Photo courtesy The Toronto Star and Arcadia GalleryWelcome to my quilt archive website. I have created this site because so many people have asked to see work that I have done in the past. So here it is, an archive of my past work that has been created by me and gone on to comfort and beautify the lives of others. Current works if not for sale, are also shown. I may even, at times post work in progress (which is what I choose to call my UFO collection.) Work completed and for sale is posted on www.ExquisiteDreams.com, which is my new shopping site for small Canadian artists to post their work for sale. You will find my own work for sale in the Textile Arts category there, in sub-categories for Quilts and Wallhangings.

Quilt making is a long process. Many quilt artists choose their pattern first and then select the fabric, or they see something in a magazine and choose to copy or re-create it in different fabrics. My process is to let the fabric "speak" to me. I go through my considerable fabric "stash" pulling out pieces that catch my attention and that seem to go together, then I start the quilt top production process. I do not make sketches first and my work usually evolves as I go along.

Quilting is often a solo business, so I am always happy to take my work-in-progress to my quilting group, the Etobicoke Quilters Guild. I get lots of good advice from the members there, which is particularly useful when it comes to selecting border and binding fabrics. I value their advice and the fellowship and support they offer to me and to each other.

After my top is complete, I select a backing fabric. When hand quilting, it is traditional to use a plain fabric for the back but with machine quilting its better to use a pattered fabric, so that the machine stitches do not show up so much.

Then I layer my quilt, fastening the top, back and batting securely in place with large tacking stitches and start to machine quilt. This part of the process is not very popular with quilters, who often send their work out at this stage. Personally I enjoy admiring the quilt top as I machine quilt, a process which takes two or three full days to complete.

I did not set out to become a quilter, in fact for many years I was a weaver with a balcony studio in my Belfountain country home and a flying shuttle that often wizzed down to the living room below, barely missing my children and my dog (who finally took refuge under the loom, as being the safest place around). My bags, shawls and wall hangings were popular in local craft stores under the name "Barbara of Belfountain" However a move into a city apartment left no room for weaving looms and quilting became my passion.

 


To view more Memory Quilts and other examples of Barbara's work, please visit www.ExquisiteQuilts.com.
2003 Barbara Elias. All Rights Reserved. Site maintained by CORE Design Services.