Sunday, 5 August 2018

Biene's adventure block #4+5

We're having such a hot summer here in Central Europe that we are not able to go on long walks during the day. Temperatures between 30 and 37C (86 to 99F) left us with longer walks in the mornings and evenings and only very short walks during the day.

Nevertheless we went into the forest at weekends, that was the only place we could actually stick this heat. Biene had fun no matter what. I didn't do much sewing either, when you have temperatures of 26 to 29C (79 to 84F) inside the house you do not turn that iron on!

However, I made another tree block, improv pieced, in turquiose this time. Who said that trees need to be green all the time?

We have the feeling that in the forest Biene is her most natural self. Very alert, very active, always searching. A true hunter. A very beautiful one though (and not hunting at all, we would not have her run free if she would).

Here's another improv pieced tree block in the forest with a very playful Biene, having picked up every stick along the way.

This tree I made with small scraps and pieced them randomly together until I had a form that kind of looked like a tree. Variety is good!

And that's Biene seeing if we really, really do not want to play with that sick laying in front of her.

Temperatures are suppose to drop in the next two weeks or so, I guess the quilty summer adventure is turning into a year long project which I don't mind because we go on adventures with Biene all year round!

Tuesday, 26 June 2018

Looking back to QuiltCon 2018 in Pasadena CA

We moved house just one week after QuiltCon 2018 and it took us a long time to get everything organised. There is still some chaos and things to be done but we're getting there.

I've only downloaded the photos I took during QuiltCon 2 moths after the event. I just couldn't find the time.

Pasadena Convention Center

But maybe that was a good thing because now I think I have processed the whole experience of having a quilt in the show.

That photo says it all! One happy girl an her quilt!

Splinter in good company

I have to admit I was super excited and also very proud every time I walked by my quilt which was in line with so many great quilts.

Interesting for me was also the judges comments on Splinter. I wasn't sure whether that would be included but as I unpacked the quilt the judges' comments and the presentation sheet were included.

But enough of my own quilt. I want to show you some of my favourite quilts which are not award winners, for the award winners please see here.

I especially liked this quilt by Carolina Oneto, such a great use of colour and shape.

I'm a big fan of Kari Anderson's work and her 'Mama Bear loves to dance' quilt is no exception.

Once again I was drawn to simple, graphic and colourful quilts like this one by Debra Jalbert, that play with colour is so good.

Very cleverly arranged triangles by Nicole Kroesen in her quilt 'To the point'.

And Jacquie Gering... what can I say. She has a big impact on my own designs and I'm always in awe of her work. With her quilt 'Champ' Jacquie explores minimalistic design combined with strong light and dark contrast creating maximum visual impact.

I love subtle colours like the ones Paige Alexander used in her 'Positively Transparent' Quilt of the Month August 2017. Beautiful thread colours too.

I loved that neon pop thread Carson Converse used in her 'Passage' quilt.

I was absolutely stunned by this quilt by Tara Glastonbury. Her quilt 'What's your time worth?' represents the back of an Australian 50$ note and is a critical statement regarding female textile artists trying to make a living while others undervalue their hobby making it especially hard for artists to earn above the national average wage. This quilt had such a great texture, I wish I could have touched it.

These two quilts from this years Charity Challenge were my favourites. LEFT: Original pattern design by Alane Davis, made by the Lake Superior MQG; RIGHT: Designed by Holly Anne Knight, made be the Greater Atlanta MQG (Funny that they both have the light/ dark colour gradient from top to bottom).

This year Carolyn Friedlander was the featured artist at QuiltCon and she had a special exhibition of her work which I loved. I'm a great fan of her architectural fabrics and quilt designs with great colour choices.

Her work was beautifully presented. How cool is that couch?

Also these quilted maps are so good. A different kind of whole cloth quilt.

And there were so many more. I have noticed an increased quality of the mini quilts presented in the show, but that would be too much to show them here.

One highlight for me was the exchange of the mini quilt the Modern Quilt Guild had organised.

