International Quilt Market and Festival, Monday/Tuesday

December 12th, 2014
SWOON! This year was the 40th anniversary (the ruby anniversary) of the International Quilt Festival, and the 35th Anniversary of the (wholesale, to the trade) International Quilt Market.

SWOON! This year was the 40th anniversary (the ruby anniversary) of the International Quilt Festival, and the 35th Anniversary of the (wholesale, to the trade) International Quilt Market.

This year absolutely was the biggest and best Festival I’ve seen, with true exhibits (not just husband’s lounge and charitable booths) all the way to the far wall.   And at the main doors, this display inspired by the phenomenal red and white exhibit in New York city a couple years ago.

One of the best things this year didn’t happen to me, but to Barb Black.  Barb greets all the teachers in the Teacher’s Room when you arrive, gives you your schedule, room assignments, paperwork, marching orders, goodie bag, solves problems and is just generally wonderful to us.   Well, Barb made a red and white quilt.   And HER QUILT was selected to be the theme quilt for this year’s show, on the entrance signage, banners in downtown Houston, on the show bag, and on display front and center right as you walked in.  I could SWEAR I took photos, but I can’t find them, so you’ll just have to enjoy her quilt on my bag (and I KNOW I took pics from the back side to see the quilting!).  I tell you, there were teachers all over the planet whooping it up because “OUR Barb” was on the bag!

Barb Black's beautiful red and white quilt on the 40th Anniversary International Quilt Festival show bag.  GO BARB!

Barb Black’s beautiful red and white quilt on the 40th Anniversary International Quilt Festival show bag. GO BARB!

And just for fun, here’s a peek into the teacher’s room.  The whole back wall is FILLED with boxes the teachers ship from all over the world to the Teacher’s Room with kit supplies, things to sell, handouts, you name it.  The area is organized alphabetically, so the first thing you do after checking in with  Barb is go find your boxes!

Teacher boxes

Teacher boxes…my stuff was at the far end.  I can tell this is early in the week because the boxes are still shut!

On Monday, I taught my intro class Let’s Machine Quilt.

The students were stupendous.  Here are some samples of the work the students did in class, and most professed to be rank beginners.  I thought they did a great job!

The students were stupendous. Here are some samples of the work the students did in class, and most professed to be rank beginners. I thought they did a great job!

Here's the class hard at work, with my samples up on the foam core boards at the front.

Here’s the class hard at work, with my samples up on the foam core boards at the front.

More student work--you really can write your own name!

More student work–you really can write your own name!

And yet another sample.

And yet another sample.

This year I wasn't in a Janome room, but was in Bernina instead (no idea why).  We had a WONDERFUL Bernina helper, the nice lady in the tray hair and dark top.

This year I wasn’t in a Janome room, but was in Bernina instead (no idea why). We had a WONDERFUL Bernina helper, the nice lady in the tray hair and dark top at showing how to thread the machine.

This is a fun exercise...quilting along a line and the other one no one ever believes will work, but does:  "driving" through the intersections.

This is a fun exercise…quilting along a line and the other one no one ever believes will work, but does: “driving” through the intersections.

On Tuesday, I gave an 11 am lecture, How Did She do That?  This talk is essentially a digital trunk show with some live quilts, telling folks “how I did that.”  I love giving it, and change it up at pretty much each venue.   Since Tuesday is the day AFTER Market ends and the day before Festival begins, most folks are traveling or in classes during that time so the crowd was small, but it went well.  Since my talk was the middle of the day, I couldn’t head out to museum-hop or shop in Houston, so I attended Pam Holliday’s lecture, which was just before mine.

Pam Holliday's quilt of her cat

Pam Holliday’s quilt of her cat

And this GLORIOUS quilt based on Pam's photography (she's an amazing photographer, too).  Shot taken during her lecture.

And this GLORIOUS quilt based on Pam’s photography (she’s an amazing photographer, too). Shot taken during her lecture.

And of course you run into friends:

With Luana Rubin of eQuilter, whom I first met at Festival in 2003!

With Luana Rubin of eQuilter, whom I first met at Festival in 2003!  Luana always looks so lovely!

I discovered that I needed something for my Wednesday class, so after my talk I walked up to a RiteAid a half mile or so away.  On the way back I spotted this and had to take a picture:

Inspiration is everywhere....

Inspiration is everywhere….got any idea what it is?

A wall inside an office-building!

The lobby

The lobby–the grain,m the texture of the stone reminded me of the froth on waves.

