Thursday, February 24, 2011

Collage + Cloth = Quilt

Want to make your eyes happy?  Well then, here's the website for you:  

Judi teaches and has written a wonderful book, Collage + Cloth = Quilt, about her technique for designing quilts from collages of personal photos.  A haiku by Claudia Alldredge, one of Judi's students, says it very well:
Favorite photos
Fractured into a collage
Blueprint for a quilt
The quilts Judi has designed and made based on photo collages are truly breathtaking, and you can see many of them on her website.  

Lucky, lucky me--I am one of the quiltmakers who has had the opportunity to learn Judi's design strategy from her.  Here is my quilt, Water Ways, designed from a collage of photos of water plants, reflections, and a stone wall:

You can see from these details that Water Ways is machine-pieced with just a couple of incidental hand-stitched details and machine-quilted:

And if you want to do a little shopping after feasting your eyes on Judi's quilts, also featured on the new website are Judi's delightful stitched paper quilts.  I'm very happy to say that one of the paper quilts, the Patron Saint of Seamstresses, graces my studio.  Now that I've seen her on the new website, I'm longing to have Gertrude here, too....  

Welcome to the web, Judi.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Spotlight on Ann Burgess

Ann Burgess (a/k/a C. Ann Burgess) is a magician with fabric.  She dyes, paints, and marbles the most marvelous fabrics and then incorporates them into stunning quilts of her own design.  

Ann made a tile quilt that is included in the Gallery of Contemporary Tile Quilts in Tile Quilt Revival:  

The only commercial fabric she used on the top is the gray batik background fabric in the blocks, which you see as the narrow channels of "grout" around the tiles.  All other fabrics you see are hand marbled, dyed, and painted.

The tile quilt technique, with its large and simple shapes, creates an ideal showcase for interesting fabrics.  Ann recognized the potential in a tile quilt for putting her fabrics to good use.  She designed 15" tile blocks with large, graceful tile shapes that show her fabrics to great advantage:

Here is a detail of one of her exotic dragonflies:

In this last detail, in addition to the marbled tile fabrics, you can see a bit of the fabrics Ann painted and dyed for the inner and outer borders of her quilt:

Thanks, Ann, for sharing your inspired creations.  

Monday, February 7, 2011

Home Again, Home Again

Home from a weeklong quilting retreat.  It was great fun and wildly productive.  Even so I'm happy to be with my sweetheart and mutts and happy to be sleeping in my own bed.  But it certainly is quiet and sedate around here--hardly the creative beehive of the retreat.  

This is the sort of thing I miss:  Sharona, the owner of a wonderful quilt store in Berkeley CA called New Pieces, posing in front of her design wall wearing the dress she later actually incorporated into the quilt behind her........

Bobbi Finley and I met at this annual retreat twenty or so years ago, and we've been sewing together pretty much continuously since then.  The 2011 retreat was no exception.  We planned, cut, and stitched two quilts and made a lot of progress on a third.  No wonder I slept 12 hours the first night home.