Cotton Patch Quilt Show Recap Part II

There were an awful lot of beautiful quilts at the Cotton Patch show this past weekend, and I thought I’d share some of my favorites. Although the modern category at the show was small, there were quite a few modern quilts in other categories also.

I really liked the blocks in this quilt:

amazeme_sheilashepherd

A-Maze Me by Sheila Shepherd

This quilt won second place in the modern category. It was cool to see traditional fabrics used in a modern way.

amsterdaze_terrijarrett

Amsterdaze by Terri Jarrett

Laurel made this one for a Modern Quilt Guild challenge. I think it’s the epitome of modern.

Cabin in the Clouds by Laurel Rudolph

Cabin in the Clouds by Laurel Rudolph

I love the colors on this quilt by Deb Henderson.

Cheerio! by Deb Henderson

Cheerio! by Deb Henderson

This all-silk quilt was improvisationally pieced. The silk made the colors so vibrant!

Color Magic by Gertrude Schilsky

Color Magic by Gertrude Schilsky

This one also used a great deal of improvisational piecing. It won a ribbon in the art quilt category.

Walk This Way by Cleo Ward

Walk This Way by Cleo Ward

This fabulous quilt is one of Nupur’s first! I love her colors.

Spice Box by Nupur Kittur

Spice Box by Nupur Kittur

Look, Tula Pink! I really wanted to steal this quilt of Deb’s, since the Salt Water line is my favorite.

Tula's Sea Debris by Deb Henderson

Tula’s Sea Debris by Deb Henderson

I thought this juxtaposition of black and white blocks with bright primary colors was amazing.

Stargazing by Julie Allen

Stargazing by Julie Allen

This quilt by Fay Rawls was one of my favorites in the show. I love her use of value.

Out Of Darkness by Fay Rawls

Out Of Darkness by Fay Rawls

I liked the use of colored bars in the frame of Hannah’s quilt.

Celtic Fusion by Hannah Jennings

Celtic Fusion by Hannah Jennings

And finally, a couple of small art quilts that I adored:

Nevermore by Madeline Hawley

Nevermore by Madeline Hawley

 

Hafgufa by Sue Trinrud

Hafgufa by Sue Trinrud

 

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Cotton Patch Quilt Show Recap Part I (My Quilts)

My local quilt guild, the Cotton Patch Quilters, held their biennial show this past weekend. My quilts did very well, and in fact the other guild members spent much of the show joking that I am banned from entering any more quilts in future shows. (I think they were joking, anyway. I’m not 100% sure of that… :)  )

The biggest thrill was the Best of Show ribbon won by The Disintegration of the Persistence of Artichokes!

The Disintegration of the Persistence of Artichokes | Flying Parrot Quilts

This quilt has really had a very good week—in addition to this ribbon, I also received notification that it has been accepted to be shown at AQS Paducah. It may also be featured in a magazine; stay tuned for details on that.

I didn’t expect my other quilts to do as well as they did, but I received several other ribbons. Main Sequence won Best Machine Quilting (which was what I was aiming for with my best-of-show winner, to be honest, so to receive both those ribbons was quite a surprise!) and first place in the Modern Quilt category. I have to give credit to all the Stash Bee Hive 7 ladies from 2014, who made most of the beautiful star blocks in this quilt—they are also winners!

Main Sequence | Flying Parrot Quilts

First place in lap quilts (a big category, with 30+ quilts entered!) went to a quilt I haven’t shown much of on this blog, Celestial Orbs. (I’m working on a pattern for this one.) This one was a big surprise as the flaws on this quilt (mostly in the precision of the piecing) are very obvious to me. However, the judge didn’t comment on the things I think are wrong with the workmanship in this quilt!

Celestial Orbs | Flying Parrot Quilts

Finally, my original artichoke quilt won a third-place ribbon in the Eight-Point Star challenge category, which was what I originally designed this block for.

Insane Artichoke quilt | Flying Parrot Quilts

I spent much of the show hanging out near my quilts and answering questions about them. It was super fun to see people get up close and personal with them!

Cotton Patch Quilt Show 2015 | Flying Parrot Quilts

The ribbons at this show are always beautiful, so I’m displaying them all on the door to my sewing room. I’ve now collected all the colors of ribbons over the course of three Cotton Patch shows!

Ribbons | Flying Parrot Quilts

I’ll have a post on all the other lovely quilts in the show later this week!