Next post will cover my Birch Pond Seasons class, which I’ll be teaching next at Maine Quilts 2015 here in Maine !

 

Clouds in the morning

December 11th, 2014
Near Spears Automotive across.  This land is "Forever Farm,"  YEAH!

Near Spears Automotive across. This land is “Forever Farm,” YEAH!

The sky was beyond spectacular this morning….. so even though I was taking Eli to school, I finally had to grab my phone and get some pictures.  Only one on the way, the rest taken on the way home about 7:20-7:45 am.   Enjoy my beautiful world!

At Simonton Corner.  I could no longer resist the temptation to take pictures, even though I was doing the morning kid-schlep to school.

At Simonton Corner. I could no longer resist the temptation to take pictures, even though I was doing the morning kid-schlep to school. Facing East.

At the high school, facing north-ish

At the high school, facing north-ish.

On Park, heading north-ish.

On Park, heading north-ish.

On Barnestown, headed west, near the North Fork turn.

On Barnestown, headed west, near the North Fork turn. That’s morning rush hour approaching me.

asfd

Heading up North Fork.  Sigh…these pictures just don’t capture the incredible colors in the clouds:  soft purple, yellow gray, blue, gold, yellow…..

Boat Landing on Rte 105 just past Molyneaux, Lake Megunticook, facing North ish I think, perhaps a bit NW?

Boat Landing on Rte 105 just past Molyneaux, Lake Megunticook, facing North ish I think, perhaps a bit NW?  incredibly still water and ice in the shallow bay.

Same boat-launch bay, more NE ish.

Same boat-launch bay, more NE ish.

The end of the cove, not a bit further NE

The end of the cove, not a bit further NE

Route 105 just past 235/Moody Mountain Road heading in to Hope Corner

Route 105 just past 235/Moody Mountain Road heading to Hope Corner

Through the top of the car, looking past the town office to True Field in "downtown" Hope/near Hope Corner

Through the top of the car,  near the town office

Looking toward True Field near Hoep Corner

Looking toward True Field near Hope Corner, Town Office on the left

Turning the corner onto our road, looking up over our neighbor's "front yard"

Turning the corner onto our road, looking up over our neighbor’s “front yard”, facing East. 

Facing NE, haying equipment in the neighbor's yard

From our driveway, facing NE, haying equipment in the neighbor’s yard

Near our garage, looking up to our other neighbors, the ones with the sheep, facing somewhat SE

Near our garage, looking up to our other neighbors, the ones with the sheep, facing somewhat SE

 

 

 

Yellow Rose of Tedium

December 10th, 2014

So I have this idea for an article.   Which requires (SHOOT ME) about ELEVEN of these 8×11 small quilts.  ALL THE SAME.  Shoot me please.  Now.  Can you say BORING?  But I want to do this test of stabilizers.

Yellow Rose by Sarah Ann Smith.   The first sample, with no stabilizer.   The two fabrics began the same size--even at this small scale you can see noticeable shrinkage just from quilting.

Yellow Rose by Sarah Ann Smith. The first sample, with no stabilizer. The two fabrics began the same size–even at this small scale you can see noticeable shrinkage just from quilting.

I’ve been in a number of exhibits where you have to have an exact size, like the Dinner@8 and Living Colour Textiles exhibits.  For the latter, size was to be 40 x 100 cm.  That’s 39 inches long.  My top was 44 inches long.   Once quilted, I had exactly enough to make 1/8″ seam allowances for my facings!

Amaryllis by Sarah Ann Smith (C) 2014.  See the Living Colour Exhibit at http://livingcolourtextiles.com/

Amaryllis by Sarah Ann Smith (C) 2014. See the Living Colour Exhibit at http://livingcolourtextiles.com/

YEP, the quilt shrank up FIVE flippin’ inches in length.  So I decided I needed to find a way to stop the massive shrinkage, and that means a foundation of some sort.   Jennifer Day likes one product; my friend Susan Brubaker Knapp prefers another.  I decided I needed to test a range of options.   So shoot me.  And please excuse me while I vanish for a week or two to quilt the same yellow rose umpteen times!  EEEEK!

Erk…I forgot! About Lisa’s book–it’s a bloghop!

December 9th, 2014

My post reviewing Lisa’s wonderful Creative Journeys book is part of a bloghop, so I invite you to visit these wonderful artists and friends and see what they have to say.

