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I am a quilter living in Woodbridge, Suffolk who has made quilts since I was a teenager. I also ring bells! Both are great British traditions....I will try to feature some of my antique Welsh and Durham quilts, the quilts I make myself, my quilting activities and also some of my bellringing achievements. Plus as many photos as I can manage. NB: Double click on the photos to see greater detail, then use back button to return to the main page.

Tuesday 25 September 2012

Back to Suffolk from Florida

I arrived back yesterday morning, on an overnight flight from Miami. So back to work today, although I still feel a bit jetlagged!

Mother lives in"The Village", a pleasant retirement community in Gainesville. I liked her new flat. One project for the week was to set up her new Ipad - email, Facebook etc. When I left she was already  up to 11 family friends!

Everyday, I had a walk around the estate for exercise. This is the "Gin Lake". The area was a plantation in the mid 1800's, and this was the site of the cotton gin, where the cotton had its seeds removed by  machine. The weather was hot and humid; you can see the Spanish Moss (a bromiliad, I think).

There were a number of waterbirds, including flocks of these white ibis.

During the week we went to the quilt shop in Trenton where I got some plain fabrics, and I also went to the quilt show in Jackonville. The speaker for the day had been taken ill, so the stand  in was Teddy Pruett, who talked on the history of Southern quilts, and how to identify them - right up my street. More on the quilt show and the talk in another post.

Monday 17 September 2012

Here I am in Florida

I am visiting my mother in Gainesville, Florida for a week. It seems very warm here after our cool Suffolk weather!

My flight from Heathrow had been delayed as two passengers were stuck in a lift at the airport. We had to leave them behind once their bags were taken off. So, I was lucky to make my connection for my onward flight at Miami - I had to run and was given a "red ticket" which allowed me to barge the queues at Customs and Security. Luckily, I had only my carry-on luggage and had not checked in any bags. I just made my flight! I was pleased to see Mother and my uncle waiting at the other end....

Plans are to go to the nice quilt shop in Trenton one day with Uncle Zane as driver - also, a local quilter and friend will take me to the Jacksonville Quilt Show on Thursday - I will be interested to see how it compares to our UK quilt shows. Of course, it is arranged by a local guild  and is not a commercial show......looking forward to that!

I also want to buy some extra wide plains for my Hawaiian quilts....will let you know how I get on!

Saturday 15 September 2012

British German Stash Exchange

This  was an interesting show of small quilts - the German British Stash Exchange. The Patchwork Gilde Deutschland challenged the Quilters Guild to a stash exchange, and 101 quilters rose to the challenge. Participants had to send fat quarters or  equivalent pieces (four to six) totalling 1 meter fabric from their own stash. These were exchanged with fabric from the other country. They then had to make a quilt with the fabrics  and any from their own selection. 60 of these were on display. I guess there was a standard size to make the quilt. These photos are just a few of the entries. You can see the entry forms with the samples of fabrics in some of the photos.

The variety of results was amazing. I enjoyed this.

Wednesday 12 September 2012

Dimension in Quilt Art

In  August, I was given a quilting book - it had been sent by mistake and was going to be pulped -
luckily, someone thought of me and the book was saved. It is  by C June Barnes and is called Exploring Dimension in Quilt Art.

June Barnes is a very  talented quilter who, I think, has conducted a series of experiments with shapes and textures. Some interesting nuggets to be found....

So. I was very surprised to find an exhibit of pieces at the Festival of Quilts that looked very familiar. While the objects look good in the photos, the reality was more interesting. There are some nice textures to be seen. Many of the items resulted from using materials which shrink at different rates - a firm base onto which is sewn a fabric which shrinks greatly - interesting textures result. This one is called Squaring Up and is based on a nine patch.

And this is called Lumps and Bumps. It looked like sea anemones.

"Pucker Up"

Wound Up - based on an Archimedian spiral.

.....and a series of different cone shaped bottles. These must be quilts, because I can see wadding in them!

Monday 10 September 2012

Heavy Metal - FoQ

Heavy Metal was the inspiration for this exhibition  by the North East group It Happens. Ideas drawn from a variety of industrial sources - iron smelting, ship building, manufacturing and social events. Experimentation with materials and techniques is at the core of the work.

The famous sanctuary door knocker at Durham Cathedral - in place on the cathedral doors when I was a student there but now removed to the safety of the museum, with a replica in its place!

Weardale Chores by Gillian Arkley

"Honouring Tyneside" by Chris Dixon. Ships, cranes and chains dominated Tyneside when shipbuilding was the life blood of  many families - a tribute to an era now long gone.


Electricity Kills - Don't Touch" by Anne Tuck. Inspiration - a circuit board in a magazine and high voltage electricity.

I found this interesting as Durham and Newcastle featured prominantly - I spent my first year in the UK as a student in Durham.

