Thursday, July 16, 2015

Bias Petal Play

Bias Petal Play by Marion Shimoda, 2014, 36.5"x36.5"
Welcome to my post for The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters - Test Quilter Blog Hop.  This is the story of the test quilt I made for the book.

In January 2014, I heard from my friend Kristin Shields that Sherri Lynn Wood was looking for test quilters for her book, the Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters.  I wasn't familiar with Sherri Lynn and not clear on what improv or modern quilting was, but thought it would be fun to be a tester.
I signed up as a test quilter and on January 16th was assigned to test the Bias Strip Petals score.  Submissions for the book were due March 25th.

The timeframe for making the quilt was a bit ambitious for me.  To improve the chances of finishing the quilt in time, I decided to limit the size of my quilt and palette of colors.

The finished quilt minimum size was at least 36" square.  My target was 36" - 40" square.

For bias strips I wanted variation, but few fabrics, to simplify the decisions to be made later when using the bias strips.  Bias strips were made from a single piece of fabric designed by Katie Pasquini Masopust for Marcus Brother Textiles, Inc..
Sherri Lynn's method for making the bias strips was quick and easy.  Bias strips in hand, I sketched various placements of petals.
I chose a configuration of petals with an offset center.
White and green fabric was chosen for the petals and neutrals for the background.  

Each petal was assembled separately.  During the process of constructing the petals, I cut into and appliqued colored wedge inserts into the three white petals.  Sherri Lynn's hints for addressing challenges with using bias strips for curved piecing were very helpful.  The resulting petals looked good to me.
Next, the petal sections were pieced together.  

I had planned to make the petals meet at the center as in my sketches, but as I was piecing them together they wanted to move apart.  I added strips and bits of color between the petals using methods I learned from studying with Gwen Marston (Liberated Quilting) and Jean Wells as I moved the petals apart.  
Ready to quilt
The piece was hand quilted.
Hand quilted
Patches of color were added along edges where the quilt top had shrunk during piecing and quilting.

Patches of color added to the edges
A thin white binding and wool applique were the final touches.
Thin white binding
Little bits of wool applique on the tips of the petal inserts
Bias Petal Play was submitted on March 25th.  It was selected to be included in the book and appears on page 95.  It was also juried in to QuiltCon 2015 and was sold there.

Being a test quilter was a challenging and educational experience.  It was a good chance try something different while applying techniques and methods I use in my work.  I learned some new techniques and that I am an improvisational quilter.

Thank you Sherri Lynn for the opportunity to participate as a test quilter for your book.  I am enjoying seeing the quilts and reading about the experiences of others making quilts based on the scores in the book.  I look forward to exploring the scores and using the techniques presented in the book and encourage others to join me in doing so.

For a list of other stops on the blog hop, click here.

Friday, May 22, 2015

SOQS 2015 - Wendy's Wish Postcards

SOQS 2015 Wendy's Wish Michael Miller Challenge Fabric Postcards
I submitted three fabric postcards for the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show Michael Miller Challenge this year.

My postcards feature japanese fabrics acquired on my trip to Japan in January and hand stitching.

The Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show posted the Michael Miller Challenge Winners on Facebook on May 15th.  I am honored that my Spiral was awarded 3rd place in the Michael Miller Challenge.
Michael Miller Challenge, 3rd Place
Cotton fabric, hand stitched, hand quilted
Cotton and silk fabric, hand pieced, hand quilted
Cotton fabric, hand pieced, hand stitched
The donated fabric postcards raise funds for the SOQS and Wendy's Wish of the St. Charles Foundation.  Wendy's Wish assists with non-medical expenses for people undergoing cancer treatment in Central Oregon.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Polyester Quilt

Aunty's Polyester Quilt
My aunty has lovingly stored my Babachan's sewing projects.  Recently aunty gave me some polyester quilt tops Babachan had constructed.  I backed and tied one of the tops for aunty and delivered it to her this week.

