The Plano Quilt Show, held at the Plano Event Center in (you guessed it), Plano Texas had so much to offer. Held both Friday and Saturday, August 11-12, 2017, we visited the event on Saturday.
Before we dove into the gorgeous quilts on display at the Plano Quilt Show, we spent a bit of time checking out the booths.
We said HI to a few vendors
Gammill was one of the long-arm companies that participated
Our friends at Rooster said hi!
We were told that in 3 weeks, these folks will be retiring
We said HI to Plano Sewing Center Too!
Beautiful Quilts on Display
After spending some time – and money with the vendors, it was time to take a look at the quilts. It seems that every time I go to a quilt show, themes appear. So, below are some of the quilts we saw and the theme they seem to fit into.
Have you ever approached a holiday and wondered why you didn’t have a neat new quilt to show off? I decided this year, I was going to make a Christmas quilt way before the holiday so I could finish it in time.
Use up those scraps!
When I have lots of scraps, I drag out my handy-dandy Accuquilt Go! and cut them down to consistent sizes. I usually start with the 5″ square and move down from there. This time around, I wanted to get a head start on Christmas by making a Christmas Gift Quilt. I searched high and low, and just couldn’t find a block online that would accommodate my 5″ blocks.
So, instead of spending more time looking, I opened up my other handy-dandy helper, my EQ 7 program. (Now I know you will all be tempted to start sending me links to this block, but to be honest, I am glad I had to start from the drawing board!)
In order to create the quilt I wanted, I actually had to design the block from scratch. I didn’t want my gifts to float around in air. Instead I wanted them to look as if they were sitting on a shelf or windowsill.
**note: After posting a picture of one of my finished blocks, a good friend informed me that Missouri Star Quilt Co. has a video tutorial for a similar block. Oh well, there is a good chance that it would not work with my 5″ Christmas square collection. Yep, they even use 5″ charm packs!!!! The proof is below 🙂
So, anyway – The finished design looks like this; however, I used stock fabrics to get the feel for the finished product, I did not scan all my fabrics. This is how I usually work out a project because fussing too much can take so much fun out of it all!
As soon as I had a plan, I started making blocks and laying them out how I wanted them. In the end, there were three ribbon colors over a variety of box prints. I decided to forego the cornerstones and did simple sashing instead. I like the clean, windowed look it provides. Finally, I used a large print for the final border and am so happy!
Again, I did not buy any fabric for this project, it all came out of my little stash 🙂
The last part of this project is to quilt and bind it. I love this part! The pattern I chose for quilting is this simple tree design by Willow Leaf Studio.
I really love the simplicity of this quilting pattern for the Holidays!
As a finished product, this quilt turned out very nicely – I can’t wait to throw it over the couch this Christmas!
Have you started a Holiday quilt yet? It is never too early, you know!
I bet yours is bigger than mine – Your quilt stash, I mean. Have you ever took a look at your stash and said….
“I really wish I could make something with this?”
Actually, this happens to me all the time. This is mostly because I am not the average Hoard… er Quilter. My quilt stash is TINY compared to many of the folks I know.
Some People’s Stash:
Yep, that’s about it and I didn’t even get it all folded pretty either. I have some additional bolts, but less than 6 of them to add to this. The other fabric I have is for garment sewing. So you can see, I am not like many folks that have rooms full of fabric – and totes hidden in closets and under beds too!
Because of this, I tend to create my projects in one of two ways:
design a quilt and purchase a little more of each fabric than I need – the rest goes into stash
quilt with what is on hand and that can get tricky indeed!
Don’t get me wrong, I DO still by fabric from time to time, but I refrain from buying just to buy. Mostly, I buy fabric in two ways:
There is a project in mind, but I need one or two more elements not already in my stash
There is a really great sale, so time to add in some new fabrics for future use
Also – and don’t hate me – I have no UFO’s.
Yep I said it, and I feel a bit ashamed, like I am missing out on membership to a club of super creative individuals that cannot hold back their ambitions. Maybe my small stash size is because I have no UFO’s? Can someone help me to achieve UFO greatness? Or am I OK the way I am?
What does your stash look like?
I would love to see the types of reserve fabric stores others have!
