Author Archives: Caryn Payzant

About Caryn Payzant

Mid Life Guru who loves to bring the world together through social media.

Couples Have Double The Fun At Road

Road to California is a great destination for some fun couple time.

Road 2017 was the first time visiting the show for Mike and Joan. Joan heard about Road from some of her “Sit and Sew” friends. Joan is new to quilting. She started a year and a half ago making traditional quilts. Joan says she likes the idea of “creating something unique to you.” She was really interested to see what Road had to offer and found it to be “mindboggling.” Mike brought Joan to the show. He shared that he had no idea about all the award exhibits and that he found the quilts to be very “intricate.”

Paul and Kim came from Carlsbad, California. It was their third time at the show. Paul is an amateur photographer and enjoys taking pictures at the show with Kim in them. Kim has been a sewer “forever” and a quilter for “a couple years.” She is glad that they don’t live too far away so they can see up close all that Road has to offer. Besides taking pictures, Paul enjoys seeing the art quilts and other “unusual things.”

Both Pam and Tom are involved in quilting. Pam has been quilting since the early 1980’s while Tom has been doing longarm quilting since 2005. They have been long time fans of Road to California. Pam started coming Road’s very first year when it was in the hotel across the street from what is now the Ontario Convention Center, 22 years ago!! Tom has been accompanying Pam for the last 15 years. Pam won the Tin Lizzy contest a few years back. She likes coming back each year to “have a good time” and see “lots of innovations.” Besides his longarm work, Tom is also an artist who enjoys painting on fabric. In 2016, he had two of his quilts entered in the show!!    

Meet Road Vendor WonderFil Specialty Threads

WonderFil = Thread (and only thread)download

WonderFil Specialty Threads offers products that enhance both the quality and appearance of stitching results, as well as expanding embellishment possibilities. They have a diversity of thread weights, textures, finishes, and materials. A family run business based in Canada, their 17 specialty thread lines are distributed in 8 countries: Canada, USA, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, and Denmark.

They carry several different lines, ranging from 8 – 100 weight, that can be used for any project. All of their cotton based threads  are made only from Egyptian Cotton which is lint free so it doesn’t gunk up their customer’s machines.  

Photo by Gregory Case Photography

Photo by Gregory Case Photography

One of their most popular products lines is InvisaFil, a 100 weight cottonized polyester thread. The number one seller in the United States, Invisafil is available in 60 colors and is a great alternative to fine silk thread. It’s unique texture is a result of combining preshrunk cotton with strong, colorfast polyester. It’s the perfect thread for all kinds of sewing, including free motion quilting.  

WonderFil prides itself in working with teachers, like Vikki Pignatelli, to create color palettes that coordinate with their projects.1-Invisafil3a

 

New in 2017 is Wonderfil’s partnership with Sue SpragoEllana is a wool fabric line combined with 28 weight wool thread that comes in 60 matching colors.

Another line, Efina, is a lighter weight thread designed for hand quilting .  

WonderFil is also committed to helping their customers learn how to use their threads. They call this Threaducation. On their website, they offer how-to videos for all their thread lines as well as share contact information for qualified teachers standing by to assist customers in Canada and the United States. 

Road to California 2017 appreciated Wonderfil’s employee, Joanne from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, supporting their philanthropy project, Roadies Give Back. Joanne is had a good friend pass away from Cancer in June, 2016 and appreciated the opportunity to contribute to a worthy cause. “It’s always fun whenever quilters get together,” remarked Joanne during the event.   

 

Friends And Quilting Are A Great Combination

Road to California is the perfect place for friends to meet up and share their love of quilting.

These four friends live in the Chicago area and belong to the Needles and Threads Quilt Guild. They were easy to spot with their matching quilt guild accessories.

Together, they have been quilting over 30 years. They were thrilled to leave the Midwest weather and “hang together” to see what was new in the quilting world and all the “gorgeous” quilts.

Karen and Dee are locals; they live up the street from the Ontario Convention Center in Rancho Cucamonga. Karen has been attending Road for the past 10 years. This was Dee’s first time at Road. She had heard about how fun the show was from her local quilt shop, The Quilt Loft, and from Karen. Karen said she had warned Dee beforehand by telling her to be “prepared to be overwhelmed.” They enjoyed seeing the quilts and the variety of vendors. Dee can’t wait to take classes next year.

