Monday, October 31, 2011

The Twelves on Quilt Festival

In case you've missed it, over on the Lark Crafts blog there is a series of interviews with some of the Twelves about our forthcoming trip to Houston.  See:
and soon, interviews with Terry and Deborah.  For some of us, it is our first International Quilt Festival whereas others have been before.  Either way, we are excited. Not long now!

You can be certain that all of us will be packing our cameras so that we can record our experience.  In case you're wondering, PHOTOGRAPHY IS WELCOME in the Twelve by Twelve area in accordance with the following general photography rules at the International Quilt Festival.  If sharing online, please credit and link to Twelve by Twelve
IQF Quilt Photography Rules
• Photos taken at Festival are for your personal enjoyment and for sharing with family, friends, and fellow guild members who could not attend. Photos are not to be used for any commercial purpose. They are not to be posted on any web site which freely permits images to be used on items that may be purchased, such as T-shirts, mugs, note cards, etc.
• If you post your photos to your personal web site, you must include appropriate credit for each quilt artist and note that the photos were taken at International Quilt Festival. If you post pictures to your account on a “photo-sharing” web site, you MUST also disable any function that would allow viewers to order the images on any goods.
• Do note that some exhibits prohibit photography, and this includes pictures taken with a cell phone camera. Please refer to signage by the exhibit ... Please be responsible in your use of the quilt photographs and help us to protect the rights of the quiltmakers and wearable artists. Photography at Festival is neither a right nor an entitlement—it is a privilege.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

We're looking forward to seeing YOU!

As you know, the Twelve by Twelve Theme Series and the ColorPlay Series will both be on special exhibit at the International Quilt Festival in Houston! Nine of us are going to be there. We'll all be spending lots of time in the exhibit area. Remember, most of us haven't seen the quilts in person -- so after four years of studying images on our blog and website, we're eager to experience the art quilts "in the cloth." Plus, I know we'll spend lots of time chatting, laughing and getting to know each other "live and in person."

So, please stop by and say hello! Let us know you've been reading the blog. Tell us which theme is your favorite. Check out the collection of postcards we've created from the ColorPlay series. Enjoy the exhibit!

Karen (and, hopefully, later Brenda) will be at Preview Night on Wednesday, November 2 from 5 to 10 pm.

Thursday, November 3
10 am to noon: Brenda and Diane
Noon to 2 pm: Kristin and Brenda
2 pm to 4 pm: Deborah and Diane
4 pm to 6 pm: Gerrie and Karen
6 pm to 6:30 pm: Karen and Terri
6:30 pm to 7 pm: EVERYONE!

Friday, November 4
10 am to noon: Karen and Terry
Noon to 2 pm: Nikki and Terri
2 pm to 4 pm: Gerrie and Kristin
4 pm to 6 pm: Deborah and Brenda
6 pm to 6:30 pm: Nikki and Kristin
6:30 pm to 7 pm: EVERYONE!

Saturday, November 5
10 am to noon: Deborah and Nikki
Noon to 2 pm: Kristin and Brenda
2 pm to 4 pm: Gerrie and Terry
4 pm to 6 pm: Karen and Diane
6 pm to 6:30 pm: Kristin and Terri
6:30 pm to 7 pm: EVERYONE!

Sunday, November 6
10 am to noon: Brenda and Diane
Noon to 2 pm: Deborah and Brenda
2 pm to 4 pm: Gerrie and Brenda

PLUS! All nine of us will be in the exhibit area from 6:30 to 7 pm on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. If you'd like us to sign your book, this will be a great time to see all of us at once. (Except Helen, Kirsty and Françoise -- so sad!)

FYI: Our special exhibit will also be on display during International Quilt Market which runs from October 29 to 31. This is a professional trade show and not is not open to the general public. But, I've heard buzz about lots of art quilters and others who will be there. I hope you'll get a chance to see our quilts.

 See you soon!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

More Friends of Twelve by Twelve

As Diane and Deborah have recently remarked, it is a joy to hear that others have been so inspired by the Twelve by Twelve project (through this blog, our BOOK or a real, live, in-the-cloth exhibition) that they have embarked upon challenges themselves.  Did you know we keep a Friends of Twelve by Twelve listing in our sidebar?

12" x 12" Waikato are the latest addition to our friends listing.  You can read all about this group in the  the latest issue of my favourite quilting magazine, New Zealand Quilter.   They got together after viewing the Twelve by Twelve exhibit at the Craft and Quilt Fair in Hamilton last year and have completed seven challenges including Letters and Song.

