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Painted Stitched Canvas Class with Katie Pasquini-Masopust

A minor blog emergency happened here yesterday — my laptop died!!! Yes, it is really dead, all dead, even though it is only 6 months old.  The good news is that it is still under warranty so it will be fixed up, good as new, in another week or so.  But, I didn’t get a blog post done yesterday.  So, I bundled up my hard drive with all the photos on it, and took it to the office — where it still sits.  Now, back home and ready to post on my big computer, the photos from Houston aren’t here!  I guess it’s time to take a little break from showing IQA competition quilts and explore more local happenings, right here in good old Albuquerque.

Katie PM Demonstrates Painting Techniques

Katie PM Demonstrates Painting Techniques

We are very fortunate to have such a well-known quilt artist living just down the road in Santa Fe, a mere hour’s drive.  Katie Pasquini-Masopust taught her two-day Painted Stitched Canvas class at Ann Silva’s Bernina Sewing Center.  I was lucky to be one of the 20 students in her class.  Even though  I had taken the class a couple of years ago, I had so much fun that I did not want to miss out.  Besides, Katie had new material.

Painting Canvas - Red to Blue

Painting Canvas – Red to Blue

We began by painting three canvases, each in a different color palette.

Paintings Drying on the Floor

Paintings Drying on the Floor

This allowed us to continue painting while the wet canvases dried on the shop floor.

Painting Canvas - Work in Progress

Painting Canvas – Work in Progress

We added bits of fabric for texturs and then added more paint.  What a blast!  Most of us didn’t want to stop the building our layers.  But, stop we must.  One of the items on our supply list was to bring a painting shirt – which most of us did.  It was about then that Steve Silva, shop co-owner, strolled by the classroom, wearing in his perfectly pristine blue shirt — not a spot on it.  We set about correcting that asap!

Painting Steve - Hands All Around!

Painting Steve – Hands All Around!

Painting Steve - Katie adds Stamps

Painting Steve – Katie adds Stamps

Painting Steve - A Work in Progress

Painting Steve – A Work in Progress

Painting Steve was progressing well, but he just needed something else . . . . and, Katie had taught us about splatter painting.

Painting Steve - the Final Touches

Painting Steve – the Final Touches by Ginny Gaskill

Out back they went, Steve and Ginny, for the Finishing Touches.  It’s a good thing that Steve is a good sport!  But, back to work on the real reason for being in class!

Painting Canvas -Work in Progress

Making the Collage -Work in Progress

The next step was to cut the three canvases apart and reassemble them – just like we do in quilting.  We created a painted fabric collage from our parts.

Making the Collage - Work in Progress

Making the Collage – Work in Progress

It was fascinating to watch the various combinations emerge.  Great creativity in this room, inspired by an amazing teacher.

Stitching the Canvas - Lynn from Gallup

Stitching the Canvas – Lynn from Gallup

Once the collage was to the student’s liking, the pieces were stitched together.

Student Projects

Student Projects

Above are just a few of the student projects!  We all have enough work completed to make even more combinations.  Katie also taught us to make a Six-minute Zipper Bag and book covers for the not-so-lovely paintings.  What a great two days! Thank you, Katie, for being such a great teacher and Thank you, Steve, for being a good sport!

Painted Canvas Collage by Yours Truly

Painted Canvas Collage by Yours Truly

Here’s what I did in class!  I highly recommend this class for everyone, even novices!  It is way too much fun and the sewing skill level is easy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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International Quilt Festival – IQA Competition – Applique

The quilts below are some of my favorites from the show.  Some are prize winners, while others are quilts that I found to be exceptional.  They represent more than one category of applique quilts.  I always admire those quilters who can make these exceptional quilts either by hand or machine applique.

