Stories My Father Told Me, WCQN

International Exposure for The Lesson and The Equation

While attending a quilt retreat this weekend, I got the most fabulous news from Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi, the curator of Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium: Quilting the World’s Conscience – My piece, The Lesson and The Equation is featured on the website of the Brussels, Belgium based organization Human Rights 70.

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Image credit: humanright70.eu

(If you are just joining us on my blog, you can read background on my piece and the exhibit in these series of posts: WCQN )

This organization’s mission, according to their website:

is to contribute to promote the knowledge and application from individual up to supranational level, of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, and in doing so contribute to the better living of all beings in the world

This Brussels based organization also has offices in Madrid, Paris, Geneva, Vienna, Amsterdam, Lisbon, Barcelona, Copenhagen, Bogota, and Mexico DF.

Here is a screen shot of the overview of the exhibit on the Human Rights 70 website:

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To say I am excited and overwhelmed is an understatement (smile)!

Perhaps The Lesson and The Equation, inspired by Article 1 of United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights, will get to tour internationally someday…

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The Lesson and The Equation at the show opening at Fitton Center for Creative Arts 08/17/18

For a high resolution image of the piece and to read the Artist Statement, see my page Art Quilt Stories.

All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. – Article 1, Universal Declaration of Human Rights


Feature Photo by Calvin Hanson on Unsplash

A Crafter's Life

Scraps from Scotland

Just a quick post today as I am currently on a quilt retreat with some Quilting Sisters who came down to Central Oregon for a mini retreat to work on our Tula Pink All Stars fabric inspired samplers (yes future blog post to come on that). 

I wanted to say how much I appreciate all the supportive, inspirational and thoughtful comments on my previous post Found! At the Thrift Shop!  – I feel like I am totally over it now! Who knew blogging could be such therapy to work out your issues – ha!


Treat from the Isle of Harris

My Quilting Sister Kathy visited Scotland this summer and while in Scotland they explored the Isle of Harris (Harris, Scotland) and she brought me back some Scottish wool samples from a wool mill they visited!

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If you are unfamiliar with the Isle of Harris here is a link to a Wikipedia article for more information – Harris, Scotland. Visiting Scotland is on my list of things to do someday!

When this delightful surprise arrived in the mail a couple weeks ago and I immediately began day dreaming of the cool piece I could make with the scraps! (But for now they have to wait in my backlog of other interesting projects).


Postscript

The other day I received another surprise package of delightful fabric scraps in the mail, this time from one of my longtime blogging buddies. That will be a future post, but here is a tease:

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A Crafter's Life, tierneycreates

Found! At the Thrift Shop!

Have you ever found something you made/gave someone as a gift at a thrift shop?

A couple of weeks ago I had my first experience of finding one of my handmade items at a thrift shop for sale – one of the little wallets I used to make. This experience got me pondering about the handmade gifts you give people and what becomes of them (and how sometimes you have to just let go for the sake of your own sanity and peace).

Found at the Thrift Shop

I was obsessed with making little wallets for a while from fabric scraps and here is one of my posts about my obsession – Little Wallet Madness.

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I would give them as gifts with my tierneycreates business card inside as an example of how you can use the little wallet. I also gave away five little wallets during the tierneycreates Blog 4th Anniversary Celebration (Announcing the Winners of the tierneycreates Blog’s 4th Anniversary Giveaway).

It was serendipitous that I found the little wallet at the thrift shop and it was sort of like the Universe wanted me to find it.

I had just finished having lunch with a friend and felt compelled to visit a local charity thrift shop after our lunch. I wandered around, not knowing why I was there and then felt drawn to the purse and wallet section.

Inside the used purse and wallet section, I found this adorable item for my sister who loves Lululemon – a little zippered wallet made from recycling a Lululemon bag:

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My sister has a collection of Lululemon bags and this little wallet was the perfect treat for her. So I thought – “Wow, I guess I was supposed to come in here and find this for my sister!”. Just in case there might be another one, I kept rummaging through the used wallet section and came upon this:

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It looked familiar and I thought: “Ah someone else must have made little wallets like I did”

But then after inspection I discovered something shocking: an old tierneycreates business card inside the wallet!

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I stood there in the thrift shop, mouth open, feeling like I was having an out of body experience.

What bothered me was not that someone no longer wanted one of my handmade little wallets and donated it (that was better than them just throwing it out); but that they just left my business card inside (note this is one of my old business cards from when I used to have an Etsy shop, etc.)

I’ve narrowed it down to who could have done this and it was obviously a person without any class. A person with class would have removed and recycled my business card before donating. Let’s just leave it at that.

Of course I purchased it (it was only 50 cents) along with the Lululemon little wallet for my sister. I removed and recycled my old business card from it and put it away for now. At a later time I will decide whether to regift it to someone or to re-donate it to the charity thrift shop (but not with my business card inside).

What Becomes of the Handmade Gifts We Give?

Many times you know what becomes of the handmade gifts you give people – either they love, cherish and use them or they do not. They might regift them, they might donate them, they might even throw them away. Or they might just shove them in the closet to gather dust.

This is something I’ve struggled with as a crafter and quilter and had to work on letting go – once you give someone something, it is theirs to do with what they want – even if it might be heartbreaking to you.

People who are not crafters or artists may not understand the love that goes into something that is handmade and how essentially a piece of the maker goes into the piece (and not just if you stuck yourself with a needle while making the piece and bled a little on it like I’ve done a time or two – ha!)

Sometimes my heart breaks for the maker when I see a beautiful handmade item sold for cheap at thrift shop. I’ve rescued lovely granny square afghans from thrift shops (usually sold for $2 – $3) as I know how much work goes into this type of project and I love granny square afghans but have yet to make one myself.

On the overstuffed chairs in our front window where we read (and I work on blog posts) I have rescued granny square afghans from my collection as well as on the bench where Mike our miniature schnauzer hangs out to watch cats, birds and passing dogs out the window (to practice his barking).

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Here is Mike napping on one of the rescued afghans:

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I do not want to become a hoarder and I know I cannot rescue all the beautiful handmade items that have been donated to thrift stores. I only rescue granny square afghans if they are exceptionally appealing and under $5, that is my guideline, but still how many granny square afghans does one person need?

A friend of mine told me a story of how she discovered a neighbor’s husband using a quilt she made her neighbor to mop up an oil spill in a garage. To me this sounds much worse than finding something you made donated at a thrift shop.

What I’ve learned as I mature as a maker is that I need to be very selective of who receives my handmade items. Also I’ve learned to that sometimes you need to just let go of your attachment to the handmade item when you gift it.

Sometimes it hurts when someone does not fully appreciate the work and time that went into a handmade item but I have to remember unless they are a maker, a crafter, an artist, or any type of creative individual they may never understand.

Life is a balance of holding on and letting go. – Rumi

A Crafter Needs to Eat

Apple Rescue and Pre-Fall Cooking

Apple Rescue

In 2016 I did a series of posts about “rescuing” neglected fruit from fruit trees in my neighborhood in these posts:

The Fruits of My Neighborhood

The Fruits of My Neighborhood, Part II

The Fruits of My Neighborhood, Part III

Several readers expressed concerns that even though the trees were neglected, technically I did not have permission from the home owners (even if some of the houses were empty) to pick the fruit from their trees. Although the fruit was falling to the ground and rotting and no one was picking it, I put these comments in the back of my mind and skipped “fruit rescuing” in 2017.

But recently I’ve noticed several apple trees in front of a business at the edge of my neighborhood where the apples are ripe and are just being allowed to fall to the ground and rot. I couldn’t take it anymore and decided it was time for APPLE RESCUE!

Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) felt like an intervention was needed also and helped me pick apples from the trees:

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TTQH helping with Apple Rescue

Until we had a bag full of apples:

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Saved from just being left to rot on the ground

We took the home and washed them and ended up with a nice haul of apples:

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Getting a bath
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Freshly rescued apples all safe and cozy in a bowl

What to do with out apple haul? Make an apple pie of course!

I used this online recipe from Taste of Home: tasteofhome.com/recipes/apple-pie/

And TTQH helped peel the apples while watching Sunday football games:

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Sunday football and apple peeling!

His hard work peeling 6 cups worth of sliced apples and my pie assembly skills resulted in this yummy pie:

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The house smells really really good

We used so many apples for the pie, we only have a little left (maybe it is time to return to those trees for more “apple rescuing”!):

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These apples might need more of their friends rescued

Pre-Fall Cooking

In Fall I start making soups and stews and I have a couple favorites which include (recipes are linked):

Bean and Chicken Sausage Stew 

Winter Vegetable Soup

Beer Stew with Beer and Paprika

But as the tierneycreates Beastie mentioned in yesterday’s guest blogger post,Guest Blogger: A Monster Needs Her Sweater, the weather has dipped from late summer weather to early Fall weather.

