Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Here are a few last interesting quilt things from 2008 I want to share with you.
First is an article in about some Mennonite and
Amish appliqué quilts for sale in Lancaster county, PA but not being made there. What struck me as I read it was the fact that appliqué quilts have never been a hallmark of traditional Lancaster, PA quilts. But that was not their point to make. I first heard about Amish quilts being made outside of the US in the 1990s. This article runs down one main source of needleworked applique.
Next is an article about women scientists, mostly specializing in neuroanatomy, who are also fiber artists. See how they have combined their passions. There is an online Museum dedicated to exhibiting the results of this combo. Maybe you have a quilt to offer them?
Lastly, have you taken Martha Stewart's textile quiz? Check it out. I got all but 1 right. How did you do?
Oh what the heck- here are some completely unrelated, but significant recommendations from me to you as you begin 2009- I'm talkn' serious girl stuff here :)
1. SEE on the big screen "The Curious Life of Benjamin Buttons." It is probably the best movie that has been made in my lifetime. The message is what I am referring to; the acting, screenplay and visuals are superb too.
2.If you like Seal's music, and are a baby boomer like me, you will love his newest album of the blues and Motown songs from the 20th century, SealSoul.
3. If you get tiny fat deposits under your eyes, use Sudden Change Night Repair Eye Cream and they will quickly go away. They form from putting creams under your eye area.
4. If you have a daughter or granddaughter who is aged 10 to 14, get her the book "The Tale of Alice's Quilt" by Jennifer Blomgren. It is so delightful! It is about an 11 year old girl learning her family history while also learning to quilt. She decides to make family heirloom butterfly blocks into a quilt. The 92 page book includes the pattern and instructions. There is a watercolor picture at the start of each chapter, making this a wonderful gift book too.
5. Join me in the new year for inspirational telephone talks with quilters and women in quilt related careers and businesses at Women On Quilts where women seam together business and spirit in the creative arts. This could be a new way to learn and grow for all of us. The first call in 2009 is Jan. 8 with author, publisher and book coach, Lynne Klippel. Are you self-sabotaging that book you want to write? Sign up to recieve notices for the next tel-event or interview on http://womenonquilts.blogspot.com
Piece to you and those you quilt with,
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Sunday, December 28, 2008
Pamela Allen's infectious enthusiasm for spontaneous quilt making had me sketching before the end of this rich two-hour DVD. I seldom sketch, but the dozens of quilts she showed inspired me! The irony of that response is that Pam would not recommend sketching at all. No. Scissors are her drawing tool.
She just dives right into cutting three values of fabric into pieces big enough to cover the backing and batting she pre-prepares by spray basting them. Her quilting and embellishing hold the layers of her pictorial wall-hanging fiber art together.
Pamela thinks in pictures; I would bet on it. She loves putting symbolism in her quilting stitches and her appliquéd pictures. She draws from her childhood up to her current life for inspiration. Her fabrics are of every fiber and type, including stretch knits. Mostly she buys clothing at thrift stores to gather her stash. She loves to touch her pictures. She appliqués the pieces by hand, using floss and big stitches on the scissor-cut edge and other stitches for decoration and portraying the symbolism she wants you to see. Stitching is an element she uses extensively, with or without embellishments - texture abounds in her art. (**bag of embellishments)
Pamela's quilt style stimulates conversation and invites the viewer to look longer and discover her many elements . About half of the DVD is like a gallery visit, where we are viewing her quilts while she explains her source of inspiration for the theme she had in mind. Good close-up views are included. In the other half, we watch and listen as she goes about spontaneously making a wall hanging. It appeared her choices were not preplanned or scripted in any way. Clearly she loves making art by auditioning both fabrics and shapes. She urges the viewer to work fast to make decisions rather than go back and forth trying to decide. It was her goal to teach us "to think like an artist." The word detached came to my mind. Don't get hung up on your favorite fabric or shape, go with what you find first that works, then stick with it.
The naturalness of her working style makes this DVD stand out from the others I have seen and enjoyed too. It is a less structured lesson and I felt Pamela came across in a very personal manner. She even includes the bloopers as a menu option, which adds humor and appreciation for how nervous she was, but didn't show it. She makes you smile because of her passionate pursuit for the craft and it's possibilities. She describes her approach to making fabric postcards by showing before and after visuals of postcards being made.
If you prefer rules and details and specifics from a teaching DVD, then this one definitely won't appeal to you. Pamela is totally free-wheeling - 'the anything goes if it looks good to you' approach. She takes quilting seriously and enters shows and challenges, but she likes to do it her way.
I didn't realize I already knew Pamela's work until she showed a house moving-themed quilt that I took pictures of at Pacific International Quilt Festival a couple years ago. I loved how she had tiny kitchen utensils attached to the kitchen wall of the house. She titled it "It Always Rains on Moving Day" in 2005, 35"X40". Pamela says " I moved a great deal as a child and hated it. It didn't matter what the weather was really like, it always seemed to be raining. Each room of the house has embellishments and quilting describing their function. Cutlery and utensils for the kitchen and even a quilted bath tub and toilet!" Pamela makes any kind of knick-knack sew-able by using various tools to make holes it, which she demonstrates in the video.
Pamela's DVD is available here. There is a also a short video sampling out-takes from the DVD.
Great job Pamela. The quilt photos are also from Pamela, and used with her permission. Thanks for sharing your self, art and approach to art quilting.
Here is the entire quilt that encapsulates the area seen in the detail photo above on the right. It is titled "WANNA BITE?" 2008,45"x42". Pamela says "I think Eve has always gotten short shrift. After all, she introduced adventure and knowledge to the human race! Hardly forbidden fruit in my opinion"
**"Think Like an Artist" bags of embellishments for your quilts are available from www.willowwoodfibrearts.com. The bag includes some of your signature embellishments including plastic eggs, safety pins, dice, game pieces, keys, spools, thimbles, bobbins and much more.
Friday, December 19, 2008
This year I was especially interested in discovering why or by what the artist was inspired. I much prefer it when I can see what the artist is saying she or he is making visible in the piece.
Their statements for the most part were meaningful, and added to my understanding of the purpose of the quilt for the artist (from their perspective). What the artist wrote about in their statement that she/he wanted to say or project, was visible in their wall art.