Heralds of Spring by Joann Webb, Grain Valley, MO

Heralds of Spring by Joann Webb, Grain Valley, MO

Although not a prize winner, this quilt was one amazing piece of work.  I marveled at the detail in the blossoms!  Joann, writes, “My goal was to put all of my favorite spring flowers into a bouquet that will never wilt.  Flower sprigs are arranged as petals in one large flower head.  Mandalas were also an influence.”

Heralds of Spring - Detail

Heralds of Spring – Detail

Three dimensional applique was created by using ruching and off-the-cuff fabric manipulation.

Heralds of Spring - Detail

Heralds of Spring – Detail

Here, you can see more of the detail in the flowers.  I especially loved the Lily of the Valley, which was a common flower at my childhood home in Minnesota.

Designer Bootique by Holly Nelson, Comfort, TX

Designer Bootique by Holly Nelson, Comfort, TX

Here’s one of my favorites!  I saw this one a long time ago and actually wrote a blog post about this quilt by Holly Nelson, who wrote to ask permission to feature Flying Geese in one of the boots.  I was thrilled and honored.  Holly writes, “If some of our iconic quilters designed boots, what would the look like?  This is what I imagine they would come up with.”

Celestial Splendor by Rachel Wetzler, St. charles, IL

Celestial Splendor by Rachel Wetzler, St. Charles, IL

Rachel Wetzler’s choices of color drenched fabrics makes this one a winner.  I love the detail and the way the colors shade throughout the quilt.  She writes,”Canterbury Cathedral’s central tower ceiling served as the model for this geometric composition.  Known as Bell Harry Tower, this magnificent example of English Gothic architecture was designed by John Wastell and completed in the 15th century.”

Four Loons and Friends by Patricia Sellinger, Ann Arbor, MI

Four Loons and Friends by Patricia Sellinger, Ann Arbor, MI

Another of my favorites, Four Loons and Friends, won Honorable Mention in the Innovative Applique category.  The unique use of the medallion style, featuring appliqued birds that are realistically portrayed make this a show stopper.  Patricia writes, “This quilt pays homage to my love of birds, and my fondness for the symmetry founds in traditional quilts.  These are all birds that are found in my home state of Michigan.  The call of the loon in quite something to hear.”

Willow by Debra Crane, Marco Island, FL

Willow by Debra Crine, Marco Island, FL

I don’t quite know how the judges were able to make the decisions about which of these stunning quilts would be prize winners.  In my mind, each of them was a winner.  Willow, by Debra Crine, is an original design inspired by antique tapestries.  She writes, “Hand-dyed fabrics were used for the applique and fused to the silk background.  It was quilted with silk thread.  The applique motifs were inspired by Deb Kimball, and the border quilting designs were by Sharon Schamber.”

My Hope by Sachiko Chiba, Morioka, Iwate, Japan

My Hope by Sachiko Chiba, Morioka, Iwate, Japan

My Hope won Third Place in the Merit Hand Quilting category.  Sachiko writes, “I wish that many pretty flowers of hope bloom for all the districts his by an earthquake.  I hope the people can live in peace and quiet.”

Birds and Blooms, by Janet Watson and Kim Norton, Coldspring, TX

Birds and Blooms, by Janet Watson and Kim Norton, Coldspring, TX

Janet Watson writes about the colorful quilt she created with Kim Norton, “I made a few changes from the original pattern because that is what I do!  I love the birds so I added a few.  I rearranged blocks and added some color.  This was an opportunity to make my first perfect circles and I really enjoyed it.  This was a fun quilt!”

Love by Yuko Muakami Kousi-shi, Kumamoto-Ken, Japan

Love by Yuko Muakami Kousi-shi, Kumamoto-Ken, Japan

The attention to detail in this quilt is almost unreal!  Among the handmade quilts, either applique, piecing or quilting, the Japanese quilters far outshone their colleagues from other countries!  Their work has characteristics that are unique to their nation.  Yuko writes, “I would like you to look at the new quilt.  I hope you will be blessed with lots of happiness too.”

