Sunday, January 17, 2021

The Chicago MQG welcomes Tara Faughnan in March

We are delighted to welcome Tara Faughnan to our guild in March for a workshop and a lecture (virtually, of course)! Tara is a pattern writer, quilter, and teacher who's key inspiration is the interaction of color. She has taught at QuiltCon, exhibited her instantly recognizable quilts extensively, and is the lead designer for the Color Collective -- a subscription program that delivers fabric palettes custom-selected by Tara along with a new quilt block design each month.

WORKSHOP: Tara will be teaching a Color Interaction workshop for the Chicago MQG via Zoom on Saturday, March 20: Playing with color is one of the most rewarding aspects of quilt making. It can be fun, intuitive, challenging and, at times, frustrating. In this 6 hour class, we will explore how colors play off one another, delve into the importance of value, and learn tips for when you get stuck. Students will start with a variety of quick exercises, and move on to sewing small color studies that can be combined to make a larger quilt.

The workshop will run from 10am to 5pm with a break for lunch, and is limited to 20 participants. It will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration opens Tuesday, January 19 at 7pm CST. All current members will receive an email with the sign-up link. If spaces are still available, registration will open to non-members on February 20th.

When: Saturday, March 20, 2021, from 10am-5pm CST
Registration Fee: $75
Location: Zoom

Once the 20 spaces are filled, a waitlist will be created. (Email [email protected] to be added to the waitlist.) If spaces become available, they will be filled from the waitlist. It is up to members to notify the event coordinator (Special Events Chair Emily Bruzzini) if they have to cancel or if they do not wish to be waitlisted. Whenever possible, refunds will be made via the method of the original payment. The board reserves the right to withhold a processing fee on PayPal payments.

LECTURE: Then, on Sunday, March 21, Tara will discuss her creative Design Process as part of our regular guild meeting, from 2-5pm. She'll share the ways in which she takes an idea and develops it; how the role of scale and color are integral to her process; and how she resolves issues and deals with a creative rut.

All meetings are 2-5 pm on the third Sunday of the month, unless otherwise noted.

This month's meeting is on JANUARY 17, via Zoom. (Look for a link in our member newsletter, the Full Bobbin.)

Meeting location: Online, via Zoom.

Rush Oak Park Hospital 
Centennial Room 
520 S. Maple Ave Oak Park, Il 60304 

A list of our meetings can be found here.

Not a member, but would like to be? Click the button below to join our Guild!

We hope to see you there!

Monday, January 11, 2021

December Meeting Recap

Our December meeting was very social, even if our shared space was online. After announcements, we had a Zoom version of our annual Holiday Gift Swap by showing off the gifts that members received from their swap partners prior to the meeting. It was so lovely to see the range of handmade gifts - from bags to ornaments - that people made with their partners' specific tastes and preferences in mind. In place of our usual holiday potluck we split into breakout rooms to play "Never Have I Ever," do a quilt-y version of Mad Libs, and to take part in a convivial and casual scavenger hunt. Read the Mad Libs concocted during the meeting for some giggles.

To finish up we had a sizeable Show and Tell. You can see some of the beautiful and inspiring finished works in the December Show and Tell album associated with our Facebook group.


Anniversary Mini Virtual Quilt Show: Hooray! You can see all of the quilts made in celebration of the Chicago MQG's 10 year anniversary in this Virtual Quilt Show! Click on each thumbnail for larger photos and more information. And a sincere "thank you" to Jenni Grover and her husband Joe for putting together the beautiful website.

Membership Renewal: If you haven't yet renewed your membership for the 2021 calendar year, head to the Membership page on our website now. We're updating our newsletter mailing list and member Facebook group access this month. Guests are always welcome to attend a first meeting for free (or for a $10 fee if we're hosting a paid guest speaker); the second meeting is $5. 

New Charity Pods!: We’re organizing charity pods again, similar to past year's groups. This is a great way to get to know other members of the guild and produce a charity quilt at the same time. If interested, you will be put into a small 3-5 person group with the objective of planning and creating a charity quilt. Your group can plan and execute the quilt any way you’d like. We’ll be deciding on the charity and their requirements before the next meeting. Contact Ellen if you'd like to be part of a pod.

