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Finding Inspiration in Nature

karen-marchetti

by Karen Marchetti
Gammill Quilt Artist

Rocks, Trees, and Snakes – Finding Inspiration in Textures

I am intrigued by texture. Being part of this amazing quilting community, I’m finding more and more that others are too.  From fabric to quilting stitches, do you find yourself touching instead of looking – you’ve just got to touch? If you answered yes, you are probably also intrigued by texture.

I tend to look to nature for inspiration — tree bark, rocks, clouds, flower petals, tall grass, and leaves, even mud drying in the sun – all of these make for interesting textures and as a result can become amazing ideas for quilting. If you stitch them large they become all-over patterns, while shrinking them down would make awesome fills. I find myself wandering through home improvement stores — simple items like floor tiles, marble slabs, and wood will spark ideas for the most amazing quilting patterns. But, it doesn’t stop there. Start looking for textures anywhere – an office supply store, your own kitchen! I am constantly looking for patterns and interesting textures. I always have my phone with me to photograph things of interest. I have so many photos that I’ll probably never use but, if maybe one or two of them have a special element that might work, it makes all of them so worthwhile.

What I’m finding out more and more is many people see a photo and can’t quite translate what they see into quilting stitches. With all the technology available, there must be an aid for this translation, right? Yes, there are many photo editing apps available, I tend to mostly use Prisma, Enlight, and PS Express – there are many to choose from, find one that works for you.

In this article I’m going to share some of my photos with you – both as an actual photo as well as an after photo using filters available on the apps. I’m hoping you are amazed by how well the textures translate with use of the filters. I’m going to warn you now; I have a real problem with tree bark.

The first picture is of the glass in my front door – oodles of texture happening here but, for some, it might be difficult to translate the texture. The photo on the right shows a different look by using a filter:

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Now that texture has become easily stitchable.

This photo is a close up of outdoor upholstery fabric. I hear many people state they are apprehensive to quilt grid work and/or use rulers because they might have a little imperfection or two. This shows that a grid can still be beautiful even if the stitching is unevenly spaced. Some of these lines are wider than others. Again, the photo on the right is using a filter, which helps to translate the visual perception making it much easier to see the pattern.

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Another texture that many are uneasy about is pebbles. Why? Because they feel their circles aren’t perfectly round. Guess what, nature isn’t perfect either! There is absolutely no reason to fret when stitching pebbles. I like when they are all different sizes, it adds visual appeal! Look at this photo of fish tank gravel – essentially pebbles, right? Look what happens when we add a filter – a bunch of tiny misshaped pebbles! Quilt away with your odd little circles – you’re simulating nature!

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This photo shows the edges of my sketchbook; on the right the filter is added. This texture is one that I use a lot while quilting. You’ll see in the filtered photo there are open areas as well as shaded areas. Ruler work! The open areas would be unquilted space, while the shaded areas would be filled with a nice background fill. This works perfect for borders – why not take that piano key border one step further – try different spacing of the quilted and unquilted areas.

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This next photo shows a replacement roller for my laser printer. I love the texture on the roller – it would be great for water, sand, as well as a general all over fill. Lines don’t have to be straight to be effective!

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Okay, I warned you about the tree bark… Here are several samples of tree bark photos along with their filtered results:

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Okay, maybe my obsession doesn’t stop with just the bark. Here is a tree trunk with an amazing root structure. If you were quilting a tree with roots, it might seem a little daunting – just break it down into shapes and lines and it becomes a bit easier.

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This next photo is of a pool patio (and yes, it is a bit blurry, no worries). The texture may look overwhelming in the original photo but, add a cool filter and look what happens! So much visual stimulation happening now – the eye has multiple surfaces, sizes, and densities to keep interest.

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Wood grain – yet another of my favorite textures:

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Here are some more really cool textures:

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What might inspire you – a trip to the zoo, botanical garden, your own backyard? Look at everything and take too many pictures – you might just be surprised!

 

Karen Marchetti

Gammill Quilt Artist – www.gammill.com

 

Karen’s website: www.creativelongarmquilting.com

 

Karen’s blogs:

http://creativelongarmquilting.blogspot.com

http://karenmarchetti.blogspot.com

http://peekofinspiration.blogspot.com

Set Sail with Statler Updates

Sail with us May 14 to 21, 2017 on a seven-day Western Caribbean Cruise on the Royal Caribbean’s Liberty of the Seas ship. This trip includes three days of education at sea along with three beautiful days in tropical ports. Enjoy education with your fellow Statler users in relaxing and tropical atmosphere.

