Monday, 12 November 2018

Heart & Soul: Two Men Tell Their Stories

These are the eight quilts in the show at the Parrott Gallery in Belleville, Ontario.The show is a collaboration with my husband, Larry Tayler, photographer. 
Artist Statements' are included, as are links to brief YouTube videos for each quilt.Photos by Larry Tayler (larytayler.com


Not For Sale
         77” x 82”
· Based on a variation of a traditional
double disappearing nine patch block.
· Fabric design assistance by Hri Neil,
Carbon Art and Design (www.carbonartdesign.com)
· Hand guided, free motion quilting by Deanna Gaudaur – (www.quintestudios.com)

Artist’s Statement

On November 28, 2017, in the House of Commons, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau delivered an apology to LGBTQ2 Canadians.

I wept as I listened to his words that day and I wept again as I reread them repeatedly, in the making of this quilt.

This speech is a defining moment for Canada, and it is a defining moment for me.  After decades of feeling less than, of living in fear, of believing that I mattered less … I knew that I was valued, accepted and OK in the eyes of my Nation.

I am so proud to be Canadian!




$1200 (available summer, 2019)
         76” x 76”
· Hand guided, free motion quilting by Deanna Gaudaur – (www.quintestudios.com)

Artist’s Statement

This quilt is one large, double disappearing nine patch block.

It is about the power that we each have as one lone voice …
· to speak our truth,
· to call out inappropriate behaviour,
· to question what we don't think is right,
· to start conversations that might seem difficult. 

It represents the notion that our one voice can inspire another, and another, and another, until there is a chorus; a conversation, and then change is possible.

This quilt inspires me to push the limits on issues that I talk about through my quilts; and hopefully to start more conversations.






$1200 (available summer, 2019)
         57” x 57”
· Based on a variation of a traditional double disappearing  nine patch block
· Hand dyed fabric
· Hand guided, free motion quilting by Deanna Gaudaur – (www.quintestudios.com)

Artist’s Statement

I remember that his beard was soft;
That his hands were rough;
That his stomach was hairy.
But I can’t remember his name.

I remember being told to be quiet;
That I’d be in trouble if someone came;
That I wanted this.
But I can’t remember his name.

I remember the smell of his pillow;
His hand on the back of my head;
The weight of his body.
But I can’t remember his name.

I remember that it was over 55 years ago;
That I was 11;
That I’m only remembering now.
Why can’t I remember his name?





$1200 (available summer, 2019)
         57” x 57”
· Based on a variation of a traditional double disappearing nine patch block
· Hand dyed and hand bleached fabric
· Hand guided, free motion quilting by Deanna Gaudaur – (www.quintestudios.com)

Artist’s Statement

I’ve thought and read a lot about forgiveness lately.

· ‘Good to forgive. Best to forget.’ – Robert Browning
· ‘Let no man pull you low enough to hate him.’ – Martin Luther King
· ‘To be a Christian means to forgive the inexcusable because God has
forgiven the inexcusable within you.’ – C. S. Lewis
· ‘Forgive others, not because they
· deserve forgiveness, but because you deserve peace.’ – Jonathon Lockwood Huie

No one quote can fully sum up what I feel.  But I do know that I need to forgive … to let go. Otherwise, the past will consume me.

I will never forget.  I don’t think that we’re supposed to forget.

I will, however, forgive. 

For me.  So that I can move on.  I need to do that.





$1200 (available summer, 2019)
         54” x 64”
· Hand dyed fabric
· Hand guided, free motion quilting by Deanna Gaudaur – (www.quintestudios.com)

Artist’s Statement

My adult life has been about change.

I have described myself as a husband, a dad, a son, an orphan, straight, gay, a teacher, a school administrator, an urbanite, a shop keeper, a farmer, a shepherd, a spinner, a retiree, a widower, a volunteer, a husband again, and a quilt maker.

For me, change has been like a constantly churning cog in a wheel.

The more that I accept the changes, the faster change churns, until it becomes a whirlwind that envelops me and whirls me through doorways and into the next change.
Embracing these new changes without fear, seems to grow the grandness that is my life .





$1200 (available summer, 2019)
           54” x 60”
· Based on a variation of a traditional double disappearing nine patch block.
· Hand guided, free motion quilting by Deanna Gaudaur – (www.quintestudios.com)

Artist’s Statement

I love the Sydney Opera House. 

And I love this iconic view of the sails of the Opera House.

To me, this view captures the grandeur of the structure, as it reflects over and over in the waters of Sydney Harbour, and in the hearts and minds of visitors from all corners of the world.

The ‘water’ is my own hand dyed indigo fabric.  The ‘sails’ are from fabric designed by Australian, Shauna Scicluna.  Jorn Utzon, the designer of the Opera House said that his design was inspired by the ‘simple act of peeling an orange’, so the orange fabric colour seemed perfect.





