Thursday, September 11, 2014

Gearing up for the Louisiana Chicken Festival

It's our year:  Our year to participate in the Louisiana Chicken Festival activities.  On even years - that would include 2014 - the Piney Hills Quilt Guild in Ruston (just a hop, skip and jump south of Dubach) hosts a quilt show.  Saturday, September 27, is fast approaching, so after our Guild meeting today, we set about "testing the water" to be sure our quilt racks had just the right umpth to support the multitude of quilts to be displayed. 

how many quilters does it take to hang a quilt?

Now, my question is this:  "How many quilters does it take to hang one quilt?"  I had my camera in hand when the fun began.  These two ladies seemed to have everything under control; but you know how it goes, can't let just a few quilters have all the fun!

So, then even more joined in

how many quilters does it take to hang a quilt?

Then the whole rooting section wanted in the action and in the photo! 

how many quilters does it take to hang a quilt?

Join all of us Saturday, September 27 in Dubach, Louisiana.  The quilts of Gladys Thompson will be featured.  The room will be filled to the brim with quilts and vendors.  And the streets outside will be filled with crafters and food carts, games and challenges.   And, did I mention that I love this t-shirt quilt. 


Saturday, February 1, 2014

A 3-Dimensional Bowtie Quilt Block Demo

Dorothy came to visit Piney Hills Quilt Guild and brought with her Christie's beautiful 3-dimensional bowtie quilt along with her sample board and sewing machine.  She very quickly set about showing the attentive group how to make a 3-dimensional bowtie.....easily!

Christie's 3-D bowtie quilt is made entirely from men's shirts.  And, the back is as stunning as the front of her quilt. 

 After walking us step-by-step through the process using her sample board, Dorothy further embedded the process in our brain by sewing a 3-D bowtie block together for us.  Yes, Dorothy was and will always be a teacher.

Then just to prove to all of us how easy the 3-D bowtie quilt block is, she called on Gayle to further demonstrate to us the technique.   Gayle sat down at the machine and quickly whipped up a bowtie block.  So, either Gayle is a quick learner or Dorothy is a great instructor OR both are the afore-mentioned. 

I was enthused after seeing the demonstration and came home all eager to make 3-D bowtie blocks and put together this little step-by-step tutorial. 

Start with a contrasting fabric and background fabric.  You'll need three squares (your choice as to size, just make all your blocks the same size) of the contrast and two squares of the background for each 3-D bowtie quilt block.  I cut my squares at 3". 

Lay one of your background squares down RIGHT SIDE UP.  Fold a contrast square in half, WRONG SIDES TOGETHER, and place on top of the background square, aligning top edges and pin in place. 


Place another contrast square on top of these two layers right side down, pin and stitch all three layers together down the right side of the sandwich. 

Open and press the seam allowance toward the contrast square.  Fold the contrast square and background square away from the folded center square.   
Now, repeat this process for the other side.  Laying background fabric down, placing folded square on top then the last contrast fabric on top of these two layers.  Pin and stitch on the right side of the blocks as you did before. 

 Your outcome will look like this.  Notice that your background and your contrasting fabrics are on opposites sides.  If you flip it over at this stage, the opposite sides will still look like this. 

Slip a finger into the pocket formed by the center rectangle and work the pocket open, aligning raw edges of the pocket with the raw edges of the contrast and background squares.  Gently maneuver all the excess pocket fabric out of the way of your 1/4" seam allowance.    Match seams, pin in place and stitch across making sure all raw edges are caught under the needle.  

This schematic might make it more understandable.  The pocket is sandwiched between with its right sides facing the wrong sides of the background/contrast layers. 

Once it's stitched, unfold  to see the 3-D magic.  It's truly as easy as one-two-3-dimensional bowtie. 

3-Dimensional Bowtie Quilt Blocks by Marty Mason

3-Dimensional Bowtie Quilt Blocks by Marty Mason


Monday, December 23, 2013

Christmas Tree Ornaments: Thank you, Linda Easterling

Yes, Linda Easterling's demonstration on how she makes Christmas ornaments using styrofoam balls and cones was a hit with the Piney Hills Quilt Guild in Ruston.  'Tis the season to rejoice and enjoy the cold weather....and make Christmas ornaments. 

