Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Highlights from April 2017 Meeting

Greenville MQG

April Showers 

That is "April Showers" of events and happenings overflowed at our meeting this past Saturday, April 15th and it's only the middle of the month!!!! 

Let's start with the Wildacres Retreat Conference Center on April 7-9th. It was a huge success and enjoyed by all who attended. Sandy Helsel wrote and read us her poem that perfectly summarized the event. She had us all laughing with her funnies......

Left and Right: Sandy Helsel reading the poem so composed...then adding the humor that made us laugh (I blurred the photo laughing......sorry Sandy ;-0 )

For those of you who could not come this past Saturday, you have opportunity to read it below:

Wildacres Retreat

An exciting adventure for new friends to bind,
Breathtaking surroundings and trails to unwind.
Knowledge of character as well as techniques,
Warm tasty meals and cozy beds to seek.

Our workroom was roomy and well electrified;
Inspiration exploded as we sewed side by side.
The potters’ below us delighted by our designs,
And came for a visit at regular times!

Time lapsed so quickly as projects unveil;
Exciting discoveries completed our tale.
Our plans for next year are to retreat to Wildacres,
We hope more of you will join as partakers.

At the retreat, Faye Jones and Sandy coordinated a special sewing project called a Schlep Bag. You may ask what is a Schlep bag? Here are some of the finished ones to see from the retreat:

Schlep Bags made with fabric squares
The scenery surrounding Wildacres was beautiful as captured in these photos taken by Elise Dunbar and Didi Salvatierra:

Bottom left: A quilt started at the retreat.....Can you guess where their inspiration came from?
Bravo to Faye Jones and Sandy Helsel for planning out all the details of this event so that it could be enjoyed. And, did you read in the poem.....The dynamic duo are already hinting about a retreat next year!!!!

April Program Recap

The topic of our April Program brought to light not the black and white of how to copyright an original quilt design, but rather, focused on the many gray areas of copyright infringement. Cindy Lammon and Faye Jones provided us with some excellent research on the topic and then challenged us to a quiz.

Cindy separated us into three small groups to better discuss the quiz questions and determine what we thought was the right answer.  As the quiz revealed, a lot of these situations are not black and white, but gray because more than one answer to many of the questions seemed right.

In addition to the quiz, for further insight on the subject, Cindy has provided below, the copyright sources used for Quilter's programs:

Block Recycle Challenge

This month was the unveiling of the quilt projects made with our tucked away, hidden, unfinished quilt squares that someone else selected to take and reimagine anew. As you know, Faye's theory and challenge to us was a hidden away quilt square could be the inspiration to another. Our goal was to prove her right.

Our guest judge was Ms. Melinda Hoffman who is a contemporary artist in the Greenville, SC area. Melinda's three joys are printmaking,working with paper and oil painting. The Melinda Hoffman website showcases her work. Thank you Melinda for coming and participating in this fun challenge for our group. 

As you will see, we had nine (9) entries. It never ceases to amaze me the boundless creativity of our group. Here are the results: 

Dana Blasi-expanded upon her square and then capped it with a rectangle of flying animated Charley Harper-like birds

Michele Blake- took her square and continued it outward building upon the light and dark

Madeline Faner- She took February's BOM "Ellen's Snowball"and created an galactica effect

Paige Alexander- took a Pineapple Log Cabin block and creatively enlarged it 

Darlene Sanford-(left) created symmetry with her squares and then added a light background color to make them pop
(right) she created movement with fabric color by dividing one of her squares- it also provided her color continuity

Pat Davies- took a hexagon patchwork and created a flower

Valorie Kasten- took her square and made a stripe, then utilized different quilting patterns to create emphasis

Faye Jones- took her square and made a nine patch quilt with a touch of whimsy

Sandy Helsel- took her log cabin square and made a handbag
Well, do you think we proved Faye Jones right!!! I think so. These nine ladies are the proof. Our challenge winners received a personal handmade bag by Faye Jones. Congratulations!

Left to right: Faye Jones-Challenger, Madeline Faner -4th place, Paige Alexander- 1st place, Valorie Kasten-2nd place, Michele Blake-3rd place, Melinda Hoffman-guest judge, Dana Blasi-5th place

Additional items to note:
  • Madeline Faner, represented GMQG in delivering this year's Charity Quilt to our local Greenville Habit for Humanities. She provided us with the best feedback we could ever wish for -- They loved it!!! ;-)
  • We had a good turnout to our meeting Saturday, April 15th (for a holiday weekend). Paige Alexander reported a total of 30 in attendance. We had 28 members and 2 guests amongst us. Thank you all for coming and participating.
  • Three opportunities for GMQG members to hone your quilting skills with Johnnie McKenzie:
    • Ready, Set, Quilt
    • Quilt Making/Sewing Basics (upcoming: Walking Foot Quilting Session)
    • Mentoring Programs 
         If you are interested, email her to inquire and/or schedule a date at
  • Susan Rink is coordinating a carpool for the upcoming Western NC Quilters Show coming up the first weekend in May in Flat Rock, NC at the Bonclarken Conference Center. If you are interested or would like more information contact Susan at 
  • Congratulations to the Door prizes recipients. We had four (4) lucky winners to win beautiful two multi-colored finishing thread sets and two quilting magazines. And, many thanks to the ladies who donated the prizes.
  • August Quilt Challenge announced!!!!! Here are the criteria for this year's prize-winning challenge:
    • Quilt size - not to exceed 36" on one side
    • Pattern name: Birds in the Air: . Note: the interpretation of this pattern is "open" to your imagination
    • Use at least three (3) of the 8 elements in modern quilt design listed below:
      • bright/graphic color palette
      • negative space
      • minimalism
      • no borders
      • improvisational piecing
      • alternate grid work
      • asymmetry
      • exaggerated scale
  • Did you know - MQG has quilting episodes called "Fresh Quilting" available on online. Check it out!
Upcoming GMQG Events:
  • May 12 & 13th - 
    Michelle Wilkie - Modern Quilt Design
    Michelle Wilkie Workshop - Modern Quilt Design-Every Day Inspiration. Look for the workshop details on our website.  For the Friday night opener, all are invited to the social and lecture by Michelle on "The Skill of Quilt Design". It will begin at 6:30pm. The charge is $5. And, if you were one of the lucky ones to reserve a spot for the Saturday workshop entitled Modern Quilt Design-Every Day Inspiration, your supplies list are available with Dana Blasi at

