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Sunday, April 11, 2010

Guest Speaker: Renske Helmuth

Renske Helmuth entertained us with an amazing trunk show! Although trained in sewing, crocheting, and knitting in her native Friesland, it was until she immigrated to Canada that she took up quilting. One of her first teachers was Rosemary Makhan, and you can see that influence throughout her work.

Many of her early works were done in the Baltimore Album style. Beautiful applique of ribbon flowers, "critters", and many birds that have landed on her bird feeders. She has entered her quilts for judging in many contests and has won awards, but enters less frequently and only if she is passionate about the contest.
She has, however, had a longstanding involvement in the annual New Hamburg Mennonite Relief Sale and Auction. She works on the committee that coordinates those quilts. Renske was so inspired by the book A Gift of Wings by Carl Hiebert, that she asked him for permission to use his photos as inspiration to make quilts for the Relief Sale. This group quilt effort raised over $11 ooo!
This piece below is Renske's interpretation of one of Carl's photos:

One quilt that she is particularly proud of, is an interpretation of her native family farm in Friesland. Working from a photograph and her memories, she created this gorgeous quilt of her family home! It wasn't until she found the perfect piece of fabric that represented the brick for building did the whole piece come together.

She "thread painted" the trees:

Much of her passion for quilted landscape art grew through making Christmas cards and postcards for family and friends. She later discovered Sashiko and has done many quilts in a Japanese style incorporating the Sashiko into the quilting.

And there was so much more, I took many photos! You can view more of them here. The LFQGuild would like to thank Renske for a gorgeous trunk show!

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