Tuesday, February 26, 2013

QuiltCon Wrap Up Part 1: The Quilts!

I returned home from Austin Sunday night and I'm still riding high on a weekend full of amazing quilts, wonderful friends and incredibly talented and inspiring people.  A lot of people worked incredibly hard to put together this event and they all deserve a huge thank you.  It was an unbelievably awesome convention and I am so excited to go again in 2015.

I want to do a big QuiltCon wrap up so I'm going to split it up over several (five?) posts so you don't get too overwhelmed.  I hope that anyone who couldn't make it can look at these photos and read what I have to say and feel a little inspired and not too sad.  I know there are a lot of you out there who were bummed to be at home this past weekend.  Well I'll tell you now, it was completely worth the trip so start saving your pennies and making plans for 2015!  I want to see you there!

Let's dive right into the main event:  the quilts!  It was so great to be able to walk through a quilt show where everywhere you turned there was something beautiful and inspiring rather than trying to seek out any little bit of modern design amongst the hoards of traditional quilts.  These photos are just a small number of the quilts in the show.  Looking back through my photos I've realized I was a little too lax in my photo taking because some of my favorites aren't here, including some incredible quilts by my friends and guild members!  So if you want to see more than I have here I guarantee there are millions of photos that are yours for the browsing on flickr, instagram and elsewhere.

One of the first quilts you saw when walking into the main hall was the QuiltCon raffle quilt.  I'm sure you've seen this one around the internet.  The blocks were chosen from all of the ones submitted for the MQG challenge and the blocks that weren't chosen were put together to make 46 quilts for all of the beds at the Austin Children's Shelter.  Those quilts were on display in the lecture hall and it was pretty amazing to see them all up there together.

The center of the hall had an amazing display of Denyse Schmidt's quilts.  I know it's not news to anyone that Denyse is an incredibly talented designer and I'm sure it's no surprise that she has been at the top of the list of quilters I admire from the very beginning.  Seeing her work in person was truly inspirational.  Unfortunately I didn't get the names of all of these.

Glass House Shelves - Denyse Schmidt

Hope as the Anchor of the Soul #2

This is a detail shot of the quilt above.  Denyse had several quilts on display that had the selvedge edge worked into the quilt top in this way.  I thought it was such a beautiful detail.

Now for the rest of the show!

This next quilt was the best in show, a very cool, modern take on a double wedding ring pattern. 

Double Edged Love, made by Victoria Findlay Wolfe and quilted by Lisa Sipes.

 I really loved the quilting on this one.  I don't think it has quite the same effect in the photo as it did in person.  The quilter used multiple colors of thread, pulling from the palette in the fabrics.  I'd love to try this sometime.
Detail of Maasai Diamonds, made and quilted by Amy Ellis
 This quilt won Judges Choice and second place in the Handwork category.  I loved the little bits of different red fabric.
Untitled - made and quilted by Lindsay Stead
 This quilt was made by my good friend Alissa Haight Carlton and I got to see it at multiple stages of completion.  It really came out incredible!
Bias - made and quilted by Alissa Haight Carlton

You Rule - made and quilted by Brigitte Heitland 
Untitled - made and quilted by Lindsay Stead
Right Here - made and quilted by Thomas Knauer

RGB Modern - made and quilted by Sherri Lynn Wood

The Big O - made and quilted by Latifah Saafir

Impracticality - made and quilted by Angela Walters

Apiary - made and quilted by Casey York
These are far from my only favorites from the show but they're definitely a good start.  I will share more highlights from Austin soon!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

QuiltCon here we come!

And by we, I mean my quilt and I of course.

I'm calling this bad boy Log Pyramids.  Get it? 
Of course, the quilt is already at the show in Austin.  In fact, I'm pretty sure it's already been judged.  Yipes!  Wish me luck!

I wanted to do a play on log cabin blocks using triangles as the "hearth" instead of a square.  The center triangles are random sizes as are the strips around them.

The solids are all Kona cottons and the rest of the fabrics are various neutral polka dot prints.

Since I couldn't find a triangle template larger than 12", I had a plexiglass template custom made so that I could cut the blocks down to size.  I couldn't come up with an easy way to trim them down to the same size while keeping them centered using regular rulers.

Because I designed and made this quilt expressly to enter into the show at QuiltCon, I was extra careful with all of my piecing and I must say, I'm very proud of the result.  Look at those points!

In fact, I liked this quilt so much that I used a photo of it to make this snazzy new case for my snazzy new phone!

I've been thinking of doing a tutorial for this quilt or even, dare I say it, a quilt-along?!?!  If I can drum up enough interest, it's on. 

I arrive in Austin tomorrow evening so I will miss the first day, including the awards ceremony but after that I'm in for three fun-filled days of lectures, workshops, hanging out with my quilty friends and hopefully making some new ones.  So if you're going and you spot me or my log pyramid phone case be sure to say hi!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Merry Christmas!

That's right, get over it.

This quilt has been in the works for too long.  I finally finished it this year so I'm not letting another year go by without blogging about it.

I used my Mod Beads pattern and started the top in 2010, right after I released the pattern.  In fact, I finished the top the same year as evidenced in this post.

The color palette was inspired by the backing fabric which I had to hunt down online so of course I started the top before it arrived.  My fabric choices miss the mark a little bit but that's okay.  I was working from memory.

Because this is a Christmas quilt I couldn't possibly work on it after Christmas.  Or maybe I just wasn't inspired once the Christmas tree was on the curb.  And...I guess the same thing happened the following year.  I got it out and intended to finish it but it just didn't happen.

Somewhere along the way I did quilt it but you know how it goes...sometimes it's hard to make that final push.

After all, who likes binding?  

Not me, that's for sure.

 And so I finally did it in time for Christmas 2012 though truth be told, it did sit on our love seat with the binding only sewn to the front for a couple of weeks.

Despite this post being dreadfully off-season, I can assure you that it was in fact finished well before Christmas.

The proof?  These photos were all taken in conjunction with our Christmas card photos.  Hence all of the Ginny-filled outtakes that I can't resist posting.

PS Here are the photos that ended up on the card.

 A very, very, very late Merry Christmas to you from the Harvatines!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


Who's going?  I am and I can't believe it's next week!  I'm flying in Thursday night, going to lectures Friday, checking out the show and vendors Saturday morning then taking Lotta Jansdotter's workshop Saturday afternoon and finally, taking Lizzie House's workshop all day Sunday.  I can't wait!

I'm joining in the MQG QuiltCon link party so here's a photo of moi and five moderately interesting things about myself.

I will not be wearing the ears at QuiltCon.  Also, that's my mom.

1.  I'm pregnant.  Ok, this one's a little more than moderately interesting.  We are expecting baby #2, a boy, at the end of May!

I am wearing this exact outfit today, shoes and all, completely by coincidence.

2.  This might be a little bit of an over share but BFD: We wanted kid #2 to be at least two years younger than Ginny (whose birthday was in January) and I knew that I didn't want to go to QuiltCon with a newborn or (even worse) have to stay home because I was 8 months pregnant.  So...we planned the pregnancy around QuiltCon.  Is that nuts?  I don't think so, especially not now that I'm 5 and a half months pregnant, feeling great and ready to go next week!

3.  I ate King Cake for breakfast and lunch today.  It's a holiday!  I swear I don't eat like that all of the time.

4.  I played the fife and marched in parades wearing a period uniform for over a decade as a youth as a member of a fife and drum corps.  Other instruments I've played with (very) mixed results include piano, alto sax, flute, baritone horn and ukulele.

5.  I have bachelors degrees in math and computer science, neither of which relate to my career which is stop motion animation.