L to R: Karen and Dee

Marquita is from Simi Valley, California and Kathy is from Delaware. They have been friends for over 60 years, growing up across the street from each other in Sepulveda, California. For the past 15 years, coming to Road to California has been their annual get together. It’s how they stay in touch. They come to the show for 5 days, bringing their sewing machines and stay up sewing each night until after midnight. They also bring lots of food— and wine!! Both have been quilting since 1989. Marquita prefers traditional quilting and Kathy loves machine embroidery.

L to R: Marquita and Kathy

These friends worked together at Kaiser Permanente for 30 years. At that time, neither Delcina or Maria were quilters. When they retired, they were looking for something to de-stress so they took a furniture upholstery class. That teacher suggested they go to a quilting class and they have been hooked ever since. The class is held every Saturday in Baldwin Park, California.  Road 2017 was their 5th time to come to the show. When they first started coming, they focused on looking at all the quilts, walking the whole show one row at a time. Now they’ve added also taking classes.  “There is lots of inspiration here,” said Delcina.

L to R: Delcina and Maria

 

Which friend will you be meeting up with at Road 2018?

 

So You Want to Make a Winning Quilt-  Outstanding Innovative Quilt

REBORN was the 2017 Road to California Outstanding Innovative Quilt winner.   Made and quilted by Molly Y Hamilton-McNally, Molly received $5,000 from sponsor, SewBatik.

Molly Y Hamilton-McNally is a familiar winner at Road to California. In 2012, she won Best of Show for Everlasting Bouquet, a quilt she made and that was quilted by Cindy Seitz-Krug.

Fear, loneliness and deep depression brought Molly to quilting in 2000 when she was diagnosed with cancer and later her mother and husband passed away. Molly realized that she had to find some way to bring her back to the light. An acquaintance encouraged Molly to take a class in basic quilting. Unexpectedly, she found herself developing a passion for this art form.

Now remarried, life is bright again for Molly. Reborn depicts the rising of the ancient phoenix and represents Molly’s rebirth as well. 

It took Molly roughly 1-½ years (the equivalent of 1600 hours) to make Reborn. Molly enjoyed the opportunity to continue to improve her abilities using her favorite technique, needle-turn reverse applique.

What was Mollie’s reaction when she heard she had won Outstanding Innovative Quilt? She says she was appreciative and happy. Also, she was pleased to have been honored by Road to California and gratified that her hard work had paid off. She plans to use part of her prize money to help pay off her longarm machine.

What does Molly’s quilting future hold for her? Molly wants to continue designing large, award winning quilts as well as small quilts which she will use to teach others her techniques.  To learn more about Molly, please visit her website.

Machine Quilting On A Featherweight

They are small. They are light. They stitch a perfect straight stitch. And they can be used to machine quilt!!

The Singer Featherweight Sewing Machine Model 221 was first introduced in 1934 at the Chicago World’s Fair. At the fair, the featherweight was considered a revolutionary machine due to its aluminum construction, small size, and a weight of only 11 pounds. The Featherweight machine was manufactured from 1933 – 1968 in just three basic colors: black, beige and white. Featherweight machines have stood the test time, built in an era that things were meant to last forever. Today, the machine has made a resurgence as a reliable sewing machine and as a collector’s item.
featherweight photo: View 8 MW150006.jpg

At Road 2017, Jennifer O’Brien from Sew Craft taught a $5.00 Lecture Class, Machine Quilting on your Featherweight. The first thing that the students learned was, yes, you can machine quilt using the small but mighty Featherweight. In fact, the principles are similar to any machine quilting project.

Photo by Brian Roberts Photography

In order to do free-motion machine quilting, there has to be free movement. Because the feed dogs on a Featherweight cannot be lowered, they need to be covered up so the fabric can move smoothly for quilting. Jennifer suggested using a Teflon pressing sheet cut the size of the arm of the Featherweight and secured to the machine using either masking tape or 404 adhesive spray. She also advised to cut a small triangle hole in the area where the needle goes in and out to avoid having the needle rub against the Teflon.

Another adjustment to the Featherweight for machine quilting is trading out the pressure foot for a machine quilting pressure foot. She recommends a “big foot” because it has an oversize, clear foot.

