Monday, February 27, 2006

A follow-up, what's new, and a rant....

The follow-up: Several people have asked about the pattern for my little quilt below. (BTW, I replaced the photo with a better one. Found out my camera flash had got turned off so that's why the pic was kinda fuzzy!) Anyway, the pattern is called "Arabesque" and it came out of the Jan/Feb 2006 issue of Quilts with Style (formerly Foundation Piecer.) I doubt it's still on the newstand as the March/April issue is probably out now, but you could probably get a back issue if you click on this link for the magazine's website.

I also want to publicly thank Dee, a quilter from NY who reads our ring who wrote me to tell me about her experience using both of my focal fabrics in the piece. Seems that the gold paint used in the design is unstable and the fabric shatters over time. I'm so sorry that she had that happen to her on a bed quilt! At least mine is just the results of a nights playing and will only be a wall-hanging. And at that will probably not hang over a year as that's about how often I cycle quilts on my office wall. So I'm not going to worry about it overly much in this quilt, but now I know not to blend the leftovers in with my other scraps. I think I'll just use them to make a few little fabric bowls for my desk to catch paperclips, rubber bands and other little stuff like that.

What's new: I've been playing again. This time with another piece of fabric that came out of Mama's "special" box. This one much more what I would have expected to find but still not one of her 30s repros or calicos.
In her box she had a bit over a yard of the Mumm fabric across the bottom of the picture. When I pulled it out it just happened that I had a FQ pack sitting on my table that looked great with this fabric. So I had always intended to make a small quilt using my fabric for the blocks and that fabric for the borders. Over the last few years I've come across other fabrics in my stash and hers that look good with them so I've been slowly collecting this little stash for a "someday" project. Someday came Saturday morning.

I was at loose ends having finished my Arabesque the night before and still a bit hyper as a result of the Allegra. I know I have LOTS of UFOs to choose from but I just felt like playing. So I went to my cabinet that holds my collections and chose this group to work with. Ok, now I have my fabric, what to make?

Several years ago (OK probably more like 10-12!) There was a picture in Quilt Magazine that caught my eye. An Ohio Star with the print and background fabrics reversed. I just fell in love with it and had to make one. I don't remember exactly what happened to those blocks. Got water leaked on and badly stained I think, but I don't remember for sure. Anyway, I ended up tossing them but have always wanted to make another set and this time get them into a quilt. I pulled this nice tan "bubble" print from my stash and am using it for the stars and my FQs for the backgrounds. My original plan was to use the Mumm fabric for the border. But this is going to be a double sized quilt (probably for one of my brothers) and I only had enough of the Mumm to make 4" borders. I'm not a big fan of skinny borders on large quilts so I had to come up with another plan. Next I thought about using it as sashing. But I really didn't plan to use sashing as I like the way the blocks looked layed next to each other like in the original photo I saw so many years ago.
I finally decided to just cut it up into as many blocks as I could get and scatter those through the quilt. I think that will look good and still tie all the different fabrics together. Of course, now I have to find something else for the borders. But I don't really mind fabric shopping so that won't be too much of a hardship. LOL!

I've been plugging away on this a little at a time since I find the hourglass portions of the block to be rather tedious to deal with. But I do a few blocks at a time so it's not so boring to me. I think I have about half the blocks I need done so by doing a little bit each night I should have the top assembled by the weekend.

And finally the RANT: I've been a long-time fan of Quilt Magazine. I've read it since probably the mid 80s and have ALWAYS found something in each issue that really spoke to me and made me want to make one. Sometimes I did, others I just filed the idea in my brain to ponder on at a later date. I think the main reason I've always loved this magazine is for the scrap quilts that filled each issue. I like co-ordinated quilts. I really do. But I LOVE scrap quilts. There's just nothing that looks as good to me as seeing someone use 100 different fabrics in a quilt and have it end up looking like a jewel.

Sometimes I subscribe and others I just pick it up when I see it. I currently do not have a subcription but have been buying each issue and had about decided it was time to sub again. So when I happened to see the latest issue in the grocery store last week I picked it up. It had a bright scrappy quilt on the front although kinda flat as it was all different colors of the same dot fabric. Imagine my surprise when I actually got around to reading the issue and found almost all the quilts featured current fabric "collections". Even to the point of giving the exact fabric number from the collection in the yardage requirements. And when they do that it's not always readily apparent which fabric in the pattern they're talking about so it's hard to convert the yardage requirements to your own fabrics.