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Dogwood Blossoms Appliqué Quilt (and pattern!)

I am so excited to finally show you this finished quilt that I made what seems like ages ago—I had to keep it under wraps until now, because it’s coming out as a pattern in the April/May issue of McCall’s Quick Quilts!

Dogwood Blossoms by Sylvia Schaefer, pattern in McCall's Quick Quilts April/May 2015

Photo courtesy of McCall’s

Cover FULL

Photo courtesy of McCall’s

The quilt is made using fusible appliqué and actually comes together relatively quickly. The size is 52″ x 52″—great for a wallhanging or crib quilt. It’s got plenty of negative space to highlight your quilting, too. I quilted the outlines of the dogwoods in the open blocks, which is a favorite technique of mine.

Issues for subscribers should be shipping this week, and will be on newsstands by the first week of March. There are a bunch of other lovely patterns inside as well, so it’s well worth grabbing a copy.

Here are a couple more pictures that I took a while ago (as you might be able to tell from the summery vegetation!).

Dogwood Blossoms quilt, in McCall's Quick Quilts Apr/May 2015 | Flying Parrot Quilts

Dogwood Blossoms quilt, in McCall's Quick Quilts Apr/May 2015 | Flying Parrot Quilts

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Paper Cranes quilt pattern available!

The pattern for my quilt Paper Cranes is now available on Craftsy (for U.S. folks) and PatternSpot (for the international crowd)!

Paper Cranes | Flying Parrot Quilts

 

Paper Cranes quilt pattern

Paper Cranes quilt pattern

The paper piecing pattern includes three sizes (baby, lap, and queen), along with quilting and binding suggestions. Or use the block to do your own thing! Please be aware that familiarity with paper piecing is assumed; if you’ve never paper pieced before, check out the resources here first.

Special thanks are due to my lovely pattern testers, Yanick B. of Sewn With Curves (see her quilt top here) and Joanne of Quilts by Joanne! They are both awesome ladies–please pay them a visit!

Happy quilting!

 

Paper Cranes | Flying Parrot Quilts

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Schnitzel & Boo Round 3 swap quilts

Another mini quilt swap has just wound up, and I have both sent off and received my minis. This time I was making for Tammy, who loves red and aqua and and one of whose favorite fabric designers is Bonnie and Camille. While this is not really the style of fabric I typically use, there’s a lot of red and aqua in their lines, so it was perfect. Coming up with something to do with this fabric was a challenge for me, but in the end I really felt like I expanded my quilting horizons in using it.

Mini Swap quilt by Sylvia Schaefer | Flying Parrot Quilts

It is, as usual, paper pieced, because that’s just how I seem to roll. I also tried spiral quilting on this quilt, which was new to me, and I really like how it complements the angular lines in the blocks.

detail of mini swap quilt | Flying Parrot Quilts

For the backing, I used a fat quarter from the line that’s heavy on the red and light blue, and sized it up with some leftover charms from the pack I used for the front.

backing of mini swap quilt | Flying Parrot Quilts

Since people demanded the pattern for this block, it’s available for free in my Craftsy shop!

I also received my quilt from Susan, and I seriously love it, especially that background fabric!

mini quilt swap received, quilt by Susan

Can you believe she’s only been quilting for a year?!

My mini quilt wall is growing nicely. I’ll have to rethink hanging them on my sloped walls soon if I keep up swapping like this!

Mini Quilt Wall | Flying Parrot Quilts

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Binding inside corners and joining curved binding tutorial

Binding Inside Corners & Joining Curved Binding Tutorial

I’m working on a quilt with a scalloped binding, so I thought I’d share my technique for binding inside corners and joining the binding on a curve.

Start with a double-fold bias binding. (Here is some information on making bias binding.) Begin sewing your binding onto the quilt in a curved section.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

When you approach the inside corner, stop with your needle down and, using a water- or air-erasable fabric marker, mark the inside the point of the binding by measuring in 1/4″ from the edge of the binding and 1/4″ down from the next edge of the quilt:

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Sew to this point and stop with your needle down. If you want, you can lift your presser foot and peer underneath the binding to make sure the needle has stopped in the right place in relation to the piecing on your top.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Lift your presser foot and pivot the quilt so the edge of your 1/4″ foot lines up with the next edge of the quilt. Pull the binding around, too.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

If you start sewing now you’ll get weird tucks in your binding, so use a skewer or a toothpick to gently push the excess fabric out of the way right in front of the needle. Lower the presser foot again and make sure the folds are still out of the way. You can keep the skewer in place as you take your first few stitches.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Continue sewing around the quilt, stopping about 8 inches before where you started sewing the binding.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Joining the binding on a curve works just like joining the binding on a straight section. Since one end of your binding should already be cut at the proper angle for a miter, here’s the technique I use.

