November 21, 2014

Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks, Vol. 10 Blog Tour and Giveaway!

Once again, I'm so happy to be a part of Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks! I've been in 5 issues now and on the cover for the second time in this issue! Do you see it?

Well it might help to actually to show you the block so you can find it!

Crossing the Circles

I love this block! It's actually 4 - 6" blocks put together to make 1 - 12" block. I'm so in love with solids and deep, saturated colors! And of course I have to work in shades of gray in almost every quilt I make! It's a very simple block to make. You just appliqué the center circle and slice and add strips of gray. For full instructions, go to page 36 of Vol. 10. I can see a full quilt made of this block, or a border, or set alternated with plain squares of solid color. Almost anything goes with this block!

And now for the giveaway! One lucky quilter will receive a copy of Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks, Vol. 10. Just leave a message telling me your favorite block (sorry, no bonus points for picking mine, but I'll be flattered!). I'll pick a winner early next week. Then, head to Quilty Pleasures, Quiltmaker's blog for more chances to win! Good luck!

November 16, 2014

Modern Applique Illusions Book Giveaway Winner!

Congratulations to Debra Kay Neiman, winner of Casey York's book, Modern Appliqué Illusions! I'll be getting in touch with you soon! Thanks to all who entered!

November 13, 2014

Optical Illusions Blog Tour and a Giveaway!

Welcome to my day on the Optical Illusions: Innovative Designs for the Modern Quilter blog tour! I'm so excited to share with you my quilt that I made for the book. We were asked to contribute a quilt that has some kind of optical illusion in the design. So without further ado, here's my quilt!

3-D Diamonds by Jenifer Dick
My influence was Victor Vasarely, a pioneer in the op art movement of the 1960s. I saw his poster, London Art Gallery online and was immediately drawn to it. I liked how the squares slowly morph into diamonds. I knew I didn't want to create and exact replica of the poster - although I was tempted! I started playing around with squares and diamonds on EQ. That led to tumbling blocks! But I wanted the squares to be represented, too. So I framed the diamonds with squares. I used gradations of the palest blue for the squares, and that became the background. To me it looks like the diamonds are floating in the sky. I was tempted to call the quilt Lucy! (Get it?)

I made a paper-piecing template for the diamonds to keep it simple. I normally don't paper piece, but it would have been more difficult to cut the diamonds with a ruler and rotary cutter since the angles aren't standard quilters angles! It also is fabulously quilted by the ever-talented Tia Curtis, who also has a quilt in the book.

I had such a good time with this challenge! And probably the best thing about it was it introduced me to the world of op art. There are so many images that can be translated into fabric. I see a series of mid-century inspired quilts in my future!

I invited my friend, Trisch Price, author of Accentuate the Negative, to review the book! Head to her blog and see what she thinks of the book and to enter her contest too!

Tomorrow is the last day of the tour. These three great bloggers will be reviewing the book and giving away more great stuff. Don't forget to check them out!

Shea Henderson  

Before you leave, leave a comment and I'll draw a winner of a copy of the book on Monday!

November 11, 2014

Modern Applique Illusions Blog Tour (and giveaway)

Today I’m so happy to be participating in Casey York’s blog tour for her new release: Modern Applique Illusions: 18 Quilts CreatePerspective & Depth. I’m so happy that more books are coming out on modern appliqué! I think it’s a truly underserved part of quiltmaking and one that has the most potential for creative expression!

Casey’s book is about perspective and illusion. Each quilt, although very minimal and modern, packs a huge visual punch done with techniques borrowed from the art world – perspective, depth and shadow.

Perspective is the illusion of depth achieved through line and space. Perspective makes a flat surface look 3-D. Depth is a word often talked about in quiltmaking. Typically, in traditional quilting and modern scrap quilting, depth is achieved through color placement – light colors recede and dark colors advance. Depth makes a quilt more interesting to look at. And shadow makes elements pop off the quilt. 

Casey’s designs are full of perspective and depth. The book is broken out into Architecture, the Natural World and Concepts. She uses all the concepts above to make her quilts look like no other modern quilts I've ever seen. It truly is a brilliant blending of art and quilts!

As part of the blog tour, Casey asked me to make a project based on one of her quilts. I chose the koi from “Ripples.” We have a koi pond at my house and I love watching them glide through the water, occasionally popping up to beg for food! They are so beautiful and calming to watch at the end of the day!

For my project, rather than make the quilt, I chose to take the fish from “Ripples” and make a purse. It was a fun project to make! I chose two of the koi templates and appliqued them with fusible web and a loose zigzag stitch in matching thread.