To start quilting on a Featherweight, start from the center of the project. With the pressure foot raised, put the material under the pressure foot then lower the needle down and up one time so that the bobbin thread just pops up. Pull the bobbin thread up to the top to prevent it from bunching up underneath the fabric. Once the thread has been secured on top, lower the pressure foot and begin gliding the material to free motion quilt the material.

Jennifer made a video to demonstrate these starting tips:

Because the sewing area of a Featherweight is limited, Jennifer cautioned that handling the fabric can be tedious. She recommended putting a table to the side of the sewing area to handle the weight of the fabric.

Photo by Brian Roberts Photography

As with all quilting, Jennifer said that Featherweight machine quilting takes practice, especially moving the fabric under the machine. She mentioned that quilting curves is easier than “stitch in a ditch” with a Featherweight. Jennifer suggested that the best way to practice is to make loops, L’s and C’s and even writing your name. Her final advice was to start small to encourage completing projects, pace yourself and don’t hurry.

 

The 2017 Cherrywood Challenge: Vincent van Gogh

Cherrywood Fabrics not only makes distinctive suede-like, solid colored, hand dyed fabrics. They also sponsor unique quilt challenges.

First was their Wicked Challenge in 2014.  Based on the hit musical, entries had to include specially dyed lime green fabrics (Cherrywood Wicked Greens) and black in their designs. The traveling exhibit was displayed at Road 2015 to much fanfare.

Cherrywood’s second challenge was The Lion King in 2016.  All entrants started with the same four hand-dyed Cherrywood fabrics (in golds and black) and designed their own original quilts within a 20-inch square. What made this theme especially significant was that 2017 is the 20th Anniversary of The Lion King musical. The traveling exhibit began 2017 at Road to California and will end its tour in November 2017 at the Minskoff Theatre in New York.   

During Road to California 2017, the next Cherrywood Challenge was announced – and it’s not based on a musical. Instead, the 2017 Cherrywood Challenge is a tribute to Vincent van Gogh, one of the world’s beloved artists. Entrants are encouraged to use Vincent van Gogh’s paintings as inspiration to think “outside the box” in creating new fiber art.

As with Cherrywood’s other challenges, each entry must include three official Cherrywood fabrics (this time they are the van Gogh Blues) and black. The quilt must “read” blue; 60-70% of the quilt top must be in blue hues. Accent colors may be used but they have to be Cherrywood fabric.

The final size of the quilt is 20” x 20” consisting of a top, a middle and a backing with a maximum thickness of one inch.  Any technique or fabric manipulation is acceptable as long as it maintains the color and character of a textile quilt. Embellishments may be added, with the exception of glitter, but must stay within the 20-inch size. No sleeve is required.

The cost to enter the challenge is $45.00 and includes the registration fee, shipping, return shipping and one fat quarter of each of the required fabrics.  Photos of the entries must be received by Cherrywood by 11:59 PM on August 1, 2017. Finalists will be announced and notified by email on August 11th. Finalist quilts are to be sent to Cherrywood Fabrics by August 25th. And then on September 1st, the winners will be announced as well as the quilts that will be included in the traveling exhibit.

Cash prizes totaling $1,000 is being offered to the winners.  Awards will be given for first, second and third place:

First Place – $700 Gift Card

Second Place – $200 Gift Card

Third Place – $100 Gift Card

The van Gogh Cherrywood Challenge Traveling Exhibit will debut November 1, 2017 at International Quilt Market and Festival in Houston, Texas. It will travel to quilt shows for at least one year through 2018, including at Road to California. We can’t wait to see all the creativity in this exhibit.

For more information regarding The van Gogh Cherrywood Challenge 2017 or with Cherrywood Fabrics, please visit their website.

Meet Road’s Display Manager Debby Bennett

Road 2017 began a new era for displaying quilts accepted in to Road’s annual quilt contest.

Continuing the tradition of a family owned and operated  quilt show, Debby Bennett, mother-in-law to Road’s Show Manager Matt Reese, was hired to freshen up the displays located throughout the main Exhibit Hall.

Work began in mid-December, 2016, to plan out the exhibits. Debby reported that her goal for the displays was to organize the quilts by category. Within each category, Debby worked with size, colors and themes to highlight each quilt.

