Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Me and My Sister: Sydney workshops

Barbara Groves and Mary Jacobson are the sisters of Me and My Sister Designs, popular designers of fabric (for Moda) and patterns, from Phoenix. They are visiting Australia next month, and will be presenting several events, including these two in Sydney:

"A Slice Of Cake"
Workshop with Me and My Sister Designs
Sunday 26th July 2015
Remnant Warehouse - Alexandria

"Jelly Rolls Gone Wild"
Workshop with Me and My Sister Designs
Thursday 23rd July 2015
Hobbysew - Top Ryde

Monday, June 29, 2015

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Biggest Morning Tea show and tell (2 of 2)

Lyn's machine applique of Anne Sommerlad's design
'Summer', from our workshop with Anne last year.
Former member Maureen came up from the south coast.
Her very large hexagon quilt has been some time in the making!
Maureen's Japanese quilt won a Viewers' Choice award
at the recent Red Berry Quilters show. The strips
are woven rather than pieced.
Miriam mixed fabrics for her hexagon quilt p everything
from batiks to reproductions. It was only when she finished
that she saw the happy accident of the light stars where
she had used light-value hexagons. 

Read more about this quilt on Sew Miriam.
Pat's 'Jolly Stars' quilt top from our workshop with
Catherine Butterworth is elegantly sophisticated.

Peggy has made wonderfully whimsical quilts for each of
her grandchildren. This is number eight.
Robyn's cheerful daisy hexagons are her own design.
The quilt brightens a common area at Robyn's village. 
Val's contemporary design was made for a
competition in the late 1990s. It travelled
to the US and Austria for exhibition.
Roslyn's beautiful applique is based on the Rose Window
in Notre Dame, Paris.It was made in the late 1990s
Sue S's classic sampler with a delightful dancing dollies border.
Susan brought one her early quilts that suited the
occasion well.She didn't know she had done broderie
perse borders until a more experienced quilter
pointed it out.
Sue C's mother made her reversible quilted
jacket more than forty years ago, and it still fits!
Thank you all for sharing your treasures - it was lovely to see them again, or for the first time.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Biggest Morning Tea show and tell (1 of 2)

Lynette showed us two of her antique quilts, from the early 1800s.
Bear's Paw blocks with red sashing.
Thanks to Phyl and Fran for being such excellent holder-uppers
of so many quilts in a crowded room.
Lynette's second antique quilt - hexagon diamonds each with a
red centre - someone commented on how popular hexagons
are now, and that this design could have been made today.
Lynette bought her first antique quilt from an American dealer
at a quilt show in Japan, and then sought her out in New Jersey
because of the quality of her stock and expertise.
Dawn has recently returned from a holiday on
Norfolk Island, where she did a workshop
with Gloria Loughman. This is her second
quilt from the workshop, based on the
local environment. The first is here.
Elsa also brought her very first finished quilt, started in a
workshop with Margaret Sampson George, and finished last
year - not the easiest design to choose for your first quilt!
Marilyn made this quilt for her mother. 
Nerida made this one a class with Sue Cody
at Killara Village Quilts about 10 years ago
Louise made this beautiful hand-quilted whole cloth as a wedding
quilt for her daughter and son-in-law ...
... and it is holding up well after 13 years of use. 
Janice showed us her Jane Austin quilt.
JoAnn and Roslyn took a quilting tour to Japan in 2008.
The group set a challenge to make a quilt about the trip, to be
revealed at their one year reunion. Joann's challenge quilt
includes fabrics acquired on the tour.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Australia's Biggest Morning Tea - our quilty version

We like quilting, obviously, and we are good at it. We like company and a good morning tea too, and we're good at that as well. So when Georgie suggested that we hold a Biggest Morning Tea to support the Cancer Council's annual community appeal, we didn't hesitate.

Georgie enlisted her sister Phyl - they are a formidable team.
Between us, we've enough fleeting and way too close encounters with cancer, and lost too many loved ones, not to know that every dollar raised in the community for research, treatment and support is desperately needed.  So Georgie got us organised in just three weeks.

Last Monday fifty of us, including some friends and family (and one adorable baby) filled our little meeting hall with chat and laughter, a few quilt-related touches, broke out the fine china and the best linen, and had ourselves a grand morning tea.

A beautiful spread - note the quilt as tablecloth.
We raffled a basket filled with fabrics, a book and a pattern, we guessed how many hexagons filled a large jar to the brim (615!) and lucky- dipped for fabric cuts - and at the end of morning we had raised $755, a very good result.

We brought along some quilts for show and tell - older ones that hadn't been seen before, or at least for a while and enjoyed seeing them again. Photos in another post or two.

Congratulations Georgie - and thanks to everyone who contributed food, fabric, friends and funds.