I chose a bright warm Minky Cuddle fabric at Fabric Depot to back the polyester quilt top.  It was a bit of a challenge to work with the pieced polyester top which does not lay flat and the slippery minky.  So I pinned all around, with a pin every couple of inches.
I hand basted before sewing the top and back together with the sewing machine.
Hand basting
Hand basted
All Sewn Together
Then the top and back were tied together with embroidery floss at the centers of each of the pinwheel blocks.
Pinned for tying 
Top before tying
Back after tying
The quilt was laundered and was then ready to use.  The colorful quilt and I made the trip back across the ocean to Hawaii and to the north shore of Oahu to aunty.  
Aunty's Polyester Quilt, Ready to be Delivered

Monday, May 4, 2015

Fiberlandia - 2015 SAQA Conference

Wired Wildflower, 6"x8"
The annual Studio Art Quilt Associates (SAQA) conference was held in Portland, Oregon this year.  For me the conference started with meetings on Thursday, April 30th and finished up Sunday, May 3rd with a panel of Oregon and Southwest Washington artists.

Artists and collectors from around the country and the world participated.  It was wonderful to see and hear from artists I know from their books and work and reputations, and to share the experience with friends.  The weather was gorgeous.  The speakers addressed diverse and interesting subjects.  The food was delicious.

On Saturday there was a "Spotlight Auction" of donated 6"x8" quilts to benefit SAQA.  My piece, "Wired Wildflower", features a flower constructed of wire stitched to a free-pieced block made from scraps purchased at quilt shops in Michigan in 2013 and solid fabrics.  I was thrilled to meet the purchaser of my quilt.  And, I was the lucky winner of Joan Dyer's "Celebration" and Lisa Walton's "Mottainai #2".

Thursday, September 4, 2014

As Summer Ends: Farmington Gardens Images, Lavender and 4th of July Whimsical Wired Characters

 Images from Farmington Gardens in Beaverton, Oregon taken in late June.
These photos capture colors and compositions of the summer garden.
Lavender was harvested from our home garden and placed in containers to dry.
A new family of Wired Characters took shape on July 4th...four in all.  Three of the four have been purchased; their new homes are in Wenatchee, WA, Portland, OR and Durban, South Africa.  They are dancers built on wood spool bases with wild hair made of fiber, button faces, fabric or knitted skirts, wire and fabric-wrapped bodies and colorful wire arms.
The three sisters in the photo below are in various stages of construction.  

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Friendly Complements Quilt @ QuiltWorks July 2014

Friendly Complements
61" x 61"
Blocks by Marion Shimoda and Kathy
Constructed and Quilted by Marion Shimoda
Friendly Complements will be in the July 2014 "Let's Laugh" quilt exhibit at QuiltWorks in Bend, Oregon.  This quilt is the result of a collaboration with my friend Kathy.

The blocks for this quilt were made by me and Kathy.  Each month for eight months we started out with two fat quarters of fabric, one selected by me and the other by Kathy, to use in constructing two blocks.  We stretched our imaginations and honed our piecing, applique and embellishing skills on the monthly blocks.  At the end of each month we'd keep one of our own blocks and exchange the other.  Each exchange was a sweet surprise!  

With sixteen blocks, after eight months, we worked on constructing our quilts.  I used Valori Wells Jenaveve Cotton Linen fabric, wool and wirework to complete my quilt.  The finished quilts hung side by side at the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show in 2011.  It was fun to see the two together, reflecting our different, complementary styles.

Friendly Complements now hangs in my home's living room and continues to delight me and make me smile.

 Closer views of each set of four blocks.
 Some of my favorite blocks
Fish by Kathy
Japanese Girl by Kathy
Hand appliqued and hand embroidered, three dimensional flowers with beaded centers.
Vase of Flowers by Kathy
Dots by Marion

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Associates) 25th Anniversary Trunk Show Quilt

Silk & Cotton
10" x 7"
2014 marks the 25th anniversary of the Studio Art Quilt Associates organization.  "Silk & Cotton" was my entry for this year's Trunk Show.  407 Quilts were received and divided into eight trunks.  Each trunk will travel through 2017.  
"Silk & Cotton" is in Trunk "H", scheduled to be in Oregon August 2014.
Hand quilted.
There is wool in addition to cotton and silk fabric.
French knots were made with variegated Valdani and embroidery floss.