Modern Quilting – a Visit to Savanna for Quiltcon

How time flies!  It’s hard to believe that its been a month since I attended Quiltcon in Savannah, the annual conference for the Modern Quilt Guild. It’s an amazing event – a beautiful quilt exhibit, vendors with irresistible merchandise, and fabulous classes. There is a lecture series that lasts all day each day with really talented speakers. In addition to all of this, there are demonstrations going on with other speakers. There is not a minute to spare while at Quiltcon but it’s so much fun. This is the 2nd year that I attended with my talented friend, Robin Pickens. We both walked around like school kids with our eyes taking in every bit of color and knowledge we could soak up.

Between lectures, we visited the vendors and shopped. I bought some of the most gorgeous fabrics while there.  I love fabric and couldn’t resist.  Here is a sampling of my fabric purchases.

Fabrics purchased PDobbsFabrics purchased PDobbs

In addition, I bought these heavier weight gorgeous fabrics for embroidery. The hoop is a new design that has a spring going around the edge to hold the fabric in place so that the small screw isn’t needed. The hoop came from French General.

Embroidery floss and hoop

Here are a sampling of the many fabulous quilts that were on display from the challenges.  The one below, Lead the Way,  is by Juli Smith of San Diego and was entered in the category of Use of Negative Space. The technique used was machine piecing. Juli loves geometry and wanted to explore things on the diagonal.

Lead the Way quilt Juli Smith

This quilt, Bling, by Katherine Jones of Chigwell, Tasmania, Australia, was amazing and won Best in Show. The technique used was paper piercing. The design was inspired by a princess cut diamond.

Bling by Katherine Jones

Lincoln by Kim Soper of Huntington NY, won first place for Improvisation quilting. At the end of the show, it had been voted People’s Choice Award. The quilt was developed out of a desire to create an entirely improv-pieced, recognizable image without use of template, paper-piecing or appliqué.

Lincoln KimSoper

Not Easy Being Green, by Mary Keasler of Chattanooga, TN, won Best Machine Quilting, Frameless. Mary began the quilt by making small 4 patch blocks with left over hand dyed fabrics then decided to add strips in a log cabin effect.  Then she added white for negative space for a really stunning design.

Not Easy Being Green

Diamond in the Rough, by Christa Watson of Las Vegas, loves creating quilts in black and white with a pop of color. Her quilting with matching threads emphasizes the geometric design of the quilt.

Diamond in the Rough Christa Watson

Shibori, by Amy Friend of West Newbury, MA, was designed using a technique that she calls improvisational paper piecing. The design was inspired by he veins of a leaf, sketched improvisational. She created a paper pieced template and used the original block and its mirror image to create the layout. To me, this quilt looks very Art Nouveau.

Sibori quilt Amy Friend

These were just a small sampling of all the wonderful quilts exhibited. Modern quilting allows for so many variations in quilting to make each one different and unique. And one of the main themes of modern quilting is that there are no rules.

And, for one more of my purchases at Quiltcon, I bought a Juki sewing machine, a workhorse for quilting and sewing. I like it because it does free motion quilting so well and is so simple and easy to use. My friend Robin and I both bought one and I am so happy to add it to my studio!

Juki sewing machine

Next year, Quiltcon will move back to the west coast to Pasadena and I can’t wait to attend again.

Happy Quilting! Do it your way!

Phyllis

Christmas Cheer with Christmas Sewing and Quilting

December is always such a busy and fun month to enjoy the holiday festivities. I enjoy visits with family and friends throughout the month, the rush of holiday activities, and the Christmas decorations everywhere.

Christmas flower pot for entertaining

I haven’t had a chance to put my tree up yet but it will go up by the weekend. Meanwhile I do have a few decorations out. This pot containing white ornaments is a terra-cotta flower pot that I painted red and white. While I only use it at Christmas, the red color can double up for Valentine to hold goodies for the kids or a kid’s party. It’s very easy to make with a clean flower pot and red and white paints.

