Monday, 30 March 2015

Espanola Fibre Arts Festival

What is the Espanola Fibre Arts Festival?
Oct 16-18, 2015

Espanola is a community in Northern Ontario, near Sudbury. They have taken on this fantastic festival that will occur Oct. 16 - 18, 2015. This collaborative project between the Espanola Public Library and the Espanola Fibre Arts Festival is an amazing undertaking. They are looking for "art"-work from anyone interested in participating so they can create a massive coral reef structure.
Not only are they hoping to bring together "like-minded" individuals to create art together, but they've added the benefit of increasing awareness to the plight of the coral reefs in our world that are being threatened by "global warming and pollution".
This community meets at the Espanola Library, where a person can learn to knit, crochet and other techniques that might be used to make this display.

beginning of a coral reef display

If you are interested in this project, you can visit their website or their facebook page.
If you want more information or are interested in participating you can contact the coordinator of this project as well.

PS - visit their website and view their 2013 gallery to see some of the amazing things they have done.

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Member Approach - 4

Lezley Zwaal continues to work on her Trend Tex Challenge quilt....

Tracing, Tracing and more Tracing
It’s amazing how much time one will spend on a project that is close to your heart.  HOURS whiz by – dear hubby has long since gone to bed.  Here I am tracing, re-drawing a little, tracing over those lines with a dark marker so I can see through the backside of the fabric.  Yes, it’s late.  Some of the tracing was done during the day, when I can use the window.  Oh, I know there are those great light boxes – but my windows are bigger.
After making the backwards copy of the outlines, I trace the backwards copy of the individual pieces that will be appliquéd, adding room for “under” lap onto the paper side of the fusible web. 

back of Wonder Under

These pieces are numbered so that they can be placed properly on the background fabric, with the “behind” pieces going down first (not pressed yet), and the foreground pieces on top, with a bit of overlapping the under pieces so no space shows between sections of the kite. 

piece layout
The next step is to determine which fabrics will be used for the pieces – and sometimes they are re-traced for a different fabric if the first chosen really doesn’t work well.  The traced fusible web paper pieces are cut beyond the edges of the actual pieces and laid out on the side of the desired fabric.  The batik/bali fabrics are great because you can be very fussy where you choose colours or pattern to aid a 3D look.  The pieces are then fused to the backside of the desired fabric with a dry heat press (big difference between pressing and ironing) and ready to cut on the line.
ensure stick down

You must be sure the fused pattern piece are entirely fused to the fabric. The fabric is easier to cut with the larger-than-needed fused paper left on outside the lines.
The backing paper is left on so I can remember what piece is what.  

Magic on one of my oqn quilts

Oh – and if little Magic decides to help scatter the pieces, I have a chance of putting them back correctly. 

using large scissors
 Something I have found after doing many appliqué style quilts, is that the tiny scissors hurt my hands.  I use the really large scissors–and turn the fabric rather than turn the cutting hand.  I have much better control cutting deep slices and points such as these.

You are then ready to cut out the pieces.

In order to place the pieces onto the background as per the pattern – more tracing is needed!

Coming next is the final edition of the work in progess from Lezley and just in time to get it to the Vice President by the deadline of Mar. 31, 2015.

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

An Aftenoon at the Museum

Quilt Canada 2015 Day Excursion
The Galt Museum is located along the edge of the coulee that marks the start of the River Valley in Lethbridge.  It has one of the most spectacular views in all of Lethbridge.  The building has worn many hats in its history, from hospital, nursing school, and rehabilitation centre to get to its current function as Galt Museum and Archives.  It has permanent displays on Southern Alberta’s history, as well as travelling displays on various topics, and also a lovely gift shop where many unique things can be purchased. 
The museum has previously partnered with the Lethbridge Centennial Quilters Guild to bring in speakers, and is excited to have an opportunity to do so again in sponsoring a lecture during Quilt Canada 2015, on Saturday, June 6, from 1pm-4pm.  The cost is an extremely reasonable $6 at the door (seniors $5).
To get to the museum from the University of Lethbridge, a chartered bus will pick you up.  This is free of charge, courtesy of the City of Lethbridge Civic Hosting Grant.  
The first lecture, Sewers and Savers: Caring for Grandma’s Quilt, runs from 1:30-2:30.  Gail Niinimaa, Textile Conservator, will share her knowledge on quilt conservation.  She will cover a broad range of topics: basic care, handling, storage, and cleaning.  She will also take you through a discussion on her conservation efforts during and after the devastating High River flooding in 2013.

