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Artists' Corner Archives

September 2019

Our little Creative group has been quite active, as you can see in these pictures, however we are always seeking new retirees who may enjoy some artistic, crafty or handmade hobbies. Please contact us! Michèle has been busy making this red and orange wall hanging sewing exclusively with fabric she designed and hand printed herself, based on her own sketches and snapshots. Also,  she continues to upcycle used clothing, leather and bedsheets to make Boomerang Bags and other earth-friendly creations. She is having trouble finding/buying some of these "vintage" Ikea bed sheets striped in blue/lavender/teal (see photo) so if you or your friends own any, PLEASE ,PLEASE sell them to her so she can finish her projects. Finally, she is still teaching her grandson to sew on his new Janome Purple Thunder machine: great memories being made.

In the meantime, Claudia has been knitting away making these lovely variegated socks and a gorgeous  grey sweater with an intricate cabled white knit color. Absolutely beautiful but looks rather difficult to produce.

Brenda has also been very busy piecing and quilting these beautiful quilts, using stunning fabrics in various shades of blue and cream. In addition, though it is not quite finished, she has been preparing this complicated Celtic batik quilted treasure. You probably do not realize how many hours are needed to produce just one of these beautiful fabric creations! A labor of love. 

Please click on images for larger view





September 2018

Well, it certainly has been a hot, humid summer and both Brenda and Claudia took a vacation from their creative activities. Michèle, however, was outside for some fabric printing using those heavy manhole covers on the street (see pictures of yellow and blue fabric). And made some pink star blocks for a group charity project. Also worked hard at upcycling old pure wool coats and blankets to make these two cushion covers depicting Dali and Frida Kahlo for her teacher/daughter's art class. All details of lips, hair, eyebrows and flowers made from wool clothing scraps and some hand embroidery. Now, she is chopping up old jeans and leather jackets for more surprising upcycles. So, new members, if you do ANY type of crafting, creating or even just upcycling, please send us a note or a phone picture c/o Michèle.





January 2018

Great weather to stay inside and be creative with different arts or crafts. This small sunny modern baby quilt/or wall hanging has been donated by Michèle for a raffle in support of the locally sponsored Syrian refugee family arriving soon. Claudia has knitted this gorgeous cardigan. Brenda has been churning out all these beautiful traditional quilts. We are currently experimenting with a small TEACH A SKILL/LEARN A SKILL format and will keep you posted on our results. We hope 2018 will be a creative artistic year for some of you and we invite you to send photos of your work.


Please click on images for larger view



June 2017

There is a lot of knitting, quilting and printing from Claudia, Brenda and Michèle, as well as save-the-earth upcycling of materials like old leather, pure cotton and 100% wool. Call me silly but I thought these 8" fabric scraps from Ikea looked like Henri Matisse made them himself, so I turned them into an artist's bag for my lovely daughter, an elementary Art Specialist at Lester B. Pearson School Board.

Claudia sent these pictures of her recent knitting, including a baby blanket for her latest grandchild and I think the white sweater she just finished had actually been started by this fellow's mom 25 years ago!

Finally, printing fabric and paper involves a lot of pressure (physical, not social) so here is a peek at some of the equipment used to roll and push those designs onto materials. You are always invited to send pictures of your own creations, or maybe send me some worn out/torn leather jackets or wool coats to be turned into something totally different, artistically!



February 2017

#QuiltsforQC - Request for Quilt Blocks 

Member Michèle Fitzgerald invites you to join her in making blocks (like those shown below) for quilt donations to comfort people touched by the shooting in Québec city.


  • 12.5" x 12.5", depicting a house to symbolize that our country is everyone's home;
  • any colour, but no depiction of animals or humans, and a pale neutral background in grays or beiges.

Links and additional information is posted at Montreal Modern Quilt Guild.



January 2017

New retirees who finally have time to be creative in their hobbies are always invited to show us some of their work. We are not looking for masterpieces: any Work In Progress (WIP) or even just a plan or sketch can encourage other retirees to finally try their hand at something crafty or artistic.

For me, I am trying to use up as much of my hand-printed fabrics as possible, instead of letting them sit unseen in storage heaven. Then I can try new methods, designs and inks or dyes.

In the meantime, my modern quilt guild has finally finished my project of making an abstract modern quilt to welcome a refugee family suggested by Jan Langelier. I am shipping out the quilt this weekend to show it in Savannah, Georgia, at Quiltcon 2017. Then it will be shipped back to Montreal, ready for donation. The theme was Scale (large, medium, small) and it is a rather abstract, giant flower inspired vaguely by the work of Georgia O'Keefe. Sewing curved fabric pieces instead of straight blocks was a great challenge for all!




September 2016

When tragedy strikes, modern quilters try to show support and offer encouragement by making special cozy quilts to donate directly to victims, rescue workers or fundraisers who can auction off unique quilts to raise money. This year, we have created hundreds of blocks and/or whole quilts in support of the Fort MacMurray displaced victims and then again some heart-shaped ones for the Pulse shooting tragedy. Meanwhile, Michèle Fitzgerald is again leading a charitable Montreal Modern Quilt Project aiming to encourage, support and welcome one or more Syrian refugee families trying to settle permanently in our midst. Future photos will be collected as this beautiful creative project develops.





June 2016

Brenda Bertram is a quilter who is happy to share some of her work. She says "I am still loving the way to put squares and other shapes together and the colour combinations. Haven't done too much out of the box. I belong to the Beaconsfield Quilters Guild and they do so much fabric art! I am not ready for that yet! I included one of my first practice quilts that I made for my grand dog."



September 2015

Modern Quilt Designs: Use of Negative Space, Asymmetry, Improvisational Piecing, Alternative Gridwork or Minimalism.

Michèle B. Fitzgerald



September 2015

This is a sample of the work done by Margaret Brown Lee who passed away in July.

Encaustic Art is a style of painting that is created using beeswax. The colours are highly vibrant.




May 2015

Michèle Fitzgerald is showing us how she has taken one image and used it repeatedly to print a pattern which she has done on cloth.




September 2014

Art: The Happy Amateur

They say the creative adult is the child who survived. After all those years of being a serious, dedicated professional, isn’t it wonderful to become a playful, footloose amateur at something you have always wanted to do in your spare time… what spare time? Well, my right brain is having a blast. I have recently added digital sketching to my arsenal of tools and finding it even better than I thought. Forget the pain of drawing off-screen with a Bamboo or Waco, now that we have touch screens! Freehand rough sketching can be done anywhere and I suggest you may want to give it a try. 

Michèle Fitzgerald 




Michèle Fitzgerald

Please click on images for larger view.



I believe we can create art using just about any medium! For years now, I have been screen printing some of my own artwork on fabric so that I can transform it into useable items such as curtains, scarves or wall hangings. Although I have been sewing for many years, I only recently added quilting to my fabric explorations when I joined the newly formed Montreal Modern Quilt Guild. I am still learning and practising but quilting definitely offers infinite possibilities for creativity as well as being very green.

I love recycling, reusing and up-cycling beautiful fabrics or rescue from used wool coats, cottons and canvasses and the beauty of quilting is that you can create large items from many tiny scraps. So, in 2013 I proposed and organized the production of 15 baby quilts to be donated to teenaged pregnant high school students in the Montreal area. The young moms were thrilled that someone had actually made something so beautiful just for them and their baby. For us, it was a wonderful project which we all enjoyed immensely.

Michele Fitzgerald


Please click on images for larger view




L'Association of Retired School Employees

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