Since my last posting, I have been on holidays, hence the lack of posts. My husband and I flew down to Las Vegas, NV and from there we rented a car. We traveled approximately 3700 miles/6000 km. We traveled around Arizona and New Mexico. We saw pueblo ruins and walked some desert trails in Sedona. We visited the Acoma Pueblo in NM also known as Sky City. We also visited the Taos Pueblo, a UNESCO designated site. We stayed in Albuquerque and Santa Fe…I love Santa Fe! So many artists…paintings, pottery, weavings…a feast for the eyes. We also visited many museums in both states. I was lucky to see two quilt exhibits in Tuscon. One was at the Arizona State Museum where 20 Hopi quilts were on display. At the Arizona Historical Society Museum 100 quilts were on display for the celebration of Arizona’s 100th Anniversary of Statehood. Below are some of my favorite quilts. They truly are Arizona quilts. Enjoy!
Tuscon: The Heart of Arizona by Karen G. Fisher
Home Sweet Home by Brenda Dickinson & Kris Lovetro
Watermelon man by Sandra Rakow
REA in Arizona by Therese Bliss and Patricia Bliss
Arizona by Sheila Groman
A Cowboy's Prayer by Nancy Arseneault
Morning at Wukoki by Barbara Janson
Loving Mother by Perri Krom
Navajo Wedding by Darlene Schrag
Viva Arizona! by Julie Scott
Viva Arizona! detail
Cactus Fireworks by Vicki L. Bohnhoff
Don’t you just love those moments when you meet someone unexpectedly only to realise that this meeting would lead to an extraordinary event. Well that is what happened to me not long ago. I received a call from a lovely woman about a quilt that required some conservation work. Both being quilters with a penchant for hand-quilting the conversation lead me to inform my caller that I had just finished my first boutis pieces (see Jan 3/11 post). She told me that she would arrange to have me meet someone who had just recently finished a most exquisite boutis quilt that was six years in the making. I was delighted to say the least.
- A Most Exquisite Boutis Quilt
To see such beautiful workmanship! This quilt has never been on display. Sue S. is a very private person and quilts for her own pleasure. I felt privileged to have been invited to view her quilt. She generously offered to teach me the technique of boutis. Since I had already done a couple of pieces, I was now eager to learn a few tricks. I was not disappointed. I am already planning to make a small window covering for a window that does not get direct sunlight. One knows that textiles will fade over time when exposed to light and white fabric will yellow with direct sunlight. Since it is a small window, hence a small piece, I am willing to test the longevity of a white textile before it turns yellow. It is a bit of a conundrum since the designs of a boutis is best seen when exposed to light yet light exposure contributes to the deterioration of a textile. A risk I am willing to take.
I have always been fond of whitework, in particular boutis/white corded quilting. Inspired by a book by Francine Nicolle called Petits Tresors de Boutis I decided to try my hand at boutis.
The process of making a boutis is somewhat different from your traditional quilt where you stitch three layers together consisting of a top, a fill and a backing. When creating a boutis, the top and backing are stitched together by hand following the design marked on the backing. The design usually consists of narrow channels and/or compartments. Cotton yarn is then inserted into the channels producing a bas-relief. The overall appearance of a boutis is quite stunning.
As I was expecting a granddaughter, I thought that it would be a nice small project to begin with before attempting a larger piece. Sixty hours later the bonnet and the jacket were completed. They were both stitched by hand with the exception of the bonnet’s crown piece and the jacket’s side seams.
Certain design elements were from Hubert Valeri’s book Boutis d’aujourd’hui.
After all this work, my granddaughter, Ruhiyya only wore it a couple of times before she outgrew it. Fortunately, another granddaughter, Kyrene, was born and the little bonnet and jacket have been passed on to her. I plan to do another boutis in the near future as I really enjoyed the process. Until next time, Happy Stitching!