Machine Quilting Blog Hop Week 9 and a Giveaway!!!!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Can you believe that next week will be the last week of the blog hop? I cannot and to celebrate we are having a giveaway!This giveaway is generously sponsored by Martingale Publishing. The winner will receive one copy of The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting by Angela Walters and Christa Watson. If the winner resides in the United States or Canada, they will have their choice of a physical or digital copy of the book. If they reside outside the US and Canada, the winner will receive a digital copy. You can enter anytime between June 26, 2017-July 7, 2017. Use Raffelcopter link above the enter ! Be sure to go to the other bloggers sites listed below for additional chances to win!

This week is the chapter called  Migration in the book “The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting” by Angela Walters and Christa Watson. HollyAnne, Kristin and Jen are joining me in this journey. The four of us are blogging our way through the book and each week that goes by we are practicing more and gaining confidence with each exercise. I am a long armer and the other ladies are using their domestic sewing machines. The patterns for the quilts in the book are amazing but we are focusing on the free motion quilting for the blog hop. Links to the previous weeks are on the side bar tab for the Machine Quilting Blog hop. Join the party at Instagram using hashtag #machinequiltingbloghop

 

I really liked the ideas of making rectangular squares look like faceted gems. Angela made high contrasting quilting by facets in the light squares and dense quilting in the dark squares of the sample quilt. She made some of my favorite shapes curls and a feather . I have made 2 quilts using these ideas and I will show you in the next series of photos.

Here is a quilt where I did the facet look in each corner of a block to highlight the center batik . I did a ton of outlining too using  a ruler. Click on each picture to enlarge for detail.

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Here is a quilt with an elongated curl with feather shapes on them. One of my favorite shapes to do . I added a bit of pebbling to the mix:

 

Click on the photos for details.

The takeaways from this week are:

  1. Emphasize an area by a bit of less quilting and the dense quilting can be a background fill de-emphazing that area
  2. Stitching in the ditch can help emphasize an area as well as anchor it before you quilt a zone … divide and conquer
  3.  negative space can be broken up in different stitched using a straight line, a curvy line or a bracket shaped line.

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway! Link at the beginning of the post

I hope you have had as much fun following along as I have had doing this post. Next week is a celebration and a chance to apply all we have learned !!!

Quilt on,

Vicki

Quilt Show ideas

 

This is a guild only show for a neighboring county otherwise I would have tried to get in ! I go when they have their biannual show and this year I was able to take my Mom with me as we were both on a vacation, a rare treat. I love looking at the perennial favorites with a twist. Dear Jane made from batiks, selvage edge used in different ways and the guilds stash buster, the string quilt pictures with kite shapes ( 5th row, 3rd quilt). Click on pictures to enlarge and see detail. Each photo was taken because I saw something that had a great idea or a quilting stitch that I liked.

I love the creativity in this little show. There were 150 quilts and lots of great ideas. My favorite new quilt pattern is the Fancy Forest quilt with all the animals ( 3rd row far right) and my favorite block in the quilt is the hedgehog. I thought that the layouts using blocks to make overall secondary patterns were cool. I enjoyed the saturated bold colors and more contemporary or modern pieces in the show.

Quilting was interesting. Many computer long armed quilts were there, not my favorite. However, I did see a trend of hand guided free motion quilting and less density.  Yes, my favorite!

Cool Ideas: The alternating square and on point square setting of the Farmer’s Wife quilt is genius ( 6th row down, far left). The resurgence of medallion center quilts was noticed and I love that ! Samplers were still a big favorite and a favorite of mine. I really like the look of sampler blocks being used to make a mosaic look for a quilt overall like the Star medallion quilt (last row , left.) And in the shop was the cute selvage edge place mats!

Which quilt was my favorite overall? So hard to choose but I liked the Leaves quilt in the 4th row. I want to try to make the little wool flower appliques quilt on a small scale 5th row , second quilt.

Now to sort out my quilting priorities ! Stay tuned about an exciting quilt project that I will be piecing!

Quilt on ,

Vicki

Machine Quilting Blog Hop Week 8

This week is the chapter called  U Turns in the book “The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting” by Angela Walters and Christa Watson. HollyAnne, Kristin and Jen are joining me in this journey. The four of us are blogging our way through the book and each week that goes by we are practicing more and gaining confidence with each exercise. I am a long armer and the other ladies are using their domestic sewing machines. The patterns for the quilts in the book are amazing but we are focusing on the free motion quilting for the blog hop. Links to the previous weeks are on the side bar tab for the Machine Quilting Blog hop. Join the party at Instagram using hashtag #machinequiltingbloghop

 

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This weeks big challenge is something that takes lots of practice. Corners. How to turn them is always something longarmers need to think about because you move the machine not the quilt. Several options were given, number 1 do something else in the corner such as a spiral square and the border is ribbon candy.

