Our second in person meeting since the looooong stretch of Covid Zoom meetings saw us back in Robert Simpson Park in Arnprior for a delightful outdoor meeting where we happily greeted each other face to face, and saw some amazing quilts. After postponing this meeting twice due to inclement weather our patience was rewarded on June 28th with a beautiful evening in the park along the shore of the Ottawa River.
This was a very casual and relaxed meeting with lots of social time to catch up with each other, and to see the lovely quilts - the challenge quilts, show and tell, and several preemie quilts and touch quilts for our Charity initiatives.
This was our last meeting of this guild year so that meant the challenges were wrapped up with viewer's choice voting for our favourites.
The winners of the 2 year long Covid challenge were Rennie Hickey with first place and Mary DeVries with second.
And the winners of this year's President's Drunkard's Path challenge were Allison Kubiseski with first place and Emma Russell with second.
Congratulations to the winners and a big thank you to all of the participants for completing your challenge projects and sharing your beautiful and creative work with us.
For more information about these challenges and photos of all of the entries, see the 2022 Challenges in the Park Blog post.
Show and Tell
A large portion of the evening was devoted to Show and Tell where we saw some of the amazing work of our guild members. Photos of all of the projects along with their makers are included in this photo gallery.
Click/tap on an image to see it in full.
You can see cropped and enlarged photos of the quilts on the Show and Tell page.
The first draw of the evening was for the 2 free guild memberships for 2022-2023. Everyone who had already renewed their membership was eligible for this draw and the lucky winners were Claudette T and Elaine E. Congratulations!
And the evening wrapped up with our regular prize draws.
The 50-50 draws are a welcome return to our in person meetings and this one for $24 was won by Penny C.
The charming basket of quilting goodies was won by Jane W. Thank you to Amanda and Johanne for putting together another delightful and much sought after basket.
The door prizes, $20 gift certificates for Sew Inspired, were won by Louise V and Mary D.
And this month's Library prize was won by Liz G. Thank you to Nancy for providing the Library prizes this evening and all year long.
-- Janet Brownlee, Communications
After many, many virtual guild meetings via Zoom, we finally got back together in person for our May 25th guild meeting. What a treat it was to see so many familiar faces and to meet newer members in person. It's been well over 2 years since we had a regular indoor meeting, and it's so fortunate that we were able to hold a fun meeting in the park in September 2020 between the early Covid-19 waves. Photos from September 2020
Our special, first "back together" program featured a big yard sale of our quilt related stuff, a short business update since this was our Annual General Meeting (AGM), updates from several of our executives, and even more.
Our Membership chair Martha greeted us and handled our "no touch" sign in.
There was a lot to see!
The Charity table, hosted by Sue and Joyce, was a busy spot where they had a sample walker/wheelchair bag on display, and pre-packaged kits ready to go out to volunteers.
They were also gratefully accepting many of our members' donations of their fine work.
There were two completed Pick Up Sticks quilts.
Perhaps inspired by our March meeting Charity night, a colourful completed twin sized quilt, and a quilt top were also donated.
There were well stocked garage sale tables with a variety of fabrics and other items!
Nancy, our librarian, happily welcomed back library books, and offered some magazines and other items for sale.
The raffle and 50-50 ticket sale table was, as always, a popular spot.
The formal meeting began with an introduction of the members of our executive team in attendance.
A discussion of our upcoming quilt show in spring 2023 started with a look at the quilt that will be raffled off at the show. This raffle is an important part of our quilt show as its proceeds will fund future guild Charity projects.
This beautiful raffle quilt top was assembled in 2020 by former Programs chair Joyce and her team, from blocks made by guild members for the 2019-2020 Blue Block Party Challenge.
This was the challenge presented to us.
There were many more blocks donated for the challenge and those remaining blocks will be used in future guild Charity projects.
You can see photos of all of the completed challenge blocks in the January 2020 Meeting Highlights.
