Monday, July 9, 2012

July Celebrations!

July is a wonderful month - our Nation's birthday, birthdays of friends and family, summer time, and more!  This month, because a vacation and other matters filled my calendar, I am not posting the quilting that I've been doing in the past month.  That will wait for another time.  For now, having just recieved the catalog for Houston's grand 2012 International Quilting Association exhibition, held in late October/early November, I am celebrating because I made a reservation for a downtown hotel room for a few nights, I've talked to out-of-town friends and they'll be making the pilgrimage to Houston in October, and... I'm going to show you some of the wonderful quilts that hung in the 2011 IQA show.  I cannot wait for the 2012 show!!!  The pictures below are in no particular order - just a riot of fun and fabulous art!

Great Blue Herons
Original design by Joanne Baeth, Bonanza, Oregon.  Joanne used extensive machine quilting to attach all of the fused pieces, to blend colors, to shade and highlight, and to create dimension.  She used inks and thread painting to enhance parts of the birds and the brown parts of the cattails.  The border is quilted very simply to reflect a frame surrounding a work of art. 

Bay Bridge Series
Original design by Nancy Brown, Oakland, California.  Nancy notes that the giraffe and the elephant live in the Oakland Zoo, while the lion and the rhinoceros live in the San Francisco Zoo.  Hence... this is a "bay bridge series."

With regret, the credits for the above quilt were illegible in my photograph of them... but I love that this is a quilt and not a painting!  It's a refreshing scene.  And if anyone knows any of the details about this quilt, email me and I will be happy to give credit where it is due!

Original design by Sonia Grasvik, Burien, Washington.  In her continuation of "Feather" quilts, this fifth one is a sentimental favorite of Sonia's.  As a child in Oklahoma, the beautiful cardinal was a common sight, sorely missed in her current state of Washington.  They are, as their song suggests, pretty... pretty... pretty.  Sonia used raw-edge applique, fusing, machine piecing, and machine quilting in Cardinal, along with cotton, novelty fabrics, decorative threads, and cheesecloth.
Marmalade's First Snow
Original design by David Taylor, Steamboat Springs, Colorado.  David's friend, Jane McLeod, took a picture of her cat stepping out of her barn - and David knew immediately that he had to turn that photo into a quilt.  Most of the barn wood was pieced together, then appliqued in place.  David especially loves the latch and the hinge in this quilt. 


Out in the Garden
Leslie Hall, Longboat Key, Florida.  THis quilt was inspired by a photograph taken by Phil Hall.  Mr. Boone was a cat who lived inside the house.  One day, however, he made his escape into the great out-of-doors.  His outing was brief.  He was quickly corralled and herded back inside to air-conditioned safety, but for that one glorious moment, it was grand being out in the garden.  Leslie used turned-edge machine applique, hand quilting, and machine quilting to make her quilt - along with hand-dyed cottons, polyneon thread, and #8 perle cotton thread.

Cape Cod Window
Original design by Sara Sharp, Austin, Texas.  Sara has often photographed this window in the 19th century rustic house, above the dunes loverlooking Cape Cod Bay, where she spent many wonderful family vacations.  The views from this window are always spectacular.  This is the most tranquilt and relaxing place she has ever been.  Her quilt reflects that feeling too, with its use of color, the breeze gently swaying the curtains, and the quiet spot by the sea.  Sara's quilt was made using piecing, fusing, and machine applique, along with thread painting, decorative machine stitching, and free-motion stitching.

The One That Got Away
Original design by Margery Hedges, Kingwood, Texas.  Margery says that quilts of your personal experiences are always fun.  She see sthe scene over and over in her back yard - it is embedded in her brain and is now in this quilt.  Note the dog at the base of the tree, and the squirrel at the top:  Go get 'em Bud!  Margery used turned-edge machine applique, tread painting, fabric painted details and shading, and machine quilting in making this quilt.

Original design by David Taylor, Steamboat Springs, Colho.  This quilt was adapted from a photograph by David's friend, Hilary Spillane, wife of Winter Olumpian, Johnny Spillane, of their dog, Maynard.  The image was taken on a cold winter's day in northwest Colorado.  The shadows in the snow were created with linings and thread.  David used machine piecing, hand applique, hand embroidery, and machine quilting in his quilt.

Original design by Jan Frazer, Elwood, Victoria, Australia.  Jan started this quilt as a study of the monsterio delicio leaf, but the colors took control of the design - hence the quilts' name.  She used many different techniques to make this quilt:  fabric stabilized and positioned using Charlotte's fusible thread, satin-stitch applique, and machine embroidery and quilting.  Bravo, Jan!


