June 28, 2016: More Vermont Quilt Festival pics; Resurrected UFO; Making berries

Greetings!  Here’s an update on the resurrected UFO that I showed recently.  It had languished in my closet for several years as a collection of relatively unusual blocks that I had fashioned from a picture of a quilt in a Tokyo International Quilt Festival photo.  Since that post I managed to sew all the blocks together (click to enlarge):

62816 twinkle#1 62816 twinkle#2 62816 twinkle#3

My husband finally came by the sewing room door seeing this for the first time and said, “what’s that?”  When I explained what a UFO is he replied that he could see why it had been a UFO – not exactly a vote of confidence ! 🙂  He since has warmed up to the idea that I think it is going to be a crib quilt and will have some type of applique border.  And I  have to give him credit for normally being my biggest quilting supporter and cheerleader!

The other thing that is interesting is that Al said it looked like a prison, i.e. he saw mostly the darker bars when he looked at it.  I see it entirely differently.  I see mostly the bits of color between the bars, especially the lighter bits.  To me it looks more like skyscrapers with windows with twinkling lights.  I’m considering “Twinkle, twinkle” as a possible title.

I have also been working on adding berries to the borders for Stardust.  During vacation I had forged ahead with working only on leaves and had about 30 berries to do to catch up:

62816 berries#1

I know that over the years I have appliqued probably thousands of berries and, although I do a good job with my needle turn technique and you have to look closely to see the flaws, I have always been frustrated that I can’t consistently make then perfect or nearly perfect.  I know that better berries are possible because I have seen them on show quilts.  This is especially true of very tiny berries.  So at the Vermont Festival last week I purchased this:

62816 berries#2 KKB circles


These packages come in 2 sizes, larger and smaller and these are the smaller ones.  I’ve made about a dozen berries out of the next to the smallest size template and they are better!  I’m happy!  I don’t find the process of prepping the berries to be onerous at all.  Here are pictures of the process: choose the template, draw the circle on the back of the fabric, cut it out – for very small berries the seam allowance should be about 3/16th of an inch – stitch around the seam allowance, pull together over the template, iron down, apply some dabs of Magic Sizing and iron again then remove the template, smoothe the edges and cut the thread.  Voila!

62816 berries#3a 62816 berries#3 62816 berries#4 62816 berries#5 62816 berries#6 sizing 62816 berries#7

It’s a little tricky to get the template out because you do have to distort the edges a bit to do so, but usually just tugging on the thread will bring the shape back.  From now on I’m making at least my small berries this way, if not all circles.

And now, here are a few more wonderful quilts from the Vermont Festival.  I very much enjoy the work of Timna Tarr and look forward to seeing something new from her in most Vermont shows.  This year she had a very fun quilt in the show featuring eggs!  I love it.  I love how she used the yellow, gold, and blue color scheme too.  Great use of color, which is something she is known for.  I very much like grids and repeated designs and this one is an original!!  It won the award for most humorous quilt:

62816 eggs#1 62816 eggs#2 62816 eggs#3 62816 eggs#4 62816 eggs#5

Pat Delaney does wonderful home machine quilting and won the award for best home machine quilting.  She always creates wonderful designs and uses color beautifully too.  I loved her “lone star” quilt this year – beautiful softer colors.  She also uses creative edgings on her quilts and I loved the prairie points on this one.  See that purple ribbon?  That means she scored between 98 and 100 and was in consideration for Best of Show!

62816 delaney#1 62816 delaney#2 62816 delaney#3 62816 delaney#4

Barb Vedder won the Best Hand Quilting award for her lovely traditional red and white quilt:

62816 vedder#1 62816 vedder#2 62816 vedder#3 62816 vedder#4

The workmanship on this next machine made quilt was pretty amazing:

62816 osiris#1 62816 osiris#2 62816 osiris#3 62816 osiris#4

This next quilt is by Wendy Reed whose blog, The Constant Quilter, I enjoy very much.  I adore autumn colors and leaves of any kind so liked this quilt a lot!  She made the quilt with the “potholder” technique in which each separate block is bound before the blocks are sewn together.  I love the use of reproduction fabrics:

62816 leaves#1a?? 62816 leaves#2 62816 leaves#3 62816 leaves#4

That’s it for today.  I have many more pictures of quilts from Vermont to share to stay tuned!

