Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Chinese Coin Demonstration

Since agreeing to give a short demonstration on Chinese Coins that date looms ever larger in my mind. Several of my Coin quilts were gifted away while others are tops at best {and some are just ideas in my brain.} It didn't seem right to have only photos to show; I need to finish {and keep} some. And I need to create a simple-yet-interesting Coin top to start them off.

How to best explain this process to new quilters is another issue. What process? As my sister aptly noted, I just pull everything from my stash and scrap bag and throw it together. Finally I wrote what I think I do. Now I will follow those directions {guidelines? suggestions?} to verify that's a workable plan.

Dovetailing my efforts, I cut strips with a certain person in mind. This woman likes yellow. "Yellow and what?" you ask. Unspecified. Last time I made her a string quilt that avoided resolving that question. This time I'm adding green. Yellow, black, white, and green. Easy peasy.

Chinese Coin fabrics in yellow, green, black and white

The yellow and green look great together. Probably a bit louder than she wants but, hey.

Yellow and green Chinese Coin columns

Adding the white columns made the green unworkable. Now the green is too bright, too loud. It makes the other columns look faded and dirty.

Yellow, white, and green columns of Chinese Coins

After a day's reflection, I sewed only yellow and white columns together. A soft, lovely quilt I think she will enjoy. Well, there are some wild fabrics in there but it does come from me and I like the buffalo plaid, the black and cream triangles, and the white daisies {which I bought for Freddy Moran's class when we took her shopping... or more truthfully, we drove while she took us shopping. Good memory there.} I bought a yard but only used one arc's worth in the Polka Dot quilt, so it became the back of the Racetrack quilt. One strip surfaced in the scrap bag.

Yellow and white Chinese Coin quilt top

Chinese Coins VI contains most of my talking points with no extraneous techniques to muddy the presentation. Mixing prints, using solid white, adding a strip square, changing column widths, and ruler cutting the sides. The only thing missing is using a third color. Much as I and FO (future owner) like this quilt, it might confuse new quilters into thinking they should only make two color Coins.

Sigh. I'll have to try again. Another sigh because there are still many green coins to use up. I do wish I could learn to cut what is needed rather than creating a small mountain of pieces each time.


Quilt Trunk Show in Berkeley
A special treat yesterday: Julie Silber presented a trunk show of some of her quilts dating from 1828-1948. Here's my favorite of the night. All she needed to add is, "Make up your bed."

Red and green quilt in Julie Silber's collection

Our friend, Rod Kiracofe helped her display the quilt and showed one of his Wheel quilts.

Julie Silber holds a Wheel quilt from Rod Kiracofe's collection

Rod and Julie are selling quilts from their collections February 10 and 11. They are sure to be swamped with buyers.

Enjoy the day, Ann

32 comments:

  1. The white and yellow coin quilt is beautiful! I agree the green overwhelmed the whites and yellows. How about using the greens and make a green, blue, and orange coin quilt top? Throw in just a touch of the yellow pieces you have left over.

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    1. That sounds like a plan, Patty. I have lots of blues but I'll wait to cut oranges until I run out of yellow. There's more than I realized in the little mountain. Ha.

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  2. For your demonstration: Could you do a power point presentation of your past coin quilts?
    Love your Chinese Coin II quilt and Rod's!

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    1. I thought about a power point but it's supposed to be a hands on demo. I think they'd rather work on their own stuff than look at mine. You probably noticed I don't have trouble talking; it's shutting up that's the issue. Ha. So bringing several and setting them around as examples may be my best plan. {But if anyone asks me to give a lecture, I sure have enough for a powerpoint.} Thanks!

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  3. Your coins are so pretty. Could look at those scrappy bits all day!

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  4. I think you need to include process photos just like the ones you shared here. There IS no perfect way to explain how to mix colors and textures - it is a hands on experiential process. And the best way is to just get into it. You can show your previous quilts (or photos of them) and talk through the process you went through during their creation (auditioning, editing, evaluating, allowing them to rest while you pondered, etc.) I think you'll do marvelously. (and I love making coin quilts in saturated colors - lots of greens, one with lots of darker blues, one with light blues, one with a mixtures of creams/grays/whites, etc.). SO many options to be considered. (patriotic, seasonal, thematic, rainbows, etc.)

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    1. Thanks for the good points, Julie. Since these are recent quilts I may bring some of the "rejected" strips. I can place them over the quilt so people can see why I thought they didn't work.
      I like your named options and will add that in as another way to think about color choices.
      I hope to get them into cutting and sewing very quickly. After all, everyone has different color sensibilities. {Some people actually prefer quiet fabrics.} I have very few quiet quilts. Even this one, definitely narrow value range, has loads of zingers.
      Thanks for the good wishes.

