onsdag, mars 31, 2010

This morning

After a few days of playing the who-finds-the-bucket-first game, life has calmed down. So much that a little quilting could be done. The internal rush to get the borders finished has begun. It feels good to be almost there.P1000485
This time two years ago these snow drops gave us joy. The snow disappeared this week – very late – and yesterday I spotted the first snow drop’s head.  I will have to venture into the rainy garden today to see the progress of our little white headed friend. Maybe some friends have joined her:)

søndag, mars 28, 2010

Yoko Saito

A week ago I attended Yoko Saito’s class at the Norwegian Quilter’s Associaton’s annual meeting. It was a class with a master.
Despite a rather bad interpreter, we all felt she came across as a warm, generous and humorous woman. When it comes to her enormous skills and artistry: Had quilting been generally accepted as the artform it truly is, she would have been given the title professor a long time ago.
Here are some impressions of the two quilts in the exhibition area. P1050049  The workmanship is astonishing, and the use of motifs shows the mind of a truly creative soul.
Baskets – she told us of her love of baskets, and that she is now studying the making of Nantucket baskets.
The “Talking houses” quilt below hung in the class room. Ms. Saito I believe has set a goal – to gently encourage a younger audience to pick up their needle and thread. The houses in this quilt were made during a period when she went to – if I remember correctly – shopping malls across Japan. She had a stand and sewed up a house on each occasion. Her view was that Japanese quilters had come to a level of artistry, that younger people might be “scared off” and think it too difficult an art form and never give it a try.
Full pictures of the three quilts are shown in May Britt’s post here.
And some are maybe a bit sceptical to hand piecing. So we were given a kit of wonderful taupe fabrics, told to cut with scissors strips and piece them together to small log cabin blocks. It was such a pleasure to sit with fellow enthusiasts and piece quietly. No buzzing sewing machines, no running back and forth to the ironing boards. Just stimulating conversation all around. And respectful and assertive tutoring from Ms. Saito and her wonderful co teacher Satomi Funamoto.
A picture of our class is shown at the end of Hanne’s lovely post.
Here are my log cabin blocks so far. I love that these humble blocks once assembled and appliqued to each other will make up a beautiful bag.
Slowly I am adapting to Ms. Saito’s sewing technique. She is sewing with such incredible speed. 
The technique is demonstraded here by one of her students.
Another detail of one of the quilts.
Now I’m back in real life, and I have to run, because my kids are sick. Take care. More later.
Oh, one more thing: Emily was there too! She has written a wonderful report here.

torsdag, mars 18, 2010

“King George”, its maker and Tracy Chevalier

Thanks to Jette at Parttime Perfectionist I found this beautiful, beautiful clip about Tracy Chevalier and her encounters with quilts at the V&A.
The film about Tracy Chevalier at the museum storage shows her seated beside the quilt “King George III Reviewing the Volunteers” writing notes. The quilt is featured in Kaffe Fassett’s museum book. And I’m currently making some of the circles. The only guide I have had so far, when it comes to patterns and size, is the pic above from Kaffe Fassetts museum book. To my astonishement - and amusement – when seeing the blocks in the right perspective, I discovered the blocks are so small. I tell you much smaller than I had pictured in my mind. They must be about 6 inches in circumference – and I’m making mine 11! 
It is also wonderful to hear more background information about the quilt. The maker incorporated herself in some of the appliqued blocks. “So funny,” Tracy Chevalier comments. I agree!
Here’s the one in the works these days -back and forth to my job, peacefully sewing on the train.