Show and Tell: Please continue to upload your show and tell pictures to each month's Facebook album (especially big quilts and other items that are hard to show off on the Zoom platform), and we'll create a slide show to present during our meeting's "show and tell" time. You're also welcome to share in real time during the meeting if you wish.  If you don't use Facebook, you can email pictures to Julia. Please upload or email photos by the day before the meeting.

MQG news: Are you attending QuiltCon Together 2021 next month? If so, you may want to join our Chicago MQG QuiltCon Together Facebook group as a way to connect with others from the guild who are participating.

The MQG is organizing a "greatest hits" exhibit of quilts to be displayed at the National Quilt Museum in Paducah. Go here to enter a quilt or find out more.

Be sure to check out the national Modern Quilt Guild site and take advantage of the many resources available to you as a member: webinars, quilt patterns, block studies and more!

QuiltCon Community Outreach Challenge: Look for our finished quilt in the virtual show next month during QuiltCon Together 2021.

Weekly Sewcials! Open to all CMQG Members: Sewcials on Zoom are every other Tuesday evening and Wednesday afternoon. These unstructured sew-ins are for members who want to hang out, catch up, sew a little (or do any craft, really) and meet other members. Jenni Grover will host them as we begin, but we'd love to have other volunteer hosts as well. The next Tuesday Sewcial is January 12 at 6pm, and the next Wednesday Sewcial is January 20 at 1pm. Check your monthly newsletter (the Full Bobbin) or the member Facebook page for the Zoom link.

CMQG Tenth Anniversary book: Book orders coming very, very soon!

Guild-wide sew along:  If you're participating in the Big Fun Mystery Sew Along, you can find the Month Four instructions here and the Month Five instructions here. Month Four focuses on dazzling stars, while Month Five introduces versatile "X" and plus blocks. The sew along will feature ten months of new blocks and then a few months of putting them all together, each quilt unique to its maker. We'd love for you to join in. Its absolutely okay if you don’t make every block, or if you like one and make it more than once! Tag your pics on social media with #BFMSAL. We love seeing your progress!

Modern Quilt Bee: Follow along with the progress of the #chimodbee on Instagram. And please reach out if you'd like to be part of a future bee!

Using hashtags to search and share: Jenni showed how to use a hashtag to search and connect around guild projects in Facebook and Instagram. You can use this more than for the Chicago MQG. Working on a specific pattern or block? Look for a hash tag related to it. One that was mentioned during show and tell was #OrbiterQuilt which is a Libs Elliot pattern – Libs was a speaker and workshop teacher at our guild in 2019.

Star Stitches: We hope you're enjoying this way of recognizing members for achievements and triumphs both large and small -- not just quilting related. Each month you can submit your friends' achievements (or your own) for announcement and celebration at the upcoming meeting. Look for a link in each month's member newsletter.


Sunday, January 17, 2:00-5:00, virtual meeting via Zoom: Annual Member Mini Trunk Show. Join us to see the amazing and diverse works of Chicago MQG members Katie Cooper, Trish De Preter, Kathy DeVries, and Emily Parson. The Mini Trunk Show is a well loved meeting each year and is a great way to learn more about some of your fellow quilters and their paths to quilting.

Sunday, February 28, 2:00-5:00, virtual meeting via Zoom: Make Do. Ideas and inspiration for substitutions, sourcing hard-to-find items, mending, shortcuts, etc.

Saturday, March 20, 10:00-5:00 (UPDATED!), virtual workshop via Zoom: Color Interaction with Tara Faughnan. The workshop is limited to 20 participants and will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration opens Tuesday, January 19 at 7pm. Workshop fee is $75. All current members will receive an email with the sign-up link.

Sunday, March 21, 2:00-5:00, virtual meeting via Zoom: Guest Speaker Tara Faughnan. Tara will discuss her creative design process. She'll share the ways in which she takes an idea and develops it; how the role of scale and color are integral to her process; and how she resolves issues and deals with a creative rut.

Use and follow our guild hashtags!  


All meetings are 2-5 pm on the third Sunday of the month, unless otherwise noted.

This month's meeting is on JANUARY 17, via Zoom. (Look for a link in our member newsletter, the Full Bobbin.)

Meeting location: Online, via Zoom.

