'Lost in the Reeds
Yesterday I finished my quilt on the theme of 'Green' for International Threads exhibiting group. I think this is the final piece in a fabric journey starting in 2003 with a weeks class in France at 'La Maison du Patchwork' near Limoge with Alison Schwabe
It was a challenging time for me - I'd just started on anti- depressants and was finding it difficult to adjust but being fed and watered in lovely surrounding with expert tuition from Alison was just what I needed. She taught us a variety of piecing and design techniques - I still use her method of curved piecing and inserting strips slightly adapted to incorporate those used by Charlotte Yde on a later workshop. I'd brought masses of green fabrics with the idea of making a double sized quilt and made loads of blocks which I'd started to join together with Alison's help. I completed the top on my return and layered it with wadding ready to quilt - then left it untouched until 2015!
Grass Clippings at FoQ 2004
I did however get very excited and inspired by all the scraps left over from cutting down the blocks and made 2 small quilts ' Grass Clippings' and 'Grass Cuttings' . The first was accepted for CQ exhibition at the fabulous Nature in Art museum near Gloucester and subsequently in a white gallery space at festival of quilts 2004( above) . In 2006 it went on its travels to Japan when I went with Susan Briscoe along with 'Serifos Storm' my first indigo piece.
Grass Clippings in Japan 2006
Grass Cuttings at work
When I changed desks at work and had space to display a quilt, I chose 'grass cuttings' as being appropriate - it was much admired and prompted conversations about what I was doing with textiles as well as plants.
When a colleague had his first child I had great fun making a baby quilt using the 'lego' piecing technique. His second child arrived after I'd left Kew last year and with most of my things in storage/packed up as we were about to move I wanted to do something that wouldn't require too much work. So deciding that after 12 years I was unlikely to quilt my double green quilt, I removed the wadding and backing , partially picked apart and reassembled a section of the top and quilted it - a suitable quilt for a botanists child!
I still had two-thirds of the quilt left and for Cwilt Cymru's next exhibition 'Cynefin ' ( roughly translated as a sense of place, of belonging) I wanted to commemorate losing my wedding and engagement rings on Catfield Fen! Lots of cutting apart and reassembling and insertion of strips of Jo Lovelocks dyed fabric as well as some photos printed on fabric of the Fen Orchid and its habitat.
Catfield Fen: Gifts to The Gods
For the theme 'Green' for International Threads, it seemed appropriate to use up what was left and try some slightly different ideas out for 'Lost in the Reeds' (below)
Besides using scraps for the Grass Cuttings/Clippings quilts, I've made several Journal quilts /samples over the years
JQ June 2003
JQ September 2015
Gifts to the Gods Sample
I've recently been posting postcards on Facebook 'sketchbooks and experiments for textiles 'group, zig-zagging together offcuts when cutting quilts down to size. I love playing with scraps! I still have a few bit left of blocks and trimmings but I think I'm done with green now!