The cool weather makes me want to start making stews now!

So using the last of the kale and tomato harvest from my garden, I made Bean and Chicken Sausage Stew !

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Ready to become stew

Oh just a note on the linked recipe I provided – the original recipe calls for cannellini beans but I used black beans instead. Also I like to sauté the kale first in the already sautéed sausage and garlic; and if I am using fresh tomatoes as I did this time – I sauté the tomatoes also, before adding the beans (and their liquid) and the broth.

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Remains of the tasty stew!

Postscript

Disclaimer: I am not a cooking blog and cannot even pretend to be one.

If you want to read actually cooking blogs I recommend these two that I enjoy:

In Diane’s Kitchen (indianeskitchen.com) – I am waiting for her to write her cookbook someday!

Momoe’s Cupboard (trkingmomoe.wordpress.com) – focuses on tasty low budget meals

 

Beastie Adventures

Guest Blogger: A Monster Needs Her Sweater

Hello, my name is tierneycreates Beastie and I am a Monster, but the good kind of Monster.

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Tierney of tierneycreates.com has invited me to return as a guest blogger for another post.

If you are new to this blog (welcome new readers, glad to have you join us!) you can read my story and see some of my adventures in the series of posts – Beastie Adventures. I was born in Dublin, Ireland and moved (well was shipped) to Central Oregon to join Tierney of tierneycreates in June 2018.

A Monster Needs Her Sweater

Since arriving in Central Oregon from Dublin Ireland in June, I’ve worn my T-shirt as my regular outfit, but recently the weather has dipped in Central Oregon and it is now in the 30s F (-1 C) in the morning and evening and only reaching a high of the 50s – 60s F (10 – 16 C) during the day.

Brrrrrr!

I finally told Tierney that I needed to change to my sweater that Helen of Crawcrafts Beasties (crawcraftsbeasties.com) made me. Tierney was using it as decoration in her sewing room and I said ENOUGH with it being used as decoration – I need it on MY BODY!

Frustrated, I took my T-shirt off and insisted I get my sweater put on (I need help getting dressed due to my unusual physique).

As you can see, Tierney said Beastie nudity was not appropriate on her blog and edited the photo to cover any special bits.

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Not wanting to put up with a nearly naked Beastie running about her house, Tierney agreed to help me put on my sweater:

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Then she helped me put on my satchel (which contains my laptop and library card – two very important items!) and my knitted hat (just in case the sweater was not enough to keep me warm…):

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I asked if we could go outside so I could see if I would actually be warmer with my sweater on when walking my dog Mikelet:

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Success! I am much warmer!

Now I am ready to take my dog Mikelet on a walk in the Central Oregon pre-Fall nippy weather (but it turned out I do not need my hat yet):

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We had to retake the photo as Mikelet was checking out something in the distance, maybe a beetle or something.

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Postscript

If you would like to check out the adventures of other Beasties, check out these two blogs:

By the way, Autumn is Tierney’s favorite season and she does not mind the chill in the air and the rapidly approaching end of summer.

“To say it was a beautiful day would not begin to explain it. It was that day when the end of summer intersects perfectly with the start of fall.” – Ann Patchett

What's on the Design Wall

What’s on the Design Wall: Tango Stripe

What?

A tierneycreates post about Tierney actually creating?

Yes it has been a long time since I’ve shared my current textile project and posted in my series , What’s on the Design Wall where I featured my latest work in progress. For the past couple of months I’ve been working on an art quilt for a future WCQN exhibit and could not share images of the work in progress (or completed work) as the curator has not announced the show yet.

But I’ve finished the piece and now I can start working on my backlog of projects.

The first project in queue is one I’ve had around for a while. You can read it’s story in this June 2018 post – .The Tale of Tango Stripe.

Here is where I left off – I worked on it during a May 2018 quilt retreat:

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Up on a design wall at the quilt retreat

I am working in bring this tale to a conclusion!

It felt so good to pull it back out of its box and put it up on the large design wall in my hallway (yes if you are new to this blog, I use my whole house for crafting):

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Up on the design wall at my house (hallway design wall)

I’ve been using the smaller design wall on the closet door in my studio to make additional blocks:

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On the smaller design wall on my closet door in my studio

Making the blocks is very fun, even though a template is involved (normally I hate templates). The designer, Jean Wells Keenan of the Stitchin Post did a wonderful job with the pattern.

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At first I could not understand why she did not give instructions to just make up all the blocks at once. After playing with making a couple blocks during the quilt retreat I attended in May, I totally got why you design your blocks as you go.

The quilt is make with Kaffe Fassett stripes and those are fun to work with and create various pairing combination with solid colors:
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I am using recycled denim (from a denim coverlet liner I picked up very cheap at a Thrift store) as the setting fabric. However, earlier this year I saw another amazing setting fabric option – olive green fabric:

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Tango Stripe made by Kristan our Central Oregon SAQA group leader

If I ever make a second Tango Stripe quilt I think I am going with the olive or khaki green or even a tan setting fabric.

I will post an update as I progress – I have a lot of blocks to make!


Postscript

I’ve updated my tierneycreates Studio Tour page in case you want to take a peek at where I am currently creating!

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Important reminder I keep in my studio!
A Crafter's Life, tierneycreates

WordPress Image (Photo) Management

This blog post is for those of you maintaining your blog on the WordPress platform, and are challenged with, or have overcome challenges with, having a WordPress plan with limited image/photo storage.

Several of my fellow WordPress bloggers have expressed frustration over the limited amount of photo storage allotment and having to either delete older posts or delete posted photos to manage their storage. So I thought I would share my experience and tips and ask for other experienced WordPress platform bloggers to comment with their tips for managing image storage limits on WordPress.

The Free Plan

When I started blogging in October 2013, I started with the free plan. This plan gave me 3 GB (gigabytes) of storage for photos I wanted to post and within a year I noticed I was quickly using up my allotted free storage.

Here is what no one told me when I started blogging (that I so wish someone had told me): you need to reduce the size of your images you post in a blog post.

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WordPress.com/pricing

I was able to stay on the free plan for another year or so by reducing the size of my photos. Eventually after 2 – 3 years on the free plan, I decided I wanted to double my available storage (especially since I now knew how to stretch it out) to 6 GB;  I wanted to remove advertising by WordPress; and I wanted to move my domain name from “tierneycreates.wordpress.com” to “tierneycreates.com”.

Managing the size of every image I add to a blog post, here is what my Photo Storage looks like after nearly 5 years of blogging (and if you’ve followed my blog for a while you know I post a lot of photos!):

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I think I can make this last another 5 years. If I had known how to do image management from the beginning I know I could have made it 5 years of blogging with my original 3GB storage allotment. Since I upgraded my plan, I’ve never had the incentive to go back to my early posts and resize their images – too much work!

How Do I Manage My Image File Size?

First a disclaimer: I figured out what worked for me and I am not even remotely an expert in photo editing and image management.

You may find my process cumbersome and I bet there are more efficient methods but here are my steps from taking a photo to posting it onto my blog:

  1. I use an iPhone for my images and use the regular image settings (I do not use HDR or Live photo settings as I assume that would be a larger photo).
  2. I have an Amazon Prime account which comes with unlimited photo storage. I have the Amazon Prime Photo app on my phone. I review images on my phone, delete the ones I do not keep and then open Prime Photo and it automatically uploads all photos not already uploaded to Prime Photo. I then delete the images from my camera to manage photo storage on my iPhone.
  3. I blog from a MacBook, and go to the online Prime Photo website and download to my desktop or to a folder all the photos I want to use in a blog post. (Note once I am done with the blog post I delete all the photos I downloaded from my laptop as I do not want to take up a bunch of space with photos that are stored online).
  4. Most photos taken on my iPhone are in the range of 3000 x 4000 pixels. There are a 1000 pixels in a MB so each photo is about 4.5 MB. 4.5 MB does not sound like a lot but there are 1024MB in one GB and you could see before you know it, especially if you put 5 – 10+ images in each post, you could quickly work your way through your 3GB allotment (if you are on the free plan). So I reduce each photo by 50% using the Preview feature on my Mac.
  5. I select all the photos I’ve downloaded from Prime Photos and open them up at the same time using Preview. Within Preview I do any needed photocropping and then I go to the Tools menu and select “Adjust Size” and reduce the size from 100% to 50%:

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As you can see in the above screenshot, the size of my image went from 4.5 MB to 1.4 MB (look at the “Resulting Size” section in the screenshot). So my reducing the image size by 50%, I have gained the ability to store 3 photos instead of 1.