Less than one month remains to take advantage of the early discount for the Gammill Cruise!  Here’s the latest information regarding this fantastic educational opportunity.

Staterooms & Pricing

Set Sail for as low as $999! Balcony, Interior and Oceanview staterooms are all still available. However, rooms are selling fast so we encourage you to book soon and reserve your spot! Plus, you must register and place your deposit on or before Sept. 1 to receive early bird pricing. Price is per person based on double occupancy and includes room, meals, cruise fares, taxes, fees, port expenses and standard cruise gratuity, and a welcome reception. Price for quilters includes conference fees and 10 educational sessions. Prices do not include air or transfer accommodations. Additional packages, such as beverage packages are available, as well as port excursions and activities; however, additional fees apply.

early registration discount image

 

Current Registrants

If you and your roommate have both registered for the Gammill Cruise, be sure to check your e-mail. You should have received a message in the past few days with information regarding your specific stateroom. If you did not receive an e-mail or need more information, e-mail contact@gammill.com.

 

Liberty of the SeasLB_02

Check out all the amazing amenities on our ship, the newly renovated Liberty of the Seas.

Some of the highlights include: 4 pools (including an adults-only retreat), 6 whirlpools (two of which are cantilevered whirlpools overlooking the ocean), state-of-the-art fitness center, Vitality Spa, complimentary Broadway hits and ice-skating shows, casino, shopping, waterpark, 3D movie theater, mini-golf and much more.

 

EducationEducators3

An incredible 17 world-renowned instructors will be on board the Gammill Cruise. They include pattern designers, authors, national and international award-winning artists, long-time CreativeStudio instructors, inventor of the Statler, the CreativeStudio author, and more! Click here to read their bios and learn more about education on board the cruise.

Port Visits

Our cruise will be stopping in Roatan, Honduras; Puerto Coasta Maya, Mexico; and Cozumel, Mexico. No regularly scheduled classes will be held on days in port so that guests may fully enjoy these amazing locations.

Connect with Cruisers

Request to join the Gammill Cruise Facebook page to receive updates about the cruise and connect with your fellow cruisers. If you are looking for a roommate, this is also a good resource. Click here to go to the Facebook page.

 

Additional Questions

Check out our frequently asked questions page and travel information for answers. Or, contact us at contact@gammill.com

 

 

Summer Cash Off Savings & July Updates

For monthly updates from Gammill, sign up for our newsletter at http://gammill.com/community/newsletter/

Summer Savings

Summer-Savings-Special

Now through Aug. 15 receive cash off your purchase of a new Gammill. Visit

 

Gammill Cruise

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Register for the Gammill Cruise at Gammill.com/cruise before Sept. 1 and save $100 off each individual registration!

New Videos

A new Best of Both Worlds is now online for newsletter subscribers (click on this month’s newsletter at http://gammill.com/community/newsletter/ to view)

Also, new tutorial videos on the features of CreativeStudio 6.0 are now available online! Click the links to watch:

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For our complete video library featuring more than 100 tutorials and instructional videos, visit gammill.com/education/videos/

Quarryburn Quilting

Gammill is pleased to welcome Quarryburn Quilting in New Zealand to its network of professional dealers. Quarryburn will provide sales, service and supplies to customers.

quarryburn quilting
The realization of a long-held ambition, Lesley’s purchase of a fully computerized Statler by Gammill quilting machine in 2006 quickly tapped into a need, and business took off, resulting in the purchase of a second machine in 2008.

Quilting is a passion for Lesley, who has been sewing since she was a child.  “My mother and grandmothers taught me to sew and knit, and I made clothing for both myself and my four children, as well as dabbling in many needlework crafts over the years.”

Lesley taught herself to quilt by reading magazines and watching “simply quilts” with Alex Andersen, and because she knows just how much effort goes into producing a single quilt recognizes the privilege and responsibility of being trusted with such precious work.

Lesley is the winner of several blue ribbons for quilts completed in her spare time, taking Excellence in Machine Quilting at the New Zealand Quilt Symposium in 2011, and having two quilts accepted for the World Quilt Show in 2010.