With cold weather, its fun to sew or quilt while staying warm inside. This Christmas Wrap Apron is very easy to make in a couple of hours and will dress up your holiday cooking. The pattern is available on Craftsy.com and on Etsy as a download.

Free Christmas Apron Pattern

I have designed several Christmas quilt patterns which are also available on Craftsy and Etsy. There’s still plenty of time to sew a fun quilt for a Christmas gift, to decorate with or just to snuggle under. This stocking quilt is fun for kids and is created by piecing. You can use your scraps or pre-cuts for this the stocking pieces.

Christmas Stockings Quilt

You will enjoy this Christmas Holly quilt for many years. This pattern is very versatile and can be made as shown below, or by making only the center wreath section for a smaller quilt or table topper. This quilt uses the techniques of appliqué and piecing. The holly pieces can be made from your green scraps or pre-cuts.

Christmas Holly Applique Quilt Pattern

This Christmas Tree and Bow quilt pattern is dimension made with “petals” that are sewn to the quilt and drop down loosely to give the feeling of a tree. The bows in the border are appliquéd, and the bow at the top of the tree is made of ribbon that is stitched on.

Dimensional Christmas Tree Quilt Pattern

I hope that December is filled with joy for each of you and that you are surrounded by the people you love. And that you get in a little Christmas sewing and quilting!

Phyllis

New Quilt Patterns – Whimsy and Modern

I have returned from the International Quilt Market held in Houston. Eye candy everywhere! Such a fusion of colors with all the quilts and fabrics throughout the show! So much to see and treasure!

With quilts on my mind, I want to show you some of the quilts I have designed recently. These patterns are all available in my Craftsy and Etsy stores.

I love the influence of modern quilting and the effects created with negative space. No matter how complex the design, you still have a feeling of simplicity and space.

This quilt pattern, Bohemian Travels, features some traditional blocks in varying sizes and in an asymmetrical arrangement. The overall size is 68″ W x 76″ H.

Bohemian Modern quilt pattern

There is still plenty of time to sew a quilt for fall or Thanksgiving with this Pumpkin Time quilt pattern.  This pattern features appliqué pumpkins, stems, vines and leaves.  Use an assortment of fabrics or precuts for more texture. This pattern is 50 1/2″ X x 60 1/2″ H.

Pumpkin Time Quilt Pattern

Windmill is an on point design with a pinwheel center block. The size is great for a wall hanging or lap quilt at 42 1/2″ W x 50 1/2″ H.

Windmill Quilt Pattern

I hope that you will visit one of these stores – you will find a lot more quilt patterns in addition to apron and other sewing pattern and maybe something you can sew as a Christmas gift.

I plan to show some of my photos from Quilt Market shortly so please check back!

Phyllis

Stars and Stripes Waving Flag Quilt to Show Patriotism

Cuddle in this Stars and Stripes Waving Flag  quilt to celebrate your patriotism. This quilt pattern in red, white and blue fabrics is easy to sew to give you a quilt to display all year, for patriotic holidays, or give as a gift to a veteran or someone in the military.

Stars and Stripes Waving Flag Quilt pattern

This quilt is a good size for a lap quilt, wall hanging, or for cuddling. The size of 56″ W x 44″ H  can easily be adjusted for a larger or smaller quilt. The chevron zig zag stripes in an assortment of red and white fabrics give this quilt a fresh modern look. Using both piecing and appliqué methods to construct, this quilt pattern has a wide blue band on one side with appliqué white stars. The pattern has full step-by-step instructions, charts, color diagrams and a full size star pattern.

This Stars and Stripes Waving Flag pattern is available online from Craftsy as well as Etsy as downloable pdf’s.

May our flag forever wave!

Phyllis

Bird on Limb For a Scrap Quilt

I love how the bird population increases with the warmer weather of spring. The birds chirping outside inspired this new pieced scrap quilt pattern “Bird on a Limb”.

