Sunday, October 30, 2005

Houston's FiberArt for a Cause - MORE PHOTOS

Thanks to someone from the QuiltArt list (who prefers to remain anonymous), I have more photos of the fiberart postcards sold at Virginia's booth to benefit the American Cancer Society. Enjoy!

Kool Kats!

KOOL KATS! cPat Dolan 2005
This quilt was made for the Fabri-Quilt, Inc. booth at the Houston Quilt Market this past week, using their 100% cotton fabrics to illustrate their current fabric lines. Several members of the Kansas Art Quilters Organization (not limited to those from or living in Kansas!) were invited to create quilts for the show. This one is mine, entitled "Kool Kats!"

Note that the 'binding' is actually fun fur yarn - which I thought was a rather 'cool' idea!

I saw sunglasses from the very first moment I heard the theme "Kool Cats" - and envisioned this huge pair of sunglasses reflecting cool cat images back to the world. I had to request more of the black + white diamond sunglass fabric than the original bundle contained - and the company graciously sent it to me. I found the metallic fluorescent sunglasses in the kids birthday party department of a local store and added them by creating button-hole openings for the sunglasses to slip through around the head of each kool kat. The cats are cute enough without the sunglasses - here they are sans glasses.

And here's a close up of one psychedelic cat!

Saturday, October 29, 2005

FiberArt For A Cause at Houston

Here are some photos Karey Bresenhan sent me today featuring the fiberart cards donated and sold by Virginia Spiegel (and many other QuiltArt list members) to benefit the American Cancer Society. The framed cards all were sold on-line via Virginia's website ( ). Many more artcards were donated (again, mostly by our QuiltArt list members) and have been selling very well at the Houston Quilt Festival this week at Virginia's booth. You can see one blank wall that formerly held fiberart cards - now sold to the tune of $750.00. And that was just one panel!

Journal Quilts - Part 2

Here are the rest of them, as promised.

JUNE 2006 - cPat Dolan
June is wedding anniversary month for many family members - although our anniversary is in December! In the upper right is a wedding photo of my maternal grandparents taken in 1907. Another photo has my grandmother holding her first-born, my uncle, taken in 1909. There is an old postcard behind her - my grandfather was a postal carrier back then. The central image is my grandmother in 1906, the year before she was married, sitting on the front porch. The large photo is my great-grandparents homestead where my grandmother grew up in Stillwater, MN with a sweeping front porch (1909). All photos, except the wedding one, were taken by my grandfather, H.L. Buck, an amateur photographer. This quilt features photo transfers (duh!), machine quilting, and raw edges. I've also left some of the end-threads from the stitching to dangle on the front - threads of my lineage...

JULY 2005 - cPat Dolan
Attempting photo transfers from my childhood photo album on my hand-painted silk. One is transferred, the other transfer is simply sewn down. A playful celebration of my birthday, myself with bright fabric strips, fabric beads, & bundles with a few of Granny's buttons.

AUGUST 2005 - cPat Dolan
I wanted to depict those fleeing from Katrina amidst the hot, chaotic storm and its aftermath. This piece has reverse applique, fused applique, twisted sheers and cottons, hand-dyed twisted papers, and metal foiling.

SEPTEMBER 2005 - cPat Dolan
I needed to honor the spirit of those most affected by Katrina. I chose a black background symbolizing death; hand-dyed gauze symbolizing the fishing and shipping industries; Angelina Fibers to symbolize the spirit of the individuals who left, who stayed, who rescued, who lived in and loved the areas affected; loose black tangled threads to indicate the tangled lives of all those affected; and diagonal lines indicating fallen oil refineries. The colors attempt to capture the light of Love cascading down upon the chaos bringing life and hope to all, and inviting new opportunities for what is yet to come.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Journal Quilts 2005

JANUARY 2005 - cPat Dolan A blustery, cold, wintry month. Hand-painted sheer fabric, Angelina Fibers, spun fiberglass, wool roving, cording, machine quilting, and beading.

Now that the International Quilt Festival in Houston is in full swing, we have permission to share our 2005 Journal Quilts with others. One requirement of the yearly Journal exhibition is that the 8 1/2" x 11" format quilts not be shown to anyone until after the Quilt Fest opens. So, today I will publish the photos of my quilts from January through May. Over the weekend, I'll put up the photos of June through September.

FEBRUARY 2005 - cPat Dolan March in the "I Love New York" city - the Big Apple with orange for the historic Gates Exhibition, on hand-painted sheer fabric, and bunched blue-purple blended silk for textural effects.

