Are you up for a challenge?

It’s that time of year again when we issue a challenge to all our clever ladies to come up with a quilt that will fit a theme and be shown at the Christmas party event at the end of the year. Before we talk about the challenge let’s talk about our Christmas Party – it’s only4 months away – I know hard to believe isn’t it?
Challenge picture 1
Generally at the Christmas Party we have a ‘Secret Santa’ gift swap where everyone brings a gift to exchange. This year we thought we’d try to be a bit more creative – actually it was Jan who suggested it so all kudos to her – instead of bringing a gift this time we want you to bring a pincushion to exchange.
All those who bring a pincushion will take one home. Here’s your chance to try a new technique or just ‘de-stash’ a little. All you have to do is:
1. Make a pincushion.

2. Wrap it up in Christmas paper (the mystery makes swapping more exciting!)

3. Bring it to the Christmas party

4. You will receive a number and when your number is called you choose a ‘gift’ and get a pincushion to keep!

Need some inspiration? There are lots of pincushion patterns at Apatchy or you could create your own!
challenge picture 2
And now on to the challenge……
We have had some wonderful exhibits in the past and the more there are the more interesting and fun the event – so if you haven’t entered before why don’t you have a go this time?
This time the rules are a little different in order to leave the event open to more types of work – which should make it all the more interesting!
So here are the guidelines:
– The challenge runs until 21st November 2014.
– There are two prizes – the winner judged by a neutral party; and the Viewer’s Choice Award
– You may make anything you like as long as it’s either quilted and/or embroidered. It can be machine or hand stitched.
– If it’s a quilt then make sure there is a hanging sleeve so we can hang it at the Christmas Party. Likewise other works should be able to be ‘shown’ at the display.
– Write a few words about your project including how it fits into the theme and you’re done.
The Christmas party will be held on Saturday 22nd November (earlier than previously advertised) and this event will also see the drawing of the raffle for the group “Flowers for Trudy” quilt – all proceeds of which are going to the Blue Nurses.
Oh and you’re wondering about the theme – well here it is….
Drum roll please, or maybe a fanfare on a trumpet…… the theme this year is

challenge picture 3MUSIC

Maybe it’s a favourite song or artist that inspires you, maybe it’s the harmony of hundreds of hexagons, perhaps a quilt for a loved one with musical instruments, or a landscape of the Austrian alps (the hills being alive with you-know-what or a skirt with guitar fabric (told you it didn’t have to be a quilt). Away you go…create my beauties
Here’s some inspiration:
challenge picture 4challenge picture 5challenge picture 6challenge picture 7

Art Attack

Another exciting day with a visit to the open day of the Textile Art Academy. There was an array of amazing creations both from the artists and their students. The academy has been running workshops this week and the creativity of its members was evident today. From artist’s books to monoprinting (with Sandra Pearce) and from basketry to felted creations the whole place was a feast for the eyes and a great source of inspiration.  It was difficult to avoid bringing everything home (and indeed there is an addition to the decor in the workroom).

Svenja, a textile artist who lives here in Brisbane, had a display of her work with some amazing wearable art from dyed silk scarves to a siren of the sea.   Here are some photos to whet your appetite.


Ok so not what you’d wear down to the corner shop for a loaf of bread but pretty special aren’t they! Actually my friend Jan and I were commenting on many of the ladies who wore distinctive clothing – all individually designed artwork. Not only were these artistic statements but some were entirely personal. One lady wore what was essentially of travel journal. Each area of the piece had embroidery or appliqué that referred to some part of her trip to Western Australia. I would love to have a more avant garde wardrobe but wouldn’t dare wear something too bohemian. Rather sad as this would be a wonderfully tactile way of exploring my fascination with textiles. Maybe one day…… What about you? Would you like to be less beige sometimes?

Time for a tactical retreat?

While we’ve been at the Esk Quilt Show we’ve been staying with Isla and Ken at the Twilight Grove Farm B&B. Here’s the scene this morning……..


If you look closely you can see Jan having her morning cuppa on the verandah. It is such a lovely place and Isla and Ken are the perfect hosts. This is somewhere you want to spend a week- maybe next time.

While we’re on the subject of home-away-from-home I should mention that Isla and Ken’s daughter is Tamara Buchanan (of Quick Stitch Quilting). She runs Twilight retreat next door and very kindly gave us a guided tour. This is one of the best retreats I’ve seen – everything is here. Just look at the photos

Part of the workroom (couldn't fit it all in) with a table and light for each person

Part of the workroom (couldn’t fit it all in) with a table and light for each person

Half of the huge verandah

Half of the huge verandah

The view from the verandah

The view from the verandah

What I haven’t shown you is the formal dining area and the fabulous open fireplace for cold winter evenings. We might have to plan one of these retreats in the near future.