Thursday, July 16, 2015

My odd design process

For me making a quilt is all about having a good time while I do it.  My approach maximizes the parts I like to do and minimizes or eliminates entirely the parts I don't like to do.  I don't like to have a complete plan to execute.  Instead I like to have a general idea and improvise as I go along.  Luckily precision is not my priority and I like things better when they are a little out of whack.  I do some thinking and dreaming and scheming about size and construction process.   I like a quilt that looks good from a distance but also has details that you can only appreciate close up.  I don't like to do much precision cutting and I don't like precision piecing.  I love color and playing with color.

I am usually inspired by my materials and a desire to enhance them rather than a plan to bend them to a design in my head.  This quilt is inspired by my love of Vicki Welsh hand dyed fabrics and by Wanda Hanson's Neapolitan quilt.  I love the work of both women and I know they are friends.  In my mind, this quilt celebrates that.

Vicki's colors are so beautiful with lots of subtle changes.   I like them so much that I've been intimidated by them, afraid I would destroy their beauty.   I've had some of her fabrics for years and could not bear to use them except in small strips.  But finally I have an idea that I like enough to cut them up (gulp).

Here is my simple plan.  I cut the fabrics into squares.  Then I find a batik fabric that enhances the hand dyed fabric.  I cut the strip and applique it to the square background.  My applique method is very simple, I just use a zigzag stitch. 

From a distance the quilt is all these beautiful glowing colors.

 From close up you can see the designs in the batiks and the subtle beauty of the background.

Right now I am working on choosing and applying the strips, which is very fun for me, because I am playing with color, which is my favorite part.  And I will get play with  color again when I decide how they best fit together. 

Mostly I don't care if anyone else likes what I do.  But this time I hope Wanda and Vicki will like how I am using the fabrics.  In any case, a big thank you to both of them for the beauty of what they do and the pleasure they provide me.


Vicki W said...

I absolutely love what you are doing! I'm so glad you finally cut into the fabric and are having fun doing it.

Exuberantcolor/Wanda S Hanson said...

Yes, I agree, I love what you are doing too. A freeing fun process and a striking end result.

Sharon @ Laurelhurst Craftsman said...

It's looking good. :)