Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Home! Home! Home!

It's always great to get home to the family and studio, but I wanted to share with you some photos from my final day teaching at EBHQ. We had a fun day of playing with embellishments... could there be anything better!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Monday - It's East Bay

It's early Monday morning and I am up and looking foward to another day of teaching for the East Bay Heritage Quilters. Yesterday was a day off, and I had my heart set on some hiking... but it wasn't to be. The rains had come in and rain it did... the entire day. I did not let it stop all activity though, and I jumped in the car and headed up into one of the wonderful regional parks that surround all the bay area cities. The trip up into the hills was definitely wet, but with the overcast, misty skies there was a calm over everything. In many places I stop got out for a bit and even took some photos. A bit of sketching was done from the dry hidey hole of the car. It was like I was being pulled into various scenes and I enjoyed taking in the depth of some of the craggy areas and the small pathways that led through the trees. The heart was willing to brave the wet, but the head took over at a certain point, for it was way too slippery and wet to go wandering about without proper clothing. My little venture had to be enough.

The wonderful place I am staying made the rest of day a delightful get away spot. Warm and welcoming with the fireplace and room to get my hands busy trying out new things. A walk in the rain during the afternoon found me in a lovely yarn store, called the Stash, on Solano Aveue. It was so much fun to be among all the color on such a grey day, and I had a great time chatting with several other shoppers. Naturally, I took advantage of all their wool selection, and will be taking home with me a couple of really great reds and a sky blue (all varigated) that will definitely work well in some upcoming quilts.

More of the afternoon and evening was spent sitting in front of the fire and creating yarn sticks. These are something new for me and I had a great time putting them together. You'll definitely be seeing them on some quilts very soon, and today I will enjoy sharing these new little pieces with my workshop attendees and see if anyone elses imagination is sparked by them as well.

Sunday turned out to be a very lovely day... and I am certainly looking foward to getting together with everyone today. A day with embellishment making is always a fun day!

Happily Stitchin' ~Rose

Saturday, February 21, 2009

New Buddies - Teaching for East Bay Heritage Quilters

What FUN! Saturday as the sun chose to stay hidden behind the clouds a bunch of lucky folks joined in the fun at the first day of workshops I was to teach for East Bay Heritage Quilters.
It started out as it does with a fun test to put us in the mood for fabric. The guild hostesses Jo & Diane were great and had everything all set up and ready to go... I do love it when a plan comes together. It makes it easy to jump right in and get to know a group of quilters and share with them the excitement and ease of my construction techniques. We all have way too many quilts in our heads and a need to be able to get them done quickly but well. Everyone was well on their way to having their tops done by the lunch break and after that the sewing machines buzzed with yarns of all colors being couched.

We heard ghost stories at lunch and there was quite a bit of talk about when you gotta cut down a tree.... or when nature decides it's time for that tree to go. Can you imagine coming home from a vacation only to find the tree in your front yard gone? Then even better, to find out that the neighbors kindly took total care of it's removal after nature decided while you were away that it was time to go.

After this we all got back to sewing, and by two everyone's minds had turned to embellishing. This gave us a chance to break, see everyone's quilt, and talk about beads, stitching, and creating fabric embellishments for the pieces everyone had been working on during the day. As the teacher it is always was a lot of fun to see everyone's piece progressing along. What a great group... wish I had photos of them all to share.

Happily... if a bit wet... stitching! ~Rose

Traveling North - East Bay Heritage Quilters

Friday was the start of my journey north and my visit with East Bay Heritage Quilters. It began early, early for anyone living in the LA area knows that it's usually a good idea to try and get out of the basin before the real traffic settles in for the day. It was a lovely drive, and the snow through the grapevine was beautiful in the light of early morning. It was the best of all trips, uneventful.

I did stop along the way to try and find Collete at Sew Many Quilts in Tracy, CA. It was a fun little venturing off and though I found the store, Colette was off at a show this weekend. I did find an incredible bead store in Tracy and it didn't take long for me to find some terrific (have to have) beads that I can use on my two in process projects.

I was able to get both my commission piece and the 'eyes skyward' piece to the hand work stage before I started my travels and I am having fun collecting things along the way to help with the embellishments.

This takes me even more forward with the day, for after I arrived in Berkeley, Karen from EBHQ came by to pick me up and show me around town. The first place we went to was the LACIS Museum of Lace and Textiles. I don't know what I expected but what I found was incredible. There were displays in this wonderful space to keep one busy for days, and the sections of tools (to purchase), books and supplies is like none other that I have seen in one place for 'us' all... and there is something there for all of us lovers of textiles.... not just the lace folks. I was overwhelmed and had to remind my self to close my mouth, for all was just jaw dropping.

The magager, Erin, is an absolute delight, and she and each of her staff were incredibly knowledgable and friendly. If your going through the east bay area I would definitely put this on your list of must sees. Their storefront(s) are at 2982 Adeline St. Berkeley, and they do have a website; that I'm going to check out soon. (no pictures this time, but I'll try to do better).

After that Karen took me to the ACCI Gallery, , where they're having a contemporary doll show, Who's your baby? It was an exciting and varied exhibit and a lot of fun to see the work of many old friends. It's up through March 22nd, so if you're about that area I do suggest that you check it out.

Today is my first day of workshops for the guild. It's a Double Quilt Applique Workshop and I'm looking foward to it. I'll try to get photos out here soon.

