Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Embellishment Sampler

Quilt 7

So, here is another Journal Quilt, this one a sampler of stitches and beads.

This was my first attempt at using beads.  I tried different arrangement, sometimes using the fabric as inspiration.

    • To use beads and simple stitches to embellish a quilt

    •  Stitched strips of batik together, cut diagonally to make squares
    • Squares were spray-glued to a backing fabric and zigzaged together to avoid seam allowances and make it easier to hand stitch
    • Used variety of threads, stitches and beads.

    • Minimal machine quilting was done to avoid stitching over beads.

    •  Zigzag

    •  Left-over strips stitched to a piece of batik

    •  I like how a few simple stitches and/or beads can change the look of the fabric, make it look more complicated than it is
    • Would be easier to quilt first and then add beading.

Date Made - August 8, 2006

Maker – Terry Whyte

Monday, January 24, 2011

Pioneer Braid

Quilt 6

A Charm Quilt

Pioneer Braid
This quilt started as a memento of our week long workshop with Jackie Black way back in 1990.  Students exchanged strips of fabric and Jackie gave us a quick lesson on putting them together as a Pioneer Braid.

no two pieces the same
That small sample sat around for a long time until I decided to make a Charm Quilt, which means that all the pieces are from different fabrics, no two pieces the same.

And then those strips sat in the UFO pile for many more years until I decided, 17 years later, to finish it and have it quilted. Better late than never.

This very versatile pattern, also known as Prairie Braid, is a very old pattern and it's perfect for using small scraps. The pieces I used were 2” x 4 ½”. They can be longer and skinnier or wider.

There are no rules as to how to assemble the pieces together, a quick look online will show you many different ways.

I chose to put mine together with dark values on one side and light or medium on the other.
Dark and light values

Once the strips are made up as long as you wish your quilt to be, you can sew them together as I did with all the lights on one side and all the darks on the other.

Again there are many choices in how the strips are set. Sashing or pieced borders can divide the strips or the strips themselves could be used as borders .

back and label

Quilt Name:  Pioneer Braid
Description:  A charm quilt. Strips are made up of small pieces sewn together to look like a braid.  All pieces are different.
Pattern:  Pioneer Braid or Prairie Braid
Size:  50” x 63 ½”
Fabrics:  100% cotton and some polyester
Predominant colours:  every colour under the rainbow
Construction Techniques:  pieced
Back:  bleached muslin
Batting:  Hobbs 80/20
Edge finish:  Double fold french binding in muslin
Quilting:  Spiral pattern quilted on long arm machine 
Quilted by:  Marnie Mascioli from Calico Cat Quilting
Sleeve:  no
Label:  yes
Date completed:  2007
Inspiration:  Old fashioned charm quilts
Appraised:  no
Quilt History:  Started as a memento in a Jackie Black's workshop back in 1990.
Students exchanged strips of fabric and Jackie gave us a quick lesson on putting them together as a Pioneer Braid.
Maker:  Terry Whyte

Friday, January 21, 2011

Waddle Quack

Week 3 - Quilt 5

This is the second journal page I made back in 2006.  
Waddle Quack - front

    • Manipulate fabric to change it's look
    • Choose a busy print and a stripe

    • Applied fusible web to back of each fabric
    • Drew a curvy line on background
    • Cut the two fabrics into squares and fused to each side of line
    • Zig zaged “eye lash” yarn over dividing line


    • Echo quilting and stippling
    • I had intended the curve on the back to match the front but forgot to mirror-image so got the opposite instead. Took advantage of that to do some stippling where the two curves met.
    • Waddle Quack - back
    • Added a line of words in the echo quilting lines

    • Zig zag

    • The original fabric

    • Really like the difference cutting the fabric made, especially the stripe when applied vertically and horizontally.
    • The yarn effectively divides the two fabrics
    • Like the overall effect cutting the fabric made. This technique would be useful where the fabric colour is right but the pattern is distracting.