Even if you do not have a Mac and use a Windows based PC or laptop, you can see the general concept: you need to reduce the size of your photos to manage your storage. 

If I do not care as much about the resolution/quality of an image on a post, then I might resize the image to even smaller like 45% or even 40%.

 Other Photo Management Tips

In addition to learning how to resize my photos before posting, the most important thing I figured out as a blogger was to be judicious in the amount of photos I share on a post.

At first I just shared any photo I wanted to share that I felt went with a blog post. Now I carefully think through how many photos and what specific photos I want to share to enhance the text of a blog post and tell a story. I am a visual person and I appreciate looking at photos myself when reading others blog posts. However I realized I do not need to try to do an extensive photo essay of an experience I want to share.

A few carefully selected photos can tell a story just as well as 10 photos can.

If you want more and likely more efficient ideas on WordPress photo management and storage (and ideas for those on blogging from Windows based devices), you can check out websites such as this one: The Ultimate Guide to WordPress Image Management

This website uses fancy phrases such as “image optimization”.

You can also Google (or whatever search engine you use) and find articles on plug ins for WordPress image management and “digital assessment management” (see – they are using more fancy phrases).

I am completely self-taught on WordPress (lots of online help and YouTube videos) and I have so much more to learn but I wanted to share what I do, which seems to be working…

Okay experienced WordPress Bloggers – please share your tips and ideas in the Comments/Thoughts Section 🙂


Feature image credit: Shelia Rosamond, free images.com

A Crafter's Life, Audiobooks and Podcasts

Las Vegas and the “Ghost Children”

Have you ever wondered why suddenly you are upset or struggling with something and you do not understand why? Well it could be the “Ghost Children“…

Throughout 2018, nearly non-stop, I’ve been listening to non-fiction audiobooks (with a couple science fiction audiobooks peppered in).

Here is a list of many of the non-fiction audiobooks (all borrowed from my public library) that occupied my ears the past 8+ months:

  • I’m Judging You: The Do-Better Manual – Luvvie Ajayi
  • Awakening Your Ikigai: How the Japanese Wake Up to Joy and Purpose Every Day – Ken Mogi
  • Eat Fat, Get Thin – Mark Hyman
  • Living an Examined Life: Wisdom for the Second Half of the Journey – James Holli
  • Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life – Bill Burnett
  • You Do You: How to Be Who You Are and Use What You’ve Got to Get What You Want – Sarah Knight
  • The Plant Paradox: The Hidden Dangers in “Healthy” Foods That Cause Disease and Weight Gain – Steven Gundry
  • The Power of Moments: Why Certain Experiences Have Extraordinary Impact – Chip Heath and Dan Heath
  • The Wisdom of Sundays: Life-Changing Insights from Super Soul Conversations – Oprah Winfrey
  • Nudge: Improve Decisions About Health, Wealth and Happiness – Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein
  • When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing – Daniel Pink
  • Faster Than Normal: Turbocharge Your Focus, Productivity, and Success with the Secrets of the ADHD Brain – Peter Shankman
  • Captivate: The Science of Succeeding with People – Vanessa Van Edwards
  • This Messy Magnificent Life: A Field Guide – Geneen Roth
  • Advice Not Given: A Guide to Getting Over Yourself – Mark Epstein
  • Soulful Simplicity: How Living with Less Can Lead to So Much More – Courtney Carver
  • Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen – Donald Miller
  • You Are a Badass at Making Money: Master the Mindset of Wealth – Jen Sicero
  • Rising Strong as a Spiritual Practice – Brene Brown
  • Yes Please – Amy Poehler
  • Fail Until You Don’t – Bobby Bones
  • The Art of Mingling: Fun and Proven Techniques for Mastering Any Room – Jeanne Martinet
  • The Artist’s Way – Julia Cameron

Between my daily walks (3 – 4+ miles a day), road trips, cross country plane rides, and sewing marathons, I’ve knocked off a lot of audiobooks so far in 2018.

Most of these audiobooks were highly engaging, filled with many useful ideas, tips, and inspirations; however one audiobook really stood out: Geneen Roth’s This Messy Magnificent Life: A Field Guide.

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image credit: amazon.com

While listening to this audiobook, read by the author, I was introduced to the concept of “Ghost Children“. According to Geneen Roth, “Ghost Children” are the stories we repeatedly tell ourselves based on an unhealed/hurt part of us that believes things such as we’re not good enough, we are unlovable, we are not worthy – because at some point in our life, many times in childhood, we had unmet needs or a hurt which are still seeking to get comfort from.

Geneen Roth has done a lot of work with women who emotionally overeat (she holds workshops and has written books focused on this topic) and she ties the “Ghost Children” concept to why people emotionally overeat to comfort their hurting “Ghost Children” but I clearly saw a connection to other behaviors.

This connection helped me during a difficult time on a recent business trip attending a conference in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Las Vegas and the “Ghost Children”

I work in the healthcare industry and I attended a healthcare industry software related conference in late July/early August held at the Aria Hotel’s Conference Center in Las Vegas, NV.

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Las Vegas Boulevard

The healthcare software company sponsoring the conference was very generous to its attendees to include providing a private Train concert on one of the conference evenings, at the Brooklyn Bowl. I was very excited about this concert as I’ve like the band Train (Drops of Jupiter, Meet Virginia, Calling All Angels) since they first came out with their song Drops of Jupiter in 2001.

Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) accompanied me on the trip to Las Vegas and I confirmed with someone at the conference registration desk that he could also attend the conference. He is also a long time fan of the band Train, so I was excited to share this private concert with him which also included an open bar and food (as I said the sponsoring software conference company was very generous).

So the evening came for the concert and TTQH headed to the tour bus set up for conference attendees to be transported to the Brooklyn Bowl for the concert. While on line to load the bus, we discovered that only conference attendees with conference badges could get on the bus and attend the conference. TTQH was not able to attend with me.

We were in shock and incredibly disappointed as I had verified with the conference registration desk that he could attend, only to find out that the staff at the registration desk very misinformed. I was torn – on one hand I wanted to go to the concert on the other hand I did not want to just leave TTQH behind at the hotel with this sudden dispointment.

TTQH is a very enlightened and well-adjusted person (one of us has to be in the marriage – ha!) and he quickly recovered from the disappointment and strongly insisted that I just attend alone and have a great time.

So I got back in line and then got on the tour bus. The tour bus was filling up quickly and people were filling every available seat. Except in my row. No one sat with me. (This was likely because I had a very sad look on my face as I was so disappointed I could not share the concert experience with TTQH). The last person got on the bus and sat with the last seat available besides the one next to me.

So the entire bus was filled, except for the seat next to me.  Before I knew it I was quietly sobbing to myself on the bus ride to the Brooklyn Bowl and did not know why.

But – I remembered the audiobook I had recently finished, This Messy Magnificent Life: A Field Guide , and realized one of my “Ghost Children” had popped up!

When I was around 10 years old my parents had a major disagreement with other parents in the neighborhood and, unknown to me at the time, the other neighborhood parents had told their children not to play with me. For a couple weeks, none of my regular friends in the neighborhood, who I played with everyday after school, would play with me. They all ignored me.

I did not understand why and as you could imagine this was fairly traumatic for a 10 year old who was used to playing with most of the kids on my block for many years. Finally one of the children was kind enough to pull me aside and tell me what happened. It was a very upsetting and frustrating experience as I was being punished for something I did not do and I was now an outsider/outcast from my long-time playmates. It is one of those feelings you never forget and I guess it eventually became one of my “Ghost Children”.

Realizing where my sudden painful feelings were coming from as I sat alone on the bus (no one wanting to sit with me), helped me pull myself together. I decided: “yes I am attending this concert alone, but I am going to have a fun time and find a group of people to hang out with during the concert”. There is so much power in awareness of where an emotion/reaction is coming from – it gives you options on how you react.

And this is exactly what I did. Upon arrival, I asked a group of women if I could hang with them for the evening and eventually ended up in another group and had a wonderful time – a “Ghost Children” free evening!

The Train concert was incredible (I sat close to the stage in an elevated area of the bar to the right of the stage) and got to connect with some wonderful people before the concert and during. I learned some new trivia about some of their songs from another concert attendee: the lead singer, Pat Monahan wrote Drops of Jupiter about the death of his mother (now some of the lyrics I never understood make sense).

Here is a little excerpt from the concert (which was only open to concert attendees) – Train performing Lost and Found (I finally learned how to upload videos to YouTube):

I love the lyrics in this song (excerpt from Google):

My dad said son, one
Day we’ll have a drink together
You’re young
You got to take your time
Just trust
Let me raise you right, and later
We can raise a glass to life, and say
Here’s to the time we have
Here’s to the lines we crossed
Here’s to the ones we’re waiting on
And the ones we lost
Here’s to the time we have
Thank God for what we got
Here’s to the ones we’re waiting on, and the ones we lost
And found, the ones who stick around
Lost and found, the ones who stick around

 

I feel like writing Geneen Roth, the author of This Messy Magnificent Life: A Field Guide, and thanking her for introducing me to the “Ghost Children” concept. Thanks to what I learned from her book I was able to reset a moment and turn it around.

