whew! it's freaking september already! time is just flying by, and there are so many things i want to post about and so many projects i want to work on!
i went down to portland for the portland zine symposium at the end of august, and had a fabulous time, and then came home and have been sick ever since. it may seem funny, with my usual chronic health issues, but i do not handle things like the cold or the flu very well! for one thing, i don't tend to get exposed, so when i get sick, i get SICK, but mostly, i just get whiney. i want to curl up in blankets and take medicine and ignore the world until i feel human again! this particular cold seems to be going around and hitting everyone super hard, and i'm still coughing my head off, almost 2 weeks later. i've been spending a lot of time working on a needlework project and watching crime shows interspersed with the food network!
but anyway, remember the other exciting thing i mentioned ages and ages ago?
there's a new quilt guild starting up in vancouver!
The Vancouver Modern Quilt Guild
our guild is part of a rapidly growing phenomenon, quilt guilds based on the modern quilt aesthetic. the first modern quilt guild started in october 2009, and less than a year later, it's spread so far!
the awesome Holly of Holly's Red Bike has put an amazing amount of work into organizing us all and getting the guild growing, and i think it's already exceeded everyone's expectations. the first meeting, 45 people showed up! i think that's pretty darn impressive.
there have been three meetings thus far, all held at the lovely new sewing studio/fabric store, Spool of Thread.
our next meeting is this coming thursday, september 16th. we'll be voting in the executive board members, and i'll be running for secretary. maybe it's my mom's influence on me, but i've been the secretary for multiple boards and organizations and groups over the years - i actually LIKE writing minutes! since we're keeping it pretty informal, i'll actually be able to handle the work, and i'm super excited to get involved in the guild!
i started quilting about 10 years ago, when i worked in a quilt shop for a period of time. though i wasn't a big fan of the fabrics we sold (very traditional, and not in my budget), i got really interested in the patchwork piecing aspect of quilts. i bought fabric that was more my style and played around a bit, but didn't really finish much... i wasn't as enthralled with the actual quilting aspect of it, so i made several pieced duvet covers, and a few tied lap quilts, but i still have multiple half finished tops from that time period.
one christmas my ex and i made simple quilts for our parents, oh, about 6 or 7 years ago, backing them with fleece, and then i didn't do any more quilting until i started a quilt the summer of 2008, when i got my brother SE-350, the embroidery and sewing machine. i didn't actually finish that quilt until March 2009... i bought a whole bunch of fabric to make my godson a quilt before he was even born (he'll be three in december!), but i haven't even started on that one. last summer i made a few simple baby quilts, the robots and the floral one, and tied them with embroidery floss. i didn't pick up any quilting again until i made my craft or die pillow this spring, and then the two baby quilts that i posted in august. i obviously come and go in waves!
part of the reason why i never jumped wholeheartedly into quilting was because i was never all that happy with the end results. i would like the fabrics i used, but they always ended up feeling really traditional to me, unless it was a simple geometric pattern like a rail fence. when i made the embroidered music quilt and had to piece the back, i totally fell in love with the result. it just never connected in my head that i could quilt that way, you know? going to the modern quilt guild meetings and seeing everyone else's modern work at show and tell has been incredibly inspiring.
the Modern Quilt Guild blog has a good starter definition of modern quilting posted under the "about us" tab, you should definitely check it out, and then make your way over to flickr and prepare yourself to loosing hours of your day ogling quilts! our guild itself has a flickr group as well, and it's filled with the amazing photos Sonya of Artisania has been taking at our meetings, as well as pieces members have posted.
(and speaking of Sonya, she creates the most incredible paper piecing patterns! she just released 5 new patterns, and i am so enamoured with the Peeping Owl pattern, i HAD to have it! she's also doing a fabulous giveaway of a yummy pillow made with the more complicated Peeping Owl pattern, so go check it out!)
as part of the guild, we've started doing monthly challenges, and they've been awesome.
july's challenge was to make blocks around a square of monkey fabric, bordered in white. there was a huge amount of variation, and i can't wait to see what they look like sewn together!
these are the two i made - i obviously forgot to take pictures until i was already there, so the pics are crappy shots taken on chairs!
i have one more of those in progress that i need to finish by thursday.
august's challenge was to make a flying geese block with a white background, using colours like teal, lime green, turquoise, navy.
this was my first attempt, which totally doesn't measure 12.5" x 12.5"! the left side is pretty good, but i don't have a clue what i did to the right side!
i obviously need to redo this one before thursday, and then find "something creative" to do with the scraps (the second part of the challenge).
this month's challenge is very exciting for me, and i'm currently prepping up some samples to bring to the meeting. i've only gotten as far as cutting out the fabric, and i've already done way too many! it's a secret til thursday though...