I used my favorite modern color combo – orange/blue/gray for the outside and lined it with a bright orangey-gold. You probably noticed that I didn’t use the shadow for my koi – my thinking was that there wasn’t enough room on this small purse for the shadow to be effective. In hindsight, it probably would have been okay. Just chalk it up to one of those real-time decisions that didn’t pan out! But it’s still a fun purse and I plan on using it everyday!

Of course there are 17 other projects in the book to choose your next project from. I think next to “Ripples,” “Chicken Scratch” is my next favorite. I grew up with chickens and miss the fresh eggs. (Although I’d be hard-pressed to butcher a chicken for dinner today!) But what I love most about the quilt is Casey used 30s reproduction fabrics in her modern quilt. I’m a big proponent that modern is what you make it, and Casey must agree! No rules for her either!

For your chance to get a copy of this fabulous book, leave a comment below saying something about the book! Be sure I can get ahold of you if you’re the winner. I’ll post the name Friday, Nov. 14.

And head to Casey’s blog to read more about “Ripples” and to win her prize, a package of Pellon Wonder Under 805 and a package of scraps she collected from the making of “Ripples!”

Here’s the entire tour. Be sure to go to each blog to hear more about Modern Applique Illusions and enter for a chance to win more prizes!

11/10: C&T Publishing,

11/11: Jenifer Dick/42 Quilts,

11/12: Debbie Grifka/Esch House Quilts,

11/13: Pink Chalk Studio,

11/14: Shannon Brinkley/Bottle Tree,

11/16: Kevin Kosbab/Feed Dog Designs,

11/17: Generation Q Magazine,

11/18: Krista Robbins/Sew What's Cooking?,

11/19: Violet Craft,

11/20: Fat Quarter Shop/Jolly Jabber,

11/21: Kristy Daum/St. Louis Folk Victorian,

11/22: Cindy Lammon/Hyacinth Quilt Designs,

11/23: Modern Quilts Unlimited,

June 10, 2014

AMB winner!

We have a winner! Congratulations to Paula Cox!

Thanks to everyone who entered!

June 3, 2014

American Made Brand Blog Tour - Missouri's Day!

Today's finally my day for the AMB 50 states blog tour! I've been enjoying seeing how the guest bloggers have interpreted their state in AMB solids! So with no further ado, here's my block:


Here's my thinking. I originally wanted to do a strict interpretation of the license plate because it really sums up the state well - it has our motto "Show Me State" and it has our two big symbols - the bluebird and the dogwood tree. And it has some quilty things I love - blue(!), duh, and gradations. Every one knows I have an unnatural love affair with gradations! The darkish to pale blue ending in white at the bottom is very yummy to me!

But as I let that percolate in the creative part of my mind, it occurred to me that the good folks at AMB sent me tons of beautiful, solid fabrics to use so why would I limit myself to just blues and white? So that's when I decided to improv piece the background for the block. I chose about 10 colors to start with and just chopped and sewed them until I got a piece roughly 6 1/2" x 12 1/2". Then I used fusible web to cut out the license (personalized for us of course!) and then embroidered a modified version of the real thing around that. (I'm not a great embroiderer, so don't look too close!) What is August 1821? That's when Missouri became a state!

So there you have it - that's my Missouri License Plate! (Bet you thought there would be an arch!)

But that's not all! AMB is giving away this fabulous bundle of solids. Now that I've worked with them, I can tell you they have a really nice hand and a good weight. Over all, they feel fabulous - which is how I judge fabric! And the colors are really fun and modern! You'll be sold on them from your first touch. (The fact that they are made in the USA is also a great bonus!)

6/9: Contest is now over!

To enter, leave a comment telling me what your favorite solid color is to work with! I'll draw the winner June 6 so enter soon. And if you're new to my blog, head over to my FB page and like me there for tons of tips, jokes and all kinds of quilty fun! (For another chance to win, head to Maine to see what their plate looks like! And go to AMB for a list of the other participants and even more chances to win!)

May 5, 2014

Quiltmaker's 100 Block magazine giveaway winner!

I've picked a winner and it is Gregg! Congratulations!

Here's what he (she?) said:
I love the simplicity and harmony of this block. In it, I'd use fresh blues and greens offset with white. I might reverse block colors and alternate them when I assembled the quilt. So many possibilities! I guess that's why I've just started quilting - every piece can be so original even though the pattern might have been done 1000 times before. It's such a wonderful mystery that old can be new again...every time.

I love the sentiment!

Thanks to everyone who entered. I love reading what your vision for the block is. Such a creative bunch! It seemed like overall, red/white/blue and various shades of purples and greens were very popular!
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