Bird on a Limb Quilt Pattern

The pattern is designed to use your scraps or precut fabrics and fat quarters for the blocks to give it a scrappy look. You can customize to make it all one color if you prefer. The birds have just landed on a limb with these pieced blocks. The size as shown is 64″ w x 76″ h. It’s easy to adjust your quilt to make a larger or smaller by adding or decreasing the blocks or rows. It’s also easy to customize for a table runner, placemat, table topper or wallhanging to give you lots of uses.

Embellish by adding buttons or beads for eyes, or a mix of both for additional scrappiness.

This pattern is available on Craftsy VibrantQuilts and Etsy WhimsiColor for instant download.

I hope this spring finds you outside listening to the bird chirping with a beautiful day and with plenty of time to quilt.

Phyllis

Enjoy Spring Showers May Flowers With a New Quilt Pattern

Spring is almost here!  Days are getting longer and the weather much warmer. But the spring showers are necessary to have the beautiful May flowers!  This new quilt pattern, Spring Showers May Flowers will have you ready to enjoy both.

Spring Showers May flowers Quilt Pattern

This quilt pattern includes both patchwork piecing and appliqué and is 52″ wide by 63″ high. The size can be easily adjusted to make it larger or smaller. Spring Showers May Flowers makes a great scrap quilt by using your scraps for the flowers and umbrella appliqué pieces. This pattern uses 2 color combinations for the quilt blocks and alternates the blocks. You can use different colors for all the blocks to give it a scrappy look. Its great also for adding embellishments with buttons or beads for the flower centers, or using rick rack for the umbrella handles instead of appliqué.

This pattern is available both from Craftsy or Etsy I would love to see your quilt that you make with this pattern!

Have a fun day of quilting!

Phyllis

ArtBizJam Artist Retreat in Gatlinburg, TN, the Smoky Mountains

We are excited to announce new and exciting details for ArtBizJam, 2016. Enjoy the beautiful fall colors of Gatlinburg, TN in the Smoky Mountains for our 4th annual art business retreat to be held October 5 – 9.  We will be  high in the mountains with a gorgeous view, but only minutes away from Gatlinburg.

ArtBizJam 2016 locationWe are also excited that Susan January will be joining us as a guest instructor!  She is the Vice President of Product Management of Leanin’ Tree, a 65+ year old manufacturer of greeting cards and gift products.  Everyone who knows Susan, knows that she is a guru with her knowledge of the greeting card industry! She is going to share her experience and much more and how it relates to artists over the 3 days of classes at ArtBizJam.

Lori Siebert, Cherish Flieder and myself, will conduct classes with relevant topics for your business to succeed and grow in a variety of ways. You can turn your art business into your dream business! In addition to the business classes, there will also be creative time to ignite your creative spark with rejuvenation and relaxation. There will also be fun surprises and much laughter! You will return to your studio recharged, inspired, with new friendships and ready to create magic with your art business!

ArtBizJam artist retreat

We would love to have you join us! Read more about it at ArtBizJam. Reservations made by June 20, 2016 will receive an early bird special of a free portfolio review by all the instructor (a value of $95).  Spaces are limited so please book early. We will be happy to answer any questions that you may have.

Phyllis

Sew a Bunny Apron for Easter

If you are stuck in the kitchen cooking for Easter, why not make it fun wearing this bunny apron? This apron will delight kids of all ages with the bunny pocket.

Easter Bunny apron pattern

This half apron made with this Bunny Apron Pattern is 33″ W and 21″ H and can easily be adjusted to another size. Buttons and embroidery floss embellishments are used for the bunny face. It can quickly be sewn for Easter or for everyday use in a couple of hours. The bunny pocket can be made without the bunny adornments.

Aprons are so trendy, you can wear it as a fashion statement while hiding the Easter eggs!

This apron pattern is first in a coming series of Special Occasion apron patterns and is priced so low you can easily buy one for each occasion.

Happy Sewing and Happy Easter!

Phyllis

Quiltcon, The Modern Quilt Guild Amazing Conference

I was delighted to attend Quiltcon, presented by the Modern Quilt Guild  in February. Quiltcon is a beautiful and amazing quilt show, with wonderful classes and lectures. Not only was the location in Pasadena, CA beautiful, the weather was also (well, except for the day I arrived when it poured rain). I want to share a few of the gorgeous quilts exhibited at the show.

