October 27, 2017: Major decision on silk quilt border; more quilt pictures from Cocheco and NEQM

Greetings!  Al and I had a wonderful visit with our son in NYC/Brooklyn.  The weather was amazing for late October!  The drive down was lovely with fall foliage at its peak.

We had drinks in the late afternoon in Brooklyn with the NYC skyline in the background:

Michael with girlfriend Jordan:


I went to the Frick Museum – not the first time and it’s always wonderful, full of masterpieces, and not overwhelming like the Met can be.  We had 2 great dinners with Michael and Jordan.  We walked on the Highline for the first time:

And when we got off the Highline, after lunch, we continued to walk south into Soho where I went to the shop, Purl Soho, for the first time.  I looked at fat eighth packs of Liberty fabrics which were wildly expensive and decided they weren’t worth it for me.  But I did buy several spools of silk thread.  They had lots of gorgeous colors!!!:

When I got home I used the silk thread to stitch some diagonal crossing lines on the piece of gold silk I bought for the border of the silk quilt (click to enlarge and see detail better):

I pinned this up on the design wall with some red strips to simulate an inner border and binding to see how it would look, but I also put a couple pieces of 3 inch wide red up for comparison:

Very quickly, I decided I prefer the plain red.  I really like the diagonal stitching in silk on the gold fabric, but I don’t think it is right for this quilt.  The more I looked at the quilt, the more I felt that the center is the “star” (Ha!!!) and it doesn’t need any extra detail in the border.  This is an usual decision for me as I LOVE fancy borders, but I also believe in letting quilts “speak” to me and this one is telling me a plain border is best.  No need to pull attention away from the center. Feel free to comment on how you feel about this, esp. if you disagree!

I continue to hand quilt Stardust and I finished appliquéing the stars on the top border of Twinkle – forgot to get a picture and will post it next time.  I continue to make hexagon star pieces and now have about 50 stars ready for hand piecing together.  I’ll be taking a few to Houston to work on during travel.  Here’s a good example of how a design can be fussy cut:

Here are some more pictures from the New England Quilt Museum for your enjoyment (click to enlarge!!)  Be sure to read the artists’ statements:

Gorgeous machine embroidery!:

Excellent geometric with amazing details:

Beautiful embellishments on this antique crazy quilt:

Beautiful hand embroidery on this coverlet:

And here are a few more quilts from the Cocheco show.

More wool applique!!!

I love Lorraine’s idea of depicting the mountains she has climbed with delectable mountain blocks and putting the names on them!!!

Wendy Coffin’s quilts have an elegant simplicity that is very effective and her construction is impeccable!  This one was a Judge’s Choice, I believe:

My friend Rosemary did a great job with this complicated pattern!

This gorgeous “red house” quilt was a viewer’s choice winner:

I’m getting so excited about going to Houston!!!  Most likely I won’t post again until after I get home.  I should have lots of pictures!

Be kind, be grateful, and cherish each day,  Gladi




October 21, 2017: I’m going to Houston!!!; projects update; more NEQM and Cocheco quilt pictures

Greetings.  I’m going to the Houston International Quilt Festival!!!!  The opportunity just came up earlier this week and I seized it!  At my trunk show for the Silver City quilt guild in Taunton, MA Monday evening, I met Janet Elia, one of the founders of the guild, past president, and current program chair.  She not only was a fabulous host and really nice person, but mentioned that she was going to Houston, did not have a roommate, and I was welcome to join her if I wanted to.  As soon as I determined that a flight at a reasonable price was available l said yes.  Wow – this is something I’ve wanted to do for years and now it’s happening in less than 2 weeks.  I’m incredibly excited.  What could be better than 3 days of being inspired by some of the best quilts being made today and from the past and endless vendors, many with hard to find products!!!  And it’s going to be fun to get to know Janet better.  Check out her blog – Janet Ann Creations – to see some of her beautiful quilts.  She has a gorgeous quilt in a special exhibit at the show and I’m looking forward to seeing it.  I leave 11/1 and return 11/5 – think of all the pictures I’m going to eventually be sharing with you on the blog!!!  By the way, my trunk show went really well – the Silver City guild is a wonderful, welcoming group of people and I enjoyed every minute of being there!

Meanwhile, I am actively working on 3 of my projects.  I am making slow, but definite, progress on hand quilting “Stardust.”  I like not feeling too rushed – deadline is end of December.