Upcoming Outside Quilting Events:

Modern Skill Builder - Block of the Month

Submitted quilt squares for X Marks the Improv Block
Our March Block Challenge was entitled "X Marks the Improv" with the tutorial on the A Quilter's Table by Debbie Jeske
X Marks the Improv Block
Look at what we received on Saturday.....what visual energy. Good job.

Cheryl Brickey has challenged us for April with:

Block name: Half Square Triangle {Scrappy Strings Style} by Designer: Karen from Blooming Poppies

Block size: 8" x 8" unfinished, (7 1/2" x 7 1/2" finished)
Skills this block builds: Strings, use of prints in modern blocks

Fabrics/Colors: White background and brightly colored print strips, all colors.

Variation on the Tutorial: In Step 6 of the tutorial, instead of aligning the drawn line on the white background fabric so that it is parallel to the seam lines of the strip block, align it perpendicular to the seam lines.

As Karen suggests, Cheryl recommends starting with muslin of about 8 3/4" to 9" square.

Each set of one strip unit and one background unit will yield 2 blocks.


Last month, Faye Jones along with Cindy Lammon and Dana Blasi had opportunity to deliver GMQG charity quilts to the Julie Valentine Center. They were also given a tour of the facilities where the staff shared how much comfort the quilts bring to children when they are being examined. Follow this link to learn more about the Julie Valentine Center. We are making a difference.

Faye also shared she has ordered and received GMQG labels that can be sewed on your donated quilt. They will be available to members at our monthly meetings. This is a great personal added touch.

In addition, if you would like to be a part of the quilt deliveries to the Julie Valentine Center, please contact Faye

Show & Share

Visual delight is how I would describe this month's Show & Share. Sometimes a photo does not do the quilt's justice. The fabric colors, design and the quilting were really exciting on each of the these pieces.  Thank you.
Michele Blake

Carol Kreson

Sarah Bookspan

Ruth Freyer

Faye Jones

Marcia Given

Valerie Kaston

Cindy Lammon

Sarah Snider

See what I mean.....we had an "April Shower" of events and happenings so far this month and there is still more going on and into May. Lots to inspire....Enjoy!

Next Month

Our May meeting is the Michelle Wilkie two-part workshop on May 12th - 13th.  Mark your calendars come and join us Friday evening, May 12th at 6:30pm and then those who signed up for the workshop Saturday, May 13th from 10:00a.m. - 4:00pm at:

2310 East North Street, Suite A
Greenville, SC 29607


Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Hello GMQG - Here is our April Agenda

Greenville Modern Quilt Guild 

April Events

Tis the season for "Spring" travel......seeing new places, being outdoors and enjoying new experiences. I think it's being in new surroundings that just inspires may be the inspiration needed for that next quilt project!!!!

Speaking of travel, we wish all who are headed to Wildfire Retreat Conference Center in NC a fun, fun and more fun time. The details of the event are here on our website. Thank you Sandy Helsel and Faye Jones for planning and coordinating this weekend away. 

For any additional questions regarding the trip, please email Sandy at

We look forward to hearing about the recap of the retreat at our next GMQG meeting!

Please note the change in our next meeting. It will be on the 3rd Saturday, April 15th.....and we will have a full agenda that includes:
  • The "Block Recycle Challenge" unveiling!!!! This is going to be so much fun seeing how each of you transformed an unfinished, packed away and/or unloved quilt square that was brought in by one of you.  As you know, Faye Jone's theory and challenge to us was a hidden away quilt square could be the inspiration to another. Our goal is to prove her right next month. Faye will present prizes to the winners.
  • Recap of the retreat at Wildfire
  • Last but not least, Cindy Lammon and Faye Jones will lead a discussion on "Copyright in Quilting"

A Note from Cindy:

Last month, Dana and I had the opportunity to join Faye and deliver your charity quilts to the Julie Valentine Center. Like all of you, I've listened to Faye explain where our donated quilts are going and how much they mean to the recipients. But there is nothing like seeing the facility in person, meeting the staff and knowing first-hand the services that are provided. Victims of abuse are interviewed, examined and provided with therapy at the center. The staff members we met, including one of the physicians and a four-legged friend, were warm, kind and loving. They shared with us how much comfort your quilts bring to children when they are being examined. Follow this link to learn more about the Julie Valentine Center. And thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

Upcoming Quilting Events:

  • Optional: bring a special item for special "gift basket" in the upcoming May workshop
  • Bring your Block of the Month, Show & Share and Philanthropy projects....and 
  • May 12 & 13th - 
    Michelle Wilkie - Modern Quilt Design
    Michelle Wilkie Workshop - Modern Quilt Design-Every Day Inspiration. Look for the workshop details on our website. 

Make plans to join us Saturday, April 15th from 1:00pm to 3:00pm at:

2310 East North Street, Suite A
Greenville, SC 29607