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This block shows a continuous pattern with the greek keys in the green. Then the blue corners were a flow of ribbon loops. Then I became really adventurous… doing loops of e’s that transition to e’s and l’s around the corner. I also used wavy lines and added a sprial in the lower right. So doing corners can be really fun and the possibilities are endless on what to do when turning a corner! machine quilting blog hop week !

This is the block from the first week. You can see a spiral in the corner and a weird square thing in the rest of the outer block. Then the rest you can see how I turned the corner in the inner rows using the flow of the stitch used. The outer border is visible with my corner with the switchbacks.

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And here is my next attempt at hook swirls. It is coming along but not quite right. Time, it takes time. When I change direction my brain cannot translate the change… yet.

This morning’s hooked swirls are even better! 

Here is the video on how I quilted these blocks

Quilt on!

Vicki

Games, planes, boats and quilts

2017-06-14 16.51.21I had a busy week this week. I had a bit of time off from work so I was able to spend time with family and friends. I was able to see the Wednesday night Air Show featuring the Snowbirds from Canada, parachute demo, biplane and F16. It was great fun to watch. My husband was in the Air Force and worked on F16s so it was pretty nostalgic. At the end of the post my Dad’s pictures are shared and he has some wonderful pics of the WWII era planes  and the more modern jets that flew over our heads!

Then I went to the Soo Locks and saw an unprecedented amount of freighters. I also went  on the Soo Lock boat tour. I have to say it was great and very educational. I learned there are 13 freighters that are over 1000 feet long sailing the Great Lakes. We saw 3 that day and 7 overall. We went into the locks that raise or lower the vessels 21 feet between Lake Superior and Lake Huron. We then saw the steel factory in Canada and went through the Canadian locks. Gorgeous views.

Then I went to a quilt show. I loved the ideas generated. I will share a two pictures and plan to write a full blog post later on in the week.

Then we had pregame dinner for the home town Highland games.

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Saturday was the game and the weather cooperated! Here is a little video of my husband’s day.

My dad took tons of fabulous pictures and here is the album:

2017 Photos by Carl Dennis feel free to share, like and download! He tried to get a photo of everyone and apologizes in advance in you were missed!

Posted by Vicki Holloway on Sunday, June 18, 2017

Now it is back to the work a day routine. Adventures will have to wait for a week or two.

Vicki

 

 

 

Swim suits and pools

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I read an article shared on social media for the second time last month. Here is the link and I found it to be a really important assertion. The article is about, my paraphrase, just put the damn swimsuit on. It was about being a mom and not jumping in the pool or getting off the beach while your kids are experiencing the moment because one thing holds you back: Getting into a swimsuit and going in the water with it on. Being exposed with a mom bod and not making the memories to the fullest with your kids by just sitting on the sidelines watching them play is a huge part of the article.

What I also take away from this article is two things that are really metaphorical not literal. One: doing things that  make us uncomfortably vulnerable with other human beings holds us back. I am at an age where I am going beyond wearing a swim suit right now in the literal sense. But the metaphor is too big not to ponder. What is stopping me from going and doing the one thing with other people because I don’t want to share my venerability. Swim suit wearing is about as close to bearing it all out in the open as you can get publicly. It leaves you open to hearing the critics, the snarky meanies over top of your own voice saying “who said this was a good idea.” It is making the decision that you are not going just sit there and watch any more. You want to be part of it all. Nearly naked , just the way you are right now.

The next part is actually doing something. The action, the jumping in the pool and just doing it. I have to say that all the prep of shopping for the appropriate swim suit is just as an important part of the adventure as the ending splash in the pool. It takes a tremendous amount of time, energy and resources to find that swim suit that fits you perfectly. It cannot be an impulsive thing when you are looking for something that is not easily found off the rack. It may cost you more. In the end, it is totally worth all the prep. You have put in the research, the time and work to make yourself the most confident you, that you can be. Then the next part will be easier when putting the suit on and making your journey to the edge of the pool with all eyes seeing you, as you are. But with a great suit on. One step at a time, one foot in front of the other, as you walk to edge of the water.

Now you have to decide. Will you just jump in fully immersing your self in the water or will this be a slower more gentle transition to the water? Having a plan helps but sometimes the water tells you what to do. There is an opening in the pool, or the ocean is presenting the best waves to jump into at the moment and you need to just do it.

 

I feel that way about my creative life. I have a plan on what my quilting will look like as a business now, as well in 5 years. I have big plans that will need to be worked every day: writing a book, publishing patterns and making a show quilt. I want to continue to long arm for other people, too. But I am not letting things hold me back. I am actively working on each step of the plan. I am putting the suit on and jumping in the deep end of the pool. It has been a time, over the past couple of years, that I have been sitting on the chairs of the pool patio cheering others on while I work and dream. But now is the time I need to experience it fully for myself.