8th December – Sarah Ann Smith – www.sarahannsmith.com/weblog (obviously you know me)
9th December – Lyric Kinard – http://lyrickinard.com/blog/
10th December – Erica Spinks – http://creativedabbling.blogspot.com.au
11th December – Susan Brubaker Knapp – http://wwwbluemoonriver.blogspot.com
12th December – Brenda Gael Smith – http://serendipitypatchwork.com.au/blog/
13th December – Judy Coates Perez – http://www.judycoatesperez.com
14th December – Shelley Stokes – http://cedarcanyontextiles.com/category/blog/
Erica is new to me, but the others are friends I have known for years.   This is yet another “I love the internet” moment–how fantastic that from Australia to North America we have managed to find each other and become friends, even when we haven’t met in person.  Then when you DO get to meet them in person, it’s a blast!
So head on out to visit the other reviewers, and be sure to go beyond the post about Lisa’s wonderful book so that you get to know their amazing artwork and products (thinking Shelley Stokes here!).

Creative Journeys by Lisa Walton

December 7th, 2014

When my friend Lisa Walton asked me to review her eBook Creative Journeys: Fun & Easy Textile Surface Design Techniques and participate in a bloghop, I jumped at the chance.  We’ve known each other online for many years n0w and met over the years in Houston, even done a couple video chats where our respective husbands wandered past in the camera while sitting on opposite sides of the planet–another “I love the internet” moment!   Over the years I’ve watched her try on new techniques and absorb them into her voice, her way of doing things, and now she shares them with you in her new eBook, the first in a series.

When I met Lisa, her business selling hand-dyed fabrics was well under way.  Then, I still remember that fateful trip she took to Hong Kong where she fell in love with beads and (I think!)  came home with a full suitcase worth, or at least the pictures looked like that!   Then she tried and fell in love with surface design, taking classes as part of the prestigious Jewel Pearce Patterson Scholarship she received.

A screen shot of a later page in the book where Lisa shows felting and the use of the felt in a completed artwork that features additional surface design.

A screen shot of a later page in the book where Lisa shows felting and the use of the felt in a completed artwork that features additional surface design.

In the incredibly modestly priced “Creative Journeys,” available on Amazon and which you can read via the free Kindle App (I have the app downloaded on both my laptop and ipad), Lisa shares with you some of these things, including the how and why.  Her book is just as approachable, down to earth and fun as Lisa is.  It’s like going to her studio and playing around with cloth and paint and fun stuff with her.   The book is thoroughly accessible for the newcomer to using paint on cloth, but also provides meat for those of us like me who have been around for years.  One great surprise was the link to a  15 minute youtube video lesson where you can actually watch as Lisa does several of the techniques from the start of the book, great those who learn better by listening and watching than by reading alone.

The book covers:

  • Introduction
  • Techniques
  • Fabric Painting
  • Stamping
  • Decorative Rubbings
  • Metallic Foils
  • Simple Screen Printing
  • Stencilling
  • Combining Different Fabric Types
  • Creative Stitchwork
  • Textural Quilting
  • Resources (including hotlinks)
  • About the Author

On the technical side, navigating the eBook was easy, even though I’ve probably only ever read one think on my Kindle app.  You can set the font size, display (one or two pages at a time) and so on.  This would be fabulous if you’ve got your iPad or eReader set up on your work table:  you can enlarge the print so you can read it while working!   The software allows you to add bookmarks and notes, too.

On the fun stuff side (everything else), there are LOTS of photos of  in progress steps, walking you through each part of each process plus completed art quilts by Lisa that use the fabrics she creates.  She also includes the photos she uses as inspiration, so you can see how she began with an idea, then worked through step by step.  In Fabric Painting alone she covers washes, repeating shapes, sun printing with scrunching and twisting and pleating, salt effects and more.   In Stamping, she shows carving your own stamps (easy and SO much more fun than buying something ready-made).  Her explanation of creating a tiling design was new to me–a much easier way than I had learned!

Here are two in-process photos of painting a wash over a stencilled piece.  I am SO going to try this!

Here are two in-process photos of painting a wash over a stencilled piece. I am SO going to try this!  Right click to view larger.

And with rubbings and stencils, I have NO idea why it had never occurred to me to do a rubbing or paint with a stencil then use dilute paints to create a wash over the first layer!   Nor had it occurred to me to use stencils with adhesive and foils….   As you might guess, my mind is (as usual) running amok with the possibilities.

Lisa’s book is highly recommended–it’s hard to find value like this at this price.   For the price of a latte and a cookie you could have umpteen hours of fun playing with paint, cloth, textiles and color.   Go for it!  Now I’m going to go get out my paints, open the book up on my iPad and have a play-date with Lisa!