Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Art for kids

I am going to get a double honor this month. I have a quilt in Fiberart International 2010, the prestigious triennial show that opens in Pittsburgh on April 16. And I have also been invited to be the guest artist for a “drop-in studio” that will be set up at the Society for Contemporary Craft, where my piece will be on exhibit.

The drop-in studio is a place where visitors can make a little bit of art to take home. It’s usually children 4-10, who spend between 15 and 45 minutes working. The museum likes to present projects that relate to art on display at the time.

Postage 1: Regatta -- detail
on display in Fiberart International 2010

My work on display is one of my “postage” quilts, a grid of little stitched rectangles that are suspended from threads. My project for the drop-in studio is to let the kids make patches by glueing little designs to 2-inch squares of denim. The museum is going to cut the squares from old jeans and come up with a pile of fabric scraps that can be cut into designs. Low-budget projects being a good thing in the art world these days, this one should be a real winner because the only thing they’ll have to buy will be a bottle of Elmer’s Glue.

I have made a bunch of samples that will be on display, and last week I invited my granddaughter Zoe over to make some patches and then model possibilities for what to do with them.

Note patch affixed to backpack

Unfortunately, the drop-in studio is unsupervised, and while scissors are OK, the staff is hesitant to put out needles. So if any sewing has to be done, it will have to be done at home. It will be OK, of course, to glue the patches to shoes, caps, notebooks, backpacks, etc. but not to anything that has to go through the wash. But I hope that some grown-up will step up to the plate and help the kids sew the patches on their sweatshirts or pants.


  1. Congratulations on your acceptance in this prestigious exhibition and for being selected to do the event. Soak it all in and report back. I'm very proud of you and for you.

  2. Congratulations! And you'll have a great time at the drop-in studio.

  3. It is a completely wonderful piece and deserves all the honors it gets. Congratulations. Plus it gives me great hope that a fellow consultant can really create beautiful pieces after years of talking and writing for a living! You give me hope.

  4. Thanks to you all for your kind words. This is the first time I have entered Fiberart International and it's quite a thrill to have gotten in. Eagerly waiting to see what else is in the show (to my knowledge they have not even posted the names of the artists let alone the type of work).