AHIQ 2017 – Game On!

A little tardy with this linkup, but once the seasonal festivities were behind us we were overtaken by the seasonal cold or flu – yes, in spite of flu shots. The fun never ends! I did decide to finish the small piece I posted about last time, Abbott’s Lagoon. I am trying to overcome my fear of free-motion quilting, fully realizing that the only way to learn it is to do it, so I just jumped in. I did some quilting, then some more quilting, then some free-motion embroidery for good measure, and finally laid it on the table and colored in some enhancements with water-soluble oil pastels and some dye sticks.

On Tuesday, when Ann and Kaja posted the AHIQ linkup, I was busy, but eventually got to reading it and was very honored to find that Ann had cited my little quilt as an example of one kind of “chinese coins”. That is part of the AHIQ game plan for this first few months of 2017. Then, I went on to Pinterest (which I have neglected for some time) and searched more chinese coin quilts and what do you know, there was me!

So, though I have nothing else new to show for January, I will just post this finished piece and link up with AHIQ…and even though, if I’ve already produced some chinese coins, I could rest on my laurels, that would be no fun; and besides I already have a bunch of ideas of what I might work on next.

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Abbott’s Lagoon, 11″ x 26″, Sue Kelly, January 2017 Machine pieced, quilted and embroidered.

A New Start

I have been absent from this place for quite some time. Our holiday season was fun, and full of food and family get-togethers, and somewhat hectic, what with one thing and another, and there hasn’t been much time to spend in the “new” sewing room let alone to write about it. Finally on Boxing Day, we had the time and some chilly but sunny weather favorable for one of our hikes, so we went out to Pt. Reyes and walked the path along Abbott’s Lagoon to the shore. Here is a photo that I took that day, which I decided to use for inspiration for an improv piece, knowing that the AHIQ linkup was coming. I have enjoyed being part of that, and want to keep my hand in.

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I chose fabrics fairly quickly; that’s always the easy part for me. Then I cut up the photo in a grid shape, as a tool for deciding on the proportions of the colors, and hopefully to give me some ideas about how to compose the piece. abbots-process-2

I liked the resultant collage a lot! For my first attempt at a composition I tried making one large square block, free-pieced. I thought I might make a series of these and then put them together somehow. img_3235It is a nice looking block that I might use for something else some day, but it was way too literal for my improvisational purposes. Next I thought maybe I would riff on a traditional block and put together a more geometric, abstract rendition. I made four large-ish dissappearing nine-patches and cut them up. img_3234

I like these too, but they were not going in the direction I wanted to go. Finally I just started cutting up strips and putting them together, plus some wider bands of piecing. This was more what I was going for, an abstraction of the image of the lagoon, but using the colors from the photo, in approximately the same proportions. I’m fairly pleased with this result…and now I am pondering where to take it next.

img_3273Better late than never, linking up with Ad Hoc Improv Quilters.

Happy New Year everybody!