If necessary, trim your other end so you can lay it flat on the quilt, and pin to the quilt.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Lay your other binding end (the one with the nice 45-degree angle) on top, following the curve. You can pin it if you would like. Then, mark the end of the top binding.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Remove your pins again, and mark a second line on the bottom binding, 1/2″ away from the previous line and closer to the end of the binding.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

I use a skinny 1/2″ wide ruler for this.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Now, right sides together, line the end of your other binding up with the line you just marked,  shifting it 1/4″ to account for the seam allowance:

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Pin and sew with a 1/4″ seam allowance.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Before you trim, make sure the binding fits properly:

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

The seam will be in between the two lines that you drew. If the binding fits properly, trim the excess, finger press your seam open, and sew this last section of binding to the quilt.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Trim any excess batting and backing now. Next, you will press the binding outward with your iron. The binding should fold naturally in the corners, but you can adjust it to make sure the top fold is right in the center of the corner. The fold should start right at the corner.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Once you have pressed each corner, insert a pin just into the bottom part of the fold (the part that will be on the front of the quilt) to hold it in place until you can stitch it down.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

To hand-sew these inside corners, use clips or pins to temporarily secure the binding to the back of the quilt. I use Wonder Clips. I put two clips very close to the inside corner:

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Sew around the quilt, removing clips as you come to them. I usually use a ladder stitch, but you can use whatever stitch you prefer.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Come up through the backing right at the corner.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Then, take a stitch through the entire quilt at the corner, catching just a couple of threads of the binding on the back:

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Come up just below the binding on the front.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Take a few stitches to secure the miter on the front:

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

And down the back:

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

Pull tight, and you’re ready to continue around your quilt!

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

This is how your finished corners should look.

Binding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot QuiltsBinding Inside Corners Tutorial|Flying Parrot Quilts

 

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#igminiswap Quilts

Happy New Year, everyone! I meant to post this before Christmas, but it seems time got away from me. I was involved in the Instagram mini swap this fall, and here finally are pictures of my quilts!

My partner was @terireymann, who also loves cockatiels, so it was easy to decide to go with a feather theme for her mini. She prefers traditional quilts, which was a nice challenge for me. I decided to try my hand at a feathered star block.

Feathers, Feathers Everywhere by Sylvia Schaefer

I started with a lot of half square triangles, using teeny weeny Thangles. They worked pretty well, although if I made this block again, I would probably stick to paper piecing.

thangles

Then the wedges were assembled and sewn together.

Feathers Everywhere assembly by Sylvia Schaefer

For the quilting, I wanted to continue with the feathers, but I also decided to try some curved crosshatching, which I marked with my trusty blue water-soluble pen. I love these pens, but they are a pain to rinse out afterwards!

Feathers everywhere quilting by Sylvia Schaefer

It worked really nicely with the walking foot, but I wouldn’t want to do this on a large quilt–too much turning. Here is that section all finished and the blue rinsed out:

Feathers Everywhere detail by Sylvia Schaefer

More feather quilting in the stars themselves:

Feathers Everywhere center detail by Sylvia Schaefer

For the backing, I just happened to have just enough of a cute bird print that matched the colors on the front:

Feathers Everywhere backing by Sylvia Schaefer

I sent it off along with a few extras, and I was so pleased to hear that she loved it!

igminiswap_extras

The quilt I received was this beauty from Silvana, all the way from Brazil! She did an amazing job piecing some very tiny pieces accurately!

Flowering Snowball mini quilt by silort

As you can see, she sent some awesome extras too!

This is a terrible picture, but you can see that it now has a place of honor on my sewing room wall. I am involved in several more upcoming swaps, so I’m going to have to figure out where to display other minis I get—gravity is not my friend with my slanted sewing room walls!