MARCH 2005 - cPat Dolan Another bitterly cold, very windy month - hand-painted sheer fabric with Angelina Fibers, machine quilting, and beading.

APRIL 2005 - cPat Dolan Winter disolved gradually into spring and the crocus bloomed riotously. Painted sheer fabric placed over various fibers, crocus free-form machine stitched, machine quilted.

MAY 2005 - cPat Dolan May revealed the Mocassin Flower AKA the Ladies Slipper. I took the photo in Pennsylvania, printed it on fabric, and machine quilted the piece.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Autumnal Scenes

I had another appointment today, so took the camera along while I was out and about. Today, I found lots more color. It's about time, too. It's been green, green, and green up until the past week or so - except for the brown, dying leaves from the drought. Now that we've had lots and lots of rain, the color is here! Tonight, we may get our first frost, which ought to hasten the colors a tad more. The color is late, even by New Jersey standards! Hope you enjoy the photos as much as I enjoyed my day!

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Rain, Beautiful Rain...

What a lovely day for taking watery photographs of the countryside... At a distance, or up close and personal. This wonder-filled view is on the road to my acupuncturists' office... It's lovely even in the rain! It's hard to believe that this is the end of October when there are so many trees that have yet to change their colors. Below are some Turkey Vultures perched above ground, waiting out the storm. And below them are water-soaked, colorful, wonderful leaves partially submerged along the roadway.

Leaves floating in a puddle in the street out in front of our home caught my eye as I walked down to get our mail. I was captivated by the colors, textures, reflections, shapes, etc. - much to the surprise and, perhaps, dismay of oncoming traffic. I no longer care what anyone thinks of me as I choose to do what captures my heart...

Above are the rain-drenched cherries on my neighbors cherry tree - the same tree in spring blossoms is in last Aprils blog entry somewhere or other.

Monday, October 24, 2005

I've Been Tagged - 20 Things About Me...

Gerrie Congdon, of Crazy for Fiber, tagged me the other day - it's now my turn to reveal 20 (insignificant or otherwise) things about myself in my blog... Here goes:

1. I am the middle child between two sisters, one 5 years older, one 5 years younger.
2. I was a pathetically shy child who found it terrifying to make friends. That lasted until I was in my 50's or so... some childhoods last longer than others!
3. I've always loved to sing, hum, and/or whistle - when I was in grade and high school, I used to sing my favorite tunes at the top of my lungs when I was doing dishes or when I was out on the 2nd floor back porch. I half hoped people would love listening to me while the other half was afraid they'd hate listening to me... Somehow or other it was easier to sing without an audience I could see, even though I knew they could hear me. I was in my HS Glee Club, which was well known in St. Paul, MN where I grew up.
4. I learned to sew after my HS graduation - it was the only way I could get new clothes for college. My mom didn't teach me, nor did my grandmother - both accomplished seamstresses. Mom said she didn't have the patience to teach me so she sent me to my older sister (who had 3 kids under the age of 4 at the time) to learn to sew. Needless to say, I learned how to sew - Elaine never touched the sewing machine while I was there, but she DID teach me and answer all my questions!
5. I didn't think I had a sense of humor because I hated the negative, sarcastic, nasty pun type humor that was common in my household. I later discovered I have a very good sense of humor - it's just very different than the rest of my family members. Well, actually, my older sis and I have similar kinds of humor and enjoy the same sorts of things.
6. I majored in art in college because it was the only thing I thought I was any good at. But I didn't think I was nearly as good at it as either of my two sisters.
7. Mom insisted I get a teaching degree - after all, an artist cannot support herself, and what if she was widowed???
8. I swore I'd never teach, that I hated it, etc.
9. Turns out I'm a natural teacher - it many different topics - and have done lots of it, but never full time. That I still think I would hate doing!
10. I met my husband-to-be at the first freshman mixer between our 2 (men's and women's) colleges - September 30, 1961. It snowed that night - it was MN after all.
11. We were married the December (in MN?!!!) after graduation.
12. Much later, my DH told me that he knew the very first night that I was the woman he would marry. Fortunately, he didn't tell me that until after our marriage. When we met, I didn't think very highly of marriage...
13. DH is my opposite - or perhaps my complement. He is calm, stable, steadfast, a scientist, and has lots of wisdom. I am excitable, prone to depression, flexible, and an artist - with wisdom of my own. We balance one another rather well. When he gets too boring, I invite him to join me in swinging from chandeliers! And when I get too crazy or compulsive, he gently invites me to slow down and enjoy life.
14. My husband educated himself out of the midwest... we ended up moving further and further east with each subsequent move. Presently, we are about 15 miles from the Atlantic Ocean - as the crow flies. (That's about as far east as I'm willing to go - other than for vacations!)
15. We have 2 kids, 3 grandkids, 1 step-grandchild, and 1 Russian foreign exchange student 'grandkid' for this school year.
16. I'm missing St. Paul... not the snow, but the city, the people - including the family members that remain, the friendliness, the culture, the arts, and more.
17. I was a professional watercolorist for 20 years prior to switching to art quilting.
18. I began quilting in 1979 - I embroidered the flowers-of-the-month that I had designed for a commemorative spoon company and then thought they would make a nice quilt. I had a lot to learn...
19. Art quilting took over my life about 5 years ago, although I didn't really give myself permission to have fun with it, let go with it, get professional with it - until the past year or so...
20. My studio is the largest room in our town-home - the living room, and the first room any visitor sees. It is colorful, eclectic, vibrant, fun, and crazy - and I love it!