Rush Oak Park Hospital 
Centennial Room 
520 S. Maple Ave Oak Park, Il 60304 

A list of our meetings can be found here.

Not a member, but would like to be? Click the button below to join our Guild!

We hope to see you there!

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Big Fun Mystery Sew Along: Month Five

Welcome to Month Five of the Big Fun Mystery Sew Along... and to a brand new calendar year (well, almost!). We hope you enjoyed making last month's festive stars. This month we're crossing 2020 off (Done! Finally.) with "X" and plus blocks. Ok, I just made that up -- that wasn't our intended plan -- but it sounds good, right?!

{Posting this a couple of days early (usually it's the first of the month) since many of us are having a different winter holiday season than we normally experience. The upside to not traveling or hosting is, perhaps, more sewing? So, in case you have some extra time on your hands and want to get started, well, here you go. Cheers.}

What is the Big Fun Mystery Sew Along? It's a little bit "block of the month", a little bit "skill-building"... and so much more. Most importantly, it's about having fun without a firm plan in place. This might be intimidating for some. (I know I usually like to have a clear objective and a plan, so initially the idea of the BFMSAL was slightly daunting for me and I took it on as a challenge.) We hope that if you try experimenting and playing along, you'll enjoy the process (as I definitely am). Your welcome (and encouraged) to work at whatever pace you want. Make one or more of the blocks or techniques introduced each month, or let them inspire you to create variations of your own. Play with color and proportion. Share your work and be inspired by others.

If you haven't started yet and want to play along, feel free to jump in now or check out any of the past months' instructions:

Don't forget to share your progress! Show your work and your process on Facebook or Instagram with the hashtags #chicagomqgsewalong and #BFMSAL.

MONTH 5 BLOCKS: X's and Pluses

This month we're featuring an improv block that comes together a little like a magic trick, and a quick-to-sew, bright and scrappy block. Both of these allow for multiple variations and adaptations. We hope you'll enjoy playing with the Improv Plus Sign and Scrappy X!

Improv Plus Sign, finished size varies (left); and Scrappy X, 8" x 8" finished (right)

Notes from Bill:
The Improv Plus Sign blocks can be any size you desire. I’m showing them with a starting size of 6.5 inches square. They will finish approximately 1.5 inches smaller. This demo shows making them four at a time. I would make four to start and see if there are any lessons learned before you make the next four.

This block relies on contrast. Make sure there is contrast between the four fabrics you choose as they will come together with three fabrics to each block.

Improv Plus Sign cutting instructions (makes four):

Cut (4) equal sized squares in four different colors (See note above about selecting contrasting colors; Bill started with 6.5" squares.)

Improv Plus Sign piecing instructions:


    1. Change your rotary cutter blade if it’s been a while. Stack the fabrics and make two slices across the stack vertically. Make the slices roughly parallel and about 1.5” apart. The slices can be straight lines using a ruler or cut free hand. Slide the top stripe of fabric to the bottom of the pile.

    2. Starting with the top fabrics in each pile, sew each of the four blocks together. (Keep track of the order of the blocks/colors as you will need to restack them in next step.) Simply guide the edges together as you sew -- no pins are needed. Use your standard 1/4” seam. DO NOT press after the first seam. Sew both seams before pressing the seam allowances inward.

    3. Stack the squares back in the original sequence, lining up the stripes running right to left, and cut a similar stripe in the vertical direction as before. Slide the top stripe to the bottom of the stack. Like magic, you should see a “+” in each layer, with a different colored square in the middle. If not, you didn’t restack them in the proper order.

    4. Sew the blocks together as before. I try to center the middle square with the four radiating stripes. Before sewing the stripe, I finger press the stripe’s seams outward so they will nest with the previously sewn/pressed seams. I press these last two seams outward so that the small square is all flat on the back side of the block. Give the blocks a good press, and then square them up as desired. Here you can see that the blocks with strong value contrasts are the most successful.

    5. If desired, make another set of four blocks. You can use the same fabrics but shuffle the color order to create blocks with different color combinations. Or use four new fabrics.

