ELAINE QUEHL, Quilt Artist, Teacher, Dyer, Designer

Monday, September 26, 2011

Back from Nova Scotia

I arrived home from Nova Scotia late last night. I'm unpacking my suitcases as we speak, and thinking about repacking them again for the teaching trip I leave for in a week's time. I'll be teaching three days before Thanksgiving weekend at Greenwood Quiltery in Guelph, Ontario, and spending a week after Thanksgiving with two quilt guilds in Simcoe Ontario (Norfolk County Quilt Guild and Norfolk Twilight Quilt Guild). I'll be teaching at the QUINCE Retreat for several days. What in tarnation does QUINCE mean, other than a variety of apple? Well they have named their retreat the "Quehl in Norfolk County Extravaganza". Cute, eh? It will indeed be a bit of a a Quehl extravaganza as I will be delivering two lectures and 6 different workshops.

Today in Ottawa we are enjoying a perfect summer day, although it is obvious that fall arrived while I was away. A number of trees in my neighbourhood have turned colour in the week I was away. Yesterday was also a perfect summer day in Halifax, where I spent a few hours on the waterfront before flying out.

I indulged in one last lobster sandwich before heading home.

It was amazing to see how much progress my students made in class between the first and last day. I think this illustrates how much practice can help improve free-motion skills. I saw some lovely texture develop, that was particularly enhanced by the great lighting in our classroom. This is some of Vivian's stitching:
This one is Vicki's.
I had a good laugh when Dorinda stitched her full set of notes to the back of her practice sandwich.
I have found myself in a similar situation many times! I often keep photographs of hostas, flowers and trees next to my sewing machine to provide inspiration for stitching. Do you know how many times I have accidentally stitched them to the back of the quilt? And in the early days when my studio was the dining room table, how many times did I stitch the table cloth into my work?

We gathered on the last day for class photos. This is my very talented and hard-working class.

There was a silent auction of donated items at the retreat, and I am happy to say that I placed the winning bid on a print of Laurie Swim's piece "From Our Back Yard". I am particularly fond of her Backyard Series as it reminds me so much of sights I saw in my rural childhood.

There was a banquet on the last night of the retreat, with much partying and merriment. In fact, some retreat members said we sounded like a fraternity. We were all required to wear facinator hats to the event, and then a photo was captured of the teachers in this attire. Oh the indignities that quilting teachers suffer ;-))
Jane looks like she has a propeller on her head, Daphne looks just plain giddy, and I'm looking away as though I can't believe this is really happening to me. After all, I'm the one who never watched any part of the latest royal wedding, and very little of their visit to Canada. But then I didn't even watch TV the entire week I was in Nova Scotia.

This week I'm actually home to attend our SAQA Central Canada meeting in Ottawa, and will be teaching Beyond Stippling, Part I at Dragonfly Fabrics on Saturday, and attending the vernissage of my show with Cathy Breedyk-Law on Sunday. Please join us at 2:00 p.m. at the Mississippi Valley Textile Museum in Almonte, Ontario. If you wish to have a sneak peek at our show, Cathy has posted some pictures I took the day we hung our show on her blog.


  1. Nova Scotia looks like a wonderful place, like a fabulous vacation even though you had to teach there. Thanks for sharing info about Laurie Swim, her work is amazing. If I lived closer, I'd definitely attend your show in Almonte, even though I have no idea what a vernissage is!

  2. Laura,
    We use the term "vernissage" here instead of "opening reception". I think it is the French influence. Here is the definition from dictionary.com

    1. Also called varnishing day. the day before the opening of an art exhibition traditionally reserved for the artist to varnish the paintings.
    2. a reception at a gallery for an artist whose show is about to open to the public.

  3. Thanks Elaine for coming to NS and being a teacher at our Retreat. I learned so much, thank you for being so patient with me! The cash/open bar won't be the same without you there!


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