Other groups on the list include:
  • Twelve by the Dozen who have also completed seven challenges  such as Seeing Red and Connections.  It's exciting to see how some of the members have used their challenge pieces as a starting point for exploring themes or techniques further in other works;
  • 12 Connected is a group of fiber artists that have banded together to create a series of twelve 11"x17" art quilts over a two year period. Their latest challenge is "Square".
  • Art for 12 have already completed one full cycle of challenges and have enjoyed it so much, they are now working on their second series.  Their blog is in Dutch but there is a translation gadget in their sidebar.
  • Keeping to an international flavour, Barcelona is the latest challenge by Art Quilts Around the World.
  • Fiberactions are creating pieces for the final challenge in the current iteration of the group.  Their challenge theme is Structure.
  • The International Quilt Challenge is a new (ish) group.  Their second challenge is "Through the Window" and there are lots of great photos and musings on their blog.
  • Kathleen Probst has joined fellow Boise textile artist  Lisa Flowers Ross  in shadowing some of our Colorplay challenges.  See Kathleen's Gray and Orange and Lisa's Orange piece Summer Breeze.  On the East Coast, Joanne of Wednesday's Child has also been playing along.  She made some wonderfully quirky carrots for the Orange Colorplay.
  • The Material Mavens  have been working on Harmony.
  • Stitching Across the Ditch  (aka the Tasman Sea between Australia and New Zealand) work in a 12" by 9" format and their latest challenge was "Time"
  • Tangled Textiles work in a 16x16in format and have completed 3 challenges including Tools. exploring
  • Textile Abstractions is a North American group and their current challenge is Escape.
  • Uncommon Threads get to meet in person but also keep a blog.  Their latest challenge was Totems.
  • Most quilters I know have a great affinity for hardware stores (and stationery stores, but that's another story.  Hardware Store is one of the subjects explored by We Are the Baker's Dozen.
If you or your group has been inspired by Twelve by Twelve to participate in  a challenge, leave a comment, share your work and inspire others.  Keep that creative quilting karma circulating!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Midsomer Tomatoes

Helen told you a while ago about the challenge put forth by Chris and De at Midsomer Quilting, after so many viewers of the Twelve by Twelve exhibit got excited about the idea of making small challenge quilts.  He told me about his "fruit" challenge when I met him in Birmingham this past August, and I agreed to send a fruit- themed piece.  And here's the piece I just sent off. 

I remember my puzzlement at learning, when I was a kid, that tomatoes are considered fruit because (according to the Oxford Dictionary) true fruits are developed from the ovary in the base of the flower, and contain the seeds of the plant.  We eat cherry tomatoes all summer long around here -- so that led me to picture them for this challenge.  And it's doubly fruity!  Cherry! Tomatoes!  Brilliant, yes?!

Chris and De at Midsomer Quilting have been amazing supporters for Twelve by Twelve, and I'm happy to contribute something to their challenge.  I only wish I could be there to see all of the entries when they are exhibited! 

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Talking about 12x12

I had the great pleasure of talking about the 12x12 project to the Quilters Guild of Dallas last month.

I signed books!
I shared my ColorPlay quilts!
I stood in the dark while showing slides of several of our 12x12 quilts!
I really can't even begin to express how exciting it is to hear people say things like "I'm so inspired!" "I've never seen anything quite like this." "I love hearing about how a group of women created this amazing body of work."

Whenever someone says, "Thank you so much for sharing your project," I just want to say, "Thank YOU for showing such support an enthusiasm!"

By the way, in the center picture above, you can see the black felt panels on which all our quilts will be displayed in Houston. Terry and Gerrie rigged up this great system and sent me three panels to use in Dallas. They worked great!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Gerrie to be a Guest on Pat Sloan's Radio Show

I am so excited to represent the Twelves on the American Patchwork & Quilting Radio Show with Pat Sloan. I hope you will tune in on Monday, October 17th at 4 pm eastern time — 1 pm, my time. Just click on the logo to find the show on your computer.
To visit Pat's Website, CLICK HERE. I will try not to embarrass the other eleven.

Saturday, October 8, 2011


During the UK debut of the Theme series at Midsomer Quilting, so many visitors made comments like ' Where on earth do they get their ideas?' or 'I don't know how they do it' that De and Chris decided to encourage customers to have a go by setting the theme of fruit. The challenge, open to all customers, will result in a show in the shop gallery and the best twelve as chosen by visitors votes will go on to the Quilt Show at Radstock Museum in Februrary 2013.
This is my entry Fez Market.

And yes, that is real dried fruit on there, albeit I varnished it to detract nibblers of either the human or insect kind! Excuse the overly squared edges - the Photoshop Ipad app is useful but nowhere near as sophisticated as the full programme.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Deborah's ColorPlay Stats

At the end of the theme series, I did a statistical analysis of the techniques I used in the first 12 theme quilts. You can see it on my blog here.

I thought it would be interesting to use the same "categories" and track the results from my ColorPlay mosaic.

Original Categories
Hand embroidery: 11
Stamped Circles: 7
Sequin Waste as a stencil: 0
"Traditional binding" (meaning a separate piece of fabric somehow encasing the edge): 6
Words: (or handwriting) 5
Free motion quilting: 8
My beloved landscape compositions: 2
My beloved shrine compositions: 4ish
Beads or other three dimensional embellishments: 8
Surprisingly least used color: purple
Surprisingly most used color: yellow
Use of sheer fabrics: 5
Paint: 9

New Categories
Botanical shapes: 9
Square sequins: 5
The Arch: 8

I'm not sure if there is anything surprising here. I do like lists and statistics and comparisons, so maybe it's just for the fun of it.

Over the course of the 12x12 project (more than four years!), I have focused my personal style. So, it's expected that I would be using the same techniques and motifs in most of my work. Apparently hand embroidery is the strongest expression of my voice. I love sheer fabrics, so I am somewhat surprised that I only used them in 5 of my pieces. Though I used free motion quilting in 8 of my quilts, I don't think it offered anything really significant design-wise in very many of those pieces. That is something I would like to do better. I guess I got tired of sequin waste.

I've heard art experts suggest that you should just keep using techniques and images until they no longer inspire you. I'm sure to keep doing most of these things -- I've got lots more inspiration to follow!