Monday, August 28, 2023

 Our meeting in August was a potluck, themed "Fascinating Summer".  We were all invited to wear our fascinators and bring our favorite potluck dish.

Members were invited to share quilts and other crafty projects.  New members were especially encouraged to bring a share.

Show & Tell

by Tracy Visher

by Tracy Visher

by Lynn Tubbe

by Sandra Mollon

by Marie Brower

by Karle deProsse

by Bonnie Ellering

by Bonnie Ellering
by Bonnie Ellering

by Stephanie Bennett-Strauss

by Stephanie Bennett-Strauss

by Stephanie Bennett-Strauss

by Stephanie Bennett-Strauss

by Stephanie Bennett-Strauss

by Stephanie Bennett-Strauss

Friday, July 28, 2023

 We had our 2nd reveal of the year.  As always, there were so many fabulous quilts.

Foiled Again

"Foiling Fate" 26" x 23"
by Stephanie Bennett-Strause, MD

Artist Statement:  As a member of MAQ, I look forward to choosing a topic from the Challenge List.  This year, I chose "Foiled Again" because the moment I read those words, I knew what I wanted to do.  Let me share this poem I wrote to explain my art:

Getting Old, Lost my Gold,
Won't be Going Grey
Anytime soon, anyway.
It just turned brown, Boring Brown.
It makes me frown.
So, I head on down into the town
To my Hair Salon, cuz my Gold is gone.
Leni says "come on in
Welcome to my Magic Den!
Even though we Can't Cheat Death
He's waiting for you Final Breath,
We can Fool Fate, and mitigate
That downer brown that makes you frown.
let's reinstate your Golden Crown."
Thus, I now go Wednesdays, ever Week Ten
To see the Scissor Witch and get Foiled Again!

In the center of the quilt is a woman's face surrounded by a mass of shorter hairs and longer strands sticking out through rolls of shiny tinfoil.  She appears very happy, yet is holding up her hand with crossed fingers, symbolic of wishing for good luck.  I used cotton fabric, loose polyester shag velour, tin foil, cotton/poly thread, superglue, glue-stick glue, cotton/poly batting, wood slat and string.

Inspired by Nature

"A Finch's Feast" 12" x 18"
by Tracy Visher

Artist Statement:  I saw this fellow on a walk in my neighborhood.  I used cotton & batik fabric, embroidery thread, yarns, inktense pencils, hand painted canvas.

I had fun figuring out how to make the thistles look 3D.

"Seasons on the Sidewalk" 18" x 28"
by Lynn Tubbe

Artist Statement:  All of my life I have been inspired by nature.  Mountains, flowers, trees or leaves show up on most of my quilts.  I wanted to make a visual representation of leaves underfoot, as the seasons change.  Bright greens of spring and summer, then fall's glory, followed by winter's decay.  I used Terial Magic to both stiffen and shape dyed cheesecloth, dyed cottons and silks and batiks.  I also used a few pieces of painted dryer sheets.

Five mini quilts were fashioned, then quilted, and attached together before the leaves were added.  A challenge was sewing the five pieces to each other - a double thickness of quilts to stitch through.  Only one broken needle. Whew!

"Shall We Dance" 39" x 29"
by Kathryn Madison

Artist Statement:  This was inspired by a PBS "Nature" episode about ocelots.  I used PFD cotton, polyester fabric, cheesecloth, batting, Tsukineko inks, Inktense blocks and pencils, rubbing alcohol, hand embroidery floss, perle floss, machine embroidery poly thread, cotton thread, monofilament thread, soldering iron, water soluble solvy.  

this ocelot was the most challenging hand embroidered quilt critter I've done to date, embroidered in 7 pieces, then reassembled.  I tried alcohol-diluted Tsukineko ink for the first time, sprayed to create the background.  The challenge for me was positioning the ocelot and the green jay to be in eye contact with each other.  

"Spring Creek" 19" x 29"
by Karle deProsse

Artist Statement:  This is based on a picture I took.  95% of my quilts are inspired by nature.  I wanted to do a quilt with water movement.  I used pictorial and batik fabrics, superior threads, hand dyed cheese cloth and yarns.

It was exciting to gather elements to create the creeks froth.  I was challenged by time and depression losing my creative juice.

"How Coyote Brought Fire to Man, A native American Folktale" 29" x 52"
by Robin Hart

Artist Statement:  I was inspired by nature with a Native American folktale that is common to many tribes across the country.  the story goes that man had no fire to keep him warm in the Winter.  Wise Coyote felt sorry for man and got together with is animal friends to conspire to steal a firebrand from the fire spirits who lived on top of the mountain.  When the fire spirits were distracted, Coyote raced into their tepee and stole a burning log from their fire.  He was chased by them, but got away, and handed off the log to all his friends, who passed it on until Frog got it when it was just a small ember of charcoal.  He hid it in a tree and then coyote showed man that by using wood from the tree and rubbing two sticks together, they could be warmed by fire.

