Friday, September 13, 2013

Week in Review 2013 - 09/13

"Change is inevitable. Change is constant."
                                                 Benjamin Disraeli

Tips, thoughts and techniques:

Entwined by Gwyned Trefethen
64" H x 48" W
Is currently on display at the
New Visions Gallery
Marshfield, WI
My thoughts often turn to the subject of change. It is the underlying theme of my blog posts, since a work in progress is all about how it changes as this or that is added. Even a small change such as adding some shadowing to Companion Oysters makes a big difference to the piece, giving the oysters some dimension. Some changes are difficult to accept, such as the loss of someone close, especially when that loss comes sooner than expected. Then there are changes that can feel difficult to keep up with such as all the technology we feel obligated to learn in order to stay current.

As the curator of Conversations In Stitch: On Abstraction, a traveling exhibition of fiber art by members of Fiber Artists Coalition, I have seen the exhibit change in many ways. Since I first put the exhibit together some members of FAC have gone on to pursue other goals and their work has been removed from the exhibit. Some of the work has been sold! Other members have joined FAC and added their work. Every time the exhibit is shown the venue and its director come up with a different layout. Conversations in Stitch is currently at the New Visions Gallery in Marshfield, WI. You can see some of it virtually on a posting by fellow FAC member Pat Bishop. Of course, I recommend seeing it in person if you are in the area.

Here are the changes that took place in my studio this week:

1) Companion Oysters 

Companion Oysters
38" H x 39" W
Let the hand sewing begin!

a) Square up the quilt in preparation of facing it. - Done!

b) Face Companion Oysters - Started

This is a job that I think should take a couple of hours. In fact I find that attaching the four facing strips, especially mitering the four corners is far more time consuming than I imagine and it doesn't get any faster with experience. The change this time is that I allotted myself full day to trim the quilt and attach the facing in preparation for hand stitching. Just accepting that it would take me this long reduced my frustration level dramatically. Now everything is ready to be hand stitched to the back. Also, by not rushing I think I managed to get four fairly sharp corners as facings go.

c) Make and attach the sleeves. - Next week?

2) Leah Day's weekly assignments

Do whatever assignments Leah comes up with next. 

Recently Leah has been alternating between giving out foundation piecing assignments for making the goddess's hair on Express Your Love II and general free motion assignments. I managed to complete one of each this week. 

The foundation piecing assignment was log cabins. I tried it Leah's way and found it frustrating, confusing and not that aesthetically pleasing. So half way through I decided to do it my own way. I made the log cabin blocks off of the foundation and then used the foundation to place them. This allowed the blocks to be "wonky" in places, but also give an even flow to the resulting piece that worked better aesthetically for me than the original plan. 

The log cabin "tress" is the uppermost of the three yellow
sections. N.B. These will all be trimmed and appliquéd
in place. The black lines are the cutting lines for each
section. They are drawn on a plastic sheet, hence the glare
in the photograph.
I really, really, REALLY loved Leah's latest free motion quilting pattern. It was easy to execute and is absolutely stunning. Leah calls it Glazed Doughnuts. It has a very asian feel to me.

I have started a new sampler to practice Leah
Day's free motion quilting assignments on.
I purposefully divided the sampler with wavy
lines so that I would be forced to problem
solve how to keep the pattern going along an
uneven edge. This motif is called Glazed Doughnuts.

3) Pictorial Painting - Face "Canyon." - Didn't even look at it.

Now that I am back in the groove I wonder what I will achieve next week. Here are my thoughts for that:

1) Companion Oysters 

a) Finishing facing Companion Oysters

b) Make and attach the sleeves.

c) Have its "formal" picture taken for submission to calls for entry and my website

d) Carefully crop the picture along the edges

e) Add Companion Oysters to my website

f) Perhaps start a gallery just for my Beach Series on my website

g) Include Companion Oysters in a Call for Entry

2) Leah Day's weekly assignments

Do whatever assignments Leah comes up with next. 

3) Come up with 5 ideas for a Visioning Project for next year. 

a) Select the most compelling one

b) Write it up on the goal page.

4) Come up with at least 5 different ideas for a new piece to work on next

5) Pictorial Painting - Face "Canyon."

I am now linking up to two blogs on Friday's. The first is Leah Day's Free Motion Quilting Project and the second is Nina Marie's Off the Wall Fridays.


  1. Every times I see your Oysters they are more and more beautiful. You are a real artist. I like your designs.
    Have a nice weekend
    Love from Amsterdam.

    1. I'm blushing. It took me years to call myself an artist and I still say it with a slight hesitation.

  2. Replies
    1. I have Leah to thank for the design, of course.

  3. It was very interesting to read about curating the traveling exhibit. I had no idea pieces came and went; that makes it even more difficult to curate but fun to see.
    Your glazed donuts has convinced me to go try it. Lovely.

    1. Ann every exhibit is different. The "name" shows, such as AQS, Quilt National or IQF maintain the same exhibit throughout their tour. Buyers are sent their purchased quilts at the conclusion of the tour. FAC is a small, invitational group of approximately 15 members. If a quilt sells, the buyer gets it at the end of the current exhibit. When a member leaves our group their work stays in the tour for as long as we have scheduled venues, then it is returned to them.

      Do give Glazed Doughnuts a try. It was a very rewarding pattern.

  4. I absolutely love the oysters and can't wait to see them quilted. They will certainly come alive. I also try to follow Leah's wonderful quilting fillers and the donuts are definately a keeper.

  5. The companion oysters quilt is a knockout. I really like the idea of the curved divisions on the sampler piece. It will be a good deal more interesting to look at as a whole piece vs the 4" squares. Hope you won't mind if I try that idea.
    Alas, I've had no time to freemotion myself this week.
    So glad I can see what everyone else has been doing.

    1. Be my guest, Suzanne. Dividing the sampler into free form curved shapes is the seed of an idea for a possible series next year. I am testing its feasibility, but also trying to stretch my FMQ skills.

  6. Beautiful Gwyned! Your work is impeccable.

  7. I love reading and seeing what you've been up to, and your goal sharing is very motivating! Your work is beautiful as always.

    1. Thank you, Amy. I find stating my goals publicly give me that extra nudge when I might otherwise drift.

  8. Hi Gwyned,
    I love following your progress, even though I don't often comment. I so appreciate the art of your work. Had to add one more 'change' quote to the pot from my days of teaching conflict resolution classes: 'The only one who likes change is a baby with a wet diaper.'
    Hope you have a good week. I just love your free motion quilting experiments!

    1. Good to hear from you, Judy. Love your change quote. So, true. The dread of change is why one New Year's my resolution was to do something new once a week.