At that time, all Debby had to work with were the pictures and dimensions of all the quilts accepted for the contest. It took Debby and her daughter, Jennifer (Matt’s wife), approximately 30 hours to organize and map out the 255 contest quilts. This was all just preliminary work until the winning quilts were chosen (the day before Preview Night) and adjustments would have to be made to the original plans.

During the judging, Debby was present so that she could have access to each winner’s information. When the judging was completed on Tuesday, Debby re-mapped the winners’ booths and fine-tuned the rest of the booths.  

Because maps of the display areas were prepared earlier, Debby felt the hanging process went by more quickly and efficiently than in the past. It took Debby and her team of 15 volunteers approximately 10 hours to hang all the quilts.  

When her job was done, Debby became a regular guest at the show, shopping and enjoying the quilts. She also was able to have a fun evening with her family at Party Time.

What did Debby think about her first experience as display manager? “I had so much fun.” Debby was able to use her organizational skills as well as her creativity to create quilt displays that she was “very proud of.” Debby added, “The group of volunteers that hung the quilts were so welcoming to the ‘newcomer’ and receptive to my new ways. I couldn’t have done it without their quilt hanging expertise. It was truly a team effort.”

Debby is looking forward to continuing her position at Road 2018. However, she is going to make sure that she has her own tool box next time around, something she wished she had had last January!!

What was your favorite winning quilt on display?

 

Meet Road Vendor: SewBatik

Nestled in the front, northeast corner of the exhibit hall, SewBatik has become a regular vendor at our show.

Started in 2004 by co-founders Diane and Bruce Magidson, the idea for SewBatik actually began the year before. In 2003, Diane was a management consultant and Bruce was the merchandiser for Blank Textiles. They had “the burn“ to make career changes, work together and “scratch an entrepreneurial itch.” Initially, they intended to become the “Tupperware of the textile industry;” creating and selling fabrics in a home-party environment. After their initial product lines were created, they decided to do a couple of shows to earn some revenue while they learned more about home party sales. But after working at the International Quilt Festival in Houston, they caught “a terminal case of quilt show fever” and have kept at it ever since.  Through the years, both Diane and Bruce have come to enjoy the independence and creative freedom that comes with owning their own business.  

SewBatik designs, sources and distributes exquisite batik and hand dyed fabrics.  Meant to be used in a variety of applications, SewBatik fabrics are made using the ancient Indonesian mastery of batik which are vivid and rich in color. SewBatik has the largest assortment of 108” wide stamped batik backings and hand dyed fabrics. In 2011, SewBatik introduced their exclusive collection of 106″ wide flannel batik, “the softest flannel you will ever feel!” The company also boasts offering the largest selection of coordinating fabrics in the industry.

SewBatik fabrics can only be found on their website, at local, regional and national quilt shows, and through their ever-growing relationships with professional longarm/machine quilters around the world. The office is based in North Dakota where Diane and Bruce live on a farm in Hillsboro.  Their house was the homestead of Diane’s great grandfather, Lars Bakkum, and was built in the 1860’s. Like other small business owners, most of Diane and Bruce’s time is spent on the road or in the SewBatik office. It’s a 24/7 endeavor. When time permits, Diane and Bruce will visit with Diane’s parents who live just four miles away. Diane is an avid sewer.  Bruce loves reading and listening to his beloved New York Yankees play baseball as often as possible. During the summer, Bruce and Diane can be found on their respective tractors, cutting the grass and caring for their yard.

Diane and Bruce love sharing their passion for SewBatik products with their customers and have fun explaining why the products are so special. Bruce relates that being at Road to California “really tests his organizational skills and is a great indicator about how SewBatik stacks up against other vendors who offer similar products.”

Their booth had everything from 110” SewWide batik backing, 100% Rayon Batik fabrics for apparel sewing, Nuance Gradation Batik, Coordinating 45” stamped batik, Pre-cut and pre-fused shapes along with hand-dyed fabrics, Project kits, 2.5” Strips, and fabric bundles. It was a busy corner during Road 2017.

It sure was a good move that SewBatik didn’t turn out to be a home-party endeavor!!

