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Monday, March 16, 2015

January 2015 WestSide Modern Quilt Club Meeting

The WestSide Modern ladies have a reason to feel proud!
Currently, there is $11 Million worth of artwork that is on display at the Portland International Airport, and they have chosen to feature selected quilts from our Bridges of Portland collection created for the Northwest Quilting Expo last fall.

On February 12, the creators of these quilts got to view their works of art "in situ" as they are currently displayed. Everyone had a great time and it was fun to see them all in one place. 

Portland: The Pearl

The topic for quilts for submission for the 2015 Quilting Expo is Portland: The Pearl.  Ideas for inspiration with sign-ups were featured and there is much excitement about our "Magazine" layout. Details about this project can be found HERE.

Pantone's Color of the Year: Marsala

"Much like the fortified wine that gives Marsala its name, this tasteful hue embodies the satisfying richness of a fulfilling meal while its grounding red-brown roots emanate a sophisticated, natural earthiness. This hearty, yet stylish tone is universally appealing and translates easily to fashion, beauty, industrial design, home furnishings and interiors."

Need some help choosing complimentary fabrics with this great color? Try using the 3-in-1 Color Tool which makes it easy to mix and match colors you may not have considered!

Show and Tell

Mallory Jarboe
Susan Dottarar
Quilting closeup
Noelle Evans
Kay Wagner
Dawn White
Jan Crow
Marjorie Elliott
Colleen Barnhardt

Elisa Corcoran
Joe Noble
Betsy Biller and Joyce Giezsler
Pam won a quilt!
Pam Raby
Molly Miles
Colleen fun with doodling
Colleen Barnhardt
Colleen's close-up
Guest Speaker: Joyce Geizsler

Joyce has been quilting for 25 years as well as designing quilts. She has been part of a "UFO" challenge every year and has gotten very good at determining what projects to finish, what projects to change up, and what projects should be abandoned.  She has come up with some handy acronyms to describe her projects.
WIP: Work in Progress
WIMM: Works in My Mind
PIGS: Projects in grocery sacks
PhD: Projects half done
TOAD: Trashed object abandoned in disgust

Joyce has to finish projects and she offered helpful hints at getting UFOs done:
Never put it out of sight
Make a list of your projects
Join Blog challenges
Out with the old before starting one new
Minute to Win it (work with a timer)
Big Bang Theory (oldest UFO- fling it or finish it)
Clean Sweep (clean sewing area, machine, etc. - good motivator)
Gold Rush (reward yourself when you finish)
Phone a Friend
Wipe Out (get rid of any you won't work on)
Calendar Girls (give yourself a deadline)
Soap Opera (sew on more than one at a time)
Dry Erase board next to sewing machine. List top 3 projects and cross out when done.

Sometimes it helps to redesign the project.  Make it into a doll quilt!  You don't have to finish where you started. 

If you aren't loving it, examine the parts. Little changes can make a big difference. Here is the same pattern with only slight changes. (Look closely to see if you can see the changes!)
Sometimes your quilt might just need a border. Or your old quilt blocks might need blending with newer fabrics that can revitalize the project. Use your fat quarter bundles!  Left over fabric? Make a small companion quilt!

Celebrate success! Pick your battles. Decide what to finish and what to fling. Gift bits of projects to others. Start small, one bite at a time. Be patient - you won't finish your projects overnight. 

Check out Joyce's 2nd book (coming soon): New Quilts from Old Stash!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

2015 Northwest Quilting Expo project - Portland: The Pearl

Portland: The Pearl

The PEARL District is an area of Portland formerly occupied by warehouses, light industry, and railroad classification yards and now is noted for its art galleries, upscale businesses and residences.  The area had been undergoing significant urban renewal since the mid-1980s, including the arrival of artists, the removal of a viaduct, and the construction of the Portland Street Car and has since been reclassified from industrial to mixed-use.

Learning how the area got its name and how impactful that was to our artistic heritage, it somehow demanded to be represented in fabric.