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Taking a break from the conference and relaxing at the Bellagio hotel, “Ghost Children” free

You are not a mistake. You are not a problem to be solved. It’s possible to treat yourself with outrageous kindness beginning today. Geneen Roth


Postscript

During the conference I got to attend my first TED Talks/TED Salon and that was a very cool experience.

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Dr. Andrew Bastawrous at TED Salon: Catalyst at the Aria Las Vegas

The TED Talks were focused on the future of health care. It was amazing after years of watching TED Talks online to see how formally TED Talks are filmed. There are hosts that coach the audience on etiquette for the Talk once filming starts.

The six speakers who talks about moving health care forward were amazing and here is a post on the TED Blog I found about the event:

Moving healthcare forward: The talks of TED Salon: Catalyst

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A slide from one of the speaker’s presentation

By the way – I’ve finally finished my intense work on the secret art quilt project for a future WCQN show that is not yet announced. I am taking a little break from “creating” and then in the near future I will return to sharing what is on my design wall as I used to do in my What’s on the Design Wall series of posts.

 

 

Special Events, WCQN

Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium, Part IV

This is the final post in the series of four posts on the Women of Color Quilting Network (WCQN) and Friends Show Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium: Quilting the World’s Conscience, curated By Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi, and inspired by the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

As I mentioned in the first post, Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium, Part I show opening at the Fitton Center for Creative Arts in Hamilton, OH, was only the “soft opening”, featuring half of the quilts. At a future date the full show will debut and in Spring 2019 the book will be published featuring all the quilts in the exhibit as well as the story behind the exhibit.

This post features one more installment of a sample selection of powerful quilts from the show. (If you are just joining us you can click on this link – WCQN – to view the three previous posts – Part I, Part II, and Part III.)


Carolyn Crump – Waiting to Have My Say

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Gloria Kellon – Freedom of Expression over the Water

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Gwendolyn Brooks – On This Special Day

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Julius Bremer – Let’s Gather Peacefully

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Deanna Tyson – Black Lives Matter

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Ifa Felix – The Green Book

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James Mardis – Cruelty Comes for Us All

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The photo does not capture how amazing and powerful this quilt is! The artist is one of the long-time male quilters in the WCQN. I had a chance to chat with him during the show and listen to him talk about this multi-textured piece made from a multitude of materials besides cotton fabric.

I wish I had taken some close up photos of the piece. I think I was so overwhelmed by the whole show and trying to meet and chat with the amazing artists that I got distracted from my photography!  When Dr. Mazloomi’s book on the show comes out in Spring 2019 it will have professionally photographed detailed images of these quilts.


L’Merchie Frazier – Going Beyond the Self: Lale and the Omo Children

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Helen Murrell – Capital Punishment

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Lauren Austin – Parole Denied

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Ed Johnetta Miller – So What Skeltons Are in Your Closet?

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Sandra Noble – Detainment

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It was an honor to be part of this show and an honor to be able to share some of the amazing quilts from this show with you all.

I have to say of course, the most exciting moment of attending the show was walking into the exhibit area and seeing my quilt on the wall:

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The second most exciting moment, was seeing an image of my quilt projected up on the screen in the auditorium before the panel discussion began:

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Before the panel discussion, Dr. Mazloomi gave a powerful talk on the power of art. Here is a quote from her talk (which I have on video but could not figure out how to upload onto YouTube to share, perhaps at a later time):

For me as an artist I strongly believe that art has the capacity to touch the spirit, engage people, educate and heal in ways that words cannot.

Dr. Mazloomi stated that the show was inspired by the 70th anniversary of the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; and that she is long-time admirer of Eleanor Roosevelt who was instrumental in getting this declaration done.


Postscript

I had a bit of adventure getting to Hamilton, OH for the show. Central Oregon is a long way from Hamilton, OH! 

Since I was going to be in the Eastern part of the country (well Ohio could be considered Midwest) I thought I should also visit with my family and I met up with my family in Washington, DC for a couple of days before flying onto Cincinnati, OH.

While in DC I went with my brother, sister, sister-in-law and 5 and 14 year old nephews to the National Geographic Museum and saw two amazing exhibits on the Tomb of Christ and the Titanic. 

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I may share additional photos from those exhibits in a future post.

From Cincinnati I rented a car and drove 45 minutes or so to Hamilton (which is not within a reasonable distance to a major airport).

While in Hamilton I stayed in sweet Victorian Airbnb rental (only $56 for the night) 6 blocks from the Fitton Center where the opening show was held. Here are some photos of where I stayed which was built in the late 1800s and had cool architecture and period related decor (and handmade antique quilts on the bed!):

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I will not share my airline travel saga but it did involve spending two nights sleeping in an airport (on the way there and on the way back) because of severe thunderstorms that grounded planes. But I did make the most of my time stuck in airports and will have a future posts on the cool exhibits and sights at the various airports along my journey!

Special Events, WCQN

Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium, Part III

Yesterday’s post with quilts from the Women of Color Quilting Network and Friends Show Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium: Quilting the World’s Conscience (Curated By Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi) were just to whet your appetite.

This post features more powerful quilts from the show. If you are just joining us you can click on this link – WCQN – to view the two previous posts (Part I and Part II).

As I mentioned in the previous post, some of these quilts made me want to just step away from my sewing machine and find a new hobby.

I’ve seen many beautiful art quilts over the years – at shows and online – but I’ve never seen in person such a collection of powerful inspirational quilt all in one venue.


Sandra Scott – Bloodties

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The photos do not do this quilt justice. This is definitely one of the quilts in the show that made me want to just give away my sew machine because now I see how art quilts “are done”. It is an absolute masterpiece and reading the Artist Statement and viewing this quilt in person can bring you to tears.


Speaking of quilts that can bring you to tears, this one had me quietly sobbing…

Dorothy Burge – Stop Killing Us

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And now the piece that attempted to completely blow out my tear ducts – a piece inspired by news story of a young Syrian refugee child discovered washed up on the shore.

April Shipp – The Waters Returned Him: In Honor of Aylan Kurdi, Age 3

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This quilt was a 3D quilt with a large set of hands coming forward holding a handmade doll representing the drowned Syrian refugee child. If seeing this quilt in person did not stir someone, then they were emotionally dead inside.

I got to chat with the amazing artist who passionately shared the story behind her inspiration. While listening to her I was desperately trying to keep it together (the tear ducts were starting to crumple) as she shared her beautiful compassion and intense feelings of heartbreak over hearing the news story (okay so I am getting weepy just trying to write this…).

Yes I kept having that “imposter syndrome” feeling being at this show with these significant pieces of work and these amazing artists (some of who are professional artists).

Here are a couple more quilts in the show to close out this post with a little less intense topics.


Carolyn Crump – Deeds, Not Words

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Sharon Ray – Hamtramck, My Home

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I hope you found these pieces as stirring and amazing as I did. In the next post I will share the rest of the sampling of pieces from the show.

Special Events, WCQN

Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium, Part II

If you are an artist/crafter have you ever attended an exhibit that made you want to just put away your art/craft supplies and find a new hobby?

This is what happened to me (no worries, it was only for a moment), when I saw the art quilts in the opening night of Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium: Quilting the World’s Conscience at the Fitton Center for Creative Arts in Hamilton, Ohio on Friday August 17, 2018.

This post is a continuation of the post Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium, Part I  and rather than ramble on about how many of these inspirational, provocative, powerful, creative, masterpieces made me want to shut down my sewing machine and walk away, I will just share a sample of images of the amazing quilts in the show.

I’ve included the Artist Statements that explain these amazing art quilts inspired by United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Note I am going to share images of quilts from the show over several posts.


Earamicha Brown – A Woman’s Worth

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Behrooz Assani – The Dawn of Human Rights

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This quilt was not by a “Woman of Color” but by a Persian man, originally from Iran who wanted to show that although this part of the world has a reputation for the violation of human rights, Persia was in ancient times a forerunner on the concept of human rights.


Barbara McCraw – Every Man, Woman, and Child

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Cynthia Lockhart – Created to Be Me

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Beverly Smith – Plant a Seed

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Glenda Richardson – Article 25

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I will leave you with these 6 quilts to think about and next post I will continue with more quilts from the show.

Special Events, Stories My Father Told Me, WCQN

Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium, Part I

Over a week ago I attended the opening of the show Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium: Quilting the World’s Conscience at the Fitton Center for Creative Arts in Hamilton, Ohio.

