Tuesday, 16 October 2018

Improv Here I Come!

Wow, it is a tough quilting theme.
The only thing I could compare this to is the television show, "Whose Line Is It Anyway?"
I enjoyed watching it off and on during its run from 1998 to 2007.

 But, quilting?

I decided to write down on slips of paper some things to work with. I wrote 3 of my favorite blocks and 5 colors based on which drawers of scraps held the most. I selected one slip of paper from the blocks category and 2 from the colors category. I chose log cabin blocks and the colors blue and orange.
(And, yes, the oranges are bright orange but the lighting didn't help!)
I decided improv would mean I couldn't use any particular measurements (until I was ready to finish it up). I could use the rotary cutter and/or scissors. I couldn't baulk on the fabric scraps I picked or how the seams got sewn.

I am ready to add the quilting and all should be ready for the reveal on November 1!

Monday, 15 October 2018

Just a Peek

This was a tough theme for me.  What is Improv in relation to quilting???

An OCD  with a left side thinking brain has a hard time even THINKING improv.  So I stitch on using these fabrics and do my thing and ...what the heck.

How bout you guys?  Do you think you nailed the theme?

Wednesday, 5 September 2018

New Member

The Endeavourers welcome a new member, Paula, who joins us in time to take part in our latest challenge with the theme of 'Improv'.

The great thing about being part of a group is to see the way we all take inspiration from the theme and run with it in different ways - it's very exciting when we post our quilts on 'reveal' day.  The looming deadline puts a bit of pressure on,  but that's (hopefully!) balanced by the fact that this is a very friendly and supportive group.

We have a 'mission statement' here but what's most important is:

get inspired, 
have fun doing what you feel inspired to do, 
and don't compare yourself to anyone else!

Saturday, 4 August 2018

New Theme Announcement

Congratulations to everybody for creating such a spectacular collection of Spiral Quilts!

Our list of theme choices now looks like this:
  1. the sea
  2. a walk in the park
  3. texture
  4. memories
  5. improv
  6. a quilt inspired by a newspaper headline
  7. emotions feelings
  8. opposites attract
  9. colour theory
  10. dreams
  11. wishes
  12. a scene from a book
  13. raindrops keep falling on my head
And for the next quarterly challenge Mr Random has chosen  # 5 - Improv.

So please have your Improv Art Quilt ready to publish for the deadline. And, just as a caution, please remember that this is a group for smallish Art Quilts - I think with this theme it would be easy to get carried away end up with bed quilts before we know it! 

The deadline for this quarter will be November 1st 2018 at 10.00am GMT. 

If you have any questions or problems arise, please feel free to email me (Janine) or Catherine at any time.

In the meantime, please post here, on The Endeavourers Blog, with any thoughts, ideas or techniques you'd like to share. I can't wait to see what you all will create for this theme.

Happy Sewing!

Wednesday, 1 August 2018

“What goes around, comes around”

Hi everyone,

Apologies for being late ...... I was going to say, because I was finishing off late into the night last night, which I was, but as you will know by now my naughty computer has let me down today, and I found that, although I am able to edit from my iPad, I wasn’t able to add a photo. Luckily for me Janine was kind enough to offer to add my photo for me. Thank you again, Janine.


My piece is called “What goes around, comes around” because as I was stitching around the triangles, heading for the spiral, I couldn’t stop this line from an old proverb entering my head. 

The reason I’ve entitled it so is because all the triangles are from previous projects I’ve worked on, and as such they were “What goes around” with their scraps being used again and again in future ideas. As I stitched the spiral into the centre and then back on itself, and around the triangles again I couldn’t help thinking “comes around”, which although it isn’t the original meaning of the saying seemed so apt for this piece.

I wanted to show a few more photos of the backing, the heading, and how I worked this, but it will have to wait until either we buy a new laptop or the sick one is repaired.

I hope everyone has had a fun day unveiling their quilts and I will be round to visit shortly. I can’t wait to see how everyone else interpreted their “Spiral”.

Barbara x

Major problem! - Updated 1300hrs

Hi everyone,

Apologies for being late! I’m having a major problem with my computer. It’s switched on and saying “Starting Windows” but nothing is happening! No whirring, nuttin’!!!!

Oh, help!

Working on it, and hope to show my photos soonest!

I’m not visiting anyone until I post.

Hope to be with you shortly.

Update: we’ve had help from a computer oriented friend, but it appears our computer has died. I will try to post from my iPad if I can get my photos from my phone. This would happen now wouldn’t it!

Very Frustratedly,
Barbara xxx

Spirals Everywhere!

When I saw Spiral was our next challenge a feeling of delight was my first reaction.  The possibilities if not endless are many and I had lots of ideas.  I struggled settling on which of two to make.  My first idea was a throw quilt size that could be functional as well as a themed art project - yes I know there is a debate on functional items not being art but I was going to ignore that and make a quilt with text in a spiral. Trouble is I didn't know what I wanted to say or what colour palette to use. 

I had the idea of a Celtic tri-spiral and ended up choosing the first lines from my favourite books to make the spiral.  Design ready, I paused and thought this is quite personal, what does it say to the world to make it an art piece, rather than a nice quilt for Ruth to snuggle under? 

Around the same time this year I was invited to make a piece for the Irish Quilters showcase with the theme of Culture.  Working on two projects at the same time they seemed to meld a bit in my mind.  I thought of a double spiral of text with local sayings and slang and all the ways we have to describe the rain in Ireland.  But as I was doodling and sketching spirals the Yeat's poem "The Second Coming", and the line 'things fall apart, the centre cannot hold' got stuck in my head.

I thought about the rise of the right in politics, the ugly glee some people took in labelling people snowflakes, while at the same time angry about being labelled themselves and I thought self righteousness is really ugly - both left and right.  I was reminded of a TED talk by Jonathon Haidt where he looked at the traits of conservatives and liberals and I took away a few things from that talk.  All human beings care about being Fair, about doing no Harm and Caring for each other.  Liberals place a lot of value on Fairness and Equality.  Conservatives care about these things too but also care about Community, Authority and Purity.  Some Conservatives care about what you do with your body and some Liberals care very much about what you put in your body or on your body.  When you see passion at both extremes and name calling and violence you wonder how important is the centre?
Are we perfectly balanced or is it like Yeats poem the centre cannot hold?  I haven't answered this question in the making of the quilt but feel like exploring it in textiles, shape and colour has been a worthwhile thought experience for me and it turns out I do have something to say.  I called it "Snowflake, who me?" and entered it to the exhibition curated by Paula Rafferty and Nikki Foley.


My quilt for this quarter is about spirals as they appear in the natural world.  You can find them in my quilt in the form of a bindweed climbing a stem, in a furled bud, and in the living snails and extinct ammonite.

The spiral is a symbol representing some of the forces of nature, and so I was also thinking about this theme when I chose Robin Hood's Bay with its dynamic geological history as the location of the scene in this quilt.

The techniques used are applique, watercolour painting, and hand- and free-motion embroidery.  Although the top and sides are squared, the bottom edge is cut in curves.  It is approximately 20 by 14 inches.

You can read more about it here!

Dorothy's House

I'm very excited to see all the spiral quilts that everyone has been making for this challenge.

I recently went to see 'Wicked' with my daughters and I decided to make my quilt for this quarter a sort of remembrance of that occasion, with Dorothy's House inside the cyclone being whisked off to Oz and a spiralling rainbow.

You can read more about my trials and tribulations making this quilt over at Rainbow Hare