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Thursday, January 3, 2013

Viewing for Inspiration


Gaches Mansion in 1891
Yesterday, I mentioned how I'd gone to the LaConner Quilt and Textile Museum.  This treasure in the Northwest is located in the fabulous Gaches mansion, which was built in 1891.  Unfortunately, this landmark suffered a horrendous fire in 1973 and it was questionable whether the mansion would be torn down or rebuilt.  Luckily for all of us, a group of LaConner residents were successful in getting the mansion recorded on the National Register of Historic Places and getting a grant for restoration.

Gaches Mansion Fire in 1973
The history of the mansion and the quilt museum which now occupies the historic building is quite fascinating... You can find it in the Museum's History Section of their website.

Gaches Mansion today




The museum is now closed through mid-February for interior renovation.  The main cost is for a fire-suppression system... rather a necessity, don't you think?  As of today, Jan 3, 2012, they still need to raise $950 more for the fire suppression.  If you want to donate to a worthy cause, please go to their website and click the "Make a Donation" button.


Dragon Moon Kimono by Cathy Erickson
The quality of the shows at the museum is incredible.  I was able to see two exhibitions.  The first was the "Best of the Festival" featuring all the amazing award-winning quilts from the yearly  LaConner Quilt Fest, an International juried show.  The entrants in this show include so many award-winning quilters that they have made "Masters" divisions for those who have won major awards in the past versus the Open divisions (so up and rising quilters will get their chance to win without having to compete against the Masters.)  The winner of the "Best Machine Quilting" for the whole show was Cathy Erickson (mentioned in yesterday's post) with her "Dragonfly Moon Kimono" pictured here.

Detail of Cathy Erickson's "Dragon Moon Kimono"
When you look at the detail of this quilt, you can get a sense of how utterly amazing Cathy's quilting is.  She is a master at micro-quilting. The little overlapping circles (a common Japanese-styled quilting pattern) are only about 1/4" across.  If I hear of Cathy doing any classes or demonstrations, I'll be sure to let you know (as soon as I get signed up!)

I guess my main point tonight is just how important it is to expose yourself to art that you find inspirational.  Because of seeing Cathy's quilt last week, I was inspired to try out micro-quilting.  Of course, not everyone has such a resource practically in their backyard, but that's what is wonderful about the internet and blogging is that you can find inspiration every day.  I hope you'll go ahead and start on your own 5x7 challenge piece today and be ready to reveal your first week's art on Tuesday January 8.

By the way, thanks to Carol from "Landscape Lady" who recommended that we get a flickr group for sharing our photos.  I'm setting it up and will have it ready before Tuesday.  More on the shows I saw in La Conner coming soon!

You might also be interested in:
52 Week Challenge to Readers
Getting Started Might be the Hardest Part
Designing for a Theme




1 comment:

  1. Ohhh. Thank you for sharing. The Kimono is amazing.

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