Friday, 28 February 2014

Lucy the Pug

I just had to share with you all today this stitched portrait of my beloved pug. I was just fooling around and felt inspired. She is so adorable and I wanted to capture her with her little tongue sticking out.

It is small, about 8" x 11".

Eclat de Joie - Commission

I was very honoured to receive a commission from a very talented member of our guild recently. She does beautiful handwork and my work could not be more different from hers, but she is a big fan of my work and asked me to create a piece for her. I was delighted to do so. "Eclat de joie" {Burst of Joy}measures 36" x 24"; the quilt is mounted on acrylic-painted canvas. I brought it over to her last weekend, she had not seen it before (she didn't want to see photos during the creation process) and she LOVED IT! I could not be happier.
Here it is on its own and installed in her living room.

Website and blog page updated

I have updated the blog page - on the right - and the Red page and members' pages on the website.  The quilts look great. 

..................and the next colour is......................

Red Challenge

Red Challenge
This piece is from a series of collographs onto mulberry paper called " Home". I have been working towards a solo show that is coming up in late summer using variations of this format and now have some larger pieces completed toward my goal.
 I find that they are starting to resemble still life compositions at times, though quite misty, seen from above, and all continue to be anchored in thoughts about the necessity of a safe harbor in which to feel at peace.
 The closest I could get to the red was the small area in the picture of pink/orange but I notice this one would also nicely fit into the periwinkle section. I guess it is still on the brain as a very useful colour!       


I have to start by admitting that I no longer have this piece. When SAQA put out a call for 7" x 10" entries to its 25th anniversary travelling trunk show, I made what came naturally to me: a red piece. When I showed it to fellow 12btd members in Montreal, they said, but it's RED! So although it is a tiny bit smaller than "regulation" size, it is definitely the right colour, and speaks straight from my heart.
"Breaking the glass."

During a Jewish wedding ceremony, the bridegroom breaks a glass. This symbolizes the destruction of our ancient temple in Jerusalem.  Some say this is symbolic of moralizing pleasure and tempering emotions.
The carpet in the synagogue where our daughter got married almost 7 months ago is a beautiful, rich red colour.  This image, showing much of the richness of this carpet was an obvious choice for this challenge - red.
Thanks to Heather Dubreuil, for generously instructing me on the technical aspects of this piece.

I seem to be fixated on planets at the moment as I seem to be veering towards this theme but nevertheless enjoyed doing it it.  We were playing with Lutradur in our group and decided to try this medium out on my piece, therefore some of the rays of the sun are speckled as I used my heat gun and distressed some Lutradur, which turned out all crinkled and then placed it between teflon sheets and ironed it flat and then painted them red, cut them out and spray glued them onto my piece before stitching them in place.  They give a bit of texture overall. 
My 'eclipse' was done in black net but in the photograph does not seem to have shown itself as well as I would have liked.  However I did have fun with it.

Three reds

Like Dianne, ideas kept coming and, in spite of my sewing machine being away services for several weeks, I have managed three.  Yes, shoot me down.

The first is a bit naf and although I love the idea the execution is poor.  A bit of hand sewing is a first for me.
The second was just something I wanted to try out using the design software and my embroidery unit.  It was fun creating - a so-and-so stitching out but I think I achieved what I set out to do - a Wordle type design of words related to our visual source. 
(For those who are interested I have a Bernina 640 and the latest version of the embroidery software.)

Wordle red
 But the piece I am submitting as my contribution is the one I have had most fun with.  Who knows why the idea came to me?  I saw a large billboard along the motorway with great big tomatoes on it  - one cut in half - and I immediately saw can-can ladies skirts!  A trip to the supermarket, one gorgeous Marmonde (hence the name) tomato bought, sliced and photographed and I was away.  The work is based on the poster by Toulouse Lautrec.  The tomatoes were part appliqued and part fused.  The legs are fused.  The black outline of the ladies was traced, uploaded into the design software, digitized and stitched out.  The lettering was also stitched by the machine.  A bit of paint completed the picture.   It still brings a smile to my face - if only all my creations were as easy and as much fun!
Tomato Can Can
Looking forward to our next colour, Hilary

Yes, it's red!

Lots of layers of paint and three sizes of stencil went together to make this piece. Unfortunately I'm not at home at the moment and the photo Is far from true. But I can replace the photo, I wouldn't want to replace the fantastic week that is coming to a close with fellow CQ members. Lots of stitching, learning and laughter - you couldn't ask for more!