The second part of the afternoon, A Pile of Quilts, will let you get up close and personal with some heritage quilts from the Galt’s own collection.  It runs from 2:30-3:30. Curator Wendy Aitkens will show you examples of fine needlework, done by the hands of both men and women, in antique quilts that date back to the 1830s.  As an added bonus, you will also see the first quilt made by the Lethbridge Centennial Quilters Guild.  This quilt was made before my time in the guild, but it is an amazing homage to Southern Alberta and the City of Lethbridge. 
After a half hour, which you can use to visit other exhibits or visit the wonderful gift shop, the chartered bus will pick you up at 4:00 and bring you back to the University.
It is not required to pre-register for this event, but if you would like to attend, please email Audrey Christiansen  as seating is limited to 35. Don’t miss this wonderful opportunity to learn about antique quilts!  For more information on the Galt Museum, please visit their website.
Shena Boes

Saturday, 21 March 2015

Lollygagging to Lethbridge --5

It’s time for the next report on our trip to Quilt Canada in Lethbridge, AB for June 4-6, 2015. Our last stop was in Medicine Hat, AB. It seems that we are getting closer to our destination and leaving some of the cold behind too. This part of the country has been bragging of their spring/summer-like weather for awhile.

We are heading up the Trans-Canada Highway towards Calgary where there seems be a fair number of guilds and quilt shops to visit.  Several of these guilds have been supplying lots of inches to help with this trek. Calgary Silver Thimbles and

Piecemakers Guild of Calgary have had great Show & Tells - if the number of inches is anything to go by. Battle River Quilters’ Guild and Cochrane Quilters’ have also been gathering inches for us to get on the way.

While in Calgary, we stopped at Along Came Quilting . We saw a neat idea for that little someone -  Burrito Baby Wrap. This cute little pattern was available there.
We made another stop - this time to Quilting from the Heart in Camrose for their shop hop on National Quilting Day and to check out all the kits and fabric too (Judy Niemeyer quilts and patterns seem to be popular here). Then onto Addie’s Creative Fabrics of Cochrane, AB. They're preparing for their booth in Lethbridge merchant mall (QC2015).

I’d like to thank Chatham Kent Quilters for their large contribution of inches this month - They had a blitz on making Cuddle Quilts this month - way to go!!
As well, notable inches came from the Abbotsford Quilters (BC), Nanaimo Quilters (BC) and Huron Perth Quilters’ Guild (ON). Thanks to everyone who have sent in their guild’s inches each month.

We have enough inches to get us into British Columbia, but not as far as Salmon Arm for this section of the trip. So we’ll stop off in Banff, AB or maybe Lake Louise to see some of the sights there before we move on... Hopefully we’ll make it to Penticton for our next stop and then back to Lethbridge in time for QC2015.
Don’t forget to keep those inches coming in to the Director at Large (

Friday, 20 March 2015

Call For Teachers for Quilt Canada 2016

Call for Teachers 2016Call for Teachers 2016The Canadian Quilters Association/Association 
canadienne de la courtepointe is pleased to announce that Quilt Canada 
2016 will be held in the Toronto, Ontario area, June 2016, venue TBA.

The Conference Coordinator invites all interested teachers to submit proposals 
for workshops.   One day workshops are preferred with a limited number of 2 
day workshops being considered.  Workshop content may be for novice to 
experienced, traditional to contemporary, machine and non-machine, including 
long arm. 

