Sunday, April 20, 2014

On the Go

I seem to have been on the go almost non-stop since my last blog post, though the last few days have been quiet- I needed the rest and also to recharge!

First some photos from Quilts en Beaujolais, which was as usual lots of fun, catching up with old friends, making new friends, Els Mommers from Saba in the Dutch Carribean, Chantal Guillermet, Caroline Higgs, Jane  Rollason, where I will be exhibiting in her village Viville in September and also conducting a workshop.
  So here are my five Chartres ladies altogether and below also faces inspired by Chartres for the Voyage art exhibition which was also shown at Quilts en Beaujolais.

I did spend a day or two in Lyon and in particular in Vieux Lyon after Quilts en Beaujolais where i found this  carved door handle  to an atelier of a young  card/textile artists whose name I did not record.

And a lovely  bookshop Diogene full of second hand books and  old  and rare books to die for, but there is only so much you can carry... alas. I spent a lovely hour or so there regardless.

And last but not least there is still time to join the On-line  Travellers Blanket class starting next week- just email me if you are interested in joining. I am also teaching this class in the flesh in Colac in begin July. And now that I have some moments to reflect on the last few weeks I think I shall make a start on one myself as well- something with a new  twist!

Thursday, March 27, 2014


The last  two weeks have been incredibly busy, with teaching dismounting the  Sentinelles exhibition delivering them to Villefranche sur Mer  next to Nice so they can go home as luggage and teaching a day in the Aude region. I feel like I have done a whirlwind around France with barely time to stop and I also teach a class today, the last class ever at best of Quilting in Marcoussis before heading off to the United Kingdom early tomorrow.

So one last look at all the sentinelles as they were hung..

And that is not quite all of them- the room looked so bare when we had taken them all down, and the staff at MJC Palaiseau said they would miss them too. Unfortunately the sentinelles are now  not going to be shown in Canberra, which is a great pity but sometimes logistics and costing gets in the way of things especially as I could not be in Canberra in the beginning of May as I have to be at an event in Germany later in May.

I shall be at an ICHF event in London at EXCel 3/5 April- will have work on display and will also demonstrate some printing, plus the Voyageart work will also be on display. If you come to this event please come and say hello.

Then straight after this event i shall be off to Quilt en Beaujolais with all the new Chartres work- it's going to be a busy couple of weeks that is for sure as I intend to  also make some more new work.

I shall be starting a new On-line Travellers Blanket class after Easter this year. If you are interested please email me!

And finally some of the things encountered int he last few weeks..

Love the juxtaposition of the brightly coloured simple little boats with the more heavy duty hardware in the background!

The Lady & the Unicorn tapestry, marvellous as always:

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Sentinelles and Palaiseau

I should have posted the exhibition flyer on my blog much sooner than this, but time and internet access the last 10 days in Australia got away from me. Still you are invited to come and see the wonderful 137 embroidered sentinelles that have been embroidered and stitched and even mosaiced by many women- les brodeuses!
To say I am absolutely gobsmacked by the invention and imagination is an understatement and seems to be the general opinion of everyone who has visited except for one lady who didn't like all that "textile stuff"- I guess she worked in hardened steel lol!
So I will share a general view or two with apologies for the lack of names ( I will get around to marrying the makers names with images when i have time)

And some more detailed photos ( if you are on FB Elizabeth Dubbelde from Berry Patchwork, where the sentinelles will be shown later this year is doing a great job of showing each image)

I know the bottom left is Bronwyn Cooling and unfortunately when I zoom in on the photo the writing is not clear enough to see the  names- so my apologies.

It has been busy,  firstly installing the exhibition and then  minding it every day. Fortunately it has been helped along by the awesome sponsorship of threads by Aurifil Threads who have sent me some gorgeous  Mako 30 cotton threads so that i can get going on the sewing machine. I could not fit any threads into my suitcase coming over here so  it is much appreciated!

And spring is springing here, daily more flowers open their petals and the colours are changing and the sunshine has been gorgeous! I love this  bare paulownia tree ( I think that is what it is) in my friends garden

 I am lucky to have a space to exhibit  at MJC Palaiseau and I seem to have brought just the right amount of work for the space. I wanted to share this video of the  lovely impromptu  singing by Delaney Nguyen-Xuan and her mother Christine Skarie singing a traditional French Canadian and is called "C'est Dans le Mois de Mai".

And last but not least- my friend Christine Moulin has the funniest cat- so yes I am joining the minions of cat video loaders because this tail cleaning routine had us all laughing!

That's it for a few days!

Workshops for March:

Saturday 15 March- Best of Quilting Marcoussis-Form and Variation ( a fun class looking at how to change things up when  you are designing and making)

Tuesday 25 March- in the Aude ( south of France)- tifaifai

Thursday 27 March- Best of Quilting Marcoussis working with Solufix.
If you want to join any of these classes email me!