Variations: You can also create two-colored blocks with the center square the same as the four corners by only using two fabrics. Experiment by making your cuts freehand (make sure to press only when both seams are sewn), making the stripes narrower or wider. If you want to make solid (one-colored) plus signs, you can make a single cut in your beginning square and insert a contrasting stripe, rotate 90 degrees, and then make another slice and insert the same colored fabric again.


Notes from Amy:
The Scrappy X is quick and easy -- sort of an antithesis to last month's paper-pieced star -- and I love it's graphic, punchy look. There are a few points to match up, but not many. I used one pin at those points/seams (and at the center seam) when sewing the sections of the blocks together. While the cutting directions below make an 8" finished block, these would be adorable scaled down and repeated as a border. They could also be stunning as a giant super-sized "X". And there's no need to make them scrappy, if that's not your thing. Scroll down for a version I made with just two fabrics.

Scrappy X cutting instructions:

From X fabric:                      Cut (4) 4.5” squares
From background fabric:       Cut (8) 2.5" squares

Note: for a scrappy version like the one above, use the same fabric/color for the larger squares, and an assortment of fabrics/colors for the smaller squares.

Scrappy X piecing instructions:


    1. Lay a small square on top of a large square with right sides facing and two edges aligned as shown. Use a straight edge (such as your quilting ruler) to draw a diagonal line with pencil or a washable fabric marker from corner to corner of the small square.

    2. Stitch along the drawn line. Trim 1/4" from the seam as shown. Then press open.

    3. Repeat Steps 1 and 2 to add a triangle to the opposite corner, as shown.

    4. Repeat with the remaining three large squares and remaining six small squares of fabric to make three identical sections for the block.

    5. Lay the sections out to create the X pattern. Sew the top two sections together, the bottom two sections together, and then sew the pieced top to the bottom to complete the block. Block measures 8-1/2" square unfinished.

Variations: Make a two-color block by using one fabric for the larger squares and a second for the smaller squares.  Here, I'm using smaller squares that are half the size of the larger squares, not including seam allowances: 4" for the large squares (plus 1/2" for the seam allowances); and 2" for the smaller squares (plus 1/2" for the seam allowances). You can easily scale the block up or down by using a little quilt math. For example, to make a 10" finished block, you would need your large squares to be 5" + 1/2" = 5-1/2" each, and your small squares to be 2-1/2" + 1/2" = 3" each. Or play around with making the X wider or narrower by decreasing or increasing the size of your smaller squares compared to the larger sections.

Please reach out to Amy or Bill with any questions. We hope you enjoy making either (or both) of these blocks!

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Big Fun Mystery Sew Along: Month Four

It's Month Four of the Big Fun Mystery Sew Along, and we're getting into the holiday spirit and making "stars" this time. We've got two different blocks to share this month, one a little more challenging than the other, but both satisfying and, we hope, fun to make. The "wonky" improv star is quick to sew up and looks great in multiples (as anchoring corner blocks, or a row of tiny stars), with slight variations inherent to each one. The six-pointed star? Well, we just couldn't resist celebrating this shape from the official flag of Chicago, our guild's home town.

What is the Big Fun Mystery Sew Along? Check out the first month's post for an overview of the challenge and instructions for that month's curvy blocks. The most important part is that this should be enjoyable (and maybe a little challenging), and we hope you'll feel free to work at whatever pace you want. Make one or more of the blocks or techniques introduced each month, or let them inspire you to create variations of your own. Play with color and proportion. Let yourself enjoy the process without a firm plan. Share your work and be inspired by others. Feel free to go back and check out the instructions from Month Two (stripes) or Month Three (flying geese) as well.

Don't forget to share your progress! Post photos of your blocks on Facebook or Instagram with the hashtags #chicagomqgsewalong and #BFMSAL.


This month we're back to featuring two different block patterns: a playful improvisationally pieced Wonky Star, and a precise foundation paper pieced Six-Pointed Star.

Wonky Star, 7.5" x 7.5" finished (left), and Six-Pointed Star, 8.5" x 8.5"finished (right)

Notes from Bill:
Last month we covered flying geese and several ways to construct them. This improv star uses 4 wonky geese to create it. Improv blocks like this one are where quilters should start, there is no precision or point matching. Pick some fabric for the background and some scraps to use for the star itself.  Start with 3” squares of fabric to make a 7.5” block. I used navy for the background and some white scraps for the stars.