Be kind, be grateful, and cherish each day,  Gladi


11 thoughts on “June 28, 2016: More Vermont Quilt Festival pics; Resurrected UFO; Making berries

  1. Shary Fellows

    Gladi, you and I are on the same wavelength with your UFO. It reminds of a cityscape at twilight when the lights in the buildings sparkle. I like it so much I’ve added the pattern to my list of “wanna-makes”.

  2. gladiporsche Post author

    Thank you Shary. If you do get serious about making a quilt like this one, feel free to let me know if you have any questions about the block construction. Gladi

  3. bkorengold

    Hi Gladi. I wanted to send a note about the circles. I use a variation of Karen Kay Buckley’s method. I cut out the circle of fabric, do the running stitch basting around it, and place the plastic circle inside. Then I pull up the basting, and tie it off. I soak the whole thing in water, and just let it dry (if I’m in a hurry, I press it dry). When it’s dry I snip the basting thread and pull it out. I find the circle holds it’s shape very well, and I don’t have the sizing or starch left in the fabric. Also, I use nylon washers that are sold in hardware stores. They’re available in many sizes, are heat resistant, and I can have dozens of each size because I seem to always need more than 4 circles of any one size at a time.

    1. gladiporsche Post author

      Hi Bobbie. Thank you so much for this information! I am definitely going to try this as I would prefer not to use the sizing and I also still have some trouble with circle maintaining an absolutely perfect shape when I remove the template with the method I described in the blog. I never thought of getting nylon washers from the hardware store – what a wonderful idea! Karen Buckley only gives you 4 of each size and they are easy to misplace or lose! Gladi

    2. Nancy

      Thank you for this tip. I’m relatively new to applique. It’s great to know I can buy inexpensive nylon washers to make circles.

  4. Nancy

    I think your bars are great but I think your leaves are fabulous. I love the brights on the dark background. They glow like the sun coming through autumn leaves! Thanks for sharing photos of the quilt show.

    1. gladiporsche Post author

      Thanks so much for the great feedback, Nancy. Also re your previous comment, isn’t the idea of the nylon washers just the greatest?! Gladi

    1. gladiporsche Post author

      Hi Barb. Great to hear from you! I have enjoyed reading your blog for a long time. I love your work and following what you are doing. Your quilt was very deserving of the hand quilting award and it was nice to see it “in person.” It’s nice to make a connection with you! Gladi

  5. Christine Wickert

    Hi Gladi, You are my source for good pictures from the Vermot Quilt Festival! It was a delight meeting you there this year. I just want to add my two cents in on the circle dilemma: I have been using Karen Kay Bucley’s circle for ever in my silk applique, using water instead of sizing. I took Karen’s class years ago and she told us then that her Perfect Circles were born when she sent her husband to the hardware store to buy metal washers and he came back with the plastic ones. After being upset with him, she discovered they were heat proof! I also make my own circle templates using 4 (sometimes 5) layers of freezer paper, non-sticky side at the top and bottom. I used to cut them out of heat proof mylar, but that is difficult to cut. This is especially helpful with sizes for which washers or Karen Kay Buckley’s circles are not available and also for ovals. By the way, when I cut my own circle or oval templates I often use a nail file to file away imperfections. I think the big secret about keeping the circle shape after removing the template is to make sure the piece is absolutely dry and yes, Bobbie’s trick of removing the basting is great. I tell my students to make a BIG knot when sewing that basting line around the circle. Then you just snip the knot and pull out the rest of the stitching.

    1. gladiporsche Post author

      Hi Chris. Thank you for this information!! I just tried making berries this AM for the first time using Bobbie’s method and it works great! I discovered on my own this AM that a big knot – even better if thread is a different color for easier visibility – really helps with the thread removal so it’s nice to have you confirm that. Removing the basting does seem to give a better result than leaving it in. I know my berries have improved and am very happy for the help from my quilting friends!!! Gladi


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