~Happily stitching, Rose

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A SAQA Valentine's Day

A BIG THANK YOU... to all the folks that turned out on Valentine's Day for a few hours of fun. Fun we did started out with a whole room of people putting together mat frames. The tape dispensers buzzed and scissors snipped and within a half hour we had close to 200 frames ready to receive the 'specials' of the day.

Those specials were samples sent in by quilt artists all over the world to be part of the SAQA@20 Trunk show. These pieces are now all framed and on their way to Texas where a dedicated member of SAQA will be handling requests for the trunk show of treasures to travel
over the next year.

The lucky volunteers had a great time seeing so many of the little treasures and it was interesting that everyone there tended to covet a different artist's piece. I'm not telling which was my favorite... it would really be to hard to decide. Anyways, the photos here are of many of the volunteers both for the matting party on Saturday, and the fun work of photographing everything on Sunday.

Hope everyone gets to have a chance to covet their own favorite. ~Rose

Sunday, February 8, 2009

My Summer Vacation - Workshop

Hi All - This was a great weekend, and I can delightfully report that I was able to share in adventures through purple heathers of Scotland and blue waters of Greece, for these were a couple of the locales that workshop attendees chose to share in fabric and learn how to use Fast-Piece Applique to portray those memories.

The several students that gathered in Newbury Park at the had a lot of fun. Drawing up the designs and choosing fabrics were part of the fun of the first day. Then all was sewn together, couched and made ready for embellishments.

Some of the attendees are shown here: Racine, Tricia, and Celeste.

For a calendar of upcoming workshops you can go to my website.

Quilt Art Commission

This week I finally began to see a light... be it small, and way down the a seemingly endless tunnel... Yeah, there is light!

During my Tuesday play group we had the opportunity to open close to 200 packages, sent in by quilt artists all around the world to participate in the
SAQA@20 Trunk Show. Boy, there were moments when each of us held up a piece that just could not be missed. It was like Christmas all over again. After this was done, I was able to pull out a wonderful commission piece that I have been working on. It is being designed for a public space in the Seattle area. Pictures of the Cascades were provided and they also wanted to have the piece include roses... big, bold roses.

It was great to finally get to sewing on this project, for it is so much fun to stitch all those bright colored pieces of fabrics together and watch as they begin to take shape. The photos here are of the rose section of the quilt top, and I actually got the top done!

On Friday I headed off to The Quilters Studio ( ) to teach a brand new workshop called My Summer Vacation. It's a workshop designed so everyone can pull together photos and memorabilia from that special trip. Will tell you more about it later.


Sunday, February 1, 2009

Organizing Quilt Art Spaces & Life

January has been especially chaotic, for besides all the normal day-to-days of things to do, I have also been rearranging every room in the house. This has all been so that I could move my studio into a bigger & better space, but in the process everything in the house has been picked up, thought about and moved, or been moved on. You think when you start a project like this that it will take so much time, but then you start to find all sorts of things. I was surprised at just how many places hidden behind this thing or that, that my cat Edgar had made his home. This meant that I found piles of black fur all over the place! Who knew. At a certain point this month the pile of things to be moved on had grown pretty high in the hallway, which is also where the closet is that holds the broom & mop. I knew that the broom was just begging to come out....

It is never a small undertaking. A true test of my organizational skills.

Today I was painting furniture and even found some time to quilt.
The studio is beginning to take shape and I am looking foward to spending more time there... andy day now.

Look for pictures soon. ~R

Northern California Quilt Council

It is always a treat to travel up to the Northern California Quilt Council (ncqc) and present to their member guilds' reps. More than anything it's the travelling up and back with my friend and fellow quilt artist Cindy Rinne. She and I have been on the road of quilt artist together since 1996 when we met at the first meeting of Quilts On The Wall: Fiber Artists, www.; though at that time the group had no name.

We have been travelling to NCQC together for a number of years now, and it really is a great time of catching up, sharing ideas and finding new haunts.

This time was no different, and we went looking for an arts recylcling center in Oakland. It is a favorite place of another of our friends, Joanell. We were equipped with a map and had plenty of time to run our hands through the 4,000 sq ft of stuff. We got there and Cindy started right in at the front of the store. I headed for the back... we both met in the middle at a huge laundy bin filled, brimming over with tie silks. There were traditional patterns and the more fun contemporary designs. There were packages of samples still rolled and unopened and there were BIG, big pieces not even cut up. Everyone stopping by the bin was amazingly willing to help find 'what you're looking for'. There were those that sifted through the pieces at the top, and those like me that dived deep in search of those pieces that may not have seen the light of day.

We had a great time and the prices were not to be beat.

The pictures we took of us inside the store diving for silk did not come out well, but you can see Cindy here as we arrived at our destination. After this we headed to the hotel where we have a great time sharing the facilities with the refinery workers. This hotel certainly takes good care of these guys, and we reap the benefits.

At the meeting the next day we had a great time chatting with everyone, see all the teachers there present. A great time as usual. In a very chance moment we had our photo snapped together.
We then had a fun time having lunch with a group of reps and teacher before heading south. It was a quick trip, but filled with fun, laughter and figuring out just what it is we're going to jump into when we get home....right??!!!

We both agree sewing is what we want to do. A bit of studio time is what we're hoping for.

Look for more about studio time soon. I'm holding out hope! ~R