It was interesting to see how the artist made the leap from a mental cognition to the fiber visual.
There is no right or wrong of course, but sometimes I just don't get the connection.
It seemed to me in this exhibit that their statements fit the quilt, even when one or the other was quite abstract. So what changed I wondered, me or the artist's statements?
Here you can view http://www.quiltvisions.org/visionsarchives.html quilts from past Visions exhibits. 2004 and 2006 show all of them.
This http://www.quiltvisions.org/v2006/v2006.html was one of my favorites in 2006, Cosmic Bicycles. Also "Primitive Door Series #30, Haunted House" was realistic looking and another favorite. Click on See All Quilts slideshow to view it.
I just came across an interesting article from an Australian magazine about a woman economist who found a connection to weaving, quilts, darning and photography. the article doesn't have pictures unfortunately, so it's a bit hard to visualize what she is referring to at times. But it fits with this post in my mind. See http://tinyurl.com/46kotc
Maybe some of my Australian friends and subscribers could post a comment on this with a link to visuals? it would be most appreciated.
I hope your Holidays are filled with love for you this season.
Monday, December 15, 2008
You are so lucky!! No photography is allowed at this art quilt exhibit in Oceanside CA, but they have wonderful brochures with pictures! I liked many of the quilts in the exhibit, but the two that took my vote (only in my mind, it's a juried exhibit) were on the brochure- yeah!
This all fabric quilt was made by Diane Goulston Robinson, titled Facade. It was like looking through a window when I first came upon it hanging alone on a short wall. It is an incredibly accurate depiction of a building reflected in a glass building across the street. Can you believe Diane used upholstery fabrics among many other types of fabrics?
My other favorite is in aqua and tan shades of layered illusions on shear fabrics, AND upholstery fabrics, rough cut to blend in ways you hardly noticed but made perfect ground and wings. A beautiful quilt that felt delicate and powerful at the same time.
This is Red Temple by Miriam Nathan-Roberts. Looks like a wooden ceiling or furniture. All fabric. Amazing.
The top quilt photo(right) is only a small section of a raw edge 8 or 10 foot long wall hanging. I am guessing on the length, but it is very wide and less tall. BIG. Close up you see layers and layers of myriad of fabrics; stand back and a scene of friends sitting around and one playing music forms. Exquisite.
The second photo is also smaller than the wall art, but shows what it mostly looks like. It keeps your attention for quite awhile, as it is interesting to look at. Symmetry is no where to be found, yet you think you can find it. I also liked the colors.
Quilt Visions 2008 will hang at the Oceanside Museum of Art (just north of San Diego) until March 1, 2009. It is without question worth your time. There is a book if you can't make it. The quilt exhibit is every other year. For directions and hours, www.oma-online.org.
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
I met Peggy quite by chance at the Long Beach International Quilt Festival this summer. She and I both attended Yvonne Porcella's lecture. We ooed 'n awed at the same things so striking up a conversation was easy. It was then that she told me her name and I told her I had just ordered her DVD about her method for quick paper piecing. Never had I put the two words together in one sentence before! Truly her method is quick and now I can make the mariner's compass and other stars that have eluded me over the years of admiring them in antique quilts.
Peggy made the purse she's carrying in the picture.it exemplifies her color choices, saturated warm colors and black and white. her compass stars will look different than mine, well most of them :0)
Peggy Martin's years of quilt teaching experience make's her technique DVD excellent. Rightly named "Peggy Martin Teaches You Quick-Strip Paper Piecing." Peggy's attention to detail is the frosting on the paper pieced quilt you can make in no time compared to non-strip pieced methods. Much less time is spent ironing, cutting, sewing and she wants you to make multiple copies from your printer. The DVD provides two patterns to download and she has a copyright free stamp on the patterns in her two books; "Quick-Strip Paper Piecing" and "Paper Piece the Quick-Strip Way."Let's face it, most paper piecing patterns are full of angles that make guessing impossible, so trial and error or checking and rechecking or ripping out and starting over are a part of the process. This turned me off in the past. Peggy's patterns are clearly marked and using her strip-piecing method together with them eliminates the guess work and eliminates steps making it a faster process. Some checking is required, but no more than on regular piecing as the 1/4 inch seam allowance still applies.
In the DVD Peggy makes two patterns, one totally made from angles for beginners and the other a compass star. She shows a variety of quilts one can make from the featured pattern blocks. Of course there are more variations.
She covers preparing the fabric, tools to use, ironing tips, sewing with excellent close-up photography and a clear narrative following her thinking as she progresses. It doesn't sound like a script is being read, she's into it and we are the benefactors. This DVD makes the process sensible and doable.
Peggy covers every question you would ask and repeats the answers when the situation arises during the instructions. I didn't have a question left when the DVD was over. After that I was pleasantly surprised to see there was more. Peggy talks about her beginnings as a teacher, shows us her studio and her quilts. this DVD is #14 in C&T's "At Home With the Experts" series.
As I always say- Piece!
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Thursday, December 4, 2008
She requests 6 5" charm squares (meaning they are 6 different 100% cotton fabrics) be sent to in a regular mailing envelope. Your name will be entered into a drawing for receiving a set of 36 charm blocks back!
Click on her icon for shipping info and more details. If the icon above isn't showing click here for the webpage
This is another historical quilt style coming back to us in the 21st century. Hurry as this ends Dec. 31.
I'm going to cut my charms now. Thanks Michele- this is a great idea. It's easy and fast for us at a busy time of year.
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Thursday, November 27, 2008
The Internet honestly I never would have thought I would say this, but it is a blessing. I am about to share with you links to incredible quilt articles, full of love, care, photos and inspiration and mindful thoughts for you to ponder and enjoy over the Thanksgiving break. (I know some of you are saying A break- what's that?) I could say that too, but I won't. I am going to take a break, consciously setting my work and demands aside for a couple of days. If it feels really good, maybe three days!
I am headed to San Diego to view three quilt exhibits. The main event however is a phenom of avant garde art quilts at Visions. Visions is a juried exhibit. Something like 564 quilted works of art were entered and 41 were chosen. The museum in Oceanside, CA, is tiny, and this limits the number that can be shown. It's a lovely setting and shows the quilts off well. And let's face it, getting your quilt accepted is even more of a coo with odds like that.