Date Made - July 24, 2006

Maker – Terry Whyte          

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Number One

Week 3 - Quilt 4

Number One   -  Front and Back        
Challenges   - 
    • to make a small quilt using only a handful of scraps randomly picked from the scrap box
    • to use  “Jiffy Fuse Fabric Joiner (recently purchased)
    • applied fusible web to back of each scrap
    • arranged scraps on muslin to form background
    • cut shapes and fused in place
    • Zig-zaged a few edges and words
    • on appliques
    • stippled background                                                                             
    • zig-zag

    • made do with scraps I had
    • Jiffy Fuse Fabric Joiner is very thin, does not make quilt stiff
    • cut shapes have nice sharp edges – no fraying
    • easy to quilt through 
Date Made: July 20, 2006

Maker: Terry Whyte

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

About Journal Quilts

Journal Quilts are sometimes known as Page Quilts because of their sizes, 8 ½” x 11”, the size of a sheet of paper.

They are fun, visual diaries where artists are encouraged to try new methods, experiment with different fabric, colour or techniques.

An informal journal is kept to record any information relating to the quilt, techniques used, influences, and/or feelings.

The restricted size frees you from worrying about spending too much time, energy or expense by attempting virtually anything in such a small format.

A little history: 

Journal quilts are attributed to Jeanne Williamson, author of “The Uncommon Quilter”. In 1999, she decided to make one small quilt a week so she could experiment with her creativity.

In 2002, Karey Bresenhan, director of the International Quilt Festival started the Journal Quilt project which was a great success. Quilts from the 2002-2006 journal quilts were compiled into a book, Creative Quilting, the Journal Quilt Project.
During the summer of 2006, I decided to start my own weekly journal quilts. The "weekly" part was pretty sporadic throughout summer and fall, but I kept it going weekly from January to July. It was a fun way to try all kinds of different things.

I will be posting some of these  after I've posted my “regular quilt” for the week.

 Today in Kenogami

Sparkling crystals

It's a cold, crispy, sunny day in Kenogami -24˚C (-11˚F)

Have a great day!


Monday, January 17, 2011

One Thing Leads to Another

Week 3 - Quilt 3

One Thing Leads to Another

During the mid to late 90's, charm square exchanges were very popular. Our guild members took part in such an exchange for a year or so.

Today they are availabe from quilt shops and online.
 “Fat Quarter Shop” describes Charm Packs as follows: Charm packs are collections of 5" x 5" squares of fabric. Their popularity stems from the fact that they are affordable, easy to use, and the size is commonly used in quilting.

Our charm squares measured 6” x 6” and every month, each quilter would make enough sets of 5 or 10 charms (can't remember the exact number) to exchange with every person participating.

Around the same time, Catherine L. McIntee and Tammy L. Porath wrote Beyond Charm Quilts, The Ultimate Challenge. I loved what they did with their 100 - 5” x 5” charms. The challenge was to make as many quilts as they could, putting a small piece of each charm in each quilt. Tammy made 18 and Catherine, 21 quilts.

Christmas Cactus Variation

These were mostly miniatures, and I really liked “Finally” by Catherine. I enlarged the pattern to suit my needs and made my quilt twin size.

Each 8 ½” block is made up of four small squares, each made with a different fabric, plus divider strips, it is essentially a 9-patch block.
The pattern is a variation of the Christmas Cactus block.

The colours of the blocks changes diagonally across the quilt. The white background blocks are from different plain white fabric, giving slight variations, and were randomly placed in the quilt.

One thing led to another and I used strips cut from Fat Quarters for my skinny border in colours to match the adjacent blocks.

multi-coloured border

The binding on this quilt is reversible, white on top but again colour co-ordinated on the back side.
reversible binding
It was hand quilted by the St. Peter's Quilters, a local church group who donate the proceeds to St. Peter's Anglican Church. Each pieced block was outline quilted and the alternate plain blocks were quilted with a different design.

quilting design

This is the first quilt I ever had juried into a major competition. In 2002, it was hanging into the Canadian Quilters Association Show in St. John, N.B.


Historically, quilters collected fabrics for charm quilts and there are many stories and myths surrounding these. No two pieces in the quilt could be the same.

