Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Community Quilting Day

Thanks to Pam Raby, one of our amazing instructors, The Pine Needle recently hosted a Community Sewing Day to make quilts for Cares NW, a local charity. 

Pam has been inspired by the heart quilts that so many guilds have made for communities affected by tragedy. Cares NW has long been near and dear to the Portland community and especially the Pine Needle.Thinking about how she might contribute, Pam offered her time as a teacher and presented construction techniques as well as heart quilt ideas which she discovered online. It was a wonderful day! A lovely group of generous, kind hearted women came to our community service day. Pam (and probably everyone there) especially enjoyed the collaborative, willing spirit everyone brought. As quilters, we often spend many hours alone happily stitching the hours away. It is refreshing and gratifying to pitch in and work together to create quilts for kids in need of comfort in our town.

Part of the group was busy working in our Lounge.

While still more people worked in the Classroom.

Some of our Pine Needle regulars, and prolific quilters for CARES: Charlotte, Pam, and Margaret.

Master coordinator, Karen, working behind the scenes organizing and making kits

Kathy's work in progress.

Kathy's finished quilt top (Illumination, designed by Pam Raby).

Beth's hearts in progress.

Nikki's citrus themed quilt top.

Another heart top in progress

Heartfelt thanks to everyone who participated. The event was so fun and productive that we will definitely be doing again.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Creative Customers

Phew, it's been a full month. Our fall catalog came out, we held an Open House, Mary Fons came to talk, and then there was the Northwest Quilt Expo -- all in September. It would have been great to blog about these things, but we got too busy! But speaking of busy, our customers have been busy too. Please join us in putting up our feet, grabbing a nice cuppa, and looking back at the beautiful quilts our creative customers have brought into the shop lately to share with us.

If this delightful photo of Betty bringing in her armload of charity quilts doesn't epitomize the generosity of our customers, we don;t know what would. Thanks to everyone who donates to CARES NW.
Barbara proudly shows off her beautiful Sequoia quilt.

Cheryl used a fun panel fabric to make a fun and easy quilt for a grandchild.

Can you believe that Evelyn used all Australian Aboriginal prints in these fantastic wheels? It's a great combination of traditional and unexpected.

Nancy's Melbourne quilt is also made using dynamic aboriginal prints.

Here's another surprise from Evelyn. She mis-cut triangles for her Spinner table runner, so she used them in another arrangement to make this "Plan B" runner.

Joie wouldn't let us photograph her face so here's her feet. We love her happy quilt made with dog-themed fabrics. Even the quilting includes a dog bone motif!

Kathy's Dancing Churndash made with the Quick Curve Ruler is stunning! We're a big fan of her grey and yellow (grellow) color scheme.

Dawn's Seeing Stars class produced stunning results. Here's Maxine's stellar blue version.
Our Pinecones are pretty creative too. Kristin made good use of the Quick Curve Ruler and our Awesome Odds stash to  create this glowing quilt for a friend's birthday.

We'll be back to posting more regularly as we re-stock the shop and get ready for cooler months and more indoor quilting weather! Be sure to also check us out on Facebook and Instagram for quick posts about new fabrics, show and tell, and more.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Westside Modern Quilt Club August 2016

Kristin here. Please accept my apologies for posting this so long after our August meeting and delicious pot luck. We've been busy at The Pine Needle getting ready for, and enjoying, our Open House, a visit from Mary Fons (just a few days away!), and Northwest Quilt Expo at the end of September! Phew, there's a lot going on!

Northwest Quilt Expo is a perfect segue into our August meeting wrap-up as the main focus of the meeting was the reveal of our Tribal Winds challenge quilts. Not everyone who has entered a quilt was present, and I did not get super photos, nor take good enough notes to credit each quilt accurately. So... I'll present an enticing peek at a handful of the challenge quilts, but encourage everyone who can to go to Expo on September 22, 23 or 24 to see ALL the Westside Modern Quilt Club's Tribal Winds challenge quilts in the cloth.

The quilts presented were exciting in their variety of subject matter and aesthetic. Everyone had a meaningful story behind their work, and there was a broad range of skill from first quilts or first time trying a technique, to old pros pushing their comfort zones. Several club members thanked Geri for challenging the group each year as it has really helped them (and all of us, really) to expand our horizons and to delve deeper into our quilt making. There is no doubt, the challenge quilts this year will be as wonderful and well received at Expo as the Pearl and Bridges exhibits of the last two years.

First, we needed sustenance for our quilt reveal. The pot luck spread was delicious!

Carol's abstract quilt is based on Tlingit baskets.

I think this one is by Janet. It represents canoes and Longhouses and many other little elements she remembers from visits to a reservation as a teen.

I don't have good notes for this one, but I think it's her first quilt! Or the first one she designed herself.

This quilt by Linda is inspired by petroglyphs in the Columbia River Gorge.

Lori's poignant inspiration was a not yet federally recognized tribe also from the Columbia River Gorge area.

Mallory's Raven and salmon quilt has interesting details like buttons and tiny symbols.

Mary Pat's quilt is inspired by a basket weaving design which represents eagles in flight -- a fine metaphor for the native american spirit.