 

Lesley and Patrick O’Rourke
2467 Puketitiri Road,
Rissington, NAPIER. 4184
Phone (08) 00434796
Home Phone (06) 8395903
Mobile – Lesley (027) 4347967 Patrick (027)2322103
quarryburnquilting@gmail.com
quarryburnquilting.co.nz
www.facebook.com/quarryburnquilting/

What’s new in May!

Check out the Gammill May newsletter by clicking here and subscribe to receive it in your inbox.

Manufacturing Marvels spotlighted Gammill on The Fox Business Network. If you missed it, here is the episode. Visit our blog post for more information.

A new episode of the Best of Both Worlds is now online! Watch as Linda Taylor and Joan Knight work more on the Barn Chicks quilt from episode 11.

A quilt becomes a family heirloom. Click here to read a new Quilter’s story featuring the Tie Quilt by Patricia Coleman Hudman.
Educational events for Gammill users are coming up in Colorado, Australia, Canada and Ontario!

Registration for the Gammill cruise begins on May 23! Click here for more information.

Upcoming Educational Events

June 15 – 17, 2016 Digital Stitch Conference
Fort Collins, Colorado, Jukebox Quilts
Joining the Digital Stitch Conference are educators Pat Barry, T.J. Speiser, Wendy Bermingham, Lorilynn King, Rita Meyerhoff, Amy Wade and Natalia Majors-Wojciechowicz, plus Business Consultant Curt Bear and Social Media Marketing guru Amy Alcorn. Classes cover topics on care and repair of your Statler, creative quilting, advanced quilting techniques, unconventional ideas, as well as business concepts that will help you to start or improve your home quilting business.
Hosted by dealer: Jukebox Quilts



July 8 – 9, 2016 Education Tour Australia – Brisbane  
Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre Southbank, Brisbane, Australia
Two-day event for current users or anyone who is interested in using a Statler by Gammill and CreativeStudio 6.0. Registration fee includes two full days of classes, lunch, and morning and afternoon tea. The conference will feature award winning quilter Kim Diamond.
Hosted by the Quiltshack



July 15-16, 2016 Education Tour Australia -Melbourne
Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, South Wharf, Melbourne
Two-day event for current users or anyone who is interested in using a Statler by Gammill and CreativeStudio 6.0. Registration fee includes two full days of classes, lunch, and morning and afternoon tea. The conference will feature award winning quilter Kim Diamond.
Hosted by the Elizabeth Machine Company



August 12-14, 2016 Statler Ontario Users and Professionals Retreat 
Best Western Otonobee Inn, Peterborough, Ontario
Learn more about the Statler and CreativeStudio 6.0 with Certified Instructor Joan Knight. The retreat runs from 1 p.m. Aug. 12 to noon Aug. 14. Registration fee includes two days of classes, Friday dinner and social; Saturday snacks, lunch and dinner; door prizes and vendor shopping.
Hosted by dealer: Kawartha Quilting Systems



Registration now open!
August 16 – 21, 2016  Classes at Old Man River Quiltfest
Vicksburg Convention Center, Vicksburg, Mississippi
Free hand and Statler owners will find classes on a wide variety of topics at the Old Man River Quiltfest in Vickburg, Mississippi Aug. 16 – 20.  Classes are priced per course and include options for all skill levels. Courses cover a wide variety from award-winning quilters and educators including Joan Knight, Anita Shackelford and Pat Barry, who will offer classes on pantograph quilting, free motion quilting with templates, free motion fills for negative spaces, free motion stencil magic, and marketing 101. In addition to the classes and vendors, the show will also feature a display of the “Supper Quilt.”  This quilt measuring 183 X 67 inches was inspired by Leonardo DaVinci’s “The Last Supper”.  A total of 51,816 squares of one-half inch cotton fabric were pieced together by Don Lock, DDS of Waxahachie, Texas, and machine quilted by Linda Taylor of Melissa, Texas.
Hosted by dealer: Stitch-N-Frame

Manufacturing Marvels

Manufacturing Marvels® will showcase longarm quilting machine manufacturer Gammill on May 13 at approximately 8:30 p.m. CST on The Fox Business Network ® during a production of Manufacturing Marvels®.

