Modern Quilt group meets 11 September

September 10, 2014 | Posted in Modern Quilt Group | By

The Modern Quilters are meeting on Thursday evening, 11 September, from 7.30pm in the CQ room. Here is a message from one of the convenors, Michelle:

This week at modern quilt group we will be putting the CommonGround quilt blocks together into quilt tops.  

There may be some blocks that need to be made so bring some single coloured scraps (we can mix and match from each others’ scraps) and don’t forget the essential cream or white piece for the centre of your slab block.  

We have enough blocks for almost 4 quilt tops. You all work really well together so I know you’ll make short work of the challenges of putting them together. Bring your machines, set up the irons and have fun on the design walls.  

7.30 pm (I’ll be there from about 7.10) this Thursday – see you there. 




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Modern Quilters meeting 10 July

July 9, 2014 | Posted in Modern Quilt Group | By

The Modern Quilters are meeting at 7.30pm on Thursday 10 July.

Here is a message from Michelle, one of the convenors:

This Thursday we will do a couple of things:

1. We will discuss how best to present our talk. I’m happy to speak about modern quilting, and Gemma said she could mention something about the first Modern Quilt show in Berry a couple of months ago as she both exhibited and attended. We will also need lots of show and tell – to show the meeting what modern quilts are. The quilts I’m looking at having there would be the improv quilts, quilts with negative space, with bright colours. You know – what we normally define as modern quilts.  Jenny Bowker – we might like to snaffle your quilt off you for the night if you are willing to part with it? No obligations. 

I know some of you have made quilts based on the demonstrations we have given you – so anyone with Jenny’s star quilt bring it along, also anything made with improv piecing, scrappy trips around the world, slab blocks … gosh I can’t remember what else we’ve done!

 Bring them along on Thursday night this week and we can then work out an order! Like 

  • quilts with negative space
  • quilts with improv blocks
  • quilts with bright modern fabrics and traditional blocks
  • etc etc etc!

You can also tell me what you want me to mention during the talk.

2. Gemma is headed to the Sydney quilt show on Wednesday, and has offered to put photos on her laptop and bring it along. So that will be a special show and tell. (See other post about Canberra Quilters’ members in the Sydney Quilt Show – including Michelle)

3. I will speak with Joanne about a day (after the exhibition!) when we can have a bee and work on our commonground quilts. Hopefully I’ll be able to let you know a date at our meeting this week.

4. Don’t forget regular show and tell! 

One of the members can’t attend this month but she has sent an image of what she created from last month’s exercise:


Message from Jacquie: You may recall that I was working on a theme of shades of lavender and sage and you can see in the photo the stack of strips that I have produced.

However I was inspired by the alternate colour pallet and I am making it into a table runner – have even started the quilting as you can see.

Thanks for the idea.

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Modern Quilt Group – evening 12 June

June 11, 2014 | Posted in Modern Quilt Group | By

The Modern Quilt Group meets from 7.30pm. Here is a message from convenor Michelle (back after a break):

I’ve seen some lovely examples of the Cheyenne block (see image at end of post) around the internet lately, and thought we might like to give it a crack. It looks pretty impressive when you put several blocks together with white or grey as the solid. And I have seen both scrappy versions, and two-colour versions (as expected, scrappy is my favourite). I’ve included an example here in this email so you can see what I am talking about (I haven’t used solids in this example, but low volume newsprints. Anything goes. Just remember VALUE! It’s important!) 

Here are the cutting instructions for two sizes – 12 inch finished and 18 inch finished. These instructions are for just one block, although with the HSTs you will end up with double what you need (and can put those towards another block). You can do the cutting before you come on Thursday, or just bring your fabrics and cut there.

 12 inch block

Cut 8 x 3 1/2 inch squares in various (scrappy) fabrics

Cut 8 x 4 1/4 inch squares in various (scrappy) fabrics

Cut 8 x 4 1/4 inch squares in a solid fabric (you can use scrappy low-value fabrics here – preferably in the one shade. Newsprint would look particularly good!)

 18 inch block

Cut 8 x 5 inch squares in various fabrics (yes you can use charm squares for this)

Cut 8 x 6 inch squares in various fabrics (or use your 5 inch charm squares, but you will have wastage)

Cut 8 x 6 inch squares in a solid fabric (if you use charm squares in the one above, just cut 8 x 5 inch squares)

 Also bring with you

  • Your sewing machine (please share with a friend if you can – it’s a quick block, we have a lot of members, and very limited space)
  • A ruler for trimming your HSTs.  A square ruler is best for this.
  • Rotary cutter and a small mat (the ones at CQ aren’t the best)
  • your usual sewing supplies
  • SHOW AND TELL! I’ve missed show and tell so much!

