Tanana Valley Fair, 2009

Well, I was surprised to round up seven things to enter in this year’s Tanana Valley State Fair, and even more surprised to get two class champions, three firsts, three seconds, and a third. I also won the Bob Hage award for the most unusual piece of needlework in the Needlework Division.

There are larger images on my Flickr site, if you’re interested…

Dinosaur’s Garden

Flowers were drawn freehand and colored with wax crayons, then embellished with simple embroidery. The grass is a silk hanky, separated into a single layer, covered with netting, and embroidered. The green felt at the bottom is stitched onto the quilt, covering the edges of the silk hanky. The tiny dinosaur at the bottom right corner is a commercial applique, as is the dragonfly. The butterfly-gosh, I can’t remember what it really was; a pin maybe? This was just a fun little experiment with crayons on fabric. Made in 2007. Class champion and first place in the art quilt division.

Blue Fish Reef

The block print in upper right corner was made in a print making class at the University of Alaska Fairbanks in 1992 or 1993. It’s my own design, and I’ve used several variations of it in different quilts. The kelp bed in the lower lefthand corner as well as the print fish, are embellished with ribbons that are folded, embroidered, and beaded, with some buttons attached. The small fish and the star fish are entirely hand embroidered. Made in 1998. Third place in the quilt division.

Photo box

I found this field box in a pile of junk at work, and kept it for a couple of years before figuring out what to do with it. I think it was originally used for taking field notes; data sheets were stored in the box and it was a good surface for taking notes and filling out data sheets. I liked the rough weathered finish, so I didn’t do any re-finishing of the wood but just washed the dust and cobwebs off. I used the peeling bark off birch trees in my yard to cover the sliding cover, gluing them down with a lot of diluted acrylic gel. There are two small clothes pins, painted a flesh color, to hold a mounted photo. Made in 2009. Second place in the reduce/reuse/recycle division.

Embroidered pillow

The pillow cover was constructed several years ago by machine. The folded fabric flowers are based on designs found in Fabled Flowers by Kumiko Sudo. The design and placement of the flowers and leaves is my own plan. The flowers are embellished with chain stitches and french knots; the leaves are embellished with feather stitches, and cotton and metallic threads. The stems are feather stitches in three shades of green cotton embroidery thread, or chain stitch and back stitch. Made in 2003. Class champion, first, and winner of the Bob Hage award in the needlework division.

Black lace hat

This hat was an experiment to see if I could make a full-brimmed hat that was stylish and comfortable to wear. It was a challenge to make the brim stiff enough so that it didn’t flop into my eyes! I used a discarded skirt, and a bolero vest I found at the transfer station. It’s based on a baseball cap, and I drew the brim pattern to fit the cap pattern I’ve used on many, many hats. The seams on the crown are covered in ribbon and embroidered with black feather stitches. The lace drooping off the edge of the brim was the hem of the skirt. I purposely left flowers off, as I couldn’t decide which ones to use! Any color that compliments the outfit worn with the hat will work. All the stitching was done by hand. 2009. First in the sewing division.

Needlelace hat

I’ve written about this hat earlier; it was entered in a competition in England two years ago, but didn’t garner any awards then. I made it in 2007. This year it placed second in the needlework division.

Bra bag

I found this black lace bra along my road while walking the dog; it must have escaped from someone’s laundry basket. And who’d want it back? But it was too pretty to just throw away. I added some Chinese style black on black fabric to the top, lined it with white cotton fabric, and embroidered small leaves and flowers on it. I also added a couple of silk flowers. The drawstring handle fits over my wrist, dangling alongside my leg. All the stitching was done by hand. Made in 2009. Second in the sewing division.

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