Letter Carriers by Janet Stone, Overland Park, KS

Letter Carriers by Janet Stone, Overland Park, KS

Mixing a touch of whimsy with a mostly traditional design, Letter Carriers won First Place in the Mixed Technique category.  Janet Stone writes, ” A love of basket blocks sparked the idea to try to create some by weaving bias strips.  An additional 26 pieced basket blocks in the border are embellished with 26 letters.  Prairie points, hand-covered buttons, and half-penny circle edging are just a few fun highlights.”

Wow!!!!

Stay tuned . . .

 

 

 

 

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International Quilt Festival – IQA Competition: Traditional Quilts – Sometimes with a Twist

Good morning!  As I continue to sort through the hundreds of photos that I took at International Quilt Festival last week, I discovered that I sometimes failed to capture the category in which the quilt competed.  A big duh on my part!  Note to self: Make sure you get that next year.  Below is an assortment of traditional, or traditional with a twist quilts that I particularly enjoyed.  Sadly, I can’t always identify the category.

Eureka, by Marilyn Badger, St. George, UT

Eureka, by Marilyn Badger, St. George, UT

I first met Marilyn Badger, in September 2013 when I was fortunate to teach classes in beautiful St. George, Utah.  Marilyn is well-known in the quilting world for her incredible machine quilting (watch for a future post all about Marilyn).  Her quilt, Eureka, won second place in the Merit Machine Quilting category at the show.

Marilyn writes, “This quilt was inspired by Jacqueline de Jonge’s Circle of Life quilt.  The Lone Star in the middle is surrounded by parts of Jacqueline’s design with my original flowers and borders.  Over 2,000 crystal beads were hand-sewn after quilting, and couching with Razzle-Dazzle was added to highlight some of my original quilting designs.”

Outta the Loop by Karen Marchetti and Eyvonne Smith, Port St. Lucie, FL

Outta the Loop by Karen Marchetti and Eyvonne Smith, Port St. Lucie, FL

How could I not just fall in love with this quilt instantly!  Might it be the use of bright, bold colors, the strong contrast, and the more subtle designs quilted into the background?  Karen and Eyvonne write, “We modified the Elements of Nature pattern by Jacqueline de Jonge by enlarging the pattern and adding various elements.  Additional stars and Flying Geese in the quilting create movement and add interest . . . a true collaboration between friends.”

Red Licorice by Linda McGibbon, Beaverton, MI

Red Licorice by Linda McGibbon, Beaverton, MI

This wall-size quilt has incredible detail combined with strong contrast and bright, bold colors, all of which I find very appealing.  Linda writes, “I used Pineapple blocks in a diamond shape.  I then used black background fabric in some of the pieces and Stitch in the Ditch  to make the design three dimensional.”

Together in a Friendship World by Geta Grama and Quilt.ro Group, Rasnov, Brasov, Romania

Together in a Friendship World by Geta Grama and Quilt.ro Group, Rasnov, Brasov, Romania

I was immediately drawn to this quilt by Geta Grama and friends.  It won Third Place in the Group Quilts Category.   I also believe it is the first entry that I have seen from Romania.  I visited Geta’s Blogspot page and enjoyed reading about her, “I am a passionate quilter living in Romania. Unfortunately, here quilting is an unknown craft to most people. I love to share my quilts with you!”  Take the time to check out her site.  I know you will enjoy reading about her and her work.

About their quilt, Geta writes, “This quilt combines traditional English paper piecing technique and an altered three-dimensional Grandmother’s Flower Garden with a mosaic background.  The 3-D effect is enhanced by the vivid colors of the flowers, which float over the large white ball.  Intricate quilting follows the flower patterns and flattens the background, contributing to the 3-D aspect of the quilt.”

Roman Tilles by Ann Petersen, Aurora, CO

Roman Tilles by Ann Petersen, Aurora, CO

This is one of the first quilts that caught my eye.  I found the detail to be extraordinary and enjoyed Ann’s use of a limited color palette that allows the more subtle painting and stitching in the background to flourish!  Below is a detail of the piecing on this quilt.

