Monday, February 20, 2017

A Winter Quilt

On this "Family Day" holiday,  I am sewing my latest scrap quilt.

quilt as you go assembly

I started it a while ago. I made it to show as an example during a scrap class I taught last November. It is a variation of the pattern I was teaching.

Heart fabrics for February's Valentines,
a bit of a Paris fabric since I was there in December,
some yellow for the sun I miss so,
fabric printed with words for all the emails
 I write to my Italian friends while I am here in Toronto,
a Christmas fabric.
Panels hanging on my design wall.
Even though the fabric reads as white,
there are so many colours!

Anyway, this quilt is about the snowy days of winter.

This is the binding fabric I bought.
It works nicely with the back blues.
The 1/2 inch that will show on the front
will add a gentle punch.

I did embroider a few cypress trees ....from Italy.

I should be done at the end of the week so I will post again to show you the finished product. I like this quilt.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Using Fabric Scraps

I love making scrap quilts.

When I teach, I impart the tricks I have learned over the years of experimenting with scraps to the students so they too can make a successful scrap quilt.

But that knowledge is compartmentalized the quilt drawer. Whoever thought I could do the same with yarn!!

I have lots of 20 gram bits after making socks for the past years. Like with fabric, I just didn't want to throw those 'valuable' bits out. I also didn't want to do what many quilters do. That is bring a small piece of fabric (yarn) to the quilt store and buy $200 worth of fabric (yarn) to 'match' it so they can use their scraps! Makes no sense.

So I applied my knowledge of making scrap quilts and what do you know? It worked!

Medium values

I divided the yarn bits into the same VALUE groups- like I do with fabric.

This is the dark value group.
Yes, even the pink ball

Even though there are many values in this ball
 there are many strands that are dark.
I notice that the purple and blue strands are
repeated in the other balls.
I see the orange is light but as a colour
it is complimentary to blue.
There is some orange in another ball in the group.
The purple is visible is several balls. It will work.

I am knitting two rounds with each colour therefore spreading the colours out, exactly how I would piece a scrap quilt. My hand knit socks are looking great!!

Keep in mind that quilter's cotton keeps going up in price. Make an effort to use what you have. It is really rewarding coming up with a solution!!

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Mongolian Textiles

This weekend I finally went to see the documentary Eagle Huntress. Gorgeous scenery warrants this film to be seen on the big screen.

Besides the magnificent mountains of Mongolia, the areal shots and the breathtaking panoramic views what I enjoyed was the embroidered clothing of the Kazakh people.

When they interviewed a local person in their home I had to read the subtitles when what I really wanted to do was look at the background textiles!

I wanted to see the embroidered clothing at the Eagle Festival close up!

I really should see it again and focus on that.

These pictures are NOT Mongolian textile. These hand-made hats are from Thailand. The stitching reminded me of what I saw in the movie...kind-of...

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Inspired by Quilts

My textile hand work, my quilts, have inspired watercolour painter Gill Cameron . She is known for her Georgian Bay landscapes but wanted to try something new.

She photographed a bunch of my quilts a while ago and painted them on paper, altering some of the colours.

She actually sewed the paper to create the folds. I like the effect it gives.

Gill Cameron was a beginner quilt student of mine about 9 years ago.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Hexagons in Fashion

Surprise! Dior has a quilt pattern in their pre-Fall 2017 fashion line!

ceramic tile detail in Barcelona, Spain

My Veronese friend Piera's latest quilt!
All hand pieced and hand quilted.
The outside shape of the 3-d block is a hexagon
picture taken at the ROM in Toronto, BIG/M├ęga exhibit
quote from the label: "Needlework was a professional trade
 as well as a domestic skill associated with the feminine virtues
 of patience, concentration and cleanliness"
...comment anyone??
A cube quilt in the process- interesting how the quilt maker
used a grey and black for 2 sides of the cube
 and only one coloured piece.

Click here to see how Dior used the hexagon shape! Interesting ....although the model doesn't seem to be too happy to be wearing it! (I can't stop laughing!)

Popular construction of a hexagon during the 30's and 40's,
hand pieced and hand quilted
Charlotte's Webs in Blue
large hexagon quilt by Judy Beca
(photo taken at the York Heritage Quilters Guild Show
Inspired by Bob Gutcher's spiderweb quilt

We are ahead of the fashion curve, ladies!

I show this example when I teach the art element of value.
Value is very visible when comparing it
to the same photo (below) in black and white.

Friday, January 6, 2017

BE THERE!! Verona, Italy, April 21 to 30, 2017

On a freezing cold day like today, I dream of a spring season in Verona, Italy. Doesn't that sound nice?

YOU may like to discover Verona while enjoying Verona Tessile, a biannual quilt and contemporary textile art festival highlighting works from around the world. 

A walking tour, classes, a wine tasting in the Valpolicella region, a cooking class of typical Veronese fare and a day trip to Venice are among the activities during the trip I organize.

My textile trip registration is progressing. There are still spots available so sign up soon as there are limited places (12 max.)

Verona is such a gorgeous city. Even though I have been visiting there for the past 11 years I never tire of it. The beautiful Adige river hugging the historical area.

The history.

The architecture.

And of course you can't talk about Italy without mentioning food!

Fresh spring asparagus over parmigiano crisps

Or it's people- full of life and ever so stylish! One of the plusses about this trip is that you will get to meet Italians that have the same interests as you- quilting and textile art. There have been some nice friendships between the Canadians and the Veronese that have blossomed since 2011 when I started taking groups over there.

Some of my friends that you will meet!

I hope you can join me for this authentic experience of Italian life. It will be unforgettable!!

Click here for details.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Last weekend for World of Threads

World of Threads, another success!! Congratulations to the festival curators, Dawne Rudman and Gareth Bate.

Waiting #1, Remembrance Women's Loss, detail
Glenys Mann

It is always a pleasure seeing the works. There is a wide spectrum of styles, techniques and materials used. I got to see things other countries are working on and it is inspiring to me as a maker myself.

Interactions #28: Head to Head, detail
Gerri Spilka

This year's show included 315 works from 23 countries!

Pages from Life's Journey, Series 1
Sung Ja Kim Chisholm

There were 134 artists and lucky me, I got to see a piece from my favourite Judith Martin!

 detail of Judy Martin's work

The program booklet was also really well done, as always. Nicely formatted and all artists' works photographed were acknowledged! That doesn't always happen in Verona at their festival and I am forever reminding them to write the artist's name. It is important!!

Judy Maryin's work left
Tammy Radcliff's work, right

Thanks to these kinds of very professional exhibits, the textile art form is gaining legitimacy and importance in the art world. This festival has been running for over 20 years!

Neha Puri Dhir

Make an effort to see it if you can get out to Oakville.