Linda says that first, we should gather:

3" syrofoam ball.  She also decorates the egg shape and the cone shapes. 
3 high contrast fabrics.  For the top and bottom of the ornament, cut 8- 2 1/2" squares of fabric 1.  Cut 16  of the second fabric for the next layer and 16 of the third fabric for the middle layer.  Linda says contrast is the key. 
3/4" to 1" wire-in ribbon.
1 1/16" straight pins.  Size is important.  Too short won't hold and too long is TOO hard to work with.

Here, you can see that the squares are folded into prairie points and pinned.  That's all there is too it....just make prairie points and pin!   Start at the top center and pin in fabric 1.  Then add fabric 2 which forms the center star.  Then add layer 3.  There's a pattern out there somewhere, but Linda says she lost it, but after she made one, she didn't need a pattern anyway.

Oh yes, and as to gathering, you can see Linda has a rubber 'thimble' over her thumb for pushing the pin in.   She added a little piece of leather inside the rubber for extra protection.  Genius! 

Round and round the styrofoam ornament she goes until the top is covered.  She then rotates and starts the process all over again from the bottom to the center where all raw edges meet. 

Linda then adds decorative ribbon around the middle of the ornament to hide the raw edges where the layers comes together. 


Make a hanging loop with the ribbon and pin in place.  

Little 'fuzzy' balls of all sizes are added after the hanging ribbon is pinned in to hide that pin...and to add more happiness to an already happy and  festive ornament. 


Janie was right there with hands on! Hearts to you for helping keep the spirit going. 

Gladys is all smiles over Linda's  pine cone ornament she won as a door prize.

 They are beautiful.  Linda. thank you so much for your dedication to the quilt guild community.  It's ladies such as yourself who keep the rest of us energized and eager to learn. 


Saturday, June 15, 2013

In Her Quilting Element ~

When Gayle Wallace was asked at the last minute to do a program for Piney Hills Quilt Guild, she immediately said "YES"  I can do that.  She knew she could because she's accustomed to teaching quilting workshops and  participating in quilting programs throughout the South.  You see Gayle, being on the GSQA teaching circuit,  is in her element when it comes to quilting. 

And what does Gayle do with fabric that she buys by the bolt?  Nothing else but design a quilt pattern and use all that fabric in quilts.  They are all different but all are the same pattern! 

Gayle Wallace, GSQA Circuit Teacher

Gayle Wallace, GSQA Circuit Teacher

Gayle Wallace, GSQA Circuit Teacher

and when she ran out of the white background, she just grabbed another fabric and kept right on sewing: 

Gayle Wallace, GSQA Circuit Teacher

And the story continues....another day, another bolt of fabric. 

Gayle Wallace, GSQA Circuit Teacher

and sew it goes:

Gayle Wallace, GSQA Circuit Teacher
 T'was the night before Christmas and Gayle needed to quilt!

Gayle Wallace, GSQA Circuit Teacher

Gayle Wallace, GSQA Circuit Teacher

Job well done, Gayle.  We so enjoyed your trunk showing and free pattern


Friday, May 17, 2013

The more I go, the more I grow ~

There's always something to learn from the quilting community.  Virginia shared this method of making a 9-patch.    So, sew easy starting with two contrasting 8" squares.  Sew and cut, re-position, sew and cut.   And, there you have it.

making a 9-patch
Virginia is always full of inspiration.  She brought a tee-shirt she had printed for the Piney Needles Quilt Guild of which she is also a member.  It's a simple thing, but what a huge impact!  A printed flowering 9-patch for each member to personalize. 

 And, you had better watch out what you say around her!  At a recent retreat she was all ears and like a mocking bird, made a note and then had each phrase printed on fabric.  How to make memories sing!  I'll say. 

comments printed on fabric

Oh, there was more.  Much more which I'll save for another post. 


Thursday, April 18, 2013

Keep Smiling

Because your day will go the way the corners of your mouth turn. 

I'm failing miserably at keeping up with my surroundings, my pictures, my blog postings.  I had to stop a minute this morning to share what made me smile last week at the Piney Hills Quilt Guild meeting.   I'm smiling again as I re-visit each of these pictures. 