Now it's time to go tag someone else, namely Mary M. of Quilt Studio 77!

Friday, October 21, 2005

What a Wonderful Week!

This week has been a whirlwind of activity from beginning to end - and I've loved every minute of it!!! It began on Monday with deciding to mount a small quilt on a larger surface prior to taking it in to the photographer. That worked beautifully, by the way - or at least I think it did. The photographer called today saying his equipment went down and my things won't be ready until Monday (he hopes!) - so I haven't seen the piece since. I'll take a digital shot of it when I get it back and you can see it for yourself.

Monday was also quilt-mailing day - one to the New England Quilt Museum for a 3 month show, the other to the Schweinfurth Museum for the Quilts=Art=Quilts competition. That took way more time than it rightfully should have taken - I hade to make boxes out of other boxes, label my quilts, write artist's statements, yada, yada, yada...

Tuesday I played with my photos and printer once again and had great fun. I now have a pile of fabrics ready to incorporate into a larger piece for Keisha Roberts curated exhibit in February in VA.

Some of my printed images ready to go...

More printed-on-cotton images ready to sandwich & quilt

Wednesday I began quilting one of my heretofore hand-painted silk scarves. I simply do NOT use/wear silk scarves - I'm a sweat-shirt, blue-jeans kind of gal, despite the photograph above! That was taken at a family wedding when I was all dolled up & not at all myself... or maybe myself in costume???

And, since I was joining Mary M and her pals on a fabric bargain-hunting trip to Philadelphia and Cherry Hill on Thursday, I figured I'd best try out the BeJeweller II that I had borrowed from her during our last visit together. Now, I'm a sweat-shirt, blue-jeans woman - my quilts aren't either one of those, but they aren't really jewel-ly types of quilts either! Nevertheless, I found two that qualified for additional embellishment along the lines of "sparkles." I'll the photos that 'worked,' just remember that jewels really don't show up all that well when photographed!

Orange Delight c2005 Pat Dolan 8"sq - it's hard to see the sparkles...

Close-up of Orange Delight with be-jewelled sparkles

Thursday was our shopping extravaganza topped off by some of the best Mexican food I've ever had from the Mexican Food Factory in Marlton, NJ. The 5 of us had a great time at Jo-Mar in Philly ooo-ing and ah-ing over all sorts of stuff. Colleen was buying upholstery and decorator fabrics for her one-of-a-kind marvelous jackets. Carol #1 was being conservative... Carol #2 was having a ball! Mary M., of course, was totally INTO the shopping, the touching, feeling, and buying of tempting fabrics. And I spent a bundle - way more than I thought I would (or than my budgeting had planned on!) A great time was had by all!

Silk + Velvel sample pieces from Freeman Discount Fabrics, Cherry Hill, NJ

Fabric Purchases from Jo-Mar (Philly) and Freeman Discount Fabrics

And today was another fun-filled day - I was standing-in for Dr. Geraldine Velasques, art teacher at Georgian Court U in Lakewood, NJ. Her class has about a dozen students, all upper-classmen/women. They are working in batik and were in various stages of completion with one to four projects each. Many had design questions, some had quandries with mixing the dye-baths in the colors they wanted, some never left the wax table except to watch demos for things or help their fellow students with problem-solving of some sort or other.

One student brought in her sewing machine and taught another one or two how to sew - and actually let them USE her Brother machine to sew up their batiks in one way or another. Mind you, the assignment is to create a quilt with the batik - and to use hand-embroidery, beading and other embellishments to make a strong design statement. Only 2 of the students in the class have any sewing experience whatever...

Several students requested an embroidery stitching demo which I was happy to supply. Others were taught about the ease & wonder of Wonder Under - then went out to the Rag Shop, bought it, came back and USED it. This is one enthusiastic group, can you tell?

