PIQF Win for Jenny!

I am so proud of my friend, Jenny Lyon, who won the 1st Runner up Best of Show at Pacific International Quilt Fest!  I have always loved her quilting, and I am especially in awe that she does it with her domestic standard machine, too.  Here is Jenny standing in front of her award winning quilt:

Here are some close-ups showing how lovely her quilting is:

This was a meaningful quilt for Jenny.  She writes,   “The quilt is based on a strong childhood memory of crouching in my Mother’s fern and Lily-of-the-Valley bed. I loved that! The smells were so beautiful and strong, there were all kinds of bugs in there and it was just a spot of beauty-sight, sound, smell and touch. I used Radiance in the center and hand dyed raw silk by Linda M Designs http://www.lindamdesigns.com/ for the border, wool batt, every thread know to man, beads, metallics, silk inset and cotton backing. I am astounded to have received such recognition.”

Her winning quilt also had some bug motifs in the quilt. Here is one example:

Jenny also won a Bernina sewing machine, too.  How cool is that?  Visit her blog to see a picture of her new machine, as well as additional quilt pictures.  Anyway, I just wanted to share with you how excited I am for Jenny and how wonderful it is to see her work being recognized!!  Congrats, Jenny!

Registration Starts Tomorrow

Click HERE to read my recent newsletter about the next class being offered.

Due to popular demand, we are holding a Fall session of the Introduction to Photoshop Elements for Fiber Artists, Quilters and Sewing Enthusiasts by the Pixeladies.  Registration for this wonderful class starts tomorrow.

If you like my artwork, quilt drawings, cartoons, etc., Photoshop Elements (PSE) is the program I use to design and draw.  It is a very cost effective program for students, but will do so much!  This is why I asked the Pixeladies to teach this class once again.  Here are just a few examples of how I use PSE:

Here are some details about this class:

Introduction to Photoshop Elements (PSE)  for Fiber Artists and Sewing Enthusiasts by The Pixeladies
Course Dates: September 17- October 7, 2012 (3 week class)

Tuition Fee: $60  (students re-taking this class receive a 50% discount on their tuition.  Contact Carla at carla@quiltwhisper.com for a special rate invoice.

This class is open to all students wanting a introductory course in using PSE.

Course Description: Want to learn Adobe Photoshop Elements (PSE) so that you can use it for your art? This is the class for you! Learn the basic tools you need to work with PSE, including selection tools, and find out what layers are and why they are the secret to Photoshop. You’ll enjoy the learning process ’cause we work with “paper” dolls! This class is suitable for PSE beginners and any PSE users who want a refresher course.

Registration starts on September 4, 2012.  For more information, click on my menu link above.  If you click here, I have a helpful video which shows you how to register for this class.

Nancy Gwyn’s Last Quilt

I am almost done with Nancy’s last quilt.

Nancy Gwyn passed away last year and she is greatly missed.  Nancy was a truly gracious southern lady,  born on January 24, 1924 in North Carolina.  I had the pleasure of quilting many of her quilts over the years, and sharing in the joy when they won awards in both North Carolina and California.

I decided to quilt Nancy’s quilt in a light to medium custom density.  The quilt includes lots of freehand work with a touch of digital design.  She always left the quilting design decisions to me.

Here are some pictures taken before the Stitch-in-the-Ditch and any fill- which I do as a last step when I quilt.  The quilt is still loaded on my table:

  Click for larger image

Click for larger image

Click for larger image

Off to finish Nancy’s quilt now…  Btw, the 2 digital designs used in this quilt came pre-loaded with my IQ computerized system.  All other quilting designs are mine.

Hugs, Carla



Registration Update!

I am pleased to report that the class is now half full!  Registration continues until the first week of the class- usually I close it on July 15th, 2011.  For more info, here is a link to the class description.

This class has a wonderful mix of all types of quilters.  From domestic machine (home sewing machine) users to professional quilters.  Plus some art quilters, too.  Thank you for signing up so quickly!

WIP stands for “work in progress.”  You all know I always have several projects going on at any given time.  Quilty wise, I am working on a special “story quilt” for a friend, Virginia.  What makes this quilt special is that it memorializes her husband, who passed away about 2 years ago.  Virginia took a class from Mary Lou Weidman, who is known for her whimsical story quilts.  With Virginia’s permission, I will show you the quilt when I am done.