Wonky Star cutting instructions:

From background fabric:      Cut (8) 3” squares
From star fabric:                 Cut (1) 3" square
                                         Gather scraps (or a fat eighth) to cut as you go

Wonky Star piecing instructions:


    1. The blocks are constructed like a 9 patch. First lay out your squares, as shown below, to keep yourself straight.

    2. Sew a straight edged scrap on top of one of the background squares to create a star point, the background left visible (lower right) gives you an idea of the size of the star point. (fig. 1)

    3. Trim off the background outside the seam allowance to reduce bulk.  Open the star point and finger press the seam. (fig. 2)

    4. Repeat Steps 2 and 3 with another scrap to make the opposite point. (fig. 3 & 4)

    5. Press, then trim the block to 3” square. Then make three more using the same steps.

    6. Arrange your four flying geese blocks, four corner backgrounds, and one center block as shown. Sew the squares together to create the 9 patch unit. Block will measure 8" x 8" unfinished.

Variations: You can alter the size and proportion of the starting pieces to vary the look of the finished block. For the block on the right, I used rectangular backgrounds for the 4 geese blocks (3.5”x3”), 3.5” squares for the 4 background corners, and a 3” square for the center. This allows the points to be longer in proportion to the center and can also give an increased background “border” around the star.


Notes from Amy:
The Six-Pointed Star block is made up of six separate foundation paper pieced (FPP) sections that are then sewn together to create the finished block. Each of the six sections has a center "star" fabric with a background fabric sewn to each side. The way each section is constructed is very similar to the paper-pieced flying geese from last month, in fact, so keep that in mind if the pattern feels intimidating -- it's really made up of six relatively simple parts.

For this block, I recommend leaving the paper on when sewing the sections together. It helps to hold the fabrics in place so the inside corners of the star are more likely to match up.

I used red for the star (because Chicago flag!) and a subtle white print for the background.

Six-Pointed Star cutting instructions:

From star fabric:                      Cut (6) 2.5” x 5" rectangles (A1, B1, C1)
From background fabric:           Cut (8) 3.5" x 4.5" rectangles (A2, A3, B2, C2)
                                              Cut (4) 3.5" x 5.25" rectangles (B3, C3)

Six-Pointed Star piecing instructions:


    1. Print two copies of the Six-Pointed Star templates at full size - do not fit to page. Check for accuracy with the 1" square on the template pages. Then cut out the FPP templates along the outer (dashed) line. You should have two of each template (A, B, and C).

    2. Reduce your stitch length to between 1.3 and 1.7, so your paper will perforate and tear away easily. Center one Star fabric piece (2.5" x 5") on the reverse side of the pattern, wrong side of fabric facing the paper. Then align one small background piece (3.5" x 4.5") so that it extends into the A2 part of the pattern by roughly 1/4", and with the right sides of the fabrics facing each other. Pin, glue baste, or hold in place with your fingers.

    3. Turn over so the right side of the paper pattern is facing up (and fabric is below), then sew along the line between section A1 and A2. Fold the paper back along the seam line and trim seam allowance to 1/4". Then finger press seam open (or lightly press with a dry iron).

    4. Place a second small background piece (3.5" x 4.5") so that it extends into the A3 part of the pattern by roughly 1/4", and with the right sides of the fabrics facing each other. Pin, glue baste, or hold in place with your fingers.

    5. Turn over so the right side of the paper pattern is facing up (and fabric is below), then sew along the line between section A1 and A3. Fold the paper back along the seam line and trim seam allowance to 1/4". Then finger press seam open (or lightly press with a hot dry iron).

    6. Trim excess fabric as shown. Note: Instead of trimming to the outside edge of the FPP pattern (which I often roughly cut with scissors), I like to line my ruler up a quarter of an inch from the finished block line to trim a precise quarter inch seam allowance.

    7. Repeat Steps 2 through 6 to make a second section with Template A and two each with Templates B and C. For sections B and C, use the larger (3.5" x 5.25") background fabric for the last piece sewn onto the paper (pieces B3 and C3).


    8. Lay out one of each sewn section as shown below. (Set the matching three sections aside.) Then sew section B to section A.

