Tuesday 20 August 2013

My report on the Festival of Quilts

Need to start with a big thank you to all the people who made quilts, organised the show, or just attended the Festival of Quilts. I know it's a commercial event, but I still feel I should thank everyone involved.

It's been four years, but I finally got to go to the Festival of Quilts again. It was really nice, lots of great quilts and a really good atmosphere. I went on Saturday, and it was Tuesday before I felt recovered from the event, and it took until Friday for me to upload all my photos. So a big event for me. I'm just putting a few notes here, to act as reminders rather than give a full coverage of the event. I don't think I could write enough to do a full coverage!

I was surprised at how much I liked the quilts in the Pictorial Quilt category. Generally, I tend to think quilts should be quilts, and when a quilt is too representational, it tends to annoy me. But not at this show; I really liked a lot of them, not just for the technical skill in making them.
view of Luke Hayes' (the American Context 68) Double Elvis view of Dian Smith's Blodeuwedd view of Hilde van Schaardenburg's Hommage a Monet

The way quilters used prints also really caught my eye this year, especially how prints were cut up and re-combined:
view of Neil MacGillivray's Forth Again detail of Janet Boult's Out of Africa detail 2  of Ans Schipper-Vermeiren's Rozen (Roses)

I also liked seeing how the back of patchwork was used, either as a second side or as a design element in its own right:
detail of Danielle Coolbear Jenkins' Peonie back detail of Sara Edwards and Mandy Parks' Ivy's Quilt detail of Mandy Pattulo's Detaching Hexagons

Something I didn't see a lot of was frayed fabric. I suppose quilting has its fads, but the absence of fluffy strips reminded me of how much I like that technique.

I took loads of pictures, maybe too many. At one point I felt like I was looking at my camera more than at the quilts.

The nicest thing happened on my way home: I was sitting in an aisle seat on the train, working on my embroidered postcard (despite having forgotten to take my scissors- I think I've already blogged about my reluctance to have different bags because of my dread of forgetting to put all the things into the current bag? Well, I was limited to using threads I had already cut because I switched bags to go to the show and left my cutting tools at home.) A troop of people who had been to the show (I could tell from their bags) were getting off at an earlier station, and one of them nodded to my work and told me "That's beautiful" as she passed by to leave the train! How sweet!

Here's how it is looking now:
postcard in progress shot

Sunday 4 August 2013

Can't take the heat

I gave up knitting because it of the heat wave! I'm not sure if it actually was hotter than just sitting on the bus not knitting, or if psychologically I just associate knitting with stuff that keeps you warm.

Instead, I've started a hopefully quick bit of embroidery. The Manchester branch of the Embroiders' Guild is putting together a display piece of postcard size embroidered rock pools that can be arranged to link up with each other. I'm sort of slacking on the embroidery work lately, so I have a feeling of obligation rather than enthusiasm about this. Still, once I got into it, I am liking how it's looking.
embroidery rock pool

And yes, I am doing it totally backwards by putting down the sequins and beads before the stitching. There isn't much of a plan for this project, and all I knew was that I wanted it to sparkle. So I started with the sparkles and I'll just put up with the thread catching on them while I fill in the rest. I have a definite deadline for this: 7 September, to hand over a the next guild meeting. Hopefully, the weather will be cool enough to pick up the knitting after that.