I love Sarah's huge smile as she shares with us the handbag she made.   (Note to self:  Does she spell her name Sarah or is it Sara?  Must find out.)    Sarah also quilts and one of her quilts was awarded first place in the 2012 Dubach Chicken Festival Quilt Show.  To know Sarah and her smile is to love her and her smile.  She's a beauty. 

Carolyn and Kay keep us smiling about all the many Christmas stockings they make for community service.  These stockings will go back to children in the community filled with Christmas happiness.  These ladies and many others spend countless hours each year putting a smile on a little face.


Oh, and how these bed runners put a smile on my face.  Kay decided she was ready for a modern one to add to her bedroom d├ęcor. 

And, Shirley was definitely thinking spring while making her bed runner filled with birds.

And remember to keep smiling.  These words are worth repeating to yourself all day long:  Your day will go the way the corners of your mouth turn.

Piney Hills Quilt Guild meets the second Thursday morning at 9:30 a.m. each month at Grace Methodist Church in Ruston.  Visit and you'll be guaranteed a smile. 

Friday, April 5, 2013

The room was full of sunshine:

It was a cloudy day outside;  however, the meeting room was full of sunshine.  Spontaneous combustion worked yesterday.  Several guild chapter members had a lot to overcome.  We knew the president was going to Arkansas on one of her glorious long-arm quilter's retreat.  We knew that our vice-president was on her way to New Jersey to visit family.  What we didn't know was that the next two ladies in line to fill in for the president in the event of an emergency also had emergencies.   Well, that left Pat who filled in beautifully on very short notice.   What information Pat didn't have at her fingertips, one or the other of us did.  We kept ourselves dutifully informed. 

What's more, all that sunshine in our room created spontaneous combustion when Holly stepped forth with her Bog Jacket demonstration.  It wasn't at all like she had planned.  You see, Holly is a whiz at power-point presentation and that's just what she had planned  - except her computer didn't cooperate.  At the last minute, she grabbed some pictures from Thread Magazine she had on hand, some construction paper and scissors and on to the meeting she came.   She passed out the paper and had every one of us make a pattern for the bog jacket out of our construction paper.  It worked beautifully.  She had pictures of the kimono style jackets to pass around so we 'got the picture.'   Holly brought lime green yardage (which made me smile)  and threw it over her shoulders to demonstrate how to measure the arm span and length of the jacket.   Then without tape measure or cutting board, she grabbed the utility scissors and cut a straight line to continue to demonstrate the stop and start points.  With her fingers, she showed us where the stitching lines would be.  Then elaborated on how we could embellish our jackets once construction is complete.    I can't wait to make mine. 

We were such a happy group yesterday, helping others overcome adversity, continuing to share our love of quilting.   

Here's Holly with no props - except the one on which she propped her elbow! 

Thanks to all who made it happen and a special thank you to  Holly for her delightful presentation. 


Sunday, March 10, 2013

Applique at its BEST: A presentation by.....drum roll please

The North Louisiana Appli'Gators deserve a resounding cheer for their presentation to the Sunshine Chapter, North Louisiana Quilt Guild.

Here's just a sampling of the beauty we beheld:

Here, Glenda is pictured with one of her first applique projects in 1996 - her denim jacket, now adorned.

And the LA Appli'Gators banner is sharing the love with Theresa LeBlanc's rows of hearts quilt.

Glenda Worley...member of LA Applique Society

Glenda Worley, leader and coordinator of the North Louisiana Appli-Gators gave us a brief history of how the group started here in North Louisiana and through the years, how the membership has grown.  There are currently 97 chapters in the Central and South Eastern zone with 410 members.   Glenda was joined by Mary Shamblin, Jeannette Rolen, Janie Lowry, Irene Danna and Marilyn McCoy in providing an afternoon of applique show, tell and how to do it.

applique butterflies, flowers and trees

Jeannette Rolen

Is this one Mary's or Glenda's???  And why is that table and chair in the picture?  I tried very hard to nudge them out of the picture, bu they wouldn't budge!  Needle turn technique and hand quilted.

Broderie Perse Applique:  Information and history on the broderie perse applique technique.

Glenda's birdhouse applique quilt front and back.

Fruit and flower applique abounds 

To say we enjoyed each and every applique quilt would be an under-statement.  Each one was breath-taking.  Thank you. Thank you for the pleasure of your company.