Just back from a stimulating but greatly relaxing five-day retreat at Glen Valley Lodge near Portage. There were about 15 or 16 friends there--a good diverse mix. The food was great, there were lots of laughs and a few field trips out to shops in nearby towns. More pictures here.
The Glen was a great respite from the real world as well as being good, intensive, uninterrupted sewing time. And boy, did I need that. I was feeling like I was losing my quilting street cred. And indeed, I still feel out of the loop on many things. But I have several new projects solidly underway.
Hah--UFOs: the lifeblood of the true quilter! And if I adhere to the 15-minute vow (dedicate at least 15 minutes a day to doing something, anything), I can make some slow but steady progress.
Project #1: The Ephemera Scrap Lap Quilt. I have 48 drab little blocks made. The plan is to sash the blocks in a black-ish batik, with cornerstones in a deep burgundy batik. I may add a pieced outer border. Lord knows I still have enough scraps. Or I may border it in more of the black.
Project #2 is the turquoise and orange MArQ project. The theme for this challenge is Opposing Forces. I left The Glen with a set of blocks made; enough for the quilt I plan. Layout to be determined later. There are umpteen possibilities, which for me means umpteen chances to dither and vaccilate. My opposing forces seem to be primarily of a color variety, but I'll have to come up with some Deep Poetic Meaning to attach to it all.
The blocks were made borrowing liberally from the directions in Margaret J. Miller's book Strips That Sizzle. I'm not entirely happy with the color value distribution in these blocks. It just doesn't seem pronounced enough to really make a shaded value statement. That said, I haven't done any laying out of the blocks yet; maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised when I see them all spread out.
But I'm thinking that to really see a value contrast, one would have to make two sets of blocks--a dark set and a light set. File that one away for another time, another project.
But I think these blocks will make a good color splash, and I'm looking forward to playing with them on my design wall.
And finally, here's the first fruits of the 15 minute productivity vow:I bought a yummy packet of silk kimono scraps at the Rosement Show a couple years back. I cut them into 3-inch squares about a year later, thinking maybe to make a scarf. They recently surfaced in a box of someday stuff and I'm looking on them in a quilterly way now. So to make them workable for quilt purposes, I fused them all onto lightweight knit interfacing and got them all re-cut out. This one will go on the design wall too and will probably end up just as a lovely mix of reds. I think I'll just let the fabric sing and try to stay out the way.Knitting content: my knitting was really about all I had to show for Show and Tell, and everyone oohed and ahhed. Not many knitters in the Glen group. I got a couple more repeats completed on the Kimono Shawl and zippo done on the waffle rib socks.