Labour day dyeing results

A couple of weekends ago I overdyed some fabric that I didn’t like. It was a yellow and black batik fabric with ghostly white flowers. The price was right and I brought it home, knowing that a dip in the dye bath could only improve it.

labour 2016 overdyeing

I cut this yardage into two pieces and dyed one in blue and the other in red.

overdyed-fabrics

I like the results above much better than the original colour.

I also dyed my husband’s t-shirt which had gotten stained.

labour 2016 tiedyetshirt

tiedyetshirt_front

My husband was very happy with the colours and pattern on the t-shirt. My son liked the t-shirt so much he wants me to make him one too!

tiedyetshirt_backThe rest of the fabrics I dyed are still in a heap on my ironing board! I will be tackling the pile soon.

Fibre Content 2016 – a Canadian fibre art exhibition

If you have love art and textiles, make your way to the Art Gallery of Burlington for the third biennial fibre art show: Fibre Content 2016. The juried exhibit is on from September 8-18, 2016 and showcases outstanding Canadian artists.

Royal Thistle by Helena Scheffer and Marion Perrault, Montreal, QC

Royal Thistle by Helena Scheffer and Marion Perrault, Montreal, QC

l attended the opening reception on Sunday, September 11th with my friend Helen (@piece_by_piece) and her proud mother Barbara. Helen’s piece: Seaton Trail was hung in the gallery space where it could be seen from the entrance.

Seaton Trail by Helen Garland, Toronto, ON

Seaton Trail by Helen Garland, Toronto, ON

Yesterday's News by Dianne Gibson, Fonthill, ON

Yesterday’s News by Dianne Gibson, Fonthill, ON

Falling Leaves by Anne Solomon, Etobicoke, ON

Falling Leaves by Anne Solomon, Etobicoke, ON

Off the Rails by Valerie Prideaux, Toronto, ON

Off the Rails by Valerie Prideaux, Toronto, ON

Maid of the Mist by Jennifer Earle, Burlington, ON

Maid of the Mist by Jennifer Earle, Burlington, ON

I met and spoke to  Jennifer Earle who wove, embroidered and beaded the beautiful shawl above. The details are stunning!

Maid of the Mist (Detail) by Jennifer Earle, Burlington, ON

Maid of the Mist (Detail) by Jennifer Earle, Burlington, ON

Jennifer also created the hanger out of copper tubing to display her entry.

Refuge by Bethany E. Garner, Elinburg ON

Refuge by Bethany E. Garner, Elinburg ON

The Way I See Myself by Sharon Deacon Begg, Guelph, ON

The Way I See Myself by Sharon Deacon Begg, Guelph, ON

This was the first time I had ever attended and so happy to see the amazing works on display. There were 125 pieces on display in 2 gallery rooms. The three jurors chose these from the 218 submissions from 102 artists.

Sunrise at Plum by Micaela Fitzsimmons, Mitchell, ON

Sunrise at Plum by Micaela Fitzsimmons, Mitchell, ON

Ocean by Pat Hertzberg, Caledon, ON

Ocean by Pat Hertzberg, Caledon, ON

I spoke to Pat Hertzberg, a textile and mixed-media artist who recently moved and how this change has influenced her artwork. Her artwork conveys a lightness and transparency that is beautiful.

Stitch Meanderings by Linda Kittmer, Rockwood, ON

Stitch Meanderings by Linda Kittmer, Rockwood, ON

Out of the Shadows by Helen Hughes, Guelph, ON

Out of the Shadows by Helen Hughes, Guelph, ON

The Gingko Tree by Cecelia Cameron, Susan Durham, Shirley Kilpatrick and Patricia Menon, Fonthill, ON

The Gingko Tree by Cecelia Cameron, Susan Durham, Shirley Kilpatrick and Patricia Menon, Fonthill, ON

The Gingko Tree (detail) by Cecelia Cameron, Susan Durham, Shirley Kilpatrick and Patricia Menon, Fonthill, ON

The Gingko Tree (detail) by Cecelia Cameron, Susan Durham, Shirley Kilpatrick and Patricia Menon, Fonthill, ON

Floating in Blue - Triptych by Gunnel Hag, Toronto, ON

Floating in Blue – Triptych by Gunnel Hag, Toronto, ON

This triptych of floating feathers made by Gunnel Hag captured their effortless flight. She had originally displayed it horizontally, but after seeing it hung vertically, Gunnel thought it might even flow better.

