Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

To all of my dear readers,
Wherever you may be,
I hope you all have a wonderful day!

Merry Christmas!


Thursday, December 23, 2010

The American Folk Art Museum

A trip to the American Folk Art Museum was high on my list of priorities whilst in NYC, and having devoted a day to view the quilts at both the American Folk Art Museum and the Lincoln Square Branch of the Museum, I am happy to tell you I was not disappointed.

American Folk Art Museum ~ Lincoln Branch
Star of Bethlehem with Satellite Stars Quilt
Leola Pettway (b. 1929)
Boykin, Alabama
Cotton and Synthetics
My day started at the Lincoln Square Branch where at present the quilts exhibited are all star themed.  The exhibition is called Super Stars.   Stars are a beloved and enduring motif in American quilts, appearing in pieced bed covers as early as the 18th century and are still popular with quilt artists today. 

American Folk Art Museum ~ Lincoln center
Le Moyne Star Variation Quilt
Lucinda Toomer
Georgia 1981
Cotton and Synthetics
What I loved most about the quilts exhibited was the bold use of color as well as the quilt makers' use of a wide variety of fabric type: cotton, silk, synthetic ~ whatever fabric was available.  My personal favorite quilt was the Georgetown Circle Quilt:

American Folk Art Museum
Georgetown Circle Quilt
Artist unidentified
Kentucky USA 1900 - 1920
Gift of Shelly Zegart
From the Lincoln Square Branch was a short trip by subway to the American Folk Art Museum on 53rd Street.  Once again, if you are ever in NYC, you will want to stop by here to view the quilts. 

American Folk Art Museum
Stars Quilt
Artist unidentified
New York 
Cotton 1880
The Exhibition is entitled Quilts: Masterworks from the American Folk Art Museum and highlights historic as well as contemporary masterpieces all in a well preserved condition and of the most exceptional workmanship.

American Folk Art Museum ~ Lincoln Branch
Sara Maartz
Lancaster, Pennsylvania
American Folk Art Museum ~ Lincoln Branch
Sara Maartz
Lancaster, Pennsylvania 1872 
Hummingbirds Quilt
Artist unidentified
I also had a wonderful time taking pictures of the quilts and have tried to carefully document all the information that goes along with each quilt.

American Folk Art Museum
Golden Wedding Ring Quilt
Artist unidentified
United States
1934 - 1940
Gift of Robert Bishop

American Folk Art Museum - Lincoln center
Artist unidentified
Possibly Pennsylvania
1930 - 1950
Cotton and blends

American Folk Art Museum
Double Wedding Ring Quilt
Susie Bontrager
Yoder, Kansas
1935 - 1945
Cotton and Synthetics

Edited to add:  All of the above quilts and many more can also be seen in this fantastic historical book:


Pin It!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

New York, New York!

We have safely arrived in NYC, touching down just as light snow was falling on the tarmac.  Incredibly beautiful, although it hasn't taken us all that long to work out that there is another definition in NY for being cold.  Really cold ~ like minus 5 degrees celcius!

We have already seen many wonderful sights, have taken many photos with an emphasis on color and have shopped to fill our suitcases and more.  Today however I would like to share with you my trip to Purl in Soho.

 There was fabric galore:

Etsuko Furuya Echino Oilcloth and Indian Embroidered fabrics

Beautiful Liberty of London
A Rainbow of Solids
Embroidery Linens in a range of colors

With map and metro ticket in hand, PurlSoho is really very easy to find.  Their new location is fabulous and has considerably increased their floor/wall space allowing for the most amazing displays of color.  Fortunately I was permitted to take lots of photos!

There was fabric galore:

Etsuko Furuya Echino Oilcloth and Indian Embroidered fabrics

Beautiful Liberty of London

A Rainbow of Solids

Embroidery Linens in a range of colors

and the most enormous and colorful display of yarn:

threads and tape:

I really appreciate the effort the store owners/employees  have made to carefully display their merchandise thereby providing inspiration and ideas.

If you're ever in NYC it is well worth the effort it to take a ride on the subway and venture to Soho (which by the way is a really friendly neighborhood) and spend some time browsing at Purl.  It is great color therapy and you are sure to walk away with some stash enhancement.

Happy Holidays,


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Taking a Break

2010 has been a very busy and creative year!

My heartfelt thanks goes out to all of my blog readers
who encourage and inspire me to continue journaling
and sharing my quilting adventures.

I am grateful for the time you've taken to stop by
and for the countless comments that have been left on my blog posts.

Thank you so very much!

