Sunday, September 18, 2016

September Meeting Coming Up!

Hello everyone! There are only a few days now until our first meeting! It will be great to see all our quilting friends again, and maybe we'll see a few new faces as well. We welcome new members! Join us Tuesday evening Sept. 20 for a 7p.m. meeting. Directions are on the sidebar.

Did you know that September is National Sewing Month? What a great reason to celebrate our return to Guild activities! If you haven't done much sewing or quilting over the summer, it's time to get back to your sewing space and get busy! And remember,YOU can help make Show and Tell even better! We want to see your projects!!

I came across this online article written by Weeks Ringle of Modern Quilt Studio on their blog
Craft Nectar, a few weeks ago. It's an interesting and eye-opening read and something I hope all members will take the time to read through. There are indeed big changes happening in the quilting industry. Those mentioned are all in the USA, but let's face it, they affect us too. Did you know that the American Quilters Society has stopped publishing books? Quilters' Newsletter, which has been in production since 1969 has published its last print edition with the current October November issue now on newsstands. The City Quilter in Manhattan is closing, as are several other well known American shops.
The article is reprinted below with Weeks' permission, but if you click on the article link above, you can also read the very interesting comments that follow the article.

The past few years have brought tremendous changes to the world of quilting. Shops have closed by scores. Magazines and book publishers have shuttered or merged with other publishers. American Quilter Society has ceased publishing books all together. City Quilter in New York is closing. Tension has arisen at times between genres of quilters who perceive one genre being intolerant to another.
We began teaching modern quilting in 2001. The ages of our students ranged from twenty-somethings to retirees. Even as early as 2001 we noticed that spending patterns were clearly divided by age. Retirees had large stashes and both the time and money to make lots of quilts. Younger quilters had student debt, insecure jobs and looming college and retirement costs that prevented them from spending as much time or money on quilting. If we had a studio sale with fabric deeply discounted, the 50+ crowd would spend hundreds of dollars and the 30-somethings would buy 4 fat quarters. It was a pattern we saw repeatedly. So we never drank the Kool-Aid about modern quilters or young quilters saving our shrinking industry. They can’t afford to. Hiring designers based on the number of Instagram followers instead of talent will not save our industry. Deciding which books to publish based on the age of the author will not save our industry. Belittling other genres of quilting will definitely not save our industry. If you REALLY want to save our industry, here are a few things you can do:
  1. Buy fabric and supplies from an owner whose name you know. Buying quilting fabric from   Massdrop or might not seem like a big deal but for a mom-and-pop retailer every dollar truly matters. If you buy from Massdrop, the designer makes 15-20 cents per yard at best. If you buy directly from the designer, they make $4-6 per yard.
  2. Buy books from authors directly or through local quilt shops. If you buy a book from Amazon to save $4, the author makes $1. If you buy it from the author, the author makes typically half of the cost of the book, usually $10-15. If you buy it from a local quilt shop, the shop owner makes the profit but at least it stays in the industry and they stay in business and buy more books. It’s an enormous difference.
  3. Support ALL types of quilting. If you’re a modern quilter, go to an exhibit of applique quilts at a local guild. Do a shop hop of shops you haven’t been to. Take classes that are outside of your comfort zone. All of this money filters down to support guilds, teachers, shops and designers.
  4. Teach someone to sew or quilt. Help a teenager make a quilt for college or for graduation. Show a boy how to make a messenger bag or a pillow for his room.
  5. Understand the laws of supply and demand. With fewer shops in business and fewer quilters, the cost of fabric has and will increase. No one is taking advantage of you or ripping you off. It’s just the economics of each yard costing more because fewer yards are being produced. Ditto for the cost of magazines, especially with magazines like ours that has no ads.
  6. Don’t expect everything for free. Unless you want quilting to go the way of tatting, with very few people able to make a living teaching or designing, don’t photocopy patterns for your friends and don’t limit what you can learn to YouTube. I understand that each of us only has so much money and it’s tempting to want to give away your favorite patterns with your guild friends, but if you don’t support shops, publishers, designers and the like, those people will have to find other ways to make a living. The closed shops, the shuttered publishers and those who have left the industry for greener pastures or as a result of closures are proof that it has become harder than it was 20 years ago to make a living in the quilting industry. Most importantly, can we just band together to support all quilters? And when I say support, I mean financially as well as sharing with others the work you find inspiring be it at a guild meeting or through social media. Can we decide that each quilt is made by someone who loves quilting as much as you do? If you don’t like the way quilt competitions are structured, suggest a new category. If you want more books on a certain topic, email the publisher. If you want more magazine coverage of a certain trend, let the editors know. If you want a certain fabric your local shop doesn’t carry, ask if they would be willing to order it. We are fortunate right now to have more work than we can manage. However, watching businesses related to quilting close affects all of us. Please share in the comments section anything you can think of to support the quilting world.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

