Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Special finishes

One of the most rewarding things is to 'give' ......this year I had four special projects that I gifted to special people in my life.

Finish #1

When making a class sample in 2013 for this fall table runner, I incorporated fabrics in the border that represent activities my parents enjoy and the center fabric fits in with their kitchen d├ęcor. The outer border was pieced as a strata with strips of fabric and then cross-cut.

The leftover strata I also gave to my mom and she made the placemats to coordinate. We enjoyed using it on the Thanksgiving table while we visited them in Arizona.

Finish #12

This fall themed table runner I named "In Your Time" and gave it to my sister. She understands the meaning...and at some point in time she'll have what she wants. ;-)

I originally made this design years ago as a guild mystery project. I was traveling at the time and saw these fabrics which reminded me of when I was in Japan and my grandmother passed away. The fall colors were spectacular that particular weekend and she always loved gold, so the gold accents in the fabric and the fall season made me think of her.

When I finally made it, the pattern didn't seem to work for me, so I re-drafted it and made it again as part of a class I offered a year ago in Grand Coulee. Just prior to Christmas I had to put my long-arm machine quilting on rest for a month. It took me a long while to get back to it, but I finally got it finished this year and was able to give it to my sister for Christmas. I chose a backing fabric that coordinates beautifully with her living room. She can use it any time of the year.

Finish #13

to a dear friend who is surviving breast cancer and all that goes along with that.

This started out as a collection of 2.5" x WOF strips obtained during the 2011 Shop Hop the Blues. Each shop had used the set of strips to make their own quilt design. I thought my Hugs and Kisses pattern might work up nicely if I could get the 'values' right.

When I decided to teach the Hugs and Kisses quilt as a class this fall, I got out the strips and decided that it was time to try and make it along with the class. Although the pattern calls for 2 5/8" strips, as long as you do everything consistently, it will still work just fine.  I organized the strips from light to dark and pulled the colors for the border that didn't quite go with the centers and made a strata to create a border.

All that was left were these pieces, the orange being the only complete strip I did not use:

As I pieced it together, it suddenly hit me that this was perfect for my dear friend battling cancer. It has a bohemian spirit in its result and it reminds me of that spirit in her, so I sent it off in hopes it would keep her comfortable and remind her of the love from a dear life long (well, since we were probably about 8 years old) friend.

I used this beautiful batik that is available in my studio for the backing and the binding. The coloring on the right is more true to what it looks like. The photo of the back was taken at night under lights.

This 'Heavenly Morsels' pantograph by Beany Girl Quilts is my go to favorite for quilting this design. I used the Fad 5 Signature variegated thread on the top and a coordinating burgundy thread on the back.

Finish #15

To another long time friend whose art work I'm honored to own. I hope this piece will daily remind her of who can inspire and sustain us. She is an outstanding artist and a beautiful person. The fabric line is 'Handmaids', the original quilt design is 'Draw Near'. I found the fabric at Experience Quilts in Odessa. I adapted it a bit so that the vertical outer borders had complete images of the fabric. This required the black sashing to be modified in a symmetrical way. The inner border called for the pink fabric, but I wanted to use the palette fabric. I chose to do the vertical green and blue (her favorite colors) and the light horizontal on top, and darkest horizontal on the bottom. The original binding suggestion was the red playtime fabric, but I chose to use a black/white chevron.

Each large panel square includes a scriptural reference.

I found the perfect quilting pantograph to go along with it. There is a paintbrush, crayon and pencil.

On one of the paint brushes, I stitched in her first name.

Details on the back:

Here is hoping you all had a wonderful Christmas time.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Exploring new territories via quilt shops

In anticipation of the Row by Row Experience that my studio will be participating in for the first time in Summer 2015, I wanted to share with you another way of exploring new areas that include Quilt Shops!

QuiltingHub.com allows you to create your own travel path and see the shops along the way. Now, anytime of year you can be sure and have options for a respite on all of your travels.

Given that my studio is at a fantastic location for sightseeing, I hope you'll consider a trip to North Central/Eastern Washington. Please take a moment and find our detail page and 'like' it.

We are in the middle of the Coulee Corridor National Scenic Byway

We are within a mile of the Grand Coulee Dam. Lake Roosevelt backs up behind the dam and provides lots of wonderful recreation. If you have an electric vehicle, we're working on putting a charging station on the studio property. If you need a charge before that is available, just contact me ahead of time and we'll make arrangements for you to get charged.

This is a movie made in 2014 about the Grand Coulee Dam. it is about 40 minutes in duration but is a nice perspective on what happened here back when the dam was envisioned and built and what it has become.

There are beautiful geological formations to explore. This is taken on Banks Lake from the north west side of Steamboat Rock. There are national, state, regional and city parks to explore.

Have I inspired you? Hope to see you next summer!

Friday, December 5, 2014

Winter Tree Trivet

Today on DoYouEQ.com is a featured project ....a Winter Tree Trivet designed by me.

This is a paper pieced pattern, adapted from the Pine Tree block in the Block Library of EQ7.

The project is something you can quickly make as a great hostess gift or just something to enjoy on your own table all winter long.


Thursday, November 13, 2014

5 years as a professional long-armer

5 years of long-arming is done! Wow. I took delivery of my machine on 11/12/09.

This year is my first complete year in a commercial space. It has been a good thing.

Here is my recap for the year:

Customer Quilts
I am almost done with Customer Quilt #337. That makes 85 customer quilts during year 5 (20 more than both of the last two years). Photos of each quilt with details of the quilting designs, batting used, threads, etc. are at http://www.facebook.com/kissedquilts in the album 'Customer Quilts v.5'.

