weekly update

QuiltCon Recap (aka QuiltCon Recovery)

I am tired and worn out but attending QuiltCon this year was incredibly worth it; it was nothing short of amazing!  The quilts in the show were so incredible, and I have quite a few to share below.  I didn’t get photos of all the paper tags, so sorry I am not listing the makers.  Good thing there are lots of these quilts tagged on Instagram via #QuiltCon2017.  The best in show quilt, Bling, was absolutely breathtaking made by Katherine Jones.  I have a new goal in life:  get a quilt accepted into QuiltCon.

I took as many classes a person could take during the 4 day show.  I was very blessed to get into all the classes before all the registration issues happened. Next year, I need to remember this course load was probably too many classes to take because of how tired I got by the evening classes. My days consisted of class from 9am-12pm, lunch from 12-2pm, class from 2-5pm, dinner from 5-6pm, and an evening class from 6-9pm.  Sunday was the only day that there wasn’t an evening class.

On Thursday, I took a 6 hour class from Victoria Findlay Wolfe called Intuition and Trust: To the Nines.  The quilt consisted of improvised blocks in groups of 9 that were then duplicated 4 times with a 90 degree rotation.  We started with coloring paper pieces of the block pattern, cutting them out, and arranging them in a nine block pattern.

Playing with the layout and our phones, we were able to duplicate the block 4 times with the 90 degree rotation to simulate what the final quilt will look like.  We used PhotoGrid, a free app, to do simulation.  This was so amazing to be able to see all the different types of quilts we could come up with.  I’ve had PhotoGrid on my phone for years, but never thought to use it with quilting.

Once we picked a layout that we liked (with slight modifications), we started to make the actual blocks out of fabric! I was able to complete 5 of the blocks during class.  The “improv” part of this quilt seemed so intimidating at first, but this method of testing before you sew was so much fun!  I am definitely incorporating it into my sewing toolbox.

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Thursday night, I look a class from Jacqueline Sava, the founder of Soak, called Maker to Making a Living.  This was such a great class to learn the business side of how to start thinking about making a creative business.  The class was definitely too short for the amount of material we covered, so I have lots of homework to do now about how I want to expand what I’m doing into a viable business.

On Friday, I took another 6 hour class from Victoria Findlay Wolfe called Thunderstuck.  This quilt is a stunner, and I was so excited to have been able to get into the class.  The quilt consists of diamonds that make a star shape.  We used slashing on the larger diamonds and pieced smaller diamonds together.  I completed almost a quarter of the diamonds for the star before lunch.  Using the technique from Thursday with PhotoGrid, I was able to simulate what the quilt was going to look like.

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Outside of the star portion is a square with slashing and a triangle to fill in the space.  We learned how to do Y-seams, so that all the seams lay flat and how to align all the points for precision piecing.  I was able to get almost everything I needed cut out for the quilt as well as completing all 4 squares with slashing before class was completed.  This quilt top will hardly take any time to complete!

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Friday night, I took Quilting Small Things from Lee Monroe aka May Chappell.  I didn’t know who she was at first until she gave her business name, and I was already following her on Instagram, go figure!  We talked about quilting minis, table toppers, and lap quilts, all of which are small things…hence the class.  We worked on specifically 3 types: clamshells/paisleys, infinity loops/cursive Ls/wishbones, and pebbles.  Apparently there are lots of different names for the same type of shapes.  One of the big takeaways is doodling helps.  I’ve been doodling infinity circles since junior high and guess what?!  The only thing I didn’t struggle with quilting were the infinity loops.  I see lots of doodling in my future!

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On Saturday, I took a 6 hour You Do the Math class from Elizabeth Hartman.  I re-learned the basics of quilt math and some tips and tricks on how to calculate everything.  The best thing that came from the class is figuring out a strategy on making my first design into a viable quilt block.  The premise before the class is that it’s a 9in square block that would need 1in finished squares that were Quarter Square Triangles and Half Square Triangles; it would have been miserable and no one would want to make it.  I think I figured out a way to do it faster, but I need to test it.  Future pattern in the works!

Saturday Night, I took Facets – An Equilateral Triangle Workshop from Rebecca Bryan.  This was the first time that I worked with equilateral triangles, and it was pretty fun.  She also did a paper piecing tutorial with freezer paper, and the method involved ZERO ripping out of paper at the end.  It’s a method I’m going to have to test at home and see if I like it.  So far my favorite method is what I learned for the Good Day quilt from Winter Quiltfest.  Because I had all the fabric cut out, I was able to complete 5 blocks in class.

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On Sunday, I took two 3-hour Free Motion Quilting classes from Christa Watson.  I’m a huge Christa Watson fan, and I’m so excited that I took her classes: Free Motion Alternative to Straight Line Quilting and Improv Machine Quilting.  I definitely loved the Free Motion Alternative class way more than the Improv.  I think the biggest takeaway from class is that I need practice, and I think there are going to be designs I love and designs I hate. I have lots of quilt sandwiches that I need to make and practice with in the coming weeks and months. Anyone want to do a Free Motion Practicing Challenge with me?

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In addition to the amazing classes and instructors, I met awesome people from around the world.  I even ran into Kim from my Serendipity Woods Modern Heritage BOM group.  It was so sweet to actually meet one of the women in person!

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I met my swap partner Nikki Moshier.  She made me this lovely mini inspired by @poppyprint, and it was actually in the show this year.  So we took a photo in front of the inspiration, how cool!

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I also gifted my mini to Kathy Cook!  It was such a nice little swap to participate in.  Everyone’s looked so great.  Shout out to everyone that was on my team!

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I also am getting better at not completely freezing when I fangirl!  I met Kate Spain and got to show off my Maker’s Tote made in her Latitude Batik line or in my eyes not your grandma’s batiks!  I think it’s funny now, but I’m so proud I actually talked to her rather than just freezing and never approaching her.

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It was a whirlwind of a long weekend at QuiltCon, but I’m so excited for next year in Pasadena and Nashville in 2019.  For all my new friends who decided to follow my blog, welcome and keep in touch!  You can follow me here – right scroll bar and/or follow me on Instagram @poweredbyquilting.  Till next week!

2/28-3/7 Weekly Goal:
Available time for quilting:
Friday PM, Saturday and Sunday Afternoon, and Monday PM

Projects I want to work on:
Quilter’s Planner Block
Modern Building Blocks
Modern Heritage BOM (I’m like a month behind!)
Chic Country
Thunderstruck

Goals for the Projects:
Quilter’s Planner Block: Complete this week’s block
Modern Building Blocks: Complete 8 blocks
Modern Heritage BOM: Complete Month 7 blocks (I actually forgot which month’s blocks they are, oops)
Chic Country: Finish assembling the quilt top
Thunderstruck: Finish assembling the quilt top
^Again, I’m super aggressive, but shoot for the moon right?!

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