A Volunteer Opportunity

September is just hours away now, and with it for most of us a return to more routine in our lives. And of course a return to guild meetings. Yippee! Whether or not you've taken a break from sewing and quilting this summer, it's time to get back in the swing of things! Do you have some fall or Christmas projects on your To Do list?
Maybe you would like to try something new this fall. Katie Noonan, the Office Administrator with Central Valley Adult Learning Association is looking for volunteers to lead some quilting classes for seniors in the greater Fredericton area (Fredericton, Oromocto, Stanley, Minto, Chipman and Gagetown.) She is keen to set this up and get it underway so if you are interested you can reach her at or at 357-7892. She would love to hear from you!

Monday, August 22, 2016

Did You Know?

Just a few DYK's for you today...

Did you know that the measuring tape you have in your sewing space is most likely 5/8" wide? Our seam allowance in quilt-making is almost always 1/4", but if you do any garment-making, the seam allowance is usually 5/8". So measure the width of your tape measure, it may very well be a handy guide for you! ~ Info passed on by Kathy Feltmate, from Colette Patterns. Thanks Kathy!  (** I checked mine and it's 3/4"... just sayin'....)

Have you ever wondered where the tomato pincushion came from? In the early Middle Ages metal pins were costly and much harder to come by than they are today. They were often stored in special pin/needle cases  made from ivory, bone, silver or other metals. In the early 1700's pin-pillows came into use- the pincushion predecessor! They were made from beautiful fine fabrics and were often embroidered. Soon they were mounted on bases of silver, china or wood and used more as a home decor item. By the early 1900's pincushions were commonly used as a useful sewing aid.
Did you know that during Victorian times, when a family moved into a new home, it was common to place a fresh tomato on the mantle to ward off evil spirits, thereby bringing prosperity to the family? Since tomatoes were only available in summer, and didn't last long, they were often made from fabric instead, stuffed with sand or sawdust and made to look realistic with veins and leaves. It's easy to picture the busy lady of the house stabbing a few stray pins into the tomato, until she could put them back in their proper place with her sewing supplies....  ~ Info from Threads magazine

Have you ever made an Irish Chain quilt? Or have you ever wondered where the name came from? Did you know that the Irish began immigrating to North America in large numbers in the mid-1800's? When the American Civil War began, the Irish formed their own brigades with approximately 140,000 Irish soldiers fighting for the union. The Irish used a tool called an Irish Chain (Gunter's chain or surveying chain) as a measuring device for land surveying; it was made up of linked sections that fit together to form a single chain. Replace those links with squares and you have an Irish Chain quilt! ~ info from Fons and Porter

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Change of Show Venue

For anyone planning to travel to Grand Manan this weekend for the Tidal Threads Quilt Show, please note there has been a change of venue. The show will now be held in the Immanuel Family Church in Castalia. Please use the sanctuary entrance. Just follow route 776 "down island" from North Head, it will be on your left. If you come to the Irving gas bar and the Save Easy, you have gone too far. If you are planning on taking the ferry as a foot passenger, the "Quiltmobile" will still pick you up, transport you to the show, and return you to the ferry.

Monday, July 4, 2016

New Shop Location

Just in case you haven't heard, The Christmas Crab Quiltery has moved downtown. It is now located on the main floor of 158 Brunswick St. There is ample parking behind the building. Note the new hours: Monday to Friday, 9:30a.m. to 4p.m. and Saturday 9:30a.m. to 2p.m.

Note also the new phone number 206-6018.

Why not drop by soon and wish JoAnne best of luck in her new location?

