Friday, January 31, 2014

A Thought

Once in a while I wonder if it is worth blogging.

Is there anyone out there??

I check my stats regularly and there are hundreds of views worldwide per week so someone out there is enjoying my photos and my thoughts.

Someone out there is being inspired.

Once in a while I get a comment that encourages me to continue, like Martha's which she just posted even though it was a past post. Thanks Martha!!

I do too much talking to the walls as a mom so it's nice to know someone is listening on-line.

Keep commenting!

(my photos from the airplane flying over South Africa, October 2013)

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Yellow Blossoms

The colour yellow brings a little sunshine into my house on this cold winter's day.

Ten days ago I pruned my forsythia bush from my front garden and brought the branches in the house.
I placed them in a vase of water close to a south facing window.

The blooms are appearing now. Slowly they unfold their colour, their warmth, their sunshine.

Odd that I like yellow flowers but never add one piece of yellow fabric in my work!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Mini Me

I read in a magazine about a fun idea.

Make a mini version of a baby quilt you've made and offer that mini one to the child on a birthday.

front view of the doll quilt

It would be a quilt for their doll!

the quilt back

Love that! I've made it already and I am giving it to her for her 1st birthday.

I embroidered her name on the back.

Click my friend's baby quilt to see the larger version.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Art Show

As past juror (2013) of the TOAE, I was invited to the opening of the Best Of Award Winners. The Best Of awards were selected during the event last July by a different group of people from those who juried the show.

Lizz Aston received Best Of fibre.

Exploding Lace View-warp#2
35"h x 30"w x 2" d
kozo paper, fibre reactive dyes, hand cut

I love the shadows her piece makes.

Artist in centre

Sarah Gaby-Trotz received a Best Of fibre, honourable mention.

The Carrot Revolution
wool, burlap, needle felted
15"h x 20"w x 20"d

The award donor was David Kaye Gallery.

Artist talking to David Kaye.

Of all the pieces exhibited in all different mediums, the one below was my favourite. It is so simple and meditative.

monofilament, wood, latex
20"h x 20"w x 2"d

It received Best Of mixed media. The work is by Geoff Buddie and Christine Rom.

side view
Maybe I liked it because of the shadows.

The show is on till February 28, 2014.

Seen in the right-hand corner is Susan Card from
DISH Gallery and Studio.
She was one of the 5 jury members, including myself,
 for the textile and jewelry category.

The next TOAE is July 4 to July 6, 2014 at Nathan Phillips Square in Toronto.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Do Something Warming on a Cold Day

Maybe you have heard on the news about the freezing temperatures Canada is experiencing lately. Today in Toronto the wind is so cold I can barely stand it.

I changed the day's itinerary and have decided to stay in my studio and make some Bear Paw blocks. I started these blocks maybe a year ago. I store the blocks in a shoe box with notes so that when I return to it I remember the measurements I am using and whether the seams need to lay a certain way.

It's interesting to note the colour/fabric choices I make today. They are different from the blocks already made.

I use mainly darker fabrics from my stash. I love the plaids in this.

I have also added some unexpected fabrics, like the lime green and some pinks, even a bright blue. They add a little interest and lift the look of the ensemble.

Sewing is a nice way of keeping me warm.

By the way, now is the time to prune your forsythia shrub and bring those branches inside. Place them in a vase of water and put them in a warm place. In about 10 days time you'll have lovely yellow blooms to warm your home.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Marking Time

Judith Martin, still my favourite textile artist, marks time by stitching.

This was a pattern I followed but even in those early days
 I changed it!
I was originally making it browns but it got so boring
 so I added a some blue and that gave it some life.

I started quilting almost 25 years ago to do just that. Mark time.

Simple Brick quilt with double boarder.

To show myself that during a day I could accomplish something.

I label my blocks (top left corner)
while I hang them vertically
 on a design wall

I could hold up my tangible quilt block and say, "Today, I did this."

This quilt was put together a few years ago.
Notice the blue square with the shibori circle.
I made that in Verona. The rest of the fabrics
 are blues from my fabric stash.
It is being quilted at this moment.

The other things I was doing were not tangible.

The centre fabric is washable silk.
The outside strips are men's cotton shirts,
Italian, of course.

Every day, I read books to my four children. I made snacks and three meals per day that were gobbled up. I prepared science experiments so we could explore together. I helped button the dress-up clothes and sat as the audience and watched plays. I walked to the park and went down the slide with them. I gave four children a bath every night.

This quilt was also a pattern. I didn't change it.
(that's not usual for me)
I did choose my own fabrics. 

This past holiday the six of us were all together. I was able to see what I had done over time. The four young adults love each other. They are on the path of happiness. They feel good about themselves.

Hearts and friendship stars,
detail of "Baby Earth" quilt
which hangs on our third floor.
The quilt was inspired
by a favourite children's book

I am so happy I marked time that way.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Galleries in the Dark

I toured some of the galleries at the AGO with my art class on a day when the museum is closed to the public. It was the oddest thing walking through the spaces in the dark with no one around but the few students from the Abstract Art class.

I was reminded of my favourite textile artist and friend, Judith Martin, when I my teacher spoke of the work by Canadian painter, Emily Carr.

Trees and Sky by Emily Carr

Judy has a piece that was inspired by Emily Carr's trees and weeping sky.

Emily Carr Visited Me (2005) by Judith Martin

It is heavily stitched, as many of Judy's works are.

The thing I like the best about Judy's piece is the movement in the sky. I get a shiver every time I see it. I feel a cold wind.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

This and That

While I was away, I did lots of this…

and that…

and this...

and that…

Now it's time for this!!

I am planning future classes (scrap quilts, of course). I have two big deadlines for art work this spring.