I'm really looking forward to returning to teach at the Vermont Quilt Festival again this year. I taught there for the first time in 2014. In addition to teaching my three one-day workshops I'll have lots of ornament kits available as well.
One of my favorite classes to teach is my 1-day Beginning Bead Embroidery workshop. It's fun for me and exciting for students to watch beads come to life on fabric, whether stitched simply, one by one, or in a wide array of combinations of quantity, size, color, and finish. It's been a while since I taught this class locally, so I'm pleased to be returning to Mill House Quilts in Waunakee, Wisconsin to teach it on Saturday, March 5th.
If you're interested in registering, you can contact Mill House Quilts to add your name to the class list. (www.millhousequilts.com or (608) 849-6473).
Here's a sample of what we'll be stitching that day:
Today was my day to take down Christmas decorations. They came down more slowly than they went up, when our kids were home. It was a good time to organize and reflect. So many of the ornaments that came off of our tree have such specific memories connected with them. It made me think about how we use decorative objects to commemorate, or even just remember, events in our lives.
Two felt ornaments I embroidered when I was about 10 or 12 years old. I'm happy they've stayed with me though many moves and life changes. A beautiful little hand-stitched heart I bought from a group of Hmong women at an art fair many years ago. We have a pale pink one too, that used to hang on a wall; now it's a Christmas ornament as well. A little clay pitcher (about 2" tall) that we received as a pair on a trip to Mexico in 1993. It came filled with tequila. I love the pitcher; I don't love tequila. One of the pitchers must have gone out with the Christmas tree years ago. But we still have one, and it always makes me smile. A pair of polka-dot hearts that were attached to a baby shower gift I received 20+ years ago, before our daughter was born. They're a lot like the Pantone colors for 2016... Today also got me thinking about ornaments I've created that I've given to family and friends or sold at art fairs. My dad has the turtle ornament hanging in his home office :). And I made this large, stuffed ornament for my grandparents. I love helping other people create ornamental remembrancers as well. I design ornaments and create kits for others to stitch in class and on their own. Some are used as Christmas ornaments. Some are finished and framed. Some are hung in a special place year-round. At least one has topped a wedding cake. Some adorn handbags or are made into pins. All have given both me and their stitchers a quiet little space in our lives to work slowly with our hands, create beauty, and then share that beauty with at least some portion of the world. I posted pictures of my new "Joyful Leaf" ornament design in early November. This is "Eastern Star"--my most recent ornament design. I hope that, for others, it will be the source of hours of peace-filled stitching time as well as a part of new and happy memories, created and shared.
I love leaves. Living in a part of the world that has slight more weeks of bare branches than leafed-out branches each year, I treasure leaves in all of their stages, colors, textures, and locations. Oak and maple leaves hold special places in my heart because I have been so surrounded by them my whole life and because they come in such varied and elegant shades and shapes.
Leaf silhouettes have certainly inspired much of my fiber art for decades. After encouragement from several of my long-time students, I'll be teaching a workshop featuring a leaf shape as well.
This weekend Saturday, November 14, I'll be teaching a "Joyful Leaf" making workshop from 9:30 - 3:30 at Mill House Quilts in Waunakee, WI. The leaves can be made into ornaments, brooches, or pieces to applique to a larger work of fiber art.
I'm excited about the wide range of hand-dyed wool colors that will be available to students as well as the mix of guided stitching and opportunities for each student to personalize her/his own design. Here's a simple example of one of the colorways and design options that will be available.
"Stitch by Stitch: Circles of Memory, Appreciations in Thread" (9/9/15 post) will be coming down from the Artisan Gallery in Paoli tomorrow morning, and the Fiber Arts Bienniale (7/13/15 post) recently concluded, but there are still several other opportunities to see my artwork on display in Wisconsin over the next three months.
The annual "Artful Women" exhibition at the University of Wisconsin Hospital is being hung this weekend, and I have two of my cigar-box framed embroideries in the show. "Mother & Child" is there along with my newest bead embroidery--"Beach Haiku." "Beach Haiku" is hand embroidered with glass and Lucite beads as well as a piece of driftwood and fossilized sharks' teeth that I found on beaches many years ago.
The opening reception for "Artful Women" is on Sunday, November 15, from 2:00 - 4:00 p.m. in the Sky Lounge Gallery of the hospital. The show runs through December 5 and is filled with art in all media by Wisconsin women artists. Sales from the exhibition benefit the American Family Children's Hospital and the Wisconsin Women's Network as well as the invited artists.
Next weekend Sunday, November 8, "From Insects to Elephants" (10/19/15 post) is opening with a reception from 12:00 - 3:00 p.m. at the Wisconsin Museum of Quilts & Fiber Arts, in Cedarburg. The show runs through January 10 and is filled with art quilts by invited fiber artists from throughout the U.S. The museum also has a special display of several pieces of my original artwork, archival prints, and bead embroidered ornament kits in the museum shop.
I'll be attending both receptions and hope to see you there!
I will be teaching a brand new two-day workshop at the beautiful Prairie Star Lodge in Browntown, Wisconsin on October 30 and 31. The project is a 5" x 8" mini bead embroidered panel I've called "Night Garden." It could be incorporated into a larger art quilt, made into a lovely front of a handbag, or framed as is. The panel design in the picture below can be stitched as is or modified to make it even more elaborate!
The all-inclusive retreat begins with dinner on Thursday evening, October 29. Then we will spend Friday the 30th and Saturday the 31st stitching, learning, and sharing together in this lovely facility. Although our official time together ends after dinner on Saturday, participants have the option to reserve an additional night at the lodge.
Two different fiber art groups I belong to have both been sharing a wonderful tip for folding quilts for shipping and storing them. It's a perennial challenge for quilters, as quilts often develop creases that can really diminish the beauty of the work. Art Quilter Ann Fahl originally shared her recommendation on her blog in 2013, but I thought it was well worth sharing again:
Stop by to say hi and get to see what promises to be a lovely exhibition. I am honored that both "Adoration" (left) and "Fruition" (right) were selected for inclusion in this second bienniale at the Wisconsin Museum of Quilts & Fiber Arts in Cedarburg.