Saturday, April 19, 2008

Feeling bright

After several dismal attempts to find a photo that 1) I liked and 2) would fit across the title, I suddenly had the bright idea that I could 'keep' my rainbow strings blocks by making a skinny row for my heading. It looks a little darker than I had expected, but I'm happy with it. (And if you caught the bright pun of feeling smart and my colorful blocks, then you are a person after my own heart.)

Most of my quilting time yesterday and today was spent doing a paper piecing project for my guild's raffle quilt. I have discovered that I am not particularly fond of paper piecing. When I am at my machine, I want to see the fabric, not the paper, go under the needle.

But I also am making some really fun mix-n-match (or mix-n-don't-match!) blocks for a swap I'm in with Donna at Quilt Pixie, Helen at Nap Art, and blogless Helen. They are so fun! It's a marvelous antidote to too much paper piecing. These are still in progress.

And today, as part of the annual Boneyard Arts Festival, I saw a demonstration of Mayan weaving, a technique that endures from pre-Columbian days. Magda Silvia Sotz Mux of Chiq'a'l, Guatemala, demonstrated her weaving techniques.
She wove the blouse (called a po't) she is wearing. It was spectacular, but I was unable to get a good angle for a photo. I took this view of the entire weaving apparatus by looking down from a staircase:
There is a waistband she wears that attaches to the loom, which is attached about 8 feet high at the other end. Here are a couple examples of her weaving. The designs are not necessarily traditional, and they don't have particular significance. The women always weave whatever strikes their fancy. I like that. This top was made in another Guatemalan village, where the women always use blue or purple as their main color. I love the color, but I wouldn't want the constraint of having to use it.
I am completely fascinated by traditional arts. I moved frequently and lived in many places growing up, and I sometimes wonder whether it isn't the sense of permanence, of having a time and place that something fits, that attracts me. Plus, of course, it's gorgeous!


diva of quilts said...

You've just been tagged! Check my blog for the details. ^_^

p.s. those are really gorgeous!

Norma said...

Love your "bright" idea.......that quilt is still calling my name. (and I am trying not to start something new so I am trying NOT to listen.....not working though! LOL )

Ok, so how do you get your banner picture that size? I just get a big one................

Lazy Gal Tonya said...

the header looks great. I didn't move much as a kid, but grew up in a very Wonderbread bland community. I LOVE traditional bright happy textiles and just wish they were a part of my own tradition. these samples are gorgeous.

I haven't paper-pieced much, but I used to always sew with the fabric on top of the paper. it can definitely be done, give it a try.

Joyce said...

It's amazing that in China there was a shop selling crafts made by a minority culture called the Miao, and they were using exactly the same type of loom. The finished textiles looked quite different though, not nearly so colorful. I did see some textiles in different shops that looked very similar to the ones you pictured but not sure who made them.

Belvie said...

I really, really like your bright string blocks as your banner!

I don't like paper piecing either. I would rather someone pull my toenails out with pliers...than for me to do paper piecing! Guess that communicates how much I like it. :-)

Exuberant Color said...

I like your banner.

Paper piecing has its place, once in a while, not very often. I like it for variety but find I can't stick with it very long.

jillytacy said...

Your header looks great. I like your "Bright" idea. The rainbow strings is perfect for the header. A new header for Life With Nature Girl is on my to do list. I've played around with a couple of pictures but haven't tried to upload them yet. I'm afraid I'll screw it up and lose my blog.

Also the weaving looks very cool. I'd really like to try some simple weaving. I'll add that to my list of projects which is probably 50 projects long. Someday!