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Entries in mid-century modern (6)


QuiltCon Block Challenge

Today is a GREAT day! I just found out that my block has been chosen to be one of the 20 blocks that will be featured in the Quilt Con Raffle Quilt! Click here to see it! There were over 375 blocks submitted and all of them were simply mind-blowing. I'm utterly amazed that mine was chosen. Thank you so much, Elizabeth! I'm speechless! ;) And if you don't believe me, simply click here to see all of the amazing blocks and the hard hard task that Elizabeth had in choosing! 

For those of you in that are not in the modern quilt world, here is a little background: The Modern Quilt Guild is a national guild that has over 100 chapters (PMQG being one of them). For the first time ever they are hosting a conference in February in Austin, Texas called QuiltCon. So far, I believe over 800 people have registered (myself one of them!). There will be workshops, lectures, meet-ups, and more! One of the activities leading up to the event was a block challenge. Simply put, make a block using the QuiltCon logo colors to describe what modern quilting means to you. 20 blocks would be picked to be part of a quilt that will be raffled off at QuiltCon to raise money for Austin Children's Shelter. All of the other blocks will be assembled to make quilts for every child in the shelter! 

I knew I wanted to participate if not only to help make a quilt for a child. Thinking about what modern quilting means to me, I knew I wanted to play with some mid-century shapes. I love taking vintage elements and translating them into quilts. It's quite a challenge, but being challenged is something that I love about modern quilting. It's so open to interpretation and you can make anything that you set your mind to! I sketched out many designs but ultimately decided on a blocky design, following the order of the QuiltCon logo. 

The QuiltCon logo: 

My sketch and plan: 

After mapping it out, I decided it would be much more vibrant and represent myself if I added pattern. Pattern is what drew me to start quilting. I love print and pattern, so not including it would not have fully represented what modern quilting means to me. I decided on the dimensions and then I pieced each shape together in strips. I didn't pre plan where I would sew the patterns in, I slightly improved where they would go and made the strips longer than they needed to be so that I could trim them later. 

Here it is one more time! It measures over 24 inches long! I really didn't think that it would get picked simply because of the volume it would consume within the raffle quilt! Thanks everyone in PMQG & the online quilting world, you all continue to inspire me with all of your amazing work, I love being apart of this creative community!! 


Before & After // Saarinen Executive Chair

I've been really excited about taking on re-upholstering this chair for awhile now. Chris picked it up a couple of months ago, but it's been at the bottom of the pile. Now that I'm a full-timer, I started on this chair this first week at my "new job". It is a Saarinen Executive Chair. For a little history on the designer, Earo Saarinen, click here. But for a quick recap, he's the creative mind behind the infamous womb chair, tulip table and chair, plus renowned as "Shaping the Future".



Back to my chair: 

This chair was incredibly dirty & smelly! I wouldn't be surprised if there was actual urine in this chair, gloves were a must! I actually thought these photos don't show enough of the grime, they make the chair look good! 

one) First I started by striping the chair of its fabric. This chair was assembled with nails and each nail must be removed. All of this was done outside as the process was incredibly disgusting! Re-upholstering is usually anything but glamorous! ;) 

two) As I started seeing what was underneath, I wasn't too surprised. The old foam had harden and turned to mush. With a scraper, the old foam was removed to show the fiberglass shell. 

three) Here is the top of the chair with an original number layered inside of the fiberglass. It was interesting to find this. 

four) After carefully cutting all of the pieces, I decided it was best to follow the sage advice of many books to make paper patterns. This helped tremendously! In fact, I'm saving them in case (Chris says when), we find one again. 

five) Pinned patterns to new bright red wool to cut! Side note about fabric: Finding the right fabric is always very difficult. Many times there is multiple trips to Fabric Depot. In this case, I spent hours at Fabric Depot, Jo-Ann's (bought fabric, but wasn't thrilled with it when I arrived home), Fabric World (NEVER go here, it's in North Portland and it a complete waste of a drive), the Whole 9 Yards (great shop, but not enough options unless you want to special order and wait 3-4 weeks), and finally Mill End Fabrics. Last time I went to Mill End, I thought I'd never return, I really didn't like the selection four months ago. This time, LOVED IT! So, so, so many fabrics that I'd love to use in my pieces. Plus I learned they just ordered over 100 of new bolts, many that are textured solids (my personal fave!). Plus they honor Fabric Depot's coupons! I'll definitely be making the drive to Mill End more often! 

Here is the after! I'm super pleased with how it came out! I knew this chair would be a challenge and it was! All of the curves = bumpy fabric! It's not perfect, but pretty close! I couldn't be more pleased! 

Many of the seams had to be hand stitched with a blind stitch. Lots of love went into this chair, but well worth it! It will soon be for sale on etsy, (I'll update this post with a link when it's live), or you could buy the current version from Design Within Reach (or out of reach depending on who's talking)  for lots of money! ;) 


Before & After // Kodawood Chair

Last weekend, we picked up many chairs at a sale, I wanted to start on this chair first. At first glance all you see is the ugly fabric, but then you see the beautiful lines! In addition to it needing an overall, the bottom springs were broken. As I started to strip off the old fabric, this beautiful vintage fabric was underneath the top portion of the seat. I contemplated leaving it, but soon discovered the bottom seat did not have this vintage fabric. So, off everything went! Surprisingly, the back of the top portion has a beautiful wood finish. Previously this had been hidden by the fabric. I decided to keep with the original wood. 

After stripping everything, re-webbing the bottom seat, and installing new foam cushions, I chose this fun, textured, orange fabric. One of the hardest parts of upholstery is choosing the fabric (I've been known to spend days searching all of the fabric stores in Portland)! However, this piece was pretty easy, I had picked up this orange fabric previously and I knew this would be the right piece to use it on. I love how the colors of the wood and fabric play off of one another. 

Hopefully, you all aren't getting tired of my reupholstery photos! I have a great one coming up tomorrow! :) If you're interested in purchasing this chair, it's for sale here. 



What I Wish We Kept

Many people ask or comment on how much fun it must be to do what Chris and I do. We do have a great time, however, it's not always so fun to have to sell pieces that we love instantaneously. Here are all of the recent pieces that I wish we could have kept, if this were not the way we make a living.

I still mourn over that sofa, but hopefully, we'll find something else that we could keep in the future. Occasionally, we can keep some pieces but only if I really beg! Currently, I'm begging that we can keep the pair of teak and brass lamps (pictured above, Chris just got them this weekend and they haven't sold yet) that are currently making our living room look spectacular! Hint, hint! ;)

Have you ever let something slip through your fingers that you regret purchasing/selling?


LA Modern Auctions

Happy Tuesday! I'm especially happy as Tuesday is the beginning of my weekend and it's starting off great! Chris and I are currently sitting in Heart, one of our favorite coffee shops in Portland, he's reading the paper and I'm blogging! We have a full day of errands and projects that we both are excited to start working on. Thank you all so much for your comments on this blog, facebook, twitter and face-to-face chats about our new venture, Remnant. It's been so great to receive so much feedback and encouragment from all of you! The logo is almost decided, I'm making a few tweaks based on feedback.

While talking about Mid-Century items, there is a lot of activity happening in LA right now. Two days ago, the LA Modern Auctions, were held. There is much to ooh and ahh over, we played along by looking at the catalog before the show, choosing our favorites, and then this morning seeing how much they went for. Here is our dream list, it's crazy to see what some of these items are going for, but there are designer pieces after all!

This was such a good way for Chris and I to learn about other designers and brands that we were unfamiliar with. I'm now going to be constantly flipping over pottery to look for a Natzler name. Do you have a favorite?