Madison Quilt Expo—3 Day Adventure!

Have you ever been to the Madison Quilt Expo?  I go every year.  Some years only one day–other years, two days.  Sometimes I volunteer, sometimes I just go with a friend to the vendors/quilt show/lectures.  But this year, I decided to go all out and go all three days…and (for the first time) I actually had the courage to enter one of my quilts.  What an adventure!

I was so excited and honored when I got the letter in the mail a few months ago that my Hydrangea art quilt was accepted!


I was so happy, just to be in it.

Hydrangea Quilt

I did a blog awhile back on making this quilt: “Lake Washington with Blue Hydrangeas”.

And how I dyed the hydrangea fabric a deeper blue and fussy cut the individual flowers; and (using a shibori dye method) how I made the water fabric with ripples for the lake.

It wasn’t a prize winner, but I was happy to just have it show with all those talented quilters’ creations!

Quilt at Expo

Quilt at Expo with

I was certainly a happy camper!

Me and my qult

If you’ve never been to the Expo, or would just like to see some of the beautiful quilts from last year—The Expo site has four videos featuring quilts from last year’s Expo:

Just click here.

Next time I’ll share with you  highlights from some of the classes I attended, and (of course) shopping with the vendors…

Until next time, HAPPY QUILTING!


Mulberry Patch Quilts

Dying Fabric for the Lake Washington Quilt: Part 3

So here’s the third and final installation  in the “Lake Washington Art Quilt” saga (dying fabric & creation of) …

I’m happy with the final outcome of the water fabric for “Lake Washington”, and started free-hand machine quilting the sky and water (piers and background).


But I don’t have the right color of fabrics for the hydrangea bushes in the foreground.  The only fabric I could find in my stash (besides piecing millions of tiny petals from individual fabrics) was this one…


Not at all the color of the blue hydrangeas I love so much in the Seattle area!  So…having blue dye still left over I decided to experiment by over-dying the fabric.


I tried two different strengths of dye with the soda ash solution, and placed cuts of the hydrangea fabric into containers.  After curing at least 4 hours, I rinsed them out, washed & dried them–and this was the result!  Much, much better…


So I began adding the hydrangea to the foreground, one flower at a time…


And then started the long task of outlining every little petal in different varigated blues, greens, and purples that I had in my lovely Sulky cotton thread stash…


The quilting took quite awhile over a few days–I had to take breaks or my eyes would go “buggy”!  (I need a neck and shoulder massage!!!)

But here’s the final result–not quite final–but at least quilted and ready to bind.


I’ll add another photo after it’s “really” done… 🙂

Happy Quilting!


Mulberry Patch Quilts

Dying Fabric for the Lake: Part 2

After the last few dying results not being exactly what I wanted, I thought I’d it try using a different preparation technique with each of two fabrics.

I neatly fan-folded a fat quarter of PFD cotton fabric, pressing each crease with my hot iron and then loosely hand tacked it all together with cotton thread and a loose running stitch).


I gathered the other fat quarter by hand sewing running stitches and pulling them…


Using my Procion Dye mixed in hot water, and adding it to a soda ash/water solution, I put each fabric into a large plastic container and poured the dye mixture over them, letting them set for at least four hours.

Here were the results:

Results: fan folding, ironing creases, & loose running stitch

Results: fan folding, ironing creases, stitching

Results: hand-stitching & gathering at ends

Results: hand-stitching & gathering at ends


They’re interesting, but way too dark.  And the gathering is very hard to get out.  So I tried once again, using the folding technique–this time using rubber bands instead of tacking stitch–with a lighter dye bath (not so heavy on the blue dye powder).


Second try–in the lighter dye bath


I was much happier with this result:


Results: lighter dye bath & folding


And I think it will work for my Lake Washington water fabric…


So, with that done…

I’m starting to put the landscape quilt together…


I’ll post again, as the quilt evolves…

Happy Quilting!


Mulberry Patch Quilts