Thursday, June 30, 2005

Adinkra Stamps

Adinkra stamps

I love African textiles and I have long had a fascination for adinkra cloth. The stamps in the photograph are actual Ghanaian adinkra stamps carved from gourds which I purchased at the African Museum near Maastricht. I am looking forward to working with them, but alas the weather is not being too co-operative ( I uaually dye and print outside)- it is doing it's wintry best to be cold and miserable. The symbology of stamps ( which are used to tell stories and allegories) are from left to right- Fofoo- what the foofoo plant wants, is that the gyinantwi seed will turn back- the symbol for jealousy ( what a cool form for jealousy- I think of it more as sunshine), Kunitkantan- don't show off-There is a need for humility and dignity,funtunfunafu denkyem funafu,won afuru bom nso worididi a na wo ko- whilst sharing the same stomach they fight for the food- dwanimen, horn of the ram, symbol for keeping things hidden.

And whilst thinking about the African museum I should mention that my friend Heidi-Stegehuis Ihle has had her African Elephant quilt invited into the Hands All Round Exhibit in Houston later this year. People say I am very productive but Heidi's output is truly prodigious. I enjoyed seeing all her work in the flesh this time in Europe, and I am just awed by the amount of work she gets through and her imagination. Posted by Hello

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Less Successful
This is another piece I painted which I don't like too much- too much like a rainbow! And yes it is a scrape back method, but the underlying colour is very important and so is its placement. I have a few ideas I want to explore but tonight we have to go to Gembrook so it will have to wait another day or two.

I tried dyeing a piece of muslin, for the Rhythm & Blues competition for Val d'Argent,and whilst I achieved a rhythm in the dyeing , I don't like the colour and I don't think it is something I can work with. I used pegs on fold lines to create and undulating rhythm in the cloth- oh well another thing learnt....Posted by Hello

Monday, June 27, 2005

Surviving the Weekend

More hand painted fabric

Well I survived the weekend- a ten year olds sleepover and last night a teenage sleepover! The mud cake ( which had been requested) was too chocolatey, and as a non-lover of chocolate I am not sure who will eat it all- maybe the chooks!

Naturally in all of this busyness I haven't done anything vaguely related to quilts, and my room looks like a disaster area- too much stuff everywhere. But on the other hand the best way to get started again after a break is to simply get on and do it- so that is my promise to myself today- to just get on and do some dyeing some painting and perhaps get as far as making something. Posted by Hello

Saturday, June 25, 2005

This and That

The Linen Closet at Erve Brooks
The picture above is of the linen closet at Erve Brooks. The owners kindly allowed me to see this treasure. The cupboard itself was made of oak and dated from the eighteenth century and its shelves were loaded with the linen of the household- all neatly arranged in categoried bundles. The ornaments on the shelf signify the married couple and also held leather bound family bibles. This was the layout an impending bride was expected to make before her wedding. The rolls of linen you see are the actual bleached linen from which the layouts were made- in a sense it signified your wealth . They are rolled in a special way and required two people to roll them. The linen arrived in an unbleached state and was then bleached by the women and then rolled, and assembled into pillows, sheets, towels etc as needed. Heaven knows what the women would think of my linen closet!

The pictures below are of more hand painted fabrics I made last week. If it were warmer I would love to make some more today, but there was a frost last night- and I am feeling the cold and I am getting a cold! At the moment it is hard to imagine doing anything, but I need to get working again.

I have also booked my next trip to Europe from 14 September to 10 October 2005- if anyone is interested in my coming to teach please contact me and i can send out a list of workshops I teach.Posted by Hello

More hand painted fabric Posted by Hello

Hand Painted fabric Posted by Hello

Thursday, June 23, 2005


Gelderse Clock, Erve Brooks
I was going to post some pictures of some more of the textile painting I did with the paint from Trapsuutjies ( I also dragged quite a lot of these home on the plane and am glad they did not check the weight of my hand luggage!) However instead I have posted some pictures of Erve Brooks which is an old Saxon farm and just delightful. I also posted a pic of poppies- I love poppies and for me the symbolise my childhood- I took a lot of pics of poppies and hope to work them up into a quilt one of these days.

However meanwhile I have to do something about the state of my house- with Collin studying and three kids who are scared of housework by the looks of it, something has to be done- and then there is two birthday parties this weekend involving sleepovers here. I will post more regularly now that I am home! I have found out I am teaching at Val d'Argent at St marie aux Mines in France from 15-19 September this year which fits in with the installation of Across Australia at the Panorama Mesdag in early October- so I shall be back in Europe in mid September.Posted by Hello

Poppies Posted by Hello

Bake House, Erve Brooks Posted by Hello

Monday, June 13, 2005


Sorry no pictures to post as I am on another computer. I just wanted to remind everyon ethat on Wednesday I will be at our exhibition with Annelies Elburg at Erve Brooks, in Gelselaar in Gelderland. Laura Liebenberg from Trapsuutjies will be there on the weekend demonstrating. Hope to see some of you there, and I am hoping my quilts from England have arrived!

Yesterday we spent the day in Maastricht, walking around, looking at the two basilica's- Our Lady and St Gervais- I really liked the dark almost mysterious atmosphere in Our Lady.

Now I have to find the motivation to make some small tifaifai's which I sew onto paper card, and which I sell,but I think I shall go for a walk first!

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Breaking All The Rules

Anneke's Quilt Posted by Hello
Anneke's quilt and the previous four quilts are all work which was produced in a workshop I taught last year entitled Breaking All the Rules. It was a thrill to see the finished pieces and my apologies to the makers for not recording their names! Each one is so different in a sense- and I enjoy seeing the playfulness that each student has incorporated into their finished piece ( I just have to get a bit better at making clearer photographs!)

And on another note- I have been babbling on about 10,000 steps in the past. I was wearing my pedometer in workshops I taught last week and was surprised to find that I stepped between 8,000-12,000 steps on the days I taught. However I do like the feeling of well being I get from going out in the morning and walking for an hour- it sort of energizes your day. Sometimes so much that I do another half hour walk in the evening as well. There are all sorts of sites promoting 10,000 steps but I found the site I have linked to be very useful for basic information. And yes the weight is coming off and I do feel better!

And Another One Posted by Hello

And More Posted by Hello

More Posted by Hello

Breaking all The Rules Posted by Hello

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Student Work from Workshops

Anneke's quilt Posted by Hello
Nikki Perryman asked me about tifaifai awhile ago. Firstly I have written a book about the technique, the image of the cover appears below. I have to say the publisher chose my least favourite quilt I made for the cover- she had specifically requested something pink and green ( and yes I can hear all my friends guffawing in the background...) and then she put it on the cover. However tifaifai is a Polynesian word which means to patch repeatedly, although usually when you think of tifaifai you would think of a appliqued top. Tifaifai is the Tahitian version, and the Cook Islands produce Tivaevae. The tifaifai are culturally significant to the Polynesian people and designs are passed from mother to daughter and carefully kept within families. I create my own designs- the only thing I have adapted is the technique of cutting the tifaifai.Hawaiian is in a similar vein but the designs are created on an eightfold thereby creating a more symmetric design. Polynesian designs are done on a fourfold thereby creating a loser symmetry- which I like, although the eye always wants to make it symmetric.
I have included some photos of work done by students in my workshops over the last two weeks. there were some really fun works created- I encourage students to draw their own designs rather than use my patterns.

Arja's quilt Posted by Hello

Kok's quilt Posted by Hello

My book Posted by Hello