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Happy New Year, everyone!
We had our first meeting of the year on January 17 at the Sikh Union Clubhouse, a lovely new venue for us and one we look forward to using in coming months.
Charu Patel mounted a small wall hanging along with an example of a write up. She circulated a sheet for members to list their quilt entries for the upcoming KQG Exhibition to be held at Sarit Centre in April. Deadline for entries will be the March meeting, but in special cases this can be extended if necessary.
A 4” sleeve, label and flat rod will have to be organised for each quilt. Entry Fee: Shs. 200.00 per quilt. Quilts from the previous exhibition may be accepted if there are not enough new entries.
Jaswinder Phull invited members to submit high resolution quilt photos via email for consideration for printing on posters. Mike Gaudaur has volunteered to help design the posters.
Kundan Pattni is taking reservations for vendors. The stalls are 2m x 3m at the cost of Shs. 5000.00 total for the three days. Deposit: Shs. 1000.00. Bookings will be taken for five vendors only.
Deanna Gaudaur will circulate a list for members who wish to sell quilts in the Boutique Stall that are not in the exhibition. The Guild will take 10% commission. It was stressed that prices should be reasonable. Those wishing to take advantage of this stall must volunteer to serve in it at least 2 hours.
Sheryl Fowler explained how the finances will work. Kundan is the Treasurer and will keep the accounts. The cost of the hall will be divided between the Kenya Quilt Guild and the Kenya Embroiderers Guild as will be profits from vendors and the raffle. The expenses will also be divided between the two Guilds. The only exception will be the workshops, where each Guild will keep their own profits.
The Flying Geese blocks for the raffle quilt were collected and the quilt face will get underway as soon as all the geese are received. Permission for the raffle is yet to be obtained from the Betting and Licensing Control Board, but the work on it has been begun.
Show Slogan: This should be a short, catchy phrase and probably not contain the words ‘Quilt or Embroidery’. The members were broken into ‘brainstorming’ groups and came up with dozens of suggestions.
Sponsorship: Letters were available for members. We hope to get as many sponsors as possible this year to help cover the cost of the Sarit Centre Exhibition Hall.
Workshops: Cost Shs. 500.00 including kits. Sign up for these at the February meeting.
Dena Crain briefly explained the changes suggested to the current Constitution (available on the website). The new Constitution has been restructured, the corrections have been highlighted in red. If anyone has any further changes they must put them forward without delay as the motion to pass the Constitution will come up at the AGM.
Thank you to Gill Rebelo and Margaret Atandi for a fabulous newsletter this month.
The Blog is a place to journal, our presence online. We need a volunteer to submit interesting information onto the website for Dena Crain to include in our Blog. Dena explained WordPress and said that she would assist a member in learning how to post, write and edit.
Show and Tell:
Members shared their quilts with us; they speak for themselves:
There was a powerpoint presentation by Sheryl Fowler on Tucks and Embellishments.
It was decided to hold the monthly meetings at the Sikh Union up until and including June. This will give the Guild time to investigate other venues.
Our next meeting will be held on February 21st, starting sharply at 10:00 a.m. at the Sikh Union. It’s a little hard to find, in the general location of the large pink block in the map below, above the label for Forest Road. Approach from Westlands, cross Limuru Road and take the sliproad down to the left. Sikh Union is near Premier Academy.
Chairperson Neela Shah opened the meeting with acknowledgement of guests, visitors and new members. She and Vice-Chairperson Deanna Gaudaur showed a few Santa bags, encouraging members to sign up to make more of them for the upcoming holiday season in hopes that we might sell them to benefit our charities. Deanna had coordinated shapes ready for appliqué, and offered a prize for the most popular “people’s choice” from all the bags that would be made.
Gill Rebelo displayed a few crazy-pieced Christmas stockings. She will be offering a workshop teaching our members how to make these charming holiday novelty items on Thursday, November 15th, in the afternoon after our regular meeting at Shalom House on that day. Phillippa Yusuf will also be teaching some fun crochet items that afternoon. Those interested in participating should sign up with Phillippa Yusuf as Gill will be out of the country until much nearer that day.
A suitable venue is needed for our annual Christmas party this year. If any of our members can host our group, please volunteer by letting Neela Shah know. Deanna suggested that instead of giving gifts to each other, this year we might think to bring food donations for those less fortunate. Stay tuned as plans for the Christmas party are made; we will let you know full details in due course.
Reports on Dena Crain’s two-day workshop held in September, Goodbye to the Grid, were most positive. Everyone enjoyed the workshop and a few people brought their works in progress to show what they designed and made.
This discussion led into show-and-tell.