Please submit your proposals before April 10, 2015 to Liz Thompson, Quilt 
Canada Coordinator, at .

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Finalists in the National Juried Show 2015

Congratulations to all the finalists in the National Juried Show at Quilt Canada 2015 in Lethbridge, AB this June 4-6, 2015!

Annette Angood
Janet Archibald
Merilyn Arms
Judy Barnett
Emilie Belak
Myja Bernadet
Helene Blanchet
Pat Borecky
Karen Brewer
Diane Carson
Stasha Ceglarz
Leanne Chahley
Michele-Renee Charbonneau
Millie Cumming
Patricia Dance
Deyanne Davies
Alison Dean Cowitz
Elizabeth Dillinger
Deb Domin
Georgette Ehr
Helen Fujiki
Nora  Fursevich
Anna Gajewska
Carol Goddu
Carole Gold
Leah  Gravells
Victoria Gray
Wendy Greber
Elizabeth Green
Kathryn (Kate) Hall
Janet Harper
Shirley Hauck
Lola Hazel
Jaynie Himsl
Earla Horne
Dorothy E Howard
Carolyn A Hudson
Jeannie Jenkins
Karen Johnson
Lorraine Johnson Brotsky
Paula Jolly
Judy Kelly
Cindy Kozlowski
Tracey Lawko
Judy Leslie
Doris Lovadina-Lee
Betty Manuel
Tracie L Maryne
Angela Maves
Lynne McCulloch
Elizabeth McDowell Heagy
Krista McIntosh
Birdie McLean
Patti Morris
Riel Nason
Colleen Peake
Jenny Perry
Cindi Plant
Cheryl Pratt
Darlene Purnell
Susan Purney Mark
Tina Putoto
Hilary Rice
Debbie Richards
Barbara Robson
Darlene Roger
Felicity Ronaghan
Barbara Root
Laurie Russman
Patricia Ryckman-Fleming
Sandra Sandvik
Martha Schellingerhoud
Lorna Shapiro
Marlene Speed
Bill Stearman
Marny Stevenson
Susan Teece
Karen Thatcher
Kathy Tidswell
Lois Toutant
Catherine Ugrin
Maggie Vanderweit
Mary Vanson
Brigitte Villeneuve
Carol Wang
Jessica Wang
Bernadette Ward
Jennifer Watson
Leslie Wickenden
Jim Wilford
Valerie Wilson
Coreen Zerr

Monday, 16 March 2015

Tablet bags for Lethbridge

Every year at Quilt Canada, all attendees of the final banquet receive a gift for attending. At the show in Niagara, those who enjoyed the final banquet also got a lovely handmade wine bag to take home as a memento. For this year's show in Lethbridge, Blown Away, the gift of honour is a tablet bag. 

Sample tablet bag

Every year the host city for Quilt Canada chooses a gift and local guilds from Atlantic Canada all the way to the West Coast use the given pattern to make the item and then send them along to the host city. These efforts are hugely appreciated by the host city and then afterwards by the lucky recipients of the gifts. On average, 200 of these gifts are given out every year. That means that quilters Canada-wide donate their time and materials to make 200 of whatever the chosen item is. This speaks to the amazing generosity of the quilting spirit. Many are donated by people who are not able to attend the conference, but wish to still do their part.

LCQ working on tablet bags
The local guild, Lethbridge Centennial Quilters, recently held a sew day to make tablet bags. The sunshine streamed through the windows as they stitched and chatted away. If you would like to make a bag, the Local Organizing Committee would be exceedingly grateful. The pattern, by LOC member and guild president Pjam Swen, can be found here. Please send the completed bags to Pjam before March 31st. Her address can be found on Quilt Canada's site. Thank you in advance for your time and generosity.
Shena Boes

Saturday, 14 March 2015


Psst... check our facebook page on March 15th... we are having a giveaway!!

