Sunday, April 09, 2006

More from Bishop's Ranch

It is only today that I have finished unpacking my sewing gear from last week's retreat. I'm still buzzing with inspiration, which is only slightly dampened by the reality of grocery shopping, laundry, floor-mopping, and other chores that are a bit out of hand around here.

But I'll pretend I'm at the ranch a bit longer, and show you a few more pictures featuring women from the Mt. Tamalpais Quilt Guild in Marin. A few entries ago, I introduced you to the back of Pat Dicker's head. She's the talented quilter who has the same taste in bright fabric that I do. Well, here she is again.

This is Pat's free-motion quilting practice quilt. Uh huh! Instead of using a scrap of batting and leftover fabric to warm up each time she sat down to do free-motion quilting, Pat assembled this top from left-over squares of novelty prints she had. Don't you love the artful arrangement of color? Then she sandwiched it and each time she was getting ready to quilt, she did a bit of free-motion quilting here to start. This is a charming mix of different patterns and threads and colors and the result is absolutely charming.

We both have an obsession fondness for the quilts made by Freddy Moran. Here she is showing one of her house quilts, which she was using as her bedspread during the retreat.

This charming chicken quilt is based on a Mary Lou Weidman pattern, done with Pat's usual wacky humor and flair for color. Can you see that some of the chickens are sitting on easter eggs?

This is one of the several projects Pat was working on during the retreat...a fancy tumbling blocks pattern from a Laura Nownes/Diana McClun pattern. And those red blocks over to the side? Pat would randomly switch and work on fusing those, too.

I apologize to Sydne for the inopportune moment at which I snapped this...She doesn't normally walk around with her mouth wide open like this! But it was my only shot of this lovely little quilt made from a Robbi Joy Ecklow pattern. Sydne was assembling the top at our last retreat, so it was fun to see it finished.

This is Diane Ansel, also from the Marin area. Some of you might recognize this quilt from various shows...and yes, if you saw it, it probably had a big old ribbon near it! Diane is especially proud that this won the Viewer's Choice award at Art Quilt Tahoe last year ... in fact, it took 2 of the 4 ribbons awarded there.

Diane's a quilter of eclectic taste. She's only been quilting for 4 years, I think she told me -- or was it 6? In any event, it's short given her talent and prolific output. Here she is with a star quilt she made in a class with Alex Anderson:

This soft pastel top is so pretty. (I think I crave pink around this time of year.)

I was enthralled watching Diane work during this retreat. She was making a small fish quilt for a close friend, which looked like this early in the retreat:

I love the piecing and staggered strips in the backround. (This is lying on a table, hence the skewed perspective.) By the end of the retreat, Diane had THIS:

You can't see all the beading and detail stitching, but trust me, it's there.

Isn't it gorgeous, and doesn't Diane look pleased?! (Of course, if I had just made this and I was about to head off to Paris for a month like *she* is, I'd be looking pretty pleased, too!)

You can tell that this retreat is about giving women who enjoy each others' company space to relax, sew, and laugh together. It doesn't matter if people are beginners or advanced quilters, and it doesn't matter that an art quilter is working next to someone making a traditional pattern with reproduction fabrics. There's no competition. We enjoy quilting and each other, and that's enough.


  1. I just love Diane A's fish - the background is stunning a diffeent from the norm - which I love!!

  2. thanks for showing all of the wonderful quilts and works of all of these talented women.

  3. Anonymous11:08 PM

    That Pat is one talented quilter!