Thursday, June 28, 2012

Calling All Quilters - An Invitation

Hi everybody.  I'm Kelli and am writing this guest post for the North NJ Modern Quilt Guild..."the unguild guild".

First, a little bit about me.  I was born and raised in Essex County, NJ and have loved fiber arts since my childhood.  My first love was cross stitch, then garment sewing and more recently spinning, knitting and quilting. If you'd like, you can peek into my zany pursuits on my blog, here.

Rayna was so gracious to extend me an invitation to guest post on the NNJMQG blog because I want to invite all of you to participate in the NJ State Fair®.

It's an annual event celebrating all that is NJ; the mission of the New Jersey State Fair® / Sussex County Farm and Horse Show is:
  • To showcase New Jersey’s agriculture;
  • Provide safe, family-friendly entertainment;
  • Present educational activities;
  • Promote youth development;
  • Give financial support to charitable non-profit agencies
There is a large section of the grounds which showcase resident artists in many mediums including photography, canning, baking, beer-making and yes, quilting.

For quilters, there are juried and non-juried categories for consideration. The general rules can be found here. You can download and print the 2012 application and event calendar at this link.  There are three classes of quilt competitions (form) ranging from: hand or machine pieced quilts to Civil War reproduction theme quilts to Quilts of Valor (for injured service men/women).

So, please consider entering an item in the fair or completing a group project for donation to the QOV program.  Last year was my first year putting a quilt in and, while it was a nerve-racking proposition, I had a lot of fun.  If you are not able to have a piece in the show, please consider coming out to the fair.  It's very family-friendly and the funnel cake is awesome.

I wont be able to make July's meeting (work obligation) but I hope to see you all at the fair. ~ksp

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

...And the winner is....FRESH!

At our inaugural meeting I asked you to guess how many MQG chapters there are--147!!!--and a prize went to Cara for her lucky guess of 148--, and I asked you what one word came to mind when I said the words  Modern Quilting.  That question elicited 23 different words, with the most popular being fresh, clean, fun, and freedom.

This brings me to a wonderful point:  while other quilting styles may have distinct descriptions and terms, modern quilting does not (yet).  I hope it remains that way for as long as possible, allowing us to individually and collectively push our creative boundaries, and find inspiration in the broadest range of sources. We encourage you to look at things differently, whether it's your color choices, design process, or fabric selection and block design.

As promised, here is a link to Sightlines, the show at the Morris Museum by the artists of SAQA (scroll down to see the exhibit description) From the site: "Sightlines explores a unique conversation between and among some of the most provocative fiber artists working in the field today." The show runs until August 5, and the museum is free on Thursday nights. 

Thought for the week:  "The purpose of art is to give shape to life." Shakespeare

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Another "Unguild" is Born!

Rayna did a great recap, so this is just my two cents. Hooray to those, who, out of interest, curiosity, or plain boredom, showed up to support the new chapter. Rayna and I loved our NY chapter so much that we wanted to build a group with that vibe across the river, and for the first meeting I'd say we succeeded. Beth Rowan's store, Rock, Paper, Scissors, offered an inspirational and intimate setting, and the meeting provided time to mingle and shop. We shared ideas and group goals, and many people came and said "thank you". I say back at ya, and we look forward to our journey together. As you make those 'Lonely Crayon' collaboration blocks, post them! I'd like to make a request for next month's meeting. Please make a name tag of your own design and share it during show and tell. Your name tag will give you a chance to win a special prize next month. A reminder email of our next meeting will be sent prior to our next meeting on July 19. We'd like the group to start thinking about a logo for the guild that we can use on the membership cards, too! I'll post pics later today.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Zowie! First NNJ meeting a hit!

Thursday night the North Jersey MQG met for the first time and had a great time!  Somewhere between 40 and 50 people showed up (I stopped counting) and the enthusiasm was universal!

Our members range in age from new moms to grandmothers, in experience from total newbies to professionals who teach and exhibit, and in styles from traditional (but open-minded) to modern and art quilters.  What a dynamic mix! We can share information and learn from each other.

 Beth Rowan, owner of Rock Paper Scissors in Montclair welcomed us and was as excited as everyone else that we will meet there on the third Thursday of every month.

We were packed to capacity, so here is the story on membership.  If you responded that you wanted to join but said you were not able to make last night's meeting, you are a member.  If you were there last night, you are a member.  But at this time, we are not taking new members because we don't have space.

If you missed last night's meeting, here are just a few of the show and tell pieces that my camera was able to capture. Debbie Krajkowski volunteered to be the photographer after she saw me with my iPhone - LOL. We promise more and better photos next time.


And here are a few important things you will want to know.

- The next two meetings are July 19 and Aug 16.  Put these dates on your calendar.
- We are making a collaborative quilt to represent our guild at QUILTCON, the first Modern Quilting Guild Conference in Austin, TX next February.  This is voluntary, but we would love you to make a block to contribute to the quilt.  The block is due at the August 16 meeting, although if you finish it earlier, bring it to the July meeting. You can also drop it off at Rock Paper Scissors.
  • SIZE: your choice of  10.5" x 10.5" square or 5.5" x 10.5" rectangle.
  • 3 COLORS: the color you like the least or hardly ever/never use + the color of your choice + white.
  • Your choice of solids, prints, hand-dyes,as long as the colors meet the specs above. White must be solid white. (Kona white is good and the shop carries it).
  • Block pattern - whatever you feel like making. Traditional, funky, modern, free-form, any technique - as long as you meet the size and color parameters. Challenge yourself and just have fun with it!
- Bring something to show/tell or share: a book you like, a quilting tool you love/hate/can't figure out how to use, work in progress or finished (feel free to ask for feedback if you're stuck), or any question you have about a technique.  Somebody will be sure to have the answer.

- If you want to bring munchies to leave in the back room for the second part of the meeting - purely voluntary, but most welcome.

- Finally - this blog is our newsletter.  Please comment so we know you were here, and if you want to become an author and post whenever you feel like it or have something to share between meetings, let us know.

hugs and thanks from Aleeda and Rayna   

Friday, June 8, 2012

We've already gotten a great response to the formation of the Northern N J Modern Guild chapter.
Our first meeting will be on Thursday,  June 21 at 7:pm.  Go  here for the location and the link to RSVP.
We need to know so we can set up enough chairs for you!

If you'd like to bring something to share - a piece in process or finished, or a book you particularly love, please do. This will be a brainstorming/planning/meeting, so bring your ideas!

Hope to see you soon.


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

a visit to the NY Metro MQG

I belong to the NY Metro Modern chapter, now in its third year, I think. Time flies, so I'm not sure...but I joined at the beginning, when there were 8 or 10 members.  Today the group has been closed at 60 because of meeting space limitations. Wow! The group meets every other month and there were about 40 members there on Saturday.

It's an active and friendly group - young mothers with babies, grandmothers, and all ages in between - plus a few men.  We come from NJ, Westchester, and at least 3 boroughs, and it's great!  I was happy to see old friends and meet new ones. There were so many of us that it was hard to get pictures, but I did take a couple.

This group quilt was fabulous and was so large I couldn't get the whole thing.  Hexagonal!  NY Metro makes charity quilts and at each meeting, members bring blocks to contribute, usually with a theme.
This month, the challenge was to make any kind of star block using orange and blue.  There was a great variety of patterns and they should make a beautiful quilt.
  Here is Victoria Findlay-Wolfe holding up one of her quilts -- drop-dead gorgeous.
This was on Victoria's wall - improvised and "modern."
Looking forward to a great start to the North Jersey Modern!  Bring your thoughts and ideas and something to share if you'd like!