The formal meeting included updates from the executive chairs, the AGM formalities, and Show and Tell.
There are larger, cropped photos of these quilts on the Show and Tell page.
The remaining 2 Blocks of the Month were drawn - for May and June, since we'll be meeting in the park in June. More info
The resumption of the full slate of prize draws was a welcome return.
The 2 door prize gift certificates were won by Tina M and Barb H, and Emma won $31.50 in the 50-50 draw. There were also lucky winners of the gift basket, and Library prize draws.
After the meeting formalities there was plenty of time to visit the garage sale and Charity tables, and for informal socializing.
It was great to see our guild photographer Emma back in action - thank you Emma for these awesome photos, and for splitting your time between your garage sale table and capturing these photos at the meeting.
-- Janet Brownlee, Communications
Note to readers: I had to leave the meeting early and I've been unable to determine who won the gift basket and library draws. If you won or recall who did please email me and I'll add that to this post.
The program for our March guild Zoom meeting was very unique as we welcomed multiple guest presenters who represented several of the charities that our guild supports with donations of our crafts. This was an extraordinarily touching and very informative evening as we heard first hand stories of how our donations are valued by their recipients, and by the people who work or volunteer at the charities.
Our guests included:
Josee Laplante, RN, BScN, Clinical Manager of The Ottawa Hospital, Special Care Nursery
recipients of many of our little preemie quilts
Nancy Peck of Arnprior-Braeside-McNab Seniors at Home, recipients of the placemats that we donate at Christmas time, which are delivered along with the Christmas meal to the Meals on Wheels clients
Pat Tait, volunteer team lead at the Arnprior & District Food Bank Inc. who fill and distribute the fabric drawstring bags that we donate.
Carole Beattie, Palliative Care Coordinator at the Arnprior and District Memorial Hospital, who have received several quilts from our guild for patients receiving palliative care.
Cathie McOrmond, Resource Development, at Lanark County Interval House and Community Support in Carleton Place who have been recipients of twin bed quilts
Nancy Arbogast, Regional Representative in Ottawa for Quilts of Valour, Ottawa. Our guild members have donated quilts of comfort for injured Canadian Armed Forces members past and present.
Gwen Pennings, Vice-President for the Pakenham group of Victoria’s Quilts who make and donate quilts to people living with cancer in Canada. Gwen is one of several of our guild members who are members of this Pakenham group.
We were in awe of the huge impact that our donations can have, and resolved to increase our efforts to support these charities.
Another month and another great information and picture-packed guild meeting!
Guest Speaker Cheryl Arkison
Cheryl Arkison joined us from her home in Calgary to inform and inspire us to incorporate play into our quilting.
In Cheryl's words:
"Far too often we focus on the results, the product, the finish line in lieu of the process. A huge part of the process is simply playing. In quilting it is about matching the pattern and perfecting our points but where is the release, the relaxation, the revelation in that? Play is an important part of a child’s development but I don’t think it should stop when we become adults.
This presentation is all about adding a spirit of play back in to our creative pursuits."
Cheryl's presentation was excellent.
She began by emphasizing the importance of play in our lives: how it makes us human, builds our skills and contributes to learning, and relieves stress by providing an escape and thus enables us to cope better with stress.
Through photos and stories of her own quilts and her experiences creating them, Cheryl very effectively showed us how to introduce play into our own quilt making. Cheryl embraces Improv as a key technique for play with her quilts. She often gives herself a little direction for a project, for example low volume fabrics, and then proceeds to make the components. Cheryl does a lot of experimenting when designing and making her quilts to "Let's see what happens". She typically makes all of the components before figuring out how she'll put them together.
We saw photos of several of the quilts with some interesting and intriguing names including Smooch, U, Making Waves, Lilla, March On, Kawasaki's Theorum, Samsquanch, Antonio's Quilt, There is Peace in Pattern, Sewing Machine Quilt, Shiver (a group of whales is called a shiver). Photos of many of these quilts and many more are featured on Cheryl's web site Gallery page. Tip: Click on a photo to enlarge it, and hover (mouse) over it to see the name and description.
