Sunday, March 29, 2015

2015 March CQJP Block

March Crazy Quilt Journal Project...

Learning a new-to-me type of hand quilting these past couple of years has been both fun and challenging.   In the recent past most of my quilting has been by machine, as I am especially drawn to free motion quilting.  Having said that, there is something unique about hand stitchery that I am drawn to it.  Even though it takes longer to complete and does not supply instant gratification by any means, there is still something very desirable in the art form.  The holding the project close, the touch of the fiber in hand, the needle and thread passing through fabric,  pondering what to do next or which thread to use, not to mention color.

I have been taking classes from Kathy Shaw ~ she is one special lady, teaching numerous students the different skills of crazy quilting, and yes, it is over the internet.  She holds classes where there may be over 100 students in a class all the while multiples classes are going on at the same time.  Not only is she super organized, but personally responds to each person's project, not only giving encouragement but criticism constructively where needed, while providing inspiration and further instruction.  Oh, did I mention her classes are "FREE".  I know, in this day and age ?  Yes, she desires to share what she knows and has loved with this next generation of crazy quilters.  Students are not only beginners like myself, but some are quite experienced crazy quilters where there is much inspiration to be had as you blog your journey through the classes.  You can find a link to the 2015 Crazy Quilt Journal Project blog on the sidebar.   Here is a link to Kathy's blog:

Here is my March block for the 2015 CQJP

 Further thoughts :
Maybe it is just the slow thoughtful pace of embroidering each stitch that allows the mind to rest or sort through ones thoughts that create this desire for hand stitching; I am not sure which it is, but crazy quilting is a quilting skill that allows for some silence in the midst of an American culture of busyness and noise, the noise of both sight and sound (even action) that interrupts the silent moments of our day constantly.   Silence can create an inward act of being still in spirit, allowing for personal refreshment of the soul, the mind to process ideas and work through challenges as one learns about herself, while still allowing time to pray adding peace and strength into the day as she creates. 

Hope you all have a wonderful Easter ~

Thursday, March 26, 2015

* Updated * 2015 FMQC March Pillow

****************  Updated  *****************
scroll down for the updates....

Our March Pillow Challenge was led this month by Patsy Thompson ~ Wow!  What a great teacher :)

This pillow I made for my daughter-in-love who loves Daisy Flowers, this tan fabric is a piece I had left from their wedding quilt I made 5 years ago this year.... I made the center flower out of wool felt using free motion quilting using Patsy's trapunto directions.  Next I attached the completed flower to the center of the pillow, added more Free Motion Quilting to the flower including the 3 layer pillow top of fabric, batt and backing.  I then did more free motion quilting, this time on the pillow front creating borders on point around the flower, then I added feathers and fillers around the daisy.   I added some wiggle pattern inside one of the frames, and shells on the corner frames.  The final addition was straight line sewing to fill the corners.

Thank you Patsy for all your encouragement, I enjoy your DVD's you graciously shared with me as a prize from the 2012 challenge, as well as your website and these tutorials you do!   I love your book.  Thank you Patsy!

Updated the flower and put a trim around that I think gives such a nice finish!
Made changes to my pillow front adding trim around the flower and stippling around shells in corner

And now some photos of the back of my pillow before the pillow form was inserted... I followed Leah Days tutorial in February for the back with one exception, I put the buttonhole band on the bottom piece and the buttons on the inside of the top piece, as I did not want the buttons to detract from the back or be uncomfortable if anyone should lay on the back of the pillow...

This is the pillow cover inside-out so that you see the lining,
I stitched the top and bottom seams of the pillow front and back together
 notice that the placement of buttonhole strip lies on top of the pillow back top
then the side seams are stitched. 

This is the back of the pillow right sides out.
Note the three buttons are stitched on the inside of the top of the pillow back

This cover is now removable for washing in cold to warm water with no dryer (wool felt flower)

Thank you Darlene, these challenges do make me "Stop" being busy and cause me to make time to quilt when so many other things that I enjoy are competing for my time. Loads of fun and inspiration as well as learning skills that have challenged me :)