Saturday, October 30, 2010

To Market, To Market to buy a . . . lot of great stuff.

One of the great things about going to Quilt Market and Festival is seeing all my quilting buddies. I found Paula Nadelstern showing off some of her newest work.
And, I met Ginny Eckley, who is a master stencil maker and makes the exact right sort of stencils for the resist-type dyeing that I prefer. Check out her website!

One of the really great things about attending Market (the wholesale part of the show) is that you can really spend time looking at all the amazing quilts without having to jostle with all the Festival attendees. They are superb and the competition is stiff. The prize winners won't be announced until Wednesday. I wonder if some of my favorites will be among the winners.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Quadrille - 2010

Here's the newest quilt with flying geese galore, intertwined with a colorful star. The geese were made from a rainbow pack of hand-dyed gradations by Starr Design Fabrics, and the backgrounds were hand-painted by Mickey Lawler of Skydyes. This was a fun quilt to make. Donna B and I worked on it together.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Top Row Retreat

I'll be teaching on a quilting cruise hosted by Stitchin Heaven, with fellow teachers Carol Doak and Eileen Sullivan, in March 2012, with stops in the Carribean. It's a paper foundation piecing cruise! So, instead oh having everyone make three different projects, each of us made a row for "our" cruise project. Mine is the top row! I finished it at our quilt retreat at the cabin.
Our quilting group, Designing Women, had a blast, sewing, eating, and . . . . .
hiking! Three of us brought our fur-kids. This is Mary C and Pogo.
And, Mr. Gab, the most excellent hiker. Hard to photograph though, since he's a dark charcoal gray, hence his full name, Gabbro. It means igneous rock.
This is Donna, who owns Cathy C. She was the newest dog to the group, only having been rescued within the last twelve months.
Miss Elaenia, formerly a puppy mill breeder, came to live with me about 18 months ago. She hikes well, but would prefer to be a couch potato.
At the overlook, looking down into the Jemez Valley, lies this intricately woven piece of wood that suspends a rock above the earth.
Debbie Caffrey is the newest member of our group. She joined in January 2010. She is an outstanding chef! We ate way too much! Good thing we went hiking.
In our group, we do have a few rules. Here, Michele was awared the No Whining button. Guess what she did to earn it! She has to keep it until someone else in the group whines in her presence, AND she has the button in her possession at the time. She might have it a long time. Harriet owned the button for two years before passing it on. I love our retreats!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Flying Colors - Coming Soon!

It's almost here, my third book, Flying Colors, published b y C&T Publications. The first copy has arrived on my doorstep and I am so impressed with the graphics and design. Working with C&T has been an inspiration. In fact, the experience has been so rewarding that thoughts of the next books are already swirling in my mind. Flying Colors takes the traditional goose beyond tradition into a heady world of free-form design. No longer just for geese, the curvy filler strips can hold many different designs and 14 different fillers are included among the pages. Thank you to all of my students who generously allowed the use of their quilts in the book too.

Monday, July 5, 2010

After VQF: Burlington Composting Center

Personal tour leader, Pat, suggested that my final stop in Vermont before boarding the plane should be to the Intervale Composting Center in Burlington. There were, indeed, a hundred or more gulls and some crows, but most interesting were the large group of students and teachers picnicking on the lawn. Apparently, the center is popular not just for birders. Across the street are expansive community gardens where many people were busy cultivating the gardens.
Yup, compost! In various stages of decomposition, being moved around.
When a potential predator was sighted, all the gulls took flight. We observed three different species, Ring-billed Gull, Herring Gull, and Great Black-backed Gull. Way cool!!
The gull's most favored spot, though, was the smelly area where freshly dumped vegetation was first turned.
Burlington has a history of being one of the greenest communities in the U.S. All the large hospitals and other industries deliver their vegetable waste to the center. What a concept and what a great last stop in Vermont!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

