Archive for the ‘Thread’ Category

Janome’s 100 Blocks project, Nine Squares

Friday, November 13th, 2015

Hi all!  Janome’s 100 blocks project is bubbling along, and today they are featuring my second block as one of today’s two blocks:

Screen Shot 2015-11-13 at 9.40.48 AM

9-Squares Applique block by Sarah Ann Smith

To get a PDF download with the instructions for my 9-squares blocks, click Sarah’s 9-squares block.

I am really enjoying seeing the blocks come to my inbox every day.  Just click on the hotlink in the first sentence and follow the links/instructions to sign up for notifications (optional) or just get to the PDF instructions.

100QuiltBlock

Doesn’t this quilt look fabulous photographed against that colorful wall? My blocks are the first one ( nine circles, Row 1, top left), Row 4 last block (the nine squares), Row 5 (bulls-eye with decorative stitching in the center…will publish next week), Row 6 (last block, wavy inserted skinny strips), Row 7 first block (mini checkerboard) and Row 7 rainbow log cabin in center). I’ll announce each time my patterns post.  Right click to view larger.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quilting Arts TV–my free downloads

Tuesday, July 28th, 2015

Well, I’m only a little (ahem) behind the curve!  Finally discovered where the links are to my downloads, and folks LOVE my easy-peasy inside-out bag!  I am thinking of expanding the pattern and adding LOTS of options to make iPad cases, card cases, journal covers and more, so the popularity of the download thrills me!    Here are links:

If you watch Quilting Arts TV, these may look familiar, as they are on one of my episodes in season 1400 AND were in the 2014 Quilting Arts gifts magazine.

If you watch Quilting Arts TV, these may look familiar, as they are on one of my episodes in season 1400 AND were in the 2014 Quilting Arts gifts magazine.

Easy-Peasy Inside-Out Bag

Free-Motion Basics

Thread and Needle FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

I believe you need to have an Interweave/Quilting Arts account, which is free, to download theses freebies.  Enjoy!

 

 

Yellow Rose of Tedium

Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

So I have this idea for an article.   Which requires (SHOOT ME) about ELEVEN of these 8×11 small quilts.  ALL THE SAME.  Shoot me please.  Now.  Can you say BORING?  But I want to do this test of stabilizers.

Yellow Rose by Sarah Ann Smith.   The first sample, with no stabilizer.   The two fabrics began the same size--even at this small scale you can see noticeable shrinkage just from quilting.

Yellow Rose by Sarah Ann Smith. The first sample, with no stabilizer. The two fabrics began the same size–even at this small scale you can see noticeable shrinkage just from quilting.

I’ve been in a number of exhibits where you have to have an exact size, like the Dinner@8 and Living Colour Textiles exhibits.  For the latter, size was to be 40 x 100 cm.  That’s 39 inches long.  My top was 44 inches long.   Once quilted, I had exactly enough to make 1/8″ seam allowances for my facings!

Amaryllis by Sarah Ann Smith (C) 2014.  See the Living Colour Exhibit at http://livingcolourtextiles.com/

Amaryllis by Sarah Ann Smith (C) 2014. See the Living Colour Exhibit at http://livingcolourtextiles.com/

YEP, the quilt shrank up FIVE flippin’ inches in length.  So I decided I needed to find a way to stop the massive shrinkage, and that means a foundation of some sort.   Jennifer Day likes one product; my friend Susan Brubaker Knapp prefers another.  I decided I needed to test a range of options.   So shoot me.  And please excuse me while I vanish for a week or two to quilt the same yellow rose umpteen times!  EEEEK!

Filming 3 segments for Quilting Arts TV! Part 1

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

WOWIE what a wonderful thing!   In February, when my friend Susan Brubaker Knapp was tapped to take over the hosting duties for Quilting Arts TV when Pokey Bolton stepped down (Pokey is now the Chief Creative Officer for Quilts, Inc., the wonderful folks that bring us Quilt-Mecca aka International Quilt Festival), Susan asked me if I would like to be on the show!  YOU BETCHA!   And what a wonderful six weeks it has been, prepping step-outs and samples and driving to Ohio to tape the three segments.

Getting ready to roll tape for my first segment on Quilting Arts TV, Series 1400.  I show you how to make my incredibly versatile Inside-Out Bag so you can customize size, pockets, techniques for the outside (pieced, applique, surface design).  The bag is quick and easy so it also makes a great special gift.

Getting ready to roll tape for my first segment on Quilting Arts TV, Series 1400.  On set with host Susan Brubaker Knapp.  I show you how to make my incredibly versatile Inside-Out Bag so you can customize size, pockets, techniques for the outside (pieced, applique, surface design). The bag is quick and easy so it also makes a great special gift.

If any of you are on Facebook, you may have seen the images Susan, Vivika Hansen DeNegre (executive Editor for Quilting Arts), I and other guests have posted, but here are some more.  And one of the best parts is, just like Houston, getting to meet folks in person that you first met online.   Jeannie Cook-Delpit of Bernina was there to help with the machines, and Sue Reno and I taped the same day so it was a blast to meet her.   Sue appears to do things the way I do:  be prepared to the max and pack in tons of great information. Sue also taped a DVD workshop on her cyanotype process that I know is going to be great!  I’m so looking forward to seeing Series 1400 which will begin airing on PBS in July.

