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Sunday, March 16, 2008


What a surprising end to a busy week!

I've been puttering around, trying to get all the fabrics I need and the parts department collected for my upcoming trip to Cambria. 3 of my friends and I will be having our own personal retreat the first week of April in Cambria, California, right by the ocean! I'm am getting pretty excited now!

I've decided I am going to work on my Michigan fruit baskets, and Hubby has decided that the quilt now needs to be king sized. That means I have 52 more baskets to make. And THAT means I have a lot of parts to get ready. Remember these? I have about 20% of the half square triangles readied, but that's still about 400 more to go.

So, in the middle of this, one of my neighbors who follows what my art projects are, stopped by to see if I would be willing to make a lap quilt for her husband. I was showing her my ideas, and then I showed her this one for the size.
She gasped and asked if it was available; it was JUST what she wanted! So last night, I sewed down the binding, and sold it to her today. She thinks she got a bargain, and I am pleased with my profit - so we both win. Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of it after it was completely quilted, but you get the idea, right?

While she was here she asked if she could talk to me seriously about contracting for a commissioned art piece. It was my turn to gasp (inwardly), and we talked a bit about what she wanted. Her husband is an avid Bonsai horticulturist. I guess that's what you call them:) He is difficult to buy for, and what man isn't?, so she thought he would enjoy an art piece of a bonsai. She is planning it for her bedroom, and has given me complete liberty with color, size and materials. Of course, I couldn't let the idea go after she left, so here's my first sketches of where I want to go. Now, it will just have to gel in my head for a while until I get there.

The Kanji script is BONSAI-two words that mean tree in a pot. Nothing special there, eh? I did learn, however, that there are and sharis and jins in bonsai, which are bark stripped areas either on the trunk or a branch, so I can have a higher contrast in the trunk areas for texture. I also learned that all bonsai pots should have feet for proper drainage, and the shape of the pot is artistically matched with the shape of the tree. The kind of bonsai I seemed to be most attracted to in many different types of pictures was always the Moyogi, which is an informal upright. The windswept ones are just too severe, and the cascading ones, while beautiful, just don't inspire me to work on it in fiber.

Now, I have something to look for when I am out shopping on the left coast. I think I'd like to find something light and airy for behind the tree - maybe even an old piece of kimono silk? Who knows where this story will take me?


cher said...

that will be such an inspiration to plan and work on...I know you will have a wonderful time on your retreat-great, great baskets!

Nancy said...

I'm such a sucker for a basket quilt, and yours are marvelous.

n, np

Karrin Hurd said...

I too am a sucker for basket quilts, I love your fruit baskets! Have a great trip!

Ms. Jan said...

Love the basket blocks! The central coast is was our home away from home when I was a child. We went to Cayucos (10 miles south) every summer and my parents retired there. Now both of my sisters live there. You will have a blast and don't miss Quilter's Cupboard in Atascadero!

Darlene said...

Love, love your Michigan fruit baskets. So, sweet and love the rick rack on the handle.

Patty Cramer said...

Hey Girl,

You're coming to Cambria? WOW I have a dear friend down there - where are you staying? Maybe I'll drive down to see you.

I am going to visit my granddaughter in Las Vegas on Friday - but will be back on April 1st!!

Patty Cramer - Miss You - Your stuff is gorgeous

ROZ said...

I love Cambria, although I must confess it's been a few years since we went to Hearst Castle, now. The baskets are really wonderful. You have so much patience and accuracy! I have always had a tree wall hanging in the back of my mind, but I haven't come up with an inspiration yet. I think of Psalm number One--"A tree by the water".

Kathy said...

I love your basket!!! You inspire me.

Now, you have been tagged!!!! Weird and Wacky. go to my blog for details.

Judy said...

OH I just love those pretty bright baskets...always plan to do a basket quilt one day. Have a great time on your retreat!!

The bonsai quilt shows really neat!

Anonymous said...

I love that little basket block with the ric rac! I'm jealous you're going to Cambria. You'll love it. Very pretty there.