Monday, April 20, 2015

Do You Doodle?

That's the first question that Sherri Lynn Wood asked of the class last Friday morning.  After an interesting and entertaining presentation by Sherri Lynn to the Kansas City Modern Quilt Guild the night before, I could hardly wait to take her workshop on Doodling with fabric the next day. Here's the project that I made...course, I've got more doodling to do before it's finished...crazy, huh!
With only six quilters present, our class was a small one, so we had room to spread out and got close-up-and-personal input from our attentive instructor. I especially enjoyed the evaluation exercises spread out over the day. Here's our small beginnings, all grouped together, awaiting input from the class. 
Several hours later, our projects had grown in size and we were beginning to feel a flow to our work. Some of the questions that we were to ask ourselves included: What surprised me? What did I discover or learn? What was satisfying and dissatisfying? We gave each other constructive feedback and it felt like we were truly creating modern art!
Here's Sherri Lynn showing us one of her completed Doodle quilts. It looks pretty in the photo, but believe me when I say that, in person, it is even more  beautiful and happy!
Sherri Lynn's first book, detailing her methods for improvisational piecing, will be available for purchase later this month, but our guild was privileged to get to purchase it early. Of course, I snatched one up!
 The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters is a gorgeous book full of beautifully photographed quilts and tons of detailed pictures of the techniques used to make those quilts. I own several books that describe improv piecing but this one is, by far, the most stimulating how-to. Here's a glance at the table of contents...
 Reading Sherri Lynn's book from cover to cover will be a delight and I already have a good start! In her book, she outlines 10 different scores (Her term for deciding a set of rules or limits to work within as you create an improv project.) to help the quilter jump into this exciting and modern way of creating a quilt. 
Honestly, I don't know when I've ever taken a workshop that was more fun or purchased a quilting book that has gotten me more excited to try new things!
In fact, I'm seriously considering going through the book, chapter by chapter, and creating a project. Anyone game to join me? Get the book and let me know!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

The Family Reunion Dress

 A few weeks ago I placed an order with Sunny Day Supply for some darling fabrics. Today, I want to show you what I made with some of the yardage, Snail Trail by Cloud 9 Fabrics. I've had the Family Reunion Dress pattern, by Oliver & S, for awhile now, but this was my first attempt at sewing it.
 You know that I adore the style and creativity of the O & S patterns. This one is a keeper for sure, and one that I'll be using over and over again for my granddaughters' little dresses. This rendition is size 4 and is the largest size included in the pattern. I may have to see if they make it in larger sizes.
 Jane, who is four, is petite for her age so the neck was perhaps a little bit wide on her. I could have made the size 3 and just lengthened it if I wanted a perfect fit. But, then again, little girls grow. Right!?
 As usual, the pattern instructions were clear and clever. I love the pin tucks on both the front and the back of the bodice. Buttons down the back are my favorite closing for little dresses. For some reason, I think that it looks classier than a zipper.
 An extra special touch is the faced hem which adds body and weight to the bottom of the dress making it hang nicely.
 Together, the super cute fabric and classic design of the dress make for a darling summer frock.
I think Janie likes it too!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Hide-And-Seek Tunic

 With Spring's arrival, I'm getting the itch to sew little-girl-size clothing again!
Cotton & Steel Horses paired with Peppered Cotton look really pretty on my red-headed Lula sewn up into the Hide-And-Seek Tunic by Oliver+S.
 Since this was my first attempt at the pattern, I wasn't sure about the sizing. Although the top is supposed to be "roomy", I might make the shoulders a bit narrower the next time on this size 7 for Lula. My experience with O+S patterns has always been positive and this pattern was no exception, going together quickly and effortlessly. The dress version with welt pockets would only be a little more complicated and easy enough for anyone with a bit of garment-making experience.
 I'm thinking of trying the top again using just one fabric and leaving off the sleeves for a summery version. It might be cute to shorten it a little to wear with shorts also.
Next up, will be a sweet little O&S Family Reunion Dress for Lula's sister, Jane. Stay tuned for that soon!

Friday, April 3, 2015

Sewing With My Modern Friends

A week ago I was beginning a three day retreat with 36 of my quilting peeps in the Kansas City Modern Quilt Guild.
Like last spring, we traveled to Hamilton, Missouri, visiting the lovely retreat center run by Missouri Star Quilt Company.
If we wanted to sleep, we had the most comfortable beds imaginable...
but mostly....we sewed!
Heres' my spot...and my awesome sewing partner, Ibby! What fun we had  sewing, chatting, shopping, eating!
 An unscheduled visit from Jenny Doan herself was an added perk on Sunday!
Of course, no where will you find more quilt shops within walking distance of each other than in Hamilton, Missouri. Fabric bombed trees are good too! 
I'm already looking forward to next year!