Friday, March 13, 2009

March Maunderings

Is there anything more appealing than the doorway to a wonderful quilt shop??

This one is Back Porch Fabrics in Pacific Grove. And it's just as wonderful as it looks.

Yes, it was Asilomar Week again.

There are some rituals involved with going to Asilomar, although they are very fluid. One of them is visiting Back Porch. They have a fabulous collection of fabrics, and their book selection is great. They also make every effort to be Empty-Spools-friendly, so when you walk in the books by the teachers for the current session are right there on display. (Assuming your teacher has written a book! Not all of them have, including my teacher for this timeast

Their back room is set up as a gallery with ever-changing displays. This time, it was quilts by their very talented staff. Last year, it was quilts by Ruth McDowell from the Thomas Collection.
Well worth a visit, any time I'm in the area. And, it's only a block from Monarch Knitting. Did I mention that I love this area??



There's some wonderful scenery at Asilomar, and even though the weather was stormy and rainy and windy much of the time I was there, I loved it anyway.
I thought the sun behind the clouds and the wind-whipped trees were wonderful.
This is my first project--well, except for a "trial run" at the technique. My teacher was Sylvia Einstein, who does wonderful "fractured landscapes" by building up layers of split and pieced fabrics. My blocks are supposed to be trees--use your imagination!--and they're done with cutting the block apart and inserting the strips to form the tree shape. I had done something similar in a workshop with Doreen Speckmann the first year I was at Asilomar--she had us experimenting with window panes on scenic fabrics.
I really like the technique, and once I get my sewing room set up, I'll probably experiment with it some more.
The second quilt top is what Sylvia calls Magic Squares. It's a very simple technique--this quilt is 20 blocks, and they are all cut from 4 fat quarters of batiks, except for 3 shapes cut from the remnants of the batik from the tree quilt above it. The border was something I had with me--yes, I brought my famous tub O batiks with me, and by a serendipitous chance it had a whole baggie of precut strips left over from my class with Colleen Wise three years ago. Made the tree quilt much easier to play with!

Lots more pictures on my Flickr page. I'll try to make sure they are all captioned but you know how that goes. I'll leave you with one of my favorites:





7 comments:

Kate said...

WOW! Beautiful pictures and the quilt shop love.

Knitting Linguist said...

Wow, those are gorgeous quilt tops! And I love the pictures of the trees -- gray and windy, my favorite :)

Anonymous said...

Pretty pictures,, pretty quilts! Foosh

Annette said...

Looks like fun! I'm glad you had a good time. Fabric and yarn shops?! Oh my.

mary said...

Love those quilts! Glad you're having lots of fabric stash enhancement too!

Sheepish Annie said...

I don't even quilt and I still find myself seduced by quilt shops. There is just something so fascinating by the colors and the tools...

Good thing my mom quilts for I'd have no use for the things I end up buying in there. ;)

Lovely photos!

Anonymous said...

We've traveled up to Pacific Grove, and the general peninsula area, about 25 times in the last 30 years. When the children were little we stayed at one of the motels just outside Asilomar, and our first ritual was to walk across to the lodge, sit by the fireplace for awhile, then wander down to the beach.

I LOVE PACIFIC GROVE. It's sad to see that some of places we would be sure to visit have gone, and now that I'm a knitter I'm surprised that there are few yarn shops in the area.