Monday, September 17, 2018

Shadow Selfie #4 - Giddy Up

This is the 4th quilt in the Shadow Selfie series.  I wrote blogs previously about quilts 1-3.

Many time when I take a shadow selfie, I enlist my husband in the picture too.  He's not quite as enthusiastic about getting into the groove as I am, but he will pose when we're on a trip.  This picture was taken on one of those trips.  We live in the Pacific Northwest, where rodeos abound around the 4th of July.  There are so many of them they call it "Cowboy Christmas".  We don our cowboy hats and western clothes and head out for a good old fashioned rodeo.   Hence the name "Giddy Up".

I found a perfect background fabric that looked like barbed wire to me.  Do you think it looks like that too?

I drew up the pattern and made freezer paper templates, which I then ironed onto the background.   I numbered each piece and made match marks between the pieces so that I could sew them back together, leaving generous allowances around the edges.  That way, I knew I would be able to trim the piece to size after sewing.  If you are working with odd angles, be sure to leave this extra allowance too.

I placed the pieces along the grain-line of the fabric and after pressing the freezer paper down, I cut out all the pieces, leaving the freezer paper in place so that I would know which piece was what.

After sewing the background togehter, I fused the shadows in place, appliqued them with invisible smoky thread and quilted the piece.

Shadow Selfie #4 - Giddy Up by Joanne Adams Roth

I hope you like it.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

New Sewing Machine - Bernina 570QE

I was sewing late last night and the spring holding my throat plate broke.  (Oh, and the day before, my walking foot stopped doing zig-zag stitching.)  It's the second time the spring has broken off, and the last time I tried to get a replacement, I had to buy a whole new throat plate.  Luckily, I kept that old one, so I had one more spare spring.  But, that was a huge clue to me that it was way past time to get a new sewing machine.  I am a dyed in the wool Bernina sewing machine owner.  I've had my model 440 for over 10 years and the last time I took it in for service, they told me it was just about worn out.    

So, the very next day, I headed down to a nice Portland dealer, called Modern Domestic.  They've been advertising all kinds of specials, and I knew that most of them had expired.   But I was ready to look seriously and perhaps buy a machine.

They showed me all of the models they had, some of the used ones, and then told me that they had recently received classroom machines that could be sold at a discount off their normal selling price.  Wouldn't you just know that it was the exact model that I was looking at!

I selected the model 570, which is the quilter's edition with an 8" throat space, which is slightly larger than the standard machines.  Its not as hug of a space as you would get on the huge machines, but since I have a quilting machine, I no longer need the huge space.  This one is more portable, meaning that it's not too heavy for me to carry.  I was able to bring it home and I'm over the moon.

I'll work on it a little bit, then take my intro class in October. 

Here's to new sewing machines!

Monday, September 10, 2018

Shadow Selfie #3 - Bubbleishous

This is the 3rd quilt in the shadow selfie series.  I wrote blogs about the previous 2 quilts.  The shadow selfie is from a picture I took of myself on a walk early in the morning to get that long leggy look.  I positioned myself to make it look like I was holding a bouquet of daffodils.  Well, actually, they look like they're coming out of my belly button, but you get the gist.

I found a wonderful new-to-me ombre fabric at a quilt show in Portland.  I knew that I was making the shadow selfie series when I bought it, and it was put into the quilt within a week.  I loved the bubbleishous (made up word) feel of the fabric.  Doesn't it just make you happy?

"Shadow Selfie #3 - Bubbleishous" by Joanne Adams Roth 2018

The quilting was done with circular templates and free form pebbles.  It complemented the fabric really well, and is hard to see unless you looking at the quilt in person.  One of the things I like about going to quilt shows is when you get drawn into a quilt to look closer.  I think this one will make people do that. (p.s. My sister days my butt is not that big!)

I hope you like it.

Monday, September 3, 2018

Shadow Selfie #2 - The Adams Stance

This is the second quilt in my shadow selfie series.  I wrote a blog about the first one previously.

