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Simple Adventures: Wisconsin Museum of Quilts and Fiber Arts

11 Jan

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I took my husband and kids back to my hometown of Cedarburg, Wisconsin for Christmas this year. I love Wisconsin, and even more so love Cedarburg, with it’s quaint old-world charm. In some recent years, a little museum sprang up quite close to my parents house- and I have driven past it wishing I could go in but knowing the name “Wisconsin Museum of Quilts and Fiber Arts” would cause my husband to go running and my kids to poke their eyeballs out. But somehow, magically, their attitudes toward fiber arts have changed- my kids love to crochet, knit, sew, even cross stitch. My husband is in the process of building a spinning wheel from a design he came up with himself. So I asked them to come with me one morning of our Christmas vacation, and nobody put up a fight. Even my youngest teenage brother came along to check it out.

The museum just happened to be hosting a kids beach themed crafting session, so we headed for that first. It was awfully cute to help the kids make their sand-art, t-shirt braided belts, fabric flower lei’s, and origami hawaiian shirts. All surrounded by beautiful quilts, an ancient floor loom, and woven tapestries.

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Origami shirt homemade flower lei

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next we headed to the exhibit, “Japanese Influences in Fiber Arts” upstairs in the huge renovated barn. It was fantastic. I believe the quilts and displays came from the 11th Nihon Quilt Exhibition, and featured some incredible works of art. There was so much detail in some of the pieces, I could have stared at them for hours. There were lots of twists on familiar patterns and techniques, stunning applique, and lots of shine.

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6E5A1645In addition to all the amazing quilts, there were a few other fiber arts featured, most striking were these incredible Temari balls. I didn’t even know this art existed and I would love to learn to make one myself!

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Overall this was an awesome way to spend the cold winter morning! If you would like to check out the museum yourself I highly recommend it. For more information you can visit their website here.

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Since I’ve been gone……

5 Jan

September! I haven’t posted since September! This has been a very busy couple of months, and the time just flew by. I figured I would catch up by posting a bunch of things this week, before I forget everything.

First order of old business:

I went to two Fiber Festivals, Shenandoah Valley and Rhinebeck. The first, Shenandoah, was a small festival held in Virginia, just a short drive out of D.C. It was my first time going to one of these things, and it was kind of like your first time visiting a good yarn shop- totally overwhelmingly awesome. I took the kids and they did great. I took my camera and it did terribly- the battery was D.O.A. Oh well, life happens.

My first order of business was to find Kate and her Gourmet Stash Punis. So I got some, in the “Van Gogh’s Paintbox” Colorway.  Next we wandered a bit, and found all kinds of fibery awesomeness. First there were the ladies spinning angora, directly from the bunnies. I didn’t know you could do that, and I found myself wanting one of these bunnies- so soft. There was also a sheepdog demonstration, and a barn full of animals to visit. Before leaving, I scooped up a cool trindle, and a skein of sock yarn from Dragonfly Fibers, a small art batt and sparkle sock yarn from Puff the Magic Rabbit, and some wool from a small farm in VA which I do not know the name (no tags!).

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Up next was Rhinebeck, a huge fiber festival in Rhinebeck, NY. This time I did not take the kids, and I am glad I did not. They would not have fared well. The drive was long, parking was horrendous, and the grounds were overflowing with people. That all being said, I had a lot of fun. I met up with my girl Vanessa from Vintage Rose Knittique and I made some great new friends. There was a lot of yarn to look at, and I scooped up a fun mostly purple sparkle Loop Batt, along with some Jill Draper Makes Stuff worsted yarn for my awesome babysitter. But overall, I did not find the same small shops/farm sellers. Most everything was stuff you can get online, but it was still nice to be able to squish all the things. I think if I do bother to go back to Rhinebeck, it will be to meet up with friends and podcasters again, and I need to have some sort of shopping plan. The beautiful fall colors and the food was incredible though, I could have sat on the Ravelry hill all day and just people watched and knit and ate!

Art Yarn at Loop

Art Yarn at Loop!

My socks!

My Socks have a photo op on the hill! Totally appropriate here.

Please if you don’t already know these awesome podcasters and shops, go check them out! I can’t wait for the Maryland Sheep and Wool festival coming up- it is going to be awesome! This time I’m taking my husband and the kids- wish me luck- haha.

My first Yarn Bomb sighting!

3 Aug

6E5A0143So you all know by now that I was on vacation in Seattle Washington to visit my sister, it is over now but gosh we had a blast! I think it was on day 2 or 3 when we headed to Bellevue Washington for the BAM! Arts Fair. The whole downtown area was chock full of local artisans, yummy food vendors, live music and of course art projects for kids and grown-ups! As we exited the art museum to go for lunch, there it was! An airborne “river” of blue crochet connecting lampposts and street signs. It. was. AWESOME! Artist Mandy Greer had a booth to teach crochet and apparently you could even create a section to be added onto the exhibit, but unfortunately I was not aware of this part until they had closed down for the evening. It is supposed to still be on display into September so if you are in the area you will be sure to see it!

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