Susan actually made two beautiful quilts. I particularly liked the graphic simplicity of this one which so plainly represents an elk tooth dress.

Again, we encourage everyone to come see the entirely of this special exhibit at Northwest Quilt Expo, along with all of the other spectacular quilts which will be on display. Be sure to stop by The Pine Needle's booths and say hi too -- we've got half the team at the notions booth and half at the fabric one so you know there's going to be some healthy competition going on between the two! See you there.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Mary Fons is Coming to The Pine Needle!

Mary Fons is Coming to The Pine Needle 
September 18!

We have two exclusive and fabulous events scheduled with the energetic and highly creative Mary Fons! Sign up now as space is limited! Call us or click on the register buttons below to sign up online.

Sunday, 9:30 am to 11:30 am
The Mary Fons "Meet & Greet" is a mini trunk show, book signing, and autograph party. Also, it is the 18th of the month (sale day, so the attendees that come to this event will get the first opportunity to get the sale discount! Included in this event is a light Continental Breakfast.  $35 per person

Sunday, 12:30 pm to 1:30 pm
Mary Fons' afternoon lecture: 10 Things I know About Quilting (and Life) NEW!
Mary is all grown up. For the past 8 years, Mary has been learning, teaching, failing/succeeding, creating video, designing fabric, recording TV shows, creating podcasts, lecturing, traveling, and of course, making quilts. She has learned a few things about making patchwork and teaching it - and she has learned about life too. Full of quilt-making tips and inspiration, this funny/touching lecture is a favorite. 
$35 per person

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Westside Modern Quilt Club July 2016

Despite hot weather and a potentially warm meeting room, we had a nice turnout (and with fans, a comfortable temperature). Geri let us know about upcoming classes, and new fabrics. We have a fun floral in stock by Kathy Deggendorfer who might be recognizable from her posters for the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show. We might even like the supporting fabrics better than the main floral! Geri also showed off a test copy of Quiltfolk, a magazine we hope to see soon from Michael McCormick (who spoke about his Gabby Quilts books last year).
One word for this month's joke: "Ew!"

We had our last challenge update. The reveal party will be August 31st at Millennium Park at 6:00. That means no Westside Modern meeting at The Pine Needle in August, but meet us at the park to see the quilts so many of you have been working on. Also, there will be no meeting in September as Geri and team will be working on and at the NW Quilting Expo. 
If you have a quilt for the Tribal Winds challenge, bring it on the 31st (bound and with a hanging sleeve) along with the entry form found on NW Quilting Expo's exhibit entry page. Please write "Westside Modern: Tribal Winds" in the notes section. You do not need to pay the $20 entry fee unless you wish for your quilt to also be judged as part of the larger quilt show. Please also bring a 75-ish word synopsis of the inspiration and concept for your quilt. If you can't make it to the August 31st reveal party, please turn in your quilt and paperwork to The Pine Needle before that.

On to Show and Tell, what fun!

Cathy showed off her hexagon quilt top. She's been working out a unique way to assemble her quilt without any hand sewing!

Darlene shared the cozy wool quilt she made for her brother. She quilted the feathers herself on her home machine.

Deslie showed off two lovely quilts she made from scarves she no longer wears. Simple and sublime. Of course, there was also a matching bag.

Elisa C shared the Gravity quilt she made in Pam's class. It has a gorgeous mix of computer and hand guided quilting. There will be a Gravity quilt special exhibit at Expo, so be sure to check it out.

Judith calls this her "Which Side is the Front?" quilt. One side is Storm at Sea and the other is an artful variation of the same blocks but with a somewhat different layout.

Marlene shared her Lone Star quilt with fun fabric choices. There's blueberry fabric in there which she had purchased in Maine (of course). Marlene also talked about working with her long arm quilter on choosing just the right computer-guided design, scaled to look like custom work, for the perfect mix of special and affordable.

Oops, I forgot to get the name of this lady who shared her lovely Log Cabin with a modern layout.

Our July Speaker was Mary Ann McCammon. She's a local art quilter who has traveled several times to Eldoret, Kenya to help the Beyond Fistula program there. Obstetrical fistula is a medical condition resulting from difficult childbirth. Women who become pregnant at a young age or who are small statured because of poor nutrition are at higher risk for fistula, and this condition is primarily seen in Africa and South Asia. Mary Ann shared with us some of the stories of the program in Kenya and the young women helped by it. A separate program pays for the surgeries which can help many, and Beyond Fistula helps with after care in the form of counseling, scholarships, and job training. Mary Anne's part, Quilts for Empowerment, is a vocational training program sponsored by Beyond Fistula. The quilting program provides obstetric fistula survivors with an opportunity to learn a new skill, gain self-confidence and earn income by making quilts. All of the quilts are one of a kind products made from African fabric and personalized with hand stitching using embroidery floss. Products include table mats, table runners, aprons, as well as decorative quilts that often tell a woman’s personal story through her stitching and choice of fabric. Mary Ann told us amusing stories of her time in Eldoret, and shared some of the stories of the young women she worked with, as well as photos of them and their charming quilts. She also brought a selection of little quilts for purchase. There will be a Fundraiser on November 20th at which guests can meet Christine Fox, the program director (and "den mother") for Beyond Fistula in Kenya. They hope to raise $12,000 for supplies through the sale of hand made quilted products and a silent auction. The Fundraiser will be held at the Wine Country Barn in Newberg, OR. 