Thank you for the photos, Nerida and Sue.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Sydney Quilt Show: Viewers Choice quilts, raffle and door prizes

Visit Template Free, the blog of the Quilters Guild of NSW to see which two quilts won the Viewers' Choice votes, and who won the raffle and door prizes at the Sydney Quilt Show last week.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Sydney Quilt Show 2015 - award winners

Now that we've calmed down a little from the excitement of 'our' award, we must acknowledge that there are other quilts on exhibition at Glebe Island - more than 400, in fact, and many award winners.

Photos of all of the award winners have been posted online by the Quilters Guild of NSW in the Sydney Quilt Show Prizewinner's Gallery.

The 2015 Best of Show was won by Karen Terrens for her quilt Sanderson's Apprentice:

Bernina Australia has posted a closer-up view of Sanderson's Apprentice on its Facebook page, here

Best of Category in the Red and White Special Exhibit was won by Merelyn Pearce, for
Red Deer with Poppies and 274 Roses

Congratulations to all of the winners, and all of the exhibitors - we know how hard you have worked.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

The 'wondrous' quilt

Stained Glass Quilt
designed and made by Peggy Molchanoff, Lyn Lang and Susan McMahon.
Fairholme Quilters 2014 - 2015

Today, a number of us proudly witnessed three of our members, Peggy Molchanoff, Lyn Lang and Susan McMahon being awarded Third Prize in the Group/Collaborative Quilt Category at the 2015 Sydney Quilt Show, for their quilt, made on behalf of Fairholme Quilters, and on commission for a local nursing home.

Congratulations Peggy, Lyn and Susan - your award is so well deserved.

Just after the awards presentation this morning
- from left, Susan McMahon, Peggy Molchanoff, Lyn Lang

On the Show label the quilt is called 'Light', although it is now better known as the "Stained Glass Quilt', or simply as 'the wondrous quilt'.

Here is the back story, in brief ...

For some years Fairholme Quilters has made quilts for the use of individual residents of the Donald Coburn Centre, a nursing home at the Anglican Retirement Villages at Castle Hill, to warm and comfort them. A year or so ago we handed over a tactile wall quilt that had been requested by the diversional therapists, that presented a new challenge for us, and that they were very happy with.

Soon after, on the  strength of our previous donations, the chaplain asked if we could make a wall hanging or panel for a bare wall in a room used for various activities, and for services for those residents unable to make the short journey the beautiful onsite chapel. The brief was for something simply graphic, based on easily recognisably Christian images, that would remind residents,  who might have advanced dementia, that it was their place of worship. We thought we could.

Three members, Peggy Molchanoff, Lyn Lang and Susan McMahon volunteered to take on the task, and began looking at potential designs and techniques after inspecting the room where it was to hang. Nothing quite gelled, so they came up with an original design: three panels to be hung closely together, suggesting a stained glass window, with a graphic design that would meet the brief. Transferring that design from a sketch to fabric was greatly assisted by Peggy's husband Peter making a life-sized drawing in correct scale. Each of the women then prepared one panel, using applique and bias-binding to realise the stained glass effect in fabric.

Most of the 'glass' fabric was donated by Fairholme members, and Lyn found a very effective background fabric that has a look of sandstone, emulating a church wall.  Fairholme donated the remaining materials, but Peggy, Lyn and Susan donated all of their time and expertise - and there was a great deal of both required. Lyn quilted the panels by outlining the 'glass' pieces, and in a masonry pattern on the wall sections. The panels were joined into a single piece for better hanging, measuring 84 x 63 inches.

As we watched the quilt come together, we were astounded at every step, by the exquisite workmanship and the stunning design. As it neared completion we could really see the illusion of light coming through the 'glass' - we knew that the brief had been more than realised, and that the residents, chaplain and therapists would be delighted.

The whole process took about nine months, and none of the three quilters spent much time on their own work during that time. There were problems that had to be solved, work that was redone when it did not come up to their exacting standards, as well as rewards when things went well.

The quilt was delivered to the Donald Coburn Centre a few days before Easter this year, and was hung the same day, so it would be in place for the Easter Sunday service.

The chaplain, Ben Boland was indeed delighted, as were the residents, their families and the staff. In his letter of thanks, Ben referred to it as 'this wondrous quilt'. We noted in the accompanying photos that it had been promoted from a side wall to the front of the room, so it seems it is doing its job.

We cannot thank Peggy, Lyn and Susan enough, for representing Fairholme Quilters so well, in this task, and for their dedication to it. It is a great gift to our community, that we were pleased to be able to give.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Sales this week

A number of Sydney patchwork and quilting shops are offering fabric sales during the time of the Sydney Quilt Show:
Quiltsmith (Annandale) 
Patchwork on Pittwater (Mona Vale) 
Remnant Warehouse (Alexandria) 
Craft Depot (Pennant Hills) 
... there could be others, and of course some shops are actually at the Show.

