I am an avid quilter. I am self-taught – when I began I had no idea what I was doing or how to go about it.

I started making bed quilts with traditional designs. My first quilt was a queen-sized double Irish chain. I figured, how hard could it be? Little did I know how important those 1/4″ seams were, and why cutting had to be as accurate as possible. Quilting made me accept that I make mistakes and learn how to fix them. But I also learned that quilting is a great way to express artistic design and create beautiful and useful pieces for friends and family.

Over the years, I began experimenting with my own designs. I slowly moved over from being a hand quilter to learning how to machine quilt, and now I usually have one of each going. A quilt I’m working on by hand in the living room as I watch TV and one in my sewing room under my machine needle. That is, of course, in addition to all my half-finished projects. I have even been fortunate to write some quilting articles, marrying my passion with my work. One such article, published over at NextAvenue.org,  has been particularly well received by the quilting community and I’m delighted that it has struck a chord: The Creative Art of Quilting – This art form is good for your health, helps you stay connected and provides purpose.

So, here are a few of my quilting projects. Some have links to close up and artistic photos. I hope you like them.

Taxi!

Fabric is the New York City skyline. My yellow cabs’ lights are red and clear beads. The hubcaps were sewn with the eyelet stitch with my machine, using silver sparkling threads. It’s one of my favorite designs. Machine quilted. If you click here, you can see close ups of the quilting and the “cabs.”

Taxi! – Photo by David Allen

 

Beyond the Brick Wall

This design came to me one day and it had to be made. The image haunted me until I designed it. Each ivy leaf is individually attached. The bicycle has a bit of a 3D effect. The handle bars and seat come off the fabric. Machine quilted. To see close ups of the quilting and 3D effects, click here.

Beyond the Brick Wall – Photo by David Allen

 

Illusions

You can read about how this quilt was designed here. And click here to see close up photos of the quilting, particularly the black thread on black fabric, which is difficult to see otherwise.

Illusions – Photo by David Allen

Here Fishy, Fishy

A friend send me some lovely batik fabrics and corresponding blue blenders. She wanted to know what I would do with them. Here is the result. I used the Ricky Tims Convergence quilt design for the center and then free motion cutting for the frame. The seaweed is trapunto, so it pops off the quilt a bit. To see more detailed photos, click here.

 

Here Fishy, Fishy! – Photo by David Allen

Marijke’s Garden

I made a smaller version of this quilt, with only poppies, as a wedding gift. When I finished, I realized how much I liked the effect and I decided to do a garden quilt for myself. The flowers are from the book Flower Show Quilts, by Lynn Ann Majidimehr.

 

This was the original poppy quilt:

 

Sampler

Machine pieced and hand quilted for my daughter. It started as a mystery quilt. The original pattern is on the diagonal, but I added blocks to square it and then added a bit of detail on the side.

 

 

Color Wheel

This is a quilt I am working on now. This is the top, not yet quilted. It’s currently about 1/3 done; I am machine quilting it. It’s a paper pieced block called Wild Winnie. When I saw it online, it was done in one color, a dusty rose with cream background. It was pretty, but I saw it as a color wheel and I love how it turned out.  I feel the placement of the circles give a spinning illusion. I’ll post a photo of it completed when it’s done.

Metro Rings/Wedding Quilt

Made for a dear friend’s daughter. Hand quilted.

 

Peeking Bunnies

This baby quilt pattern was in a Quiltmaker magazine. I adapted it to my vision. Machine quilted.

 

Urban Sunset

Several months ago, a colleague posted on line a sketch he had done of a skyline. I asked for permission to adapt it to a quilt. I changed the dimensions a bit to suit the medium. The fabric is all one piece, changing color, and the black stripes are done with black bias tape. Machine quilted.

Urban Sunset

 

Healing

I created this piece as part of my healing process from some trauma in my life. The dark silhouette of a girl purposely blends into the fabric. The shape cracks and breaks and as she heals, the pieces come back together. The black thread used to sew the pieces represent the scars. She is a whole woman, but the scars remain. Machine quilted. Click here to see several close ups and artistic shots.

Healing – Photo by David Allen

 

 

Mariner’s Compass

I never thought I would make one of these, but I’m glad I did. It turned out beautifully. Hand quilted. Would you like to see close ups of this one? Just click here then.

Mariner’s Compass – Photo by David Allen

 

Rita’s Hug Quilt

I make hug quilts for friends who are going through a difficult time. This is just one and it’s one of my favorites. Made from a panel that someone gave me as a gift. The flying geese added around the panel seemed to fit the design.