Thursday, October 30, 2008

Quilt mountain depleated

Well after quilting every hour I could fro weeks I've got the mountain down to two quilts. It has meant that some have gone back so fast I haven't had time to photograph them but I am feeling much better with a smaller pile to work on. So if you have quilts that have been waiting for me (and thanks to hanging on to them for a while) now is the time to pounce.

The charity quilt for Macmillan Nurses went back to the group that made it yesterday. Once they have the binding on it will be displayed at Patchwork Corner for about a month. I will get a picture of it while it is there. If you get a chance please do go and look at it, you might even like it enough to buy a raffle ticket for it.

Sunday, October 26, 2008


I can't believe it. I missed the deadline for Road to California. I know I have had a lot going on, but this show is important to me and I really wanted to enter again this year. How could I miss something like that? Still nothing I can do about it now, so I will spend some time checking all the other shows I might want to enter and making sure I don't miss them. I think I either need an assistant or some software to warn me of impending deadlines.

I've had an enjoyable but very tiring weekend manning the Patchwork Corner stand at the Wye Valley Quilters show. Sadly you will have to wait 5 years for their next exhibition, it was a good event, well attended by a very friendly bunch.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Quilt japan

Magazine out now with my work in.

Whups, I had intended to send that to myself. Oh well. now I've said it, I've heard that Herd Mentality and my large whole cloth are in it. I don't know how to get a copy though. I guess this is proof I can't multi-task. Well not to the extent of sending an email and serving a customer at the same time. No I wasn't actually supposed to be working I was just trying to be helpful.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Silly things to get excited about.

OK, I'm sad. Very sad, but a friend's book is out to pre-order on Amazon, and I am really thrilled. They haven't got the image up yet, but I am sure it won't be long.

I've been having a weird day all in all. I got up to find my necklace had broken again, so a trip into town was required to get it fixed. With a whole stack of work to do that wasn't ideal, but I figured I could at least make it to the bank as well so it wasn't entirely wasted time. So as I was heading out of the door the post came. Including a cheque I didn't expect. Well that makes the trip into town more worthwhile. So I go to the bank, put my necklace in the the jewellers and have lunch while I wait to get it back. Even though the weather has been getting colder I am still living in my Crocs. A lady came up to me and asked me if they are as comfortable as people say. Strange, but not a problem and we get talking. It turns out that she would like to get into quilting. Her mother was really good at it and now she wants to try it. How strange is that, well it gets stranger. She was most concerned about getting the layers together. Her relatives had told her about people in other countries that will do quilting for others, but had no leads on anyone in this country. Now what are the odds of us just happening to run into each other? It was a very cool lunch and I think she left inspired to start working on a quilt. I can't believe a day that started to poorly could work out so well and it wouldn't have happened if I hadn't broken my necklace in my sleep.

Thursday, October 16, 2008


Just for the record I have been quilting. Unfortunately it has not only been customer work, but it's been going back so fast I haven't had time to photograph a lot of it. I will try to do better.

I am also working on a new pattern. A couple of weeks ago Jenny at Patchwork Corner challenged me to come up with a pattern for some black and white and red and white prints. Fortunately this really appealed to me and an idea came very quickly. I hope I will be able to share it here sooner rather than later. I've only been able to work on piecing this new quilt in down time before classes at the shop, so it hasn't gone as fast as I would like, but hopefully today I can finish it.

Once I have this top made I want to do a second from the same pattern as I think it will look great n a very different colourway, and I can't wait to see it. So expect this project to be taking up my 'spare time' for a while.

One of the customer quilts I have waiting, that I will definitely get a picture of when it is done is a fund raising quilt. It is a fairly traditional bed quilt that I will be adding feathers to, which will be raffled to raise money for Macmillan Nurses.

I am also making good progress with my second book. Apparently my students are enjoying it so they are working faster than I expected, which means I have to as well. Unfortunately this is stopping me finishing my quilts from the first book. How embarrassing is it when your students are finishing your quilt before you do. Oh well at least one has been kind enough to lend me her quilt for talks, so if you do come to one you will see at least one finished example. It also looks like I finally have a title for it. I want to try it out on a class or two before I share it here, so watch this space.

Something to see in London

If you are in London before the 19th, try and find time to get to
Gallery Forty-Seven. It is 47 Great Russell Street, and is currently
home to "Dreams and Visions". This is an exhibition of work by six
artists, Marlene Cohen, Claire Crocker, Margaret Jarvie, Alicia Merrett,
Christine Restall and Stefanie Rickard. These ladies work together under
the name Colour FX Textile art and have a web site I was
lucky enough to be invited to the private viewing on Tuesday byt Stefanie,
who won the guest book prize from my show.

