festival of quilts

  • Festival of Quilts 2012 Part VI


    From the competition quilts you’ll see in all the magazines the winning quilts, so I decided to show you only Best of Show in detail (it is also Winner Group Quilts and Judges Choice of Greta Fitchett) because it is so fun!!  It’s made by the group mentioned in the catalogue as “the ‘no name’ quilters” and on the website of TwistedThread as the Dumb-Belles. They named the quilt:  The Quilters Games. Remember the Olympic Games!!!


    524 overall winner group.JPG










    And then some other competition quilts I liked a lot

    Starting with:   Jan Frazer Australia & Jenny Rolfe UK



    My absolute favorite … Angela Schenz Austria



    Mike Wallace & Helen Parrot UK



    Natalia Manley UK & Yvonne Kervinen Sweden & Lucie summers UK


    Rita Dijkstra Netherlands & Juana Castaneda Spain



    In Category ‘two persons’: Lesley Williamson +the Bramble Shop & Debbie Evans + Aileen Bunker UK




    Caroline Wilkinson & Neel Williams & Ferret UK



    Jane Hendrickx Netherlands & Jane Appelbee Uk



    Kate Tribe UK & the Marlton Elementary School UK



    I will not talk about the ‘not-to-show-quilts’
    they were bad enough for me, I’m not going to hurt your eyes…


    So here’s time to leave Birmingham (in blog-reporting-time, it’s already a little time ago in reality…)

    I thought last year that we were flying with an old airplane because of the propellers … but I was wrong.
     In fact the Bombardier Q400 is now one of the most popular aircrafts on short distance for several airlines.
    Brussels Airlines has three of them operating. Technologically, it’s the most advanced and fastest turboprop in the world. It also has a significant reduced environmental impact; it produces 30 to 40% less emissions (more than 6.000 tons fewer of CO2 per year) and it uses also that % less fuel.
    It is also one of the most quietist aircrafts in the world. Inside there is a system called ANVS (active noise and vibration suppression) that reduces noise and vibration making it as quiet as a jet whit outside 10 decibels less noise!


    Look at the site of Bombardier (click – there’s EN for English version) and you’ll know everything about it.


    So, this might be one of the reasons why I’ll be going back to Birmingham next year J  among a lot of other reasons …





    Hope you enjoyed my reporting about the Festival of Quilts in Birmingham 2012 !!! you want to see more? Well, only one solution: you’ll have to go over there JJJ  next year…


    8th to 11th august 2013 à  note this in your calendars   !!!


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  • Festival of Quilts 2012 Part V


    I mentioned I’ll talk about two special shops I discovered this year, well here’s about the first one :


    When walking through the alley’s, I suddenly saw a men doing something I remember I did with my grandmother when I was a little girl (more than 50 years ago L). It was like a flash that came back and I recognized immediately the “lucette”, in En = lucet. It was so fun to see this again that I didn’t hesitate, and bought it, I got amused with it the same evening in the hotel and next day I could go back to show how fun it is. You don’t know what I’m talking about? Well you all know the little knitting mill (a bobbin with four nails) (fr=tricotin – nl=punnik) I’ve been showing often here and what you already saw in so many shops – it’s very common – and which makes you round cords. The lucet is also making cords, is much faster and gives you a square cord.  You can use them as braids, ribbons, trims, cordage, lacings …


    J’ai découvert en me promenant le long des stands un petit coin où un homme faisait des cordes telles que je me souviens d’avoir fait avec ma grand-mère en utilisant la « lucette » ! J’ignorais que l’on l’utilisait toujours et cela m’étais complètement sorti de la tête. Mais c’est vrai que toutes les techniques anciennes reviennent tôt ou tard… Le tricotin vous fait des cordons ronds, la lucette vous donnera des cordons carrés, voilà la différence principale et sachez que cela va beaucoup plus vite de luceter que de tricotiner.
     Quand j’étais petite et que ma tante (qui était couturière) avait besoin de fins cordons, on se mettait à la tache !  Pas question de toute façon d’aller rendre visite à ma grand-mère ou autres dames de la famille et de rester assise sans rien faire : il fallait broder, crocheter ou tricoter  ou faire un autre travail manuel et pour une fille, c’était forcément en textile qu’il fallait aller ses mains.  Pour en revenir à ma tante, elle cousait par après les fins cordons faits sur la lucette, sur une robe en tant que dessin ‘brodé’– je me souviens d’une robe de mariée où il fallait des mètres et des mètres en blanc ! – ou bien cela se cousait sur l’intérieur des manches des costumes d’hommes où la doublure rejoint le tissu pour protéger le tissu contre le frottement et l’usure. Et l’on pouvait fort bien le faire en tant qu’enfants, car toutes les irrégularités dans le fil s’en vont avec un peu de vapeur et –le gas du stand m’a aussi dit - en tirant dessus. Un enfant peut faire des petites merveilles. Je fais déjà le tricotin, le kumihimo, et maintenant je me replonge en enfance avec la lucette.
    Quelques liens ? voici :

    The shop 


    How to?   clic        clic       clic     and otherwise …  go on you-tube and take your time to look around .