After VQF: Quest for a Life Bird

Once the festivities wrapped up at the Vermont Quilt Festival, it was time to explore. My friend Pat, herself a crazy birder type like yours truly, suggested we drive up Mt. Washington, in New Hampshire, as soon as they opened the road in the morning. The sign threatened a very scary drive. But . . .
It was stunning. Living all of my life in the West, I had not considered the size of the mountains in New England, which are just as high above ground level as most of our western peaks. We were on a quest for a particular bird, Bicknell's Thrush, that is found in a narrow range between 3,000-5,000 feet above sea level. We opted to climb Mt. Washington as it was the most accessible site to search for the elusive bird, listening to bird song tapes so as to ensure that we would know its song.
Friend, Pat, is a dedicated birder, even promoting birds on her license plate. We did indeed find the little fellow, singing his heart out at the exact location he was supposed to be. How often does that happen? We also got to see and hear a Swainson's Thrush, another lifer! What a day! But, there was more! Pat is an outstanding birding guide!
Back at Pat's place, we checked out her neighbor's property, heavily forested. It yielded, not only ancient equipment, but also a Black-throated Blue Warbler - yet another lifer. We were on a roll.
The view from Pat's front yard was spectacular and the birds in a back yard numerous, attracted by an over-sized pond filled with koi. Our evening entertainment was to sit on the porch and watch the kingfisher snagging baby goldfish over and over.
We even got close-up views of a few cooperative birds, like this Eastern Kingbird. I think Vermont is about as close to heaven as possible -- at least during the summer.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

VQF - Sensational Stars

This star in progress, was designed by Donna Hastings. Donna had taken this class from me before, and brought this beautiful creation with her to class.
Donna Hastings
Sensational Stars is a one-day class where students design and make their own stars. Here are a couple in progress. This one is the design of Barbara Roberts.
Barbara Roberts
Here's a nifty design in progress, belonging to Nicole Laurencelle.
Nicole Laurencelle

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Vermont Quilt Festival 2010

One of the most fun parts of class is seeing the designs take personality. Here are two wedges of Mary Nelson's Star - an original design.
Mary Nelson
On Friday night, we explored downtown Burlington, Church Street in particular where they have many street artists such as this fellow who was playing the digeridoo, an Australian aboriginal instrument.
Cows are big here in Vermont, the land of cheese, chocolate and ice cream. The street was filled with cows painted by various artists. Fellow teacher Jan Krentz and I pose by a plaid cow. Our photographer was Carol Doak. They were my roomies on this trip - way too much fun. I hope to spend more time with them in the future.

Friday, April 9, 2010

It's a done deal. My quilt, "Black Hole" was purchased by the New Mexico Art in Public Places Program. Here's the photo essay (not quite in order) of the installation and the charming village of Magdalena. Pictured with "Black Hole" quilt are (left to right): Greg Tindel, framer, Gail Garber, artist, Magdalena Senior Citizens Center Site Manager Rosemary Wilburn, Socorro County Senior Citizens Director, Lewis Auerbach, County Commissioner R.J. Griego, and Socorro County Sheriff Phillip Montoya.
Greg was amazingly helpful. Not only did he make the frame, he installed the quilt, securely bolted to the wall, driving the two hours south to Magdalena to do so.
Measure thrice and drill once.
Donna, my partner in quilting. Turns out that her in-laws call Magdalena home. We got to learn about Grandma Kelly's brainchild, the thrift shop that provides food for over 300 families. More on this in a future post.
Just a bit of the local c0lor in the Wild West.
Check out the steer. He has an old license plate on his face. And, if you look between his legs there will be no doubt as to the gender.
Downtown Magdalena.
Eggs for sale - and more
I left some of my earnings right there in Magdalena when I found these exquisite baskets by Holly Modine. Turns out her husband was working at the shop that day. Next time you find yourself in the Land of Enchantment, check out this little known and seldom seen jewel of New Mexico -- Magdalena. You will be glad you did.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Lancaster, PA

Last day in Lancaster. Cold and breezy bird's eye view from the hotel window.
One of my students, Katrina, took me to the Central Market for lunch. It's the local Farmer's Market, only open on Tuesday, Friday and Saturday. I had little idea the treats that were contained within the red brick walls of the historic building.
But, first, it was class time. This is a design workshop, and all students design their own project. The morning is spent entirely on drawing and the various fillers used in my upcoming book. But, by the end of the day, parts of projects were beginning to emerge. Here's a 10,000 pyramids border below a field of grass.
And a row of geese with pointy dudes!
At the market, we found many culinary treasures. One that didn't get photographed was the first part of lunch, homemade baklava. Always eat dessert first, lest you not last through the meal.
We found a German cookie maker with fabulous hand-molded sweets. This is an antique cookie mold.
Several more were on display.
Groff's vegetable growers use no chemical sprays.
Just too cool, piles of vegetables just waiting to be taken home. Too bad they weigh so much. In the end, I settled for a piece of quiche and a deli salad. Lancaster is a charming community. I hope to return one day.