Poppies Aglow II by Carolynn McMillan, Burlington, ON

Poppies Aglow II by Carolynn McMillan, Burlington, ON

A Green Thought in a Green Shade by Carolynn McMillan, Burlington, ON

A Green Thought in a Green Shade by Carolynn McMillan, Burlington, ON

Mita Giacomini co-ordinator of the Interactive Display Area

Mita Giacomini co-ordinator of the Interactive Display Area

Mita Giacomini was one of the very talented fibre artist who had 2 pieces in the show as well as coordinating the interactive exhibit. Here she is in front of the board that shows how she creates her work.

Cross Road by Mita Giacomini, Dundas, ON

Cross Road by Mita Giacomini, Dundas, ON

She calls the technique she developed “surface weaving.” She described the process and had the sample to illustrate the steps involved. Mita also has information on her website as well as photographs of her other pieces in this series: Overhead Underfoot.

Brighter Path by Mita Giacomini, Dundas, ON

Brighter Path by Mita Giacomini, Dundas, ON

A feature of the show is the series of Artist Talks given by three fibre artists. These one hour talks are free of charge and open to everyone. The first talk was given by Dianne Gibson on Saturday, but you still have time to hear: Maggie Vanderweit on Wed. Sept. 14th from 10 -11 am and Mita Giacomini on Sun Sep 18th from 1-2  pm.

Camden Town #2 by Heather Dubreuil, Hudson, QC

Camden Town #2 by Heather Dubreuil, Hudson, QC

Port Clyde 3 by Heather Dubreuil, Hudson, QC

Port Clyde 3 by Heather Dubreuil, Hudson, QC

Rue du Buade #1 by Heather Dubreuil, Hudson, QC

Rue du Buade #1 by Heather Dubreuil, Hudson, QC

The photographs I took are just a small sampling of the beautiful work presented in the Fibre Content show. I hope you have the opportunity to see the outstanding art in person. Fibrations is the not-for-profit organization that organizes Fibre Content. All of the artwork in this show will be featured on the Web gallery, where information for the past two shows: 2012 and 2014  can be found.

Labour Day 2016 – Hand dyeing

I have been waiting all summer for the opportunity to do some hand dyeing. The weather has been ideal, with hot sunny days and nights. Yesterday I started to dye 30 metres of pfd fabric.

labour 2016 dye bucket1

I wanted larger pieces and decided to dye 2 meter lengths. First I dyed red, fuchsia, bright yellow, golden yellow, black, turquoise, cerulean blue, and royal blue.

labour 2016 4colours

Next I mixed orange, purple, and green.

labour 2016 dye buckets

I also experimented with dyeing layers – parfait layers is how Ann Johnston describes layering 3 fabrics one on top of the other each with its own colour. The results are always fun to see.

labour 2016 yellow parfait

My husband brought me his new t-shirt that was stained and asked if I could dye it. I am curious to see the results of this tiedyeing experiment.

labour 2016 tiedyetshirt

I purchased this batik from the discount table even though I didn’t really like it. I thought it was really ugly actually, but I knew that I could improve it by overdyeing it. I split the piece into 2 long lengths (there was lots left on the bolt – no one else liked it!) and overdyed one piece with red and another piece blue. Worse case, it gets used for backing.

labour 2016 overdyeing

I will be rinsing and ironing these out over the next week. I am looking forward to seeing how these overdyed pieces and the t-shirt turned out!

Hope your Labour Day was fun!

Look up – Ceilings as Inspiration

We don’t often walk around looking up to see what is above our heads. If we looked up more often we would see some beautiful and inspirational ceilings.

