Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Great Quilts, Great Stories

This is the old savings bank that is The New England Quilt Museum.

And this is one of the many banners.

Saturday morning, October 20, I met Pam Weeks who, with Kate Hanson Plass, curated the show I'm in: Great Quilts, Great Stories.
One of their motivations was to make history come alive through "material culture".
So often history as we grew up with it was based on men, conquests, inventions, & explorations.
Women had hardly a place in the books we studied.

I didn't meet Kate, but here is Pam.

She gave a tour for me & the docents that morning, so we could learn more about all the quilts.

Here are a few of them.

This quilt was on the cover of the 3rd quilting book I ever bought. And the 1st quilt I saw in the show. I was delighted. Sharon worked in New Hampshire & I once corresponded with her. Pam didn't know if she is still alive.

Here are some of the other quilts in the show.
I'm not going to be able to tell you their stories, thought each had one.

You can see that these are all conventional & classic quilts, each made with fabulous skill, dense quilting, etc.
Textile places tend to be dark to preserve the cloth, so I had to lighten all of my photos.

But there were others too, less conventional.

This is a red cross quilt, made for, I think, the WWII effort.

And a marvelous "Don't Judge a Man Till You've Walked a Mile in His Shoes" story quilt. An elder talks to the youth, & possible trouble is ahead on the road of life-- black cat, snake, dead skunk,  and so on. 
Utterly charming.
Don't miss the shoes!

This artist does raw appliqué, lots of animals, and such playfulness.

And then me in my space in the exhibit with 10 quilts honoring the people and things that make my quilt-making possible.

(Oops! I touched the photo by mistake, it fell, I had to fix!
I'm really not allowed to handle the quilts any more!!

Me in front of Much Depends on Quilt-Makers!!

About 22 people came from various patches in my life. 
We ate together & had champaign, thanks to Mary Beecher Price.

Lowell is a place with a lot of feminist consciousness. 
The first women's labor organization in the USA was in Lowell.
There are several sculptures about women.
I am very happy that my project is in Lowell and at the NEQM.

Then Kate Layzer, my niece, found a plaque celebrating a visit William Lloyd Garrison, Wendell Philips & George Thompson made to Lowell. We scrubbed them down.
This is no relation to 'my' George Thompson. This one was a British abolitionist.
Garrison named two sons after these two men.

And finally, some shots of Lowell.

  Lots of old brick everywhere, old buildings, old mills, & renewal.

One of the canals built to help power the mills.

And unspeakably beautiful days!

Thanks to Nan Heminway & friend, Mary Beecher Price, Myra Ramos & her daughter-in-law Michele, Pam Smith Hendricks, Lee Thorndike Sprague, Nancy Hansen, Peggy Latimer, Joan Countryman, Emmy Preston, Sally Ropes Hinkle, Greta Keyes, Cory Hurley McPeek, Pat Jackson, Kate Layzer & her sweetie, Don, John Harwood,
Lynne Harwood, Faith Gilbert, Upty Terry Clouse, Diane Haley, & if I've forgotten anyone, I'm truly sorry. I did forget some married names.
Thank you for coming. It was lovely sharing this with you.
And thanks to George for brick-like support!

That's it for now.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Beginning of Trip East

Sunday last we had one of those long days extended by getting up at 4am to get a 7am flight to Toronto.
After a 3 hour layover there we went on to Hartford.
We got to Sal & Dick Warren's house at 10:30.
They had just been to a 4 hour community planning meeting to try to figure out how to stop a huge line of windmills going in an an extended ridge line near them in Grafton VT.
So they were pretty spent too.
The impact on small roads, personal property, wildlife, and watersheds would be huge.
No community in Vermont has successfully fought this off... yet.
They are hoping.

We've has fabulous weather: sunny, high-flying-sky days.

Lots of this...

On another note Sal bonked herself on the head with a jar that fell off a too-high-to-reach-except-with-a-spoon-oops-ouch shelf!!
Serious enough so that 3 days later she's still laying low.

