Friday, July 18, 2014

Dreaming in Color...


While I love the rustic charm of Sisters, Oregon and the people watching is quite phenomenal, I must admit that it is the quilts hung from every storefront, store interior space, coffee shop, clothing and drug stores and of course, art galleries and centers, that totally captivate your attention!



And best of all, as an active blogger with her fingers always searching out the pulse of online quilters and new trends, the show has a very short lag time for incorporating the essential elements of each new direction or trend in the quilting industry, but even more so..what quilters are truly creating.


 It is after all, a quilt by quilters and the quilts that they enter into the show. Anyone can submit a quilt, and as long as it followed the submission guidelines, it will show, so there's a great deal of variety in that sense!  And this amazing variety is all by one group, within one exhibit, alone! And there are so many, many exhibits!!!



 




I loved seeing so many free spirited, artsy, and improvisational quilts this year. And I loved that more and more quilts tell stories..even if sometimes you have to 'go into the quilt' to feel the energies of that story.




    






 I saw, I felt, and I loved.  And the entire quilt show was quite lovely and great, great fun!

First of all there was a lot of color! In fact, I started out my day by "Dreaming in Color" with the Vancouver WA / Portland OR 'Cover to Cover' book and quilt groups always amazing exhibit. This one honored Kafe Fassett and his autobiography "Dreaming in Color. 




So much energy in these fun quilts. Many of them not your typical example of a bed or wall quilt but quilted ottomans, a fabulous quilted mobile and more!


The "Cover to Cover" Book Club quilts were a great deal of fun (as they always are one of my favorite exhibits!) again this year!  They stacked up to be mighty fine and a great way to start out seeing this year's show!!!!






And oh yes! Another group also based their quilts on a book! "The Language of Flowers"..so much fun here, even if it took me forever to find the "Blue Burro" import store...loved the owner, loved her stories about traveling to Guatemala to find the arts and crafts she sells within her store! I came home with some worry dolls and bookmarks and a tiny beaded chicken that I just had to have ;-)

I saw so many quilters spending hundreds of dollar at a pop on quilt show tshirts, posters, bags..cloth and recycled milk bottle plastic ones that Oregon is famous for, and so much fabric, and books, and patterns, and even purchased quilts and quilting accessories. Oh, they were having fun shopping as well as looking.

I guess if you only come here once, it is one very big, over the top good time! I come here almost every year and I still feel that way and look forward to it every single time....heat, sore feet, blisters, and all. I go home with one very big happy grin on my face!

And yes....I am still dreaming in very bright, very vivid, very beautiful quilted color!!

More photos to come!!

Links to my other posts about the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show (SOQS) :


2014
Dreaming in Color... 
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show 2014

2013

Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show 2013: The Teacher's Tent
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: ab-strakt-ed, improvisational, or modern?

2012
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: So Many Quilts to Want to Make!
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Two Rivers
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Small Wonders Abound

Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Wonders of All Kind
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Rosalie Dace
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Teacher's Tent
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Peter and Wendy Quilts



Michele Bilyeu blogs With Heart and Hands as she shares a quilting journey through her life in Salem, Oregon and Douglas, Alaska. Sewing, quilting, and wildcrafting, with small format art quilts, prayer flags, and comfort quilts for a variety of charitable programs. And best of all, sharing thousands of links to Free Quilt and Quilt Block Patterns and encouraging others to join her and make and donate quilts to charitable causes.   Help us change the world, one little quilt, art quilt, and prayer flag at a time!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show 2014


When quilters say they want to go to Sisters some day, and see the amazing little Western town that is transformed one day a year into a quilted wonderland, I tell them: "It's something a quilter needs to do at least once in their life!"



I'm fortunate to live just a couple of hours or so away, in Salem, Oregon. And I try my best to go each and every year that I'm in Oregon and not helping family in Alaska. And some years, I've returned to Oregon just to be sure not to miss this amazing quilt show.


Sisters, Oregon is a very small 1880's styled 'Western' town in Central Oregon. It boasts a population of get this...about 1,460. And for one day in July...always the second Saturday of this month, up to 15,000 quilters swarm in and take over the town.   Somewhere around 1,000 to 1,300 quilts are displayed,....on every single available surface that the eyes can see,  and the hands can reach!

 Quilts are hung inside of coffee shops, drugstores, grocery stores, apparel shops,...


...and of course the famous Jean Well's "Stitchin' Post',which is a pretty unbelievable quilt and fabric shop along with "Twigs" which sells unique giftware and home decor items.  


Here's a peek inside the store....


where a woman was buying a quilt that was for sale, the darling salesgirl turned and caught me taking the photo!






And lovely shoppers/readers/ purchasers who caught my eye and I couldn't resist taking a photo! Cute, cute, cute!



 Quilts both inside and out, range from traditional to folk, to liberated and improvisational, to modern, and everything in between!

They are made by both men and women, alike and this year there was a ManLand just for those quilts as well as one for childrens quilts. I'll show more photos in other posts, too much eye candy for one blog post, trust me!



 



Everyone should go to this show...at least once.....and if you go back again, you know you're a dedicated quilter, or quilt lover; because the heat, the crowds and the traffic, make for a challenging experience in some ways. But for the rest of us...it's the most quilting fun we can have in a year!

I once overheard a lady from Canada describe it as being..." a once in a lifetime experience" and she also added that she "absolutely loved it!"




Two Rivers Three Sisters is an amazing 40' quilt installation that has been called "A Masterpiece of Contemporary American Fiber Art."

Originally called the "Quilt for Two Rivers" after the National Forest Foundation’s Tale of Two Rivers conservation campaign.     The Two Rivers Three Sisters Quilt is a unique collaboration between the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show, the National True to its art form, the quilt tells a story. And each of its parts contributes to the whole as 19 artists share the love of two rivers... Whychus Creek and the magical Metolius River of Central Oregon in the Three Sisters wilderness area which surrounds the town of Sisters.

