Over the Rainbow (August 2014 CDA’s)

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August CDA’s were pure fun.  I focused on the word “rainbow” and interpreted this as intense colour combinations.  I found some bright strip sets that had been left over from a group project and proceeded to cut out 2 1’2″ X 3 1’2 rectangles to try and get as many different colour combinations as possible.  (I now have some bright strip sets with rectangular holes in them. )

Next I found three bright primary solids of #10 pearl cotton thread in the same value range.  They are fushia, apple green and a teal blue.  Using a cording foot #22 for my Bernina I couched down three threads over the intersections of the strip sets with some departure were my mind said it would create a more interesting composition.  The goal  was to see how many different colour combinations or schemes that I could create. I love using the couching foot and am sure I will find some other reasons to use it.

I plan to use these little pieces as inspiration for choosing various colour schemes for future projects.   Hope you have as much fun looking at them as I did creating them and perhaps you may find inspiration for colour combination in them as we


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Homemade You Know What

IMG_5691 IMG_5692One of my favourite things is to have an occasion, read excuse to bake something luscious that I can justify because I share the results.  It was my cousin’s birthday last week and I went searching in a fairly new cookbook called Butter.  

After reading, read looking at the pictures I decided upon a recipe for cookies entitled “The Homemade You Know What”.  The cookies are nearly a meal in themselves with each one starting with a ice cream scoop of dough.  Then when baked layered with a buttercream filling and topped with another chocolate cookie they are a generous dessert to be enjoyed with a special coffee or tea.

I certainly enjoyed mine and no one I gave them to asked for their money back so to speak so I think they were worth the effort.  If I had an occasion to make them again I would make them tiny so they could be added to a selection on a dessert plate.  I think that people likely would then not feel that they had to protest on general principles.  I have a philosophy on desserts.  Don’t waste the calories unless the goodie is truly decadent.  Then eat it with abandon and without guilt.

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Symphony in the City

Labour Day weekend in Edmonton typically hosts a series of Edmonton Symphony concerts at Hawrelak Park.  This year because of the Trialathon World series event changes were made. Instead we had Symphony in the City.  There were three concerts; on Friday and Saturday evening 12,000 Edmontonians filled Churchill Square in the heart of the city each evening for a wonderful Disney concert.

Sunday evening the venue moved to Kinsmen park just east of our HIgh Level Bridge.  The McDades entertained us for a rousing concert.  This was followed by the traditional 1812 overture.  As usual at the appropriate time cannons were discharged, audience members rattled their keys and this year the finale was accompanied by fireworks.

The piece de resistance were the lights on the High Level.  We have had a campaign:  Light the Bridge that resulted in 60,000 LED bulbs being mounted on the Bridge.  The lights were programmed to work together with the music and with the Celtic colours there was a constantly changing array of lights.

Additionally the second deck of the bridge which used to be used by the railway now is used for a trolley car in the summer months.  Last night we enjoyed the trolley car slowly going across the bridge with occupants waving to the crowd and us waving back.

IMG_5703 IMG_5704 IMG_5707 IMG_5709 IMG_5712 IMG_5713What a wonderful conclusion to a summer of festivals in this Festival City.


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Orange Crush

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July CDAs at last. They were done on time. No access to the computer delayed them.
Orange Crush connotes a lush texture with depth to me. I think of an orange torn with many layers exposed; a tactile surface reflecting light and waiting to be tasted. So my orange crush base is a piece of fabric with many layers of colour in it, providing depth. The colours range from deep orange ranging to yellow and then through levels of pink. Tactile depth was added by couching yarns and threads that echoed the colours of the base and had texture that interested me. I used a new couching foot for my Bernina 820 and while I intended to add 31 rows of stitching I couldn’t stop.

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Art Quilt Campus – A Flurry of Activity


Today we got to take the pieces out of the jars, dry and press them and see the wonderful colours we created. I did some parfait dying and came up with some brilliant orange reds to use in creating a poppy piece.