First:  many thanks to Pokey Chatham Bolton, an amazing woman with vision and talent and drive:  who knew when she fell in love with crazy quilting and started a magazine in the back of her in-law’s sheep barn that Quilting Arts would become what it is today! I spoke with her after finding Issue #2 on the stand and called up to subscribe!  What a long way you’ve come and how much you have accomplished, Pokey!

Second:  many thanks to the sponsors of the show including Bernina of America, Coats and Clark, Havel’s Scissors and AQS.  THANK YOU for bringing this show to the happy quilters of the world!

I'm somewhere near the Pennsylvania-New York border on the Thruway driving toward Solon, Ohio (near Cleveland) where the show tapes.  I chose to drive rather than fly--I hate airports!  It didn't take much longer than flying, I could take everything with me, and listen to audio books en route.

I’m somewhere near the Pennsylvania-New York border on the Thruway driving toward Solon, Ohio (near Cleveland) where the show tapes. I chose to drive rather than fly–I hate airports! It didn’t take much longer than flying, I could take everything with me, and listen to audio books en route.

The trip from Maine to Ohio was 835 miles each way, so a full day and a half.  I left at 8 a.m. Tuesday and arrived in Ohio just in time for lunch.

This unassuming door is the entrance to the company (owned by a woman--YEAH!) that films and produces the show.  Well organized, lots of good pre-taping information and support--great staff!  Thank you Kathie, Katherine and all the crew that make us look good.

This unassuming door is the entrance to the company (owned by a woman–YEAH!) that films and produces the show. Well organized, lots of good pre-taping information and support–great staff! Thank you Kathie, Katherine and all the crew that make us look good.

Susan Brubaker Knapp is a wonderful artist, teacher, mother, friend, and she is going to be WONDERFUL as host.  They are keeping the format the same in general, but introducing a few small changes, first among them is that instead of three segments in a half hour, there will sometimes be two longer segments so we can share more in-depth information.  Susan is handling the chaos of taping with aplomb, asking great questions, and I couldn’t have felt more relaxed or comfortable with Susan, Vivika, Helen Gregory (now VP for Content at F+W/Interweave) and Kristine Lunblad of Quilting Arts.  Thank you to Kristine for taking all of these photos…it was so funny:  she’d have three cameras around her neck and as many phones to take the requisite “on set” photos for each segment.

TV lights do weird things to make up, so when taping for TV or a DVD workshop, a professional comes in to do your make up so you look good on camera.  Thank you Sue, because you succeeded!  Here I am taking a sorta blurry selfie after Sue worked her magic at the make-up/hair station.

TV lights do weird things to make up, so when taping for TV or a DVD workshop, a professional comes in to do your make up so you look good on camera. Thank you Sue, because you succeeded! Here I am taking a sorta blurry selfie after Sue worked her magic at the make-up/hair station.

The guests (meaning those of us on the show) were invited to bring outfit changes for our different episodes  They film 12 or 13 episodes at a time.  If you’ve seen the show in the past, you know Pokey had on a different outfit in each episode.  But the guests are in multiple episodes, and they all tape the same day.  So Susan had to change about a thousand times (well maybe five to seven) a day.  They have a bulletin board up with photos of Susan in outfit and jewelry, with “Day 1,”  “Day 2” et cetera, so they could keep track of what she needed to be wearing for which segment/episode.  So I went in and looked at the photos to pick which of my tops to wear so we’d look good together.

Some of the trays for my segments:  the rear three are for the bags (the last tray is all the different bags I've made with this method), plus the one for the thread-needles segment.

Some of the trays for my segments: the rear three are for the bags (the last tray is all the different bags I’ve made with this method), plus the one for the thread-needles segment.  PS:  Marie Z. J.:  see your black-white-gray thread-catcher bag on the second tray?  I love it so much I brought it to use on set!

On the day I arrived, I set out all my stuff for the segments on trays (like great big sheet cake pans).  I guess I had a lot for the bags segment, as one staffer asked if I was taping a workshop (60-75 minutes) as well as a segment (mine were 10-12 minutes each). Hmmm.  Over-prepared?

And the last tray, for my free-motion quilting segment on taking the leap from walking foot to beginner designs.   Thanks to Jenny Bowker (blog here) for allowing me to adapt one of her teaching methods and share the way I teach it on the episode.  While we're speaking of Jenny, she has just undergone surgery for breast cancer in her Australian homeland.  Let's all send MASSIVE healing light and comfort and "nuke the cancer into oblivion" thoughts to speed along her recovery.  Go, JENNY!