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  5. You will do very well at your presentation. The great variety of strips you cut is what makes them so special. I love looking at a closeup and seeing the little surprises. Question: What is a strip block? You go, girl!

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    1. I don't know what to call it. It's a square made of strips of equal width that run parallel across the block. I throw leftover blocks in my scrap bag and found it there. I cross cut it and added it in the bottom of the middle yellow column. It didn't work out as well in this quilt but it can add a nice "dotted line" to the design.

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  6. so that demonstration was interesting... I decided the green had a lot of yellow in it so it blended with the yellow. The white and green had a lot of contrast so the green stood up loudly. the yellow had a lot of white in it so it blended with the whites and it looks just terrific. I swear, every quilt teaches us about color theory. LeeAnna

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    1. I agree with your points, LeeAnna, and am glad I didn't "force" the greens into this top. I like the way it came out even though it wasn't what I'd planned.

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  7. I like how you came to that yellow and white softness--the yellows give just the right spark for me.
    And, I always waaay overcut;000 ..which is why I have strips and strips and strips left--and usually am sick of the colors by the time the quilt is done..[and I find it hard to "See" those colors in another way for
    quite a while...].
    Maybe those greens will find their way into a Holiday quilt? Hugs Julierose

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    1. It did turn out well, didn't it? I hardly ever make such a quiet quilt. And like you, it's hard to see the leftovers in another combination. A holiday quilt sounds good but I'm planning to use them up as other examples of this color combination. Then I'll either have some more samples to show or a bunch of baby quilts to restart the reserve pile. If I could trust myself to not cut a million reds...

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  8. Interesting thank you to see how your mind works through the process : )

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    1. Thanks. I didn't give much detail here, just photos.

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  9. I love how you walked us through your thought process. I really liked the green but I understand why you decided to stay with the yellow and neutral, because I like it too. Fun, bright, and interesting.

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    1. I'm glad you agree with my decision. I like that green, too so will definitely use it soon.

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  10. I liked the yellow and green and probably would have added brown instead of white. Yesterday and today I was sorting through strings and that was one of the color combos I set aside for a project (as well as pink/white, blue/gray, brights). But you are right...the white didn't belong with both yellow and green and you ended up with a wonderful example for your demo. I like the yellow/white with pops of black. I know you are going to do a great job with your presentation because you do a great job explaining things and inspiring us here on your blog!




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    1. I hadn't considered brown. In fact, I recently finished using loads of old browns from my stash and have few left. Glad you agree the white didn't work with those yellows and greens. Funny how that happens. I think FO will like this version better anyway although I could have set it aside for someone else.

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  11. great coin quilt and I love Julie's antique quilts.
    That block from"mother" cracked me up - good for her! lol

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    1. The entire room erupted in laughter when Julie brought it out. What a hoot. Right there front and center.

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  12. Very nice yellow and white CC, I like the different widths you have.

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    1. Thanks, Maureen. I am coming to appreciate the colors. Including different widths sure helps use up more scraps; always a win in my book.

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  13. I like the white and yellow and it was interesting to view your process :)

    And that red and green quilt by Julie with the text...LOL!!

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    1. Wasn’t Julie’s quilt a hoot? And beautiful, too. I’m glad you enjoyed the process.

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  14. love, love, love your quilts and seeing your process!!

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  15. I always enjoy reading about your processes and how you ended up where you did... lots of learning for all of us I think! Love love love the 'wheel quilt' - another one to add to my list!

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    1. Isn't that Wheel fabulous? Rod has such a good eye for design. And he and Julie are both selling off some of their quilts. I'm sure they'll be mobbed.
      It's good to know you enjoy reading my process posts, Linda. As a maker I'm incredibly interested in how and why others do what they do.

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  16. What a lovely, soft-coloured piece. I agree with Julie that showing/explaining this sort of process detail is a great way to help people think through making their own quilts (and maybe they should be reading the comments section on your blog too!)

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  17. I think some of the hesitation/fear of mixing prints and colors can be attributed to the current trend of quilt media (print, online) to show quilts made from collections (and new-right-now collections at that). I know that the fabric manufacturers want to promote their wares and they buy the ads, and that we want quilt shops to stay in business. But "copy this and here's what you'll get" stifles creativity and the ability to make a quilt that is one-of-a-kind..........All that said, I like your coins and reading about your ultimate color selection . And the vintage quilts are wonderful.

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I enjoy reading your comments and usually reply here where everyone can read and join in. We have some great conversations.