Other news:  Congrats to Jayne Moore, who won “Best of Show” at the local Fair show.  You all might remember Jayne’s quilt, which I quilted last year:

Here is a close-up of a random block:

Apparently, it won a first in the “professionally quilted division,” so I get a ribbon, too!

That’s all for now!  What are YOU up to?  Carla

Thinking of Nancy

Nancy is one of my elder friends, who I have quilted many quilts for over the last 6 plus years.  I learned recently from her Daughter-in-law (DIL) that she moved from North Carolina back to Northern CA again.  That’s the good news!

Unfortunately, the good news is tempered with concern.  I learned that Nancy is in the ICU right now, so I wanted to ask you all for your prayers, good thoughts of healing, etc. on her behalf.  Please  think of her when you read this.

Some of you might remember Nancy by her quilts I have quilted.  One of the first ones was this Carolina Lily:

Here is a Wedding Ring quilt:

Here is a 2 alternating block quilt:

Here is my working sketch for this quilt:

Here is another lovely quilt by Nancy:

and another:

Front View:

Plus, I have a few more still for me to do for Nancy, when I recover completely from my spine surgery earlier this year.  I no longer quilt full time, but I still have a few friends (like Nancy) that I quilt for, so long as they don’t mind waiting.

So please keep Nancy in your thoughts and prayers.  Thank you, Carla



Best of Show at Folsom!!

Barb shared the good news tonight that the antique kimono quilt I quilted and finished just a day before my spine surgery won “Best of Show” at the Folsom Quilt Guild in Folsom, CA.  It also won a first place, too, in the memory quilt category.

I wish I had some good pictures, but here are some snapshots of this wonderful quilt that Barb pieced and designed for her friend, Sally. Sally is planning to hang this quilt in a place of honor in her home.

This photo shows an overview of the back of the quilt:

Here is the front of the quilt, just after I finished it:

Another front view showing the silk blocks, photo transfers, etc.:

Block front:

Block Back:

Kimono Block front:

Another kimono front:

The back shot of this block:

and another kimono block back:

So, above are the pictures of this quilt showing my quilting design.  Now some detail info for machine quilters:  Notice I have lots of freehand quilting, some ruler work and 2 stencils to blend together for this quilt design.  Design elements are repeated throughout the quilt for unity.

I feel that the quilting design is cohesive, balanced, and I carefully picked the thread colors so that the quilting did not overpower the photo transfers or quilt design.  Overall, I used about 10 different thread colors.  In the center section, I curved lines to draw the eye towards the center, the focal point photo on this quilt.

My congrats to Barb on this Best of  Show win- our second together at the Folsom Guild.   My only regret is that I am still recovering from my surgery and am unable to see the quilting hanging in the show.  Hopefully, someone will send me some good quality pictures.

Oh yes, I also want to mention that the lovely silk photo transfers were done by my good friends, the Pixeladies, Deb and Kris.  If the names sound familiar, it is because they will be teaching Photoshop Elements next month on quiltwhisper.com/forum.  An announcement will be made most likely within a week.

I have been recovering from my surgery the last 3 weeks, which means I lay down most of the day, interspersed with walking.  I am normally very active before surgery, so I was feeling a bit of recovery boredom the last few days.  This bit of news cheers me up!!  Hugs, Carla

Carla Tip: Quilting Design

Here is a good tip for beginning to intermediate freehand machine quilters:   Look for creative ways to fill blocks and spaces evenly by expanding the motif or fabric design into the blank space.

I was thinking about this today as I was quilting a Japanese theme quilt.  I had a kimono block to design, and I was pondering all the options I had to quilt the space:  1) I could quilt a unique fill in the space, 2) I could use bits and parts of a stencil, 3) borrow a texture quilting used elsewhere in the quilt, or 4) quilt the space by quilting along the fabric design.

Since this is a special memory quilt and the antique kimono fabric was fussy cut, I decided to go with #4 and quilt along with the fabric design.  Here is the first block:

Notice how I quilted in faux branches  to fill the space more evenly?    This next block uses different fabric, so I needed to custom fill the blank spaces with a different quilting lines and design:

Look closely to see that I quilted in faux cherry blossoms and branches, also a butterfly.   By quilting it this way, it makes the blocks more interesting- in addition to filling the space more evenly.

