Wednesday, 26 January 2005

Australia Day

Today is Australia Day, our national day, so my mind is exercising itself trying to think how nationalistic symbols fit into CQ. I know that whenever I have to embellish something and need to put an Australian symbol on, I now tend to go for the old threepence or sixpence with the coat of arms on it - the kangaroo and emu are recognisable, the material is silver and the simple circle is elegant and easy to incorporate.

When we have the annual Aus-USA swap I something find charms of Australian animals, but wonder how usable they are in CQ for our sisters in the USA. More often, I have been fabric stamping images originally by Ida Rentoull Outhwaite, as some thing Australian. But hardly sort of "iconic" Australian. But there are some other wonderful illustrators on that website (although not necessarily Australian - amazing how easy it is to get side-tracked)

The problem is - while kangaroos are recognisable, they hardly belong on Victorian CQ. And while I could work in/send fabrics in the orange/brown ochre colours of the inland - I am not from there, I am from the green and purple part of the country. (The Great Dividing Range starts just by my back gate, if you are wondering how long a bow I have to draw for the purple)

There - see what I mean? Put the snow on it in winter, and I live in a purple, green and white landscape. (*Groans* heard offstage, left)

Anyways, where am I heading???? The picture above is to make up for the fact I cannot find my Lyrebird Cross-stitch pattern to post here. The Lyrebird is the Australian equivalent of a peacock - beautiful tail etc, but shy and a symphony is browns, not a showoff like the peacock. But a wonderful mimic. I grew up in the bush and remember chainsaws arriving. It took us a while to work out why we could hear them on a Sunday - it was the Lyrebirds.

So here, for Australia Day, is a little bit about Lyrebirds

Now, what are other Australian symbols that fit with CQ???? Gum Leaves? May Gibbs with her Snugglepot and Cuddlepie??? It is hard to find illustrations on the net of her work, I think because they are so well controlled by the charity they were willed to. But in the meantime, it is good to see some Cross Stitch Kits becoming available.

Anyone got any other thoughts on how to incorporate "Australianism" in CQ???

(And, totally from left field - my spell check wanted to replace Snugglepot with knuckleball. Go figure!)


Blogger Maureen said...

There are some gorgeous Australian theme patchwork fabrics you can use. From your almost sane quilting friend in Perth.

9:26 pm  
Blogger Sharkeysday said...

My hubby is Australian (from Sydney) and his folks are always (at my request) sending us Australian books, etc for our kids. What about some illustrations from classic Australian kids books, like "Blinky Bill" or "The Magic Pudding", etc. I believe in Victorian motifs they quite often used drawings from childrens stories.
I admit it's a tough one tho. I've done an Australian sunset with gum trees (although it's not finished!) with velvets, silks, fibers etc, but it's much MORE of an art quilt than a traditional victorian crazy quilt block.

1:28 am  
Blogger arlee said...

I had to laugh---if any of us from any country *had* to use the conventional "symbols" of our home....hmmm, i'd have to go with mounties in red serge, igloos, beavers, a maple leaf, maple syrup, huskies and maybe some wheat....gah! Guess we all need to personalise the icons and twist 'em around a bit!

3:18 am  

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