StitchnSew EZ Quilt Block Sheets (by HeatnBond) provide support and are easily removed by tearing away, up to the stitches, without distorting the embroidery. Tear-Away Perforated is very soft and gentle against the skin. Print directly on the material to easily design quilt blocks!
HeatnBPressing Paper(by HeatnBond) protects your projects from the hot iron (and your iron from accidental exposure to adhesive!). See through and reusable…just roll it up and store it until your next project!
All you have to do is leave a comment on the fb post!

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Vendors for Quilt Canada 2015

Welcome to Quilt Canada 2015's Merchant Mall Vendors. We are very pleased to let you know who they are. The Merchant Mall will be housed in the First Choice Savings Centre for Sports and Wellness at the University of Lethbridge. (The same place as the NJS and other shows.)    
                              Everyone is welcome! 

Visit our vendors' websites early to see what they have to offer and make up a shopping list before you come!

Our vendors are:

Quilts of Valour and HA Kidd will also be there -  providing information and doing demos.

CQA/ACC has a table too! Please stop by to say hi.

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Laurie Russman

Laurie Russman, New York, NY, recently joined CQA/ACC and is an excited entrant into the NJS in Lethbridge. Her work features animals - one of her loves - maybe second to quilting...

Laurie with 2 of her little friends -
(future Fidelco guide dogs...can you stand the cuteness?)

She loves to do "art quilts" but also makes lap quilts as special gifts.
She will be teaching at Internationl Quilt Festival in Chicago this March 2015

Her love of animals is shown in her work and in particular, her latest (I think) demonstration that she will be doing in Chicago - 

"I am demonstrating what I call "pet-lique" in "Open Studios"... 2-hour sessions in which anyone can drop in, watch the artists at work and ask questions...I did it for the first time in Houston last fall and it was a blast!  I take photos, frequently use apps to turn them into more-easily-traced illustrations, trace and then recreate using raw-edged fusible applique...and lots of fabric thread and ink.  Most of my art is animal-centric... and this, for example, is my donation quilt to the Quilt Alliance this year.
If you look carefully, you can see that I've used grey fabric appliqued to the white layer...all of the other features are inked in and/or stitched in."

Laurie uses this same technique for fast pet postcards that she also used in Houston.
And Pinterest has a whole collection of her "pet portaiture", but no blogs/website yet as they are a work in progress.

She learned to sew as a child but really took up quilting in 2000. She explains how she started:
"New York has the most wonderful quilt shop - The City Quilter. I walked into the shop and asked, 'What do I need and how do I do this?' and they were fabulous! I am thrilled that I will now be teaching there this summer! The most influential publication for me was and is, Quilting Arts magazine - it is a constant source of inspiration."

Laurie had entries in two special exhibits that premiered in Houston last October, and will be in Chicago too: SAQA's "Redirecting the Ordinary" and the Awarenes exhibit, "Raining Cats and Dogs".

" I strongly believe that everyone has a creative streak! The fun is in discovering your path.... and all of the friends you'll find along the way." (Laurie's quote)

The back of the quilt!  I do all of the thread-painting once the quilt is on the longarm, and use matching bobbin thread, so some very fun images form on the reverse side.


"And, one more, here is what's on my long-arm at the moment (or, I should say, WHO's on my longarm :))--"

Thursday, 5 March 2015

Member's Approach to the Trend-Tex Challenge - 3

Lezley Zwaal is sharing her path and thoughts as she prepares her quilt for the 2015 Trend-Tex challenge with the theme "Blowing in the Wind”. Her story continues.... 
    WOW – where is time going!!  A very good Christmas was had with family - laughs, gifts and lots of turkey and all the trimmings.  We had time to relax and recharge – and now the Trend-Tex 2015 Challenge is becoming more than a dream!
From a little slide of dad and kites, and incredibly low resolution, I wish to make a quilted piece to maximize the use of the fabric – with my own challenge to use only the Trend-Tex fabrics. 
To the planning board we go.  Prairie skies are one of the most vast expanses of blue on this planet but depending on the time of day, and whether we are looking into the sun or away, the sky can be much lighter.  Our fabric choices - the blue is far too dark, but the gray .. hmmm might work. And then I thought, “Can I use the back side of the fabric???  I don’t see any ruling for that!  PERFECT!”  Now that restricts me to a 21-inch wide uninterrupted sky assuming I keep with the fabric pieces given.  I can work with that. 
Now, to turn a very low resolution photo into a crisp clear set of kites.  Photoshop here we come!
First the photo will be turned into a black and white version – and then enlarged to fit the desired 21 inch width.    As I enlarge the black and white – I lose a lot of detail.  Yikes!  OK – It’s an outline - this can be traced and the pieces filled in  – right?
Black & White of photo

