The rules for the latest challenge in Project QUILTING read as follows:
Visit an office supply store. Choose three items for inspiration. You may use the actual items in your project but you do not have to use them. Circumference should not be more than 130".
My inspiration items included a small box of crayons, colorful envelopes and colorful paper.
The end result was a perpetual calendar quilt titled "Today Is..."
I started with a piece of white fabric which I sandwiched with batting and backing. For the slightest hint of color I used yellow thread and quilted a loopy meandering, adding in a few stars, flowers, suns, and musical notes. I doodled.
Next, the envelopes. Using eight fabrics of basic colors found in a small box of crayons (plus pink) I made two sided rectangles, making the top pointed, and folding up the bottom to create the envelope. These were then laid out on the quilted piece and sewn down. The dates (like little pieces of stationery) are also two sided. I used my new serger for these. (DH knows me and knows I'd much prefer a sewing item to jewelry - he bought me a serger for our anniversary!!!) I like the border the white thread makes on these. Numbers for dates cut from black fabric were fused to the 'stationery'. The dates are folded in half and tucked in the appropriate envelope.
The black cirle has the center cut out but it's still attached at the top so it can also be tucked in the envelope, leaving the rest of the circle to 'circle the date'.
The months are appliqued letters in appropriate colors. The month banner is held on with binder clips. To dress up the clips I added floss strung with beads the same colors as the fabrics.
Then I added a row of beads to the bottom of the quilt.
For those pesky months (every year has a few) that procrastinate until the end of the week and don't start until Saturday or Sunday, forcing us to add another row of days, I included binder clips that hang from the beads and hold the extra day or two.
Another fun challenge. Another learning experience. I find that with the deadline I am forced to solve my problems as they come up instead of setting it all aside to become another UFO. There were ten other entries. As with all the other weeks, I'm impressed by all the finished projects and amazed at the creative interpretations. You can see all the projects at Flickr: Project Quilting Pool. You can also see them (but only one pic of each) AND you can vote for your favorite at Kim's Crafty Apple
45 women, all contributors is some way to Marine Comfort Quilts, made squares for this quilt. We each chose a square to make, then made one for ourselves and one for each of the other women. All the blocks were mailed to one person who sorted the blocks and then mailed packages back to everyone. I needed a few more blocks for the layout I chose, so I made three string blocks.
I guess it should really say 45 Kindreds Spirits = 45 quilts.... with a bit of each of us wrapped up in each quilt.
I've decided to make smaller flowers... just centers and one row of petals. The second row of 12 petals is keeping me from sewing any flowers at all. So I'd rather have smaller flowers - not quite as traditional - than no flowers at all. Two this Wednesday. I'm happy with that re-start.
I did try to take pictures of quilts at the fair so I could share some quilty eye candy but, again, as last year, the quilts were not hung. The champion hand quilted quilt was displayed and a portion of my map quilt was displayed, as was the champion afghan.
But that was it. The rest of the quilts were folded and propped up so you could see about 12 - 15 square inches.... sometimes less. And they were behind glass.
I so wanted to see everyone else's quilts, and I know I wasn't the only one to complain. We were told that they have solutions in mind for next year and they will hang the quilts. We'll see.
After I picked up my quilts I took final pictures of the Map Quilt with the corrections and cars.
Car on gravel road with "dust" . . .
On the South side of the road is our old farm. The new owners have chickens and horses.... we just had horses. On the North side of the road are the neighbors that God plunked us next to for our first several years in the country. Many thanks for that - they are awesome people . . .
Town. And the strip of houses just south of town where we now live . . .
All these quilts are now sitting at the fairgrounds. Judges are looking at them now! I hope they write lots of notes. Ribbons are okay, but my favorite part is the judges' critiques.... I listen; I learn.
Yes, that's the map quilt at the bottom there. I fixed a couple mistakes. Junkyard Joe's house was in the wrong corner. One road deadended where it really didn't. And I completely missed one house. All better now. Then I added cars (little buttons from Karen and Sarah - THANKS GUYS!) And one of the cars is on a gravel road so I added some fuzzy white yarn for dust. Fun and done.
But to say it's handquilted is just technically correct. One little square around the center and one square along the border. Stitched in the ditch. I'll try hand quilting again but that's all I could handle on this one. Baby steps.
It does qualify for entry in the fair... the class description is "Miniature Quilt, Handquilted....must be less than 15" square."
We had to use at least one color other than red, white and blue. And we did NOT have to use red, white and blue. The theme: Stars Over America.
My interpretation was literal. I made stars and hung them over the word America.
I started with lots of little squares of creams and golds and pieced each of the letters in a separate block. Mini-borders of red (1/8 inch) were added to each letter block to make them stand out a bit. These blocks were pieced to a background on larger squares of two different cream fabrics. Before the background was finished I ran out of the lighter cream. I discovered that using the wrong side of the darker cream would give the same look.
The stars that hang above the word were stuffed with lots of bits of batting to make them puffy. I made flag blocks to hang below, outside the square of the quilt. The white in the flag blocks was too white! I thought about taking them apart and doing them again with cream. Then inspiration struck... I brewed some tea and soaked the blocks... perfect!
When I first sketched my project I thought of making it a flip floppy piece. Not reversible but top becomes bottom and bottom becomes top. So the flags have stars on the back, and the stars on top are red on the back, and the random boxes on top have letters appliqued upside down. Flip the quilt and you again have "Stars Over America"! Love it! Or it could be hung over a fence or railing and you would have a quilt on each side.
With this project I thought outside the square, wrong side out, and upside down!
There were nine other entries. Three other quilters said they had a literal interpretation and they were all different. Funny how you can be literal about the same words and still be different. You can see them all at Kim's Crafty Apple. There's a neat prize to be given away to the public. All you have to do is leave a comment.