Monday, May 14, 2012

Various & Sundry Monday: Vol. 27

Little drops of water,
Little grains of sand,
Make the mighty ocean
And the pleasant land:

So the little minutes,
Humble though they be,
Make the mighty ages
Of eternity.

Little deeds of kindness,
Little words of love,
Help to make earth happy
Like the heaven above.
–Julia Carney

More from the Home Machine Quilting Show
I've been picking up the HMQS catalogs every spring for probably the last 4 or 5 years, always admiring the quilts they show off and browsing the class lists. As I flipped through those pages I thought I'd never, ever, in a million years be quilting my own quilts. But last year when I was looking at the catalog, I was particularly interested in the quilt show because I'd started quilting my own quilts. I'd missed the entry deadline, which was OK because I didn't really have anything good enough to go in a show anyway. But I decided then that I would enter this year. I entered my Snowball Quilt. I knew it would be a daisy among the roses and didn't expect to win. I thought it would be fun to enter, though, because at the time I'd finished it {which was about 11 months after I started doing FMQ}, it was the best quilt I'd done. The show was last weekend in Salt Lake and here's my quilt hanging in the show.

Quilt shows are subjective and each person gets a unique experience when they attend, which is why, I think, it is hard to share them properly in a blog post. I mostly took close-up photos of quilting techniques that I liked and want to have as a reference. But there were a couple of quilts that I really liked and want to share them with you. I started yesterday with one of my favorites and I'll share another today. Maybe I'll show a couple of others in the next few days, or maybe not. I haven't decided yet. The lighting wasn't the best for taking photos. I alternated between using the flash and not using it. I used the flash on this quilt and should have gone with my gut and taken some without the flash. I did the best I could in editing.

These little embroidered dresses are so amazing! I love the bead details the quilter added. It is hard to pick a favorite!

Can You Tell Me How to Get {Back} to Sesame Street?
I've had to put my Sesame Street Quilt on the back burner for a little bit, because I had some prior sewing commitments that are a little time consuming, but not very interesting to post. Mostly, I'm participating in a half-square triangle swap that I signed up for in February, but that isn't due until the end of this month. I figured there was plenty of time, right? Right. Anyway, there's no set number of HST's you have to make. You just make however many you want, keep a few of each of your color combinations for yourself and send the rest to the coordinator. You get back the same number of HST's you sent in and then you can make something fabulous with them when they come back. I decided that I didn't want to be on top of the deadline for this one, so I've put the Sesame Street quilt on hold and have been working on getting them together. The HST's are 2" finished and I'll need 888 of them to make a nice lap-sized quilt. Picking and prepping the fabrics was fun, but sewing them together, even using a speed-piecing method, is killing me. Can you say snooze-fest?

My point is, 888 half-square triangles in the prep and sewing stages does not make for interesting blog fodder. I'm still looking for the balance between work, home, kids and me, so when I have a few free minutes and the choice is between sewing or blogging, sewing has been winning, even though it's not interesting enough to post about. When I get my swap triangles back and start sewing them together, then that will be interesting. And as soon as I get them wrapped up and in the mail, I'll be back to the Sesame Street quilt, racing for the deadline. The first quilt show is June 8th and 9th. If I miss that one, I have a few days before the entry period for the next quilt show. If I miss the second show, then I have three more weeks until the show here in town at the Art Museum, which is the show I really want to make it to. Hopefully, I'll be done with these HST's in the next few days and back to Sesame Street before mid-week {yeah, yeah. I know. Wishful thinking.}.

I was really inspired by Michelle's patterns and that's where this quilt started. As I've worked on blocks, I've also been working out all the details of the quilt, including how to quilt it. I wanted to do something other than my favorite swirls in the sashing and feathers in the border. Those didn't seem to really fit this quilt. I was inspired by a couple of things Lane is doing on his red silk quilt. I loved the pumpkin seed border and figured it would fit really nicely in the sashing of the Sesame Street quilt. Not so much.

The outer corners don't match up, and the intersections are kind of weird. So I asked Lane what he thought. He made some really great suggestions for making a motif work in your space. I revised. Lane {and everybody else}, what do you think? Do the little spacers work, or do I need to go back to the drawing board?

Monday Music Spot: A Thousand Years
The Piano Guys' latest release is an amazing! I don't think there is one thing they've done that I haven't like. But this one is extra cool because it also has a really great Twilight connection. They've put together an arrangement of Christina Perri's A Thousand Years from the Breaking Dawn soundtrack and it is beautiful.

Available for purchase from The Piano Guys or on iTunes

Story behind the song:
Our kids give us great inspiration for our music. When Jon's 17 year-old daughter said how much she loved this song, Jon decided to try it. He experienced a flood of inspiration. "Never has a piano part come together this fast" Jon says. Steve experienced similar inspiration while composing the cello parts. Since the lyrics suggest a bride walking towards the groom in a ceremony we thought we would include a quote from the Bridal Chorus by Wagner in the climax of the song (it is carefully disguised).

As it seems to always go, Paul and Tel didn't find the spot until they spent 9 hours driving around southern Utah the day before the shoot looking. After getting a little discouraged by not finding anything that great, they just happened to check out a little hidden spot right near Baker Dam and thought it was perfect for the song. The next morning we all loaded up the piano and headed out there to film, but after getting the Truck and Trailer stuck and waiting for the sun to move, we didn't get started filming until that evening having about 3 hours of light. It was so fun to film and play in the middle of the trees!

A Thousand Years written by CHRISTINA PERRI, DAVID HODGES
Arrangement produced by Jon Schmidt
Arrangement written by Al van der Beek, Jon Schmidt, & Steven Sharp Nelson
Performed by
Jon Schmidt: piano
Steven Sharp Nelson: acoustic cello, & cello-percussion
Music recorded, mixed & mastered by Al van der Beek at TPG Studio
Video produced by Paul Anderson & Tel Stewart


Paulette said...

So much to see and comment on! First, congrats on the quilt entry! Your snowball quilt is beautiful and I'm sure it was greatly admired in the show.

Love that embroidered dresses quilt! Thanks for the popout in order to see the detail. How fun!

I felt like I was missing something on the two sketches, but I finally saw the difference between them, and yes, the spacers totally work. I guess that's good that I they are not that noticeable, if you were worried about that.

As you know, I totally get you on the "sew or blog" dilemma. Do whatever feels right. Sewing together 888 HSTs? Sounds like a great time for a new audiobook.

Good luck with all your plans!

Richard Healey said...

I also attended hmqs and took tons of pictures my wife asked why. Some were taken to inspire future quilts but many was as you said to admire the technique of how others did things. I look forward to seeing what other quilts you enjoy.


Shay said...

Good on you for entering a quilt show. I think it’s really hard to put yourself out there (at least it is for me )

I love the embroidered dresses too. The detail is amazing.

I think we all have that perpetual dilemma of finding enough hours in the day to fit in all the things we want to do. I agree with P - do what feels right for you!

whimsyfox said...

I lije the spacers in the second design. They add interest, a little something unexpected. It's more playful & less formal.