    So I’m having fun … some of my cords I tried out. Now starting with different colors … I feel sooooo youg again J


    Then a “wool-shop” that cought all my attention and stole my heart and mind … Ruth & Belinda

    Gorgeous wools, a stand against the wall on your right side when you come in, filled with bags of white wool in different compositions and thicknesses with some models exposed.
    You could touch Buttersoft (100% baby alpaca) 100m/100gm, Silky (80% Alpaca and 20% Mulberry Silk) 166m/100g, Light Silky (80% Alpaca and 20% Silk) 262m/100g, Light Kiss (50% Merino and 50% Mulberry Silk), 400m/100g, Baby Soft (organically farmed Australian merino wool), 375m/100g …
     I had a nice talk one day, came back the other day to buy the Light Kiss, came back the next day to buy some more … these wools are so natural, so gorgeous, just so beautiful, so nice to touch, so inviting to start knitting … I’m falling in love…

    shop ruth bel.jpg


    Ooohhh    why don’t I have more hours in a daytime????


    Click on their names hereunder and enjoy their site and blog, lots to discover! They are on Ravelry too.   Site with all info     -       Blog     -     Site of Belinda


    And so we come to the stuff I bought. Already mentioned the book of Leslie Gabrielse, also the Autobiography of Kaffe Fassett which is a heavy thick book full of pictures, of stuff you want to know about this absolute master in color, how he was as a kid and how he grow as an artist. It’s of course signed by the master …
    and a few of the magazine Selvedge.
    that’s for the heavy part of the luggage .


    Then also some fabrics (the one I was missing for my quilt for the exhibition in Edingen next October – hurry Viviane, it’s got to be finished in time!- and some fabrics at Rowan. I learned that if I have an absolute ‘flash’ and ‘coup-de-coeur’ for a fabric, I better buy it, cause the collections are moving so fast that it’s possible that next year it won’t be on the shelves anymore (except when it’s from an artist as Fassett of course). So from Nel Whatmore, I bought a package, see on the pic how good it works out in a quilt.


    And then of course my lucet, some embroidery stuff to embellish quilts and last but not least my Light-Kiss in merino-silk. Can you feel the softness through this pic??? I can!




    So this is quiet some news to read for now.
    Next posting will be the last one about the Festival, with a lot of pic’s of the competition quilts!


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  • Festival of Quilts 2012 Part IV


    One of the last artists I loved the work and the special corner in the exhibition hall is Kate Dowty who with a background in graphic design, makes some wonderful quilts with a very textural surface. Starting with a landscape, and its seasonal changes, she uses a mixture of techniques and makes beautiful mural quilts with layers of fabrics threads and colors.

    KATE DOWTY.jpg


    There were more galleries of artists, but when you are forbidden to take pictures, you cannot show anything on a blog ….



    Also we had also a lecture by Leslie Gabrielse,


    His words from his website (click)


    While a student at the Academy of the Arts in Rotterdam, I was exposed to many media and enthusiastically embraced all possibilities. I worked in ceramics, textile design, graphic arts and painting. I found handling textiles very satisfying, partially because as a child I was surrounded by many fabrics and the sound of a sewing machine because my mother was a fashion designer. Even though my material is fabric I consider myself a painter-draftsman always working with the interpretation between material and illusion.


    lect gabrielse1.jpg


    During his lecture he explained us step by step, photo by photo, how he made his appliqued quilts, embroidered with perlé thread n°5. The whole creative process was explained in detail and in fact, he is a painter with fabrics. It was a fascinating moment and I felt so sad that so little persons did take time to hear him talking about his creativity and revealing his details. You could take pictures as much you wanted, and at the end he unfolded one of his last pieces: impressive! I bought his book (signed of course) and I ‘ve done a very good buy. I remembered the first time I saw some of his quilts was in the 199x in Brugge, Belfort, when there was the annual quilt exhibition from the UK that came abroad; couple of years before the Festival of quilts were started. It was a magic moment, because the Belfort is a very special location with a nice “atmosphere”. He was also in Veldhoven at the OEQC two years ago, see my article here.


    lect gabrielse2.jpg


    One of his quilts was hanging in the NEC, at the exhibition of SAQA Masters Art Quilts volume 2.

    click on Masters 2 and you’ll see all the quilts from this travelling collection.


    lect gabrielse3.jpg


    Another “classic” in the Festival of Quilts is the Diversity in Europe with one quilt of each member-country. This year Belgium chose a public winner of last year’s exhibition (corner right up in second pic hereunder)





    From the shops I’ll show you my dear friends of “Il était une fois” : here is Michèle Charvet on the picture and if you want to see more of her boutis it’s here,
    and more of the shop and the news on the blog, it’s click here. Of course you’ll see them in the Alsace next month!


    shop iletait1fois.jpg


    My meeting with Chris Gray was wonderful; we chatted every day a little moment and had lunch on Sunday before we left. She’s a lady always full of energy and so much kindness: her blog is here     and from there you can go to her shop. At the NEC she was running between her stand and the workshops (all full and sold out)  she gave J.

