Novel Idea Quilts 2011 to 2018

 2011 Imagine ( Kapitoil  by Teddy Wayne)

2011 Imagine (Kapitoil by Teddy Wayne)

Every now and then I get a really good idea when I'm in the hot tub late at night.  Sometimes the ideas are really quite harebrained, but I do a lot of thinking in there.  Last night I got the idea to do a Novel Idea quilt post so I hope you think this is a good idea too!  Each quilt is labeled with the title of the quilt and the title and author of the book.

I've included all the Novel Idea quilts I've made over the past 8 years and a couple of extras.  Imagine (above) was the first.  It is completely hand stitched using cloth weaving and embroidery techniques learned from Jude Hill. 

The Novel Idea program with the Deschutes Public Library is a community read program.  The book is usually announced in December and we have about 4 months to read the book (less if you are going to be creating art, of course) and then there is a month of group activities offered by the library which culminates in the author visiting town to do a lecture.  As a life-long reader and lover of books, this has always been one of my favorite things about our library.  I was thrilled when Marilyn Forestell (also a book lover and owner of QuiltWorks) suggested starting the Novel Idea Quilt club which gets together just for the purpose of creating quilts and textile art for this program.  Often the author has been able to visit the quilt gallery to see the exhibit and they've always been so thrilled to see it.  That first year Teddy Wayne was able to see the quilts and I was there.  It was so great to be able to meet the author and discuss how I was inspired to create this quilt.

 2011 Tea is No Minor Beverage ( The Elegance of the Hedgehog  by Muriel Barbery)

2011 Tea is No Minor Beverage (The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery)

Tea is No Minor Beverage is not actually a Novel Idea quilt, but it's here for a reason.  During that first year everyone was so fired up about making book quilts we decided to do a second project that year and we chose The Elegance of the Hedgehog.  I didn't realize until doing this blog post that I've done a tea cup before!  After this one extra book we went to just doing the Novel Idea quilt each year.  It was never a cohesive group to begin with and many of us are now in other small groups which make book quilts.  Mine is The Undercover Quilters which I've mentioned many times before.  

 2012 Autumn in New York ( Rules of Civility  by Amor Towles)

2012 Autumn in New York (Rules of Civility by Amor Towles)

The third year we read Rules of Civility which was a favorite with many.  One of the things I love about book clubs of any sort is that I am introduced to books and authors I don't know about.  I became a fan of Towles with this book.  His more recent novel, A Gentleman in Moscow, is one of my favorite books ever.  

You may have noticed that this piece is made with silks.  Also, many of these are hand stitched.  One thing about the Novel Idea quilts is that there are no size restrictions.  When creating for most quilt shows, your work must meet a minimum size.  When I'm doing hand stitched art pieces I prefer to work small, so I love that I can work with any size that works for me.  There also also many hand dyed fabrics in these pieces.  I tend to use my most favorite pieces of fabric for these small gems.

 2013 The Spirit of the Wood ( The Snow Child  by Eowyn Ivey)

2013 The Spirit of the Wood (The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey)

Of all the books we've done for the Novel Idea Quilts, I think The Snow Child was the most loved by the quilters.  It's such a visual book with themes that appealed to many.  I had so much fun with this piece.  I used hand dyes and vintage linens and it's all hand stitched.  I did get to meet the author, but it was at the book signing rather than the gallery.  She did see the quilts and was very touched by the whole exhibit.

 2014 Longing for Connection ( The Dog Stars  by Peter Heller)

2014 Longing for Connection (The Dog Stars by Peter Heller)

If you haven't read The Dog Stars, it's a novel about a post-apocalyptic future.  Many people I know in town as well as many quilters were put off by the theme, but I actually really loved this book.  There were some lovely moments including a passage which included a poem by Kim Stafford, one of Oregon's past Poet Laureates.  This quilt, which is quite small, was inspired by that poem within the book.  I was able to meet the author at the book signing and to tell him about my quilt.  He saw the exhibit and was so inspired he asked if any of the pieces were for sale.  In the end he bought several of them including mine.  What an honor!

 2015 The Wayward Jungle Crow ( A Tale for the Time Being  by Ruth Ozeki)

2015 The Wayward Jungle Crow (A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki)

A Tale for the Time Being was such an interesting book.  The author talk was also fascinating.  Like I said in the previous post I am always on the lookout for nature themes, wildlife and especially birds when I read a book for a quilt.  This one did not disappoint with a Jungle Crow that keeps returning to visit one of the main characters.  This one is machine pieced, hand appliqued, and hand embroidered using many hand dyed fabrics and some vintage linens.