I will print this off and then work to enlarge it to the desired size.  I do this using WORD – inserting the photo and print an 8 ½ X 11 sheet with only the picture – measure it up, do a little cropping in the file and re-print. At this point, I have a photo that is half the width and half the height of the finished product.

Enlarged kites
I cut the printed photo into quarters, and enlarge each quarter by 200%. Voila! Tape it together and I have the exact size pattern to create the desired design for an appliqué.    I trace that final size onto a clear set of sheets so I can actually make a pattern.

Maybe one day I will spring for software to make this easier.
Now to start tracing (reverse) onto the fusible web and auditioning that fabric!

Stay tuned for the next steps that Lezley takes to get her finished quilt....

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Youth Challenge - VOTE for your favourite quilt

The gallery of entrant's quilts is now on the CQA/ACC's website.  There are an amazing number of quilts entered - 33 - WOW
Check out what our youth from all across Canada are capable of doing. 

This gallery is located in 2 places - under GALLERY on the top red bar and at the right with the Youth Challenge info

Once you've chosen a quilt that you like, and would like to cast your vote for the Viewer's Choice, click on the button at the bottom that takes you to the Member's Area. At the top there is another button that brings up the screen where you indicate which quilt you like.

Thanks to Cantik Batiks for sponsoring this challenge!

Thank you for helping us by voting.

Sunday, 1 March 2015

Travels with Herbie (and 18 little quilts) - aka The Traveling Quilt Show

Meet Herbie
Photo by Jaynie Himsl SK-RR
For six weeks Herbie and the quilts traveled across Manitoba, from Kenora to Brandon and points south. The quilters (and non-quilters) at every stop were enthusiastic in their welcome, wowed by the beautiful little quilts, oohing and ahhing over the workmanship and imagination that had gone into the design of each quilt. Many were also amazed at how compact the show was, neatly fitting into the little blue suitcase! Each group that saw the show was very appreciative of the chance to see the quilts, definitely pleased that the show had been brought to them, for many would not have been able to see them otherwise. It was an excellent chance to meet with members of several guilds.

January in Manitoba can be terrible. This year was somewhat different. Yes, there were storms and freezing rain, but overall, the bad weather kindly appeared in days when the show was not on the road. On only one day were there any problems, and that was the day to visit Brandon. There had been freezing rain, and on the morning of the show, more rain and fog. As the month was nearly over, rescheduling would have been a problem, so the decision to try to get to Brandon was made. It was a slow trip, given the state of the highway.  Seeing a vehicle in the ditch is always a little unnerving, but in this case it was a semi (or at least what was left of it - no cab in sight, just the trailer with boxes strewn about in the ditch), and elsewhere some sort of highway equipment, with a row of tow trucks and cranes trying to extricate it from deep in the snow. The fog and rain disappeared halfway to our destination, and  slow and steady got us to Brandon and a very warm welcome. (Returning home, the highway was in slightly better shape, though there were more tow trucks and cranes still trying to get something out of the ditch, causing about a two mile long back up of vehicles that couldn't get by. Farther on were a very battered trailer and an equally battered sanding truck, both being towed). It was really quite amazing that the weather was as good as it was.


During the six weeks that Herbie and the quilts were in Manitoba,  there were showings at three different retreats, seven guilds, four small groups, and at the Manitoba Prairie Quilters and Winnipeg Embroiderers Guild meetings.