IMG_1840

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WIP—Another Artichoke Quilt

After making my original artichoke quilt (pattern available here!), some friends of mine told me I should make a larger version for show, so that’s what I’ve been working on for some time now. I actually got the top done back in the spring, then it sat around for a while waiting for batting and backing. But with my local guild show coming up in the spring, I figured it was time to put it all together.

The Disintegration of the Persistence of Artichokes by Sylvia Schaefer

I’m calling it “The Disintegration of the Persistence of Artichokes,” as a little homage to Salvador Dalí, one of my favorite artists. I didn’t quite manage to get it picture-ready in time for the QuiltCon deadline, but I did squeak in under the wire for the AQS Paducah show, so keep your fingers crossed for me! (The joy of show quilt entry photos: I did the world’s worst job of machine binding it; now I get to rip it out and redo it by hand. I might rip out and redo a small section of quilting, as well.)

Here are a couple of closeups (conveniently not featuring the binding…). I tried to continue the disintegration theme into the quilting.

The Disintegration of the Persistence of Artichokes by Sylvia Schaefer, detail

The Disintegration of the Persistence of Artichokes by Sylvia Schaefer, detail

And yes, all of this quilting was done on my domestic machine, a Bernina 430!

The Disintegration of the Persistence of Artichokes by Sylvia Schaefer, detail

The Disintegration of the Persistence of Artichokes by Sylvia Schaefer, detail

(I promise, that white’s all the same color. Color balance was killing me!)

Linking up with Freshly Pieced‘s WIP Wednesday today!

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Bloggers’ Quilt Festival—Main Sequence

I’ve posted about this one recently, but I love this quilt so much I thought I’d enter it into the Bloggers’ Quilt Festival, too. Forgive me if you’ve already seen and read all about it! This quilt is called “Main Sequence” and is a really nerdy quilt because it illustrates an important concept in astronomy.

Main Sequence by Sylvia Schaefer

 

"Main Sequence" by Sylvia SchaeferThe design is the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram and represents the main sequence of stars shown. It shows the relationship between the brightness, the temperature, and the color of stars. As the temperature of stars increases the color changes from magenta to blue. The hotter stars are also brighter. So in the image below, temperature increases as you move right and brightness increases as you move upwards.

"Main Sequence" by Sylvia Schaefer

Most of the blocks were made for me by members of my hive in Stash Bee. Everyone used a slightly different background color, so I ordered a bunch of different brands of solids described as “navy” and used those in the negative space. In the end, I’m really glad that happened because I think it’s more interesting than just one solid color, which was the original plan.

"Main Sequence" by Sylvia Schaefer

"Main Sequence" by Sylvia Schaefer

The backing includes a few reject blocks made while I was working out exactly what to ask for from my hive mates, and a fantastic astrophysics-themed print from from the Rocket Age collection by October Afternoon.

"Main Sequence" by Sylvia Schaefer

"Main Sequence" by Sylvia Schaefer

Honestly, this may be my favorite quilt that I’ve made to date. It just makes me really happy when I curl up with it!

"Main Sequence" by Sylvia Schaefer

"Main Sequence" by Sylvia Schaefer

Finished size ~56″ x 74″. Original post here.

AmysCreativeSide.com

 

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Paper Cranes

I realized that I haven’t shown a quilt I finished a while back, so the Bloggers’ Quilt Festival seemed like a good time to post some pictures of “Paper Cranes.”

Paper Cranes by Sylvia Schaefer

This quilt was inspired by the Japanese origami paper cranes that are thought to bring good luck if you fold a thousand of them. I was not going to paper piece quite that many, so there are only thirty on this quilt. But paper piecing is harder than folding, right?

Paper Cranes by Sylvia Schaefer

To quilt all the negative space, I decided to echo the cranes in the empty blocks:

cranes_perspective

I pebbled most of the quilt, but I did quilt a long feather in the big area of negative space on the left.

paper_cranes_quilting_detail

The backing is a great Japanese print I found with… cranes!

paper_cranes_backing

This quilt got to hang out at the American Quilter’s Society show in Chattanooga earlier this fall. It was fun to get a quilt in, and I am definitely going to enter more quilts in the future… just have to finish them!

Paper Cranes by Sylvia Schaefer

I’m working on writing a pattern for this one, so if anyone wants to test it for me, please get in touch. :)

Size: 40″ x 60″

Fabric: Mostly Kona Navy, with scraps of many different batik blenders.

AmysCreativeSide.com

 

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