Originally posted on Anna Hergert, Art & Design:

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Art Quilt Campus 2014 Show and Share


Today we did more dyeing and some indigo. The time spent in the evening enjoying the work of other participants was delightful and awe inspiring.

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First Impressions from Art Quilt Campus 2014


Here is the first day of Art Quit Camp in Muenster at St. Peter’s Abbey. I have not dyed for over 30 years and am just delighted with the wonderful jars of bright fabric.

Originally posted on Anna Hergert, Art & Design:

005_first coloursArt Quilt Campus at St. Perter’s Abbey in Muenster is in full swing and as you can tell from the image above, everyone has settled in nicely!

The glorious colors above are a first glimpse at some of the activities that took place on day 1 of our five day gathering. Dyeing captivated most of the quilters yesterday. Above Alison, Barb and Helene are setting up the jars with the most luscious colors to cure int he heat. Wait till we rinse these fat quarters…

001_the classroomAbove is an image of the classroom as we were moving in. A spacious, climate controlled room with large tables and windows all around! The “ohhhs” and “ahhhs” from participants confirmed that this year’s venue is worth looking at again!in the dye roomBut wait – the studio is one amazing room but we also have an indoor dye room that put a big smile on every dyer’s…

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Singing in the Rain

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Okay, so catching up is hard to do.  It is fun and ideas seem to come readily when it comes to CDA’s it is just finding the time.  Obviously I haven’t found the time every day which is the task.  CDA’s are intended to be a daily act of creativity.  Somewhere about April I lost the hang of it for a number of reasons.  Ah well.

Here they are “Singing in the Rain”.  June was relatively dry in Alberta.  My garden is a high priority and it demanded and got my time as that is one of the things I love to do. Another good thing about June was it had 30 days.  That means that I can create an overall  plan for my CDA’s and they fit into a rectangle.

I used that to create a simple landscape using pieces of fabric that were in plain sight and left over from other projects. I cut the pieces free hand to create a very simple landscape with simple shapes.  I tried to use bright colour.  The reason for the bright colours was that I wanted them to show through a  sheer piece of fabric of blue fabric that would mask the landscape enough to create the feeling of a misty rainy day.  All of this was held in place with a variety of kinds of silver metallic threads to form the rain.  The singing part comes through the use of the shiny metallics.  It is interesting for me to look at each individual CDA and see if it is a composition that could stand on its own.  At the same time I look to see if I can figure out where it fits in the puzzle of 30 pieces.

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Imagine – May CDA’s

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Imagine that!  My May CDA’s are finished.  The theme for those of you who are new to this creative daily act was Imagine for May.

I have undertaken a fitness program in the past months and I was challenged to imagine myself as where I wanted to be.  While I am enthusiastic it is hard to make time to do this every day.  I am trying to incorporate individual exercises into daily routines so that it seems less of a chore.  My goals  – to be tall, trim, strong and straight will be easy for those who sew, knit, work on the computer and love chocolate to identify with.   When I close my eyes and think about physical fitness it is the colour orange that comes to me.  Mental fitness is periwinkle.

My May CDA’s were created to help me remember.  One that says tall and straight is tucked into the handle on my sewing machine.  Another that says all  four goals its above my kitchen sink.  I will think of places where I need to be reminded and put an individual CDA where it will draw my attention to what I should be doing,  For example as I sit at the computer I would like to be reminded of  – straight.  In the slides you will see 30 of the CDA’s in a grid showing the line drawing of a body that is what I am aiming for.

My undertakings in fitness have involved a number of explorations.  I have always been very reluctant to join any fitness classes as I can never figure out exactly what moves I am to make nor can I figure out how to actually do them.  I had the good fortune to make the acquaintance of Barb Turner, of http://www.3tsystem.ca   Barb has proven to be a marvel for me.  She understands that I need to know exactly what to do and how to do it.  When I can practice until I am comfortable with a particular exercise then I feel confident enough to join a group.  I am finding that I am increasing in confidence with the process of becoming fit.  The outcomes of looking and feeling better are motivation to continue.

