Oglethorpe Square

Oglethorpe Square, 18x40

Oglethorpe Square, 18x40

Oglethorpe Square was inspired by one of the squares in historic downtown Savannah, Georgia when I was there for QuiltCon last February.  In Savannah, each square is a green park space with serves as a gathering area for locals and tourists alike.  They are beautifully landscaped with trees, flowers, fountains and statues.  There are always several park benches too and are a lovely place to pause while walking around.  Oglethorpe Square was one that I went to several times while I was there.  When I got home from Savannah, I was reminded that the Central Oregon SAQA challenge for this year was "Pathways".  I decided this was the perfect theme to highlight this square.

Now, the logical thing to do would have been to make this quilt with a variety of greens to echo those squares in Savannah, but I had this stack of indigos that I've been wanting to use.  Some of them are Japanese indigo and they are really lovely, with a variety of textures and shades.  You'll notice a variety of colors of blues in the photos which are due to lighting and my tendency to play with Instagram filters.  In reality the blues are duller than in most of these photos.  The left side photo below is probably the most accurate color-wise.

While I was inspired by a real-life square I didn't try to copy it in any realistic manner.  I created several strip sets and cut them up in a liberated manner to create this design.  In general, the square did have the four quadrants and two pathways aligned perpendicularly to one another. My favorite bench was in the bottom right quadrant. 

Pausing in the middle of machine quilting

Pausing in the middle of machine quilting

Again, I went back to my old standby of 1/4" channel quilting by machine.  I usually start by stiching in 1/2 intervals and then going back to create 1/4" spacing.

I created this piece in just a few days as I had a lot on my plate and upcoming 2 weeks of jury service (thankfully, I did not get called in).  It was nice to get this project done so I could move on to other things.  

Oglethorpe Square will debut in the SAQA special exhibit at the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show on July 8 and may have other showings around Oregon in the next year.  

Dancing in the Streets

Dancing in the Streets is a new quilt that I made for the Mountain Meadows Quilt Guild log cabin challenge.  This block is a variation called half log cabin and it's my favorite.  I have played with it many times (Walking the Dogs, Iris Dreams, and Puzzling World).  In this case I used a stack of highly patterned fabrics I've been saving for a while.  It was a lot of fun to cut up and use these fabrics.  The exuberance of the prints led to the title of the quilt.

Dancing in the Streets, 48x48

Dancing in the Streets, 48x48

I decided to hand quilt this one and it went quickly with pearl cotton.  I finally figured out that using a chenille needle size 22 works best for me when quilting with pearl cotton.  Now that I have a system that works I have been doing a lot of that.  

The back was fun to do.  I used up leftovers of fabrics from the front and had to buy the red in the cross shape just to make it big enough.  This will make a super fun and cozy lap quilt! Dancing in the Streets will debut at the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show on July 8.  Then it will be shown at the Sunriver Quilt Show on August 5.

Shards of Glass

Shards of Glass, 30x34

Shards of Glass, 30x34

So, what do you do when you have a bunch of leftovers from a quilt?  Make another quilt!  Making Nested Star-Crossed Strings created a bunch of strip set triangle shaped leftovers.  After a little bit of thought I decided to make some pinwheel blocks by combining them with solid triangles.  As it turns out, the strip set leftovers were not uniform in format and that makes for more interesting pinwheels.  I also ended up with various sizes of blocks which I could have cut down to a uniform size, but I decided to just sew together like sizes and then keep adding on.  In this case, the four blocks in the middle were sewn together first, then I added to the left side, the bottom of that section, then to the right side, the top and lastly, the bottom strip.  

After showing a photo of this quilt on Instagram, I got two comments that referred to shards, glass, and mirrors, so I decided to name it Shards of Glass.  I machine quilted it with 1/4" channel quilting.  I didn't discover until I was well into the quilting that my walking foot was not behaving.  At that point I couldn't imagine removing those stitches to start over, so I kept going.  As such, it's got some small puckers.  I still think it looks pretty interesting.  I will be offering it for sale in my Etsy shop, but if you are interested right now you can contact me directly for a price.  It measures 30x34 and will come with a hanging sleeve attached.  

Nested Star-Crossed Strings Revisited

Nested Star-Crossed Strings, 2017, 31x31

Nested Star-Crossed Strings, 2017, 31x31

Last year I had a request to re-make a quilt for a happy customer who had bought the quilt below for a friend and wished she could have one too.  It took me a while to get around to making it, but I did so last month.  I had already told her that I would do it again with a different background because I felt that the two background colors took away from the star design.  Right now, the newest version is winging its way to the customer and I hope she likes it just as much as the original.  

Nested Star-Crossed Strings, the original, 2015, 29x29

Nested Star-Crossed Strings, the original, 2015, 29x29

This design is one I developed and called Nested Star-Crossed Strings. It's made in a liberated style with strips of fabric.  The cross shaped block centers were an idea I saw in a vintage quilt that Roderick Kirakofe showed online at one time.  I haven't been able to find a photo of the original, but will add it here if I do find it.  It was only the cross blocks, not the star points.  Actually, the very first quilts I made with this design were the ones below.  They incorporated the cross block center and the star points.  Then I got the idea to nest the stars together, which is a nice effect.

Star-Crossed Strings Sample, 22x22, sold

Star-Crossed Strings Sample, 22x22, sold

Fruity Star-Crossed Strings, 38x38

Fruity Star-Crossed Strings, 38x38

I posted photos of this one in progress on my Instagram.  I can see a lot of variations of this one, so perhaps it requires more experimentation?  I do have other ideas for this design and maybe I'll have time for them someday. 

All Things Being Equal

All Things Being Equal, 12x12

All Things Being Equal, 12x12

This quilt was made for the SAQA Benefit Auction.  The deadline has been extended to June 9 for arrival at their facility.  Just yesterday I decided I had a few hours to make something and came up with an idea of using improv equal signs in a simple vertical layout.  My goal is to spread the word about equality in all things in life and this may mean different things to different people.  Gender equality, marriage equality, pay equality, racial equality.  What does it mean to you? 

I had these scraps saved from the Maria Shell class I took last month.  I plan to get back to that one soon, but in the mean time I had some strips already cut and ready to use.  I created six different strip sets and roughly cut them to 2.5" lengths.  Then I rearranged them to make this design.  I needed a bit more width, so I made another set of the black and white version and created one strip with just black and white.

I did some simple channel quilting which is so easy on a small piece like this!  Last night I finished the binding, label and sleeve on the back.  This will be donated to the SAQA benefit auction and will be auctioned off this fall.