Monday, December 29, 2014

My Christmas Dream

 Many of you that read my blog may remember this crazy quilt that I did for my book, Quilting...Just a Little Bit Crazy.  It is one of my favorites because it is hard core crazy quilting, and when I am in the mood for that...this is the pattern for me!  For those of you that are new to my blog, you can go here to read about that quilt.

Last Christmas, I decided it was time to pull the pattern out and revisit it in a new way.  I knew I wanted to do a Christmas wall hanging featuring one of my favorite pictures of my 4 boys.  The picture is about 8 years old, but it is still my favorite!

 So, I started in with my piecing and embellishing, and then I got distracted because Christmas was over and I just wasn't in the mood for it anymore.

So, this Christmas, I decided that was going to finish it before the end of the year!

I just love doing silk ribbon embroidery, so it is all over this quilt!

My Christmas Dream, by Valerie Bothell, 2014

I ended up doing a fold over binding in velvet to finish the edges and did a feather stitch in gold thread all the way around it.   I think you can click on the image to enlarge it to see the detail on the edge.  I decided to not add a fancy border because I didn't want anything to distract from my favorite part of the quilt, the picture of my 4 boys.  This is a wall hanging I will always treasure......

I have started a new group on Facebook that I would love for you to join!  I hope you will join the fun that I have planned starting January 5.  For more info,  click here for a link to the group.

Talk to you later,

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Quilt Market

I have been back from Quilt Market in Houston for over a week now and it has taken me that much time to come down from all of the fun that I had there!  The photo above I made from the new threads by Weeks Dye Works.  I stood in their booth and was silently freaking out at the beauty of them.  They are a #12 pearl cotton and are just beautiful!  Anyway, on with a report of the fun that I had!

Here I am in the hotel with my co-author, Allie Aller!  We had not seen each other in over 2 years so it was a great reunion...

On Friday night, I helped the owner of River Silks with sample spree.  Oh my, people line up for hours to get into this event!  Just look at all the silk ribbon waiting to be sold....

Saturday morning bright and early, I was at the Valdani thread booth to do a demo with all of their gorgeous threads.  They have some new silk thread that I can hardly wait to get my hands on!  What a nice group of people to meet...

Saturday afternoon, both Allie and I went to a book signing for Michele Muska's new book.  You can read about her book in the last post I did.  I was alot of fun to meet all the other people who contributed to her book.

I then ran over to the Moda/United Notions booth to do a demo for them.

I made this sample with the fabrics they sent me from the American Jane collection of 1930's fabrics.  I just love them, of course I am always a sucker for reproduction fabrics!

I really did have fun at that demo!

Sunday morning, Allie and I headed to the C & T Publishing booth for our book signing.  It was really fun to meet people who were just as excited about crazy quilting as we were.

The next set of photos were of quilts on display.  I was only able to see about half of the show because of everything I was doing at Market, but I loved so many of the quilts on display.

This quilt used yo-yo's for the unique and interesting...

Just beautiful!

I  loved the colors in this one.

Are you noticing a theme?  If it had pink in it, apparently I liked it!

 Love this one and it was made out of all silk!

 So proud of my co-author....with her crazy quilt on display...

This one was made out of all buttons, so of course the crazy quilter in me loved it!  

The Hanah silk booth, I really have no words for the beauty there.  I think spent a few dollars there...maybe...

What a fun weekend I had, with my room mates Allie and her friend, Tracey Brookshier!

Last minute, I stopped by the booth where Victoria Findlay Wolfe was doing a demo.  I just loved this pillow she made using her new double wedding ring die cutters.

Anyway, I had a great time and if you have never been to Festival...go!

Talk to you later,

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Quilting: the new classics!

A couple of years ago, I received a fun email from Michele Muska.  She told me that about this idea she had for a book and would I be interested in participating.  Allie and I were just finishing up the book we wrote together (you can get one here) and it sounded like a fun way to keep myself busy again.  Not only would I be designing with Allie again for this book, but in total there were going to be 20 different designers included.  I read the list of designers and I knew instantly that this was going to be a great book and I felt very honored to be included.

Here is a description of the book:

All quilters draw inspiration from the past. But how do today's artisans put their personal stamp on classic patterns? Twenty influential quilters from across the stylistic spectrum present their unique creative vision of timeless designs. Each pattern, Double Wedding Ring, Crazy Quilt, Dresden Plate, Bear Paw, Log Cabin, Nine Patch, Hexagon, Yo-Yo, Flying Geese, and Rail Fence, comes with step-by-step instructions for two adaptations, one traditional, the other modern.
The book also includes a history of each pattern, images of heirloom or museum-quality quilts for inspiration, easy-to-use templates and essential quilting techniques.
Forwards by Meg cox and Janneken Smucker.

