Friday, April 30, 2010

Studio visitors (more)

I don't remember what was on the wall and under discussion, but it looks like it was receiving everyone's attention.

This is another "E" quilt that Bev is working on, using her hand-dyed fabrics.

Nancy was trying to do some hand sewing on a new project and was getting some help from Inspector Suki.

This is the small (6-inch) piece that Linda Bachman made as a donation for the Rochester Contemporary Organization.
Posted by Picasa

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Studio visitors (continued)

Priscilla bought this lovely hand-dyed fabric from Vicki Welsh's Etsy shop. She's auditioning it with some African fabric and other fabrics that she re-discovered in her stash.

Here Priscilla is considering the start she has on her "leopard" project.

We all wish we had "treasures" in our garages like Priscilla does....   She says she's been doing some cleaning and found a box of textiles from one of her trips to India 8 years ago.   She came across this bedspread and is considering whether it could become fabric for a new jacket.

These pieces were made from vintage saris.

Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Studio visitors

These are pictures from earlier in April when Beth and Priscilla came for some sewing time.

Beth is making a lot of progress on her heron quilt. She decided to add some pieced blocks, and managed, most appropriately to find a block pattern called Great Blue Heron.

Priscilla laid out some fabrics to audition to go with the leopards at the top right of the picture. Of course, Inspector Suki was on the job, testing for the softness factor in each piece of fabric.

Priscilla showed us the progress she has made on her turquoise jacket.
All of the colors are terrific, and the focus fabric, shown here on the back of the jacket is wonderful.

Here's the front of the jacket, without its band and the lining.
Posted by Picasa

Monday, April 26, 2010

Spring flowers and snow

The quince hedge begins to develop early blossoms.  Unfortunately, we find these are an ornamental variety, when we thought we had bought the fruit-producing type.  Pretty -- but No Jelly!!!

The magnolia tree was full flowered this year.  We have had fungus problems other years, but some spray treatment seems to have solved the problem.

Our usual full tulip display was attacked by deer this year, but some wire fencing saved some of the later varieties.

We had no measurable snow in March, but April flurries deposited a slight covering.  This ruined the chance of breaking the record for the shortest winter.  Prior to this we had new snow on the ground only during December, January, and February! 

 Posted by Picasa

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Spring landscape

Our gardener, Karen Johnson, got an early start on some of our perennial areas.  Weeding and edging at the start of the season offers evidence to the ordered sections of this offering.

We trimmed the spirea bush and the perennial grass severely at the entrance to the gazebo garden.  They will fill in nicely this year and be easier to shape and control in the future.

The rhubarb plants produce early in the season, and we have a crop ready for harvest.  Some pies are on the desert menu coming up!

The herb garden was also prepared for planting and harvest.
Chives, tarragon, oregano, and sage winter over with some protection and we'll add more tender choices soon.

Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Exciting News!

A winner at the Paducah AQS Quilt Show!!

Broken Squares was awarded Third Place for Small Wall Quilts in the Longarm/Midarm Sewing Machine Quilted section.

The complete list of winners is at

Jet Trails #6 has been selected by juror, Dan Mills, for Images 2010, the juried gallery exhibition of the Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts. 

The show will hang in the Robeson Gallery on the University Park campus of Penn State University from June 9 through July 11, 2010.

The art selected for the shows for 2008 and 2009 can be seen at

This is a picture of Deborah Kemball with her winning quilt at the IQF Spring Celebration show in Chicago as she shows the back of her quilt. 

My Yellow Brick Road quilt in the background did not win a ribbon, but it sure coordinates nicely with her sweater and her quilt!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Almighty Dollar Activities

Pat Pauly organized the opening reception for the exhibition she planned, "Almighty Dollar - Art Quilts Inspired by the Dollar Bill." Here's Pat chatting with one of the guests. Pat's quilt is behind her and mine is to the right. And Priscilla Kibbee is at the left of the picture.

Pat's centerpiece for the table (growing some money in her flowerpot) was very clever.

This is Bev Kondolf, one of the participating artists. And in the background is the table full of very good snacks.

Gerald Muhl was one of the featured speakers on "The History of US Paper Money (By George!)." He also prepared the exhibit of historical currency in the display case.
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Almighty Dollar - more activities

Pat Pauly was scheduled to give a presentation on "A Dollar for Inspiration: Art Quilts and the Creative Process."

Here she is with Priscilla Kibbee's quilt that illustrates both US and foreign currency.

Due to an equipment malfunction (ie., computer crash!), Pat wasn't able to show us her PowerPoint presentation.

She quickly shifted gears and gave us a wonderful walking tour and overview of the work of each of the artist's pieces.

Beth Brandkamp was there and spoke about her Fractured Flag piece.

Pat discussed Mary Diamond's Frowning George quilt, which is rich with symbolism.
Posted by Picasa

Monday, April 12, 2010

Pond Cleaning Day

The boys from "Clearly Aquatics" showed up to clean our ponds.  Pumps are used to empty the winter snow melt, and here a worker readies the hose connection to work on the upper level pond behind our house and the deck.

We have the disliked cobblestone lining for our lower pond.  The owners of the company have a coin toss each year, and the loser gets to clean the leaves and sticks out of the crannies and crevices.  Dave Young lost the flip and tackles the odious task.

Shawn Howard and Bill discuss the condition of our lilly pond at the head of our behind-the-barn gardens.  Shawn is also reporting on his troubles in selling and buying a residence for his family.

We have a serious infestation of "duck weed" in the lilly pond, which multiplies quickly and covers the surface of the water.  The treatment with a systemic herbacide would kill the flowers and plants in the pots on the bottom of the rubber-lined pond.  We don't have a good alternative, but will try a pond skimmer and some form of an overflow water treatment.  As all of us gardeners know, there are always problems to challenge our attempts to regulate nature!!
Posted by Picasa

Friday, April 9, 2010

A little fabric dyeing

We've been enjoying some lovely warm spring weather, which turns my thoughts to getting a little fabric dyeing done.

The purple and leaf green gradations were done from some very old dye powder, but I'm happy with the results.

These fabrics were made with an orange and black double-dye process.

This group of fabrics started with a gradation of fuschia fabrics, which were over-dyed with various blues.

Most of the fabric I started with was white Egyptian cotton.

Of  course, Suki has to test out the softness of piles of the newly-ironed fabric.
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Signs of Spring

We have a large multi-acre pond on the edge of our property.  The female snapping turtles travel in the spring looking for a place to deposit their eggs, and this one was around our barn today.  She's about the size of a very large serving platter.

Daffodils are the hardy signs of good weather.  We created this raised garden with eros boulders to display spring bulbs.

At this latitude April weather vacillates from 80-degree days to 40-degree shockers.  Fortunately, the flowers don't mind.

The hyacinth bulbs join the early blooms.  Some of the empty spaces used to harbor tulips.  Unfortunately, the local deer herd eats the stalks as they come out of the ground -- Glad they don't like the other choices too!!

Posted by Picasa