting as we take a look at fussy cutting and English paper piecing.

Saturday, May 9th
Quilt n Stitch, 6049 Cypress St, West Monroe, LA 71291
10:00 am – 12:00 noon

A couple months ago Stacy Lee and her daughter, Elizabeth Prine visited with us and fit right in!  They had some wonderful show n tell in many of the Cotton + Steel fabrics, but the project that really stole the show was their La Passacaglia medallions in progress.  The contrast and color scheme in their medallions were beautiful.

EPrine.LaPasacaglia IMG_5497IMG_5496

They have graciously agreed to talk with us at this May meeting about the tricks to fussy cutting fabrics and English paper piecing.   It should be good!

I love the look of fussy cutting specific designs for effect, but have always worried about wasting fabric.  I’m anxious to see if they have any tips for getting the most out of the fabrics.

Other Business:

At our last meeting we discussed the need for by-laws and officers of the guild.  At this meeting, we will take volunteers or nominations.  If you are interested in serving, please let me know or mention it at the meeting.

We’ve also discussed having another free-motion quilting session.  I will be taking a poll to see how many would like to have sew time for our June meeting.  Typically we start those sessions with a short meeting and the sew time extends to 2:00 or 3:00 o’clock for those wanting to stay that late.  If you will not be at the meeting, but would like to vote, just leave me a comment with your name and a method of contact (if I don’t have it already).

See you Saturday!


Modern Quilts, Traditional Shows

“Modern Quilts, Traditional Shows: My In With Scott Murkin”

You really should visit Mandalei and read her interview with Scott Murkin, a certified Quilt Show Judge for AQS.  The interview gives an overview of judging quilt shows and how modern and traditional quilts interact.  Very interesting read!  I really enjoyed his insights.

Interview, Part 1

Interview, Part 2

FMQ Workshop – Followup

In our previous post, we introduced the Free Motion Quilting Workshop and provided registration information. Quilters will have the option of bringing their own supplies or paying $10 for two quilt sandwiches (one cotton batting and one polyester batting), spools of Aurifil, So Fine, and Isocord.

OrphanBlockSamplerIt is highly likely you will fill these quilt sandwiches during quilt time. You might consider bringing extra sandwiches to have as backup. A good idea would be to use orphan blocks or simple pieced blocks so that you can see the difference between quilting on whole cloth and on pieced designs. I was surprised how difficult deciding quilting designs on pieced blocks is for me.  Working with pieced sandwiches can be very good practice.  To the left is a sample I’ve created with unused blocks, simple 2″ square blocks and blocks of solid. This one is approximately 36″ x 36″ and gives plenty of room to play. With the different shapes, I can also play with different quilting designs.

Since these are orphan blocks, I won’t be devastated if doesn’t turn out awesome, but I could be surprised and end with something I’m really proud of. At worst, it’ll make a great dog blanket! 😀

Be sure to check the supply list in the original post.  If you have any questions, let me know.  I’m looking forward to spending time with you next Saturday.  What a way to spend Valentines, huh?!

Free Motion Quilting Workshop

We will be hosting a free motion quilting (FMQ) workshop at our February meeting.   This is definitely a hands-on workshop. All participants are encouraged to bring their sewing machines and be prepared to play!

Saturday, February 14, 2015
Our meeting time has been extended
10:00 am to 3:00 pm.
(Finger sandwiches will be provided for lunch.)

Quilt n Stitch
6048 Cypress Street
West Monroe, LA 71291

So what will we cover?

  • Tools and Resources
  • Drawing Designs
  • Setting up Sewing Machine
  • Setting up Workspace

We will provide:

The majority of this workshop will be spent practicing different FMQ designs on quilt sandwiches. Since your quilting can be affected by fabric, batting and thread choices, we will be providing

  • two 18” x 22” quilt sandwiches (one with polyester batting and one with cotton batting),
  • one spool of So Fine thread and
  • one spool of Isocord thread (courtesy of Quilt n Stitch).
  • one small spool Aurifil (courtesy of Aurifil)
  • The cost of supplies is $10 each. You may elect to bring your own supplies if you prefer. Just be aware your results may differ based on materials.

What to bring:

  • Notebook or drawing paper, pens or pencils for practicing quilting designs. 8.5 x 11 is a good size.
  • Sewing machine
  • Extension table for your machine if you have one.
  • Darning foot or quilting foot
  • Needles (Quilting, Universal, Microtex, or Jean, size 80 or 90)
  • Bobbins filled with colored thread. (We will be sewing on natural colored fabric and want the thread to show.)
  • Snips / Thread Scissors
  • Supreme Slider (Optional)*
  • Machinger Gloves or similar (Optional)*

*The Supreme Slider is wonderful for allowing the quilt to move smoothly as you quilt. I don’t quilt without one. If you are buying, buy as large as appropriate for your machine. If you can cover crevices caused by table joints, that is a good thing.  (Link to the right shows the Queen Size at $48.  Good price.)

*Machinger Gloves are a specific glove brand, but there are many others. I recently heard someone mention buying cheap gardening gloves instead. Rubber tips on fingers, think surgical gloves, are an option. I find Machinger gloves to be very comfortable to work with and do not cause my hands to get warm.

Be sure to check with your local quilt stores for any supplies you may need.

Space is limited, so be sure to sign up for a spot.  Also indicate if you would like us to provide supplies as indicated above.