Sunday, October 29, 2006

Winter Wheat

Well, my cousin has left for the Netherlands, today. sigh. It was such a brief but fun visit! Unfortunately, we had pretty lousy weather, but we still managed to do lots of fun things. This will be the first of a few posts of the visit. First, the weather...ugh I think it was sunny for about 2 hours the whole time she was here, it rained a lot, it even snowed and hailed once, but we still had some fall leaves left on the leaves as you can see from these photos.

This was our visit to Winter Wheat in the small town of Sparta. It is owned by folk artist Lucy Ogletree and her partner Mike. The store is surrounded by a grove of pine trees and corn fields. Amongst the pines you will find chain saw sculptures like this rabbit and his clocks "where time stands still". Other sculptures include a crow playing the piano, and along the highway the fenceposts are angels with halos lit with christmas lights! After exploring the store and the grounds you can pause for complimentary tea and cookies. It was a delightful, warm experience! I highly recommend it!

It was so nice! Winter Wheat offers 2 small houses in which you can sit and have complimentary tea or coffee and cookies. In one, my tante Janny relaxes and enjoys her coffee in the cosy, warm studio, and the gang (Marjon, Dad, Tante Janny, & Mom) stands outside the front. This house was decorated with original Lucy Ogletree art.

My Dad sits inside the glass house, made of recycled windows.

Here's a view of the driveway back to the highway, with the studio tea house to the left.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Echt Hollands

WooHoo!!! My cousin and my aunt have arrived from Holland! And catch your breath, these are the lovely fabrics they gave to me! (I am soooo spoiled!) Real Dutch fabric! And guess where they bought it! At Irma's Sampler Patchwork and Quilt Shop in Haarlem, where a certain Lucy works!
It's such an amazingly small world with the internet!

Can't write much more, have got to explore Ontario with the family!

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Quilt Envy

We had our guild meeting on Thursday, and as usual it was inspiring as well as depressing! Nancy Trowbridge (?) gave a wonderful trunk show. Apparently she teaches many classes on quilting, so many of her quilts were designed to teach specific lessons. They were great! The depressing part is to see how many quilts these people have. I look at my paltry collection and I wonder where all my quilts went! I know, I know, I've given them away as gifts, mostly baby quilts. It's a good thing most of my friends have stopped having children! My new goal is to make and keep quilts for myself! (I've highlighted it to remind myself)

My four entries into our guild's quilt show are all wallhangings. So I must try and make another bed-sized quilt. I've only ever made one in the 10 years of quilting!

Also, I must tackle the UFO's: there is of course the Spike and Suske quilts, the remembrance day quilt, an old sweatshirt I want to dress up, my NBX (Nightmare before Christmas) quilt...I've drawn it out by hand and on EQ5 and have the fabric, but haven't started cutting....also a basket full of sampler blocks. I would go through my quilting magazines and see many nice quilts, but wasn't ready to make a whole quilt, but I wanted to try a block. I got this idea from one of the magazines, this lady would try out all her blocks on Christmas fabric and then turn those blocks into a christmas sampler. Well I decided I didn't want to use Christmas fabric so bought a bunch of Debbie Mumm fabric that I liked at the time and did my samples in that. The problem is I'm not as crazy about the fabric as I once was. So I think I should finish that one up and start a new bunch of samplers....maybe this time in batiks... or should I pick a theme, maybe not christmas, a colour theme, or a season, autumn,...hmmm ?

I think I'm going to make fabric postcards for Christmas, this year, too!

There. No more quilt envy, I've got a plan!

(next post: the best laid plans of mice and men...)

Monday, October 09, 2006

Here is my Remembrance day wall hanging, as promised. I was crazy to get this done, and worked at it all weekend. It was a glorious Thanksgiving weekend! It was sunny and warm. I managed to get a lot of things done as well as this wall hanging. I washed and put away all the lawn furniture and table. Cut back the wild perennials and even planted daffodils! Also managed to eat 2 yummy Turkey dinners! Thanks Mom and Mom-in-law!

As for the wall hanging, it is not exactly as I had originally pictured it in my head. But it was a totally improvisational effort. I started with the wonky letters and they were hard to do!(By the way that "F" is an F and not a "P", there is just a dark spot on the light fabric, which makes it look like a P in the photo) The letters were a bit bigger than I expected. I was going to put 'lest we' on one line, then the poppy, then 'forget', but 'forget'was big enough! So I rearranged them that way. I like the green fabric that I picked it an army green tone to it. I am thinking this could be good in wools, perhaps even made from old army uniforms....hmmm, something to think about.

Next photo is an update on the Spike quilt, it's looking good I think!

Here is an update on the Spike quilt. As you can see, I've started the free fan hand quilting around the outside. I had a photo of the whole quilt but you couldn't see the detail of the handquilting.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Let Freedom Ring

On September 22, 2006,as an expression of thanks to Canada and its Armed Forces, the Dutch community presented London with this Carillon for their role in the liberation of the Netherlands and Belgium during World War II.

The memorial consists of 3 sections. First, 18 bronze bells suspended on a large stainless steel tower decorated with a spiral of maple leaves. The bells were cast in Holland. The bells will chime on the hour, year round and can be programmed to play any tune. Second is a granite sculpture at the base of the bells that show the location of Canadian Forces cemetaries in the Netherlands and Belgium. Third, a beautiful garden was created to encompass the site.

The money to build this memorial came mostly from donations from the Dutch community in this area.

My mother took the following photos when she attended the dedication ceremony. My parents are originally from Holland and also donated money for this memorial to be built. I think my mom's photos were better than any that were printed in the local papers. However, there are some other nice photos of the veterans that attended the ceremony here.

Here, you can see some of the veterans and some Dutch-Canadians dressed in traditional Dutch clothing.

A veteran touches the memorial.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Keep On Quilting

I've started the handquilting on the Spike quilt, and I must say I really like it! Thanks Tonya , for the inspiration! I am doing her free fans around the outside and then I will outline Spike and then probably do full concentric circles in the middle (at least that's the plan). I don't have photos yet.

I have an idea for a remembrance day wall hanging. I think I will use Tonya's wonky letter for "lest we forget" with a big poppy in the middle, in fall or muted tones. I can see it my head. And I will also post some photos my Mom took of a Veteran's memorial dedication that took place in our city. They are very nice and I think moving photos. It is sad how fewer and fewer seem to take pause to remember their sacrifice, especially now that there are so few of them left.