Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Art Nouveau CQ Block

As you may know,  I’m participating in an Art Nouveau round robin in Crazy Quilting International.  I just completed my third block (two more to go); this one is for Leslie.  It’s a 6” square block.

Leslie said she loves Alphonse Mucha, probably the most notable of the Art Nouveau era painters.  So on her lovely neutral block I added a silk print of a lady in gown out in the fall garden having a glass of wine.  I love this print and the colors.  As I was thinking about how to proceed, I looked out in my garden and saw our grape arbor.  The grapes are slower than usual this year (cool, rainy, spring and summer was late to arrive), but they are getting fat...  Voila!  The woman definitely needed a grape arbor.  After all, the wine had to come from somewhere!

So I “assembled” an arbor from hand-dyed lace.  This is the golden lace that I dye with potassium permanganate and sell in my Etsy shop.   To that I added grape vines with bead and silk ribbon leaves and seed bead grape clusters.

The chain-stitched tree that extends around the top of the block added much of the rounded element of Mucha paintings.  The rest was added by another piece of lace “grass at the bottom right.  The bottom left area was first painted with a light wash of fabric paint, then silk floss grass and silk ribbon foliage were added.   I toyed with adding wispy ribbons to M’Lady’s dress (stumpwork), but was afraid that would bring her too forward.  And she needs to stay back, beyond the arbor.....

This was a fun (really fun!) block to work on.  Next up is a block for Hideko and I look forward to that.  However, I have to sew myself a bathrobe first.  It’s getting cool here in the mornings and my favorite ol’ bathrobe bit the dust last year, but I lovingly saved some of the romantic pink floral-and-paisley flannel for some project someday..... LOL.    After the bathrobe are some fall-themed things for the Wheeler Farm Country Store, THEN the next Art Nouveau block.   I hope to have that all done in the next couple weeks so I can spend the last half of the month preparing for our CQI Retreat in Colorado at the end of the month.

And finally, yesterday was DGD London’s first birthday.  Wow, how fast can a year fly by???  When she was born, I was sick with the flu and didn’t get to see her for over 10 days.  THIS year I spent most of the day with her and her dad (my son).  She was a bit cranky (unusual for her) in the morning, but was mostly good natured as we hauled her around to the attorney’s office (a custody thing), then to lunch and errands.   One of the errands was intended to be getting her one year pictures taken, and we had her cute little dress and everything packed along.  But we were afraid she was too cranky, so she was still in her ok-to-get-messy playclothes.

In the afternoon at home, London was happy as could be, playing with her things and letting Grammy read to her.  I was too busy to get any good pictures, but did snap this one in the attorney’s office.   If she had been smiling, you could see her four new front teeth.

This weekend we are having a family gathering to officially celebrate her birthday.  We’ll get some cute pictures of her and her party then, I’m sure!

Cathy maroon


  1. What a doll baby. She is too cute to ever be cranky. Loved seeing the block. It is an inspiration for my beginning project on my blog, come see it and give me some ideas, if you get a chance.

  2. I just love that block... I'll have to look at the others..That is one of my favorite silkie...that and the beer one!!!
    Hugs Gerry

  3. Hi Cathy

    I saw the block on CQI but didn't realize you had done the whole block. You have outdone yourself here. It is gorgeous and I love the grapevine going over the arbor and the tree coming up the side is sheer genius.

    London is so sweet. They grow too fast so enjoy yourself with her. Everything else will still be there when she is gone to school.

    See you soon. I am getting excited.



  4. What a beautiful block, and the lace is perfect for the grapevine. Isn't it just a joy to be part of your grand daughter's life. She's a lovely little girl.

  5. What a serious looking little baby. She has a lot going on in her thoughts!

    I love the square. Great job!

  6. Your block is gorgeous Cathy! And I see a little cutie pie at the bottom of the post! ;)

  7. That block is gorgeous. I just found your blog. Happy Friday,

  8. Hi Cathy, I'm here and getting caught up. Happy birthday to London! I can't believe she is already ONE!

    You did such a great job of adding that photo to the block that it looks like it wasn't added at if she really was just standing under a tree...beautiful.

    glad to be back...see u around xo Susan

  9. Cathy, that block is so beautiful...I'm sure the recipient is going to be thrilled. And talking about beautiful,London is adorable...a happy first birthday to her. x


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