Saturday, April 21, 2018

Japanese Quilts at NEQM

detail from Under the Eternal Starlit Sky by Makiko Nakamura 
Just under the wire last week I finally got over to the New England Quilt Museum to see Quilts Japan - I mean, wow!  One of my favorites: 

Under the Eternal Starlit Sky by Makiko Nakamura 

detail from Under the Eternal Starlit Sky by Makiko Nakamura 

detail from Under the Eternal Starlit Sky by Makiko Nakamura 

detail from Under the Eternal Starlit Sky by Makiko Nakamura 

And, in the classroom, be prepared to have your socks knocked off by the quilts of Gladi Porche.  This is up until April  28th so you have some time to get over there to see her amazing quilts.  There are several inspired by Japan, and one is more amazing than the next.  Love. 

Gladi has blogged a lot about the Quilts Japan quilts - click here  and also peruse her other posts - very inspiring and if you've missed Quilts Japan, reading Gladi's posts is the next best thing. 

Both exhibitions so wonderful - colorful... just amazing! 


Friday, April 20, 2018

Kiku sashiko project class

Yesterday the time flew as I taught a fourth sashiko class at Cobblestone Quilts.  Five ladies, each with her own connection to handwork and either a new or a developing interest in sashiko stitching.

We explored this timeless motif - the chrysanthemum - or kiku - which represents long life and rejuvenation or energy.  The Chrysanthemum was adopted by the Imperial Family of Japan as the Imperial Flower and has become a symbol of Japan itself.

We see it everywhere -

I love these vintage bits of indigo katazome (stenciled patterns)  featuring kiku

You can start to see the "fan" appear as the motif gets more simplified:

So when you see something like this, go ahead and think "fan", but know that its origins are in the hearty and elegant chrysanthemum!

A piece like this might be made into a pillow, but a more classic use (lined, or unlined) would be as a furoshiki, or traditional Japanese wrapping cloth.  The braided stems are perfect for this use.

I wish I'd taken more photos!  Isn't it always a balance between being in the moment and documenting the moment...

In other news... this was yesterday morning.  Come on, April, stop with the snow!


Thursday, April 19, 2018

Doll quilt exchange

I am participating in Lori's (Humble Quilts) doll quilt exchange again this year.  You know, little quilts are so fun to make.  We were to make a reproduction style quilt using 19th century style fabrics.

I sent this off to Melissa in Washington state yesterday.  I hope she likes it...

I used scraps from the old Stars in a Time Warp, mainly.  A sweet pink backing to feminize the quilt a bit. Very narrow single fold binding - totally sold now on single fold! 

I was expecting some happy mail from Vermont Quilt Festival yesterday in the mail, but alas, my quilt was not accepted into the contest.  Boo.  Oh well.  I need to be more on the ball next year. Their acceptance window was 5 days long.  Of course I had spaced it and rushed at the last minute to reach that deadline window.  My application got there on day 5, but they had filled their quota on day 4.  Doh!