Monday, November 17, 2014

November, 2015

November is one of the highest attended Pueblo West Quilters meetings of the year. It’s consistently has been popular for several Novembers. Why?
The program is PWQ’s Annual Challenge Quilt Showcase. There’s a core group within the group that presents their challenge quilts so the meeting’s guaranteed to have eight to a dozen quilts showcased.
Also, November is the push month for those last minute LUV quilts and Wounded Warrior quilts to make their appearance.  Let’s not forget the pillowcases either.
And finally, the Sew-N-Share portion of the meeting tends to showcase the quilted gifts PWQs have made for their families and friends.
But this year’s meeting was different.
It went way beyond expectations.
But first, a little business…
The President’s Block is any 2014 Block of the Month you loved making in muted greens and off-whites. If you need a third fabric, select burgundy red, or a fourth fabric, gold. None of that neon color family because that’s soooo not Helen. The blocks will be collected at December’s meeting because you know Helen; she’s quick in creating and completing her quilts. Including the labels!!!
The Fat quarter for December is Christmas fabric and the Block of the Month is the Disappearing 9-Patch Block Variation in scrappy fabrics of greens, golds, and beiges.
Here’s a visual of the pattern, different sizes. Mary-Frances calls it  Disappearing Nine-patch, Variation 1 (Double Trouble). Scroll down the page until you get to this variation.
Remember, PWQ’s BOM begins with two scrappy 9.5” x 9.5” 9-patch blocks and we’ll end up with two 8.5” x 8.5” disappearing 9-patch blocks. The square size is 3.5” x 3.5” and you’ll need 4 gold squares, 4 beige squares, and 10 green scrappy squares. Oh boy! It’s dig into your scrap stash time!
To create your 9-patch blocks and align with Mary-Frances’ pix, use the 9-patch sample where she has the 5 navy squares in the corners and center and the light blue for the side squares. Place your green squares where the navy fabric goes and the gold (beige) fabrics where the light blue goes. Remember one block is greens and gold and the other block is greens and beige. Also remember to measure from the center seams when cutting, not from the edge of the block. Why? Because that’s what Jacqueline Bryson told us to do when she presented the block. (I think it’s because of the seam allowances for the external strips but don’t quote me cause I got distracted.)
Karen Stiphout presented some timely organizing tips. She uses ornament divider boxes to separate her scrappy squares and strips: 1.5”, 2”, 2.5”, 3”, etc… and one is for her bias tapes, seam bindings and rickrack. And this time of the year is great for picking up charms with your name on them. You can attach the charm to your scissors, rotary cutter, or any other tool. When you take them to Sew Days or quilting retreats, you’ll easily locate your tools when it’s time to pack up your supplies. (Also, it’s not a bad idea to tag your fabric scissors so your family knows to keep their grubby little paws off them. Maybe I should do this so I’d remember!) Oh and if you’re thinking about getting your quilting organized, don’t forget to go to the hardware and sports stores for possible organizing equipment.
Wait for the sales!
The LUV quilt goal for the year was 100 and PWQ was 4 quilts shy of that goal coming into the meeting. I don’t know the total but I do know we overshot that 100 quilts by at least a dozen, if not two dozen quilts!
The Sew N Share portion …. Can you say spectacular? Check out the pictures that were taken. They don’t convey the feelings and atmosphere of the evening but you’ll get a sense of some of the quilts, pillows, and totes shown.
A break was needed prior to the program so the Board had cake to celebrate the LUV Quilts 100 mark. But to encourage its members to continue making quilts, there was a HUGE fabric sale! PWQ is raising funds to purchase batting for 2015’s LUV quilts. I can’t imagine why...
Ummmm… Could this fabric sale be the result of the other challenge? The unofficial challenge several members declared at the beginning of the year? The one where they stated they weren’t going to purchase fabric but use fabrics from their stash? That challenge?
I wonder how many remembered their declarations. I mean, it was 10 months ago and a lot happened. I held out for what, a month? A month and a half? I needed black fabric in April so I remembered that. I’m sure I’ve purchased – wait! I know I’ve purchased fabric in March for my Mystery Quilt Retreat I attended. But I didn’t purchase the fabrics for the 2014 Quilt Challenge because that was part of my challenge to the challenge. And yes, I did bring my finished quilt. It didn’t have a name then but a few days ago the name came to me. Hunter’s Hanky.
Back to the regularly scheduled program…
A packed house appreciated quilt after quilt after quilt!
Over two dozen quilters took the 2014 PWQ Quilt Challenge and brought their quilts, their partial quilts, their tops, their partial tops, and their pieces. Right off the bat was words to the effect, “I didn’t follow the rules.” Followed by several other quilters who … Did it their owwwwn way.
A couple did follow the rules but the rest of us? Well, that’s the beauty of the quilts. It was a Mystery Quilt Challenge and every one’s mystery was solved in a unique way. We began with different fabric choices, was given the same directions over three months, and ended up in very different places. It was fabulous! The quilts came out gorgeous and everyone had a great time telling their journeys.
November is definitely one of the highlight months of the year. Quilters come to see quilts and quilts they saw. I wonder what next year’s challenge will be?
In the meantime, if you’ve paid for the Holiday Party for December 1st, I’ll see you there. If you didn’t pay, I’ll see you the first Monday in January – January 5th – with your bags stuffed with quilts to Sew n Share.

May your holiday season be stress-free and filled with quilting dancing in your heads.
May your holiday season be stress-free and filled with quilt designs in your heads.
Try it again …….

May your holiday season be stress-free and filled with finished quilts on your beds.
Cactus Kilter Quilter