Tuesday, 4 June 2013

I found it!

Well, Carol the weather-girl said that this week would be sunny with the temperatures gradually getting warmer and so, after last year's dismal so-called summer which was very wet, cold and very miserable, not to mention this year's long hard winter and cold spring, last night I decided to explore my wardrobe for a light-weight skirt to wear to work this morning and look what I found hanging on a skirt hanger!!

In the immortal words of Victor Meldrew - "I don't belieeeeve it". It's my long-lost Phebe centre block. 

I began this block about 3 - 4 years ago and didn't progress further than this because I didn't like it. I didn't like the background fabric - too yellow - I didn't like the birds - too pale and washed out - I didn't like the tulip flowers - too dominant - I didn't like the lilac coloured flowers - too flat - and most of all I didn't like the hillock. So I decided to throw the block away in disgust. A very unusual decision for me, but I couldn't stand the sight of it. 

But then 2 years ago,when my friend LuAnn said she was thinking of making the Phebe quilt, I started to think about the block I had started - I looked high and low for it - did I really throw the block out? Surely not. I searched again a year later and still I couldn't find it and came to the decision that I really had followed through with my threat. I even bought some new background fabric 2 years ago to have another go at the centre, but did not get much further than that - and then last night... there it was. Hanging amongst my Baltimore Album blocks in my wardrobe was my Phebe centre block. 

I still don't like it - I cannot quite work out why? So, early this morning I took another photograph in daylight, it's even more yellow or is it the red pot?

LuAnn gave me some of the fabric that is used in Di's original quilt for the hillock and I've pinned it on to see whether it makes any difference.

But no - if anything it looks worse. So I am going to start again - unless any body else has some bright ideas?

Sunday, 2 June 2013

Les petit maisons continue...

 Blogger was causing me problems uploading photographs yesterday, so herewith the remainder of my photographs...

Di Ford's Petit Maison

Miss Porter's Quilt - inspired by a quilt made by Miss Porter in the 1770's and in the collection of the American Museum in Great Britain in Bath. I love the dusky hues of this quilt.

Miss Porter's Quilt

Close-up of the border

Ann's Legacy - inspired by Ann Dagg's quilt in the Smithsonian, Washington DC. This is one of my all time favourite quilts and would love one day to see it "in the flesh".

The centre of the original Ann Dagg Quilt
Di Ford's version of the centre of Ann Dagg's Quilt
Border of Ann's Legacy 

Phebe's Quilt - This is Di's version of one of Phebe Firmin Warner's quilts. Phebe and her sister made some very intricate quilts. This is an adaptation of the original  "Phebe" Quilt which can be seen on the front cover of Quilts of America by the Orlofskys which has the most amazing vine border. I have found other quilts by Phebe and her sister Sarah  notably in the Winterthur Museum in Wilmington, Delaware.

Phebe Quilt
Close-up of centre
Close-up of border vine
Close-up of centre panel

Di had so many more quilts from her book to show, but too many to put on display, these were so tantalising...
More quilts!

An Moonen and Petra Prins - petit maison
Two of my favourite quilt shops are in Zutphen and Amsterdam in the Netherlands. The shop in Zutphen is owned by Petra and Den Haan and Wagenmakers in Amsterdam is part owned by Petra with her friend Nel. I always spend well(!) at both shops whether it be in store or at a show. Petra has a canny eye for fabric. I also have fond memories of having dinner with two of Petra's helpers from the Zutphen store - Bep and Gerda in Nantes last year - it was hilarious - Fawlty Towers could have drawn much from what we experienced!

An Moonen is a Dutch quilt historian specialising in the Dutch chitz quilts from the late 18th and into the early 19th centuries (my period!), and together with Petra they have a new book out called Promenade in a Dutch Garden (Promenade dans un jardin Hollandais), where they have drawn inspiration from antique Dutch quilts for a wonderful collection of reproduction quilts - here are some of my favourites.