So Allie and I were each asked to do a crazy quilt piece, one would be modern and the other traditional.  For those of you that know us well, (or own our book) you already know which one did each version.  Of course, I did the traditional version....

Michele sent a picture of a crazy quilt that was made by her great aunt Sadie(pictured above).  We decided that it would be fun to reproduce one of the blocks each in our own style.

I have been a long time fan of a crazy quilt that is owned by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.  In fact, it is on my bucket list...I will see it some day!  I don't think I am allowed to repost a picture of it, but you can look at it on their website:

It was made by Tamar Horton Harris North in 1877, to honor her daughter Grace who had passed away, it was my inspiration for the piece I made for Michele's book.

I incorporated some of the colors used in the quilt and embroidered some similar motifs.  Strawberries represent perfection and pink roses were a symbol of motherhood.  Such sweet sentiments...

Tamar Came to Visit, Valerie Bothell, 2013

When I received my copy of the book, I was extremely impressed!  The photography is done to perfection, instructions are great and the quilts are beautiful!  Definitely one to add to your library!  
You can buy her book on Amazon here:

I am participating in a blog hop with all the designers that participated in Michele's book.  The following is a list of each of the designers, their blog addresses and the day they will be blogging about the quilt they made.  I would invite you to take a look!

Oct. 20th Michele Muska

Oct. 21st Leslie Jenison

Oct. 22nd Janneken Smucker

Oct. 23rd Valerie Bothell

Oct. 24th Kaari Meng

Oct. 25th Elisa Sims Albury :

Oct. 26th Heather Jones

Oct. 27th Victoria Findlay Wolfe

Oct. 28th Amy Smart

Oct. 29th Jackie Kunkel\

Oct. 30th Pat Sloan

Oct. 31st Shelly Pagliai

Nov. 1st Allie Aller

Nov. 2nd Kristin Omdahl

Nov. 3rd Pat Sloan 4:00pm eastern time

Talk to you later!

Friday, September 12, 2014

My Summer Bedspread

 A couple of years ago, I made a purple crazy quilt bedspread for my room.  I LOVE that bedspread, but it is too warm for summer because I attached it to a very warm blanket.  Great for winter but too much for summer.  That is when I decided to make a Summer Spread.  I remembered seeing some pre-quilted lightweight bedspreads at Bed Bath and Beyond and I decided it would be fun to dress one up with a crazy quilted Dresden plate.

A few months before this, I had spotted this great template called Fats Cats.  It helps you make large Dresden plate designs quickly.  After I made the Dresden plate, crazy quilted and all, I appliqued it to the pre-quilted bedspread.  Such an easy and quick project.  To tie it all together I folded my winter purple bedspread at the end of the bed.

I am really happy with the result!  For the blog posts that I wrote when I was making my purple bedspread, go to the upper left corner of my blog, and in the search bar, put in bedspread and all the posts I wrote while making it will come up.

Talk to you later,

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Hand Dyed Wool Blocks

I just listed some beautiful hand dyed wool crazy quilt blocks on my website today!  They would make a perfect fall project! 

Here's the link: Hand Dyed Wool Crazy Quilt Blocks

Talk to you later,

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Beautiful Bullions

For those of you that have taken classes from me, it is no secret, I LOVE bullion embroidery!  Every single crazy quilt project I do includes some type of bullion embroidery.  I thought I would write this post so that you would be encouraged to add a little bullion pizzazz to your quilts!  Pictured above is a bullion embroidered pansy that I did several years ago, and of course, I thought it was so much fun!

Here are some roses I did to embellish a seam.  The thread I used here was one of my favorites from Judith Baker Montano's thread collection.  She has a lot of great colors and I have them on my website here:

Here I used bullion's to make a little of course!

Bullion embroidered roses were used here to create a little scene, adding a bee and a bee hive.

Even long seams look great with bullion roses!

I even have been know to embellish a spider web with a little bullion rose.

In the two photo's above a bullion was used to attach a button.  I love using butterfly shaped mother of pearl buttons and attaching them with a bullion! 

Here is a close up shot of the crazy quilt I did for our book, Quilting...Just a Little Bit Crazy.  Little bullion embroidered rose buds can be used to dress up a fan blade.

You can also use two different colors when making your bullion's.  It gives them a great 3-D realistic look.

 I also love to tat, so I thought it would be fun to combine the two together.

This pic show how you can use bullion roses in different configurations.

Hopefully I have inspired you to try bullion embroidery on your quilts.  These are just a few of the countless ideas that you can use to incorporate into a project.  I would love to hear from you about the different ways you use bullion embroidery on your crazy quilts.

Talk to you later,