Thursday, February 27, 2014


In Paris with all the  sentinelles and a suitcase that weighed 100 gms under 30 kgs ( the limit of luggage allowance).
Rainy morning so I will be brief as I battle the suitcase.... on  wet and murky streets near Gare du Nord
The grant from Creative Partnerships Australia came through on the eve of my departure- yay the Australian Cultural Fund and Sarah Ricketts.

I got upgraded by Qatar Airways on the Doha Paris leg to Business class- you have won my loyalty yet again ( last time was when they were the only airline not to charge double the normal fare when I suddenly had to return to Oz in 2010 due to a death in the family)

Auriful threads are going to sponsor me whilst in Europe with their Mako 30 threads- I love these threads!
My morning so far:

And my last queen which I managed to finish whilst staying with my mother...

Friday, February 07, 2014

Still Packing

I have finished another  Porte Royale queen and another one is one the way. There are only  5 on the actual portals themselves, plus there is one inside the cathedral in the a downstairs passageway (not sure what to call it really as it is much wider than a passage and leads to the well and further chapels, I suppose aisle might be a better word) I am intrigued how different the faces become when stitched, they really don't look like the  sculptures at all anymore and yet that  is where they have come from and I am using the photographs as a base for the faces. I guess the angle of my camera shot comes into play as it makes the necks look longer than they are.

 To say that I am behind is not an understatement and in the end I can only get done what I can get done. I forgot to reverse this queen....oh well

Whilst packing I found some hand dyed muslin weight fabrics that I had dyed in preparation for a travellers' blanket at some point. They are for sale.They are all slightly different sizes so the prices vary.

This piece is  100  cm x 140 cm . Price is $25 ( AUS) plus postage.SOLD

 This piece is 85 cm x 140 cm. Price is $20 (AUS) plus postage SOLD

 This piece is 115cm x 140 cm Price is $28 (AUS) plus postage.SOLD Email me if you are interested in any of these pieces.

I have also updated my workshop page on my blog. On the page you will see details of a lot of the classes I teach, and I can often combine one or more- flexibility is the key!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Packing to Move GRRR

The last week has been pretty stressful- packing a  whole house away takes time, plus I need to keep working on my Chartres work and making more work for that. I feel like I am running short of time, but have to keep going as i can see these queens when they are all together are going to have presence. This morning I washed the outside of the house and the windows. I am trying to make sure I do something everyday including packing stuff every day. The biggest problem is my work things- you never know exactly what you may need. I am also running out of  the right coloured threads, but  non one around here sells the 28 weight Aurifil threads that I like to use.

Stitched Sentinelle panels are also starting to arrive- they look splendid- in case anyone wants to work on a panel and send it to France ( to join the project ) I found a few more panels I had stuck away whilst I was packing. Email me if you  would like to buy one.

Meanwhile here is another queen. She has extremely long braids- braids were much admired in medieval times with several writers of the time mentioning the aesthetic  beauty of perfect braids. The sculptor in any case went to long lengths to make the braids look long and perfect. The panels are awkward to photograph because they are about 180-185 cm long. The queens in the sculptures themselves have different heights.

I have been thinking I would like to make a booklet to go with them, but again the awkwardness of the length of the figures I can't quite  think about page size.

Today is Australia day- sadly it celebrates white settlement of this large continent when three boats arrived loaded with convicts. 

Saturday, January 18, 2014

More Chartres

We have just had a four day spell of plus 40 degree temperatures ( 105 plus fahrenheit), and of course consequent bushfires in various parts of the state. It's always scarey when those temperatures rise, there is no question that it will result in bushfires somewhere. It is also not very conducive to quiltmaking especially when your house is not air-conditioned, thank goodness there is ceiling fans in the bedrooms. Packing is progressing slowly- I wish the packing up and moving fairy would just do it overnight whilst I was sleeping... never mind it will all eventually come together I hope! And good news, my youngest daughter got into Monash University Arts, which she is very happy about ( and her mum too I might add)

However I am behind on the work I want to make for my exhibition at MJC Palaiseau in France for the Voices of Women Festival, so I had to keep on going . The exhibition will run from  3- 22 March along with the sentinelles and all the sentinelles that have been embroidered around the world. I now have 20  stitched sentinelles at my house- and I am blown away by the inventiveness of the stitching and embellishing- it's going to look spectacular I think! Can't wait to see them all. So another Chartres doorjamb queen is just about stitched. I love  how they look in colour- they once would have been coloured in fact the whole royal portal would have been highly coloured as things were in  the middle ages.I also  finished another little face embroidery- the pile is growing!

On the left is the queen as she stand on the portal and on the right is my version of her done  with lutradur and machine stitching. the lutradur  I have used is the type used by florists, so the fibres are bigger creating a different kind of transparency.

I posted some work for sale before Christmas. I am trying to get together my airfare  to go to France late February and am prepared to consider any reasonable offers in relation to the quilts that have not sold. I am also prepared to let a travellers blanket ( the blue one that was on the cover of Quilting Arts  or the one with circles) go for less than half price. But only one these pieces are so much work  they have been the  only ones I have ever been really reluctant to sell .If you are interested please email me.