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Wedding Quilt Chuppah

The biggest gift we were given for our wedding was the gift of a handmade quilt that we used as a chuppah from my mom and her Quilty Ladies – from L to R  – Nancy, Judy, Ann, Mom, Miyoko, and Susie. An untold number of stitches done with love over an untold number of hours combined to create a stunning heirloom gift that we are so very honored to have. What is a chuppah, some of you might be asking? In our ceremony we explained: “In the Jewish tradition, marriages take place under a chuppah. A chuppah represents a home. Just as the chuppah is open on all four sides, so was the tent of Abraham open for hospitality. Thus, the chuppah represents hospitality to one’s guests – that’s all of you, our family, friends, and loved ones. This symbolic home lacks furnishings to remind us that a home …

How to Hand Quilt from an Expert

I recently learned to hand quilt. In sharing my story, I tried to describe hand quilting. I received a couple of questions asking for more of explanation. I really don’t know enough to answer them properly, so I reached out to Ann Rindge, the winner of Best Hand Quilting at the 2013 Vashon Quilt Guild Quilt Show for her description. Ann says: “The technique I am most comfortable with uses a rocking motion with the needle.  After I have buried the knot into the quilt sandwich, I balance the needle gently under the thimble of my top hand and the middle (or index) finger of my bottom hand.  The needle should be perpendicular to the quilt.  The thumb of my thimble hand rests on the quilt just in front of where I wish to travel with the needle.  I gently push down on the needle until I start to feel the tip of …

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Vashon Quilt Guild Quilt Show 2013

The Vashon Quilt Guild Quilt Show, where I learned to hand quilt last weekend, had an amazing quantity of beautiful quilts. I thought I would share a small selection of them. Many of the quilts feature Kaffe Fassett fabrics because the local fabric store, Island Quilter, specializes in his fabrics. This meant that there were lots of bright and colorful quilts, right up my alley! The community quilt was on display. Every year for many, many years, Catholine Tribble has put together a quilt that features blocks made by different community members and is raffled to support Vashon Allied Arts, raising thousands of dollars to support art in the community. This year the theme was businesses of Vashon and includes a block made by my mom (and blocks made by two other Quilty Ladies, her weekly quilting partners-in-crime). The quilt blocks are appliqued by hand and all of the quilting …

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I Learned to Hand Quilt

This weekend I went to the Vashon Quilt Guild Quilt Show (Vashon is the island outside of Seattle where my mom lives). During the two-day event, my mom and her friends – her “Quilty Ladies” who she stitches with every week – had a quilt frame set up with a quilt on it and were demonstrating how to hand quilt. The quilt had been previously basted (to hold the back, batting, and top together). The blue painters tape was put down so that the quilters had a straight line to follow (and replaces the need for chalking the lines). I was surprised that the quilt was not taught, but was told that it needed some slack so that your bottom hand could pinch the fabric. The large open spaces in the quilt won’t have straight lines across them but will instead be quilted individually in a decorative pattern using a …