24 February 2013

Quilts by Ginny Radloff and Judy Niemeyer

Ginny Radloff speaking.
On January 28 quilter Ginny Radloff presented her quilting to our guild. Ms. Radloff is living the dream, turning her quilt hobby into a business as a certified instructor of Judy Niemeyer quilt patterns. Wyoming-based  Ms Niemeyer, whose son Brad is now also involved in her enterprise, is a quilt designer whose patterns are ultimately derived from the Mariner's Compass and New York Beauty quilt traditions.

Antique New York Beauty quilt. Source: http://www.rockymountainquilts.com/files/antique_quilts_18.php

Ms. Niemeyer has perfected a method for piecing these types of quilts using paper piecing techniques, in which over-sized fabric pieces are stitched onto a pre-printed paper substrate; each piece is trimmed before the addition of the next piece. The paper is removed when the blocks are finished. Ms. Niemeyer's patterns and methodology are very popular, so she has licensed a team of certified instructors to meet the demand for workshops and lectures.

Team Ginny included her three children, who were obviously, and justifiably, very proud of their mother's accomplishments as they displayed her quilts.

Three offspring, three quilts.
Influenced by the Red and White quilt show at the Armory, perhaps.

I really liked the red and white quilt above, and it was refreshing to see solid fabrics used, as opposed to the ever-present batiks.  Ms. Radloff quilts her own tops; her machine quilting is lovely and would show up even more on solid fabrics, so I hope she might consider using solids in some of her future work.

One of Ms. Niemeyer's newer designs.
Table runners too.

For those not ready to commit to a large quilt, Ms. Radloff sells Judy Niemeyer patterns for table runners and placemats too. This is a good way to "get your feet wet" with the techniques.  

Quilt top.
Another quilt top.
Judy Niemeyer patterns as beautifully interpreted by Ginny Radloff.

As is usually the case, prior to the quilt guild presentation the instructor led week-end workshops. Ms. Radloff is a very good teacher - organized and clear but still fun, helpful and enthusiastic, as was her helper Susan.  We each made one block of a Niemeyer pattern called Desert Sunrise. 

My finished block, in sorbet colors.

11 February 2013

Blizzard of 2013

Parting the snow sea.

Thirty-five years, almost to the day, after DH and I survived the Blizzard of '78, we have renewed our New England weather bragging rights. From early Friday, February 8, until the afternoon of the next day, fierce winds flung 24.9 inches of snow at us, the fifth deepest snowfall on record.  The good news is that we did not lose power, as we did during Hurricane Sandy, when a Norway maple tree on the next block toppled onto a power line.

My car is under there, somewhere.
The Sunday sky was a brilliant, crisp azure, the brightness of the white snow contrasting with the blue shadows. My heroic DH made like a suburban Hercules and dug us out.

Clearing the sidewalks.

A traffic island becomes a very short piste.

Source: http://www.petrexgmbh.com/year-of-the-snake/chinese-paper-cut-out-snake-as-symbol-of-year/

On a warmer note, February 10 marks the beginning of the Year of the Snake, according to the Chinese zodiac cycle, so Happy New Year to everyone who celebrates the lunar calendar.