Dena finished show-and-tell with a presentation of her African beaded quilt, a work in progress, as an introduction to the morning’s demonstrations. She and Charu Patel presented two different ways of beading with a hook instead of a needle.
Dena’s method uses a latch hook, something hard to find in Kenya but we hope Kundan Pattni will bring some back from her trip to the US for the International Quilt Festival and Market in Houston. Working with beads pre-strung on a thread that is still attached to the spool, Dena practices Kantan couture beading. She keeps the beads on the face of the work and the hook underneath it, making chain stitches on the underside of the quilt top that catch one or more beads on the surface of the work.
Instructional videos on YouTube:
Beading Supplies: Lacis Tools & Materials
Charu Patel works with the tiniest of crochet hooks. She keeps the thread underneath the fabric, draws it up with the crochet hook into a loop on the surface, drops the loop, picks up a bead with the hook, then picks up the loop again and passes the bead over the loop. Reinserting the hook into the fabric, she catches the thread again to complete the first stitch and begin the next one.
Dena’s method is fast but Charu’s method produces exquisite quality. Which method might suit you best is for you to decide, perhaps different methods for different projects, but it was certainly good to see both methods demonstrated side-by-side.
The Exhibition Committee will hold a meeting on October 19th at Jasvinder Phull’s house. It is still not too late to join the Exhibition Committee if you are interested. You will be most welcome to attend the meeting and lend a helping hand, especially as we are facing a very busy year in 2013. We are in contact with International Quilt Festival Houston and American Quilter’s Society about the possibility of showing our quilts after the London International Quilt Festival in Canada in the United States.
We are also negotiating with the FibreWorks artists from South Africa about having their Major Minors IV exhibition of some fifty 10-inch square quilts shipped up to Nairobi for exhibition here on its way to or from Canada where it will be included in our show there, along with work from Gabon (Paula Benjaminson), Zimbabwe (through Bev Rebelo) and possibly Tanzania. We hope to have about 200 quilts of our own on exhibition in London, Canada, so please–keep working on your African quilts!
Dena announced that Quarke, Quilt Artists of Kenya, had a couple of sales during their recent exhibition at Karen Country Club and that they will be holding another exhibition at Village Market over the weekend of November 23-26, open 10 am until 7 pm each day. Kenya Quilt Guild members are welcome to visit the show and to bring their family and friends along.
We had a brief discussion about acquiring retail selling space at one or more of the various craft fairs held throughout Nairobi in conjunction with holidays (Christmas or summer). Everyone agreed this is something we should do. Now all we need are members to be making things for sale and letting us know about upcoming events in time for us to apply for selling space in them. The Council will do the rest by making the applications for space, paying the fees, and calling for volunteers from amongst our members to be present to sell our goods. Money from this venture can go either to offset the expenses of workshops or exhibitions, or it may go to charity. Either way, everyone’s help will be much appreciated.
Next meeting: November 15th, Shalom House. Note on your calendar that there will be no regularly scheduled meeting in December. Details about our annual Christmas party will be forthcoming via email notification.
This in from Deanna Gaudaur: Baby’s Kikoy Rag Quilt Tutorial. Enjoy!
It was party time at the Kenya Quilt Guild!! We had our usual monthly meeting but several members brought their children who participated in a cup-cake feast and in making kikoy quilts! Neela Shah (Chairperson) welcomed several visitors including Australians Meryl Lees from New South Wales and her daughter Lyn Cussons from Canberra. Darlene and Rose were visiting from the USA and Suzanne is a new member who has recently settled in Kenya having moved from Kansas.
Neela drew the attention of the meeting to the date change for the Kijabe field trip to see Deanna Gaudaur’s long-arm quilting machine. It will now take place on 1st August. A form was handed round for members to sign up for the trip and to indicate what they would contribute to the pot-luck lunch and whether they would be willing to transport others. Deanna will email directions to all who have signed up.
Neela also reminded members that there is no KQG meeting in August as so many members are away. Consequently, books from the library can be borrowed for two months instead of one.
Gill Rebelo (Education) reminded members to sign up and pay for the classes being offered by Dena Crain in September. Information is published in ‘Snippets’. ‘Goodbye to the Grid’ is a two day class Dena offers for the Quilt University which introduces the skills required for making art quilts. Neela underlined the good value of Dena’s classes, as she has attended them herself and picked up lots of useful tips and skills. The other class Dena is offering is entitled ‘True Quilts’ and includes Stack to the Back, Quilting From the Outside In, and Fuss-Free Binding. These sessions are offered 25th, 26th and 27th September. Check the Quilt Workshop Schedule for more information.