The topper of the day was around 1:15pm when the fire alarm went off and we all had to evacuate the building. I was absolutely certain that we had triggered the smoke alarm, presuming it was the hot wax over-heating in the craft lab. We turned off all heating units, opened the windows, turned off all electrical supplies, and shut the door as we hurried out to join the entire population from the Arts & Science Building - into the rain, of course. Nearly everyone presumed this to be a fire drill - it's October, after all, when nearly all schools have fire drills. We waited over 15 minutes outside in the rain before an old firetruck, no lights or sirens in evidence, lumbered up to the main entrance. After another 5-10 minutes waiting in the cold drizzle, we were allowed back into the building.

Guess what? The fire-woman was waiting in my hallway when we arrived... My students did indeed cause the alarm to go off - but it was in the drawing studio across the hall from the craft lab where the alarm went off. It seems one of them had popped pop corn in the microwave, then took it to her seat - directly below the smoke detector - and openned the bag... Bingo! Alarm bells. Evidently, the alarms send info directly to the fire dept, thus they KNEW it was no big deal since the smoke never intensified nor did any heat register. So much for the movie-version illusion of quick firetrucks responding to the scene of a fire!

There was one other time, at the Vincentian Renewal Center located off Rte. 1 near Princeton, when my group set off the buildings smoke alarms... My co-presenter for the seminar decided everyone should write down on small scraps of paper whatever it was they wished to release during the process of our retreat. Then she proceeded to put them in a small container & set them afire... The fire truck came really quickly that time, much to our chagrin. We learned we couldn't even light CANDLES anywhere in the buildings because the alarm system was so sensitive...

So, it's Friday night and I'm happy and tired and happy. Hope you are happy too!

Sunday, October 16, 2005

More Antique Photos for Your Enjoyment!

I scanned in another 60+ old photos today. Here are a few for you to see - eventually you'll see them coming up in various quilting projects, to be sure!

This cutie is my cousin + her teddy bear - 1940s

These somber children are my grandmother, Mary Alice Collopy, and her two younger brothers, Rosco and Robert - yes the youngest IS a boy! This was taken before his first hair-cut, obviously. 1895

Snowy Mr. Pumpkin - Halloween in Minnesota!

Great-grandma Emma Paden Stephen on the porch swing - about 1915 or so.

My mom, A. Irene Buck reading a book at age 5-6 - about 1915.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

What a Week!

My mother, Alice Irene Buck, 1910-1985

This has been a very exciting week for me - so many opportunities are unfolding that I'm spinning in my own little spiral of joy!

1: Keisha Roberts has selected one of my photo-transfer quilts for her upcoming curated exhibit at the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival in February 2006 entitled: The Nearness of You: Memory and Commemoration in Quiltmaking.

2: Keisha then requested a professional photo of said quilt which she hopes to use in her upcoming magazine articles about the exhibit!

3: Anne Copeland has offered the membership of her group free websites for a minimal contribution. Now that's an offer that's hard to refuse!

4: My knee is steadily improving.

5: My creativity is growing by leaps and bounds.

6: My self-confidence is rising with all this good news.

7: My new printer has arrived, is installed & is now working like a charm.

8: It's stopped raining (after 13 1/2" in 5 days - all of which we needed since we've been in a drought!) and the sun - and the nearly full moon - are visible once again.

So today I spent the day scanning in images dating from the 1880s to the 1980s. I have several more ideas for photo-quilting and am now more inspired than ever to proceed. Some will be done with photos printed directly on fabric - which I've finally learned how to do without having the cotton jam up under the printer-heads. And some will be done with photo-transfers. Some will have actual photos sewn in. And, of course, some will be a combination of one or all of the above. I just checked to see how many pictures I scanned & discovered I did a whopping 90 photographs!

I scanned everything from baby, wedding, holiday - including some 1915 Halloween pictures of my mom & uncle as kids in costumes, house, church, store, picnic and quilt photos... All are presently in large tiff files. I've jpegged a few for your enjoyment.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Fun in West Virginia

We are just back from a wonderful visit to West Virginia where the leaves were nearing the peak of autumnal color, at least at the higher elevations. While we were there, I crocheted a few arty purses to wear to upcoming artquilt openings.

Brown Purse - sans button!
Our daugther and son-in-law, Chris + Steve, with whom we were staying.
Red Purse with button but missing shoulder strap...
Blue Purse - complete!
Blackwater Falls
Blackwater River

Here I am crocheting on a foggy morning...
Autumn fog in West Virginia...