Saturday, May 31, 2008

Gesture Drawing

The first drawings I do of botanical subjects are gesture drawings. I place my pen or pencil on the page, and without looking at the page I follow the lines of the plant from bottom to top. Sometimes I run out of page before I run out of plant, so I'll draw it again until I have learned to fit the plant on my drawing sheet. I think some of the most lyrical and elegant drawings result from gesture drawings. One learns to really look at the subject, rather than assuming anything from past experience/culture.
This is an ink drawing of Chicory intybus, one of the few true blue wildflowers that grow in my region.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Quiltfest 2008

A notice from Susan Purney-Mark, the Publicity Director of the Assoc. of Pacific Northwest Quilters:

Quiltfest 2008 is coming soon...don't forget to add the dates August
8-10th, 2008 to your calendar! Quiltfest is the biennial quilt show
hosted by the Association of Pacific Northwest Quilters. The show
will feature over 250 quilts from the best quilters in the Pacific
Northwest including BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon, Montana, Idaho,
Alaska, Northwest Territories and the Yukon.

The show is held at the Washington State Convention and Trade Centre
in downtown Seattle. As well as the show there are many special
exhibits from Canada, Japan, South Africa and the UK. Its an event
not to be missed! We hope to see you there! For further information
see the web site:

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Portland International Spring Quilt Market 2008 Final

My husband Sid is my booth helper (one of my customers called him 'Booth Candy'), but also lends a hand wherever needed with others. His job is also to scout out a local microbrewery/restaurant and lead us all to dinner at the end of the last day. He chose the Deschutes Brewery, which had just opened, and which Sid had researched on the internet before we went to Portland. It certainly was excellent - the beer, the food and the service!

Sid and Tracey Browning (Quizzles) from Australia

Sid tells a good story! To his right are Tracey Browning and Helen Stubbings (Hugs 'n Kisses) of Australia, and Shannon Haley-Funcke of Iowa, President of Quilt Press.

Jean Boyd on the left (Patterns by Jean Boyd), myself in the middle (Botanical Art Quilts) and Tricia Sherman on the right (Great Canadian Shop Hop).

Life is good.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Portland International Spring Quilt Market 2008 #3

International Quilt Market is a pile of hard work, but as you can see in these photos it is also a whole lot of fun. You never know who you'll meet wandering down an aisle. I noticed the name "Karen Combs" on the tag of a lady in the Blank Textiles booth, and invited her back to my booth. Karen has designed many of the Blank fabrics that I use in my quilts. She was so appreciative of my work that she brought a number of Blank people back, including le grand fromage Mitchell Blank, the President of Blank Textiles.

Karen is a designing dynamo, author and teacher. Her website is and her blog is Karen Combs.
Here we are struttin' our stuff!

Sharon Pederson visited our aisle, known as
Little Canada. Sharon was debuting her latest book,
Machine Appliqué for the Terrified Quilter
published by Martingale & Company.

A sassy lady sporting a new henna
tattoo also stopped by. Her initials
are Tricia Sherman, and she is the
owner of The Great Canadian Shop Hop as well as being a media star for
I met Tricia in 2007 when she filmed
the 4th episode of GCSH at Country Concessions, a quilt shop in
Cookstown, Ontario.
I was one of the featured designers.

Tomorrow will be the last post on Quilt Market - photos from the Deschutes Brewery!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Portland International Spring Quilt Market 2008 con't

One of the most wonderful things about International Quilt Market is connecting with old friends and meeting new ones. Although we come from different parts of the globe, we are all in the same business and share common challenges and goals. These are photos of friend's and neighbor's booths.

Jean Boyd of Patterns by Jean Boyd and Upper Canada Quiltworks, having a chat with Jeanie Sumrall-Ajero, the owner/designer of the software company Kaleidoscope Collections.

Christine Baker of Fairfield Road Designs and Nellie Holmes of originellie's, also under the banner of Upper Canada Quiltworks. I asked for an action shot and I got one!

Barbara Cribb of Wild Thymes Pattern Co., my booth neighbor. Barb's wool creations are gorgeous, and her handouts for the Schoolhouse sessions were the best I've ever seen.

Tracey Browning of Wysistas and the creator of Quizzles (interactive quilt pattern software). Tracey and Helen (the next photo) were our neighbors at International Quilt Market in Salt Lake City last year. They both hail from Australia. It was great to reconnect with them. In fact, I found them in the quilt books aisle at Powell's Book Store!

The fabulous award-winning Helen Stubbings of Hugs 'n Kisses. Helen gave me one of her coveted Boobie Buttons, which I sat and coloured in her booth. You can see the buttons on her blog, Helen's Hugs.

Tomorrow I'll post more action shots...

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Portland International Spring Quilt Market 2008

International Quilt Market, a wholesale trade show, is held twice a year in the U.S. Fall Market is always in Houston in late October. Spring Market moves between several cities in the northern areas. Last week Market was in Portland, OR. Portland is a beautiful city located in the Pacific Northwest on the Columbia River. Mount Hood and Mount Adams are visible, and Mount St. Helen's is northwards.

My husband Sid came along to help, and we arrived a day early to explore downtown Portland.

The first amazing visit was to the Portland Chinese Classical Garden, also known as the garden of awakening orchids.The other wonderful experience was spending a couple of hours in Powell's Book Store, the largest independent new and used bookstore in the world. We filled our packsack with books of all sorts. What a treat!

The next day was booth set-up.

And lastly, a photo of Sample Spree - a wild frenzy of shopping!

Tomorrow I'll show photos of friend's and neighbor's booths.

