ELAINE QUEHL, Quilt Artist, Teacher, Dyer, Designer

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Encore Complete

I have spent a fair bit of time in my studio during the months of December and January. Last night I finished the facings on my new piece/s. This group of four small quilts (each 12" x 24"), when hung together, form a quadriptych that I have named "Encore". It is basically a retrospective of all the seasons I have worked with in my hosta foliage series. This subject matter has provided an endless opportunity to study light and shadow, curve and furl. I am still not done with it.

As I have mentioned before, I am involved with an international group called "Crossing Oceans", that includes artists from England, Scotland, Ireland, Denmark, Taiwan, United States, Australia, and Canada. We will be doing a group show on the theme of Nature, where each artist will submit six pieces. All pieces will be sized at 12" x 24", 24" x 12", 24" x 24", etc.  That explains why all these pieces are 12" x 24". They will hang individually at the international shows, but can form a quadriptych for other shows. Since they are finished early (our first show is in France in September) I am hoping to enter the group in one or two North American shows. After all, they will likely be too old when they come back from the international show. Here are detail shots of each of the four sections.
Encore 1: "Unfurling"

Encore 2: "Blossoming

Encore 3: "Maturing"

Encore 4: "Returning"

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Dye Happy In Ottawa

I am pleased to share that in Spring 2014 I will be renting the dye studio at Wabi Sabi in Ottawa to offer my five-day Dye Happy workshop. It will run on Fridays, with all dates listed below:

March 21, April 11, May 9, May 23, June 6, 2014

Workshop Location:
Wabi Sabi
(Ottawa’s unique destination for knitting, spinning, and weaving)
1078 Wellington St. W.
Ottawa, ON
Classes run 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

This workshop hasn’t been offered in Ottawa since 2010. It ran this past fall at the Haliburton School of the Arts (under the name Dyeing to Quilt). Please visit my blog to see lots of photos of the work produced in this class. http://www.elainequehl.blogspot.ca/2013/10/dyeing-to-quilt.html
Wabi Sabi is the perfect location to teach this workshop because they have a proper dye studio. Class will be limited to 8 students due to studio size and to provide a more intimate and individualized learning experience.

Day 1: Low-Water Immersion and Parfait Dyeing
Day 2: (Shibori) Pole Wrapping, Folding, Clamping
Day 3: Flour Paste Resist
Day 4: Soy Wax Batik
Day 5: Painting with thickened dyes

Please email me at equehl@hotmail.com if you would like more information, and to obtain a registration form, class outline and supply list.

Here are photos of the kinds of things you can expect to create.



Monday, January 20, 2014

My Fabric Collection Unveiled

I am delighted to finally share my new fabric collection from Northcott Fabrics. Most of the designs are based on my hand-dyed fabric, with a few prints added using motifs from one of my quilts. This line, part of the Artisan Spirit line, is called "Falling Leaves", and is available in two colourways, "Spring Rain" and "Autumn Harvest". The collection will be launched at Quilt Market in Pittsburgh in May. It should ship to stores for September. 

If you click on the photos below you can view a larger image.

Spring Rain:

Autumn Harvest:
I designed a very simple pattern to go with the collection. I think a beginner would be just fine creating this design. It can be done in either colourway.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

A New Year ...

At this time of year everyone seems to be making New Year's resolutions or choosing a word for the year to inspire them. What about you? I don't really do either. I keep a running list of goals all year long, and update it maybe once a month. My list includes nine major categories:
1) Well-being (this includes health related items like eating better, exercise, and getting in the studio because it is good for my mental well-being)
2) Self Development (things I want to learn, things I need to learn)
3) New Work (the work my heart wants to make)
4) Show Entries (shows I plan to enter along with entry deadlines)
5) Course Development (classes I am revising or developing or dreaming about developing)
6) Patterns (this is a relatively new one)
7) Dyeing (what do I need to dye that might be useful in upcoming classes or for my own work)
8) Publishing (includes website updates, new brochures, e-newsletters, e-blasts, and sometimes magazine articles)
9) Commissions 

The last section is called SHORT TERM GOALS.  This is where I list all the things I need to do in the next few weeks. Sometimes they get carried over a few times.

Keeping all of the above balls in the air really does require me to write everything down, especially since my memory is not what it used to be!!

One thing is for sure, there are some big changes coming for me in the new year. I now have a retired husband and will have my first fabric line, and am heading into the pattern publishing world. There is also a plan to have a shopping cart on my website in a few months. My patterns will be sold there, and perhaps some fabric. It may be my Northcott line, and there may also be hand-dyed fabrics.  

As I write this I am beginning my relationship with Electric Quilt 7 software. I am on a fairly tight deadline to design two patterns for my new fabric line. Can I just say that the free-hand drawing tool is a big challenge?! My fabric line was finalized just before Christmas, but I have been asked to wait until the end of January to share it. So everyone will have to wait a bit longer. Well OK, maybe it is me that is having the hardest time waiting ;-))

In the mean time, I have some other in-progress work shots to share.This first little piece is my 10 x 7 inch submission for the upcoming SAQA Trunk Show. All members are invited to contribute a work that will get shared in a travelling trunk show to spread the word about Art Quilts. You can see it is a spring off from the panel I made for the European show, in the photo beneath it.  This piece is not yet quilted.

Over the holidays, between the travel and bad weather, I also managed to get a really good start on the hosta bud piece. All that is left is the main bud and one leaf below it. This piece is slow in the making.

Here are all the panels for the European exhibition group so far, with of course a big gaping hole in the middle one, where the main hosta bud still needs to be created. This piece has brought me back in touch again with my love of light and shadow, and how it creates form. But wow, it has a lot of little pieces. I am fairly happy with how the sheer purple organza is giving the effect of purple buds about to pop open. But as I write this I wonder what would have been the effect with green organza overlaying purple fabric? An idea to explore in a second hosta bud quilt.

What do you think? Do they work together so far? 

I am working on several projects at once. This peony is an experiment for another pattern I hope to publish. I am off to a good start but lots more work to do, after some of the other stuff that needs doing.

I have also finalized the designs for my new hosta classes. The first group to try my two new patterns will be the Windsor Quilters Guild in March. There are some lovely values of green in my new Northcott line, so maybe I can turn one of these into a pattern that promotes the line. That is if I manage to master that darn free-hand drawing tool.  Yes, I know, I didnt learn free motion in a day, and I probably wont master the tool in a day.

All best wishes for a happy, healthy, and creatively fulfilling 2014!