Saturday, January 31, 2009

A Change of Pace - Another visit to my studio

This is an overall view of my studio taken several years ago. You see the design wall which is about 30 feet long. It is covered in flannel (queen size sheets) and has 4 movable sections.

This is the fabric storage with the center two doors open. The photo was taken soon after I moved into the studio. The shelves are 12 inches deep which accomodates fabric folded into 4 thicknesses across the width. As you can see there are also sections that accomodate larger pieces of fabric. I arrange my fabric by color.

This is a photo of the same area taken today. Do you notice how I changed the distance between the shelving so now I can store the fabric vertically rather than in piles. This has made it much easier to see what I have, take fabric out and replace it. I periodically rearrange my fabrics getting rid of those that no longer fit my needs.
I couldn't do what I do and create the quilts I make without this palette to work with.

When I first moved into the studio I realized I hadn't made any accomodations to store finished quilts. I used to keep the larger ones on the bed in the guest room and ceremoniously remove them as my guests got a quilt show and Oh'ed and Ah'ed!
This got old fast and I realized I needed a better system.
I had purchased this 3/4 antique East Lake victorian bed years before for a pittance at an auction. My husband refinished it and we put a mattress on it. This is where I store my quilts. You see the top quilt here, but there are probably close to 50 quilts under it.
The smaller quilts are stored on two trolleys that pull out from under the bed. This has proved to be a great storage system as I am able to store them all flat.
The art you see on the wall is not a quilt but a painting by Frank Salcido, an Indian artist who's work I love. On the design wall you see several pieces of silk I dyed. I intended to make a unstructured jacket from this fabric to wear for the opening of my show. When I realized what the weather would be that day I changed my mind!

Tonight's puzzle is a view of the bed with the quilts taken from a different angle.
Click to Mix and Solve

Jinny Beyer Seminar Closing Banquet

Jinny always plans something special for the final banquet. For many years the entertainment at the banquet was the Fairfield Fashion Show. In this photo I am modeling Georgia Bonesteel's coat and dress. I don't know the title but it had everything you'd every need to make a quilt inside the coat.
This would be a good idea to make a similar garment and you would not have to pay for an extra suitcase when you travel. You could have one pocket for your stockings, another for your nightie, etc!

This is one of the outfits I made for the Fairfield Fashion Show. This is the official photo as I don't have a photo of it being modeled at Hilton Head.

The garments for the Fairfield show travel for about a year. When this was returned to me I wore it for the banquet one year.

One year we actually remembered to take some photos at the banquet. Many of you will recognize this quilter with me. The sweater I am wearing was one of my Hilton Head shopping purchases. I think it may have been 75% off!

This is our group of five who stayed together in the condo one year. We had to have a schedule arranging who got up first, how long they got to spend in the shower and who they woke up next. One of the people in the photo is my sister. Can you pick out which one she is?

We even were able to find Jinny to be a part of our picture. I can't tell you the year this was but I do know the seminar was still being held at the original Hilton Head Inn at the time, so it was probably one of the first 5 years.
When I started putting photos together for this trip down memory lane I couldn't find enough photos. Then I found an album filled with Hilton Head photos. You have just seen a few of them. I also have other projects I worked on at Hilton Head that you will see in the future.

I have enjoyed taking this trip down memory lane and I hope you have enjoyed it too.

As I write this post this years participants are probably all sitting at the beautifully decorated tables beginning their meals. I'm there with them in spirit, but it sure would have been great to be with them in person!
I'm sure they have all had a wonderful week and more tears will be shed at the end of this seminar than in the past since this is the grand finale.
Job well done Jinny and staff. You have certainly impacted many lives with your annual seminars. BRAVO!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Quilts: Another Dimension - Work of the invited artists

I will be at the show tomorrow in the early afternoon, Tuesday the 3rd in the early afternoon and next Saturday the 7th in the early afternoon. If you come to the show while I am there please be sure to introduce yourself. Better yet, let me know you will be there ahead of time!
The common denominator of the work in the show was that each artist used the third dimension in their work in some way.
It was very interesting to see how each artist was able to add this third dimension to their work.
Sonji Hunt is a professional artist in every sense or the word. Her work conveys her intent and is meticulously in its execution. In addition to this, she is a much better photographer than I am so I borrowed these images from her blog to share with all of you. She went home from the show and edited them and had them on her blog that evening. I have included a link to her blog toward the end of this post.