Riding on Thermals
by Rose Hughes
Exhibited at PIQF 2008
To learn more about becoming a quilt artist, meet Rose Hughes, maker of this velvet and silk quilt, December 3, on Women On Quilts You can see more of her quilts on this page too.
So - Take your time, pour a glass of whatever you love to sip, put on some soothing music, light a scented candle, and begin to embrace the variety below. I recently discovered a musical group or orchestra really called State of Grace which I love to listen to as I work. Few words, mostly heavenly music. Very inspiring. It's published by Windham. Don't confuse it with their State of Grace 2, it's not as soothing IMHO. While I'm sharing, have you discovered the exquisite scented candle made by W&M Co.? Wow, scented meets it's match. I bought mine at Home Goods in the Silicon Valley, but it's a chain of stores.
http://www.selvedge.org/default.aspx 1924 video about the wool manufacturing process step by step in Australia
http://www.pintangle.com/journal/2008/11/21/another-2-diamond-blocks-done.html crazy quilt embroidery stitching
and http://www.pintangle.com/journal/2008/11/23/how-to-transfer-embroidery-patterns-to-fabric.html hot to transfer embroidery patterns to fabric
http://lucyquilting.blogspot.com/ "Quilting with the Past"about making reproduction quilts mostly
http://www.gwenmagee.com/portfolio.html Gwendolyn Magee, Art quilter, some are statements on slavery, intense & speak volumes
http://www.needlenthread.com/2008/11/art-of-embroiderer-museum-exhibit.html antique embroidery on clothing at Kent Museum
http://www.colourlovers.com/blog/category/interviews scroll down and down through the posts to see the photos mostly, but they grab you to also read text. Warning- no quilts, yet.
Marshall county dump quilts http://pennysanford.typepad.com/penny_sanford_porcelains_/2008/04/finally-the-sto.html
Judy's frugal link http://www.womenfolk.com/frugal_quilting/
Selvage jacket Calendar Pages
http://calenderpages.blogspot.com/ and http://calenderpages.blogspot.com/2008_10_01_archive.html and http://calenderpages.blogspot.com/2008/11/jacket-finished.html
http://charmsofdays.com/ Lots of feedsack photos intermingled
http://www.sacredthreadsquilts.com./default.htm be sure to click on the Gallery tab to see previous winning quilts
http://lynnewsnyder.blogspot.com/2008/11/lunch-at-quiltlers.html the Provo quilter country charm
http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/389492_caps26.html inspiring story about teen girl helping homeless, quilts mentioned just once
http://scrapsandthreadtales.blogspot.com/ scroll down for location pictures on this woman's travel
I have enjoyed our journey together this year. Thank you for being with me on it. Each of you are a gift to me. Together we hold the thread that forms the circle of quilters spirits around the world.
Piece to you and those you quilt with,
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
My interview with Amy Milne including the many projects she directs within the Alliance of American Quilts was inspiring, thought-provoking, and truthfully, it felt like a gift was handed to me.
As a result I want you to hand the gift to you too. Amy has agreed that we make this interview available to all of you, VIP or not, right here by webcast. Start here.
Sunday, November 16, 2008
I left guild early thinking the freeway may be closed and fortunately it was not. Since then our local news has been about nothing but fires; east and south of us, they continue to rage. So much beauty is lost when the fires come. Arnold, our govenor, said today that there is no longer a fire season in California. Now fires are all year long. That's true. He said it was due to the climate changes connected to global warming.
In one mobile home park over 500 homes were desicrated. Many many families are homeless today since the fires began on Thursday evening. And we Americans, me included, are focusing on the economy, unemployment and stock market thinking that things couldn't get much worse. Let's take a moment and count our many blessings.
This week I put a new article on my website String Quilts Match the Economic Times, Past and Present. The quilts shown are from my collection. I think there is a surprise in it. Let me know if you found the surprise. It's a connection for lack of a better term. No, it's not candy or fabric- sorry! It may bring a smile to your face though, and that's worth getting. :)
Diane Shink, my friend and quilt history buddy has co-authored a quilt book with Karen Neary, Canadian Heritage Quilting — Quick Creative Designs, a 128-page book that delves into 16 vintage Canadian quilts, many with a strong Maritime connection... Ms. Shink researched and wrote the historical details for each quilt featured in the book. Ms. Neary created the modern patterns. click here for a Canadian news article about the book
The book has just been published in Canada and I am thrilled for Diane. She told me last week that it's on Amazon. Diane lives in Montreal, collects antique quilts with a star pattern, any star, and she collects Aprons. She teaches, writes, is an appraiser and a member of AQSG.
Are you looking to make some fast but wonderful quilts or wallhangings for Christmas gifts? Are you aware of the technique that uses no bias, no set-in Y seams and no diamond shapes, yet results in a Star of Bethlehem, or Lone Star pattern?
Big One-Star Quilts by Magic is written by Nancy Johnson-Sebro. It is her second book using this technique for big stars with 14 new star patterns, I recommend in my review that you use an all-over tight print or marble or hand dyed looking fabric for the rectangles and squares that form the Star's diamonds. This will trick the eye, leaving the horizontal or vertical seams in the Texas dust. No one will be the wiser.
It looks to me like a weekend would take it from start to finish. Nancy goes green by providing 14 patterns for the back that use the scraps from the front.
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Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Star-Spangled Banner Days You can see pictures of the original flag maker, the flag in a Smithsonian Museum's conservation lab, which gives you a sense of its enormous size, how it looks in the display case now and more. Click on the photo icon that says "Picture Gallery" to the right of the article. Here are a few paragraphs from the article about this Flag- worthwhile article,an historical account.
"To make the flag's stripes, she overlapped and stitched eight strips of red wool and alternated them with seven strips of undyed white wool. While the bunting was manufactured in 18-inch widths, the stripes in her design were each two feet wide, so she had to splice in an extra six inches all the way across. She did it so smoothly that the completed product would look like a finished whole—and not like the massive patchwork it was. A rectangle of deep blue, about 16 by 21 feet, formed the flag's canton, or upper left quarter. Sitting on the brewery floor, she stitched a scattering of five-pointed stars into the canton. Each one, fashioned from white cotton, was almost two feet across. Then she turned the flag over and snipped out blue material from the backs of the stars, tightly binding the edges; this made the stars visible from either side.