Friday, May 23, 2008

The Bed Quilt Club 8

I'm slowly digging through all the work generated from International Quilt Market in Portland. I'll post about Market starting tomorrow. Today, however, I'll share the last Bed Quilt Club meeting which was held 2 days ago. Marg kindly emailed the photos to me, as I was up to my neck in printing patterns and couldn't attend.

Once again, the guidelines:
  1. You must be working on a bed quilt.
  2. There are no deadlines or pressures or responsibilities.
  3. You can Show & Tell any project.
  4. Helpful tips and suggestions are welcome.
Myrna's quilt is away to be quilted. She is SO going to win the Speed Queen Award.
Pat shared news of a huge new Canadian Shop Hop to be held this fall.

Doris did some reverse sewing where she had used the wrong colour logs in her blocks. These are the beautiful result! The pattern is "Cabin Fever" from Trudie Hughes' book Log Cabin Quartet.

Gwen finished her quilt top. The pattern is "It's Always Green in Miami" from Jane Hardy Miller's book French Braid Quilts.

Marg sewed 25 more Friendship Star blocks. She is hosting our final get-together at her camp on Manitoulin Island on June 21st. Here's proof that I'm psychic: Pyjamas will be worn. Gin and tonics and single malt scotch will be consumed. There will be a few tears and much laughter.
A good time will be had by all!

Colleen wasn't able to attend, but brought in her 9 Patch Block exchanges earlier. The 9 Patch Block exchange rules are:
  1. 3" finished size blocks, 1" finished squares.
  2. No solids or whites.
  3. The dark squares are at the outside corners and centre.
  4. Blocks will be 2 fabrics: light and dark.
  5. We have to include every block from the swap in our quilts.
  6. We can add as many extra blocks as we want to our own quilt.
Starting tomorrow - some great photos from Quilt Market.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Sugar Maple Dance

Sugar Maple Dance, 45" x 45", Janet Rice-Bredin

This is my latest pattern. The inspiration for this design is the gorgeous colours of Sugar Maple trees on a warm autumn evening. The blue background quilt is on the quilt pattern cover, and the cream background quilt is on the back.

The fabrics are all from Blank Textiles, and the decorative threads are from Superior Threads.

I'll be leaving for Portland International Quilt Market this weekend. If any of you are going, please drop by my booth #1608 to say hello!

I'll post again when I return.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

The Bed Quilt Club 7

The Bed Quilt Club met yesterday, which will be the last meeting I am able to attend. I'll be exhausted and crazy when I come home from Portland International Quilt Market, and I plan on sitting on my deck in a daze.

However, this was a great meeting with many beautiful bed quilts shown and here is the first: "Fall Fantasy" by Doris, from the book Clever Quarters Too by Susan T. Dissmore. It was beautifully longarm quilted by our very own Catherine Sloan. Doris made this quilt at camp.

The next was made by Pat, who shared with us her tales of woe in the making of this scrap quilt. According to Pat, nobody knows the trouble this quilt has been. Can you spot the Humble Block? This is the one that ended up (accidentally) sideways. Despite the problems, the quilt turned out very well!
Gwen is working on a second pattern called "It's Always Green in Miami" from the book French Braid Quilts. These strips will become 2 quilts for brothers, who are Gwen's step grandsons.
Marg has made 14 more Friendship Star blocks. She is also wearing a quilt fabric tie made by Pat years ago from fabric that most of us have owned in the past!

Myrna has completed her quilt top, which is ready to be quilted.

Myrna has also made a scrap quilt from her fabric stash which she is donating to the Sudbury Hospice. Did I mention she also works at Pat's store, drives 100 km round trip to get to work, travels often and has a beautiful log home and amazing garden?

I feel tired just thinking about it.

We also traded our nine patch blocks, and planned a pyjama party at Marg's camp in June. Pat has added more "rules" to the block swap.
  1. We have to include every block in the swap in our quilts.
  2. We can add as many extra blocks as we want to our own quilt.
Pat is the boss of this exchange, so she gets to make the rules (is what she says, anyway). I think we should have a democratic vote for the next boss.

I haven't done a thing with my bed quilt. Instead I am feverishly working on Quilt Market stuff. I'll post a photo of my latest pattern tomorrow!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

'Princes Irene' Tulip

And no, I didn't spell Princes incorrectly. This is one of my favorite tulips. How can you go wrong with orange and purple?

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Floral Celebrations Table Set

I just finished remaking my Floral Celebrations Table Set pattern in Northcott's new Tulip Time fabrics which are their Quest for a Cure 2008 collection. These fabrics are so beautiful, I couldn't resist! Ro Gregg is the fabric designer. I'm going to change the pattern cover to showcase this version. I'll be teaching the placemat pattern in my Take & Teach classes at the Portland International Quilt Market in less than 2 weeks. Northcott has generously donated all the fabrics for the kits.

Floral Celebrations Table Runner

Floral Celebrations Table Topper

This is the information Northcott has on their website about the Quest for a Cure program:

Commited in the Fight to Cure Breast Cancer

Northcott is donating a portion of the purchase price for every yard we sell of selected collections to Breast Cancer Research. Participating collections will be identified by the Quest for a Cure™ logo. This logo can be found on hang tags on the bolts supporting this cause in your local quilt shop.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Tulipa tarda

I took this photo of Tarda tulips exactly one year ago in my old garden. My husband built a 5'x10' raised garden yesterday, for temporary storage of all the perennials I have stashed in friend's gardens until I begin building my own perennial beds. Monday's job is to fill the temporary garden with soil, then start bringing home the plants.