Thursday, 30 October 2014

The Power of the Unusual

I'm always attracted by the unusual, the quirky and the downright odd, (and I'm not just talking about the Hubby here!).  I mean seeing the normal and ordinary in abnormal and extraordinary places.

Here are a few examples I've come across lately.....

Quilt blocks on quilts is usual.  Quilt blocks on barns is, well, unusual!  And for me, that's where the interest lies.  

'Robbing Peter to pay Paul' is the block here, I think.

Quilt blocks on quilts is ordinary.  Quilt blocks made of flowers is extraordinary, and there's a whole blog about it here.

A pinwheel block made of flowers.  photo courtesy of Amish County . org

Postcards made of card (the clue is in the name 'Post  Card') are now boring if made of card!  So much more exciting and exquisitely beautiful if they are made of textile, like this one from my friend Judy in Boise, Idaho. Do visit her blog - she excels at so many creative things: 

Thank you so much, Judy!  It is so beautiful - and unusual!!

From the look on our postman's face, I don't think he'd seen one before!
And, of course, last but not least, I hope I've proved that a quilt block is not only for quilts, but for homewares and handmade ceramic bowls.

Quilt-block tea towels, aprons, mugs, coasters and handmade ceramics from
And it's getting to that time of year again when we're all hunting for something unusual, something interesting, something a bit quirky even, for that perfect Christmas gift.   Have you started your Christmas shopping yet?  No, me neither!

Cathy x

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

It's a Small World after all

'It's a small world after all, ...'  Those of you with small children will know this Disney song, and apologies for the fact that it will now be going round in your head incessantly for the next week/month, but these words came home to me this summer in a big way.

I have been visiting Chris Jurd's Patchwork Fundamentals blog for a while now.  Chris is a quilt teacher based in the Blue Mountains near Sydney and shows her own work and the fabulous work of her pupils.

She mentioned that she was doing a trip, taking in the UK, and long-story-short, she came to see me and my pots!

So, in honour of her visit, I made her this large quilt bowl depicting one of her own patterns on its inner surface.

Whilst she was in my studio looking at my work, I casually asked her if she liked this one and whether there was room in her suitcase for it to fly back to Australia.  You should have seen her face!

Top: mapping out the design onto the wet clay.  Bottom: all the usual trimmings
I had to make sure I got the lines and points as perfect as I could on this one!
We had a lovely time together and I was even brave enough to show Chris my first (and only) quilt ... and she even found some positive things to say about it, as all good teachers do!  

We parted,  and then a few weeks after Chris had landed back home, this arrived in the post for me - in the same pattern as the bowl!

Just beautiful!  You can't tell the size here but it's about 2ft diameter.
I'm not afraid to show close-ups of Chris's lines and points as they're absolutely perfect!

Her quilting is better than mine, but as she says ... her pottery isn't!  Lol!

I even love the back of this piece, and especially love the quilt-label she made!

'Though the mountains divide
And the oceans are wide
It's a small world after all'

Blogging, to me, makes the world a smaller and friendlier place.

Thank you so much Chris!  I will treasure it.

x Cathy