Friday, October 30, 2015

Quilts & Threads Show - 2015

The weekend before I left on my trip to France was busy with all the things you have to do just before a departure: making sure tickets and itineraries are in order, sorting enough pills into daily packs to last the duration, pack, stock up on cat food and litter. It was also a big weekend for community events that I wanted to poke my nose in on. Saturday was the big annual parade in Our Little Town, followed by a festival and chili cookoff. It had nearly been canceled, then rescued by a community effort. The annual quilt show in the Little City Down the Hill was on Saturday and Sunday.

I gave up on the parade. I don't have the stamina to stand for it, and last time, when I had a front row seat, some Rude Dude thought he had a right to stand directly in front of me, in the street. I wanted to kick him in the rear end, but I just steamed instead. So I made a quick visit to the festival on Saturday afternoon, and ran down to the quilt show on Sunday.

It was a quick trip and I took photos of quilts that particularly caught my eye, not even very many of them. When I first started shooting, I didn't think to take clear pictures of the labels so I could provide information about the quilt. I'd welcome any of my fellow quilters contributing missing info in the Comments below.

I don't know who made this quilt or its name, but I love the richness, and , , ,

. . . the horses. So elegant.

This is "Split Personality," by Marilyn Scheller, the Featured Quilter at the show. I've been looking at a book with this technique illustrated, and I'm interested that giant red flowers were used as a background fabric. I'm a red poppy fan and plan to do some work with a panel I bought.

This is "Movement with Drunkards Path" by Barbara Walker. Love the colors, batiks. I used to want to do a Drunkards Path and this execution takes it out of the traditional mode.

This is "My Colorful Dark Side" by Ginger Dugan. It's in the appliqué category. I like its off-center center in a traditional pattern that's not usually this bright; it's slipping a symmetrical pattern "down down the page," off-centering it.

Dragonflies in delicate colors and shapes ... light airy quilt.  "Dance of the Dragonflies," by Kim Garro. Zoom in on this. It's lightness is lovely.

"Flower Vase," hand-appliquéd by Susan List.  Charming.

I think it's "Got Blocks" by Barbara Barrieau.  An awesome way to showcase blocks and fabrics. I wonder, does she had some bigger works using these fabrics?

"Coneflowers," also by Susan List. I've had a recent fascination with coneflowers. I'm almost thinking it came after I saw this quilt.

Two quilts in the same pattern made at a spring quilt camp. On the left is "Splashed," by Cheryl Ferreira, and "Ocean Waves" by Sharon Heimlich on the right, It's a neat pattern looks like a damned lot of work! I like the similar but different colors.

I have always wanted to make a "Storm at Sea, with my own unique angle to it. Betsy Main has done this with "Rainbow at Sea." Very cool, Betsy.

"Yin Yang" by Louise Nelson. I believe this handsome guy has been done with thread painting. See the photo after this to see his surroundings. Enlarge the photo to see the subtle blue shade shifts in the Yin Yangs.

"Maryjane," by Barbara Barrieau, is made from scraps of Daiwabo fabric from Japan. The pattern is by Maria Taomako. Paper pieced and machine appliquéd.

CATS!  Of course I'd give  you a photo of cats! On a quilt! "Cat's Meow," by Patricia Fleischman. My photo of the label isn't clear enough to read her story.

"Long Fall Sally," Sara Henry. A collage quilt, with many Kaffe Fassett fabrics. "The hard part is knowing when to call it finished," said Sara. It's adorable. (Smiley.)

I like yellow, black and white together. I once made a quilt in those colors. This is "A Kiss of Klimt," by Barbara Hardwick. I've had a previous encounter with Klimt  here.

This quilt was too big to capture on my camera in the space available. Here, I'm showing the upper left corner and the lower right out of six photos. Best done this way to show details of the animal embroidery. It's "Animals in the Wild," by Ken and Liana Mahn. Embroidery designs by Anita Goodesign, machine pieced by Liana, machine embroidered by Ken, and machine quilted by Susan List.

"Out of the Box," by Barbara Hardwick. It hangs in her quilting studio as a reminder to be creative and think outside the box. That's exactly what I thought when I first saw it, before reading her description. It's a splendid piece.

Rhinocerus!  I'm charmed by "Rhonda Rhino" by Diane Kinsinger from a pattern she found last year at PIQF (Pacific International Quilt Festival).