Monday, June 20, 2016

Row by Row 2016

Tomorrow, June 21, marks the official start of the 2016 Row by Row Experience.  Are you ready? Car gassed up? Credit card or cash in wallet?
What, you don't know what Row by Row is?? Let me fill you in. It's like a summer Shop Hop, but without any fees or cards to stamp.You have the entire summer (until Sept. 6) to visit participating shops and pick up that shop's free pattern for a quilt row. Each participating shop has designed a row on the year's theme - the 2016 theme is "Home Sweet Home" and Timeless Treasures has created a line of fabric on the theme as well. Click here to see the fabrics, designed by Debra Gabel - there's even one to colour yourself!! Visit as many shops as you like to collect patterns - then assemble them into a quilt to win prizes. Every pattern/row will be unique. To qualify for a prize, you must complete a quilt using at least 8 different rows from 8 different 2016 participating shops. The quilt design is your own - the rows can be vertical, horizontal, arranged around a centre, whatever - your choice! If you are the first to bring in a completed quilt to a participating shop, you will win a stash of 25 fat quarters! Win a bonus prize by using that store's row in your quilt. (Note- "Completed" quilt means quilted, bound and labelled.) The deadline for submitting a quilt for a prize is October 31.
Participating shops are all over Canada and the USA, you can click here for the list. Shops are happy to give out one pattern per person, at no charge, to walk-in customers only. Patterns will not be mailed out or emailed. So have fun travelling, shopping and collecting! In keeping with the theme, why not start at home with the six participating NB shops - our two locals, The Christmas Crab Quiltery and Country Crafts and Curtains,  two in the Moncton area- The Covered Bridge Quiltery and The Fabric Cupboard, Town and Country Quilts in Rothesay and Spruce it Up Quilt Shop in Port Elgin.
Happy rowing!!

Friday, June 17, 2016

Using Poly Threads

Just a quick post today to pass on a bit of helpful info re. thread. I'm a lover of cotton threads, but I know some of you piece with polyester. I receive regular emails from Superior Threads and they are so great about allowing people to share their educational info, so here's today's tidbit....

"We always teach that when piecing with polyester thread, set the iron to medium heat. The length of time the iron is in contact with the thread also can affect the thread. Polyester thread can melt at temperatures above 300°. All irons are not equal in their temperature settings. Below are the average ranges of iron temperatures.

* An iron set at High = 300 to 400 degrees
* An iron set at Medium = 230 to 300 degrees
* An iron set at Low is below 230 degrees"

So there you go gals, something to keep in mind if you use poly threads in your quilting...

Monday, June 6, 2016

Wrapping Up Another Year

Our final meeting and potluck dinner was again a great success! We have many fine cooks within our membership! As always there was too much food, and the odd "I ate too much" groan could be heard... just sayin'...

The Starstruck Challenge was a success with a number of participants showing their creations... here are a few..

Our final executive meeting and dessert party is this week, and then we're out of school! It's summer vacation time!  What do you have planned for this summer? A big trip? Some interesting day trips? A quilt show or three? Be sure to check the sidebar for up to date listings of shows and events of interest, and if there is a show that's not listed, let me know so it can be added!

It's such fun to travel to quilt shows far and wide, but not everyone is able to do this, so here is another "armchair tour" for you to enjoy. Click here and here to view quilts from the World Painter's Challenge which was issued to quilters' groups in Japan, France and the USA. Participants were to create a piece of fibre art to represent the work of a famous painter, or to create a design of your choice in the style of that painter. Picasso, Monet, Renoir, Klimt, Matisse.. they're all represented! Thanks to Quilt Inspiration for the great photos. Enjoy!

Have a great summer, everyone!

Friday, April 15, 2016

Updates and Links....

 Ricky Tims is presenting his LAST Super Seminar in St. Charles IL in October. He has something new on the horizon for 2017... wonder what it will be... whatever it is, it's bound to be good! Some of our members have been fortunate to attend a Super Seminar when it was given close by. Everyone loves them- if by any chance you are going to be in the vicinity of St. Charles Illinois around October 20-22 definitely take advantage! You won't regret it!

For those of you familiar with American teacher Libby Lehman, you'll be happy to know she is sewing again! Ever an optimist and determined to recover after her debilitating brain aneurysm and stroke, she is making great progress.

It's been a while since we've had an "armchair quilt show tour" so here goes. Quilt Inspiration is one of the many blogs I follow, and recently they showed quilts from Quilt Arizona! the new name for the annual show by the Arizona Quilt Guild of Mesa AZ- click here and read back through the three most recent posts for some real eye candy! If that just whets your appetite, click here to see quilts from AQS Quilt Week in Phoenix. There are six posts in all, just keep clicking "Older Posts" at the bottom of the page.

Here are some great tips for using scraps...

How are you coming along with your Starstruck Challenge piece? If you need a little inspiration, click here and here for lots of star quilts to gaze at.. maybe something there will spark an idea...

Are you all ready for our meeting and Spring Cleanout Sale next week? I hope you are bringing lots of goodies to sell, and don't forget your loonies, toonies and fivers so you can take some treasures home!!