Thursday 6 September 2012

Miniature Quilts - FoQ

Just a few of the  miniature quilts entered into the Festival of Quilts. These always attract a lot of attention,with people marvelling at the very tiny pieces.

This is "Autumn" by Hilary Drake of Basingstoke. Mainly foundation pieced from Liberty fabrics. Inspired by the colours of autumn leaves. See the extremely small flying geese!!

"Bouquet with Tudor Rose" byKumiko Frydl of Texas. Paper foundation pieced with hand silk embroidery Inspired by a trip to Hampton Court and the Tudor Rose. Third Place quilt. Just amazing...

A little wholecloth quilt - "Lord Inchinquin" by Mary Palmer of ireland. Machine quilted on silk with silk thread. Wool wadding with cotton backing. Inspired by Irish and Welsh wholecloth quilts. Quite amazing.

"View from Thorncliffe across the Roaches" by Isobel Surawy, Leek. Wholecloth machine quilted. A panoramic view of the Peak District.

While I can do "big" I don't think I could do this small! There is someting very appealing about these very small quilts, decorative but not functional.

Regarding the Best in Show "Unrest" - I have been going to the Festival of Quilts for many years - but did not appreciate how the Best in Show is arrived at - apparently it is chosen from the winners of the various classes not by the judges  but by the Patron Kaffe Fasset together with the Guild President. This year Kaffe was not available so it was chosen by the Guild President and another past president. Of course the Best in Show can only be chosen from the winning quilts and these have been arrived at by the judges using the agreed judging scheme. But I had not known how the choice was arrived at - I just assumed that the highest scoring quilt won. So, the choice is very much the personal choice of two people, neither of whom is a judge. This probably has good and bad points - you can read more in the Guild statement here:

Tuesday 4 September 2012

Contemporary Quilts at Festival of Quilts

Here are some photos of quilts from the contemporary and  art quilt classes of the Festival of Quilts. It seems that there is quite a bit of over lap in the contemporary and traditional quilt classes. One person's traditional is another persons contemporary, and vice versa. The art quilt class is more distinctive...

This quilt is called "Lichen" and is by Janine Visser of the Netherlands. Hand dyed cotton screen printed, discharged and painted fusible web. Three panels of wool felt in mixed techniques.

Here is the whole quilt. Lichens are an indicator of pollution, they will not grow where there is sulphur dioxide - there are lots of lichens in Suffolk, so we must have good air quality here!

I loved the hares on this quilt. I often see hares as I go about Suffolk.

This was an interesting quilt...

Photos don't really do this quilt justice, it was in lovely colours and the piecing was stupendous.

Another very striking quilt "Mrs Sun and Mr Moon" by Turid Tonnessen of Gressvik, Norway. Two wholecloth quilts joined together. I could easily have taken this one home....

This is "Vikings Beware" by Jane Appelbee of Milltimber. Machine and hand quilted wholecloth, hand dyed cotton with paint sticks.Wonderful thistles.

I think that this is "Snake Goddess" by Janneke de Vries-Bodzinga of the Netherlands. The Snake Goddess of Minoan culture, Crete. Wonderfully executed and colourful.

Some nicely done applique -two gates.
By Dilys Fronks of Mold, I think....

Not sure which quilt this is - but again very striking and impeccable piecing. Unusual treatment of colours, subtle, another one I wanted to take home.

Saturday 1 September 2012

Festival of Quilts - more photos

Here are some more photos of quilts from the Festival of Quilts 2012.

This was a very beautiful quilt. It had crystals which did sparkle nicely but are not apparent in the photo. It is called " In the Middle of the Night" and is by Angela Rudolph of Geithain, Germany. Do you  remember the report on the use of fusible webbing and the implications for the lifespan of the quilt? I wonder what problems museum curators and collectors will have in the future? This quilt is embellished with "Hotfix applications". It is paper foundation pieced and longarm quilted.

This was a lovely wholecloth quilt which was machine quilted.

This quilt is "Rampant Blue" by Birgitta Debenham of Dorchester. Machine pieced and quilted in silk cotton and linen. Contemporary translation of 17th c heraldic cross stitch pattern.

"Tara" by Simon Henry of Derby who challenged himself to use techniques that were not familiar, like curved edge piecing, turned edges....very colourful.

This quilt has a familiar theme - the celtic spiral???

This is a two person quilt "Glacier Star" by Janet Stone and Janet L Santeusanio (longarm quilter) of the USA. Paper pieced and designed to compliment the colour scheme of a room, this quilt got a commendation.

Nicely machine quilted..

"This Many Faces, This Many Cultures"  by Rita Dijkstra-Hesselink of Hengelo Holland. All the faces are made out of fabrics, with accents added in free motion quilting. Pictures of people from all over the world are used as the basis for the portraits. Very interesting quilt, with lots to look at.