Friday, October 28, 2011

Nov Dec 11 Schedule

Okay..... here is the schedule of classes for November and December...

As usual, scroll down to see what the Shop has set up for classes for the next two months, a description of each one and a calendar you can print on the last page.

Check out the Duffle Bag Class!

Any new quilters out there? or...... Do you know someone who says, "Oh I wish I could make a quilt!"? Well, let's encourage them to LEARN THE BASICS!!!!! We will get them on the right track to start with to piece a quilt. Why the 1/4" seam allowance is SO important and accurate cutting makes life easier!

"My Runners" is a super new book making table runners...... from a Scandinavian perspective.

Have you been reading about or thinking about the "Farmer's Wife" quilt? This is a very popular new book and quilt-along pattern. You can use your stash to make one or use a current fabric line for a fresh new look. Bright Hopes Quilting will be hosting an afternoon each month for anyone interested in working on this lovely project with a fun group of gals! Come join us and visit, laugh, sew and share tips as we work our way through the book. This is not a class but a "sit and sew".

Okay, that's all for now.... watch your email for the newsletter sometime tomorrow!

Thursday Wrap-Up

We had one heckuva fabulous hour yesterday afternoon when Betty T and Casey B stopped by to show us their final quilt-tops.

These two ladies have been making "round robin" quilts with member of their guild and we've been watching the progress all year.

For those who don't know, the round robin quilt starts with everyone participating bringing a center already finished and then handing it off with specific requests (like all batiks or no applique, please (no applique???) and then trusting your fellow-quilter to add another "border" or sides that both complements and continues to build on the center. Then the pass the quilt to the third and so on.

The thing is, you don't get to see what is happening to "YOUR" quilt until the last person is finished. So technically, you all get to see the final results at the same time.

Now this in definitely not for everyone. But it can be great fun for those adventurous souls out there and Casey and Betty are firmly in that category. One with the SHOW!

Here's Betty with her finished top...... exquisite work!!!! I am slightly disappointed in my photo because the batiks are more vibrant than shows in both shots..... but I can't wait to see it quilted! You can zoom in by clicking on either photo to see the fantastic workmanship. Casey pieced the intricate border third from the outer edge.

This is Casey's..... check out the outer-most border close-up..... see the diminishing geese?

I was lucky to be working on the days they'd bring in the ones they were adding to and watched the progress but this is the first time I got to see theirs.....

So GREAT!!!!!! Thank you for sharing this adventure with us!

This is "Market" weekend and the Big Houston show next week. All you attending, have a super fun time and tell us all about your trip on the return!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Interview with Carolyn Burga

1.When did you start quilting and how did it come to happen?
Senior year at Newcomb College, my mother panicked because I had not made a trousseau quilt. I couldn’t imagine piecing anything, so she set me to making a whole-cloth cross-stitched quilt by hand.

2. Do you still have your first quilt?
No, but I still have the first one I designed. And my mom’s 1938 hand-quilted bubble-gum pink quilt.

3. When did you arrive in St. Tammany Parish, and what brought you here?
We came in 1998 when my husband was transferred from a south shore bank.

4. How long have you worked for Bright Hopes Quilting and what do you do there?
I’ve worked here about 3 years part-time. I cut fabric on Tuesdays and teach classes once or twice each month.

5. Here is the other “stealth stitcher” in our family….. Carolyn will show up with a new sample and I never knew the pattern existed! How do you find things and from where do you draw your inspiration?
I find things by tripping over stuff, usually in my sketchbooks. (sometimes on the studio floor)

6. Your “art quilts” and canvas are very personal. Do you think of yourself more as a quilter or as a fiber artist? (Or do you even make that distinction at all?)

As I make “originals”, I see myself as a fiber artist. When I tell people that, some think I make art from healthy cereals. It’s easier to just say “quilter”.

7. Do you have a space dedicated to your work? Would you have any tips you’d like to pass on in “organizing your space?”
I am blessed with a studio – AKA spare bedroom, no bed. You just need a table to leave our machine out and a design wall nearby. Put everything else away.
Or see Answer #5

8. If your fairy quiltmother could grant you one wish, what would it be?
I’d love floor-to-ceiling shelving so all my fabric could be visible all the time.

So, back to me...... Carolyn's work is intimate and the quality shows in the detail. Here are 2 small close-up shots of "points" in her work.

We have several of her originals on display at the shop and if you take one of her classes, I hope you take time to talk to Carolyn. Her calm and quiet demeanor only masks a sharp and quick humor. She leaves me in stitches!

Stonehenge Revisted

So, did you get a chance to attend the Event with Vic Dadika yesterday?

I sure hope you did..... but in the case of those unable to get here, I'd like to show just a touch of what we got to see first hand.

First, it was explained that Stonehenge, the fabric line from Linda Ludovico and Northcott, is the best-selling fabric in the United States and when you think that there are 81 fabric distributors all vying for our attention and money, that is no easy accomplishment.

