Thursday, March 23, 2006

Colors of Spring

Moving right's another item I can check off my list of goals for the week. Yesterday I sewed together my 4-patches into this quilt top for charity. This pretty much uses up the blue fabric that went into the two Cobblestone quilt tops, and it also used up a white with tiny letters printed on it. As I was adding the borders, I thought - what a change from the dark, very brown quilt I just made for the Changing Perspective exhibit! All those pastels and whites are not what I usually work with but certainly were cheery! I also realized that these are the same colors I'll be using in the piece put on hold until I could find a glue for my foil. Mmm...I must want spring to come more than I thought!

It's hard for me to see trends in my work - probably hard for most of us. But because of the way I keep my documentation files chronologically, I sometimes pick up on themes or trends if I page through it. One observation I've made in the last couple of years is that I seem to work with a certain color palette over several quilts - not intentionally, mind you, but where once each project seemed to be in a different color scheme, suddenly I had a year of predominantly green quilts, then a year of predominantly blue ones. Sometimes fabric from the first quilt will lead me to the next, or find itself suitable for it. What I haven't taken time to analyze is what breaks the pattern to move me on to another set of colors.

As for the fabrics that went into the 4-patches, they are predominantly leftovers from clothing I made for either myself or my mother back in the 1960's, which is the same time period I suspect that blue fabric came from. Oh, we were so mod back then and wearing quite garish patterns and colors. I guess the earthtones that I am now so fond of kicked in a little later, or maybe this is just mostly our spring/Easter frolics. After a long Idaho winter, we really knew how to brighten things up come spring. Of course, most of this is poly/cotton blends or all synthetic, some a bit heavier and some a bit lighter than the cottons used in quilts these days. There's even a dotted Swiss and a flocked gingham, but I think they work just fine for this application. I've had these squares sitting in a box waiting for a give-away quilt since I wielded my first rotary cutter and decided to cut up all those dressmaking scraps into usable-sized squares. I definitely started this creative quilting path in the "use it up" recycling mentality of traditional patchwork. It didn't take terribly long, though, to get caught up in "creating a stash" from all the new and beautiful fabrics that suddenly filled the stores in the 1990's.

I think these three scrap quilts have gotten the charity sewing bug out of me for the time being. My brain is rested from the rigors of the problem solving of that last art piece and I'm itching to work through a new technique and design challenge.

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