This piece spilled off the wall onto the floor. It was magnificent. It features her hand painted fabric as do all of her pieces. She makes various components and then combines them in her own unique style.

Frances's use of both found, semi precious and precious objects in the work compels the viewer to spend time looking at them and to come back again and again and see new things each time. She weaves them together in a very purposeful way using color as the unifying element in many of her pieces.

Claire's work is varied in style and technique and each pieces is as good as the other. Her vessels are very intimate and draw you closer to study and enjoy them with a closer look.

Pamela's work was the largest work in the show and yet you were drawn to it for an intimate view. You first saw the overall image and detail from a distance. It drew you closer and you were able to see all the wonderful and sometimes funky ways she had used everyday objects in her work to engage you.

I mentioned I borrowed these images from Sonji's blog. This is just a taste of what her blog has in store. If you haven't visited her blog please do as you are in for a treat. She has done a much better job than I could ever have done featuring the work of the artists. Her photos are superior and her commentary is both brilliant and entertaining as only she can do.

Tonight's puzzle is June 17, one of my quilts from the show.
Click to Mix and Solve

Beach Run and Stitch and Share

No matter what the weather during the week during the seminar on Friday at 4:30 the rain would stop, the sun would shine and hundreds of seminar participants were on the beach for a one mile run. All those who completed the race would be rewarded with T shirts with the Jinny Beyer Seminar logo in the "Color of the Year".

I participated every year. I have a collection of pristine T shirts that fill a whole drawer. You see, it was the thrill of the chase to get a T shirt each year, but I never wear T shirts!

One year I cut the bottom off mine, added that to the sleeves and attached fabric to the bottom to make a morning dress. I threw this on every morning when I got up while I stayed on the island to work on my quilts the following week.

After we received our T shirts we would change to our regular clothes, have a lovely dinner at the hotel and then gather our supplies to attend "Stitch and Share". This is a very relaxed function. Some sit and stitch and others wander around seeing what everyone else is working on or has brought to share.

In this photo I am admiring Carolyn's work. She attended more seminars than just about anyone. Her work is absoutely fantastic - both the workmanship and the way she uses color.

I am sharing my Japanese quilt with Diane in this photo. Each year Diane made it a point to take a photo with me in it and have it waiting for me the following year.

I developed a method of making miniature quilts with 1/4 inch or narrower strips using graph paper as a base. Here I am sharing them with Kathryn who also made precious and precise miniature quilts.

Stitch and Share was always one of my favorite parts of the seminar as it was very laid back and gave you a chance to see the work of the other participants up close in a way you could really appreciate it. You even got to touch it!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

What comes after 2? Colors Of My Life 3, of course!

When I arrived home after completing Colors of My Life 2 my mind was racing with ideas. This quilt is a simple Nine Patch with sashing between the blocks.
What is not so simple is the coloration.
If you look carefully you will see that the red centers change from bright to dull moving diagonally across the quilt.
The greens and browns also change - from light to dark.
The sashing is somewhat the same value overall.

There are places on the quilt where you can easily see it is a Nine Patch and then there are places where you really have to study it to see what is happening.