Meet Linda Pumphrey: Author, Quilt Designer, International Quilting Association President

For her first visit to Road to California, Linda Pumphrey kept very busy at Road 2017. If she wasn’t in her Mountain Mist vendor booth helping guests with their batting needs,

she was arranging for her mom to meet her childhood friend that she hadn’t seen in 75 years,

(l-r) Mary Pumphrey and Marion Clute

finding new members for the International Quilt Association,

or talking about her books, Mountain Mist Historical Quilts

and her upcoming publication, Red and White.

Linda was first introduced to Mountain Mist in 1989 when she did a marketing project for the company while getting her MBA. She went to Cincinnati and gave her presentation to the company leaders on using a unique cleaning product to wash and preserve quilts. They liked her presentation so much, they hired her!! Linda worked for Mountain Mist for the next 20 years, through three ownerships, and retired from the company in 2014. She recently returned to work for the company as their Senior Retail Account Executive and “loves working for Mountain Mist.” She particularly appreciates the company’s “layers of history.” After all, they have had a product line since 1846!!

Linda says she “fell into” authoring the book, Mountain Mist Historical Quilts. She appreciated the opportunity to tell the history of 132 original Mountain Mist patterns that have “endured the test of time” and show them using today’s contemporary fabrics.

Linda’s service with the International Quilt Association (IQA) came about from her desire to “give back.” IQA is the non-profit side of Quilt Market that is held the end of October in Houston each year.

They oversee three events prior to Quilt Market: Judging the quilt contest, hosting the Winner’s Circle and hosting the Winners Luncheon. IQA also offers a grant program that aids quilters with their efforts in promoting quilting and keeping quilting alive. Linda was elected president of the organization for 2016-2017 – following the term of Road’s director of judging, Stevii Graves. In this capacity, Linda gets to choose the jurors and judges for the Quilt Market contest, emcee the Winner’s Circle where the prizes are awarded, and choose the upcoming nominating committee.

Linda enjoyed the “vibe” of Road 2017 and loved being a part of the “market booths” providing education on the company side of Mountain Mist. Her favorite winning quilt was Director’s Choice.   

What does the future hold for Linda? She is looking forward to the release of her book, Red and White, in the fall of 2017. The book will feature 40 blocks of red and white patterns taken from quilts at the International Quilt Study Center & Museum located at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.  Instructions for the blocks will be included in the book as well as for 14 projects that each utilize 3 versions of different block combinations.

Eventually, Linda would love to move to Bali. She has been there 10 times and just loves “the spirit of the people. That is definitely on my bucket list!!”

 

 

Outstanding Art Quilt – Road 2017

Emma in the Looking Glass was made and quilted by Lenore Crawford who won $5,000 from sponsor, Handi Quilter.Winning Quilt by Lenore Crawford

Lenore Crawford is no stranger to Road to California. She has been a member of the teaching faculty in the past and in 2014, she won in the same category, Outstanding Art Quilt, for her work, Capturing Brittany.

Lenore started quilting in the late 1990’s using 2” fabric squares as her art medium in the watercolor quilting style.  She created impressionistic art quilts with the squares.  Up until that time, she hadn’t done any quilting; just lots of other things with different mediums.

What inspired Lenore to create Emma in the Looking Glass? Lenore along with her friend, her friend’s daughter and granddaughter were visiting Lenore’s mother’s gardens where there is a beautiful lily pond that Lenore’s step-father had built.  Emma, the granddaughter, was playing around the pond when Lenore took her picture.  It was a beautiful sunny day in mid-summer and Lenore was “really inspired by the whole scene.”

Lenore spent several months in the winter of 2016 creating Emma in the Looking Glass.  It was one of the very first quilts Lenore had done of a person using her fusing technique.  The most difficult part was finding the perfect flesh tone fabrics which in the shadows and water were very purple.  Lenore ended up using her fabric paints and painting the colors and values of fabrics that she needed for them.

When Lenore found out she had won, she thought that it was “very exciting to win a prize like this!  I like to have my art quilts in large shows so others can see what can be done with fabric.  If I win a prize that is the icing on the cake!” She is planning to use her prize money toward the purchase of a new car where she can “enjoy it every day!”

What does the future hold for Lenore? She has already finished a large piece this past winter that she plans to enter either in 2018 or 2019 at Road to California.  She loves to have a large piece in the works.  For Lenore, the larger the piece the more detail she can add to it which “makes it all the more fun!”

We can’t wait to see what Lenore has created next!!

To learn more about Lenore, please visit her website.