This week at Fairholme (1) ... finishes!

Now that the large project Susan has been working on is
finished, she is back to her own work, and has finished
her lovely quilt started in a class with Sue Ross last year.
Dawn recently enjoyed a class with Gloria Loughman,
during a holiday on beautiful Norfolk Island to celebrate
her birthday. She finished her wall hanging during the trip.
Sue C is most comfortable working with her favourite
colour, blue. But this quilt is for a little girl who
loves pink, so Sue adapted! 
Lyn will definitely be the first to finish her Jolly Stars
quilt, even after she needed to do a little correction
to some of the border blocks that had got their colours confused.
She is on the final stretch of binding now, and then
it will be handed over to her 16 yr old nephew.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Sydney Quilt Show and social media

The Sydney Quilt Show is nearly here - it will be held at the Glebe Island Exhibition Centre next week, 17th - 21st June 2015.

Our quilt has been delivered - more about it next week, when the Show opens.

The Quilters Guild of NSW is always very prompt at posting photos of the award winners on its website (the awards are announced and presented on the first morning). This year there will be more news than ever on social media - the Sydney Quilt Show is now on Instagram @sydneyquiltshow2015 and invites others to link via #sydneyquiltshow2015

Check the Guild's photography policy here, especially if posting to social media.

With more than 400 quilts entered, including 150 in the special 'Red and White', expect a lot of social media activity.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Community quilts catch-up

Lynette has been mining the blue fabric in our community
stash - this her fourth in a series of blue and white quilts, and
there are more to come.  The pattern  'Lattice', successfully
blends a range of blues, some with a touch of pink in a
pretty, fresh design.
Dawn pieced a gorgeous selection of blocks from
 our 2014 end-of-year-challenge to produce
the second finish in our 'Pittwater' series of
quilts made with some beautiful fabric scraps
donated by Robyn Evans of Patchwork on
Pittwater at Mona Vale.
A long overdue photo of a bright and beautiful
quilt pieced by Robin W from her Kaffe Fasset stash

Monday, June 8, 2015

Right way up?

One of the best things about belonging to a friendly and co-operative quilting group/circle/guild is that someone will always help you to pin-baste your quilt, and there are usually large tables to do it on. Every time we do it in our evening group, we wonder about which side of the batting should go 'up', can't remember or work it out, so we decide it doesn't really matter. Perhaps it does --- we might need a copy of this pinned to the wall ...

Batting has an "up" and "down"
APQS, January 22, 2013
Well, most of it does, anyway! It may surprise you to know that many batting products have a right side and a wrong side, just like fabric. If you place the batting wrong side up, you'll typically experience more batting "bearding" (small slubs of batting that pull to the back side of the quilt) or difficulty in maintaining consistent thread tension ...

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Embroiderers at the Sydney Craft and Quilt Show

Our friends at the Embroiderers' Guild of NSW have asked us to let you know that they will have a presence at the Sydney Craft and Quilt Show (17th - 21st June), so please put them on your itinerary for you show visit - they will have information, displays, a competition, and give-aways.

You might find yourself talking to someone you know ...

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Call for entries

A matter of time is new travelling textile exhibition to be curated by Brenda Gael Smith - the call for entries is now open and closes on 15th january 2016.

All details, the entry form and the timeline for entries and exhibitions are on the exhibition's website now.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Australian Modern Quilt Show - best in show, viewers' choice

Congratulations to the Wollongong Modern Quilt Guild on mounting a fabulous second Australian Modern Quilt Show in Kiama last weekend - lots of beautiful quilts, well displayed, a good range of vendors, a workshop program, and the location was pretty good too.

The winner of the Best in Show Award, Clamshell Carousel, by RachelDaisy, can be seen on the Modern Quilt Show website now. Viewers' Choice was won by Galaxy, made by Jess Frost (a photo is on the gallery page, but you might only be able to see it if you have an Instagram account, at the moment).

Added 3/6/2015:
Kirsty who blogs at Bonjour Quilts gives a good run-down of the show in this post: Modern Quilt Show Australia – Kiama 2015

'My Name is Lizzie Flynn'

Here is a new book (released just yesterday) to keep an eye out for. The publisher lists it as a children's book (suitable for readers 7+), but there might well be be a few grown-up quilters amongst its keenest readers ...

My Name Is Lizzie Flynn - A Story Of The Rajah Quilt
Claire Saxby, illustrated by Lizzy Newcomb
Black Dog Books, 2015
Based on the true story of a quilt made by convict women on board the Rajah, bound for Australia.

There's a lovely children's bookshop next door to an excellent cafe not far from me - I'll go do some research for you ...