Sunday, 28 August 2016

Green Quilts: I think I've Done Now.

'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!

Samuel's Quilt

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!


Debbie said...

Well travelled and well used, its beautiful

The Idaho Beauty said...

That's a lot of quilts from a single idea that began in a workshop! Woman after my own heart - I love working with scraps and the odd shapes from trimming. Sometimes those "one thing leads to another " quilts are better than the original quilt that birthed them.

Margaret Cooter said...

It was a workshop with Alison Schwabe that got me going on a small series that I called "splinter quilts". She gave the workshop to London Quilters around the time of yours, and I have the final of those quilts, double bed size, half quilted. Might have to finish it one day, though I doubt it will become baby quilts.

Like you, I used up the offcuts in some small pieces.

The gentle greens in your series work interestingly with that edgy, splintery shape, especially in the closeups when the other colours come into play.

Liesbeth Williams said...

I love your 'Lost in the reeds' quilt, quite beautiful. I don't think I have seen any of these green quilts before. Very nice!

Heather said...

Fascinating process of transformation and reconfiguration. Gorgeous work!