Let Freedom Ring

Let Freedom Ring by Ricky Tims 
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WIN THIS QUILT

TRY THE JIGSAW PUZZLE

Choose your own difficulty. Click the 9-patch grid to change number of pieces. Click the circle arrow to make the puzzle pieces rotating instead of stable orientation. Also, there are tips under the "?" on the upper right of the puzzle. If you'd like a full screen version, click the button below. Have fun!

   

52 Week Challenge Class

Challenge: Silence
photo by Allen Etheridge

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Allen used a technique that is taught during the year called Dreamscape. He said: "We rarely have snowy vistas here. I grew up in Colorado and fondly remember the absolute silence that a good snow can impart. We have had quite a bit of overcast lately so a night shot would have been a stretch.

In early winter it is not uncommon to get morning fog. It rained all night Tuesday. On Wednesday I could not see my neighbor’s house, but the morning chores of coffee and walking the dog the fog around the house lifted. A good fog does impart a silence to me. I drove up Green Mountain here in Huntsville, AL, and it was extremely foggy halfway up (all of 600-foot change in elevation). Given the weather there was no one at the Madison County Nature Trail. It was lovely albeit very wet.

Oh, one more bit of learning, when the breeze blows in the woods the trees will “rain” on you. When shooting in this environment one should always have a dry lens cloth to eliminate droplets on the lens (first water is not good for cameras, and second tiny drops create little fuzzy halos on the photograph). Yet another “Duh!” moment for me.

 

 

 52 Week Critique Group

Challenge: Tickled Pink 
photo by Wendy Hodina

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Wendy said: "Only in Cleveland! These inflatables caught my eye this morning as I was heading out for a hike in the snow. The 1983 movie “A Christmas Story” was filmed in Cleveland nearer to downtown in the Tremont area. This house with the inflatables is actually in Hudson, OH. We do see leg lamps occasionally around town.
After the hike I came back by to take some photos. And I’m still chuckiling about it. The house is fairly set back from the road and it’s a busy narrow road so I had to shoot through the open car window. Slightly cropped and cleaned up some props in the front yard. Used the Topaz filter starlight glitter. Happy Holidays, All!”

 

 

 

 Summer Storm in Clay County

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Detail of the quilt:

Detail of Summer Storm in Clay County
Summer Storm in Clay County, TX by Ricky Tims  

I grew up in Wichita Falls, TX. My dad's parents were in the next county over, Clay County. They lived in flat lands on the edge of live oak forest. The house was white with a red roof. We had windmills to draw water up for cattle. The ponds, murky red from the red clay of the Texas soil, were commonly known as 'tanks'. I used a bit of artistic license here and made the water blue - after all, if the sky reflected at the proper angle, it would be blue. The area had plowed fields and from some vantage points you could see for miles. Look closely on the horizon. A boiling summer storm is definitely approaching.
 
My first year quilting, 1991, my grandmother, (Myrble Virginia Chesher Tims) passed away. It was in September of 1991. I was only a few months into quilting - but I was addicted to it. My dad had also started quilting. After her death, dad went to sort through her belongings. In the attic of the old house he found a box with bits and pieces of fabric scraps in odd shapes and sizes. They all fit into a shoebox. Dad gave the box of scraps to me and I decided to use her fabrics to make a wall quilt as a tribute to my grandmother and the family ranch. Hopefully you'll notice it is hand quilted.
 
I fell in love with the vintage fabrics in that box. Especially the western themed fabrics. The windmill bases and the same fabric used in the border was from one of her dresses. It is cotton sateen. 
 Summer Storm in Clay County Fabrics
 
As each year comes and goes, I think about the connection I have to those who blazed a way for me. The end of a year is time to reflect and connect dots that help us to understand where we came from - and perhaps provide a bit of guidance as to what direction we should take moving into the future. This quilt helps me to remember my grandparents and the times we shared in the little house in Clay County, TX. May the flames of love never be extinguished. May they never be fully past and gone. We'll take a cup of kindness yet! I hope you will agree.
 