Roman Tiles detail

Roman Tiles detail

Ann writes, “My original center star, borders, layout, quilting designs and painting we added to a small piece started in a workshop by Norah McMeeking.  The quilting was inspired by Roman Mosaic tiles.”

What a great show!  It was a privilege to be among so many beautiful quilts!

Stay Tuned . . .

 

 

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International Quilt Festival, IQA Competition – Miniatures

The quality of the quilts entered in the two different IQA miniature categories, “Miniature” and “Art-Miniature” was absolutely mind-blowing!  I have combined the images from both categories in this post in order to condense the overall number of posts about Quilt Festival and to bring you images of my favorite quilts sooner.

Wind by  Masanobu Miyama, Chofu-City, Tokyo, Japan

Wind by Masanobu Miyama, Chofu-City, Tokyo, Japan

“Wind” won the Superior Thread Master Award for Thread Artistry.  What an incredible quilt!  The threadwork that creates the image draws one right into the quilt, where you could easily imagine being there with that happy dog on a windy day!

Masanobu says this about Wind, “My dog’s long fur was streaming in the wind while I walked her at the riverside.  I thought it might be fun to express the invisible wind with streaming fun, waving grass and so on.  The original micro-fused applique technique is applied to create the dog precisely.  I also hand-dyed almost all of the fabrics I used to match the color”.

Life on the Mesa by Mary Ann Hildebrand, Comfort, TX

Life on the Mesa by Mary Ann Hildebrand, Comfort, TX

This beautiful miniature won 1st place in its category, Art-Miniature.  Mary Ann wrote, “I participated in a challenge in which I was to interpret a quilt passed to me.  The quilt was a southwestern scene with a mesa in the background.  I chose to concentrate on the mesa and depict it as realistically as possible”.

Miniville  .  . .or It's 5 o'clock Somewhere by Karen Eckmeier, Kent, CT

Miniville . . .or It’s 5 o’clock Somewhere by Karen Eckmeier, Kent, CT

This stunning little quilt almost escaped from my camera lens and then I took a second look.  Wow!  What detail, and in such a small scale!

Karen Eckmeier writes, “Three days without electricity during a winter storm prompted me to start a collage project so small that it could fit only my living room table and be seen with my hiking headlamp!”

Miniville detail

Miniville detail

And what detail there is!  I still can’t quilt believe that Karen could create this diminutive piece with all this detail.  It was the 2nd Place winner in its category.

House in the Valley #5 by Laura Wasilowski, Elgin, IL

House in the Valley #5 by Laura Wasilowski, Elgin, IL

Third place was awarded to this whimsical piece, created by Laura Wasilowski.  She says that this piece is a view of her house as observed by a busybody bird!

Mission San Juan Capistrano by Sharon Schlotzhauer, Castle Rock, CO

Mission San Juan Capistrano by Sharon Schlotzhauer, Castle Rock, CO

The threadwork in this piece was amazing.  Sharon Schlotzhauer writes, “Founded n 1776, San Juan Capistrano is the seventh of the California missions and is designated the “Jewel of the Missions”.  This quilt depicts one of its lovely courtyards.  I visited this historical site as a child and again earlier this year, which was the inspiration for this piece”.

Eagle Eyes by Margery Hedges, Kingwood, TX

Eagle Eyes by Margery Hedges, Kingwood, TX

Of course, it is nearly impossible for me to not photograph any of the quilts that feature birds, especially when as well executed as Eagle Eyes.  Margery Hedges writes, “I enjoy doing close-up views of animal faces, and this look of intense concentration makes you feel as if you are really face-to-face with this awesome eagle”.