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Westside Modern Quilt Club June 2016

Our June meeting was filled with inspiration and food for thought. 

First off, Geri caught us up on details for the Tribal Winds challenge. Hopefully everyone wishing to participate is already well on their way creating their quilts! 
• The 2016 Challenge will debut at Northwest Quilting Expo in September 22-24, 2016. Please print out the entry form from the NQE website (the link is on this page) and bring it, filled out, with your quilt to our reveal party. Write in Westside Modern Quilt Club in the Special Exhibits box. The $20 entry fee is waived for our Challenge quilts. 
• Our reveal party pot luck will be at 6:00 on August 31st at Millennium Park in Lake Oswego. If your last name starts with A-L, please bring a main dish; if your name starts with M-S, please bring a salad of some sort; and if your last name starts with T-Z you may bring dessert.
• The challenge is open to anyone wishing to honor the heritage of the Northwest Native Americans in a Modern Quilt format (please avoid decidedly pictorial solutions). 
• Your piece must measure either 32"x 44" or 48"x 66" and use some amount of the Benartex fabric Sevilla in gold or gold and white. 
• It must also have a 4 inch sleeve attached to the back of the quilt for hanging, and must be bound or otherwise finished (facing, satin stitch, etc.).

As always, Show and Tell was fun!

Cathy brought her Floribunda fabric quilt. She created a design which used fat quarters as efficiently as possible. She still had a few leftover bits, so she incorporated them into a simpler, graphic, back, which she's decided she likes better, so it is now the front!

Kathy E brought a vintage hexagon quilt she recently purchased. She's thinking it's great inspiration for a more Modern version. The crafts(wo)manship was gorgeous.

Pat's been using up her stash fabrics. She brought a striking wall hanging made of neutral colored triangles, and a contemporary interpretation of a log cabin in a very Modern green, orange and grey scheme.

Deslie showed off her Fish Fish Fish quilt which features a lively, you guessed it, fish print batik.

Grace brought her shashiko placemats and gorgeously stitched "hexie" quilt, plus a fun bright quilt with a relatively simple design but great impact.

Jane showed two very different quilts, one with batiks and one a nearly whole cloth quilt made from a vintage tablecloth and osnaburg fabric. She did gorgeous long-arm quilting on both.

Susan brought her little sketch quilt from a Jean Wells Intuitive Piecing class, plus two more even tinier ones made from the leftovers. These little compositional studies are like potato chips -- you can't make just one!

Linda D brought the big color wheel quilt she made with a Tula Pink pattern, and her newest Billie Bag adorned with graphic crows.

Robin brought flower quilts! One was a brightly colored quilt from a Weeks Ringle pattern, which Robin quilted as if she were a bee flitting from flower to flower. It's full of charming loops and meanderings. The next is a big sunflower which she created using a Pine Needle kit purchased when she was just learning to quilt. The last was a lovely blue, white, and yellow quilt featuring flower baskets which Robin embroidered masterfully.

Geri showed off some of the new fabrics in the shop -- like a Marcia Derse alphabet panel, House of Hoppington by Portland's own Violet Craft, and especially our new batch of Australian fabrics which we've paired with the Me+You modern batiks to great effect. 

Our guest speaker was Judy Livingston, a pattern designer and former buyer with Maywood Studio and EE Schenk distributors. She gave us an insider's look at what a fabric company looks for when designing fabric lines, and what a buyer keeps in mind when purchasing for a distributor (plus Geri got to chime in from a quilt store's point of view). She talked about new colors for old designs, creating designs from artwork, the batik process, and the difference between batik, silkscreen, and digital prints. I don't think many of us realized how long the process can be, and how many choices have to be made along the way. By the time the fabric reaches your local shop, it has been carefully tailored to that shop's needs. One of Judy's favorite projects was working with Maywood's Japanese-inspired line of taupe fabrics. To celebrate the 10th year of the line, she designed a beautiful quilt using all the fabrics produced for the collection over the ten year period. 

Judy also spoke about inspiration and creativity. She gave us tips for cultivating creativity by simply finding ways to relax and percolate. Learning whether you find thinking about a creative project relaxing and can drift off to sleep letting your subconscious work at it, or find it invigorating and can use the quiet time before getting up perfect for planning an approach to a project, can help us better tap into our creative selves. As a pattern designer, Judy finds inspiration in many things. She likes to look outside of the quilt world, and often looks to nature for interesting color palettes. She showed a "dresser scarf" she made with repurposed pieces of an appliqu├ęd vest -- which was a pretty creative use of fabrics she liked...

but that project then went on to inspire a new pattern design based on colors and Broderie perse flowers.

As always, the meeting was informative and inspirational. We look forward to next month's meeting the last Wednesday in July.