    Look on the pic’s to all those little embroidery threads she dyed!


    shop mabon arts1.jpg


    She presented her little houses in real (look in the middle of the pic)  and they are all wonderful.
     For the ones who didn’t make it to Birmingham: she’ll be at Sainte Marie aux Mines and know that the patterns of her houses are also explained in French and Dutch !!

    shop mabon arts2.jpg


    An annual ‘rendez-vous’ is also the stand of the Cotton Patch of Birmingham with the fabrics of Rowan: all those colors and fabrics and models: Who wouldn’t like such a stand???

    shop rowan.jpg


    And a very special wall on a stand caught my attention: zigzags.

    Look at these stuffed little log cabins, all attached in the corners, isn’t it wonderful? The site is zigzagsonline.co.uk


    shop zigzags.jpg


    And a newcomer – at least I never saw her at the FoQ : so refreshing, so fine work, so carefully displayed and the owner … well she was always smiling and working with her hook : I present you Woolipip. Her site (click here) is full of lovely little things she made.

    shop woolipip.jpg


    So that’s it for today

    Next posting will be about two other shops, special meetings and a selection of the competition quilts. Because, don’t forget, the FoQ is first of all a giant competition of international quilting!

    Have a great weekend


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  • Festival of Quilts 2012 Part III


    One of the other galleries that was refreshing was the “CQ@10” : the 10th birthday of the Contemporary Quilt celebrating this event with a picture that refers to “tin”, symbol of 10th anniversaries. An image of a tin mine was the starting point for all these quilts. In my pic’s I added this photo of Tony Howell’s tin mine in Cornwall.
    So we could see that this one image gave a wide variety of interpretation. All techniques assembled in one space:  handmade, digital photography, machine stitched, hand painted, mixed medium.

    The CQ   has got some 600 members!




    The Prague patchwork meeting presented a original collection of the Art Quilt Club CZ.  Where in 2010 they had to incorporate rust in each quilt and in 2011 it was lace, now the theme is wool. I loved the diversity of each quilt and there were so many different interesting details to catch in each one … as well the traditional as the contemporary. I’m already looking forward to next year : the theme will be beads.






    And then we saw something very original : the exhibition called “Whisperers”.


    It started with an idea by Georgina Chapman who shared it with 13 other quilters. The challenge is based on the game of Chinese whispers, where a group of children sit in a circle and whisper a message from the first child to the last, with the last one revealing the final message. Usually the result is totally different from the starting one. So here the quilts had to be of three layers, no side more than 40” or less than 24” and each artist had six weeks to complete their work and nothing was to be discussed with the other members of the group. The first quilter made her quilt based on a photograph (joined in my pic) and she sent her completed quilt to the next quilter in the chain who only saw the quilt. Quilter 2 made a quilt from the first quilt and this was then passed to the next one and so it has continued along the list.

    Here you see the starting photo, the first quilt, the second who incorporated blue color and from the third one, they all thought there was a water theme in it! Ending with the dark blue quilt.

    It was so refreshing and very interesting to see the evolution!




    I might close today’s post about artists at the festival 2012 with the lecture we followed with Jane Sassaman = a vivid and interesting narrator (clic on her name to joint her website) . She’s so passionate by colors and fabrics and designs and talked so well about it, that the time seemed to have flown with incredible speed.

    She gave us a colorful glimpse into her inspirations and design process at Westminster fabrics. From dreaming to drawing to coloring and cutting and making a quilt or dress of it: the whole creative process was explained and we saw many examples of quilts and accessories born from Jane’s fascination of fabrics. Definitely worthwhile!!!


    lect sassaman.jpg


    To finish this article, a pic with the NEC and hotels surrounding (circles round ours and our path morning-evening). As you can see, we get from the hotel into the airport, into the special little automatic train to the train station and from there by feet through long galleries with all kind of escalators, all inside ! Nice way to start or finish the day!



    Next time you’ll see some more information and pictures of my “Coups de Coeur” I had this year in Birmingham.


    Have a nice day meantime J


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  • Festival of Quilts 2012 Part II


    Today, let’s talk of my absolute favorite of this year.