The photo is now rotated so that you've a better chance of seeing the text in the layers of paint. I cut my own stencil in several different sizes and used a Gelliplate to build up the layers. I began hand stitching the swirls but even with fabric medium mixed in with the paint, the layer was too thick to respond to the stitch so it is completely machine quilted!

View from the High Line: Red Challenge

View from the High Line, 11" x 8.5"
For a starting point, I chose a photo (below) that I took while walking the High Line linear park in New York. As I played with these warm colours, I imagined the reflected glow on the buildings as the sun set over the Hudson River.

I like the way the cylinders of the water towers contrast with the rectangles of the buildings. With only a line to delineate the towers, they link the middle ground to the background of the sky.

photo taken in Chelsea area of Manhattan

This piece was hung as part of my solo show at the Kirkland Library. It was made within a few days of another piece very similar to it, though a little smaller, Water Tower #4, which has been donated to a SAQA traveling trunk show.

Red Delight

Not long after the colour was announced I was putting together a Christmas cushion cover for my guild which included a large red felt poinsettia flower in the middle of the cushion.  I had lots of bits of felt over, found the background fabric and promptly put this little number together.

Afterwards I thought, what a cop out. Seeing I had plenty of time still to go I carried on looking for some inspiration which I am afraid did not happen hence this is it.  A sweet little red and black number! 


Finished in the nick of time, about 6pm yesterday!  I wanted to use this idea of narrow stripes again, and black was the only possible choice.  My father was diagnosed with terminal cancer in early January, and died on the 6th February.  This piece was largely made the day before we went to his funeral, and when we got back early afternoon yesterday.  I realised after the piece was put together that the starry fabric really stands out, which is fine as my Dad was a star to me.


I was delighted to finally use a circle cutter that I've had for a couple of years. I couldn't help but join the celebration of the Olympics and quilting.

Double indemnity

I think that these challenges have finally stimulated my creative juices.  I'm coming up with several ideas and this time I've actually done them.  I confess that in actuality they are in a 12"x12" format as the Montreal Women's Art Society requires a square format this year.  I'm not sure they will go in (March 1 is my deadline!) in which case they may be chopped back to the format you see here.

Red Tide
A challenge was given out at the guild  and so  24 of us were given a colour from the colour wheel and we are to make a 16x36" piece which will "read" the colour that we were assigned.  This was one of my ideas.  I have actually made the top in a geometric fashion, but may make this one up in that size as well.  It will require a lot more creative quilting than this.

This is based on some photos that I have taken while cross country skiing this year so this is my husband posing for me.  

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Red is Still in My Head...

I, too, must ask forgiveness and an extension for this deadline for the Red Challenge. I have been very sick off and on since December and have not been able to get to this deadline. I apologize as I do not want to let our group down...I will finish and post it before the end of March. I am looking forward to the big reveal tomorrow!! Drumroll, please.

Friday, 21 February 2014


I'm in a panic - it was only when Michele was announced as the "dictator" for our next round that I realised that this round needs to be completed by next Friday.  As some of you know, I've had a sad start  to the year, and I'm away for most of next week.  I shall endeavour to have something completed by the end of the month, but if I fail to post on time, please bear with me and I shall certainly get something made by the following week.

I've also just got out my fabrics, and am amazed at how little actual red fabrics I have in the drawer labelled "red/brown".  This may be tricky!!

Thursday, 20 February 2014

And the next challenge will be chosen by ....

...... Michele.

Thanks to Heather for reminding me to get out the hat from which to choose our next challenger. Life is just a bit busy here at the moment.My local, mainly traditional group has it's biennial two day quilt show with over 100 quilts starting tomorrow for the weekend. This is just one section:

On Monday I get to spend five days with fellow quilters on a retreat  in our beautiful Lake District.  This was the view from my bedroom last year!

Then there's a breather, rather than a rest, whilst we spend a weekend with our daughter and family and the following Monday it's time to set up an exhibition of work by a local textile group that I belong to. It's wonderful stuff, and very exciting but I fear that I'm going to drop one of the spinning plates shortly!

Monday, 17 February 2014

New tool

I'm very pleased with the results from using the Olfa Compass cutter.

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Friday, 14 February 2014

So excited!

