Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Rotary Art Show 2009

The Rotary Club of Drummoyne held their 32nd Art and Quilt Exhibition at the City of Canada Bay Civic Centre, Drummoyne on 24th to 26th July 2009, and we were lucky enough to be asked to participate again.  In 2009 the proceeds went to the Rotary Clubs "Supporting our Community" project.

A view of the hall & some of the stands
As in the previous year, we entered about 30 quilts.  We had a range of cot, crib, lap and single sized quilts and one or two large doubles.   About half of those we exhibited sold.

Here are a handful:

Blue Lightning

Bugs galore
Lets Count

Pink Dreams

Eastern Dreams
Blue Hearts

That year we were encouraged to include some handcrafts amongst our exhibits.  The ladies all got into the act, and despite the huge number of quilts we produced we all made lots of handcrafts too.

There were shopping bags, lavender bags, lingerie carriers, hand made cards, cushions, Christmas decorations, toys for babies, teddy bears, and more.  The tables were groaning with lovely things, and the crafts were very popular.

At the conclusion of the show, the Rotary Club gave us a very generous cheque, which represented our proceeds from the sale of the quilts & crafts.  These funds were used to purchase much needed supplies, so that, you guessed it, we could make some more quilts!

Sunday, 17 March 2013

Working Bee at Darleen's 17 January 2008

For ages now, we have been meeting in the middle of January to do a "special" day.  The reason is lost in the mists of time, but I suspect it all began because in the early days, when we met at Purple Patch, a quilt shop which is sadly no longer with us, the shop was not open from Christmas to the end of January.

You know what quilters are like, more than a week or so between meetings, and we have withdrawal symptoms. LOL

Well we used to use the "special" day for organising ourselves.  All the supplies used to live at the Fearless Leader's aka Darleen's.  So the January day was used to co-ordinate things, sort our supplies, put labels on quilts & so on.  There was also lunch thrown in.  

So here we all are at it.....

Shirley with her back to you, Rema, looking for something, and Cheryl looking busy.  There are folded quilt tops on the table at the front - these need to be matched with wadding & backing and then they will need need pinning & quilting.  A pile of completed quilts at the back of the table.

Can you see Darleen's gorgeous leadlight propped up against the window?  She is so artistic!  She does some really beautiful things, and is a real inspiration to us.  Behind Cheryl is a TV program which used to be on the How to Channel, just to keep us tantalised and inspired.  Not that the Slave Driver (aka Darleen) let us stop to watch too much of that!

That is Cheryl with our hand pieced Hexagon Quilt.  It is yet to be quilted in this photo.

Dasha sewing down binding.

The Slave Driver did let us stop for lunch.  And what a terrific spread it was.  Here we have Rema, Lynn, Colleen & Cheryl tucking into the goodies on the table.  Darleen's hubby had a bunch of his mates there too, doing some voluntary work in the back shed, so the table was full, the jokes flew back and forth, and we had lots of laughs.

Since we have been meeting at the Senior Citizen's Club, we have the use of the hall all through the year, but the "special" day is still observed.  Now its usually an excursion somewhere interesting and a lunch out.  As there are 5 birthdays in January in our little group the mid-January day has become a Birthday Excursion.  More on that some other time.

Monday, 11 March 2013

Lucas Gardens School September 2010

During 2010, we decided to make quilts for all the children who attended the Lucas Gardens School in Five Dock.  The  NSW Public School Locator website describes the school as follows:
"Lucas Gardens School provides educational programs for students with intellectual and physical disabilities, some of whom also have sensory impairments and complex medical conditions. The school operates 6 classes on the Canada Bay site, and retains 2 places for part time enrolment for students in respite care at the Summer Hill Respite Centre. The school draws its enrolment from the Inner West area of Sydney, resulting in a diverse student population from a range of backgrounds."
The school website can be found here
We approached the staff at Lucas Gardens with our proposal, and they supplied us with a list of the children who were attending at the time, and a suggestion of the likes of each of the individual children.  The personal likes and choices the children made were quite diverse, and we had a ball making the quilts.
Here is a selection of the quilts we made:



A Rabbitoes supporter

Dainty butterflys and flowers in mauve and pink

African animals in lush greens
Bright butterflies

And more cars

The handover was in September, and the school invited us all to the Annual School Presentation Day and morning tea.  

Shirley, Colleen & Rema at the Presentation Day

Some very talented staff and parents put together a wonderful collage of photographs of all the kids with their quilts, which was put on display at the morning tea:

Colleen, Rema Jill & Shirley with the collage.