"My mother worked many nights until 12 o'clock to complete it in the given time," Caroline Pickersgill Purdy recalled years later. By mid-August, the work was done—a supersize version of the Stars and Stripes. Unlike the 13-star ensign first authorized by Congress on June 14, 1777, this one had 15 stars to go with the 15 stripes, acknowledging the Union's latest additions, Vermont and Kentucky."
"There was nothing special about it," says Scott S. Sheads, historian at Baltimore's Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine, speaking of a time when a new nation was struggling for survival and groping toward a collective identity. That all changed in 1813, when one enormous flag, pieced together on the floor of a Baltimore brewery, was first hoisted over the federal garrison at Fort McHenry. In time the banner would take on larger meaning, set on a path to glory by a young lawyer named Francis Scott Key, passing into one family's private possession and emerging as a public treasure."
"On the most memorable of those occasions, the flag was displayed at Fort McHenry with George Washington's campaign tent and other patriotic memorabilia when Revolutionary War hero the Marquis de Lafayette visited in October 1824. When Louisa Armistead died in 1861, she left the flag to her daughter, Georgiana Armistead Appleton, just as a new war broke out."
A patriotic quilt exhibit is currently at The Women's Museum in Dallas TX is on Judy Breneman's blog Among the Usual Days.
Mmore about patriotic quilts can be found at Patriotic Quilts through Time. It's been on my website quite awhile and many of you have probably read it already. That's the good thing about writting about antique quilts, the articles never really get old. :) In it I ask you to use the book by Safford and Bishop "America's Quilts and Coverlets" to see the quilts pictured in it that I discuss in the article and give page numbers to.
Sunday, November 2, 2008
I love the taste of pumpkin anything. I am a sucker this time of year for The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf's or Starbucks Pumpkin Latte. MMMmmmm. The first one I ever tasted was in Golden CO at the AQSG conference in 2005. It was a cool and crisp day and this latte was a taste of heaven on a fun day at the Rocky Mountain Quilt museum. Do you have foods that bring a good memory with it to you?
The quilts I'll show you today are filled with Fall colors and they just so happen to be made of reproduction fabrics. One quilt is made in French reproductions and the other American reproductions. It is Stunning. She has keen sense of color use in a quilt. Wow. Margaret McDonald made it and she lives, no, not New England, but Australia.
Click on this link to see about 16 slides.
A quick note to close- this coming Thursday evening (5PM Pacific time, 7PM CST, 8 PM EST) Pat Sloan will tells us really how she balances all of the quilt business hats she wears with great success and how she keeps creativity flowing. She has written 19 books, has a P&B fabric line, her pattern company and she teaches all over the world, so how she has time is another mystery. Pat is lots of fun and full of energy. And she is courageous - as she is my first Woman On Quilts to be interviewed! Please join us on the telephone or listen through your website. There is no charge. Register here to get the log in link or phone passcode.
The next batch of pictures you'll get will be of arty and embellished quilts in the exhibit. One of the makers is going to be a Woman On Quilts in December!
May you have a happy Monday and wear a smile all day. Tuesday, get out to vote!
Friday, October 31, 2008
It has been a very busy and exciting time. I see no end in site and I do apologize for the delay in sharing pictures of the stunning and fascinating quilts I saw on display at Pacific International Quilt Festival earlier this month.
Starting today I'll share them with you on a more frequent basis than usual for QS. There are so many and I can't just show you one full shot- No Way! I would hear you yelling through your monitor "tease, selfish, oh come on now" and I don't want that! I want you to send me happy, upbeat, WOW thoughts of gratitude and that's what I'm sending your way too.
We'll begin with this crazy style modernized quilt of a flag. Nancy K. McLerran made it. She named it "Betsy Ross Never Imagined This." Aptly named I say. Nancy embroidered minature symbols of the America Revolutionary War such as the Liberty Bell, flag, Washington's profile...
Nancy is from from Santa Rosa, in the wine country of California.
I think she did a great job of blending new and old and older styles of quilts. Notice the reproductions indigo fabrics in the canton. Very cool quilt!
Tomorrow I'll send some more pictures. This quilt will use loads of my favorite early 19th century reproduction fabrics!
Boo! from your Patchwork Queen (tee-hee)
Happy Halloween everyone- don't get a tummy ache.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Pippa is fond of quilts and they are her thesis topic. She gives a condensed and precise overview of the history of the origins of quilting in Gee's Bend, from the 60s into the present. She hits on the controversy or controversies, including the ongoing, (pre-Gee's) debate about whether or not quilts are art at all. She gives her view of the exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, which is inspired by her personal take and the quilters history.
I digress for a moment- it is the quilter's history that has always grabbed me and my attention on the quilts too, admittedly, more than seeing the quilts in person. I like them better in books than in person myself. I made a reproduction of one I particularly liked in the big blue book. The top is made of three high contrast fabrics in all long narrow rectangles. I used older fabrics, used from clothes made in the mid last century and a sheet. I cut the pieces by scissors and made the pattern look the same, but it just didn't have the zing. It was harder than I had imagined to achieve the "awe" factor and in fact I did not achieve it all all. My respect for their artistic eye and creative thinking remains high, along with being inspired by their historical underpinnings beginning last century.
Pippa's article is worth your time to read. Here are a couple of out takes
"Their display is evidence of how far we have already come. However, it is hard not to feel like a true triumph of the quilting medium would allow the quilts to exist as artistic masterpieces without the justification of museum walls. "
"Despite the tendency toward improvisation and originality, many of these quilts are also based on patterns and display both a remarkable ability to innovative within boundaries as well as the inherently communal aspect of quilting. The “Housetop” pattern (a variation of the traditional Log Cabin) is a favorite amongst the women of Gee’s Bend. Other quilts are based on traditional Euro-American quilting patterns, such as Wild Goose Chase and Bethlehem Star, but still maintain the Gee’s Bend’s penchant for creativity and innovation."
This last one may have our dear late Cuesta Benberry rolling over in her grave- she was not a believer that African-America quilts were all asymetrical, not at all. Her books show us many quilts made in traditional block styles, including appliqué. Pippa writes "Even if seen in the light of the African American quilting tradition, one that has always favored asymmetry and improvisation, these quilts demonstrate a truly remarkable degree of originality." Pippa's statement indicates how embedded this belief is in American culture.
