Monday, September 19, 2016

European patchwork meeting visit

We have just had a lovely few days in Strasbourg, I went to the EPM, Peter strolled then drove around Strasbourg and its suburbs!
The EPM was interesting, my French is terribly basic, however I managed quite well!
There were many small venues and churches along with larger venues full of quilts , mostly art quilts by European artists, and not , well to my eye, influenced by traditional American patchwork.
There were buses to take viewers to the 4 different towns, I just followed the crowd!
My favourite pieces were the ones curated by Nancy Crow, large, bold, I bought the book. I really wanted to sit for a bit, sadly no chairs. I saw these quilts twice I was so impressed!
There were a few smaller exhibitions of work in series by several quilters, the works by Ann Johnston were magnificent. It was good to see progression over the years in their work and some really simple yet very effective art quilts!
The European quilters seem to work a little differently, which was quite refreshing.
There were also some antique quilts that had been machine quilted by a handi quilter ! These were wonderful!
I saw a woman wearing a Suffolk puff hat, then a bit later  I saw her from the front! She had a colourful Suffolk puff dress on! I thought it may have been a bit rude to take a picture of her from the front!
All in all a wonderful few days. Inspiring, busy full of wonderful things. I bought one skein of thread, one book, a Mola kit and a magnet. Thrifty!
My Mola stitching work from my class with Marion Wetter

A refreshing beer on a busy afternoon

Waiting for the bus back to Selestat, then a scramble to catch a train

That hat! With matching dress under the coat!

Lastly a picture of me taken by a new French friend I met on the bus! I saw her and her friends later on in the day, they greeted me like an old friend.
The find of the day - when I got cold and didn't have a jacket! was a green jacket I bough for 2 Euro's at the local Vinnies! Perfect!

Tuesday, September 6, 2016


Peter and I are enjoying a lovely and lively holiday. First, a week in London, lots of walking, training and just a little cycling yesterday!
We have seen palaces, galleries, towers and gardens!
A day trip to Stone Henge and Bath with a very lively guide was a fun day!
Excellent porridge at Bill's, they have free wifi and ok coffee, a feature of our holiday- food, wifi and drink!
Afternoon tea with the Queen, shame - paper cups, I did enjoy her dresses! Wonder if the cutlery is biodegradable?
 A tapestry at the V&A, inspiring
 Sunken garden at Kensington palace, a nice little place to sit and rest
 I was warmly welcomed by the London Modern quilt guild, a nice meeting.
Tyvek period costume at Kensington palace.
We went to the theatre to see Michael Crawford last night, sadly he is ill! However the show was wonderful!
We are off to Edinburgh today on the train, seeing and nook packed!

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Free wifi and other news

Searching for free wifi in London is interesting! We take our mobile phones and the generic home wifi for granted!
Never Mind, there is so much to see and do, we hardly have time to use computer, however googling addresses and finding shops and other landmarks a little free wifi comes in handy.
Pictures another day. It's my husband's birthday today, also the 19 th anniversary of the death of Diana. An interesting array of memorial notices and flowers at the gate of Kensington palace.
Off to the Tower of London today!

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Leaving on a big plane

Tomorrow we are leaving for 5 weeks in Europe!
2 weeks in the UK and 3 in Italy, with a side tour to Alsace to the European Patchwork Meeting!
No sewing much happening here, but hopefully lots of pictures and good stories to tell!
Keep an eye out for our adventures!

Sunday, August 14, 2016

A long break

I have had a long break from blogging, I have been using Instagram, and trying to post images of my stitching every few days, its easier than loading the SD card into the computer to get good quality pictures. My Lenovo tablet is great but its camera is very ordinary.
I have completed  a collage of the project a day from April, and submitted it to the course I was doing through Tas uni- Photography for social media. This was a really interesting course, I learnt a lot about photography and lots of Apps for Instagram, and other social media.
 These small blocks will be made into a banner or bunting soon.

 I entered 3 small quilts into the Ekka, agricultural show, am very happy to say I won 2 prizes, the Nine Patch? quilt won second in Art quilts, this was a fun improvisationally pieced quilt.
I am planning to do some more of this style of piecing, teaching a class at the Brisbane Visual Arts Community in October. Its a great way to use up scraps and small pieces of fabric, too small for much but too precious to throw away.

This little quilt won first in small professional, its a tablecloth mounted on a hot pink silk/ cotton blend fabric and quilted with some added trapunto. The tablecloth belonged to my mother in law who passed away a few weeks ago, so its nice that her cloth won a prize! She use tablecloths all the time, so its well worn and loved.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Making my mark

 Continuing on with my project of documenting the 'making of a quilt', I have taken some images of mark making, some hand stitching and some machine stitching.
Hand stitching is relaxing, these are Ali's pieces, using silk, they are very tactile, and soft.
                                                            Close up of hand stitching
 Same piece as above, not so close!
 Cream, soft and supple
 slightly coloured, loving the pink, it just adds some luxury!
My own favourite skirt, hand stitched to hold it together for just a bit longer!

A lovely little bird, designed by Ali and Rebecca. Hand stitched by me.
Hand stitching on tea bags, they are used, then dried, and torn then stitched down. 
A lovely soft and interesting tactile surface to stitch.
My tools of the trade, my favourite Bernina feet

Some machine texture on a project, sometimes you just need to stitch with black thread on white fabric!

A few more rows stitched....

 I am really enjoying the process of documenting 'the making of a quilt,' I have taken inspiration from hand stitched pieces and am also documenting tactile surfaces and hand stitched pieces- up close!
Its a bit time consuming, its eating into my stitching time, but I am enjoying the learning of the camera and its ways! also learning about cropping, and photo editing, also Photography for Social media- which is the on line course I am participating in. 
At the end I am hoping it will improve the quality but also the quantity of stitching pictures on my social media- Instagram and facebook and this blog.
my Instagram tag is janemadlyquilting

Monday, May 16, 2016

Making a quilt part 2

There are many things to consider when making a quilt, size, colour, design, composition. The competition challenge requirements are dictating several parameters for this quilt -size, theme and fabric to be used, it is also for machine quilting competition - so the machine quilting need to be a big part of the overall effect.
Starting with a white design wall, the fabric and the theme Celebration, I have designed a basic floral spray, one of the main emphasis' of this quilt will be the machine quilting, so leaving lots of space for that is always in the back of my mind when designing.

Cutting out shapes, saving each last piece, just in case I need to use it. There is nothing worse than running out of fabric, in this case I only have a small amount of each one. I am using an iron on fusible webbing for ease when adhering the shapes to the background, and speed in creation!
I have chosen a cream background fabric with gold dots on, the gold is quite dense at the bottom, then becomes less dense towards the top of the fabric, creating a secondary design. I am hoping that the background will not detract from the machine quilting when it is completed, but create an interesting, but not to overpowering aspect.
 Using my petal shapes, and choosing where to put them. I decided on 3 simple flowers, using the red, orange, purple and blue fabrics for the flowers themselves, and the green and grey for the stems. I added one red print for some variety as the selected, and 'must be used  in a recognisable amount' in this challenge prints, are a little flat.

One version, the balance is not there, the stems are not flowing nicely, some tweaking led me to the next layout, I am quite happy with this. It does need a little fine tuning when the pieces are ironed onto the background.

 The final layout, the flowers and stems need to be ironed down, then some serious stitching needs to happen. I am happy with the balance, it has a good structure, the next phase of stitching will finish it off and give it life- I hope!