Ceilings as inspiration for:

  • applique
  • shapes
  • blocks
  • block settings
  • quilting designs
  • colour palettes
  • textures
  • layouts
Stained glass cupola in Casa Loma

Stained glass cupola in Casa Loma

Cupola in Mary, Queen of the World Cathedral, Montréal

Cupola in Mary, Queen of the World Cathedral, Montréal

Medallion in Mary, Queen of the World Cathedral, Montréal

Medallion in Mary, Queen of the World Cathedral, Montréal

Mary, Queen of the World Cathedral, Montréal

Mary, Queen of the World Cathedral, Montréal

Wooden ceiling in Notre-Dame de Montréal

Wooden ceiling in Notre-Dame de Montréal

Wooden ceiling detail in Notre-Dame de Montréal

Wooden ceiling detail in Notre-Dame de Montréal

Wooden ceiling in Notre-Dame de Montréal

Wooden ceiling in Notre-Dame de Montréal

Painted wooden ceiling in Notre-Dame de Montréal

Painted wooden ceiling in Notre-Dame de Montréal

Painted wooden ceiling in Notre-Dame de Montréal

Painted wooden ceiling in Notre-Dame de Montréal

Wooden ceiling in Notre-Dame de Montréal

Wooden ceiling in Notre-Dame de Montréal

Wood ceiling

Wood ceiling

I love the colour and texture of this ceiling. It is the underside of an outdoor warehouse structure in the Port of Old Montreal.

Ceiling of Montreal Marriott Chateau Champlain

Ceiling of Montreal Marriott Chateau Champlain

So, look up! You never know when something will spark an idea for your next project.

 

AQS 2016 Quilt Show: My Favorites

I didn’t photograph every quilt in the AQS quilt show in Syracuse but I was tempted! So many outstanding quilts were on display, it was overwhelming to take them all in. Of course, I did take some photos.

My Favorite Quilts (in no particular order):

AQS_Beavers_The Whole

The Whole is Greater Than The Sum of Its Parts by Cassandra Ireland Beaver

I love that Cassandra changed the colour of the thread as she quilted through each segment of the circle. There is a very subtle shadow of colour on the white fabric.

AQS_Horton_Shelterl

Shelter by Ann Horton

I love the beautiful soft colour of the eggs against the graphic black and white of the quilt.

AQS_Horton_Shelter_detail

Shelter (detail) by Ann Horton

Ann’s quilt is beautifully quilted with leaves and branches supporting the nest.

AQS_Nufer_Mimi's View

Mimi’s View by Beth Nufer and Clem Buzick

My photograph doesn’t do justice to this amazing vista created by Beth and long arm quilted by Clem. It looks like you could walk through the archway into a beautiful summer day.

AQS_Badger_Nighthawk

Nighthawk by Marilyn Badger and Claudia Clark Myers

Claudia’s great sense of colour and design are apparent in this skillfully  pieced quilt. Marilyn’s long arm quilting adds beautiful depth to the design.

AQS_Taylor_Trois port de

Trois Port De (aka 3 doors up) by Chris Taylor

I really liked Chris’ improvisationally pieced log cabin blocks in turquoise interspersed with purple and red. They really pop against the black background.

AQS_Taylor_Trois port de_detail

Trois Port De (aka 3 doors up) detail by Chris Taylor

AQS_Griner_View from the microscope

View from the Microscope: Pickled Paramecia by Connie Kincuis Griner

The name of the quilt made me laugh! Connie, seems to have a good sense of humour and definitely a good sense of design. The machine quilting added visual interest and lots of texture.

AQS_Sobotka_Silk Road Sampler

Silk Road Sampler by Melissa Sobotka

Melissa’s quilt was absolutley amazing to see in person. It appeared as if you could pluck one of the pillows off the shelf!

AQS_Fulton_Loving Laszlo

Loving Laszlo by Charli Fulton

Charli’s quilting highlighted the strong design.

aqs_Beavers_Baubles_

Baubles by Cassandra Ireland Beaver

Cassandra’s quilt was whimsical, fun and amazingly machine quilted!

AQS_Esch_Abandoned in long valley

Abandoned in Long Valley by Carol Esch and Lois Walters

I really loved this quilt, the texture and colours really gave the impression of faded wood. Gorgeous work by Carol and Lois.