I have made one charm quilt, Pioneer Braid, which I will show you soon.

Today in Kenogami it is -19˚C (-2˚F) and snow might be on the way.
Have a great day!


Quilt Name: One Thing Leads to Another
Description:8 ½” blocks set on point with alternate plain block
Pattern: Christmas Cactus Variation
Size: 59” x 73
Fabrics: 100% cotton
Predominant colours: /white background, blue, green, red, purple, black
Construction Techniques: pieced
Back: muslin
Batting: polyester
Edge finish: Reversible double fold french binding
Quilting: Hand quilted
Quilted by: St. Peter's Quilters
Sleeve: Yes
Label: Yes
Date completed: 2002
Inspiration: Quilt named Finally by Catherine L. McIntee
Appraised: No
Quilt History: Juried into the Canadian Quilters Association Annual Show in St. John, N.B. & the 2004 Kirkland lake Mile of Fold Quilters' Guild Annual Show.
Maker: Terry Whyte 

Monday, January 10, 2011

Boreal Forest

Week 2 – Quilt 2 

Boreal Forest

I've chosen a quilt made more recently to show you the direction I seem to be going now. Art quilting more so than the traditional, although I still really enjoy piecing every once in a while and playing with lots of colour.

Inspiration photo

The inspiration for Boreal Forest was this photo, taken while out on one of my walks down our country road. These species are black spruce trees and represent a large portion of the Boreal Forest population.

I hand painted the background on white cotton using Gloria Loughman's techniques.

First painted the sky backdrop with textile paint, let it dry and set with hot iron.

Next came the sponging and painting of the background trees.

Work in progress

Once the paint was dry and set again, the piece was ready for the appliqued trees and branches.

trunk detail

I wetted some of my own hand dyed fabric , scrunched and wrapped it with elastic bands and threw it in the dryer with a load of clothes. Once dry, I had bark for my two trees. After the branches were added, I painted, stitched and added dyed cheesecloth moss.

moss detail

Snippets formed the little tree in the left corner as well as some needed texture to the undergrowth.

snippet detail

The background quilting on this quilt is an all over angled type of stippling (straight lines instead of curved) and the bark was free motioned with a random wiggly design.

quilt back

I piped the edge of the binding and painted the back of the quilt, a little surprise on the back is always fun.

Boreal Forest was juried into the 2010 Pacific International Quilt Festival XIX.

Judges comments:
Great use of multiple techniques that combine well into a cohesive scene.
Back design noted and appreciated.
Binding piping well done.

I was very happy with those comments and even though the quilt did not place, just being juried in was very exciting. I was lucky enough to be able to attend the Quilt Festival in Santa Clara. What a show!

Also got to spend a few days in San Francisco which has been on my bucket list for a long time and I was not disappointed.

Even with an overcast sky and a little cool -13˚C (8˚F),
it's still a nice day in Kenogami.

Have a great day!



Here's the documentation for Boreal Forest:
Quilt Name: Boreal Forest

Description: Tree landscape using colour and design to create depth and threadplay and layering of fabric for texture: hand painting on ground. (Description from Appraiser)

Pattern: Landscape

Size: 34” x 29”

Fabrics: 100% cotton, hand painted background, hand dyes, cheesecloth, tulle

Predominant colours: Brown, green, blue, white

Construction Techniques: Machine quilting threadplay, scrunched technique, hand painting

Back: 100% cotton

Batting: Bamboo

Edge finish: French fold 2 ½” binding, machine applied front, hand on back with mitered corners, 1/8” piping

Quilting:All over angled stippling and directional free motion on trees

Quilted by: domestic machine by Terry Whyte

Sleeve: Yes

Label: Yes

Date completed: April 2010

Inspiration: Photo taken by Terry Whyte

Appraised: Yes, insurance replacement value $600. Cdn

Quilt History: Juried into Pacific International Quilt Festival XIX, October14-17, 2010

Maker: Terry Whyte

Friday, January 7, 2011

Elephant Walk

Week 1 - Quilt 1-

The first quilt I've chosen to document is Elephant Walk, not for any particular reason, I just need to start somewhere. We are going to be all over the place, old quilts, new quilts, bed or wall quilts, you get the picture......