 2016 Spirit Tree ( Euphoria  by Lily King)

2016 Spirit Tree (Euphoria by Lily King)

In 2015 my sister, glass artist Cheryl Chapman, moved to town.  She also loves books and is a quilter so I thought I'd better get her involved in the Novel Idea quilts.  We both made quilts for the exhibit, mine is above.  I was inspired by the cover of the book and also a passage about the rainbow gum trees.  In addition to that Marilyn had an idea for folks to make masks as part of the exhibit.  It was a theme that related to the book and many people did so.  Cheryl came up with the idea of making glass masks.  We had so much fun getting together to do this.  We created the glass forms in her workshop and she fired them.  Then we had a day in my studio creating the fabric additions for the top of the masks.  

 2016 Fused Glass Masks ( Euphoria  by Lily King) Cheryl Chapman on the left, me on the right.

2016 Fused Glass Masks (Euphoria by Lily King) Cheryl Chapman on the left, me on the right.

 2017 The H Quilt ( Homegoing  by Yaa Gyasi)

2017 The H Quilt (Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi)

Last year the book was Homegoing which had a multitude of characters, time frames and locations.  In end I decided to put this quilt in the exhibit even though it wasn't made just for the book.  I had actually finished it a couple of months before with no other inspiration than seeing an old H quilt and thinking it would be cool to try it in an improv manner.  Plus, my maiden name starts with H.  As it happens, one of the main characters in the book was called, simply, H.  How coincidental is that?

You can read yesterday's post to find out about Ranjana's Chai (below).  If you haven't made a book quilt yet I highly suggest it as a jumping off point.  My rule with them has always been that my quilts are inspired by the book.  They are not necessarily illustrations of the book.  You can take a feeling, phrase, sentence, word, color scheme, character, animal or object for your inspiration.  It is really fun though and maybe you'll even meet the author some day!  I have done 19 book quilts so far (wow!) and am making plans for my 20th for the Undercover Quilters.  This year our book choice is Martin Marten by Brian Doyle.  I can't wait!

 2018 Ranjana's Chai ( No One Can Pronounce My Name  by Rakesh Satyal)

2018 Ranjana's Chai (No One Can Pronounce My Name by Rakesh Satyal)

Modern Quilts: Designs of the New Century

Happy New Year!  Today I am very happy to be a stop on the blog tour for the new book published by the Modern Quilt Guild, Modern Quilts: Designs of the New Century.  This book is like a fantastic trip to QuiltCon, except you don't have to leave your house.  It includes some of the best modern quilts from the past decade.  You can order the book at the link above.  I have two quilts in the book (pages 93 and 170) and couldn't be more thrilled to be included with so many fellow quilters who I admire.  To see the other stops in the blog tour click here.

 The Spectrum of the Ordinary

The Spectrum of the Ordinary

The Spectrum of the Ordinary was first shown at Pacific International Quilt Festival 2015, then QuiltCon 2016, and was featured in an article in Simply Moderne Magazine Issue 5.  You can read about the making of the quilt here.  You'll also find mentions of it here and here.  

 Waiting for Sanity

Waiting for Sanity

Waiting for Sanity was a Judge's Choice winner at QuiltCon 2017, exhibited at the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles and the International Quilt Festival Modern Quilt Guild Showcase in 2017, and was featured in an article in Fons and Porter's Modern Patchwork in the Sept/Oct 2017 issue.  I am so happy that it not only is included in the new book, but will also be touring with the Modern Quilts exhibit this year.  You can find the touring calendar here

Read about the beginnings of this quilt here.  It started in a workshop with Gwen Marston.  And here's how it ended up.  Here's the post about getting the Judge's Choice.  Here's the post about the Modern Traditionalism category at QuiltCon.  It is truly amazing to me that this quilt has had such a wonderful year.  This exposure would never have happened without the support and encouragement of the Modern Quilt Guild, so I'm very thankful to be a member.

2017 Holiday Tails Art Fair

Brown ink on Ivory Linen (7).JPG

Hello Friends! 

I am working like crazy to get ready for the Holiday Tails Art Fair this weekend.  I finished up these ornaments above and below.  Some of them will be for sale at the fair. I want to keep a few, but it's hard to decide which ones to keep!   The Folk Art Friends ornaments above were an alternate colorway I put together to show the variety of colors and stitch you can use.  These were printed with brown ink on ivory linen.  The ornaments below were created with free hand embroidery on wool.  The free form embroidery is tricky and I kept wishing I had lines for guidance, but I like how they turned out.  I now admire even more the work by some of the embroiderers I follow on Instagram (especially Adam Pritchett).

Free hand embroidery on wool (11).JPG

In other news, I have been learning some new bookbinding stitches over the past month or so.  These are really fun to make.  The first two photos show some of the postcards books I made. I used modern art and quilt postcards from my stash.  


