Arnprior & District Quilters' Guild Newsletter - September 2020
Happy September everyone! Summer is winding down and quilting season is getting back into gear. I hope everyone had a great and healthy summer in these COVID times.
We had our first meeting of the new year last Wednesday at Robert Simpson Park. It was so great to see so many out (Penny counted 39) and so many lovely quilts for the President's Challenge and the Black and White Challenge.
Paulette and I recently went on a one day "shop hop" to 8 quilt shops! We met up with my cousin (from the Trenton area) and we had a great time, even in these COVID times. Every shop found a way to make social distancing and crowd limits work. As always, it's fun to visit different shops and see the fabrics they stock and the pieces they have on display to entice and motivate us.
Even in this year of social distancing I've been to 13 quilt shops so far this year.
Our meetings will be via "Zoom" (on the internet). We don't know how it will work, but we are going to give it a try. Most guilds are following this path. It's not as great as "in person" but it still allows us to stay connected as a quilting community. It will be a learning process for all of us (including me) so be patient and hang in there.
See you all on Zoom!
-- Frank McCarron, President
2020-2021 Meeting Dates are listed on the Schedule page
Our September guild meeting is on Wednesday September 23 at 7 PM. This will be our first remote meeting and we hope you'll join us on Zoom for this unique initial experience. Watch your email a day or 2 before the meeting for instructions for connecting to this meeting.
Our guest will be Debby Soll who will share her Sashiko techniques with us. You may recall the Debby was scheduled for a meeting last fall and she unexpectedly had to postpone her visit. We look forward to her virtual visit!
We wrapped up our challenges from last year at our late afternoon get together in Robert Simpson Park on September 16.
The President's Challenge and Black and White Challenge projects were displayed in the gazebo and members voted on their favorites. Congratulations to all of the winners and a huge thank you to all who made the amazing entries in these challenges.
Winners of the President's Challenge are:
1st - Margaret Fisher
2nd - Susan Wimperis
3rd - Elizabeth Couture
Winners of the Black and White Challenge are:
1st - Anne Cruickshank
2nd - Joanna Vlaming and Mary DeVries
3rd - Sue Hodgins
1st - Anne Cruickshank
2nd - Joanna Vlaming and Mary DeVries
3rd - Sue Hodgins
Joyce's Program Team did a fantastic job on setting up the gazebo for the outdoor get together where the strong wind made hanging the quilts quite a challenge. Thank you to Joyce Murray, Anne Cruickshank, Jacquie Lavictoire and Sue Hodgins for a very fun evening. And a special thank you to our photographer Emma Russell for these great photos.
Coming soon on the Blog: Photos of more of the challenge projects
Thank you to our 2020-2021 advertisers! Your support funds our Communications budget which includes the hosting of this web site. We are very grateful for this financial support.
To our guild members, please support out advertisers. You can click/tap on any of the advertisements in this newsletter to access the vendor's web site. The vendors are also listed on the Links page.
-- Janet Brownlee, Communications & Newsletter Editor
It sure was nice to see all the familiar faces at the park on Wednesday afternoon! It was a lovely afternoon get together, and I was pleasantly reminded of all the creative quilters we have in our guild. Way to go everyone!
Charity Block - Pick Up Sticks : The cream coloured background blocks were distributed to members at the park, and the instructions for this block is located here. We hope that you enjoy making the blocks with scraps from your stash to make the sticks on your block. For those who weren't able to make it to the park, we will make these background blocks available again in the near future. We don't have a drop off date set yet for the blocks, so make them up and keep them handy and we will announce the instructions for drop off in the next newsletter.
Preemie Quilts - Marilyn Erskine has collected at her doorstep, 53 premie quilts and 6 knitted beanies since Covid started, and has kindly delivered them. We have also collected 35 more quilts and about 6 more knitted beanies at the park on Wednesday! Good work! It has obviously been a great way to use up the scraps and pass the time during Covid. With all this freemotion quilt practice we are all going to be experts!
The NICU nursery (at the Civic Campus of the Ottawa Hospital) has assured us that during Covid they are still happy to receive the quilts, and they wash each quilt there at the nursery campus before they are circulated. So please keep those sweet little quilts coming and we will let you know the next opportunity to deliver them to Marilyn in the next newsletter. Those of you who are new to the guild, the premie quilts instructions are listed here and we will have more batting available to pick up shortly for your use.
Drawstring bags - About 63 precut bag materials were handed out this Wednesday, and that is a great start. Thanks goes to Gwen Pennings for all her time she volunteered to coordinate the materials and cut them out for us! Usually we try to make around 100 of these bags for the Arnprior and district Food Bank to hand out at Christmas, so keep them coming. We will make arrangements to collect the bags from you in November. The instructions to complete the bag is located here, and remember you can use any material that you have saved for a rainy day and don't know what to use it for. :)
Christmas placemats - To make sure that we are all busy helping the community for the next while, please make a place mat for the Arnprior Meals on Wheels. The size is listed here, and this is a great place to use up any orphan blocks you may have. Don't forget this placemat is two sided, one side should be festive xmas material. We will set up a designated drop off for November for this project as well.