    C.June Barnes & Janice Gunner. They called their exhibition ‘unexpected pleasures’ and it was a pleasure!


    They both know one another for 20 years they joined forces to present a display of innovative work. You could find a collection of things in 3-dimension in different ways: hanging, standing, moving, and illuminating. They also had pieces you were invited to touch because color changed the fabric they used with the warmth of your fingers. It was magic and marvelous! Look at some pictures I took and also to their websites: click on their names for the link in a new window:  June Barnes 
    Janice Gunner.








    The second I loved particularly, was Anne Woringer.





    I also liked the work of Sohie Furbeyre, but “no pictures” … she did not want photo’s been taking … eternal annoying fact on an exhibition …. 


    Pauline Burbidge’s exhibition was also very well done and presented, but I love more her earlier work than the one she’s been doing last decade. And I’m sure you’ll see on so many other blogs the review of her career in her gallery at the Nec.


    We had also a new EQA exhibition with little quilts of all the member-countries (17 in total). You remember I showed already mine(click) , it’s the theme Crossroads and it had to be 20cm height on 50cm wide.

    so here a snapshot of some of the countries exhibited at the NEC and they were really beautifully displayed!

    (Sorry for the yellow shine, wonder if it wasn’t the spots who were giving bad lightL)

    And some close-up’s



    It’s an exhibition that will travel, so if it’s coming in your area, don’t hesitate to go have a look, because they’re really interesting!

    Our second day was also filled with a little workshop and a lecture.

    The workshop with Rosalind Johanson : applique an African panel … I thought I would learn something more on the techniques or materials used in Africa, but it was a simple bondaweb giraffe or elephant on a batik base and black cotton appliqued with blanket-stitch. We learned nothing and so it was a little disappointed, not for the hour sitting down and working with thread and fabric, but for the fact that I thought it would be ... different and more "african".


    The lecture was with Louise Mabbs : get to Ghana, got to Ghana. And again a little disappointment because the theme was not really about explaining the textiles (adinkra, asafo, kente) but more about her travel and the persons she met.


    But when we see all the workshops and lectures we had last years, and that so little don’t answer our expectations … it’s still worthwhile to register for a few! And the third day we had two awesome lectures (more in next post).

    So ... we choose another gallery on the map to visit, and though it’s a very classical theme with always a strict geometric pattern; it was very nice to see! It looked more modern than you would think by using always the same block in one quilt. All fabrics are shiny (dupion silk and polyester satins) and it was a technical outstanding hand-work!


    I’m talking about Brigitte Morgenroth. (click on name)




    And for today, this will be all.


    I’ll finish with something what’s connecting all visitors ...


    No No,  not only the love for quilts,

    but the fact that fashion stops  … somewhere above the ground


    … we all have a comfy comfortable zone in shows …







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  • Festival of Quilts 2012 Part I


    Here we went on Thursday morning, direction : a kind of heaven on earth for a couple of days … J

    We had a clear sky, could see where Liliane lives, the Atomium, the Royal palace … nice departure!




    Arrived at Birmingham Airport, we take the little automatic train  (a green and a blue one, depends on the publicity...) to the railway station from where we can walk through the galleries to the “NEC” (national exhibition center). Never have to get outside!

    No Time to Waste; they announced it in big letters above our heads!!! how clever!!!!




    The first stop after having bought a catalogue …   the kids to see what our three Belgian girls had done, and YEAH - !! J  !! - a third prize and a highly commended: two on three = they’re doing better than our adult quilters J

    The pic’s are little yellow, don’t know how our why, I’ve got it with some of the ones I took over there. Is ‘it because of the spotlights, the fact I didn’t use flash ..; anyhow, we’re proud of our youth quilters!



    Liliane and I had planned two little workshops and four lectures, looking all the competition quilts and all the artist’s galleries and shopping and between all this also some food-taking and drinking … we came back exhausted but happy we’ve done it again. It’s the eight year we’re visiting the Festival of Quilts that had its tenth anniversary this year. 

    First day was first workshop. One with Jane Davies (we attended one with her two years ago, clic here to see that project).


    So here we are again with a lovely lady, a fantastic artist, with a nice project to start. This time it was all about to discover the versatility of a simple stitch. Some fabrics laid one over another, in a way of your choice, a nice perlé thread, a needle and a leaflet with some embroidery stitches. It’s the way you put them on the fabrics that makes it interesting. It’s not yet finished, have to do some more stuff and I’ll show the result later. Here a pic of Jane Davies with some of her samples. I can tell you that we enjoyed it, we learned some interesting little things, always good to know and we had a wonderful hour. clic here to see more




    We had also a lecture of Sandra Meech, and it was very interesting. She talked about the importance of good design and composition in today’s contemporary stitched textiles and included a lot of work of other artists in her slides. She’s got a new book out (connecting design to stitch) and this was an excerpt of it. That little hour was way too short! She had a demonstration stand in the hall too, and we could see some of her latest quilts over there. clic here to have her website and see soo much more of the wonderfull things she creates.




