Friday, December 30, 2011

Reflections on 2011

As 2011 comes to the end and we ring in 2012, I would like to reflect on the past year.  I started the year with good intentions and enthusiasm about continuing to make barn quilts.  I did start the year by making the New Year's barn quilt.  This was a challenge presented to me by my friend, Suzy Parron from Stone Mountain, GA.  I have a link to Suzi's blog here on my blog.  I finished the New Year's barn quilt in about a week. 


I thought that it would be a neat idea to make a barn quilt to comemorate all the holiday's of the year.  If you've been following my blog, you will see that the idea never materialized and I went into dormency (for a lack of a better word).  Other activities came up through the course of the year which didn't help.  To be honest, that really isn't a concrete excuse.  I should have found time.  When autumn came I told myself that I had to get back into the game.  Halloween was coming up, so I made the Halloween Pinwheel.

This project got my creative juices flowing again and I was looking into what to make for Christmas.  In the meantime, I received a much needed adrenaline boost from a lady in Illinois who wanted me to make a barn quilt for her mother, as a Christmas present!!  I couldn't believe that one of my creations would be hanging on someone's house, out of state!!!  As of this writing I'm awaiting photo's from Illinois of the barn quilt hanging.  When I receive those photo's I will post it on my blog!

I now had to think about what to make for Christmas.  My thoughts were answered by a good friend of our's, Sue Messinger, who I had made a door quilt (1' x 1') back in 2010.  Unfortunately, I don't have a photo of it to show.  Sue wanted me to make a Christmas door quilt for her.  I didn' take long to come up with a pattern!!

Does it look familiar?  That's right!  It's the same block pattern that I used for the Illinois barn quilt.

Now that the creative juice's are flowing, I ordered new business cards AND door magnets for my pickup truck, so I can catch the attention of all the lovely quilting ladies traveling on the roads to their favorite quilt shops!!!  I've been commissioned by a lady who I work with to make 2 barn quilts for her.  One for her summer cottage in New Hampshire and one for her home her in Connecticut.  So, hopefully, 2012 will be a great year for Barn Quilts by Dave!!

I want to take this time to wish all of you a happy and healthy New Year!!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Door quilt update

Several posts back I featured my latest 'door' quilt (1' x 1') that I made for a friend, Sue Mesinger.  She already had a door quilt that I made for her last year, but wanted something with a Christmas theme.  She sent a photo of the door quilt that is now hanging on the front door that I recently made for her. 

It's amazing how the colors pop out at you using a dark colored door as a background. 

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Traveling Advertising!

Connecticut is blessed to have a large number of quilt shops around the State.   Just ask my wife.  She has visited everyone of them.........and more than once!!!!  I've been to several of these shops with her and I was amazed at the steady number of customer's that come in and out of these shops.  So, how do I take advantage of this customer traffic?  The online printing company that I use to print out my business cards, also offer door magnet's.  Fantastic!!!  I had them make up two for me to put on my pickup truck, so that the quilting ladies, traveling the highways of Connecticut, hopefully will take notice and give me a call.  Or, traveler's who have no idea what a barn quilt is may just call me, or visit my website, to see what they are.   Should be interesting!!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

When you think about Christmas in New England your first thought is snow covered fields, a definite nip in the air and the sounds of snow blowers and snow mobiles.  Not this year!!!!  We have had temperatures in the 50's and 60's for the last month.  The fields are still green and I've heard the sounds of lawnmower's, weed wacker's and leaf blowers!!!  So, how can you get into the Christmas spirit with these conditions?
Last year I made a door quilt for our friend, Sue Mesinger.  I call it a door quilt because it's 12 inches square and hangs on your door.  Several months ago Sue wanted to know if I would make another one for her.  I told her that I would.   Being close to Christmas I decided to do one with a Christmas theme.
Coping the pattern that I used for my last barn quilt that I shipped to Illinois, I proceeded with picking out the colors that I would use for this one.  I would also add details to the door quilt, to make it more Christmasy.  Is that such a word?!

I stuck with the typical colors of Christmas for the design which are red and green.  Once the board was painted, I started to think about what type of patterns I would add to it.  I had purchased a package of rubber stamps from my local A. C. Moore craft store.  There was a stamp in the package that looked like a star burst.  But, when I did a sample stamping using white paint, the impression looked like a cluster of snowflakes.  Fantastic!!  I then taped off the dark red and became stamping my impression using white paint.  I was very happy with the result!  I didn't want to leave the white area's left barren, so I thought holly's may look good there.  I went on the computer and search out line drawings for holly and came up with what you see here.  I sized the drawing down to fit the area, placed the design over the spot it was going to go and then, with a pen, I traced over the picture making a line impression onto the board.  That impression became my template to apply the paint.  I did the same thing with the silver bells and the large snowflakes.  This next picture give you a better look at the designs.

 I then finished the board by painting the border.  This border was painted silver to match the silver bells.  
This quilt was a lot of fun to work on.  It gave me a chance to hone my skills on detail painting and my first time using Folk Art paints.  This quilt also got me into the Christmas spirit, even though it's still mild outside and no forecast of snow for, at least, another week or so.
I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!!