Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Halloween Fun !

Happy Halloween to all !  Is there a Halloween quilt in your future (or past?) We spotted this fun quilt at the 2019 Quilt Arizona show.  It is packed with pumpkins, scattered with bats, hats, and cats, and there are even some not-so-gruesome ghosts and spiders to enjoy.

p.s. For quilt patterns, books, and vintage collectibles, please visit us on E-Bay quilt-inspiration !

Halloween Parade by Margie Brakefield, quilted by Debbie Stanton

Margie Brakefield won Honorable Mention (white ribbon) for this wonderful quilt, with its perfectly executed machine embroidery, in bright Halloween colors of orange, green, and purple.  She says, [It was] "a fun Halloween quilt to make! The border was very time intensive but really made the quilt."

By our count, there are 50 appliqued candy corns in the border! This Halloween Fun pattern is by Lunch Box Quilts.  The blocks were enhanced with professional quilting by Debbie Stanton.

Image credits:  Photos were taken by Quilt Inspiration.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Best of the Pacific International Quilt Festival 2019 (day 1)

Held annually in Santa Clara, California, the Pacific International Quilt Festival is the largest quilt show on the west coast. It features a wonderful variety of beautiful quilts! Here are some of the highlights of the festival. Let us know which ones are your favorites!

For quilt patterns, books, and vintage collectibles, please visit us on E-Bay quilt-inspiration !

For Such A Time As This, 68 x 70, by Kathy Wylie, Canada

Top prize winner, the Best of Show award, Kathy says, "For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven...[In this quilt], time is portrayed by clock numbers, monthly birth flowers and birthstones, leaves changing color with the seasons, moon phases, and the shapes of an hourglass and infinity."

In this close-up, you can see the pretty pale yellow daffodils, the birth flower for the month of March. Kathy's stunning original design is hand-stitched with turned-edge applique and domestic machine quilting.

Family Reunion, 81 x 81, by Barbara McCraw, Texas

Top award winner, Best of World, for the World of Beauty quilt exhibition, Barbara explains, "I designed my quilt after spending several years studying on Ancestry.com. I found my maternal great-grandparents and soon after that, I woke with the vision of the completed design, with them featured in the center." Barbara has produced a breathtaking quilt, well deserving of the Best of World award.

This block is labeled, "In memory of my Ancestors", as they are seen working in the cotton fields. Barbara's original design is hand-appliqued, machine pieced, and sewing machine quilted.

Here are Barbara's maternal grandparents, wed in 1904. They are lovingly encircled by a Baltimore-album style wreath, adorned with three-dimensional flowers and embellished with delicate beads.

Barbara adds, "When [this center block] was done, I decided to design 12 blocks encircling the center, representing my life, my loves, and my dear family. It took nearly 3 years to complete."  Barbara has published a book that tells the story of this momentous work: My Family Reunion Quilt : A Sentimental Journey in Applique.

We Three I'iwi, 60 x 48, by Phyllis Cullen, Hawaii

Phyllis notes, "It is my pleasure to present four of my favorite techniques to create this tribute to one of Hawaii's native birds." For her vibrantly hued original design, Phyllis won the blue ribbon for Best Use of Color in the Innovative Quilts category.

Phyllis continues, " [The techniques here are] free fabric collaged birds, painted branches, sun printed background, machine appliqued, and free motion quilted on the longarm. There is no greater pleasure than painting with fabric and thread."

Trip Around the World II, 38 x 39, by Inger Blood, California

Blue-ribbon winner of the Janome Best Sewing Machine Workmanship Award in the Wall Quilts, category, Inger remarks, "This quilt was inspired by an antique quilt from the early 1900s. Dupioni Silk was used to create the center pattern. Borders were quilted using ruler to extend the center design into the borders. "

These tiny little pieces in the center of the quilt, are less than one-half inch square! Inger machine- pieced them with amazing accuracy. For the border pattern, Inger adds, "Design created with the ruler work was filled with free motion quilting on a domestic sewing machine."

Cat Groove, 44 x 55, by Sue de Vanny, Australia

Second place winner in the Modern Quilts category, Sue writes, "The inspiration for Cat Groove is from my own drawings, 'Art Deco/Retro'. Improvident pieced design inspired by artist Wassily Kandinsky, feline salt and pepper shakers of the 60's/70's, and the music 'Something for Cat' from the Breakfast At Tiffany's soundtrack."

Here's the happy face of a most content kitty! Sue's fun, whimsical original design is machine pieced, machine appliqued, and sewing machine quilted.

Image credits:  Photos were taken by Quilt Inspiration at the 2019 Pacific International Quilt Festival.

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Harvest Time !

The leaves, the wind, and the occasional chill in the air simply means the countdown to Halloween is officially on! Do you have a favorite quilt or decorations to display at this time of year? This fun blackwork embroidery quilt highlights many elements of the fall season.

p.s. Check out our E-Bay shop for great bargains on quilt patterns and collectible items ! For continuous free quilt patterns, please visit us on Twitter !