I used cotton percale whole cloth, cotton batting and cotton back fabric, various colors of cotton and polyester threads, curtain rings.  This was designed in Adobe Illustrator and inspired by photos of wild animals.

The challenge was to create two quilts that would explain the story.  The main quilt is the animals getting together for a meeting on how to steal fire from the fire spirits.  the second top quilt shows the pursuit of the fire spirits after Coyote steals the firebrand and goes to give it to the deer to run with it.  I decided to link them together with rings like I did for my Moons project.  

"Leaf it to Us" 48" x 47"
by Shelli Fried and Jan Mitrovich

Artists Statement:  This piece is meant to evoke the joy of being in nature.  Shelli created the cyanotype prints a while ago and collected some fabrics that would complement them.  Seemed like a perfect use for this challenge.  The blocks were created with a vision of them hanging unattached to each other in some way.  When Jan joined the project, she agreed that hanging the blocks off a branch might work...A collaborative effort began to design the blocks; placing the cyanotypes and the leaves that Jan created.  Jan quilted the blocks and the final layout was done on the foyer floor at Shelli's with adjustments once it was on the branch.  The branch is from a redwood tree behind Shelli's house.

We used cyanotypes, commercial fabric, batting, Fossshape, water soluble stabilizer, various weight blue/green variegated threads to crate texture and blend colors, and a redwood branch sprayed with fast drying polyurethane.

This was our first collaborative project.  It was great fun, and we found we were able to agree and disagree, make suggestions and reject them, try things (a lot of "what if") without any ego issues getting the the way.  We will do more together!  One challenge was figuring out how to hang the blocks on the branch so they hang straight.

"Monarch" 20" x 20"
by Julie Berry

Artist Statement:  Butterflies are one of the most beautiful and unique parts of nature.  The inspiration was a trip to the Monarch Sanctuary in Pacific Grove in January. Cherrywood fabrics were used in this quilt and it is quilted with Madeira polythread.  I also used Copic pens and PROFab transparent paints.

This was my first Cherrywood challenge and it did not get chosen for the traveling exhibition.  I am looking forward to seeing the exhibition of these beautiful creatures next year.  

"It Started with a Rectangle" 26" x 34"
by Jane Haworth

Artist Statement:  This quilt focuses on circles within circles.  My inspiration came from a small rectangle of fabric I painted a few years ago with colored concentric circles in bright colors with a black background.  It's made from this painted rectangle on cotton fabric using fabric paints, silk fabrics.  It is hand stitched using perle cottons, mostly 8 wt.

My challenge was would the raw-edge silk fabrics simply cut work and did I have the right colors to match my painted rectange.

"Viva Magenta" 20" x 30"
by Sophia Day

Artist Statement:  I made this for a Pantone "Viva Magenta" challenge.  I didn't link it correctly, so it wasn't actually in the challenge to be voted on.  I tried to find a light, medium and dark shade of magenta and paired it with some of my stash of black/white fabric.  I have always wanted to do an improv circle quilt, so I thought this would be a good pairing of the two challenges.  It's all commercial cotton fabric.  I used glide thread in a wavy circle pattern for the quilting.

"I Don't do Subtle" 32" x 33"
by Tracy Visher

Artist Statement:  This has 26 fabric circles.  I often feel like I am an oddball amongst my peers.  Loud, a little crazy.  Go Big or Go Home.  I embrace my uniqueness.  I used cotton fabrics, thread, inktense blocks, sequins & beads.

My challenge was finding a design to express the title my family often uses.  Also adding shading in a way to make the circles seem dimensional.

"Dream time" 34" x 43"
by Elisabeth S Baratte

Artist Statement:  The inspiration was the design of the aboriginal fabrics. I used Aboriginal Australian fabrics, Paula Nadelstern Kaleidoscopes, 80/20 batting. 

"Dancin' in Circles" 17" x 77"
by Marylee Drake

Artist Statement:  I have been holding onto this Tim Holtz fabric for a couple of years and I finally had an idea when listening to a Lady Gaga song, "Dancin' in Circles".  I used hand dyed cotton, printed cotton, variegated thread, cotton batting, wonder under fusible.  

This is a table runner for a friend.  I used wonder-under for my raw edge appliqued circles.  There was a special challenge when I realized the hand dyed fabric dye was unstable.  I had to wash with synthropol and dye fixative after quilting.  I hadn't intended to wash it at all.  

