Wednesday, 19 August 2009

One shape, many quilts

“4 generations; just hanging round the house” (2004)
When my guild celebrated their 15 year anniversary 5 years ago, they issued a challenge to use a specific fabric in a quilt. The fabric reminded me of some pants I had years back, so I decided to make a quilt about house wear over 4 generations. I designed a female figure inspired by the lovely paper dolls mom used to make and clothe for us. Each figure is dressed in house wear typical for them: grandma’s house dresses, mom’s aprons, my funky pants, and daughter’s hundreds of tops; all made from the challenge fabric. To make the fabric really stand out, I used only solids for the rest of the quilt.

I love this simple shape so much, that I have used it several times in other quilts. The results are very different though.

“The golden girl experiment” (2006)
My artist’s statement: “This quilt is the result of experimenting with techniques, shape and space. It is depicting 4 different aspects of being a woman, and a tribute to the golden girl in all of us:
It is a Work of art how she pulls it all together
She should be the Star of her own show
She is often Defined by the surroundings
She is The supporting wall in the family and community.“
Each part is made separately and sewn together.
Experimenting means lots of fun and great surprises. The different techniques would make a great workshop.

“Star of my own life” (2006)
I loved the results from my experiments, so I decided to use one of them in my Hoffman Challenge. I pieced a background of rather dark solids, and fused a negative shape from a lime fabric + the challenge fabric. The lime looked all wrong, so I peeled it off and made another shape with turquoise fabric. Finally kind of happy, I added 3 borders on the sides.
The background is heavily quilted in lots and lots of tiny circles in orange and yellow to make the light beams. The rest of the quilting was a nightmare, so I put it aside.
I finished it later however, and gave it to a very special person.

“Background and foreground” (2006)
So, there I was, a few weeks to go before the deadline, no Hoffman quilt, and 4 shapes left over from the previous attempt.
Well, a quilter is nothing but resourceful, so I fused the shapes to 2 background pieces, quilted them, sew them together, put on a binding, blocked the quilt and shipped it off.
My artist’s statement: “When the spotlight seeks out perfection, others, or other sides, more colourful and exciting get left out in the background. However comfortable that might be, everybody should get recognition for who they are and what they do. Here’s to all “invisible” women and the support they provide in all aspects of life!”
The quilt got accepted into the travelling exhibition, and was exhibited all over USA for one year; it even made it to the quilt festival in Chicago. Not bad for some last minute leftovers:-)

“Fifty and fabulous” (2008)
I made this little quilt for my friend, Marit, when she turned 50. The shape is built with lots of 50-s. I had to think a bit about how to make it work, and I’m very happy with the result; and more importantly, so is Marit:-)

The picture was taken in a hurry as we were leaving for Marit's party; the corners are actually square!

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