$1200 (available summer, 2019)
         67” x 78”
· Based on a variation of a traditional    double disappearing nine patch block
· Hand dyed fabric
· Hand guided, free motion quilting by Deanna Gaudaur – (www.quintestudios.com)

Artist’s Statement

I love the night.

In its darkness there is a calm; a quiet.

But no matter how dark it seems, there is always light … light from the heavens, and light from within us all.

And from that light comes the colour of night.

And we know the peace that comes with the colour of night..





Private Collection
         53” x 65”
· Based on a variation of a traditional double disappearing nine patch block
· Quilted by Deanna Gaudaur – (www.quintestudios.com)

Artist’s Statement

Days before his eighth birthday my Grandson told me … “My Dad doesn't think that you act your age Grandpa.”

In an attempt to discover how old I do act we continued to chat. 

We discovered that we had similarities.

We both like to get our own way; we both get grabby when we’re tired; we both like to eat ice cream; we both like Lego and making things; we both tease our sisters; we both laugh when we hear farts; and we both have no intention of kissing a girl. 

Our conclusion … we are both eight!



Sunday, 4 November 2018

Constructing an Improv Double Disappearing Nine Patch Quilt

To start with I sort my fabric.  In this case I sorted by medium, light and dark ranges.
Then I construct the first nine patches.  I usually make more than I'll need.


When I have all of the nine patches made, I cut them into quarters.  
For each of them, i use the original blocks in the corners and then add five more blocks to make new nine patch blocks.
I will often mix up the original quarters in order to get colour/tone proportions that I think I'll want in the final piece.


Next I cut the second nine patches into quarters.  These are the 'blocks' that I'll use in my quilt.
I arrange the quarter blocks on my design wall until I'm happy with the arrangement.
I will often add solid blocks to emphasize aspects of the quilt.
Sometimes I make more blocks.  For this one, I wanted to ground the composition using white fabric, so I made some blocks I could use to soften the edges where colour and white meet.


This quilt is called 'Forgiveness'.  
The Ghanaian batik fabric uses the symbol for forgiveness as its basis.
The other fabrics are either bleached from black fabric, or rust dyed.

This is the fourth variation 'taught' in my Double Disappearing Nine Patch Variations workshop.

Monday, 29 October 2018

'For the Oppression of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Two-Spirit Communities, We Apologize.'

'For the Oppression of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Two-Spirit Communities, We Apologize.' 
77” x 82”
  • Based on a variation of a traditional double disappearing nine patch block.
  • Text of the PM's speech is printed on most of the fabric. Printed by Spoonflower.
  • Fabric design assistance by Hri Neil, Carbon Art and Design (www.carbonartdesign.com)
  • Hand guided, free motion quilting by Deanna Gaudaur – (www.quintestudios.com)


Artist’s Statement

On November 28, 2017, in the House of Commons, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau delivered an apology to LGBTQ2 Canadians.
It was an amazing speech.
I wept as I listened to his words that day and I wept again as I reread them repeatedly in the making of this quilt.
This speech is a defining moment for Canada, and a defining moment for me. After decades of feeling less than, of living in fear, of believing that I mattered less than … I knew that I was valued, accepted and OK in the eyes of my Nation.
I am so proud to be Canadian!

Tuesday, 11 September 2018

Bio For Quilt Canada 2019

This is my bio from the Quilt Canada Website - List of Teachers page.

I kind of like it!  I think that it reflects ME pretty well!


Bill Stearman

In his lifetime, Bill has been … a poor student, a badly-behaved son, a teacher, a high school vice principal, a husband, a father, a grandpa, a landscaper, a farmer, a shepherd, a community living home-care provider, a hospice volunteer, a zoo volunteer, a spinner, a weaver, straight, gay, a husband again, and now he tells his stories with quilts.
His quilts have been juried into national and international shows across North America.
Bill’s energetic, optimistic, positive, and passionate approach shines through in his work, his Back Pack Shows and workshops.
Email: b.stearman@hotmail.com   

Wednesday, 29 August 2018

What's Love Got to Do With It!


This quilt replaces one that we wore out on our bed.  We share our bed with an active Dachshund, a Basset Hound who likes to dig, and a black cat with claws to exercise. Together, the five of us have worn out one bedspread in four years.  It was the second quilt that I ever made.

But, we've worn it out with the love that comes with a family bed!

When it was time for a new one, I turned to my favourite fabric in the world.  It is a Tanzanian batik, made by a woman who supports her family through her work, which is fair traded and ends up with my friend Michelle, at Kallisti Quilts.  Michelle has become a friend and I love to buy from her.  She always makes me smile. And when I work with this fabric, I can hear the woman who made the fabric humming as she works. And I sing as well.

The fabric ... this quilt ... and where it is ... 
Love has everything to do with it!



Quilted by Deanna Gaudaur, quintestudios.com
Photographed by Mike Gaudaur, quintestudios.com

The Power of One


This quilt is one, large, double disappearing nine patch block.
It's purpose is to show the power that we each have if we speak our truth, call out inappropriate behaviour, question what we don't think is right, and generally loose our fear to speak.  Each of our voices will inspire another, and another, and another ... until it is a chorus, and change happens.