Cheryl's tip for easing into improv is to make a quilt of half square triangles using fabrics from a coordinating fabric bundle plus one neutral fabric, and then improvise with their layout. Her Network quilt is an example of a half square triangle quit.
Those of us who made the slab blocks for the quilt tops for the Canadian Quilters' Association's 2017 Big Quilt Bee were using Cheryl's design for the blocks. These quilts were donated to Ronald McDonald Houses in Canada as a Canada 150 project, See photos here. The leftover blocks were used to construct 4 quilts for Quilts of Valour.
Cheryl's own bio sums up a lot of what she expanded on in her presentation.
"Back when I started quilting it was practically unheard of for a 23 year old to do so, but there I was. Now, over 20 years later I haven’t stopped. In addition to my own creative work, I love to teach, write books, spread the gospel of improv, and design quilts. Every now and then I make a garment, my Grade 8 Home Ec Teacher would be proud.
When it comes to making I am happy to make what inspires. I am well known for my use of bold colour and the quiet whispers of low volume fabrics but I will use anything in between as well. Use what you love, make what makes you happy. Just get your butt in the seat and sew.
In the past decade I’ve published three books: Sunday Morning Quilts (coauthored with Amanda Jean Nyberg, A Month of Sunday, and You Inspire Me to Quilt. I’ve also travelled the world to teach quilting. In between I am raising 3 active kids and running a business with my husband. Sometimes, I sleep."
Keep up with Cheryl via her web site: www.cherylarkison.com and on Instagram and Twitter: @Cheryl_Arkison
Thank you Cheryl for a very informative and motivating evening.
Summer Scrap Challenge
Brigid gave her presentation of the Summer Scrap Challenge projects including the 3 prize winning quilts. The challenge participants saw this presentation during the challenge wrap up Zoom call in early September.
We saw some beautiful Show and Tell projects and enjoyed their stories.
The evening wrapped up with the prize draws.
The Library prize was her "You Inspire Me to Quilt" book donated by Cheryl Arkision (co-author) and it was won by Emma.
The $10 door prize gift certificates for Auntie Em's Scrapbooking & Quilting in Cornwall are going to lucky winners Tina, Joyce M, and Brenda G.
-- Janet Brownlee, Communications
We kicked off our new guild year on Wednesday September 22 with an exciting, information packed meeting full of inspirational ideas, and guild news. What a wonderful welcome back to returning guild members and a welcome for several new members!
Guest Speaker Lise Bélanger
Our guest speaker, Lise Bélanger, wowed us with her beautiful custom art quilts and her stories about their design and creation.
Lise certainly delivered on her promotion of her presentation:
'Everyone is creative; you just have to listen to your creativity. This lecture introduces you to my competition quilts, my creative process, and the techniques I use to create them. What is most important to me is to show you how it is possible to relax into the creative process, what I call making space, getting inspired and trusting yourself. You will see that I don't have all the answers when I start a project, and that's often best."
Lise's quilting journey began as a child (her grandmother had a fabric store), then she moved on to sewing costumes, designing a line of children's clothing, and then to learning the techniques to make textile art paintings. Two years later she won first prize in the CQA Trend-Tex Challenge. From there she has never looked back with many more awards, including the 2012 and 2013 Trend-Tex Challenges, and some truly beautiful works of art.
She included photos of many or her works, and some very interesting details of her creative process in designing and constructing them in her presentation to us. Her two key principles are that she always thinks she can do a project and that she can easily let go and wait for inspiration when she doesn't know what to do next.
Lise is a very engaging, funny, encouraging, and inspirational speaker, and a tremendously talented artist who has created some beautiful and unique pieces of fabric art.
There is much more information from Lise and an extensive photo gallery of her creations for you to check out on her web site. http://en.libexpression.com
Lise kindly brought along 2 packages of her art cards, which are going to lucky draw winners Annet and Betty.