The Lucas Gardens School Newsletter dated 24 September 2010, which is distributed to parents & supporters from the community, featured an article about the quilts we had delivered to them:
"Beautiful Quilts from the Stitching Hearts
In another generous act from our wonderful community, 31 beautifully sewn handmade quilts were delivered to the students of Lucas Gardens School this week, by the very talented ladies of the “Stitching Hearts” group of Nth Strathfield.
Darleen and her group of talented ladies, delivered the beautiful quilts to every student in the school on Tuesday, and whilst we were planning to use these quilts at school, they were so amazing that we decided to send them home to be used and admired in the children’s homes every day!
Each quilt was custom made to suit the interests and preferences of every child, reflecting their likes and personalities, resulting in a rainbow coloured display of creativity and skill.

The City of Canada Bay subsidised the cost of materials for these quilts.  Thankyou to the Stitching Hearts and Canada Bay Council!"

Besides this article, there were several photos of the children with their quilts in this Newsletter, and also other snippets about the quilts were in the news from each classroom.

Monday, 4 March 2013

Rotary Art Show 2008

In 2008 the Rotary Club of Drummoyne (more info here) invited Stitching Hearts to participate in their annual art show.  We were invited to display as many quilts as we wished with a percentage of the proceeds from their sale to be returned to the group to purchase much needed supplies. 

The Rotary Club of Drummoyne's 31st Art & Quilt Exhibition was held at the City of Canada Bay Civic Centre, Drummoyne, on 1-3 August 2008, with the opening night event held on Friday, 1 August 2008, with drinks & refreshments.

We prepared about 30 quilts for display, with about half of these cot sized children's quilts, the rest being lap or single sized.  We had to name each of them for inclusion in the show brochure, sew on the Rotary Club badge as well as our usual Stitching Hearts badge and fix rod pockets on each quilt to allow them to be hung.

The Rotary Club badge is a cloth badge with a royal blue edge which looks like this:

The highlight of the quilt was this double bed sized quilt, which was a striking red & white schoolhouse block quilt.  It was hung on the wall in a very advantageous position, and sold within half an hour of the opening of the exhibition. 

Jill, Shirley, Dasha & Darleen enjoying a glass of bubbly on the Opening Night of the show
Red Heritage House
Here are a couple of the other quilts we exhibited:

Buttterfly Daze
This was a large cot sized quilt, with the cutest panels of butterflys a beetle & a dragonfly, set 3 x 3 with a striped sashing.
Lavender Maze
A variety of mauves, purples and greens were used in this quilt, which was 12 Greek Cross blocks set 3 x 4, with sashing, cornerstones and a couple of borders. 
There's a Bear in There
A child's bed quilt with stars appliqued onto squares, and a band of bear's heads peeking out at the top of the quilt.  As usual, photography does not do the quilt justice.

The cot & children's quilts sold extremely well, and there were also several of the larger quilts sold.  Much to our surprise and delight!  The local paper, Inner West Weekly ran an article advertising the show on Thursday, 31 July 2008 p.29, which featured a photo of Jill & Darleen holding the Red Heritage House quilt with the president of Rotary, Dale Larsen.

Inner West Weekly, Thursday, 31 July 2008 p.29 
It reads:

"Drummoyne Rotary Club's popular Art and Quilt Exhibition opens its doors next weekend for the 31st year.

This year's exhibition features more than 230 pieces of art, as well as stunning quilts made by the Stitching Hearts charity group from Cabarita.

The group has completed 200 quilts since its inception in 2004.

Peter Messer, from Showcase of Australian Art, who has a long association with the Drummoyne Rotary Club, will present 140 paintings, including works of Suzanne Sommer, one of Australia's top-selling artists.

Working in acrylic, oil and pastel she is best known as a contemporary artist and a romantic impressionist painter.

Art dealer Murray Rodgers will also showcase 60 paintings.

'This annual exhibition had been one of the highlights of the local calendar, and over the years we have raised thousands of dollars for local community projects.' Drummoyne Rotary Clup president Dale Larsen said. ' This year we are supporting the Heamatology Clinic Trials Unit at Concord Hospital as well as other Rotary community projects.'

There will be a raffle for a Sommer painting valued at $1495 and other prizes."

In 2008 the proceeds from the show went to The Haematology Clinical Trials Unit, Concord Hospital and other Rotary community projects. 
The generous cheque, representing our percentage of the sales, which the Rotary Club presented to us, we used for the purchase of batting to enable us to make more quilts.  Although most of the fabric we use in quilts is donated to us by members of the community, the single, most expensive item we use is batting, or wadding as it is sometimes called, the soft centre layer of the quilt, which gives it its warmth.