And the last tray, for my free-motion quilting segment on taking the leap from walking foot to beginner designs. Thanks to Jenny Bowker (website here) for allowing me to adapt one of her teaching methods and share the way I teach it on the episode. While we’re speaking of Jenny, she has just undergone surgery for breast cancer in her Australian homeland. Let’s all send MASSIVE healing light and comfort and “nuke the cancer into oblivion” thoughts to speed along her recovery. Go, JENNY!

And my suitcase, emptied of projects but with a few quilts to decorate the set still inside.  And my take-with-me electric kettle which I take when driving.  Nothing like a relaxing cup of decaf tea (made properly with boiling water!) at the end of a long teaching day on the road!

And my suitcase, emptied of projects but with a few quilts to decorate the set still inside. And my take-with-me electric kettle which I take when driving. Nothing like a relaxing cup of decaf tea (made properly with boiling water!) at the end of a long teaching day on the road!

To close, a special Thank-you to hubby, who totally didn’t mind that I spent our 31st anniversary driving to Ohio and setting up my trays!

Next blogpost:  Taping my segments on Thursday!

A note:  where I live in rural Maine, alas we don’t get QA TV on our local PBS affiliate.   In some markets, the creative shows are on a PBS spin-off channel called CREATE TV.   If you get your TV on cable, you will likely be able to catch the show on air.   We have DirectTV, and alas no joy.  But you will be able to purchase the entire series or individual episodes (download only on the latter) once the series airs.

Gouache, Birthday Boy, Snow, and Thread

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

Just a quickie catch-up post!   I’ll have some great news to share in a couple of weeks about what has been keeping me busier than my usual busy.   But I’ve also managed to squeeze in a few other things.  First in date order is two online classes with the delightful, talented, and superlative teacher Val Webb (website here).   This winter I had planned to relax and take two of her classes which overlap by about a month.  Despite the fact that you can really do a LOT of work (and LEARN a LOT), I decided to take both.  First one is Drawing Dogs and Cats, second one is Fairies (or as I prefer, Faeries) in Nature.

My Luna-Boy faerie in gouache, about 9 x 6 inches.

My Luna-Boy faerie in gouache, about 9 x 6 inches.

In Val’s classes, you learn not only about drawing, but also painting, as well as various media and techniques.  The lesson above is for small children as fairies, with wings, and gouache (which I have never used).  There are some technical issues; basically, I need practice with the medium!   But overall I am quite pleased with my Luna-boy.  In the next photo, we worked with graphite to sketch a dog.  His right eye is a bit off (thank you for the feedback, Val! I knew something was off but couldn’t spot it until you helped), but I’m fairly happy with this one, as well.  I attribute all good stuff with these two to the quality of Val’s teaching!

Sweet doggie, in graphite pencil.

Sweet doggie, in graphite pencil.

This week is also number 2 son’s 16th birthday.  How the child can be 16, weigh more than me (wooohooo! finally!), etc., defies comprehension.  Clearly the calendar lies.  Eli’s request for birthday dinner:  my waffles and Joshua’s parmesan fried chicken, an exact repeat of what Joshua had in early November.  As it was the beginning of the wrestling season, Eli couldn’t pig out.  This time he could and did <<grin>>!

We will NOT think about the calories involved in waffles and fried chicken.

We will NOT think about the calories involved in waffles and fried chicken.

Thanks to de facto DIL Ashley for taking pics as I brought in the birthday cake:

The calendar lies.  There is no way my youngest is 16.  I realize I am old enough to be his grandmother, but that is irrelevant LOL!   Eli, we love you to bits and are so thankful you came into our lives (even if we were and are old and tired!).

The calendar lies. There is no way my youngest is 16. I realize I am old enough to be his grandmother, but that is irrelevant LOL! Eli, we love you to bits and are so thankful you came into our lives (even if we were and are old and tired!).

She also got this great pic of Thumper the 26-toed cat.  As you can see, our cats pay us no mind.  Sigh.

Thumper.  Sigh.

Thumper. Sigh.

And guess what it is doing today.  Again.  Sigh again.

One more time.   At least it isn't sleeting a lot, as was predicted, and the temperature is now down to freezing or just below.

One more time. At least it isn’t sleeting a lot, as was predicted, and the temperature is now down to freezing or just below.

At least it is pretty–the flakes where HUGE!  We were predicted to get a lot of snow, school let out early, and we are all expecting it to be cancelled tomorrow.  Then the weather service predicted less snow, more ice and lots of sleet.  That is actually a lot worse.  But we haven’t had any sleet here in Hope, though beyond the ridge of hills on the coast is may be sleeting.  Here it has been snowing for about 7 hours.  We’ll see what the morning brings.  We will also fill buckets with water as it is likely to be heavy, wet snow and power could well go out.  Again.  Sigh.

And to end of a fun note, this fall I will be helping curate (i.e. be the behind the scenes worker bee) the new SAQA Food exhibit, open to SAQA members.  Alex Veronelli, mover and shaker at Aurifil Thread, will be the juror.  Just today I received the Quilts, Inc., eInsider newsletter, which had this profile of him.  It’s an interesting read.  Enjoy.

Now I need to go start on dinner.  Oh whee.