Cheyenne block – 16 patch

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Modern Quilt group makes ‘Modern Geo Hugs’ quilt for Jenny Bowker

June 1, 2014 | Posted in Modern Quilt Group | By

The modern quilting group recently held a quilting bee to make a quilt for the group’s founder, Jenny, who is currently undergoing treatment for cancer. While the modern quilt group had sewn together on charity quilts before, they had never sewn together on the one project at the same time. 

Michelle had the idea of a simple quilt using bold, solid fabrics to give a modern geometric effect, and selected 11 colours to be used. There was no pattern – just the simple instruction to the cutters and sewers to cut 7 inch squares, sewing half square triangle blocks (HSTs) and then putting them back together into a quilt. The group gathered one Sunday morning in late April at our Cook rooms. During the morning there were between 17 and 20 members in attendance. Some members ironed, some cut, some sewed, some trimmed, and some took over the design wall to create a truly special quilt.

Here are some images of the process (photography by Jacquie Rogers):

Jacquie sewing blocks

Jacquie sewing blocks


At the pressing stations

At the pressing stations

Removing the "ears"

Removing the “ears”

At the wall- arranging the blocks

At the wall- arranging the blocks

at the wall- checking the arrangement

at the wall- checking the arrangement

Sewing the blocks into strips

Sewing the blocks into strips

Pressing the final top

Pressing the final top

Top finished

Top finished with backing fabric in the foreground

In under two and a half hours, the group had sewn the top together, as well as prepared the binding and backing. They worked with little direction, and everyone had an opinion on the placement of the blocks. We ended up with a truly beautiful modern quilt.


Playing with the leftovers

Playing with the leftovers

The next step was left to member Gemma who is a long arm quilter. She quilted enormous swirling feathers over the quilt using variegated thread in shades of purple and dark pink. The batting is 100% wool, so the quilt is meant to be very snuggly and warm. 

When Gemma had finished quilting the quilt, Michelle took it home to bind and label it. The final size is approximately 60 inches square, and is called “Modern Geo Hugs”. 


The quilt was presented to Jenny this weekend. The modern quilting group wishes Jenny all the very best for her treatment and recovery, and look forward to seeing her a modern quilting group again soon! We miss her very much, but all our love has gone into this quilt for her in the hope that it will assist her in her recovery. The image below is from Michelle Law, at Jenny’s home:

Jenny with her new quilt

Jenny with hew new quilt

Further images are available on Michelle’s Flickr album here.

Now the thinking caps are on for what we do for another bee. The first one was a lot of fun and we achieved so much in such a short period of time. It helps that the group is extremely friendly and collegiate, and everyone pitches in to help out where help is needed. We are currently making quilts for the QFO CommonGround project, so this might be the subject of our next bee. We’d like to encourage the other small groups to undertake a bee if they haven’t already – it’s a great way to get to better know members of your group, and you can possibly make something really spectacular together.

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Modern Quilt group – 8 May

May 3, 2014 | Posted in member activity, Modern Quilt Group | By

Jan Kates is hosting the meeting on 8 May, with Michelle Law. Start time is 7.30pm. Here is a message from Jan about the evening’s activity:

For the MQ May meeting I will be making a very quick/simple table runner that can be used for a gift idea, or your own of course. You don’t have to make one – bring your own project as usual if you prefer. For those that would like to make the runner, as opposed to just observing me, bring the following: 

  • Feature fabric, WOF (width of fabric) about 30cm wide
  • Co-ordinating Fabric, WOF about 45cm wide.

These measures do not have to be exact, so don’t sweat it. The backing does need to be about 15 cm wider than the feature (front) fabric. You WILL see the “backing” on the front, hence the use of the word “co-ordinating” – you need to like your two fabric choices together. 

Bring a sewing machine or share one with a friend. This is very quick so sharing works.

I do realise this is technically not a quilt as there is no batting or 3rd layer. Once you have made one and get the process, you can adapt the process to accommodate using iron-on pellon and quilting to produce a desired effect if you choose to. Of course you may feel confident enough to bring the pellon and do just that first up. 

See you on the 8th. We will do this after the usual  chantelle.