Long Day's Journey
Original design by Pamela Morris, Nokomis, Florida.  Pam lives in gorgeous Florida and uses its natural beauty as her muse:  open water, sun, grennergy, and rivers.  If you've ever tried to paint an abstract work, you know it is terribly difficult (at least it is for me!).  I envy people who make it look so gloriously simple -- they have a sense of balance, color, and design that escapes me!

August Garden
Original design by Ruan Robertson, Bethesda, Maryland.  Ruan frequently uses abstract landscapes as a focal point.  HEre, Ruan divided a snow-dyed panel vertically and placed it on the sides.  The challenge was to achieve a smooth, apparently seemless transition to the larger central pieced section using many fabrics, while maintaining the character of the whole.  I'd say that Ruan succeeded by any standard of measure, in achieving the aim fo this quilt.  The quilt involved hand dyeing, fussy cutting, crazy piecing, machine quilting, and included commercial prints, batiks, and artist's hand-dyed cotton.

Judy in the Sky with Stitches
Original design by Judy Robinson Ehrnst, Springville, Alabama, with quilting inspired by Quilt Savvy: Gaudynski's Machine Quilting Guidebook and This quilt was string-pieced by machine and "appliqued" by hand. It was free-motion quilted on Judy's domestic machine without a stitch regulaor. She used quilting designs, as noted, to create texture and movement in the sun, sky, and clouds. Below is a close-up of the quilting this work of art!

 Close-up of Judy in the Sky with Stitches

Full Sails 
Original design by Pamela Morris, Nokomis, Florida.  Pamela enjoys what Florida has plenty of:  fun people!  Her quilt exhibits that spirit of fun, joy, and happiness that comes from doing what one loves!  Pamela used hand-dyed fabrics and cheesecloth to make this quilt.

O Happy Day
Original design by Timna Tarr, South Hadley, Massachusetts.  Color and polka dots were combined in this quilt by Timna.  Starting without a plan, Timna played with the squares and the layout until she was pleased with the color progression.  The wool batting that she used made the circles puff up, giving them nice dimension.  The photo of this quilt does not do justice to its radiance!

Life in the City
Original design by Sheila Frampton-Cooper, Van Nuys, California.  Sheila's inspiration for this quilt was simply her love of color, especial in nature.  As a native of Los Angeles, this is her representation of life in the city:  the parks, trees, flowers, birds, busy intersections, her love of driving, and colorful people.  Sheila says she truly enjoyed particpating it her quilt's creation.  Please excuse the brown portion int he lower left corner of the quilt - a stand interfered with the photographer (me)!

Whirling Leaves
Original design (inspired by a Jane Sassaman workshop) by Cheryl Lara, Albuquerque, New Mexico.  Cheryl achieved the center design by arranging three shapes until she arrived at a pleasing composition.  Using the bright colors she loves, she tried to create a feeling of windswept leaves and depth.  She added decorative stitches to add texture to the finished design.

Spontaneous Combustion
Original design by Pat Kroth, Verona, Wisconsin.  Pat trained for and competed in three ironman triathlons.  This quilt is a reflection of the high energy involved for athletes and spectators alike.  Pat used hand-dyed and hand-painted fabrics, fused applique, machine embroidery, and machine quilting to make this quilt.  It is spectacular!

I hope you've enjoyed this month's display of phenomenal quilts.  Quiltmakers continually astound me with their creativity, their willingness to use color in unproven ways, and their joy in sharing their efforts.  Next month I hope to show you what I've been working on over the past weeks - somehow, it all seems to pale in the face of these wonderful quilts, though.  That's okay, though - there is hardly a quilter out there that doesn't inspire me in one way or another by their choices!

Until next time, happy stitching!

(c)2012 Susan H. Garman


  1. Thank you for a glimpse of these breathtaking works.

  2. What a joy to see these beautiful quilts. Thank you so much for sharing!

  3. What a fantastic feast for the eyes! Thank you, Sue, for sharing so many wonderful works of art and providing all the info so we could go surf further about the artists. Love these quilts.

  4. Sue, I've just started quilting in the last year and came across your blog, read through most of the past year, and have to say, YOU ARE AMAZING!!! I am inspired by your talent and even the love you show to your parents. Your guild is blessed to have you, as I am to have seen your work, and some of theirs too, and I am going to find the June issue of Quiltmakers so I can see up close how to applique so wonderfully. May the Lord continue to bless you!!

  5. What a fascinating and informative newsletter! The various programmes your Guild has to involve its members is inspirational and I hope you won't mind if I mention some of these ideas to my own Guild here in Australia. It is always a challenge to come up with motivational activities for members, especially ones which are so achievable.

  6. Thanks Sue ... for sharing the quilts and the guild works always love others work.
    Debbie Kelly

  7. Thanks for sharing nice information with us. i like your post and all you share with us is uptodate and quite informative, i would like to bookmark the page so i can come here again to read you, as you have done a wonderful job.
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