For me, it was as much about friendship as it was about quilts.
The opening was attended by the organizers, The ambassador and his wife from Finland, and even an Imperial Princess. In this picture after all the speeches were made they are cutting the ribbon in the opening ceremony. NHK was busy filming assorted aspects of the show and later my husband watched events on TV at home.
On opening day, there was a bit of time to view the show before the general public was let in.
Who needs a princess when you have a queen to shadow? We set off to view the "traditional" Quilt Category.
One of my frustrations of the past 12 years is the practice of putting all information ... title ... maker's name ... and other details in Japanese ONLY. This year was no improvement. Even the catalogs of the show are all in Japanese.
I am certain every one of these participants knows how to write her name in "Romaji" or Roman script. It is difficult enough to translate the quilt titles into English, but names are a challenge even for Japanese. (whenever you fill out a form of some kind, there is a space above the written name to note the pronunciation ... since many characters can be pronounced more than one way) Even so, s simple common name like Sato could also be written Satoh. Only the person possessing the name would know.
There were very few foreign quilts so where are the "International" aspects? Only in the public that attends?
This "Flower Garden I long for" was made by Michie Arai.
Although machine quilting is beginning to make inroads to Japan, the traditional category was mostly hand pieced or applique and hand quilted.
It is hard to imagine the amount of time these quilts would take to complete.
Note the fine hand quilting.
"Blue Forest" by Sawada-san uses those same types of "Japanese Taupe" fabrics and is a masterpiece of detail in piecing and quilting.
This "Everybody Shining"
was made by a person whose name could be read either Shioya or Shiotani.
Even the Japanese viewers probably don't know her name by reading the kanji.
At any rate, it is a quilt with quite a lot of work involved.
Note the poor lighting caused shadows on many of the quilts. I guess I shouldn't complain because it has only been in the last few years that photographs have been allowed.
"Moment of Heightened Pleasure"
is a simple Amish style quilt that is anything but simple.
Created by Satomi Makino, it is closely quilted in trapunto.
Check out this detail!!!
By Masako Yoshihara.
Look how she fussy-cut the fabric on each of those rays!
The center star has a huge Aztec figure and you can see smaller figures embroidered in the corners.
Note those tiny mola border blocks and fine quilting.
This is the creation of Miki Kanno.
This one was made by Kazuko Ito.
Well, even titles like names are sometimes difficult to figure out.
This quilt with many tiny pieces was made by Chieko Kudo.
By this time in the show, the thundering hoards had arrived and it became more and more difficult to take pictures without heads and elbows or whole bodies covering them.
For many years I had given up trying to see these shows with other members of my quilt group. It is hard to keep a group together under the crowded conditions and many people are interested in only parts of the exhibit or shopping in the stores. It has been a joy to go along with Queenie to more than one show. We move at about the same pace and both of us notice different things even in the same quilt. Often her observations give me cause to take a second look and find things that attract me in quilts I might have otherwise passed by. She is also a font of information so please pop over to her posts queeniepatch.blogspot.com . Also check out my friend,
Tania bytaniwa.blogspot.com, who met with us the following day. (Yes, two days so far and I have only covered the first hour spent there).
For now, this is probably enough to whet your whistle. Tomorrow after church, I will be doing nature study with the scouts. (my other life) My camera took quite a while to down-load so you can imagine there is a lot more to come.