Please go to our Blog Site ( and read about Pearl Amhara (click on the link for Margie Boule's story).  A truly informative and inspiring story.

Because of the history of the area, and because of the renovation that it has experienced, it reminded me of the juxtaposition of Traditional Quilting and Modern Quilting and the common relationship of both.

Quilting has undergone a transformation as well and this exhibit will be a combination of that journey.

WestSide Modern Quilt Club, sponsored by The Pine Needle in Lake Oswego Oregon, would like to invite you to participate in our 2015 project entitled: Portland: The Pearl

Project Description
Our mission is to create a 32” x 44” finished piece representing your interpretation of a Pearl District image.

This exhibit is not necessarily a pictorial exhibition, but rather a Modern-style representation.

The quilt exhibit will be hung in a magazine-style format with facing quilts which will act as pages and will debut at the Portland Northwest Quilting Expo September 24, 25, and 26, 2015.

This challenge is open to anyone interested in participating.  It is not required to be a member of the WestSide Modern Quilt Club.

Below are some ideas for your information but, of course, you can develop any image that you find inspiring:

The Armory
Union Station
The Alphabet Streets
Lovejoy Columns
First Thursday
White Stag Sign
Powell’s Books
Jamison Park
Urban Renewal
Loading Docks
Weinhardt Brewery
China Town
Portland Street Car
Pearls/Iron/Black Jewelry/ Gardenia (Look up the story of Pearl Amhara on the Pine Needle Blog site to understand this input into the area)
North Park Blocks
NW Industrial Triangle

To name just a few ideas………

We have someone doing our COVER and someone doing our Table of Contents page, so your assignment, should you choose to accept, is to create a Modern quilt of Portland: The Pearl.

Each piece must finish at 32”x44”.  Each piece must have a rod pocket (see below)

Rod Pockets
Rod pockets should be flush with the top, or at the bottom edge of a binding (if the binding is not larger than 1/2" wide). The rod pocket or sleeve should be a double pocket so the rod does not touch the back of the quilt and finish at 4" wide. The length of the rod pocket or sleeve should be equal to the width of the quilt, or no more than 1/2" shorter than the width of the quilt.

Expo Entry
Each piece must have an entry form found in the NW Quilting Expo flyer or on line at  It is free to have your Portland The Pearl quilt showcased at Northwest Quilting Expo.

However, if you desire your piece to be judged (optional) you must then follow the guidelines of NW Expo for judging.

Each quilt must come with a type written (75 words or less) ….description of the theme of your piece. Including your name.

Preferably with a copy sent to

Due Date
Each completed piece is due August 15, 2015

Our Big Reveal Pot Luck will be at Millennium Park and the exact date will be announced in May.
Please do not reveal your quilt to anyone prior to the Millennium Park Pot luck.

Once you have decided to work on this project, we would appreciate a phone call or email letting us know of your intent, only so that we have an idea of how many pages will be in our exhibit.  Not mandatory but appreciated.

Last year our Bridges of Portland was elected to hang at the PDX airport.

This year I am working with the City of Portland Travel to see what they can do for us. I will keep you all informed.

I WANT your work exposed!!!

If you have any questions, please feel free to call the store (503-635-1353) and ask for Geri.  I will, hopefully, be able to answer any questions you may have.

I look forward to working with you.  I am SURE it will be the Talk of the Town!

For now,


Thursday, December 11, 2014

Susan Beal shows off Pendleton wools

In November, the WestSide Modern Quilt Club met for their monthly meeting and were met with oodles of wool showcased by guest speaker, Susan Beal. Susan also gave a brief history of Pendleton Wool; highlights from her new book, Hand Stitched Home.

Discussion continued about the upcoming theme for next year's Quilt Expo exhibit: Portland, The Pearl.  Geri inspired the group by sharing an article written by Margie Boule: "Pearl District's namesake was a jewel of a woman".   