    We saw on the first day a lot of things too! One gallery was in memory of Marie Roper. And it was the opportunity to see a few of her quilts and dolls she made. I’m an absolutely fan of her little knitting-lady! clic on her name to see more on  her site




    We went also for some shopping on the first day – I’ll group all the items later in another post.
    First I want to let you see how the plan of the site looked like. I think we can only dream in France and Belgium of such a place reserved for pick nick and dinner … they almost kept an entire hall for seats with the result that you didn’t see people eating sandwiches sitting on the floor! Very very very good idea!!!

    si les personnes qui organisent l'Aiguille en Fête lisent ce message, svp, faites de même : garder beaucoup beaucoup beaucoup de la place pour s'asseoir et manger à son aise ....

    You could easily rest some moments and chat a little and enjoy the fresh air. I have to say that except first day, we didn’t really had too warm (it was also 10°Celsius less warmer than in Belgium J, I think we had max  25°C outside) because they opened regularly doors at the sides of the halls. So happy shopping and looking time in a sometimes gentle breeze blowing!




    I’ll stop here for today, have to do some grocery shopping first and I’ll prepare my future articles and pictures for the next days. Do I need to say that I’m a happy person  LachenLachenZoenen?


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  • Festival of Quilts 2011-4

    The competition quilts were as usual displayed at the entrance, left and right. Every year there are less traditional quilts, so for the lovers of this kind of patchwork, I can understand their frustration to have not “enough”. However in many shops, a lot of patterns were seen.

    I picked out my favorites.

    The absolute winner: the big knitted log-cabin quilt from Pauline Law, followed by

    Hilary Beattie who had three quilts in three different categories. Bente Kultorp, Angela Mary, Annette Morgan, Edith Bieri, Fay Allwood, Hilde van Schaardenburg (I’ve seen here in a glimps when leaving the hall, just time enough to say hello and goodbye), Janneke de Vries Bodzinga = truly winner, Maggie Barber, such finesse at close view, Robyn Fahy, Yvonne Kervinen from Sweden.

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    Not a special quilt, but nice texts on it which made laugh a lot of visitors: the quilt from Victoria Dale

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    In our Youth section: 15 Belgian quilts among the kids!!!!!! What a success!

    A few ‘highly commended’ from the jury and ….

    Here we go again!

    Yes, Mirthe, who was a winner last year, is this year again awarded. Here little sister Hanna, first participation, is too!

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    In the creation and 3-D objects … nothing special in my eyes, that’s why I didn’t take any pic from it…

    From the special features of this year I also want to show you something from Jennifer Hollingdale, hint from quilt companion Chris. Very nice how she integrated the closures we use daily in quilts.

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    Another of my favorites was the exhibition of the Art Quilt Club from Prague, the Czech Republic. Every year they launch a challenge with a theme, and this year it was “lace”. Yes, that’s something I like to see!

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    A very nice lady from Japan: Yoshiko Katagiri.

    Emma took also some good pictures: click this link to see them   

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    Arabic inspiration was also a big hit for me. Such beautiful designs!

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    I saw the winning quilt from Padmaja Krishnann some years ago and here was a special exhibition area and stand for her. Just with running stitches, she gets to create some stunning work. No appliqué, just embroidery through all the layers.

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    Regina Benson with her rusted burned and discharged quilts had a special area, also Jennie Rayment with her fabric manipulated pleated quilts and artfacts. I had lectures from them some years ago and they are both very good souvenirs! so no pics from them this year (those among you who follow blogs, will find surely some pics in other places of the web)


    At the fair, a little stand, a “coup de Coeur”, a sudden strong envy to have these little brooches …  today I wear the little dog; tomorrow maybe the gentle sheep…


    festival of quilts, honningdale, yoshiko katagiri,

    If you liked my Birmingham postings, click on these for those of 2010 and 2009





    Enjoy the Belgian sunny weather this weekend,
    and hopefully the announced storms for tomorrow won’t be as intense and lethal as the one from Thursday evening.







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  • Festival of Quilts 2011-3


    At the FoQ, on Friday I had a meeting planned with Emma.


    She’s got a shop (au fil d’Emma) and a stand at SteMarieAuxMines  , she’s got a blog with interesting videos (atelier d’Emma ) and another blog with her textile creations (Emma creations  ). We took the time to chat a little before she went back home.


