Milwaukee Saturday

Milwaukee Art Museum : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Another busy, busy weekend here – but I have a lot of photos to share! Saturday I woke up bright and early and headed north to Milwaukee. Lee and I had our third (and final) Pottery Barn Trunk Show scheduled, but before that began we visited the Milwaukee Art Museum. Lee and I were lucky enough to be invited to see their Uncommon Folk: Traditions in American Art special exhibit, featuring a few quilts from from Gee’s Bend, Alabama.

Milwaukee Art Museum : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Because I always leave for events ridiculously early, I was actually the first person inside the museum for the day! How cool is that? The space was so beautiful and full of light, right on Lake Michigan.

Milwaukee Art Museum : Fresh Lemons Quilts

The Uncommon Folk exhibit had whimsical sculptures, paintings, quilts, photographs…all sorts of fun and funky things really.

Milwaukee Art Museum : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Of course, the five or six quilts especially caught our eye.

Milwaukee Art Museum : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Above, from left to right: “Lazy Gal” Quilt (1993) by Revil Mosley; Four Block Housetop Quilt (2000) by Rita Mae (“Rabbit”) Pettway; Work Clothes Quilt (1935) by Rachel Carey George.

Milwaukee Art Museum : Fresh Lemons Quilts
Four Block Housetop Quilt (2000) by Rita Mae (“Rabbit”) Pettway

Milwaukee Art Museum : Fresh Lemons Quilts
Crazy Quilt (1883) by Margaret A. Beattie

I captured Lee taking a detail shot of this beautiful quilt.

Milwaukee Art Museum : Fresh Lemons Quilts
“Star of Bethlehem” Quilt (1875), American

It was a really fun morning! After we finished up at the museum, we headed over to the mall to grab lunch and set up inside Pottery Barn.

Vintage Quilt Revival Pottery Barn Trunk Show : Fresh Lemons Quilts

This time we got to set up right up front. What an experience!

Vintage Quilt Revival Pottery Barn Trunk Show : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Vintage Quilt Revival Pottery Barn Trunk Show : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Vintage Quilt Revival Pottery Barn Trunk Show : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Lots of people stopped by and it was so fun to meet everyone. Many told us that seeing quilts in person is such a different experience than seeing them in a book – and I cannot agree more!

I also finished my big deadline quilt yesterday (woo hoo!) so now I’m hard at work cutting into my Shimmer fabric in preparation for a blog hop after Spring Break. I’ll be posting some updates as I go along ~ paper piecing, yay!

A Finished Quilt ~ Stardust

Stardust Quilt by Fresh Lemons Quilts : Faith

I may have set a record in amount of time to make a small wall hanging, but I’ve finally finished my Stardust quilt! This quilt is a small version (9 blocks) of the Stardust quilt from Vintage Quilt Revival. Several, several months ago, my aunt asked me to make a quilt to hang on the wall in her home. She gave me some size requirements and some colors she liked – golds, yellows, teals, browns. She loves flowers and nature. I didn’t really know of a lot of fabrics that fit those particular wishes until I saw Carolyn Friedlander’s Botanics line at Fall Quilt Market. I sent her a few design ideas from my new book and she told me to surprise her. Well….surprise!

Stardust Quilt by Fresh Lemons Quilts : Faith

Normally I like to take my quilts outside for photos in natural light, but since this is a gift and I absolutely did not want it to get dirty…and outside is covered in snow, mud and sludge…I decided to duct tape the quilt to the wall in our guest room for photos. :)

Stardust Quilt by Fresh Lemons Quilts : Faith

This quilt took me some time to put together, despite it’s small size. Since I knew this quilt would hang on a wall and people would probably look at it quite closely, I really worked hard to get things just perfect. I am so happy I took the time. These may be two of the harder blocks in the book but practice certainly makes perfect.

Stardust Quilt by Fresh Lemons Quilts : Faith

I wanted the design to pop and I also wanted this quilt to hang nicely (not too loosely), so I quilted a dense meandering design with thread to match the individual fabrics. I purchased Aurifil #2132, #4182, #2835, #1148 plus used the white I always use. This meant a lot of starting and stopping. I followed Amanda Jean’s great tutorial for burying knots during quilting.

I still need to attach a hanging sleeve, but this one will be off to it’s new home in the next week!

Shimmer by Jennifer Sampou

Shimmer by Jennifer Sampou : Fresh Lemons Quilts

It’s been a whirlwind around here over the last several days. I spent the end of last week in Rockford, Illinois, visiting with the lovely Sinnissippi Quilters Guild. What a great group, I’m so happy to have had the chance to talk with them about modern quilting, modern traditionalism and improvisational piecing. I arrived home to a package of this beautiful fabric – Shimmer by Jennifer Sampou for Robert Kaufman Fabrics.

Shimmer by Jennifer Sampou : Fresh Lemons Quilts

I met Jennifer last fall at Quilt Market. (This is by far the best part of having the opportunity to travel to market – meeting SO many new people!) Jennifer had some little sample packs of her newest line and asked if I was interested in designing something with it for her blog hop. Working with metallics is something very new to me, so I jumped at the chance. I can’t wait to start cutting and share my design with you all.

Shimmer by Jennifer Sampou : Fresh Lemons Quilts

This afternoon I’m heading to my daughter’s first grade class to talk quilts! I’m pretty excited to share why we make quilts, how we make quilts and then let them create their own quilt block design with fabric scraps, paper and a glue stick. Wish me luck!

A Busy Week

Safari Moon by Frances Newcombe for Art Gallery Fabrics : Fresh Lemons Quilts

It’s been a pretty busy (shortened) week here. The kids were off school on Monday so we went to Michigan last weekend for a bit of winter fun. My daughter took a picture of my husband and I snowshoeing (that’s Lake Michigan behind us).

Snowshoeing Lake Michigan : Fresh Lemons Quilts

When we arrived home, I had a great package in the mailbox from Art Gallery fabric designer Frances Newcombe – a bundle of fabrics from her new Safari Moon line. I am taking part of a blog hop in a month or so, and have my quilt all planned out. I was so excited in fact, that I started cutting that night. I have the quilt top about halfway pieced now and I can’t wait to show it to you soon.

Safari Moon by Frances Newcombe for Art Gallery Fabrics : Fresh Lemons Quilts

I also finished my aunt’s quilt top (pattern is the Stardust quilt from Vintage Quilt Revival). I decided I want to match the quilting thread to the individual fabrics, so I ordered a few small spools of Aurifil thread (#2132, #4182, #2835 and #1148) and will finish it up once those arrive.

Stardust quilt from Vintage Quilt Revival : Fresh Lemons Quilts

And to round out my week, yesterday I spent the entire day cleaning my sewing room and the attached guest room – closet, storage cabinets and all. I was really feeling smothered by the mess and clutter and I’m starting to feel better about the state of affairs. It’s really hard for me to be creative when I’m surrounded by chaos. I still have more to do, but it’s loads better than it was before I started. More sewing on tap today, and my little girl is home from school with what I hope is just a nasty cold. For those that live in the US, stay warm this weekend!