It has been a while since I used the United States cut for a puzzle. This will test your U.S. geography skills using Colors of My Life 2 from last night. Hope you enjoy it.
Click to Mix and Solve

Thursday: Jinny Beyer workshops and Show and Tell

I took a class on making a doll pin from Andrea Perkins one year. I'm not a doll maker but Andrea's classes were too much fun so I took several from her. This is Violet. Of course Andrea also tells stories about the dolls.
This is Violet's story. Violet is from Wisconsin. Wisconsin's state flower is the violet so that is why she always wears that leather violet pin on her hat. Her hat is made from a piece of decorator fabric Kay purchased on one of her shopping expeditions earlier in the week and from a sample of Jinny Beyer fabric chosen to match her pin. She thinks the beaded feathers under her chin are so fashionable, even if they do tickle her when she moves the wrong way. She was so happy to be created in a class taught by Andrea as Andrea is originally from Wisconsin and Kay also lives in Wisconsin.

This large block is a work in progress started in one of the early Jinny Beyer seminars. My intentions are to add one or more borders to finish it. At one time I had planned on making it much larger. It certainly doesn't need to be much bigger than it is now.

I designed and made these blocks one year when the seminar theme was Medallion Quilts. I intended to make this a king size quilt to fit our bed. At the time I started this I thought all my quilts should be king size quilts! How many king size quilts does one family need? I have a basic layout sketched to make this. I will be scaling this back and making a generous size wall quilt with it. I still love the blocks as much as I did when I originally made them in one of the early seminars. The colors I chose were very unusual at the time. I have learned that these are colors that look good almost anywhere.

This very poor quality photo shows my quilt "Bordering On A New Millennium" being held up on stage for the Thursday evening show and tell of participants quilts. This was shown at the 2000 Seminar. You've seen this quilt on the Anderson Arts Center calendar in a previous post.

Robin Haller has sent me photos of 2 of her quilts. This one is called "Inner City, Outer Space". Robin attended about 10 of Jinny's seminars and you can see this is a wonderful example of things she learned. I'm so pleased to be able to share her quilts with you.

Cosmic Cube is another quilt by Robin. This quilt is a great example of how you can show the third dimension on a flat surface. I love both of her quilts so much. Robin has won a lot of contests with her gorgeous quilts. Robin and I last saw each other at Jinny's 25th Seminar.
Stay tuned as I will share two more posts with you as there are two more days left in Jinny's final Hilton Head Seminar.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

On the second day Kay created The Colors Of My Life 2

OK - I'm stretching the truth a little - it took a year before I created The Colors of My Life 2. My intention was to just take the left over squares from the first quilt and piece them together to make a back for the first quilt. After I had it partially completed I realized it was too good to be a back and I would make a second quilt. That is how the series began. This is the only quilt in the series than is not made up entirely of squares. The black fabric separating the squares is a solid strip of fabric. At the time I did this I had no idea that this would eventually become a series of 20 quilts concluding with The Colors Of My Life 20 - The Grand Finale.

Quilts: Another Dimension is the first time this series has been shown in its' entirety. They are more powerful when they are all shown together. The Anderson Arts Center is a perfect place to show this series. They are in a beautiful mansion in a beautiful location with great lighting. What more could any artist ask for?

My intention is to keep these quilts together and they will not be sold separately. I would also like to show them as a group in other suitable locations in other parts of the country.

I would like to thank all of you for your comments and emails about the quilts and the show. I tried to keep up responding to each of you but I found I just couldn't keep up. Thank you all for your positive responses and compliments.

I will be making a few more visits to the show before I leave for Florida. I will let you know when I'll be there if you would like to visit the show when I'm going to be there.

Jinny Beyers Quilt Seminar has begun!

I took a class from John Flynn the morning before the opening of the seminar. This is my class project which I finished before the evening banquet. I brought it to show John I had finished it and to share with my friends. If you notice the slit in it that is because I chose to use it to make a jacket.

I had the jacket finished and wore it for the Saturday evening final banquet. The banquet photo where I am modeling this is in Florida so I am sharing this newpaper photo with you.
After the morning class we stopped at Signe's, one of our favorite places for lunch and also one of the very best bakeries anywhere.

