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Gail's Quilting Blog

Dinner at the Home of Kerry and Marion Manson

Katherine Parrott Reeves

Katherine Parrott Reeves


Many, many thanks to friends, Kerry and Marion Manson, for hosting a really fun evening where we could relax, meet new friends, enjoy some wonderful treats (like pavlova!), and “Show and Tell”. Here, Katherine Parrott Reeves, shows off her quilt Te whanau o nga awe kaka. Translated as the “Red feathered parrot family, this quilt describes her family and heritage. The images in the quilt are of Katherine and her 3 brothers. This quilt is featured in the 2009 exhibit and book “Made in New Zealand II”, organized and published by Anne Scott, owner of New Zealand Quilter magazine and Minerva, located in Wellington.

Robb shows off her quilt

Robb shows off her quilt


Here, Robb Jerebine shows off her plaid creation. The image doesn’t really do justice to this charming quilt.

Donna and Ashleigh Ward

Donna and Ashleigh Ward


Donna Ward, and daughter Ashleigh, show off quilts from a miniature challenge in which they participated. Donna, Ashleigh and mom, Merle, all taught at the Remarkables Symposium in Queenstown, three generations of quilting teachers!

Gail and Flying Colors Sampler

Gail and Flying Colors Sampler


I showed off my Flying Colors Sampler, one of two quilts that were small enough for me to carry along on this trip.

Not Robert and Not Bruce

Not Robert and Not Bruce

Meet “Not Bruce” and “Not Robert”. Seems that when we made the nametags for the group, we used everyone’s given names as they were listed on their passports. It was after a little beverage indulgence at the party that our mistake became apparent! Not Robert is really “Mike”, a New Mexico resident. “Not Bruce” is a friend of the Manson’s and husband to Robb.

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Onward, to Grandmother’s Garden

Grandmothers Garden

Grandmothers Garden


Leaving Auckland behind, our group traveled south to Hamilton, stopping at Waitomo Caves to view the glowworms. Our first quilt stop was at Grandmother’s Garden where two large, incredibly mellow dogs seem to take all the visitors in stride, and a large cat as well.

Doggie Day Care

Doggie Day Care


Grandmother’s Garden opened in 1984. It was the inspiration of Hazel Wolff who had just returned from living in America where she had become ‘hooked’ on patchwork and quilting. Animals are an obvious passion of Hazel’s as evidenced by this fun quilt that hangs in her classroom.

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Kelly Tarlton’s Antarctic Adventure

Gentoo Penguin

Gentoo Penguin


With the afternoon free, I opted for a visit to Kelly Tarlton’s Underwater World which was a dream of Mr Tarlton, created in the abandoned sewers of old Auckland. Here, they have two species of penguin on display, Gentoo and King. The Gentoo Penguin shown in the foreground here, might be found on the Subantarctic Islands of southernmost New Zealand. Oh, how I would love to be able to visit these one day and see the penguins in the wild.

Parent and baby King Penguins

Parent and baby King Penguins


Kelly Tarlton’s has a breeding population of King Penguins. The parents and their young a isolated from the other birds to prevent aggression. King penguins breed on seven sub-Antarctic island groups with large populations on the Falkland Islands, Macquarie Islands, Heard Island, Iles Crozet and Marion island.

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Juliet Fitness, Quiltmaker

Illuminated French Curves

Illuminated French Curves


Next stop on the tour was tea at the beautiful home of Juliet Fitness in west Auckland. Juliet is an amazing quiltmaker, and her work is unique. The wide array of styles was impressive.

Juliet's Yard

Juliet's Yard


Her home is located on 10 acres, in suburban Auckland. With the historic native vegetation, special permits were required to clear enough land to build their home. Consequently, the vegetation comes right up to the house, a fantastic display.

Juliet Fitness

Juliet Fitness


Juliet is known for her creativity, use of color and techniques that she uses in her quilts.

Kiwi Wall Hanging

Kiwi Wall Hanging


She has a good sense of humor too, as evidenced in this small wall handing of a Kiwi.

Allison and Gail

Allison and Gail


Her friend, Allison, helped serve tea and cookies. We ate the most unbelievable snacks, Kipper Biscuits and Fruit and Nut Slices. Yumm!!!

Never Ever Give Up

Never Ever Give Up


‘Nuff said about Juliet’s sense of humor!

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Patchwork Passion

Patchwork Passion, Auckland

Patchwork Passion, Auckland


Day two of our tour found us visiting more quilt shops, beginning with a stop at Patchwork Passion, owned by Robyn Burgess.

Robyn Burgess of Patchwork Passion

Robyn Burgess of Patchwork Passion


Robyn specializes in exquisite Japanese fabrics, 1840 reproduction fabrics and hand-dyed woolens. We departed with heavy packages.

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Dye-It Fabrics

Janet Ryan of Dye-It Fabrics

Janet Ryan of Dye-It Fabrics

We enjoyed morning tea at the home-based business of Janet Ryan, who specializes in hand-dyed fabrics, some of which are stamped with Kiwi-ana birds and symbols.

Looking for the silvereye

Looking for the silvereye

While Janet and her friends graciously hosted tea and snacks, the tour participants got their first taste of my other passion — birds. I heard a little Silvereye singing in Janet’s garden. Many rushed out to see what I was looking at.

Aloe Vera plant

Aloe Vera plant

One of our North American house plants, the Aloe Vera, grows to gigantic size in subtropical Devonport, and even blooms. I was only able to capture a bud, however.

Mike

Mike

Mike, a.k.a. Not Robert, quickly became our photographer extraordinaire with his Canon 7D. He also hails from New Mexico. He managed to capture another New Zealand bird in Janet’s garden, a Tui. We were then off to High Tea at the home of Hugh and Helen Bedford, with its spectacular gardens nestled right in the midst of urban Auckland.

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Kiwi Quilts, Auckland


That afternoon, we visited KiwiQuilts, a home-based, online quilt shop. Mary Metcalf opened her home to us, offering us afternoon tea with beautiful quilts to ogle, spread around her living room. To our delight, we found different Kiwi-ana fabrics, so more was added to our traveling stash.


One of the quilts found a new home with Karen, one of our tour participants who hails from her home state of New Mexico.

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The Quilting and Textile Tour Begins – Devonport


After a glorious three days up north, I returned to Auckland to meet the 17 tour participants. Although some had flown all night, we headed right off on the ferry to Devonport where we visited Cushla’s Village Fabrics and our group had their first taste of Kiwi-ana fabrics. I think they bought out the shop. We met our coach here too. While we boarded the bus, a Pohutakawa, the New Zealand Christmas tree, shed one of its limbs. Amazingly, within minutes, two guys showed up with saws, quickly dismantled the downed limb, and cleared the road — all by hand!


At the Devonport Library, I discovered this quilt made by the local quilt guild. It was behind glass, so there is some glare. We were on our way!

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