Tranquil Swim by Melanie Marr, Houston, TX

Tranquil Swim by Melanie Marr, Houston, TX

Another masterful piece, Tranquil Swim features the incomparable Wood Duck, among nature’s most dramatically plumaged birds.  “This quilt was inspired by a photo taken of a Wood Duck at the Houston Zoo.  The ripples in the water made the perfect background with abstract patterns,” writes Melanie.

Dutch Flowerpots by Lahala Phelps, Bonney Lake, WA

Dutch Flowerpots by Lahala Phelps, Bonney Lake, WA

This traditional miniature won honorable mention in its category and captured my attention with the lovely contrast between the red and cheddar as well as the fine detail.  Lahala writes, “A favorite quilt of mine is Pots of Flowers pictured in the book, A Flowering of Quilts, by Patricia Cox Crews.  I thought why not try making a miniature Pots of Flowers quilt?  I designed my own and used a cheddar background seen in many Pennsylvania Dutch quilts”.

Betwixt and Between by George Siciliano, Lebanon, PA

Betwixt and Between by George Siciliano, Lebanon, PA

No miniature exhibit would be complete without at least one piece by George Siciliano, and the IQA exhibit featured two of his. He says, “This quilt is a micro-mini version (one-fourth the size) of my miniature quilt called Crop Circles.  My new, self-taught, silk techniques have enabled me to sew a one-inch square block with 49 individual pieces.  This quilt has over 2,874 pieces of 100% Dupioni silk fabric.”

Some Assembly Required by Gerge Siciliano, Lebanon, PA

Some Assembly Required by George Siciliano, Lebanon, PA

Closing out this post is George’s other entry that contains 4,860 pieces.  “When all the pieces of silk were laid out, and in order,” George wrote, “A funny thought crossed my mind.  In 1975, my partially-blind son was six years old.  We passed a flatbed tractor-trailer, and it was loaded with all the raw materials needed to build a house from roof trussed to flooring.  My son whispered under his breath, “some assembly required.”  These are my thoughts exactly.”

Congratulations to all whose quilts were accepted into these two categories.  The competition was intense.

Stay tuned . . .

 

 

 

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International Quilt Festival – IQA Competition – Art/Naturescapes Category

I was fortunate to be able to look at the competition quilt at my leisure during the wholesale part of the International Quilt Market.  During these days, the aisles with the quilts are largely empty as shop owners and other quilt business folks are trying to either buy or sell the latest, greatest notion or fabric so that you will find it in a shop near you very soon.  But, while the aisles are nearly empty, making photography easy, none of the show winners are not identified as such until the International Quilt Association (IQA) Awards Ceremony on Tuesday night.  Because there are so many quilts that captured my camera lens with their uniqueness and beauty, I plan to show them over the next few days.  Clearly, the Art/Naturescapes category was one of my favorites.  Below are a selection of quilts from that section.

Autumns Early Light by Janey Argyle, Washington, UT

Autumns Early Light by Janey Argyle, Washington, UT

The quality of all the entries amazes me each year.  This year, I noticed an increase in the quality and quantity of machine quilting in many pieces, both those stitched on a longarm and those created on a home sewing machine.  When I photograph a quilt, I take the image of the quilt first followed immediately by a photo of the label, so I can be sure to give credit to the amazing artists that make this show so wonderful.

Janey said this about her quilt, “A photo of Canyonlands in southern Utah Haunted me for several years.  With permission of a photographer, the unusual rear lighting, early morning glw, and dancing tree in a confined colorful canyon provided a challenge that could not be resisted.  Beauty exists in unusual places, and this needed to be shared”.  Original design based on photograph by Robert Lefkow.

 Sunset by Shirley Gisi, Colorado Springs, CO

Indian Summer Sunset by Shirley Gisi, Colorado Springs, CO

Although, in my less than stellar photo of this quilt, there appears to be little quilting, this piece is beautifully quilted with stitching that complements the intricate graphic design.  It was an IQA award winner in its category.