Happy New Year!
 
Auld Lang Syne - (Days Long Gone)
Should Old Acquaintance be forgot,
and never thought upon;
The flames of Love extinguished,
and fully past and gone:
Is thy sweet Heart now grown so cold,
that loving Breast of thine;
That thou canst never once reflect
On auld lang syne.
 
For auld lang syne, my dear,
for auld lang syne,
we'll take a cup of kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.

  

 TRY THE JIGSAW PUZZLE

Choose your own difficulty. Click the 9-patch grid to change number of pieces. Click the circle arrow to make the puzzle pieces rotating instead of stable orientation. Also, there are tips under the "?" on the upper right of the puzzle. If you'd like a full screen version, click the button below. Have fun!

   

 

 

 Joyeaux Noel

 

Joyeaux Noel by Ricky Tims  
Click on quilt for full view.

It seems Christmas/holiday wall quilt patterns abound, but not so many patterns are available for full-sized bed quilts. In this case, the pattern is for a queen size bed. When I designed this, I wanted to focus on small pieces - not large length or pieces (like borders), but a quilt the could be made with scraps if desired and the border is built into the piecing design.

This one, the original, was made using my hand-dyed fabrics and I created a kit for it. However, for the time being, there are no hand-dyed fabrics. Still, the log cabin aspect lends itself to using all those wonderful fabrics in your own stash. In addition, the simple bow tie blocks for decoration add a nice bit of whimsy.

Sometimes people are surprised when I create something using traditional elements. But the more you follow me, the more you will know that I am inspired by quilting traditions and then… I just take a turn and put my own spin on them. While it’s far too late to do this quilt for 2020, you might consider grabbing the pattern and making it a project for 2021. If you only enjoy it for the eye-candy and something to brighten your days, I’ll be thankful. Be sure to give the jigsaw a try - I’m betting it will be harder than usual. Game on!

 

 

 TRY THE JIGSAW PUZZLE

Choose your own difficulty. Click the 9-patch grid to change number of pieces. Click the circle arrow to make the puzzle pieces rotating instead of stable orientation. Also, there are tips under the "?" on the upper right of the puzzle. If you'd like a full screen version, click the button below. Have fun!

   

 

 

 Baby It's Cold Outside

 

Baby It's Cold Outside by Ricky Tims  
Click on quilt for full view.

The year 1991 was life-changing for me. I started quilting on my own little island, not really knowing any quilters, quilt shops, or quilt guilds. By that Fall I had met a quilter and was invited to a guild. I was absorbing as much as I could and I had learned foundation piecing - and crazy quilting. Early in December, I sketched (not a pattern) out this quilt thinking I could create a Santa, and to keep things not so complex, put him in the attic window setting so it would keep the paper piecing contained. As you see, he is looking inside to where it is cozy and warm...and yes, the title of the quilt is a nod to the song. 

Using scraps from my small meager stash (remember I was a newbie), I worked freely (no pattern) to create the the top. The four windows came together fairly easily because they were each separate self-contained units. It was the rest where things got a bit insane.The striped bulky thing is meant to be Sant's toy sack. I just keep going and sewing. I dyed the white fabric on the snowy hills with blueberries to create the effect I wanted.

I wanted to include Rudolf and as you see - I did. But looking back, the funny thing is… if I could, at random, by stewing and studying...figure out all this crazy patchwork…why couldn’t I figure out how to give Rudolf hind legs? I hope you get a kick out of that - no pun intended.

Have fun studying one of my first original quilt creations. In 2019, I finally released this as a pattern. It’s not as hard as it looks - but does take a bit of time.

 

 TRY THE JIGSAW PUZZLE

Choose your own difficulty. Click the 9-patch grid to change number of pieces. Click the circle arrow to make the puzzle pieces rotating instead of stable orientation. Also, there are tips under the "?" on the upper right of the puzzle. If you'd like a full screen version, click the button below. Have fun!

   

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