Friday, June 30, 2023

 We had a fabulous speaker for our June meeting.  Christine Barnes presented “Magic Fabrics/Special Effects,” using fabric to create light, and vitality, transparency, luminosity, and luster. Below are some of her fabulous quilts and wearable arts.

And as always, we had show & tell from some of our members.

Thursday, April 27, 2023

 We had our first reveal of the year and it was a fabulous one as always.

A Place Visited

'Shades of Shard' by Carole Rossi
20.5" x 37"

This quilt is inspired by an iconic building in London called "The Shard".  I took numerous photos of this building when I was in London ("the place visited") in December 2022.  Its pyramid-like shape & jagged top story dominates the cityscape in a very dramatic way, particularly when the ski is pink at sunset.  I was inspired to create and abstract piece which suggests but does not realistically depict the Shard.  I used hand-dyed cotton overlaid with silkscreen printing; commercial cottons; various yarns, couched; batting-Quilters 100% Dream Cotton; machine quilted with Bernina 820 using several rayon threads.  I created a pattern for the design and worked from there.  I challenged myself to create an overall border that was not a simple rectangle.  I wanted the overall shape to be a bit "jagged" like the top of the building itself.

"Hay-on-Wye, Wales" by Karin Polli
22" x 29.5"

This was inspired by a visit in 2001 to Hay with a friend to visit the many bookstores.  The sky is hand dyed.  It's decorated with beads, buttons and.  My view of Hay is personalized.  The bookstore is named after a business I owned in Guatemala.  The pub is named for the Brewery owned by my daughter and son-in-law in Diamond Springs, CA.  The antique store is named for one owned by my mother and aunt.  The pins were owned by my mother.  The quilt & needlework stores are because of my interests.

"Le Petit Maison" by Michelle Peerson

I saw this little house near the Loire River in the Anjou region of France.  I imagined living there.  The quilt is fused on to a new product for me;  'Pattern Ease".  This is a non-woven stabilizer.  I also used it as my batting.  It tends to make the quilt crinkle, but I like the effect it created.  I used Steam-a-seam 2 lite as my fusible, a titanium needle and fused the facing...another first for me.

"Cathedral Rock, Yosemite Valley" by Sandra Mollon
32" x 25"

This is perhaps the most visited site in Northern California is Yosemite Valley.  Cathedral Rocks sits directly across from El Capitan, and glows in the late afternoon light.  Made from: Cotton batiks and hand dyed cottons (by artist), silk batting, various threads.  The challenge for me was capturing the late afternoon light.


"Sunset Sal, Beachcombing Gal" by Tracy Visher
18" x 20"

I took poetic license with the topic.  Rather than making a quilt about the place itself, I had a fictional character show it.  My family had a reunion at a beach house at Sunset Beach in Watsonville, CA in June 2022.  As we took early morning beach walks, I picked up shells, etc. and imagined a quilt incorporating them.  I used batik cotton, ribbon, wire, beads.  Shells, feathers, sand dollars from Sunset Beach.  Inktense pencils and blocks, pen, organza, glue and Modge Podge dimensional magic.  This quilt is a bit of fun and whimsy.  Rather than just doing a beach quilt, I made up a character so I could include all of the items I collected while roaming this beach every morning.  It was fun and challenging to figure out how to do her hair.

"Kitty Sunrise" by Sophia Day
17" x 20"

My kitties sit on the window sill every morning to watch the sunrise. This is 3 layers of fabric and 1 layer of batting. This is reverse applique.  Black batik is hard to come by, so I tried this black cotton that was touted to not fray.  Not true.  But I was far enough in when I realized that I didn’t want to start over.  I decided to heavily quilt the black and leave the color un-quilted.  This has mandalas for the sunrise and they create a kitty in the negative space.

"My Mandalas" by Pat Gillings
42.5" x 42.5"

Mandalas have been made for thousands of years to represent sacred forms in the world and have lately become popular for meditation and relaxation.  Technically, a mandal can be any design that has expanding circles or geometric shapes.  I created my mandalas using the I-ornament app which allows you to hand draw shapes that are converted into various symmetries.  The backgrounds for the mandalas were created using my hand dyed fabric & some watercolor and alcohol ink designs of mine which were photographed and enhanced on the computer.  I then took my mandala files that had been saved on transparent layers and layered them over the various backgrounds.  The files were then sent and were printed by Spoonflower.  I had them printed as 4 fat quarters; one large for the center and then 4 each on 3 fat quarters that were cut apart and surrounded with Moda grunge fabric.