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This show is curated by Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi, founder of the Women of Color Quilting Network (WCQN). It is inspired by the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

According to the United Nations’ website (un.org):

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is a milestone document in the history of human rights. Drafted by representatives with different legal and cultural backgrounds from all regions of the world, the Declaration was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in Paris on 10 December 1948 (General Assembly resolution 217 A) as a common standard of achievements for all peoples and all nations. It sets out, for the first time, fundamental human rights to be universally protected and it has been translated into over 500 languages.

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Dr. Mazloomi invited members of WCQN and friends to design a quilt inspired by one of the 30 Articles in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

As those of you who’ve followed my blog for a while know, I designed a 50″ x 50″ quilt inspired by Article 1 and Stories My Father Told Me (this is a new category on my blog which contains all related posts about the first quilt in a series of quilts I plan to make inspired by stories/lessons my father told me as a child), titled The Lesson and The Equation. 

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The Lesson and the Equation (2016) by Tierney Davis Hogan. Photo by Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi.

The Lesson and The Equation debuted at this show along with many mind-blowing and inspirational quilts.

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Friday August 17, 2018 was the “soft opening” of the show and contained about 25 – 30 quilts, half the entire show. The entire show will be opening in the future at a larger venue and there will be a book that accompanies the show.

Here are some examples of books from other WCQN shows that can be found on amazon.com (just search “Carolyn Mazloomi”):

In addition the soft opening of the show, Friday 17, 2018 was also the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Fitton Center for Creative Arts.

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Around the exhibited quilts, there were placards with the Preamble and the corresponding Articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, below are a couple examples:

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I was very overwhelmed to be part of the this amazing show and here I am absolutely amazed that I got to be an “Exhibiting Artist”:
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I was also overwhelmed and very honored that two of my long-time blogging buddies Sandy and Cindy of graybarndesigns.com came from Ohio and Western NY to meet me and see the show!

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Tierney and the GrayBarns Sisters!

Next post I will share images from the amazing and inspirational pieces in the show!

“Our hopes for a more just, safe, and peaceful world can only be achieved when there is universal respect for the inherent dignity and equal rights of all members of the human family.” – UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka

 

 

A Crafter's Life

Small World with Awesome Yarn

It is a HUGE world but it is also a SMALL world. As a blogger I get to connect with people all over the world, and it is kind of magical!

Early in July, my dear friend of many years, Michele, went to Ireland and Iceland for her honeymoon. She is a world traveler and these were two places on her list she had not visited yet – funny the names of both countries began with the letter “I” (and it would have been awesome if she had also visited India, Israel, Italy, the Ivory Coast and Indonesia too on the same trip if she was keeping with the letter “I” as her theme for travel)!

Since she was going to tour Ireland including a stop in Dublin, I connected her with my blogging buddy Helen@crawcraftsbeasties.com and they were able to connect and hang out together during Michele’s visit. How cool is that? 

Well a surprise came for me in the mail today – a box from Michele.

Inside the box was a lovely bag:

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Peeking inside the bag I spotted some yarn:

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Not just yarn,  but beautiful yarn – from Ireland and Iceland!!!!

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Now I get to knit something with yarn from Ireland and from Iceland (the yarns are different textures/weights so I will likely use them on separate projects)  – what an awesome surprise!

“(Knitting,) it is pure potential. Every ball or skein of yarn holds something inside it, and the great mystery of what that might be can be almost spiritual”
― Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, Knitting Rules!: The Yarn Harlot Unravels the Mysteries of Swatching, Stashing, Ribbing & Rolling to Free Your Inner Knitter


Postscript

Of course now Helen@crawcraftsbeasties.com is expecting me to visit since I sent my friend to meet her first, ha! Plus someday I need to see where my tierneycreates Beastie was born (and Terry the Quilting Husband’s grandparents are all from Ireland so he might want to see his ancestral home someday…) and meet her maker!

But then I would be obligated to visit ALL the countries in which my blogging buddies live, just to be polite 🙂

Special Events

Threads That Bind – Show at Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty Gallery

My 18′ x 40″ quilt from recycled materials, The Recycled Love (2018) is part of the  – Threads That Bind Central Oregon SAQA exhibit at Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty Gallery, downtown Bend, Oregon that opened August 3, 2018 and is running through August 2018.

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Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty, downtown Bend, Oregon

I did not get to attend the opening but luckily I met a friend for lunch the morning of the show’s opening. After our lunch we peeked into the gallery and luckily the pieces were already hung in preparation for the evening’s opening.

I took photos quickly as I needed to return to work – here are images from the show (apologies to the artists for the less than stellar photo images of their amazing quilts – the quilts were all perfect rectangles unlike my camera image portrays!):

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Each art quilt had a placard with the name of the piece and the artist’s name, but I wish the Artist Statements were also displayed. Our SAQA group met in June at one of the member’s gorgeous homes (the house was a piece of art itself!) and we took turns unveiling our pieces and sharing our Artist Statements/the background on each piece.

The art quilts in this show each have an amazing story and I am sorry I cannot share those stories with you (I should have taken notes at the unveiling). I do remember part of one story, a piece by the incredibly talented Jan Tetzlaff – it was inspired her trip to South Africa and seeing the prison where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for for 27 years:

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In case you are new to my blog, you can read more about my piece The Recycled Love in this post – The Recycled Love.

Creativity takes courage.

– Henri Matisse

A Crafter's Life, Stories My Father Told Me, The Library Stack

The Library Stack and a Little Craftivism

It’s time to continue my ongoing series, The Library Stack, sharing my stack of borrowed books from my beloved local public library.

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“Craftivism”

I’ve finished most of the stack and enjoyed flipping through the books with a couple pots of tea. I’m still finishing up one book that I wanted to spend extra time on: How to be a Craftivist: The art of gentle protest by Sarah Corbett.

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Image credit: Amazon

As the author asks in the book: “If we want a world that is beautiful, kind and fair, shouldn’t our activism be beautiful, kind and fair?”

This book is by the founder of the Craftivist Collective and provides an alternative to responding to injustice with apathy or aggression – responding instead with gentle, effective protest.

The back cover summary provides as excellent overview of the book so I am going to just quote it: “Quiet action can sometimes speak as powerfully as the loudest voice. With thoughtful principles, practical examples and honest stories from her own experience as a once burnt-out activist, Corbett shows how activism through craft can produce long-lasting positive change.”

If you are interested in Craftivism (using craft as a form of activism according to the author), I highly recommend you borrow this book from your library or pick up a copy at a local bookstore (or online).

The author shares a Craftivist’s Manifesto and I’ve listed her ten (10) actions below but I refer you to the book for more details and explanations:

  1. Be the tortoise
  2. Craft is our tool
  3. Solidarity not sympathy
  4. Find comfort in contemplation
  5. Empathy never points fingers
  6. Small and beautiful
  7. Humility holds the key
  8. Provoke don’t preach
  9. Embrace positivity
  10. Make the change you wish to see

The book is peppered with powerful quotes by great thinkers and activists and below are  several examples, which are explored deeply in the book:

There comes a point where we need to stop just pulling people out-of-the-river. We need to go upstream and find out why they’re falling in. – Desmond Tutu

Our greatest strength lies in the gentleness and tenderness of our heart. – Rumi

An unexamined life is not worth living .- Socrates

We must combine the toughness of the serpent with the softness of the dove. A tough mind and tender heart. – Martin Luther King

If you want to go quickly go alone. If you want to go far, go together. – African Proverb

Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world,. Today and I am wise so I am changing myself. – Rumi

Anger is the enemy of non-violence and pride is a monster that swallows it up. – Mahatma Gandhi

Handle them carefully for words have more power than atom bombs. – Pearl Stracha Hurd

Evil flourishes when good people do nothing. – Edmund Burke

Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.. – Winston Churchill

UPDATE 8/6/18

There are several TED Talks by the author, here is one of her awesome TED Talks:

My Dabble with Craftivism

In my June 27, 2017 post Seeds I share how I contributed a piece/banner from the Women’s March to the national traveling exhibit called Still They Persist: Protest Art of the 2017 Women’s Marches. It is featured in a book about the exhibit by the same title.

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NOTE: Being sensitive to the fact that my American blog readers may have differing political views in regards to the current U.S. President and protest events such as the Women’s March, please be thoughtful in any comments you make in the “Thoughts”  section of this post about these topics.

My Craftivist Future

A couple of weeks ago I had a wonderful conversation with my sister who challenged me on what direction I want to take my art.

I already plan to continue by series Stories My Father Told Me (see post Creative Inspiration: Stories My Father Told Me ) which is focused on sharing positive stories through textile art of how my father overcame the challenges of discrimination, segregation, and racism.  However after talking to my sister, I am starting to explore other series that will have a “Craftivist” flavor.