    9. Press the seam open with a hot dry iron. I removed the paper from the seam allowance before pressing it open to get a flatter seam.

    10. Sew section C to the other side of section A and press seam open as before.

    11. Repeat Steps 8 through 10 with the remaining three sections, then sew sew the two halves together to complete the block. Block measures 9" x 9" unfinished. The star should measure roughly 8" from point to point. 

Variations: To make a bigger or smaller star, you can scale the pattern up or down. Just be sure to re-draw a new 1/4" seam allowance outside of solid outer lines of each template. 

Please reach out to Amy or Bill with any questions. We hope you enjoy making either (or both) of these stars!

Virtual Block Party Challenge with Brewer Sewing: Winners Announced!

Wow, has 2020 been a doozy! In the swirl of everything going on, it can be hard to imagine what good there is to come from a new year.

But! But. Goodness IS possible! We've seen that throughout this year from all of our members. Births, marriages, anniversaries - y'all have celebrated each other with gusto. Creative expression - it blossoms in your quilts and other crafty pursuits. Hope - we see it in the activism our members display in their quilts, masks, yard signs, and words on social media. 

Because we have each other, we have the potential for goodness in 2021. So we decided to look forward with a new, fun challenge, sponsored by our friends at Brewer Sewing.

As a consumer, you may not heard of Brewer, but you may be familiar with some of the notions they distribute; they're a locally based company that supplies independent quilt shops all over the U.S. When they reached out to guild President Jenni Grover a few months ago about a partnership, we were thrilled about the chance to offer a fun challenge - and prizes! - to our members. Brewer believes in supporting local quilting organizations, and they recognize that as a guild, we contribute a lot to the larger quilting community. 

The nice folks at Brewer have worked with Jenni and Vice President Julia Bryant to develop a fun and HOPEFUL challenge for us to sneak in before the end of the year. We are so thankful for Brewer's support!

Virtual Block Party

We're throwing a Virtual Block Party! What better way to celebrate the coming year, and all of the beautiful things we've accomplished in 2020? 

To join in the fun, we asked members to create one quilt block that represents their hopes for 2021. It could be any size or shape; it could use any techniques they love. We encouraged members to let their creative expression flow. Their instructions: Show us, through your block, what 2021 might look like, literally or figuratively. Have fun with it!

Blocks were submitted with a deadline of November 15, 2020. Members could do anything with their blocks after submission; some have already turned them into mini quilts.

We asked our friends at Bloomington-Normal Modern Quilt Guild to be our jury. President Nancy Powell and Vice President Kathy Cook chose three winners to receive cash prizes of $250, $150 or $100. Thank you, friends!

Congratulations to our winners:

First Place: Amy Struckmeyer - Hope, 16"x16" - $250 prize

From Amy: "This guild has been a steady rock for me and my wish for 2021 is for even more connection and lifting up among our amazing Chicago MQG community. Meeting in person again (and retreats!) would be an extra bonus!

And I wish for a turning point in our country for real, positive change, and not simply a return to the normalcy of the “before times.” I wish for the beginning of a movement to truly reexamine and overhaul the policies of our local and national institutions that foster inequality, discrimination, and racial-injustice. Black lives matter. I wish for an end to the systemic racism that exists in this country, to the hate, and to any attempt to place the value of one human life over another. Oh, and to make a true effort to combat climate change. In short, I truly hope we get through this crazy, uncertain time stronger and better and braver than before.

My block is inspired by the ethereal wet-on-wet watercolor paintings I made as a Waldorf school student years ago. It’s meant to depict a hint of daylight from inside a cave... or firelight in the dark. It’s about finding bits of light and lightness in the midst of anxiety and uncertainty, and the anticipation of lighter and more hope-filled days ahead."

Second Place: Jen Beatty - Up We Go, 13.5"x13.5" - $150 prize

From Jen: "We need to be positive and I believe going/looking up will accomplish this as we move forward."

Third Place: Iris Johnson - Hope, 7.5"x7.5" - $100 prize

From Iris: "Trees are my symbol of hope. Their lives are a forever cycle of growth, decline, dormancy and return. I am inspired by the way trees respond to the seasons and thrive."

