Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Revision of schedule, again

This is the current state of the schedule for assignments: 

(we are supposed to be working on Eti's assignment "Signs and Symbols", and have left off the October assignment 'florals')

Bella (give new guidelines SOON) 
Uta (give new guidelines by end of February 2016), Barbara (give new guidelines by end of June 2016), Gillian (give new guidelines by end of October 2016), Margaret (give new guidelines by end of February 2017)Kathy (give new guidelines by end of June 2017)Eti

... unless something changes with regard to membership of group!

International Threads on youtube

Gillian was interviewed during the Maastricht show and now has an appearance on youtube, speaking on behalf of International Threads:

Take a look!

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Signs and Symbols

Ok - I am happy to admit here and now that I have not even started working on the Afghan square challenge. Nor do I have an idea worth mentioning. But hey! I finished the quilt for Eti's Challenge Signs and Symbols.

Quilter's Curse

These past weeks have been a plain hassle in my real world job - I'll spare you the details, but it has not been pink clouds and pixie dust. Just hard work and loads of it. And no quilting. At all. And when I did have a chance to sew - I messed up.

Usually I don't swear or curse ( ok, I'll say "scheisse" on and off) but that's it. But these past weeks I would have, if I had had the slightest hope of turning anything for the better.

Sunday, 30 August 2015

Afghan Square
Next week I have a quieter week due to some teaching being cancelled so decided I needed to just get on with the International Threads piece that I have moaned so much about. I thought I would photograph it as I went along.
The piece lends itself to do traditional patchwork, but I can't do that - never have been able to, so decided to take the approach that I know, and will paint and print my piece.
I have drawn it out on my calico, and will paint and appliqué the women, I have made some printing blocks and have done the appliqué at the bottom.
Now I am going to print the background - lets hope it works.

Saturday, 29 August 2015

New quilt

It's about time to post our new quilt
My suggestion is - Symbols and Signs
It can be Tribe's symbols, it can be road signs, it can be letters in any language and it can be numbers, or any other symbols and signs you can think about.
Good luck


Last month we were invited to Russia by the Russian Cultural Office.
We have an exhibition in Moscow at the Jewish Community Center
It's a trio exhibition of of Ita Ziv, Rahel Elran and myself.
It was a pleasure to meet Barbara and be with her on this trip.

We gave Ita's quilts a great respect and we think that this exhibition will be a good way to remember her.

Afghan Embroidery

This is my "Afghan Embroidery" quilt
It was not so simple to go back to traditional patchwork.
I'm waiting to see all those quilts from you all.

Thursday, 23 July 2015

'Working Meeting' in Germany

Gillian came to Germany for her holidays, and after spending a few days in the  Alps three members of the group got together for a brief and intensive 'working meeting' during which a number of issues were discussed - and decided!

Obviously, I did not take this photo - somehow to me it seems a bit distorted,
but you can still recognize Gillian, Barbara and Uta, from the left.

Because of heavy workloads and tight schedules of many of us we have gone back on the size issue a bit, and the size we will be working with in the near future is 50 x 100 cm. This new size could apply to the challenge including the Afghan embroidery already, but because Kathy Loomis (and, as it now turns out, Eti David, too) has already finished hers in the 60 x 120 cm, Uta Lenk has decided to make hers in that dimension as well.
We have a new member: Bella Kaplan, from Israel, and are looking forward to welcoming her into the group. Watch out for her introduction piece.

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

New size, new challenge...

I came home from the show in Prague (and almost a month away from home) with great enthusiasm for getting back into my studio and doing some sewing.  The embroidered piece from Nasrin, the Afghan woman artist, called out for repetition of the geometric motifs she had used, and I fastened upon the chevron and the half-square triangles as the best features to work with.

I must say that our new size is a lot bigger, compared to the old size, than I was anticipating.  You look at the dimensions and see that they're half again as large -- that doesn't seem too huge -- but when you do the math (or when you do the piecing) you realize that it's more than twice the area of the old format.

I had been so happy with the small size of our first-round pieces, because I could whip them out so quickly and quilt them so easily, and now having to make something more than twice as big seemed like a lot more of a commitment.

Not saying that I'm unhappy with the new size, but it is taking more time and effort -- and thought. Which is probably a good thing.
Can't wait for the next challenge!

Friday, 17 April 2015

Schedule for giving assignments - revised and enlarged

Developments in Prague have led to a new assignment that had not been foreseen before. 
Kathy and Uta found enough embroidered squares from the Guldusi Project of Embroidery in Afghanistan to go around the entire group, and went ahead and bought them. They are currently being delivered to the members of the group by either special courier or post. Once we have decided on the new size, this could/would be our next assignment: Include this square in a quilt/textile art piece.

As a reminder: deadlines for finished pieces are the end of October, the end of February and the end of June.

The following schedule for GIVING assignments covers another round of going through each member of the group:

Kathy and Uta (have already given new guidelines - 'deadline' is end of June 2015)

Eti (give new guidelines by end of June 2015)
Marylou  - (give new guidelines by end of October 2015) 
Ita (give new guidelines by end of February 2016), 
Barbara (give new guidelines by end of June 2016), 

Gillian (give new guidelines by end of October 2016), 
Margaret (give new guidelines by end of February 2017)

Eti (give new guidelines by end of June 2017)
Marylou  - (give new guidelines by end of October 2017)

The result of the vote on the new size will be announced as soon as we have it!