I am going to take a blogging break over the holiday season to spend some time traveling with my family.  We will be spending the next few weeks in New York City where we are hoping to enjoy a white Christmas. Of course I have already marked the map with many must see local attractions (patchwork/fabric/yarn stores!).   Should time and internet connection permit you may see me pop by here to show you what we've been up to.

In the meantime, take care and enjoy a safe and happy holiday season.

p.s.  NYC "must see" and "must go eat" recommendations are very welcome!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Not enough hours in the day ...

December is well and truly upon us and with it comes all the hoopla that the holiday season entails.  There has been much end of school year celebration and even preparation for the 2011 school year (already!) as well as the usual Christmas partying and organising.  All this has left just a little time for sewing:

Thank goodness for the sanity and serenity that sewing brings me!  This simple quilt top is made from 4 1/2 inch squares arranged in a traditional "Trip Around the World" style patchwork design.  Really very easy sewing, but just what is needed at this time of the year.

Some fussy cutting was required which in this instance was unfortunately rather wasteful of the remaining fabric, although of course nothing has been relegated to the rubbish bin.  No scrap is too small ...

All printed fabrics used are from the recently released fabric collection called Sanctuary by Patty Young (see also Sunday Stash #79 - here).  The solid white fabric is Kona Cotton in White.

The Sanctuary collection has a lovely drape and are an excellent quality fabric.  The prints and colors were a delight to work and play around with.  Now all I need is a few more hours in the day to continue working on this quilt ... soon.

Happy Stitching,

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Hand Pieced Hexagon Quilt

Let me start by telling you that this quilt top is not my handiwork.  I was however lucky enough to photograph it so that I can share it here with you.

You may remember that I have previously featured my Mother-in-Law's hand pieced hexagons (here and here), and although my MIL is continuing to work on her quilt top (it is almost finished!), she is also a keen quilter in a sewing group whose members together have hand pieced this particular quilt top.

There are 8 quilters in my MIL's sewing group who have been meeting every third Thursday for more than 15 years.  The average age of the group members is approximately 65 and  they share, amongst many other things, much more than a century of quilting experience and know-how.

One of the group's quilters celebrated a big '0 birthday this year, and the above quilt top was secretly made by the remaining 7 members to present as a birthday gift.  This project was in progress for about 6 months and was a well received surprise for the birthday girl.

The hexagon blocks are made using just one diamond shaped template to cut fabric pieces.  Most  fabrics were carefully fussy-cut to create a repeat pattern in the center star.  The quilt top is entirely hand pieced.

Sewing groups are such a wonderful way to share and learn sewing/quilting techniques whilst sharing friendship, food and the highs and lows of everyday life.  These women are an inspiration for the commitment they have made to the group, their amazing work and their enviable bond.  

Thank you for allowing me to share this beautiful quilt top.


Tuesday, December 7, 2010

December Reading

I have a huge weakness when it comes to resisting new books and magazines and as a result enjoy my extensive craft  book library, where not only can I be as noisy as I like, but also drink a cup of coffee with biscuits on the side.

The latest addition to my library is Gourmet Crochet  by Christen Haden and Mariarosa Sala published in Australia by Penguin books.

Step aside Granny Square and take a walk on the wild side!  This whimsical crochet book has over 60 straightforward patterns covering all of your nutritional requirements.  

From platters of vegetable dip and sushi to stir fry, tomato sandwiches and sweet treats, each chapter is accompanied by detailed and easy to follow patterns suitable for beginner crocheters.

There's something for everyone, no matter what your tastebuds prefer.  From savoury ....

Images from Gourmet Crochet
to sweet:

Images from Gourmet Crochet
Delicious ~ without the calories!

Last week, by chance,  I also discovered the magazine publication Frankie, and what a happy find!  I thoroughly enjoyed reading a rather old issue which I picked up whilst waiting for an appointment and not only did I go out and purchase the current edition but have also treated myself to an annual subscription!

Frankie Nov/Dec 2010
Frankie magazine is a national bi-monthly magazine from Australia with a difference. Frankie is filled with fashion, art, craft, music, cuteness and real-life inspiration and is dedicated to uncovering the newest trends and celebrating the latest creative talents.

Images from Frankie Magazine Nov/Dec 2010
You won't find celebrity gossip or the latest diet in Frankie magazine, instead it features emerging artists, musicians, designers, crafty people and stories with cultural and DIY content .  It is witty, funny and beautifully illustrated.
Fox in the Bed Quilt pg106 Frankie Magazine Nov/Dec 2010
 Frankie is about real people, for real people.
Image from Frankie Magazine Nov/Dec 2010
Inspiration galore!

Do you have (or wish for) a new crafty favorite book or magazine ~ one that would also make a great Christmas gift?