This morning Aria and I had such very nice talks together, me sewing while she knitted with brother away at a homeschool sports program. Usually she would be at her homeschool co-op program on a Wednesday, but with the winter break she's home. Honestly, she'd probably be asking me to do this or that or another, but today she respected that I needed to work on Grandma's quilt. Grandma's Christmas present quilt. Right-o!
Now all my blocks are done, and I'm starting to lay it out. I've been nervous about this quilt. Excited, but nervous.
Well... let's begin and the beginning. I've been meaning to make my mom a quilt. Her move to a new house was just the catalyst for both of us. She fell in love with this incredible quilt by Krista of Spotted Stone Studio.
Seriously, my mom has this Flickr photo open on her computer to gaze lovingly upon every day. Clearly, this is the one. Still, I hoped to evolve it a bit to make it my own. One night I thought "fireworks!", envisioning a quilt with large and small blocks, some overlapping. Kind of like this photo by Vodou Blue, abstractly rendered as patchwork:
Do you see it? Now, the idea of overlapping blocks is definitely ambitious. But, what am I if not ambitious? Hehe.
Ok, so colors. This is the luscious mix of Kona colors that we came up with. Kona from bottom: melon, coal, coral, crimson, amber, cadet, olive, jade, curry, med. gray. Yum!
Then, following Krista's lead, we'll need lots and lots of low-value neutrals for those colors to fly around in. Kona from left: white, snow, bone, oyster, sky, ash, parchment. I've also used some natural linen scraps for texture.
By the way, of the new Kona colors, I really dig oyster as a white-neutral. It has this touch of gray, unlike bone which has a touch of yellow. Kona oyster has been gorgeous with the saturated colors I typically use.
Do you think I needed so many different shades of low-value neutrals? Well, I don't know, but it did break up the tedium. I'm telling you it is So. Darn. Hard. for me to sew with so many neutrals. Seriously, takes bucket loads of self-control. That's not because I don't like the effect - Krista's quilt is fantabulous! It's just because color fuels me. So, on a block-by-block scale, this quilt has been underwhelming. I certainly wondered how it would turn out.
Each of these starburst blocks is made from 4 quadrants, a la "Kathy's Block" from Liberated Quiltmaking II. In order to keep the colors flashing amongst so many neutrals, I aimed to sew only one color per quadrant and to have one quadrant per block that is all neutrals. So, yeah, the example above is actually too-much-color according to those rules. That's probably why I like it as an individual block!
Today I finished all my quadrants for all my many, many starburst blocks and started laying out my mom's queen-sized quilt.
This is just the beginning, but, eeek, and I think I like it! The spaces in between will be filled with various neutrals (I think). My next step is to start assembling sections, overlaps and all. Since I don't have a design wall, I realized that laying out the entire quilt on the floor wouldn't get me very far. Those kitties are just waiting for me to leave so they can raise a ruckus. Wish me luck?
P.S. Any suggestions for this quilt's name? I keep thinking "fireworks" but that's just not going to cut it. Thanks in advance!
P.S.S. Enquiring minds will want to know that Kona can be found in great plentitude at Marmalade Fabrics, Sew Modern, Fat Quarter Shop, Canton Village, Fresh Modern Fabric, Fabricworm, Pink Chalk and in Canada at Mad About Patchwork.