Buds and blooms has budded and bloomed!

It’s been a little while since I have blogged a quilt but this next one is a real show-stopper, I promise! But, before I debut Dawn Gerber’s amazing applique quilt, I want to take this time to place a tiny commercial here. You see, this blog actually costs me $300 a year just to blog these quilts to you and I am contemplating whether it is worth that fee to run this. So, I’m hoping this little plug helps generate some interest (from y’all) in my other home business…artisan luxury cold-process soap for face and body (and, they’re for sale, imagine that!) I currently hand-produce 16 versions of my essential-oil and plant-based soaps. If you love handmade soap, you will love my all-natural soaps. By the end of November, we will have 3 women’s shave soaps and 4 men’s shave soaps available as well, and we will even have magnetic-closure gift boxes available for the holiday gift-giving season. You can shop us at www.soapworksfactory.com. OK, see, that shameless plug was easy enough to get through!

On with this marvelous show quilt!

Dawn Gerber came to me way back in 2019, asking if I would consider longarming her next national show quilt, a turned-edge absolute work of wonder in blue and white. Knowing that Dawn was currently showing a quilt longarmed by the internationally acclaimed Judi Madsen, I bashfully agreed to take on this daunting project. National show quilts are unlike any other type of quilt, in that I know the work will be scrutinized, up close, to incredible standards. Dawn was advised that my schedule would slot her in in 2020 and the day came (and so did the quilt). Here is it as it arrived into my possession:

I got to work designing things by taking photos of this quilt and then printing them out. I always design old-school….placing tracing paper over the photos and sketching things out with pencil until I am satisfied. Here is one sketch that I brought into AutoCAD to draft out and create custom-cut marking templates from, after Dawn had approved the sketches. You can see the photo of the quilt below the sketch:

The sketch is scaled to size and then I draft out the sketch in the areas that a marking template is needed. I cut them out on a scrapbooking cutter and, poof, I have my own custom marking templates! The quilt was painstakingly marked with a water-soluble Mark-B-Gon blue pen and this step took over a day to accomplish.

We decided upon a double layer of Quilters Dream Blend batting, which would give the quilt wonderful quilting relief and substantial support for the demand of vertical presentation.

The quilt was loaded and around 95 hours of work later, we had the finished product. Care to see it? OK, OK, here it is:

I wanted to share with you more of the close-up’s, where you can really see where all that time was painstakingly invested. Here is some eye-candy of the border:

And….

So very cool, I must say! Totally custom and boy, did it pop! Onto more eye-candy, I say! Here is the very center block:

And, here is more detail shots of some of the other blocks:

Dawn Gerber and I can only hope that 2021 begins to have live quilt shows once again. While virtual quilt shows are nice, they are rather hard to take when we know how much work has gone into these quilts and how they really deserve to be seen up close and personally. Here’s to hoping 2021 finds many of us shopping and taking in these beautiful quilts first-hand.

Thank you for stopping in and please remember my fledgling soap company, Soapworks Factory. I hope you get to have a little time to be creative today!

Patricia

Joyce Hite is at it….again :)

While we have been going through this Covid-19 Pandemic, I’ve been busy, in my basement, peering out of my well-window and refocusing on the current quilt on frame. They’ve changed several times over this 3-month period. The one we are featuring today was on frame for several weeks, due to no access to chiropractic care or LMT help. I nearly broke my neck in a racing accident in 2000, and I’m now being very careful about my posture and my well-being.

This particular quilt was so much fun to design the free-motion quilting for and I used my version of a fill that Judi Madsen so beautifully does…I can’t compare to her world-class talent level, but I can certainly still have fun.

Meet Blooming Baskets, a quilt design from Planted Seed Designs…https://plantedseeddesigns.com/products/blooming-baskets-and-blooming-basket-stars-patterns. Here she is all decked out and ready to roll!

I quilted her with one layer of Quilters Dream Blend batting and used my standby of Glide 40 weight thread. I love the slight sheen and strength of this thread. I first marked out this quilt with a thin water-erasable mark-be-gone pen. Marking took about 8 hours, due to all the measurements that were necessary on this quilt, but sometimes, marking is best and the timeline takes longer than you would imagine. Let’s look at more details of this beauty! Here is the beautiful center of this quilt…something I wanted to showcase a bit more, so I added the boxed feather border to it to help highlight the gorgeous center:

And, here are more close ups:

Didn’t she just turn out beautifully? It was sad to see her head back home with Joyce, but I’m so thrilled I got to add to the beauty of this quilt. I’m incredibly fortunate to longarm for my wonderful clients and it’s humbling to know that I’m living a little mark of myself for decades to come.

On another front, here is another venture I started on April 15, 2020…an online artisan cold-process luxury soap company. I hand-make each bar of soap using only the finest essential oils and base oils, using copious amounts of olive oil, shea butter and avocado oil. This soap is amazing on your skin and I couldn’t be more proud of the testing and reseach I put in to make this online shop a reality. We now have 10 varieties of soap with another 5 coming throughout 2020. Visit our fledgling online shop at http://www.soapworksfactory.com and let your skin drink in the goodness that is our soap!

Thank you so very much for popping in and visiting my blog. I hope you have a little time to be creative today.