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Modern Quilts meeting – 10 April

April 8, 2014 | Posted in Modern Quilt Group, Uncategorized | By

The Modern Quilts group meets this Thursday, 10 April, at 7.30pm.

Michelle and Jenny are unable to make the meeting so the stand-in leaders are Gemma Jackson and Jan Kates.

Gemma has something special to show everyone:

Binding quilts is my least favourite part of quilting.  At one point I realised that I was accumulating unbound quilts as I just couldn’t face all that hand stitching.  (Yes, I know some people claim it’s relaxing, I claim that of quilting 😉 )  Since I discovering machine binding I haven’t looked back!  This week I’m going to share a couple of different machine binding techniques.  I will do a demonstration, but you are more than welcome to bring your own quilt to try it out yourself 🙂

You will need:

  • Trimmed quilt (of any size).
  • Binding prepared (I cut mine at 2.25″, join on the bias and press in half lengthways with right side out).
  • Sewing machine with walking foot.  If you have a walking foot with a guide (like a blind hem foot),  please bring it too.
  • Small bulldog clips or hair clips or clover clips or similar
  • Usual sewing supplies
  • I find a quilting glove helps

 You may wish to apply your binding to your quilt to save time, but please note that I will be showing you one technique which requires you to apply your binding to the back and one which requires you to apply your binding to the front.   

TIP: to work out how much binding you need add together the length of the four sides of your quilt and then add an extra 15″.  Divide the total by 40″.  This will give you how many strips of WOF (width of fabric) you need for your binding.  

For example.  My quilt is 40″ x 65″  = 210 +15 = 225     225 / 40 = 5.6  so I need 6 WOF strips for my binding.  I cut my strips at 2.25″ 

I look forward to seeing you Thursday!


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Modern Quilt Group meeting – 13 January

February 11, 2014 | Posted in Modern Quilt Group | By

Here is a message from one of the joint coordinators, Michelle:

Happy new year! Our modern group is meeting again this Thursday 13 February at 7.30 at the Cook rooms. 

Jenny and I thought we should name this month “Crossed Over” or something equally witty.  😉

Jenny will be demonstrating one type of cross block, and I will be demonstrating another.  I will bring along a heap of squares and you guys can have fun arranging on the design walls.  Or bring your own alone – for my method you will have to have 5 squares of each fabric.  you pick the size – 2 inch, 4 inch, 6 inch! Whatever you want. As long as they are all square, and the same size.

 No need for sewing machines on Thursday – it will be a night where we show off a lot of quilts for show and tell (please bring along!), chat, share and arrange squares of fabric.  Should be fun.

See you then!

crossed over

Arrange the squares to create crosses

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Modern Quilt group meeting – 12 December, evening

December 11, 2013 | Posted in Modern Quilt Group, modern quilters | By

At the final Modern Quilting group for the year, we are having a little Christmas celebration, so bring along a SMALL plate of something yum to share.  Jenny will also be teaching her star quilt. You should have received an email about this – with the cutting instructions –  a month ago, on 14 November, if you are on the email list, but if you didn’t, just email and Michelle will forward you the email.


Hopefully see you all there! It will be lovely to celebrate the wonderful group that the second Thursday of the month has become.


Michelle and Jenny

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Modern Quilting meeting 14 Nov – evening

November 13, 2013 | Posted in Modern Quilt Group | By

The Modern Quilting interest group meets this Thursday evening, starting at 7.30pm. Here is a message from one of the convenors, Michelle:

I know people last month were interested in me showing the slab block again – so lets do that on Thursday night.  Jenny also might have some other ideas.

Bring along your sewing machines, scraps sorted by colour, a couple of white or off white centre pieces. 

And your show and tell.  We’ll do that at the beginning of the night again like last month – that was fun

Here are some slab blocks, courtesy of Michelle:

sample slab blocks

sample slab blocks

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Modern Quilt Group Meeting – Thursday 10 October

October 8, 2013 | Posted in Modern Quilt Group | By

Modern Quilt group meets this Thursday 10 October from 7.30 pm.

This month Jenny is going to do some machine quilting demos – simple and very effective quilting that can make your modern quilts pop! You can check out Jenny’s Pinterest board on these type of quilts if you want some inspiration before Thursday.

Bring along a small quilt sandwich in white or cream, and your machine if you want to give it a go. Or bring along whatever else you are working on. Plus show and tell, and any new books of magazines to share with the others. Should be a lovely night, as usual.

See you then!

Michelle and Jenny x

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