My swapping partner was Anne Sullivan of PlayCrafts and her work is amazing. I absolutely love the mini she made me! And how coordinated are our quilts? We even made the MQG News letter with our minis!
You can read more about 'Three', the mini quilt I made here.

I once again opted for the all day lecture pass. Sometimes the less obvious lectures are the best and are surprisingly good.
I only took one class and it was the advanced photography class with Kitty Wilkin and Michelle Bartholomew. Thoroughly enjoyed the class, learned a lot and could have actually done a whole day!

Exploring depth of filed

Once again I truly enjoyed the whole QuiltCon experience and being among like minded people. It was so great to meet quilters in person I have been in touch with via social media.

Today the registration for QuiltCon 2019 opened and unfortunately I will not go next year. I will make QuiltCon an every other year event. 2020 in Austin it is.

Thursday, 14 June 2018

Bee blocks for Melanie - Eads Quilt

I love my little quilting bee and the great variety of bee blocks my fellow bees come up with.

Melanie picked this beautiful paper pieced pattern by Carolyn Friedlander, who kindly allowed us to use her pattern for this bee. The pattern is called 'Eads' and you can find it here.

Melanie picked this lovely low volume colour palette with whites and creme tones. It's such a beautiful palette, I love this subtle colour play.

I am usually an improv kind of quilter and I don't really like precise piecing but with paper piecing it's different. I really like the crisp and precise look that you can achieve with a lot less effort than normal piecing. Here you can see more blocks Melanie received already. Can't wait to see the finished quilt!

Sunday, 10 June 2018


I have admired all the mini quilts that have been submitted to be included in the Curated Quilts Magazine ever since that magazine was created by Amy Ellis and Christine Ricks at the end of 2017.
For their upcoming fifth issue in autumn 2018 the topic for the featured mini quilts is 'Connections/ Improv' with a beautiful autumn colour palette.

How could I resist?

And that's my mini quilt 'Connected'.
If you think, hm, that kind of looks familiar then you're right! It's the same improv piecing technique I used in the mini quilt I made for the MQG mini swap. This is further to explore as I really need to make a big version of it!

I randomly quilted in straight, diagonal lines and I think this adds such a nice texture to the quilt.

It's the second time that I used a faced binding and I really like it. Especially on such a small quilt. 'Connected' is only 15 x 15" big and it's the smallest quilt I've made so far.

I used three different colours of 50wt and 40wt Aurifil thread, two beige tones and one light grey.

I hope it gets accepted, but anyhow, if you don't know the Curated Quilts Magazine you should check it out. I bought the first tow issues at QuiltCon in February and I absolutely love that magazine!

Linking to Curated Quilts where you can see all entries!

Monday, 21 May 2018

Biene's Summer Adventure Quilt - Block #2+3

We're having so much fun with Biene and I can't wait to show you more summer adventure quilt blocks.

We are having fantastic spring weather here with temperatures that feel like summer already (27C / 80F). So we decided to go in the forest and remain in the shade, otherwise it was just too hot.

So this is the first imrov tree block for the quilt and it has very subtle colours. Again I used only scraps and worked with what I had on hand.

We had a lot of fun and enjoyed a long walk.

Who would have thought that Biene is such a poser?!

The following day we went to my Rowing Club and Biene went for a swim. The previous owners told us that she loves to swim and we could see it recently that she attempted to hop into every pond she saw. (Not every pond is suitable for a dog swim though, especially not with lots of birds currently breeding at the banks.)

Usually we don't let her play with tree branches but in the water it was an exception.

So and that is block #3, I used some Alison Glass fabric from her collection 'Sun Print Bike Path' in blue to represent the water, some green for the river banks, birds and flowers and a blue sky.

She hopped into the water a couple of times but was dry very fast in this lovely weather.

And that's Biene with the quilt block pinned to our boat house timber facade. As if she knows that this quilt is going to be about her and our adventures!! She looks so good!