AQS__Bower_ Dottie's lament

Dottie’s Lament by Sue Bower

This quilt made me smile. Sue has certainly written a great caption for her version: FIRST KISS #20 (1961) by Vince Colletta.

I encourage everyone to go out and visit quilt shows in person. Photographs don’t do justice to the amazing pieces of art on display. Go and visit a show soon!

 

 

Primroses and Blueberry Green Teas in Syracuse

I attended the American Quilter’s Society quilt show in Syracuse this July. There were many beautiful quilts on display including two quilts made by my friends Helen and Marcia.

Primroses by Helen Garland

Sign of Spring: Primroses by Helen Garland

Helen is a quilter who loves piecing. She has designed, pieced and quilted beautiful art quilts using photographs she has taken. This quilt  was designed from a photograph she took of yellow primroses. All of her quilts are machine pieced with no applique. They are all truly stunning, with lots of details and beautifully machine quilted. Sign of Spring: Primroses is her first entry into an AQS show.

Blueberry Green Teas by Marcia DeCamp

Blueberry Green Teas by Marcia DeCamp

Marcia is a contemporary quilter who uses her hand dyed fabrics to create beautiful abstract quilts. Blueberry Green Teas is part of her Geometrics series. It is created using her hand dyed fabrics, some commercial fabrics and skillfully machine quilted. Blueberry Green Teas won an Honorable Mention in the Small Wall Quilts Longarm Machine Quilted category at the AQS Paducah show in Paducah, KY, in April of this year.

aqs_three_blueberry tea

Helen, Jeanne and Marcia in front of Blueberry Green Teas

Jeanne Simpson is a contemporary fibre artist who designs abstract geometric quilts. She and Marcia attended the show and we were fortunate to be able to meet in person.

aqs_four_Primroses

Helen, myself, Marcia and Jeanne in front of Signs of Spring: Primroses

It was wonderful to meet up, take some photos, talk about art, and quilting. Plans are being made for us to get together at another art show early this fall. How often do you meet with your friends and enjoy seeing some amazing art?

Toronto Modern Quilt Guild summer 2016 Retreat

The new president of the Toronto Modern Quilt Guild, Adrienne, invited members to spend a couple of days at her parent’s cottage in Georgian Bay. A few of us packed our sewing machines, projects and swimsuits to take advantage of this generous offer.

TMQG2016summer retreat

The weather, the view and the company were great!

TMQG2016summer retreat_boat

Everyone pitched in and brought food, food and more food!

TMQG2016summer retreat_food

Everyone had a space to work.

TMQG2016summer retreat ladies

Time was spent laughing and sharing.

TMQG2016summer retreat_sewing

Dia brought cake to celebrate all the July birthdays.

TMQG2016summer retreat_cake

Sunsets were photographed.

TMQG2016summer retreat_sky

More amazing photographs were taken.

TMQG2016summer retreat_sunset

Some projects were begun and a few were completed. We look forward to our next retreat. A huge thanks to Adrienne and her parents, the Van Halems for allowing us to share their beautiful place.

Quilts at the Creek 2016 Blue By You Challenge

It was a hot weekend but that didn’t deter visitors from viewing the 298 quilts on display this year at Quilts at the Creek 2016. I participated in the Blue By You Fabric Challenge and was very interested in seeing the quilts others had created using the same bundle of Northcott fabrics. I photographed all the quilts I could find – they were scattered throughout Black Creek Pioneer Village.