Shirley says, “The landscape theme of the quilt utilizes straight lines and geometric shapes, including circles and semicircles.  Primarily pieces, the trees are machine appliqued.  White fabric paint gives the suggestion of snow on the mountain tops”.  Original design.

Night Bloomers by Beth Miller, Kambah ACT, Australia

Night Bloomers by Beth Miller, Kambah ACT, Australia

“The delicate, highly perfumed flowers of the cactus contrast strongly with the columnar and prickly stems.  The large flowers bloom only at night, attracting moths and insects, and last only from one sunset to the next.” Original design by Beth Miller.

Although my photo does not do justice to the quality of the piecing and quilting, this is an amazing piece.

Traces of Seasons Past by Roxanne Ferguson, Mayfield, KY

Traces of Seasons Past by Roxanne Ferguson, Mayfield, KY

“The machine quilted leaf images are stitched in spring green as upright buds at the top left and change to full-sized leaves at the top right.  The leaves take on fall colors and angle more downward toward the middle and, finally, are brown and drop vertically at the bottom of the quilt.  Original design inspired by Esterita Austin’s class.”

In the Bleak Midwinter by Ruth Powers, Carbondale, KS

In the Bleak Midwinter by Ruth Powers, Carbondale, KS

This masterful piece was “designed to use the hand-dyed sky fabric and was inspired by Kansas winters,” said Ruth Powers, “where even in the bleakest of times, there is color to be found”.  Original design.

Amazing quilt, stitched by some incredible artists!

Stay tuned . . .

 

 

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Color and Contrast in Quilting – At Quilt Festival 2013

Students work on exercises at Color and Contrast in Quilting 2013

Students work on exercises at Color and Contrast in Quilting 2013

One of my favorite classes is the half-day, Color and Contrast in Quilting.  In this class, there is a lecture about the use of color in making successful quilts, but especially, there is discussion about the need for contrast in a good quilt!  Then, students critique a number of samples that I provide, figuring out why it is that one works well and another does not.  Moving right along, each student is given 16 random fabrics and a limited amount of time to cut and glue their very small project into the workbook.  We had time for three exercises in this year’s Houston Class.

Color Exercise 1

Color Exercise 1

In the first exercise, each student worked on a line drawing that appeared to be a nine-patch.  They were told that they had to use at lease 3 different fabrics.  They also were told that they did not have to ‘color within the lines’.  Check out the wide variety here.

Color Exercise 2

Color Exercise 2

In Color Exercise 2, you can see that more students departed from the traditional 25 patch line drawing.  In fact, none of these small works even resembles a 25 patch block.

Color Exercise 3

Color Exercise 3

By Exercise 3 we were running out of time!  Students had only 10 minutes to work on their final exercise.  I think the designs are pretty imaginative!  Below are a few of my favorites.

Color Sample 101

Color Sample 101

I loved the abstractiveness of this little design which shows the very effective use of the Zinger fabrics, the lime green and the light rust.

Color Sample 102

Color Sample 102

This design is effective both in contrast of color, but also the use of scale in the combination of the hearts, dots, and solids.

Color Sample 103

Color Sample 103

This very creative piece is simply adorable, from the flower cutouts to the mountains and sun.  This student went event further in her 10 minute proejct, by using a marker to draw in the window panes.

What a creative group of students!  This was a fabulous class and everyone was a STAR!

 

 

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A Little Help for My Friends, Lynn and Skip

August Folk Dance Camp 2013

August Folk Dance Camp 2013

Shortly after I returned from New Zealand, I was on the road again.  This time my destination was less than 100 miles away, to Socorro, NM where I attended an annual Southwest International Folk Dance Camp!  We stay in the dorms at NM Tech, and dance our little toes into the floor!  It is so much fun and I get to reconnect with friends I see only once a year!  Such was the case this year too!

