War Quilts

Sometimes you can be lucky.  I was lucky the other day when I was reminded on Facebook that there was an exhibition called War quilts showing out at the Ipswich Art Gallery. 

It is only on for a week and finishes this Saturday 25th March '17, so you will need to be quick to see it there.  It will also be on display at the Australian Quilt Convention in Melbourne in April.  I have to say that I have been to lots of Historical Quilt exhibits around the world but this one was exceptional.  And because it was out at Ipswich there were no crowds and I got to REALLY see every stitch.

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As I was on the mainland baby sitting and I had a few hours before I had to pick up the girls from school, It was into the car to brave the traffic and the rain to get there.   This is only a small gallery but they always have good exhibits and we visit with the children quite a lot.  They have a dedicated Children's Gallery for under twelves which the kids love.

I don't know where to start with these quilts.  Firstly, there is a wonderful book by Dr Annette Gero, $89 but worth every penny. 

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Photo Wayne Taylor

I can't find the book in any on-line book shop as yet so she must be selling them herself.

  I will start with a quilt I saw a number of years ago in a dark corner in the Brisbane Council Gallery in the 1990's.  Back then my eyes nearly popped out of my head when I saw it.  I knew it was very significant but there was no label on it and it was just part of a 'People of Queensland' display.  I rang the council, spoke to the attendants but couldn't get any information and it disappeared.  Now here it was again and this time all the information was there.

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I didn't have my camera with me, it is in for repair, so all the photos were taken on my iphone.  I looked for a sign about photography, but there was non and I asked the attendant who thought it would be fine to take photos.  I still felt a bit uncomfortable taking photos so didn't take as many as I would have liked.  It is the details that I wanted to see.  There are lovely images in the book but not those little details.   Like the embroidery with the applique of the children's song.  All the flowers and grass are embroidered there.  Even the hair on the pig

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And there is a snake in the tree.  The tree of knowledge?

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And look at those rabbits and that bird.

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And this is just ONE of the many wonderful quilts on display.   I am pouring over the book which is full of detail and as I digest more of the information I will post again about this exhibition.  I might even make an embroidery of part of this quilt.

 

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WIPW

As per usual I grossly under estimated the amount of work in the borders.  I thought I would be finished by now but I have only finished the inner border.

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This inner border is worked in single faggot stitch.  Now, this is normally a drawn thread stitch but if you work the stitch with out pulling it, it makes a great decorative border.  I went to get my text on drawn thread and all I found was a space on the book shelf.  I hope I haven't lent that book to someone.  So it is just a hand drawn illustration of the stitch.  This was worked over 4 threads.

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With any luck I might finish this next week.


More effort needed!

Last Sunday friend Janey invited me to an embroidery class that was being held in the Brisbane City Library.  This was an event to celebrate Harmony Day and Nowruz , (Persian New Year).  We joined the Iranian Society of Queensland for a 'hands on' introduction to coin embroidery (sekkeh doozy), traditionally used to make decorative objects.  Let me start by saying I was hopeless.  It wasn't that I didn't know what to do it was just that I couldn't get those threads to stay put on the coin.  But I am not giving up.  I will keep trying till I am an expert.

I made sure that I took some photos on my phone for future reference.  This technique is similar to the Indian 'mirror embroideries' but is more decorative.  There are a number of ways that you can attach those coins.  When it came to keeping them in place on the fabric a spot of glue was used to keep them still.

We were to make this embroidered bracelet.

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We started with the dingle dangles and these were the ones I found difficult.  The thread provided was just too slippery and had too much give in it.

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The stitches are mainly based on button hole and needle weaving.


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English is a second language for  Shabnam  and she was not a trained instructor but we all learnt so much. (Some more than others.)  There is a series of videos on their Facebook page that I intend to sit and work through.  I am starting to save all those 5 cent pieces now that I have a great use for them, other than clogging up my change purse.

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You know, we are so lucky to live in such a culturally diverse society.  We have access to so much of other cultures all of  which enriches ours.

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The weather is still a problem here.  We haven't had decent rain since before last Xmas.  So wouldn't you know, it rained on the day my new book, Inspired by Islay, was delivered.  Luckily I saw it out there in the rain and rescued it before there was any damage.  Normally books are put on my doorstep not out in the letter box.  And this one wasn't delivered until late in the afternoon instead of the morning.  The post lady must by sick.

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This is more than just a book of knitting patterns that Kate has compiled, although these are in the book.  They include patterns for both men and women.  It also features  some really well written essays by other writers.  I found the essay "The Language of the Landscape" by Anna Mac Quarrie very interesting.  Both my husband and daughter have decided to learn Gaelic (I am still ploughing on with the Italian.)  They are both very good with languages but are finding this one challenging.    This essay gives an insight into why they are having difficulty.

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The other memorable essay is by Gordon Yates and has some of the best wild life images I have seen in ages.  Oh to be able to capture images like these.  Now this isn't to say that the essays I haven't mentioned are no good.  They are all very good.  It is just that these two impressed me more than the others.

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I have a complete set of all Kate's books and I treasure every one.

Now to the knitting.  No, it is still too hot.

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Out with the Old - In with the New.

I don't know about you but I have a variety of containers on my desks to hold stuff.  Tins, glass jars  holders from desk sets.

The middle desk

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It wasn't until I started to photograph these that I realised how much stuff I have around the place.

The computer desk

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The cutting table.

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What I had been looking at was the end desk where I sit and embroider and do my hand drawing.  Here I have been using the plastic water containers I use when doing water colours.

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Everytime I want to paint I have to put this stuff somewhere else and I loose it.  So, I decided I needed a new container.  Something that spoke of where I live and I found it in a hand woven basket by Jackie Cresswell.

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I often run into Jackie out in the bush.  She goes into places I wouldn't go to collect her vines for weaving.  I'm too afraid I will run into a snake. 

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http://www.redlandcitybulletin.com.au/story/4501647/its-weeds-to-art-on-coochie/#slide=1

So now I have a new container.  I really must look at rationalizing all the others.

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