Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Color Bars Class and Caryl Bryer Fallert-Gentry

What an exciting week! It started off with the birth of a new great-grandson in Dallas on Saturday, Tucker Knox Kuykendall. Then Wednesday I teach my Color Bars class here in Hattiesburg. On Thursday I drive to Oxford (250 mi) to attend the Reception and gallery talk of CARYL BRYER FALLERT-GENTRY: 40 YEARS OF COLOR, LIGHT, & MOTION, a 58-quilt retrospective opening at the University Museum at Ole Miss. Woo-hoo!

Color Bars is an improvisational way of creating art quilts and I love to make these and teach the class. For people who have always worked from a pattern, this free-form way of cutting and stitching can be called "permission to do your own thing and ignore the quilt police." I am inspired by the works of Rayna Gillman, Dianne S. Hire, and Kathy Loomis, and there are many quilters today who enjoy these techniques.
Color Bars #2--Black

When I first saw Caryl Bryer Fallert-Gentry's quilts in Houston in the 1980s I became her fan. Her Corona #2: Solar Eclipse that won Best of Show in Paducah in 1989 is my all-time favorite quilt and is a part of the permanent collection of the Museum of the American Quilter's Society. It is also pictured in The Twentieth Century's Best American Quilts.
Corona #2: Solar Eclipse by Caryl Bryer Fallert-Gentry
Caryl has many pictures and full description of how she created this masterpiece on her website.


Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Starting a New Year

New beginnings are always exciting. But I'm starting this new year by completing something from last year. And that gives a good feeling of accomplishment, too. My guild, Pine Belt Quilters, has had a "Shapely Challenge" in progress since March of 2015, with five steps given semi-monthly through November. We have until March 2016 for the reveal of our finished quilts. We drew for five fat quarters and could add anything else to make the twenty 12-inch blocks using specified shapes for the five steps (squares, half-square triangles, Drunkard's Path, etc.). I loved the fat quarters I drew:

These suggested to me that deep rose and various shades of green would guide the rest of my choices. After all, red and green are compliments.I selected several deep rose fabrics:

Here are some of the greens I used:

Of course, some neutrals to allow the roses and greens to be the main characters:

I had one yard of green E. E. Schenck Diawabo called Elite Gelato which I thought just right for setting the squares. Luckily, I found an Etsy source to buy more and discovered a neat blogger I will enjoy following, Tierney Hogan:

 Here are my groups of fabrics on the green background:

Choosing patterns for the five steps using specified shapes was like Quilting 101, and even though I have mainly transitioned to making art quilts, the challenge was interesting and nostalgic, and drafting and cutting templates was good to sharpen skills I learned many years ago. But the most fun was working with the colors and balancing them four blocks at a time.

I'm eager to post the blocks and the setting I have chosen--but since we are not to reveal our work for two months, I will wait.