Lynn St. Pierre

Lynn St. Pierre

Lynn was showing off these handmade dolls that she was selling as a fundraiser for a project to raise funds for women in an rural community in Berekuso, Ghana, West Africa.  Last spring, Lynn taught at the primary school in the village, while her husband, Skip Ellis, taught at Ashesi University,  in Accra, Ghana.  Lynn’s school, in a small village, was constructed of cinder blocks with small or no windows (for security).  There, the children sit at rickety desks on chairs full of splinters and rusty nails.  The teacher has a book and blackboard or concrete wall to write on (if she has chalk) and the students have no books or any educational materials at all.

Lynn teaches her students

Lynn teaches her students

The educational system there is based on the U.K. model that the Ghanaian government continued after they became independent in 1956.  Unfortunately, caning was common when Lynn first worked at the school (the practice of corporeal punishment using a long stick 1/2 to 3/4 inch in diameter to beat the children if they give a wrong answer, are late, their parents have not paid their fees, or they misbehave).  After witnessing a caning of the entire first grade class, she spoke at length with the head master and was invited to do  in-service trainings for all the teachers, kindergarten through 8th grade.  The teachers learned respectful discipline and classroom management as well as engaging the children in active learning via a Waldorf curriculum.

Orphanage in Kpando, Ghana

Orphanage in Kpando, Ghana

At the end of the semester – the teachers chose Adinkra symbols, virtues from their culture, with stamps carved into calabash gourds and ink derived from native tree bark. Each teacher choose the symbols they wanted emulated in their classroom, and stamped them onto woven kente cloth (made in their village of Berekuso).  We then hung the fabric on their canes and placed them in the classrooms, transforming the cane into a meaningful piece of art and a reminder to use better ways of teaching and disciplining the children.

Like many African countries, a large percentage of the children are orphans, or are raised by their grandparents.  Nearly all of the parents of these children have died of AIDS which remains rampant in Africa.  Lynn and Skip are returning to Ghana to teach again in December 2013.  Skip will return to the university and Lynn will again teach at the  school in Berekuso. When I learned that they were taking up a collection to gather school supplies for the children in these schools, I just knew that I had to help!

Stay tuned . . .

 

 

 

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Meet Marion Manson, Fiber Artist

Marion Manson

Marion Manson

If you’ve been following my New Zealand blog posts, you’ve seen the images of Marion Manson  collecting leaves.   Marion and I became friends back in the early 1990s when she ordered a pattern from me.  It was the very first time that anyone from overseas had ordered a pattern from me.  I was so thrilled that I wrote to her and then she wrote back.  We became pen pals.  And, it was Marion, one of the conveners of the 1997 New Zealand Quilt Symposium, who made it possible for me to teach in my very first overseas venue.  We have remained friends throughout the years and I love to visit her, and husband Kerry each time I return to New Zealand.

Marion's Leaves

Marion’s Leaves

In recent years, Marion’s passion for quilting has evolved into creating her own textiles, using natural dyes and tannins from the foliage of different plants.  Her back yard and garage are full of various pots with bundles of fiber carefully wrapped around different types of leaves, each of which creates different colors and shapes on her fabrics.

Marion's Shawl

Marion’s Shawl

She had an exhibit of her works at a gallery in Hamilton during my visit where I was able to see many of her beautiful designs, both garments like the shawl above, and wall hangings.

Wall Hanging by Marion Manson

Wall Hanging by Marion Manson

I love the delicate fibers and subtle texture in her layered works.

Wall Hanging by Marion Manson

Wall Hanging by Marion Manson

All of the textiles in Marion’s work are created by natural dyes obtained from plants.  The dark color in this piece is particularly dramatic.

Large Wall Hanging by Marion Manson

Large Wall Hanging by Marion Manson

In this larger, sampler piece, the various techniques that she uses are evident.  I hope that she has another exhibit when our tour visits Hamilton in April 2014 so others can also see her works.  Thanks Marion, for being my New Zealand BFF!

 

 

 

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