Many things inspire me when I think about making a new quilt. In the past I’ve found inspiration in photographs, wallpaper and the landscape around me. However, more often than not, fabric sparks the first idea. Most of the time I’m a quilter who takes fabric, be it a single fat quarter or an entire collection, and builds a quilt around it, rather than using a pattern or specific block.
So is the case with the next quilt on my to-do list, tentatively entitled ‘Gossip’. Like the dinosaur quilt before, it was the backing fabric that dictated how the quilt should look. I remember when I first saw it, in IKEA of all places, and knew that it would make a great quilt back. They have some wonderful 100% cotton fabrics there, almost all wider than your average bolt of quilting fabric, making them ideal for backing. Half an hour later, 4 meters of it was riding shotgun home with me. I choose the name ‘Gossip” as the women’s faces suggest that’s exactly what they’re doing; sharing secrets and scandal at an afternoon at the baths. What do you think?
The picture doesn’t do the vibrancy of the colours any justice – pops of neon yellow, pink, orange and blue jump out from the monochrome outlines of the design. My idea was to take these colours in matching solids and combine them with text, black, white and grey-scale prints in log cabin blocks to create a striking and graphic-looking quilt. I wanted the monochromatic fabrics to dominate, with the colours appearing here and there, much like the backing fabric, and I liked the idea of using text prints to echo the talkative nature of the fabric’s figures.
When I read other quilting blogs, more than the finished quilts I look forward to reading about the process behind it. When making my own I like to document everything and share it here. I usually start with a rough sketch, using it to determine the finished quilt’s size and rough block layout. I then use this to make a first, or practice, block.
Remember these fabrics? Yesterday I cut into them, along with others from stash, and made a few blocks. I’m still waiting for more text fabrics to arrive, and also need to pick up a yellow and orange solid when I visit the village haberdashery at the end of the month. I want to buy them in person so I can make the closest match possible. The Kona valentine in this first block came from this purchase and was the perfect choice. Don’t you love it when the same fabric works for different projects!
Look out for more blocks soon.