Friday, December 4, 2015

the Spark

Autumn is burning out in South Carolina.  There's a sharp chill to the mornings, and the few leaves left on the trees tremble in vibrant reds and fiery oranges.  In my sewing room a faux-fire space heater is warming up my space while I patchwork with equally autumnal hues.

Aria this autumn

This quilt was sparked by an outfit of mine.  I found myself admiring the way purple, burgundy and brown intermingle and set out to recreate the palette in fabric.  It may have ended there, but for a one yard cut of orange Candied Lollies by Jeni Baker that was sitting about, a cast-off from an Eleni photo shoot.  I decided to recreate a favorite simple patchwork piece I made several springs ago in green.  This time the vibrant orange of Candied Lollies would be the feature checkerboard tone and the other fabrics would fill in between.

fireside patchwork

From Left fabrics are Candied Lollies, Kona Violet, Kona Coffee, Wild & Free Woven Path, Chicopee Circle Cross, Kona Crimson, Kona Biscuit and Sunburst Stripe

I'm working with yardage, so strip piecing is practical and quick.  First I cut several selvedge-to-selvedge 3" wide strips of each fabric.  Next I sewed them together, alternating vibrant orange with other fabrics.

fireside patchwork

Cross cutting into 3" segments creates already-sewn patchwork strips that will make up the quilt.

fireside patchwork

Not surprisingly, I found I wanted to add more fabrics...

fireside patchwork

I let Dowry Coffee Lineage, Kona Paprika and Kona Nectarine swap in for the Candied Lollies at times.  Using only the Candied Lollies fabric made the checkerboard pattern stand out too much.  Best to keep the eye wandering a bit before settling on a pattern...

fireside patchwork

I'm having trouble working on this quilt at night because the oranges look absolutely ghastly in artificial light.  I think I'm touchy about orange though.  I notice I don't sew with it that much.  In natural lighting I feel this quilt has a warm, fireside feel, but maybe the color balance isn't quite right yet.

fireside patchwork

Today I'm adding in a few light fabrics to brighten things up.  Crossing fingers!

Happy weekend, friends.

9 comments:

  1. I think finding the right orange color fabrics can be challenging. I wanted to make an orange quilt years ago, but wasn't finding inspiring fabrics. I think that's changing these days... you've included some great ones! I like hearing how your color story for the quilt is evolving as you go.

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  2. I tend to use cools with orange, violets, aquas, navy's...so to have all those warm Konas really does give this a fireside feel! It will be wonderful!

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  3. It's a beautiful color combination Rachel! I love those Orange Candied Lollies and the patches look wonderful together.

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  4. Love the colors you play with!

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  5. I very rarely sew with orange. The only ones I'm really willing to use are Carolyn friedlander oranges

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  6. Aria looks beautiful!
    Your patchwork definitely speaks of fireside warmth :)

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  7. Very nice fabrics. I'm really drawn to oranges and pinks these days.

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  8. LOVE the photo of Aria!! Your new quilt is looking good... orange lover here.

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