Saturday, January 16, 2010

Hawaiian Dancer

I just finished this beautiful applique Hawaiian quilt for a customer named Christi. She was raised in Hawaii and made this quilt for her mother who was a dancer in Hawaii. I don't know if you call it hula dancer but she was a performer in shows featuring Hawaiian customs, music and dancing. She had lots of customs made of cotton. So Christi decided to make a memory quilt for a her mother's 83rd birthday and use pieces of the customs and photos of her mother. It is like a tribute to her mother.

I did not want to steal the show with my quilting so I did simple echo around the big petal shapes and ditchwork around the applique. I put in some fern in the foliage blocks. But I kept it simple. I really wanted to put a digitized hibiscus flower design called Aloha from Legacy quilting but I did not want to steal the show. With the applique using different fabrics and photos, the quilt had a lot going on already.

So I finished it and called her to let her know that it was done. She was excited (maybe because I have had it in my studio for 2 months...). Then I told her that I had wanted to put in the hibiscus in between the applique petals. She suddenly got very quiet and I was thinking that it was a REALLY good thing that I had not put the hibiscus flowers in there. It had sparked a memory for her. She said that she remembered as a kid growing up in Hawaii, every time her mother or grandmother went out for the day, they always put a hibiscus flower in their hair. She definitely wanted me to put the hibiscus flowers in the quilt.

I put the quilt back on the machine but had to run into town before finishing the quilting. I ran into Christi and she had printed off a current photo of her mother (who is still a knock-out at age 83), Christi and her grandson, Nainoa which in Hawaiian means "the navigator".

I hope her mother likes the quilt.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Lover's Knot in Batik

I just finished a Lover's Knot. 94" x 104" all the richest earth-tone batiks. It was on my machine way too long, for about 8 days. It took me forever to figure out how to make the over-under of the knot's come out right.

Lots of ruler work. Deb Levy from Machine Quilter's Resource did a video a while back using a big beefy Gadget Girls Diamond ruler. At the time, I thought that the ruler was too bulky and heavy but I admire Deb's work and figure she has the best tools. So I ordered that one and the longer diamond ruler wondering if I would ever use them. Oh, yeah. Thanks, Deb, this was the perfect ruler for 1/4 SID for the knots and extended further than my normal SID ruler.

The double hearts in the center were a challenge also. I wanted continuous. I tried drawing them on paper, using funny foam, my Doodle Pro. Then I recorded the double-heart in my IQ but it looked rough, not smooth. I was having a hard time getting the parallel lines of the 2 hearts to look good. I finally took it to my PreDesign Studio. I downloaded the trial of Pre-Design a couple of years ago and then later bought the software but I just have not given it enough time to show me what it would do. This was my trial-by-fire for Pre-Design. I click-designed the hearts, refining the look over about 9 tries and finally got a smooth double heart with a hook at the end. I exported it as a .dxf and used it in the Lover Knot blocks. Loes and Theo - I finally did it. I am definitely going to be using this again and again for my design work.

I used Summers Dream in the border, one of my favs and the setting/corner triangles are Jocelyn Triangle from Legacy quilting. I used my last Quilter's Dream Puff King; Superior King Tut Flower Pot 911 in the borders and blocks, Superior So Fine 424 Chocolate for the SID, Superior So Fine 531 Siena in the bobbin.

My life has changed in the last couple of years - some bumps, I retired from quilting, and then I moved to Texas. I'm anxious to see what new adventures await me in the next phase of my life.

About Me

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Ramona, California, United States
I started quilting when a quilt shop opened in our little town in January 2004. I have been hooked ever since.

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Books I"ve read lately

  • The Help (Kindle)
  • The Appeal by John Grisham
  • Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
  • Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
  • To Kill a Mockingbird (again) by Harper Lee
  • Bleachers by John Grisham

This is called Fruit Cocktail

This is called Fruit Cocktail
It is all batiks