Friday, 11 May 2018

Pantone Quilt Challenge 2018 - Purple Haze (a finished quilt top)

I am so happy to take part in this year's Pantone Quilt Challenge again and that the category 'Quilt Top Only' exists as entry.  Our recent move kept me so busy that I wasn't able to finish a whole quilt in time.

So this year's Pantone colour of the year is Ultraviolet. I had some problems finding matching colours but in the end I was very happy with my choices of Kona Bright Peri as equivalent to Ultraviolet, Kona Corsage as light violet, Kona white and Kona Tangerine as a pop of bright orange. As often I mixed it with the beautiful Carolyn Friedlander cross hatch fabrics. I can't help myself, I just love them.

I also seem to have the suitable Pantone cup for every quilt challenge I do, this one is an espresso cup and it even has some milky foam and coffee in it!

I wanted to do something bright and cheery for this quilt and opted do to improv curves. That was the first time I did improv curves and they were a bit scary but after a few blocks I really enjoyed the whole process!

I was looking for an alternative layout other than having all blocks in one direction or forming circles. So I came up with this design:

As often my husband came up with the name for the quilt: Purple Haze. Very suitable I think.

I love this quilt top so much already and can't wait to finish the quilt. The whole colour scheme, the sewing technique and the quilt layout itself is so outside my comfort zone and unlike anything I did before. But that's what a challenge is for, right?

Quilt stats:
Name - Purple Haze
Category - Quilt Top Only
Size - 1.50x150m/ 59x59"
Country - Germany

Linking to Bryan House Quilts and No Hats in the House and thanking Rebecca and Sarah for hosting the challenge again this year!

UPDATE: Purple Haze has won 1st place in the 'Quilt top only' Global category!!!
Wow, I'm very happy and honored!
See here all the amazing winners.

Friday, 4 May 2018

Biene's Summer Adventure Quilt - Block #1

Ever since I can remember I wanted a dog. As I was young I walked every dog in the neighbourhood but was never allowed to have one by myself.
As I got older life got too busy for a dog: university, high performance rowing, working full time, living abroad.
My dream has finally come true in December last year when we gave Biene a new home. 

So why is there a story about a dog on the blog today? I got inspired by Kitty Wilkin's beautiful lecture 'Quilts to mark milestones' at QuiltCon 2018 in Pasadena earlier his year. Kitty made quilt blocks of family adventures and brought them with her on hikes, boat rides and even flights. She documented the adventures with her beautiful photography on her blog here and here. Kitty brought her finished quilt top with her to the lecture and it was so beautiful to look at all those fun improv blocks that documented a whole summer.

After the QuiltCon lecture I immediately knew that I wanted to make my own 'Summer Adventure Quilt' marking adventures with Biene. This April we went on the first adventure that is also our first holiday with Biene to the North Sea in the Netherlands. 

There are endless sand beaches in 'Zeeland' and they are famous for the timber poles which break the waves in stormy weather.

The first quilt block was inspired by those poles in the sand. I improv pieced this block using only scraps. I took Kitty's advise and decided for a 15" height of this block and all coming blocks. The width will vary but 15" is the consistent height I'm aiming for.

The weather forecast was not the best so there is a bit of a grey cloud in the block as well.

It was too windy to hold the block up so I taped it down to the lovely timber huts that are all over the beach.

We had so much fun at the beach and Biene just did not tire of running after that ball.

Her whole face was covered in sand but that didn't seam to bother her.

Her floppy ears were going nuts with her speed and that wind. Isn't she beautiful?

 We got Biene to pose with the quilt block and the poles but she could hardly sit still, too excited!

The weather did improve after all and we had some really lovely sunny days.

If Biene wasn't playing ball she would dig holes.

Or dip her feet in the water.

I think she did have a lot of fun!

We all did actually! This is one rare selfie with the three of us where Biene did sit still for a couple of seconds...

I can't wait for our next adventure! And the next quilt block!

(I hope that weren't too many dog photos, but given the fact that I needed to wait for sooooo long to have a dog I think the amount of photos are in order. Quilty photos coming soon, I promise!)