    I also met –again- Camille.
    Remember my stay in Dijon at the 4SaisonsDuPatch?
    Camille had a workshop where you could design your own fabric. You make a colored drawing on an A4 paper and then she makes a sample fabric of it.

    Well here is my result …


    Above you see the paper version, under the fabric, which is wonderful soft pure cotton. More information you can find on her site (creez votre tissu ).
     Don’t hesitate to try the adventure!

    She’s fun, always smiling, it must be a joy to be next to her on a fair!

    il était une fois.jpg

    In Birmingham she had a big stand (Il était une fois) with the fabrics of her and mums design (look at their blog …  ), mostly for cute child coverlets or some feminine stuff, with the advantage that they have coordinating more ‘filling-design’ fabrics too.

    And I bought some for a quilt for my little grandchild (coming soon!).

    As you can see below, it’s very sturdy and masculine: all little and big cars in the colors that fit with my home. And with some nice teddy bears too. So when he’ll be coming here, he will have his own little quilt. I have already the pattern in my head; just have to make it…

    PS à Camille = merci des petits dessins en plus!

    il était une fois tissus achetés.jpg

    And on another booth I found these labels


    And some other fabrics from the African Fabric Shop (will be in SteMarie too) and some (no classic blue ones) from Hungarian Kekfesto .


    But it’s not all buying, it’s also learning!

    You already read I had a lecture from Mably, but there was also one by Sue Marks (Dr Susan Beryl Marks) about “Patchwork in the Parlour”.
    It was about the Victorian parlour where the lady of the house could best demonstrate her artistic taste and refinement.
    She gave us a glimpse behind the curtains to see how she and her daughters decorated and embellished their homes with patchwork, from tea cozies to mantel covers.

    sue marks crazy1.jpg

    It was very interesting to learn some more about history. She had also some wonderful old samples with her and we could touch it!!! Gorgeous silks and velvets and satins....
    In the hall were some other pieces to be seen from the collection of the British Quilters’ Guild, Museum York.

    sue marks crazy2.jpg

    On Saturday we had a lecture from Katriina Flensburg about ‘environmental impact on artistic expression’.
    She’s a Scandinavian quilt artist who told us about her search to the effects of environmental factors such as social interaction, geographic location and commercial environment on the output of quilters in general.
    She made a survey among colleagues from various countries and showed and explained us where she noticed differences or similitudes.
    All highlighted with slides with a lot of pictures.


    Very interesting and you start looking quite differently to quilts afterwards.

    She had also an exhibition stand at the Festival.


    flensburg article.JPG

    Besides those lectures, Liliane and I had a workshop with Fiona Wilson. She was at the stand of the ‘Graduate Showcase’ at the Festival in 2009.


    fiona workshop1.jpg

    The work session was about making a little work (to be framed) experimenting with bonding, knotting and simple running stitch on bonded and translucent fabrics.
    We all left with a beautiful little panel.
    The workshop itself was relaxing, fun and very well prepared. A brown envelope contained all we needed to start.
    I keep a good souvenir of those 90 minutes!

    fiona result workshop.jpg

    Let’s go back to the exhibition hall.
    On the wall near the restaurant area, was a huge quilt of little houses.
    Soooooo beautiful!


    And can you imagine how neat the stands are before 10am?
    It doesn’t stay as clean and empty like on this pictures         -

    so neat.jpg

    This year, there were finally enough places to sit down while eating something warm or cold or your own pick nick. It took several years to the management to understand that we like to put our butt on a seat and not on the ground. If they would understand this in L’Aiguille en Fête in France too … it would be nice!


    And for those who couldn’t come … just see the map below of the hall and I’m sure you want to be there next time too.

    map festial of quilts 2011.JPG

    Next posting will be about some other quilts I like, and about the quilts of the competition area, but I already want to finish with the ‘wrong’ ones, just as last year, and the years before…
    I pity for those quilters who don’t have friends or a teacher to tell them what they are doing wrong…

    I agree with the organization that everyone must have the opportunity to exhibit and enter a quilt in the competition, so they don’t refuse entrees, but really, a little notion of basic technique should be required.

    What not to do:

    Curling the quilts : view from the right

    not to1.jpg

    Put a sleeve anyhow on the quilts : view of top quilts

    not to2.jpg

    Playing accordion with the quilts : view under

    not to3.jpg

    view them from any side …

    not to4.jpg







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  • Festival of Quilts 2011-2


    Let’s go on with some highlights of the FoQ 2011,
     my highlights (it’s my blog anyway -

    Starting with the EQA.

    In Diversity in Europe, a selection of the EQA countries for this year, Belgium sent in the winner of last national competition: Sylvie Hoffman with her very beautiful appliqué, you can see it here left of the quilt from France with this time a very classical triangle-quilt. Every country chooses which quilt they will send in, and it can be a viewer’s choice at their annual exhibition, as well as it might be a special quilter they want to be in the frontline.


