Saturday, October 3, 2015

Quick burials

Here's a tute on burying your threads in your quilt without a self-threading needle.

All you need: one sewing needle and about 30" of thread. Fine threads don't work well. Use a grabby thread. I use glazed cotton hand quilting thread and a long thin needle with a big eye. 

1. Thread the needle with the thread doubled: fold the thread in half and put either the end loop or both cut ends through the eye. 

2. Pull the thread so the loop end hangs longer than the cut ends. 

3. Optional: on the quilt, pull the bobbin thread up to the top and tie it the top thread. You could bury each thread individually, but then you'll have twice as many to do.

4. Insert needle near these thread ends to be buried and come back out an inch or so away. For a smooth end, I bury it just about in the same place where the bobbin thread came up. Also if I direct my needle back toward the line of stitching, it seems less likely to pull out. 

5. Grab thread ends and pull through the loop. As you pull the needle out, keep threads end in the loop. 

6. Cut excess thread ends as needed. Voila!

After you get the hang of this, burying threads is easy and speedy. And you can make thread starts and stops just about disappear.

After composing this, Cindy Needham made a great You Tube video of this technique. So follow the link. Much better than any photos! 

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

No more walking

After spending 120 hours quilting one large project, I kept the momentum going. When I ran out of bobbin thread on the bed quilt, I switched to another ufo.
quilting another ufo
Then this thread started running low. I diverted my attention to problem areas. Plenty of bad stitches to redo which slowed my progress while I await more thread.  Here's an area that developed tucks and creases:
unstitched quilting to smooth it out
Quilting lines run on the bias in this area. More basting. Will it behave now?
basted grid
Predicting problems elsewhere, I added more basting there too.  That's when the walking foot fell apart. Spring unsprung!
. . . couldn't put it back together again 
The dealer/repairman had reassembled one for someone else before, but it was fussy and fiddly work. This time they're ordering a new foot. No charge but no walking foot for at least a week. Fortunately threads arrived. Back to fmq on the bed quilt. Saved from housework.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Intense swirls & pebbles

It has been a nose-to-the-grindstone kind of month. Back to quilting the bed quilt. I want to finish and gift it before winter.
Swirls and pebbles à la Angela Walters
There's a reason for those gaps. Filling it completely with swirls and pebbles was so intense. Turning out lovely. But makes me want to tear out the quilting elsewhere.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Working back to normal

Blogging had to take a back seat in the past two years. That period has been all about deadlines. Not only was I immersed in work for Color Improvisations 2, I also filled a position as Program Chair for my local guild, EBHQ. So I had to stay on top of everything.

In those two years I've selected artists for a presentation and two days of workshops to fill 19 months of programming for the guild.

The illustrious guests for 2014 included Pat PaulyVelda NewmanSandra BruceSuzi ParronStacey SharmanJane DunnewoldJenny Lyon and Els van Baarle.

The lineup continued in 2015: Judy Coates Perez, Terrie Hancock Mangat, Sue Rasmussen, Youngmin Lee, Jean Cacicedo, Jo Fitsell, Ana Lisa Hedstrom, Cynthia Corbin and Jiyoung Chung.

Still yet to come in 2016: Leslie Tucker Jenison, Sherri Lynn Wood, Rosalie Dace and Jacquie Gering. Check the guild's website to see who's coming soon.

And the members enthusiastically responded; enrollment averaged 18 to 19 students (out of 20!) per workshop. So if you are considering any of these wonderful people and want to know more, just ask.

My tenure ended on June 1st. After some residual business, I am a free-er and more relaxed woman who intends to post less erratically as well as keep on working in the studio!
in the studio

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

When the stars align

I remember taking my second workshop at the Crow Barn, before the Color Improvisations exhibition was slated to open in 2010. It was to be a stellar line up - one I wanted to see up close and personal. But that didn't happen: I didn't make it to Europe and it didn't travel to the United States.

Most of all, I wished for an invitation from Nancy Crow to participate in a exhibition. Now the stars have aligned!

I have been juried into a group exhibition, Color Improvisations 2, curated by Nancy Crow and featuring 50 works by 43 artists. I am honored by the invitation to participate, blessed by the acceptance of my work, Terra Verde, and flattered to be included with many acclaimed artists. A sure bet: I'll be there for the opening!

Color Improvisations II
Curated by Nancy Crow

Organized by Ginie Curtze
March 12 - August 28, 2016
Opening reception March 11, 2016 7pm

Museum Tuch + Technik Textilmuseum
Neumünster, GERMANY
Kleinflecken 1
24534 Neumünster
Telefon  04321 559 58-20

detail from Terra Verde

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Tat peeps

Showing off our matching tats at SAQA's Fiberlandia

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Lost in transition

Done my good deed for SAQA. I finished this mini quilt (thank you, Colleen and Sandy for feedback), completed the participation form and mailed it off with days to spare. It was to be part of the Spotlight Auction at Fiberlandia, the conference in Portland, OR.

Was to be. 

Lost somewhere between the post office here and Seguin, TX or New Braunfels, TX. Probably in Texas (the recipient moved). Three were lost. I hope they have many more for the auction.

This doesn't stop me from going to the conference! See you there?

Update: The other two showed up in time to make it to the conference, but not mine. It showed up at the original address the Monday following the Perhaps it was having such a good time going first class,  it wanted to spend an extra month with the post office!

SAQA sent it back to me, nicely matted. Unless it finds another happy home, I'll resubmit it to next year's conference.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Fiberlandia Spotlight

Last year I joined SAQA and attended the quarterly Northern California regional meetings. I even participated in two of the featured programs: one on critiques and the other on long term learning. This year I’m heading to Fiberlandia, the conference in Portland, OR and I've something to donate for the Spotlight Auction. 

Here is it before trimming:
before cropping
It's bigger than the requested size – 6" x 8". I'll crop it, they'll frame it. But which orientation to show in the 4.5" x 6.5" window? 
A: horizontal 1
B: vertical 1
C: horizontal 2
D: vertical 2
After seeing them here, I have my druthers. Then a little more Shiva Paintsticks to finish it off. 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Results may vary

I’m gearing up for major fmq by getting rid of the cobwebs around the hand-eye-sewing machine-fabric coordination. Just stitching samples, four inches squares. Just practice.

Here’re two samples based on an interesting pattern shown on Amy’s Free Motion Quilting AdventuresAll straight lines. It’s a stitched version of a Twisted Log CabinShe has a video showing how she did it.

same pattern, different results
The one on the left was stitched first. No rulers. And other than the perimeter square, no marking – spacing eyeballed. I did turn the square so I am stitching the line straight on from back to front. 

What if I don’t turn it? Thus the second sample on the right. Yeah, I could use more practice stitching in other directions. The lines aren’t as straight, the spacing is uneven, the resulting curve is rougher, and the center is off. 

It’s got wonky charm, doesn't it? 

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Gussied up & stepping out!

Plain Jane before:
Plain Jane in 2013
In response to FiberShots Community Challenge: Embellish Your World at the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles, I gave it a makeover:
Vega Alpha Lyrae
Post transformation, I’ve donated it, as Vega Alpha Lyrae, to the museum. It will be exhibited from March 7 to April 26, 2015 along with many other works to be auctioned off to support their worthwhile efforts.

The museum issues these FiberShots challenges annually. Check them out! Support the museum by starting or adding to your own collection of 16-inch squares.