Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The Fabric Shop, Gander, NL

I have been having some difficulty getting back to doing 'stuff'' in my studio - especially posting to my blog! But, as promised, here's a few more photos from my trip.

One of the things on my list this trip was Dr. Seuss fabric. Last year I found it in Chicago but after getting home could have kicked myself for not buying it. I could have purchased it on-line but didn't. Anyway, to make a long story short, the only place I found it was at C & M Crafts N Stuff / The Fabric Shop, Gander, Newfoundland. Needless to say, some of it is now in my stash. In fact, I've already started a project with it.

If you are a quilter, this quilt shop is a must visit. I was impressed with the variety of fabrics, notions, threads, kits, yarns and embroidery supplies. There is also a dedicated classroom for teaching quilting classes.

I was told that their other location in Carmanville, has different fabrics (no duplications). On my next visit to central NL, I have to visit that shop as well.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Blog List

I'm finally back home from vacation. It was fun keeping you posted on some of the shops I visited as well as posting photos of things I saw! There is still more to share with you and I'll try to get to this soon. Tonight I did an update on My Blog List. A lot of the sites were hidden behind the scenes and only I could see the blogs I had joined. Now everyone can read the updates. Grab a cup of something and check out the list! Some of the posts are older ones but even so, the information on them is still worth reading. Enjoy. . .

I'm still searching for interesting sites related to quilting, stitching, felting . . . the list goes on.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Not Just Any Old Sheep . . .

I was taking photos of sheep (among other things) in St. Jacques, Fortune Bay, today. Of course, to me they were just a bunch of old sheep! However, I was later educated about the sheep from St. Jacques. These sheep, which belong to the Whalen family, are a Newfoundland heritage variety known as St. Jacques Sheep. They are one of three distinctive breeds found on the island. The others are found in Bourgoynes Cove and the Exploits Islands. A few years ago, Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN), did DNA testing and discovered that this breed of sheep (as well as the other two breeds), has maintained its pure strain for hundreds of years. There are quite a number of black sheep. Makes me think of the nursery rhyme, Baa Baa Black Sheep - the wool is sent away to be processed and sold as yarn.

Here's some photos to enjoy.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Laurie Swim - Textile Artist

On my travels, I had the opportunity to visit Laurie Swim's Gallery in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. Unfortunately, Laurie wasn't there. We met several years ago (I believe it was 2002), at the Waterloo County and Area Quilt Festival. Each year quilts from a different province were highlighted and it was Newfoundland and Labrador's turn. I curated the quilts and accompanied them to the festival. South African quilts were also on display as well as some of Laurie's masterpieces. Laurie and I also happened to take several workshops together.

Laurie Swim's medium is quilting in which each piece tells a story. If you ever get the chance, please go visit her gallery and see her work up close. A photograph in a book is great but not as fantastic as the real thing. You are able to see the threads and fabrics and how they relate to create a fabulous scene.
Laurie has also written three books. The latest one is The Quilt as Art, Rags to Riches. I have my own signed copy.

I was given permission to photograph around her gallery. Enjoy!

Friday, August 10, 2012


I'm always looking for patterns / unusual designs when taking photos. You never know what might trigger an idea - old vines on a brick wall in Kingston, ON; a rock wall and a brick road leading down to old Quebec City; waves created by bricks beside a water exhibit in Quebec City; a bridge across the river (check out the clouds). . .

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Farmer's Field

I took a walk along the road beside this field. The sky was blue but off in the distance I could see clouds. Within ten minutes, dark thunder clouds appeared and I felt a few drops of rain. I just made it back to the motor home when the rain came down in buckets! However, it passed over quickly and the sun came out again. I managed to get these photos just in time. Each of these scenes has the potential of a thread painting and/or applique. Think about it. How would you begin? What fabrics would you use? How large or small would it be? . . . the field could be: strip pieced, thread painted, hand embroidered, a single piece of hand dyed fabric. Would you paint the sky, use dyed cotton, transfer paint, water colour pencils/crayons? For my sky, I'd use a piece of hand dyed satin. I just love the shiny sheen from the satin. Don't stick to traditional cottons but explore other fabrics. Some might work out but you'll never know unless you experiment. These are just a few ideas to get you thinking about small landscapes.

The black birds at the bottom were awesome. One minute the field was dotted with black and then they just swarmed up into the sky. My mother, who is 90, calls these the 'dirty weather birds'.

Friday, August 3, 2012

More Inspiration

Here are photos from several walks along the way. Note the vivid colours in the flowers and the multitude of greens. I'm not familiar with the foliage in the second photo but would appreciate finding out about it. Inspiration for sure!