Manufacturing Marvels® produces two-minute spotlights on American manufacturers and their products, as well as the companies’ processes and customers. The segment featuring Gammill was filmed in April at the company’s headquarters in West Plains, Missouri.

 

Gammill revolutionized quilt-making in 1980 when founder Ken Gammill created a quilting machine that glides over fabric, similar to a pencil moving over paper.  Previously, machine quilting was done on standard domestic and industrial sewing machines, with a laborious process of moving three layers of fabric through a stationary machine.  In the early 1990s, the Gammill began offering computerized quilting technology when Paul Statler invented a software and hardware system that allows the machine to automatically stitch almost any design. man marvels12

 

 

“We are excited to have the opportunity to share with the general public a bit about Gammill’s 35 years as an industry leader in manufacturing longarm quilting machines,” said Michelle Weaver, Gammill General Manager.  “This production will give customers an inside look at the process each one of our machines goes through in order to create a product that provides quilters with precision and accuracy Gammill is known for.”

 

Manufacturing Marvels® will offer a behind the scenes look at the creation of both Gammill’s computerized system, the Statler by Gammill, and its hand-guided quilting machine.

men marvels32

 

Manufacturing Marvels® is narrated by nationally acclaimed voice talent John Criswell, who has more than 40 years of experience as a CBS and ABC news anchor. It is produced by an award-winning team including producers Bob May and Jerry May and director Bryan McCullough.

 

You can also find the segment on Gammill’s website at Gammill.com or its YouTube Channel following the May 13 broadcast.

 

Set Sail with Statler!

The Gammill Education Department has been making big plans and the reveal is finally here!

Watch the video with Paul and Mildred Statler.

We hope to see you in May 2017! For more information, visit Gammill.com/cruise.

Manufacturing Marvels ® to spotlight Gammill

men marvels22Manufacturing Marvels® will showcase longarm quilting machine manufacturer Gammill on May 13 at approximately 8:30 p.m. CST on The Fox Business Network ® during a production of Manufacturing Marvels®.

Manufacturing Marvels® produces two-minute spotlights on American manufacturers and their products, as well as the companies’ processes and customers. The segment featuring Gammill was filmed in April at the company’s headquarters in West Plains, Missouri.

 

Gammill revolutionized quilt-making in 1980 when founder Ken Gammill created a quilting machine that glides over fabric, similar to a pencil moving over paper.  Previously, machine quilting was done on standard domestic and industrial sewing machines, with a laborious process of moving three layers of fabric through a stationary machine.  In the early 1990s, the Gammill began offering computerized quilting technology when Paul Statler invented a software and hardware system that allows the machine to automatically stitch almost any design. man marvels12

 

 

“We are excited to have the opportunity to share with the general public a bit about Gammill’s 35 years as an industry leader in manufacturing longarm quilting machines,” said Michelle Weaver, Gammill General Manager.  “This production will give customers an inside look at the process each one of our machines goes through in order to create a product that provides quilters with precision and accuracy Gammill is known for.”

 

Manufacturing Marvels® will offer a behind the scenes look at the creation of both Gammill’s computerized system, the Statler by Gammill, and its hand-guided quilting machine.

men marvels32

 

Manufacturing Marvels® is narrated by nationally acclaimed voice talent John Criswell, who has more than 40 years of experience as a CBS and ABC news anchor. It is produced by an award-winning team including producers Bob May and Jerry May and director Bryan McCullough.

 

You can also find the segment on Gammill’s website at Gammill.com or its YouTube Channel following the May 13 broadcast.

 

 

 

 

Solve the Education Puzzle & More Gammill Updates

Have you heard? The Gammill Education Department is planning something big! Check out our Facebook page for teasers and see if you can solve the puzzle.

puzzle1

If you haven’t had a chance, be sure to check out our April Newsletter, or better yet, sign up to receive the newsletter in your inbox!

 

This month’s issue features a new Best of Both Worlds Episode. In this episode Linda V. Taylor and Georgia Stull show us how to make game boards using a Gammill.

 

Also, new to the Gammill website is the Gammill Gallery. Gammill Artists and Educators have come together to create the Gammill Gallery, a collection of just some of the award-winning quilts done on a Gammill machine.

 

While on our website, read the featured “A Quilter’s Story” articles to find out more about your favorite quilts and quilters. A new story will be coming at the end of May!

 

 

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