Ultimately I would love to make art that inspires dialogue. I am still early in my artistic journey and finding my voice.

Of course I also want to make pretty/visually pleasing traditional and art quilts in the future too as well as many other types of textile crafts. Now to just plan to win the lottery so I can devote all my time to my art!  (Oh wait, do you have to play the lottery to win?)


Postscript

Speaking of “winning the lottery”, I had one of those awesome early morning walk experiences last Friday (or maybe it was Saturday) that felt like a mini-lottery win.

I’ve been trying start each morning with a 2 miles walk around 6:00 am before it gets hot.

The Balloons Over Bend Hot Air Ballon Festival was in progress (July 27 – 29) and much to my surprise during my morning walk I noticed hot air balloons floating over my neighborhood at a fairly low altitude. One of them dipped so low for a moment that I thought it was going to land in my neighborhood park!

It did not land however and took back off up into the sky.

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It was 60 degree Fahrenheit with a slight breeze and absolutely crystal clear blue skies. Seeing the hot air balloons float by was an exquisite experience and the moment made me pause and realize that life is filled with many wonderful little sweet surprising moments!

Beastie Adventures

Guest Blogger: Monster Musings

Hello, my name is tierneycreates Beastie and I am a Monster, but the good kind of Monster.

The regular blogger Tierney, appears to be too distracted lately to write a blog post, so I told her I will take care of getting a post up this week. She did help me take photos since I am not very good at selfies due to my limited arm range.

Here I am ready to start a long overdue blog post:

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Tierney made me a make shift desk
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Sometimes I have to look over my glasses while writing

But first – if you are new to this blog (welcome new readers, glad to have you join us!) you can read my story and see some of my adventures in the series of posts – Beastie Adventures. I was born in Dublin, Ireland and moved (well was shipped) to Central Oregon to join Tierney of tierneycreates in June 2018.

I am so glad my maker,  Helen of Crawcrafts Beasties (crawcraftsbeasties.com) , made me a laptop so I could help Tierney with blog posts!

So what have I been up to? Well as you know, just like Tierney, I have locs in my hair (you may know these traditionally as being called “dreadlocks” but the current term is LOCS, as there is no “dread” in them!). Like Tierney, I am always wondering how to style my locs and sometimes I get lint in them as Tierney does with hers.

Tierney and I were playing with different hairstyles and she french-braided my hair:

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French-braiding attempt

The cool thing about Tierney’s attempt at french-braiding (let’s be honest, she is not going to win any “French-Braiding Awards”) is that my adorable ears get featured:

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My ears are normally hidden with my hair flowing free but here they are – popping!

Although I enjoyed showing my adorable ears, after a while the french-braid felt too tight and we returned to my regular hairstyle:

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While writing you, my miniature schnauzer Mikelet (named after Tierney’s dog Mike) began staring at me and I suspected he wanted to go for a walk:

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I was pretty sure he wanted to go for a walk when he got insistent:

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I wanted to put the final touches on this blog post, so I told him to wait.

He got bored waiting and wandered into the living room.

Realizing he probably really needed to “go potty”, I went to the living room to get him for a walk before finishing my blog post and found him hanging out with “Big Mike”:

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Big Mike’s beard was looking a little messy so Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) began combing it while Mikelet looked on:

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Mikelet wanted his beard combed also (he wants to do everything Big Mike does), so TTQH attempted to also comb his beard:

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Finally, with a freshly combed beard, Mikelet was ready to go on his walk:

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Postscript

Tierney is not totally goofing off. She is still working on an art quilt for a special exhibit in which she cannot share photos until the curator announces the show.

But she did finish the little appliqué pillow she mentioned in this post – Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show 2018, Part II: Visiting Crafters.

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It was her first attempt at wool appliqué and next time she plans to do better stitching, but it was a practice piece.

Mikelet however appears to really like the pillow as I found him hanging out with it on top of the bookcase (how the heck did he climb up there?):

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Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show

Sisters Outdoor Show Part III: The Show

Do you attend quilt, craft or art shows? While attending these show do to you take WAY too many photos…of like EVERYTHING that catches you eye?

Once again this was my situation when I attended the 2018 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show (SOQS), as it is ever year that I attend.

This year I’ve decided instead doing a series of posts on photos from the show, I am going to share my favorites from the show in ONE POST. This post is about quilts that captured my eye or captured my heart.

If you would like a more extensive virtual tour of the 2018 SOQS, there are three (3) Central Oregon bloggers that have extensive photos, stories from SOQS and even videos of SOQS – check out their sites:

They have excellent high quality photos and/or video on their sites above and I recommend you visit their sites for a deeper feel for the 2018 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show.

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Main Street (Cascade Ave) closed to traffic and open to SOQS attendees

Now onto my favorites from the 2018 SOQS show…

Blogging Buddy at Quilt Show

It is so awesome to see in person a quilt made by a quilter whose blogs I follow. In 2016, I got to see a modern quilt by Claire of knitnkwilt.wordpress.com at the SOQS (see the 07/17/16 post Return to Sisters). This year I got to see in person an amazing quilt by Becca of Pretty Piney:

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The quilt is titled: “I Didn’t Want to Make This Quilt” and above I share an image of the tag on the quilt from the show so you can appreciate the story behind it!

If you stand back a slight distance from the quilt, the illusion of movement and depth was very impressive. Plus there was a slight breeze gently moving the quilt so the rippling effect was more pronounced. It was fun to stand near it while I took photos and listen to all the great comments by onlookers. I told them that I knew the quilter and several onlookers said to tell the quilter: “She did an awesome job!”.

Ode to Beloved Retrievers

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This quilt absolutely captured my heart and the woman who made it was standing nearby talking to her friend about her quilt so I got to chat with her about her inspiration.

She had many retrievers throughout her life – yellow, black and brown labs and golden retrievers. She honored all her retrievers with this quilt filled with images of her beloved dogs. She pointed to some specific retrievers in the quilt and told some stories.

It was very touching and I wanted to hear more of her stories but I needed to move on as I was showing my Sister-in-Laws visiting from NY around SOQS.

The Quilts I am Really Going to Make Someday

At the show were several quilts that I either have the patterns for, have already started the blocks or just really want to make someday. Below are images of some of those quilts:

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The first image is a Farm Girl Vintage Quilt and you can check out my series of post Farm Girl Vintage Blocks to see the blocks I have completed so far.

Perhaps seeing images of these completed quilts will inspire me to finish making them someday…perhaps…

Quilts with Words

I love quilts with words/messages and the SOQS had many on display. The ones below were my favorites:

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Teachers’ Tent

Each year at the SOQS internationally renown quilt teachers teach classes at the show. It is rare you get a opportunity to take classes from Master quilt makers during the Quilters’ Affair the week before the show all in one place.

Instructors and presenters at the 2018 SOQS Quilters’ Affair included:

  • Jenny Doan of Missouri Star Quilt Company
  • Rob Appell of Man Sewing
  • Violet Craft (queen of modern paper piecing)
  • Kathy Doughty from Australia of Material Obsession
  • Sue Spargo (queen of appliqué)
  • Resident nationally known instructors such as Jean Wells Keenan and Valori Wells (owners of the Stichin’ Post); and Anna Bates of Quilt Roadies
  • Joe Cunningham
  • Rosalie Dace from South Africa (amazing art quilter!)

As well as many more big names in quilting. In previous years Tula Pink has taught classes at the show (I tried to take one last year but did not register in time) as has Angela Walters. If there is a big name in quilting, then likely they’ve been an instructor at SOQS!

Living in Central Oregon, I do have the opportunity during the year to take classes from the big names in quilting during the year when they visit the area. Someday I am going to take advantage of this! The classes are not cheap but I think they would be worth it!

The visiting instructors show their work in the Teachers Tent at SOQS. Here are images of a couple of my favorite pieces on display in the Teachers Tent:

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Violet Craft
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Rosalie Dace
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Rob Appell
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Sue Spargo
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Anna Bates

The Threads that Bind

The Central Oregon SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Associates) group has an annual exhibit at SOQS. In several previous post I’ve discussed the evolution of my piece Recycled Love which is part of this exhibit.

Here is is at the Threads that Bind Special Exhibit at SOQS:

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Please check out Kristin Shields’ post Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show Part 7 for high quality images of the entire exhibit (Kristin is an excellent photographer in addition to being a very talented art and modern quilters).

Vincent Van Gough Quilt Exhibit

Cherrywood Hand Dyed Fabrics has an annual Challenge and Exhibit. This year it was Vincent Van Gough Themed small quilts. The exhibit was mind blowing and below are a couple images of my favorite pieces:

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For more photos (and much better photos), see Kristin Shields’ post Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show Part 6.

