Smithers Centennial Quilt {Blogger's Quilt Festival Fall 2013}

I'm linking up with Amy's Creative Side who twice a year hosts this Bloggers Quilt Festival.

In the photo below it shows the finished quilt that I made to commemorate our  northern Town of Smithers 100th Birthday! This is my story of what I learned.

I have been learning more about quilting since I was 14 yrs old when I met my high school Textile teacher, Miss Hepburn, now Mrs. Summerskill. Unfortunately, she passed away earlier this year and she would have been so impressed that the scrawny tomboy of Gr. 8 had reached new opportunities of learning.

I learned from Mrs. Summerskill that no one should tell me what to do. That I should take the time to 'think' and 'plan' and to just be yourself. This was very good advice to a young budding quilter.

Sometimes though, we can get lost in the keeping up with all the other blogger's doing all sorts of lovely quilts. Sometimes, we lost in an illness that strikes you down and holds you captive. I keep on learning every day.

This particular quilt made me stretch my design and capabilities to new heights. I was very fortunate to do a piece so auspicious in nature that it will be here in another 100 years from now, not many of us can leave a legacy like that.
From this I learned that if you don't try new things, you'll always be held  back from your true nature. 
Stretching your mind and your muscles is good for you!

I was also very thrilled to have 6 other artists help me with their own interpretations of our valley for this quilt. For the full story of this quilt please go here.

I learned a little bit about the First Nations community of the Wet'suwet'en people who were first in this valley for hundreds of years before we Europeans arrived. This simple slabs of log home with dancer's in the night is my limited interpretation of their culture and its so rich and true.
I've lived most of my life in the north and in the north also live many First Nations and they are mostly kind, gentle, mischievous and friendly.
Their culture is proud and filled with ceremonial rituals that I find fascinating.

I have many of the young adventurous bloggers like Leah Day, who are tremendously audacious with risk taking, so I could too, take risks in machine quilting. I learned more on this project to stretch and believe in your work and for this I say thank you, Leah!

Below, I felt priveledged to make the black and white photo come to life in this colour representation of the namesake of Smithers. Sir Alfred Smithers had a family member come to Smithers this past summer to say thank you!

I was very happy to profile a young and very talented First Nations artist who made these fish below, Todd Tracey Lace can be found online at Wet'suwet'en Native Arts and Crafts.

I took more risks as I went along. I'm so thankful that I learned a new way to thread paint as I did for Sir Alfred Smithers, our namesake.

I played with fabric and rick rack to achieve the landscape scene of Babine Mountain Range with more thread in a more expressive way than ever before.

I am in love with crazy quilting and even here, I stretched and played with a new freedom like never before. I appliqued on the birds and butterflies and then stitched over top again with more hand embroidered threads and machine quilting to expand this make believe scene of the wilderness that we live in that needs our attention to increased environmental protection from the increased demand for minerals that our northern soil has kept secret for many hundreds of years. I tried to say this statement without offending anyone in our community.

I played with machine embroidery in this rose and then free hand created the translucent leaves in machine quilting.
My hope for all readers to think back to when you wanted to try something new and hesitated for fear of looking silly, I urge you to be silly, you never know where it will take you:)

I didn't have anything fancy like a light box to transfer all the various felt pen structures onto the foundation of my style of thread painting. You can do what you want to do, you just have to take risks. I found the light!

I found new experiments with doilies and corduroy, this engine of the train is actually a version of trapunto, but you can only really see this up close and personal.

So this quilt is my entry into the category of Blogger's Quilt Festival- Art Quilts and if you click on the link above  you can go and see my work and many others who have entered this great contest. 

If you like my story and this quilt, please vote for Smithers Centennial Quilt in in Art Quilts.

Take care, thanks for reading and do leave me a comment! I love comments.



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