Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Prison quilts & Expressions

Only four more sleeps - said the notice outside the nearby coffee shop and this is another decoration, which might be recognised by some local quilters.

A few years ago - and really that is what Christmas is all about to me, the traditions and fun from past years - a friend of mine was asked to teach this wall hanging at a local shop - so she worked out her pattern and then asked a couple of friends [I was one] to be guinea pigs one day.

It was great fun and I am very happy with the end result - and with the actual making because the other friend was such a fast stitcher, that they had ironed out any problems before I got to that part of the pattern!!

There has been some conversation on Kiwiquilters, [a yahoo group] about the two programmes for teaching in New Zealand prisons; one in Auckland and the one I take part in, here in Wellington.

The quilts vary considerably of course with the skill and patience of the maker, the latter being sometimes in short supply!

The first quilt I want to show you took some while for us to gather together all the fabrics, lilac, pink, purple and greens were wanted and sewn together in a traditional way -

This photo was taken when showed the quilt at a local club meeting.

The next one also took some while to gather all the fabrics, this young woman wanted blues - any blues. and she showed the tenacity of a real patchworker in the way she put them together, I think -

The choice of piecing and the fabrics used remind me of some of the Gees Bend quilts, here is a close up of the left 'block'

And here is the centre  -

And the right hand - though come to think of it, the quilt was probably used the other way, with this next block at the foot -

Rather wobbly because of the difficulty of holding it still - by my granddaughters in my sewing room!

And talking of my granddaughters, they have moved house this week which is one of the reasons I haven't been able to blog more often.  I am thankful that they are only half a mile or so from their previous house, but moving is so stressful at the best of times.  The week before Christmas is not to be recommended........  I was able to help by having the family over here for the evening meal which gave us a chance to try the Christmas Cake I had baked the day before.  I use the recipe from my Goodhousekeeping Book, 1958 edition which I brought out to New Zealand when we emigrated.  It is a recipe I just love so I really need people here to help eat it!

These days I don't do a lot of knitting, but thought I would share this blanket -

It dates back about forty five years - yoiks - when I was President of the Hataitai Kindergarten Mothers' Club - actually it was rather funny, I was invited along to a meeting and there was a misunderstanding, perhaps the accent confused me - anyway, the meeting I showed up at was the committee meeting, not the actual club - and by the end of the evening I was the new President, without ever attending a club meeting!!

Anyway, we were asked to make blankets for the orphans in Romania - sound familiar? - so we knitted peggy squares and joined them with crochet.  After we had finished I carried on and made one for myself - you can see it was well used by the amount of darning on some of the blocks.

Today I went along to Upper Hutt, a few miles up the valley, to buy a particular Christmas present for one of my granddaughters, mission accomplished I decided to look in on "Expressions" the Art Gallery and also have a coffee there.

The current exhibition was on Dolls, a bit off beat like most of the exhibitions at Expressions but well worth a look, it is open for quite a while yet.  Some while ago there was another exhibition at the Dowse in Lower Hutt of Malcolm Harrison's family of dolls - and the exhibit today that caught  my eye was of Huttette at 21 by Vita Cochan.  Huttette is the name of the baby doll in Malcolm's family.  So here she is, all grown up.

Beautifully made and the embroidery, particularly on the bag, has me seriously contemplating getting out my threads........  But not until I have finished hand quilting the wonky hexagon, and then the baby quilt - and what about hand piecing the extended nine patch?  Maybe I'll content myself with admiring the work of others.

I am sure the Hobbit fans out there have enjoyed the teaser trailer, I have more photos to share, this one from the beginning of the shoot up Matamata way -

Last week a friend told me my son's photo at the end of the blog wouldn't open, I have no idea why but if you are having trouble like that, please get back to me and I will investigate.

The thought for today, "It is easier to be critical then to be correct" - don't think I quite agree with that!

Nice talking with you,

1 comment:

Jenny said...

Hi June

I was wondering why you had been quiet for so long, and now I know.

I also went to see the Doll Exhibition at Expressions and have to say that it was not really to my liking at all. Guess I was expecting pretty dolls, and I am obviously a bit of a traditionalist.

Merry Christmas, hope you have a lovely day.