Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Quilted Garden

I’ve blogged about my exhibit several times, but a solo exhibit is a big event in the life of a professional quilter! I wanted to blog about it one more time. These shows are so much work, that I’d almost prefer to be a part of a group exhibit instead.  This helps to share all the costs involved in making and shipping quilts to and from the show location. Shipping expense is a huge consideration, that 2 or 3 years ago when I agreed to have the show, was not as large a cost. Any of you considering shows now, should think about this cost long and hard!

Back to the show at the La Conner Museum.  I always make a quilt especially for my exhibitions. As you know Coneflower Fiesta is the featured quilt for this one.Why did I choose coneflowers? I’ve done so many coneflower pieces and still have some in mind.

I wanted this one to be large, showy, and have flowers that dance across the width. This carries out the theme from my book on free-motion quilting, Dancing with Thread.  The quilting is spontaneous and adds lots of interest to an otherwise boring sky-like background.  And lastly, it carries out the garden theme for the show: The Quilted Garden.
Background of Coneflower Fiesta in process
I began this project by piecing together blue and green strips to create the background. Most are 6 -10 inches wide. I was tired of making quilts with pieced squares in the background and wanted to create a simple yet striking setting.

Fused top of Coneflower Fiesta. The multi-colored cones are a favorite rainbow commercial fabric.
Eventually one ginkgo leaf and a fallen petal were added before the embroidery was started.  After the top was completed. I marked where the quilted flaming spirals were to be placed by safety pinning paper circles on the top. So if I got carried away with my dancing/quilting, the important space for the spirals would be reserved.

So the show is up, the doors are open, and my quilt is on display. You can check my website for more of the story of its making. Make sure you look at the 3 closeups to view the flowers and spirals. Or better yet, go see the exhibit.

This quilt has become a new favorite of mine.  Thanks for reading.



Rachel said...

My favorite part of this quilt is the diagonal green grass. The irregularity creates such movement and interest. Congrats on the opening of your show!

Barbara Strobel Lardon said...

Congratulations on your show! I can see that it is a lot of work but I am sure it will be well worth it.

I love your new piece. Your background is wonderful!

I was reading your book, Dancing with Thread, just last night. I ordered it and finally had time to read it. It is an excellent book and I have learned some important techniques from it. I am anxious to try blocking my quilts like you do.

This piece will fit in well with your other coneflowers.

Anonymous said...

Ann, this is a beautiful quilt. I just saw a wee portion of it on your facebook pictures, but seeing the whole backdrop, I love how you did the piecing, theunconventional approach. Oh my you've got my attention. I'm off to your website to see more.

Anonymous said...

Back on your facebook page, I noted that you had more pictures of this quilt and background there but I got excited to see the details and, I jumped over here too soon.