One of my favorite textile designers is William Morris. He was a mover and shaker during the Arts and Crafts Movement and designed some of the most pleasing fabrics you can imagine. So you can imagine my delight when I found these cups and tray at a shop in Heathrow Airport. Can’t wait to have a cup of tea in his honor.
Many years ago I planted a few morning glory seeds in the garden. They seemed the perfect flower to cover an old fence post. But little did I know how quickly this vivid blue flower with lush green vines could take over a garden.
I still love the morning glories and look forward to their blooms each year. They are a constant source of inspiration for my quilts too. But they are getting the better of me and the garden this year. It’s amazing what can happen when you plant just a few seeds.
I had a lovely time in the sweet town of Zumbrota, MN last week. My hostess and owner of the All in Stitches Quilt Shop, Sandy, made my visit a delight. During breaks I’d leave the classroom and pop into her shop to enjoy the beautiful displays. It is full of colorful quilt fabric, threads for hand stitching, and my new favorite fiber, wool. You have to check out All in Stitches next time you are in the Rochester, MN area. Zumbrota is a great small town with lots of other wonderful shops too. Thanks Sandy for bringing me in!
A big advantage of adding hand embroidery to a small piece of art work is the way it adds fine detail to the quilt that you can’t get with fabric shapes alone. Here you see Whimsy Lane #9 before hand or machine stitching.
And here you see it after hand embroidery and free-motion machine work. Notice how the hand work adds definition, detail, pattern, and texture to the piece. Without it, the quilt is really rather plain. I loved dressing up this little quilt and I’m so happy with it!
Time to pack for my new class called Improvisational Hand Embroidery on Wool. I’m cutting up rectangles of wool fabric and placing colorful hand-dyed threads on rings for the class kit. Needles, more thread, and class step-outs are all set to go.
In this class, students make original designs and learn about the joy of hand embroidery on wool. My creative students will all make something different and I can’t wait to see the results. Hope to see you at the Pacific International Quilt Festival in Santa Clara, CA where I teaching this class on October 14.
My new best friend, Donna, is making a set of quilt blocks from wool. She’s sewn odd shapes of wool together onto muslin in a crazy patchwork style. Each block is then enhanced with embroidery stitches decorating the seam lines. (Note the beautiful size 8 thread from her supplier, Artfabrik.)
And here’s a twist. Donna leaves the labels on the swatches of wool fabric. This is a portable project and a great way to reuse an old wool jacket or skirt to make something warm and cozy. Thanks for sharing your work with us Donna!