Circle of Witches - quilted by Bep Wissels
Tree of Life - Di Ford and Petra Prins
Tree of Life centre - designed and made by Di Ford
Vesalius - designed by Meghan Leslie and quilted by Alison Bacon
Sisters - centre - Designed by Petra, made and quilted by Esther Paap
Doll Quilt by Kris Pieters
Simon - Designed by Petra and made and quilted by Josephine Gaaf
There was one more petit maison that I visited, but I am very sorry to say I do not know who the designer was - but she had an unusual twist on quilts - adding embroidery gave a completely different dimension to the quilt. I will find out the designer's name and then change this entry at a later date, but I am on a roll!

Another version of the Sarah Johnson quilt
Centre of the quilt with embroidery added
Sampler quilt with embroidery

Well, I think that's about it for Nantes 2013. It was good trip all told with many happy memories including visiting the show with my American friend Theresa and her daughter Julie, an unplanned experience of standing up infront of a crowd of quilters talking about my Dear Jane experience, but not so happy memories of very painful feet due to a flare! 

Thanks for the comments from my previous posts and hopefully it will not be too long before I post more photographs... now where are the photos from my trip to the USA last November...

Saturday, 1 June 2013

Les petit maisons d'artistes de quilt

I am pretty sure that I have made an error in my post blog title, but my schoolgirl french is not what it used to be!

On with my photographs from the Nantes show - another reason for visiting the show this year was to see Di Ford's work. She has her first book out called "Primarily Quilts". Di is fantastic at "fussy cutting" or "fancy cutting" her fabrics to obtain a new perspective from the fabric in its use. I don't quite know how she does it as so many of the fabrics in her collection are in mine too and yet I have stared and stared at some fabrics wondering how I will use them, and there they are popping up in her quilts - so why didn't I think of that I wonder? A true artist!

I have been collecting Di's patterns since about 1993 when she had a shop, "Primarily Patchwork" just outside Melbourne. I unfortunately never got the chance to visit her shop when I lived in Australia, but often telephoned to buy patterns and could hear all the bustling and laughter in the background. I wouldn't say that I have all of Di's patterns, but I have got a draw full of "one day quilts", especially those that feature a lot of applique :-)
Di's book is published by QuiltMania and both she and other featured quilters each had their own little houses to showcase their work.

Les petit maisons...
Kaffe Fassett's petit maison was an explosion of colour as one would expect, but two tapestry cushions particularly took my eye.

I love Baltimore Album Quilts, and these tapestry cushions are wonderful. I particularly love how he has blended the blue "ombre" in the vase and urn. I haven't seen the patterns for these two cushions although I do have the applique patterns!

Di Ford's petit maison was always busy whenever we popped by, but towards the end of the day I finally got the chance to take photographs without arms, heads and bags suddenly appearing. Unfortunately, the lighting was appalling, although Di had one of the better lit maisons. All of the following quilts have patterns in Di's new book.

Rotherfield Greys - Rotherfield Greys is a tiny village in the Chilterns, near Henley-on-Thames.

Rotherfield Greys with Jane Austen inspired quilt in the background

Close-up of Rotherfield Greys centre
The Antique Wedding Sampler is a re-worked quilt of a pattern I bought back in the late 1990's. I have a workbox of fabrics that I have collected over the years to start work on this quilt and have two blocks completed, but I have to say that I much prefer the fabric combinations in this quilt than the original and in someways shows just how far fabrics and their designs have developed.

Antique Wedding Sampler
close-up of one block
another close-up - I have sooo many of these fabrics in my stash!

Sarah Morrell Quilt - again I have another box of fabrics in readiness for this quilt including the fabric for the right hand block with the boy and girl on it - too many quilts not enough time!

Centre of the Sarah Morrell Quilt

Broderie perse block

I love the fabric use in this block

Antique Flower Basket - this pattern originally came out in one of the Australian Country Craft magazines. - and yes I have the pattern - I told you too many patterns and not enough time!

Dutch Flower Urn - inspired by the fabrics of Den Haan and Wagenmakers in Amsterdam, Netherlands - I must get some of the border fabric.

Oh Dear Mrs Tompkins Quilt (the Burnt quilt) - I don't have this pattern in my stash - all that piecing! - but there is quite a bit of applique in it too... so maybe... maybe...

Oh Dear Mrs Tompkins Quilt
Centre panel

Blogger is now "acting up" - may be too many photographs, so I will continue in another blog tomorrow.

Thanks for stopping by.