03 March, 2012

All Quilts, All The Time

I feel as if I have been totally immersed in quilting for the last two weeks, beginning with our 1st Annual UVQG Guild Retreat at Gold Beach with 30 Guild friends, and also finishing up the two quilts that I shared recently.  Add in a Guild work group that I led just after returning from the retreat and I'm a bit maxed out at the moment.

I seriously need to hold off on the quilting/sewing for a few days. I have 52 rose bushes that are screaming at me that they need pruning, and tons of other yard and garden related tasks that I want to take care of. But late last week our guest speaker at Guild was Marsha McCloskey, the Queen of the Feathered Star.  Google her.  She's... well... she's right up my alley. I so admire women who have made their way in the quilting world.  So many of them are women who are just like me, mothers and homemakers who have found their creative outlet by using a sewing machine, fabric and scissors. (Make that rotary cutters for we modern quilters!, but we all started with scissors, didn't we?.)

The Guild contracted with Marsha to lead us in workshop on her Radiant Star block the following day. This was a workshop that I could not possibly pass up!, even with all of those rose bushes waiting on me. Marsha is a thorough and patient teacher.  Now my head is just about to burst with all of my new knowledge on how to draft my own Feathered Star pattern, how to use her amazing techniques for cutting all of those tiny one inch triangle squares and new tricks for piecing.  I finished my very own Radiant Star block pictured above, early the next morning.  I was up at 5:30 a.m. to sew.  I just couldn't sleep until I finished it.

 My Feathered Star - 1993
I had made the Feathered Star quilt pictured above about 20 years ago.  Wait... was it really that long ago? Am I really that old?  OK,... I guess I am...  Anyway,  I made this quilt for our son, the G-man.  He was 12 years old when I completed it.  I won a ribbon for it at the quilt show in Auburn CA that year. The quilt was on his bed from the time that he was a boy up until the time that he was young a man.  It was queen sized and hand quilted.  I'll say that again.  It was hand quilted.  But then... the quilt was lost.  I won't go in to how that happened, I don't know the details, it really doesn't matter, but suffice it to say that when you gift a quilt, it is out of your hands. I love my only son, this quilt is somewhere in the wind, but the G-man is older and smarter these days and I will make him another quilt. His older sister, "Butterfly", thinks that his ex-girlfriend confiscated it when they parted ways....  It could have happened, and if it did, I hope that she enjoys it.  But in reality, I'm betting that it's a dog bed or a painting tarp.

Marsha McCloskey's radiant star block has 115 pieces in it!  Well, I think that's how many pieces there were.  It was really hard to count them all. The Radiant Star block is so beautifully complex.  I have chosen these materials to make another block, and if I love it as much as I think that I will, I will make a whole quilt using these pretty Robyn Pandolph fabrics.  Making another Feathered Star quilt has been right up there on my Quilt Bucket List for a very long time.

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