Saturday, December 17, 2016

a new Direction

I was all geared up to make an Aerial Grove quilt for our bed.  I had even purchased fabrics for both the neutral background and colored circles.  But then...

Japanese inspired

My husband hung one of his favorite paintings on our bedroom wall.  Combined with the various Japanese-style art pieces he's collected over the years for our room, it sets a certain direction that just doesn't say, "Sprinkle me with Liberty florals, please and thank you."

So, I can't do it.  I just can't make a quilt I know doesn't suit him when our bedroom is the only room he really gets to decorate.  Instead I'm changing directions.  I'm Facing East.

launching Facing East

In Friedlander's book, Savor Each Stitch, there is another quilt, in addition to Aerial Grove, that has long caught my eye.  The Facing East design is visually related to the Japanese rising sun flag, which dates from feudal times.  Carolyn makes several versions, but the one which I tend to find myself staring and staring at is the all-neutral version in white and cream.

So, before I change my mind, here we go!  All my white, cream and pale gray fabrics, please report for duty.

launching Facing East

In addition to scraps, I have these recently acquired yardage cuts from Westwood Acres Inside Voices bundle and more.  That Make Drafts Paper print is one of my favorites!  That and the very pale silver script print at far right.

launching Facing East

Of course I'll be including many solids as well ranging from true white to cream to pale brown and light gray.

launching Facing East

Facing East is a machine paper pieced design with an applique finish.  It's by no means a fast sew and we're talking queen sized, so..... Yes, I am feeling intimidated.

launching Facing East

But my first block looks promising.  The "rays" print is Architextures Crosshatch in gray.  For backgrounds I used white, cream, pale gray and that script print.  It was surprising how each of the background fabrics looked more saturated (more blue, more yellow, more pink) than usual due to the relative effects of low contrast.

Such a departure from my scrap quilt project!  I am hoping to work at Facing East without getting bored by alternating with other quicker, more colorful makes.  So, it may be quite awhile before this quilt hits our bed, but I don't mind.  I've promised myself not to worry about the pace, just to celebrate the progress.

34 comments:

  1. Too sad about the liberty quilt but I think this quilt will be as great as the other would have been and definitly will fit better in your bedroom. Just an idea but what do you think if you would use a fabric the same color as your wall for the circles? Perhaps even a blue/petrol liberty print?

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    1. That's tempting, but I think in the end I will like it better if I keep the quilt very, very understated. It will be a quiet place in a very colorful house! Maybe blue pillows, if it needs something =)

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  2. I have never been a big fan of neutral quilts, but love the block you have done so far. Very elegant! Perhaps a couple blue (color of your walls or close) silk pillows will add the color we all love! Seems this quilt will create a very calm and restful bedroom.

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  3. What a beautiful palette! I love gray and all Carolyn Friendlander.

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  4. This is going to be stunning. I like KathyD's idea of adding some blue pillows to the mix.

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  5. Ooooh, this is going to be absolutely stunning!!! LOve the fabrics you chose, so very peaceful and calming.

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  6. yummm, paper piecing. Can't wait to see this one. :)

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  7. Why not use the pp motif as only part of the bed quilt? That is, across part of the quilt, and then use larger plain, pieced segments? This would set off the pp parts and get you your bed quilt faster. Bed quilts seem to get more washing and a whole quilt done this way may show its wear sooner. I think the main idea is to carry an Asian theme through the room and meet Brandon's decorating preferences.

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    1. Thanks for the suggestion, Sandra. Yes, I am open minded to changing the layout as I go to need less blocks. I think it could be done and still make a strong impact. I'm going to see where it takes me!

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  8. Rachel, I love this pattern, and think you will be very pleased when all is said and done. The soft muted tones are very soothing, but I think, as you do, that a slower pace is definitely the way to go with this, so you don't get bored with it. Merry Christmas to you and your family.

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  9. Your neutral pallet is so restful and elegant. I think a neutral quilt can make quite "the statement " that you need with the oriental theme you have going. It will create a balance with your beautiful wall color too! Merry Christmas to you and your sweet family!

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  10. love it. elegant. serene. mindful.

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  11. Hmmm. Have to see more. As always your work is so precise. Japanese summer fabrics are usually an indigo blue and white print. So can see adding pillows in blue to compliment the design. Or you could try laying a piece of blue in every once in awhile starting with pale hues and working into more color as you go.

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    1. Oooh, that's an interesting idea - to work in a few pale blue fabrics. Just a smattering. I might try that!

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  12. As a person born in Japan, I look forward to seeing this finished!
    がんばってね! (Do your best!)

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  13. This will be stunning...challenging but I expect, quite worth it. I've been considering a neutral quilt for our bed too....just to decide what design.

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  14. Love your fabric choice ! This is going to be a very elegant quilt.

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  15. Love your idea and the soft neutral tones, which look so elegant and serene!

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  16. Oh my, the block is absolutely wonderful. I bet the whole quilt will look very sophisticated and beautiful. Take your time with this quilt, it will be worth it.

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  17. Changing midstream happens all too often! I love the new version. It will be stunning. And by all means...take your time!!

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  18. What a great pivot, Rachel! I love Japanese art - woodblock prints especially have my heart <3 I think this is a wonderful idea and I bet it's going to look awesome with those blue walls and all that light!

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  19. Ohhh super pretty, I love your idea so far.
    My hubbs spend 6 months in Japan when he was in high school (some school program) He had a really weird family he had to live with, so his counselor took him out and put him in the local college dorm and he traveled with a group in Japanese college. He brought home some incredible memories and a lot of wonderful treasures.
    I love this art work your hubbs chose. Japanese art is completely foreign to me. I was born and raised in Europe- Holland France and Germany mostly. Life is so full of interesting amazing things.

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  20. Oh i Love it! And i totally understand your feeling about changing your mind about the quilt design.

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  21. Ha, I do that, start before I change my mind ;)
    You are so sweet to do that for him and it will be lovely. I do love how a low volume quilt is like being covered with a calming sigh.

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  22. Just put the binding on my facing east!

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    1. Congratulations! I love the colors in yours. I was just looking at it before getting started on mind =)

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  23. This will be a beautiful quilt and support your husband's decorating style! I agree with the comment above by Sandra W about mixing in some solid blocks. Just an option to consider. It will be beautiful either way.

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  24. I have seen pictures of that quilt and I love it! What a wonderful choice. I am looking forward to seeing your progress and hearing what you think about it along the way. I think I might like to make a smaller one than queen size, so I will be watching you.

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  25. The fabric pull you've shown is so gorgeous Rachel. And seeing the block, it looks like you have chosen the perfect quilt for your bedroom! It's going to be phenomenal!

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  26. Love it! I have a couple pieces of it, but would love enough for a quilt!

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  27. I started this in the spring. All white rays, with neutral, low volume backgrounds (scrappy.) I'm only about 6 sections in, but love the results. Definitely a long term project!

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  28. I love the neutral color pallette Rachel. This will be beautiful. Don't worry about taking a while to complete this. All things worthwhile seem to take time, don't they? Merry Christmas.

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