Quilted by Deanna Gaudaur, who added her power through quilting to the message.

Random Pics of Recently Dyed Fabric





Thursday, 12 July 2018

My New Sink!

One of myTrent Valley Quilt Guild friends found this wonderful sink for me in a Swap Shop and of course, I bought it!
After two quilt shows, a retreat, a trip to New York City to look after Victoria Findlay Wolfe's dogs, and guests from B.C. ... life has slowed down enough that I have it hooked up in the back yard.


Today, I played around with bleach on black fabric.
The test pieces are in the wash to be sure that the process stops.  When they are dried, I'll add a picture of the finished pieces here.

Next, I think I'll dye, since I just bought 30 metres (118" wide) of the fabric that I love to dye.

In the Autumn, once we have our 'Heart and Soul' show up and running, the sink will be installed in a 'playroom' in the basement so that I can manipulate fabric whenever I want!

Life is good!

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

WOW ... Humbled Yet Again

My quilt, 'My Left Brain', won the Viewers' Choice Award at the PEC Quilt Show last weekend!
Totally humbled.
For me, this award really matters.
Thanks to all who voted for this quilt.
It is, of course, a double disappearing nine patch variation!
Life is good!




PEC Quilters' Guild - Quilt Show, 2018

At the PEC Quilt Show, I bring in a bunch of old sewing machines that I've collected over the past couple of years and set up  a Vintage Sewing Machine display.
It is great fun.
The best part is the faces of folks who see the machine that they learned to sew on!
I'll be back in two years, if they'll have me ... in spite of the fact that the machines get heavier every time I have to lift them ... lol



Canada Day Long Weekend - 2018

Over the Canada Day long weekend, we had the opportunity to 'pet sit' for my quilting friend, Victoria Findlay Wolfe at her Manhattan loft.
How could we say no!
I'd met the pups last June and loved them.
And I got to know Victoria at the same time.
Her NYC home was a great place to base out our adventures in the city.

Below is Agatha, who seemed to be quite stuck to me whenever I sat down.

Jenny Egg is an older girl who has vision and hearing issues.  I thought that might make her love me the best  ... but ... she stayed pretty much glued to Larry!



Thanks Victoria for this opportunity!
We're looking forward to return visits!

Monday, 18 June 2018

Rare ... New Pictures of Me!

I rarely allow folks to take my picture.  I'm not sure why, but as a result, there are very few pictures of me out there.
Lately, I've had two taken and I love them both.
Interestingly, both are of me with the same quilt!

The one below was taken by my husband, Larry Tayler    (larrytayler.com).


 And this one was taken by my Guild friend, Eleanor, at Sewing With Your Friends.

Life is good!

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Double Disappearing Nine Patch Variations Workshop Samples

 I have finished the samples for the workshop that I'll be teaching, starting this Autumn.
Once the block has been mastered, and sample blocks completed, these are the patterns that I will have available.

'It's a Breeze'
- a traditional variation 

'For Baby and Me'
- a transitioning to modern variation

'Nice People, Nice Things'
- a modern variation

'It's the Same World, No Matter How You Look At it'
- an improv variation
(no pattern for this one, just instructions and suggestions)



An Award!


My quilt, 'I Wish I Had a River' won third place in the Modern Bed and Wall Quilt category at Quilt Canada!
Humbled. Grateful. Blessed.
Thank you Quilt Canada!




Thursday, 10 May 2018

Quilt Canada 2019


I got word this week that my application to teach and give my Backpack Lecture at Quilt Canada, 2019 was accepted!
I am thrilled, humbled, and terrified all at the same time.
I've been working wildly on more Double Disappearing Nine Patch variations and will get them posted here very soon.  Some of them are pretty traditional (for me), and a couple take my breath away.
Life is good!

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

I Am



ARTIST’S STATEMENT

I Am

I remember the first time I thought that I might be.
It didn’t make sense that I was.
But how was I to know?

I wasn’t a hair dresser, or a florist, or a cross dresser.
They were the only ones I knew. I wasn’t like them.
So, I couldn’t be.

Maybe everyone had the same feelings as me. Felt like me.
That would make me normal.
And I lived my life as if I was.  Normal.

I dated. Women
I married and bought a house.
It was all as it should be.

Once I fell in love.  With a man.
We had a torrid affair.
And again, I thought that I might be.

But I had an infant son.
And I couldn’t be.
Dads couldn’t be.  It was 1975.

So, I forgot about it.  For the most part.
I remembered to straighten my wrist when the topic came up. Deepen my voice.
I acted more like a man. And I wasn’t.

Time passed. Years passed.
The world changed. I changed.
I rarely wondered if I was.  I knew.

One night, standing on a bridge. Contemplating.
I knew that I had to be. To go on. To survive.
And so … I am.