Monday, January 23, 2012

My Exhibit at Road to Californa 2012

I was honored to be asked to show my crazy quilts at Road to California last week, and glad to give CQs some exposure in the sane quilt world!

 I had some very great volunteers helping me hang the quilts.

I couldn't have done it without them!

When everything was ready, it looked like this:

This was the "spring" side...quilts made when things are growing and blooming around here.
And in the fall, my palette shifts over to this:

This has happened for the last 10 years, which is the amount of time this body of work represents, more or less.

It was really fun to secretly watch people taking in the exhibit.

 I enjoyed being "backstage" at the show, too, helping a friend of a friend set up her vendor booth.

She asked me to sort her threads for sale into colors.  Now what could be more fun than that?

And then she paid me in threads, over lunch!  That card is of the Lei Challenge she and her friends in Hawaii participated in...yes, those are long narrow quilts.

My brother and sister each braved the Southern California traffic to come out to Ontario and show support.

Thanks, Matt and Mary!
Oh!  And I have been invited to teach there next year, so stay tuned for more information in the coming months....

Friday, January 20, 2012

Gerlinde Hruzek's "All Creatures Large and Small"

I have spent the last three days at the Road to California show in Ontario, California.  It is a big and wonderful quilt show...and one of a minority in the USA that accepts crazy quilts in competition.  This year of all the entries there was only one crazy quilt....but it was a masterpiece.  It was entered in the "Traditional Other" category.
Its maker is a woman whose work I recognize from fleeting glimpses of tantalizing quilts online here and there.  Her name is Gerlinde Hruzek, and I believe she resides in Arizona.
I hope that this fine lady does not mind that I post detailed photos of her quilt, All Creatures Large and Small, for the pleasure and instruction of other crazy quilters.  Ms. Hruzek, you are a true inspiration!

This quilt was made entirely by hand: pieced, quilted, embroidered....there is cross stitching, needlepoint, and tatting as well.
I photographed each of the 20 blocks and am showing them below, followed by an overall shot of the quilt.  Take your time and enjoy this truly superlative work! Click on the photos to see them enlarged.

This is her eleventh crazy quilt, truly the work of greatness.  It took 3rd Place in her category, but I think it should have been 1st!
I'll just bet she is hard at work on #12 now, too......

Sunday, January 15, 2012

New Project: Carole's Heart

One of the highlights of my time at the Victorian Stitchery Retreat in Wichita last fall was spending time with Carole Samples.  Most crazy quilters are familiar with her book, Treasury of Crazy Quilt Stitches, one of the "bibles" of our craft. Far fewer of us have had the privilege of hearing her lecture, taking a class from her, or just hanging out enjoying her delightful conversation.  I felt so lucky!

My friend Val Bothell, organizer of the retreat, and I were inspired by her block designs in a challenge we issued to each other: let's see how original our individual "takes" on working up the same block can be!  Crazy quilting obviously has room for many, many interpretations....You can fview Val's take on Carole's heart on her blog here.

As always, I LOVE pulling fabrics at the beginning of a new piecing project.

I decided I couldn't do just one heart, you see, so have had a blast over the last week making several of them:

They all will finish out at about 14" X 14 1/2".
I still very much have plaid on the brain. There are the blue ones...

....and the green ones....

...and the brown ones...

...and one white one.

Altogether up on the design wall they look like this:

I definitely scratched my piecing itch this for the fun of embellishment!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Go Crazy....Finished!

Thanks, everyone, for all your sweet comments on my last post!

I have loved making this quilt and am sad to see it end.  All that blue herringbone stitching on the blocks accompanied me through the entire year of 2011--on airplanes, while Skypeing, when visiting family--this was the perfect work for those snipets of time when I wanted to be stitching but couldn't think too much about it or bring a whole bunch of stash and tools along.

And the way it all finally came together was really fun, too.

I decided to use the same orange melton wool for the binding as is on the back of the quilt, but wanted to "frame" the outer edge in black as well.  The wide black rick rack was my solution.  It's zig zag shape mimics the herringbone, too.

It was yummy stitching through the wool binding, getting the rick rack on.

I'm going to have to find another one-block quilt, so I can do this again!