Friday, December 7, 2012

Sort of Quilty Gifts

Today was the annual Christmas brunch of the Whacky Ladies Quilt Bee.  We met at our usual restaurant, Brig's in Wake Forest, which has always offered us plenty of space for all our gift bags and show-and-tell (plus generous portions of delicious food.)

We actually only had one show-and-tell quilt this time, a red and white beauty by Caroline Ormond.  Unfortunately, my photo is out of focus.
(No, we were not drinking Bloody Marys or Mimosas!)

She made the blocks from Block-of-the-Month kits from Wish Upon a Quilt.  This one will be quilted by our bee member Donna Sontag of Whatever's Quilted.
We traditionally exchange small gifts for each person.  What a lovely selection of candy, ornaments, soap to take home!  Okay, this picture's upside down.  (No, I didn't come home and start drinking Bloody Mary's!)
Donna made these cool silvery quilted ornaments on her computerized longarm.

In addition to the small favors that we exchange, we each bring a larger gift to go to one person in the "Dirty Santa" exchange.  You know, you pick a number, then choose a gift.  The next person can either steal your gift, or choose one that's not opened yet.  This year no one stole any one's gift.  I guess we were all on our good behavior today.

I made a journal with a needle-felted cover and hand-painted pages.

Here is the back. (I swear the folks at Blogger must be doing handstands today.)
Here is the hand-dyed inside cover and some of the pages.
Here is when it is very handy to have a stash of painted papers lying around in your studio.  I just chose some that sort of coordinated with the rainbow colors of the cover.  They are sewn in by machine in three signatures.
The cover itself has silk fibers and ribbons needle felted to a piece of wool felt, then quilted on my sewing machine with a decorative stitch.  The lining is fused to the back.

For my small gifts, I made yet another round of watercolor ATC's.  This time it went much faster, because I fused the whole sheet of watercolor paper to the backing paper, and then cut out the ATC's. 
I don't think I showed the backs last time.  I made large color photocopy of a painting I did in the free Strathmore online class with Traci Bautista,
and sections of it became the colorful backs of the ATC's.
I also only went around the outside once with zigzag stitch, which makes a neater appearance on the backs especially.
Here are some of the ones I especially liked.

Since I collaged some printed words this time, I applied a coat of matte varnish to the front of each card.
Recently one of the members of my art quilt bee lost her husband.  Our bee each made an ATC to send her.  All together, they made quite a lovely showing of love and support.  I found another piece of painted, doodled paper in my stash and used it to wrap around the ATC's before mailing.
So, moral of the story, keep painting and doodling and you might find the perfect items in your stash the next time you need to make a gift.
Now I must get ready to have the whole family of kids and grand kids arrive for the weekend.
But first, I may just need to drink a Bloody Mary!






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