Friday, 20 January 2017

The 16th Tokyo International Great Quilt Festival 2017 (Quilts by 'sensei')

This fantastic quilt show is now on at Tokyo Dome, a huge baseball arena here in Tokyo.

I will post tidbits from the show bit by bit.

Today I will show you work by some of the professional quilters, so called 'sensei'.

Plumeria by Yoshiko Kurihara 栗原淑子

To You by Yoko Sekita 関田陽子

Polish Pottery by Chieko Shiraishi 白石千恵子
Detail of the same quilt. Can you see all the crochet?

Be Happy by Megumi Mizuno 水野めぐみ
 Detail of the same quilt

 Field Sketch 'Cornflower' by Noriko Nozawa 野沢典子
 Detail of the same quilt

 Ainsley's Garden by Kazuyo Kanno 菅野和代

 Following the Sweet Scent by Harue Yumoto 湯本晴枝

Detail of the same quilt, fantastic variety in the quilted background.

 The Night Garden by Misaki Okabe 岡部美咲

 Rond of the Flowers by Chinami Terai 寺井ちなみ
 Detail of the same quilt, the bias tape is made from velveteen and the mimosa so fluffy.

In this section I and my two friends, Julie and Tanya, had some complaints:
1) the ghastly wallpaper with black and white leaves, a most unflattering background for most of the quilts,
2) the unfortunate lightning. Above the quilts were beams that cast ugly shadows over the quilts by the strong spotlights of the baseball field. The shadows are very obvious on the quilt above and the one with the cornflowers. So sad, because those quilt were both stunningly beautiful, but did not photograph well.

However, I have to take my hat off to the organizers of The festival for paying such attention to displaying quilts well in another section, by building scenes for some of the quilts.

Yoko Saito, who is famous for her taupe quilts, also has a love of Scandinavian design. In recent years she has made a series of quilts and quilted items in misty blue, and they were displayed like this:
A Swedish falu red house had been built.

Real trees and live flowers had been planted in the artificial grass of the baseball field. The perfume of the daffodils was almost overpowering!

In the dining room there was a set of antique furniture and real potted geraniums showing off the quilted table cloth, tea cozy, cushions, lampshade and the hooked rug.

More goodies from the show another day.

Friday Homework for Lesson 8: Heavy Chain Stitch

As the headmistress, 'teacher' and student of Sunday Stitch School I can decide which stitch to teach, how to teach it and how to work it.

Stitch no 8, Heavy Chain Stitch was a good choice! Oh, I LOVE this stitch. It is easy, quick and enjoyable to work, and the result is better than I expected.

For my homework I did some doodling and scribbled a loop,

then wrote the initial H for someone's birthday card.

I have not had the time to make them into cards yet, but will do.

Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Work In Progress Wednesday - The Snake Charmer

Work In Progress Wednesday,
Pigs may fly, but snakes CAN be charmed!

Last Wednesday I thought I would 'breed' about 5 snakes a week, but listen to this, I have tamed no fewer than 19 snakes, so there are 24 reptiles in the box. Once I got the hang of how to sew the paper strips together into long columns in an organized way, it was quick work.

Fabric in Focus
This is the fabric I will be using for strips between the columns of triangles.
There are green areas and turquoise areas so there will be some variety in these strips, too.

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Sunday Stitch School - Lesson 8: Heavy Chain Stitch

It is time for a new stitch at Sunday Stitch School. This week is dedicated to Heavy Chain Stitch, which I found in several of my books. The clearest illustrations were in Reader's Digest Complete Book of Embroidery. I hope my step-by-step photos will be easy to understand.

Start by making a short straight stitch. 1-2
Take the needle out a bit further down. 3
Then let the needle pass underneath that straight stitch, without going through the fabric.

Insert the needle at 3
and come out a bit further down at 4
Once again, let the needle pass underneath the same straight stitch, without going through the fabric.

Insert at 4.
Out at 5.
You now have a double Chain Stitch.
Next, let the needle pass underneath the upper chain of that double Chain Stitch, without going through the fabric. 

Insert at 5.
Out at 6.
You now have another double Chain Stitch.

Repeat in the same way 6-7,  and always let the needle go underneath TWO Chain Stitches.
Does it look complicated? With a bit a practice, it will become easier.

On Aida Heavy Chain Stitch looks like this:

It creates a beautiful braided line and looks good on curves so it would be perfect for monograms or text.
For stump work, it would make a beautiful knitted sweater if worked in a row of columns.

There are two names in Swedish: 1) Täta Maskstygn, eller 2) Kedjesöm under en länk. Is there a name in your language for this stitch?

Scribble something with red variegated Perle on this slip of batik and make it into a greeting card.