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Pictures of the exhibition in Prague

We put the quilts up sorted by assignments. We have six booths, each of which takes one assignment (with two minor 'redefinitions' of pieces that fit equally well into another booth, simply for reasons of symmetrical distribution).

This is assignment Red:

This is "Grey with a little bit of color":

This is "Blue":

One of Barbara's is on the right hand panel which you can't see on this picture.

Assignment "Lines":

The green one on the left is Uta's Play of Lines XXXVII

Assignment "Repetition and Pattern":

Assignments "Change of Scale" is split up into the two head panels:

And a has-to-be-combined view of "Proof of Sketch" (with aredefined piece by Gillian):

Friday, 10 April 2015

International Threads in Prague

Kathy Loomis arrived in Germany on Tuesday, 

and yesterday we took the train to Prague, where International Thread is having its first international exhibition.

Together with Barbara, who was already there when we arrived, we worked hard putting it all up. 

At first we were debating whether we would put up each member’s quilts together, but eventually we decided on arranging them ‘by assignment’: Red, From Grey to White with a Dash of Color, Repetition and Pattern, Change of Scale, Lines, Proof of Sketch, Blue.
We have six sections of panels, and the sides to the entire arrangement, which fits perfectly to the number of seven assignments. In order to arrive at an even distribution, and because some members had made a couple of extra quilts, we were able to have six assignments arranged all in one section (with only one or two ‘redefinitions’ due to a more coherent arrangement).

We were finished just before eight o’clock in the evening, worn out after a long day. And very proud of a coherent and interesting exhibition on display, starting at 12 noon today.

(More pictures tomorrow.)

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Sketch, finally finished

Just about in time - I finished my sketch-challenge!

It all started with my heaps of scraps:

And, of course, the sketch which seemed everything but feasible (a line tracing of a photo of water swirls I had seen somewhere):

I used techniques from the class with Jan + Jean, which I took last year, and in the end, strictly speaking, this is not a quilt.

Scraps arranged on solufix, covered with Avalon film, stitched

under the machine

It waited on the wall for a few days,
trying to figure out whether it needed
more stitching, or was done like this

Check out whether the other orientation is preferrable -
definitely not! But I could imagine a double version
including both orientations, perhaps in a different color range...

dissolving the film and solufix in the sink

figuring out how to do the sleeve, involving the flimsy backing


It is just a bit wider and a bit longer than our usual size - but I did not want to cut anything off at the edges, it needs to be raw as it is.

Thursday, 19 March 2015


Someday I'll get comfortable with social media but it hasn't happened yet!  I sent off my 6 quilts for Prague to Kathy, then realized that I hadn't photographed "Lines".   I promise to post it when it comes back home...

Here is "Blue" aka "Things Fall Apart".  It's part of a new series that I'm working on.  The others are very large in scale -  about 80" x 80" (or 200 x 200 cm) square.

Also, Gillian, I have not given up on "Sketch"  even though it won't be done in time for Prague.  You have certainly put me out of my comfort zone with it, but I'm determined to finish it.  I'll post it with "Lines", I hope!

I'm very impressed with all of the work that you all have posted and wish that I could see them all in Prague - maybe next time...

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

seven finished - working on sketch...

So I had already shown you my Blue one, over a month ago. Since then I have worked hard (not only these Prague quilts, but...) -
This is my report:

Finished Repetition - pattern:

text messages 6

text messages 6, detail
Then Kathy had this problem about one being too long, and out of sheer solidarity I made one that is also approx. 10 cm longer than our normal size. At first I planned it for the 'lines', then I thought I might substitute it for my black to grey to white with colour, which I thought I didn't really like.

Play of Lines XXXVII
Play of Lines XXXVII, detail - all the seed stitches are done in
four different shades of grey (no pun intended)

But then I took another look at my original solution for the grey challenge and didn't think it quite as bad as I had remembered - so I decided this one was going to stay my piece for 'lines' after all. By then, however, I had already started another one that could have served for 'lines', which I finished, too. Figuring it might give me a good excuse to drop out of making one for sketch, which I was really having a hard time with - mainly deciding, which sketch I was going to use...

Play of Lines XXXVIII
This one is green, because Barbara had mentioned that she had made a green one extra - and, again, it is slightly longer than the usual size, thus another companion for Kathy's long one.
In between I thought I would never be able to really come up with that nice sketch, then made several, neither of which seemed feasible. However, after I finished all of these, counted to seven and thought I could consider myself done for Prague, I finally took the plunge, chose the sketch least workable - and am currently working on it. This is the sketch.

To be honest, the sketch was done on the computer - but Gillian had not said we could not do that, so I consider the method legal. It will not be a quilt proper, but I am doing it in the style of Jan + Jean, the double-troubles, whom I took a workshop with last year. But again, we didn't say they all have to be quilts proper, so I think it's legal. (And it will be faster to finish before the big date.) Kathy can say no to it when we are hanging, if she thinks it's not appropriate. I will show a picture before we hop on the train.