Friday, September 19, 2014

Celebrating Autumn Quilts

We love everything about autumn: cool nights,  colorful trees, falling leaves, and  apple harvest time.  We've picked out some of our favorite fall quilts from the past twelve months to share with you today.  We hope this season is filled with sunny days, warm memories, and quilt inspiration.

Apple Scrapple by Rhonda Borders and members of the San Luis Valley Quilt Guild (Colorado)


This wonderful fall quilt has pieced, appliqued and embroidered blocks.  Rhonda Borders says, "I won a set of basket blocks in our local quilt guild.  They formed the basis of an original design using apple patterns from several sources." 

close up, Apple Scrapple by Rhonda Borders


The embroidered basket blocks surround a tree bearing colorful leaves and apples.  The quilting was done by Peg Collins (Alamosa, Colorado) who quilted swirls in the white background around the appliqued leaves and apples, echo-quilted the clamshells, and used a leaf design in the green plaid strip (see the closeup photo below).



Autumn Faery, 31 x 31", by Diane Hansen


Autumn Faery won first place for Art / Painted or Digital Images at the 2014 Arizona Quilters Guild show and Honorable Mention at the 2014 AQS Quilt Week in Phoenix, Arizona.  Diane Hansen says, "I used Tuskineko inks and about 30 colors of thread to complete this quilt." The project was inspired by a calendar art image by her favorite artist, Linda Ravenscroft, with permission.

close up, Autumn Faery by Diane Hansen


We admired the beautiful autumn colors and detailed quilting in Autumn Faery, which was started in a fabric painting workshop by Patt Blair.   Diane Hansen says that she fell in love with painting after taking the class.  To see a photo of the work in progress, see the post at Patt Blair's blog.

Double Duty by George Magee, quilted by Mary Vaneecke


Double Duty won first prize and a blue ribbon in the Large Pieced Two Person category at the 2014 Tucson Quilters Guild show.  George Magee did a wonderful job interpreting the design in autumn colors of russet, green, gold and caramel.  The design is by Carrie Nelson at Miss Rosie's Quilt Company, and the quilting is by Mary Vaneecke.

close up, Double Duty by George Magee,  quilted by Mary Vaneecke


George says, "Working with the different colors used in this quilt and organizing them in a pleasing arrangement was quite a challenge. I enjoy making tops using traditional piecing, and I appreciated Carrie Nelson's use of log cabins and flying geese." Within the log cabins,  Mary Vaneecke quilted the octagon shapes with a design resembling a sunflower.


September Song by Jane M. Rua


Winner of an Honorable Mention award at the 2014 Arizona Quilters' Guild Show, Jane notes that her quilt is inspired by a class taught by Rita Blocksom, using Gloria Loughman's Quilted Symphony book. We enjoyed this quilt, which features large leaves, boldly outlined with prominent veins, as they drift through the air. Jane has quilted very intriguing leaf patterns into the dark green outer border, which emphasize the motif of swirling movement.

Close up, September Song by Jane M. Rua


Golden yellow, silver, and charcoal gray together are an innovative color combination which provide a contemporary, refreshing feel to this work. We like Jane's choice of patterned batik fabrics for the neutral background.  The leaves are finished with blanket stitching.

Texas Gold by Vickie Owen


Texas Gold was part of "The American Tradition", a show within a show at the 2013 Houston International Quilt Festival.  Vickie explains, "My first quilt, made 30 years ago, was a Texas Lone Star. It wasn't too bad, although my color choices have definitely changed over the years ! I love the Lone Star pattern and fell in love with [the color combination shown here], so I was excited to create this quilt when I found the pattern in an old magazine."

Close up, Texas Gold by Vickie Owen


Vickie has added a circle of slate blue and white floral print fabric diamonds a few rows out from the center.  They  provide a  midway focal point and draw the viewer's eye towards the symmetrical patterns of appliqued leaves. Vickie's  work is machine pieced and appliqued. She adds, "The Lone Star design is one of the oldest and most recognizable quilt designs, and thus appropriate for "The American Tradition" exhibit.

The Falling Leaves of Red and Gold by C.J. Fuhrman, quilted by Rose Maynes


C.J. notes that her quilt was started in 2004 and finished in 2013. (We all can certainly relate to the fact that our most impressive project sometimes take years to complete !) It was originally made for the 2004 fall meeting of the Arizona Quilters' Guild, but it wasn't quilted until 2013. CJ's work was inspired by the Cabin Cozy pattern in the American Patchwork and Quilting Magazine.

Close up, The Falling Leaves of Red and Gold by C.J. Fuhrman, quilted by Rose Maynes


Here's a wonderful example of two very traditional patterns which look great when juxtaposed. The bear's paw center blocks work perfectly with the log cabin blocks which surround them. Both the  lacy white longarm quilting design on the outer border and the curved pattern on the blocks show up really well without overpowering the angular patchwork.

