Sunday, 12 March 2017

QuiltCon report PART 1

I'm back from my first QuiltCon. It was such an amazing experience that I guess I needed a bit of time to let it all settle.

My journey began with a train ride to Frankfurt Airport, continued with a stop over in Washington DC to the final destination Savannah. I was traveling with Christiane of the Modern Cologne Quilters, which was very relaxing and fun!

But actually our QuiltCon experience began already at the departure gate at the airport in DC. We could identify the first QuiltCon visitors by their beautiful self made bags already. We got to talk to two lovely ladies from Denver, CO. and we spotted Amanda Jean Nyberg aka Crazy Mom Quilts!! So she got a bit of an entrance from probably 15 excited quilters as she boarded the tiny plane. That's what happens when you meet your first quilting hero!!

Once at Savannah airport we were greeted by this:

We also met our house mates Seven and Derek, who flew in from Dublin, Ireland. So good to see them again after they moved from Germany to Ireland late last year.


Much to my surprise I received a goodie bag filled with loads of quilty goodness for being under the first 1.000 people who registered for QuiltCon. How cool is that?

And this is where it began: The award ceremony starting at 8am with some stats:

Wow, Tammie, and I though we traveled far from Germany!!

I was amazed by all the award winning quilts in all the different categories, but I think the quilt that took my breath away (and I was not the only one in the audience) is this one:

Inspired by a princess cut diamond this is 'Bling' by Catherine Jones won Best in Show - so well deserved!
Here you can see all other award winning quilts! 

Upon entering the show room we heard some very loud cheering coming from the Art Gallery Fabrics booth.  And there they were: Mathew Boudreaux aka Mister Domestic and Pat Bravo having some real fun with giving away gorgeous fabrics that feel so damn good!!!

And will you believe it, I won this awesome fabric bundle! 9 yards of gorgeousness in my favourite colours! 

I also really loved their booth and the stickers on the floor!

That basically was the first impression of my QuiltCon experience: by just the first 15 minutes inside the show room I did feel the difference. There was such a positive and happy energy from just everyone I met. And that feeling continued throughout the entire duration of QuiltCon.

And then there were the quilts. Oh the quilts!

Here are just SOME of the amazing quilts that stood out to me. There is no particular order or category, just simple beauty.

'Made in GDR 26' by Emily Doane

 'Making All The Pieces Fit' by Stephanie Skardal

'Bertha' by Melissa Curly

'Min Mid Mod' by Kim Simpson

And then we met Amanda aka Crazy Mom again, who was chatting with loads of people and giving away some of her beautiful pin cushions.

In the background 'Leftovers #4' by Debra Jalbert

I cherish this little pin cushion so much!

Every famous quilter I've seen and even briefly talked to was so approachable. First I was very hesitant to talk to all of my quilting heroes because it felt like stalking rock stars or something, or like I was taking up too much of people's time. But it actually was the complete opposite. Everyone was so happy when you told them that you love their quilts or their fabric design. And also that we came aaaaalll the way from Germany especially to go to QuiltCon. 

That's me and Giuseppe aka Giucy Giuce at the Andover Fabrics booth. I'm a big fan of his work and was probably a little excited hence the shaky photo... :o)

 More quilts! 

'Skewed Symmetry' by Katie Pedersen

Two weeks before QuiltCon my husband got invited to come to Seattle and instruct a McGuire Course. As he said 'I'm going to Seattle, wanna come?' I couldn't contain my excitement, of course I wanted! Before we even booked flights I booked a work shop with Katie of Sew Katie Did where she will be teaching the technique used in her quilt above. I am one lucky girl!!!

'Yay or Nay' by Debbie Jeske

I know Debbie of A Quilter's Table from social media involvement since quite some time now and adore her quilts. It was great to see one of her quilts in person!