Have any of you tried to reproduce a Gee's Bend style quilt? Tell us about it, send photos.
I will soon post photos from PIQF. It was an amazing show and I took lots of pictures with you in mind. I have to catch up on biz first and then your show will begin, with all credits given!
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Pat Sloan On Balancing Her Creative Arts
How does she stay inspired with fresh ideas, make one artistic expression lead to another and have the energy to handle it all? Plus live Q&A time.
Pat carries more roles than you can imagine and this is just for her work! Her quilt businesses are family owned and run, but she is the creative brains, teacher, quilt maker and designer behind it all. Tell me more...
You must register for this interview to receive the phone number and code or link for webcast get in. The live interview is fr.ee
Please join us on the teleclass or webcast on a November evening. There is time for live Q&A and your questions will make this aspect fun for everyone.
Women On Quilts
PS When you go to the WOQ page, please cast your vote for the best day and time for you to attend future interviews.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
I'm taking a full day's class with Barbara Olsen about breaking out of your box and trying something new and arty. Barbara is known for her black and white spiral quilt among others. Before I return I'm teaching at guild near there about my other favorite subject- antique quilts. It's going to be a great get-away with wonderful people, who knows who I'll meet? I'll post pictures and tell you all about the event when I return next week.
Speaking of that, today I announced the first guest I'll interview on Women On Quilts. I emailed those on my VIP list and registrations are coming in. If you sign-up now you'll receive her name, topic and all the info right away. If you want to be there you'll be assured of getting a "seat." Its fr.ee. There are other benefits, besides first notice, to being on WOQ's VIP mailing list. Hope to "see" you there.
Monday, October 13, 2008
The trend to quilt at times like this began for me when the Oklahoma City Federal building was bombed in 1995. Choosing or drafting a design and auditioning fabric gets the most consideration from me and this stage gives me the greatest push into creativity. I used a pattern and made a brightly colored quilt with an Escheresque pattern. Using a design wall was essential because the colors of a block flowed into the next block in order to get the effect. It took lots of time to figure out.
Creative thoughts are the opposite of depressed, helpless, hopeless, and mad thoughts. Opposite thoughts with their accompanying feelings don’t exist in your mind/body at the same moment. Engaging in creativity is one way of coping with feelings that come up at times like these. Sure I cry and pray as I go along too, but I keep my mind moving along with the quilt on its path to completion.
Making a quilt kept my mind from concentrating solely on the devastation and my feelings of helplessness and powerlessness to help. The news kept me involved with the story and able to hear the people interviewed. I could send "God Bless yous" from my heart to theirs as I moved pieces for the color arrangement and sewed the pieces together. The same calling to be creative came forth as other disasters struck.
When I'm sewing by machine I feel less involved with the information (partly because it's hard to hear or read while doing it) so it is the best remedy when I need a break from it all. If the sewing is simple, my mind can wander and send energy to the struggling people. I also go through my attitude of gratitude list while sewing. There is so much for which to be thankful. By the time the quilt is completed, I feel some relief from the intensity of the days before. I have worked through a great deal of feelings and gained a life awareness I didn’t have before the crisis. The quilt always reminds me of the new awareness I gained and how fortunate I am, providing another opportunity to say a little blessing prayer for the people who died and their families.
Because I lost my voice, got a sinus headache from the hot dry winds and the economy was tanking, I figured the spirits were talking to me to take off a couple of days to design a new quilt project. I also needed to separate from predominantly left brained activities to open up the right side – wide. As a result, time flew buy, my body relaxed and I felt calmer and more creative thanks to designing a quilt block and auditioning fabrics.
This is a picture of one block showing where I am in the process right now. A stained glass panel is the end goal made with 8 blocks.There is a bit of a twist, but I'll keep that to myself until it's finished. How I will cover the seams on this one I have not decided just what yet. Since I awoke to good news about the stock market, I worked all day on the computer. (Hmm, is this a no win situation??)
I have planned two different colorways for the blocks. The other color resulted in a private challenge when recently I was dared (in the good way) by a quilter whom I had the pleasure of staying with while teaching at her guild in Escondido CA. The challenge came from a quilt shop "ah ha! moment "when we fell for fabrics that were not the usual choice for either of us. Life is full of surprises. We agreed to make stained glass blocks we design separately using the same fabrics. This blue, green and gray one is a test quilt and i'm gald i took the time to do it as i will handle the challenge quilt differently. Fortunately I like both versions.
Would you like to share your quilt made in a crisis or your story. I would be very interested in hearing about your use of quilting and how it helps you. Post it as a comment or email me.
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Introducing (trumpets roll please) a teaching, learning, and sharing opportunity for creative women everywhere- Women On Quilts: Interviews, Teleclasses, Webcasts! From the comfort of your home, by telephone or using the internet, meet fabulous women who make their living or live their joy in the quilt world. Learn how they did what they do to pursue their goals and find succesful inside and out. My hope is you will feel a spark from these conversations and classes that will enable you to accomplish your dream too.
During this demise of our country’s economic fabric, I can't help but think about women living during the Great Depression and making quilts for covers and mattresses. I have to believe we will figure a way to avoid another Depression. Every day brings new information, new stock market numbers and experts discussing how we can save our money. Although I couldn't have known this when Women On Quilts was just a buzz in my head early this summer, what I am bringing to you certainly seems to be an antidote during this crisis and the ensuing months of the recession. Just think, from your home or office you can meet women working in the wide world of quilt businesses, designing, writing, leading & planning, teaching, quilt making, and so much more. I will teach how-to classes in research, quilt history and to spark your creativity & overcome challenges in your life, work & art such as
fearless speaking in front of groups
using perfectionism to your benefit
using healthy attitudes & beliefs in your work and art
releasing blocks, fears, and negative thinking
finding approaches to living your life pursuing creativity ***
I so appreciate all of you that subscribe to my newsletter, read this blog, post comments and send me emails. You made WOQ happen. To keep up with my next interviews with well known and lesser known quilters, including the first women I haven't announced yet, opt-in to WOQ VIPs now so that you will automatically get the class and interview announcements. As a thank you, you will receive my E-article "Sparking Your Creativity." Yes, you want to subscribe to both QS and WOQ as they are completely different and WOQ VIP's get privileges non-subscribers and feed subscribers do not.
