Tag Archives: inspiration

Fallen Stars

Hello!  It’s Easter Monday and, for me, it’s a day of tidying up loose ends.  The list isn’t terribly long and I’m optimistic that I can cross off several items.

Several months ago I entered my name into a fabric challenge, put on by Riley Blake fabrics.  The rules for each challenge differ and for this one I just needed to use the fabric that I was given and create something quilted, by April 30.  The fabric line is called Rockstar and my pieces were orange, white and aqua.

I was awed by the Best in Show quilt at QuiltCon in Savannah,  (See post here – QuiltCon 2017.) so decided to try my hand at paper piecing.  Hmmm, how to draw a star?  Freehand didn’t look so great.  Thankfully, Google and YouTube came to the rescue!  Once I had the star, I broke it into smaller pieces and assigned each piece a number and a colour.  Hopefully this would help me get it all back together in fabric.


Once the fabric star was pieced I machine-embroidered the names of my favourite Rock Stars who are no longer with us.  Leonard Cohen, Michael Jackson, John Lennon, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison plus several others are stitched on in silver thread.  The silver is a bit too subtle and I’d use a stronger contrast another time.

The finished star was then appliquéd onto the black background.  I quilted the star with a mix of straight lines and triangle shapes.  The quilting on the background mirrors the shape of the star.  The batting is 100% cotton and the quilting thread is Superior King Tut in Temple.  The piece has a one inch facing instead of a binding.  It measures 32″ x 32″.  Here’s a photo.


It’s not meant to be centred, if you’re curious!  Also, the background fabric didn’t come in my package so I had to purchase it.  It never dawned on me, until I got it home, that the white marks look like cemetery crosses – kind of fitting!

This is my third challenge piece and I don’t expect it to be prize-worthy in the judges’ eyes.  However, I enjoyed having to use my imagination and I acquired some new skills along the way.

Now for the next thing on my list – cleaning out my thread cabinet.  Now that’s a challenge!

Thanks for reading.


QuiltCon 2017

Hello from 32,000 feet over Nebraska!  I’m heading to Seattle on the next to last leg of my adventure to the southeastern USA. This morning began in Savannah, GA at 4AM, which would have been OK if I hadn’t stayed up until 12:30 AM watching the Oscars!  But, oh, it was worth it!

Eight days ago I flew to Little Rock, AR to spend three nights visiting Brooke and Kevin. My luck with weather in Arkansas is terrible and this was no exception, with cool days and lots of rain. Still, always great to see Brooke.  While I was there it was Presidents’ Day and we took advantage of free admission to the Clinton Library.  We also visited the Esse Purse Museum!!  No kidding, it was fabulous.  It’s one of three purse museums, the others are in Seoul and Amsterdam.  Informative, bright displays and a well-stocked shop made for a fun hour.

From there it was off to Savannah for QuiltCon 2017, which was held in the building pictured at the top of this page.  QuiltCon is like Mecca for Modern Quilters.  This year there were 3500+ registrants from all around the world. I met people from Australia, India and Scotland. Canada had a strong showing and we rocked the conference with a group photo and singing of “O Canada”

All of the top instructors and modern quilters attend this conference and there were four days of courses and lectures. It’s a terrific opportunity to learn from the best. There were 450 quilts on display, all in the modern style. Those quilts were chosen from over 1500 entries!   They were judged and prizes were awarded in several different categories. I’m attaching a few photos of quilts that caught my eye. You’ll see that they vary widely. Funny that I’m equally attracted to both the complex and the simple ones.

When not at the conference I explored Savannah. The weather was lovely – cool in the morning and evening, but sunny and warm during the day. The Savannah River runs in front of the hotel where I stayed and it was a constant source of fascination. Apparently, Savannah is the 3rd busiest port in USA, and I can believe it. Massive container ships move through a space hardly big enough to hold them. I was transfixed!