To kick off the 20th anniversary year of our guild, current guild member Katrina Kahn shared her memories of the enthusiasm and excitement of that first ever guild meeting on September 26, 2001. What lovely stories about the tight knit group of quilters who got this guild started. Thank you Katrina!
Brigid and her Program team kicked off a number of programs for us.
Two workshops are planned (via Zoom):
This year's Block-of-the-Month will feature a revisiting of some blocks from the past 20 years. BOM co-ordinator Amanda chose several blocks and spun the wheel to choose the September block! It landed on the "Slice of Life" block from 2014-2015. Members are encouraged to make all of the blocks in the fabrics and colours of their choice and either keep them or hand them in at the end of the year for future guild Charity projects.
Refer to the Block-of-the-Month page for instructions and a photo of the September block.
Brigid also mentioned that the Summer Scrap Quilt Challenge projects will be on display at Sew Inspired in the near future.
Tina delivered 111 placemats to the new Grove Nursing Home in Arnprior the earlier in the day of the meeting. What an amazing contribution from our guild.
Tina also described the charity projects we'll be undertaking this year.
Vickie provided more details on her "Drunkard's Path" President's Challenge which you can read about on the web site Challenges page.
Thank you to all of the members who shared their latest projects with us - pictures are on the Show-and-Tell page.
Our meeting wrapped up with the prize draws. The Library prize was won by new member Shirley Coleman, and the $10 door prize gift certificates for Watergirl Quilt Co in Prescott were won by Rennie, Vickie and Katrina.
-- Janet Brownlee, Communications
At our March meeting we welcomed another very interesting guest speaker. This month we were treated to a presentation by the very talented Jackie White who joined us from her rural home on Manitoulin Island. Jackie describes herself as "a designer, quilter, pattern creator and lover of all things handmade".
Jackie's quilts are mainly modern quilts and they're fun! Lots of bright colours and often featuring circles in the design or polka dot fabrics. Many of her designs are simple yet stunning. For example, in her one block quilts simply rotating some of the blocks creates a very impressive effect.
A number of Jackie's designs have been published in magazines including Quilter's World and Canadian Quilter, the CQA magazine.
Several of Jackie's designs are featured in books published by Martingale, including this one in their I Love Log Cabins book.
Jackie enjoys creating fun and simple designs for youth to make.
And she likes incorporating different fabrics including denim, and embellishments such as felt, one half of a zipper for a flower stem or along the edge of the quilt, rick rack, and one quilt featured many flattened bottle caps with a button sewed in the middle of each one! She also enjoys 3D designs
Jackie showed us a number of her smaller works where she really showcases her creativity, something that she feels is important for all of us for our physical and mental health, especially in these pandemic times. And she showed us photos of her pieces that have been in national juried shows.
In conjunction with the CQA, Jackie has designed some very successful quilt alongs (QAL) to promote quilting across Canada.
52 Blocks in 52 Weeks was a very successful QALin 2019. Our guild member Elizabeth Couture participated in that one and she sent along a photo of one of her quilts for Show and Tell. From Elizabeth "We couldn’t wait for Tuesday mornings for the week’s design. Of course, by the time we got it, the East Coasters had already produced finished blocks! We quilted one of each block in our chosen colour scheme and one each using Christmas scraps. I made 3 lap quilts with the results."
And our guild member Sue Hodgins participated in Jackie's recent Cov-recome quilt along - here's Sue's finished quilt. Sue is on our Program committee and she's been lining up our guest speakers.
Jackie's latest quilt along, Just Breathe, started in February. Patterns for all of Jackie's quilt alongs and other designs can be purchased from her web site shop.
For more information about Jackie and photos of her quilts, see her:
Thank you to everyone who provided photos and interesting stories of their work for Show and Tell. This commissioned quilt made by Vickie and Emma.