Look for QS newsletter on Monday when I will talk about my quilt making during this week of economic crisis and you'll get a glimpse into some of my thinking about the mind/body benefits of being creative. I will pull from my background in psychology for some of the classes I offer through WOQ.
***An interview Judy did with me reveals more about WOQ's purpose and goals on Womenfolk:The Art of Quilting.
Monday, October 6, 2008
Here is a terrific take on recycled cloth, which starts by introducing the Gee's Bend quilt exhibit opening at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. From Recycled Scraps To Museum-Quality Quilts, by Sandy Bauers for The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Ok, that's not really new news to quilters, but how about this?
"...clothing Swap-O-Rama-Ramas started by New Mexico's Wendy Tremayne because she "wanted to find a remedy for consumerism."
"The idea is for women to bring in old clothes, experience 'total abundance' when the stuff is piled together, then start taking things to nearby sewing machines and design experts to learn how to alter them to fit or refashion them into other clothing."
Have you ever been to such a swap or heard of them? I read articles about people remaking old or out-of-fashion cloths into trendy clothes. It's chic. And there is an upsurge in sewing one's clothes at home. No doubt Project Runway has contributed to the surge in fashion designing at home and in schools with such a degree.
I wonder if this particular swap came from this trend or from the green generation who thankfully are taking our trash seriously too. Either way, its a fun and exciting expression in the wide world of fabric lovers.
A Google search is full of info. Wendy began the swaps in 2005.Please comment below if you have personal experience with the Swap-O-Rama Ramas!
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
There is a new article on my website about Welsh Quilts. Mary Jenkins is my guest author this month and she wrote the fabulous book "Making Welsh Quilts" which is in it's second printing. In her article,'Making Welsh Quilts: Necessity is the Mother of Invention' Mary talks about quilting and quilts in Wales where she grew up, then and now.
In the book, Mary describes how Amish quilts were inspired by Wale's quilts. In the book she features 10 patterns for medallion style Welsh quilts all shown completed in glorious reproduction fabrics.(one of Mary's recent samples is in the article) They are yummy quilts. Mary and Clare Claridge, the co-author, have pages and pages of Welsh quilting patterns they are known for; spirals, fans, leaves, pears, flowers, hearts, borders and more. The quilt projects have quilting patterns and templates. They are easy enough for beginners to piece by machine or hand.
The beginning of the book is a quilt gallery of antique quilts, one of which is pictured in her article. To find out more about their book, there is a link to Amazon at the end of article and another to Mary and Clare's webpages.
A big thank you from me to all of you who responded to my SOS call for fabric to mend my tasty antique quilt top. You guys are so great and so helpful!! I am following your leads, checking out different original fabrics first. If they don't work out, then the repro has been discovered. It is by Judy Rothermel in Lancaster 3. The red fabric remains a mystery. Further ideas are invited.
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
I have gone through my stash looking for reproduction fabric to repair the top but can't find either one in my stacks. They both look so familiar to me me, I'm pretty certain both were reproduced. Can anyone tell me which company made either of these, or the the designer? Here are closer shots.
I showed this top at a Guild lecture I gave last week and upon packing it noticed the brown fabric was splitting, cracking in one block. (Crocking is when color from the dye rubs onto another block) This happens over time to browns when they are washed or in the sun. That's not the case with this top, but the brown pieces feel dry and inflexible compared to the others fabrics. If the top had been batted and backed the splitting probably would not have happened, yet anyway. Iron was used to make brown dyes and this is what often happens to brown fabrics in quilts.They are the first to deteriorate, and this is how it begins--
Please help me find the fabrics. The brown fabric I have not seen reproduced. I plan on putting a dark brown plain fabric underneath it and crepoline across the top in order to save it from further deterioration from movement.
Lest you wonder, I bought the top with these mouse chews included, free of charge!
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Take a look at my website antique quilt dating guides...by Style. What do you think of that red? Does Turkey Red come to mind?
If you are a subscriber, have you seen the new look of Quilters Spirit? (clicking the blog title will take you there) Do you like the apple green color? I love this shade of green. When we were redecorating our bedroom awhile back and picking the paint I was pulled to this green! I didn't chose it though, it's hardly a restful color. But it is perfect for Quilters Spirit.
Very soon now I will be launching a brand new program. There is something for every quilter. I am very excited to tell you about it... but it isn't quite ready to begin. I have spent many days of long hours and given it a lot of thought and planning. Technology and software glitches are still present. I am working with one beta system, which means it is in the trial phase, but oh my gosh, when it's right, WOW, it will be great for us to use together.
I won't tease you any more, tonight. Watch for my announcement!
Quilters are animal people. Here are my furry ones keeping me company in my studio. Haley is a Maine Coon not quite 2 years old. And Faith is nearly 10 years old. She is part chow, part border collie and part??? They are both rescued animals ( they rescued me) and dearly loved members of our family. They love quilts and leave their hair all over them.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
The first is written by Serena Renton, an artist and college teacher currently in North Carolina. Her website is a thinker and a looker Layers of Meaning. She offers her personal comments on design and textile arts and the creative expression of them.
Sue Spargo is a folk art quilter. She designs all of her own pattern designs which . are quite different than what you may think of when you think of folk art quilts. Sue uses wool, decorator fabrics, trims and cottons all together in a pattern to make her appliqued quilts, pillows, and gifts. Her designs are whimsical and wonderful and some are even useful, like needle cases and pin cushions,. She draws from the old but they are decidedly contemporary.
Fiberella is an art quilter's website with a gallery of quilts made with machine needle felting, machine embroidery and quilting and thread drawing techniques that make quilts very exciting and intriguing. Paula Scaffidi, the quilt artist invites quilters to submit photos of their own work to post in her gallery!
Recently I watched a teaching video for beginning art quilters and those quilters who want to know the art school terms and thinking about composition and drawing to add to their repertoire. It was terrific, like being with friends in their studio, they being the teachers on the video Jan Davila and Elin Waterston. You can read more about Teach You Art Quilt Basics and my thoughts as a student. After that, why not check out my other book reviews, they offer quite a variety of topics in the quilting field.