I am thrilled to have been profiled on the British-based website, This site, produced by Sam and Joseph Pitcher, has a serious, international following.

Not only do they feature in-depth profiles of artists working in the full spectrum of textile art, but they also offer very helpful articles on subjects like choosing venues for your work, photographing your work, and selecting attractive templates for your website.

You can check me out at:

This is definitely a career highlight for me! No doubt it is all downhill from here.

Thursday, 13 February 2014

A cause to Celebrate!

Our challenge in August 2012 was Jubilation, suggested by Linda Forey and no doubt prompted by the frenzy in the Commonwealth over the Queen's Diamond Jubilee.

So delighted to see that TWO of these 12btd challenge pieces have been chosen for the Members' Gallery, in the Winter 2014 issue of the SAQA Journal. The theme for the gallery is Celebration, and included are Dianne's piece, based on her photo of a neighbour's grandchild jumping into the lake, and mine, with my hot pink birthday candles.

The Journal can be read on-line, but I believe access is limited to SAQA members.

Monday, 10 February 2014

Photos from my solo show opening

Many thanks to Michele and Helena for help with the hanging of my Cityscapes show, running concurrently with the Synthesis II exhibit. It would have been completely overwhelming without their able assistance. Here are some photos from today's opening, which saw lots of family and friends turn out. I had sixteen pieces on display, including one in the lobby, positioned to lure in the visitors.

Photos of Synthesis II opening

After the hanging on Friday,
Helena studies her Vinyasa

Quebec's first-ever SAQA exhibit had its opening today at the Kirkland Library. On display were twenty pieces, celebrating the variety of technique and theme in contemporary art quilts.

Heather, on left, talks to visitor, while Helena
looks into Michele's camera 

Dianne and Colleen discuss the exhibit
On far left is Heather's Tuscany 5, which sold
at the vernissage
We were happy to welcome about 50 visitors
over the two hours.

Thanks to Michele and Helena for bringing their talents and stamina to the hanging of the show!

Sunday, 9 February 2014

Plea to all artists to use new media

Thanks for the post on Ann Johnston's new video DVD, Heather.  I am making a plea, though, for all artists to consider making content available for download on tablets.  I was prompted  to the possibilities of this by Delia Smith the cookery celebrity who now has a cookery online course which even children are using by following the recipes on their tablets in the kitchen.  How great is that?

These mini laptops are so portable and are the answer to being able to take the information right to the place of work - garage for dyeing, sewing room for stitching - even retreat for patterns, techniques, etc.

Incidentally, I am about to renew my subscription to Quilting Arts and will go down the online version route.  Several reasons -

1.  I don't have room for any more magazines,
2.  I don't have to pay the postage (expensive to Europe)
3.  I love being able to zoom in
4.  You have direct links to URLs

How times have changed!  Any thoughts?


Monday, 3 February 2014

My upcoming solo show

Heather Dubreuil, Open Door, Riga, #2, 24 x 18

Delighted to announce my upcoming solo show, which will be held at the same time and place as the SAQA regional show Synthesis II. I hope to be showing about a dozen of my recent Cityscapes.

These two recent pieces were based on photos taken by Lauma Cenne on her recent visit to Latvia. Thank you, Lauma!

Heather Dubreuil, Open Window, Cesis, 24 x 18 

February 8 - 27 at the Kirkland Library, Kirkland, QC
Monday - Friday, 10 am - 9 pm and Saturday - Sunday 10 am - 5 pm

Vernissage Sunday, February 9, 2 - 4 pm.

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Quebec's first-ever SAQA exhibition

Vinyasa, Helena Scheffer

Helena Scheffer and Heather Dubreuil are delighted to have their work included in Quebec's first-ever SAQA exhibition.

As many of you know, SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Associates) is an international group devoted to the promotion of the art quilt.  Its 3000-plus members include several of us at 12 by the dozen. The Central Canada region, with more than 130 members, has put together a juried group show which has already been seen in six Ontario galleries.
Tuscany #5, Heather Dubreuil 

The twenty works by 16 artists celebrate the wide range of technique and subject seen in this contemporary art form.

Synthesis II will be shown at the Kirkland Library, 17100 Hymus Blvd., Kirkland QC, February 8 - 27. Hours are 10 am - 9 pm Monday to Friday, and 10 am to 5 pm Saturday and Sunday.

A vernissage will be held on Sunday, February 9, from 2 - 4 pm.