Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Remnants Night on Friday

Don’t forget that the Remnants Night is on this coming Friday 31st July at the Art Society Room in Bath Street.  The doors open at 5.30pm, and early birds bring something for the shared meal.  Tea and coffee supplied, and occasionally chocolate fish make an appearance.

If you can’t make it for the shared meal, just drop in when you can.  Plenty of room at the big tables for those who wish to bring their sewing machines and need to spread out.  Or hand stitching, even knitting, sometimes mending gets done, it really is your choice.  There is always good company, help on hand if required, plenty of fun and companionship.  Hope to see you there.

Monday, 27 July 2015

Tivaevae Quilts at Te Papa

Fancy a trip to Wellington?  There is still time to visit the exhibition of tivaevae quilts, “Out of the Glory Box” currently on show at Te Papa Museum.  Situated up on Level 5, with free entry, this is a stunning exhibition indeed in a riot of bright colours.  The quilts are hung down both sides of a light and airy long gallery, with still more hanging on rods from the ceiling.    Cook Islands tivaevae (quilts) are cultural treasures, painstakingly hand-sewn and often stored for safekeeping in family glory boxes.  Many of these quilts were presented as gifts to family members and reflects the vibrant cultural life of the Cook Islands

P6240034 Over-view of the exhibition

The quilts on show had plenty of the expected Hawaiin style showing cut out floral designs which were appliqued onto a background fabric.      THis tivaevae tataura (applique embroidered quilt) has appliued hibiscus and orchid flowers, reminders of a tropical homeland.  The maker is unknown.

P6240054Colourful quilt featuring hibiscus and orchid flowers

Two colour tivaevae manu (applique quilts) are the quickest to make.  The quilter folds and cuts a piece of fabric into a symmetrical pattern.  Then this is unfolded and stitched onto a contrasting background, using an invisible stitch.  The taro leaf design was stitched in 1980s, maker unknown.


Two colour taro leaf design

Stitched by Jasmine Underhill in 1987, this lovely two colour quilt features the puarata flower, related to our pohutakawa tree.  The motif was designed by Jasmine’s aunt.

P6240056 Two colour quilt showing the puarata flower

Unexpectardly, pieced quilts were also on show.    I did not realise that tivaevae quilts were also made from patchwork pieces, and as I read, are the most highly prized of all the Cook Islands quilts.  Mothers often present them as gifts of love to their daughters on their wedding day – with the understanding that the quilt will one day be used as a funeral shroud for the daughter’s husband.    These tivaevae ta’orei (patchwork quilts) require careful mathematical planning.  Quilter Paree Ringiao tells how she threaded hundreds of diamond shaped pieces of fabric onto a string, in a precise sequence.  Then she pulled them off one by one and carefully stitched them together, helped by her mother-in-law. 

P6240041 Star quilt, stitched by Paree Ringiao, 1950s

This is just a taste of course, there are many more beauties on display as well.  Don’t miss this exhibition – you could combine it with a visit to the exceptional “Gallipoli – the Scale of our War” exhibition which is also showing.

Monday, 13 July 2015

Hanging at Winchester House

This blue and white beauty is currently hanging at Winchester House, and has a little story to tell.  Carol and her husband had an amazing five year journey travelling around New Zealand in their campervan.  And this quilt was stitched during that journey, all those lovely stitchery blocks and the hand quilting.  If this quilt could talk, I’m sure it would have some interesting tales to tell of people met,  places  visited and adventures along the way.


P7090036 Carol’s blue and white quilt, stitched in the campervan

The medical staff, the volunteers who give their time, and the patients always enjoy looking at the quilts which brighten Winchester House, I’m told.  Many thanks to the club members who loan their quilts, and for Helen for  being the chief organisor.

Saturday, 11 July 2015

July Club Night

The July Club Night almost sneaked up on us this month.   Yes, it was on the usual 2nd Wednesday of the month, as always.  But this month the second Wednesday fell on the 8th of July, instead of halfway through the month as usually happens, so club night was much earlier in the month, this time.  Luckily a good few members were not fooled and turned up on the correct night.  As an added bonus, it wasn’t raining, for a change.

We had a little club business to commence, and our President Sandra asked for suggestions to be made for interesting speakers and any classes that members would be like to see offered,  any thoughts can be written down and placed in the Suggestion Box.  Sandra also asked that members consider coming on committee, it may seem a long time away, but the months will rush by.  Raffles were drawn, and the lucky winners were Bev Hamilton and Lynne Burnham.  (I’m still waiting patiently for my name to be called out).

The items for Show and Tell were a little down this month, but just as interesting.  These included a cushion, a table runner, a cute little volts wagon wall hanging and several quilts. 

P7080017 Made by Avon for a special friend

Our speaker for the evening was Sonya Revel, President of Rose City Quilters.   She loves doing appliqué and prefers using batiks as it doesn’t fray, and  likes to fussy cut most of her shapes to get the desired effect from the fabric, she told us.

P7080013 Sonya Revell was our speaker

McKenna Ryan patterns in particular are real favourites, and Sonya enjoys doing all the fiddly cutting  out and putting the puzzle together. 

P7080027 Eagle quilt

Christmas quilts are another great love, and there were several wonderful examples of these.  And I loved the Chicken quilt too.




Sonya was a very generous speaker, only too happy to share her tips with us, such as using embroidery needles for thicker threads  or top stitch needles for metallics and loosening the tension.  We all went up for a closer  inspection of her lovely work.

P7080025 Small dolphin wall hanging

It was a very interesting club night, as always. 

Thursday, 9 July 2015

Left Behind at Club Night

Have you lost a pair of fingerless gloves and a purse with a single key?  These were found lonely and forgotten on the seats at the conclusion of our Club-Night at Life Changers Hall last night.  If this is your property, the items can be collected from Diane at the Bernina Shop.