Modern Quilt Guilds throughout the US and several countries submitted entries for the “Member Charity Challenge”. These quilts were displayed through the hall of the convention center and in rooms for viewing. This quilt is “My Baltimore” by the Baltimore MQG.  I showed many of these quilts in my Instagram and Facebook posts while atending Quiltcon.

My Baltimore BMQG

“David Bowie” was designed by Holly Hickman and was in the Moda fabric booth. I think this quilt was shown on social media more than any other quilt there! You can find more information about the making of this quilt on Moda’s Blog.

David Bowie

“Falling” is by Kathy York of Austin, Texas. The batik cirlces reminded her of strands of beads so she hand stitched some dashed lines to represent the cording. This quilt was entered in the “Use of Negative Space” category.

Falling Quilt

“Cat Face” was by Megan Callahan of Bakersfield, CA. and was entered under the “Piecing” category.

Cat Face Quilt

“Handcrafted Triangles” is by Jennifer Johnston of Kitchener, Ontario, Canada and was entered in the “Improvisation” category. I love all the colors.

Handcrafted Triangles Quilt

“My Brother’s Jeans” by Melissa Averinos won “Best in the Show”.  She found the jeans in the trash after her brother’s death.

My brothers Jeans Quilt

“Picnic Petals” is by Sheri Cifaldi-Morrill of Woodbridge, CT and was entered in the “Modern Traditionalism” category.

Picnic Petals Quilt

“Puttin’ on the Glitz” is by Gina Boyd of Davis, CA and was entered in the Glitz Fabric Challenge by Michael Miller Fabrics.

Puttin on the Glitz Quilt
“Square Dance” is by Carol Dennis of Garland, TX and was entered in the “Piecing” category.

Square Dance Quilt

“The Big Swirl” by Betsy Vinegrad of Short Hills, NJ, was entered in the Glitz Fabric Challenge by Michael Miller Fabrics.

The Big Swirl Quilt

“Whimsical Logs” by Letitia Chung of San Francisco, CA, was entered in the “Modern Traditionalism” category and won 1st place.

Whimsical Logs Quilt

“Red Hot” by Shawna Doering of Denver, CO, was entered in the “Use of Negative Space” category and won the Judge’s Choice Award.

Red Hot Quilt

“Making Triangles” was made by Dawn Golstab of Leander, TX.  This quilt was entered in the Triangle Quilt Challenge.

Making Triangles Quilt

In addition to lectures and classes, there were also demonstrations in the exhibit hall. I really enjoyed this block printing demonstration by Valori Wells. You can see some of the gorgeous fabrics she created with her block prints on the table in front of her. I learned a little about block printing in college and was so inspired watching Valorie that I bought her book “My Life in Fabric”afterwards

Valorie Wells Demonstrating Block Print

An exhibit of quilts by Gwen Marston created a display of beautiful colors. She also gave a lecture that I thoroughly enjoyed. She is so colorful in all that she does!

Gwen Marston Quilt

In addition to all the color and quilts, I enjoyed spending time with a very good friend, Robin Pickens. We definitely inspired each other shopping in the vendor area!  One can’t have too many quilt supplies!  Robin had lived in the Pasadena area several years ago and gave me a tour of parts of it and I enjoyed meeting her lovely family. Spending time with a friend and lots of talking was icing on the cake for Quiltcon!

I hope you enjoyed seeing some of the quilts! I tried to get all the information correct, but if I have any mistakes, I apologize and hope that someone will let me know so that I can correct it.  There were so many more absolutely breathtaking quilts and I wish I could show them all.

Keep quilting!

Phyllis

 

Interview by Terrys Fabrics, England

I just received this interview that Terrys Fabrics Co, UK conducted with me and am delighted to share it.  Thank you to Terrys Fabrics!

Courtesy of: Terrys Fabrics UK

For the top 5 choices above, Number 2 is from Lori Siebert Studio Blog, and number 4 are tea towels from Robin Pickens.

Phyllis

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