Thomas Edison: “There are no rules here. We’re trying to accomplish something”
Someone used this on Liberated Quilters today, and I’m going to use it as my mantra for a fortnight, cos I’m crazy busy for the next ten days with the Fabric Follies events.A4 Beeches art exhibitiondocx(2) is a link to click for the poster, if you’re in the area, please do come :)
Some progress reports:
Nico and Emilia pruning the big hawthorn tree in the back garden
the bath is now a purple sprouting broccoli and chard bed and lots of those branches are drying out for a solstice garden fire
The chiro quilt sample went down very well and gave me lots of ideas for the overall design – I am a process artist so very happy leaving lots of space for improvisation, in fact I find drafting a whole design and following it exactly very draining.
There will be 16 or 20 blocks with borders and a framing/sashing edge. Each block has a central piece about 18″/45cm square, which is embroidered or embellished to connect with the lake outside the window. This sample is an abstract representation of leaves and the reflection of foliage floating in the water, the lake edge and the fires of autumn, both real and the bright hedgerows…. These central pieces are individually worked and then framed with parti-blocked borders in plains, if you can call the sumptuous shot taffetas I’m using plain….these are all to be joined up and quilted with a variegated gold thread to unify/resolve the piece as a whole. I am so looking forward to this piece!
Next I have to make samples of wadding/filling and when they are approved I can really get moving :)
The 3D memory squares quilt/ installation is getting a great response, and I’m having to cut hundreds more squares – some groups are cutting and embellishing their own, which is lovely, the carers/ family and friends group Lynn from Fabric Follies set up is having a training session on Friday and they are going to use the squares to talk about memories with the residents at the Beeches, it makes a very easy lowkey way to start that conversation so I’m really pleased the timing has worked so well for this. When the school groups come in next week to embellish squares, working on their own memory square and one for a resident will hopefully bridge some gaps – and at home too, maybe. I used to love hearing my granny’s stories of being in service and when the street burnt down – the colliery houses were built of wood, so the whole street went up, and my mum was born in the back garden! – but also how she would cook a meal for 6 on an open fire, what washday was like……
Making the request for a happy memory has generated some very positive conversations already!
Stashbusting continues, this is the pile for the chiro quilt, but two large (think cushion or duvet) bags have left with Cherry Simone for her to build stash and to share with her fellow art journallers and sewers for fun, and a bundle of pink went off to someone expecting a girl soon, and the squares are another large carrier bag sized gap! An empty shelf appeared and is now a current project boxes area. Emilia said you could see a difference today from a month ago! I will be taking embellishing ribbons and yarns with me to the Beeches next week, so that will help too.
A little voluntary project I’ve taken on is making comfort cushion cat and dog beds for the local animal shelters - the lovely, lovely Colleen who used to run Hucknall RSPCA shop has set up an independent shop supporting all the local animal sanctuaries/projects. The new shop is on Watnall Rd and I went in to ask if they could save pilled up fleece blankets for me, to use for wadding in quilts. One thing led to another and now they are saving any old bedding that’s too tatty to sell, tearing the sheets and duvets into hand width strips if there’s a quiet moment on the till, then I stuff old pillowcases and stitch them up. You roll the strips into loose bundles, wrap the ends in and mix them with any fabric snips or old duvet wadding and it makes a nice cosy, washable bed for a distressed animal, Nonie jumped straight on the one I made last night and started paddling, so it works! Don’t put thread bundles in, cats and dogs often shred their bedding when they’re distressed, and would choke or get internal obstructions if they swallowed lots of tangles. But they’re very quick and pleasing to make, a good way to help those lovely people who take in the strays others have abused or abandoned and a good way to really use stuff up completely.