Jul 26, 2015

slow stitching, hand embroidery

Did you know there was a movement called slow stitching? 

Apparently we love to label things and quiliting is no exception. Now we have traditional quilters, art quilters, modern quilters, fiber artists, even bad ass quilters. It did not occur to me that slow stiching needed to be called anything other than... well... quilting, but there you have it.

Anyway, I made this improvisational pieced quilt a while back using some of my favorite prints that I'd been collecting for awhile. I had a lot of fun making this off-kilter grid-like design and loved the stress free approach to just cutting and sewing. 

When I finished piecing it, I let it sit for a few weeks while I thought about what to do with it. Now, the decision has been made and I am "slow stitching" it. Or you might just call it embroidery. Later I might even hand quilt it. For the embroidery, I'm using the lovely pearl cotton threads, size 8. 

My plan is to just keep adding embroidery until I think I'm done. This is gonna' take a while! Guess that's why they call it slow stitching.

Jul 23, 2015

book tour talk today - Victoria, Texas

I was the guest speaker today at the Quilt Guild of Greater Victoria. It was such an honor to be invited. Great group of quilters. 

Victoria is a 2 hour, 15 minute drive south of Houston. The husband is kind enough to drive me most places. He calls it 'drivin' miss daisy'! What a riot! Really its just an excuse to drive his fancy car. And let me tell you, it takes some organizational skills to pack 3 quilts, books, a projector... a bunch of other stuff and some very special black cowboy boots... all in this trunk. But everything fit! 

We took time to visit the 1892 courthouse - which has been beautifully restored.

I LOVED this courtroom! I can just picture Atticus Finch in there arguing his case... or the characters from "12 Angry Men." You don't see court rooms like this anymore in the big city, that's for sure.

After my talk about the history of Japanese quilting, the guild hosted a workshop for young people to learn to sew and quilt. So there were several young daughters and grand daughters in the audience too! Loved that!

Jul 20, 2015

my new book is here! my new book is here!

Two years and then some... the first few copies of new book have arrived on my doorstep.

Thank you Schiffer Publishing for rushing the advance copies!

Now to sit down and read....

Jul 18, 2015

great remodel of 2015 revealed

I'm singing from the highest mountain... well, at least from the Third Floor! The great studio remodel of 2015 is complete. Unbeknownst to me, the husband set up a hidden camera and recorded me and my pal Tom as we curated the new red shelves.



 Ah, the tools!

Linking up

Jul 13, 2015

the three-day tote bag

Bigger than a weekender. Smaller than a suitcase. Perfect for carry-on!

Here's my newest tote bag. I'm calling it the Three-Day Tote, aka known as the Tanzania Tote because this original hand wax-dyed fabric was made in Tanzania. I bought it at a craft/artisan store about four years ago during a photo safari vacation. I clearly remember the store and the lovely people selling this fabric. They had stacks of these and I think I bought half their inventory! They were quite surprised. I've had all this fabric safely stored for a "some day" project. In the process of remodeling and moving fabric, my friend Amy G. re-discovered this and suggested it would make a great tote bag. I think she was right!

Anyway... Ever hear the old saying: The cobbler's children have no shoes?

Well, I own a small (micro might be a better term) business making custom quilted tote bags, yet I've never made one for myself. Now I'm no longer a shoeless cobbler's child.

These lined pockets are quite handy.

I love the zipper close up photo... for so many reasons. First of all, I once feared the zipper! Why do we do this? Zippers really aren't that hard. 

For the Three Day Tote I used a 36 inch "parka" zipper with two pulls, so you can open the bag from either end.

I make all my tote bags on my awesome Bernina 820. Below is a great photo of me quilting the bottom panel of the bag - using the dual feed "walking" foot (10D). This foot is perfect for quilting long lines.

The selvedge on this fabric is one of its most endearing parts, so I just couldn't cut it off. Instead I Mistyfused it to the solid border material to make the panel wide enough. I thought this was ingenious - because if I had pieced it, I would have lost 1/4 inch of the writing.

 Pretty thrilled with the results! The Tanzania Tote is ready to go.

I'm featured in Where Women Create Business

Where Women Create Business is part of a beautiful series of magazines created by Jo Packham - and I was fortunate enough to be featured in the Summer 2015 issue!

The magazine should be making its way to a limited numbers of book stores shelves now. Its also available at Jo Ann's, and online from Stampington.

If you've never seen this magazine, I think you'd love it. The content introduces artisan entrepreneurs and the places and studios where they work. So many truly interesting stories. The photography alone is just stunning. Such a beautiful magazine to just flip through, and there very few ads!

The other magazines in this series are Where Women Create and Where Women Cook.

The Summer 2015 of Where Women Create Business includes a feature on Heather Grant, one of the founders of Modern Quilt Guild & Quiltcon; plus, features on boutique owners, food bloggers, hotel/B&B owners; and several other women-owned small businesses. Their stories inspire me.

Jul 11, 2015

Sacred Threads exhibition opens today in Washington DC

Teresa Duryea Wong. Dawson Hill, 2015. Machine pieced, hand applique, machine quilted.
 Cotton, cotton and silk thread, glass beads, vintage handkerchief, lace.  39 x 49 inches.
The Sacred Threads exhibition opens today just outside our nation's capitol and I'm so thrilled to be a part of this show.

Sacred Threads is a juried exhibition featuring art quilts that exude joy, spirituality, peace, grief and healing.

What I love most about Sacred Threads is that it’s non-denominational. So we can celebrate all variations of faith… and you don’t find that combination too often.

My art quilt is Dawson Hill... and I was inspired to make this after I saw a large stone Celtic cross that seemed to be looking out over the cemetery where my dad is buried and it just struck me as this huge sentinel in a place that’s filled with so much meaning and history.

After you work on something like for months, it’s actually hard to part with it. But I felt that Sacred Threads is a wonderful venue to share my art with anyone who cares to see it.  

I won't be traveling to Washington to see it, unfortunately. But one of my SAQA friends is going and I am hoping she'll be able to take some pictures for me.  If you're in the area, please go see it!

Here's their website: http://www.sacredthreadsquilts.com/

If you'd like to read more about how I made this, here are my previous posts.

Jul 3, 2015

zebra art quilt finished: "Tanzania Tango"

Black, white and fuchsia. Finished. Hanging on the wall. And titled: "Tanzania Tango."

Teresa Duryea Wong "Tanzania Tango" 2015. Original design. Cotton. Fused applique, machine quilted.
Yep, its finally all finished! The zebras are based on a photo I took in Tanzania a couple of years ago on a safari with my husband and a large group of our family. You can read my previous blog posts about my process (part two) here, and (part one) here.

And here's a pic of "Tanzania Tango" hanging in our family room next to "Holy Cow."

I love the two pieces hanging side by side! Makes me think of modifying that great movie line from "The Big Lebowski" ... "those zebras really tied the room together..."

This is my first attempt at a series, and will probably be my last (at least for a while). I think these two pieces work really well together, but I find working in a series like this to be a bit repetitive (that's such an obvious statement that its kinda funny). Time to move on to something new!

I'm a member of SAQA and I hear/read a lot about the benefits of working in a series and finding your "voice." I can see where there are benefits to working this way.... its just that I have many voices. And I see that as a positive.

What about you? Do you work in a series? Would love to hear your feedback.

Linking up
Finish it up Friday
Off the Wall Friday