I finished the appliqué of the lover border of “Twinkle” and designed a star border for the top:

The stars across the top in the above picture are paper so I could get an idea of what they might look like, how many I might need, and how to distribute them.  Below you see I have made the fabric stars and appliquéd 2 so far:

I think I have become addicted to English paper piecing!!  I have been buying striped reproduction fabric to supplement my stash and making hexagon stars almost every day:

I enjoy trying to pick out just the right fabric for the centers once the outside pieces are made.  Once I get the 7 pieces made for each star, I clip them together to save until I can hand sew them together:

Janet Elia suggested I stop in at The Quilted Crow in Bolton, MA on my way home from my trunk show so I did and, not only did I find several excellent striped reproduction fabrics for the stars, but I found a suitable background fabric for the project!!  I wanted something in the warm tan range:

I made a few background pieces and pinned the stars I’ve completed to the design wall with them:

I had been trying to keep the colors to mostly reds, browns, blues, and black.  However, now looking at the whole, I think I want to add green to the mix for a little extra spark and I think I want more red as well:

I’ll add some green blocks before I actually try piecing some of the background in.  I also have to figure out what the best plan is for sewing all the pieces together – rows?  from the center out?  Anyone have any experience with this or references to suggest?  I also don’t know yet how big this quilt is going to be – crib size or larger?  Might depend on how well piecing the parts together goes and how long my addiction to this process lasts!!!

As for my silk quilt, ideas for the border are simmering in my brain.  I may even try a sample of an idea before I commit to the entire border, just to make sure it’s OK.  With all the work I’ve put into the center of the quilt, I want to make sure the border is something that enhances the overall quilt.  My current idea includes quite a bit of embroidery work.

Here are some more pictures from the New England Quilt Museum.  Click on the pictures to enlarge them and enjoy the details:

Incredible hand quilting on this one:

In addition to the “Gilding the Lily” exhibit, the museum also had a wonderful display of some quilts from their collection.  Here are a couple:

Wouldn’t it be lovely to have a pattern for the quilt (coverlet, actually) below!

Wonderful design and use of textiles on the one below:

And here are 3 more quilts from the Cocheco show:

Another beautiful wool appliqué quilt:

Yet another beautiful wool appliqué, this one by my friend Rosemary:

And I LOVE what Patience wrote about this quilt!:

I think that’s enough for today!  Will save more Budapest for another post, plus more quilts from the museum and the Cocheco show.

Al and I leave tomorrow AM for New York City to visit our son – only staying 2 nights and coming back Tuesday, but should be fun.  Hoping to get in a couple good dinners, perhaps a walk on the Highline, and a visit to one of the museums.

Be kind, be grateful, and cherish each day,   Gladi



October 15, 2017: Cocheco Quilters Guild show; Budapest

Greetings!  My guild – the Cocheco Quilters Guild – had its annual show this weekend.  Every year I’m amazed at the wonderful quilts on display and the many talented quilters our guild has.  I am so lucky to be a part of this quilting community!

Spirit of Japan#3: Kuruma (the wheel) won a blue ribbon and a Judge’s Choice!

I was in charge of the Meet the Quilter exhibit and was at the set-up all day on Friday.  We featured 3 quilters.  2 of them were sisters, Patience Dixon and Louise Ford.  They are long time members of the guild, having joined the first year – 38 years ago!   For a long time both did exquisite hand quilting and hand appliqué.  They have continued making wonderful quilts but now have them machine quilted.  The third featured quilter is Mitzi Horne who has made some beautiful quilts and does a lot for the guild.  I’m afraid I didn’t get a lot of closeups, but click on the pictures to enlarge and see the exhibits more closely:

Here’s Patience’s exhibit (the Hawaiian is hand quilted!):

Here is Louise’s exhibit (check out the hand quilted masterpiece!):

And here is Mitzi’s excellent exhibit (wish I’d gotten a closeup of her Salzburg quilt – the one in between the 2 big ones – enlarging the third picture might help you see it better):

Martha Wilson won Best of Show for her beautifully home machine quilted quilt featuring birds – wonderful use of a panel!

There were several quilts with wool appliqué – more than I remember in any previous show so I think this is a trend; lots of quilters doing wool appliqué.  Here is a wool appliqué quilt that won a Viewer’s Choice.  Lots of great detailed hand embroidery embellishment!:

I will have many more pictures in upcoming posts!  Seems like I have stockpiled a lot of quilt pictures to share over several future posts.  I still have a few things from the World Quilt Show, I still have a lot from the New England Quilt Museum, and now our Cocheco Show!

Here are a few pictures from Budapest before I end this post:

We had a small balcony off our 5th floor apartment with an incredible view of St. Stephens Cathedral:

The view from our bedroom window:

The cathedral at night:

Evening view of the palace in Buda:

The Chain Bridge:

The Academy of Sciences:

One of our favorite activities – going to the Spa!!  Budapest has numerous public spas.  My husband played chess (not a picture of him as we left our phones in our locker and took pictures after we got out and got dressed!)

Another favorite activity – eating pastries in the fabulous cafes!

More to come!