Harvest Time, 52 x 56", by Sandra Crane

The embroidery blocks in this fall-themed quilt include a smiling scarecrow, pumpkins, a cornucopia, sunflowers, and acorns, superimposed with pieced churn dash and flying geese blocks in autumn colors. Sandra Crane says, “I am a gardener so fall is usually the final harvest. A FALL quilt can go up mid September and down end of November. Much longer than a Halloween one. The colors also remind me of the change of seasons.”

Mr. Scarecrow has a Jack-o-lantern face, perfect for Halloween !  He sports overalls with embroidered patches, and a hat adorned with a sunflower. (Note: we're still searching for the source of this cute pattern.)

Image credits: Photos were taken by Quilt Inspiration at the 2019 Santa Clara Valley Quilt Association show (California).

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Fall Into Fall !

We love the warm and cozy look of folk art quilts ! Many are done in autumn colors and primitive styles.  Here are some outstanding quilts that remind us of days gone by.  This post is titled Fall Into Fall after the first quilt, which is rendered in beautiful fall colors.  We hope you enjoy today's quilts!

p.s. Check out our E-Bay shop for great bargains on quilt patterns and collectible items ! For continuous free quilt patterns, please visit us on Twitter !

Fall Into Fall by Yvonne Carter

Yvonne Carter says, "I love fall colors and enjoyed every minute working on this quilt." She fell in love with the picture in Kim Diehl's book, Simple Harvest, and knew that she must make this quilt.  It is part applique and part pieced, and is both hand- and machine-quilted by Yvonne herself.  The pattern is in the book Simple Harvest: A Bounty of Scrappy Quilts and More, available at Amazon and other sources.

In Full Bloom by Marianne Michaels, quilted by Ramona Sorensen

Colorful birds, flowers, butterflies, and a large vase of cut flowers serve as the dominant theme in this stunning quilt, winner of Honorable Mention at the 2019 Springville (Utah) quilt show.  The fibers in this quilt include a combination of wool, cotton, linen and silks.  Marianne Michaels hand dyed many of the wool applique fabrics.  In Full Bloom received Honorable Mention at the Springville show.

This quilt is heavily embellished by hand with a variety of cotton and silk threads; in the closeup photos you can see Marianne's many creative stitches and French knots. The In Full Bloom pattern, by Sue Spargo, is available at Amazon and other sources.

Not So aLone Star by Tamara Johnson, quilted by Lynn Peterson

Lone Star is a traditional Amish quilt design, and many examples are included in the collection of the Folk Art Museum. Tamara Johnson received an Award of Excellence for her Not So aLone Star, which she designed as she prepared to teach a Lone Star Color Theory and Technique class.  She says,  "The experience was challenging and rewarding, and I'm very happy with how this quilt - and others made with the same resources - turned out."

Chanticleer and Company by Laura Brown, quilted by Kim Peterson

We love the color scheme in this delightful quilt. The whimsical roosters, hens, and baby chicks are given a realistic flair by the use of chicken wire-print fabric in the background of the blocks. Laura Brown embellished the edges of the applique pieces with many different decorative stitches, as shown in the closeup photo below.  The Chanticleer and Company quilt pattern is by Nancy Barrett at With Needle and Thread.

Berry Blossoms by Monette Klinkenberg

Monette Klinkenberg created Berry Blossoms with an array of beautiful prints in hues of orange, brown, green, and pale blue gray.  The flower motifs are fused and machine appliqued and adorned with yo yo's in complementary colors.  Monette quilted her creation herself using sswirls and, in the flying geese border, heart motifs. The quilt pattern, designed by Kim Diehl, is available at the American Patchwork and Quilting shop.

If you're inspired by folk art quilts, you may want to check out our recent Free Pattern Day for Folk Art Quilts, including free patterns by Kim Diehl and other top designers !

Image credits:  Photos were taken by Quilt Inspiration at the 2019 Springville Museum Quilt Show (Utah).

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Nature's Glory in Applique

It's Fall! The leaves are turning brilliantly, and early snow has fallen in many Northern states. Do you enjoy autumn as much as we do? Are you planning any fall quilt projects? In celebration of the season, we wanted to share this photo of a stunning autumn quilt.

Jill's Botanical Wreaths by Patricia Wills

Patricia Wills from Arizona explains that she created this quilt for her younger daughter, Jill, who expressed admiration for it. She used the book Botanical Wreaths by Laura Reinstatler to learn the applique techniques needed to created this lovely display of autumn leaves and blossoms.

Here's a close-up of the Patricia's wonderful applique workmanship against the dark neutral background, which really causes these shades of peach, lemon, russet, and apricot to "pop". We really enjoy seeing the variety of fabric patterns that Patricia selected.

Patricia brought in so many different colors of nature, that you can almost see the sun of a clear, cool autumn day shining right through these delicate leaves.

Note:  The pattern is from Botanical Wreaths: Nature's Glory in Applique by Laura Munson Reinstatler (published by That Patchwork Place, 1994).  Although it is out of print, the book is sometimes available on Amazon and on E-Bay from various sellers.

Note:  Photos were taken by Quilt Inspiration at the 2019 Arizona Quilters Guild show.
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