Image credits: Photos were taken by Quilt Inspiration.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Quilting in Scotland

Have you ever been to Scotland?  It is truly a glorious country. This year, Quilt Inspiration (Marina, along with her stepmother) had a chance to visit Scotland, home of our ancestors.  In Edinburgh, as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, we enjoyed the annual quilt exhibit by students of Pat Archibald. Then, while in the outer Hebrides, we saw wonderful landscape quilts by Effie Galletly - and enjoyed a cup of coffee - at Morven Gallery.  Here are some photos we thought you might enjoy.

Edinburgh, Scotland


Pat Archibald is renowned in the UK, Europe and US for her innovative and artistic quilts (for examples, see her online galleries.) At the beginning of 2013, a group of students at Pat Archibald's studio in Edinburgh embarked on a Creative Journey Course.  The topic for the year was 'Freedom', one word that has many layers of meaning.  Here are some of the finished works, which show how each person interpreted the theme in her own unique and personal way.

 Sheer Pleasure by Carol Douglas


Carol Douglas constructed this exquisite quilt from sheers in order to capture the lightness and airiness of the outdoors.  You may be able to see the shadows of the colored shapes reflected on the wall behind the translucent quilt.  She says, "Freedom for me has always been about being in the outdoors.  Sailing on the West coast [of Scotland], hillwalking and more recently cycling in France are all passions of mine.  We have a seaside home in Edinburgh where the brightly coloured sails of the dinghies racing have always been admired."

Out of My Hands - Forever in My Heart by Marion Rodgers


We loved the curved flying geese in this quilt.  Marion Rodgers says,  "A skein of geese flying across an island landscape made me reflect on the physical freedom I enjoyed growing up on a farm in Shetland.  For my own children growing up in the city, their freedom was different - more choice and opportunity to find their own direction... and fly.  The colours of the flying geese and the quilting on the hand-painted background pay tribute to their individuality.  The geese fly on together, encouraging and supporting each other throughout the journey."

Kaleidoscope to Freedom by Tricia Laurie


Kaleidoscope to Freedom was filled with multicolored butterflies breaking free.  Tricia Laurie says, "Butterflies... appear to be totally free in their flight, but they are tightly bound in their chrysalis before they can experience freedom.  I have tried to show this in the fluttering of the butterflies above the rigid pathways we follow in everyday life." A broken chain is shown in the lower right corner of the quilt. "To truly experience freedom, I believe we have to appreciate the shackles which have been broken, be they physical mental, emotional or imaginary, to give us that freedom." 

Knowledge is Freedom by Beverley Cline


The title of this quilt comes from a quote by Miles Davis:  "Knowledge is freedom and ignorance is slavery." Beverley Cline says, "The story of the Underground Railroad quilt has always fascinated me.  During the American Civil War the centre block of a log cabin was coloured black (normally red) and hung on a line as a signal to runaway slaves that it was a safe house.  The slaves were guided by conductors like Harriet Tubman who freed a thousand slaves."

Icarus by Christine Covell


We are intrigued by the imagery of the sole figure diving from atop a tall tower.  Christine Covell explains, "Freedom can be a lonely place.  Icarus stands at the terrifying moment of decision - dare he risk all for the unknown?  His choice alone.  He jumps - and for all too brief a time, he flies, glorious and free.  And then... is freedom always fleeting?  Are we brave enough to seize our chance when it comes?  What will we regret if we don't?"

Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, Scotland
 


Effie Galletly grew up in the west of Scotland.  A quilter for almost 20 years, Effie has focused her work of the past decade on interpreting Hebridean landscapes, which she finds fascinating and exhilarating. Her work was featured in the recent (August/September 2014) edition of Quilters Newsletter.   We viewed some of her recent pieces at the beautiful Morven Gallery in Barvas, Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides.

Shieling on the Moor 2 by Effie Galletly as seen at Morven Gallery


Effie Galletly's machine-pieced and hand-quilted landscapes use strips of fabric in lieu of paint to represent the hills, valleys, moors and sky of the Hebrides.  A tiny hut or "shieling" can be seen in the distance in this quilt. Usually made of stone, these isolated structures can be seen all around the Western Isles of Scotland, where stones are plentiful.

North Lewis Skyline by Effie Galletly as seen at Morven Gallery


Effie Galletly says, "I am a quiltmaker in the practical sense, but I think more like a painter." The gray-and-brown tones of a rock wall that bisects the landscape can be seen in this piece, along with the soft greens and browns of the moors.

Bothy with Turquoise Roof by Effie Galletly as seen at Morven Gallery


The russets of autumn contrast with the turquoise blue roof of the structure.  In the sky you can see the way in which Effie used big-stitch quilting to represent the swirling wind and clouds of the pale blue sky.  Details can be seen in the close-up photo below.

close up, Bothy with Turquoise Roof by Effie Galletly as seen at Morven Gallery


For more inspiration see the galleries at Effie Galletly's website.  If you do have a chance to visit the Outer Hebrides, be sure to stop in and see all of the contemporary art works at Morven Gallery while enjoying a fine pastry and a cappuccino - delightfully decorated with a thistle, which is Scotland's national symbol.


 Image credits: Photos were taken by Quilt Inspiration.
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