Gill announced that Pippa Moore will be coming from Canada to teach in October and suggested members look at her web site. Gill also encouraged members to join the workshop after the meeting where those who attended in June could finish the Shoo-Fly block started then and hopefully complete a Calico Puzzle block as well. These will go towards a sampler quilt to be completed during these workshops over several months. Gill had little packs of appropriate fabrics available for sale at 100/-.
Neela then introduced Darlene Tapie who is visiting Kenya on a mission trip for the Presbyterian Women of New Jersey. Darlene explained the work of a group of women who knit or crochet prayer shawls. These are voluminous, warm shawls made of a soft yarn that the makers pray over as they are fashioned. The shawls are then donated to people at the birth of a baby or when someone is ill or bereaved. Darlene asked that anyone who would like to be involved would communicate with her.
Neela then asked Maureen Dougherty to tell the group about her visit to the International Quilt Festival of Ireland in June. Maureen had been delighted to meet Martine Chamorel, our former Vice-Chairperson, there and they had looked together at the Round Robin quilts, including those from Kenya to which they had contributed. They recognized the hand blocks made by Carol Davey and Martine in the huge welcome quilt at the entrance. Maureen really enjoyed the whole exhibition which had lots of character but was most impressed by the quilted garden feature.
Neela displayed the glass crystal mounted plaque that has been awarded to Sabine as winner of the ‘best quilt in show’ at our recent exhibition.
- Members had been asked to display quilts they had made for children but there were also lots of other beautiful things on offer.
- Deanna showed a lovely single bed sized quilt in black and white fabrics with a bright green line in. She had made this for her son’s girlfriend!
- Brij displayed a pair of jeans she had decorated with multiple colourful appliqué of elephants for Village Market’s Jeanius competition. The jeans were greeted with a chorus of impressed ooohs and aaahs!
- Stacey Davis had made a fun quilt for her son with a design of trains in primary colours.
- Veena showed a bargello quilt wall hanging, a delightful combination of blues and rich browns.
- Gill is well prepared for the advent of future grandchildren with a charming rag quilt, decorated with a teddy.
- Lakhbir displayed a gorgeous double bed sized bargello quilt in twenty shades of red and black with a Möbius strip shaped design on it. She was challenged to make it as a wedding present for her daughter who must have been so pleased with it!
- Jasvinder showed her stunning dancing ladies wall hanging and a second one she had made using the same method but with Maasai dancers.
- Maureen had been stash-busting and had made a pleasing rainbow colours quilt for one of her staff members.
- Induben has been working on a beautiful Maasai village scene with a bead embellishment.
- Cheryl displayed two very pretty quilts she had made with little girls in mind. One was appliquéd with a girl in a bonnet motif and the other with pink perambulators!
Meryl Lees and Lyn Cussons had brought some samples of indigenous print fabrics from Australia which featured snakes and witchetty grubs or sylised lizards in interesting patterns and colours. Members of Meryl’s quilt guild had also made gifts for KQG. Each member present was given a beautifully embroidered handkerchief. It was such a lovely kind thought and action and very much appreciated.
We then had the draw for the prizes of the day – some kikoys! These were won by good fortune by Meryl and Lyn! There were also some KQG winners …. Neela!
In the extended break we all enjoyed delicious cup cakes brought by members and a fizzy punch made by Deanna Gaudaur.
The meeting finished with Stacy Davis from Kijabe showing some of the kikoy quilts she has made using a very simple quilt-as-you-go method. She explained how it is done and then the children who had joined the Guild for the day had a go at making them. Everyone went off happy and satisfied that we had enjoyed a great meeting and would be looking forward to meeting again in September.
The June meeting was a very interesting one, starting with our officers arriving to set up only to discover we had been moved out of our usual meeting hall to an upstairs room. Although that caused a small flurry of activity, things quickly settled down and the meeting proceeded without further interruption.
We had a somewhat unusually large turn-out of guests and visitors, and Chairperson Neela Shah welcomed everyone, including one or two new members. Sadly, she then called for a moment of silence in memory of our recently deceased friend, Rowena Buxton. The last few weeks have been a sad time for the Guild as we have each had to accept this most unfortunate loss.
Deanna Gaudaur has issued an invitation to our members to visit her studio at Kijabe for a demonstration of her long-arm quilting system. Of course, this necessitates a social outing complete with car-pooling and a sign-up sheet to control who will bring what dishes for lunch. When our members cook, the eating is top-notch, so if you’re a KQG member or guest, you won’t want to miss out. Date for the event is August 1, and it’s not too late to join in on the fun!
Sarah Brewin will be back with us later in the year, so everyone is encouraged to work on their African quilts to send with her for exhibition at the Rhododendron Needlework Quilters Guild in Boston. From there, the quilts will be forwarded to Canada where they will be shown during the “Out of Africa 2013” exhibition to be held at the London Hilton Hotel in Ontario, Canada, June 11-15, 2013.