This quilt started with shadow selfie photo that I had taken on a walk.  In April, I took a picture of a field of blooming daisies.  I loved the idea of putting this shadow selfie onto the field of flowers.   So those 2 photos became the inspiration for this quilt.

I started with a blue ombre fabric as the background.  The shadow selfie was appliqued, then the piece was quilted.  White, pink and yellow embroidery threads were used to embroider the lazy daisies on the bottom of the quilt.

"Shadow Selfie #2 - The Adams Stance" by Joanne Adams Roth 2018

I was tickled pink when our 5 year old granddaughter noticed right away that it was a shadow!  She drew a picture of the quilt.  Don't you love it?

I named this quilt, "The Adams Stance" because many of us in the Adams family (no...not the show, my real family) inherited a quirky knee bend from my father.  There are so many pictures of him like this, and of me, and of my son.  It's really quite funny because we don't know we're doing it.  Then we see the pictures and have a great laugh.  Do you have family characteristics that show up in pictures too?   Like perhaps squinty eyes?  And you know who you are, right?

I hope you like it.

Monday, August 27, 2018

Blue and Light - Sister's Delight - The Design

I realized with an almost horrific reaction that I haven't made a quilt for my sister Colleen.  When she sent the quilts back to me for my solo show, it hit me like a ton of bricks.  Like my mother before me, I've been making quilts to give away as gifts, and haven't considered the equanimity of giving quilts to my relatives who also make quilts.  Shame on me!

So, I called her up as soon as I unpacked the box of borrowed quilts and apologized for never making one for her.  I asked if she wanted one, and if she did, what would she like.  She immediately knew!  She took a picture of a comforter she has on her queen-sized bed that is in shades of blue and light cream and tans.  It has paisley motifs all over it, so she said something that goes with that in the same color scheme would be great.  I'm thrilled that the serendipity of this request matches exactly the theme of my quilt guild's show theme for 2019.  Do you pay attention to serendipitous events in your life?  Makes the hair stand up on your arms and at the back of your neck.  I love it when it happens.

Here is her picture and some of my sketches for ideas:

She liked the one with the hexie background and paisley applique.  I liked it the best too, because it's more modern.

Monday, August 20, 2018

On the Hunt for sewing supplies

I'm back to sewing some clothes again.  I made a pattern for a loose carefree top based on a top I purchased recently.  I've been testing out my pattern and have made a few adjustments here and there..  Perhaps by the 3rd or 4th time I sew this top, I'll get the pattern just right.

The collar on this top is really interesting.  It looks like it's ruffled and it stands up quite nicely.  The secret is 1/4" wide flexible boning sewn between the collar and the facing.

Here's a picture of the top:

I went to a local bridal supply store and bought the only boning they had.  Way too stiff!  Then I went to a local discount fabric store and found some 1/2" flexible bonding.  I decided to cut it down the middle to give me the 1/4" wide flexible boning that I needed.  It's not quite as pliable as the original, but I think it works just fine.

It's been really fun to use my serger and quickly sew up new clothes.  This material was some of the cheap stuff I bought at the stash bazaar; when my friends ambushed me at the door with stacks of green fabric.  I think this was just the right pattern to use that fabric.  What do you think?

Monday, August 13, 2018

Shadow Selfie #1

I've been taking shadow selfies for about 4 years now.  I don't know why I like them, but I do.  Perhaps it's because I don't care if I have make up on, what I'm wearing, or how many wrinkles are on my face.  My shadow always looks good.  Since I post so many of the shadow selfies, many of my Facebook friends do it now too!  I think they are having as much fun as I am.  I've taken them at rodeos, on hikes, on bike rides, and on many of my daily walks.  I especially like the ones taken early in the morning, when my shadow is long and leggy.

Sometimes, when you're drawn to something, you really can't put your finger on the reason.  Artists get their inspirations from many sources, and I'm no exception.  Are we getting a message from the universe that we should pay attention to?  What do these pictures say about me?