    And the very beautiful collection of the little “circle of friends” quilts.
    Every country member of the European Quilt Association had to bring circles of 20-30 cm diameter; each one in black and white and 30% of a color they were assigned.
    Some colors were unique, some did also had to be used by other countries (17 members with green blue violet orange red yellow, in total : three primary and three secondary colors).
    This year Belgium had ‘reds’ to use.

    The responsible of each country had to make also one and while the 17 members were exposed on the walls, the little circles of the responsible were hanging in the air, above your head. Very good setting and it pleased to all the visitors.
    It was so airy, light, bright and special!



    Those who look sometimes to the links in my left column, see Creatilfun and 12by12 (do have a look : just clickclick!!).

    They have now a book with their first 144 quilts.

    Who are they? Quilters from different countries of three continents.


    They set challenging themes and each quilter makes a twelve inch quilt that is then revealed on their website.
    Now they were presented in blocks with (what was a very good idea) each quilter always at the same place in the mosaic.

    I of course bought the book which was kindly signed by our own Belgian Françoise and by Diane Perin Hock.
    Twelve by Twelve will go with these little quilts to Houston & more …

    12by12 setting.jpg

    I also loved the quilts made by Grietje van der Veen,  but ... forbidden to make pictures, I can only show the one I took ‘secretly’ from the outer side of her stand … oeps!

    Grietje van der veen.jpg

    An absolute favorite (and that will stay so for a long time) is this one …


    Yes, the tentmakers of Old Islamic Cairo!
    When you see how these men make a quilt … simply amazing.
    It’s a work I much admire.
    We are using fine threads, fine needles, fine pencils, and fine scissors
    while they work with big, really big scissors to cut randomly shapes to appliqué all those little pieces, they sew it with a strong needle and rather thick thread….
    We are sitting on a good table, preferably with an ergonomic chair, we need a lot of place (
    Look how they are installed, simply sitting cross-legged on the ground or on a small bench to mark with a chalk pencil or sewing on the knees and making this incredible appliqué quilts with a very complex design in such rich colors.


    Their quilts were sold at a very cheap price.
    I found that they might have asked much more for their work, especially when I saw another artist (!?!) who asked 4950£ for a quilt that had the same size as one these tentmakers were selling at 250£.


    It’s sad to know that they are a slowly disappearing group.
    Only about forty older stitchers are trying to keep this beautiful tradition alive.
    It’s a hard work and underpaid, so younger ones are not really motivated.
    As always, hand-work should be more appreciated and respected …

    I took a lot of pic’s, and it’s difficult to choose, so I hope you like this selection.



    Did I make some other purchases than the book of 12by12 ? 

    Yes of course …

    I took a little jar filled with hand-dyed cotton & linen threads from Chris Gray of MabonArts. 

    mabonarts fils.jpg

    We had a very nice chat, e-mails exchanged, and I certainly will get back to their stand when I come to a fair they attend.
    I also bought a little jar with all in for a little art-quilt and some threads.
    Admit it; would you have resisted the temptation?

    mabonarts stand.jpg

    mabonarts stand b.jpg

    And then I take traditionally my ‘Selvedge’ series of the year, and now I bought also some back issues. It was interesting in price.


    I also took the new book of Kaffe Fassett with very colorful quilts and pages (as we are used to see) and all again in very simple shapes. 


    It’s – of course – signed by the master. J

    kaffe f book.jpg

    kaffe f.jpg

    We had also the lecture of Brandon Mably who talked about his ‘working-with’ Kaffe (please pronounce Keef!).
    The inspirations, the realization of a new collection, the creation process … interesting to hear how it works behind the scenes!

    kafffe lecture brandon mably.jpg

    that’s it for today, now preparing next posting …






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  • Festival of Quilts 2011-1


    Hello everyone!  You see it: I’m back from wonderful four-textile-days.

    Magic moments of wonder,
    amazing moments discovering little treasures,
    surprising moments when I saw ugly quilts (like last year …), made wonderful contacts,
    met very nice people (of course!),
    had very interesting lectures and a good little workshop.
    I bought also too much stuff, but, yes, that temptation is so strong … and the £ versus € is interesting.
    So I spoiled myself a little.

     In the next days, I’ll tell you about my vision of the Festival of Quilts.
    Thus there will be (exceptionally) no preview as usual on Mondays for my book – I’m going to skip one week.

    Let’s start with the Start!


    I thought that those airplanes didn’t fly anymore, that they were old and ‘antique’ …
    eeeuuuuhhh … NO!
     They still go in the air! A plane driven with such big propellers …



    To start we (Liliane and I) were sitting in the last row of the tail:
    that’s a place a little more “agitating” your bips than when you’re seating in the nose of the plane, especially when the pilot is rather a "sportive driver".
    But it took only an hour, and we were glad to walk through the galleries of the NEC in direction of the hall where the Festival took place.
    The suitcase on wheels is really a good invention, even if at departure the weight is only 8 kilos, wheels are good!