"Pearl loved the gritty neighborhood and foresaw that it someday would be filled with creative people. These old, crusty exteriors on the buildings are like the exterior of the oyster shell. But inside it's amazing: There are literally thousands of people inhabiting them, some illegally . . . not only painters and sculptors, but software-makers, wine distributors, poets and musicians."

The format of the quilts will emulate a magazine: all portrait orientation and 32" x 44". Ideas for linking the quilts together with either a script or perhaps a pearl were offered.  Geri will be having sign-ups for various topics and parts of the "magazine".  The quilts will need to be completed by September 1, 2015.

A collection of beautiful quilts were shared by Ann Crowder, Debbie Sroggy, Elisa Corcoran, Carol Wilborn, Marjorie Elliott, and Sally Hass.

Crowder's hospital-inspired quilt
Scroggy's Tula-inspired quilt
Corcoran used her new Nova

Corcoran with a charity quilt

Wilborn's Intuitive Design Quilt

Elliott's Double Dutch quilt

Hass' quilt took on a variety of styles

An amazing job by everyone! Great background stories were shared on each one.  If you see these talented ladies, ask them about their quilts!

By Susan Beal

Susan started off the evening with a short synopsis of her book regarding the history of the Pendleton Woolen Mill. She shared photos and stories and relished her time wearing white gloves while researching in the archives! Thomas Kay arrived in Oregon in 1863 and eventually took over the mill in Pendleton in the early 1900's. Family-owned and operated for more than six generations, they continue to offer Native American-inspired designs, unique plaids and beautiful jacquards.

Late in the 1940's, after WWII ended, leisure activities were becoming more popular and Pendleton realized that women were ordering their goods. In 1949, they premiered a single garment, the "49er" - an unlined women's jacket. This is still their single most popular design and now women's-wear is the largest part of Pendleton's business.

In the early 1960's, California surfers were wearing wool shirts as early wet suits. The Beach Boys (who actually started out their career as the Pendletones) then made Pendleton wool an overnight sensation by wearing plaid wool shirts on their album cover.

In 1990, Pendleton partnered with the American Indian College Fund to honor their 1st customers. Pendleton began exclusively making trading blankets and could mass produce Indian master-weaver designs.

Q: Can the wool be washed?
A: Some are machine washable and they won't even felt or shrink! For other wools the default is to dry clean them. Care instructions can be found on the Pendleton website.

Q: How did you start being interested in Pendleton wools?
A: I always admired the clothing and blankets and in 2008 I saw the Centennial Blanket at the Oregon State Fair. My interest developed from there. I designed one wool quilt for my book Modern Log Cabin. I approached Pendleton about doing this book and they were very excited as they had never done a book before.

Q: Is wool hard to cut?
A: One amazing thing about the wool is that you can just make a little snip at the edge (through the selvage), and you can tear a clean and straight line! Note: you can't tear blanket fabric.

Q: What about seam allowances?
A: I usually do seam allowances at 1/2"

Q: Do you use batting for your wool quilts?
A: No. You can, but you will find that the weight of the wool is plenty without. Hint: if you use heavier wool on the pieced side, use a lighter weight on the back. Top-stitching also adds a nice touch.

Q: What about moths?
A: I store my wools with cedar. Pendleton also recommends that you air your garments between wearing.

NEXT MEETING (December 17)
Join us at the next meeting and bring a Pin Cushion (for a gift exchange) and 3 dozen cookies (for a cookie exchange. And don't forget to bring your Show and Tell quilts! 

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Elizabeth Hartman "wow's" Westside Modern Quilters

The WestSide Modern gals were at it again. Their meeting on the 29th of October featured guest speaker, Elizabeth Hartman, who was there to talk about her new book Patchwork City which will be available shortly.