So what's up with that?????? If I wanted to make cookie-cutter quilts I'd just buy a kit! I think Bonnie has something in her definition of a "Maverick" quilter to the tune of, "if you can name the designer for all the fabric in a quilt then you're probably not a Maverick." And no, I'm not a Maverick and don't aspire to be. Well okay, I did apply for membership when the ring was closed but have not reapplied because I find I don't need the title. I am basically a traditional quilter who also likes to bend the rules and color outside the lines. I am a scrap quilter. A Stash Quilter. That's who I am and will always be.

So, I'm not a Maverick. But then I'm also not a blind follower who has to be told exactly what fabrics to use so I can duplicate a quilt exactly! I might choose to make a quilt very similar to one I see but using my fabrics and spin on the design make the quilt MINE, not just a carbon copy of what everyone else is doing.

LOL! Looks like my Rant turned more into a ramble but bottom line is - I'm VERY dissapointed in the direction the editors and publishers of Quilt have decided to take their magazine. And I will NOT be resubscribing. And you can bet I will never again blindly pick up their magazine without flipping thru it first to see if I find anything I consider worth spending my hard earned bucks on!

14 comments:

Laurie said...

Nancy,
LOVE the fabrics and quilts! They are AWESOME!
Hugs
Laurie

cindyquilts said...

I like the reverse of the traditional placement of fabrics in the Ohio star ... very nice.

Patti said...

Nancy, I also picked up a copy of that magazine about 6-8 months ago - also because I liked the cover quilt. I discovered exactly what you discovered, and said "never again!" Even the kits that I buy have a mixture of fabrics from many lines and many designers - at least most of the time. Can't imagine anything less creative and/or boring than making one of the quilts I saw featured.

Jeanne said...
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Laurie Ann said...

Nancy - Thanks for letting us know what that pattern was. Like I said, I think I have just the fabric for it. I started my blog to be on the Maverick ring right before they closed it. But you know, I like the Stash Buster ring just fine! And I have fun "visiting" the Mavericks.

Happy Valley Quilter said...

I liked your little rant. LOL! I whole heatedly agree with what you said about the magazine. There was a time when all of my fabrics had to come from the same line, but those times are gone!
Kairle

Tropical Screamer said...
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Finn said...

Hi Nancy, you are doing a great job of using your stash, and you definitely get to play!! I like the color choices and the Ohio Star being the "plain" part..really neat to see it reversed..Hugs, Finn

Linda_J said...

Nancy, I know what you mean about quilt mags lately---just seems like the same things re-hashed. I only subscribe to 3 at this point and it is about to be less than that when they run out. There are just so many other sources of information that I can just save that money for what I really want--a piece of yummy fabric now and again. Good to find out about that gold fabric from Dee---that would be a YIKES moment. Breaks and shatters?

The Calico Cat said...

Here! Here! (On the mavericks bit & on the direction that some magazines are taking!) BTW I like your Ohio Star & love the quilt idea. (On your lable besure to mention that you used Momma's fabric, that will make it more special for your brother!)

Passionate Quilter said...

Nancy--you are so right. I'm finding myself buying less and less of the magazines these days. They all rehash the same things and I guess we are just getting to the point of where we wanna do things our way with our fabric. I know new quilters like all those details because they don't feel confident in their own skills yet to do it all on their own. Maybe we are just entering another phase in our quilting life where we are confident enough to do our own thing. I rarely follow a pattern exactly anymore. I always have to make changes. Or I just do my own thing. Glad you got your ranting off your chest...feel better? :)

cher said...

how fun to find a way to play with that wonderful fabric from your momma's stash! I think those Ohio stars look great that way! I agree with your rant/ramble too.

Samantha said...

I like your rant! It was always hard for me, when I worked in an LQS, to have customers want to make "that exact quilt" from a pattern, magazine, or book. It could be hard to explain that the quilt on the pattern cover might have been made from 6 year old fabric in the quilter's stash, and that we didn't carry it, nor even know where to find it... The magazine is most likely catering to those quilters.... Which is a shame, because it sounds like it used to really make you happy.

FYI, I'm am Maverick and not even sure how- I think I snuck in shortly before they closed ranks. I don't think I really fit there, but I'm reluctant to leave. Stashbusters ring is so much fun!

Bonnie said...

I'm sorry that everyone feels this way. I really don't know what to say.