I couldn't resist playing with the line-up ...
I wonder how these will end up being displayed.
Today our Thursday bee group had a "Spirit" party to reveal the finished spirit dolls. This included each of us contributing to a buffet of yummy things for lunch. The only spirits to drink were teas. Our dolls pinned to a display board was the center piece at the end of the buffet table
At some point I turned them around to take photos of their backsides.
Eight of us participated in this round robin of dressing and decorating individually made dolls from a pattern I had designed. One of them and her owner, Sandy, were unable to be there.
After lunch each of us presented our doll for discussion by the group. The thing that amazed me was that the completed spirit dolls reflected qualities of their owners. That shouldn't be surprising about those of us who have been long time members, but there were a couple of participants who are pretty new to the group. Each of these beauties speaks pretty loudly about their mistress.
This past week my spirit doll returned home after making the rounds of SMQ Guild's Thursday bee members participating in this project.
So I've been working on her a bit. I stitched her hands together so she can hold the acorn gift that Susan Lenz gave me when I met her in South Carolina last January.
She gained breasts and a derriere made in the "yo yo" technique ... the gathered side placed up and decorated with wood beads for her top while they're placed down to give her a smooth bottom. I also lengthened her tutu skirt by dropping it down and suspending it with lengths of yarn from her waist. A layer of leaves cut from the piece I made for this quilt is sewn to her wings.
The other spirit doll with lovely hair is the last one passed to me. One of my additions was to lengthen her tutu by stitching silk flower petals to the hem. While I was at it, silk blossoms with silk ribbon centers were added for decoration.
She, too, gained a yo-yo derriere. Her skirt is parted to give you a better view.
I couldn't resist posing them in front of the two latest prairie flower mini quilts.
All the spirit dolls will be brought to bee next Thursday. Come back then to see pictures taken of all these beauties at the "spirit" party.
This quilt, "Secret Windows", spotlighted the Smoky Mountain Quilt Guild Show at the 1998 Dogwood Arts Festival.
It was begun from a collection of scraps back in 1994 when I was a new quilter. A classmate in a one week workshop with Nancy Halpern was throwing out scraps of material that were larger than the fabric samples I had brought to work with. After I had made a fuss about finding them in the trash barrel, she consented to save those scraps if I found a bag in which to collect them. During the week after I got home, I sewed every scrap into "crazy quilt" squares. Originally, I had set them together to be a child's quilt that would be donated to the Ronald McDonald House
My husband and friends protested it being given away. So, through the next few years I'd occasionally make more crazy quilt squares from my own scraps. It grew into a full-size quilt that ended up being a Christmas present for our younger son and his wife.
It still looks good all these years later as you can see in a photo taken this summer.
I like to piece the backs of quilts.
The hand quilting is more easily viewed from the backside.
The crazy quilt squares set on point are quilted with satin-stitches using two strands of variegated floss. There was no way I was going to hand-quilt a running stitch across all those seams.
The portraits were cut from a shirt sewn by my mother-in-law for my husband with fabric featuring artists from the Expressionist period. It was a great shirt for the 1970's ... worn with chains at the open collar plus a wide belt with a big buckle and platform shoes. Woo Hoo! Let's do the Hustle.
This is the first quilt in which Elvis made an appearance.
I still have some of the home decorator fabric that was cut apart for the triangles around the crazy quilt squares. The printed squares are two and half inches.
Maybe I'll make another window quilt with crazy quilted blocks from the many bags of scraps collected in the ten years since this quilt was begun.
The Smoky Mountain Quilt Guild members made this quilt in 2004. It honors the victims of that infamous day, September 11th of 2001, as well as the new found spirit of courage and unity of the American people that resulted from this tragedy.
It was created in conjunction with an exhibition of September 11th quilts at the Knoxville Art Museum (those quilts were part of the collection that was gathered immediately after 9/ll and exhibited at the Houston show by Karey Bresenhan and can be viewed in this book).
The individual blocks for this quilt were made and donated by guild members. The quilt was designed and hand-quilted in the museum gallery over several Sundays during the exhibition by SMQ members. When members were not quilting at the big frame, they were docents for the exhibition.
Following are close-up photos.
The writing around the center block reads, "The legacy of September 11, 2001 is one of strength, compassion, determination, resolve, and a new spirit. We honor the victims in NYC, Pennsylvania, and Washington DC."
The upper left corner blocks...
the top center blocks ...
the upper right corner blocks ...
the blocks on the right side ...
the lower right corner blocks ...
the bottom center blocks ...
the lower left corner blocks ...
the blocks on the left side ...
The center block is my contribution. To read how the lettering was stitched go here. To view the 9/11 quilt, "Out of the Rubble" I created go here.
The spirit dolls have changed hands three times.
These first two pictures are from Patty. She's in charge of the exchange.
My contribution to each is a pair of breasts since I didn't include any when I designed the pattern*.
They are made "yo-yo" style, stuffed with a circle cut from batting, and have nipple decorations to conceal the hole and stitching where the fabric is drawn up.
This one was given "Bee" wings and button buttocks by one of the participants before I got her.
What are the chances of my finding a fabric in my stash that matched the dolls body so well that she looks bare breasted?
We Thursday Bee ladies are having fun!
*click on the word "pattern" to be taken to the introductory post for the Spirit Doll. There are two links at the end of that post ... one for printing out the pattern and the other for printing out assembly instructions.