Photos of all of the quilts are on the Show and Tell page.
As usual, our meeting finsihed up with prize draws. The Library prize was won by Allison K. And the $10 gift Sew Inspired certificates went to Jane W, Betty R, and Diane A. Congratulations to the lucky winners!
by Janet Brownlee, Communications
I feel that we're really getting into our Zoom guild meeting groove now with interesting speakers, familiar faces on our screens, and seeing our own work in Show-and-Tell.
This was our first ever "bring a friend" meeting! We were all given the opportunity to invite a friend (or 2) to this meeting and we were delighted to welcome about 15 invited guests. The meeting opened with an opportunity for all of our guests to introduce themselves and this got the evening off to a wonderful start.
Our guest speaker was Karen Brown of Just Get It Done Quilts. Many of our guild members were already familiar with Karen from her web site and her extensive library of excellent YouTube videos, and while I wasn't among those, the advance information that Sue provided in the newsletters certainly caught my interest.
Karen started out by telling us that she had grown up in Pakenham and that she was thrilled to be joining our Arnprior & District Quilters' Guild for the evening. And that she now identifies as a content resident of Toronto where she is a member of the Toronto Modern Quilt Guild.
Karen then guided us through a cognitive exercise where we identified which aspects of quilting we particularly enjoy and are often more skilled at, and those that are less enjoyable and we're more likely to struggle with. This led us to recognizing which general quilting character category we each fit into: 1 Visionary, 2 Healer, 3 Warrior, or 4 Teacher. To be a better quilter, we need to value our strengths or as Karen calls them, our "superpowers" and to recognize that easy does not equate to effortless. It's important to recognize our weaknesses not just for what they are, but to determine what we can do to improve our skills on those areas. Karen, who identifies as a 3 Warrior, recommended tackling a challenging task for a short period by setting a timer for 30 minutes, and committing to working at it for that time. She also encouraged us to practise techniques such as free motion quilting, to improve our skill.
Karen mentioned a number of her videos that can help us improve our skills, including hacks for straight seams and mitred corners.
Karen shared her notion of an "afterquilt" to use up scraps from the quilt top to make blocks that go into the quilt back. And she recommended her very first video on her versatile Economy Block. She talked about her recent January Declutter Challenge.
Karen's web site Just Get It Done Quilts is packed with interesting information on her Blog, patterns and other downloads, links to her YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest accounts, and a sign up for her regular newsletters.
We are grateful to Karen for sharing so many interesting ideas and philosophies with us and inspiring us to become better quilters.
During Show-and-Tell Gwen showed us her Christmas ornaments that she recently made from Karen's Christmas Ornament Tutorial video. Gwen plans to give one to each of her female guests at a future Christmas dinner.
You can see more photos of our guild members' inspiring work on the Show-and-Tell page, including a peek inside these cute travel iron cases that Amanda V showed us.
Joyce showed us the next block in the Block of the Month mystery project. You can find a photo of this modified Attic Window block and the instructions on the Block-of-the-Month page.
Our meeting wrapped up with prize draws. The Library prize was won by Karen M. And the $10 gift Sew Inspired certificates went to Gwen P, Liz G, and Lynne W. Congratulations to the lucky winners!
by Janet Brownlee, Communications
At our first guild meeting of the new year we got a fascinating look at some outstanding modern quilting from our guest presenter, Peter Byrne, who joined us via Zoom from Toronto. After various creative job experiences Peter made his first quilt in 2009 and has since risen to prominence in the modern quilting community with his amazing award winning designs and creations.
Peter's presentation provided a comprehensive look at several aspects of his quilting journey starting with QuiltCon 2020, then an in depth look at his award winning quilts, a tour of his awesome studio, a look at the first 2 quilts he made in 2009, his experience in the Toronto Modern Quilt Guild, and his thoughts on making quilts specifically for juried shows.
Tip: Click/tap on the links and photos below for more information and higher resolution photos.
