Thursday, May 30, 2013

Tentmakers of Cairo Quilts

If you were not able to get to the AQS Lancaster or Paducah shows, then you missed a fantastic exhibit. AQS has brought back two men from Eqypt to the US - men who still create this wonderful artform.  These are some of the quilts that they make.  When I call them quilts, I use that loosely.  The "tents" are made originally for celebrations.  The outside of the tent is a canvas, and the inside is this wonderful and colorful applique.  At Paducah, both men were sitting at the exhibit appliqueing.  It was really neat to see and watch.
 As a quilter that loves to applique, I find this very exacting.  I use tiny, thin needles with very thin thread. My seams are very carefully turned, and many small stitches are taken.  They are much different.  They cut crude shapes with large shears, then turn the edge under with a honker of a needle, and what is probably only a 40wt thread!  Their stitches show, and are not super close together.  Their process is built for speed, and production.  But look what they make...Isn't it wonderful?!
There were many quilts at the show for sale, ranging from about $500 to 1500.  Boy I would have loved to have had one.  I'd love to make one, but I am not that crazy.  I'll leave that for my facebook buddy Megan Farkas - her's will be amazing someday when she is done.  The Tentmaker's quilts are all so colorful, and geometric.  I am amazed at how they get such good symmetry when they mark off the applique shapes with a block of chalk (no, not a visible pattern to be seen).
 The shapes leave me with great ideas for quilting motifs...
 I mean, seriously, is this not gorgeous and amazing?
 ...this one too.  And they are designed & made by men.  They really are fantastic.
 I love the dahlia shape, so this one is so intriguing.  I cannot imagine how long it would take to make.  Forever probably!
Hope you enjoyed :-)


~Michelle~ said...

Those are neat! How big were the $500 quilts?? Based on the amount of time invested, it might have been worth it!

regan said...

Seeing the tentmakers at Lancaster was one of the highlights! They really were amazing to fast!

What Comes Next? said...

enjoyed immensely - thank you!