    And you never guess how we came back … yes in the same propeller-plane!!
    With a lot of more weight (17,5 kilo for my suitcase and more for certain others…).
    This time with a better pilot … calm and smoothly,
     but … now we had a seat just near the propellers … a “little” more noisy though!
    But again, as you can read, safely landed and,
    with my suitcase, open at home yesterday evening,
    I’ve been enjoying the look at my purchases.
    Now I just have to download the hundreds of pic’s I took


    Besides this ‘airplane-report’ ???  oh, you know me … I have always something interesting happening …
    I think this year it’s the last time we went to Express Holiday Inn nearby the NEC in Birmingham.
    After five years of happiness over there, we had this year some moments of ‘just bad luck’.

    There is no restaurant-service for the evening in the hotel (only breakfast) but a Pub is just nearby where we got used to go for supper. Even with a silly system with numbered spoons to put on the table an ordering at the bar to get your food, it was rather good: a nice atmosphere, good food, a wide choice … all the ingredients to spend a nice evening as closure of a good day.

    First evening now, on Thursday, we had the happy surprise that ordering was taken at the table! Wow! They finally understood that that’s the way to work in a restaurant! (Later I learned that the ‘spoons’ were still used in the right side of the pub…).

    So we had a good tasteful meal. Look at my dessert (profiteroles) and Liliane’s (crumble) on a big big plate.


    Next day (friday) we went back: oooohhhh !!!! you had to make a reservation!
    Why didn’t they tell us day before????
    So no reservation = no food.
    And for next day (saturday) ? I asked.
    well, You have to come back tomorrow to see if there’s a table left, did they say. 
    And can we take a reservation now for the next day? No.
    Maybe if you come soon enough … and – question - that is? – answer -  Soon enough, and then maybe you’ll have food….
    They still are not very commercial-minded in that pub, if you ask me. In Belgium that would never happen (this is a little chauvinistic thought)

    But … nevertheless: we saw that in the hotel they had (new since this year) a meal-service from 6 till 10 pm. So we go back and sit down and order.
    The choice is rather limited: chicken wings as appetizer, three kinds of pizza’s and a burger with fries. That’s it.
    Okay, for once, we’ll do with this. Sitting with about twelve persons in the resto, a few guys sitting nearby, some quilters, all waiting for their meal, we join them. And we wait, and wait, and wait.

    The guys look not really satisfied; they are waiting since an hour!
    The responsible of the hotel explains that they are overwhelmed in the kitchen and very busy (??? we are not that crowded thought we…).
    But then, the waiter arrives with one plate in his two hands with a burger and fries for one of them. And after a couple of minutes he brings the second one for the other guys and so on, and when the last one gets his burger, the first one has finished … and after some minutes more they receive some more fries – ordered a while before.
    Meanwhile some other tables of quilters get their food too, and we? We are still waiting.
    Getting nervous and very hungry, Liliane and Chris go to the vending machine to buy two little packages of chips …
    After an hour waiting the responsible explains to us that the machine of ordering broke down and thus our order never arrived at the kitchen (some ten meters are separating the bar where orders are placed and the kitchen…must be very long for the staff...).

    Finally after one hour and twenty minutes, I got my burger (as hard as leather) and fries (black and dry - hey, I’m from the country of tasty fries!!!).
    With a little part of the pizza of Liliane and a little wing from Chris (chicken from her plate of course, not from her body!) and the salted chips, my stomach has calmed down and we decide wisely not to repeat this adventure…

    So on Saturday evening, we bought a sandwich in the NEC before leaving the exhibition area, and eaten it in the restaurant-room of our hotel and saw then, that indeed, they had a problem with the ordering system, because now the few (very few) people attempting the supper-adventure-in-the-hotel are served within ten minutes with their burger or pizza.
    But as we really didn’t want to eat another pizza or burger on saturday, at noon we took a pasta dish in the NEC, and in the evening we had our tasty sandwich. Afterwards, we sew, crochet, and talked together till night, and that was a nice closure of our Holiday-Inn-staying.

    Got to say that breakfast was not that  good as before (no tasty bread, no cheese or ham anymore– but new on the buffet were the white beans and sausages)

    It was nice with meals in the pub nearby in the past, but if they don’t take anybody anymore, and limit to one service an evening-shift ….

    So we’ll see next year, where we will lay down our tired little feet to sleep.

    And now I’ll prepare my pic’s for tomorrow and read the blogs I follow!


    Have a nice Monday afternoon and evening.



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