So, are you gonna just go put on the swim suit and jump in the pool ? I am because I just don’t wanna sit and watch everyone else at the pool party fully immersing themselves because I am afraid of exposing myself to the world. White legs and jiggly middle and all.

Here is step one. I made a YouTube channel. I videoed my 51 year old, overweight self for all to see as it currently is. I decided that real life and everyday people are more interesting. Maybe others will think my daily adventures, quilting and travel are too.

Step two: Keep working on being a healthy me so I can keep doing what I want to do. Exercise, diet and sleep right. Follow Doctors orders and keep on keeping on.

Step three: PUT ON THE SUIT and JUMP IN. The slowly immersing myself has been what the last few years were about and not fully immersing myself in my creativity. I submitted a quilt to a show but didn’t make it this year. I convinced my quilting friends to submit a collaborative project that I long armed and helped piece. It DID make it ! I submitted a book proposal. I have been rejected before but I keep trying. I have another company to try if this one says no. I have lots of options for printing my patterns.

It is really that simple. Put in the work every day. Buy the suit, put it on already. Now, you are ready to jump in.

Here is my latest video from my adventure last weekend:

Hope to see you at the beach wearing your  swimsuit and getting in to the water.

Vicki

Machine Quilting Blog Hop!

 

This week is the chapter called Exploding Star in the book “The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting” by Angela Walters and Christa Watson. HollyAnne, Kristin and Jen are joining me in this journey. The four of us are blogging our way through the book and each week that goes by we are practicing more and gaining confidence with each exercise. I am a long armer and the other ladies are using their domestic sewing machines. The patterns for the quilts in the book are amazing but we are focusing on the free motion quilting for the blog hop. Links to the previous weeks are on the side bar tab for the Machine Quilting Blog hop. Join the party at Instagram using hashtag #machinequiltingbloghop

Christa’s spirals are not something that you can do on a longarm— the continuous spiral pattern over an entire quilt. Angela’s take on this chapter is about quilting with using free motion stitches and using scale to make stitches. She talks alot about using items to keep the stitch motif to stay the same size throughout the quilt. Think of an item that would be about the size you want to make motif or stitch–penny, nickel, quarter. You can can see in the “o” block the back ground is a tight swirl. The Blue fabrics have a small paisley.

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She then talks about changing the scale for emphasis— smaller denser scale bring more emphasis. As well as  echoing and outlining areas. In this quilt, the background has a denser stitch of leaves and loops. The leaves have ruler work straight lines.

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In this quilt, I used different sized stitches for each area and you can see the different areas that show more emphasis due to the density and size of the quilting stitches.

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The final quilt shows examples of most of the concepts we have talked about in this book… different sized stitches, different types of density and different stitches in different parts of the quilt.

Can you see all the different takes on some of the basic stitches? swirls, pebbling, switchbacks, lines and paisleys? Do you see the echoing and changing of scales. Enlarge the pictures to see the details.

Please sign up for my biweekly newsletter using the tab on the left side bar!

Vicki

 

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Watch the blogs for the full details on our giveaway coming up!!!!

What to do with DNA information ?

suprise, DNA results!

My Ancestry DNA results

It is not a surprise that my ancestors are from Europe. It confirms all the family lore of my mothers family. Irish and Scots came to the US looking for a new life. My mothers ancestor immigrated from the Netherlands, all in the lore. What is also in the lore is that my great grandmother told me I looked like her grandmother who was Native American. We have pictures of her. But pictures don’t tell everything–was she family, was she a friend in the photo? What year was this photo and who is everyone in the picture.  I did not test for this in the DNA. I was a bit disappointed , I cannot find who she may be in the lineage at this time and thought it was all legend.

This hobby of mine started when I was a child and watch the movies “Roots.” Genealogy was hot back then, I knew 6 of my great grandparents. YES GREAT Grandparents. I interviewed them and had them write down stories. Most of which are true. Such as stated above, however, some were not as one of my grandmother’s thought her late husband was from France when, in fact his ancestors were from Wales. So all things much be researched and verified! My dad is a photographer and keeper of photos and family items. He also is a genealogy hobbyist. His DNA returned much the same as mine, EXCEPT he did have the Native American gene. Tiny amount but maybe there is some truth to the story his grandmother told me. I hope to find out as I continue my Ancestry journey.

We recently went to the Cultural Museum in Saginaw : Ziibiwig Center of
Anishinabe Culture. Something my husband and I have always wanted to do and finally had time during the hours that the museum was open. I was deeply moved by listening to the history and culture. We learn about the creation story, the traditions and the wisdom of the Grandfathers. The rest of the post is self explanatory photos I took in the museum. Click on photos to make them larger to see details or read the plaques. It is well worth the trip to  see the art, hear the language and learn about the culture of people who lived in my state for so long … and may very well be part of my history also.

 

I love museums, it is so inspiring!!!

Vicki

 

I love museums, they are so inspiring!!!

Vicki