I call this "Colorful Corner." I don't have details on the quilts -- shot early on and quickly, Eclectic little works, smiling at each other.

Charleen Beam's "Yolanda."  Charleen fell in love with this guy, used her Kaffe Fassett fabrics and did her first machine quilting on anything larger than a table runner.

I had to rush home for more of getting ready for travel. I wanted to pick up a sandwich at the show snack bar but it was too late for food. I got a soda of some sort and sat down to drink it.

These beautiful little bouquets waited on the tables to be cleared away at the end of the show. Sunlight shone in from high windows in the concrete walls of the fairgrounds building, lighting up the blooms. I couldn't resist taking their pictures.

Monday, October 26, 2015


I emerge into bright sunlight after debarking from a cramped, rush hour rapid transit train from the airport. It only takes an exchanged glance with the cabby – the only cab in the queue – for him to rescue me from my heavy, awkward luggage arrangement. Settled in the cab’s back seat, I start to give him directions in French! 

*     *     *     *     *

Was it just this morning that I was sitting in Charles de Gaulle airport, the big one for Paris, waiting for the trip home?  My airport shuttle gets me there in plenty of time, so after check-in, the ever-joyful search for non-compliant items, a short hike, a train ride, and a longer hike, I arrive at Hall M, Gate 50 in the International Departures Terminal 2E. Followed by the long wait.

A few early arrivals like me scatter themselves around the large room’s seating area. Avid smokers cram into a tiny atrium off to the side.  I listen to a pleasant blend of French voices, the occasional English and a smattering of less familiar languages, and smile.

I love France. If there’s any deep reason accounting for it, it may hark back to the trip First Husband and I took abroad in our college years, intending to bicycle. That went by the wayside in short order. But not before we rode the bicycles through the multi lanes of traffic around the Arch of Triumph. We started in England and made our way, by a variety of means, around Western Europe. Paris, and our favorite Hotel des Deux Continents (very low end in those days), became our refuge when we were stressed or short of funds. Remember the American Express in Paris? The place where you received manna from home when spirits and money sagged? Paris has always felt like a port in the storm. Home.

I’ve been back to France many times since. Other countries, as well. (Have you visited the Principality of Seborga?)  I was as excited about this trip as ever, full of joy and anticipation. It would encompass a variety of companions and places. A mishap part way through poked a hole in some of that joy, but I don’t think anything could have brought me all the way down.

I’ve been among French voices daily for almost a month. I sit in the airport with the sound of French in my ears, misty eyes, and a smile on my face. Nostalgia? Wistfulness? What if this is the last time?          

The cabby has some kind of accent, but it’s not French. When I tell him I almost spoke to him in French, he laughs. “French. Like ‘merci beaucoup?’” he asks.

“Yes. Like ‘merci beaucoup.'”

We arrive at Sister’s house, where I am lavished with love by happy kitties, obviously believing it’s Mommy and Daddy arriving home from their vacation.

“Very soon, kitties,” I assure them.

There won't be anyone lined up at this gate for quite awhile.
My airport shuttle makes sure I am not late.

I arrived at Terminal 2E,  and made the journey to X marks-the-spot in Hall M, Gate 50.

There's just one person out there working on something at the nose of the aircraft.
 I don't know at first that this is ours, since it's parked on the opposite side of the Hall.

 There's a flurry of activity now, after a service container is lifted to a door 
on the upper deck. A steady flow of carts streams
 from the container into the plane.

All the window shades are closed in my cabin on the upper deck. I take peeks 
at the feed from the tail camera periodically to see what there is to see.
 I make a special point to look out as we travel over the South tip of Greenland. 
This is a better view than looking out the window. I can watch the flight without 
cricking my neck. I have three very similar photos of Greenland here. 
They are not identical! The view of the plane is constant. It's Greenland that's changing.

I'm staying at my Sister's house for the night on my arrival, rather than driving home to 
the mountains completely jet lagged. I'm awakened in the morning by Bentley-cat, 
who believes my chin needs a good licking.

I'm home, and there's a beautiful sunset to remind me how beautiful home is,

I'm blogging about my month (almost) in France now, after the fact, as I was cautioned that announcing one's absence during that absence is not a good idea.