It now hangs in the Sisters City Hall, shown above, it is a true collaboration of art and beauty!

Bonus:
For truly artistic, professional photographs of the quilts in the show, check Daryl@Patchouli Moon's photo album on flikr:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/patchoulimoonstudio/sets/72157645779800645/
And I will be featuring additional quilts, descriptions and impression in posts to come!

2014
Dreaming in Color...
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show 2014

 2013
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: So Many Quilts to Want to Make!
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Two Rivers
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Small Wonders Abound
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Wonders of All Kind
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Rosalie Dace
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Teacher's Tent
Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show: Peter and Wendy Quilts 

Sisters Outdoor Quilt Shows: 2009 -2012

Michele Bilyeu blogs With Heart and Hands as she shares a quilting journey through her life in Salem, Oregon and Douglas, Alaska. Sewing, quilting, and wildcrafting, with small format art quilts, prayer flags, and comfort quilts for a variety of charitable programs. And best of all, sharing thousands of links to Free Quilt and Quilt Block Patterns and encouraging others to join her and make and donate quilts to charitable causes.   Help us change the world, one little quilt, art quilt, and prayer flag at a time!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Melanie Testa: Meadowlark




After a wonderful holiday weekend, what could be better than getting some beautiful fabric in the mail? 
by Melanie Testa

Windham Fabrics and artist/sewist/designer Melanie Testa hit the jackpot with this amazing combination of fabric designs.  Melly is known for her unique surface designing abilities, and combined with her love of color and cloth, she has created this absolutely beautiful collection of fabrics that combine her own unique stamping and surface designs with color co-coordinating prints and blending solids.


My fabulous packet of 10" squares arrived this week, and I could not wait to open it up and lovingly lay each beautiful piece down...all over everything. I could not believe how beautifully they co-ordinated with each and every room in my house..and my rooms are all different and in different colorways!

Somehow this collection just brought out whatever tone needed to be brought out and every single piece just melded into one gorgeous display of color, print, blender, or even as a whole. It didn't seem to matter what style of furniture, or decorating accents I had used in each room.

I had way too much fun taking each piece's photo on my vintage quilts which grace my loft wicker daybed in my sewing studio!  Here are just a few, I'm trying so hard not to 'get carried away' by showing ALL of my photos  ;-)





I loved that whether my decor was traditional, vintage, more modern, or my personal favorite 'eclectic', Melly's fabric fit right in.

Check it out at the Windham Fabrics site...they are even more gorgeous when you see them in larger viewing size than what I managed here with my own photos! And because I love to play, I actually lay each piece down against my vintage daybed decor and took photos of each square just to prove how wonderfully they all seamlessly fit right in.


Gorgeous fun! Now, that I have played with them and have them all out of the colorway order that they arrived in, I can't decide which ones I love the most...guess I'll just have to use every single one of them ;-) 

Oh, it's just so nice getting something so lovely, and so much fun in the mail!  Thank you, Windham Fabrics, the amazing and talented Melanie Testa, and the oh so lovely Vivien Zepf who introduced me to these beautiful fabrics during Melly's blog hop!

So much fun..."After a wonderful holiday weekend, what could be better than getting some beautiful fabric in the mail?"...Why, thinking of wonderful and creative ways to use it, of course!!!

But first, I need to take a bit of a lie down on my daybed and just wallow in lovely fun for a while....ahhhhhhh ....

.



And to show my appreciation for this wonderful packet of fabrics and to learn more about Melly's new line of fabrics and see some of the amazing things that others have created from them, check out the links from the following textile artists/sewists/quilters

Vivien Zepf
Chrissie D
Sue Bleiweiss
Leslie Tucker Jenison   
Jamie Fingal
Lyric Kinard
Jen Eskridge
Jacqui Holmes Calhoun
Stephanie Forsyth
Victoria Findlay Wolfe
Teri Lucas
Scott Hansen
Helen Eckard

by Melanie Testa
 
And what's in a name? And why "Meadowlark" you ask?
Melly is an ardent birder, or lover of birds. 

 Melanie Testa - Martha Stewart Living   What inspires you?

Birds. I am passionate about birds. The main print, the bird print in the Meadowlark by Windham Fabrics line features 6 of the Audubon's list of Common Birds in Decline. These birds have declined in population by 72% in the last forty years, in some cases. If we act now, by learning the needs of and accommodating those needs, these birds can flourish-but they need our help. As an artist and a lover of birds, I decided to create my own awareness campaign to help these birds in whatever way I can.
Western Meadowlark Photo

Western Meadowlark 

Sturnella neglecta  

ORDER: PASSERIFORMES FAMILY: ICTERIDAE


"The buoyant, flutelike melody of the Western Meadowlark ringing out across a field can brighten anyone’s day. Meadowlarks are often more easily heard than seen, unless you spot a male singing from a fence post. This colorful member of the blackbird family flashes a vibrant yellow breast crossed by a distinctive, black, V-shaped band. Look and listen for these stout ground feeders in grasslands, meadows, pastures, and along marsh edges throughout the West and Midwest, where flocks strut and feed on seeds and insects. "



Michele Bilyeu blogs With Heart and Hands as she shares a quilting journey through her life in Salem, Oregon and Douglas, Alaska. Sewing, quilting, and wildcrafting, with small format art quilts, prayer flags, and comfort quilts for a variety of charitable programs. And best of all, sharing thousands of links to Free Quilt and Quilt Block Patterns and encouraging others to join her and make and donate quilts to charitable causes.   Help us change the world, one little quilt, art quilt, and prayer flag at a time!