I’m off to Taunton, MA tomorrow to give a trunk show to the Silver City Quilt Guild there.  It should be fun!  I have half the quilts packed – am taking 24! – and will do the rest in the morning.

Be kind, be grateful, and cherish each day,   Gladi

October 9, 2017: Vienna, part 3; World Quilt Festival, part 4; Back to “Stardust”

Greetings!  While in Vienna, we visited many beautiful churches:

and visited the Freud museum, which is located right where he lived and saw patients so we got to see the waiting room, the room in which he saw patients – the couch! – etc.  Al is a psychologist and I seriously considered going into psychiatry.  I did not go that route, but saw a lot of mental health patients in my primary care practice. So this was fascinating!

A highlight of the trip was going to the Vienna State Opera to see a performance of Mozart’s “The Marriage of Figaro”!!!  We brought dressy clothes just for the occasion (though my hair was a bit of a mess!):

The opera house was beautiful!

During intermission we saw the famous tapestries of “The Magic Flute”:

We saw street musicians in all three cities.  This accordionist in Vienna was incredible!

We saw beautiful floors and stained glass windows:

We went to several art museums and saw great art”

We saw beautiful buildings and statues:

After 4 wonderful days we left for Budapest.  On the way to Budapest we stopped at a famous Benedictine Abbey and couldn’t go into the church because there was a wedding going on but we were able to visit the fabulous library.  There were incredible original copies of books from the 15th century, onward.

Views of the abbey from a distance (I wasn’t able to get pictures on the way so these are a good way to see it!)

View from the abbey:

The amazing library:

On to Budapest (more next post!):

Here is more from the World Quilt Festival in August.  There was an exhibit of quilts from the Cherrywood Challenge – quilt makers had to illustrate The Lion King with selected fabrics.  This was a wonderful exhibit and here are just a few of my favorites:

I just loved the hand stitching in this one!!!!:

3 more quilts I enjoyed seeing at the Festival:

I have started hand quilting “Stardust” again after taking 3 months off.  I’m really glad I took a break and now feel ready to tackle this and finish it!!  I want it to be part of my exhibit at the New England Quilt Museum so it has to be finished by early January – should be very “do-able.”  I should have time to work on it steadily but also have some time for Twinkle and my EPP project.  I’ve put the pastel quilt away, probably until next spring when I’ll be ready to work with those colors again.

Be kind, be grateful, and cherish each day,   Gladi


October 5, 2017: Busy week!!! Silk quilt update; Vienna, part 2; New England Quilt museum

Greetings!  It’s been a very busy week!!  First, both grandkids had birthdays, 2 days apart.  We celebrated them at the same time between soccer games on Saturday!  Dmitri turned 13 and we took him to the local bank to open a savings account as our gift:

We gave Sveta a 3/4 size guitar.  She turned 10!:

And I baked a chocolate cake for the celebration:

A great time was had by all!

Earlier this week we drove 2 hours to Brattleboro, VT to visit good friends from Nova Scotia.  Paul is a Rudyard Kipling fan and Kipling once lived in a house that he designed and had built, just outside of Brattleboro.  The house is beautiful and in a gorgeous location and is now for rent (by the day or week, I believe).  It has many of the original furnishings that Kipling had.  There’s a library with his books and much more.  A 4 night stay was a birthday gift to Paul and his wife, Lee, from his daughter and son in law – what a fabulous gift!!  It was wonderful to see our friends, have lunch with them, and tour this great spot:

I took advantage of the trip to Brattleboro to visit Delectable Mountain Cloth, a fabulous shop in downtown Brattleboro that specializes in silk fabrics, but they have lots more too.  I shopped for border fabric for my silk quilt!

Here are some pictures of the shop:

Wow, what a spot!  I, of course, brought along my silk quilt and tried all kinds of fabrics against it looking for just the right thing.  Muted colors didn’t work at all; it had to be something bright or a gold “neutral.”  In the end I decided on a one inch wide red strip against the center of the quilt with a wider – maybe 5-6 inches?? -gold strip outside that.  The gold I picked out is a deeper, richer gold than appears in these pictures.  The finished center of the top: (click on pics to enlarge)

The border fabrics ( really like the check pattern in the gold):

Laid against the quilt for an idea how it might look:

I have to decide if I’m going to appliqué and/or embroider anything on the border…..

