My husband, Randy Erickson, and Christina Fairley Erickson

My dear friends, I’ve decided to take a break for a little while from blogging. After working hard last week in my new class, then getting the “Salsa!” exhibition installed at the Mighty Tieton Warehouse Gallery, I’ve looked around at my priorities and have realized that I need to spend more time with my family and with making my own artwork, rather than being on the computer so much. I’ve loved sharing with you and will be continuing to read (and comment) on my favorite blogs. Thanks for all the support and encouragement you’ve provided for me.


Christina Fairley Erickson

Photo of a gerber daisy I took today.

Today’s been very exciting for me… I’m spending my birthday realizing a goal of mine- to be in the ongoing, long-term coursework at the Gail Harker Center for the Creative Arts.  I started in “Studies in Design, Experimental Machine and Hand Stitch Level 200” yesterday.

We mainly have been working on color theory and dyeing the last two days.  The photo above is a great example of color.  You probably know and can see how the complementary colors of blue and orange make this photo extremely vibrant.  But the photo also works well because it has red-orange, yellow-orange, yellow, and yellow green.  The spectrum of the color wheel from yellow-green through to red-orange are all included, which are analogous colors.  Also, the blue, red-orange, and yellow-orange combine to make a split-complementary theme.  Now, if the colors were all in the same proportionate amount, it wouldn’t be nearly as effective.  but the dashes of yellow-green and red-orange really help the photo POP!

A few of my embroidery threads and yarns that I’m hand-dyeing.  The dye is wet on the thread here and will look different once it has been rinsed out.


Beyond playing with dyes on paper and practicing color schemes, we started hand-dying our thread today.  I played around with variegating between colors, from dark to light in one color, and with using a split-complementary color scheme on the thread.
Some of my notes and a color study of creating neutrals from
complementary colors (Red-Orange and Blue-Green)

Tomorrow we will get started on dyeing our fabric and hopefully get to stitching.  I have three more wonderful days of this session… then it’s home and off to set up the Tieton, WA “Salsa!” exhibition, which will be opening Memorial Day weekend.  I’m pretty confident that I’ll be freemotion quilting as soon as I get through my show opening!


From my sketchbook- Creating shades by adding black to a pure color (orange) and mixing a triad of
Yellow-Green, Yellow-Orange, and Violet



As a special supporter (or “Stashfest Friend”) of the La Conner Quilt and Textile Museum, I was honored to attend a tea this afternoon.  A lovely group of supporters, board members, and quilt aficionados enjoyed getting to know each other a little bit and were the first to see a new collection of antique quilts that the museum recently acquired. Here are a few which I thought you might enjoy!

This pattern called “pickle jar” is pretty intricate and the colors are so vibrant.  Hard to believe that this incredible quilt dates back to 1910!
This 1932 “bluework” quilt is exquisite.  The patterns were so different from anything I’ve seen from that era. The part I was most surprised with was how the quilter used a dense field of French Knots to create the filling/dark shading of the cross.

Here is part of the area filled with French Knots.

Here’s a close-up of some of the incredible embroidered blocks.


This log cabin block quilt from 1865 is particularly unique because it’s a two-sided quilt… quite unusual for that time period.

This incredible piece has feathered triangles and appliquéd flowers and leaves as a large wide border. It’s in pristine condition… for a quilt that will be celebrating two centuries in a few decades.  It was made in the 1840s.

Here’s another piece from the 1840’s.  What makes this quilt special is that it is a very early example for broderie perce. This technique is done by cutting out a part of a printed fabric and appliquéing it onto a background, such as the center piece you see here.  The fabric was also used to make the large diamond shape border around the quilt.
The full 1840 broderie perce quilt.

This cherry quilt from the 1890’s is Mennonite.


A wonderful and unique example of redwork embroidery from the 1890’s.

Hope you enjoy this step back in history.  It’s amazing to see what was done so many years ago… how women expressed their artistic selves, even when it wasn’t considered art.
I’m staying up on Whidbey Island for the rest of the week, while I attend my first session of the Level Two series in hand and machine stitch and design at the Gail Harker Center for Creative Arts.  I’ll do my best to keep up with what all I’m working on this week,