October Dazzle

24.Maple TreeLinda Burton posting from Arkadelphia, Arkansas – As if October weren’t already my favorite month, this October dazzled. Early in the month was Garden Club, just the regular monthly meeting, but held at the Speights home where every room was decked for autumn, especially the dining room with a table centerpiece even prettier than the food. I was on the refreshment committee so got to hang out in the sunny kitchen which overlooks a stone patio complete with fountain, all tucked into the edge of the woods, trees just beginning to turn. The program was “Landscape Design,” ART in nature’s purest 17.Evelynform. And then there was a three-day event, the “9th Annual Round About Artist Studio Tour,” where people come from all over the country to visit working artists’ studios, learn a little about technique, and load up the car with treasures for home. Sponsored by the Caddo River Art Guild, this year it featured 21 artists spread over the Caddo River area from Burrow Road to Whispering Ridge, with a large group showing at the Art Center downtown. ART in every form from fiber to fused glass to watercolor to wood carving.

20.October.Henrietta.MaidThen, last week, three events in a row, dot, dot, dot: “Dressing Henrietta” at the Clark County History Museum featured two enterprising and historically savvy DAR ladies who “dressed” a mannequin (Henrietta) in a humorous but educational presentation about clothing in the 1700s. Next was the opening reception for “Quilting Treasure: A Batik World,” at the Art Center downtown, with 42 incredible quilts from the Clark County Quilter’s Guild displayed wall to wall to wall, remaining on exhibit through November 21. The topper was “125 Years of Hats,” over at Proctor Hall on the Henderson 24.Janice.TopHatUniversity campus, a charming and informative display of millinery history. Research was done by the Fashion Merchandising students; the hats are part of the collection of 600+ that have been donated to the University, from cloche to veiled and fur to flowered. All three events illustrated the progression of need (clothing and quilts and hats for warmth) to creativity (it can be beautiful and is fun to do). ART with needle and thread. My brain is filled with new insights and historical perspective. “But how do those events fit with capital cities, and the development of our country?” you might ask. I’ll tell you.

French fur trappers were trading beaver and mink and sable in North America even before the colonies numbered thirteen. All that fur was a hot market item for nice warm hats, and coats. And if you’re up on your history, you know the political significance of the exploration of those beaver-filled waters, the treaties and alliances formed between natives and the French and the Spanish and the British, the expansion westward, who settled where and when. As this conglomerate of people reset their world and carved out a new country, they exchanged ideas, took up new habits, and adapted. Nothing reveals how a people lived more clearly than the objects they used day to day. Like clothes, and quilts, and hats. A lot to be learned, from simple things. Here’s the scoop on who did the teaching last week.

24.Hats.Mirror“125 Years of Hats.” Fashion merchandising majors in the Department of Family & Consumer Sciences at Henderson State University; History of Costume through the 19th Century class, Dr Patti Miley, Professor; students Kanesha Evans, Hayley Gibson, Rachel Grabert, Janice Richburg, Jamie Sullivan, Beth Ulmer. Department Chair Dr Connie Phelps. Presented on campus in Proctor Hall October 24. Hat styles researched and exhibited included the Gibson Girl, popular in the 1890s; the cloche hat worn by flappers in the 1920s; halo hats of the 1930s, worn towards the back of the head; mink hats such as those designed by MM Cohn (incidentally, the MM Cohn chain was founded in Arkadelphia in 1874); flowered hats; and veiled hats, a trend that began in the 1950s. Family & Consumer Sciences, Henderson State University, http://www.hsu.edu/Academics/TeachersCollege/FCS/index.html

22.Betty.Challenge“Quilting Treasure – A Batik World,” Arkadelphia Art Center, 625 Main Street, October 22-November 21. Clark County Quilter’s Guild, part of Extension Homemakers. Exhibiting quilters are: Marie Gravitt, Mabel Neel, Shirley Olson, Debbie Page, Gwen Savage, Betty Smith, Terry Tumlison, Jo Ann Vann. The Guild meets 2-3 times monthly at the Fairgrounds, President Mabel Neel. According to member Betty Smith, “A few years ago we worked with a 4H group and made Quilts of Valor. Within the next year we plan to make thank you quilts for the local fire departments, many of which are volunteer.” Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ClarkCountyQuiltersGuild

20.October.Henrietta.Back“Dressing Henrietta” by Jo Kilduff and Fern Taylor, members of the Cadron Post Chapter of DAR, presented at the Clark County History Museum October 20. Henrietta, a female mannequin, was dressed from the “skin out” with clothing in the style used by both ladies and servants during the Revolutionary period of America. Through detailed research on the authenticity of the garments used, the Kilduff/Taylor team made all the garments themselves. Both ladies have received an American Heritage Outstanding Program award for their program, which they have presented statewide for a number of years. Cadron Post DAR http://arkansas-dar.org/cadronpost.htm

“9th Annual Round About Artist Studio Tour” presented by Caddo River Art Guild October 16-18; an opportunity to visit the artists as they work in their studios and to see the techniques used for various art forms. Twenty-one artists participated this year; read about all of them at http://caddoriverartguild.com/TourArtists.htm . I purchased four pieces this year (wish it could have been 21!) from the following four artists; here’s a quick bio for them:
17.James.Diana.2• Farrell Ford, multimedia artist, 50 years’ experience in the visual arts. Backyard country barn studio filled with art of realism, abstraction, fiber, transfer, clay, with a demonstration of knife painting.
• Evelyn Good, Painting, Fiber Art, Jewelry, 40 years of teaching, HSU Family & Consumer Sciences. Mostly work with fiber/fabrics, developing drawing and painting skills.
• James Langley, Painting, wood carving, Taught art in public schools, mostly portrait art, works include portraits of African American culture, includes acrylic painting and photography.
• Johnny Whatley, Painting, drawing, wood burning, colored pencil, watercolor. Enjoys drawing people, begins his work in graphite or charcoal.

“Landscape Design” by Matt Williams, for the Primrose Garden Club on October 13. The club meets monthly September-May at member homes; the programs focus on gardening of course, with special trips to Garden Shows and Garden Tours around the state, including the Camden Daffodil Festival in March, http://www.camdendaffodilfestival.com/. Local president Kim Ward, State president Rose Knight (Arkadelphia), whose theme for the year is GROW.
• Gain knowledge
• Reach out to others
• Open your eyes
• Welcome new ideas

GROW-ing was easy to do this month, with all those good teachers dazzling up October.