Thursday, December 27, 2012

Quilting: by machine or by hand?

Last March I machine quilted a piece in Maui. 
I didn't like the results.

Too uneven, too many unwanted wrinkles, my inner critic said.
SO, as I had wondered about tearing the stitches out & hand-quilting the piece, I decided to embark on answering that wonder.

It takes a while to pick out machine stitching. A seam-ripper is the tool & you have to be really careful not to cut the fabric, just the threads.

I decided to use the sewing lines I had made.
The little holes in the fabric were still visible.
That made it pretty easy.

I really like the difference!! 
Hand quilting is less linear & more dotty looking. And softer.
I was using electric light for these, not flash.
You can tell the light is on the left.... oh well....

Anyway, now I'm wondering about this one. 
Will I'll re-do it?

partly quilted


Opinions welcomed.
That's all for now. 
Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

One Day Past Solstice

This blog & the next will be about process: making a quilt.
I've taken to making a photographic record of the evolution of the concept and the closing in on the final design.
I give credit to Nancy Crow for that idea.
It's a way I can get perspective on how the idea looks at a bit of a distance, condensed by the photograph.

This dea began a long time ago when I saw some one else developing a quilt with triangles and I thought it looked like fun.
I made several starts & abandoned it several times.
...maybe I can't do this?...

And then, one day, going through stuff I came upon those beginnings.
It's time to try again, I said.
This idea still intrigues me.

Gradually I was learning how to make those apex points!!

So I settled on The Key of Green, and plowed ahead.

So some things needed to be decided: am I going to 'allow' sideways triangles or inverted [point down] ones?
I play around with that idea.

At this point I have settled on layout. And machine quilting begins.
Machine quilting is not my comfortable zone. I regretted the thread & may start over. I found the quilting lines too intrusive!!

partly quilted

fully quilted

And then, up on a wall....

One of the things that really interests me are the rectangles of density created by color choices. Look lower right & there's one there.
I'm using flash and there are all kinds of problems with it!
What? Another learning zone?

That's it for now.
I guess I'm calling it Triangles in the Key of Green.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Last Leg of Trip East

Driving to N'yOrlins we went along the coast for much of the way. We got to see mile after miles of lots with large live oak trees with missing grand mansions, thanks to Katrina.

What's being built now are stilt houses, not anything as pretty. 
And lots of lots are for sale.

So there were 6 of us hanging out for meals together: Fred & Marion, Beth & Don, & George & I

The food was fabulous. Beth chose our wine. We also 'drank well'.

I fell in love with the look of New Orleans. I took lots of building photos for colors, shapes, shadows & lines. It felt quite European to me in lots of ways. Of course, the scale did it!

                    There were some great numbers to see too.

This was my favorite.

But these were pretty nice too.

Favorite shadows:

Favorite sign:

Favorite new word:

The 'disease' is the irrepressible desire to be free.

New architectural knowledge: the look of slave quarters-- these half-houses, very narrow.  In the early days New Orleans had many free people of color, though gradually, before & after the Civil War, Jim Crow asserted itself.

This was my favorite kinetic sculpture playing on the fleur de lis which is everywhere!

Thanks for the great company, great food & wine & beauty
& to Joslyn who helped me recast the look of my blog!

That's it for now.