Savannah is a good walking city. There are lovely, shady squares throughout the old part of the city. Chippewa Square was on my list as it’s the square where Forrest Gump sat!   I spent all day yesterday walking, stopping for coffee, sitting in squares, waiting in line for 20 minutes at Leopold’s Ice Cream Parlour and enjoying the southern vibe.   Lots more to see and I’d heartily recommend a visit there – perhaps combined with Charleston, SC or Hilton Head for golf.

It’s been a fun trip with familiar and new places. QuiltCon was all that I thought it would be. I’ve made new quilting buddies and learned valuable tips. I also brought home a small stack of new fabrics – things that we just can’t find in Vancouver.   I’d go again and in 2019 it will be in Nashville, TN, another new city for me.

Here are a few photos from Savannah.

It’s good to be back and looking for the next adventure.  Thanks for reading!

Seeing Spots!

Laura’s name has come up in a previous post –  The Girlfriend Quilt .  You’ll also find her, and her husband Greg, in the blog that I kept while we travelled through India in 2013 –https://samosasojourn.wordpress.com  We met at Willows Elementary School in Victoria in September, 1969, and have been great friends since then.

Last year I offered to make a quilt as a housewarming gift for Greg and Laura’s new home on Shawnigan Lake.  We looked at many different quilts on Pinterest, in books and in magazines.  Finally, we found a photo of a quilt, by Zen Chic, on Pinterest – lots of bright coloured dots on a white background.

The background is a solid white cotton that I purchased at Fabricana.  I pieced it to make it queen-sized.  The dots were a multi-step process.  First, we chose fabric in colours that reminded us of our trip to India.  Many of these fabrics were remnants from “Delhi Dreams” Start To Finish #6 – Done!  Then, I cut the dots in three different sizes, using plates and bowls as my templates!  The dots were sewn, right sides together, to fusible interfacing.  I cut a small slit in the interfacing and turned the dots so that they were right sides out and fused them to the white background.  Each dot was then edge stitched to ensure that they would stay attached.  Then, to cut down on bulk, I cut away any excess fabric from behind each dot.

The back of the quilt is the same white fabric as the front, with just a few dots.  The batting is bamboo.  I quilted this on my Husqvarna domestic machine using Superior King Tut thread in ‘Temple’.  It’s a meandering pattern that was fun to do and looks great with the dots.

We originally wanted to use white for the binding, but decided that it needed some contrast, so I chose an orange/yellow/gold fabric that sets the quilt off well.  The binding is attached by machine to the quilt front then pressed and folded over towards the back.  Normally, I would hand stitch the binding, but the 400″ perimeter seemed daunting, so I finished it by machine.

The final step was to choose a name and make/attach a label.  I enlisted Laura’s help and we came up with all kinds of silly possibilities.  In the end, and as a joke, Laura suggested “Laura’s Quilt”.   Seemed perfect to me!


“Laura’s Quilt” was made with love and with countless memories of 46+ years of friendship.  Curl up, snuggle and enjoy!

Thanks for reading.  Happy Saturday!

Inspiration and Ideas are Everywhere

This project, which is called ‘Pixel’ was completed in the summer of 2015.  I’d had the idea for a while, after thinking that the Kleenex box would translate nicely into a fabric wall hanging.  The squares were cut at 4 1/2″, allowing for 1/4″ seam allowance, and the finished hanging is approximately 36″ x 41″.  I sewed the horizontal rows first and then joined them from top to bottom.

I had originally thought about adding a version of the Kleenex logo and polled my friends for their thoughts.  The nays won, hands down, so I kept the black bar plain.  There is a hanging sleeve on the back and the metal rod runs through it, keeping it nice and straight.

Had I not seen the Kleenex box, I would never have considered throwing all those colours together, even though I like them all individually.  This was an eye opener for me and I now usually have my camera or iPhone with me to snap other ideas.  Here are a few shots that might inspire a project one day.  If you hover over the bottom of each picture you’ll bring up a description.

Thanks for reading!