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
At this workshop I showed my recreation of a Ruby McKim flower block that was both embroidered and appliquéd. I had found an extremely tattered quilt using these blocks with lilac solid color fabric and matching quilting thread. I saved it for many years and finally cut out the best blocks and reused them in a new wall size quilt. You can see the original and new quilt here.
At the workshop one of the ladies brought this quilt to show and ask about the date. She had no idea is was a sister version of mine that I showed earlier in the class. Her quilt is all embroidered, with no appliqué, but they are the same McKim blocks.
Here is the original pattern from Ruby's "Designs Worth Doing" catalog, 1930-31.
A few of the blocks close-up
How's that for synchronicity? I was thrilled to see Mary's quilt. I knew it was a McKim pattern right away, but putting this together with the other McKim state flower blocks that also showed up at that workshop (I blogged about these in July)it was quite a coincidence and wonderful learning experience for all of us.
If you have any McKim quilts, tops or blocks you would like to share, please put a link to them in the comments.
I've added a share/bookmark icon. If you like my newsletter won't you please take a moment to tell others by clicking on those sites of your choice in that icon- it opens to show all types of destinations. Or you can send them the url for my blog http://quiltersspirit.blogspot.com. Thank you :)
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
The multi-media portrait of Ramsey includes a mini-documentary, extensive biographical information and over forty interview clips on various topics. The project will debut publicly on the Alliance’s website in mid September. To view the project visit Center for the Quilt.
There's much to be learned from old quilts, but they can't speak for themselves," says Amy Milne, executive director of the Alliance for American Quilts. "Our website projects save not just the images of quilts, from the humble to the magnificent, but allow us to save and share the stories of how and why they were made. All the funds raised in Knoxville, with Kimberly-Clark's help, will enable us to preserve these stories online for all those who value these treasures."
Also sponsored by Kimberly-Clark on August 21, was the first ever Quilt Train event in Knoxville. Board members of the AAQ from all parts of the US and a large contingent of quilt and train enthusiasts from the Knoxville area enjoyed a rolling wine and cheese party on the Three Rivers Rambler excursion train owned and operated by Gulf & Ohio Railways Inc. Vintage quilts from the collection of Knoxville resident and esteemed quilt historian Merikay Waldvogel were hung and draped around the train. Also exhibited on the Quilt Train were small quilts from the AAQ contest, My Quilts/Our History, for which quilters around the country and abroad made quilts celebrating their personal quilt histories. (For more information about the contest and the upcoming auction, go to the Alliance website,Center for the Quilt
The Quilt Train evening continued with a dinner at Calhoun’s by the River restaurant to honor nationally-recognized quilt historian, curator and author Merikay Waldvogel, who recently ended her term on the AAQ board after many years of dedicated service. Waldvogel and Ramsey were co-directors of Tennessee Quilt Survey, a major effort to document the state's quilts which produced a traveling exhibit and publications. The documented Tennessee quilts, along with thousands of quilts from other state and museum collections, are preserved permanently on the Quilt Index, a rapidly-expanding online repository of historical and contemporary quilts, a joint project of the Alliance and Michigan State University.
Kathy Metelica, Market Manager for Kimberly-Clark’s southern region honored Merikay Waldvogel and Bets Ramsey for the important contribution both have made to the preservation of Tennessee’s quilt history, and added “Kimberly-Clark would like to congratulate The Alliance for American Quilts for 15 years of preserving the rich history of American quilting. We are proud to sponsor these events.”
The information above is from a press release from The Quilt Alliance, which is the Center for the Quilt and the Quilt Index. Contact for more information is Amy E. Milne, the Executive Director of The Alliance for American Quilts, (828) 251-7073, email@example.com, www.centerforthequilt.org.
Related to the women honored by the Alliance is another great quilt org.The Quilter's Hall of Fame. Both Bets Ramsey (in 2004)and Merikay Wadvogal(2009)are inductees of The Quilters Hall of Fame. Merikay's will be official next July, her induction was made public this past July. The Quilter's Hall of Fame inductee this July, 2008, was Helen Kelley, writer, quilter, teacher, machine quilting pattern expert, and so much more. She has written a column for QN forever. Sadly, she passed away this Monday, Sept. 1. The Quilter's Hall of Fame offers detailed biography's of each of their inductees and this book is a worthwhile investment for any one interested in our quilting history, past and present.
Sunday, August 31, 2008
|Antique Qlt Vendors Finale|
Labors of Love can be found at large quilt and textile events and festivals. I saved their pictures for the Labor Day weekend. (If you believe that, I have a genuine UGRR quilt for sale...)
Cotance, owner of Scarlet Ladies Antiques, describes herself as a gypsy, traveling from shop to show to shop to show across the country.
This concludes my photo journey through the first International Quilt Festival in California.
Have a great time for the rest of your long weekend.
Friday, August 29, 2008
So, as not to disappoint, I have found a way around this temporary obstacle.
If you will, click on this album
|Antique Quilt Vendors|
To see more of the quilts these vendors offer you, here are their websites.
Email Sandy White ~ sandywhiteAQ@adelphia.net
Cindy's Antique Quilts
Mary Koval Antique Quilts
Believe it or not- I have two more vendors to share with you! Since a holiday weekend is upon us, I will blog them to you before you can make a quilter's knot.
Be safe and have fun,
Monday, August 25, 2008
The first paper appeared last October in FOLK ART Magazine of the American Folk Art Museum. Hewson is considered to be one of the earliest and the finest of chintz block printers in America's history. He emigrated from England to Philadelphia in 1773 to set up one of the first textile printing factories here. His goal was to dye and print cotton and linen fine enough to compete with England's dyed and printed cottons. Colorfast printing on cotton was still new to the Western world at that time and they loved it; colorful cottons from India, called chintz, were all the rage around the world and now Europe and America would be competitors.
A small number of textiles printed by Hewson exist today (as far as we know there are twenty-eight) and the majority of them have a large vase holding a bouquet of garden flowers placed in the middle of a square printed panel. The quilt maker often placed this panel in the middle of a medallion or frame quilt. Or the vase and flowers design was carefully cut-out of the chintz and appliquéd to a different background in a quilt.