Jinny welcomes everyone at the opening meeting, introduces the staff and introduces the seminar theme. We are divided into groups and we sit at a table with our group. Each table has one of Jinny's staff to help us when we have problems. Jinny was the first person to use a computer and projector to teach any quilting classes or lectures I was at.

After the afternoon meeting it was time to change clothes and get ready for the banquet that evening. The evening started with a lovely cocktail hour with excellent hor duevres and a chance to meet and visit with other participants and the staff.

More introductions were done at the banquet. I sat at the head table for the 10th Anniversary banquet. Since Jinny has a seminar coordinator she had no idea why I was sitting there. Here I am presenting our surprise to Jinny.

During the previous summer I contacted the participants and any past participant I knew to create a special quilt top for Jinny for the 10th Anniversary. I sent each person a pattern and instructions to make a block with Jinny Beyer fabric. People returned the completed blocks to me and I assembled the quilt top. I felt bad that I didn't have time to get it quilted. It actually proved to be a life saver for Jinny as she was able to quilt it while recovering from surgery on her knee.

This is a closer view of the center area of the quilt.

This is a close up view so you can see the signatures and the block.

In this photo of the top right corner you can see I used one of Jinny's border prints as a border on the quilt. The finished size of the quilt is BIG! I don't have any measurements. I do know that I had to take it up to the high school and lay it out on the gymnasium floor to see how the blocks blended together. I had to go climb up to the balcony to see it.

I haven't had a puzzle for a few days so I am giving you one that is very easy. A sister of one of the people who's signature is on on of these blocks has not done the puzzles so this is for her, and also for the husband of the person named on the block!
Click to Mix and Solve

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

In the Beginning Kay created The Colors Of My Life 1

This is the first quilt in The Colors Of My Life Series which consists of 20 quilts.
I had taken a 2 1/2 hour class from Jan Myers on Intersecting Fields of Color at Jinny Beyer's Hilton Head Seminar many years ago. I loved Jan's quilts made from hand dyed fabrics but didn't want to copy what she was doing. I remained on the island for a week after the seminar with a very limited amount of fabric. My fabrics were printed fabrics. There was no place to purchase fabric on the island so I "made do" with what I had brought - 50 or 60 3 inch strips of fabric.
I arranged them by value and designed on the floor. When I wanted to see what the quilt looked like I ran upstairs to the balcony and evaluated it. When I ran out of a fabric I substituted a similar fabric. I also used the wrong side of some of the fabrics. When I was pleased with what I had done I sewed the squares together. At that point the quilt was 16 squares high and 16 squares wide.
I put it on the design wall when I got home and knew it needed something more.
I added more rows on each side and was finally satisfied with it. The entire process took over a month just to make that decision and addition.

One of the questions I was asked frequently at the show was "How long does it take you to make a quilt like these?
My answer "A lifetime."

There are so many life experiences that go into how we create and what the results are. It's not like following a pattern and making an exact duplicate of something.

Quilts often remain on the design wall for a month or even several months while I am evaluating them and deciding if I am satisfied with them.

After they are sewn into the top, they may go back on the design wall for another long period of time while I make the decision of how am I going to quilt them.

Often they remain there because I am trying to come up with a simpler way to quilt them, but know in my heart they really need a very specific quilting design that is more labor intensive to make them work.

All of the quilts in this series are machine quilted and they are quilted with straight lines of stitching.

This is a case where machine quilting is the best method as these are quilts with strong graphic images. They need the hard edge created by machine quilting.

Hand quilting would soften and spoil the strong lines and shapes I created.

At this point I had no idea this would be a series. It was a year before I worked with the remaining fabrics. I was again on HHI and laid out another piece starting with the fabrics that were left from this quilt. Stay tuned and tomorrow you will see that quilt.

My solo show consists of this series and also the June series.

Still waiting for seminar to begin - Power shopping today!

This is the back of a special jacket I made for shopping. It is comfortable in a wide range of temperatures. I made it from sand washed rayon. I channel quilted the black fabric to a royal blue sand washed rayon with a light weight batting. I also made a long sleeve shell in red and full trousers in black sand washed rayon.