Since I like to turn pictures into art quilts, I decided that a series of my shadow selfies would be really fun.  I decided to make them 12" x 12" and to try to make 10 to start with.  All of them will have black shadows and black binding.  But the rest will be whatever inspiration strikes me at the moment.

Shadow selfie #1 started when I picked one of the shadow selfies for this quilt.  There was a really great batik that I had with ombre dying in it plus some strong horizontal lines.  So with these 2 things as my inspiration, I sketched up a design that would be quick and that would convey my photo.

I traced the wedges and put them on top of the fabric, matching up some of the horizontal lines.

These were pieced, the shadow was appliqued to the background, and it was simply quilted with teal thread.
Shadow Selfie #1 by Joanne Adams Roth  March, 2018

I hope you like it!  And have fun taking shadow selfies too!

Monday, August 6, 2018

Arizona wall quilt

My sister retired from a job in Alaska and didn't want to spend one more winter freezing.  She and her husband actually both retired and headed to Arizona, where they found a nice home.  She sent me a few pictures of bare walls and asked for a quilt (or two) to help decorate her home.

Here are the bare walls and color preferences.

I used to make Native American themed quilts and thought that perhaps I could do that.  But I then started thinking about other desert motifs and how they are more prevalent in Arizona vacation homes now.  I showed my sister some of my ideas and she sent me more pictures.  We settled on a sunset scene.

The background was made using freehand cutting and sewing with some strips inserted.  My sister likes the Kokopelli motif, so I sketched this one onto steam a seam light and fused the black fabric to the background.  It was quilted and faced.

I hope you like it.

Monday, July 30, 2018

Paper fabric postcards

I wrote a previous blog about making painted paper fabric.   Some of the pieces that I made were just the right size to cut up and make into postcards.  They are a really fast and fun way to get things done so that you have the feeling of accomplishment!  So many of our projects take years to complete, and most of us quilters/fabric artists have several in progress.  Fabric postcards are just the ticket to give you something you can finish without slowing down all of your other projects.

Here are a few of the postcards that I made with that painted paper fabric.


Monday, July 23, 2018

Fabric, fabric and more fabric

Our quilt guild holds two stash bazaars a year so that our members can clear out their "junk" and sell it to other people as their "treasures".  I recently went to one of those stash bazaars and I was bombarded as soon as I walked in the door.  So many people know that I love lime green anything, and especially lime green fabric.  So a few of them had set some aside underneath their tables, lying in wait for me!  It's all in fun... but since I have lime green fabric lust, they cleared out my wallet!  I keep telling myself I WILL NOT BUY ANYMORE LIME GREEN FABRIC.  It isn't working.

Anyway, I now have a bunch more of it, and I love it still.  I hope I'm not the only one.

Is there something that you love too?  Something that you just can't get enough of?   Happy Quilting!

Monday, July 16, 2018

Getting Nervous about my solo show

I had to admit to a few people that I am starting to get nervous about my solo show approaching in October.

I've made a list of all the quilts I want to display - around 100.  One task done.
I've written to all the people that have quilts I want to borrow back for the show.  Second task done.
I've made most of the card stock labels that be pinned to the front of the quilts.  Third task almost done.
I've sent pictures to our publicity chairperson for the postcards and flyers.  Fourth task done.
I've done a preliminary layout of the show.  Fifth task almost done.

However, some unplanned tasks are starting to crop up:  Several people have asked me how to wash their quilts, how to get them to me, if I can do a few "small" repairs, and to let me know there isn't a hanging sleeve sewn on the back of the quilt.  Oh oh, that sounds like some work for me.  I don't mind a little bit of work.  I just know that it's summer and this is my traveling, gardening and biking season.  So, it feels like there is going to be a crunch time coming.  And that is making me a little nervous.

Wouldn't it make you a little nervous too to gather 100 of your quilts from around the USA and Canada?

Anyway, still over the moon that I was selected to be the featured artist for Clark County Quilters.  Mark it on your calendars:  October 19-21, 2018.  Opening reception is on October 19 from 5-7 pm.
H.H. Hall Building, Vancouver, WA.

