Saturday, March 28, 2015

Two Mini Quilts to Mail and Dianne's Quilt to Show

 A complementary set of mini quilts/mug rugs finished and off to their new home.  One for him and one for her. The hand dye painted fabric was chosen as it reminded the new owners of their new home with the lake in the background and the flowers of their yard in the foreground. Rather than making the pieced work the same I opted for two harmonious colour runs. One with the warm colours of yellow through orange and the other from a cool yellow to green to greenish blues.

One day when we took a break from our carving group to have lunch at Dianne's, she showed us this quilt she was making. It was lovely of course but when she described it, her words flowed just as an artist might describe a painting. I will ATTEMPT to give you a few details of what she said.

Lunching at Diane's. Can you see the outdoor rug she painted.

I believe the quilt design started as a traditional pattern but the way Diane chose and placed the coloured fabrics made this a very original quilt.

Close up of the sunrise.

The beautiful sunrises of the BC coast is represented at the top with the three yellow, pink and orange blocks. The mountains in the background are along the BC coast shown as three blue triangles side by side. Below that is the blue of the ocean. And sticking up into the ocean you can see more mountains showing. They represent the islands that dot the BC coast. Diane used a variety of blues to show more water and then there is some yellow and green introduced that shows the life in the water next to the shoreline. The sand of the beach is shown with beige and very light blue.

A close up of the beach. The life along the beach is shown with a star fish.

The whole quilt is also a large fish and there is his eye appliqued on.

More shore life is appliqued onto the beach.

If you see the whole quilt as a fish, the fins are depicted with the triangles and tails on the left of the photo. Can you see the eye near the top of the photo on top of the yellow.
When you hear the explanation of why this quilter placed the fabric pieces of this quilt together in the way that she did, it makes so much sense. Just as a viewer looking at a painting attaches their own meaning, I think the same could be said for a viewer of  this quilt. Enjoy.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Bird and Wildlife Stitched on Fabric

Wow, some of these were a bit challenging to stitch. Fortunately the herons were easy as having stitched them several times, I know their shape fairly well. The Canada goose required some additional shading to aid in identifying it's species. The moose, well I just love it and I hope you do to. These textile cards are for sale at Creston Card and Stationery in Creston, BC but I can also create you something similar if you are interested. Just send me an email to
Definitely I am going to be painting some fabric with chickens in mind as I look forward to stitching a few 'chicken' poses. The fox is very different being stitched over a colourful place in the fabric but when I was thinking I would like to try stitching another fox, I saw this fabric and said to myself 'Why not give this a try." What do you think?

'Canada Goose'

'Blue Heron'

'Blue Heron Strutting'

'A Big Chicken'

'My Moose'

'Colourful Fox'

'Red Silos' - not birds or wildlife but it seemed to 'kinda' fit with this grouping.
Today is the first day of spring and I will have some spring flowers painted on textile to show you very soon. 

Oh, I almost forgot to mention the 'It's Time for Colour' Quilt show came to Creston this week. You can read about the national project here.  What a delight to see the some of the  quilts from across Canada come to our town thanks to the Canadian Quilt Association.

Saturday, March 14, 2015


Working in an alternative medium feels quite freeing. As a beginner, you do your best but there are no preconceived notions of the quality of your work. This winter I couldn't wait to purchase a diamond willow stick at the carving show. Where I used to live as a child in the Peace River area, diamond willow stalks could be gotten for free but here, I was happy to pay $22. for one.
A few pictures from my winter carving class. We have three new members and gosh they are doing  great. Of course that has a lot to do with the fact that we have a master carver, Joyce to provide excellent instruction.

Two new carvers. John from Alberta and Estela from Az. Missing is Diane also from Alberta.
John has a lot of carving to do as this is the first of a set of Chess pieces. This is the King carved in butternut wood. It is harder than bass wood but isn't the grain gorgeous.
Joyce showing Estela the importance of scoring the details first.

Estela's 'Little Man' . Amazing as this is her first year of carving.
L.Z. applies the technique of chip carving to a round surface. Now that is talent for you.

Diamond willow stick with the bark removed, the diamonds carved out, some peak holes created and the whole thing sanded and sanded. Larry is getting to be an expert at staff carving.

Close up of see through holes made between back to back diamonds.

Here is my diamond willow stick with a hole drilled through to start the look though. Gosh do I have a long way to go. It has a twig sticking out of it and I plan to carve a bird to sit there. This will be a very long project.  When I said that I plan to use my willow stick for a wall hanging rod, someone asked me what the wall hanging was like that is to hang on it. I had to say I haven't started it yet but I think it will be the easier of the two to complete.

Joyce, demonstrating how to carve a face.

Can you see the clean cuts. This is a master's work and what the rest of us carvers aspire to do.

It is always nice to have a sample to work from and by the next week John will have the duck's head attached. To do this he will drill a hole in each, insert a small round peg and glue the two pieces together.
Estela's first bird. Some carvers like a sanded smooth finish and some like the knife marks to show.

John's carving a gnome. He seems to always have someone in mind he is giving the piece to before he starts carving. That seems like a good idea to me.

Note the beard is detailed now.

Under Joyce's expert hand, a simple board cut out comes to life over a few hours and that is with all us beginner carvers interrupting her many times for help.

Almost done. Look at how clean the cuts are. No little fuzzy bits of wood hanging on.

My border collie is happy to be at home with all her toys surrounding her.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Spring Flowers Painted on Fabric

The following 3 textile pieces are painted onto cotton lawn material which will have a stabilizer attached before being free motion stitched.  The loose look of the lilacs delights me as it is more watercolour like than most of the textile pieces I have made so far. Hmm, how to apply that technique to other pieces???
Spring lilacs. Perhaps only the leaves and a very few blooms will need stitched details.

Okay, I know these look like yellow blobs but I am convinced I can stitch the shape of a daffodil onto them.

First I sponged some dark dye and then the lighter mauve dye. Although I can't remember for sure even though this was only last week, I believe the dye was thickened. After the coloured dyes had dried a bit, I added the drawn black line by squeezing thickened black dye through a small metal nib attached to the plastic squeeze bottle.
Spring is coming and it is time to think about spring blooms and also about feeding the birds that are migrating through.
Wild turkeys. Where we were bird watching two different children came up over the period of an hour we were there glasses for more 'exotic' birds. Both greeted the turkeys with "Hi turkey" as if they knew them. How delightful.

Acorn woodpecker

Broadbilled hummingbird. The cage around the feeder gave the birds somewhere to perch after drinking.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Quilt Group: 'Paint Chip Challenge 2015'

This mini-quilt/mugrug is off to a new home. Enjoy!
Nothing like a quilt show to bring like minded people together. I enjoyed connecting with other quilters interested in art quilting at the show, seeing old friends and going for lunch with a friend I don't get to see much. She has an amazing quilting project in the planning stage. It will be based on a painting she saw. In order to base her textile piece on the painting, she contacted the artist's for permission to do so. I understand the artist was thrilled.

All the 2015 Quilt Group Challenge entries were displayed together at our quilt show today. Here are photos of many of them.

Evergreen Block for Eileen

There will be more photos to share from the show but this is all for today's post. Our group has an interesting challenge for 2016 that will result in great individuality in the quilted pieces. Each member drew a number out of a bowl to correspond with a page in a magazine. That page was given to us and we are to base our quilted challenge project on the image or on some the words on that page. My image is mostly whites and silvers with some great words such as shimmering, platinum etc. Hmmm?