When the clerks in the stores and the other shoppers see us coming they know we are serious power shoppers! They move out of our way so we can do the job we came to do!
The clerks all know us by name.
Today will be our last full day of power shopping. We have been known to fit in some emergency shopping during lunch hours, before dinner or in any free time we have.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Quilts: Another Dimension reception: Part 2

Some of my energy has returned. I'd like to share more show photos.

This is a view of the east gallery with some of the people who attended the show. This is also where the food and beverages were served. I really enjoyed the very lovely hordeuvres.
There were also two pianists who alternated playing the grand piano during the show. The gentleman looking at the quilt on the right was one of the pianists and the lady who also played is seated at the piano.

These are long time friends Tim and Mary. It was so good to see them. Tim and Mary are standing in front of Colors of My Life 17 - Subtitle: An Amazing Quilt

These lovely ladies are all part of my son's office staff. I even look forward to visits to his office because they are always so pleasant and so much fun.
All three quilts partially visible in this photo are from the June Series. These quilts are all constructed from fabrics I either dyed or painted.

Bernadette is also from his office staff and she is accompanied by a friend and 2 daughters.
The quilts you see part in the background are also from the June series.

This is another picture of my friend Sue in front of Colors of My Life 4. This particular quilt is a charm quilt. In a charm quilt each piece is the same size and shape and they are each cut from a different fabric. They are so much fun to make and to collect fabric for.

This is my good friend Virginia. We met as members of Illinois Quilters. She lived in Illinois, I in Wisconsin. She moved to Wisconsin so we now live only a few miles from each other. Sorry Virginia - I caught you off guard as we can tell by your funny expression!
I have to apologize to my friends who'd photos I did take. It got so busy at times that I missed a lot of people who mean a lot to me.

I also would like to share another site where you can see some really good photos of the show along with Sonji's brilliant commentary:

If any of you will be visiting the show this Saturday, January 31st I'll be there with family and friends in the early afternoon. I also will be there on Thursday, February 5th in the early afternoon.

Waiting for Jinny Beyers Quilting Seminar to begin! I'm so tired from shopping for all the bargains on Hilton Head Island!

This is my almost daily post reminiscing about the 20 or more Jinny Beyer Seminars I attended on Hilton Head Island.
That sign is what we learned to recognize from a block away. We also did our research by checking out the ads in the newspaper, the radio and peaking in stores before they opened.

These 2 photos are from the coldest day on record on HHI.
We knew we still had to get out there and shop until we dropped.
It's a tough job, I know but someone has to do it.
We were fortified because we had spent 3-4 hours at brunch on Sunday. We always went to the very best brunch on the island. Over the years we probably had 4 or 5 favorites as things changed.

This photo shows some of the shops and restaurants at Harbour Town. Some of our favorites were here.
Our favorites also changed over the years, but our favorites were the ones with 75% or more off. Since their seasons were ahead of ours they reduced things and we could still wear them for at least 5 months in Wisconsin. I am still wearing some of the things I bought years ago.

This is the lighthouse at Harbour Town which is a well recognized symbol to any one who has heard of HHI.
We stopped here or in one of the many wonderful restaurants before continuing the after lunch shopping.

This was our "Show and Tell" from one of our shopping expeditions.

This is another of our show and tells.
For Jinny's 10th Anniversary Seminar she gave out many achievement awards. I received the Champion Shopper award for knowing where every store on the island was and what their discounts were daily. I thought everyone knew that!
One of the first questions we asked when we entered a store was "Do you ship?".
Fortunately most stores did. If they charged for shipping it was usually less than what we saved on sales tax. If we couldn't squeeze everything left in our suitcases we took the rest to the island pack and ship or post office. We also did a lot of early Christmas and birthday shopping when we were there.
This was just one of our memorable experiences we shared as friends on our annual trips to Hilton Head.