Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Immersed in quilts!

I have taken this week off work to imerse myself in quilts. So lots of photos for you this post. On Sunday Dennis and I went to Quiltfest in Llangollen. A small but well formed quilt show was enhanced by the presence of Magie Relph who was happy to relieve me of a large sum of cash in exchange for the most beautiful Ghanaian fabrics.

This was one of my favourite entries - part of a challenge exhibition to use the Sisters block. It is - I think, if my memory is correct, by Jennifer Roberts. I have a deal with Dennis at shows. He comes and looks at the quilts 'as if they were art'. (I know I know- his words. I know they are art!) He lets me know which ones strike him and which do not before sloping off to get a coffee and read his book whilst I go round again more slowly then hit the traders.. I find this useful not only to gauge what quilts he might like around our house but also to see which might work as art and which not so much. I do not always agree with him but of course we are entitled to our own opinions...

.... only sometimes that opinion is best kept internal. He saw this quilt, which was inspired by a Scotttish shore line and immediately and loudly pronounced it "horrible". Only its maker,Elizabeth Brimelow was standing right behind him! Ooops. Fortunately she either didn't hear or was exceedingly gracious as she came up and asked me if I'd like to know more about her exhibition of work which of course I did. It included this double sided quit which I first saw in this book. I had been trying to figure out its construction for ages so it was good to see it up front ( and back, as it were).

I was amused that this quilter who has been exhibited in museums and has her quilts in publish books confessed that she had never made a 'proper quilt'! (She meant a traditional pieced quilt.) She was of the view that others could do it better than she so why bother trying. I agree to a point - I think you mayb ehave to try once to know that others are better but then yes, focus on what comes naturally to you rather than trying to follow the crowd

My own efforts have been more humble.

The beast of a Kaffe Fasset top is finished (yeah!)
From this quilt I learned that:
1. For all I moaned about it, I spent hours at a time happily working on it's construction - the committment and self-discipline I apply to my work seems not to desert me at the sewing machine!
2. In the end it took three part days to finish - nowhere near the mamoth off-putting, tedious job I had been building it up to be! It could have been done ages ago.
3. Whilst I would probably enjoy the contruction of any quilt I am much more at home working freely than following a pattern ( especially a one patch one!) . I like to pull out from the stash a pile of fabrics that look good together, take them downstairs and start to make something, designing/playing as I go.

In celebration of its completion, despite the fact that I told myself I was not starting any more quilts until I had finished up the major projects on hand I started these blocks ( using the preferred method in 3 above).... nominally they are my samples of fabric manipulation for my City and Guilds ( and therefore I did not cheat) but I think you can see that they are intended to end up as a quilt when the course is over.
(that one doesn't show well but is slashed fabric)And this one still needs its hole filling!

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