Before Elizabeth got started, the big news of the night was all the buzz over the Bridges of Portland quilts at the Quilt Expo held at the end of September. Honoring those quilts, the Port of Portland would like to display selected quilts at the airport! The following quilts were selected:

  • St. John's Bridge (by Sharon Rauch)
  • Morrison Bridge at Night (by Lisa Crnich)
  • Riveting - Steel Bridge (by Mary Kay Price)
  • Girders Look Up - Oregon City Bridge (by Susan Borger)
  • St. John's Bridge (by Carol Wilborn)
  • Arch Bridge - Oregon City Bridge (by Adrian and Key Wegner)
  • The Bridge of Life (by Janet Murdock)
  • St. John's Bridge (by Gerrie Thompson)
  • Bridge Lift - Hawthorne Bridge (by Linda Dyer)
  • Tillicum Crossing (By Virginia Hammon)
  • St. John's Belly - St. John's Bridge (by Janet Surbrook)
  • A Path to St. John's (by Carol Wilborn)
Next year's quilt theme for the Expo is under discussion. Geri is challenging the group to come up with a "Magazine in Fabric" all about Portland's Pearl District. This will be discussed further at the next meeting (on November 19) with sign-ups for various parts of the "magazine".

The display at the airport will be from November 4, 2014 through April 30! 


New books to check out!

 The Little Spark by Carry Bloomston    A Month of Sundays by Cheryl Arkison   My Life in Fabric by Valori Wells

Geri also shared some fabulous new Alison Glass fabrics and Yarn Dyes that will be coming in after the first of the year and be available in a fun new quilt kit.


Kathy White's 1/2 square triangle quilt
Lily Logan's Irish Linen quilt
Kathy White shared her quilt that she made in Katie Pederson's Double Trouble Quilt Workshop at the Quilt Expo.  She said that this type of 1/2-square triangle quilt would be perfect for leftovers! (Left)

Lily Logan also showed off her very first attempt at a quilt with linen she purchased in Ireland. (Right)
Gerri Linardos with her challenge piece
Mallory Jarbol's Foxes
Pam Grogan's Fox quilt

Gerri Linardos showed off her 20" x 14" challenge piece featuring solids, batiks and prints (above left). Mallory Jarboe (center) and Pam Grogan (right) both showed their versions of Elizabeth Hartman's Fancy Fox pattern.


Following up on her two previous books (Practical guide to patchwork, and Modern Patchwork), Elizabeth's latest book, Patchwork City, is about to hit the store shelves. This new book features 75 block patterns for modern quilts, 7 quilt projects and a multitude of "How-to's".

Elizabeth also brought a sampling of her wonderful quilts.  She had great advice and tips and even brought fun and playful patterns for purchase.

TIP: How to quilt on a regular machine
  • "Wear" the quilt on your body to help move it around.
  • Start from the back and pull it toward you - it is much easier to see where you are going.
  • Push your table against a wall.  This helps manage the weight of the quilt and prevents it from falling off the table.
  • Work on one quadrant at a time.
TIP: Quilting spirals
  • Use a walking foot 
  • Trace a circle in the middle and work out from their using the width of the foot
TIP: Helping with design
  • Take a picture of your design wall. It gives you a different perspective on your work.
  • Take a black and white photo. It shows you values better to help balance your piece.
  • Use gray as a background color and even incorporate it into the block. This helps make the colors "pop" (she finds that black is a bit harsh).
  • When quilting, use a thread the same color as your lightest piece.  Whiter quilting stitches look better on dark colors than darker quilting stitches on lighter colors.  The darker quilting stitches on lighter pieces detracts from the design.
Below are some examples of some of the quilts that she brought:


Ann Johnston will be the quest speaker at the next Lake Oswego Women's Coalition luncheon.
Date: Wednesday, November 19, 2014
Time: 11:30 (Preview of quilts), Noon (lunch), 12:30 (slide show) Q&A follows.
RSVP: To Jackie (503-747-2573)
Fee: LOWC members $19 (non-members $21) cash or check.
Ann will be available to autograph her books, some will be available for purchase.

NEXT MEETING (November 19)
Join us and bring a friend! Guest speaker will be Susan Beal who will be giving us a slide show about the history of Pendleton.  She will also be signing her new book!