Thursday, November 26, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving to all my Friends and Family!

To be very, very honest.  I really haven't done a lot of seasonal decorating since we moved back to America.  I still have boxes that need to be unpack and furniture arrangements that require more tweaking. So, holiday decorating is on the back burner. But, I recently made a chalk board/backpack station for my kids using an old, discarded dresser mirror frame. 

This is the first time I've actually tried to draw on it.

Chalkboard Backpack Station

I have to say, drawing with chalk is harder than it looks.  I drew this freehand without any real plan and getting good lines and shading was nearly impossible.  I don't know how those chalk artists do it.  Just goes to show that just because your competent in one medium does not make you a master in another :)

I think my chalk board's surface is a bit too rough for any really good chalk  art, and if I want to do this again, I might need to sand it smooth and put another coat of chalkboard paint on with a sponge roller.

Chalkboard Thanksgiving Turkey

For a first try, I'm happy with how this turned out.  I really only did it for my little girl who guilted me into drawing a turkey for her since I've been promising to decorate the chalk board for two months now :)

Again, Happy Thanksgiving everyone.  Have a great day with friends, family, and food!

Friday, November 20, 2015

Houston Quilt Festival 2015

I'm so happy that this year I got to attend the BIG Houston, Texas International Quilt Festival!

I always love going to this show, and now that we are back in Texas, it's much easier to attend since the travel time is minimal. By minimal, I mean it's a good 6 hour drive.  Not too bad, except this year it took us a little over 13 hours to get from my house to Houston due to all the flooding. 

Texas Flooding

Little did we know when we started out on Friday morning that we were about to get caught up in one of the season's worst storms so far.  We saw cars floating in the water, torrential rain, roads closed, and major traffic diverted to two lane highways not meant for that many cars.  We ended up arriving after midnight, completely missing the show on Friday, but we arrived safely.


This year's festival did not disappoint.  The quilt show featured so many different exhibits that it was hard to see everything.  And, there were so many vendors that I only had time to focus on a few dozen that really interested me and scanned the rest.

Houston IQA show flower quilt

While I do love the vendors at these shows, I can't get enough of the magnificent quilts exhibited by quilters from around the world in so many different styles here! I love the bold colors and dramatic angles on this floral quilt.


The quilting is also very nice and is a good contrast to the sharp lines of the flowers.

what's for dinner

The "What's For Dinner" display was also one of my favorites.  They set a table with place-mats featuring so many creative and funny meals.  My favorite was the naughty dog. 


That naught beast ate everything on the plate but the peas :) As a dog owner, I can personally attest that this is just about what happens when you don't have someone guarding the table at meal time.


This is a beautifully done more traditional applique quilt that I thought was just perfection.


I love the wonderful use of color variation in this quilt and all the hard work that went into the applique, borders, and quilting.

Halloween applique

There were also so many creative people at the show decked out in home made Halloween clothing since the show landed on the holiday.  This fabulous lady let me take a picture of her wonderfully appliqued shirt.  Didn't she do such a lovely job.

monster ballMy mother (who went to the show with me) and I also got into the Halloween spirit on Saturday night when we attended the quilt festival's "Monster Ball".  They had a live band, great food, a photo booth, and a lot of crazy ladies dressed up and dancing the night away!  Wish you could see my mom's full costume.  She is a mad scientist with a crazy pink tutu on, and I'm a sugar skull flapper. Yeah, we're weird, and we're cool with it :)

The last two quilts that I'll post were my favorites.  "Like Cinderella" is by Yukiko Maruhama from Japan.

Houston IQA show like Cinderella details

I just swoon over all the different shoes on this quilt made from so many great fabrics and buttons!  

Polar Bear Quilt
This was my absolute favorite quilt at the show.  I even made a special trip back to visit this quilt one last time before the show closed.  It's called "Now you see him" by Cat Larrea of Alaska.

Houston IQA show polar bear details
Not only did I fall in love with the wonderful subject and great composition of this quilt, I love the artist's use of tiny fabric scraps to piece this quilt together like a mosaic.


I also love how she used brightly colored fabric as the shading instead of an overall dark shadowy color.  I lingered near this quilt for a good long time before saying goodbye :)  It was a great way to end a great show and wonderful weekend with my mother.

If you want to see more of the quilts from the show that I photographed, make sure to watch the slide show at the top.  Hope you enjoy it as much as we did. :)
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