The Stitchin’ Post

No Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show visit is complete without a stop at the shop that started it all the Stitchin’ Post.

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I get to visit the shop all year long since I live in Central Oregon, but it is fun to peek inside during the craziness that is the Stitchin’ Post on SOQS Day!

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You can barely move in the shop and they convert the classroom in back into an awesome shopping area. Here is an example of some of the treasures to be found:

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Finally, let me close this post with an image of a quote, rather than a written quote. It was on the billboard of the local flower nursery in Sisters, Oregon:

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Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show

Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show 2018, Part II: Visiting Crafters

Hello! Are you as warm as I am? We’ve been blessed with 95+ temperatures in Central Oregon. I am writing this on my porch (which is shaded) as our two little evaporative coolers are not keeping the house as cool as I would like it to be (someday we dream of installing central air conditioning…)

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Photo credit: “The Sun” by William Picard, free images.com

It’s dropped down to 92 degrees so it is now cool enough (ha!) for me to work on a blog post. I am continuing my series of posts about the 2018 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show (SOQS), that began with this post: Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show 2018, Part I.

Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH)’s sisters from New York, Sue and Diane, came to town for the show and to visit us for a week. We took them on a Central Oregon Quilt Shop Hop (they are both quilters/crafters) on Thursday and Friday before the SOQS on Saturday.

As a result of all that quilt shop-hopping, new projects were purchased by my sister-in-laws and we’ve had many enjoyable evening sitting around my living room, backyard (when it cools down in the evening), or my dining room table crafting together:

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They’ve been working on two different wool appliqué candle mat patterns by Bareroots Little Stitches. One is a cat themed candle mat and the other is this dog themed mat pattern called #195 Puppy Love.

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Here is one sister-in-law’s progress on the kitty themed wool appliqué mat:

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As you can see there are many little pieces. Luckily I had freezer paper, appliqué glue stick and of course basic sewing supplies on hand.

Here is the progress my other sister-in-law is making on her dog themed wool appliqué candle mat:

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The mats are super adorable! One of my sister-in-laws taught me how to make french knots which I’ve never made before.

Oh you wonder – what I am working on during our crafting sessions? I am working on a wool appliqué miniature pillow that I started in March during a class with Kathy Cardiff (see post Trends Show Part II: More Classes).

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I will share on Instagram (@tierneycreates) the completed images of our pieces.

Next post, I will share images from the 2018 Sisters Outdoor Show (once I weed through the zillion of photos I took!) If you cannot wait until my next post, here are two Central Oregon quilting bloggers that are already sharing awesome photos and stories:

Kristen Shields (kristeinshieldart.com):

SISTERS OUTDOOR QUILT SHOW 2018 :: PART 1

Anna Bates (wooliemammoth.blogspot.com & Quilt Roadies YouTube Channel):

Surround yourself with people you can always learn something from. Always work with people that are better at their craft than you are. – Tony Vincent

Audiobooks and Podcasts, My Minimalism Journey, Quality of Life

Soulful Simplicity and the Mexican Fisherman

What does the phrase “Soulful Simplicity” mean to you?

The last several months I’ve listening to some awesome audiobooks from my public library while I go on daily walks, sew, or do errands. I plan to share highlights from the audiobooks in upcoming posts and I thought I would begin with my current listen: Soulful Simplicity: How Living With Less Can Lead to So Much More by Courtney Carver.

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image credit: Amazon

Here is the summary of the book on on the Deschutes Public Library website:

Courtney Carver shows us the power of simplicity to improve our health, build more meaningful relationships, and relieve stress in our professional and personal lives. We are often on a quest for more, giving in to pressure every day to work more, own more, and do more. For Courtney Carver, this constant striving had to come to a stop when she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Stress was like gasoline on the fire of her symptoms, and it became clear that she needed to root out the physical and psychological clutter that were the source of her debt and discontent.

In this book, Carver shows us how to pursue practical minimalism so we can create more with less-more space, more time, and even more love. She invites us to look at the big picture, discover what’s most important to us, and reclaim lightness and ease by getting rid of all the excess things.

The audiobook is read by the author (which always adds a high degree of authenticity to the listening for me) and focuses on “being more with less“.

I am 2/3rds through the audiobook and wanted share one of my favorite stories (that the author shares in her book) about what really matters in life. As the author states, there are many versions of this story. Here is the version from her website: Be More With Less.


The Mexican Fisherman

An American investment banker was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one Mexican fisherman docked.  Inside the small boat were several large yellowfin tuna.  The American complimented the fisherman on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them.

The fisherman replied, “only a little while”. The American then asked why didn’t he stay out longer and catch more fish? The Mexican said he had enough to support his family’s immediate needs. The American then asked, “but what do you do with the rest of your time?”

The Mexican fisherman said, “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take siestas with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine, and play guitar with my amigos.  I have a full and busy life.”

The American scoffed, “I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat. With the proceeds from the bigger boat, you could buy several boats, eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the processor, eventually opening your own cannery. You would control the product, processing, and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually New York City, where you will run your expanding enterprise.”

The Mexican fisherman asked, “But, how long will this all take?”

To which the American replied, “15 – 20 years.”

“But what then?” asked the fisherman.

The American laughed and said, “That’s the best part.  When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich, you would make millions!”

“Millions – then what?”

The American said, “Then you would retire.  Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take siestas with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos.”


In the version I heard many years ago, the Mexican fisherman states at the end of the story: “Why would I go through all that to get what I already have?

The first time I heard this story it deeply resonated with me. As I have discussed in my series of posts on My Minimalism Journey, I’ve been working on appreciating and enjoying the life I have; taking care of my physical, emotional and spiritual health; and curating my possessions to only those things I truly love (but darn it, I love all my crafting books and magazines!)

In my pay-the-bills health care job, I’ve been offered the opportunity to attend my employer’s leadership track nine-month program to move into a leadership position. I declined the opportunity as although it would be more money, it would be much less time doing the things I love such as blogging, crafting, spending time with my husband and dog, enjoying nature, etc., etc., etc.

I am already happy with my job, salary and work schedule. I do not need to climb the “corporate ladder” to become happier.

Actually I think climbing the corporate ladder at this point in my life would be the path to less happiness as I remember a lot of stress in my life when I was previously in leadership for 8 – 9 years.

Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) fully supports this decision as he remembers his very stressed wife during her years in a leadership role.

I am quite content in my life’s version of a “little fishing village”.

Fear less, hope more; Eat less, chew more; Whine less, breathe more; Talk less, say more; Love more, and all good things will be yours! – Swedish Proverb


Feature photo credit: Johanna Ljungblom

Creative Inspiration, Special Events

QuiltWorks Gallery July 2018, Part II

Are you ever intimidated by the work of other artists? I struggle at times between feelings of inspiration and intimidation but I try to focus on INSPIRATION.

This post is part two of the posts on the July 2018 QuiltWorks Gallery exhibits. In the previous post, QuiltWorks Gallery July 2018, Part I , and in this post I will share images from the other side of the gallery – the show of the Featured Quilter Betty Gientke.

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Betty is a member of my SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Associates) group and an unbelievably talented art quilter. Her use of color and her color palettes are amazing and very inspirational (note I am focusing on “inspiration” not “intimidation”, ha!)

Betty gave me permission to share the images from the show and here she is at her show:

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Here are some of my favorite pieces from the show – enjoy!

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And then there was this piece. Mind blown. The photos do not capture how spectacular it is:

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Turquoise and Orange – what an incredibly yummy color combination. In addition to the impressive palette, she had many different fabric textures in her pieces.

I took photos of the Artist Statement of several of her pieces but forgot to tie them with the piece, so I am just going to share some of her Artist Statements below alone. Even without the piece to directly connect them to it is still interesting to read about her inspiration for each piece:

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I am fascinated by Artist Statements, especially since I realize the work/thought that goes into writing them (see post Recycled Love (“What’s On My Lap” and Artist Statements, Part III)).

Well the weekend grows near and I hope you all have summer fun or summer crafting planned.

My beloved sister in laws (both quilters) are in town for the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show (Saturday July 14) and I took time off work to go play with them. Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) and I are taking them quilt shop hopping around Central Oregon!


The important thing for you is to be alert, to question, to find out, so that your own initiative may be awakened. – Bruce Lee

Creative Inspiration, Special Events

QuiltWorks Gallery July 2018, Part I

Are you inspired by the work of other artists like I am?

Last Friday was filled with inspiration as I attended the QuiltWorks Gallery opening of two shows: Tree Quilts and Featured Quilter Betty Gientke.