Here are the quilts in no particular order:
Blue by You by Jane Cramer

Blue by You by Jane Cramer

 

Modern Hexi by Brenda Horvath

Modern Hexi by Brenda Horvath

 

Early Spring by Katie Johns

Early Spring by Katie Johns

 

Blue Gingko by Maria Pascoe

Blue Gingko by Maria Pascoe

 

My Australian Blue Sunflower by Diane Daniel

My Australian Blue Sunflower by Diane Daniel

 

Into the Deep by Kim Workman

Into the Deep by Kim Workman

 

Mama's Blue Vase by Maria Steveton

Mama’s Blue Vase by Maria Steveton

 

Underwater Blues by Joy Takahashi

Underwater Blues by Joy Takahashi

 

Blue by You by Dorothy Green

Blue by You by Dorothy Green

 

Blue Bayou Kisses by Susan Gaston

Blue Bayou Kisses by Susan Gaston

 

Hunter's Star by Daryl Workman

Hunter’s Star by Daryl Workman

 

Bias against Blue by Valerie Prideaux

Bias against Blue by Valerie Prideaux

 

Deeply Darkly Beautifully Blue by Peggy Pirillo

Deeply Darkly Beautifully Blue by Peggy Pirillo

 

Ocean Blue by Lyne Mielke

Ocean Blue by Lyne Mielke

 

Phoenix by Robert Gutcher

Phoenix by Robert Gutcher

 

...And So It Grew, Out of the Blue by Judy Messenger

…And So It Grew, Out of the Blue by Judy Messenger

 

Blue by You by Cathy Fortune

Blue by You by Cathy Fortune

 

Blue Bayou by Doris Lovadina-Lee

Blue Bayou by Doris Lovadina-Lee

It was fun walking around trying to identify the Blue By You challenge quilts. Every person used the Northcott bundle of fabrics very differently. I was impressed by the designs, the variety of techniques and the workmanship in these pieces. Which piece to you like best?

 

Vacation inspirations

Many of us have hundreds of photographs taken during our vacations. Digital cameras have made it easy to take and store images. How often do you go back and look at them?

Mayan Riviera tile

Mayan Riviera tile

Looking through holiday pictures can stimulate creativity. Look closely and see what design ideas are hiding in plain sight.

Mayan Riviera tree ceilingMayan Riviera wooden ceiling

Patterns on tiles, floors and ceilings can inspire quilt blocks or quilting designs.

Mayan Riviera jar

Mayan Riviera jar

The patina and colours found in pottery and nature can inspire unique colour palettes and applique shapes.

Mayan Riviera leaf

Mayan Riviera leaf

The texture of bark  can inspire a machine or hand quilting pattern.

Mayan Riviera tree trunk

Mayan Riviera tree trunk

Mayan Riviera fossils

Mayan Riviera fossils

Look back at your vacation photographs, enjoy reminiscing and then take a closer look at all the designs that inspire your creativity!

Blue Bayou Quilt

This beautiful bundle of blues are the Northcott fabrics selected for the 2016 Quilts at the Creek challenge: Blue By You.

Northcott fabric bundle for the Blue By You quilt challenge. (photo courtesy of Quilts at the Creek Blog)

Northcott fabric bundle for the Blue By You quilt challenge. (photo courtesy of Quilts at the Creek Blog)

This was one of the easiest quilts for me to name. When they announced this challenge at a workshop last year they called it Blue by You, but, I heard Blue Bayou. The fabrics reminded me of the changing colours of the tropics. Aerial photographs of the ocean show the colour changing from a deep blue that is almost black to a light turquoise.

Blue Bayou Quilt front

Blue Bayou Quilt front

The word bayou conjured images of hot temperatures, beaches, water and buildings painted reds, pinks and corals. I searched through my stash and found a few more blues to co-ordinate with the Northcott bundle. I added 2 small prints in red, some of my hand dyed solids and the navy with circles of blue, green and red tying the fabrics together.

Blue Bayou Quilt draped

Blue Bayou Quilt draped

Many of the colourful painted houses found in tropical climates have jalousie or louvred glass windows. The design of this quilt reminds me of looking out of these jalousie windows and seeing a beautiful tropical vista.

Blue Bayou Quilt detail

Blue Bayou Quilt detail

Blue Bayou is machine quilted with a walking foot. The undulating design in the blue rectangles refers to waves and the straight lines of the navy and blue solids to the frame of the windows.

Blue Bayou quilting detail

Blue Bayou quilting detail

Stop by the Blue By You display at Quilts at the Creek July 23 and 24, 2016. See what others have created with their fabric bundles!