However, by now you are probably well aware how beautiful the fabric is and how great it feels to work with and how well it blends with other designs.

But it was very interesting to hear how the designer came up with this concept, how it developed further and how far it's come in just two years.

We have had it in stock only since around the beginning of 2011 and carry a vast selection of bolts, collections, and recently received the 2.5" strips and now the "chips", the 5" squares. A package of these were given to each attendee along with a terrific trunk show of outstanding quilts. Here are just two:

Stoney River

Blueberry Hill

Now, these were my personal favorites and there were many more....

Northcott has a vast website offering pattern ideas for use with Stonehenge, some of which are free PDFs.... the two featured here are in stock now at Bright Hopes Quilting.

We lucky ladies sitting in got to see what was coming up in 2012 and I can't show n tell you. Yet. But there were plenty of excitable wimmen-folk and I only hope Pearl is able to order and receive enough of it to satisfy the masses.

Along with the pack I received, I purchased another and yardage of "Salt" Stonehenge and can't wait to get busy with it. I already know what I'm going to do... check back in a few weeks!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Interview with Jayne Harrell

1.When did you start quilting and how did it come to happen?

A very dear friend had started paper piecing . For a very long time, she had been encouraging me to learn. I was not interested at all. Then one morning, flipping through TV channels, I spotted a paper piecing demo on Simply Quilts. I can do this!!! That was about 15 years ago and it has changed my life. I am proud of my new found creativity and thankful for the many wonderful friendships I’ve made.

2. Do you still have your first quilt?

Yes, it’s awful and hidden in the closet. My second quilt, however, was made for my husband and is proudly displayed in the den. It’s a beautiful Log Cabin from my first quilting class with Alice Levet. Thanks Alice for starting me on the right road!

3. When did you arrive in the local area and what brought you here?

I was born in New Orleans and raised in Metairie. In 2003 my husband was transferred to Hammond. We rented a house and started building our dream house in Robert, where we now live. We absolutely LOVE living in the country.

4. How long have you worked for Bright Hopes Quilting and what do you do there?

I started at Bright Hopes 3 years ago. Let me just say, this is the best job I’ve ever had! Everyday is like a party and we actually get a little work done!! And the UPS deliveries are like Christmas morning! My job is to do whatever needs to be done, from cleaning to sewing samples to making bows. My favorite part is helping brand new quilters. They bring so much excitement to the shop.

5. Jayne is a fan of “retreats”. Can you give the reader who isn’t aware of these things an idea of what you do on a retreat and how it promotes your “work”?

I ‘retreat’ twice a year with a wonderful group of friends. The one thing we do most is laugh!!! And, we get lots of sewing done too. It’s amazing how much you can get done with no interruptions from phones, husbands, kids, work, etc. We have workshops, raffles, gifties, and lots of show n tell. The grounds of the retreat center are beautiful and many take long walks in the woods. When we return home we are relaxed, inspired and very ready to do it again!!!!

6. Do you belong to a guild? attend large quilt shows? travel far afield to take classes?

I belong to Queen Bee Quilters, Stitchin’ Sistas, and Happy Hearts. I love going to Houston Quilt Festival and GSQA Seminar. In Houston, I meet with my dear friend and quilter Barbara (from Buffalo NY). This is usually the only time we see each other which makes the event extra special.

I also try to see as many quilts shows as I can. When we vacation, I’m always on the lookout for quilt shops.

7. Since I have known you, you have branched out in new directions concerning fabrics. How has your work changed in the past 8 years? Where do you see yourself headed?

My heart lies with traditional patterns and fabrics. BUT, I find being exposed to so many different styles, I’m being drawn out of my comfort zone. Namely, batiks. (thank you Pearl!!!) I’ve done a few shop samples in batiks and have fallen in love with them.

Lately, I’ve been working on several table runners. There are so many adorable patterns available. And now with a new grandbaby on the way (a girl!!!) I’m buying lots and lots of pink fabrics!!!

8. If your fairy quiltmother could grant you one wish, what would it be?

My wish is to be able to quilt for a very long time. I have so much fabric and so many patterns, it will take a life time to complete it all!!!

Back to me..... I LOVED to hear Jayne describe what it's like to work at Bright Hopes..... like a party and Christmas when the UPS man walks in with boxes. That is exactly spot-on.

Her retreats sound like another party... and one I'd attend in a heartbeat. Laughter. Friends. Food. Fabric. There's a real recipe for success.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

The Tote Club - October 25

Jayne is teaching the Tote Club class this month..... Rag Bag.

This roomy tote is fast and fun... perfect for a grab and go project.
The class is Thursday, October 25 from 10-2pm.

And Georgia got the last border on that "stained glass" Stonehenge quilt:

I have reached the age where any assistance in seeing is greatly appreciated so when I spied this new Sewline Quick-thru needle-threader, I had to try it out.
I used a No. 8 needle and voila!

It threaded like a champ.