I also did 3 commissions. A Fall Table Runner given as a hostess gift, a baby quilt with photos printed in sepia tone so it just blended in with the fabric and a t-shirt quilt. The first two are in the Commissions Album and third is in the T-Shirts Quilts Album.

After being asked to take several photos of a man and his dog and make them into a quilt, an art collage ended up being printed on canvas and framed. This definitely pushed my Photoshop capabilities and the client was very happy.

Publications:  "You Can Quilt! Building Skills for Beginners" is undergoing editorial review and is due for publication February 2015 by AQS. This is co-authorized by myself and Leila Gardunia.

"Red, White and Quilted" by Linda Baxter Lasco, published by AQS included two quilts that I had the privilege to quilt --'Double Nine Patch' and 'Birds in the Air'. The DNP was featured on the inside front and back covers as well as its full write up and BITA was used as the cover for the Spring 2015 Wholesale Catalog and was selected to hang in the Ruby Jubilee Exhibit at International Quilt Festival in Houston.

New Patterns: Four Quilted-in-Honor themed designs using Bella Nonna's Design Studio Boondoggle Ruler(TM) and Boondoggle Baby Ruler(TM) are now available in the Dangling Diamonds pattern at Craftsy.

The Country Register continues to be my muse. Every other month, for the past four years, I have written a new article. It is now being picked up by many of the regions across Canada and the United States. Tell me....do you read it?

Quilts in contests or made it into noteworthy shows/locations included:


2014 - Juried into AQS Phoenix

2013 -

  • juried into MQX-West in Portland and received a Teacher's Award from Georgia Still
  • Best of Show at Ferry County Fair.
  • 2nd Place at Lincoln County Fair

  • 2012 - EQ7 Layout Challenge Winner

    "Rosie's BOMb"

    • 2014
      • Fronnen Steppdecker Quilt Show - Odessa, WA - Ribbon
      • Juried into MQX New England
      • On display at the Grand Coulee Dam Visitor's Center as part of a special exhibit
        May - November
    • 2013
      • TriCities show - Outstanding in its Field
      • Pendleton show - Best Machine Quilter
      • Juried into Pacific West - Tacoma
      • Juried into AQS-Des Moines and received 2nd place, Bed Quilts, Machine Quilted (HUGE deal!)

    • 2014
      • Ferry County - WSQ 1st Place ----judges' advice was to re-block and bind...so I have. We'll see where it goes next!
    • 2013
      • WSQ-Spokane - INMQ Challenge category; 2nd Place - WSQ, Honorable Mention - INMQ'
      • Displayed in the Warm Company's booth at the International Quilt Market, Houston
    "Zig Zag Love"
    Creating a design as part of the red and white challenges that SewCalGal has been hosting this year and helping a charity group in Arizona resulted in this particular quilt. It also gave me an opportunity to experiment with some special quilting before I took on the challenge of the two quilts included in the 'Red, White and Quilted' book.
    • 2014 - Ferry County Fair - WSQ 2nd Place Ribbon
    "Red Starry Night"
    • 2014
      • Ferry County Fair - Challenge Entry - Judges Choice
      • WSQ Spokane - INMQ Honorable Mention - small quilts category

    In the Walla Walla Valley Quilt Show, there were quite a few client quilts in the show that I had
    quilted. So grateful to have such wonderful representation of my work. Second place, Large quilts, Viewer's Choice went to Dr. Susan Crawford for her Glacier Star with extended borders plus two of her own additional borders. I had the honor of quilting it.

    "Mesmerize" by Bella Nonna's Design Studio hung in the Fabri-Quilt booth at International Quilt Market. I got to quilt it!

    The astronomical exhibit at International Quilt Festival that was inspired by Astronaut Karen Nyberg, was a huge success. I entered a block and here it is in one of the 28 assembled quilts. I had fun finding blocks for 4 friends whose blocks also were used.

    Here is Karen standing with her block (red/white strips with a blue star about her shoulder height and 5th column from the left--she pieced it by hand in space and failed to bring any templates to help with cutting/sizing):


    The year long series wrapped up and will be coming out as a book in February 2015 (noted above). AQS is the publisher. Some students wanted to accelerate so it didn't end up taking a year, others preferred the block by block process.

    I'm now teaching some of my own self-published patterns and other popular designers. If you have a suggestion--we're always listening.

    Since my studio space allows for some fabric, I've kitted these patterns. Let me know if you're interested in any of these kits.

    Zoe -- a 'Fishy Fishy' version

    I periodically post a TIP on my KQ Facebook page. There is a photo album that contains an illustration for each tip. Tip Posts by KISSed Quilts.

    Personal WIPs have included 8 items finished, 7 sitting ready to quilt, and 6 (only 2 actively) in progress. I'll do a more in depth review of these at the end of 2014. Maybe I'll even get a few more finished and/or started!

    Most of the above has been published in older blog posts or on my KQ Facebook page with many more details provided.

    So...what did CQ1 look like? Here is the backside of the first client quilt that I did:

    I was so afraid of filling the negative space!

    Here are my other yearly reviews if you're curious about the journey I've been on. I'm grateful to all those who have shared so I could take their class and learn. Each time it seems that within a short period of time it is just the technique, style or critical lesson that I needed to employ on a project.

    Having the commercial space has begged me to offer fabric and notions. With over 200 bolts at the moment and another 100 on the way...I do hope if you're in the area that you'll stop by and find just the right fabrics that you need to get started on your next project or to finish one.
    Next summer I'll be participating in the Row by Row Experience. Stay tuned for the row design and exciting fabrics that will be used in the kit.
    Thank you for following along, your input and business throughout the year has been greatly appreciated.