One more thing to note; we are still looking for a volunteer that could step forward to help out in the future with guild charity work as Jane would like to step down after two years of service.
Vickie MacNabb and Jane Wickware
Your Charity Team
Did you spend those impossibly hot summer days in your sewing room like I did? It’s sometimes difficult to shun the sun but, when you get into that special sewing space…time flies and soon enough you have a wonderful quilting project done!
I finished up quite a few things and then was left with those inevitable scraps so I turned to a book, Cut the Scraps! by Joan Ford. Lucy and I bought it, along with some others, for the Library but then Covid-19 happened. I became so intrigued with her “ScrapTherapy” that I bought a copy for myself and, yes, I’m trying this therapy to bring my scrappy pile under control. The theory is to cut any fabric less than ¼ yard (I admit to only cutting smaller pieces than that so far) into three sizes of squares: 2 in, 3 ½ in, and 5 in. Then you sort them and store them in clear shoebox size bins. You can have a cutting session whenever you want… a change of pace from being at your machine. The book also contains 20 projects to make; however, I’m not nearly ready for that yet! I’m just happy cutting and stacking for now. I’ll let you know how my therapy is going through this coming year.
We’re all on our own quilting journeys and if you’d like to share yours, let us know!
I am disappointed that our Library is inactive for now, but I hope those of you who have some books out are still enjoying them and keeping them handy. We’ll let you know for sure when returning them will resume!
Keep safe and happy in your sewing space!
Nancy (and Lucy in Cape Breton having a great time!)
2020-2021 Leadership Team
Guild executive members are into our second (or more) years in our positions and it's been a year like no other! We met twice over the summer on our lawn chairs in Frank and Paulette's driveway to plan out this unusual guild year.
Here we are, very happy to be at the recent get together in the park.
Left to right: Joyce Murray - Program, Rennnie Hickey - Treasurer, Vickie MacNabb - Vice President & Charity, Nancy Hayley - Library, Frank McCarron - President, Penny Carruthers - Membership, Paulette McCarron - Secretary, Janet Brownlee - Communications
Co-Librarian Lucy Voss is missing from the photo as she is still in Cape Breton.
As mentioned in a recent email message, membership fees for renewing guild members are waived for the 2020-2021 season. This is due to the number of meetings that were canceled last year and lower expenses anticipated for this year. New members will pay $15 for this year instead of the usual $25.
Your membership has been automatically renewed and a membership form is not required this year. If any of your contact information has changed please notify the guild (firstname.lastname@example.org). This includes any changes to your phone number, email address, or mailing address.
Many thanks to those who sent in photos of your completed projects for our virtual show-and-tell during the last several months.
Our librarians Lucy and Nancy both completed I Spy quilts in the summer.
What's Brigid's Doing?
Welcome Back - well sort of!!
As we won’t be meeting in person for a while, I thought I would have everyone over to my new house, with a tour of my quilting area, even if only virtually. Over the next months, I will be featuring some tips and tricks that I have picked up over the years from many of you. We will feature creative storage solutions; stash management (in my case that may be mismanagement); specialty tools; and ergonomic setups. If you would like to see something specific highlighted, feel free to reach out to us.
I am going to start with a book review and tip on design walls. I will feature something I have never made - a quillow (quilt/pillow).
First step - make a quilt! I have made this quilt pattern before, it’s from the book Think Big by Amy Ellis. The quilt pattern is called Building Blocks. As the title says, it’s big blocks, 18” blocks to be precise, which makes this a fast project. I like that the book shows how many blocks are needed for 5 sizes of quilts, there are other blocks in the book which I will try at some point.
This is for a neighbour who has a much loved quillow that she wanted to replace. The one she had was basically two pieces of fabric with batting between ... not sure it’s even quilted. Sorry ... that’s not happening this time around ... she pretty much knew that before asking! So I proposed this pattern with grey background, pinks, burgundy and mauves which fit her colour scheme and a bonus grey flannel on the back to make it extra snuggly!
Here’s a picture of the top on the design wall. This finishes to 53 x 73, a little too big for the wall. You get the idea! The top was done in less than a day, then onto quilting.
I made an extra block for the pocket, but forgot to take into account that the pocket gets flipped inside out when used as a pillow. I knew she wanted flannel on the inside, to keep her toes warm, so we left it as is. I am pleased with the finished product.
Design wall tip
My design wall was made for about $20. We bought a 4' x 8' sheet of styrofoam insulation at a building supply store. We cut it down to approx 72” high, and cut the leftover in half to extend the 4 ft to about 55”. The pieces were taped together, and we put tape around the edges so that the styrofoam bits are not escaping. I then used a cheap flannel backed table cloth to adhere fabric to. The table cloth is about $4 which is cheaper than batting or flannel. Because I don’t have a wall I can dedicate to it, I store it at the end of my longarm when not in use, and then depending what I am working on, I drag it around the room to where I need it.
-- Brigid Whitnall, Past-Past President
Love to Quilt
Too busy quilting to get the car washed? Can you guess whose car this is?!?!?!