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Archive for September, 2017

Hello September, that funny month which begins by still offering the hot days of summer fun and ends with fall: cooler air, changing colors, and shorter days … With the changing season, the Pressed Seam Club sent the most glorious fabric. This might be my favorite bundle yet!

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The deep and yummy blues remind me of all the fun we have had on the water this summer. We fell in love with stand up paddle boarding, and have been having a blast visiting our local lakes.

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The most exquisite paddle was on Mono Lake, with the tufa towers and glossy water and phalaropes spinning circles … So many beautiful colors and textures and sounds. Much like this fabric!

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There are a lot of wonderful textures in this bunch, from woven to canvas to double gauze, I look forward to playing with them all. Much like paddling has felt like playing, exploring the lakes and being silly.

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Fall is one of the most beautiful seasons where we live, and yet it is bittersweet too, as the days get shorter there is less time outside, but more time sewing inside!

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Maybe this set can become a paddling Mono Lake quilt …

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Quilts at the Fair

Our county fair happened to open on my birthday this year. I had entered four quilts, and was excited to visit the fair, see the quilt show, and celebrate my birthday!

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When I entered the quilt show building, it was filled with so many beautiful quilts! And all my other quilt friends who had the same idea and came on opening night to see the quilts. I turned to the left and easily spotted three of my small quilts hanging together. A 1st and two 3rds, yahoo!

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My fourth quilt was my Big Pine creek mountain quilt. It took me a second to find it because it was hanging over the door as you walk in. And when I did find it, it was a great birthday present, Best of Show for Domestic Machine Quilting! Double yahoo.

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(Super challenging to get a good picture, both because of it being way high up and over the open door …) What a great birthday present!

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I’m always fascinated by how the judge selects their placings. Quilts that I thought would do better didn’t, and quilts that did well surprised me. It’s always exciting to get the quilts back after the show, because the fair staff very nicely write the judge’s comments on the back of the label. Want to hear what they said? (Apparently I have a lot of issues with tension …)

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Okay, so I was surprised by my Bristlecone Sunset, because I love this little quilt. But it does have issues with quilting tension, as you can see in the tree trunk. The judge’s comments were: Overall design placement well balanced. Concept intriguing. Raw edge applique handled well. Lower yellow stitching has tension issues. Bobbin thread shows thru front. In leaf areas, some background. Facing is appropriate for piece.

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After the Sun Sets also received a third place. The judge commented: Variety of vibrant colors adds interest. Trees appear out of scale. Applique well done. Attention to quilt lines create texture. Strive for more precise tension control. Facing is appropriate. 

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Big Pine Creek surprisingly received a second, for it also being a best of show. I kind of assumed that best of shows also need to be a first place? Guess not! Judge’s comments: Very pleasing overall conceptual design. Excellent piecing technique. Small purple delineation lines greatly utilized. Quilting lines add texture. Well done! Facing well done.

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And lastly, my sweet Cotswold quilt, was the first place winner! Judge’s comments: Pleasant and inviting scene. Perspective is well done. Variety of fabrics add interest, and are appropriate. Raw edge applique generally well done. Inner flashing (hard to read word) appreciated and well done. Machine quilting sufficient. Slight tension issue noted on back. Nicely framed and faced.

There you have it! I like the comments, but am also curious how the comments relate to the placings. Is the tension enough to make it a third place? How is design and technique and overall look weighted? Is emphasis put more on one than another? Does the judge just look at it and decide in that moment? Whatever the way, it is fun to support the fair, show our quilts, and receive the feedback!

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August is a middle of the summer month, surprising you with unending heat, and pretending to be the end of summer. It’s when we start to long for fall, with cooler days and changing colors. For me, my August was full of summer fun riding bikes and starting a new job.

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And so with all these changes in the air, it was a pleasure to unwrap my August Pressed Seam Club fabric, excited to see what lovely colors were arriving to me this month.

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What lovely soft colors for the crazy heat of summer! We like to escape the valley floor where our temperatures often reach the triple digits, to the mountains where while still warm, are much more milder.

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I’ve enjoyed seeing my stash grow with the Pressed Seam club fabrics, and have been drawn to new colors and patterns I wouldn’t normally pick out myself.

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It’s nice to know my fabrics are patiently waiting for me while life gets crazy, with new job and summer fun. Knowing the weather will get cold and the days shorter and there’ll be more time for stitching and cups of tea.

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Until then, we’ll go to the mountains to play and rejuvenate our souls. I’ll take pictures and be inspired by mother nature. And some day there’ll be time for quilting again!

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