September 2016 meeting

With the change of seasons, September also
brought us our first official meeting with the new TMQG Crew. The training
wheels are off and we’re fuuuhh-lying!

Block lotto biz

Berene shared an interesting story about being
contacted by Bill Kerr, one half of the pioneering Modern Quilt Studio (the
other half being the lovely Weeks Ringle). Unbeknownst to Berene, her tutorial on a
previous block lotto, Pick Up Sticks, was an infringement of a pattern Bill & Weeks had
in an out-of-print book of quilt designs. As the pattern was never digitized
for the interwebs, it kinda propagated on its own and has been used by many not
knowing where it came from. You can read more about it here. It just goes to show how nebulous our creative
world can be. At least our community is kind and understanding, so no hard feelings all around. 
And to make up for this innocent
transgression, Berene (and Georgia!) won our Spools block lotto. Nice work, karma.

“You mean they’re ours?! We get to keep them?!”
Just in time for Hallowe’en, Andrea proxy-presented
Julie’s block lotto, the scrappy Spider Web Block. You’ll find several
tutorials online for this classic block including this one or this one. Kona Black was used as the starting foundation piece and the finished block measures 12” square. (BTW, the bottom black triangle in the image below hadn’t been string-pieced yet.)

These spidey, tingly blocks will be raffled off at
our October 30th meeting so get your string quilting game on. The
more you make, the more chances you have at winning the whole Jack-o’lantern pot
of blocks. Muahahahaha!!

Let bylaws be bylaws

Catherine & Dia took us through the
ratification of our guild’s new bylaws and a vote was taken. And like the US election
campaign, it was too close to call. JK! It passed and you can review them at your
leisure here.

With glowing hearts

Valerie of Quilts at the Creek fame dropped
off a box of some sharp red and white fabric generously donated by Northcott.
In celebration of Canada’s upcoming 150th birthday, this year’s QATC goal will
be to display as many red and white quilts at Black Creek Village. Imagine a
sea of gorgeous red and white quilts proudly flapping in the wind. The next
QATC takes place on July 29-30 so you’ve got T minus 10 months to work on some
true patriot love.

Just a click away

Stephanie pulled out a pocket-sized
projector (no acetate overlays for this member) and walked us through a
comprehensively compiled list of online quilting resources. It was thorough and
I liked that members collaboratively shared their faves. I know our
new-to-quilting members and visitors will be checking them pronto. Heck, I
already bookmarked a few new-to-me links. Wait … do people bookmark anymore? Do
people still say heck?

Show & Share

September’s S&S was very lean and I have
to say, I took it personally. So prove me wrong and bring your masterpieces at
our next meeting on October 30.

In the meantime, Lisa shared her Rainbow Rows quilt. I believe everyone should
have a go at making a sharp, spectral quilt.

Rainbow Rows
Catherine teased us with the promise of
three quilts to show but unfortunately for us, she had to give away two. The ‘towel-sized’
Blue Sun is an original quilt pattern and was meant for taking to the park or the beach but
alas, summer is officially over so it’s destined for a nap on the couch.

Blue Sun
Jeannie gave us a sneak peak of a gorgeous quilt
top made up of the TMQG’s very own Samarra Khaja’s awesome Geogram fabric collection for Lecien Fabrics.
Launching at the upcoming Quilt Market, this stunningly graphic collection (and the quilt pattern!) will
be available to the masses this January. I’ll be tucking my allowance into my mattress
in anticipation.


  • The QuiltCon Charity Quilt Challenge
    started off with a bang at our last Sew-Down. Becky’s winning pattern on this
    year’s theme of playing with scale is coming along beautifully. And like two
    dueling grand pianos, some of the quilt was pieced on two tiny Featherweights.
    Old meets new. Watch this space for more updates.
  • Our Instagram account now has over 500
    followers. Yay us! And although our sudden surge in popularity is all well and
    good, we’d love more followers. So click here or on our newly added Instagram button above, follow @torontoMQG
    and enter to win a 1-year membership to our guild. Contest closes on October 2.
  • There were lots of lovely visitors this
    month: Christine, Georgia, Gillian, Jenna, Linda, Marian, Sandy, Susan, and
    Suzi – welcome and hope you’ll join our awesome guild.
  • This month’s door-prize winner was Valerie.
    Thanks to Catherine for donating that adorable pink zippered pouch.

And finally, one month into my role as
Secretary and I’ve already failed you on the bribe promise of a home baked
treat. Believe me, with season 7 of the Great British Bake Off in full swing, I
had all the intention of serving up a sweet confection for our meeting. Unfortunately,
I was waylaid by blunt force on my right shoulder and couldn’t stir some dry
ingredients together, let alone unscrew a bottle of vanilla. I’m not making any
promises but I’m hoping a batch of Dampfnudel or a Bakewell tart is in order
for October’s meeting.
Yours in quilting,

— Debi

August 2016 meeting: Passing the baton

August’s meeting at the TMQG was all about
the transitioning of the Not-Really-Presidents leadership to our recently elected guild board and leaders. A chorus of heartfelt thanks and appreciation went to Becky,
Andrea and Sheila for their tireless work running our rudderless guild these
past few years. That was soon followed by a hearty “Good luck with that!” slap
on the back to the new crew. Becky took us through her last guild housekeeping items
<sniff> and we moved onto our newly-formatted meeting.