For uniformity, I designed and quilted the green and orange parts of the blocks the same throughout the quilt.  This design frames the block nicely and provide interesting texture.

Note that I still need to SID around both the square block and the kimono to finish and polish the block.  I do this as a last step.

Thanks to Barb (and Sally) for letting me use their quilt to illustrate this tip.  I do hope I have described it adequately for you.  Be sure to post a question if you have one.   Regards, Carla

Creative in 2011: Quilting

It feels good to quilt again.  Right now I am working hard to finish up an antique kimono quilt for my friend, Barb.  It will be entered into the Folsom Quilt Show next month, and I am making wonderful progress each day.  That is what I have been doing in the last week, creative wise, as in Creative in 2011:

I don’t want to spoil the surprise for Barb, but here is an early photo taken of just one block that she has already seen:

This is a silk kimono quilt, which is one reason the block just glows in the light.

My goal is to finish this quilt before my upcoming surgery.  Btw, thanks for all the kind thoughts, the short version is I am having an artificial disc replacement surgery, which is the best technology available for what ails me.  This will be done in San Francisco, by a leading spine surgeon whom I trust.    Once I heal, I can get back to what I love doing best: quilting, beading, teaching, traveling, sailing, creating, and doing back flips.   Well, maybe not the last one.  LOL

I already have lots of projects to do while I heal:  writing, new class development, drawing, beading and freeform crochet, etc.  I have a wonderful new challenge to do for ArtBeads.com, too.  The challenge is to create a beaded piece inspired by “Winter.”    I have it designed in my mind, but I see a freeform beaded necklace inspired by white/blue colors of a winter snow.  I will be using ultrasuede as the base.

I will also be working on a booklet about quilting Theme Quilts, too, for machine quilters.  I’ve had so many requests for this very thick class handout, that I am planning to expand it even more and release it as a booklet.  Here is a sample page showing you how to quilt 3 leaves:

Off to quilt now.    Hugs, Carla

Good News From Nancy!

Nancy, who lives in Lenoir, NC, USA, called me this weekend to let me know that her Morganton, NC guild show judging had taken place- and that the quilt I quilted for her won 1st place in her guild’s professional division.  Here is the quilt that won:

Here is the back:

Here is a closeup of the front.  I had some challenges with this quilt as my stitch regulator and SID  feature on my longarm went cabooey, so I couldn’t do any straight line work.

My machine was fixed after this quilt, so life is good once again!

Nancy is a very sweet woman in her 80’s.  I do enjoy quilting her quilts; she is a dear friend!  I am glad she won as there was some issues with her entering previously since she used a quilter who did not live in NC.   That “rule” has been lifted by the current board members, so Nancy was allowed to enter this year.

I do wish Nancy had internet service so she could see how much you all enjoy her quilts! One time, I read your comments to her and she was thrilled!

Happy Quilting!  Carla

Doug’s Sierra Nomad Quilt

Doug always gives me fun quilts to do for his artisan-built trailers.  His latest trailer is called “Sierra Nomad,” and it is stunning!  I lifted borrowed these pictures from Doug of his hand-built trailer:

Here is the picture of the other side:

Pretty cool, isn’t it?  Doug also makes a quilt for each trailer he had made.  I quilt them all with fun motifs and items quilted into the quilt.  The quilt matches the curtains, and the detail inside the trailer.

Here is the finished quilt:

I quilted a simple, but effective border for this quilt.  Here is the back side:

I also “hid” many fun motifs and wording into his quilt.  Besides the name of his trailer, “Sierra Nomad,” and “DougKraft,” his logo, I quilted a bear:

I decided the bear needed a name, and what better name than “doug!”  LOL

and some trees.  Here is an easy quilted tree:

This one is a scroll with the words, “Blah, blah, blah.”  It has a hidden meaning that is funny to Doug and I.  Look close to see it:

These type of trailers are nicknamed “canned hams,” so that explains this motif, shown from the back:

Doug had a wonderful dog named ‘Daisy,” who he lost back in May, 2008, due to cancer.  Doug loved that dog, who was his faithful companion.  I decided to sneak in a memorial to Daisy within the quilt.  Look for a dog and some daisys:

I hope you have enjoyed my story behind Doug’s quilt.   Some quilts, while not show quality or award winners; are truly special for other reasons.

Regards, Carla