For many that know me, this post will not come as a surprise. Each year from the beginning of April through May, my family and I spend a great deal of time at the Scarborough Renaissance Festival. Spring is time to break out the cloak and brave even the coolest mornings
Scarborough Renaissance Festival 2017 Week One Sunday Photo by Bonnie Charles
Time to switch from quilting to sewing:
Each spring, I switch my focus from quilting to creating garb. Garb refers to the many period garments that serious folks wear at Renaissance Fairs. Over the years, I have sewn many of my own cloaks, dresses, jackets and associated elements. It seems that the spring is the best time for me to switch up my quilting for sewing.
Focus for Spring 2017 – The Cloak:
This year, I concentrated on an element of garb that we were sorely lacking – Cloaks. In years past, at Scarborough, Sherwood Forest and even TRF (Texas Renaissance Festival), we have been plagued with soggy weather. Staying warm and dry is important in the spring. The different weights and linings of cloaks helps keep us warm and dry. Below are a few cloaks that have been added to our closets. Some of these cloaks are for sale or already sold:
We did a redesign of our website recently and actually added a section for clothing/costumes. Feel free to check it out! In the future, you will probably see a mixture of quilting and wearables. Let me know what you think.
I was aware of both and prior to taking in this class, I even purchased some of his products, specifically his long-arm rulers and I need to say that I adore them.
So, when the opportunity to take a class with Jamie, I jumped at it! I will tell you now that I was not disappointed. The class was held at the Long Arm Quilting Academy in Fort Worth. Because they do not have an actual classroom for this type of thing, the chairs were set up next to a variety of long arm machines and you can also see the rest of the shop in the pictures I took. This is not the largest quilt shop, but it did have charm.
There were many different classes to choose from; however, due to limited time I finally decided on the Sunday class “How Would I Quilt That?” At this point in my quilting life, I find that the most important lessons are learned by listening to what others would do. Jamie’s own quilting is beyond gorgeous, so I was excited to find out what he would do to my quilt top.
For the record, Jamie is a real straight shooter and he does not pull punches. He also has a few one-liners that he uses to exemplify the points he makes. One he reiterated often was:
“Learn your lines before opening night” (Don’t offer what you cannot do)
His advice to practice, practice, practice and be sure you are good at something before you promise the technique to a customer, is well-placed.
Another mantra of his centers on the process of long arm quilting itself. He addressed the nervousness that many of us feel when we approach our machines to start a new project. For this he says:
“Your machine is just a pencil”
This is powerful as it puts into perspective the simplicity of the process when you get to the point that you are grasping the handles (lightly) and beginning to move about your quilt.
So many beautiful colors
I bring up these tidbits because Jamie did more than simply tell us how he would quilt our tops, oh no! He spent a great deal of time answering all sorts of questions and going into other topics. Some additional elements covered were:
Batting (what kind and how much for different types of quilting)
Are you quilting this (quilt top) to make money or build a legacy?
You Doodle App for marking your own quilt top
How to quilt a hand-pieced top
Always prewash Batik backing to soften it
Hunter’s star (or pinwheel) nubs? Grab a hammer!
This top was brought in by the nice lady I sat next to during the class. YES, those are all tigers!
We talked about so much more and, ultimately, we ended up going at least an hour over the scheduled class time. There is no question – we got our money’s worth!
Oh and I also want to mention Rich – who I believe must be Jamie’s right-hand-man. Rich was the fella that kept the electronic boat afloat throughout the entire process. Thanks Rich!
Sprinkled throughout this blog posting are many of the tops presented by the other attendees. Some were just so gorgeous that it would have been criminal to do an all-over meander!
Below are pictures of the quilt top I brought along. I consider it a silly little top as it consists of reproduction fabrics in a rainbow of colors, a very large white on white background fabric and drunkard’s path blocks that are anything but traditional. There was unanimous agreement that a purple border would work great for this quilt.
Checking out my quilt top
Purple fabric for the borders
As with the other tops, Jamie had some interesting suggestions. Curved cross hatching in the circles, lines up and down the sashing and a super fun border treatment of circles. If you look closely at the white on the quilt, these circles would mirror the pieced ones as well as the flowers in the white on white (which are enormous!)
Jamie shared both quilted and printed examples of the types of designs he loves to do and encouraged us to take pictures of everything!
These designs are featured in YouTube Videos.
This pretty little girl welcoming the sun after the rain is so adorable – Please forgive the orientation – for some reason, I can’t get her to stand up straight!
As I said, Jamie was an amazing presenter and I encourage anyone to spend time learning from him. I had a blast! The next step is to sew on the borders and get that quilt on my frame so I can apply some of his suggestions.
Has anyone else attended his classes? What are your thoughts?