Tips & Tricks

Catherine endorsed two quilting aids: the
No Math Quilt Chart & Formulas and a binding tool aptly named, The Binding Tool from TQM
Products. Here’s a great demo of the tool. I attest to being directionally
challenged and am constantly buggering up the dreaded join and so I think I
will add this tool to my arsenal and attempt the other binding tips that were
offered up by some members.

Still on binding, prolific quilter Elaine
shared some great machine binding tips which then got the ball rolling as
other members piped in with their tricks. To say it became a one-upping sesh sounds
barbaric. We’re too genteel for that.
New member Ludgera demo’d her ingenious use
of freezer paper for when there’s no ruler big enough for the job. A great use
would be squaring up blocks, something I rarely do. This might explain the quality
of my piecing. Note to self: listen to Ludgera.
Karen displayed some adorable pincushions
and specifically talked about the stuff you don’t see, the actual stuffing. One
of her preferred fillings is wool roving. The inherent lanolin in wool is like
a spa treatment for those sharpie sharps. So the next time you need to whip up
a pincushion for a guild swap, stuff it with wool. Show some love and gratitude
to the lowly implements that get the job done.
Masterclass quilter Becky shared an oldie
but goodie tip for our new-to-quilting members: pressing seams to one side to
enable seam nesting and therefore accurate matched-up seams. A contentious
issue in the modern quilting movement (PC vs Apple springs to mind), an open-seamer
practitioner (uh, that would be me) challenged the one-siders and expressed frustration
at seams inevitably folding the wrong way once you started piecing your blocks.
It got ugly. We took it outside. Police were called. Thankfully, no one got
hurt. That aside, I promise to give it a go and piece my rows in a mindful,
alternating fashion. Thanks Becky!
All said, whether you’re a novice or a pro,
it’s a good time to be a member of a modern quilt guild when great stuff is

Game Time!

Becky’s parting gift was an innocent
looking, quilt-themed Jumble that sure kept us quiet for a while. And I thought
quilting math was hard. ‘Nine Patch’ was the winning word Jumble and both Andrea
and Sheila were claimed winners. 

Hmmm … I’m just sayin’ … I’m not saying
anything … did I say anything?

Show & Tell

Lisa showed two adorable baby quilts. Phi’s Little Birds was chirpy cheerful
and lovingly made for her grandkids. Rory’s
which she made a few years back, was tonally gorgeous.

Kat’s first attempt at a ‘big’ quilt was Under Another Cover, her take on Heather
Givans Letters from Home. Kat works at the post office museum
so those envelopes are in her DNA. Awestruck, we all imagined what we would
stuff in those envelopes. One could easily hide a snack or two in there. Return to sender!
Elisa shared a few goodies including a
sewing machine cover and a mini-quilt inspired by the colours of the Brazilian
flag and of the recent summer Olympics in Rio. She’s one proud menina! She also shared a mysterious yet
magical reversible quilt-to-pouch-to-pillow called a Quillow. Quilt… pillow… quillow.
Get it? <nudge nudge> Always striving for the latest in napping technology,
I will be adding a quillow to my quilty queue.
Elaine’s Tree Lines quilt showcased a machine quilting pattern that made me think I should give FMQ another go. The recti-linear motif shows up so
beautifully in the negative spaces I like to live in.
Dia’s philosophical Meadow Quilt by Lizzie House is one for the textbooks. Not only does
she get an A+ for the use of nerdy-science fabric, the quilting is
extra-curricular. Longarm’d by Irene of Brayne Waves Quilting, she picked up on
those science cues and mimicked a DNA strand. Makes me wish I studied harder.
A Meadow upon Meadow
Catherine’s April at Elmhust charm pack quilt was a reprieve from making too
many pinwheels at this year’s SWO Mod retreat. Love the serpentine stitch
quilting. She hopes to gift this to her imaginary grandchild.
Laura came in just under the wire with a
freshly bound quilt for a highschool friend’s baby. Made up of kitten-y
goodness HSTs, Scrappy Geese will be
loved and cherished for years to come. I don’t know about you, but I’m a big
fan of quilt labeling in the actual binding. So discrete. And I’m all about
Lisa’s mini quilt of HSTs in jewel-toned solids
made me think I will attempt this one day. But like BIG. And NO prints. Wish me
New member Sakina’s Bargello-inspired crimson
beauty was, if I’m not mistaken, her first attempt at free-motion quilting.
What the what?!


  • A warm shout-out to some new faces this
    month – Leilani, Lisa, Ludgera, Nancy, Sakina, Susan and Xandra – WELCOME! And apologies if I
    missed anyone.
  • Due to a conflict (ahem, that would be mine),
    Elisa graciously volunteered to become our new guild photographer. Yay Elisa!
    She’ll be shooting black & white in the po-mo pictorialism style on a
    medium format Hasselblad. JK, JK. I had to use up some of my art school
    knowledge before wifi waves zapped it all.
  • Don’t forget our upcoming Sew Down at the
    Danforth/Coxwell library from 1:30 to 4:30 this Saturday, September 17th.
    We’ll be working on the 2017 Charity Quilt Pattern. They’re forecasting rain so
    it couldn’t be a better time to stay indoors, indulge in some treats, and craft
    to your heart’s content.

See you on the 25th!
– Debi