The International Quilt Convention Africa 2012 is fast approaching, scheduled to run July 27-29 in Johannesburg. Members are urged to make airline, accommodation, workshop and social function reservations immediately so as not to miss out on the opportunity to participate in this historic and fun-filled event: the first ever professionally organized quilt festival on the entire continent of Africa!
Gill Rebelo also encouraged any of our members willing to do so to participate in Village Market’s Jean-ius fashion design competition. Details about that can be found on the Village Market Facebook Page.
Show and Tell photos are below:
Our guest speaker was textile artist Sophie Standing, whose work is much in demand. Sophie produces images of African wildlife and domestic animals on cotton canvas by applying raw edge appliqué of a wide range of printed cotton and other fabrics, followed by machine stitching. She described something of the processes she goes through from initial sketch to finished piece. She stretches her completed pieces on stretcher frames, ready for decorative framing. Sophie’s work has been so successfully received by Kenyans and international visitors that she has commissions booked for the next two years! Well done, Sophie; we all greatly admire your work!
The July meeting will be a children’s quilt day! All attendees are invited to bring any children they know who might like to learn about patchwork quilting plus 1 dozen cupcakes, and be prepared to teach and learn with the young people.
Neela Shah, our recently re-elected chairperson, welcomed six guests to our May meeting as well as Magie Relph and Sarah Brewin our visiting teachers.
Neela informed us that last weekend’s exhibition at Village Market raised a good sum for the charities we support–AMREF’s Fistula Clinic to pay for corrective surgery, and the The Dream Project to support the purchase of a new water tank. She announced the winner of the “Viewers’ Choice” prizes and the winners of the raffle quilts.
There were rather fewer entries to our exhibition this year than in previous years. Members were encouraged to be more productive as exhibitions will probably take place annually in future rather than every 18 months. The location of the exhibition hall at Village Market proved less than ideal as there was little walk-in traffic and lots of noise; members were asked to think of alternative locations.
Dena Crain mentioned that several visitors expressed interest in buying quilts at the show, particularly “Dancing Ladies” and she has sent out information about pricing quilts and suggested some of the members could turn professional! There was a write-up of the exhibition in the Star and another in Asian Weekly. Dena asked for a volunteer to help her with advertising and promotions.
Sarah Brewin had taught her ‘Dancing Ladies’ quilt on Tuesday and Sheryl Fowler displayed her delightful variation on the theme with twirling guinea fowl on a rippled background. Sarah’s Rhododendron Needlers Quilt Guild in Boston had kindly donated $200 towards the KQG exhibition and are eager for some African quilts for their exhibition in March 2013. Twelve of the members present expressed interest in sending quilts to the exhibition.
Dena talked about the exhibition in Canada next year which has changed time and location. It will now be in the Hilton Hotel in London Ontario from 11th to 15th June. Deanna Gaudaur pointed out that the date change would now preclude attendance by those with children in school.
Gill Rebelo, who organises the educational side of the Guild’s activities, explained that from next month she will be arranging free workshops after the monthly meetings. These will be sociable opportunities for new members to learn skills from more experienced quilters and to make products for sale for the Guild’s charities. She asked members to offer to help and suggested they would enjoy making a ‘block of the month’ each. These will contribute to a sampler quilt for the next exhibition.
In Show-and-Tell, Gretchen Sanders-Mwaura displayed the lovely book cover she had made in Bev Rebelo’s machine quilting class the previous week, and a 20” x 10” block she has made for her Voyage Art Textiles group. It was loosely inspired by a blue painted shack she had photographed and was beautiful and original.
Nasreen Arain showed her sparkly lady’s bag. It was pretty and flamboyant, embellished with sequins. Indu Shah showed us a quilt she is making for a lucky child, with Thomas the Tank Engine and friends represented on it. She had skillfully hand quilted a design to show the clouds of steam from the engines.
Delia Spring had made two jolly and colourful quilts with dinosaurs and bones and stipple quilting for her three and six year old boys. Sheryl Fowler is making two quilts for an 80 year old friend. She showed us the first one which was a very attractive French Braid quilt in luscious shades of pink and dark red with a repeated triangle shape border.
Magie Relph talked about the classes she will be teaching in the next few days and showed some stunning examples of her work, including many of the lively West African fabrics she collects. She describes her freeform African Jazz quilts as topsy quilts! She says “Thumb your nose at the quilt police”! She went on to give an extremely interesting illustrated talk about West African cloth. She has observed and photographed artisans dyeing and weaving and printing cloth using ancient methods and shared those fascinating experiences with us.