'Caged Bird' by Juli Smith
After I've seen the first quilts I calmed down a little. I did not submit a quilt myself because I was afraid and unsure. I haven't seen that many quilts of other people and I had difficulties to judge whether my quilts are good enough for such an amazing show.  But seeing that almost all quilts have little bits which are not perfect I began to understand that perfection is not what I should be aiming for and that I also should not be so overly critical with my own work. All these beautiful quilts brought my own work into a different perspective though. I had difficulties understanding the different categories as well. Now I know where my quilts would maybe fit into.
So QuiltCon West, I'm going to submit a good few quilts, that's for sure. Whether they get selected is another story but at least I am confident now that the quality of my quilts is similar to what I've seen in Savannah.

I had a full lecture pass and went to several very interesting lectures.

But there was also time for getting to know people and enjoy the sun outside.

There were several other German girls attending QuiltCon e.g. my fellow quilting bee Vicky, who I met for the first time in Savannah, how crazy is that? Or Carola, who only lives like 50km away from me. Nico currently lives in the States but was happy to meet some fellow Germans.

All in all a fantastic first day!

Linking to
Modern Cologne Quilters
Let's Bee Social

Monday, 20 February 2017

Quilt Con prep

Only a few days left and I'm going to QuiltCon in Savannah, Georgia! As you can imagine at this stage I am beyond excited!

In preparation of my first QuiltCon I made myself some business cards, in the hope to connect with loads of other quilters!

I used my logo from the blog, which I really like and it looks so good in that tiny print, too!

I also made a lanyard from the left over scraps from my pillow so I can have my business cards ready to hand out.

And that's me, introducing myself on Instagram #helloquiltcon

If you see me, come say hello!

I have also prepared for my work shop 'QuiltRemix' with Riane Menardi of Vesselquilts.
We were asked to prepare two large blocks in contrasting colours, and I opted for Kona black and Robert Kaufmann Essex Linen in gray.

One is a 20" square log cabin block.

And the other one is a huge 40" square dutchman's puzzle block. I had some difficulties making this giant block, some of the seams don't match up... very obvious in that size and these colours. But hey, I'm cutting the whole thing up again so I just cut the mishaps out. (Uh, did I really say that?) Anyhow, I'm sure after the remix it will look all good.

I am so looking forward to the whole event! I will write reports from my stay when I'm back, so stay tuned!

Friday, 17 February 2017

My personal fabric challenge

I've always adored the Quilts by Emily and her awesome fabric selections. She puts together fabrics which at first sight don't seem to match up. But then those fabrics create the most interesting and beautiful quilts! Like this one, or this or this, or this.

So I was pulling fabrics from my stash and came up with this selection:

Yes: brown, mustard, pink and turquoise. Ui!

I was very skeptical myself but as I started to cut some strips and placed them beside each other they actually started to work.

I wanted to create and interesting design but kept it simple. I opted for a coin layout with 5 rows in different widths. Much to my surprise I think it turned out really well! 

The pillow is in my favourite size 26 x 26" (65 x 65cm) and is going to be a gift for a friend.

I was unsure of how and in what colours to quilt it. I had several colours to chose from but opted for white, light grey and mustard, all beautiful Aurifil wt 40 thread!

With all these different colours I think there is so much to look at and despite the big variety of fabrics it still is harmonic. I'm in fact so happy with the pillow that I want to make a whole quilt out of it and keep that for myself since I'm having a hard time giving this pillow away.

Linking this to Finish Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts
Modern Patch Monday at the Modern Cologne Quilters

Saturday, 28 January 2017

Regatta Quilt - revisited

I have never intended to make a quilt twice.
But in order to write the Regatta Quilt pattern I knew I needed to make another one.

I actually had a lot of fun making this quilt again, since the first Regatta Quilt happened kind of accidentally.
This time I made it properly from start to finish following my own pattern.

I opted for Oakshott jelly rolls again, this time in an autumn colour palette, which I absolutely love!

Despite the non- water colours I opted for the same wavy line quilting as the original Regatta Quilt.
I'm very happy how it turned out, 2.5 years practice make big difference in the quilting!

Again I used the left over strips for the back, but this time I turned them vertical and added white and two colours oakshott for an interesting design.

I was actually surprised how well the horizontal wavy quilting lines go with the vertical strips of the back!

I also opted for the white binding since it makes the colours really stand out.

That applies for the back as well. 