The newest type of stitch I've learned is called the buttonhole stitch.  This stitch is created with a delightful little cutout in the spine of the book.  These are truly lovely, special journals.  All of my journals have been created with acid free artist's paper.  Some have drawing paper, some have heavier paper suitable for wet media.  Some have a variety of paper for those who might want to experiment.  All of the journals come with a handwritten label indicating which paper is which in case you find something you want to get more of.  These are all for sale in the shop for the next few days.  I'll close the shop starting on Friday for the weekend when I do the art fair and unsold items will be re-listed on Monday December 11.

PS- I managed to finish the quilt from the previous post and submitted it along with two others for QuiltCon.  I'll post about them when I get a chance after the art fair.


SOQS 2017 : 5 : The Storytellers Book

 Storytellers Book, photo by Marion Shimoda

Storytellers Book, photo by Marion Shimoda

The Storytellers Book was a new fundraiser for the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show this year.  Dan Rickards, who designed the poster for the show this year, came up with this idea for a real oversized book (2' x 3')  with pages made of quilts.  Twelve quilt artists were asked to created pieces for the book, and one of them was me.  It was an honor to be included in the inaugural year of this project.

Rickards worked with leather artist Julia Zell to create this beautiful handtooled leather cover.  The pages were made with poster board and the quilts were attached with velcro.  Each quilt was offered on silent auction with a buy it now price.  

 Contents Page, photo by Marion Shimoda

Contents Page, photo by Marion Shimoda

The book was located at Sisters High School in the week before the quilt show.  Unfortunately, I didn't realize that, so I never got good photos of it before quilt show day.  The first three photos here were taken by my friend Marion Shimoda.  The others below that were taken on quilt show day with poor lighting, but I hope you can appreciate how big the book is and what a cool idea it was. 

 My Quilt!- Once Upon a Quilt by Kristin Shields, photo by Marion Shimoda

My Quilt!- Once Upon a Quilt by Kristin Shields, photo by Marion Shimoda

The people who turned the pages for folks to see the quilts were apparently quite exhausted by the effort to move the pages.  I'm not sure if they'll change the process for next year, but it was created with the intention of having this be a fundraiser each year now.  

What a treat it was to see my quilt in the book!  You can read the story about my quilt here.  I don't know who did the written pages, but they look amazing too.  The photos below were taken in the courtyard of The Open Door cafe on quilt show day.  Enjoy!

 Quilt by Karen Shadley

Quilt by Karen Shadley

 Quilt by Joanne Myers

Quilt by Joanne Myers

 Quilt by Ruth Ingham

Quilt by Ruth Ingham

This is my friend Jan Tetzlaff turning pages on quilt show morning.  She gave a little spiel about each quilt as she turned the pages.  She can attest to the fact that these pages were heavy!  I'm sure all the extra embellishments on my page didn't help.

 Quilt by Valori Wells Kennedy

Quilt by Valori Wells Kennedy

 Quilt by June Jaeger

Quilt by June Jaeger

Each of these quilts tell a little story about their makers.  I wish I'd gotten photos of all of them, but trust me, this was a wonderfully unique idea and I hope it continues for many years to come!

I Like Pie

 I Like Pie, 35x35

I Like Pie, 35x35

Today's quilt is another one made in the last few months.  Winter and early spring are always busy in the studio, prepping for various quilt contests, challenges and local quilt shows.  I Like Pie was made for the Undercover Quilters book challenge.  This year the book is Kitchens of the Great Midwest by Ryan Stradal.  This quilt isn't related in any particular way to the book except that it's a pie cooling on a kitchen windowsill.  

I had this stack of Denyse Schmidt fabrics that I have been saving for something special.  The pie is created with needle turn hand applique.  The rest of the quilt was created with liberated piecing.  I quilted it in a combination of free motion and walking foot machine quilting.  This quilt is smaller than usual as we decided to make our group quilts smaller this year.  I think I was the first one to finish my quilt, but I look forward to seeing the other wonderful quilts by my UCQ friends.  

The backing of this quilt is a favorite bird print from the stash, because who doesn't love birds!  I created the label on the computer and printed it out on fabric.  

A pie cooling on the windowsill seems like the embodiment of comfort and home.  The outer border of shoofly blocks is an indication of one of the things you might have to watch out for when you leave said pie on the windowsill to cool. 

I love to bake and pies are a particular favorite.  I make lots of different types of pie, always with a homemade crust.  This pie is my quilted version of a good old-fashioned apple pie. 

These Kitchen quilts will debut at the Mt Bachelor Quilters' Guild Quilt Show in the Park on August 19.  The quilts from last year's book, All the Light We Cannot See, will show at the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show on July 8.

There's more to come as I catch up on the studio activity from the last few months. Stay tuned!