Friday, April 15, 2011

Meeting Notes: CT Regional Meeting at Brookfield Craft Center

BBC_logo This past Saturday a lively group of our members met at Brookfield Craft Center.  For those of you who have never been, it's a complex of several "colonial" buildings on a gorgeous river side setting. 

THANK YOU Mayann Weinberg for arranging our meeting at Brookfield, providing drinks & veggie appetizers, and even volunteering to pick up our lunch order!

The day began with a few announcements and reminders:

    • Portfolio 18 for PAM (Professional) members – Deadline for Digital Entries 4/30/11
    • And to ALL SAQA members:
    • Submissions of images for “Blue” theme in SAQA Journal – Deadline 4/30/11
    • SAQA:Structures in Cloth Exhibition – Deadline 4/30/11
    • SAQA:Layers of Memory Exhibition – Deadline 6/15/11

ARTFABRIK_sm1SHOW & TELL: Some unusual items included a lovely “Fish Purse” (a gift made by a friend) shared by Cynthia Butts, and a quilt with matching tote bag made out of fabric selvages, created by Debbie Bein.  Debbie is still collecting selvages if you have some to donate; strips should include the machine edge plus about 1” width of the fabric itself.

After Show & Tell, we were treated to a visual buffet of hand-dyed fabric and thread by Laura Wasilowski ARTFABRIK.  There were plenty of “Ooohs” and “Aaaahs” as people enjoyed the rich colors and picked their favorites to purchase.   After a while we had to put them away since the food was about to arrive.  We enjoyed a delicious Panini lunch from nearby restaurant, Casablanca.

NEW FRIENDS: Executive Director Richard Herrmann, Director of Marketing Betsy Halliday and a photographer from the Craft Center dropped by to meet us and take a look at our work.  BCC is a very fiber-friendly place, and the staff is interested in offering even more opportunities for fiber/textile artists.  Anyone interested in offering classes...or taking classes...please get in touch with the Center (

SAQA-NY artist Kendell Storm made the trip from White Plains to Brookfield for our meeting, and has joined us as a dual NY/CT member.  Welcome to the group, Kendell!

FOLLOW UP INFO:  During the meeting, Diane Wright talked about the needles she uses in her work, and some people were wondering where to get them.  Per Diane, “I use Organ Needles for Sewing Machines.  I purchased mine from Marathon Thread at a quilt show. is located in PA.  They have both regular (of all sorts) and titanium (of all sorts).”Guilford-Art

NEXT MEETING: Co-Rep Diane Wright has volunteered explore the possibility of hosting the next regional meeting at the Guilford Art Center during July while a textile/fiber exhibit is featured.  The upcoming exhibit will be a four person invitational show of hooked rug work, including SAQA-CT member Liz Alpert Fay.  

The meeting will most likely be on a Saturday in late July or early August.  After a date is confirmed, Diane will approach the featured hooked rug artists and see if they are available for an artist talk and Kate will arrange to have the 2011/2012 SAQA Trunk Show on display.

elementsMINI-WORKSHOP: We ended the meeting with the first of hopefully continuing mini-workshops.  Kate Themel offered a basic overview of Art Elements and Art Principles.  Art Elements: specific building blocks we use to create 2D compositions (Line, Value, Color, Shape, Texture); Art Principles: more loosely-defined theories, how viewers perceive visual information (Figure/Ground, Balance, Emphasis, Gestalt) – How can we use these ideas to improve our own compositions?  

If you missed the discussion or if you’d like more information about these terms and concepts, here are two excellent sources:

FUTURE WORKSHOPS: Each meeting will feature one of our SAQA members giving an informal lecture/demo on one subject.  They are called “mini” for a reason – just 15-20 minutes of your time to give an overview on a something you are comfortable talking about, and answer some questions from other members.  Very low pressure!  Contact Diane or Kate if you have an idea for a mini-workshop, or if you’d like to volunteer to lead one.

Volunteers for future mini-workshops include Carol Eaton: Dyeing with Natural Ingredients; Betty Warner: Tips on using Photoshop; Barb McKie: Effects of Fusible Products on Fabric.   The mini-workshop topics will depend on our guest speakers’ availability and the date/location of each meeting.  Stay tuned for more details!

Thank you to everyone who participated and made our Regional Meeting so much fun.

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