TGIF!

I think Friday is my favorite day of the week. The feeling of joy I get at about 6 pm on a Friday is unmatched by anything else these days.

That was a little bleak.

So anyway, it’s blood donor month. Did you know that? One donation can help up to 3 people! I’ve got my appointment tomorrow morning at 9:45 am. I love having a donor center right around the corner!

I got two new sewing books burning a hole in my metaphorical sewing pocket. Did I blog about these already? My blogging has been so¬†intermittent…anyway, I’m super excited about them. First off is Elizabeth Hartman’s Practical Guild to Patchwork. Of course, there’s already a big Oh

Fransson group on Flickr – check out some of the projects! Besides the great quilts in her book, I also want to give mod mosaic a try. How cute is that? And everyone posting their pictures say it’s really easy.

My other new book is Dare to Be Square by Boo Davis. Super cute projects – especially the robot. And the weiner dog.¬†Her patterns are totally unique. I love straight lines – she’s got such a fun mix of quilts in this book. AND, she’s a totally awesome illustrator. Check it.

So that’s what I’ll be working on in the near future. That and my outstanding bee blocks and some sweet baby gifts for my new cousin Jackson due in Feb.

Oh! And I almost forgot! I’m going to do Project Modern Challenge #2. I’ve been doing some sketches, but I’m not quite to the sharing stage. Thanks to the awesome Modern Quilt Guild for setting it up! Look at all the super awesome entries from Project Modern: Challenge #1!

Have a great weekend!

what does modern quilter mean to you?

snake charmer hand quilting-3

I’m a little late on this, but this discussion has been going on over at the Modern Quilt Guild blog. Today someone posted a great recap of the discussion, complete with VERY cool pictures. I wanted to add my two cents to the din because, of course, I have an opinion. As usual.

I just got one of Nancy Crow’s books from the library (talk about ahead of her time!), and she was talking about how (in the early 1990′s) it seemed like everyone was using fusible web to put quilts together, and she thought that machine piecing might soon go the way of hand piecing and be a thing of the past. I’m so glad she was wrong and that today’s quilters have so many methods to choose from.

When I think about what it means to be a modern quilter, I think about my own way of picking and choosing methods. I like to see what’s available (taking classes, listening to lectures, reading a billion blogs), and then cherry pick what suits me best. As a member of a traditional guild and now the LA Modern Quilt Guild, I’m surrounded by quilt makers of all skill and experience levels. People who love tiny details and people who hate tiny details – only loving big (fast) results. Some people love the tiny details and still have big, fast results!

I think it would be wrong to say that modern quilters aren’t precise or meticulous, because I know that to be false. Although many modern quilts do end up with a free or even haphazard look. It took skill and planning to get them that way. An eye for color, a certain whimsy…whatever it is.

To me, modern quilters are this: the ones doing the sewing. That’s all of us. The ones who find the time in their busy lives to create beautiful, useful keepsakes. Fabric hugs for family and friends.

I do think that the connotation ‘modern’ represents a certain aesthetic: bold colors in prints and solids, large geometric shapes – sometimes off-set, good use of negative space. This is just what I think of. And in my mind’s eye – I see quilts made by Elizabeth Hartman and Ashley at Film in the Fridge and a whole slew of other quilters setting the internet on it’s ear with all their gorgeous pictures.

I also think modern can refer to the seemingly thousands of quilters coming together online, naturally grouping because of similar tastes and styles and using every bit of the current social networking technology available to share ideas and accomplishments. I love watching what’s happening and being a part of it!

Its a great time to be quilting. No time like the present!

serendipity

I’ve been overusing that word in the last few days, and hearing a lot of John Cusack references in answer, but there’s no other word for it. I’m feeling good about things…so good, I went out and bought a few quick pick lotto tickets! But that’s not what we’re here to talk about.

I got hired by my company! So now, instead of being a consultant, I’m an official employee on the payroll. Still part-time, which is perfect. I truly have THE BEST JOB EVER.

Then, my kid finally got into a preschool! I was about to give up – I’m on waiting lists all over town with no nibbles, and I called the top of my list in hopes that there had been a little movement. School #2 said, “Oh! I was just going to call you today! I have one spot for you!” Whew! That is a big relief…I hope this works out!

I was doing my normal eye-candy-foraging on ohfransson.com, and read her post about the Portland branch of the Modern Quilt Guild. I followed the link and found the national page, which led me to the LA branch. So I joined! I lucked out, and was able to make it to a meeting and met a bunch of cool girls, saw a bunch of awesome quilts, and am really looking forward to getting to know everyone better. Then I found out there is a little local guild forming! So exciting. I’ll probably hardly ever get to go to the meetings, but they have a weekend sew once a month, and I think I can swing some of those.

I just wanted to mention this quickly. These girls are doing something awesome. Pioneers! Bringing together modern quilters who have already been grouping informally online for a long time…sharing ideas, forming bees, etc. This is happening because there is a real gap in the industry where modern quilters are concerned!

I recently went to the Road 2 CA quilt show and not one vendor had any Denyse Schmidt fabric for sale. I don’t know how many vendors were in the vendor mall, but there are over 100 listed on the site. Not all of them sell fabric, of course, but still. Not one had Denyse Schmidt, and I’d say she’s easily one of the most popular fabric and quilt designers of the modern quilt movement. Another popular designer who was nowhere to be found was Heather Ross. I did see a couple Mendocino prints, but only one vendor. CRAZY. I saw about a billion reproduction prints from every time period…except my own! So that’s a bummer. The industry is not keeping up with the whole audience. And what’s happening is that the fabric manufacturers and the book publishers see the writing on the wall – or internet – but the trade shows and traditional shops seem to be a few steps behind.

One thing I did see was some of the Gees Bend solids and the kits. Now, how can you make a pattern for a Gees Bend quilt? I mean, doesn’t that defeat the whole purpose? Watch it…or we’ll take the magic right out of those beautiful quilts.

Alright, that’s enough of that.

One last good fortune… our family in the Dominican Republic is safe and sound, which is awesome.

I hope to do some sewing this week. I hope you and yours are doing great. I wish all the babies in Haiti were wrapped in quilts right now.

 
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