Peter's quilts earned 2 (of the 4) top prizes at QuiltCon 2020 in Austin TX and 2 firsts - first solo Canadian, and first male QuiltCon winners, giving him the title "King of Modern Quilting".
Peter's Starring You won Best in Show!
And his Cityscape won Best Machine Quilting, Frameless.
Pathways represents the diverse communities in Toronto. It includes 2,500 2.5" half square triangles and illustrates hover quilting, a unique new form of raw edge appliqué. Peter described hover quilting to us using photos of his work during construction.
Peter's Grandmother's Flower Garden String quilt features hexies, and was accepted into the Quilt Canada 2020 juried show, which will wrap up this spring virtually.
Watercolour also features hover quilting, in a star and hexie design. This quilt was also accepted into Quilt Canada 2020.
Shuttered Part 1 (pictured) and Part 2 reflect our lives before and during Covid-19.
Peter's quilts typically feature bright colours, and innovative construction techniques.
Some of the teachers who helped launch and inspire Peter's quilting journey included Craftsy courses by Christa Watson, and Stephanie (Steff) Rose, a fellow member of the Toronto Modern Quilt Guild. And now Peter enjoys teaching others through his workshops, and inspiring many others through his presentations and his quilts.
We'll be watching for Peter's 5 quilts that will be featured in the upcoming Quilt Canada 2020-2021 combined juried show.
For more information about Peter, look to his web site peterbquilts.com and his Instagram account @petersquilts.
Show and Tell featured 25 of our members' projects and we enjoyed hearing the stories about these stunning creations. Here are a few that we saw and you can see all of the photos on the Show and Tell page.
The meeting ended with prize draws:
Congratulations to the lucky prize winners!
Our last guild meeting of this tumultuous year of 2020 was a much more subdued version of our usual festive Christmas pot luck get together but on the bright side for some of us, it featured a glass of wine! (or 2).
This meeting did feature our first Zoom Show-and-Tell. Guild members sent in their photographs of their quilts and other quilted creations and then told us about them. Seeing each others work, and hearing their stories and tips is a key element of our guild meetings and we were delighted to catch up on what our members have been creating.
Thank you to Brenda, Brigid, Elizabeth, Emma, Gwen, Joyce M, Joyce T, Louise V, Marilyn, Nancy H, Rennie, Sue H, Sue W, and Vickie for sharing their pieces with us.
You can see all 45+ photos of these projects on the Show-and-Tell page.
The lucky winners of the draw for $10 gift certificates for Watergirl Quilt Co (in Prescott and online) were Georgene B and Joyce T. And Kathy F won the Library gift package. Congratulations to our winners!
Special thanks to Vickie who hosted the meeting.
We all look forward to seeing the end of 2020 and welcoming the new year 2021. See you in January regardless of the winter weather on Zoom!
Now that we have settled in to our new Zoom meeting experience, we were very happy to welcome Bonnie Rankin as our guest speaker at our November 2020 guild meeting.
Bonnie is a past president of the Canadian Quilters' Association (CQA) and a very creative and accomplished quilter. The first part of her presentation was a trunk show. And once again we were thrilled to get an excellent close up look that Zoom provides, at Bonnie's beautiful quilts.
Bonnie comes from a family of quilters that included her quilting father. Bonnie loves trying new techniques and she enjoys working with a wide variety of fabrics including wool and flannel. Her show included applique, paper piecing, and curved piecing. And she's used needle punch felting to create landscapes.
A small sample of the quilts Bonnie showed us are pictured below.
The second portion of Bonnie's presentation was about the CQA. She gave us an interesting overview of the various activities and her experience as president. She encouraged us all to check out the CQA web site
Our quilt guild is a long time guild member of the CQA.
The meeting ended with draws for a $10 gift certificate at The PickleDish Quilt Shop in Carleton Place and the lucky winners were Diane A, Barb deV, and Gwen P. The Library gift package went to Eleanor K.