You will have heard me mention my interest in incorporating text into my pieces.  I tried some new things this time.  Working with my friend Shirley who is a marvel with stamps we tried using various inks and embossing techniques with stamps.  Some techniques and colours were more successful than others.  Then I tried different fonts on the computer and different thickness of pens.  A Pigma pen with a 1mm tip worked for the proven method of tracing the short words directly on to the top layer of fabric.  A new (to me) Pebeo SetaSkrib+ fabric marker pen was used to draw the thicker outlines of the body.  All of these were ironed after using to “set” the ink.



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IMG_5232This past weekend Kathy, Sonja and I went off to visit Drumheller.  Reason for the visit – “Quilting in the Badlands”.  I had never been to Drumheller AB so this was a first and I was prepared to be wowed by the geography. I was!

The quilting came first however.  We arrived in time to view all the quilts hung on the main street.  I especially enjoyed a quilt likely made in the 30″s or 40″s.  It was a pinwheel quilt made of scraps with a half square triangle in the corner of each block  that appeared like a diamond in the overall design.  The background fabric was a cream and the pieces in the quilt were print and scrappy.  The diamonds were solid coloured pastels of equal value.  The pinwheels made of scrappy fabric were well-balanced with most reading of a medium value.  The prints were overall and the scale varied from small to medium.  I enjoy seeing vintage quilts that are traditional in design.  The designs can be timeless and I find my eye returning to a well done vintage quit to see something I missed the last time.  These successful old quilts tell me that good design is timeless.

Following that after enjoying our packed picnic lunch we went off to hear Anna Hergert, the Canadian Quilter’s Guild 2014 Teacher of the Year give a lecture on creativity.  It was both inspiring and practical.  One of the things that Anna talked about was creativity on a daily basis and exhorted each of us to do something creative every day.  This year Anna and I started the Creative Daily Acts (CDA’s) and we are doing that.

I interpreted Anna’s lecture as a  talk about creativity as a lifestyle.  For example cook a dish, cut and arrange some flowers.  Some days I just don’t get to my CDA’s and feel that I haven’t stretched my creativity and just as important haven’t received that feeling of satisfaction from having applied creativity.  So cooking as a creative endeavour was a delight.  I am very creative in my cooking.  When people ask me for a recipe I always have to pause and try to remember what I changed in the recipe.  I might not have an  ingredient, or am trying to make it without dairy or gluten or lower fat or less sugar.  I digress.

Anna’s lecture was inspiring and she had many examples within her body of work that she brought to show.  Those who attended were able to spend a good time  studying her work and asking questions.  She is so generous with describing how she did something and there is so much detail to observe that one can easily see why she is Teacher of the Year 2014.

I am quite excited as between looking at Anna’s work and  studying and taking pictures of the Badlands landscape and flora I have some new ideas to explore when I go to Anna’s “Art Quilt Campus” this summer.

Then we were off to the quilt show.  It proved to be small, with some gems of work contained in it.  I hope that the next one will get earlier and more prolific advertising and that people from outside the community will realize that they can enter.  It is a great way to spend a summer weekend so take the time to watch for the advertising.

The next morning saw us off on a “Wild West Badlands Tour”.   Our hosts Don and Val were very knowledgeable and we learned a lot about the area as well as seeing spectacular scenery with different features including the Hoo Doo’s.   It was very impressive.  There is more to explore including a pottery studio, the Atlas Coal Mine, The Royal Tyrell Museum so that suggests that there will be another time and perhaps that will include the Passion Play.  The site for it was quite intriguing.

Home again with many pictures.  I kept thinking that the layers of various  material that makes up the spectacular cliffs looks like a layer cake with the various fillings being squeezed out.  This is exactly what is happening.  The time span of the creation of these cliffs is almost beyond comprehension.  The picture above shows wonderful texture and I expect that you will see it in a quilt sometime in the future


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