Here is a view of the downstairs QuiltWorks quilt shop from upstairs in the gallery:

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This post I will share some of images from the Tree Quilt Show, held on one side of the upstairs QuiltWorks gallery, that my piece Tree of No Hurry was in (see my post “Tree of No Hurry” at QuiltWorks Gallery).

Next post I will share images of mind-blowing art quilts (including orange and turquoise together in inspirational and spectacular combinations) of Betty Gientke, who also belongs to my local SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Associates) group.

Note – the July QuiltWorks show was crowded and I did my best to take photos quickly between groups viewing the quilts – so apologies on the less than stellar photos…

Tree Quilt Show

Central Oregon Winter by Joan Fox

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Her Majesty by Bonnie Tomsheck

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Pretty amazing or should I say “majestic”, huh?

Leaves All Around by Mary Stiewig

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Hope by Martha Phair Sanders

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Okay this one took my breath away (the piece itself and the Artist Statement) but then I know Martha from the SAQA group I belong to – and she is incredibly talented.

There were also these two wonderful pieces in the show that I forgot to photograph their Artist Statements, so I have no talented artists to credit:

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I like the modern quilt interpretation of trees set in a bold red-orange background!

And then there was my piece, with it’s simple message to slow down as all will be accomplished:

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Yes my piece was not as “artsy” as the other pieces in the show but the message in it makes me smile!

As I mentioned in the post “Tree of No Hurry” at QuiltWorks Gallery, QuiltWorks hosts monthly fiber art shows in their upstairs gallery. The shows open the first Friday evening of the month and includes appetizers and drinks for opening attendees. There is also drawings for fat quarters and other treats. The shop/gallery owner, Marilyn Forestell, always makes opening night fun and is usually showcasing one of her eclectic outfits!

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Marilyn Forestell, QuiltWorks owner, modeling the cool vintage skirt she wore at the opening

As a bonus, Marilyn’s dog Piper can usually be found wandering around the shop:

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One of the things I love about the QuiltWorks shop (besides Marilyn and her dog) is the inspirational words in the windows about the shop (one of them is the feature image for this post).

Here are the word posted in the windows around the shop:

  • Create
  • Inspire
  • Dream

I think those are very good words!

Next post: Serious art quilt masterpieces by Betty Gientke at the QuiltWorks Gallery July 2018 show (the other side of the gallery from the Trees Quilts Show).


Postscript

Speaking of trees, here is a follow up to the 07/07/18 post Creative Inspiration: Bark, with a couple more B&W photos of tree bark that I took yesterday while wandering around a local park:

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Okay I think I have collected enough inspiration for the piece I am working on. Enough with the tree bark for now (smile).

Creative Inspiration

Creative Inspiration: Bark

Are you inspired by nature? If you are an artist, is your art inspired by nature?

As part of my ongoing series of posts on sources of Creative Inspiration,  I am sharing my latest nature-based inspiration: TREE BARK.

Wait. When you saw the post title, did you suspect I meant “dog bark” or the barking of dogs? I do love dogs, however their barking provides little source of creative inspiration (smile).

Studying Tree Bark

For the latest project I am working on (a secret project for a future exhibit not yet announced by the curator) I needed to study the texture of tree bark. A trip to a local park provided plenty of study subjects!

I was particularly taken by this tree:

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And I took a couple B&W photos so I could study the lines of the bark texture for my piece in progress:

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Although I did not take more photos, I studied the lines of several more trees in the park and on my daily walks I’ve paid closer attention to trees in my neighborhood.

Speaking of trees, next post I will share images from the Tree Quilt Show I attended last evening.


For the true nature of things, if we rightly consider, every green tree is far more glorious than if it were made of gold and silver. – Martin Luther

Special Events, Studio, tierneycreates

“Tree of No Hurry” at QuiltWorks Gallery

Tree of No Hurry (2017) will be part of the Trees Exhibit at QuiltWorks Gallery which opens on Friday July 6, 2018. The show will run through July.

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Tree of No Hurry (2017)

QuiltWorks is a Central Oregon quilt shop that has a gallery upstairs and supports the Central Oregon traditional and art quilting community through its monthly shows featuring the works of local quilters, quilting groups and guilds.

Here is more about the QuiltWorks Gallery from their website:

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Quiltworks.com

If you are new to my blog, Tree of No Hurry began in an appliqué class with the wonderful teacher Janet Shorten at the Stitchin’ Post quilt shop in Sisters, Oregon in May 2016. Here are the related posts about the beginning of the piece, it’s evolution, wrangling embroidery floss, etc.:

Tree of No Hurry is part of my “Nature Stories” series of quilts. You can view my current four series of art quilts on my Art Quilt Stories page.

Here is the Artist Statement/story behind it:

TREE OF NO HURRY (2017)

25.5” W x 27” L, cotton fabric, embroidery floss

Designed, pieced and quilted by Tierney Davis Hogan

THE STORY OF THIS PIECE:

How often do we hurry about in our lives attempting “to do” everything we feel we must accomplish?

This quote by ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu reminds us that a force as powerful as Nature (with a “to-do list” greater than we could imagine) does not hurry and still gets the important stuff accomplished.


Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished. – Lao Tzu

 

Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show

Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show 2018, Part I

This is a follow up to the post Beastie Adventures: Sisters, Oregon.

I mentioned in this post that I had two pieces in the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show (July 14, 2018) this year. Originally I was only going to have one piece, my 18″ x 40″ quilt for our annual Central Oregon SAQA themed show: The Threads That Bind

 The Recycled Love

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The Recycled Love (2018)

However a couple weeks ago I got an e-mail from Jeannette Pilak asking for additional quilts for Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show (SOQS) Sponsors. The “Sponsor Quilts” are hung in the local businesses that financially support the show a week before the show. “Sponsor Quilts” help support sponsors by encouraging SOQS attendees to visit their shops and businesses to see additional quilts.

I was honored to be included in the list of those invited to help out, so I decided to also put this quilt in SOQS as a “Sponsor Quilt”:

Additional Conversations

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Additional Conversations (2018)

I am listing Additional Conversations for sale as the show as I’ve been invited to create another quilt with the same inspired design for a very special show, that of course is secret and I cannot share information on yet.

Speaking of secret shows, if you are wondering why lately I have not posted photos of any works in progress it is because I am working on a secret quilt for a future Women of Color Quilting Network Show and I cannot share images until the show is announced.

I know several of you have worked or are currently working on secret quilts too for special shows/books/events. It will be fun when we can all reveal them!

Other SOQS Stuff

Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) does not have any quilts in the show this year. It is not like 2016 when he had FIVE quilts in the show and SOLD TWO! I also had five quilts in the show and SOLD NONE. He teased me quite a bit about that as he was a very new quilter and I am a long-time quilter. He was in the special Man Made exhibit so that might have given him more exposure (or his quilts were just more appealing than mine).

For this SOQS one of my blogging buddies, Becca @Pretty Piney who lives on the East Coast of the U.S. has a quilt in the show this year and I am going to take photos for her and send them on to her.  I met Becca in person in NYC September 2017 while we were both attending Quilters Take Manhattan and we were both trying to photography our mutual blogging buddy, Mary @Zippy Quilts piece! It was one of those “talk about a small world” moments!

I have a bunch of blog posts on previous Sisters Outdoor Shows and if you would like to read those stories and see some of the amazing quilts people display at the show, check out this series of posts: Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show

And I will likely do a series of posts on this years show. I am especially excited about this years show as my two beloved Sister-in-Laws, who are both quilters, are coming for a visit to see the show and to hang out with TTQH (their brother) and me!

For next year there are rumors that some of my California-based Quilting Sisters might come for a visit during the show! We had a blast a couple of years ago when they visited and I might need to check with them before I share some of the hysterical shenanigans that occurred during their visit…something to do with a quilter’s cutting mat and I can say no more at this time – ha!


For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone. – Audrey Hepburn

 

Special Events, Stories My Father Told Me, WCQN

Human Rights in the New Millennium

The show postcard for the Women of Color Quilting Network (WCQN) show Human Rights in the New Millennium: Quilting the World’s Conscience has been published and the show’s curator, Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi shared it on her facebook page, so I am sharing it on my blog:

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The show opens August 17, 2018 at the Filton Center for Creative Arts in Hamilton, Ohio. The show is based on the United Nations (U.N.) Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Show participants had to select one of the thirty (30) Articles in this declaration and make a 50″ x 50″ quilt inspired by the Article.

I will be attending the opening and I am excited and honored that my piece The Lesson & The Equation (2016) will be in the show.

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The Lesson and the Equation (2016) by Tierney Davis Hogan. Image courtesy of Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi.

If you’d like to read the stories behind this piece and its Artist Statement please see my blog posts Creative Inspiration: Stories My Father Told Me and The Lesson & The Equation.


All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. – Article I, U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights