Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Milkweed cycle

 "Milkweed Cycle" in progress -
Here are the nine pieces of "Milkweed Cycle" assembled in a circle on the pink design board.  Nine women each made one section. It's fun to see the nine pieces come together as a whole. The only guidelines we all followed were to use the same size template and to put something representing the sun at the center tip.

And here it is, finished. We donated it to a local non-profit called Save Our Monarchs:

It's so true that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.


Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Milkweed and caterpillar

"Cycles" quilt challenge: Milkweed...
(Tap on the photo if it's out of focus!)

The Minnesota Contemporary Quilters' current challenge is to create a wallhanging no larger than 36" x 36." The theme is "Cycles." I'm in a small quilting group of nine women and we decided to make a group piece based on the cycle of the milkweed plant.

We divided a large paper circle into nine equal pie-shaped pieces, each of us taking a pie-piece to use as a template for representing one stage of the milkweed cycle. I depicted the milkweed plant with mature leaves. Willy-nilly, I added a caterpillar, which led each of the other women to incorporate into her stage of the milkweed cycle the appropriate stage of the monarch butterfly's life cycle.

The milkweed plant is absolutely necessary to the life cycle of a monarch butterfly; there is no other plant that monarchs use. We all know that monarch numbers are decreasing rapidly and dramatically due to loss of habitat  and the use of chemical sprays along their migratory path. Milkweed plants are native to Minnesota prairies - we have some milkweed in the prairie my husband planted in our front yard.

Happy spring in a couple days. It is snowing here at the moment.


Sunday, March 2, 2014

Textile-related images, Switzerland

Zurich, Switzerland, February 2014:
some memories......

Above two photos: taken through the window of a tailoring shop in Zurich.

Another photo taken through a Zurich shop window: handcrafted bed and bedding, with a contemporary yet traditional folk
look. My husband liked the dovetail detail on the bed frames's corner.

The rest of these photos were taken in the Schweizerisches Landesmuseum in Zurich:

Footwear display: one-pieced wooden highheel shoe with attached heavy woven fabric stocking (there is a mirror at the top of the display case causing the reflection at the top of the photo.) I think they're adorable but  can't imagine walking on the cobblestone streets of Zurich wearing them.

Swiss apparel through the centuries:

Paisley wool scarves (I have one similar to these that I got at a consignment shop in Minneapolis); and the center portion of a huge piece of fine handmade lace:

A fabric sample book - I didn't get the year on it:

Lovely treadle sewing machine with built in cabinet:

(On the iron work under the cabinet it says:"ORIGINAL VICTORIA")

and a magnificent tile floor!