Thursday, December 31, 2015

Review of Quilting in 2015

As 2015 comes to a close, I've enjoyed reflecting on my year of quilting adventures.  There have been many wonderful memories made both in my studio as well as in the larger quilting community--but here are some of my highlights from 2015.

First up is my annual quilting New Year's Resolutions:
1.  Experiment with Fabric Dyeing and Manipulation
Hand Dyed Fun in 2015
As you can tell from this explosion of color, I had a lot of fun learning to hand dye!  I had 5 dye parties where I experimented with various folding manipulations, creating gradients, tray dyeing, thread dyeing, and dyeing an assortment of clothing/accessories.
Special thanks to:

  • Jane Dunnewold's Craftsy class:  The Art of Cloth Dyeing
  • Frieda Anderson's book "Fabric to Dye For"
  • Leslie Morgan and Claire Benn's book "Tray Dyeing"
  • My friend Chris C who was my partner in crime for two dye parties
  • Doug for helping me to hunt for plastic containers/trays, create my outdoor wet studio and was very generous when I needed more "materials" to dye.

2.  Continue my Battle Against UFOs
Attack on UFOs
UFO successes:

  • I was able to complete 7 of my own projects that were started in previous years.  The two projects in the lower left corner had components that were made in 2012!!!
  • I purged several UFOs as part of the UFO Exchange, and brought home a large quilt top with some large squares of colorful fabrics that were given new life in two new projects including an improv strata quilt that is in progress.  
  • I started and finished a total of 20 brand new quilts in 2015.
  • And I only added 7 new UFOs to my docket, many of which are still in progress and I am very much committed to finishing!

3.  Learn new quilting designs/techniques to add more beautiful texture to my quilts
Textures from 2015
I love enhancing my quilt tops with such fabulous textures during the quilting phase!  This year, I added many new tricks and techniques to my quilting tool kit including:  new free motion motifs, hyper quilting, trapunto and match stick quilting!!

Many thanks to:


4.  Put myself out there more as a Quilter
2015 Quilting Successes
This was a very exciting year as I celebrated several quilting victories:

  • My Wicked Windy & Winding Ways quilt published in AQS magazine and the Wicked Challenge book!
  • Seeing several of my quilts on display at both our SCVQA Quilt Show and PIQF
  • Leading a demonstration on Interleave Quilts for my fellow members which really started off a trend on so many wonderful Interleave quilts being made!!
  • My DNA Mapping:  Past, Present and Future winning Viewer's Choice at the SCVQA show
  • Joining SAQA and being paired up with a fabulous mentor Terry Waldron who has been incredibly generous in sharing resources, tips and tricks she has learned as a professional artist/instructor!
  • Engage more with the online quilting community.  I finally signed up for a Facebook account, where I have connected with so many friends, family and certainly the vibrant online quilting community!!  I continue to post my work on my blog with a total of 57 posts!  I also worked through Alisa Burke's Art of Blogging course and found it really helpful in creating intentionality in my posts and overall blog design.  I am also gaining more traffic visiting my blog by participating in several link ups, cross posting to Pinterest and Facebook!   And I've participated in several online challenges/quilt alongs.
  • Designing original quilts/blocks and entering them into challenges including the MQU Modern Makever Block Challenge, A Focus Through a Prism monthly Challenges, Be Creative Quilt Challenge, EQ7/Timeless Treasure Block Challenge, Fiber Shot for SJMQT, MQG EZ Triangle Challenge AMB Mini Quilt Challenge, MQG Riley Blake Fabric Challenge and of course, the Hoffman Challenge.

2015 Challenge Entries
5.  Incorporate technology into my quilting process, designs and documentation
This year, I embraced technology in my quilting adventures:

  • Completed Pixeladies Photoshop Essentials 1 and 2 online classes to learn how PSE features in my quilting.  These lessons have come in especially helpful as editing was needed for pictures taken during our monthly meeting show and tell.
  • Watched all the video tutorials and worked my way through 4 online courses through EQ University to learn how to use EQ7 in designing my own original quilts/blocks.  These lessons were brought to life as I turned to EQ7 for designing all 7 of my Focus Through the Prism challenges, all five MQU Modern Block challenges, the Be Creative Quilt Challenge and even created a virtual block for the EQ7/Timeless Treasures block challenge!

EQ7 Mock Up Designs Translated into Fabric
More Highlights from 2015:

  • Studio Enhancements including a brand new cabinet build by Doug, reupholstered benches and Lego sewing machines.
  • Shop Hop by the Bay
  • Joining a small quilt group and enjoying the company of these talented quilters (even if it meant I had to join a Senior Citizen Community Center before turning 40!!)
  • February Retreat near Yosemite
  • Workshops with some amazing quilt artists including Katie Pasquini Mosopust, Laura Wasilowski, Kathy Doughty, Karen Eckmeier, Sandra Bruce, RaNae Merrill and Jan Soules.  
Workshop Techniques Added to my Quilting Tool Kit

Last but not least--a whopping total of 27 finished quilts!!
2015 Finished Quilts!!
I am looking forward to seeing what quilting adventures await in 2016!!

4 comments:

  1. What a lovely review, Mel. I love the "continuing battle against UFOs." Always an ongoing struggle. Your work is such a delight; I'm glad you're "putting it out there more." Keep it up!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Ann...I always enjoy this time of the year--reflecting on the past year but excited for what is to come in the new year! Wish you lots of quilting bliss in 2016!!

      Delete
  2. You had such an amazing quilting year! I haven't yet put in the time to EQ7. How proficient are you feeling at this point? (From my perspective you're looking like a master!) I never get tired of looking at your beautiful, colorful work including your amazing quilting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Sarah! In terms of EQ7--I've got enough practice to create basic blocks/layouts/colorways and create most of the quilts in my head. But I know I've only scratched the surface in terms of its potential in order to design the many quilt visions in my brain that don't always fall into a neat grid/design. There is always more to learn!

      Delete