Elephant Walk

This bed quilt is a medallion design which means you start with central block and keep building out, adding borders around and around.
Elephant Walk is the 3rd in a series of medallion quilts.

Swatch sample

I get bored when doing the same thing over and over again, so I really like to use lots of different fabrics in my quilts.  This works really well, as I've stopped buying large pieces of fabric and pretty much stick with FQs.  This way I never run out, I just substitute another fabric.

The key to using forty to fifty fabrics instead of 3 or 4 is all about values.  You can pick 5 or 10 fabrics that all "read" the same.  Line up all your choices, evenly spaced, stand back and squint.  If they all blend together, you can use any of them in place of just one fabric.  If any stand out, remove it.  In the swatch sample above, the 2 strips on the right hand side are from the border print fabric.

close up of centre

last 3 borders and binding



After designing and making my first medallion quilt , I decided to teach it as a class. My favourite way of teaching is to make a quilt along with my students and the reason why I'm now the proud owner of four of these quilts, three are finished but #2 is still in the UFO pile and needs to be quilted.

Every quilt uses the same pattern, except for the central 12” block, and border #7 made up of 6” blocks.  This change gives each quilt an original feel.

Elephant Walk was probably started in 2003 but wasn't quilted until 2009.

I like this quilt, it's a colourful happy quilt.

It's a nice day in Kenogami!

The thermometer says -5˚C (23˚F).
A light fluffy snow is falling, and that's nice after the 3 days of rain we got around New Year's making everything super icy and slippery.

Have a great day,




Quilt Name: Elephant Walk

Description: Medallion Quilt – This quilt is an original design. 

Central Block is The Silk Road from The Block Book by Judy Martin.
6” Blocks are Gwen Marston's Liberated Stars.
The other borders are either plain or from traditional designs made up from squares, half-square triangles, flying geese and big & little chain of squares.

Size: 75” x 95”

Fabrics:   Border print was purchased on a trip to Arizona.  43 fabrics in 4 values – light, medium light, medium dark and dark were chosen in colours from the print.

Predominant colours:  Gold, green, orange and black with a small amount of turquoise and purple.

Construction Techniques: Twelve pieced and plain borders were added around a central square. All the plain borders are made from the border print,  except border #3 which is made up of 4 large triangles and skinny border #5

Back: Northcott 100% cotton - Dark brown & black with metallic gold swirls – Bonsai Geisha # 2089 by Ro Gregg

Batting: Hobbs 80/20

Edge finish: Double fold french binding – Black with white pin dots

Quilting: Long arm machine quilted – Pattern – Square spirals

Quilted by: Marnie Mascioli from Calico Cat Quilting

Sleeve: Yes

Label: Yes

Date completed: April, 2009

Inspiration: The inspiration for the colours and fabrics used came from the border print. Two borders depict elephants which inspired the Quilt Name.

Appraised: No

Quilt History: This quilt was displayed in the Kirkland Lake Mile of Gold Quilter's Guild 2009 Annual Quilt Show in May and the 2009 Temiskaming International Plowing Match Quilt Competition in September.

Maker: Terry Whyte

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Quilt Documentation – A personal challenge

This blog will document the quilts I have made during the past 20 years, an inventory of sorts.

I am challenging myself to document at least one quilt a week, with photos and as much information as I have or can remember. The “remember” part might be a problem.

My quilts run the gamut from king size to mini, traditional to contemporary, utilitarian to art quilts.

For several years, I have emailed photos to family and friends under the heading of Today in Kenogami. Mostly nature photographs, beautiful sunsets, flora and fauna, colours of autumn and snow and ice photos have made the rounds.

Kenogami is the name of our community, as well as the lake, on which my husband and I have lived for the past 30 years. It felt like an appropriate and natural choice for the title of my blog.

Should you decide to come along for the ride, check in once in a while, to see a new (to you) quilt every week and possibly things happening in and around the area or beyond.

Check in tomorrow for Quilt #1.