Monday, July 9, 2018

Painting paper fabric

I bought a whole bunch of muslin when I saw a sale at Mood on line.  It was purchased for making dress fitting muslins.  But it was so much, like 10 yards or something!  And I don't sew that much clothing.  I remembered a technique that I did one time where I glued tissue paper to the muslin to make a "paper fabric" base.  This time, while everything was still wet, I went crazy with water colors and fabric paints and made up some interesting painted paper fabric.  It is so fun to have a play date and do things like this.

I want to make some art quilts with it; perhaps a nest.  Who knows?

Anyway, here it is:

Monday, July 2, 2018

Sewing with the cat

If you are a quilter and you have a cat, or cats, you already know my dilemma.  The cat likes to be near me, on me, on top of what I'm working on, underneath what I'm working on, underneath my feet......  You get the picture.   I end up with cat hair on everything.  But I love my cats!  OK, I might go so far as to say that I have made my cats co-dependent on me.  I've turned into a cat enabler.

Here is my current cat, Jack, sharing my chair while I'm waiting for paint to dry and goofing around on my computer.  Do you see how much chair I get to use?

Here is a picture of my previous cat, Fly, who loved to sit on top of my sewing machine while I was sewing.  Sometimes, she would hang her feet over the edges and get so close to the needle, I thought that I might accidentally sew over her paw.

Here she is sitting on top of a quilt while I was sewing on the binding.

And here is a really old picture, showing me holding a kitten when I was about 6 yrs old.  So you know I've liked cats for a long time!

I hope you have room for pets in your life too!

Monday, June 25, 2018

Labels for quilts

I helped several people working on documenting quilts from their states as part of a historical record.  Many of the quilts we discovered did not have the maker's identity on them,  Sadly, this is the case for most antique quilts.  Because of that, I think that every quilt you make should have a label on the back with your name and the date.  Other things you can add are the name of the quilt, the person you gave the quilt to, a picture of the quilt or yourself or the recipient, a short story about the making of the quilt, or your city or contact information.

When I first started making quilts, I hand embroidered my name on the lower right back corner.  I started out using chain embroidery stitch and embroidery floss.  I changed to back-stitching with embroidery floss and still do that sometimes.  Here is my very first quilt signature:

(Did you notice that it took me 17 years to complete this quilt?  Yes, it was a long time.)

Lately, I've enjoyed doing the label in the Word program and printing it on inkjet ready fabric.  I try to match the color of the label to the color of the quilt.  But not always.  It's super easy to do that in Word.  Here are a couple of examples.

Sometimes, it's fun to include a picture of the recipient or the honoree on the label.  Here are some examples of that:

After I print the label, let it dry and iron it,  I stitch it to the back of the quilt by hand.

Some of my friends have labels made on embroidery machines and these are quite beautiful.  And other friends hand write out their labels with pigma pens.  Some of these labels are quite large.  But they tell the full story that stays with the quilt.  It's so fun to read those story labels.

I hope you remember to label all of your quilts too.

Monday, June 18, 2018

President's block

Each year our guild is asked to make quilt blocks to give to our outgoing president, as a way to thank her for her year of service to our organization.  This year, 2018, the request to the members was to make a block, up to 10", of something orange, and perhaps a chicken or cat somewhere on the block.

I know that this particular president has quite a sense of humor, so I designed a humorous cat for the block that I wanted to make for her.

And here it is:

I hope it gives you a smile too!

Monday, June 11, 2018

Special Exhibit - Avian Studies with Wilma Scott

We had another fabulous quilt show at the Clark County Event Center in April 2018.  I entered 16 quilts, which seems like a lot!  Some of them were entered into a special exhibit called "Avian Studies".  Wilma Scott entered 7 of her bird quilts, and I entered 7 of my nest quilts.

Here are the pictures of that special exhibit:

It was fun to have a collaborative exhibit.  Thanks Wilma!