I laid out the EPP fussy cut “stars” to show you how they might look when I start sewing them together with a background fabric:

And here is Twinkle with the lower border pinned up next to it (still appliquéing):

Yesterday I took a friend to the New England Quilt Museum in Lowell, MA to see the current exhibit, “Gilding the Lily” which is FABULOUS!!!  It’s up for a couple more months – actually I think through December – so please get there and see it if at all possible!  Today I’m showing 2 of the quilts in the exhibit, but will show many more in upcoming posts.  The exhibit highlights embroidery and other embellishments on quilts.  My 2 favorite quilts in the exhibit are ones you’ve seen on my blog before because I saw them in quilt shows and loved them.  They are by 2 of my favorite quitmakers, Bobbie Korengold and Christine Wichert.  These quilts are so gorgeous and I was so happy to get to examine them closeup once again.  Here they are:

Bobbie’s quilt:

Christine’s quilt (all silk!!!):

Now for some more Vienna!  We had the famous sacher torte 3 times, plus other pastries and still lost weight on the trip because of all our walking (the second picture is the kitchen in the famous Demel Cafe):

The Hofburg palace garden area:

We visited this museum to see their famous collection of musical instruments.  They have the best collection of Renaissance instruments in the world, and they have a lot of instruments that famous composers and musicians used.

I loved some of the pictures showing instruments being played:

The main hall in the museum was vast and they also had an incredible collection of armor and weapons (which we were not as interested in!):

I think that’s enough visuals for today!!!  Of course, will share more from the trip and many more pictures from the NEQM exhibit soon.

Be kind, be grateful, and cherish each day,  Gladi

October 4, 2017: The Czech Republic and Vienna (part 1)

Greetings!  After 5 days in Prague, we traveled to an old medieval town, Cesky-Krumlov, in southern Bohemia.  On the way we stopped at this gorgeous castle.  We took a tour, but unfortunately were not allowed to take pictures inside.  The woodwork, tapestries, etc. were beautiful.  (Click on pics to enlarge.)


Cesky-Krumlov also has a beautiful castle and we were also not allowed to take pictures inside.  The town, itself, is lovely.  Amazingly, we had our two best meals of the trip there!  We saw more lovely buildings with wonderful architectural details.

Look at the cobblestones I had to navigate!:

Then it was on to Vienna!  Prague and Vienna were our favorite places of the 4 we visited on the trip.  Look at the roof of St. Stephens Cathedral:

We went to the place Mozart lived when he was in Vienna:

I saw a fabulous exhibit of Art Nouveau works at the Museum of Decorative Arts.  Included were a couple of very large works by Gustav Klimpt.  I love all the texture and shapes in his work.

We visited a wonderful shop in Vienna that had gorgeous scarves and linens.  They also had a great selection of “Kantha” work – “big stitch” type hand quilting holding layers together on cotton fabric, usually courser than the kind of cotton with which we usually make quilts.  Often the stitching is on bright floral printed fabrics though not always.  Kantha seems most commonly used for bed covers and pillows, but I have seen coats and jackets done like this.  Here are the pictures I took in the shop.  Please enlarge to see the stitching details:

I hope to post again tomorrow with an update on what I’ve been up to the past couple days – very busy and quilt related! – and then more on our trip.

Be kind, be grateful, and cherish each day,   Gladi


September 26, 2017: “Twinkle” comes out of hiding; EPP while traveling; more Prague; World Quilt Show pictures, Part 3

Greetings!  I took 2 English Paper piecing projects with me while we traveled in Europe.  In the evening and early morning when I didn’t feel like reading, they were the perfect way to relax.  I finally – FINALLY – have the lower border of “Twinkle” planned using the English Paper pieced pentagon flowers I made on the trip.  Here is a “mock up” showing an idea of how it’s going to look and pictures of all the little “flowers” I made on the trip.  Am also including a couple pics of the rest of the quilt since I haven’t shown it in a while (click on pics to enlarge):

I also started an EPP project using reproduction fabrics and showed a few of these in my post just before the trip.  I made about a dozen more on the trip:

I have another dozen cut out and ready to carry around with me as a portable project.  I’ll be shopping soon for a background fabric to start joining all of these.

All three cities we  visited were very involved in the Art Nouveau movement at the turn of the 20th Century.  In Prague I took a tour of the Municipal Building which is known as one of the most beautiful art nouveau buildings in Europe.  Here are some pictures of some of the features in some of the rooms:

The Alphonse Mucha room – everything in it done by him:

Textiles with art nouveau designs:

I loved the fact that we literally stumbled across this plaque of Beethoven in Prague while out wandering, having no idea that we would come across a place where he stayed for several months and composed some of his pieces!

Here are a few more pictures of quilts from the World Quilt Show, as promised!

Lovely design in machine appliqué:


An honorable mention in the Traditional quilt category:

Award for best quilt from Israel – love the details on this one!!:

Like this design a lot:

I thought this was the best of the 4 (only 4, sob!) Japanese quilts in the show and I liked the hand work:

Next post I’ll show pictures from Cesky-Krumlov in the Czech Republic where we spent 2 nights and maybe get to some Vienna pictures.  I hope to have the center of my silk quilt completed within the next few days!  There are still more pictures from the World Quilt Show.  Stay tuned!

Be kind, be grateful, and cherish each day,  Gladi