We took the photos at the recently finished 'Anneliese Brost Musik Forum Ruhr' in my home town, which has a beautiful brick facade and is a very well designed building next to an old church, which is now the entrance into the Forum.
We walked around the whole building complex and took some more photos in the winter sun.

The original Regatta Quilt I quilted with a blue-white variegated Aurifil thread. This time I opted for just plain white and it worked so well with all the different colours. Usually I quilt with 40wt Aurifil thread, but this time I used the 50wt Aurifil thread and achieved a very subtle texture.

I will give this quilt to my Dad, he loves autumn and he recently said to me that he would love to have a quilt. There is nothing better than giving a quilt to a beloved person who really appreciates all the effort that goes into making a quilt. In return I love to give comfort and warmth provided by a beautifully hand made quilt.

The free Regatta Quilt pattern is available on my blog here.

Linking this to Finish Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts
Let's Bee Social
Modern Patch Monday at the Modern Cologne Quilters

Friday, 27 January 2017

Transforming Inspiration into Original Designs

I have always taken photos of structures, patterns or anything interesting that catches my eye without knowing what to do with these images, I just found them interesting. Since I'm quilting these photos got a whole new meaning: inspiration for quilt designs!

So far I have not put these images into quilt designs though, there were other ideas that need to be turned into quilts.

Insofar I found the January Mighty Lucky Quilting Club Challenge especially helpful since I was now turning these images into an actual quilt design!

There were several topics we were ask to photographs of first. This is what I've found:
Topic: Graphic Design

I've been to Munich in January to attend a huge building and construction trade fair. I really liked their logo on the facade panels!

This is a painted sign for the delivery entry of a shop on my way to work. Nice flying geese!

Topic: plants, leaves and such

It's a bit challenging to find plants in winter but this ivy is on my way to work, and I've never really noticed it. There is so much interesting detail in these little buds!

Topic: Architectural Detail

As an architect I could fill a whole blog post about that topic but I won't bore you. I picked two images:
Top: This is the 'Excenter House', a landmark in my home town. It's build on an old bunker from WW2, has 3 x 5 stories turned at different angles. The facade is most interesting where tinted windows create a very interesting facade.
Bottom: Stairs at a sub way station between escalators. I liked the ceiling design!
(Don't ask me what that lift is doing there half way down the stairs...)

Topic: Fence 

Well, this is not really a fence, rather a facade but I still liked all the different angles it created. It's a cage for a little skater park on top of a clothing shop. Pretty cool.

Topic: Bridge/ Supports of bridges

There are probably prettier bridges than this one but the photo still created an interesting play with colours and angles.

Topic: Skyline
Bohooo! Couldn't find anything appealing.

But I found other interesting patterns like this old tiled floor. (My shoe is in there for scale.)

You could just 'copy and paste' this into a quilt!

Or these illuminated 'train tracks' at the HQ of our public transport service.

 Topic: shadows from angular structure

This is our back garden, the photo is taken out of our kitchen window.

And that's the image I was stuck with.
I sketched a few designs and and came up with this block:

It was nice to sketch again and get my Copics marker out. They still work!

I played around with layouts and since I don't have any fancy quilt design computer programs hand sketches have to do.

And this is my 'Mini Quilt Design':

I stuck to the colour scheme of the original photo and threw in a little bit of pink and I like it!

I loved this exercise and will definitely consider making this quilt!
And, hmmmmm, a quilt design computer program is now on my wish list.

Thanks, Amy of DuringQuietTimes, for this great challenge!

Wednesday, 4 January 2017

I am Queen Bee for January/ February!

It's January again and that means I'm Queen Bee for the next two months!

I picked a beautiful improv log cabin block design by Debbie of A Quilter's Table, the tutorial can be found here on her blog.

I was planning on making two blocks to show my bees what my plan is, but I kept on going and made four blocks because I had so much fun!! I had to stop myself otherwise I would have made a lot more with no more work left for my bees!

I am in love with this colour combination at the moment.
Light blue:

Dark navy blue:

and yummy mustard:

I am planning to make a baby quilt for a friend who recently had a baby boy.

Can't wait to see what blocks my bees come back to me!

Linking this to Let's Bee Social and Farbenspiel