1. A break in the textile posts for a dahlia moment. We visited the amazing dahlia farm Country Dahlias on its last open weekend for the year. The farm is home to over 20,000 tubers and has been a labour of love for its owner Jenny Parish for more than 20 years. It was also absolute heaven. This was my ‘pick-your-own’ bunch.

     

  2. About a month ago I posted a pic of an beautiful strippie quilt from the 1860s at the International Quilt Study Centre. I finished a quilt inspired by it this weekend. I am very pleased with this one and feel like it is taking my work in a bit of a new direction. I am interested in playing around more with using predominantly black & white with some colours as highlights and some use of small scale prints. I just ordered a load of solid colours and 19th century reproduction shirting so we’ll see where we go from here.

     

  3. Indigo 22, 1984
    Black & White 3, 2006
    Black & White 2, 2006

    (All photographs copyright Tom Grotta, courtesy of browngrotta arts)

    Ethel Stein, like Shelia Hicks, studied with Josef Albers in the 1940s. Her beautiful weavings often combine a damask structure with ikat dyeing techniques. She spent many years as a researcher at the Cooper-Hewitt Museum and this experience has strongly informed her weaving style. I particularly love the indigo piece at the top here—the deft use of strong geometrics with the soft indigo dye of the yarn is blissful.

    (Source: craftcouncil.org)

     

  4. Wall hanging Flat-weave with partly reversed harness Warp: cotton. Weft: wool and viscose 1923
    Design for wall hanging called "Mit gewendetem Schuetzen" 1923 39.4x31.5 cm

    The relationship between this design sketch and then resulting weaving by Gunta Stölzl is just fantastic. I love to find where there has been small design changes.

    In my work with weave, tapestry, machine knitting and quilting—graph paper is an invaluable resource. In fact I think that graph paper may actually be the one connection between my work in all these different mediums—revelation of the day for me!

    (Source: guntastolzl.org)

     

  5. First tapestry sampler

     

  6. (all early 20th century Sawtooth Star quilts via IQSCM)

    I am not a natural lover of stars—quilt stars that is—but the boldness and strangeness of the sawtooth star pattern does draw me in. I think maybe it’s because it nearly doesn’t look like a star at all—more a simple kaleidoscope or tangram pattern. The five-star quilt in the middle has a strange pull on me which may be resolved by making one…

     

  7. These three quilts are from the amazing Folk Museum exhibition Infinite Variety that was staged for six days in the Armory in 2011 and starred 651 red and white quilts. My mum was lucky enough to be in New York that week and calls it one of the highlights of her ‘art life’. And I am lucky enough to have the quite excellent free iPad app which lets you look at great photos of every single quilt.

    Different ones jump out at me every time I go though them all but at the moment I am interested in the way these three do something a bit different with the basic half-triangle block. The half-drop pattern on the first one here is particularly brilliant.

     

  8. Primary Pattern: Carpenter’s Square
    Quiltmaker: Maker unknown
    Geographical Origin: Possibly made in Indiana, United States
    Date: Circa 1880-1900
    Style/Type: Blue and White
    Dimensions (LxW): 196 x 161 Centimeters

    Via IQSC

     

  9. Primary Pattern: Carpenter’s Square
    Quiltmaker: Maker unknown
    Geographical Origin: Made in United States
    Date: Circa 1950
    Style/Type: Signature
    Dimensions (LxW): 191 x 196 Centimeters

    Via IQSC

     

  10. Australian Tapestry Workshop sells weaving yarn in 366 colours. It is a total colour dreamland.