But she & I still had lots of time for talk.
And George & Dick went out for a toot in Dick's MG.

Of course they had an adventure. The MG quit, George came home for Dick's car, getting a ride from a friendly neighbor near the breakdown point, and then the MG was towed home.

Ah, true boyish fun. And no sweat!!

One day I went to the Putney Spinnery where knitting wool is spun, sometimes to order.
It is such a cool place.
Right up my alley, so to speak.

This woman is spinning two lots of one ply wool into one lot of 2 ply wool.
She's using serviceable but old machinery.
Said said she was 'bobbin hopping' but I didn't quite get what she was doing.
I'll have to look that up.

There was wool lint everywhere!!

I loved this office. There were several.

This was someone's order ready to go out.
I bet the wooden spindles come back.

There was much good talk.
At the end Sal & I recorded some wrinkles that we have.
Here goes!!

The drive to Lowell was sublime.
Lots of light pouring through lightly-leaved woods.
New England towns going by.

                                                       Not enough time to capture all of it!!

Nearly the only red tree we've seen.

That's it for now.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Saying Goodbye to #408 in Kihei, HI

I first came in Maui in 2002.
I came on Feb 14 & left the 21st.
The first morning I was here Gene & Ellie took me for a morning walk on Sugar Beach.
I met George.
He had befriended Gene, my uncle.

And so began my relationship with Maui.
Two years later I started a correspondence with George and two years after there was a marriage.

As we are now packing up 408 & preparing to move out I thought I'd show some of the quilts I made while I was here. This was a mosaic I made from dishes from Zimbabwe!

The one that I associate the most with being on Maui is one I made in my "triangle period".
The colors came from an amazing lucky-find tablecloth I got here.

NOPE!! Not the one I was looking for! But these are two others from the Triangle Period.
My first real foray into quilting by machine.
I'll have to post the special one mentioned later when I find it!!

There also was a 3-month period, another year, in which I did  concentric circles. I did quite a few in Maui. I have sub-standard photos, but I am beyond feeling/being fussy/proud about this.
This is a detail of one.

 All the circles were done by "raw appliqué" -- no edges turned under.
They were all quilted by hand.

Then there was the winter of Stripes = simplicity!!
I sewed together bands of color, may 6 or 7 of them.
I thought of them as chords.
Then the chords were assembled into compositions.
I loved/love this way of working.
Here are various chords.

These were hung over a door where I could think about them!

Here are some of the subsequent pieced products...

This one had a comical story
My chords all curved.
So I inserted wedges to straighten the curves out a bit.
This final one is after quilting on a huge quilting machine I use "upcountry".

Thanks to Russell whose machine it is. The BEST!! A Hamill.


The white dot is because I hung the piecework on the front door to photograph it.
The white dot is the peephole!

And then these...
This was the Left-Overs Scrap Quilt from all the striped quilts.

I call this one The Yellow Ladder.

So all of these came from the year 2010-11.

Then came the Year of the Retinal Tear, 2011-12.

These are the last ones I composed here.

This one was done entirely by hand. 
My machine was getting serviced in Honolulu.
And I couldn't read.
I had lots of time for handwork!

This one is a variation on squares-- curvy quadrilaterals, really.
I wish I had quilted this one by hand.
I could re-do it!!

Green Triangles.
This one I made with fabric I paid for with a gift from Karla Thompson. 
I started it here in April & finished it in Vancouver.

And finally, the quilt that I love so much that somehow typifies my time in Maui.
This is the one I couldn't find at the beginning!

I think a bit of the Bird of Paradise flower!
I love what you can do with shapes that are slightly "off". 
They add so much character to the work.

I'm amazed when I look at this body of work that Maui has inspired in me.

Thanks to Russell, Marilyn at the Maui Quilt Shop, Shawn King (my sewing teacher for several years), Michael James, book which got me thinking about stripes again (which I found at the Maui Quilt Guild), Barb Jenks who took me to the Maui Quilt Guild.

That's it for now.