Wednesday, January 22, 2014
Chai Rose Ikat Quilt
How are ideas born? You can't force them. You have to wait, to bide your time, eyes open for those bolts of inspiration, sometimes achingly far between, other times thick as a storm.
I'd been going through a bit of a dry patch and was wrapping up a particularly frustrating day when I plunked myself down on the sofa with my sketchbook, wishing for an idea to land.
Twiddle, twaddle, la, la..... Soon I fell to admiring my new rug, and pondered and smiled and began sketching it into block form. Why not? It was bound to happen eventually. My design echoed the rug in the center, but evolved into something quite different at the edges. And then - oh my! - the edges did connect in such a wonderful way. When I finally tucked away my sketchbook, it was late, but all was well. So well! I would make this quilt. I had to make this quilt. And it was going to be fabulous.
Ah, yes, new ideas are always fabulous!
Turns out this one was a bit late. I absolutely wanted to include the design in Color Intensive workshop and to have it to show you upon registration day.
Which was So. Very. Near.
Insistent on paper piecing for maximum design clarity, I made my test blocks. Then I got help!
This is the quilt our family made. Aria and Liam pressed seams so I could stay at the machine, stitching away, and Brandon pitched in by printing and cutting the paper foundations. I couldn't have done it without family and friends in such a short amount of time.
Somewhere along the way Aria began admiring the quilt. The colors, the fabrics, the design (I had used some old favorites by Anna Maria Horner, after all), they were all speaking to her. And, I suspect that helping make it also did her in. Well, she needed a new quilt to replace her threadbare one, so Chai Rose now lives on her bed. I'm so glad it has a place with us. I think we've all become quite attached.
This is definitely a design that delights whether viewed right up close or from afar. Hurrah! I love it!
A note on the colors. I started this quilt with a nephew in mind, a nephew who wanted black and orange. Well, I can't do black and orange. From the beginning I added white, gray, brown (basically all the neutrals) trying to tone down the black and orange (wink). I made 3 blocks this way before throwing in the towel on such a bleak color scheme. I loved the design too much to not make it "me". Out came pink, red, purple, peach. These girly colors breathed fresh life into the quilt, which was now most certainly not for my nephew.
In the end I am entirely thrilled with the colors! It feels mature, yet feminine. The subdued neutrals and high contrast along the black/white chains make the quilt easy to get lost within, while still calming. I know I wouldn't have ended up here if I didn't start there. That's the nice thing about getting outside of your color comfort zone!
The Ikat Quilt pattern for a twin-sized quilt comes with my Color Intensive online workshop, registration open now! Each block is 20" square. Add or subtract blocks to easily suit your needs! Pattern includes paper piecing or traditional piecing instructions.
Can't wait to see yours!