And a hearty thanks to everyone else who entered our challenge:

Lauren Krause - Reckoning, 12"x12"

From Lauren: "So many things to hope for, to make 2021 a better year. At the top of my list is a Truth and Reconciliation process in the USA to look honestly at our country’s history of racism. This includes genocide of the indigenous, and particularly, enslavement of Africans, and the various permutations of injustice over the years since. Participants in the process would take a clear eyed look at where we are now, with a reckoning of what still needs to change. There would be consideration of reparations, in whatever form they need to take. I am more hopeful that we will take steps towards this goal than I would have been, had the presidential election turned out differently. In some parts of this country it has already started."

Adamandia Kapsalis - New Growth Against Climate Change, 11"x11"

Jenni Grover - It's Rising!, 11"x11"

From Jenni: "I am hopeful that 2021 brings more peace for the world. In my block, the bottom half is 2020: dark, chaotic, a bit gloomy. But we voted, and there was a blue wave in many places, and we're going to embrace science moving forward... and we spent lots of time outdoors and we started to smile more... I tried to show that in the bottom half.

The top half is like a sun rising, really serene and calm and peaceful. It's an antidote to all the craziness. I hope that 2021 has more of that feeling - and I'm here to do the work to help make it happen!"

Trish De Preter - Bots on the Move, 8.25"x8.25"

From Trish: "My wish in 2021 is for more time to do the activities I love and the safety and reassurance to do them with those I love. My block reflects the buoy sailing I do in the summer on Lake Michigan. Their is a new system where Bots move the upwind buoys automatically as the course changes because of wind changes. The moving buoys can happen mid-race and are funny to see."

Trish De Preter - The Feast, 9"x9"

From Trish: "This block reminded me of The Feast of the Annunciation that happens every March 25th to celebrate Mary's news of her immaculate conception. I thought it looked like you were looking out of a dark window and into a bright Spring future. With the 2020 lock down in March Catholics were unable to celebrate the holiday. My wish is for us to be able to celebrate the little things, and big things, with those we love."

Emily Lang - Home, 8.5"x10.5"

From Emily: "My hope is for a new home."

Sarah C. Evans - Hexagons are the Bestagons (but it's hip to be square too), 3 unit size: 12.5"x9"; multiple units size: 26"x18.5"

From Sarah: ""Hexagons are the Bestagons" is the title of a CPG Grey YouTube video we recently watched as a family. We also watched his director's cut of the video and then when down the rabbit hole of Euclidean tilings finding SO MANY interesting geometric shapes. I was mesmerized and quickly wanted to test at least one out as a quilt pattern.

The pandemic not withstanding, my vision for our future is for us to continue exploring the ideas and things and as quilters, the shapes that excite us as well as push the boundaries of our skill sets. This is a prototype of the [; 3.426; 44] (t=3, e=4) 3-uniform tiling with 3 vertex found. Hopefully 2021 can be my personal shape journey.

Laura McDowell Hopper - Moonshadow, 9"x19"

From Laura: "This block, already turned into a simple mini quilt, is called "Moonshadow" and is inspired by the Yusuf / Cat Stevens song. His song is about finding joy in life, and especially in these times I can’t help but contrast that with Yusuf’s near-death experience with tuberculosis early in his career that left him hospitalized for several months, followed by a year of convalescence. Similar stories have been too common in 2020, adjusted for the coronavirus. Yusuf took his traumatic medical experiences and emerged, crafting some of the greatest songs we have about kindness and joy. His sickness was a phase, but for too many people today it’s an end.

I’ve thinking a lot about phases lately. These moon phases are inspired by my own personal phase of sleeplessness as a new parent, and how nature, even when it’s in crisis, has a way of telling us that things happen in phases. My hope for 2021 is that we move through the dark phase we are in now towards something brighter, even a little bit, that can bring us closer together."

Lisa Hasenbalg - Bringing the Divide to Hope, 22"x23"

From Lisa: "We need to build and use any and all bridges. One of my favourites is along the 101 in California in big Sur near the Eselan. That’s what this block represents to me. Finding new sources of clean energy (see windmills), healthy oceans, less fires and happier forests, and lots of sunshine. Free motion quilting (till my bobbins kept snagging). No appliqué, all assembled using improv strips."

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This month's meeting is on Sunday, December 13, 2020 at 2pm CST

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