The vase and flowers are colorful and naturalistic in their depiction. Hewson's influence was thought to be from his homeland and from Dutch flower paintings. A closer look at the neoclassical decorations on the vase indicated to me that it was in fact more like the decorative arts I was seeing made in France in the last quarter of the 18th century. With the decorative arts as my field for research, I became more convinced of the French connection as I went along. Then in 2004 I found the source of his design!
What I reveal in this important paper is the late 18th century French arabesque wallpaper in the Louis XVI style from which Hewson borrowed the vase and flowers design to print onto cotton. He took the central portion of the vertically repeating design on the wallpaper, adapting the tip top of his flowers and bottom of base of his vase, to show a complete free-standing design.
The wallpaper curators of museums in France and America are of the belief that this wallpaper was from the atelier Jean Baptiste Réveillon, whose manufactory was known for producing the finest luxurious arabesque wallpapers at that time. 1780-1790. Who printed the French wallpaper I discuss in this article, is not certain as it is not stamped with a manufactory and it is not in the sample books of Réveillon's wallpapers kept at various museums. However, the late 18th century printing was likely printed at his manufactory after he retired, by the new owners were Jacquemart and Benard.
I also reveal how the manner of Chinese wallpaper artists probably affected Hewson's designs and choices he made for the lay-out of his panel. This is not to be confused with the style called chinoiserie. The manner of early Chinese wallpaper artists, who were the first to make wallpaper, is the influence I write about here and it is significant.
Wonderful photos accompany my article. The highlight of all the photos however is the pair of portraits of John and Zibiah Hewson!! Their portraits have not been published before.
I will be publishing more of my research findings and assessments about John Hewson’s life and his work. I am available for lectures and presentations. To talk about this further please contact me directly at a different email address, firstname.lastname@example.org or go to my website for the phone and address at http://www.antiquequiltdating.com/ I welcome your inquires and contributions!
The month is nearly over, so if you haven't found a copy yet, order one from the publisher by email: email@example.com or to subscribe call 212.941.2806. Some Borders and Barnes & Nobles sell the magazine, as well as other fine bookstores, and many libraries subscribe.
Kimberly Wulfert, PhD
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Plus the Olympics have caught my attention this year, I have so enjoyed learning and seeing more about China than I ever have. I have cried so man y times watching Micheal Phelps, Shannon Johnson and Nastia, Misty May and Kerrie, and all the other people who are so superior in their sport. My heart has grown huge with happiness for them and I am regularly awed by their ability and by their handling of the challenge before them. Such wonderful role models for everyone!
I must admit that I have not watched the Olympics before, other than here and there, but this locale and Phelps' story caught my eye. Come to find out, many incredibly inspiring personal stories have been told by NBC. I am blown away by what these people have gone through in their personal life! It made me appreciate everyone of them so much more deeply.
Remember I am a clinical psychologist and have worked in many venues and heard many stories, but seldom do people rise to such levels of overcoming the challenges, although some certainly do! I don't mean in their sport, I mean in their life. They are able to keep their vision, reach their personal goals, get support, find their way, rise above feeling like the victim of their life and instead a leader of their life who dream big and make it happen in spite of the odds. I am so impressed by the Olympians' accomplishments before they get to China. I especially have enjoyed seeing how many older folks are coming back to compete and doing a great job.
I certainly don't see watching the Olympics as a tacit acceptance of communism or Chinese attitudes toward women, the environment or Tibet. As I see it, the athletes and this huge country of human beings also living on this planet, are my brothers and sisters, and knowing their ways is enhancing my life. Wasn't that Opening Ceremony something? I simply have never been so awed at a performance and I've been awed at a lot of performances, but 2008 people in unison on stage, over and over again with different sets of 2008 people in perfect unison, doing intertwined performances, on a giant led monitor- the tears were just running down my cheeks in amazement that they have this level of discipline, creativity and vision in China.
With that said, let's look at some pictures of the fabulous quilts and people I saw at the Long Beach Quilt Festival.
These happy campers are Audrey, Dee and me.
So who are Audry and Dee, besides my long time buddies? They are the founders, planners and hostesses with the mostesses of both Quilt Camp in the Desert (Jan. in Phoenix) and Quilt Camp in the Pines (July in Flagstaff, AZ) See http://www.quiltcamp.com/ to see the teachers lined up for the July camp. It's a blast!
This was the booth for SAQA, Studio Artists Quilt Association, one of the earliest art quilt group orgs, which Yvonne Porcella began right here in California.Artists in the Photo from left- Jeanette Kelly, Cathy Gregory, Linda Miller, and Karen Lusnak.
I would show you photos of SAQA's quilts on exhibit here, but no photography was allowed. These are incredible quilts though, many presented in a series, and many were for sale and marked sold on the very first day.
when I took a time out to hear Yvonne Porcella teach for a half hour (and describe her new magazine coming out this fall!)I was oohing and ahhing in unison with the woman sitting behind me, so I turned around to talk during the break, to see the kindred spirit. Turns out it was Peggy Martin, the Strip Paper Piecing Queen!
A funny coincidence happened (there are no coincidences in my opin)I had just ordered a DVD of Peggy's book from C&T for reviewing. It won't be out until November darn it, but it was on my mind and then there she was! We had a great talk and I look forward to watching her teach even more now.
More to come from the Long Beach show, but this is it for now. Piece to you and those you quilt with!
Monday, August 4, 2008
All the antique quilt and textiles vendors I asked were gracious to let me take pictures of their booths to share with you. I am going to show you a booth from New England vendor's today.
Pique,(accent on the e toward left) was a totally new vendor to me, owned by Julia and Valerie Kelly-Hodenius. Their coxcomb quilt was a little worn from friction during use, but the quilting was stunning. Interesting to me that the Turkey red fabric showed wear, but not the teal or background fabrics.
Their princess feather quilt- WOW- this quilt maker had time and talent. The quilt measures 127" x 131". Her applique quilt has a "coxcombesque" border flower and a compass design in-between the giant feathers. It is beautiful in person, grand and orange. Do you get a picture of the maker in your head?
Pique brought 18th century fabric from France and England on bolts! Of course these are not original, they are cardboard, but they had enough of the yardage to sell it this way, and they weren't cutting it up.
In the photo below the toile on the left is early 20th century furnishing fabric, and the toile piece on the left was made one hundred years plus earlier.Both were made in France.
Thank you Pique for sharing your collection with my subscribers. You can visit their website at www.piquetrouver.com