I managed to get there, in the middle of a very full day and I was
thrilled I had. I have to admit that I like that area of London anyway
but I don't often go there, so that in itself was a treat. The first
thing that struck me was the windows. How dumb does that sound. I don't
think I have ever seen textile art displayed in a window like that, and
well, it's something else. It made me look at it in a different way, and
was attracting the attention of passers by. Not bad going on a wet
evening. Inside the gallery has three separate areas. I like not being
able to see everything at once. I'm not sure for me it is so much a
journey as having to hunt for things to look at.

As I am terrible at names (and faces) I went without any idea what I
would see. I was very happy to discover some quilts I had seen before
and enjoyed. Had I the money I think 'Rainbow Fizz' would have had a new
home. I loved this quilt when I saw it at the FOQ, but hadn't got
arround to looking up who had made it. It turns out to be one of
Alicia's. I was also really taken with Solaris 2. It just is. To me it
has everything a sun should. Heat, light, dark and flares. The funny
thing is I don't really know how it had flares, but I could see them,
and I liked them.

I can't do these quilts justice here, so if you are arround London in
the next few days, do try to get to see them. If you can't make London
then they will also be on display at the Cowslip Workshops, Launceston
August 2009. I suspect details will be the Colour FX web site.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Blah blah blah

Another weekend another talk. Today's was near Wantage, and I was paired with Kim Shaw. I don't envy people the job of booking speakers. Not only do you need to find people who won't bore or offend your audience but you also need to consider how well they will fit together. I felt Kim worked stunningly well with me. We both have something of a slack attitude. Perfection is for other people and quilts are to be handled. Yet we also come from very different angles, she does a lot of hand quilting and I claim hand is a four letter work (well it is). I think people had a good time, I hope so, I certainly did.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Long time no time.

I haven't forgotten you all, but I don't seem to have time to think at the moment. Since I last had time to blog I've been out and about again, it seems mostly collecting colds. Last Saturday I spoke at the Quilters Guild Region 7 regional day. It was a lively meeting. I was amazed to find the hall fairly full when I arrived well before opening time, and it just got busier. I really could get used to this being treated like a celebrity, but maybe that wouldn't be too healthy. At least one of the audience did leave feeling inspired, which is my goal, this is her blog, Master of Patience.

I wish I could have stayed for the afternoon talk, the quilts I saw looked amazing, but I had to run off to the Birmingham Comics Convention. We made it to the convention center before it shut, although we weren't helped by Birmingham's one way system and the lack of hotel car parking, and arrived just in time to find our friends had completed their goals for the day and had time to show us around. It's interesting seeing the different comics shows. Much like quilting shows they each have their own feel. This one was very smart and professional, but not quite as friendly and lively as Bristol. I would put it as my next show of choice though. I like slightly quieter, especially when I am trying to have a look around. Over the weekend I managed to meet a quilter, and buy fabric markers, thus proving that I can work anywhere. We did also buy a few graphic novels. I was particularly taken by some adaptations of classics. I went for Macbeth, Christmas Carol and Frankenstein. They have lovely black on black covers and from a quick flick through they seem very well thought out. They are apparently being bought by schools to encourage reading so I am hoping they are well done. We did go for those with the original text which I think will help for me, but they do produce versions with different simplified text for children. If you would like to read more about the convention, Cy has put a few posts on his blog.

Monday and Tuesday were dedicated to quilting. The quilt you see here is the first I have done with this sort of edge. It is more effort, as I had to mark the curves before I could start, but I do love the effect. I really hope someone will need it again. I am also thrilled with how well the triangular feathers came out. I've been doing quite a few of them recently and it looks like the practice payed off. If you would like to see this quilt in the flesh, it will be at Alexandra Palace for the next four days. It will be hanging on the Patchwork Corner stand, which is the only reason it got done this week. I don't like doing customer work when I am under the weather, but I think I got away with it this time. I am still very busy with customer quilts but rest assured, I am working my way through them as fast as I can.

I am also making faster than expected progress with my second book. I can't claim this is down to me however. My students seem to be enjoying it (either that or they hate it and are trying to get it finished and out of the way) and are working through it far faster than I expected. This means I have to write faster to keep ahead of them. I have so much more respect for authors who can make them selves to write regularly without this kind of motivation. I know I wouldn't have the discipline to do it. Heck there are days when I would love to bunk off even now. Still I am pleased to say I have managed to write three chapters this week and hopefully that will keep me ahead for a little while.